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Everything posted by CDBurns

  1. I have long known everything you've written as an active marketplace store I've been dealing with this firsthand, but the reality is this isn't on the government to break up, it is simply a matter of the consumer deciding against what's comfortable. That's the only hope is that consumers wake up.
  2. They are listening. My wife and I were talking on the phone about houses in a certain area. She picked up her phone and on Facebook there was an ad for the area we were discussing. The same thing has happened to me on several occasions. I now use my browser to access my social media as opposed to the apps and I deleted the apps, but I'm sure they are still actively acquiring data. It's crazy.
  3. This discussion goes so much deeper. Amazon with the Echo is integrating itself so deeply into our lives that we don't even recognize that they are putting a listening device into our homes that allows us the ability to order with our voice, completely removing the barrier of "one click" which Amazon is famous for. By getting rid of this last barrier they become the perfect impulse buy business. It's to the extent now that people simply trust that Amazon has the best price and will buy items without researching anything. You can't compete and the tragic part of this is that to earn 1 million dollars Amazon needs a fraction of the people it takes Wal-Mart to make a million dollars. Amazon and companies like Facebook and Google kill jobs. They don't make a product and they sell a service so making money requires fewer people which in turns kills our economy in the long term and there is literally nothing we can do about it. Amazon is predicted to become a Trillion dollar business by 2025. They currently control over 50% of all online transactions. They are the most efficient company in history and they provide their shareholders zero dividends, yet people keep buying based on the potential and promise of Amazon. In the next few years they will begin to build brick and mortar locations and fully integrate themselves into every aspect of our lives and we are welcoming them in via Echo and keeping our credit card numbers on file. It's amazing... and I'm officially researching L2 and data companies way too much.
  4. Screw a budget and staff. You are right on point with what you're doing. It's all about the cosign. That FightMediocrity is amazing isn't it? If you simply found a different way of doing what he does, you'd kill it. Then again, you know what? This kid didn't even get a cosign, he ran YT ads and has a very catchy style. You simply need to review the "popular" books in a catchy way. I'm giving all of my time to YT and my site now. Sneaker Sites are now IPO'ing and selling for millions. I'm all in.
  5. As we both know all it takes is a consistent cosign from a person of status for your video or information to take off. 5500 is a huge number for a book, but when you realize that a 22 year old kid doing book reviews is a YouTube millionaire, you realize how crazy the entire social sharing system really is. It's awesome that she shared it, what should happen now and it would be great if it did, you should be more of a correspondent for the book topics. Just in case you don't know what I'm talking about with book reviews. Look up a channel on YouTube called FightMediocrity. I'm not linking it because the dude doesn't need anymore subscribers, lol. All he does is book reviews and he is making a killing. Nice job though on this!!!!
  6. I actually think we are just fine. We got killers in the South, lol. Seriously, I think this is the last hurrah for White America. They officially done themselves in. They have everything they want and once Obama leaves office, they will no longer have anyone to blame for their problems. They have it all. They just shot off their nose to spite their face (Is that the saying?)
  7. It was her apathy towards White Women that killed her. That voting block is the biggest and they sided with their husbands against a woman who couldn't keep her mans thang in his pants. Hillary never used what would have worked the best for her, being a mother and a grandmother. She never made herself human. That was her biggest mistake.
  8. His bookstore will perform well because of the connection to someone "famous". Influencers shape the market and if celebrity is involved and only a drop of business savvy, a person can attain things us mere mortals can't attain. If tomorrow someone posted that Essence magazine bought AALBC, the site would become a cherished item in Black media and mainstream. It's a frustrating thing to deal with.
  9. Added each on to CBP and shared each one. Good stuff Troy.
  10. LOL!!!!!! I guess because I worked for Apple and was a certified tech, I never bought into the hype. I still have all of my CDs and I go out of my way to get CDs even now. I buy so much music that I've literally run out of space to house them, but I'm going to keep buying because I know what happens with the "cloud" and digital music. The digital domain is still being scrutinized and changed. The laws haven't been written and it's a very dangerous space for creators. Imagine being the artist and knowing that your work can literally be stolen from YouTube. The amount YT pays for streams is horrible. Amazon Cloud is even worse. I tell you, no one is winning right now except the platforms.
