Wednesday, May 28, 2014

The New York Times innovation problem has a name: "Consciousness Shift"

The New York Times innovation report points out the readership problem that mainstream media like the NYT, the Washington Post and the Guardian are going through and which the report identifies as an issue of "audience development" set in a wider blurred setting called "digital media."

Through this article we will demonstrate our thesis statement that identifies the New York Times innovation problem as a problem of "Consciousness Shift."

Not surprisingly, after months of investigation led by a team of eight who are among the most "forward thinking" NYT writers, they came to the conclusion that the more urgent need was "to focus on the core of the New York Times."

That conclusion sparked outrage in the NYT newsroom, as the immediate reaction even cited in the report was that "Focusing on the core is harder than starting something new because every proposal threatens tradition and turf."

Such a reaction is the kind of attitude that has been preventing our civilization from evolving for about 2000 years.

It's called "fear of Self-Empowerment" or on a deeper level "Fear of Consciousness" and it made me think of Umberto Eco's "The name of the Rose" a 1980's novel that wonderfully portrays the very reason behind the birth of religion on this planet:  Fear.

This is an abstract from the movie adaptation of the book:

The starting point of the Innovation report is that over the last year the Times "has watched readership fall significantly". I warmly invite you to read the abstract below which is the introductory paragraph of the NYT Innovation report:

"The New York Times is winning at journalism"
 Our daily report is deep, broad, smart and engaging
-- and we've got a huge lead over the competition"

"At the same time, we are falling behind in a second
critical area: the art and science of getting our
journalism to readers."

Dear New York Times Editor, trying to disguise readership with something weirdly defined as "art and science" is not very honorable coming from a historical institution like yours.

"Getting your journalism to readers" is not "a second critical area," nor it can be mystified or confused with "art and science" because it has nothing to do with witchcraft nor is it something that can be exiled to an unspecified "secondary scientific/artistic area."

Such a redundant essay reminded me of the time when Physics scientists at the beginning of the Twentieth Century discovered that Consciousness was involved in the dynamics of matter creation and they were so shocked by what they found out that they had to confine such a disturbing phenomenon within a different type of physics.

The discovery was so dreadfully appalling to their fragile consciousness that they felt the compelling need to call it by a different name. That's why Quantum physics still at today is cut off from "official physics."

Just as is the case with a law of physics, Readership is a direct consequent of Consciousness:

No Consciousness, no readers. End of story.

You can try to hide behind bad faith claims like "the endless upheaval in technology"

Or nonsense like: "Digital media is getting more crowded, better funded and far more innovative"

But at the end of the day you will have to face yourself in the mirror and try to convince the person you're looking at.

Turning towards Consciousness means beginning to connect to the world's collective feelings and looking at the world without "tradition and turf," that is to say you have to start telling stories without all the filters you’ve been adopting along the course of your entire history.

That is to say that if you don't want to completely lose your audience you have to jump ahead of the Consciousness Shift and take the lead.

Obviously if you are stuck with "tradition and turf" I strongly suggest you to drop out of the competition because there is no way out here other than tuning yourself into Consciousness mode.
You can find a million excuses not to. You can call it digital upheaval or digital divide, but what you need to do is to become aware that its correct name is "Consciousness Shift." Despite its roboant sound, its implications are not as exotic as you might think. Actually it just means that "you have to follow the vibe," where the vibe is yourself and yourself only.

I understand the concept might sound hostile to someone who has buried consciousness under the concept of “digital upheaval” but once you are willing to catch the shift, surprising things will follow, like solving your readership problem for example.

To be perfectly honest I am quietly optimistic regarding the New York Times situation, because among the world's major newspapers that have been mentioned in the Innovation Report the NYT distinguished itself for its cautious behavior and its attitude of sticking to a strict fact-based policy.

As a matter of fact the NYT never made a real faux pas in comparison to other media like the Guardian or the Washington Post, whose fact-checking policy can be defined as an "improv show" to say the least.

What's even more appalling regarding these two papers is that they almost seem to share the same newsroom because their headlines are often exactly the same.

In fact I was almost flabbergasted when I read in the Innovation Report that competition in the news-industry has become more aggressive and the NYT Innovation analyst affirmed the Guardian and the Wash Post adopted "aggressive strategy."


This is the Washington Post on April 8, 2014:

From this headline you can judge yourself the level of "strategy" put in place by what used to be one of the most respected media worldwide.

The headline reads: "Want people to think you're smarter?"

This is not a joke, this is the Washington Post. 
Remember Woodward and Bernstein? The Watergate scandal? It's the very same paper.

Let's analyze this headline deeper: the statement expressed in the headline starts from the assumption that "you got to look smarter" even before "being smart".

Actually the very concept of "being" here is completely trampled on, because according to the Washington Post what really matters is "to make people think" you are smart.

