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December 2, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review June 4, 2013/ 26 Sivan, 5773

Branded

By Peter Funt








http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | While taking a shower at the Hampton Inn in Franklin, Mass., I noticed some information printed on the tiny bottle of shampoo. On one side it said "shampoo," which I found to be both appropriate and useful. On the other side it said "www.hampton.com," a notation that was baffling under the circumstances.

As I rinsed off it dawned on me that had I thought to bring my netbook into the shower I could have sent management an e-mail: "pls deliver 2 btowels to rm 320 asap :)"

Apparently one significant aspect of the Internet Revolution is that businesses now believe it is essential to, as marketing people term it, "brand" their Web addresses in as many crannies as possible. Some firms, it seems, would rather be known as a Web address than as, say, an actual company.

Looking around my hotel room I discovered the Web address - that's hampton.com - emblazoned on the bottle of conditioner, the moisturizer, the mouth wash, the plastic drinking cup, the laundry bag, the room key, the ballpoint pen, and even on each sheet of paper on the notepad I used to make this list. That's either what you call high-powered Web branding, or Internet Era overkill.

Meanwhile, it's come to my attention that seven states now print their Web addresses on license plates. If you're driving behind someone in Florida, Pennsylvania, Georgia, Michigan, Maryland, Nebraska or South Dakota, you'll know instantly how to reach state government via the Internet with a message such as, "There's a dead raccoon at Mile 147 of I-95."


I doubt state legislators wish to encourage motorists to use the Internet while driving, so what exactly is the purpose of stamping the addresses on license plates? Did a highly paid marketing person actually sit in a room and say, "I'll bet more people would shop here in Nebraska if only we had our Web address on license plates"?

Flying on United Airlines I noticed that United.com is printed in large type on every paper napkin. Here again, I must be missing the big point. You can't make use of a Web address during flight, and you've already managed to contact the airline in order to buy your ticket, so is the idea that you'll stick the dirty napkin in your bag and carry it around in case someday, after you've forgotten how to contact United Airlines, you'll refer to the napkin and be reminded of United.com?

A byproduct of this Web obsession is the fact that many companies simply don't want customers calling them on the phone - never, ever, for any reason, anymore, period. Most banks and airlines are already there. They hide their phone numbers more artfully than Hollywood celebrities. And if you somehow track down a number, you run the risk of paying a penalty for daring to use the phone. You're also in for a tedious button-pushing ordeal to get through the screening system, ending with an automated: "Thanks, I'll be sure to pass that information to an agent."

The agent, who is likely to be housed in an unidentified offshore location, has a strange way of speaking English which is eerily robotic in tone and execution. Regardless, he or she has not been given any of the information that you punched in, and is usually of so little help that you'll be trained never to bypass the Internet again, ever.

One regional carrier, Allegiant Air, now makes it impossible to phone them without a charge, stating on their Web site: "...we have chosen to reduce our costs by discontinuing our toll-free number." If you do choose to phone the 702 area code, you'll find that there is a $10 fee per passenger, per segment flown, for using the "Call Center." So it's worth a lot of money if you can find a paper napkin that might have Allegiant's URL on it.

Bottom line: I think we may all be overdoing the Web thing just a tad.

Incidentally, if you're reading the printed edition of this newspaper, the Web address is conveniently branded almost everywhere you look (not that there's anything wrong with that).


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© 2013, Peter Funt. Columns distributed exclusively by: Cagle Cartoons, Inc., newspaper syndicate

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