Wired magazine itself broke the rather disappointing news yesterday that its long-time editor-in-chief, Chris Anderson, will be stepping down from his role at the magazine after an incredibly successful 12-year run. “Anderson joined Wired in 2001,” as an item on the Wired website explains, ”taking the helm of the iconic digital brand just as the dot-com bubble popped.”
From the article:
“On Friday, [Anderson] announced he’s making the … move … from a career turning bits into words and ideas to CEO of 3D Robotics, a company he co-founded in 2009 that turns atoms into drones.”
Anderson plans to depart his current post by the end of the year, according to an item on the New York Times‘ Media Decoder blog. During his tenure, Anderson was largely responsible for bringing Wired‘s vision of a technology-saturated society to a larger and more mainstream audience than the magazine had previously enjoyed. Wired won eight National Magazine Awards under his leadership.
Anderson is the author of The Long Tail: Why the Future of Business is Selling Less of More (Hyperion, 2006); Free: The Future of a Radical Price (Hyperion, 2009); and Makers: The New Industrial Revolution (Crown Business, 2012).
An internal email sent to Condé Nast staffers yesterday, which announced Anderson’s impending departure, has been republished by the New York Observer; click here to read it.
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Yes, I know Burning Man can be a bit goofy. But do yourself a favor: Give this one a chance, and watch it all the way through. Trust me: I wouldn’t recommend it if it wasn’t worth seven minutes of your time.
[And a big huge thanks to the Brainpickings Twitter account for posting the link; this video just made my day.]
A Must-Read for Every Struggling Journalist: Robert Krulwich’s phenomenal Berkeley J-School commencement speech
First, for those of you who aren’t familiar with Robert Krulwich: He’s one of the two hosts of Radiolab, a public radio show so brilliant, so smart, and so singularly unique that it literally must be heard to be believed. Thankfully, they’ve got a free podcast, so if you’ve never had the pleasure, do yourself a big favor a download a few shows, stat. [Radiolab podcasts]
And second, I’m not going to say too much about Krulwich’s recent commencement speech, which he gave on May 7 to the 2011 class at Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism, because there simply isn’t much I can add that will do it any justice. But trust me on this one, please: If you’re currently involved in the field of journalism, and if you’re anything other that 100 percent thrilled with the way your career is panning out, please take the time to read every word of this truly brilliant speech. Read more…
First things first: Spend some time reading this Boing Boing interview with Seth Godin, which was conducted by the Philly-based tech writer Avi Solomon. It’s a wonderful interview–quite a bit different than most of the other Seth Godin Q&As I’ve read recently–but it’s unfortunately littered with typos and grammatical errors. (Confidential to Mark Frauenfelder: What’s up with hiring a copy editor?)
Anyway, Godin mentions his truly exciting new publishing venture, The Domino Project, during the interview. If you don’t happen to already be familiar with The Domino Project, click on over to its website and read the “About” and “FAQ” pages. It’s essentially an eBook publisher that releases its products through Amazon at especially reasonable rates, and from what I can tell, the books all lean strongly towards the same inspirational/creative entrepreneurial bent that Godin espouses in his books and on his super-popular blog. Read more…
There’s an incredibly readable feature story in the Sunday Styles section of today’s New York Times–I highly recommend giving it a read–about self-improvement author Tim Ferriss, who was apparently a popular guest at this year’s South by Southwest (SXSW) conference in Austin, Texas. Ferriss was in Austin to promote his new book, The 4-Hour Body, which is a textbook-like manual that purports to teach its readers how to become “superhuman”–or as Ferriss himself might say, how to hack the human body.
Interestingly enough, even though I have the Sunday New York Times delivered to my front door each weekend, I found out about this particular story through a Gawker post, which essentially made the argument that Ferriss is a self-obsessed asshole because of the unusual way he handles his personal email. There’s no doubt that Ferriss has a huge number of very fervent fans, but he has also managed to inspire a good number of serious haters over the past few years, and apparently Penelope Trunk, a popular work-culture writer who I happen to be a fan of, has been one of them for quite some time.
