I thought I was being asked to have lunch with a great friend I hadn’t seen in like 4 years. Man, we had so much fun together before our lives led us in different directions. She was writing for a neighboring newspaper and I was helping a mutual friend launching his own blog service.

We would bounce things off one another like two cub reporters in the days of the “big scoops.” You know, moving int publicity with the real story behind “Man bites dog” (Part of reporting history is the story told of how to catch the imagination of a the public about things that were mundane. The newspaper owner said, “Get me some stories about a dog biting a man and I say, ‘What’s new.’ But, get me some stories about a man biting a dog and I can sell some newspapers!'”

We were good at getting the “man bites dog” stories. Really good.

So she bites me…she put the bite on me…she tricked me into a lunch date to try to sell me into this travel club multi-level marketing company called WorldVentures. You’ve seen it, it’s the photos of people on vacation with these ridiculous rollout mini banners that read “You Should Be Here.” That’s the one.

She started tell me about how she is now traveling, blogging, booking, recruiting, and making a level bringing new members into this stuff.

Her excitement was palatable. You could taste the shrimp on the barbee and the smell of the ocean breeze. Well, it got breezy, but not that kind of a breeze.

Seriously, she was wanting me to jump into this thing with her and bring all my traveling crew. (Admittedly, we do like to travel. If only for a two night, three day excursion, we like to do that about once every 60 days.)

I’m not going to turn this thing into a sales pitch for that travel mlm stuff…that would be like me treating you the way she treated me. I detest that sort of thing.

I gave her the, “I’m going to have to sleep on this one” response and after about three more memorized assertions (canned stuff I am certain she had been trained to spot and address), I stepped away just before she completely degraded our friendship into the dust of the past.

I googled that travel mlm thing and found www.scoobyphotos.com . Man was that helpful.

In less than five minutes I had read enough to demonstrate to my friend when she calls back (and, trust me, she’s going to call back…it had taken three calls just to work out a lunch date…and I hadn’t placed any of them) that I did some research, had some reservations, saw how it matched up with a few other current travel mlms and I had decided to not participate.

At the very least that scoobyphotos.com place was a godsend. I know where I can go when the next friend hits me up, and where I can go if this friend doesn’t stop harassing me about her current project.

I’ve got to admit, I thought we were back in the “man bites dog” story days. It just kept getting more forced by the minute. It was obvious she was seeing me not as a friend from the past, but a source of prospective enlistees, all the while pushing the idea that since I travel, I might as well make money. The problem with that is, it would make me act more like she’s acting and less real than either one of once was.

It’s a sad day when friends have to begin to avoid another rather than embrace the past full of closeness and wonder.

Forgive the rant, it just needed to be made public, if you know what I mean.

No joke.

I called my friend Marc at awtsupport.com and he helped immediately.

Instruction: take the sims card out immediately, shake it to get the water out if possible and bag it in a small, but full plastic bag of rice, leaning it on the side of the sims car slot. Let it sit for 48 hours.

If this doesn’t work, bring it in for a chemical dry and then restoration.

What’s absolutely hilarious is what happened beforehand.

My grandson while at summer camp was soaking a foot wound (he’s not real coordinated with sports) and when the phone in his hand buzzed unexpectedly, he jostled and the cell phone went from his knee straight in to the water.

You’ve never heard so much protest as my wife railing on how immature and idiotic dropping a cell into water must be.


What about when you’re sitting on the couch, a glass of water is in the cupholder middle section and you poise to get up from the crouch. In doing so, you brush your hand accidentally across the couch, tap the phone, and it slides right into the cup of water? You guessed it.

One is an accident and the other is just not paying attention to your surroundings. I’ll let you decide which is which.

The outcome:

wife’s phone is functioning just fine, no problems at all.

grandson’s phone is completely corroded and must be replaced.

Go figure.

This is one of those encroachments that moves publicity into privacy.

A marriage is not merely a civil union, but it is at least that.

A civil union is not a marriage, and it never will be.

What a pity that people have to tear down an institution in order to walk across the lawn. Why is it necessary? To demonstrate pride? To require others to be like I am? I thought that was the whole idea of “coming out.” Not to require others to be like me, but to assure that I don’t have to be like them.

Now, we suppose to require everyone to be like us? That’s absurd.

The Supreme Court of the United States has proven itself to less supreme and a court of public opinion rather than a court of law.

Publicity should never rule the court, and yet it has.

It remains to be seen how unbounded the public can actually become. When a court can voice its own previous rulings as if it establishes a legal precedent for continual rulings to its favor, then where does the boundary appear in setting laws. We abandon all discipline for the sake of a willed agenda.

We all have been given permission to become our own law. If questions, we simple point to the law we previously set as per our agenda and legitimize the agenda all the more.

A wise man once told me, “I’d rather have influence, than control.” Why?, I asked.

He explained. “To have control and abuse it that control, though corrupt, can cause you to become even more powerful. But if you try to abuse influence, you lose it.”

Think of someone whose has influence over you. As you consider that person and your shared relationship, how often can that person “step over the line” with an invasive comment too personal to be received from that person?

How often can that person speak to you as if commanding you to do something, when previously you clearly understood it was a helpful suggestion, but now it is a pronounced command with dire circumstances if you don’t comply?

See what the wise man was saying?

