Sunday, May 22, 2011

El fantasma de Ma Bell

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Aquí les presento el primer editorial que escribí para ESMANDAU.com, el primero de varios al ser miembro activo del staff.

Interesante el recuerdo que sigue latente en el mercado de telecomunicaciones el término de “Ma Bell”. Durante la semana pasada y esta hemos escuchado muchos, incluyendo senadores y oponentes de la compra/venta de T-Mobile por parte de AT&T sobre que estaríamos viendo “el regreso de Ma Bell” si este junte se da.

En este editorial, damos un corto vistazo a que se refieren con Ma Bell y como prácticamente el gobierno de los Estados Unidos sancionó oficialmente un monopolio controlado.

El término de Ma Bell, más bien es lo que se le conoce al monopolio que tenía Bell System, una compañía que dio a nacer a American Telephone & Telegraph, conocido hoy día como AT&T y que prácticamente controlaba el mercado de la telefonía residencial y de larga distancia en toda la nación.

Bell System fue fundado en 1877 bajo el nombre de American Bell Telephone Company en Connecticut. A lo largo de su desarrollo, la empresa fue expandiéndose, creando mini –empresas o franquicias, donde las pusieron bajo la sombra de su sub-compañía American Telephone & Telegraph y de allí introduciendo el llamado “Bell System”.

El éxito de la empresa llegó a tal extremo, que prácticamente para continuar su expansión, incluyendo el hacer posible la comercialización de llamadas de larga distancias, la empresa decidió dejarse comprar por AT&T, quienes estaban con sus centrales en Nueva York, mientras que Bell estaban en Chicago. La razón de esto es que en Chicago, en aquel momento, eran más rigurosos en cuanto a impuestos y regulaciones que en Nueva York, logrando para el 1899, que AT&T se convirtiera en la matriz de Bell. De ahí se crearían sus cuatro principales divisiones:

  • Larga Distancia
  • Bell Labs
  • Western Electric Company
  • Operadoras

Desde 1907, AT&T estaba operando bajo la filosofía “One Policy, One System, Universal Service.”. “Una Póliza, Un Sistema, Servicio Universal”, con ella, todo compañía potencial estaba siendo comprada para evitar competencia y mantener la superioridad. Pero esto empezó a ser alarma para el gobierno de los Estados Unidos, pero AT&T de buena voluntad (y no perder el momento) llega a un acuerdo.

El acuerdo llamado el “Compromiso Kingsbury”, el cual empezaría con AT&T vendiendo sobre $30 millones de acciones de Western Union para permitir la conexión de otras compañías y evitar más adquisiciones de parte de AT&T. Entonces, para el 1934, esto permite que el gobierno permitiera un monopolio supervisado teniendo obviamente a AT&T en protagonismo y logrando el prácticamente el control de la industria de la telefonía.

Pero no todo sería bombos y platillos para AT&T al enfrentarse a la primera demanda antimonopolio presentado en 1949 en donde el Departamento de Justicia denunció que AT&T estaba estrangulando cualquier potencial competidor al mantener una ventaja injusta de innovaciones en tecnología. El resultado de esto es que AT&T bajaría hasta el 85% de dominio del mercado nacional, incluyendo contratos gubernamentales. Para este instante, ya AT&T tenia también presencia en Canadá y en el Caribe.

La segunda y definitiva denuncia se haría para el 1974 en donde nuevamente el gobierno acusa a AT&T a alterar el progreso de compañías que pudieran ser competidores, pero esta vez, AT&T tuvo un respiro de 10 años mientras el caso era atendido hasta que en 1984, el sistema Bell tenía que ser eliminado y sus compañías miembros se establecerían independientemente o adquiridas por otras compañías.

Debo concluir, que es interesante saber cuál era la necesidad de que el gobierno autorizara un monopolio. En tiempos reciente, no se había escuchado que algún gobierno oficialmente sancionara un “monopolio controlado”. No soy quien para decir que Ma Bell reviviría si en efecto AT&T logra tener a T-Mobile USA. Pero viendo algunos comentarios de algunos de nuestros lectores, parece que no hay mucho interés o desconocimiento del por qué debemos confiar en todo proceso que busque velar por justicia para consumidores y el mercado.

