Headline, August31, 2013



!WOW!  !! WOW !!  !!! WOW !!!!

''Instead of being like most companies,'' Mason says : ''Conforming and becoming more normal,  We Want To Become Weirder.''

'That's right! That is the way to go!,' say I to the Students of the whole world! And for now, let me return to the Tale:

In February of 2010, Mason decided he had had enough. He sued Groupocity, one of the copycat companies, for trademark infringement. The company changed its name to CrowdSavings.com and Groupon dropped the lawsuit. But a month later, Mason was on the receiving end of a legal complaint. A law firm filed a class-action suit against Groupon for allegedly illegal expiration dates on its vouchers. That lawsuit was settled out of court but more followed. The legal cases took a toll on the usually laid-back Mason.

Come 2010, Groupon spent more than $200 million on marketing alone. It's I.P.O filings acknowledged that the company could be outspent by some tech behemoths, including Facebook and Google,  which have both recently launched Groupon type services. The filings also stated that Groupon can't guarantee the same rate of growth moving forward : ''Given the limited history, it is difficult to predict whether this market will continue to grow or whether it can be maintained.''

In a letter to potential shareholders, Mason vowed that his trademark persona is here to stay, ''We are unusual and we like it that way.'' he wrote. ''We want the time people spend with Groupon to be memorable. Life is too short to be a boring company.''
But the pretense that Groupon is a scrappy start-up is wearing thin. Mason took great pains to explain and emphasize that that the company was staying true to its idiosyncratic roots, but it's hard to maintain that a publicly traded multi-national business being valued at over $20 billion will remain a quirky outsider.

But, but, Groupon Now could also go a long way in caulking Groupon's chinks. It will help keep merchants flowing through Groupon's pipeline and, by creating more proprietary technology-based service, will make Goupon harder to replicate. Mason says that Groupon Now will transform Groupon from sales company into more of a technology company.

Marc Andreessen, a co-founder of Netscape and an investor in Groupon, thinks that Groupon Now will help the company become a ''permanent part of how small businesses acquire new customers..............It's comparable to the Yellow Pages in the old days  -fundamentally you had to use it. It's going to be core.''

When in his late teens and 20s, Mason had always fancied himself part of the counter-culture tribe. He hitchhiked across New Zealand, milking cows, harvesting honey, and building shacks. He followed around the punk-rock band Fugazi the way others followed the Grateful Dead. He took on Colonel Sanders. Then he headed a multi-national corporation based on consumerism.

''It's totally weird and I am self-deprecating about it,'' he says. ''I feel like I have made the transition from Anakin to Darth Vader.'' Mason then gets a bit philosophic,  -nay, nay, spiritual : 
'' And in a lot of ways with technology the good you do ends up being a side effect of something that's fundamentally selfish. I mean, we're catalyzing new life passions for people every day. Like that's simply Awesome. that's really exciting to be a part of and I can totally sink my teeth into that. Maybe, I'm just rationalizing my massive sellout, but I don't think so.''

Mason is a notoriously obsessive worker. He arrives at the office at seven in the morning and typically doesn't leave until eight in the evening. He says he frequently falls asleep at the computer and dreams about his work. He insists he has no free time:

''Working this hard, it's not a chore. It's an absolute joy. Why would you not want to spend your life spending every waking hour working on something where you can have such an impact and that's so interesting? I mean, what's better? Maybe playing video games, but short of that there's no activity other than work that could possible be more satisfying.

''The irony is that in theory I'm at a place where I'd probably be able to enjoy life more than I ever will in the future or have in the past.''

Mason found a deep meaning in studying Bach's final masterpiece. The Art Of Fugue. ''He actually died writing it.'' Mason says. ''And nobody cared about him anymore. He just worked on these figures because he believed in it and he loved it and that's all that mattered and to hell with the rest of the world.''

He then pauses for a moment, ''I love the idea of dying doing something that nobody cares about.
I think that's a cool idea.'' 

I have the honour to conclude these case-study,  Headline posts. The Samurai and the world at large, must insight and learn these great lessons and incorporate them as we go forward.  

With most respectful and caring and loving dedication to the Great Heroes:
Malala, Mary, Rabo, Dee, Haleema, Sameen, Sarah, Vishnu, Hadiqa, Saima, Areesha, Paras, Sorat, Maham, Mahnur, Mamuna, Armeen, Zeba, Aqsa, Sania, Nabia, Hussain, Ali, Rauf, Shabzada, Jehanzeb, Shahzaib, Salar, Ehsan Khalil, Ahsan, Aniq, Daniyal, Rahem, Sannan, Hamza, Hazeem, Zaeem,  Zarnish, Nayab, Mayna, Hannia, Talat, Shahrukh, Awais, Haseeb,

With most respectful dedication to the All The Students Of The World, Professors and Teachers. See ya all on the World Students Society Computers-Internet-Wireless : ''Great Things Must Be Attempted.''

Good Night & God Bless!

SAM Daily Times - the Voice of the Voiceless


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