The Three ThingsWelcome to the 61st edition of The Three Things, the weekly update of three links, podcasts, videos, or books you can’t miss – from Howie Goldfarb (Blue Star Strategic Marketing), Joe Cardillo (, and yours truly.

For those of you new to this series, The Three Things arrives in your inbox on Sunday mornings (unless you don’t subscribe, but that can easily be fixed if you hurry over and enter your email address or add to your RSS feed) so you have some extra time to spend perusing the obscure content we’ve curated for you (and one another) before your week begins and deadlines, meetings, and work takes over.

Today we explore the destruction of the Constitution of the United States of America, a new look at content strategy, and life before YouTube.

NSA Collection of Phone Data is Lawful, Federal Judge Rules

Howie on the Destruction of the Constitution of the United States of America. Don’t really know what to write here. Big Brother has scared me since High School when Ronald Reagan was President. It is why I until recently always used aliases in Social Media (Twitter is my real name). If I wasn’t in marketing and I had a corporate job like I did in the past I would never use my real name. I grew up with the specter of the KGB, and what totalitarian regimes looked like. Between advances in technologies, the exploitation of people by companies such as Facebook, Apple, Google, etc., by tracking us everywhere we go, to how now in the US the cops take photos of every license plates to build a database of our whereabouts – all the in the name of terrorism?

Since 9/11 there have been 180,000 murders in the US. Since 9/11 zero people have died of international terrorism  And now a judge has ruled the US Government can blow off the constitution in the name of ‘Protecting Us’. This should be a concern to everyone. Having experienced the unfairness of our ‘system’ first hand, and watching as we stood and cared less about human rights here (aka Guantanamo), I am scared for my kids who are so young they might never know what freedom really is.

As Marketplaces Evolve, Greylock Places Its Bets

Joe on Empires, the Collaborative Economy, and what they Might Mean for Content Strategy. I was several decades yet to be born when Hearst and Rockefeller were building their empires. But since I love history there’s a nice little section of my brain devoted to books and essays on journalism, industrialization, and the captains of industry.

What does this have to do with content strategy? Well, part of what we’re seeing on the web is that building empires is becoming collaborative. That seems like an obvious statement, but consider most of our current publishing and media giants weren’t developed this way. Typically they built a strong core, expanded, and then acquired or negotiated from a position of power with other similar properties.

What the collaborative economy is doing is shifting the power to s/he who builds the model, who underwrites the process of calling a cab, buying a physical good, getting something designed, etc.

For those of us whose jobs revolve around content, this is significant. At core is a simple question: Do we want to excel at creating/distributing content, or do we want to underwrite the process? If you’re in the second camp (or, ambitious and trying for both) then some of the quotes in this article about scaling trust, validating people’s capabilities, etc… are worth putting in your brain.

Lost Viral Hits of the Pre-YouTube Era

Lindsay on Life Before YouTube. Wait. What? There was a time before YouTube? I kid, of course, but really, how normal is it for us these days to expect the latest YouTube sensation and/or viral video in our Facebook or Twitter streams on a daily basis…? This is a lovely walk backwards down memory lane – and I guarantee you’ll remember some of these memorable moments.

Number three alone, with Crispin Glover, is pretty epic viewing. According to Internet lore, Glover appeared in character as “Rubin”, from a then-unreleased movie Rubin and Ed, wearing platform shoes and a wig. Rather than a conventional interview, Glover staged an Andy Kaufman-like prank. And Letterman was suitably disturbed. To the point where he walked off-stage mid-interview. There’s an innocence to these “pre-YouTube” clips that is quite lovely. I hope you enjoy. 

Now it’s your turn. Is there a book, podcast, article, TV show, blog post, or story we should read?

Lindsay Bell

Lindsay Bell is the content director at V3 Marketing, and works in Toronto. A former TV producer, she’s a strong advocate of three minutes or less of video content. She has a cool kid, a patient husband, two annoying cats, and Hank Dawge, a Vizsla/Foxhound/moose hybrid. Ok, maybe not moose.

View all posts by Lindsay Bell