Small Business Saturday – Backbone of the Black Out

Small Business Saturday – Backbone of the Black Out

ssmall business

As most of you know a major part the success of the retail black out taking place is 1) turn down business with bigs and/or 2) supporting the smaller indie brands in our community. What makes this a great time for such a move is that it is holiday season and many of the smaller businesses deal in products that are more intimate and personal. Yesterday while banging away on the keys I started my holiday support for the small business community with a few purchases for my folk.

After the jump check out a few of small businesses whose professionalism and quality deserves your hard earned dollar.

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#BlackHennyFriday #Hennypalooza Tickets Available At Midnight

#BlackHennyFriday #Hennypalooza Tickets Available At Midnight

#Hennypalooza

Tickets go on sell via #hennypalooza.com at midnight.

All year y’all have asked me about this event. Hopefully you’ve taken the time to search it on my site, Google or YouTube. The brown water classic ends the year right with their 2nd Anniversary celebration. #Hennypalooza creates the ultimate year end party sandwich as it’s perfectly placed between Christmas and New Years.

Tickets go on sell via #hennypalooza.com at midnight.Hennypalooza

Cop Now. See you there!!

Jason Francis | The Social Media Samurai

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Holiday Unrest: Boycotts, Small Business & Black Friday

Holiday Unrest: Boycotts, Small Business & Black Friday

Black Friday

In the wake of Monday nights clearing of Mike Brown murderer Darren Wilson, the collective energies of the people, especially the Black community has been directed toward finding actions that will let the nation know just how powerful we are and how much you need to be taken us seriously. In the 24 hours since the Ferguson jury elected not to indict Wilson I’ve been having a number of conversations about what to do next. I have people pushing to boycott in one ear and others who work in and with the retail world not sure how to move. It’s not as cut and dry as many people think it is.

Let me dive into this and touch on a few things. Understand this isn’t a directive on what you should do. I believe there are many paths to the destination we all want to reach. We all play different roles and operate in different spaces so our actions may not all be the same.

In regards to boycotts I’ve seen a few things being pushed like #NotOneDime. The general campaign missions I’ve noticed are a call to boycott all businesses, all retail during this holiday weekend that consists of Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday. I’ve heard a few goals mentioned but the most prevalent seems to be a desire to make a statement with the power of the “Black Dollar”. It’s reported that entering 2015 we’ll be generating roughly a trillion dollars of buying power. It’s not a new piece of info but coupled with this time of year it resonates a little more.

The statements being shared are very well intended and do have a ring of truth to them. “Lets hit’em where it hurts”, “Let your dollar speak for you”, etc,etc….Yes ideally that is possible but my concern comes from a few areas. The majority of these calls to action are vague, generic and lack the detail and full leadership needed to make them effective on multiple levels.

First there is its duration. Exactly what is the hope and goal of this 3-4 day campaign. Is it meant to have a lasting effect or just act as an attention grabber? Folk reference the Montgomery Bus Boycott as what this boycott should look to as inspiration. The MBB lasted over a year and it was specific and direct to a sole target within a confined area. What stores in this present day mission are folk targeting? Is it Just the majors like Target, Best Buy or Walmart? What qualifies a store to be targeted? Is it just any place of business? After the weekend ends does the shopping return? Do folk understand just how much boycotting it takes to hit a companies’ bottom line? What of the workers that look forward to additional holiday hours? They are the first and most expandable when financial stability is threatened so those are just a few areas of detail I need to  see clarified before a plan is put in motion.

Small business

Next we have the matter of small businesses. I’m an entrepreneur and operate within a network of other small business owners. Are we including them in this boycott. From what I’ve seen posted many are not making a distinction as to indie vs mainstream businesses. It shouldn’t come as any surprise that I’m taking this stance as I feature small business every year during this season. These brands need the commerce of the upcoming weekend so it matters to me that in our emotional push for action we don’t negatively impact our own.