  11. I stopped shopping at Wal-Mart a long time ago, but that parking lot stays on Full. We live in a want it now society which just doesn't fit the idea of boycotting. The only alternative is a big competitor willing to pay working wages and the only competitor willing to take on that, that I can see is Amazon. We both know that isn't the answer, but it's the only company that can force a change in culture because the people won't do it.
  12. It's funny Troy, he was an NCAA D-1 Wrestler at Penn State. The same university that hid Jerry Sandusky's rapes for over 30 years. It seems that his friend took the fall and he transferred. He has never outright denied the rape, which is troubling. Of course people are saying that he is being wronged because no one brought it up during his other films. the conspiracy theorists think that he is being targeted because of the film's story. I think it's like Biggie said, Mo Money, Mo Problems. When you take a 17 million dollar pay day you become food for the wolves and your life enters the real public domain where everything you do is scrutinized.
  13. The problem is there isn't an alternative Troy. You can't provide the millions of workers with an alternative if they boycott. Wal Mart will simply push forward and hire other people who are willing to accept the wages and the wheel continues to roll downhill. The only thing you can hope for is another superpower will challenge their dominance and actually pay a living wage with benefits. It's the Trader Joe/Sprouts vs Whole Foods scenario. Whole Foods charges too much and it opens the door for more accurate pricing and Sprouts, Trader Joes, Fresh Market capitalize on Whole Foods failing to adjust and do the right thing. Wal-Mart dominates the low end marketplace, but they are getting their asses handed to the in e-commerce and this is also leading to an opening in brick and mortar. The only company capable of creating a better situation and forcing a change is Amazon and they have proven they can wipe out the competition and build their own and I see in the next 5 years Amazon getting into the retail space with superstores to rival Wal Mart. This is the only thing that will fix the situation. People are no longer able to boycott as they did 50 years ago. We aren't confined to one area anymore. This has removed the ability for us to sustain through a boycott. If Blacks were still concentrated in one area then we could sustain a boycott.
  14. I think we are in agreement on the college issue and we've written some good info so I will let that one go. I make a statement in almost every video or lecture I do on small biz, "You don't have a business until the people you don't know buy your product." The guy who called that interviewed you asked me a similar question about Black people and family support. I've had decent family support for my business, but I don't have a very big family. My peer/friend support is not very good at all. As far as Black people, I've all but avoided the tag of Black owned footwear company, because it has done very little to help me grow. As a matter of fact when I did very well, the people sending pictures of themselves in the shoes were primarily of different races. When I say it's hating on you, it's not you personally, it's the idea of you. You are not living the life that other people are living. People have to acknowledge what you do and face the fact that they aren't pursuing a dream when they share your information. Instead of sharing your info they ignore and that way they don't have to support you or your dream. You get what I'm saying? I may be wrong and I know I'm being negative about this, but I really do think people are willfully ignorant. They want to be uninformed because then they don't have to build you up and see you succeed. I have a deep desire to see people win so I make it a point to break bread with people who are in business at least once a year financially and if not financially with my time as often as possible. We are the exception, not the rule. People really do think that they diminish their opportunities by supporting you. Like you said, we choose not to use the power we have. White folks use it and thrive. I could give examples, but you probably know what I'm saying.
