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Where’s the truth in the news?

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Back in 2007, I obtained a degree in Marketing, in part inspired by a woman I absolutely adored – Jackie Killeen – who herself had just obtained a degree in Marketing, and in part inspired by ex wife – Amy Newton – who I have just recently learned is one and the same as Commander T’Pol from the fictional series known as Star Trek Enterprise.

*sigh* Had I known Amy and T’Pol were one and the same woman I would never have gotten a divorce!

But then again.

I would also have wished I could see the Vulcan known as T’Pol instead of my ex!

But I digress.

Pursuing that degree and understanding Marketing demanded that I look at and regard my news sources differently.

No longer could I look at a story like this:

“Uber’s Silicon Valley Employees May Be Looking to Jump Ship”

Naively as a fact based presentation of information as I once previously had, instead I was forced to begin questioning perspective and “What’s In It For Me?” otherwise known as WIIFM (pronounced whiff-em)

Now the concept of Wiifm is simple: I as an experienced observer have perspectives, beliefs, goals, motivations, habits, choices, and an ever growing list of influencers which guide and influence what I say, how I say it, and more.

I’ve learned there’s no such thing as unbiased information. Period. End of story.

So going back to the story that appeared on Fortune concerning Uber. Because it’s positioned as fact, clever marketers might understand that most minds might let this slip by as fact and at that point commence the process of questioning – why are they jumping ship?

Enter the company Lyft. (Quasi) Competition to Uber.

Which begs the question.

Is Lyft in actuality competition?

Or is this just deceptive marketing by unscrupulous Lyft Marketing employees?

A simple reflection on the news of late demonstrates an interesting pattern:

In one news story, we see:

Forget Uber: How Lyft can win raising another $500 million for self-driving cars

In another new story we see:

Can Uber be saved from itself?

And in another:

How Uber Deceives the Authorities Worldwide

And in yet another:

How to keep Uber from becoming a terrifying monopoly

And in yet another:

Lyft Replaces Free Cab Rides For St. Patrick’s Day In Montgomery County

So is it just me, or are all these stories sounding mysteriously like the same overactive marketing voice?

The unified message some unidentified marketing individual is sending is clear from a marketing perspective: Uber is evil, Lyft is good, and Lyft is the successor to Uber’s throne.

Most people I know haven’t heard of Lyft. Uber’s used VERY commonly, and I even know a few of the drivers who are good people. So from a marketing perspective, Lyft comes across as being highly deceptive with their marketing, which to me – SHOULD I choose a service, I’d actually choose Uber at this point because I don’t like what appears to be highly manipulative marketing efforts being made at Lyft.

Here’s the problem in a nutshell: There’s SO much negative news about Uber and SO much positive news about Lyft that it just feels…


Which comes back to the concept of What’s in it for me?

In this case, Uber can lose customer base to Lyft which is less revenue. NOW one possibility is THEY themselves may be doing this, for fear of being targeted by monopolizing. That seems remote, but is still a possibility because of the professional taxi cab companies which are clearly losing substantial business to Uber.

For me. The more likely seems like Lyft is just using deceptive advertising to gain entry into the same market space and Uber.

Moving forward, here’s some other stories that – at face value – suggest there’s potential for deception in the information.

Consumer Reports to consider cyber security in product reviews

One of the most annoying things to me is when other people tell me what I’m thinking. In this case, Reuter’s features a random article which suggests Consumer Reports is going to begin reporting on security of products.

For me as an IT professional, I’ll say this – most people I know, with the exception of Anti Virus protection, don’t know nor really care about security. Security companies such as Norton, McAfee’s, and the like have all received substantial bad press over the years for a wide variety of reasons, and for me, paying money for ‘security’ is like paying protection money to the mafia – I just don’t like the idea of it.

I’m suspecting a story like this is sent out by marketers working for security companies with the sole intention of trying to draw more attention to security, and with the hopes of influencing Consumer Reports to actually begin reporting on it. It’s my belief CR isn’t in actuality considering it and won’t unless they read this article. In which case – CR: Please don’t bow to this pressure!

This one annoys the fuck outta me:

Berkeley Will Delete Online Content

Over the last several years, many not for profit  higher education institutions have offered their content free of charge on the internet. This has led to a gradual decline in the profitability of for profit institutions, and a drying up of public funds for funding for profit education.

Now this story, in my opinion, is blatant manipulation of public perception and to me is fucked up and here’s why:

First, the Justice Department isn’t involved in the business of what companies do and don’t publish online. Period end of story. Second, some poor nitwit IT guy or gal working for California State is going to read this news, act on it, and whammo – you have literally years of hard worked erased because some unscrupulous for profit institution used deceptive marketing practices to limit educational resources online in the hopes they’d drive more business to their for profit institutions.

It’s my hope that people in not for profit educational institutions wake up and understand just how deceptive marketing practices and potentially foreign hackers are overruling simple common sense and altering the landscape of our country by choosing to do what they’re told versus what’s right.

I am suspecting the entire message was falsified.

But that’s me.

Here’s another:

Don’t Freak Out About the New Bird Flu Outbreak (Yet)

I’m noticing a weird pattern with phrasing on the internet. “Don’t freak out.”. The ‘terrifying” or “horrifying” xxxx, and “You should do xxx”. The moment I see something that matches this pattern, I instantly get a mental image of a zit faced,. overly obese booger eating 20 something year old who’s patting himself on the back about how crafty he’s being about these feeble attempts at scare tactics or overtly manipulative marketing.

It’s stupid, really,

A few years back, when purported epidemics of swine and bird flu occurred, I began investigating the origin of these and other diseases. I saw a supply chain, an obvious one, which made it clear that in many cases, news itself and media were being manipulated to the detriment of the public to create problems where the suppliers of these messages just happened to also have the solutions to those problems.

It was a not so clever arrangement. So when I see news stories like this that tell me about the next world breaking virus.

I learned to tune it out.

You see, here’s the thing. Many marketers know that the mind supplies the energy which shapes and molds the world, and with that, in a literal sense creates the conditions for these diseases and ailments to manifest in the real world.

Reject this blatant manipulation of the mind.

Just say no to marketing which tears you down by creating these conditions and then takes more from you financially once you’re down.

That’s worse than double taxation in my opinion.

And in my last story of annoyance:

All of That Pollution in Asia Turns Into Smog in the U.S.

A few years ago, I was offered a job in Beijing which I politely declined because the air quality was that horrid.

Asia’s been banking on expat labor to revitalize their nation, and as I learned, they’ve been doing a LOT of manipulation of foreign media in order to drive ‘traffic’ their way.  Living conditions there are rough, there’s not a whole lot of respect for individuality there, and to make matters worse, they treat their environment like they do their people. Horridly.

The United States has worked for decades to not just understand weather and ecosystems – at the very least – to clean up it’s air and water supplies. One thing we’ve learned has been the planet naturally segments and protects over VERY short distances.

So news such as Fukushima radiation infecting the United States as well as pollution from Asia infecting us is…


Think about it this way: When you create interest in your country by threatening others with your conditions because you lack the ability to self govern, are you any different than a modern day terrorist nation?

To this. I flip the bird to China. and say a big huge FUCK YOU out to the entire Chinese population.

“Take care of your own shit, we have enough problems here that you are doing nothing but refusing to assist with anyways as you continue taking from us”

I quit reading newspapers years ago.

And I’m glad.

News quality both online and off has deteriorated to the point of ludicrousness.



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