Now, consider a person who has control over you. When that person exerts that control to the point it is merely to his/her advantage, what happens? You submit an he/she gains even more control and power.

See what the wise man was saying?

I choose to treat the SCOUS as what it is, a negative influence to the community; when it would rather I respond with submission. I refuse to extend control to an abusive command, when it is ruinous to all sides.

What a ridiculous tug of war, resulting in too much damage and a flood gate of even worse to follow.

I’ve got a great friend, Stew (short for Steward) over at www.DallasStuccoConstruction.com¬†Yeah, it’s a shoutout to Stew!

We were talking about the essential difference between publicity and reputation. You know, like reputation is the cloud spawned by publicity.

Gossip is like the old telephone game… five people stand in a single file next to another five people standing in a parallel file. A printed slip of paper with something like “Tell Tommy His Mother Said To Telephone Teddy About The Party Sunday Night.” is given to each number 1 person in their respective single file line. It’s done at the same time and each person in the line can only whisper into the ear of the person directly behind them. The first person can not read from the paper, but must simply whisper so that no one else hears what is said to the second person in line. It can only be said once. And it passes from one person to the next person in the same line until the last person hears the phrase.

Yelp, the phrase comes out something like: Mom telephoned Sunday. Timmy can’t party with Peter. Gossip spreads in crazy ways.

So, I asked Stew, “If gossip is not publicity, just words shared without certainty about a shared subject; then how is reputation like publicity?”

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Earlier this week a super hacker was interviewed on a national news network.

In a matter of minutes he was sitting with a female he had never met face to face. Within just a few sentences he told her where she banked, how many accounts she had, what her passwords were, where she lived, the balance on her mortgage, and where she made a recent purchase down to the exact amount spent, the time of the purchase and how much tax she paid.

She became unnerved.

And this hacker is a good guy (white hat).

He admitted he had worked for the bad guys (black hat) and was paid handsomely. Now, he’s trying to help the good guys build defenses against the bad guys.

Guess where the bad guys usually reside?

Yelp, overseas. No question. China, mostly; Russia some; more and more in Islamic regions.

BUT, that’s not the only place the black hats are found.

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Now think with me about it… how much privacy do you have…maybe everything is public?

You swipe a bank card at a gas pump and you’ve just given your most vital information away with a motion so simple you might as will have waved goodbye.

You send an email and the system records the content, the date stamp, the sender, the recipient and now the recipient has been captured and recorded for interests noted within the content you sent, whether the recipient shares the same interest with you are not.

You step through a scanner at the airport, and there’s no need for me to tell you how much information you just gave away…more up to date info than your mother has on you.

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At the heart of publicity is the disclosure of information to others so that privacy of that information is no longer maintained.
Secrecy is the antonym of publicity.
However, there are those who bring a complexity to the definition of publicity. That complexity is most often tied to the introduction of media. The use of an avenue or mechanism for the acceleration and proliferation of information to an ever broadening audience.
What do you think? Does publicity require the introduction of media? Can we have publicity without media? Does media simply stimulate publicity or is it a requirement for publicity?
Why would we settle today for the concept that publicity did not exist before media? Can word of mouth be called media or is it simply word of mouth?
Think with me for a minute. Publicity could be a higher form of gossip or sharing of information. Certainly prior to the printing press there was news. Certainly prior to news there was talk. Talk shared among family and friends and beyond was the first experience of publicity. The making public of that which to fore was held private.

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Have you noticed that “going viral” is hardly ever separated from a sense of publicity. It occurs so dramatically that what seems to be popular seems to be publicity, almost without distinction between the two.

There are elements that are similar between the two:

Publicity is shared…..Going viral is as well

Publicity is an invasion to the private…. same with going viral

Publicity is considered greater in effect according to the audience increase…. the very definition of going viral

Yet, that which is publicity does not have the same shelf life as going viral.Continue reading

Suicide is a horrible environment. I say environment rather than experience, because the one who experiences the suicide has little sense of the total environment inflected by the singular act.

Suicide seems to always be expressed by the “should have dones” rather than the clinical cause. WE should have noticed. WE should have known better. WE should not have presumed.

There is an environment, an atmosphere if you will, of confusion…seeming to know the details but not as distinctively clear as they should be. Thoughts of how, when, where, why go unexpressed, if not unanswered. There is a veil of vagueness, yet a sense of “you have all the information you need.”

We move on. We who survive the action of another. But, we are deeply and significantly altered.

Publicity has an aire of suicide. When do we probe deeper? At what level do we satisfy ourselves that the facts made public are adequate, “you have all the information you need.” But do we? If publicity is content shared with others, then who has the choice of the level of content? Does the informer have the right? Does the audience have the right? Does the State have the right? Oh, now we get ourselves into the fray. Seems as though each party declares they have the right. But do they?Continue reading

Have you just looked at it? Plagiarism is impoverished privacy.

In plagiarism there is a privacy brought to publicity that is intentional and deliberate.

Some one has taken the time to discover something of value in written form. There was initially a private moment of discovery. Then there was a consideration of exposing that written data beyond its current venue or exposure.

Two steps: one perhaps unintended discovery of value, the second a deliberate exposure of information to a broader audience.

When you just look at it, there is a compliment in there some where.

Privacy has been impoverished at three levels.

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