  15. The study is looking at BCS schools which is going to be skewed completely by the fact that a percentage of those athletes leave school early, and also transfer and those things are not taken into consideration in relation to the graduation rates at the BCS schools. Once again BCS schools make up such a small fraction of college athletics that it's almost insane to analyze BCS schools and major conference schools and completely overlook the number of schools at the low major D-1, D-2, D-3 (non scholarship) NAIA and JUCO schools that are graduating college athletes at a higher level than Black non athletes graduate. There is a reason all reports ONLY look at revenue generating schools and it's because it makes better conversation about the failure of athletics. https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2014/10/29/graduation-rates-athletes-hit-record-high While most research has a position and the NCAA has a position where they have to make themselves look better, their research has not been refuted. You can use the above link to look into the research on the NCAA website. You can focus on the most desirable programs, but doing so means that you are focused on the negative because those schools make up such a small percentage of the scholarships available for student athletes. It completely discounts over a thousand programs at all levels to focus on 20-30 schools. So when you say there is a problem and it can't be debated or shouldn't be debated, that's not right. The problem is why is all of the research focused on the revenue generating schools? Are those schools more important than the non revenue generating programs that have a lot of Black students. I've posted a link below that discusses the NCAA stats and what's surprising is that of all sports the lowest graduation rate is among Wrestling programs. Those programs tend to be White. We both know that Black students who attend college are not performing and graduating at the same rate as their peers, but when you dig into the stats across the board, not just at the revenue cash cows/BCS schools that your report focuses on we also know that student athletes graduate at a higher rate than their Black non athlete counterparts. http://www.ncaa.org/about/resources/research/academic-success-rate-asr So what exactly are you attempting to establish? That sports aren't working for Blacks and they should place their focus elsewhere? or That sports at BCS schools aren't serving their purpose for Black students? Because to look at BCS schools solely would mean that you are going to have to factor in students transferring which happens more often at BCS schools and students leaving for the pros which happens more often at BCS schools. Now, you make the suggestion that people don't know. Troy, I think that is the most positive thing you've written because it gives people the benefit of ignorance. I'm unlike you in this regard because I think people know, they just don't give a damn. People know visiting AALBC is good for AALBC, but people are freaking haters and don't want to support the site because that would be supporting you and giving you an income. I think Black folks suffer from so much self hate that we tear down each other through inaction. In other words, I will give you lip service and lipstick support, but I won't support where it matters most because I'll be damned if I'm going to give your black ass a dime. I will give you a dime when I think it will benefit me, but outside of that I ain't paying. The decline of the message board in my opinion is not anti-intellectual. It's anti you. On a daily basis when I'm around Black folks in the street and even at corporate styled events I here these words, "Fuck that nigga." It's under the breath and whispered in conversations between people. I've seen people standing when they don't think they are being heard and they say outright, " (insert name) thinks they are doing big things." Sabotage happens through a lack of effort as much as it does through ignorance. Schools are failing Black students. PERIOD Not just Black athletes, Black students. The reasons actually align with why this message board isn't half as busy as when I used to lurk. Our people are a monolith in that when it comes to having an issue with seeing the success of our people we have half of us pulling for each other and a quarter of us, waiting on failure and that other quarter isn't interested at all. It's like the issue with students we talked about. The good students get support, the poor students get support, the kids in the middle get left to figure it out. This message board and Black students are left to figure it out.
  16. Troy, if we pay attention to the reality and dwell on the failures as opposed to what is working the same thing will happen and improvement will always be slow. That is why improvement is slow. You are placing a huge amount of your narrative on the failures. That is my point. Analyzing BCS schools is a waste of time. That is the NFLs minor league for football. Analyzing the lower levels where there are thousands of schools, not just 25 BCS schools doesn't bode well, but those athletes are graduating and those are Black men with degrees. Honestly I don't give a darn if you think those degrees don't help, because they may be trumped up in your opinion, I say that they aren't. Those kids/young men work very hard while in school. The myth of just passing the athlete is just that, a myth. It may have been a diploma mill at one point and there are still some diploma mills, but overall the athletes work hard during high school and in college. I think we all need to clarify a few things: 1. We all know that things are not as good as they can be. 2. We all know (those of us here) that it could be better. 