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Corrupt Movie Moguls, Heartless NFL Owners, Star Trek And Wonder Woman

October 13, 2017

I went to see Wonder Woman yesterday. I know, I’m really late to the party, but I don’t do a lot of movies. As I sat in the theater and waited for the main feature, the theater showed some exciting scenes of coming attractions. The first one displayed the familiar white lettering on a green background letting us know the Motion Picture Association deemed it fit to be seen.

The image on the screen was a mere blip. Hardly long enough to even register. And had I seen the trailer last week, or last year, I wouldn’t have noticed it. After all, the name of the studio is a minor consideration when you are watching a movie or a preview. But, not this time. I don’t remember what movie the trailer was for. I was too startled by the movie company logo. In fact, hardly a logo, it was really just a name.


The NFL owners recently made news by announcing that they will not force their employees to stand when the national anthem is played. Some people might think the NFL decided this because they respect the players right to protest. Some thing the NFL was considering forcing them to stand because the league is concerned with the perception of not respecting America’s military. Neither is true.

I enjoy playing a table top game called Star Trek Attack Wing. It’s played with miniature models representing ships in the Star Trek universe. Each player picks a Star Trek faction (Federation, Romulan, Vulcan, etc) and builds a fleet to compete with the other player. Interestingly, Star Trek Attack Wing, does not allow you to play the new Captain Kirk as played by Chris Pine. Chris Pine also starred in Wonder Woman. That has nothing to do with my point, but it’s an possible bit of random trivia.

Anyway, Star Trek Attack Wing is sold by a company named Wizkids. The game has been out for a while and Wizkids recently revised the rules and changed some of the underlying costs for the various ships. On the facebook forums players were speculating on whether Wizkids will issue an errata and retroactively change the cost of existing ships to bring them in line with the new rules. You can still play the old ships, but since they cost more, they cannot compete as well with the newer version. I explained that in my opinion, Wizkids will never “errata” the earlier ships.

See, Wizkids is a company who makes money when they sell products. If they reissue the old ships with new costs, the players will have to decide to play with our older expensive ships, or upgrade to the newer ships. In this case, “upgrade” is an option that means Wizkids makes money. And as a player, I’m actually okay with this. If the company makes money, they will keep producing the game. If they no longer make money, then the game shuts down.

The NFL owners, in my view don’t care a bit about the flag. And that’s not a bad thing. The NFL, like Wizkids, is a business. They are in the business of making money. If they can make money, they will keep the league going. If they cannot make money, they will go with the way of the XFL and the USFL.

Company Loyalty Only Ever Goes One Way

Companies are not people. Companies cannot have emotions. They don’t get mad. They aren’t patriotic. They aren’t mean. They aren’t anything. They are an engine that takes input and produces outputs. People ask why the NFL is so concerned with the current protests when they have admitted wife beaters playing. They have drunks, drug users, people accused of crimes. Why would the NFL let them play, but have such a problem with people peacefully protesting now?

Because it’s not about the protest. It’s about the fact that the protest seems to be driving down viewership. The stadiums are not as full this year as last year and the owners are trying to figure out why and how to correct it. The drunks and the wife beaters didn’t impact the bottom line. If the current protest wasn’t driving away advertisers and alienating a group of fans, the NFL wouldn’t care. If the protest drew more people to the game, the NFL would be thrilled to give its players a platform to exercise their rights.

The Weinstein company has been a pretty successful movie house. They won a lot of awards. They put out some very popular movies. And they would have continued doing that so long as they could make money. But, they now have a problem. Just like me, people are starting to notice their name and it has a pretty negative connotation. Of course, the company fired the founder for allegations of some pretty henious acts. The company itself is considering changing the name. Most likely it will be bought up by some other company and the name will disappear from the title credits for movies.

I enjoy my job. I’m pretty good at it. I’m proud of the work I do. And yet, if you read through the 1200 or so blog entries I’ve written in the past 4 years, you’ll not see it mentioned once. My value to the company has a particular worth assigned to it known as my salary. If I make some comment here, on my own time, on my own blog that brings disrepute to my company, that potentially causes it to lose customers, or value, or goodwill, it maybe that my value is not greater than the cost of something negative. So, I don’t associate my company’s name with this space.

Companies are in the business of making money and returning value to the shareholders. If you approach the news of the day with that idea, it makes much of the actions by companies, Weinstein company, NFL, Wizkids and my own company make perfect sense.

(The movie was excellent, by the way. Really enjoyed it.)

Rodney M Bliss is an author, columnist and IT Consultant. His blog updates every weekday. He lives in Pleasant Grove, UT with his lovely wife, thirteen children and grandchildren. 

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(c) 2017 Rodney M Bliss, all rights reserved 

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