Here’s a recent blog post written by Trunk entitled, “5 Time management tricks I learned from years of hating Tim Ferriss”. One of the many reasons Trunk gives for “hating” Ferriss has to do with a meeting that took place between the two at a South by Southwest conference in 2007, in fact. At the time, Ferriss was aggressively marketing his first book, The 4-Hour Workweek, to influential bloggers. Apparently, Trunk feels as if she was tricked into having a coffee date with Ferriss, who wanted a chance to pitch his book to the sort of blogger who might be able to introduce it a wider audience. Read Trunk’s post, here, for the full story.
Perhaps not surprisingly, Ferriss recently put together an incredibly useful blog post about the ins and outs of dealing with haters, and if you happen to be a public personality of any sort, or if you happen to be especially successful in your chosen field, I seriously recommend reading it. One of very best points Ferriss makes in the post, as far as I’m concerned, begins with a quote from the sports agent Scott Boras, who said that, “If you are really effective at what you do, 95% of the things said about you will be negative.” If that’s a quote you can personally relate to, take the time to check out both of the posts I’ve linked to below.
Do you have any especially useful techniques–psychological or otherwise–when it comes to dealing with unnecessarily harsh critics? If so, please post them in the comments section.
- Tim Ferriss Scam! Practical Tactics for Dealing with Haters [The Blog of Tim Ferriss]
- How Tim Ferriss Learned to Love the Haters [TNW]
Here’s an old one from way back in mid-2003, when I was first attempting to get my freelance foreign correspondence career off the ground. This story was reported during my first-ever trip to Bangkok, and at the time I didn’t even realize how obsessed I was by creative entrepreneurial types. But when I discovered Farang magazine and Cameron Cooper, the expat publisher responsible for it, I knew I had to write about both. Jesse Oxfeld edited this one, by the way. He left Mediabistro.com about a year later for Editor & Publisher before moving over to New York magazine. He’s now executive editor of Tablet, an online Jewish culture publication. (Not to be confused with the now-defunct alt-biweekly newspaper from Seattle.)
A FARANG IN PARADISE
Bangkok’s Farang magazine–a snarky and useful montly aimed at backpacking kids–and Cameron Cooper, the swashbuckling expat publisher who created it.
By Dan Eldridge – September 8, 2003 | Mediabistro.com
It may be the desk-jockey journalist’s most popular fantasy: pack a suitcase in the dead of night, call a cab to the airport at the break of dawn, and upon arrival in a previously fantasized about exotic locale, commence romantic reinvention from bored newspaper hack to swashbuckling foreign correspondent.
Admittedly, Cameron Cooper’s own transformation from daily scribe to editor-in-chief of Bangkok’s Farang magazine–a monthly travel title aimed at the thousands of world-wizened backpackers who pass through Southeast Asia on gap years or round-the-world treks–didn’t happen quite like that. The story of his introduction to the world of expatriate publishing, in fact, is even more colorful, and filled with over-the-top anecdotes and a string of traveler’s tall tales that he was all too happy to share with me over cups of instant coffee and an endless stream of cigarettes when I recently visited Farang headquarters, a tidy, three-story office overlooking a sweatshop on an almost hidden side street in Bangkok’s sensory-overloaded Banglampoo district.
Incidentally, I have no idea what Cameron Cooper is up to now, although I suspect he’s still living and working in Bangkok. The last time I saw him was maybe three summers ago, when I was in Thailand to research a guidebook for Lonely Planet. Cameron had since changed the name of his magazine from Farang to Untamed Travel, and he mentioned that the publication was up for sale, and that he had another creative entrepreneurial venture in the works.
Unfortunately, he didn’t share any details of his new business plan with me, and I don’t know if it was a publishing effort or something entirely different. If you’re out there, Cameron, I’d love to hear from you. And if anyone reading this happens to know if Cameron is running a new business in Bangkok, please get in touch–or even better, tell us about it in the comments section below.
I’ve always been a big fan of the New York Times‘ “You’re The Boss” blog, which is regularly filled with smart and (sometimes) instantly applicable tips for struggling small business owners. Here’s a recent post, for instance, about a Chicago-based entrepreneur who found himself in the decidedly unusual position of passing along quick nuggets of business-success wisdom to a college student at a red light. (Check out the post’s comments for an even longer list of smart tips.)
Even better, though, is this recent post (with accompanying video) about a small community newspaper publisher who managed to save his quickly-failing business by bringing on an economic consultant, of all things. To check out even more inspirational videos from the Times‘ “How I Saved My Company” series, click here: [link]