Thursday, April 26, 2012

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Technology

My, the Internet has Changed...Everything - Part 2:

Last week, we gave you the start of some of the many things the internet has changed.  Here goes part 2!

Because the internet allows works of authorship to live in perpetuity, copyright has been getting more extensions than the "limited times" afforded it in the Constitution.  Copyright is to protect original works of authorship for limited times, but with so many options and means to reproduce works, copyright protection has gotten more extensions than legislative bills!

In addition to getting longer protection, copyrights have had to work harder with the vast capacity for infringement and piracy. With the speed of technology, your copyright could be violated within minutes.  Vigilance is critical.

Piracy and Infringement Law
Relative to copyright, but also including trademark and patent, intellectual property has been at the forefront of the internet age.  Brands and authors have had to become more vigilant in watching over their works, because virtual stealing can be so easy.  These niches in the legal profession have grown from outside counsel to in-house and complete departments, to protect the integrity of brands and products in the market.  As we've mentioned before, copyright, trademark, and patents are to be protective measures of creations of the mind.  

The internet has not only made it easy to share great ideas quickly and in mass, but also quite simple for some to take them as their own.  

The Music Industry
Where it was once so necessary to have a deal with a major record label to be considered a viable artist, the internet has made way for big changes.  These days, promoting and selling music over the internet relaxes the stress of scoring a major deal.  It also makes way for a larger market and more options for consumers.  We continue to mention the difficulty the internet has brought in regards to protecting one's craft legally, with infringement and piracy being so easy, but hey...if you're being copied, you must be worth it, right?

Fashion law is a growing and exciting field, and of course a favorite here.  This field is emerging largely in part to the internet changing the face of the industry.  At one time, we had just a few major fashion magazines--we now have a plethora of fashion blogs, giving various angles of the business.  The internet allows for the sharing of looks and styles, but like other creative works, makes way for infringement and legal battles.  

Fashion has continued to prosper as a billion-dollar industry because of the internet, and will surely continue to do so.  Unlike other creative arts, music and film to name a couple, fashion does not have much federal protection past trademarking to keep it's products safe.  Despite the jeopardy music and film have found themselves in protection-wise, fashion still has a battle when it comes to government protection of its products.  As always, we're watching this as it happens.

The Voice of the Public
History is used to marches, boycotts, and picketing, but outright internet blackouts are totally new.  As the internet faced a blackout over the idea of efforts to stop online piracy (SOPA), we were able to see just how the voice of the people has changed.

The internet has made way for social media to be as much of a part of life as breathing, with it being available at our fingertips at all times.  We can get messages out in mass, plan events, dictate protests and share good news, all because the internet brings us together.  Facebook may not be your thing, or you might not be so into Twitter, but in some way, you are able to connect to people and be a part of this mass social circle we call the internet.

No one was ready for the changes the internet has brought, and of course this list sheds light on a just few.  This great force in our everyday lives is something we have become greatly dependent on and will surely hold dear as we continue into the future.  

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Events

Don't forget!!

Noisemaker Entertainment - Company Launch, 4/30!

Check out the premier of this fabulous entertainment company and help raise money for their feature film screening!

These hardworking ladies have joined forces to produce something major, and you don't want to miss out.

Here's the details...


You are invited to the following event:
Monday, April 30, 2012 from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM (CT)
1240 W. Randolph
View Map
Read More

Share this event on Facebook and Twitter

We hope you can make it!

Facebook Twitter LinkedInEventbrite

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Tops

Top 5 Tips for a Successful Networking Event~

Networking is increasingly important these days.  It leads to jobs, promotions, stronger relationships and brand building.  Whether you have a product or service to offer, or want to just strengthen your name in the market, networking is a must.

If you're more into hosting versus just attending, here are some great tips for a successful networking event:

1.  Know your audience.
Who do you want to come to this event?  Is it social?  Professional?  A mix of both?  The guest list is very important when planning an event.  You want to be sure to have a good mix of attendees, but not so much the mix may turn sour.  Envision the event in advance, and plan your guests from there.

