Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 11, 2013 12:41 PM
The old adage about mail being delivered whether there is rain, sleet or snow doesn't cover whether the letter carrier makes appointed rounds if the Postal Service is losing billions of dollars.
The USPS, of course, has announced that as of August, Americans won’t be getting deliveries on Saturdays, due to the service losing $1.3 billion in the final quarter of 2012. (Holiday mailings were expected to stave off such massive losses.) and $16 billion in its previous fiscal year. (Esquire has an expansive piece out this month looking at the service's wide-ranging woes.)
No hint of the service's troubles seems apparent on its Facebook page, which announces "6-Day Package/5-Day Mail Delivery" in a manner that almost seems to suggest it's an improvement. It also calls itself "the largest, most efficient postal company in the world" (with a retail network that is "larger than McDonald's, Starbucks and Wal-mart combined") and reminds Americans that a stamp that costs 46 cents in the U.S. is priced at an average of 93 cents elsewhere in the world.Continue reading...
name that _______
Posted by Mark J. Miller on June 25, 2012 04:03 PM
Everybody is looking for cash these days, but how to drum it up when everybody is also paying extra close attention to where a wallet’s contents are disappearing to. Cities are no different. Government services are hurting for cash and there are only so many ways to generate more dough.
So cities are getting creative, the New York Times reports. Baltimore is currently trying to sell space on its fire engines to raise some extra pennies. And why not? The city’s current budget has made the elimination of three city fire companies necessary this summer.
Philadelphia is selling ad space on its subway fare cards and one of the city’s main train stops is now named for AT&T. Chicago is selling naming rights to its eleven "L" subway stations. As for the Times' hometown, the naming rights for the Atlantic Avenue subway station at the new Barclays Center in Brooklyn were sold in 2009, and the MTA implemented the Barclays name change in May.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on June 18, 2012 01:56 PM
In the latest update of its Transparency Report, Google says it has received more than 1,000 official requests from governments to take down content from search results or YouTube in the last six months of 2011.
"It's alarming not only because free expression is at risk, but because some of these requests come from countries you might not suspect — Western democracies not typically associated with censorship," stated Dorothy Chou, Google’s senior policy analyst, in a blog post. "Unfortunately, what we've seen over the past couple years has been troubling, and today is no different. We hoped this was an aberration. But now we know it's not."Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on March 5, 2012 02:35 PM
There is a worldwide battle against cigarette marketing going on and the British government has doubled up on rulings in order to keep them out of the eyes of consumers.
Starting April 6th, the UK government stipulates that retailers that runs stores larger than 280 square meters must keep cigarettes hidden from consumers and only expose them while making the sale or cleaning off the shelf that they are on, according to FreshBusinessThinking.com. “Price lists and posters, necessary because customers will not be able to see the products, have to be in a specified font and font size,” according to the Dec. 2011 tobacco display guidelines.
The effort to hide the smokes will cost retailers an estimated £15.6 million ($20.6 million), but there has been an outcry from the British Retail Consortium because the government is also “considering the possibility of plain packaging for tobacco products.”Continue reading...
Posted by Laura Fitch on September 14, 2009 04:59 PM
China’s upcoming 60th national day celebrations are an exercise in public perception.
Last year, the government focused on showing China’s best face to the world during the Olympics, with friendly volunteers assisting hapless tourists an increased press freedom (at least officially, if not in practice). Ads featuring smiling athletes and television commercials espousing world peace and harmony. This year, however, the message is a little different, as the Associated Press reported. Continue reading...
Posted by Stephanie Startz on September 11, 2009 09:53 AM
The dark future predicted after 9/11 did not come to pass. [NYT
Hersheys considers a counterbid for Cadbury as shares fall in Kraft. [Times of London
Motorola debuts a new Android smartphone -- the Cliq in the US and the Dext elsewhere -- seeking to reposition the brand from "a voice centric company to... a mobile internet, data driven company" designed to compete with Apple's iPhone. [FT
Analysis of Obama's strategy to reframe his health care reform plans. [Washington Post
GM issues a 60-day money-back guarantee to ease consumers anxiety. [CNN
Japan's Suntory and Asahi
Breweries have reportedly placed a €2.6bn ($3.8bn) bid before the private equity owners of Orangina, Blackstone and Lion Capital. [FT
Posted by Corianna Sichel on September 10, 2009 04:53 PM
Verizon Wireless has gone to great lengths to tint its brand green. But as Ad Age reports, the mobile communications giant took a big step backwards when it enraged environmentalists by refusing to pull its sponsorship of a West Virginia Friends of America Rally over Labor Day weekend, organized by Massey Energy.
Why would environmentalists be upset? First, Massey Energy uses mountaintop removal, a coal mining process which involves chopping down forests, removing topsoil, and blasting away up to 1,000 feet of ground. Continue reading...
Posted by Anthony Zumpano on September 9, 2009 06:23 PM
This week Barack Obama offered strong opinions about two major tech brands in his address to America’s students: Apple’s iPhone and Microsoft’s Xbox. Guess which one gets the love?
The President characterized Apple's communication device as the pinnacle of technological advancement:
Maybe you could be an innovator or an inventor – maybe even good enough to come up with the next iPhone.
But the dreaded Xbox, according to Obama, threatens to make American children lazy and stupid. Continue reading...