Friday, December 22, 2006

A Pulitzer.COMment ~ Adieu 2006

Greetings Cyber citizens! Some treats pour vous:

One of my new favorite new thing! L'essence. Frozen fitness fuel created by Robert Guida himself! Low calorie, low carb, low fat, 14 grams protein coated in "authentic" French dark chocolate. It's like a frozen milkyway bar but good for you! http://www.lessence.com/

Holiday shopping? Is this where your gifts will end up?

Have a hard time waking up?

And now, for your viewing pleasure! This week's videos and photo-essays of my personal "cyber scene" i.e. holiday parties de semaine!

Friday, December 15th, Rockefeller & Co.'s holiday party for their employees. Yes, I've worked here longer than anywhere else! (Except my own business)
food! glorious food! and people! (including David Rockefeller himself!)

Monday, December 18th was the "Cocktails with Courtney" holiday soiree. It was a small group, but we were in high spirits as ABC News Digital Media Group's Bernard Gershon entertained us (check out both videos).
my food review... and pictures! and
the Juggling Master! and locks of jokes!

As if I didn't have enough fine foods on Friday at the Rainbow Room, the chairman of Meriwether Capital treated our office to another delicious lunch in the spectacular dining room.

I'm off to sunny Tucson, Arizona for a week, so Happy New Year to one and all and to all a good night! :)

Friday, December 15, 2006

Raining Reindeer!

A little Hanukkah gift to my devoted readers, who've lasted this long in the newsletter, me and some Reindeer! Okay, okay, I know. The reindeer don't come on Hannukah, but I couldn't resist sending this now. Heralding back to December 10, 1999 at the Clickthebutton.com Holiday Party. Yee-gads, it brings one back, doesn't it?

Design to Better Relationships (and thus the World)

And now, in the spirit of togetherness and bettering the world and all those good things, web and graphic designer extraordinaire Alyona Makeeva has unleashed her creativity into real space with innovative industrial design. The highlights are her sleeping-bag for two with a built-in journal, couple-mittens and a play-dish for sharing desserts and maintaining eye contact. A future project is a long-distance relationship clock.

Her thesis at Pratt Design School, "50/50: Designing for a Better Marriage," explores the notion of marriage in today's America, as it's affected by social changes and cultural tradition, and how design can bring back the affinity and genuine communication into a family. In the fast-moving world, where values shift and attitudes change, while some old customs and traditions become neglected, she's created products that bring harmony, encourage playfulness and foster communication. She believes stronger bonds can be developed in families through design, creativity and exploration.

Born in St. Petersburg, Russia, Alyona was raised amid Classical and Baroque architecture, the brooding wisdom of Dostoyevsky, the elegance of the Kirov ballet and ubiquitous Soviet Propaganda. This rich tableau suffused her from her earliest days with an enduring love of art, which she's carried with her to New York. After getting a degree in Media and Communication at Hunter, she worked in graphic design and has now turned to industrial design. She envisions a range of functional creations which are emotionally evocative while stimulating the imagination.

And now...presenting...the duo-sleeping bag (and more)!
-- also check out: http://www.mocoloco.com/, http://www.core77.com/

Brad Paley did-it.com again!

Brad Paley "Did-it"(.com) again! He generously distributed a unique calendar option for 2007 (http://informationEsthetics.org). There will soon be a forum allowing people to upload their own over-scribbled versions! For a little wordy-distraction, also check out http://TextArc.org

NextNY's Holiday Party

Breaking News! I made it to a NY tech-related Holiday Party! I know. Stunning. Things happen. So, I made my way on Wednesday, December 13th, in the Big Apple to Apple Restaurant for NextNY's Holiday Fête. I happened onto one of the most enthusiastic groups of young gentlemen in a long time. They were friendly, outgoing and had very good social and networking skills! Hurrah! It made my job so much easier. No more concerted efforts at pulling out information like, "hello" and "what's your name." These things were readily offered. Wow.

The first gentleman who greeted me was the affable Mark Crofton (SAP) who not only introduced me to a few other people but told me about the recent Office 2.0 conference and some interesting companies like Intailo (a leader in Open Source BPMS). We then chatted with Ram Tantaloor (Angleritech.com) and Anne-Marie Joss before stopping for a photo-op with Steve Eisenberg.

DealMine.com's founder & CEO Scott Cherkin proudly pronounced his upcoming article in the NY Daily News (12/14/06) before I launched into some extended conversation with the dapper-est young men there. Nate Westheimer (Innonate.com) told me off-the-record about his next on-the-record project. I'm fascinated and impressed with this bow-tie clad man's knowledge of women and the Internet. Let me assure you, it's more with Soccer Moms and Community and nothing to do with Jenny Garth. Equally engaging was Worth1000.com's Michael Galpert who foretold of the future capabilities of his company.

Gathered round NextNY's founder Charlie O'Donnell at one long table was RadioTail's Gregory Galant, TheGatheringWebsite.org's Juiette Powell and Pravda Marketing's Kfir Pravda. Pulver.com's Jeff Pulver and his Pulver.com posse ("wartime consigliere" Jonathan Askin and Network2.tv Chris Brogan) were also enjoying some dinner.

This dynamic community is, of course, dynamic online as well and you can find more picture and wiki-blogs at (http://www.nextny.org/wiki/). //\\ My pictures...

Pulitzer.COMment ~ more mentoring and giving

Ho Ho Ha Ha Hoppy Hanukkah!

I am delighted to report that this reporter's spirits are considerably better this week. Oui, c'est vrai. J'ai contente cette semaine. Perhaps it's because I completed my French class? Perhaps. Si vous voulez me parler en Français, disez! (okay, if you can read French then you may be able to see mes erreurs aussi!)

Thank you for your concern (You know who you are!) about my biking in the big city. I'm fine and have been better this week. The big news is that the past two weeks I've been delving into my other passion--helping girls and woman as a mentor. While Brad Paley (http://www.didi.com/brad/) accurately mentioned that I'd been helping socially challenged people (in the tech field) for quite some time, this is a venue that fills my soul in a different way.

So two organizations I've been looking into are "Youth at Risk" and "iMentor." Youth at Risk is a great organization that helps at-risk youth move from their chaotic lives into one that is healthier where they can be effective citizens. The other one, iMentor, heralds from the early dot-com days, (founded in 1999, the tell-tale name beginning with "i"----, and the orange sofas, chairs, folder and pens)! iMentor is interesting, from a technological point-of-view, as it emphasizes email communication for busy mentors with its closed-intranet for emailing purposes.

If mentoring isn't your thing, you can honor a friend or loved one while delivering life-changing aid to families in need this holiday season with one of the 20 distinct Mercy Kits. (http://www.mercycorps.org/mercykits) There are kits for children and women and you can show your commitment to important global issues while sending something unforgettable and deeply meaningful.

For the "Think Global, Act Local" person. Come join me and some friends this weekend at one of these opportunities. On Saturday, from 10:00 a.m. to about 1:00 p.m. a group of dedicated volunteers will be making sandwiches, washing and bagging fruits, and wrapping gifts for the homeless. Food and gifts will be distributed outdoors at the corner of 125th Street and Morningside between 1:30 and 5:30 p.m. [Call John for specific directions: 646 541 5830].

