Archive for May, 2018

Data Driven

Posted: May 15, 2018 in Uncategorized

By R.C. Seely

BETWEEN THE NEGATIVE coverage in the media and the comments by the president, internet giant Amazon is getting beaten up in the public eye. And it’s all because of a lie perpetrated by their rivals. Many companies didn’t plan for the internet when it was new and over built on outlet stores. That’s why they have been losing money and had to contract.

You talk to the emerging online giants, they see brick-and-mortar stores as still a viable option, they weren’t properly utilized is all.

Take specialty glasses and sunglasses online retailer Warby Parker, it launched in 2010, and is expecting major growth. “By the end of 2016, it had 36 stores… Today, it has a total of 63 locations across the US and Canada, with plans to hit 90 by 2019,” reported Entrepreneur magazine, in its March issue.

How is this possible? You may ask. Retail stores are dying off so fast they may need to be placed on the endangered species list. Real estate firm Crushman Wakefield tallies the numbered of closed stores in 2017 at 9,000 and an additional 12,000, or more, by the end of 2018.

And Warby Parker isn’t alone in thinking store expansion is a sound idea. The Canadian company, Tease-Tea, plans on opening doors in New York. British based athletic brand Gymshot is considering opening stores in Los Angeles.

What do these companies know that the larger retailers don’t? Nothing really, they simply have proven better with the knowledge. It’s a system referred to as Deep Data, a set of algorithms based on the previous buying habits of past customers. Mostly it’s a s common sense sociological analysis–monitoring where they have the most sales when they were online only and only building there. Sounds like a practical model to me and like a winning strategy too.

E-commerce companies Birchbot, Everlane, Bonobos are talking about taking about going brick-and-mortar as well. Even though there’s a certain amount of risk to this strategy, Warby Parker maintains it worth it and appears they are not the only one.

In the Entrepreneur interview they also argue there are lessons to be learned:

“The physical store also creates data that no online store ever could. For example, Warby Parker recently tested a kiosk-style pop-up in … a mall in lower Manhattan… The company learned something unexpected: Customers don’t like trying on prescription glasses in a public setting: it’s too intimate… But sunglasses sold well.”

Deep Data science is comparably new, but it already appears to be an effective tool to avoid overbuilding and while some retail insiders say be cautious, ignoring Deep Data might be a missed opportunity. Used efficiently Deep Data may lessen the gamble.

R.C. Seely is the founder of and ALTV. He has written books on pop culture and has an upcoming new release–Confused Yet?: Understanding the Utterly Incomprehensible.

By R.C. Seely

WHAT IS THE POINT OF CONVERSION OF unions and conservatives here in America? American protectionism in the economy. That warm feeling, they get to see that “Made in America” seal of approval. That seal has a great cost and it’s a loss of freedom in the free market. It also demonstrates that conservatives have less faith in the free market then they claim. I don’t share such sentiments, of course I’m a consumer advocate not a labor advocate.

Advocates on the conservative side are making basically the same arguments as unions too, that’s the confusing part! Both are claiming it’s better to only have American labor made products in the American market and keep out those cheap inferior foreign alternatives: A collective agenda. Free market advocates, on the other hand, recognize that a true free market isn’t one that favors labor or nationalism of any kind but empowers the consumer: That’s an individual agenda.

Even when they enjoy the fruits of foreign labor, they still complain about it. And fruits are one of the most common of all foreign labor, even with the diverse climates of California much of our produce comes from Mexico where it can be grown year-round. Keep that in mind when you are having an avocado or orange in the middle of winter.

Produce is not the only product that is made the US takes advantage of, those steel tariffs proposed by Trump will also increase costs to construction, which will increase costs to the consumer. Just because we pay more, doesn’t mean we end up switching to “American Made.” Foreign products are bought because there’s an economic advantage to it; if a consumable product, it’s either available year-round somewhere else or not, has a superior flavor from the foreign environment, or isn’t available at all in the US; with other products, other nations might also have environmental advantage or a developed a more effective manufacturing technique. If it’s the latter, that puts the burden to change on the US not the foreign competitor, which tariffs discourages.

Just like brick-and-mortar stores have to constantly evolve to compete with online challengers, so too the domestic markets need to alter their plans to compete with foreign competition. That’s the only way to achieve a free market.

As for the much-maligned NAFTA agreements, no it’s not a bad thing and is simply a contract between countries, a fact that I’m sure Trump knows. And like any contract, it can be renegotiated, so if the presidents not satisfied with the terms, he should do so and stop stirring up resentment.

R.C. Seely is the founder of and ALTV. He has also written books on pop culture and has a upcoming new release–Confused Yet?: Understanding the Utterly Incomprehensible.

Robocall Restrictions

Posted: May 2, 2018 in Uncategorized

By R.C. Seely

SOCIETY HAS GOTTEN SO used to having big government ridding them of all life’s problems that now activists need to invent causes. An addition was brought to my attention via an email petition.

From the petition:

“Let’s stop the minute-to-minute annoyance of unsolicited calls constantly coming through to our mobile phones.
Calls when we are in a meeting, calls when we are with our children, calls when we are having dinner, calls when we are going to bed – when does it end?
Ten a day, then 15, then 20 – it just doesn’t stop.
We need the FCC to make the necessary regulatory changes on their end and then to start this mandate of the phone carriers.
Many of the hundreds of millions of calls are originating overseas. Companies and scammers are using computer technology to dial literally millions of numbers a day. With the push of a button millions of calls go out through the network at one time.
Furthermore, they are using ‘spoofing’ technology to have those calls come through to our phones as a local call by showing a local area code to try and fool people into picking up.
It is time for the FCC to require phone carriers to develop and implement technology that can detect when a flood of calls are coming through the networks and prevent those calls from ever making it to your mobile phone.

Seriously… The FCC isn’t involved enough in our lives with Net Neutrality, it’s deemed necessary to “protect” us from annoying phone calls as well as different views.

This is especially absurd since there’s already a system in place for this. A little thing called “the no-call list.” But let’s get real what this is all about, it’s one more progressive anti-capitalist stunt. A false bravado to attempt to demonize capitalism. Of all such demonstrations, this could be the most pathetic.

R.C. Seely is the founder of and ALTV. He has written books on pop culture and has an upcoming new release–Confused Yet?: Understanding the Utterly Incomprehensible