2.  Choose a theme.
The theme doesn't have to be overt, and guests don't even have to know there's a theme.  This can be your guideline to your guest list, menu, and the attire you suggest.  Choosing a theme is as simple as promoting the event as a social scene, professional meet-up, relaxed atmosphere, fundraiser, speed networking or whatever.  Be sure you have an idea of how you want the event to go and any results you may need (donations, etc.).  Your theme will come easily from there.

3.  Select a great venue.
Venue is important.  After determining how many people you want to come, and what you envision the event to be, chose the perfect backdrop.  Do you want a swanky summer setting, or a cozy, warm space.  In selecting a venue, you must also consider price, sale of liquor, food, and in some cases, parking for your guests.  You definitely want people saying good things about your venue when they leave.  

4.  Prep...and prep again.
Once you've chosen your guests, setting, and theme, be sure everything is all set.  Go over your guest list again--make certain you didn't forget anyone.  Check in with the venue to be sure they are all set time-wise, and see if there are any particulars you need to have in order before the event begins.  Also, have all the small things in order.  This lends itself to your theme, considering favors, centerpieces and other things which might make your event a little extra special.

5. Engage and Enjoy.
As the host, you must be there early to greet and make sure everything goes off without a hitch.  However, once things are going, mingle and check in with your guests.  Show them you are having a good time, and the feeling will rub off.  Pose for pictures and enjoy the evening--after all, you put in a lot of work.

We hope these suggestions are helpful to your next fab social!

Monday, April 23, 2012

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Law

Fashion & Crime: Where a Fun Market Meets Unfortunate Realities

Most often we talk about the exciting and profitable attributes of fashion, but there are also some harsh realities deriving from the stylish industry.  Be clear, this is no slight to the industry we love; it is a tangential connection to its products and some of the consequences they bring in society.

As you surely know, the hoodie has taken on a new life after the sad killing of Florida teenager, Trayvon Martin.  Because of the style he chose to don on his last day, his life was taken with a distant connection to what such attire may--or may not--have represented.  Often, young men, typically minorities can fall into the wrong situations and stereotypes because of the fashion they choose.  Although unfortunate, this is a sad reality.  Sagging pants (which we strongly suggest against anyways), tall t-shirts, oversized clothing, trench coats, exotic hair--the list goes on, but these are just a few of the fashion styles quickly attacked everyday and in the media.  Even those just liking the look, but not the life potentially connected with it are subject to scrutiny.  

The case is no different for young women, who find short and tight looks to be as appealing as they are on performers before sold out crowds.  In some instances, these looks can also give the wrong impression to onlookers, sending a message they are into ill-reputes they may not be.  Again, crime can ensue, simply because of the appearance presented based on clothing.  

Surely these aren't the only trends leading to harsh consequences, but they are rather popular in our media-heavy culture.  What can we do to change the outcome of what could end in tragedy?  Will crime or death always be one of the downfalls of dressing on the edge?

Fashion will continue to be a fun market, but hopefully the connections to crime based on narrow-minded actions can begin to cease.

Let's see style with style and save lives.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Technology

My, the Internet has Changed...Everything - Part 1:

Over the last 15 years, the internet has changed our lives more and faster, than almost any other invention in history.  This constant in our everyday lives has had an impact on so many fields, professions, socioeconomic groups, and more.

Let's take a look at what it's done:

The internet has changed commerce in a big way.  Now, you don't have to go stand in long lines, or walk through crowded malls.  You can sit on your couch and shop for almost anything online.  In many instances, you can save money, as a good amount of online shopping can be done tax free.  Beware, this is subject to change, but it has been major in recent years.   

Consumers are not the only ones saving money.  Businesses are, too.  With the option of being mostly, or completely online, companies can save money on costs they had to have in the past.  Lower utility bills, and maybe even fewer employees (which we definitely don't endorse) are results of the internet business model.  However, a McKinsey Global Institute study from Spring 2011 found: for every job destroyed by the internet, 2.6 were created.  So maybe one business needs less people, but another either needs more, or gave way for a new entity to be created. 

No matter how you look at it, the internet has had a major impact on business.