3. No one, no one, knows how to fix the problems. Which is why there are continuously studies being done to try and figure out the solutions. When things improve there is another problem that will be analyzed and discussed. That's how this thing works. We focus so heavily on the failures and the shortcomings that we spend less time analyzing the success and to me that is the problem in the US. You can hardly ever find a report that analyzes why things worked well or were successful. You can find a thousand reports and essays on why they are failing. I spend more time on what's working because that is the only way to get better. When I write business posts, I use my experiences to show where I failed, in order to show how someone can succeed. Maybe a simple change in research methods would fix a lot of our issues. While you look at the low graduation rates of athletes. I look at the fact that the graduation rates of Black student athletes is always higher than the graduation rate of Black non-student athletes. What is it about athletics that sees more Black students graduate than those entering college without a discipline? Why is that you see athletics as a waste of time if the graduation rates are higher for those who play sports? Do you know that at the majority of colleges that are not BCS schools operate sports programs at a loss? That trickle down economics is actually working at the college level because of BCS sports. I'm not justifying not paying athletes or the exploitation of the athletes. I've written posts about all high major talent attending NAIA schools or small schools because the amount of money being spent is absurd. However, that same money coming in because of BCS sports funds every non "major" sport. You literally wouldn't have women's athletics without the money as it is disbursed and college sports isn't going anywhere. It has to be fixed for sure, but maybe this discussion on the message board, that transitioned into sports is the perfect metaphor for how discussions evolve and shift to represent how life really is. There are people who research based on negative qualities and there are people who research based on positive aspects. Both researchers are needed, but it is the neutral research or aspect that actually accomplishes the most. The problem is not many people are truly neutral.
  17. Congrats!!!!! This was a great post and I'm sure Cynique is coming for you about that monolith comment, lol! You are appreciated!
  18. I guess when I say I see small success stories, I'm not looking at the larger scope of business. I'm looking at the small Gluten Free Pastry company owner here in Memphis who was able to leave his job and has launched a granola brand as well. I'm looking at the locally owned DeJaVu restaurant that has two locations and is hands down one of the best restaurants in the South. When i say I see small pockets I mean just that. We have a chocalatier here named Phillip Ashley that recently provided chocolates for the Oscars and has been featured in Forbes. These are not just "illusions" as you say. There are small businesses doing well and maintaining very comfortable lifestyles against some major players. I had a lawn guy who moved from having one truck to having a fleet in 10 years. My garbage company is black owned and they are doing a better job than the bigger company i was with. Are there enough small biz people? No, but do not discount the small pockets because although the literary website that is fighting to maintain in a culture that doesn't understand how the internet works, that website is fighting and to me that's a success. It can be better, but it's here. it's not enough, but I'm not careful about saying there are successes because I believe strongly in the energy placed out here. When my energy is good I see a lot of good. When my energy is negative and doubtful I see very little success and accomplishment in the same things. I prefer to say I see success in small pockets and I don't think about the idea that it's a drop in the bucket. I think about the idea that people are fighting and working hard at learning. It definitely is a frustrating battle though so I get what you're saying. I also think you are speaking towards the larger idea of success. Black kids pursuing sports careers, musicians looking for the big ticket, these are grand ideas and you are right. But where you see a waste, I see a kid who pursues football as earning a scholarship. Specifically at smaller schools, not just the big stage D-1 schools. I sent 100 guys to college on basketball scholarships. I can say without any hesitation that probably 80 percent of them have degrees of some type and are leading solid lives because of it. We place too great an emphasis on the NFL chasers as opposed to the kids who are attending the smaller schools and graduating. Also the graduation rates are going up across the board even at larger high profile schools as more players begin to realize that pro ball is not a great option: http://www.chronicle.com/article/Graduation-Rates-of-Football/135400/ I do agree that we are in a battle for our minds. The most frustrating part is knowing you have solutions but because Black folks can't listen to those without celebrity a lot of answers just disappear.