Hence, it doesn't matter if you are a mentally disabled individual. What really matters is other unspecified people's thoughts over your "smart appearance."

Not only "being smart" is absolutely out of discussion here, but the article jumps to a further disturbing stage because it aims at leading the reader to assume that what really matters is what an undisclosed number of unidentified people, somewhere in the space-time tissue, might, one day, THINK OF YOURSELF. Without even knowing you but only looking at yourself and at your abilities "to look so intelligent."

Let's see:  Do I want other people (who are not me), to see me as a smarter person?
Ok, let's put it for a second that me, Mr. Nobody, I follow the Washington Post's Cro-Magnon's advice and I start to look smarter than what I think I actually am. What then?

I mean once "my smart look curtain" dramatically falls down what then?
How do I keep looking smart once the people I want to impress go beyond that veil of appearance and realize I am a total idiot?

Does the Washington Post provide a solution for that kind of "Consciousness death" like some after-life pill or something that goes beyond how to look or to impress others?
Do you realize the Washington Post is promoting external appearance disguised by Self-Empowerment?

In the era of Consciousness and Self-Awareness the Washington Post Editorial Policy on Self-Empowerment is to focus yourself on "how you look,” which in terms of self-awareness means absolutely nothing but killing your own Consciousness by hiding it under "what other unknown people might think of me one day."

Is this the Washington Post’s audience development strategy?

Rather this appears to be a totally pathetic attempt to deny the very existence of human Consciousness, which is the default equipment of every living human being. Even if it has to be considered pathetic in its form, this is nonetheless but a lame attempt to completely annihilate the reader's consciousness.

And the New York Times is afraid by the strategic audience development put in place by the Washington Post.

I wonder why....

Audience development is an advertising concept. Most of the time, people who have no advertising background and absolutely no knowledge of audience development (as in the case of the Washington Post) they have a sort of makeshift attitude towards something that actually requires a professional background and years of study and dedication.

Below you see a basic audience-development diagram that shows you how a concept has to be modeled upon the audience segment you want to target.

Usually our client tend to prefer advertising campaigns that fall within the ME/PRODUCT area, while in today's market it's the southeast area designated as BENEFITS/AUDIENCE that makes the difference in terms of audience.

In today's market the targeted audience segment has to immediately perceive:

(1) The product was shaped just for them
(2) The immediate benefit they would receive from buying it.

Diagram Courtesy:  GLD Marketing

This is just a very basic standard you have to stick to when you work with Audience Development Professionals in a professional environment.

If you go back to the Washington Post headline, it is absolutely and immediately clear that the message they want to sell to the audience is not only off target, because it doesn’t provide a single benefit, but it is actually a self-destroying message, hence it won't ever sell. 
Not in a million years.

Here's another pearl:

This is the Guardian's audience development strategy; we can define it as "the denial of human consciousness, of free will and of quantum physics in one shot".

"Does smoking weed make you a better parent?"

We should start here from the Quantum physics, whose basic assumption is that "it is the observer who creates reality". 
Indeed the famous double-slit experiment demonstrates that "when the observer doesn't watch matter behaves like a wave." Quantum physics was discovered 200 years ago and the double slit experiment is a sneak peek into the power of Consciousness but still at today news media struggle to familiarize with it. Or better they simply don't care because they think it's something that only relates to nerdy scientists and not to our everyday's life and certainly not to the scientific-art of audience development.

Instead, here we have a headline that is just as self-destructive as the Washington Post's article on "looking smarter." It basically starts from the assumption that the reader's consciousness and her/his free will simply do not exist.

This is the Benefit-oriented/Self-Empowerment strategy of the Guardian in terms of Audience Development.

What the New York Times must be aware of, is that a major Consciousness Shift is occurring on this planet and if you pretend this is not happening, you are not only going to completely lose your audience but you are taking the risk that you might end up in a no-time zone like the Bermuda Triangle, where time doesn't flow and everything is stuck, including your own Consciousness.

Consciousness Shift means that a major change is occurring within every single human being on this time-string.

You have to be aware that Consciousness is not an inclusive club like Religion; some people will be left out of this shift. The final result is that the people on the planet will be split in two separate dimensions. On one side you will have those people who were awake enough to "catch the wave." On the other side you will have those who defend "tradition and turf" and who believe that an external reality does exist outside of your own Consciousness. 

The immediate consequence of such event would be that you should stop using stone-age words like "supernatural" or "paranormal" or "truth" and you have to accept the power of your own Consciousness which is by default eternal.

You should open your weltanschauung and shift your point of view not on a global scale but on a Multiversal scale. 
Such a shift involves accepting concepts like "Multidimensional Consciousness", "Life in the Multiverse" and the presence of different time dimensions, which for some reason, despite the fact that their existence was scientifically demonstrated by Albert Einstein almost hundred years ago, it is still a struggle for news media to take it into account.

