Saturday, 27 July 2019

A Facebook Problem, A Confession and a Request about a Pollution Video

A Facebook Problem, A Confession, and a Request about a Pollution Video


If a child is to keep alive his inborn sense of wonder, he needs the companionship of at least one adult who can share it, rediscovering with him the joy, excitement, and mystery of the world we live in.   Rachel Carson


It was an idyllic summer when I was 25 years old free spirit on a boat with a good friend exploring the Gulf Islands of British Columbia. We'd fish, find a sandy shoal to shuck fresh oysters and sink an anchor at twilight in a sheltered nook filled with emerald and navy shadows from the overhanging trees.

The sky was blue porcelain; the ocean water swam all around in gentle swishes and burbles in wavering lines of sparkles and ripples. There were the odd puffy clouds; the early morning mist ascending along the horizon; there was an affinity and primeval peace all was harmonious in our natural world.

At the same time, as I watched the interplay of wavelets, I was reading Rachel Carson’s book The Silent Spring. I tried to relate to her fears about polluting the environment and long-term effects on biological systems in a finite biosphere, sometimes irreversible. 

Her words and the blue infinity all around stirred my consciousness to write a story from the point of view of water. What if a little water sprite with roots could personify the cycles that there is a beginning and ending to all living forces on land and on water?

The twilight hours were long, and I wrote it, long hand, all 20 chapters; and then in the bustle of making a living, I put it away for decades. This year, the manuscript was discovered as I rummaged around to find some memories to leave as a legacy for future generations. I read it again and realized the message still vibrated clearly that anything that affects one part of nature, will affect other parts, from the smallest to the largest. There was still joy, excitement and mystery in the world we live in. It was critically important for children to connect to the normal patterns of life with all life-forms.

Microsoft Publisher simplified the process of putting together my e-book. called The Incredible Journey of a Water Sprite with Roots. Now came the challenge to promote it with personal blogs and videos. Facebook was a natural channel because of keywords and worldwide demographics. They approved a few ads and then blocked an ad with the word pollution in the caption.   

Here's what Facebook said about what prevented this ad from running:
The text and/or imagery you're using is about social issues, elections or politics, based on the definition we're using for enforcement. However, your Page is not authorized to run these types of ads. You must authorize your Page to run social issue, electoral or political ads.

My appeal stated that "I am a retired teacher with an important story to share with young people about how the water cycle is one of the main parts in understanding Earth's ecology and protecting its ecosystems. The hero is a water sprite with roots who can communicate with other organisms and talk about their realities. I believe this is a very timely and educational story for all young people to read at a time when our environments are must be protected...Earth's resources are finite." But the case was closed.

I checked the list of social issues that required authorization and disclaimers. For Canada, they included civil and social rights, economy, environmental politics, health, immigration, political values and governance, security and foreign policy.

Is there any issue here that is not subjected to control by some department or authority figure(s)?

At what point can the word censorship prevail for individuals versus authorization by whom?  

As monopolies and bureaucracies get bigger, as their intrinsic policies and administration kick in, at what point do they become too big to care about regular people with real concerns, not corporate agendas?

First, let me say my opinion that if you really care as a human being who cares, then you should have the right and resources to demonstrate that; the bigger the message, the bigger the scale.

Second, I confess I am not a professional internet marketer or social media personality. I am foremost a teacher who believes in the power of words, the stream of a story, the worth of a picture or diagram and the soul to love the only planet we call home. My e-book is homespun at every level.

Third, I wonder what your opinion might be about the YouTube video that Facebook would not approve without a complicated authority application.


Strangely, they did run it for a few hours before they realized it escaped their scrutiny. There were 162 people reached with 12 engagements where 9 people liked or shared it.

As a younger, stronger and capable woman, I would not think about asking for help, but as an older woman in a cyber world, I am asking for help to promote this video and story. If you think this video and message is important, please share with people with strong environmental values, societies or organizations who believe in preservation and conservation.

