retail news in context, analysis with attitude

I got criticized last week by a reader who thought that my enthusiasm for online shopping betrayed a lamentable lack of support for local brick-and-mortar businesses.

MNB user Karyn Chenoweth had a thought about this:

Someone commented today on online shopping being the antithesis of buying local – while that may be true for some sites – others also encourage small businesses and enable reach that otherwise wouldn’t be possible.  Etsy is a great example of that.  I can log on and immediately find handmade options for gifts, which can be customized and delivered quickly with a personal touch.  They may not be shops in my immediate hometown, but they are small businesses nonetheless and ones I love to support.




On another subject, MNB user Mark Wilkerson wrote:

In response to the person who said “Nobody lies on their death bed wishing they would have been at the office more.”

…I’m pretty sure its entirely possible Steve Jobs was laying on his death bed upset that he didn’t finish his fully integrated Apple TV.


Though he apparently cracked the code, according to the biography by Walter Isaacson. He just didn’t live to see it completed and on the market.

Another MNB user wrote:

I have been reading the commentary on the Steve Jobs bio with interest.  I was taking the kids to the Apple store in Bethesda not that long after his death and my kids saw the photos and wanted to know who he was.  I explained that he had been the person behind much of the success of Apple and was a real genius.  My nine-year-old looked at me and asked, “But was he nice?”  Having grown up in Cupertino, I knew the answer to that one and had to say, “Nope, not nice.”  To which my kid responded, “Then what’s the point?”  Hmm.

I might have replied that he was “complicated.” But point taken.

And, from another MNB user:

Bill Gates may have once been a jerk, but he seems to have transformed his life to one of service and philanthropy. Not too bad, and I give Melinda a lot of credit for the change--never underestimate the power of a great wife.

Actually, I never underestimate the power of a great spouse. Which isn’t just a semantic difference.
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