When you affirm that "Flight 370 likely went down," you are not adopting a cautious attitude towards the facts because to this day there is still no conclusive evidence that the plane actually "went" somewhere. 

Despite mainstream science showed the existence of other time dimensions, according to which planet earth is not just three-dimensional but it has at least 12 different dimensions, this hypothesis has not even been considered by the New York Times. 

My question is "Why?"

Entering the Consciousness shift means implying that such an event might actually have happened.

Obviously you can pretend that such a shift doesn't exist or that Consciousness is just an empty word and you can keep up being stuck by fear and terror of your own Consciousness but you have to consider the chance that not accepting such a change is actually occurring, might involve the possibility for you to end like those poor people that 2000 years ago were so frightened by the power of Consciousness and so weakened by their inferiority complex that they disguised their own abilities with the work of the devil or the "supernatural".

In practice they were so frightened to discover the power of consciousness that their inferiority complex let terror and fear taking over themselves. They needed a safe haven to try to control their unstoppable self-empowering instinct which scared the hell out of them and led them to feel the need to build a safe recovery called religion and buried their consciousness within.

Those monks suffered of very low self-esteem and they could not conceive "power" as something related to their own self, hence they started to think that "an external reality" existed outside of themselves. They were deeply convinced the power they felt inside of their consciousness did not come from within but was to be attributed to an external superior entity called god. And that those self-empowering feelings had to be attributed to the Evil One: the Devil.

Strange to say but this human attitude is still alive and well. The same mistake was made by those scientists who 200 years ago discovered how consciousness affects matter and were so scared by it that they created a brand new branch of physics to distance themselves from that nightmarish reality.

You have to realize that fear (which has no correspondent feeling in the rest of the Multiverse, hence is earth's most typical product) characterized the whole history of our civilization and is the very reason for our civilization's major setbacks in all fields that involve knowledge.

The entire human history has to be seen as a continuous struggle between Consciousness and Fear, fear that has resulted in the inability to accept Consciousness as the very fundamental ground upon which the whole Multiverse is based.

Starting to accept what Middle Ages philosophies defined as "supernatural" as "natural" could be the first step towards the right direction in terms of audience development.

On the contrary, holding up "Tradition and Turf" at the New York Times it would be like keeping the Holy Inquisition's flag waving over New York city and the whole world.

You have to get rid of such dead weight policy if you want to survive in the era of Consciousness. Especially if you are the New York Times and you are supposed to be the guide of our Civilization through the new era we have just entered.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

In the Land of the Braves, Hillary leads The Way

I have been waiting more than a day before writing this piece, because once something of this magnitude happens, you have to absorb it within your own Consciousness and make it up along the way.

I had the privilege of meeting Hillary Clinton when I was a young Intern at CNN in DC back in 1996. I think it was my first "big assignment".

It was a celebration of the Presidents Interagency Council on Women, at the National Press Building in Washington DC.

I do remember the cerimony consisted in a documentary projection that lasted for a while. 

Hillary Clinton was facing the crowd but she was able to stay with her head turned back so that she could watch the movie screen without showing her back to her audience and she stayed in that position without moving for the whole duration of the movie.

I was impressed.

I never saw anything like that before. I am from Europe and there's no chance you could see something like this here, not at that time and certainly not at that level. (Not even now I would say)

That was my first lesson on Leadership: never turn your back to your audience. I won't ever forget that sense of respect she was able to transmit not only to me but to all the people who were there at that event.

I was so inspired by such a demonstration of energy I eventually did something you are never supposed to do, especially if you are a fresh CNN Intern and you want to make a career in journalism. Hence, I decided to join a line of women who were there to meet Hillary and shake her hand.

I was the last in line and she was almost leaving but once she saw me, she turned back and streched her whole body over a crowd control barrier only to shake my hand. She stretched her body so much I was fearing she was going to fall but instead she loooked me in the eyes and she said: "Nice to meet you".

She expected I would have said something back to her and I think for the first time in my life I did not know what to say as I was just standing in front of her in a contemplation state.

I was not embarassed nor was she I guess, but what really surprised me was her enthusiasm in meeting new people.

I think I was born with a couple of notions here and there on how human nature works and what really impressed me was the fact she was not playing a role but she was authentically and sincerely there. 

My encounter with her only lasted a dozen seconds but to me it was extremely enlightening because when you meet someone whose consciousness is so inclusive you always learn something new and you make a step forward into your awareness process.

Luckly my Producer did not see me while I was harassing Hillary Clinton but I couldn't do otherwise as she was just a massive flow of energy I wanted to see it closely whether that was real or not.

I have never been a celebrity worshipper but you can tell I am a Consciousness worshipper and I was completely dazed by that encounter because you couldn't ignore the energy she transferred not only to me but to the whole crowd who were there for her.