Here are two other ways to help out:
1. TWO-FOR-ONE GIFTS. Look carefully at your Christmas gift list. Ask yourself about each person on your list, "Does he/she absolutely need my gift in order to survive the next 8-10 weeks of cold winter?" If the answer is "no", please buy your gift anyway. Give your family member or friend a wrapped box with a note inside that says, "I bought you a fantastic sweater for Christmas . . . and gave it to a homeless man (woman)". Then, come to our street corner or send your gift to me to give it to someone from you. Add a note on the package if you like, such as "My brother and I hope this keeps you warm". Two Christmas presents for one.

2. DRESS YOURSELF IN A PAPER BAG. Take a clean large paper bag or bags. Buy new underwear. Fill the bag with one day's complete (gently worn) clothing -- from new undies right up to outer sweater or jacket. Tie the bag with red for men, green for women. (Tie multiple bags for one person together). Write an approximate height and weight range (or size) on the outside. Add a Christmas greeting if you like, such as "I hope this outfit will feel as good to you as it did to me". Then, come to our street corner or give your bag to me for someone your size.

DONATIONS OF MATERIALS AND SUPPLIES. If anyone wants to help in other ways, please offer the 1-gallon ziploc bags as a donation option. We need 3000 for sandwiches and fruit. Volunteers should bring Christmas gift wrap, red and green yarns and ribbons, scissors, marking pens, gift tags, handled shopping bags for carrying.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Pulitzer.COMment

Well I've certainly had a full-moon week! Bumping into things, being bumped into, all sorts of crashes intellectually and physically. I'll try to compose this newsletter without too many more calamities!

One thing that's been highlighted for me is bicycling. I have embarked on becoming a bicyclist. This is my preferred form of commuting and general transportation in the city. And, unlike many messengers or other bicyclists, I actually obey the traffic laws. I stay in the bike lane (if there is one) or on the left-hand side of the street. I stop at red lights. But I am just getting' plain ol' tired of having pedestrians walking in the bike lane, and then calling me names when I holler "bike lane" to them (i.e. "the sidewalks are for people, the roads are for wheeled-modes of transportation). Most annoying was the middle-aged man who threw water on me and the other (fatter) middle aged man who actually hit me! And then there are the people who just don't look when they open car doors. I got "doored" for a second time this week by a man getting out of the back door of an SUV (2nd row of seating). In an unusual gesture, he gave me $20 (I asked for $25) to cover costs of replacing my tire.

So, if this little rant can get one person to look before nonchalantly stepping out into the street and save them and a bicyclist from an accident then I'll be happy. If that bicyclist is me, I'll be even happier!


Speaking of friends... I've been on a kick of trying to get back in touch with long lost friends. As in most things, some are trickier than others. And I found this interesting little site a little helpful: http://www.lostfriends.org/. So if you're looking for someone that google can't find (gasp!), try it and see what happens!

Now, a brief party report. Well, there are a-plenty but in a radical departure from years past, I actually didn't attend many (or for very long). I have been spending my time with various non-profits and turning my attentions towards perhaps transitioning into working more in the social (causes) sector as opposed to the social networking industry.

Among the many parties were:
Wired's store in Soho having a fete (12/7),
the 400+ NY Tech Meetup (you go, Scott Heiferman!),
Howard Greenstein's Social Media Club (11/27),
Webgrrls' Holiday party (12/6) at Gaetana,
The March of Dimes Chairman's Club Dinner, honoring Working Mother Media CEO and Founder Carol Evans,
The NYC Podcasting Meetup 2006 Holiday Event (12/4),
NYC ContentNext Mixer of paidContent.org and Moconews.net (12/5) at T New York,
SAJA Annual Members Meeting and Holiday party (12/6) at Cafe Vivaldi,
And tonight the Kevin Heaphy studio is offering a special "Art Attack" stress into creativity event at their studio in Soho.

Happy Birthday this week to... Gennadiy Borisov (MTV); Matt Heindl (Heavy.com); Jen Nash (Mangoes, Inc.)

One party I did get to last week (and where I have volunteered in the past) was Inmotion's fundraiser. Last Thursday, November 30, I stopped by the swanky studio of Brooklyn Brothers (http://www.thebrooklynbrothers.com/) for their (http://www.inmotiononline.org/) benefit. InMotion motivated the guests' spirit of giving (beyond the #20 suggested donation) with tempting jewelry (reasonably priced) by Kimmeron (http://www.kimmeron.com/). Many women, lawyers and other supporters, came into the hip studio to chat and shop while munching on chocolate covered strawberries. There were a few gentlemen--guests of the women--but they stepped up to the plate (so to speak) too and bought a few sparklies too!

You can see all 2 pictures I took!

Let's hope for a week of joy and happiness as we focus on the important people in our lives, amidst the December Frenzy. I will!

Friday, December 01, 2006

Upcoming "Cocktails with Courtney"'s

ANNOUNCING "Cocktails with Courtney" DECEMBER!
* NEW LOCATION THIS MONTH! *
Cocktails With Courtney Holiday Soiree
December 18, 2006
6:00 - 7:30 PM
Triomphe Restaurant
(in the Iroquois Hotel but with a separate entrance)
49 West 44th Street
(212) 453-4233
http://triomphe-newyork.com/


"Cocktails with Courtney" ~ Tucson, AZ! Thursday, December 28, 2006. Tucson, AZ. More details coming soon!

CLIOS!

The Clio Awards were announced and celebrated at the 2006 CLIO WINNERS REEL SCREENING on November 29th at the Village East Cinema in New York, followed by the "official" screening after party at Cafe DeVille. For all the 411, check it out at: http://www.clioawards.com/winners/index.cfm

Cocktails with Courtney ~ Post Thanksgiving

'Twas the night before the tree* was to be lit when all through the city, not a soul could sleep. Sugar plums were dancing in their bellies from the recent Thanksgiving feast and bristling with anticipation, the guests of Cocktails with Courtney at Pulse Restaurant had a perfect view of the darkened tree...guarded and gawked at.

The soiree was delightful. The guests were brimming with wit. Confetti was on the tables and glitter was on some cheeks, thanks to sparkly Rainbow Heart and his creative face painting! Janine Trusello of Hip Vintage, and who was an integral part of the Cocktails with Courtney business during 2002, looked stunning in her rose silk top and long black skirt. She mentioned that the vintage clothing business online is a hot market and she has been recently elected to the Vintage Fashion Guild's (www.vintagefashionguild.org) Board of Directors.

Doubleclick's director of Research and Industry Relations Rick Bruner and Research Manager Heath Row (http://mediadiet.net) stopped in to schmooze. Rick came to my first CWC in San Francisco, when it was hosted at the stunning home of Bill Ryan, one of my business advisors. Singers and otherwise vocal extraordinaires Laaraji and Elizabeth Soychak (http://cdbaby.com/cd/soychak) met and mingled while Rainbow Heart painted a flourish on Elizabeth's left eye.