If there are any other ways I can promote this story online, I’d appreciate to hear comments and advice. I sincerely believe this story would make a wonderful movie about a super hero who really matters to the Earth’s survival,
    
As a last word, I think I understand why Facebook needs to be more transparent, to improve security settings, and control certain algorithms. I appreciate their opportunity to market and even improvement of privacy settings. But I also do not want to believe that any mega monopoly now, or in the future, can censor or control what is important to talk about when our planet’s survival may be more important than authoritarian approval.

Questions and comment are always welcome,
Annemarie
amarie10@gmail.com
Facebook Page:  https://www.facebook.com/Helpful-Mind-Stream-for-Changes-366385050641568/


Check out e-book:  The Incredible Journey of a Water Sprite ...on his mission to find Cyclical Truths... a story for all ages

Excerpt: 

My thoughts wander about the kind of ecology that humankinds believe in, as I have witnessed. Do they get it that natural life begins with DNA in a nucleus, one celled animals and plants, then species and then an ecosystem? Do they know that every small ecosystem is part of the total large biosphere on Earth that connects them all; water, air, food, resources, and shelter? Do they realize that perpetual growth, industry or destruction of any habitat is not sustainable on a limited planet?


Thursday, 25 July 2019

A Special Bonding for Children from Researching and Writing this Story About the Water Sprite with Roots



A Special Bonding for Children from Researching and Writing this Story About the Water Sprite with Roots

The truth is: the natural world is changing. And we are totally dependent on that world. It provides our food, water and air. It is the most precious thing we have, and we need to defend it.” ― David Attenborough


So what did I learn from researching ecosystems and the special bonding I hope to pass on to children as they also learn about healthy ecosystems for a healthy Earth for a healthy people.

Actually, I learned several factors that only grew in significance the more the natural environment opened up.This is not the simple water cycle as first envisioned from the ocean’s transpiration where it starts  to the ocean’s runoff  where it ends. In the middle, there are adventures drawn from co-inhabitants in an ecological balance with a different connection around every bend. What I learned will only help to increase my admiration of a walk in the woods by a pond; or larger yet, the way I view our beautiful blue and finite planet.  It is this journey I wish to share with young people of all ages to create a special bonding and vision for a sustainable community for all species.

 Let's start with the A-List:

AMAZEMENT at the extraordinary biological diversity of life forms that create their own interdependent communities on land and in water.  We are surrounded by such specialized simple lifeforms called microorganisms that live in fresh water, which may be only a handful of living cells but with the ability to sense, feed, propagate and even adapt as required; but without defenses against pollution. 

Did you know that only 3% of our planet’s water is drinkable where half of fresh water is frozen in glaciers or underground? 97% of it is saltwater.

AWARENESS of the diversity of organic Life forms or compounds containing the carbon molecule, the most common life matter on Earth. The sun’s energy called photosynthesis can create a simple sugar molecule as food for any carbon-based plant and animal by combining with water (two hydrogen and one oxygen).  Even the hydrocarbon found in fossil fuels is filled with the sun’s energy which can be used as fuel or manufactured into inert plastics; forever non-biodegradable.  

Did you know that Americans throw away enough plastic bottles in a week to encircle the Earth 5 time and that only 5% of Earth’s population?

APPRECIATION of the numerous cycles required for ecology to be balanced, from sun and water, to nutrients for primary plants, to animals and even decomposing bacteria to recycle matter. For example, the nutrient cycle begins with minerals that include carbon, sulfur, nitrogen, oxygen and water among others as these elements recycle to produce food for the ecosystem. The water cycle is immemorial, continually recycling over time. We all live in one huge watershed from beyond dinosaur times. 

Did you know that the leading source of pollution in surface drinking water supplies is polluted rainwater runoff from household products (EPA)?
  
AFFINITY to the wonder of a healthy ecosystem based on four functioning levels which help to clean our water, recycle nutrients, maintain our soil, purify our air and provide us with food and shelter. Every chapter shows how anything that affects one part of our ecosystem will in turn affect others … from the very smallest to the largest. There is a strong link to an ECOLOGY ETHIC where exponential growth is not possible. Nature is not to be contradicted but integrated within our common humanity. 

Do we have a moral obligation to leave an environment worthwhile to live in for our children?