  19. I definitely think the discussion here is a foundation for a damn good book. You both are right. I don't really have much to add. I take that back... Facebook is fine because as I've said often it appeal to the emotional aspect of online interaction. In that arena Facebook is king and that won't go away anytime soon. it's a matter of marketing and how people are inevitably tied to a specific brand because the brand has been able to humanize its brand. Apple has done this. Nike has done this. Facebook has done this. Google has done this. I mean consider you couldn't even maintain your Huria Search engine due to Google's dominance in search. I can't gain a fraction of a tenth of a percent in the footwear industry because Nike owns the minds and hearts of the world. We are all damaged by the marketing machine when we are small business people, but the rest of the world isn't into business ownership so these companies will remain as powerful and influential as we move more and more towards online interaction in our daily lives. I don't use Facebook as much as I used to, but I am still there just as you are. I also find some pretty engaging things there as well. It has become a part of the routine, but it is wearing thin for me... this only means that I will be replaced by the next person and the machine keeps rolling. That's okay because that is the way of capitalism. The person with the deepest pockets, or biggest computer always wins. However, in small pockets their are extraordinary success stories and they are becoming more common. That's what keeps me motivated.
  20. I agree, and once again it sounds like Pioneer has written the preface of the book "The Decline of Black American Intellectualism". Troy your writing up there at the top is the Introduction, and Pioneer has the preface, all we need is Cynique to contribute and I can add in and we publish a collaborative book. That kind of moves us towards doing something.
  21. No there has never been a real movement or push to reestablish the Black family. There has only been lip service and the work that has been done has only been for 40 years. I know some people who are 50 and can't get their stuff together, but you are saying that it hasn't been successful? That's a stretch. The reason I said that the students are graduating is because that was the discussion topic. A discussion on the usefulness of a high school education is a completely different discussion that can have elements of this one, but should be taken on independently. Now I asked this before, but I am asking it again. In Memphis, gentrification has been taking place for almost 30 years. The murder and crime has increased although the projects are gone and the areas where the people were moved to were formerly upscale White owned areas. If Lead poisoning is such a major threat, why is it this new generation of 15-20 year olds who were not raised in the projects are killing and committing crime at a higher rate than when the projects were around? Lead would have to be genetically passed on and affecting the kids which is a possibility. This is a link to a map of Memphis crime: https://www.neighborhoodscout.com/tn/memphis/crime/ Take a look at it and when you see where the majority of crime is taking place in Memphis, I will show you how close those areas are too safer parts of town. There is only one solid block on this map that could fall into your discussion on lead and that is in the left of the center of the map. When you begin to move away to the outskirts you have pockets of crime and these areas used to be all White. 30-40 years ago so the likelihood of lead may be there because of age, but not like it would in that one section. I hope this is clear because it's hard to look at the map and type, but I guess what I'm saying is the crime in Memphis is central to a particular area where the income is the lowest so you could say that lead was an issue... but the interesting thing is those same areas in Memphis also have homes and not projects. Some of those homes are nice, some are not so nice, but the talent and ability in those areas is amazing. A lot of the kids come out of there swinging. This is why I have an issue with lead because I've lived in two distinctly different cities, in the poorest parts of those cities and while lead and toxins could have contributed to the issues, ultimately it was poverty and decision making that created the issues.
  22. Facebook has so deeply integrated itself into our society that now there are legacy options allowing a family member to take over your page after your death. Basically ensuring that you survive on SM long after you are gone. People are literally wishing dead people happy birthday on SM. I say all of this to state that as long as you pay for your hosting, your site will survive, but SM plays a vital role in allowing us to interact with people we can't see or talk to on a daily basis. It provides an easy out. We can say happy birthday and move on without having to speak to people. We can like something to show our figurative support, or share information to provide a temporary boost. Facebook is now considered 1 of the 4 Horsemen of Business along with Google, Nike and Amazon. Companies that are not going to go away any time soon because they have heavily invested in alternative methods and will always have the capital to exist. Now, with that said... I don't think the forum is going away. It's still alive and kicking for certain communities. When another big Black book movement pops up, message boards will be back in vogue. AALBC will be primed for the resurgence when it happens. Social media for enjoyment has to be divided from Social for business. Unless the content you are creating has the same emotional elements of hedonistic pleasures, social just doesn't work for business. Books are solitary. Music is not. Music tends to thrive on social platforms. Emotional news issues thrive on social platforms. Literature doesn't cause the same emotional response so it isn't good for social in most cases. Good post though Troy. It sounds like the beginning of a book.
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