Support Club Passim in Harvard Square!!!

Hey! If you live in Boston or Cambridge, and you like music, especially Folk music, then you’ve probably been to Club Passim in Cambridge – Harvard Square actually. It’s a lot more than a ‘Coffee House’ – it’s an institution where many of your favorite 70s acts got their start.

Passim is a tiny little folk music club in Harvard Square that’s existed years and years and where musicians like Joan Baez and Bob Dylan played at the very beginning of their careers. I am friends with various people at Passim, over the year we have attended lots of shows there.

We have been members for years and more recently even made some donations to them. For me, the place has a wonderful sense of history, not to mention that we are  big folk music fans. Passim has hit hard times over the years on several occasions, and this year’s economic downturn (did you read about it by any chance?) has hit them hard again.

I know I would hate to see Passim go under or have to curtail it’s programs even more than they are already doing. They have a fairly tiny budget as it is, and they do a lot for music in the area as well as nation wide.We go often and it’s amazing a place like that lives hand-to-mouth. You wouldn’t believe it.

How about it, lighten up your 2008 tax return a little and make a contribution. You will feel happy and Joan Baez will personally call you to say thanks. Whoops. There I go again. No she won’t call you. But I will 🙂

I’ve made a page where you can contribute if you are so moved. Click and Give!

Also you can send a check, made out to Passim Center to:
Passim Folk Music & Cultural Center
26 Church Street, Suite 300
Cambridge, MA 02138

Sign up for Jason Calcanis email list!

Jason Calcanis has stopped blogging and instead is doing an email only mailing list (yes, how 1999 of him.) I had heard about it but recently got me a copy of his most recent missive.

Interesting, opinionated, practical and easy to read. I recommend it!

I’ve never met Jason but I’ve been in his presence as he forcefully (and humorously) debated this or that luminary. Feisty guy, experienced and articulate. Most recently he founded, which was well covered when it first launched but now I don’t hear that much about it.

Here’s where you sign up for Jason’s mailing list.

10 Commandments might apply to more than just Facebook!

Check out these 10 Commandments for Facebook Applications. They are pretty good commandments for software in general. I especially like:

“Make it simple. Users DO NOT read.”, from FaceReviews

Yup, I have seen that time and time again with BlogBridge. Hard to believe. But true. Of course there’s the 1 in a thousand who ask for more documentation, but they are very rare.

[if you are interested in Facebook, take a look at BlogBridge’s Guide of Facebook blogs and feeds]

Asymmetrical conflict in the blogosphere

I met with a potential client the other day who was on red alert because there were a lot of nasty things being said about them on blogs, comments and forums. And I thought of the concept of asymmetrical conflict as we have learned about it in recent years.

Even without knowing whether the criticism of the client was deserved: for a single act, or a pattern of action, or not at all, it struck me that they were in a very tough and unfair spot. If you look at nasty blog posts or comment streams, it is hard to deny that there’s a piling on, hit them when they are down dynamic.

When hearing the people and effort that this client had deployed to try to respond to this, and how helpless they felt, i did feel sympathy. Once a thread about your company, or your product, or yourself, starts up, and gets interesting, it gathers a crowd, maybe because they agree, but just as easily because the attacker is funny or outrageous or clever in an evil way.

And then Google gets a hold of it, and before long negative diatribes become number one and two hits when people search for it. And there’s not a thing you can do about it.

Basically what’s going on is that individuals (bloggers but just as easily comment posters) invest almost no time, equipment or money to create essentially an attack which gets magnified 10 or 100 fold by the crowd mentality and then the search engines, and which the target, no matter how much time, equipment or money, cannot really defend against, even when it’s totally untrue or unfair. Asymmetrical conflict.

Yeah I know this is the way it goes on the web and it’s just one dark flip side of all the good that we get from the internet. But I know I personally will think twice before zipping off a blog post or comment in anger.

Great new information about blogging

I just wrote a few brief tutorials that I thought might be of interest to you and, well, everyone. Please check them out – if you find them useful, please pass them on to your friends!

Continuing coverage of Demo 2008

Yesterday was a busy day! I saw lots of excellent products and ideas. I don’t know how useful the Liveblog was for y’all, but it was a handy way to have me take notes and concentrate on what was happening. You wouldn’t think you need help concentrating, but sitting in a big dark room for hours on end can wear out your attention span.