Back to present day, when I saw Hillary Clinton being portrayed together with the Pussy Riot, I can't say it didn't surprise me, but I was absolutely expecting something of that magnitude was going to happen as that's what I have been saying in my articles in the past five years.

I didn't know when it was going to happen and who would have made such a shift but certainly I didn't expect it happened that soon.

People who talk about marketing stunt just make me smile. I would like to tell them: "you can't be just a little bit pregnant", either you are with the Pussy Riot or you are not. 

As the Latins used to say "tertium non datur" ("no third possibility is given").

America is the symbol of leadership in itself, because of its exceptionalistic nature, its understanding of individual responsibility, its culture of bravery and its hate for tyranny. 

I think legitimizing the Pussy Riot was not an easy decision but it was one of the  smartest move in the history of U.S. politics.

In comparison, Richard Nixon's visit to China is nothing.  

I am not talking about the Ukrainian conflict, because this is a statement that goes well beyond that. Only a blind would see it as a way to respond to Russia. 

The extent of such a huge political statement completely depends on how You are going to see it and how you are going to use it.

You have to realize our planet is split in two different visions, you can call them dimensions, state of mind, whatever you prefer. 

On one side you have the arrogance and the dispotism of a few powerful people who just want to control the planet's economy. Controlling the economy implies controlling politics and that's the way it worked until today, when a giant bug entered the system and completely hacked it. 

This bug is called "visibility". 

In today's world everything and everyone are visible. You can't hide and you can't even run.

What happens is that visibility automatically involves a conscious judgement on the legitimacy of your behaviour. Are you behaving badly? Everyone would know it right away.

In today's world, if you are a leader you must be visible and you must behave accordingly to the core values we have reached today as a civilization, who constantly confronts itself throughout Facebook and twitter, otherwise you immediately become "the bad guy" and you get framed in that picture forever. 

No question about it. In today's world you can't mess up. Whether you are a movie director, a journalist or a world leader if you act badly you are a negative character. Period.

Not by chance and in more than one occasion, Republicans openly supported Vladimir Putin's aggressive policy, because he's visibile and apparently he is not afraid of the public judgement.

In response Hillary Clinton stands up for the Pussy Riot. 

Who do you think the majority of Americans and the rest of the world would stand for?

Despite my appreciation of Vladimir Putin's charming attitude and his enormous intelligence, ruling by fear and intimidation is so last millennium.

Especially in terms of leadership, because of the visibility problem that carries with it the sudden judgment not just of the Russian people but of the whole planet that cannot have other outcome than total disproval. Basically it's a losing strategy by definition. 

Although the verve surrounding these willing human beings might lead them to become creative. They can even decide to stage a planetary show to avoid the "visibility problem".

Although the problem is that staging something in the era of Consciousness is like trying to dam Niagara Falls with toothpeaks.

That's why former President George W Bush started to make paintings. That's the only form of expression he's allowed to. Kinda sad.

The only chance that President Bush has to get back to the surface is to completely change his position and his point of view.

Do you realize how different is today's world compared to the latest Bush Presidency?

The concept of bravery for example has been completely reversed and Hillary Clinton sealed this major shift in our planet's consciousness when she decided to sponsor a group of Russian hooligans whose American reference is Occupy Wall Street.

Being brave today means having no fear, because real awareness leads you to the knowledge that fear is the most primitive nonsense that only exist and tries to survive on the most remote regions of this disgraced planet. 

Consciousness defies fear in the very same moment it pops up. Why? Because Consciousness is Eternal while fear is based upon the concept of death as the end of everything which is a Neanderthalian concept.   

Personally I would define Hillary's move as the most revolutionary political statement that a Western leader has ever done in recent history.

The inspirational act of leadership made by Hillary Clinton is a clear direct message to the Koch Brothers, the Tea Party and those 13 people who think they can keep running this planet while staying hidden behind the scenes.

We know You. We know what You do and things changed as this is a changing world.

This is not a game anymore, otherwise they could have changed the rules, but they can't change the rules as rules today are supervised by the planet's majority. I am talking about the majority of people, because we can only have one majority. 

Our leaders make choices every single day. They are there to inspire Yourself. Making a difference it's up to You and Yourself only.

E Pluribus Unum

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Gianluca D'Agostino worked for CNN in Washington DC and for Associated Press in Rome and Tirana. Holds a Ph.d in Theory of Information and Communication and worked as Researcher at the Department of English at Stanford University.  
                         twitter: @giallucad 

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

The Washington Post looks not very smart lately

This image file I posted above is from the Washington Post and it was published on April 7 2014, at 1:34 pm Eastern Time.

The story premise of this whole article you are reading here is based on the assumption that on average, 8 out of 10 people only read headlines.

I want you to focus on that headline. 