ACCOMPLISHMENT by introducing characters who can relate their experiences of integration and interdependence within their special systems.  Many interesting characters who are defined as micro-organisms really do exist in various water states; but for a change, they are given a voice to talk about their thoughts and fears. A few are imaginary creations in their particular system like glaciers, oil lakes, and plastic manufacturing factories; but all are connected to the water molecule. 

So, on one hand, we can research a factual description of Ecosystems as communities of organisms and non-living matter that interact together where a damaged balance can cause many problems. Or, on the other hand, we can tell a story of a sensitive water sprite with roots who lives through these encounters, imbalances, fears and hopes. He talks the walk through his mission of discovering cyclical truths from the sun to water to nutrients to plants to animals to decomposing bacteria to respecting the biodiversity.
  
The hope is that the reader will form a special bonding with this main water sprite character; thereby, making an emotional connection through his trials, tribulations and inclusions of all lives in a balanced natural environment. As the water sprite falls in love, so will the readers in kinship and motivational affinity to protect Nature at its best.


“No one will protect what they don't care about; and no one will care about what they have never experienced..”   David Attenborough

You are invited to check the story here: 

Comments and questions are welcome and appreciated,

Sincerely,
Annemarie
amarie10@gmail.com

Two excerpts: "The mystery of this cycle has slowly unfolded. It's about the power of the sun giving light energy to the chlorophyll in plant cells to split the water molecule, and combine it with carbon to produce a simple sugar compound as food for animals and humankinds. A cycle is what a cycle is; but miss out one tiny piece like a chloroplast found within the chlorophyll, nothing is completed, and life is not possible. So tiny, so simple, yet so complex."

"Also, maybe, there is some misunderstanding about what makes a life-form; especially lesser and smaller beings than themselves. Maybe, being so intelligent and progressive has made them short-sighted and narrow-minded about their own groups only, and prejudiced against other communities which may be different from them. Is this why pollution doesn’t matter to some? What if, I think, amusingly, they can be referred to as kind humans rather than humankinds."

Attack by Giant Amoeba and Saved by A Rotifer


Monday, 22 July 2019

When Creative Writing Mixes with Science to Express Facts and Feelings about Earth's Ecology


When Creative Writing Mixes with Science to Express Facts and Feelings about Earth’s Ecology

We are at a unique stage in our history. Never before have we had such an awareness of what we are doing to the planet, and never before have we had the power to do something about that. Surely we all have a responsibility to care for our Blue Planet. The future of humanity and indeed, all life on earth, now depends on us...

I know of no pleasure deeper than that which comes from contemplating the natural world and trying to understand it.”
― David Attenborough

Welcome to the world of this unique water sprite with roots on his mission to find Cyclical Truths in the Earth's ecology.

His story combines imagination and fantasy with scientific reality.  Because he shares an affinity with any organic life form derived from carbon and hydrogen, he can communicate with other beings and express their stories from their realities. Most importantly, his experiences help explain the cyclical truths that are very real and essential to the Earth's ecology as he embodies the words ‘sustainable development’ and ‘ethical consumerism.’ 
At the end, we care deeply for his manners, fears and hopes. What an amazing friend especially for children to get to know.

I must admit there was an undeniable joy in writing many of these passages because I could write creatively to express some very serious thoughts and feelings. The narration is first person to give more credibility and vitality.

There is a unique power in figurative language known as personification when you can give human characteristics to non-living things or ideas. Associations help to better relate to the object or idea and have a sense of empathy that it matters. What more precious bonding can there be than to consider water as a valuable friend, as a person and necessity for survival? You wouldn't hurt or bully a good friend, right?

Here are a  few situations where I feel personification helps to focus on water as a real entity in its own right for sustainability and protection:

How else can you describe evaporation from the ocean as frolicking with friendly air molecules, rising higher into snowstorms and freezing unto a glacier?

How else can you describe the joy of a plant bathed in sunlight and drinking nutrients though it roots, feeling its body structure becoming stronger cell by cell?

How else can you describe the value of chloroplast cells and their connection to photosynthesis for plants to create food from the sun's energy as primary producers for secondary consumers like animals and humans?

How else can you describe the importance of the decomposition of organic matter by bacteria in an endless carbon cycle mixed in with nitrogen air molecules?  

