Brian Gongol Show on WHO Radio - October 24, 2010

Brian Gongol

I stand behind argument tonight that Charles Schultz could only have created the Peanuts canon of work in a place like America, where creativity can be rewarded by the private market. I'm just trying to imagine the North Korean version of Charlie Brown. There's an enduring value to things like the Peanuts specials, and lots of places don't create them.

If the Communist Party of Vietnam (or anywhere else) tries to "friend" you on Facebook, don't do it. In fact, you should probably have a pretty clear idea and set of rules for whom (or what) you'll identify as your friend on any social-media site. And beware how much time you invest in any of these sites, or how much you rely upon them to preserve your memories -- I think Facebook will be eclipsed by something bigger by 2015.

As credible, established journalists leave legacy names like the Washington Post to go to websites with names like "The Daily Beast" and the eponymous "Huffington Post" (which don't sound to me as credible as "Newsweek" or "Tribune"), it's pretty clear that the Internet is helping to make individual credibility as important as institutional credibility -- if not even more so. At least some journalists are making good use of establishing their own personal brands, which all of them should. It's another evolution in how we understand media.

Benoit Mandelbrot has passed away. You may not have heard his name before, but you probably recognize the Mandelbrot set -- the image illustrating his principle of fractal geometry. Mandelbrot wrote a magnificent book called "The (Mis)Behavior of Markets" that I strongly recommend to anyone looking to understand how the financial markets have worked over the last 15 years.

And for some reason we got on the subject of the song "MacArthur Park". These things happen.