Doc Searls has a useful post on brandjacking.

I no longer keep, much less answer, email from my bank (which, to keep from making things worse, I won’t name). Nor from any other bank. Nor from eBay or PayPal.
Except for their Web sites, all those companies have had their brands hijacked on the Net by Phishers and Pharmers.

Buy your health insurance at Costco?

Victoria Colliver:

Retailers and health care may seem like an unusual pairing, but an increasing number of stores — especially big-box discounters — have been getting into the business of offering health coverage or care. With health care costs on the rise, these retailers want to offer their customers a value on a needed service and increase their profile as a store that offers everything under one roof.

“It makes sense to offer health care in places where people already have to go — whether to buy food or other household goods,” said Linda Sherry, spokeswoman for Consumers Union, a watchdog group.

Strategic Failure: HP & AT&T


It is interesting to note that groups of technologists within AT&T were accurately forecasting the future. A few groups formed to deal with new developments and even attempted to influence the decision makers. Probably the most interesting was ODD *- I wasn’t directly associated with it, but know most of its former members.

A friend who happens to be one of the ODDsters, Amy Muller, co-authored a brief history on the group and AT&T’s strategic failure. (pdf) read it

Interesting Reading… Via Lessig

Blogs & Democracy

There have been quite a few dustups recently in the ongoing discussion of blogs.
Locally, Madison School Board Member Juan Jose Lopez recently said of the group education blog: “I think this kind of forum is destructive
School Blogger Ed Blume blogs a proper response to Juan’s comments.
We’d all be well served by reading a few of Jefferson’s quotes on education & democracy. has much to contribute.

KCRW (Public Radio) starts Podcasting

Setting a great example for all other public radio stations, Santa Monica College’s KCRW will launch Podcasts of their programs (mp3 files easily passed around, linked to and played back by the millions of mp3/iPod type players in use today). KCRW is an excellent source for interesting music and programs, via mp3 internet streams.
I’ve seen no change in Wisconsin Public Radio’s audio content. They would be much better off, as would the listeners and contributors if they provided all local content in easy to use mp3 files (they currently have real audio streams which require the listener to be connected to the internet while listening).
Rebecca Ryan is speaking Tuesday night (3/1) at the Overture Center on whether Madison has what it takes to play in the New Economy (Two bad signs: no public radio podcasts and no wi-fi at the airport, actually, there’s a 3rd, we continue to let Kenton Peters inflict his metal buildings on us….). While these two issues require attention, the larger problem we have is a low business risk culture. Sort of strange, given that the Wisconsin economy was grown by many, many entrepreneurs who built agricultural and manufacturing businesses 50, 70 and 100 years ago.
What are podcasts? Click here to find out.

Paul Ryan and Social Security Reform

Mike Allen follows Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan around his district as he advocates for Social Security reform:

Ryan, who will help write the legislation as a member of the Ways and Means subcommittee on Social Security and is a longtime proponent of changing the popular government retirement program, is pushing the White House idea to farmers and factory workers throughout his district in the southeastern corner of the dairy state, with 35 “listening sessions” in 12 days.