How else can you show the family and community life of microorganisms like rotifers and their special bonding to fresh water except by developing mutual feelings of respect for each other?

Who can better describe the microscopic food chain than a microorganism called Stentor as part of the great ecological cycle? “This is one of the great Cyclical Truths … if one part lives, then the other part lives; if one part is destroyed then the other part will be destroyed in time? Isn't co-operation wonderful, a true democracy through diversity?"

What better way to show the importance of water in a human digestive system than to describe the process of being chewed alive and final eliminated through perspiration?

How else can you meet a carbon molecule with his ancient heritage, trials and transformations into plastic?

What better way to personify people as a block called humankinds which contains their inquiry, progress and power; however, the onus is left to the individual person to be responsible to make a difference outside the block?

How else can the horror of pollution be experienced except at a personal level and loss of a personal community with a forewarning of larger systems?

How else can you contain a journey over centuries into a glass of water in your hand today that is even more crucial for survival in a man-made industrialized environment?  

 Whose truth is more real than a water sprite saying at the end, "When you drink fresh water, do you see the earth inside the glass? Well, you should.     
               
In the end, science and imagination weave a fascinating story that only a water sprite with roots can tell; that in order to survive, we need to balance our Earth’s ‘Cyclical Truths’  and protect its ecological ecosystems. Most importantly, I hope children can accompany him and respect our natural environment even more around every chapter.

Introducing:  The Incredible Journey of a Water Sprite with Roots 
                      ...on his mission to discover Cyclical Truths
              ...a story for children of all ages

               
Questions and comments are welcome and appreciated...

 Annemarie
amarie10@gmail.com

Excerpts:
"I relax and feel the chloroplast cells swelling as the air-control center sensitizes my body to receive carbon dioxide to combine with my present water molecules in my system to form a simple sugar compound.  Before long I can feel the sweetness seeping through my cells' membranes, bathing them in self-sustaining juices..."

"Well, as I move gradually through the waters, what I see is both marvelous and astounding beyond any perceptions I have ever seen before. I could never even imagine that so many life-forms could exist of such great variety. Most seem to be only single cells, but they move and pulsate enough to give signals of life. Some are obviously one-celled plants like the diatoms that hang suspended like ornate jewels; some are algae cells, green multi-forms, some single, some linked in long wavering chains. But they are living organisms, requiring light and carbon dioxide, without which they would die like any land plant."








Water Natural World

Saturday, 20 July 2019

Discovering Plato's Allegory of the Cave in the Cyber-World where Freedom of Education Can't Be Denied


Discovering Plato’s Allegory of the Cave in Cyber-world 

where Freedom of Public Education Can't Be Denied


We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light.  Plato

An allegory is a story with characters and events that reveal a hidden meaning or a moral message differing between right and wrong. Plato’s allegory of the cave from ancient Greek times still has morals to teach today's citizens undergoing a massive cultural revolution in a formidable, relentless technological cyber-world.  Not unexpectedly, we can share a common human bondage with both past, present and future timelines, but the differences are profound affecting even our youngest people.

There has never been a greater urgency to make the case that public education must remain democratic, diverse and strong; especially for young people who are the stimulus and hope as they inherit the future with greater degrees of fairness, ethics and justice, both to the kinds of society and environment they want to live in.

But 24 centuries ago, Plato started with an image of a large cave descending into the Earth, our natural connection. At the bottom of the cave is a large wall in front of which sit rows of prisoners in chains, meaning that people as public participants need to follow social rules or laws. (I would assume children were not present in these adult affairs.) Behind them is a platform where various puppets and puppeteers are performing their actions or events. Behind them burns a large fire so that only their shadows are cast on the wall. The prisoners do not see or hear the real puppeteers or their puppets but rely only on the echoes and shadows cast by these forms. Their only experiences and only words they can speak are about these shadows, thinking they are the real things.

For example, they may say “look there is a rich man” by pointing to the shadow on the wall. Plato asks would they be wrong in believing this shadow must be a real rich man without deception. Or is the perceived rich man just manifesting his image and desires in order to make people believe he is a rich man with special rights. Perhaps, it may actually be a poor man who starts the mirage and illusion on the platform itself.

