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Bold Moves

As we enter the NFL free agency period, I’m ready for some splashy moves (this morning’s news of the Percy Harvin trade to Seattle comes to mind; Niners better sort it out during free agency and the draft) and my “whoa” antennae is up as I note some bold moves (note that the formal definition of “bold” is not about a good move or the right approach, but “showing or requiring a fearless daring spirit”) in other industries:

  • Amazon Reaches to Lock Up .Book Domain – And other bookish domains such as .author and .read This is just. Wow. Bold. And overreaching. Ricardo Bilton at Venture Beat offers a succinct glimpse at what would be at stake if such a thing happened: “To use an obvious example, imagine typing ‘LeanIn.book’ and being directed to Amazon’s listing for the book. It’s a powerful branding tool.” More to the point: “Apple, for instance, probably shouldn’t own the rights to .movie, and .app shouldn’t fall into the hands of a company like Google.” Indeed.
  • Sheryl Sandberg Launches LeanIn.Org – Setting aside the hullabaloo surrounding Sheryl’s book and the talk of her (and Marissa Mayer’s) position of privilege (and so how dare she offer insight to working women, so the meme goes), it’s not her book that’s bold but the launch of LeanIn.org, which aims to “offer women the encouragement and support to lean in to their ambitions” that has me sitting up and taking notice. Reminds me of Gretchen Rubin’s Happiness Project. Yes, it was a book but it has become a powerful online community that extends far beyond. Will be interesting to see how Sandberg’s bold move plays out over the next few years and if it can increase the number of women in leadership positions. I’ve just joined a LeanIn Circle so, there you go. Hook, line…
  • Google and Adidas Create a Talking Shoe for Fitness Motivation – As the health device market goes bonkers and funding for health startups gets even crazier, Google and Adidas do something that seems a bit retro. The talking shoe? Really? Since Nike+ launched the in-shoe sensor YEARS ago, shoes have been the last place digital health startups are trying to place sensors. Your clothing, your waist, your wrist. But back to shoes again? Hmmm. Also a bold move. Will be very interesting to see if this pans out in what feels like the first mile of what promises to be a 100-mile desert trek over the next few years.
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