No eye-flourishes but exciting nonetheless, the Hudson River Museum's Special Events & Individual Giving Manager Allison Martin and her friend Marie-Louise Seelig chatted with Avenue-e Health Strategies' EVP Managing Director Anthony Manson. Anthony and I also tried to see if we knew where other former Young & Rubicam interactive people (from 1997-1998) had landed and what they were up to (If you're reading this and remember Y&R before it was even Brand Dialogue, drop us a line!)

Robert Weintraub of Wolf Haldenstein Adler Freeman & Herz LLP and Dean Gamanos who does marketing and Grape Getaways (one-day trips for wine aficionados) also got to meet up and chat with some CWC regulars like Richard Allen Charles Leider (who's going to be launching a new site in January), NBC's Jim Andrews and attorney Havona Madama.

Anthony Citrano was regaling Lisa Latter (up from New Orleans) and I about his 7-weeks of international travel and what he'd do differently (fewer trains). Anthony had this luxurious time off after he sold his business and plans on more travel soon. John Bachir and Timothy Appnel geeked out later in the night talking about how they each were easing the blogging world with their programming finesse.

It was yet another lovely, low-key cocktails, a pleasant change from the massive mash-ups during the earlier boom! Check out the PICTURES: http://public.fotki.com/pulitzer/cocktails_with_courtney/2006/cwc-~-post-thanksgi/

Writing on the Right

Based in LA, WriteGirl has been helping girls find their voices through a variety of programs since December 2001. They bring the skills and energy of professional women writers to teenage girls who do not otherwise have access to creative writing or mentoring programs through one-on-one mentoring and monthly workshops. The organization has grown and there are several publications out already as a result of all the creative juices and hard work from both the women and girls. Now, to celebrate their five-year anniversary, they are holding an official launch party for their fifth anthology: Untangled. Keren Taylor, Executive Director, told me in this collection of poetry, fiction, songs, memories, scenes and creative non-fiction, girls and women work through the knots and give shape to deeply personal thoughts and feelings on family, friendship, society, school and love. So, if you're going to be on the left coast on Tuesday, December 5th, celebrate the writers and this organization at The Grill at Universal Studios (3900 Lankershim Blvd., Universal City, CA) from 7 - 9 p.m. RSVP is required so email RSVP@writegirl.org TODAY!!!! or call 323.363.1287. www.WriteGirl.org

Why Wouldn't We Love Our Children?

Love Our Children USA is a remarkable organization focused on helping keep our children safe and to raise awareness to prevent violence against children. Their recent newsletter provided tips on holiday toy safety and calls to action via donations or buying their Swarovski Crystal Awareness Bracelet, which they're asking everyone to wear for the over 3 million children whose voices are small, ignored and unheard. Wear the bracelet as a promise to America 's children and help raise the volume so that everyone hears their message. For each donation of $49.99 they'll send you a bracelet, which includes shipping and handling. Love Our Children USA was founded as a promise to America 's children to break the cycle of violence against children. Check out their website to read much more information about this great organization, the celebrities that help them and how to help.
www.loveourchildrenusa.org

A Better View

Chat the Planet is a television show that connects groups of young people around the world, via satellite, for frank, no-holds-barred discussions about politics, relationships, prejudices and life in general. They put young people into direct dialogue, so they can talk to each other and learn about each other from each other. It's uncensored, unscripted, and unlike anything else in the mainstream media. Move over Barbara Walters, this is a better "View." Our goal is to build bonds, to confront biases, to tackle cultural misunderstandings, and to get young people all fired up and ready to act for social change. Currently, they are working on three broadcast projects focused on bridging cultural understanding in the Middle East with Iran, Israel, Palestine and Iraq. They have raised a substantial portion of the funding for these projects, but are still looking for completion funds. For more information, check us out at www.chattheplanet.com

Barbie's Not Just For Girls

Many readers and card-carrying netizens know Tiffany Shlain from The Webby Awards. This talented woman has significant credits in filmmaking as well. And, her film, The Tribe, is making a round here on the East Coast in a special showing at the 92nd St Y on February 22nd. If you can't wait till February, and I recommend that you don't, you can now also order a fabulous kitsch, er, kit, at www.tribethefilm.com for a mere $40. That won't set you back too many sheckles and will be a unique and entertaining (and informative) gift your friends and family won't forget. If you like bargains like I do then you'll be thrilled to know that if you buy a home screening kit now, you'll get a second DVD of The Tribe for free! Order your kit by Dec. 5th, to ensure delivery in time for Hanukkah. [The kit includes: The Tribe DVD: The Tribe: An unorthodox, unauthorized history of the Barbie Doll and the Jewish People ...in around 15 minutes; The Guide from the Perplexed film guide; Conversation Cards to spark the discussion.] Such a deal!

Socially Conscious Business Gifts


With the holidays quickly approaching, give upscale business gifts while being socially conscious! Whether you are looking for new ideas this year or you know what you want to give, Andi Jompole of The Perfect Present offers exceptional personal attention and custom services for your business gifts that will leave a memorable impression on your clients. In addition to saving you time and money, she will donate, 10% of the net proceeds from your project to a charity of your choice. In the spirit of the season, your gifts will give twice. Personal shopping services and gift selection advice are also available. Just contact Andi@ThePerfectPresent.net and she will deliver both ideas and products that will be a perfect reflection of you. The Perfect Present specializes in helping you make the impact you want on your clients and guests by providing unique, creative and traditional solutions for classic promotional, marketing and incentive items to V.I.P., upscale gift, favor and decoration solutions for all types of corporate, non-profit, public relations, social events and projects you may be planning. Client references graciously provided upon request.

Praying Gets Personal

Nick Hall of Possibility Productions has been blessed with the birth of two children, but has been challenged because his new children, and wife Jenn, have had a struggle since then. He has posted a more descriptive update along with a poem he wrote for all the babies in the NICU on his blog. The quick update is that both Reece and Graham had their important Day-4 brain scan and they came back negative (which is a good thing). They are on a minute-to-minute journey and sending him your love, support, prayers and energy makes a profound difference. Email: nick@possibilityproductions.com

Open Your Wings...And Fly!

Stunning and artful spray-paint/stencil portraits on old vinyl records or adorable and warm knit creations can be found at WingNYC.com. My friends Jillian and Emily, two amazing women whose fun, creative and joyful spirits come through in their art deserve at least a "look-sie" online. They do their own designs and every piece is handmade. They will also be hosting other local artists' whose work they admire and feel are underrepresented, on the web or otherwise. Also, if you are interested in email updates, you'll know when they add such work: chartreuse_dachsund@yahoo.com. The website was created by their friend Evan. So come on, support some women who give the term "Williamsburg Artist" a good name! PS. You'll see a picture of my pup, Teddy, there too!

Greetings Gentlefolk


I trust you all had a beautiful Thanksgiving and were able to give thanks for all the blessings in your lives. Mine was quite pleasant, spent in DC with my mother and stepfather and it was quite mellow, for a change.