Personally I care little for statements or emotional victories. Change is needed. Truthfully the matter of Police Brutality doesn’t make me jump to commerce and boycotts but if a well laid plan is presented I could see and support it. Also, there is the thinking that in boycotting we will reduce money that is going to fund entities like the police who have brutalized us. If you work, every dollar you earn is taxed so your financial support is flowing into the system regardless.

I make no bones about it and will not hide the fact. Within my business I work very directly with retail stores, many of which would fall within this boycott. I just dropped a piece on mobile apps to aid you with your Black Friday shopping. I’m a part of the system which I don’t apologize for. We can be many things and that aspect of business is part of me.

Will I be boycotting this weekend? No I won’t be. I’m not opposed to it but it’s not the move I’m making. It’s not for some sick desire to shop or get savings I could get at any other time. I have a plan for how I will approach this weekend and I have no issue sticking to it. I won’t be shopping on Black Friday but that is because I’ll be working day & night gigs. My economic statement will be made though featuring and supporting small businesses that you can buy from throughout the weekend. Saturday I will be shopping at outlets for a few personal items along with things for my family. Those that know my struggles and growth professionally over the last year should understand where I’m at with this.

I was at the last rally for Mike Brown in Union Square just as I was with the multiple rallies for Trayvon. It was a moving gathering but it reached a point where any and everyone was being allowed to speak and too many ideas, too many “we need to do…” statements were being thrown out and it became a jumble. Lets really organize, strategically lay out a long-term plan and execute. You know what they say about insanity and repetition. We say the same things every time

Many of us think there is a one shot option to successful change. We want to think that if we ball up our collective fist and strike one mighty blow everything wrong will just crumble. Unfortunately It doesn’t work like that. Folk have to be in it for the 12 round fight with a 12 round plan of attack.  There’s no 1 Hitter Quitter, Mike Tyson Knock Out punch in this. We’re all sick of the nonsense so let’s finally do something about it.

Mike Brown

 

Jason Francis | The Social Media Samurai

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Samurai Rides: My Hyundai Reunion with the New Sonata

Samurai Rides: My Hyundai Reunion with the New Sonata

#HyundaiSonata

I recently had the opportunity to spend a week driving the new Hyundai Sonata. Besides it being a quality ride but personally it was cool to see what Hyundai was putting on the street considering what I was behind the wheel of the last time I drove a Hyundai. My very first car in 1997 was a 89′ Hyundai Excel. The stories of what went down with that ride would need its own blog, but back to the matters at hand, the Hyundai Sonata was a great smooth ride as I move around New York City and back to Westchester.

#HyundaiSonata

From the 10 speakers supported Infinity sound system to the touch screen control panel to the navigation system you get a real touch of luxury in a very affordable package.   I’m a big guy too and in terms of leg room it was a very comfortable ride.  16 years removed but Hyundai has come back pretty strong. Definitely would like to get behind that wheel again.

#HyundaiSonata

More images of the #HyundaiSonata after the jump!!!!

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Samurai Sit Down w/ Media Personality My My [Part 2 Birthday Edition]

Samurai Sit Down w/ Media Personality My My [Part 2 Birthday Edition]

 

My My

It’s always cool to chat with people who are out in the mix of things working hard and pursuing their goals. Getting beyond the computer screens to learn more about folk is something I think a lot of pride in. Today I give you part 2 of my #SamuraiSitDown with PR pro, media personality, model, etc. Ms Maria Myraine.

We’re touching on relationships, fitness, domestic abuse and more. It’s also her Birthday today so read her words and share this with your people as a gift to the Birthday girl.

