The Future of Payment


And every Friday we’d go out for drinks. And every goddamn Friday this would happen. The bill would come, and they would go, ah shit, sorry Tod, do you mind covering this week I forgot my wallet. And I have no memory. I’m not even certain what city I’m in right now.

Okay, I’m really bad at memory. And so I go yeah, yeah no problem. Of course they’d done this week after week. The next week comes, the exact thing happens. Bill comes, oh Tod, do you mind paying, over and over again for a year. This is how bad I am at payment to online casino review site.

And just last year I emailed the other Todd, Todd Cusolle, to ask him like okay level with me here. How much money did we actually end up getting off of poor Tod Maffin, and this was his email. So we don’t speak anymore, and.

But you know it all used to be simple, and this is one of the interesting things that I find about payment and commerce, and I work in the retail space, I run a digital marketing agency, we work with lots of retail customers, so we work with your customers. We help a lot of shopping centers, we help a lot of retail organizations, we’ve worked with Mountain Equipment Co-op, and so on. And so our view of payment and commerce comes from the view that your customers are seeing, and that’s why, as I hope in the sort of the comments that I’ve got, we talk a bit about that most important part here, which is gonna be solving. The other two will fall out of it. And your role as the ability to be the trusted advisor through this crazy digital world, is going to be so important. Because technology will change everything.

Technology will change and continues to change the very nature of payment. This was the very first credit card in fact, at the consumer level anyway. There were some oil and gas things, and it wasn’t a card at all, it was a coin. And they would literally take the coin and they would rub it on the sales slip, and this had problems. Notably, there’s no name on it. And it wasn’t cheap to produce.

So technology adapted. And it ended up being, this is the original charge card was literally a metal card, they called it the Charga-Plate. And it was a little bit better, you know because it had a name on it and so on. But it was not cheap to produce, and so the consumer demand that that changed as well, and it did. And it changed mostly because of this guy, Frank McNamara, he was out for dinner and he’d forgotten his wallet in New York City.

And like Matt and Todd, although he actually did forget his wallet. And he was very embarrassed, he was humiliated, in fact, and he was saying to the guy look I’ll wash your dishes, I’m so sorry. And his wife eventually paid and bailed him out. But he came back a month later to that restaurant with two things, with a business plan and a partner. And the idea was Diner’s Club.

And that was the invention of the Diner’s Club. But it was initially meant just for restaurants, it was literally a club for diners. And it ballooned so incredibly quickly. And of course it’s typewritten, wouldn’t it be awesome if this were the way it was still today. Can I just say something, I hope this isn’t offensive, ’cause I’m in from Vancouver right, so we all have weed, right. I mean like, let’s just.

(audience laughing) Dudes, I’m a little high right, no, no, I’m not. I am, but on Sudafed, not on anything bad. And I have to tell you like I went to the weed store, I have no interest in weed. I’ve smoked weed twice in my life, both were negative experiences. One I don’t really remember, the second I happened to been in Toronto and I spent three hours walking up and down Young Street looking for bananas.

Still don’t know why. Don’t even know if I found them. So in Vancouver now it’s kind of legal basically, there are more weed stores in Vancouver than there are Starbucks. That is actually factually true. There are more weed stores in Vancouver than there are Starbucks in Vancouver. And so I went and I got their card, which is kind of like this.

It looks like something you’d make at science fair, you know in grade A, it’s the craziest little thing. And you put it through this cheap little Staples laminating card. There ya go. Like, that’s it? Anyway, we’re off topic already, we’re gonna be here forever. So after they started that 42,000 people in the first year, 42,000 people had signed up for it.

Which, back then of course in the 30s, was pretty amazing. And yet, technology still needed to change. And of course we’ve come a long way since then.

We’ve got cards, we’ve got augmented reality, we have social payment, we have e-transfer, we’re gonna walk through a lot of those things that your customers are seeing today. Of course, as you know, Africa’s been one of the huge leaders in there. This platform here M-Pesa, is responsible for a third of Kenya’s overall GDP alone.

Just this one platform, a third. So very close to Vancouver as weed revenues, in terms of the GDP. Mobile payment transactions in China hit 2.35 trillion dollars, trillion dollars in 2015. That’s, by the way, that’s 10 times more than the US.

So we’re kind of behind the ways, in some ways we’re still catching up. And I have to say that not everyone believes that it’s still gonna get there. About 15 years ago I gave a speech to a federal agency on the future of mobile commerce. And I put this slide up and people laughed. They thought I was kidding.