This week we're continuing our focus of giving thanks, giving back and in the spirit of helping others there are many links to wonderful organizations that need your support--along with some gift ideas (like donations to said organizations).

And, after all the goodness, the party updates!

Friday, November 17, 2006

The Cyber Scene ~ November 17, 2006

HAPPY BIRTHDAY DAD! Yes, folks, my dear ol' Pop has turned another turn around the sun. Many of you may remember him, as he helped out at many (almost all) of the New York City Cocktails with Courtney events. He's been a great supporter of me and my endeavors and I'm lucky to have such a great friend in him too. Many more Dad! :) (You can wish him Happy Birthday too, if you want: arthur@pulitzer.com)

Well the month started off busy--foretelling of the bursting holiday headiness--with Tracy Reese opening her boutique on November 1st.for a 1-night-only shopping event and debuting her Sunburst-T, benefiting the American Legacy Foundation, which promotes tobacco-free generations. [americanlegacy.org] As someone who suffers from the negative effects of cigarette (and other substances) smoke from my superintendent and his son (coming up from the basement of my building), I know how harmful this is and how sad that the son is following his father's footsteps.

At the swanky Stone Creek, Ad Femme hosted an Ad:Tech mixer and VIP soiree on November 6th, mostly to benefit the good cheer and lives of those who attended--at least for a few hours! The next night, on November 7th Kobemail sponsored the Coreg Insider and Active Response Group Ad:Tech after-party at 320 Studios. So--plenty of parties for ad-aficionados and "autres" for amusement.

For the more brainy-types, NYU's School of Continuing and Professional Studies hosted a discussion on The Human Brain: Cutting-Edge Research from NYU. Talk about touting your own horn. And the brain certainly is a hot-topic since even network TV has a whole show about it! (http://3lbsshow.com/)

While everybody was out either damaging their brain with alcohol or enhancing it with stimulating discussions, I was busy with final preparations for my trip to Mexico, which was lovely. First at an all-inclusive resort (Secrets Capri Riviera) and then for true R+R at Cabanas Copal (cabanascopal.com), I spent several delicious days just lounging, sleeping, sunning, swimming and reflecting! My final night I got a revealing and very rewarding full astrological reading (maps, charts, everything!) from the amazing Jeremiah of HiDreamers.com. Now I understand that while I'm a sun sign, I'm actually ruled by the moon! Go figure! It actually explained a lot. Well, (true to my moon-nature) I won't get into more details, but I will say I cannot state enough how so absolutely amazing the EcoTulum.com spas are!

Also, another treat was that due to my profile on Airtroductions.com, I was matched with a very pleasant fellow traveler who was on the same flight to Cancun from NY. If you're tired or cautious of online dating, this is definitely an efficient and harmless way to meet fellow like-minded travelers!

Anda report in from the West!
Tery Spataro wrote in to mention how the Social Media Club is progressing in Phoenix.

Phoenix held its first Social Media Club last night at La Madeleine's. The wine room was completely packed with over 50 people eager to learn about the Social Media Club, co-created by a number of people, including Chris Heuer and Howard Greenstein, in the social media community. Francine Hardaway of Stealthmode Partners organized the meeting and brought together a great group. The energy in the room was electrifying. Smart discussions ranged from the meaning of social media, creativity, purpose, platform, and desire to cooperate and support each on the endeavor. Interest was expressed by newbies as well as experienced and established experts. As an "old timer," memories of the early beginnings came back to me as I saw a new resurgence of spirit in a media intended for sharing and collaboration. Chris and Howard are certainly resurrecting that movement through the Social Media Club. Francine Hardaway, Ed Nusbaum and Amanda Vega will host the next Social Media Club - Phoenix on December 14 at 6:30pm at the Foundation for Blind Children's Facility. If your in town, come on by!

Tery also wrote in that she took former New Yorker Nick Boris (ex-ABC) to meet Tim Westergren, the founder of Pandora. She said, "he's awesome. I took the photo on the stage!" http://www.dailyeats.com/2006/11/very-special-evening-with-pandora-tim.html

Don't forget! "Cocktails with Courtney" is coming up! Save the Date!
Monday, November 27th from 6:00 PM - 7:30 at Pulse Restaurant (45 Rockefeller Plaza, 3rd Floor)

"Cocktails with Courtney" ~ Paris
New Date to be Set!

Thursday, November 09, 2006

"Cocktails with Courtney" ~ Halloween

And then the very next night was a different story altogether (here's the "camp" part) with the Groucho Marx-themed "Cocktails with Courtney" soiree on Halloween at Pulse Restaurant. Guests arriving in Groucho Marx masks got their admission price waived (treat!) and those who didn't...well, no tricks but let's just say, "they paid the price." Among the guests (in costume) were: Propanda Marketing Communications Inc's president Amy Krakow and her notable husband, Gary Krakow, who's seen the insides of the Microsoft beast since the early days. Other guests ala Groucho were: Andi Jompole (theperfectpresent.net) and her four friends including Gerit Quealy and Susan Kaufman, David Glackin, John Joseph Bachir (formerly of the fabulous ibiblio.org and all-around-cool-guy) (http://blog.johnjosephbachir.org/) and Richard Allen Charles Leider who's had the whole shtick since high school!

[HERE ARE THE PICTURES!]

While every guest is near and dear, some other notable mentions are: TMGI's Angelina Jao (http://www.tmgi.us/), Vantage Point Venture Partners' Howard Yeh and AOL's Ken Gawrelski. Then the dueling Larry's showed up (separately and without a duel): Larry Aronson brought me up to speed on his programming efforts and Larry Kesslin on his burgeoning entrepreneur consulting business. Martin White, TJ Walker (mediatrainingworldwide.com) and Shehzad Daredia rounded out the fun-loving, comic and effervescent guests that the CWC events are known for!

Come to our next 'Cocktails ~ Monday, November 27th from 6:00 PM – 7:30 at Pulse Restaurant.

And with that ~ Olé and see soon!

October's Events: Classy, Campy and everything inbetween

Well, as Groucho Marx said, "Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana." And time has been flying these past few weeks! For me personally, it seems like Thanksgiving's already here and then there's the other holidays and then whoosh! 2007! It could be, perhaps, because I am leaving tomorrow for a week sojourn in the Mexican Riviera. Yeah, that's probably it.

It's been a busy few months, what with my graduating from an innovative self-defense program (well, a single girl traveling the world's gotta have her street-smarts) at Prepare, Inc. Check out this amazing and innovative program (http://www.prepareinc.com/) and my continuing studies at NYU's Continuing education program in French...

...which will serve me well when we do our next European "Cocktails with Courtney" in Paris on January 9th, 2007! That's right, folks, you read it here first. Now, go tell all your amis et amies! :)

Among other highlights of the month include the Art Directors Club's "Fall 2006 Ping Pong Challenge," held on October 19th where teams of men and women (mixed doubles) competed and feted. Synapse Productions completed its compelling and thought-provoking "Ignite Festival" in October (http://www.synapseproductions.org/index.html). iBreakfast's social at the Time Warner Center, also held on the 19th, featured the "new breed of Web 2.0 companies" in the New York area. Dozens of giveaways including MP3 players, jumpdrives and tickets to "important new events" added incentive to those who still had their doubts.