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Dave Chappelle GQ Man Of The Year – Interview

Dave Chappelle GQ Man Of The Year – Interview

chappelle

 

Dave Chappelle GQ Man Of The Year – Interview

2014 has been quite a successful comeback year for Mr Cappelle. The highlight of which  was a series of sold out shows at Radio City Music Hall. Now he caps of the year being named GQ’s man of the year. As aware of his celebrity as Dave is you can allow imagine what he thinks of the honor. After a nearly a decade of curious moves and straight up silence we get a very candid and open interview from Dave Chappelle. Check out his thoughts on Kanye and David Sterling and more.
 
He doesn’t think Donald Sterling should have lost ownership of the Clippers

Ultimately, I don’t think he should have lost his team. I don’t like the idea that someone could record a secret conversation and that a person could lose their assets from that, even though I think what he said was awful. When you think about the intimacy of a situation, like, can a man just chill with his mistress in peace? I just don’t like when things like that happen, because if they take shit away for things that people say that are objectionable, I may not have anything in a few years. Granted, I don’t think I say shit like “Stop bringing white people to my game.”

Thoughts on Kanye’s Civil rights stane.

Well, okay now, I don’t know about that. But I do see a common denominator in the sense that the issue of privacy in general is everyone’s issue. And his version of that is very extreme. I’m a celebrity in some people’s eyes, but not to the extent he is. I saw on Yahoo that his wife got tackled in Paris. Like, just crazy shit. I think that he’s right in the sense that scrutiny in and of itself is oppressive. If someone sits there and stares at you while you eat, you won’t even eat the way you normally do, because it’ll make you so uncomfortable. If I look at my dog when he’s eating, he will look at me like, “Dave, I will bite you. What are you looking at? I’m trying to eat.” It’s something that dehumanizes a person, being on display like that. So is it like the civil rights movement? Not quite. The metrics are a little wrong to make that comparison. But it is a civil rights issue, in a sense. Because how is he supposed to live his life? It’s like someone putting their ear to your butt and being

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Lies Society Tells: Men & Women Can’t Be Just Friends.

Lies Society Tells: Men & Women Can’t Be Just Friends.

Friends

It gets repeated time and time again and it never really made sense to me. Men and Women can not be just friends. “Just” is the key in the statement which implies an even balanced platonic relationship just isn’t possible between folks of the opposite sex. I’ve always found this to be a funny concept. When you take into account the context that this is most often viewed through it’s really just an indirect way of saying sorry guys we just don’t think you can keep it in your pants. Maybe a woman is placed into that role of no control/ sexually free spirit  here and there but generally this is a guy centric thing.
So let’s tackle this head on. It’s understandable that by our nature men and women interact with each other socially, emotionally, professionally and yes many times physically and sexually. Those are actions and choices that we make but at what point does it become an unavoidable result that this interaction WILL “cross the line?” Do women truly believe that men are out to sleep with each and every woman they come across? Maybe this is a reverse ego boost trick or something? Be clear. While attraction can know few boundaries it’s not the thought, feeling or urge that is the problem, but rather the issue of will power and self control, or the lack there of.

friends
I’m blessed to have very close relationships with a few amazing women. Amazing and very fine women and there’s no line stepping over here. There’s no internal struggle to act out just because I can admit to them being good looking. I mean think about how counterproductive that would be? As more business ventures move into the field of indie entrepreneurial ventures, many campaigns, projects and brands are born out of friendship and the connections folk have established on a personal and social level. Women are on the rise in these fields especially in the social media space. How much potential business would I be cheating myself out of if I couldn’t foster friendships and relationships with women to advance professionally?

friends
This also leads into the often used lady quote “I know if I gave him the chance my guy friend(s) would sleep with me.”
That nonsense is the trump card so many ladies pull even though upon inspection it makes no sense. “If I gave him the chance” nullifies your ability to call out the man. If 2 adults link up then that’s the discussion they made as a unit. You don’t get to separate yourself from the actions you initiate.
I won’t act like there aren’t guys who simply can’t act right but I truly don’t see this as the majority rule. Maybe I’m the rarity? I don’t think I am but hey you tell me? Do any of you ladies have quality platonic friendships with men? Do you trust them to stay that way?