Legislation and Government
Favorite B.A.F.F.L.E.D. topics for sure, and greatly changed by the internet.  Now, because of the technology brought on by internet-based devices, legislators have to do their best to stay on top of the pros and cons this invention brings.  Texting while driving was unheard of in the 90s, and no one ever considered the impact online sales would have on tax revenues now-missing from local governments.  Because the internet is so vast in information and capacity, privacy laws must remain updated, as well as considerations for Freedom of Information Act requests.  As technology continues to advance, legislators will find themselves quite busy in keeping up.

Surely you remember having to see the movies you loved in theaters, later on VHS or DVD, with no other option.  Now, movies can be streamed online and watched on an array of devices.  The internet has made it easy to watch films for consumers, and harder to keep track of rights and licensing for producers.  With the option to stream and store movies on hard drives also comes the ease of sharing, coupled with a loss of profits for producers.  This is not something unique to the film industry, but is shared in music, fashion and other creative arts as well.  The pros and cons can often be compromising.  

International Trade
The internet has made international trade easier in a number of ways.  Consumers can have products shipped to them at quicker speeds, and have a greater shopping capacity as the market has opened into global arenas.  Also, the ability to convert money has grown easier as so many have embraced the internet as a portal for business.  Conversely, the internet is a means for infringement, allowing for piracy and harm to brands simply wanting to protect their image in the market.  With heightened crime on the internet, the bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement is tasked with seizing foreign websites accused of copyright infringement as well as other harms to consumers.  As we get more advantages to having the internet in our world, we get a host of precautions to take, too.

Stay tuned for Part 2 of the changes the internet has brought our way.  You won't want to miss the rest next week!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Events

Noisemaker Entertainment - Company Launch!

Check out the premier of this fabulous entertainment company and help raise money for their feature film screening!

These hardworking ladies have joined forces to produce something major, and you don't want to miss out.

Here's the details...


You are invited to the following event:
Monday, April 30, 2012 from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM (CT)
1240 W. Randolph
View Map
Read More

Share this event on Facebook and Twitter

We hope you can make it!

Facebook Twitter LinkedInEventbrite

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Tops

Top 5 Legal Issues for Fashion Shows

Fashion law is part of the reason we're here.  Surely the niche is growing, but its presence has been longstanding in many areas. Fashion shows are a prime example.

Are you planning to promote a fashion brand anytime soon? The tips below are critical considerations to get you started.

1.  Check your promoter.  Know your cause.
In theory, anyone can produce a fashion show--but a reputable one is another story.  With so many promotional groups and social organizations, doing some checking on the entities you plan to work with is a quick and easy way to avoid problems later.

2. Are there riders?
In the music industry most notably, artists often provide "riders".  These documents go along with the performance contract and include special requests of the performer.  Models may have these for fashion shows, as well as any other talent which might appear.  Read these carefully--you could be up for some pretty interesting demands.

3. Is your show insured?
Insurance is so important. You never know what could happen on a runway or in a dressing room during a change.  Having insurance for the venue at a minimum, and the event depending on its size, is critical.  Many insurance companies have agents who specialize in entertainment. This call is totally worth it.

4. Is everything clear?
Whether you're using music, photos, or just clothes, you need to make sure you have all the appropriate licenses and permissions to use everything you plan.  An infringement suit is the last thing you need when trying to share style with the crowd.  Having legal counsel near is definitely important here.

5.  Technology
The size of your show may determine how technology will impact it.  Though larger shows may end up on television, even small shows can be recorded via small camcorders or cell phones.  This is absolutely a consideration for what you allow your guests to do or have when entering the showroom.  These days, technology is a big reason for infringement--as photos can be taken at fashion shows, sent to designers and hitting the cutting table all within minutes!  Technology can be a plus, in promoting the show and brand, but it can also be a curse.  Be sure you are careful about how it can impact your production.

Of course there are other matters to consider, but these are a few key points to get you started.  

Thursday, April 12, 2012

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Events

Bottomless Closet!

It's no secret the work and mission of Bottomless Closet is a favorite of B.A.F.F.L.E.D.   This event is a great chance for networking and supports a wonderful cause.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Get your tickets now, and enjoy!!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Honors


Today is International Be Kind to Lawyers Day!  This holiday may not be as popular as some others, but it just means there's room for improvement.  