October's end went from classy to campy. On October 30th was Trader Monthly's (tradermonthly.com) first "Women in Trading" celebration at Le Cirque with gentlemen and women in proper business attire, sipping fine wines and cocktails and nibbling on hors d'oeuvres, all adding to the air of refinement.

And then the very next night was a different story altogether (here's the "camp" part) with the Groucho Marx-themed "Cocktails with Courtney" soiree on Halloween at Pulse Restaurant. Guests arriving in Groucho Marx masks got their admission price waived (treat!) and those who didn't...well, no tricks but let's just say, "they paid the price." Among the guests (in costume) were: Propanda Marketing Communications Inc's president Amy Krakow and her notable husband, Gary Krakow, who's seen the insides of the Microsoft beast since the early days. Other guests ala Groucho were: Andi Jompole (theperfectpresent.net) and her four friends including Gerit Quealy and Susan Kaufman, David Glackin, John Joseph Bachir (formerly of the fabulous ibiblio.org and all-around-cool-guy) (http://blog.johnjosephbachir.org/) and Richard Allen Charles Leider who's had the whole shtick since high school!

[HERE ARE THE PICTURES!]

While every guest is near and dear, some other notable mentions are: TMGI's Angelina Jao (http://www.tmgi.us/), Vantage Point Venture Partners' Howard Yeh and AOL's Ken Gawrelski. Then the dueling Larry's showed up (separately and without a duel): Larry Aronson brought me up to speed on his programming efforts and Larry Kesslin on his burgeoning entrepreneur consulting business. Martin White, TJ Walker (mediatrainingworldwide.com) and Shehzad Daredia rounded out the fun-loving, comic and effervescent guests that the CWC events are known for!

Come to our next 'Cocktails ~ Monday, November 27th from 6:00 PM – 7:30 at Pulse Restaurant.

And with that ~ Olé and see soon!

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

The Cyber Scene ~ November 7, 2006

Well, as Groucho Marx said, "Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana." And time has been flying these past few weeks! For me personally, it seems like Thanksgiving's already here and then there's the other holidays and then whoosh! 2007! It could be, perhaps, because I am leaving tomorrow for a week sojourn in the Mexican Riviera. Yeah, that's probably it.

It's been a busy few months, what with my graduating from an innovative self-defense program (well, a single girl traveling the world's gotta have her street-smarts) at Prepare, Inc. Check out this amazing and innovative program (http://www.prepareinc.com/) and my continuing studies at NYU's Continuing education program in French...

...which will serve me well when we do our next European "Cocktails with Courtney" in Paris on January 9th, 2007! That's right, folks, you read it here first. Now, go tell all your amis et amies! :)

Among other highlights of the month include the Art Directors Club's "Fall 2006 Ping Pong Challenge," held on October 19th where teams of men and women (mixed doubles) competed and feted. Synapse Productions completed its compelling and thought-provoking "Ignite Festival" in October (http://www.synapseproductions.org/index.html). iBreakfast's social at the Time Warner Center, also held on the 19th, featured the "new breed of Web 2.0 companies" in the New York area. Dozens of giveaways including MP3 players, jumpdrives and tickets to "important new events" added incentive to those who still had their doubts.

October's end went from classy to campy. On October 30th was Trader Monthly's (tradermonthly.com) first "Women in Trading" celebration at Le Cirque with gentlemen and women in proper business attire, sipping fine wines and cocktails and nibbling on hors d'oeuvres, all adding to the air of refinement.

And then the very next night was a different story altogether (here's the "camp" part) with the Groucho Marx-themed "Cocktails with Courtney" soiree on Halloween at Pulse Restaurant. Guests arriving in Groucho Marx masks got their admission price waived (treat!) and those who didn't...well, no tricks but let's just say, "they paid the price." Among the guests (in costume) were: Propanda Marketing Communications Inc's president Amy Krakow and her notable husband, Gary Krakow, who's seen the insides of the Microsoft beast since the early days. Other guests ala Groucho were: Andi Jompole (theperfectpresent.net) and her four friends including Gerit Quealy and Susan Kaufman, David Glackin, John Joseph Bachir (formerly of the fabulous ibiblio.org and all-around-cool-guy) (http://blog.johnjosephbachir.org/) and Richard Allen Charles Leider who's had the whole shtick since high school!

While every guest is near and dear, some other notable mentions are: TMGI's Angelina Jao (http://www.tmgi.us/), Vantage Point Venture Partners' Howard Yeh and AOL's Ken Gawrelski. Then the dueling Larry's showed up (separately and without a duel): Larry Aronson brought me up to speed on his programming efforts and Larry Kesslin on his burgeoning entrepreneur consulting business. Martin White, TJ Walker (mediatrainingworldwide.com) and Shehzad Daredia rounded out the fun-loving, comic and effervescent guests that the CWC events are known for!

Come to our next 'Cocktails ~ Monday, November 27th from 6:00 PM - 7:30 at Pulse Restaurant.

And with that ~ Olé and see soon!

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

3LD Re-Birthday Party

Almost six years and a month later, I visited 3LD Art & Technology Center for their first Annual Re-Birthday Party.  Why a "First Re-Birthday Party?" Well, because their initial opening party was to be in October 2001, and it was to be produced by "Cocktails with Courtney."  We are all familiar with the tragedy that hit New York City (and the nation) in September of that year.  3LD was especially hard-hit.  Their studios were at 30 West Broadway and suffered complete damage from the destruction at the World Trade Center.

Their new home, as of Spring 2006, is located at 80 Greenwich Street in Lower Manhattan, just 3 blocks south of the WTC site.

They are the first producing arts group to sign a lease in the Liberty Zone and the first to rebuild downtown. A cultural anchor for the Greenwich Street Arts Corridor, their new center will provide complete production and presentation facilities for emerging and established artists and organizations that create large-scale experimental works, many of which incorporate and create new tools and technologies.

One of the elements that's so pertinent for readers of this publication, is the fact that the company has always had an integration of technology.  The founder also owns a software company. So.  Now, onto the party!  There were performances by Stephan Earnhart, Joshua Fried and the Curse of the Mystical Renaldo.

Friday, October 13, 2006

A Look Over the Horizon: Google, Microsoft, New Yorkers talk

The room could've been set for a wedding. Short, elegant white hydrangea and orchid arrangements centered on each table, elegant martini glasses at each place setting and a beautiful sunny day all contributed to the excitement in the room. There was a man and a woman at the center, on a dais, and a third man officiating, and an expectant audience. Yet, the stage and room was set for the Syracuse University's Newhouse School in NY discussion at the Bryant Park Grill. The woman was Google consumer web products director Marissa Mayer and the man was Intellectual Ventures founder & CEO Nathan Myhrvold. The "officiant?" The author and writer of "The New Yorker's Annals of Communications" Ken Auletta.