En mi opinión personal…No es solamente burocracia, el congreso no se han olvidado de la compra de Centennial, que han sido un desastre (recuerden mi opinión personal) con el manejo de Centennial, en Puerto Rico, New Jersey e Islas Vírgenes no tengo información pero probablemente sea la misma situación y apenas vamos para un año que se aprobó la transacción pero apenas en Agosto aproximadamente es que empezaron a “cumplir” con la condición Lo dice un ex de Centennial que aprovechó la oferta junto a su familia. Estoy de acuerdo que si AT&T quiere clavarnos, porque sé que no viene rebajas en tarifas por más que AT&T prometa, como lo hizo con Centennial, tengan que chuparse las sendas condiciones que vendrían si quieren la aprobación y digo clavar pues soy cliente de AT&T, el precio de tener el BlackBerry Torch, pero estaba en planes de volver a T-Mobile y me quedé con las ganas. La gente no puede pasar de esto como si “son empresas, que se resuelvan ellos”, porque al fin y al cabo pagamos por culpa de afrentados de dinero.

Friday, May 6, 2011

The Circus Know As Early 21st Century Pro Wrestling

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Today I want to make a quick comparison between wrestling industry now and before from the point of view of a guy that watch and breathed wrestling related-topics and show.



I remember a time when it was a early noon at one particular Saturday in my 4 years at age, I was seeing a tag-team match and two dudes were just kicking ass and making their opponents to bleed. Years later I would have learn that I was seeing a classic with The Bushwackers, on their hardcore alter-egos "The New Zealand Sheppers". With this story, I was trying to say that since a kid I have developed a love for wrestling, that even in my late teen years to early adult, I was beginning seriously considering a wrestling career, even making contacts with independent wrestling community for start my training. Little that I know that choosing to do that while studying and working will leave little time even for myself, so I canceled the plans, at least for the moment.

Fairly early this week, I got a nice conversation with my ESMANDAU colleague and GM Militza. Surprisingly I was told that she in fact is a wrestling fan but close to my timeline begining my interest in to wrestling...Militza failed one question though but telling me that she remembers "The Smoking Guns" (For Kip James/ Billy Gunn fans and don't know it, this was one of the most remembered but not successful tag team stable which was composed of Bart Gunn and Mr. Ass himself as billed as western wrestler.). Just for that I know she knows what she talking about and for a woman is rare finding a fan that had follow wrestling since that period. That conversation and other that I had with my friend Karlo motivated me on having a quick view on how wrestling is being today.

Wrestling then...
World Wrestling Council, previously know as Capitol Sport Promotions was my direct contact with pro wrestling since early childhood. I was faithful every weekend in the short time they went on Tele-Once and their successful migration to WAPA TV. Meanwhile my first time I could enjoy a full-televised, (Since cable TV wasn't accessible as it is now, I could rent video circa 87, 89 and so on) WWE show was circa 95. At the time called World Wrestling Federation, show that wrestling wasn't only in Puerto Rico (hey I was a kid). Around 97 there was the AWA on SuperSiete channel which I suspect was a "farm" of World Wrestling Federation" and the hype at the moment was when Savio Vega joined Nation Of Domination. I saw a more crude way of wrestling in Puerto Rico than the USA. In fact more hardcore type of wrestling, which one or both opponents bleed in the match because of the "intensity" of the "hatred". That reminds me of a well know promotion that broke all the "family-oriented" wrestling specially from WCW, in the USA. ECW. Extreme Championship Wrestling, former NWA's Eastern Championship Wrestling. Day one as "extreme" marked when an event, with NWA officials present, the promotion ran a angle that practically they insult the integrity of NWA Championship belt as creating a new title for ECW. Afterwards, we have seen all memorable moments in ECW, as the born of many superstars status for wrestlers like Shane Douglas, Mick Foley, Steve Austin, Sandman, Tommy Dreamer, Stevie Richards, The Dudley Boyz, Chris Benoit, mexican wrestlers with American exposition forEddie Guerrero, Rey Misterio JR., Juventud Guerrera, Super Crazy and memorable moments with Sabu, Terry Funk, Tazz, etc. Shortly both World Wrestling Federation and World Championship Wrestling would follow, not only in the exploit of hardcore wrestling but also the introduction of more "sexiness" in women's wrestling as more g-string and more tits and more ass and the rise of anti-hero in the likes of Stone Cold Steve Austin, D-Generation x and The Rock were appealing and a interest on teenagers and early adult market became profitable. The formula would have been short-lived for WCW as changes in their mothership, Time Warner Company was facing a merger with AOL, which they at the moment though that WCW means unnecessary spending as failing in The Monday Night Wars with World Wrestling Federation for TV ratings.

