education

Facebook Stock Down; Porn Star in Where We Belong; Obama and The New Normal

On Tuesday, Mark Zuckerberg had to deal with questions from aggressive stockholders about why facebook’s stock isn’t what he’d promised it would be by now. Facebook is free to millions of users and based on ad revenue, like most social media.

“We’re disappointed with the performance of the stock over the last year,” Mr. Zuckerberg said. “We expect there’s going to be fluctuations.”

Mr. Zuckerberg also defended the company’s business model and several of its recent decisions, such as changes in its mobile apps and new ad products. He said there are signs of strength across Facebook’s business, especially in mobile, where about 30% of its sales now come from mobile ads.

It should be interesting to see how this continues to play out. The fact is that times are still hard for most people. Most people don’t click facebook ads (partly because they don’t trust viruses). We used to have no choice when it came to ads on TV and radio. We had to watch them or listen to them, or get up and leave the room until they were over. Now we do have a choice, for the most part, with ads and most of us don’t pay attention to them. Most ads annoys us. In a weird moment a few years ago I thought I wanted a nine feet tall white artificial Christmas tree. I searched for a few on google, and for the next three months I was followed by a shitstorm of ads for nine feet tall Christmas trees until I thought it would never end. I didn’t buy it in spite of the ads…or perhaps because of the annoying ads.

Facebook could start charging users. A lot of online newspapers and magazines are starting to do that. But would you pay to find out what Betty Jane Author Person had for lunch?

Actually, I’m on Zuckerberg’s side. I don’t know how it’s going to work out, but I hope it does. I do like social media and I think it’s helped change the world. I’m just not certain I’d pay for it.

You can read more here.

Porn Star in Where We Belong

I posted earlier that former porn star, Johnny Hazzard, is in a new gay indie film that’s not porn titled, Where We Belong. You can read more here.

Frankie Valenti, aka gay adult film star Johnny Hazzard, is set to make his big screen debut in the independent feature-length drama “Where We Belong.”

The film, set in a small town in Central California, highlights two estranged gay brothers who struggle to reconnect after the recent death of their homophobic father. Valenti plays the role of the younger brother and black sheep of the family.

Aside from the fact that I have a gay brother and that part about the film interests me, I also think it’s interesting that the film has been funded through kickstarter. I’ve posted several times about kickstarter here. If you haven’t heard of it, you might want to check out that link.

Kickspy lists the details here.

Here’s a facebook page for the film.

Obama and the New Normal

I posted more than once about the TV show The New Normal.  I was on the fence with it for a while, I finally started getting into it more, and now I hear it’s been canceled.

NBC quietly canceled its groundbreaking gay sitcom “The New Normal” after just one season on Friday. The news was met with very little fanfare from the liberal media, which stood in stark contrast to the circus atmosphere hype surrounding the show’s premiere on September 11, 2012.

The cancellation was among a long list of shows such as “Go On” and “Guys With Kids” which were also canceled Friday.

“The New Normal” was produced by Glee’s Ryan Murphy, who sought to redefine the way families are portrayed on TV. Murphy arrogantly described TNN as “changing the face of television.”

Of course One Million Moms took credit for The New Normal Being Canceled. This is very amusing:

A conservative and notoriously anti-gay group is claiming responsibility for the cancellation of the NBC series “The New Normal.”

Joe. My. God cites an email sent to him from Monica Cole, the leader of One Million Moms, who writes, “Our persistence has paid off once again! ‘The New Normal’ got the axe by NBC after the show’s first and only season!”

You can read more of this nonsense here.

Give us a break, million moms. And give us some credit, too. The reason I think The New Normal was canceled was because it was too self-indulgent. I wrote about that here last year. I was wrong about TNN sticking around. I guess you can’t win them all. But I don’t think I was wrong about it being way too self-indulgent.

There was a TV show years ago where the creator used to get very political. It was called “Designing Women,” and it’s still on TV in some markets in syndication. In the beginning, it was a great show. But as each season passed it started getting more political and self-indulgent and it wound up being more cheese than actual entertainment. The only reason I watched it was because Delta Burke was hysterical and her character grounded the other big mouths who were always complaining and harping about something. And it always seemed as if the creator of that show, Linda Bloodworth Thomason, was standing on a soap box telling the world her political opinions: self-indulgence once again. The show wound up tanking after Burke left, and Bloodworth-Thomason went on to create other shows that never did half as well as “Designing Women.”

Those one million moms can think anything they want, but the fact is that I know many gay men and women who didn’t watch TNN because they couldn’t relate to it. Some I know hated it. I actually did relate to TNN in many ways, but not all gay people are like me or like the characters on TNN. And that’s the problem with being self-indulgent. You tend to assume too much, and you don’t take into consideration that not everyone agrees with you. 

In the same respect, on the very day that TNN was canceled, the US Department of Education made a huge change of its own:

The new policy, which takes effect in the 2014-2015 school year, will eliminate the terms “mother” and “father” from student aid forms. The new, non-gender specific terms will be “Parent 1″ and “Parent 2″.

The change is being instituted to make children who were raised in non-traditional same sex homes more comfortable with the application process.

“All students should be able to apply for federal student aid within a system that incorporates their unique family dynamics, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said in a statement.

You can read more here, where Sandra Rose gets into a few interesting statistics about HIV/AIDS.