It says: "Want people to think you're smarter? Do this"

You sit in front of your PC and while scrolling down your Facebook updates  your attention is catched by such an appealing image of three human faces whose edges have been blurred to look more ethereal and catchy. Then the headline goes "You want to look smarter?" And that's the turning point, when your brain kicks in and you stop being Conscious about Yourself. 

I make you an example. You could tell any person on this planet: "You are the weak!" and he will start doubting about him/herself and taking your word for granted. Why? Well because the human identity on this planet and our objective as a civilization is everything but clear or taken for granted.

Two thousands years of superstitious beliefs carrying thousands of rules against Self-empowerment led us to the situation we are now: we don't know who we are, what are we doing on this planet and where we are supposed to go. That's it. This is the pre-requisite upon which the Neanderthalian propaganda set up by the Washington Post is aimed at. Identity is humankind's biggest problem since the dawn of times. And I am talking about real identity not just knowing your likes and dislikes.

That Washington Post's headline is aimed at placing a bug in your ear: "remember you are not smart", which behind the second curtain is: "remember you don't know who you are". 

When I first read that Neanderthalian headline, I couldn't believe it was real! I mean, it sounds like a vintage PsyOp trick from the South American theater back in the 50's. Are you guys that behind???? You are the Washington Post honey! You can't make such Neanderthalian Cro-Magnon stuff. You want a real consultant? Call me! My company provides beyond-the-sky-consulting to whoever needs help. And you guys are in desperate need of help. 

The consequent question is: "The Washington Post is showing all its weakness while it wants to play the tiranny?" Tyranny is dead. Tyranny died once Consciousness entered our world dear you.

Can't believe this is happening for real, in the Era of Consciousness. Can't find the words except maybe this is a sad pathetic bad comedy that can seriously put at risk the reputation of what once used to be one of the world's major news-media.

That article's headline claims that it is important "what other people think of you". In the Washington Post "vision" this is the pre-existing condition of your roadmap to self-empowerment. 

Ask yourself this question: "You want to look or you want to be?" Make your own judgement. 

This is simply outrageous if it weren't tragic, the state of awareness among what we used to define "mainstream media" is simply pathetic. I have a the perfect metaphor for the Washington Post editorial policy:  

"The blind leading the blind."

Let's get at the end of this once for all by analyzing this question in depth:

"Want people to think you're smarter?"

First of all who told the Washington Post I have to be smart? What the word "smart" really mean?

According to the Merriam Webster the word has several interpretations. However the first is "very good at learning or thinking about things"

The second is "showing intelligence or good judgement"

The third is "showing lack of respect or talking in a rude impolite way"

Conclusion: we are not even sure about what the word "smart" really mean even if we read all the existing English Dictionaries. However as our starting point and in the common use we'll take for granted the firsts definition that is "very good at learning or thinking about things"

"Thinking about things"? We should write another story just on this but let's just put that off otherwise I would enter a state of  infinite depression.

Below I reported between brackets the implicit meaning of the words they used:

"(you) want that (other) people think you are smarter (than what you are)

Let's see: Do I want other people who are not me, to perceive me as a smarter person? Is that correct? 

Uhm....According to the Washington Post I should care what other people "think" instead of how I do perceive myself? 

But the Washington Post did not use the word "perceive" they used the word "think".

Hence let's go even deeper: here the keyword is "think" which is the most misunderstood and often overrated verb in the known Universe. Who told the Washington Post that "thinking" is the best human activity when it's about managing yourself and your own life? 

Some of the earliest written records of the Hindu traditions of Vedantism around 1500 BCE shows that thinking is not the natural state of our Consciousness but the exact opposite of it. As a matter of fact the activity of thinking (to what then?) might cause confusion and distract yourself from your own self. The practice of Meditation shows that in order to develop self-awareness you should be able to plug-off your brain and stop thinking.

In the end "thinking" means confusing yourself about everything. 

Although this is the starting point of the Washington Post's philosophy to empower yourself. 

Ok. Always according to the Washington Post, after I started thinking I have to project my "thinking activity" to what "other unspecified people" think of me. 

Hence according to this funny corner-philosophy I should be able to address other people's vision throughout a system that distract myself from my own Consciousness? 

At the end of the day the whole problem is that the Washington Post article is a pathetic attempt to distract Yourself from Yourself and start thinking to what other unspecified people think of yourself. 

Do you realize the Washington Post is stuck in the Stone Age? 

The Washington Post with this article is promoting the false assumption that how do I look might influence my own Consciousness? 

Uh I forgot to tell you that Intelligence is Consciousness. Sorry about that. 

The Washington Post wants you to care how do you look because according to their evolved science "how you look" is the basic fundamental attitude to take the right path towards self-awareness, self-empowerment and leadership.