The spectators can only ask the ultimate ageless question: do we gain knowledge as shadows of someone else’s reality or do we seek our own truths based on facts? 

From sitting in bondage watching shadows, people know there must be the cave’s opening at the top where they can exit into sunlight, meaning truth or enlightenment.  

Obviously we do not live in an ancient Greek world. Their wall would be more classical knowledge; images would be limited to location, harvests, marketplaces, families, some warfare, many deities to explain the forces of nature and wise philosophers who begat the name democracy meaning “whole citizens able to rule in government.”  Our connection is, as part of the perpetual human condition, that we also care for our environment, our productivity, our families, traditions, and our past and future histories.

What’s happening with today’s technological containment with modern puppeteers?

However, our physical containment is channeled deep into recent technology. We do not watch shadows cast by a fire, unless in quiet repose in front of a campfire shooting sparks into the dark sky. Our wall is the global worldview now where our planet Earth appears as “a tiny blue dot set in a sunbeam.” The audience, including young people, sit neatly within their social rules; but this time, the shadows on this wall are created by the glow of the internet screen. 

Our opinions, our glimpses of reality, our illusions of truth are controlled by the light of the internet, even more brilliantly enhanced by individual i-pads and cell phones at our fingertips.  

So, who are these puppeteers and new kinds of puppets, casting shadows and sharing messages for our behalf on our screens? Definitely, the range of scale offers an infinite variety of acts from which to choose. Once more, the nature of this medium overtakes the meaning of the message where the focus is always on the moving parts without regard to background composition or long-term effects.    

Without precedence, however, this internet medium has enabled, accelerated and extended this focus on the obvious, the loudest, the most theatrical, without attention to personal and social consequences; in other words, this is the brain limbic system fulfilling its key functions of emotions, memories and arousal or stimulation.

And so, it is that the loudest actors, loaded with the most spectacles and huckster speeches, cast their viral shadows not only on the wall but also on the personal screens of the bonded prisoners in our society; including even children, armed with their own devices.

Our modern cave has turned into a clamorous and glamorous social media circus. Each big noisy shadow is followed by an even bigger noisier shadow, without boundaries. Lines are quickly drawn along sexism, ageism, racism and elitism. Furrows are made for nationalism, authoritarianism, partisanship, and extremism. Egos thrive, tolerance suffers, toxicity normalizes, the word ‘hate’ surfaces again and again, human rights are questioned, and society fragments. Twitter-verse becomes the new Twilight Zone where the smallest words have the biggest bangs.

What kinds of problems can happen with the swarm of the biggest players?

The biggest problem is that the biggest puppeteers with the biggest shadows are the ones that proportionately fill both the worldview wall and the individual screens. Often these are the wealthy, academic and political players from corporate owned media outlets; and multinationals such as industrial and medical platforms with plans to profit from and control the masses. 

There is even the rare possibility that one puppeteer with the right celebrity hype and exposures can rise as a demigod to not only fixate the seated crowd but infiltrate the moral public conscience and give license to follow darker instincts.

The biggest immorality of such unrefined media ascension and access is when despots with the biggest microphones begin to shape the attentive populace to fit into their realities, illusionary and false as they may be. The purity of freedom of speech is ransacked by fake news and yellow journalism. Our common moral justice demands that news must rely on observed truths; but history shows how the term ‘fake news’ has been used before by tyrants to cover their own propaganda. There is no other way to explain the phenomenon of an educated man with a strong Christian faith who can blatantly describe an actual photograph of a terrible event with the most comforting lies to suffice his followers…the infiltration is complete.

Back to Plato, both our ancient and modern societies also share this common human bondage. Most people would prefer to remain in chains or keep tuning into those performers who replay their favorite programs. We tend to prefer to see shadows of reality from others, because it releases us from seeking our own truth. At the same time, often these manufactured social images affect our normal self-images to think we have no comparable abilities, skills or results but need a king on a white horse for rescue.

