The New NBA Commish Silver Drops The Hammer On Sterling

The New NBA Commish Drops The Hammer On Sterling

Silver

I knew it was going to happen but to be honest I didn’t think it would be this heavy. Newly appointed NBA commissioner David Silver got his official welcome to the role of NBA head. The world was watching and waiting for his judgement on the vile comments from L.A Clippers owner Donald Sterling. Everyone had a view-point, opinion and position on what the league should do, what the players should do, etc,etc…Yesterday afternoon the wait ended as Commissioner Silver banned Donald Sterling for life from any and all NBA dealings and has started to process to force a sale of the Clipper team.

In the after match of this decision there is no shortage of feelings. Personally I’m happy within this particular moment. Looking directly at the NBA they did what they needed to do to handle one of the ugliest situations to hit the league since “The Brawl” years ago in Detroit. This nation is run by money. The dollar trumps all but in this case, bank account size couldn’t save Sterling. Well played Mr Silver……but now as I step back from the moment I have questions. What comes next? Will the owners act right when the vote comes? Are we delusional enough to think Sterling is the only person within the NBA hierarchy that thinks these thoughts? Will we all celebrate this lone case and ignore the issues of racism that take place everyday? My biggest issue is the question of how do we focus in on things like this when so many of us disrespect each other day in and day out? Will we turn this eye of scrutiny towards Hip Hop which is not too kind to our Black women and men perception-wise. Is disrespect more acceptable if it delivered with a beat by people that look like us?

This matter goes so much deeper then one man’s comments. I always say that these social issues say more about us then they do about the people at the center of them. How do we react? How do we view things? Who do we blame? What do we actually do? Do we actually DO anything? Will even care in 2 weeks? It’s always about the people. This could be a moment that leads to a vast awakening or it may be just simple moment lost among others. We’ll see. At the very least the NBA is looking to handle business and I do respect that. You had quite a run D. Sterling. It lasted a lot longer then it should have….glad your gone.

Silver

Jason Francis | The Social Media Samurai

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Rihanna’s Strike Against Clothes Continues on Cover of Lui Mag

Rihanna’s Strike Against Clothes Continues on Cover of Lui Mag

Lui

Regardless of what you think about her music or social antics, one thing is clear, Rihanna takes amazing pictures. After just hitting the cover of Vogue Brazil for their 39th anniversary issue Rhi-Rhi turns up the heat more with her new cover for France’s Lui Magazine.

Hit the jump for the **NSFW** but artistically done cover image and feature shots. You can also see her Vogue cover.

Continue reading Rihanna’s Strike Against Clothes Continues on Cover of Lui Mag

Blogger Week 2014 – The Samurai Hits Washington DC

Blogger Week 2014 – The Samurai Hits Washington DC

Blogger Week

The busy month of April rolls on as I have safely arrived in Washington DC to take part in the first official Blogger Week put together by Black Bloggers Connect. The week will consist of events, mixers and the full blogger “Unconference” this weekend to bring together bloggers, media professionals and more from across the nation. The goal is to grow and expand within this blogger realm and overall social media business. During the week you will be getting live tweets and blog recaps from me. You know how get when goes down for live event coverage via the samurai so stay tuned to the Internets. My Facebook, Twitter & IG will be active for #BloggerWeek and if you’re in the DC area and like what you see from previous work feel free to reach out.

Blogger Week

 

Jason Francis | The Social Media Samurai

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The Rise and Rise of Bitcoin – A Deeper Look Into the Future of Currency

The Rise and Rise of Bitcoin – A Deeper Look Into the Future of Currency

 Bitcoin

As the age of adaptation and expansion continues society moves forward with the breaking down of classic structures and systems. The Internet changed communication so that you no longer require a major media organization to back you to have your voice heard by millions. Crowdfunding has changed the way money is funneled into business. No longer must you have a major corporation back you to deliver product to the people. Sites like IndieGogo and Kickstarter eliminate the middle man between creator and consumer. Now we see a major attempt to change commerce. Enter Bitcoin, a fully digital, anonymous currency that exists outside of the normal financial systems. The Rise and Rise of Bitcoin gives us  a look at mysterious and random creation of Bitcoin along with many of the major players in the Bitcoin evolution. This tale gives us a look at the positive potential and the negative stigmas that come with trying to bring “freedom” to finance.