Ok. Let's put it for a second that me, Mr. Nobody, I follow your Cro-Magnon advice and I start look smarter than what I think I am 

(because of you obviously, as before reading your smart article I was the smartest kid on the planet)

You might have lost the concept hence I repeat it once again: Let's put it for a second that me, Mr. Nobody, I follow the Washington Post's Cro-Magnon advice and I start look smarter than what I think I am. What then? 

I mean once "my smart look curtain" dramatically falls down what then? 
How do I keep looking smarter once the people I want to impress they go beyond that veil of appearance and realize I am a total retarded? 

Do you have a solution for that kind of "death" some after-life pill or something that is other than how to look or impress others? Do you realize how much retarded you are? Do you realize you are promoting mental retardation disguised by Self-empowerment? 

In the era of Consciousness and Self-Awareness the Washington Post Editorial Policy on Self-Empowerment is to focus yourself on "how you look". which in terms of self-awareness means absolutely nothing but nonsense, a bunch of static. 

This is Conscious Machine, not the Washington Post and this is Gianluca D'Agostino your worst nightmare on this and other time strings.

E Pluribus Unum

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Thursday, March 13, 2014

A Public appeal to Bill Gates: Save Windows!

I do remember when XP came out in the fall of 2001. It was magic. 

Finally PC software was entering the era of user-friendly software, I even thought that Microsoft CEO Bill Gates had been enlightened by the study of Leonardo's Codex Leicester, which is basically a pamphlet that centers its attention on the human being's possibilities. 

As a matter of fact with the coming of XP Microsoft overcame Apple with the most intuitive OS I' d ever seen before. I was happy, we were happy. With the coming of XP, users felt to be like kings, we were in absolute control over our PC machines, you run a command and there you are. You got what you were looking for.  

Everything started from the magic Start button:  programs, accessories, control panel, but the very magic was Customization. 

And that's exactly what Microsoft lost along the years: Customization. 

After the huge success of XP these genius developers started to think in narcissistic terms and like in the worst tradition of big mistakes along human history they relied on themselves and stopped thinking about the Windows final users. 

Recently I just bought a new PC and I have Windows 7 installed because I don't even want to think of having to deal with that nightmare of Win 8. The simple fact they removed the start button it makes you immediately realize of a Microsoft Developer's psychological eviration.  

Windows was the START button

By removing it, Microsoft developers evirated Microsoft not only of its masculine properties but of its own identity and consciousness. 

At each new version that was released after XP, Microsoft seemed like it wanted to destroy every good thing they have been developing with XP. Since then, they completely changed their attitude of willing to realize great software. 

Like in a pseudo-philosophical shift they stopped thinking to the final user, the Microsoft customer, and started thinking on how to destroy the lives of millions by making every single thing more complicated. 

Take Windows 7 for example, there is no "Show Desktop Icon". Why? Why they did remove such a crucial thing for any PC user? 

Let's take another example, the internal search engine. XP had the BEST search engine ever. It showed you three options that included the most common categories of files you might be looking for: Images & Movies, Documents and text or all  files. It was just magic. It was easy!

Here in Windows 7, you have a simple box over the start button, and it makes everything much more difficult because if you look for a movie you have to put the file extension, but file extensions among videos are of several types, they can be .avi, mpg, mpeg, .mov, wmv, so if you don't know the extension you must make 5 searches instead of one and obviously other than making everything more difficult you feel completely exhausted thereafter. 

Why? Why deteriorating a perfectly working system? 

Let's take the tray icons, which in Windows 7 you can't customize it. No matter what. You always have that arrow-up that hides all the tray icons and puts a further step between yourself and the notification icons. Why? 

Why I cannot have my tray icons that can be customized the way I like? The only option you have is to turn all the icons on or to select to have some of them but in that case they are being hidden again by that  arrow that for some reasons is hiding all my tray icons! Why you make an icon tray if you then hide it behind an arrow which I have to click on to see what's happening? Why putting further limits on your own functions? Why Microsoft Developers are putting new limits not only to the CUSTOMIZATION of my software but to those functions that perfectly worked before this? 

Why I am not free to customize the way I love my Windows functions? Can you explain me why please? Do you realize that every single action that prevents us, the Windows users from customizing our own PC is a limitation of our personal freedom other than making my time completely wasted because I have to try to solve by myself the problems you created with no apparent reason but to put me in trouble and most of the time with no solution to your mess? 

Let's talk of Office Word 2013. Did you see it? It's a nightmare. They changed EVERYTHING. They completely destroyed a software that was absolutely perfect. 1) They changed the menu names, completely. They spread all the icons around like if they threw them. If you click on file it even opens A NEW PAGE!!!! Hence when you click on the file menu a NEW PAGE POPS UP!!!! And you have to find the way to go back to your document and see where you left. Don't you realize this is completely crazy and idiotic? 

Why did you make such an idiotic mess? Why destroying a perfectly working Word format software?   

