Are rising wages really bad news?

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There’s no shortage of news these days that will make your blood boil. But what really got me going was an article in USA Today about the next big threat to the economy: rising wages. I am no economist, but I’ve been reading business and economic news and analyzing the future of whole industries for … Continued

Can AI write good articles?

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I asked an artificial intelligence to write an article. It wasn’t very good, but it wasn’t completely awful, either. If you’re a writer, machines are nipping at your heels; it’s time to work on your creativity. Machines have been writing articles for years — but only in formulaic settings. For example, you won’t be shocked … Continued

There are six PR people for every reporter. So change your strategy.

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Bloomberg reports that, according to the U.S. Census, as of 2018, there are 6.4 PR people for every journalist. Reporters will tell you what that means for their inboxes. Thousands of pitches falling on the floor. Constant pestering. And waste. So much waste. You can lament this trend (and the loss of media is a … Continued

When a SpaceX rocket explodes, they call it an “anomaly”

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SpaceX tested its crew capsule’s abort system on Saturday and it exploded. They described it as an “anomaly.” Is that accurate or misleading? SpaceX designed the crew capsule so it could send astronauts into space (so far it has only carried cargo). The system it tested on Saturday was for the “inflight abort” — a … Continued

HubSpot’s excellent apology for its recent outage

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HubSpot products failed for much of last Thursday. (Since today is April Fools’ Day, I want to emphasize — this is over, but it really did happen.) The company’s apology email was sufficiently straightforward, clear, and contrite that two different people sent it me with complimentary notes. So let’s take a look at what HubSpot … Continued

Wow Air shutdown shows why “you’re screwed” is passive voice

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Without warning, the Icelandic airline Wow Air has suspended all its flights while seeking additional financing. There is no better illustration of how companies use passive voice to evade blame than its message to passengers. By writing in the passive voice, Wow Air makes it sound as if this is some unfortunate and unforeseen circumstance … Continued

What is Robert Kraft apologizing for?

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New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft just apologized for not doing anything wrong. Why bother? Police in Jupiter, Florida say they have video of Robert Kraft visiting the Orchids of Asia spa and massage parlor, which they say was a front for prostitution. The video almost certainly shows him doing something he’d rather you didn’t … Continued

Two conflicting approaches on those Boeing 737 MAX crashes

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Boeing and its airline customers are in a tough situation. Plane crashes are very rare — planes are safer than ever — but in the wake of two crashes of Boeing 737 MAX aircraft, they need to both reassure people and indicate that they’re taking steps to solve the problem. Boeing clearly has a disciplined … Continued