As changes become tougher to face, it’s easier to discriminate, bully, blame or victimize the person next to you who may be watching a different screen. In fact, the allegory continues, that if for some reason we find ourselves outside the cave, where we can find freedom, this state can be very frightening because illusions are more satisfactory for the moment. There is pain associated with liberating yourself from the past or coming into the daylight or enlightenment.

And so, people keep exposing themselves, keep clicking, tweeting and twerking, keep looking at false illusions on the wall and their screens, facing personal traumas, believing there is some sanity at least within some shadows of the loudest puppeteers. Unfortunately, this transformation can also apply to young people.

Can Plato’s truth fit into our modern society?

Back to Plato’s philosophy which is that truth exists outside the cave on the wings of education. The sun is a metaphor for freedom described as enlightenment. This is where ideas flourish, the essences of  love, justice, beauty, and service to others with decency and morality are encouraged. This is where the arts and sciences are nurtured, where the creative and spiritual contributions make connections and bind relationships.

Plato believed that everyone wants to crawl out of the cave of darkness and ignorance and walk in the light of truth. He taught his students that all of us want to be part of something higher, a transcendent reality of which the world we see is only a small part to where our human bondage can unite everything into a single harmonious whole.

Why is the Freedom of a Public Education Essential for Democratic Society?

So how do young people fit into our modern technological social revolution? 
As a captive audience, they have also been exposed to the streaming shadows and fake realities in front of their internet screens. They have vicariously adopted adult roles while often facing media abuse, trauma, addiction, hyper-sexuality, materialism and market manipulation. 
   
The moral outrage here is they are still young; their adolescent brains have not fully developed to make rational decisions or judgement calls. The associative prefrontal cortex doesn’t have the experiential inter-neuronal complexity until their early 20’s to make deductive critical reasoning. 

This transformation of youth culture via a veritable social media invasion is unprecedented, crying for discussions and solutions because young people must remain as our main stimulus to better manage changes in societal and environmental spheres. Can anybody dare say this is insidious indoctrination?

There is no doubt that digital technology saturates today’s educational platforms. Definitely there are advantages to the ability to “connect to specialized information nodes and resources in real time” and learn from social networking, blogging, message boards, Google searches, and Wikileaks. But how does individualized social autonomy explain the difference between teaching and learning via traditional methods in public schools?

My reference is personal experience. In a public classroom there are students of diverse backgrounds, abilities, and goals; including special needs. The lesson objectives are shared equally and collaboratively. Students interact at their levels and interests with a one-on-one teacher who encourages brainstorming by understanding the basics of critical thinking and making consensual decisions.

Public education creates the public where the country’s interests and civic responsibilities are talked about so that every person can hear their own voice and feedback to manage situations where multiple representations, or truths, can exist. There is no one elitist or biased puppeteer to promote his or her agenda with private enterprises. What is the better way to develop citizenship values?

In Plato’s world, the main purpose of education was to “ban individualism, abolish incompetence and immaturity, and establish the rule of the efficient.” Publicly, education was the positive measure for the operation of justice in an ideal state where ignorance was the root of vice. Properly, education started with storytelling to young children, continued with teenagers and citizens with civic roles and progressed as long as 50 years to the rare individual capable of governing the country.

Plato said, “that those who are able to see beyond the shadows and lies of their culture, will never be understood, let alone believed, by the masses.”  Maybe, perhaps you also  wonder what Plato might say about his “transcendent, integrated development of human personality” in today’s internet world of change?

Our hope is public education with equality for every child minus the bright lights of illusion. We must do better especially for our children’s sake.


The further a society drifts from the truth, the more they will hate those who speak it ... George Orwell




Wednesday, 10 July 2019

Requiem for MLM Home Business by a New Kind of Internet Marketing Hero


Requiem for MLM Home Business by a New Kind of

 Internet Marketing Hero

But I, being poor, have only my dreams..

I have spread my dreams under your feet.

Tread softly, because you tread on my dreams.   William Butler Yeats

I closed my eyes momentarily when I read the words that MLM (Multi-Level Marketing) is like the old, drunk uncle at family reunions nobody wants to talk to! But only for a moment, because my reasons for joining a matrix to make residual income with other believers was more based on philosophical content than practical commodity. 