I remember how hesitant I was when Paypal arrived, innovation is not always a quick and easy thing to accept. Only a few of my peers know of Bitcoin and their understanding of it is limited. Some say get into it now while others err on the side of caution. One of the key quotes of this documentary i that”Innovation moves faster than regulation.” As the people push for more freedom from the system, the powers that be struggle to fully understand what is going. As The Rise and Rise of Bitcoin shows, fear and doubt go far in attempting to slow down progress, especially when trying to change/fix the world economy. Yet Bitcoin usage is continuing to trend upward internationally. Will this be a passing fad, looked back on in 5 years as a joke or will this eventually become as accepted as Paypal? This is a perfect introduction to the newest craze on the financial scene and I for one will be getting in the mix.

 

Jason Francis | The Social Media Samurai

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Claims Of Racist Statements from LA Clipper Owner Donald Sterling Dominate Internets

Claims Of Racist Statements from LA Clipper Owner Donald Sterling Dominates Internets

Donald Sterling

 

By now I’m sure everyone is aware of the drama that’s been spreading from Los Angeles across the NBA landscape since the early morning hours. LA Clippers owner Donald Sterling is being accused of making sickening statements towards Black people to his girlfriend of the time. Sterling who has a history of racist actions and comments may be posed to claim the title of most hated person in sports once held by former Cincinnati Reds CEO Marge Schott.

As the Internets reacted to this story in its usual fashion. There was outrage, frustration and the expected curiosity for what would be done. Everyone seems on the same page that this can not stand. For an owner to make such statements takes the league back so far from the progressive place it’s certainly in. The NBA’s new commissioner Adam Silver has his first real dilemma on his hands. He addressed the public less than an hour ago and basically said everything you would expect a person in his position to say. The allegations are serious, not want the NBA stands for and are being investigated to confirm authenticity. It’s not till they confirm the validity of that tape that I’ll personally start looking for real action from Silver.

Recently retired Commissioner David Stern ran the NBA for 30 yrs. It’s silly to compare how he “would have” handled this vs how Silver in his first real test will handle it. I’m sure if we dive back to early Stern footage when the NBA was dealing with drug issues heavy he looked nervous at times too. Of course people are crying out why does the audio in question need to be investigated. -___- I’m going to let that slide as a byproduct of emotion because adults should know better. This is a race issue so yeah we all want action and want it now but like it or not this is happening within the frame-work of a multi-billion dollar business. The man at the center of this is a billionaire in his own right. There is a process to effectively dealing with this.

This Sterling case is so interesting to me….Disrespect is Disrespect to me regardless of the source. I don’t get more mad that some billionaire old man is racist any more than I get mad at some young woman of any ethnicity calling me the “N” word just because she grew up liking black guys and listening to hip hop. It ALL bothers me. I see too much disrespect communicated between ourselves to get all irate because of what Sterling said. What happens closer to home is what I want to deal with. But we seem to get more active when we have an actual “bad guy” to point the finger at . It keeps us from looking in the mirror and checking the foul things we do to each other day in and day out. But I guess that’s an issue for another day right?

In the meantime we wait and see what the people directly involved in this matter will do. How will players react? Will other owners speak out? Many say that players should boycott the playoffs? As fans of the NBA will you still watch the Clippers games? This story will dominate the headlines for a while so lets see if this becomes a true moment in time and just another blip on the 24/7 social media radar.

Get Familiar with Mr Sterling’s colorful past after the jump.

Continue reading Claims Of Racist Statements from LA Clipper Owner Donald Sterling Dominate Internets

Michael Rapaport Delivers Sports Nostalgia with When The Garden Was Eden

Michael Rapaport Delivers Sports Nostalgia at Tribeca Film Fest with When The Garden Was Eden

Eden

This is a rough period in Knicks history as rebuilding plan of 2010 officially has run its’ course with less than stellar results. Rebuilding plan 2.0, which will be led by new Knicks President and former championship player & coach Phil Jackson, is on deck and if ever there was a need for reflection it’s now. Michael Rapaport delivers exactly that with When The Garden was Eden. Inspired by the book of the same name, Key players, coaches and personalities of that past era were interviewed about the climate in NY, the NBA and especially Madison Square Garden during the Knicks rise to prominence and eventual 2 championships.

