Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Morning Brief: Follow-up to MSC story; RBI ends sales cycle; Apple & Iran compared; PennWell seeks UK editor

Yesterday I wrote a post about online community news publisher Main Street Connect. Late last night CEO Carll Tucker wrote a lengthy comment clarifying a few points concerning their affiliate model.

The Dow made huge gains yesterday as the stock market reacted to Europe's attempts to support the Euro and ease the debt crisis in Greece. This morning, however, European markets fells as the rally lost momentum. The Guardian is live blogging the market this morning, just as they are live blogging news concerning attempts to form a new U.K. government by the Tories, Labour and the Liberal Democrats. Yesterday Gordon Brown announced that he would eventually step down as head of Labour, and thus Prime Minister, even it Labour is able to secure a power sharing deal with the Liberal Democrats.

Reed wrapped up its deals with their former publishers, leaving Chain Leader, Converting, Graphic Arts Blue Book, Graphics Arts Monthly, Purchasing, Restaurants & Institutions and Trade Show Week unsold. Folio: reports, uncritically, that RBI will retain these titles for "lead generation" purposes. Sure. Clearly RBI had no intention of selling the remaining 23 titles unless they could have secured large multiples. If they had wanted to sell them they would have put them on the market, right?

Is Apple out of control? Shiny Shiny, a mobile and gadgets site, passes on the follow report:

A [Dazed & Confused] insider revealed that the mag's iPad edition has been nicknamed the Iran edition by the people putting it together, given the parallels between censorship in the Muslim theocracy and the iTunes store.

This all goes back to Apple's prudish views of nudity, forcing publications to self-censor to make it into Apple's app store. Somehow Apple is managing to destroy its reputation for cool, built on the backs of millions of iPod sales, and are quickly becoming the brand of old and stodgy.

More Apple: Hopes that Apple would bring its iPhone to Verizon have been dashed as it became clear that AT&T has a five year exclusive on the phone. That Apple would have, once again, made a mistake by keeping a product exclusive (just as they have with their own OS) is incredible. The result is that Verizon is moving quickly to fill the void pushing the HTC Droid Incredible phone.

Apple may be mad at Google for moving into the smartphone market, but in the end they will have only themselves to blame when the iPhone becomes a small niche product the way the Mac is. That is not a statement about the quality of the iPhone, which I still prefer over others, but simply an observation concerning the company's inability to learn from its past mistakes.

Job alert: PennWell is advertising for a Chief Editor for its Renewable Energy World & HRW magazines. The job is located in the U.K., which only makes the job more attractive, if you ask me.