In hindsight, this strange personal conundrum can be explained by the right conditions versus the wrong directions with a big question left unanswered, some good news, welcoming a new hero, and precautionary warnings to watch for and run away from if you are thinking about an MLM home business opportunity. After all, experience teaches us not to repeat failures and, at the same time, not to miss the Big Picture and adapt to new concepts and new resources.

THE RIGHT CONDITIONS

When I joined my first MLM company, following my retirement, the internet was an email or two delivered by a butler on a serving platter with a whistle; now many emails are phishing scams. Sales presentations and word-of-mouth recommendations resided in homes with definitive party plans. Soon enough, business websites, personal blogs and self- branding quickly evolved. Traditional bureaucracies began to give way to consumers like you and me with our likes and influences about advertising, buying patterns and more.

In fact, with a few keywords and clicks, in a very short time, the largest transfer of wealth was moving from offline to online. A new Digital Age gave birth to a new Digital Economy where a new Personal Economy was possible. E-commerce and M-commerce accelerated with continuous disruptions. The challenge became how to displace huge income disparity with income mobility.  

The truth became self-evident much later: that MLM was never about self-empowerment or mass exposure.

THE WRONG DIRECTIONS

First, the mechanics of MLM work as any sales business based on creating customers to create customers. It’s not about wrongfully trying to educate a prospect…a lifelong commitment. The process starts by selling a product and then recruiting a new salesperson to make residual income via direct and indirect referrals in a matrix. 
   
Therefore, the nature of selling is to start a conversation, and by follow-up to earn trust and value of a customer as a partnership. Even the best salespeople require a few visits to establish integrity and psychological safety. Herein lies the problem root of MLM recruiting. It requires an entire sales team to participate with the same MINDSET, same vision and dialogue to persuade others to change their mindset. How difficult is this for anyone to be on the same wavelength?

However, the biggest blunder in MLM home business industry, in my opinion, is to bait prospects by chasing their dreams. The common hook is WHY? Why do you want to make money? Why are your dreams so important? Why can’t you be the best person you can be? Why don’t you want to be part of the fastest growing, richest opportunity?


 Who would say NO to these kinds of questions? The door is open for the next pitch and sometimes a home run with a new sign-up.

The dual engine of MLM or network marketing is to recruit but also to duplicate the process, inning after inning, game after game. But, in every next inning, who will be the best pitcher and the weakest player...and therein lies another problem...at least traditionally.

However, along came the Internet and Internet Marketing. Our team was over the moon, our backyard was the whole world, we were on a Conveyor Belt to Galactic Success!  It seemed like overnight virtual space was filled with exposures of digital fireworks, subject lines, banner ads, floating buttons, space ads, and sales funnels of unlimited variations.

Pioneer marketers became the movers and shakers with early technical expertise for mass exposure, to build followers and lists. But they were promoting what they did best … aid-packages to learn guru marketing like themselves, not building a home business based on relationships. And guess what, their mantra was loud, clear and everywhere that you do not need to talk to anyone, just program yourself to be a leader everyone wants to follow. Imagine that in a selling profession where everyone touts leadership skills?

But MLM or network marketers took the bait, hook, line and sinker. We invested endless time and money into these programs to become our own self-brands, competing with lucrative marketing superstars and huge ad agencies to stand out in the crowd. Imagine a little old lady in the valley trying to make a virtual footprint?

In hindsight, of course, it was exploitation of the dream for any individual to succeed, other than the power brokers; but it was also the death knell for MLM online marketing. There was a brief period when the MLM jungle thrived online when mercenary, ego-driven entrepreneurs took advantage of proper networking principles with promises of dollar bills falling from the sky, exotic cars and holidays, and 200% commissions; just a  brief flash into oblivion filled with vulnerable bodies.  Soon EBay and Amazon readily displaced products with 70% markups to pay distributors’ commissions. 
         
So, where does personal philosophical content play a part in this journey? It started with  distribution of wellness products produced by a doctor and cellular nutritionist, seaweed elixirs that arrived frozen in a Canadian winter, and Ayurveda tonic with a celebrity endorsement who very few people seemed to know.