This is a personal appeal message to Mr. Bill Gates: Mr. Gates, could you please tell your retarded developers that when a software works there is no need to change it? Could you please take over the development of Windows 9 by personally supervise its development? 

Do you realize that PCs are the very basic tools for the evolution of our species? Don't you realize how important is this? Do you realize what kind of responsibilities you have? Please take action now!

I am using Windows 7 and I am going through a real hell to perform my daily tasks. I won't ever use Windows 8, that's for sure and I am seriously thinking of going back to XP even if by following this genius policy of Microsoft there won't be new updates for XP. 

Mr. Gates, I warmly invite you to think about this situation which I would define as desperate. What your developers need is a totally change of their mindset, of their attitude of their objectives in terms of software usability. We, the final users are those who use your software not you and your developers, whose minds showed to be absolutely corrupted as the products they put on the market in the past few years. 

E Pluribus Unum

Gianluca D'Agostino 

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Gianluca D'Agostino worked for CNN in Washington DC and for Associated Press in Rome and Tirana. 
Holds a Ph.d in Theory of Information and Communication and worked as Researcher at the Department of English at Stanford University / Visiting Scholar at Media & Communication Dpt of Fordham University and @ the Film Studies Program UC Berkeley
twitter: @giallucad

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Why Apple Itunes restricts Property Rights and props up Slavery?

Today I want report the effective state of Hellish Slavery that any Itunes user has to go through while trying to handle his/her own personal music, (read Property)

To be honest with you, I never experienced a more nightmarish interaction with any electronic device than when I tried to simply transfer my mp3 collection (herein defined as "Personal Property") from my PC to my Iphone.

The main problem is that  ITUNES doesn't allow us, its customers, to use  our own property, represented by our personal collection of music. Itunes does not allow me to handle MY music the way i like but it tries with every possible mean to restrict my property rights.

For example if I want to use an mp3 from my personal collection (as I hope I still have the right to choose what to buy and from where) Apple tries to restrict my freedom and make my choice ineffective in every possible way. To manage your own music collection, Itunes requires an extremely complex procedure, including hiding files, hiding directories, forbidding drag & drop, requesting to rename files from m4r to m4a and many other devious tricky means,  that any poor guy, even someone who can be defined as PC literate, is literally forced to give up.

Because after hours of attempts you feel completely drained, especially when an alert pops up saying "Itunes can't find your song" or "the song you are looking for does not exist in the library". The Itunes system is a "control-freak software" and it goes against every possible free initiative taken by its user or any intuitive action like drag & drop for example which is absolutely forbidden.

Why is there no “Edit” function? Instead, you have to click “Get Info”, then click the “Info” tab. This might seem a little thing for you, or someone could say: "well this is a software product sold in a free market, go buy another one". Well the problem is that Itunes occupies a dominant position in the music software and if you want to transfer music files between apple devices you must use this control-freak software who takes over your freedom and runs the show for you.

This is a Monopoly regime that restricts our freedom, it might seem a little thing to you, but it's not.
This kind of control-attitude reminds me the horrors of totalitarian communist regimes of the past that forbid people from dealing with their own private property. Besides, the idiotic but complex bureaucratic-like approach that Itunes has, is the same that South American governments used back in the 50s to keep people away from exercising their rights. And when the game gets too hard, people usually tend to give up. 

Every time I connect my iPhone,  iTunes pops up and asks me to register all over again. Every single time! How many times do I have to register the same iPhone? And maybe I don’t want to use iTunes; maybe I want to use the more familiar Winamp or Windows Media Player. This is a major restriction of the user's freedom and her/his basic rights.

Why do we need to tell iTunes about every single MP3 we add to our music folders? Worse, why does iTunes try to reorganize the folder without asking? Why I have to undergo your rules when it's about of MY PROPERTY!!!! This is the worst sociopath attitude that a brand could possibly adopt in terms of customer engagement. Mr. Cook you have to remember that Freedom and the Bill of Rights is not suspended on the Internet. Internet users are people who are exercising their rights, so you have to surrender to the basic principle of Democracy as well stated by the US Constitution and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. We, the people, who also happen to be YOUR customers we are FREE to decide on how to handle our PERSONAL PROPERTY the way we prefer. Do you understand the situation Mr. Cook? 

Mr. Cook I warmly invite yourself to stop trampling on my property rights, I want to use my property the way I like the best. I would like you to think about it.

After having been through the hell of Itunes, I searched On-line and I found dozens of forums in which desperate Itunes users were trying to understand how to escape the restrictions of the apple software.

For every single and simple operation you want to make on Itunes there is a tutorial of several pages created by some compassionate souls (not by apple) to solve your problem.