Lawyers in all fields of practice take plenty of flack, so it is long overdue we get a day of recognition.  Law school was our choice, and many of us enjoy what we do.  The profession is noble, rewarding, and full of ways to flourish.

Consult your favorite lawyer, and hey--be kind! :)

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Tops

Top 4 Things to Know About Trade Secrets

Trade secrets are one of the hidden gems of intellectual property.  Copyrights protect original works of authorship, patents protect tangible inventions and methods, and trademarks cover brands in the market.  But, trade secrets--these are a special kind of creation of the mind.

Trade secrets are just that--secrets.  Whether a method for creating a product, or the recipe for a secret ingredient, trade secrets are often the best and worst of IP.

1.  Your craft is protected and can't easily be replicated.  
Like the special sauce at McDonald's or the secret recipe of Coca-Cola, trade secrets are to keep your product from infringement simply because it's a secret.  

2. Costs are internal.
Because there is no federal or local registration for trade secrets, the cost is determined by what creators do to keep the secret under wraps.  These costs can include password protections on systems bearing the secret, and training employees on how to protect it.  This can definitely be a pro and a con.

3. There is no time limit on the secret.
Unlike copyrights and patents, which expire after a predetermined time, trade secrets are protected as long as they remain a secret.  Again, since there is no way to register your trade secret, it is up to you how long it remains a secret.

4. You must protect from within.
Trade secrets are great for being unique in the market, but sometimes keeping the secret is the tough part.  Properly training and preparing employees is essential to keeping the secret.  The government can't stand behind you on what your secret is and fighting infringement.  Having agreements for your employees to sign, with provisions holding them accountable are a minimum for protection.

We can't stress enough the importance of using intellectual property of some sort to protect your brand and products.  With a variety of options, be sure to figure out which is best for you.

Friday, April 6, 2012

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Careers

Get Your Career Off the Ground!

Saturday, April 14th join OfficialAnais and WRITE TO SUCCESS for another RESUME SEMINAR Donna's Cafe Chicago. Get assistance with making over your resume, whether you are employed or seeking employment. There will be valuable information provided on job leads/fairs, resources for ex-felons, and more. RSVP today. 

This workshop offers effective resume writing workshop offering one-on-one consultations, specific resume guidelines, and cover letter writing assistance. 

The seminar is FREE with a $5 minimum purchase at Donna's Cafe!

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Spotlights

Interview with a BOSS - Cameka Smith

The BOSS Network (Bringing Out Successful Sisters) is a wonderful social network for women looking to connect with others like them.  Seeking or sharpening their entrepreneurial skills, ladies have a plethora of information and resources to help them get to where they want to be.

I got some time to chat with Cameka Smith, founder of The BOSS Network, and she gave some information definitely useful to all you trailblazing business minds out there.

Here's the chat:

How did you come up with The BOSS Network?
It started in June 2009 as a series of events through my background as an event planner.  I wanted to bring together professional women of color who could connect with like minded women and share experiences to help one another.

What did you do prior to the birth of BOSS?
I have a background in education, where I worked as an administrator in Chicago Public Schools.  I was also a "sub-entrepreneur", running City Global Events on the side; it was through CGE I started an event series called BOSS.  I got a lot of women who were interested in being involved in the events, so I wanted to make it something women could be a part of on a consistent basis.  From the strong interest, I was able to develop The BOSS Network.  

How was your transition from education into full-time TBN?
My contract was ending with CPS, so I decided it was time to become my own boss. I put the same amount of full-time work and effort into The BOSS Network.  I worked hard on learning the market and building the brand so I could best serve the women I was looking to connect.  

What is your day-to-day like as the leading lady of TBN?
There's really no typical day-to-day, but I stay connected to my computer.  It's "like my pen".  I'm able to always get things done, especially with travel, and meetings, etc. I do a lot of planning with my team, strategizing, and working to be a hub for professional career growth and entrepreneurship. A lot of time is spent talking to people with access and resources, making connections, traveling to different conferences, and providing the access to members on business growth.  I also serve career women, not just those looking to start their business--offering resources to  sub-entrepreneurs, with side business in addition to their 9-5s.