These weren't the only powerhouses in the house though. CBS Digital Media president Larry Kramer, UBS Investment Banks MD and Joint Head of Tech Brian Webber and The New Yorker editor David Remnick also each had a chance for their shout-out.

Here are the meat-n-potatoes (synopsized):
KA: Does Google think it's getting revenue from its massive YouTube purchase?
NM: Google's purchasing a popularity entity, not a profitable venture. Soon these videos will be seen on HD quality.
MM: We will honor copyright requests of content creators on YouTube and remove videos when asked.

KA: Is Google going after Microsoft?
NM: Yes! Case in point, "Google's word processing application online is like a thumb in the eye to Microsoft" and MS will respond to that for sure.
MM: "It's hard to play offense when the competition has $150 mm in cash." "We try to focus on the end-user."

KA: How is Google affecting the traditional content generators (publishing, books, Hollywood)
MM: Books are not going to go away. Publishers don't need to work. People will always want to bring a book to the beach, not read it on their computer.
NM: "I'm on the board of Dreamworks, so I'm Shrek's boss's boss." The software is so much better from a technology standpoint so the ability to tell a story is much better. "The challenge is what happened to music is now happening to movies. Hollywood is driving toward the cliff, just like Thelma and Louise." I have two twin 17-year old boys and I told them as long as they live under my roof (with copyrights have paid for) then they will be paying for their music. Of course their teenage friends think they (and thus I) am stupid.
MM: We are working with publishers and have 10 years before we get all books online.
NM: The biggest issue is that there's no Digital Rights Management (DRM). There's no standard way to buy digital content, so people will steal it. It's like when you pay for something with a Mastercard or Visa, the machine that reads the stripe on the back is standardized.
MM: We initially had resistance when we first launched News. You didn't want to be in my Inbox that morning! But by the afternoon, things were better... We had success with the New York Times with the "1st-click free" experiment. We convinced them that there would be more registrants and loyal readers if they let them read the first page of the article they're trying to get at for free. It worked.
NM: In 1989 there was an article saying that it's not about the 3lbs of pulp delivered to your doorstep on Sunday mornings. Newspapers don't need the paper. It's about the content and now these content players can expand their offerings to other mediums. TV News killed "Look" and "Life" magazine because those publications were photojournalism. In the same way there will be some transitions and filtering of older properties as these newer mediums emerge and fine-tune.

KA: A lot of companies have a big lead and then stumble--AOL, Yahoo--How's it going to be for Google?
MM: We don't consider ourselves on a big perch. Yes, search is good but we'd like it to be even better! And we're not the leader in Asia. I always tell my product developers, "look! There's another leader! Follow them!" Sometimes it's easier to see what others are doing and follow their lead than to always have to be the one to come up with the font leading on a site. (oh! Woh is me!)
NM: It's important for companies to not rest on their laurels. The way you do well in life is to fix the mistakes when you're not perfect, because none of us are perfect.

Question from the audience:
Larry Aidem, President and CEO, Sundance Channel: Question regarding a quality filter. Their tagline is, "we watch bad movies, so you don't have to."
MM: Good videos get rated higher and when you see one you like you share it with your friends. For instance, she loved the OK GO treadmill dance and sent that to all her friends. There's a guy at Google who watches videos all day and rates them. Lucky guy. People love his ratings, and this is the beginning of their "quality filter."

Writing this, I got sidetracked and the one I found that I think is cool, is this one: http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=6061551977859737596
(and here: http://www.mediathatmattersfest.org/6/slip_of_the_tongue/)

A UBS guy asked about the scalability of the hardware.
NM: This is the disease that computer geeks since the 60s keep getting--thinking that you're going to get a computer that's scalable. The computer isn't scalable, the interface is. Basically, Google itself is a giant supercomputer using lots of computers around the world.
MM: Google wants to make more content partnerships. Her friends and family are exasperated by Google's interface. They're like, "You've been there 7 years and it still looks the same!" Advertising is the area where there's the most room for innovations.

Question from Joe @ The New York Times about when will we be able to just type a question into a search and get an answer?
MM: We need to do a better job of blending technology so you could get a picture, or a video or a snippet as an answer. Written instructions on how to build a snowman isn't as effective as a video. Soon she'd like to see ability to get search results for voice requests, like when you're in your car and you're looking for a Chinese food restaurant.

John Sykes from MTV Networks asked a question before there were closing remarks and the captive audience sipped some more coffee, exchanged a few business cards and then headed out into the bustling busy city of New York. Media, Technology, Art, Fashion, Film, Culture and Food--it's all here and it's all excellent!

Disclaimer: The martini glasses were filled to the rim with.... yogurt, honey and granola!

What's the next (creative) idea?!

Looking to bring some more creativity into your life? Try Judy and Andre's "The Next Idea Creativity Weekend," where you can explore the Art, Science and Spirit of Creativity. Held the weekend of October 27th, in the idyllic Lebanon, NY, flush with trees bursting with color at a Sufi retreat and compound, this weekend will have diverse workshops given by over 20 top leaders in the field of creativity. Structured as a "Micro-University" with 3 concurrent sessions every hour and a half, you can select from a wide range of topics in Business, Personal and Professional Creativity. More info:

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Psychedelics, poetry and technology. What more could a girl ask for?!

What kind of world will it be when psychedelic medicines and sacraments are fully integrated into society? Well, on October 12th, "Poetry Science Talks" featured Tom Roberts, professor, scholar, author, chrestomathematician, organizer and quiet activist spoke on a psychedelic future. Whoa dude. I actually couldn't make this trippy happening, but I'll be checking out others, so stay tuned for more!

Kim Roy is not a Korean man!

The first two years of my college life I spent in idyllic Saratoga Springs, NY at Skidmore. This small liberal arts college manages to continue to produce smart people with smart ideas so I was more than interested in attending their first of a monthly series at the Triomphe restaurant on 44th Street. Bright and early on Thursday, October 12th (7:15 AM!) I heard Ralph Lauren-Women president Kim Roy (Class of 1980) speak on her career path to this high-profile job. She spoke of the companies and department stores she worked for and how she's equally blessed with a wonderful family (including a daughter who's a Skidmore freshman now). Kim spent the majority of her brief talk focusing on what Ralph Lauren's business was like and how it's changing. We can read that in the news, I would've preferred to hear more of the personal journey as well. Like the time she was 23 and first sent to Asia. Everyone kept expecting a Korean man to show up because Kim is a common surname!

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Slacking flacks need not apply

Media Bistro is kicking up its heels and hosting more soirees, like their parh-teh in New York City on October 11th at the R Bar and an upcoming one in DC on the 25th. More info: mediabistro.com

Green Drinks? It's not even St. Patty's Day!

