What I’m thinking about this morning:

1. Teens are oversharing
2. MLB and Shaggy have a lot in common.
3. See through dresses and edible packaging.
4. Best Star Spangled Banner ever?
5. Update on Chicago Sun-Times.

1. Teens are exposing themselves more than ever. I read an article from Brian Solis where he shared some scary data from a new Pew study. It was all about how much teens (digital natives) are sharing through social networks.And  I’d have to bet that a good percentage of it their parents don’t know about. I’m not talking about ‘sharing’ in the sense of questionable photos or what they’re doing that night (the merit of doing so is something I’ll save for another day).

No, I’m talking about sharing as in the basic form of sharing – name, address, phone number.

91% post a photo of themselves, up from 79% in 2006.
71% post their school name, up from 49%.
71% post the city or town where they live, up from 61%.
53% post their email address, up from 29%.
20% post their cell phone number, up from 2%.

Cleveland recently took the world by storm when three kidnapped girls were found. When Amanda Berry was taken Facebook didn’t even exist. Now teens are sharing all kinds of vital information on it and other social networks. I’m not saying teens shouldn’t be on social media; however, I am saying that just like we were taught, growing up, not to give out or phone number or address, or tell someone you’re going to be home alone, the digital natives need to realize the dangers of oversharing.

2. Major League Baseball exercises the Shaggy defense. It wasn’t me. Steroids? It wasn’t me. Links to a prominent supplier of PEDs? Wasn’t me. Positive test? Wasn’t me.

I love watching baseball players deny they used PEDs. But Ryan Braun may be my favorite. Everything he says drips with self righteousness. His interview, right after the news broke that he, A-Rod and others would be tied to Tony Bosch was classic. Saying he didn’t really know much and the PR person ‘had just grabbed him and told him of it’ moments before he faced the media after the game…yea, we almost believe that. No PR person is sending his client in front of the media without telling them every little detail of the story. Braun used it as an excuse not to talk about the story – but only after he again talked about how much he has overcome dealing with the pressure of these claims. You know, the claim that he tested positive but thanks to a technicality in the testing, was cleared of.

But, until baseball takes a hard stance – lifetime ban, five year ban? – athletes will continue to take this risk. The payoff is too great. Consider Melky Cabrera —a two time offender—will still make $15M for his work over the next three years. So where’s the punishment? It’s obvious these players could care less about personal reputation and credibility so the only way to truly punish them is to deprive them of their craft. I love baseball and I hate saying that…but something drastic has to be done. This is a joke.

3. See through dresses and edible packaging. Ever been so hungry you don’t even bother to take the wrapper off whatever it is you’re eating? Anyone? Anyone? No. Well me neither then.

Anyway, what if you didn’t have to take the wrapper off? What if you could just eat it? What impact would that have on our environment? Well, that’s what companies are experimenting with now. You can read about two examples – hamburgers and ice cream sandwiches – here in this great read from Goldforest, a packaging design company in Florida. It’s in this same article that you can read about a dress that becomes transparent when the wearer’s heartbeat passes 85 beats per minute, which should make a club much more interesting when Blurred Lines gets played.

So why is Goldforest writing about these things and why do I find it so interesting? Because this is proof that packaging, in a much larger definition of the word, is finally evolving, not just beyond the package design (aesthetics) but in the ‘design’ i.e., the form and function. We are going to start seeing how they blur into one—do they have to be separate all the time? What if the package was the product? And how can the package make the product better? It’s an exciting time for design – but why should product designers have all the fun?

4. The Star Spangled Banner just got interesting. Have you seen the video of a middle school band performing The Star Spangled Banner? And the kid playing the cymbals drops one half-way through…and….you just have to watch for yourself. This is just fantastic:  (skip ahead to the 1 minute mark).

A few thoughts:
1.Check out the look on the face of the girl playing the bass drum.
2.The kid playing the snare hung in there pretty well too – even though he can’t figure out what the kid who dropped the cymbal is doing.
3.How did the band director hold it together? Granted we can’t see his face but he kept directing like nothing happened.

5. The other day we talked about the Chicago Sun-Times eliminating its photographers. Now we see they are planning to picket the building. That’s what I love to see – can’t go down without a fight! According to the group planning the protest, this will ‘make a statement to the company that people care about the quality of journalism’.