Turning on wrestling content 
In 2002 we see some changes both in Puerto Rican and American Wrestling. ECW and WCW were bought by World Wrestling Federation as they were in a legal battle with World Wide Foundation for the "WWF" which utimately won, forcing the wrestling empire to change his name to World Wrestling Entertainment and censuring all post 98 WWF logo references. That physical change were at not much affecting the product , at least at that moment. In Puerto Rico as far as time advances, International Wrestling Association, were giving WWC a good fight until recent changes forced in part by the unexpected death of Wrestling genius and owner of IWA, Victor Quiñones which was most behind of all angles and scripts. Ultimately nowadays, IWA still struggling to have a convincing product with success as WWC is struggling to maintain interest in wrestling.

Why naming this post like that?
With the little background I gave, I just want to see how things are going right now. Current USA's wrestling situation is that we got to mayor leagues of wrestling with WWE and TNA and a flagship of independent wrestling with Ring Of Honor. Now I don't intend on joining the unselective club of internet forums or blog with many Dave Meltzer-wannabes giving their analysis on wrestling, which I AGREE had damaged and exposed the industry way beyond imagination if things like this could be learned in the 80's. But I admit that kind of exposure has made the WWE break the paradigm on sanctioning a reality tv-like programmin named Tough Enough which proved that although moves are real, they are choreographed for safety purposes and the ring yes, although covered with a thin layer of foam, it is in reinforced wood (clarifying doubts).

Years will come and we see a rapid evolution in programming as both compaines, WWE and TNA went again on improving their product. Now I will focus on WWE for the rest of this article, for reason that I am about to explain. Why WWE? Well I believe that due to the background I gave early, seems that WWE has changed their foucs back to children appeals. Make no mistake, I love children but I don't think it will be that easy for WWE forget the "Attitude Era" or avoid it's shadows as they are pretending. HELL! If I even reconsider my possible wrestling career I vow right now, if I am ever contacted by Johnny Ace telling me that WWE has interest on me, I will say "Thank you for the opportunity Mr. Ace, but you can call me again when WWE change his focus." Like I said, I love children and love to be the center of attention, but not 24/7 and definitely not in wrestling. I love double-sense & suggestive themes, I love women sexiness and I am interested in doing damage if I ever reconsider a wrestling training. Maybe harsh and maybe you are saying, "blogging about it is easy". But not necessarily,  I believe there is a sense of money-interest and hypocrisy in the part of the company. Why you want to be acknowledge so bad to be a entertainment company?

Recently WWE had being in a massive media and channel summary correction on not naming them a "wrestling event". Of course, some summary, instead of making change, probably rolled their eyes back, and just remove the sumarry. Why it is so important to run on this risk, which is not helpful? Some of the answer are found when WWE joined the NYSE and making a few friend for investment. A good example of how dominance of control they had on WWE than the very same Vince McMahon, that when The Nexus sable formed, Daniel Bryan was immediately fired just for pulling a tie of a ring announcer in a way that looks like strangling. Headlock is not a strangling move if it used by full force?! Why even bother of trying people forget the wrestling side of WWE, when their main stage is composed of a transmission table, announcing table, timekeeper tabler and a FREAKING WRESTLING RING. Also since a few years ago, I had been noticing more interactions backstage and skits than seeing wrestling action. Maybe I am wrong but any old-schooler had to at least have his attention.

My example named John Cena
I had openly admitted that after Wrestlemania 22 that I hate John Cena. Of course not as a person, but as a wrestler. He may had the discipline, but the move and his body is not at his favor. He isn't convincing although having more than 11 years of professional exposure, including being on IWA with a Terminator-like gimmick. And that's the main point and why I believe wrestling today is a fucking circus, the guys is better on gimmicks than doing good old faction wrestling. And unfortunately Cena is the main reason of the direction of WWE being like cartoon land. Unfortunately he is popular with children and children means money for every company. I had to give his credit the guy bust his ass for his paycheck, but having him as champion 24/7 every year is kinda old-Hulk Hogan formula that many promotion had been following, including WWE, and each and every one of them doesn't the important lesson, IT ONLY WORKED WITH HOGAN, PERIOD. So bad went the situation that even with Vince McMahon upset, WWE TV had to acknowledge the lack of Cena popularity which was seeing on television despite all attempt of WWE to push him as a company's face.

I had to conclude that the interaction between legend The Rock and Cena will modify some of the crappy TV-PG environment and even in some point upgrading to a still-crappy-but-more-amusing TV-PG13 as The Rock character is really not compatible with TV-PG in mannerism, language and interaction.

We shall see...

'Till next time
GeeZus