Green Drinks NYC hosted their monthly cocktail party for New Yorkers interested in exploring all things green and sustainable. This past Tuesday, October 10th, they schmoozed at Ear to the Earth at 3LD Gallery/Art Center, 80 Greenwich Street, in the Three Legged Dog space. Three Legged Dog is another fascinating and very important theater (and tech-y) group you should check out.
http://www.3leggeddog.org/3LD/find.htm

If you haven't heard of "Ear to the Earth," then get thee feet to it! It goes till Saturday October 14 and is a festival of environmental sound and image with installations, panels and concerts. Conceived and organized by Electronic Music Foundation, the aim of the festival is to inspire sensitivity to our natural and human environments through sound and foster engagement in environmental issues. See website: http://www.eartotheearth.org/about.html

Ignite your Snapses ~ Stories from Iraq

Renaissance man Jim Sosnicky was in town, from DC, to read excepts of his stories from the book "Operation Homecoming" on Monday, October 9th at the Astor Place Barnes & Noble and then again on Tuesday, October 10th at the Ignite Café. Ignite Café is part of the amazingly provoking Synapse Productions month-long movie series, designed to get those synapses firing. Synapse Productions' artistic director Ginerva Bull, Jim and I discussed how to get people to care about the issues in our world. Are we all so busy? Are we all that apathetic? What would make you want to go downtown to an amazingly authentic, gritty theater and get informed and entertained with films about the controversial topics our nation (and world) are facing? Let us know! courtney@pulitzer.com or ginevra@synapseproductions.org

Jim's stories were graphic and real. They told the story of one man who's informed and experienced and who had the incredible opportunity perform in a theater about his experiences in the theater of war. I have decided this is how I prefer to get my news. Yes, there's usually a liberal POV, but I'd prefer to get informed this way, than through the major news enterprises (who also have agendas).

Get the book

NYU treats to a healthy shake!

The crisp fall air brings out memories of returning to school and this week I reconnected with both of my colleges. I had a lovely lunch on Tuesday, October 10th (okay, a health shake at the healthy Pulse Café with NYU's Office of University Development and Alumni Relations Senior Development Associate Eric Riley. Always one for an audience (there's that acting training!) I was happy to recount my life's experiences for his reconnecting with alumnae project. Of course, I also couldn't resist getting involved helping with Reunion activities and the mentoring programs.

Some of you may recall I mentor with Futures For Children, which is a wonderful mentoring program where, mostly via letters (you remember those, don't you) you instill the importance of education to a Native American child.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

New York Is Open to the Public

We're in a world where the public has access to so much and yet more access is being denied in other areas. Once a year this fabulous city opens its doors to some secret spaces. The 4th Annual openhousenewyork Weekend (presented by Target) was the weekend of October 6-7th. There were 180 sites and 120 programs such as opendialogue, sustainablenewyork, an architecturemoves performance and kids workshops and tours in all five boroughs on the city's architecture, design, cultural heritage and history. I biked up the Hudson River's esplanade to hop inside the Solders and Sailors Monument on 82nd and Riverside and then through Central Park to the Ukrainian Institute House, build by Mr. Fletcher for Mr. Sinclair's family. It was a great workout for my legs and mind. Ah New York! Can't beat it! :)

Saturday, September 30, 2006

BARCAMPNYC2 et al...

Good Lovely Day Cyberscensters!

Here are a few upcoming events that I think are worth attending!  Perhaps I'll see you at one of them. 

BARCAMPNYC2
BarCampNYC2 is on track for this weekend (Sept 30th to Oct 1st) and
it's going to rock.   Of course, we're still looking for awesome people and companies to chip in to help feed and cloth the attendees.  If you or your mad cool company wants to score goodwill from BarCampNYC, a donation of anywhere from $100 to $500 or in-kind donations of food or snacks are much appreciated.  This way we get to keep the participant cost to zero, in the spirit of BarCamps.  Please send your donations to my paypal address (no, really, it's legit!) at: courtney at pulitzer dot com. 

We're also looking for bits of equipment. Let us know if you can bring in power strips, extension cords, VGA/DVI adapters, etc.:
http://barcamp.org/BarCampNYC2PlanningEquipment

To attend BarCampNYC2, you must register or we won't be able to get you
into our venue.  It's going to be at Microsoft's offices and if you or your friends haven't signed up yet, be sure to do so ASAP: http://barcamp.org/BarCampNYC2Attendees

Check out the site for all the groovy info: http://barcamp.org/BarCampNYC2

*  In the Company of Women presents: "Does your MIND create your BODY?"  A moderated conversation with Patricia Moreno of IntenSati Life.
Does your mind create your body? Is your body an outward expression of your Self?  Could your thoughts about yourself manifest in your experience of your body?  If we are able to choose our thoughts, can we choose our bodies?  Bring your thoughts on this topic and join the In the Company of Women group for this unique evening of evocative conversation. Thursday, September 28, 7PM. Seamen's Church Institute; 241 Water Street. Tickets: $30/advance, $40/door. To register or for more information about the event, please visit: www.itcowomen.com or call 212-604-4705.


* Congratulations to Hartnick Consulting president Kate Hartnick Elliott for adding nonprofit and media executive search to her firm's suite of services.  This was a natural extension of the marketing strategy, communications and event management solutions the firm has offered to nonprofits since its founding in 2001.  They are also well positioned to conduct media executive searches they regularly speak and work with media executives, and have decades of experience working inside media companies.  You may remember Kate from her earlier days as VP of advertising and bizdev at online cultural magazine, FEED; the first director of corporate sales at Jupiter Communications and a marketing executive at the New York Daily News.

* James Sosnicky is a renaissance man.  He writes, he brings people together, he helps people, he works hard, he serves our country.  He's just returned from duty in Iraq and like him, there are other well-written men and women who have been chronically their experiences overseas.  On September 12th, 2006, Random House released the book "Operation Homecoming," containing stories written by veterans of the Iraq and Afghan wars.  The reviews have all been 5-stars and Captain Jim has two stories in the book!  So if you remember him from his parties in New York, or his stories during studying at Oxford U, then support him by buying the book! http://www.amazon.com/Operation-Homecoming-Afghanistan-Troops-Families/dp/1400065623/sr=8-1/qid=1158852756/ref=pd_bbs_1/104-4705544-7143106?ie=UTF8&s=books
Here are his other sites with stories: http://www.iraqorsomething.com/,
http://www.oxfordjames.com/stories/oj1.htm, http://broadwayjim.com/

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

NYCwireless September Meeting


I first met Molly Steenson at South by Southwest in 2000 when she was promoting her award-winning webzine Maxi and worked at Scient and then Razorfish.  Today she's
researching historical precedents for mobile, social interactions in architecture at Yale and spoke at the NYCWireless group's meeting held at NYU's ITP on September 27th on her ethnographic research in Bangalore, India, on mobile phone sharing between the classes. While at Microsoft Research India and discovered that, regardless of class,  mobile phones are shared in a variety of ways. With the diverse background and interests, it's no wonder she's a girlwonder.com!

* Happy Birthday Fotki!
Wednesday, September 27 was Fotki's Birthday!!!!!!!!  They're 8-years old! Perhaps you're wondering just what is this "fotki" all about?  Fotki is a familiar little term for "photos" in Russian.  The first version was released as a personal site by current president, Dmitri Don, together with Katrin Lilleoks in their New York City apartment.  It was a hobby and a place for them, their friends and relatives living in different countries to share their photos.  It was also the initial and current home for all Cyber Scene photos! 