Check this out: this is a tutorial on how to make a simple operation like setting up any of your song as Iphone Ringtone. I followed the whole path of steps but I didn't succeed. And I consider myself a PC literate person, so I want you to think to the people with disabilities, to the elderly citizens and in general to all those people who are not apple software developers

                            2.710.000 people had a hard life dealing with ITUNES

What do you think of this situation Mr. Cook? Do you think this "policy" can be defined as inspired by Freedom? Why apple hates its customers so much? Why they restrict our freedom so badly? Why they trample on our basic rights like our Property rights?  

Mr. Cook you saw the numbers reported in the screenshots I reported within this article. Hence this is not a news article anymore, this is a Public Petition that aims at stopping your illegal conduct.

The apple attitude towards its customers is inspired by the worst form of Totalitarian Regime where Personal Property is not only restricted but forbidden and slavery is the rule. 

The Itunes system developed by apple computers on how to manage your personal property is against the very idea of Freedom which is instead acknowledged and promoted by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, other than by the U.S. Constitution.

I understand apple went through a lot of pressure by the music industry and you want to sell their records through Itunes store but that's not my problem Mr. Cook, and in no way it must not interfere with my freedom and my rights to access my property in any form. Hence what you have to do now is to go visit your marketing department and squeeze their minus habens brains to find a less restraining system. Have you ever heard of Customer Engagement? Itunes could be the most popular music software on the planet but in terms of Customer Experience is stuck in the Stone Age. 

You are certainly aware that under the Common Law people are not required to obtain a permit before they can use their property—no more than people today are required to obtain a permit before they can speak freely.

Property is the foundation of every right we have, including the right to be free. Every legal claim, after all, is a claim to something—either a defensive claim to keep what one is holding or an offensive claim to something someone else is holding.

John Locke, the philosophical father of the American Revolution and the inspiration for Thomas Jefferson when he drafted the Declaration of Independence, stated the issue simply: ‘‘Lives, Liberties, and Estates,
which I call by the general Name, Property.’’ And James Madison, the principal author of the Constitution, echoed those thoughts when he wrote that ‘‘as a man is said to have a right to his property, he may be equally said to have a property in his rights.’’

Abusing your dominant position to force people who are also YOUR customers, undergoing such a devious path only because you are strangled by debts or you desperately want to sell your friend's records is not simply immoral, but under the United States Law it's illegal!  

Restricting the freedom of people by limiting their access to their own personal Property is not only a crime under the U.S. law, but a modern example of the worst form of modern Slavery. And this is made by Apple Computers. Under the U.S. Federal and State Law only government officials can restrict access to a property and only under the specific cases provided by the Law. 

Under the general provision of Common Law you can't abuse of your dominant position to restrict my property rights. Besides, your to say the least "counter-intuitive and non-logic slavery system" is making YOUR customers losing hours of extremely valuable time to exit from the labyrinth cage you built for us. Hence, not only your communist system restricts the use of my property rights but it is causing an economic loss that can be quantified by the time I have lost to understand your idiotic Itunes rules without succeeding. 

This is unacceptable. This is Illegal. This is immoral. This must end now.

In comparison, the Microsoft antitrust case is nothing, because the devious path you built by making such a complex procedure to use MY PROPERTY s is not only illegal but it's against the very basic idea of Freedom upon which the Founding Fathers built America.

I am a PC literate and I while using ITUNES am unable to manage MY PROPERTY RIGHTS. 

Now I want you to think the sort of hell a disabled person or an elderly citizen would experience if they try to carry on such a supposed simple operation

                          UNPOPULAR: 16.400.000 results for ITUNES SUCKS

Let me tell you that people have now realized the hell they went through the use of Itunes was not because of their fault nor because of their lack of computer literacy but it was because of your systematic will of making their lives the hardest possible. Who cares if they are disabled people or elderly citizens or people who are not familiar with technology? We are apple. We are genius. 

You are everything but genius because your lack of empathy, your lack of consciousness and your lack of awareness, places your company at the lowest level in terms of real Evolution. 

You represent the Stone Age of Consciousness and because Consciousness is the most meaningful sign of Evolution, you still are at the stone age.

In the past few months I have been studying Microsoft products in terms of Customer Experience and how do people relate to Windows and I discovered some major problems in terms of access and easiness to use but after the Itunes experience I almost feel sorry for them as I was not aware there was such a thing as the Communist Slavery Regime of Itunes.

Hope you understand this attitude will lead apple nowhere but to confront itself with the public opinion as the worst example of abuse of dominant position other than complete lack of Consciousness. 

A situation that is much worse than the one that led Microsoft to be indicted by the DC Court of Appeal and the European Union .

Your policy and your attitude are simply shameful and I warmly invite you and your company to take some decision before your customers will be able to make themselves a more clear idea on how Itunes is restricting our Freedom.


Gianluca D'Agostino

Credits: I want to thank Roger Pilon and his excellent work "Cato Handbook for Policymakers" at the Cato Institute from which some reference on property rights have been taken.