This feature documentary is set with a clear time placement in the uncertain present of the 2014 Knicks. Opening up with a series of scathing sound bites from New York City sports radio shows, Eden is a call to remember the pride that once came with representing the orange and blue. As the NBA overall was still in its’ youth a collection of players with different styles, backgrounds and personalities crafted a brand of play that still connects with basketball players today. This team optimized the concept of team 1st even with so many individual stars on the roster.

“Intelligence, that team started and finished with intelligence…..”
– Hall of Fame Player Jerry Lucas

When you look at the background and post playing accolades of those players you get just what that means. At a time when the basketball future of New York is unknown and the emergence of the Brooklyn Nets looks to lay claim on citywide supremacy, When The Garden was Eden succeeds in giving Knicks fans and sports fans in general a deeper knowledge of what winning was like during the Knicks glory years. Even greater then historic appreciation, Eden gives hope that winning can return to the Mecca again.

Jason Francis | The Social Media Samurai

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The Search For General Tso – Deeper Than Chicken

The Search For General Tso – Deeper Then Chicken

 General Tso

I dont know if there’s anyone that hasn’t had this meal at one time or another. Every Chinese restaurant across this nation has this dish available and as we enjoy the tangy flavored chicken, broccoli and rice have you ever wondered who was General Tso? Well, if you have the answers to that question and many more get fully answered in The Search For General Tso. One of the surprise hits of the Tribeca Film Festival this documentary seeks to learn where this meal came from, who General Tso was and what the connection is between him and the food that bares his name.

What we learn early on in the film is not only was General Tso a real person but that the link to General Tso chicken dives much more into Chinese American history then the the possible cuisine preferences of any Asian military figures. The initial quest for General Tso turns into a highly educational story of what the Chinese dealt with upon arriving in the U.S and how they adapted to oppression and spread across the nation. You’ll never look at Chinese food the same after viewing this.

 

Jason Francis | The Social Media Samurai

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Time’s 100 Most Influential People – What Does That Really Mean

Time’s 100 Most Influential People – What Does That Really Mean

Influential

 

Time Magazine just released its listing the “Top 100 Most Influential People” it’s a powerful collection of people from various walks of life. Many you know and many I’m sure you don’t know. For me when I look over this list and dive into the various stories I cant help but ask myself “What is all this influence going towards.” Do you feel as a people, as an overall human collective we are living up to our potential? Often when we focus in on the individual people we find great tales of the human spirit succeeding over grave circumstances but as we pull back and take in more and more we see repetitive themes of racism, greed and celebrity worship.

Maybe I’m too much of an optimist but I just feel we’re not doing the best we can…..I hope to see what we can truly accomplish.

Below are a few of the people featured on this years list.

More After the Jump

Erwiana Sulistyaningsih

In 2013, like hundreds of thousands of other migrant workers, Erwiana Sulistyaningsih moved to another country (Hong Kong) in hopes of a better tomorrow. Just eight months later, she returned to her native Indonesia covered in burns, bruises and open wounds, struggling to see and barely able to walk. Erwiana shared that she endured months of torture at the hands of her employer, a 44-year-old mother of two, who told Erwiana that her family would be killed if she did not perform her duties. Nor was Erwiana paid; when she was sent home, she had $9 in her pocket.

But Erwiana could not be broken, nor could she be silenced….

Eric Holder

Most Americans do not realize all Eric Holder has done to protect their freedom. He has worked tirelessly to ensure equal justice, even when some try to tip the scale in favor of a select few. Despite continued challenges designed to weaken our commitment to fairness, he defends the rights of all Americans. He has confronted the banking industry over mortgage fraud and tax evasion. He has taken on the states over restrictive voting practices, discriminatory sentencing and anti-immigration laws.

Thuli Madonsela

Thuli Madonsela is an inspirational example of what African public officers need to be. Her work on constitutional reform, land reform and the struggle for the protection of human rights and equality speaks for itself. As South Africa’s public protector, with her ability to speak truth to power and to address corruption in high places, Madonsela has been outstanding.

Pharrell Williams

At 41 and still with the swagger and appearance of a college kid, he has been the biggest part of our soundtrack for the past 15 years. And you will never see him doing it without a smile on his face.