From 1999 when friends got the Fotki community snowballing to 5,000 members in 2000.  Just a year later there were 10,000 members and premium membership and online photo printing were introduced. In 2002 when other companies were closing, Fotki was hiring more full-time employees and offered phone customer service.  Yes indeed, someone actually answered the phone to help with any questions!  With over 100,000 members and 15,000,000 photos in 2003, Fotki we moved their servers to a new data center with 24/7 monitoring.  Premium members also got the ability to keep online journals and an option to sell photo prints.  New uploading tools and slideshows made photo sharing more pleasant and Fotki ran its first photo contest!  Continuing its exponential growth, in 2004 they had 400,000 members and 30,000,000 photos hosted and in 2005with 650,000 members and 50,000,000 photos online, users enjoy convenient social bookmarking, RSS feeds, photo tagging, upload by email features, and geotagging. Now, between offices in Europe and the heart of NYC (Times Square), they're poised to take over the space, literally!  Today they have over 1,000,000 members from more than 200 countries and over 100,000,000 photos shared in 12 languages.  Fotki truly is a tremendous international family whose members love their digital photo-home.  They are connecting users the world over and I predict another amazing 8 years (and more)!

More at: http://journals.fotki.com/fotkicom/fotkiblog/

What's the Big Idea?

Find out at Wired's magazine's NextFest!  Wired hosted a host of events in the present for its multiple day event on the future.  Starting with a private reception, on Wednesday, September 27, to celebrate the opening of the future (and conference) at the Javits Center, Chris Anderson welcomed guests to imbibe and chat while viewing the amazing new machines that will help our lives personally and professionally.  The next night, at the New York Public Library, Chris conversed with Stanford Law School professor and Wired columnist (among other things) Lawrence Lessig.  They mused over what will happen to our culture and economy as we shift from mass-everything to massive niche things and what stands in the way of truly having unlimited choices.  Do we really want that though?  I get overwhelmed just visiting Wholefoods, let alone a universe of choices!  I am all for innovation and advancement in terms of security and gadgets to make life easier.  And yet, once again, it seems we need gadgets to manage our gadgets!  Tonight there's a special concert at Irving Plaza with Peeping Tom and DJ Diplo; a benefit for Creative Commons, which truly is a sign of our most recent (and future) times.  It's still going on at the Javits till September 30—as is BarCampNYC2!

Friday, September 22, 2006

The Cyber Scene ~ September 22, 2006

Happy OneWebDay everyone!

In honor of OneWebDay (http://www.onewebday.org), I am seeking donations for a new laptop. Yes, I know. Hard to believe I am the needy one here, but both my desktop and laptop have no access to the very Internet of which I write! After I downloaded and installed McAfee's download manager and latest Internet Security Center my machine began having errors and then McAfee blocked all LSPs and Winsock. Help! I have no Winsock! And winter's a-coming! After four days of going online with tech support at my office and then going home to try the recommended "fixes" I finally gave up and requested a full refund. (I think I'll post all the chat sessions online. Stay tuned.)

OneWebDay is a great community-building concept. In the spirit of community, DailyEats.com is baking a cake (cause baking and eating are all about community) and launching a video/photos/podcast about it on Daily Eats and a few other places.

And in the spirit of food...here is a review of a fascinating panel on design and dining (private and public spaces where food is created and consumed)... [http://www.pulitzer.com/thecyberscene/2006/07/design-for-dining.html]

Things are heating up in the meatspace with events that kept me running all week--just like the old days! Monday, September 18 was Howard Greenstein and Chris Heuer's Social Media Club's (http://www.socialmediaclub.org) first NY networking night. Held at the BusinessWire offices, seasoned professionals like Jason Chervokas showed up to weigh in (although he looked like he lost weight!) on social media and how to grow this group organically. "Newer" folks, like Nate Westheimer (developer) and David Bradfield from Fleishman-Hillard asked questions and were helpful in the idea of a new new-media-standard press release. Howard, ever the "coach" did an energy check and made sure each person had a chance to share their viewpoint. More comments are here: http://www.socialmediaclub.org/2006/09/19/social-media-club-ny-wrapup/ and here: http://navigatecommunications.com/

Mercredi, J'ai commencer m'études en le Francais. Je rapporterai ici sur la progress... Maintenant, Je peut dire "bonjour madame, quelle heure est-t-il, s'il vous plait?, le train est en retard, bonsoir a tous, et plus!" Yeah, yeah, I know. I have a long way to go!

Interactive Resources' multi-tasking and multi-entrepreneurial Christine Harmel flew into town on Thursday, September 21. Just in time for a full round of events. We met for a light beverage at The Modern and then headed over to spacious conference rooms at Brown Raysman Millstein Felder & Steiner, LLP on Third Ave. and 54th for the WWWAC Old-Timers Meeting (wwwac.org). Center Hill Services president Martin Focazio did an excellent job of hosting (extra points for homemade cookies by his wife) and moderating despite sub-par software.

The panelists were WWWAC co-founder Kyle Shannon (also urbandesires.com; agency.com and The Darwin Marketing Group); The Geek Factory founder Peter Shankman; Dotglu executive producer Ari Feldman (part of Kirschenbaum + Bond & Partners; also product manager at Oddcast.com & exec. producer at Heavy.com); Trigger Media prez Mike Dizon and the sharp and adorable Amelia (14-year old daughter of Martin's neighbor).

As Martin intended, it was "designed to bring the weary 40 and 50 somethings of the interactive development world up-to-date on the universe that these creatures called the "13-24 set" inhabit. We talked about MySpace, privacy (does it matter to them), design issues, purchasing software/media and how do they handle porn spam (they just delete it, "no big deal.")

The ongoing online chat and video conferencing were reminiscent of NYU's ITP's Yorb show with EchoNYC. There even was a powerpoint presentation!
(http://www.centerhillservices.com/events/events-old/events-old-files/index.html) It was a great time. Martin was fantastic managing all those elements! I was impressed and it added a delightful level of hilarity watching him master (manage?) (attempt to manage?) all the hardware and software issues. He handled it with aplomb. Also--the panelists proved witty, as well, in their humor and wisdom on the hot topics of the online bullying aspects of social networking and the (apparent) non-issue of how kids handle porn online. It was great to catch up with Joshua Freeman (eFashionSolutions.com), Peter Shankman, WWWAC president Scott Bowling, WWWAC inter-organizational liason Bob Frankel, Hens Breet, and JV Van Raalte afterwards. I'm definitely looking forward to the next one!

Also occurring this week was the Wired "Design Like You Give A Damn" panel (http://www.wired.com/news/culture/0,64409-0.html) with Cameron Sinclair, Kate Stohr, Cynthia Barton and (Wired's) John Hockenberry at the NY Public Library on September 20. Next week they've got some concerts going on too. Let's see if I can break away from my busy schedule to get there. The Art Directors Club got into the event action with its debate (moderated by Brian Collins) over advertising and design as instruments for social and political change at their gallery on West 29th Street on Thursday, September 21.

C'est tres bonne semaine!