This physical distribution soon changed to intellectual distribution of ideas in tune with a digital world; such as, overriding search engines to find the lowest prices online. It was the first time I was intrigued to hear the term that a home business has potential for the masses with a membership of $29 a month to save and make money. Who couldn’t afford $29 to belong to a residual matrix based on a worldwide pool?  

Here began my hope as a common denominator to be a fair and democratic home business mentor. This was beyond sales; this was ethical, people helping people. In a changing world, technology should not displace opportunity, or sabotage dreams; ignorance is not a virtue. Why not fit into the Digital Economy with a People Power program and plan that can duplicate and monetize new changes with or without self-development, technical skills and no critical details missing?    

BIG QUESTION

Everyone agrees, I’m sure, that internet technology has radically changed our culture, industries and movements by continuing to recycle more disruptions. We cannot disagree that more People Power has created the greatest marketplace. We possibly may agree that we have unlimited access to information that can be comprehensive, less expensive and fast without the heavy burden of labor.  

How can we best address the reality that until you have an asset where you can use information tools to expand your knowledge and time, it is difficult to go beyond physical geography or hourly income?

GOOD NEWS

The GOOD NEWS is that as the rapidly changing economy continues, there is still power in the distribution business model, but it must be applied to the industry that is the most crucial to internet marketing; namely internet marketing itself. There is no question that this totality developed over the years has become inordinately complex and I would not wish the trials and tribulations of learning and applying it by yourself on any enemy. But today it is possible that you don’t need to know a lot; I’m certainly not an expert. You can join the marketing evolution and use a marketing mastermind’s skills, knowledge, drive and execution.

My  experience shows that there is more power than ever in today’s technology to plug into the capabilities of a large company and expert personnel. It is the universal power of LEVERAGE unleashed like never before. You have the choice for affiliation to let the experts tell the story on your behalf, explain the comp plan, testimonials and bonuses. If the prospect doesn’t get the value, he rejects the mastermind, not you.

NEW HERO

I have managed to tone all this down to how to be a self-franchised distributor in the definition of franchising “where a company can expand its business and distribute goods and services via independent agents by providing them with an operating system, brand and support.”
Who has heard of a Self-Franchised Distributor or Affiliate Marketer? I believe the time and place has come to make room for such a hero. This is the opportunity to access the potential of Internet Marketing by leveraging and sharing a single resource with a total en-suite of necessary tools to be a successful online marketer, save time and make money. 


You can read more about this adaptation in The Self Franchise Report
Three Reasons to Be a Self-Franchise Entrepreneur
 Four Adaptations to Reality Check to Keep it Real. 

CAUTIONARY WARNINGS

In review, MLM may appear better exposed and not as dangerous but avoid hot buttons, launches and heavy-duty outdated repackaged marketing skills.

Never sign-up for any company without a free trial period that goes beyond the sales pitch to practical benefits. Make sure a refund policy is in place if money is paid to prevent buyer’s remorse. Never make a permanent decision based on a temporary emotion.

Stop thinking that there is “a beach bum and a millionaire inside you” and only you can make the difference. Business coaching or self-empowerment programs work for a few strong-minded people, they will never duplicate in a team.

Refrain from listening to self-made business gurus who tell you to feed your dreams and to believe in yourself to get better. Their magnetic charisma and well-honed speaking skills make it easy for a select few to proselytize, not generally reflective, more dream-baiting.

Run away from anyone who asks WHY do you want to be successful? Of course, you do. Instead, ask them WHAT kind of successful marketing program they use, WHY it works on today’s internet marketplace and HOW you can do it. Plenty of time to dream after your marketing strategies prove results.  

Remember the biggest blunder in MLM is hooking people’s DREAMS as a reason to start a business without an able marketing strategy. However, the biggest advantage is using professional LEVERAGE. The time is right to replace the WHY with the HOW.

Questions and comments are always important; in fact crucial. Let me know what you think about the right conditions, wrong directions, new opportunities and warnings.

Annemarie Berukoff
amarie10@gmail.com  (Please set a time to talk that fits you.)


Remember that it is a common fact that at times of disruption and wealth distribution of this scale, true entrepreneurs can make fortunes with right programs and systems.



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