Zennie62 on YouTube

CNN / YouTube Debates - My Message To Steve Grove and Dave Bohrman

This video and post present my message to Steve Grove, the News and Politics editor for CNN, and to Dave Bohrman, the Executive Producer of the CNN / YouTube Debates for CNN.



My take is that CNN/YouTube was lucky to realize the ratings record that was set for the debate, and this was achieved for two reasons: 1) the time of year -- it's the fall holiday season, and 2) the fact that all of the Republican Presidential Candidates were there, which is no small feat.

Still, CNN/YouTube handled this debate differently than the Democratic Debate. First, the level of promotion of the event was dramatically scaled back compared to the first. Second, there were fewer questions picked out of the 5,200 that were submitted : 34 questions versus 43 for the first debate. Third, there was an annoying tendency to pick Blacks who submitted questions about Black issues, when there were videos from people who were not Black, but did ask questions about Blacks and the Republican Party.

(As a momentary aside, I think that practice shows an America that does not exist. It shows an America where only Blacks care about Black or minority issues, and not the real America, where a diverse set of people care about all Americans, and will ask questions regarding how Blacks are treated. To not show this -- the real America -- is criminal and paints America as far more racist than it really is. This country has come a long way and is better than it's ever been.)

CNN/YouTube also didn't handle its video talent properly. In the video I present myself as an example. In the begining I was -- and still am -- part of the sample video for the CNN/YouTube Debates. I'm also on the YTDebates channel, at least as of this writing and you can see my photo on the channel here in this blog post. So when I learned that YouTubers were being flown out by Google to the debates, I thought -- rightfully -- that somone would call.

Nope. Didn't happen.

I also sent an inquiry to determine if this was the case, and didn't get an answer from Steve Grove.

So it makes one wonder -- in this case, me -- what's going on over at CNN / YouTube and why they treat people in this way - or at least me. But given the thousands of people who have made and submitted videos, and the other talent that was promoted, I can't believe it's just me that had the problem.

CNN itself showed little regard for my time when they contact me for the first debate. Three show producers contacted me separately and in one case I thought I was to get on a flight. Then didn't get a call back. Then was essentially made to wait for a few days, then got a call saying I wasn't being flown out, only to get a call from another show flying me to New York.

Nuts.

What bothered me this time around was not that I was not called, but Steve didn't answer my emails attempting to learn what he and YouTube were going to do. If they'd said "Zennie, we don't need you this time", or "Hey CNN thinks you're an Obama supporter, and they've got a problem with that" then I'd be fine. I just wanted communication. I didn't get it.

As for the debate itself there were a lot of problems in addtion to the ones I discussed above. Not a single video question on Health Care was presented, leaving one to think the Republican Party doens't care about it. Is that CNN's call or the Republican Party? One has to assume they were working together. But in eliminating that series of questions, CNN / YouTube and the Republican Party pissed off a country.

Plus, CNN / YouTube did't tell video submitters they were going to do this, and the video makers -- given the Democratic Debate with YouTube, had full reason to think they would do so. Moreover, CNN / YouTube didn't tell anyone what they were going to do -- I learned it from CNN's David Bohrman being quoted in the New York Times.

That's not good.

In closing, I think CNN / YouTube owes YouTubers an appology and I'm also disappointed with how Steve Grove handled things this time around. I have high standards for him and I expect that -- givent the historic nature of what he's doing with YouTube and CNN that he will reach and maintain them. It's not personal -- I like Steve -- just professional.

I don't know Dave Bohrman, but I expect that he's a fine and upstanding person who will take these crticisms to heart and act on them. I think all of us want to see the CNN / YouTube system reach its potential.

D.O.A. - Dead Or Alive - Movie Trailer

Facebookers Launch Official Petition Against Hillary Clinton's Insult

In The Politico.com , it was reported that On Saturday, November 10th, Clinton advisers told reporters this about Barack Obama's voters:

“Our people look like caucus-goers,” Grunwald said, “and his people look like they are 18. Penn said they look like Facebook.”

Penn added, “Only a few of their people look like they could vote in any state.”

This was reported by Roger Simon in his column today and the well-reported quip angered more than a few Facebook users. It was one of the dumbest errors commited by the Clinton campaign, and could serve as another nail in the coffin of her Presidential campaign.

The Clinton camp's way too arrogant, and comments like those of Gruwald and Penn prove it.

