David Rosenbaum's blog

07/31/2014
Traditional print journalism seems to be dying a relatively quick but still gruesome death. According to the Pew Research Journalism Project’s State of the News Media 2014 report, “Full-time professional newsroom employment declined another 6.4 percent in 2012 with more losses expected for 2013....
06/13/2014
The thought leadership industrial complex churns out an endless stream of articles full of advice about how to become a thought leader. One nugget invariably is to get quoted in the media. But these articles never tell you how to do that. The funny thing is, it’s not that hard. In truth, getting...
06/11/2014
It’s becoming increasingly hard to be considered a thought leader these days unless you have something to say about social media, as my colleague Tim Parker noted here.  Inevitably, chiming in on social media to establish one’s thought-leadership credentials has resulted in a great deal of wrong-...
04/25/2014
Orange Papers now available on the X Random Consulting website. Orange represents change.  At X Random, we understand change and apply innovative solutions to help our clients successfully manage change. Our white papers are referred to as Orange Papers as a reminder that at X Random we focus on...
03/25/2014
Is Bitcoin, the proprietary digital currency now accepted by eBay, Overstock.com, Wordpress, and other digital businesses (as well as by money launderers the world over) a good subject for a thought leadership article? One might think so. Type “Bitcoin” into Google and you get 41 million hits...
02/07/2014
The New York Times ran a feature story last month with the fairly compelling headline, “I May Be 50, but Don’t Call Me a Boomer.” Me, I’m skeptical of all generational tags – the Silent Generation, Generations X, Y, and Z, Millennials, whatever. As an old newspaperman, I know very well that they’re...
01/28/2014
The web is a tabloid medium. Like tabloid newspapers, the web collects the world’s news and notes, analysis and opinion, flotsam and jetsam, organizing it all in helter-skelter fashion without passing judgment. Great content and nonsense are treated the same. The web, like the tabloid, is a great...
04/08/2011
  Historically, writers and editors have been comic figures, ye olde ink-stained wretches, necessary evils, people so lacking in life skills that they're reduced to trying to earn a living by putting words together, something anyone, even a child (and certain birds) can do. Is it any wonder that...
04/07/2011
  I was informed by a client this morning that my compensation for writing for their website would be cut by more than 50 percent. I was told not to take this personally; all the writers the client employed were taking the same cut and they were taking it happily. After a few email exchanges, I...
06/30/2010
I was at MIT the other day listening to the CEO of a small technology company discussing his company's security product when a member of the audience asked him about "cloud governance" and I saw the CEO's head explode. No, it didn't actually explode, but it was a near thing. His eyes rolled up;...
06/01/2010
Once upon a time I had a boss who would always end his memos announcing some new Draconian policy with the phrase: "Thank you for your mandatory cooperation." Of course, this became an oft-repeated office joke. Clearly, if something is "mandatory," then "cooperation" loses its meaning as, indeed,...
05/21/2010
It is a truth universally acknowledged that corporate writing--from white papers to one-sheets and everything in between--stinks. Say "white paper" to 99 out of 100 executives and first you'll hear a snicker, and then something along the lines of "I never read that [insert expletive]." Why is this...
05/20/2010
It's lovely to be able to refer to "my agent." Just saying "my agent" gives you the feeling that you're special, that you've got an edge, that you're not alone in the world.  I've always enjoyed it immensely.  It's sort of like referring to "my guardian angel," only your agent is flesh and blood...
05/18/2010
Let's say an editor likes your proposal. She's prepared to try to convince her boss that this is a project worth investing in to the tune of X dollars--your advance.  (Your advance, by the way, is probably the only money you'll ever see so you'll want to maximize whatever you can get. Forget...
05/12/2010
It’s no secret that the book publishing business is in big trouble. Book sales only grew 1.6 percent from 2002 to 2008, according to Ken Auletta in “Publish or Perish” in the April 26 New Yorker. That’s not good. In fact, it stinks. For writers, that means, among other things, that advances will be...
05/06/2010
The most important thing to know about a book proposal is that it's not actually a proposal and it doesn't really have much to do with books. In the publishing world, the term "book proposal" is simply a traditional nom d'art. What a book proposal really is is a business plan one creates to entice...
05/04/2010
Well, why shouldn't you write a book? Thousands do. According to Bowker (a publishing industry consultancy) there were close to 9,000 new titles published in 2008 in the business sector alone. So you may be asking yourself, to paraphrase the Cowardly Lion in "The Wizard of Oz," "Whatta those...

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