Jason Francis | The Social Media Samurai

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Is The Desire For Motherhood Trumping The Desire for Partnership

Is The Desire For Motherhood Trumping The Desire for Partnership

Motherhood

As baby fever sweeps over many of my peers it makes me think back to a moment in time where I was put in a position I had never been in before. Among the ladies in my age range that biological clock is ticking or so I’ve been told. The want to experience motherhood is growing and as a man I don’t knock that in the slightest. Loyal readers know that I too want to experience parenthood, but I wonder if I need to speed things up on my side before the ladies in my immediate circles become unavailable. Not in terms of relationships but in terms of doing whatever they have to do to become mothers on their own schedule. It’s a growing trend and evolving mindset that I’m seeing arise. Friends used to say if we’re still single by age X we’ll just have kids. That is sounding so crazy from what I’m hearing and seeing.

Single parenthood is nothing new. Sometimes it’s planned often times it’s not. I’m glad to say that I’ve seen many make it work out. But with that I have no issue saying it’s something I intend to avoid. To that end I was once talking to some one whose family had a history of illness and it put her in a position of wanting a child before her lone parent passed. She felt if she didn’t have a child and her mom died she’d have nothing to live for. As this personal revelation spun in my head it made me wonder. I know I am in no position for a child right now. If the option was given to have the perfect partner for the rest of your life but you would never have kids or have a child but be a single parent for the rest of your life what would you select?

Understand that I don’t think there is a right answer to that, but if you are a person in a relationship with someone with that much weight on becoming a parent do you feel a kind of way? Do you feel expandable to what ever will get them that child? Do other areas of your relationship get short changed for the need to meet that goal?

Companionship and Parenthood are no longer automatic partners so it seems to be a matter of many having to select one over the other? Is that where we are now in the pursuit of personal happiness?

Jason Francis | The Social Media Samurai

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Otriad Creates Perfect Business Breeding Ground During MobileWeek

Otriad Creates Perfect Business Breeding Ground During MobileWeek

Otriad

This past week New York City played host to its’ 1st MobileWeek. For those of you unfamiliar with that, Mobileweek is a week long collection of sessions, conversation panels, pitch sessions and more targeted towards the field of mobile technology. This included a weekend long Hackathon that put app creators in competition for the shot at exclusive production products and event long publicity. With sponsors like Spotify, Meet Up and MobileAppTracking to name a few it’s a great opportunity for the up and coming tech pros to shine.

Originating from San Francisco, MobileWeek brought out developers and programmers presenting new and upcoming mobile apps and app based services. Along with them you had numbers of data analysis teams, marketing groups and social media influencers keeping an eye out for the newest thing to effect the digital world. In comparison to SXSW or Social Media Week which took place earlier this year Mobile Week is very tech heavy in terms of language and the focus being really on the nuts and bolts inner workings of building mobile technology. There was a need to create a common space that brought everyone together and allowed for the communication to flow smoothly between the technical participates and the more social media/communicative people.

Otriad

In my opinion there was one group that truly stood out to me in facilitating an ideal environment for networking and connecting business minds during this campaign. Otirad Marketing was the mind behind Decode NY which for me was one of the best events of the week. Writer and bloggers networked with new app builders who’s creations fit their existing needs. Chris Guess, winner of the aforementioned Hackathon received a lot of attention for is audio playlist request app Fiestafy.

After enjoying this incredible event I took a few moments to speak with Mrs God-Is Rivera the Director of Social Media & Content for Otriad.

“We saw an amazing opportunity to expand on the growth of Silicon Alley by allowing tech developers to introduce new innovations by directly socializing with the creatives that could best use their services…..It also kills the myth that developers are these anti-social, hard to work with people”

 

We were then joined by the Senior VP of Otriad who added a few words regarding Otriad’s successful blueprint .

“One of the keys to success as we see it is Investment in people. You can throw more money at situations but what gets results is are the people you have working with you and the level of commitment you have to each other.”  

That was great to hear because so many people don’t get just how value the people on your team are. Not simply as cogs in an emotionless machine but living components with their own wants, goals and ambitions. Otriad Marketing made a huge impression on me and I’ll definitely be keeping my an eye on what projects they’re working on in the future.

Otriad

Jason Francis | The Social Media Samurai

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