The anger of Facebook users has materialized into a petition against Hillary Clinton, which you can see and respond to with a click here.

Dr Donda West, Kanye West's Mom, Passes After Surgery

Kanye's mother dies after surgery

Kanye West often spoke about his close relationship with his mother

The mother of rap star Kanye West has died at the age of 58 after cosmetic surgery developed complications.
Dr Donda West, who managed the star's businesses and educational foundation and was the subject of his song Hey Mama, died in Los Angeles on Saturday.

Her publicist Patricia Green said she passed away "as the result of complications from a cosmetic surgical procedure", but gave no more details.

West's spokesman said the family "asks for privacy during this time of grief".

The 30-year-old often spoke publicly of his close relationship with his mother. She raised him alone after her husband left when West was three.

'Inspirational'

In Hey Mama, on West's 2005 album Late Registration, he sang: "Hey Mama, I wanna scream so loud for you, cuz I'm so proud of you. I appreciate what you allowed for me, I just want you to be proud of me."

In May, she published the book Raising Kanye: Life Lessons from the Mother of a Hip-Hop Star, in which she paid homage to her famous son.

She was chairwoman of the Kanye West Foundation, a non-profit organisation that aims to improve literacy and stop people dropping out of school.

Ms Green said: "May Donda's work and deeds be an inspiration to each of us, may we start each day knowing that support of family and community are central to purpose."

Heroes On Hulu - Watch The Entire Episode "Out Of Time" Here, Now Live!



Click on the arrow to watch the entire Heroes episode "Out of Time."

Hulu is NBC's new website system that allows one to see HD-quality online versions of shows from NBC, CBS, and other providers. I don't see it as a YouTube replacement for reasons I state over at Zennie's Zeitgeist, but it's a fun system, none the less.

Bionic Woman On Comcast On Demand - Saw It

I just saw Bionic Woman on Comcast OnDemand. Click on this -- Bionic Woman -- to read my review of the pilot episode.

San Francisco Macy's Passport Video Features Bauer's Limosine



This is a video that promotes Macy's Passport -- the fashion show to end all shows -- at Fort Mason, September 19th, 2007. The short message contains images of the Lexus 400h Hybrid Car, the rage for those going green, and can be rented at the page for Macy's Passport

Jersey Boys' Drew Gehling and My Mom @ REAF Benefit in S.F.



Tickets at SBSTickets.com

Everyone Likes CNN's Paula Zahn - Even The Limo Drivers!



I'm still in New York City, having appeared on CNN's Roland Martin Debates to talk about the CNN / YouTube Debates program and its impact on society. But during this trip, what impressed me was the impact CNN's now departed Paula Zahn had on everyone around her.

People love her.

This was made clear to me by the limo driver who picked me up at JFK. He said "Paula, she was great. Most people (CNN anchors and contributors) just get in (the car) and don't say much. Paula, she asks you about your family, and how you're doing."

This view was echoed by yet another driver with the firm that holds the CNN livery account. And it speaks to the character of the person that will be replaced by Cambell Brown. She's a truly good person, and the best way to know that is when other people say so.

"SF Limo Service Tour | Bauer's Limo Video" - Too Short's Song Is Key

If there's one rap song of the modern era that has an "old school" feel to it, it's Too Short's "Blow The Whistle." Released in 2006, this make-you-get-up-and-dance tune is popular at clubs around the World. But what's not known is that it makes a great back drop for a commericial video. Take this one I made to promote Bauer's Limousines:

William Shatner On Kirk's Death In Star Trek: Generations - Video

I just found a site called " Bring Back Kirk.com " which calls for Paramount to bring Star Trek's Captain Kirk back from the dead, where he was left after Star Trek: Generations. As part of this effort, they have this video where Shatner's talking about his objection to the plan to have Kirk killed. It's an insight into the kind of thinking that Shatner says Paramount had in making their decision.

Bonnie Piesse Is "Aunt Beru" From Star Wars Episode II and Episode III



Actress Bonnie Piesse appeared at WonderCon in San Francisco and was kind enough to listen to my stupid question regarding her time playing "Aunt Beru" in Star Wars Episode II and Star Wars Episode III. In our conversation Bonnie explains that the baby she held was in fact not real, but was made to feel like a real baby.



She also offered that George Lucas, who directed and produced the movies, was relaxed and easy to work with. Finally, Bonnie talks about her music and her album which is set to debut in late 2007.