John Tierney has a great column on the aspects of WalMart that the anti-Walmart forces never bother to discuss, “The Good Goliath.” Unfortunately the “stupid goliath,” The New York Times, continues to try and get people to pay for online opinion pieces. Key conclusion from Tierney:
Wal-Mart has been one of the most successful antipoverty programs in America. It provides entry level jobs that unskilled workers badly want — there are often 5 or 10 applicants for each position.
Meanwhile, over at the online paper of record, The Wall Street Journal’s WSJ.com, a new news tracker has joined the indispensable Avian Flu News Tracker. This one is the “Holiday-Sales News Tracker.” Example of post in this tracker:
8:45 a.m.: Online retailers and analysts are crunching the “Cyber Monday” numbers. Amazon.com reported one million items were ordered from 6 a.m. to 1 p.m. yesterday, compared with 660,000 items during the same time on Sunday. Online bag and shoe seller eBags announced that its sales jumped 60% on Monday from a year ago.
This “deep and current silo” approach to news is a fascinating revolution that is a new standard for online editions. I suggested a Campaign 2006 News Tracker yesterday, but would also like to see a “D.C. Scandals News Tracker,” “Baseball Hot Stove” and “NFL Draft” trackers, and of course a “New Media News Tracker.” The WSJ.com staff is providing the sorting and real-time functions that information consumers are demanding in greater and greater numbers.
Here’s my suggestion to corporate gift-givers everywhere: Save that expenditure on Christmas cards that get thrown in the trash the day they arrive and on the candy for clients campaign. Rather, give gift subscriptions to WSJ.com. You’ll be the most popular corporate gift-giver of them all.
And if the WSJ.com marketing folks were as smart as their news types, they’d discount the $99 a year subscription and feature it on the front page.