How do you manage work-life balance?
There's really no such thing as balance; it's more like a tight rope and you learn how to walk it. You must have patience with business.  Taking care of "me" comes first, so you can give to your business.  Having a strong foundation to do the work you need to, to be successful is most important. 

What do you consider the toughest part of managing TBN?
There's just so much info out there, figuring out the best content for membership and the best info for the network is the greatest challenge.  We survey members to find out what best accommodates them, and assess needs. Knowing your target market is your strongest tool, so we have to spend time talking to members to best serve them.

What is next for TBN?
On Thursday, April 5th, we're cosponsoring the Midwest Entrepreneur Summit with Black Enterprise Magazine.  This is a huge opportunity to work with Black Enterprise, especially in preparation for the Black Enterprise Entrepreneur Conference, May 23-26, 2012.  It will be the 1st time the conference is held in Chicago and we want to make sure everyone knows about it.  It's amazing to be in the same space with like-minded people and the energy of this conference is always great for attendees.  

Moving forward, we'll continue constantly creating similar opportunities to expose members to "the best of the best".

What advice would you give to young women looking to start their own business?
Don't jump into being an entrepreneur; patience is the key. Know your field; work and study your target market.

*One quote Cameka left us with was golden, so it must be highlighted: "You know what's going to happen if you don't do anything, but you never know what will happen if you do.

We appreciate Cameka's time to share her insights on The BOSS Network and look forward to the Summit and Conference in May.  For more on the Summit, see below and for more on the Conference, stay tuned!!


WHAT:  Midwest Entrepreneurs Summit, presented by Black Enterprise and The BOSS Network
WHEN: Thursday April 5, 2012           
6:30 pm- 8:30 pm
WHO: The BOSS Network in conjunction with Black Enterprise join forces to present a powerful summit featuring a panel and host of who’s who in Chicago’s influencer community.
 WHERE: Hilton Chicago 
720 South Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL 60605
For more information about The BOSS Network or their involvement in the Black Enterprise, Black Entrepreneurs Conference + Expo visit

To schedule interviews with Cameka Smith please contact Miji at 404-944-6439 or email at

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Tops

Top 5 Most Secure Career Fields

Today's economic times call for unique measures to protect our finances, homes, and futures.  As always, we look to share any career news we can, whether it be job listings on the site, or openings we share via Twitter.

Check out this list of "safe" fields.  Maybe one has the job of your dreams.

1. Technology, mainly computer systems design
This is a relatively new field, and based on the quick advancement of technology, it isn't going anywhere. Computers, tablets, and phones get smarter each day, and other devices are getting greater intel as well.  If you have a knack for math, science, and are tech-savvy, this is a field worth checking out.

2. Educational Services
Obviously education is here to stay.  It is the foundation of every career field and the key to any success.  Education systems from preschool to PhD, formal and informal, all need able-minded and dedicated people in them.  This industry is by and large the most important.  If you want to teach little ones, adults, or consult, education is a safe field, always in need of talent.

3. Government
Government surely isn't going anywhere.  Whether you'd like to be a lobbyist, elected official, fundraiser, or legislative staffer, government work will be around for the long haul.  With so many issues and constant changes in society, this field may have quick turnover, but the positions and needs are here to stay.

4. Health Care
Another no-brainer.  Although there are great struggles in access to health care for all Americans, the field itself is so necessary, and really cannot fade away.  We will always need doctors, nurses, consultants and able-practitioners to keep us going.  If you're looking for work helping people live and have optimal health, look no further.  

5.  Utilities
Utility work is the backbone of the technology field, and living day-to-day.  Surely our everyday lives as we know them would be pretty tough without electricity, gas, and hot water.  Could you imagine?  You certainly wouldn't be charging any smartphones.  As technology advances, so too does the utility field.  

We wish you the best in your careers, and if you have any openings to offer, please share with us.

*This list is in no way a promise of career happiness or success, just some help for those looking.

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Sports

NBA Free Agency Popcorn Watcher By: Tonisha Hood,  BMMO Consulting NBA free agency started with a few bangs.  First, everyone was am...