Jason Francis | The Social Media Samurai

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JBL.Com’s Portable Wireless Speakers Provide A Great Gift To Set Off Your Holiday Gatherings!

JBL.Com’s Portable Wireless Speakers Provide A Great Gift To Set Off Your Holiday Gatherings!

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #CollectiveBias

#GiftingAudio

It’s that time of year again. The Holiday season is upon us and soon we’ll be presented with the decision of what gifts to get and where to get them at. Electronics always sit well for a large majority of people and in this case you’d be well served to tell the recipient of this gift to open it immediately. #GiftingAudio equals giving the perfect gift for the music lover, traveler or host in your life, the Flip 2 portable wireless speakers from JBL.com.

These days the name of the game is mobility. Having the ability to take the party with you is pivotal for a good time. Now you can achieve that ideal social setting with ease via the Flip 2 speaker. How do you accomplish this? Simple. The Flip 2 works off 2 basic functions. Bluetooth and AUX connection. That killer playlist you have on your smart phone can now be easily unleashed on the public. You have a group of friends and family coming over for an evening gathering? You can just charge up for Flip 2 speaker, connect to a media player or sync to your smart phone or tablet via bluetooth. You’ll get 5+ hours of steady play on a fully charged battery so your party will be covered. The quality of the sound will have guests amazed that so much power is coming from such a compact device.

#GiftingAudio

Of course having the sound system is only part of the game. You need the appropriate tunes for this festive season. I love this time of year and keep a nice collection of Christmas music to fill out a holiday  soundtrack. I’m a sucker for the classics so A Motown Christmas, A Charlie Brown Christmas and Mariah Carey’s “Merry Christmas” album are getting heavy JBL.com speaker play.

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The Flip 2 will only add more pleasure to an already enjoyable time. Plus it’s easy to pack away and take along with you anywhere you go. To add to all of that, now is the ideal time to pick one up. From today until Nov 22nd you can get the Flip 2 for an additional $20 off. Your purchase also includes free ground shipping and returns.

After the Jump take a moment to check out some of the specs on the Flip 2 and my hands on experience.

#GiftingAudio

Then hop over to JBL.com and get yours.

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Samurai Rides: Welcoming Fall with the Mitsubishi Outlander

Samurai Rides: Welcoming Fall with the Mitsubishi Outlander

#Mit#DriveMitsubishi

An annual affair for many as the fall season hits is pumpkin and apple picking in the northern counties of the NY metro area. On a beautiful Saturday morning off a friend’s suggestion, I decided to get away from the loud sounds and frantic pace of the city for a little farm side fun. Bourgeois farms in Dutchess County were the destination. Riding the open roads up north we took in the scenery and brightly color foliage from the comfort of the 2015 Mitsubishi Outlander.

I’m always appreciating of vehicles that provide me enough leg room without taking up the space of the passenger behind me. The sleek exterior design of the Outlander under states the amount of the room this car packs. I feel like in the age of cleaner, greener driving the monstrous gas guzzling SUVs of the late 90’s and earlier 2000 are now being replaced with an emphasis on understated size. I drove a Ford Expedition for a decade so I know what it was like hogging up the road to the tune of $85. I’m honestly a fan of this scaled down approach to automotive design.

#DriveMitsubishi

#DriveMitsubishi

Once you do get inside and behind the wheel of the Outlander there are a few features that I really liked ad hope become standards on all drives. There are motion sensors for the vehicles ahead of you that give you early warning to stop in the case of them braking suddenly. Along with that this Mitsubishi has lane recognition technology that alerts you when you are swirling and crossing over into another lane which is a VERY useful feature with a number of real life applications.
It was an enjoyable week with the Outlander. I’d definitely recommend it to people. Oh and the sound system knocks like you wouldn’t believe. Anyway, hit the jump and check out some of the images from this latest edition of #SamuraiRides.

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