Only it’s not funny, ’cause it’s here, right? It looks a little bit differently, it looks like this now. But it’s here. And it will affect every aspect of how you do business.

Your job in the next decade is gonna be to master that first one, to solve the problems, be the trusted provided for everything, because technology is changing everything. MasterCard says half of all digital orders are done on smart phones. Now we’re talking things like the former website orders and so on.

Even those website orders, half of them are being done on a smart phone. I don’t know if you’ve ever tried to order anything on a smart form from a website, it’s horrible for the most part, but it’s getting better. It’s getting better really quickly.

This is payment’s moment. I truly believe this. I don’t have any money, but if I were to invest in money, you bet I’ll be investing in two areas. One is payment, and the other is batteries.

Batteries and power bars. Trust me, when you see all these thing. Like I have the Alexa at home, which I’m sure some of you have seen, we’ll talk about it in a moment as well.

Of course the Alexa is connected to the door unlocker, which is connected to the camera in our house, which is connected to every light bulb has a wifi chip in it and everything. We run like so many power bars to get all these thing working, I think BC Hydro must check on us every week, like you sure there’s not a grow op in there? Is that the third weed reference? Am I just reinforcing all the Vancouver stereotypes, what’s happening here? So what I want to do is I want to bring you up to speed on the changes that are happening in the stores of your customers. Not just the Canadian Tires of the world, but also the small businesses.

You know, as you heard Rob said earlier, it’s gonna be those small and medium sized businesses where the change is really gonna happen in the next little while. So I want to bring you up to speed on what those changes are, because then you will be better positioned to meet those payment demands, but you’ll also, as a sales person, be better positioned to just be able to explain it. So we will be tackling this together in eight ways, and here they are.

Financial abstraction, biometrics and big data, hacker culture, social buying, conversational commerce, sometimes called chat bots, hyperlocal marketing, that’s the beacons of the world, augmented reality in stores, and this crazy internet of things. So let us begin with the first, which is financial abstraction. Is anyone here a big video game player? Okay, Xbox.

Put your hands up if you’re an Xbox player. Yeah, really. Okay, so this is my gamer tag, add me. I have no friends.

For a while I was playing this game called Plants Versus Zombies: Garden Warfare, which is just multiplayer shooter, and you’re basically a plant or a zombie and you’re shooting. And the idea behind the game is that you’re in this room with like 24, this like area, with like 24 other people, and they’re really, really, really good. And you’re supposed to have this chat system where you can hear other words. For the first couple of months EA, the developer of that chat system was broken, and so I just thought these guys are good man. And I would get my little cactus out and I’d go (imitating gun fire) I’d try to snipe, pea shooter would hit me right in the head.

I was getting pissed off. Like I rage quit sometimes. And then all of a sudden one day they turned the chat on, they’re all eight years old. (audience laughing) They’re all eight, and they’re like ha ha ha ha, I got the pea shooter. I’m like are you kidding me? So I switched to more grown up games.

One of my favorite is this game called Watch Dogs. And Watch Dogs is a great game, hacker game. This is the first version of Watch Dogs, which I like better than the first one. One of the modes in Watch Dogs is this area where you go into free roam, and you basically just do whatever the hell you want with no consequence. You can throw bombs on things, and you know you get cars in the game, but basically you’re a hacker, so you just unlock them with your smartphone and you just steal the car.

And so you get in this lobby with a bunch of people, kids mostly. And you run up and you stand on top of their car, and you get your little bazooka out, eh, I’m gonna shoot your car, and they go go for it, (booming) (laughing) and it’s fun. I’m 46 years old. But there’s no consequence right, there’s no real consequence to this because it’s not real money. And if your car gets blown up you just go steal another car, or you buy another car with the in game money, or something like that. And this is one example of the financial abstraction that young people today are living with.

Right, they have become disconnected from real money and the role of real money. And as a moment we’ll see how that affects payment, which it does in some pretty drastic ways. This financial abstraction in video game carries through for most video games, but not all. And the one exception is GTA V. I keep looking for my video game friend now for validation. GTA V, which you will notice looks a lot like watch Dogs, but has a slight difference.

So this is playing a game and I’m just doing my regular mayhem, again in a group of a whole bunch of people, and I start throwing bombs, throwing these bombs on cars. And this little kid runs up to me, in his character. ‘Cause you can hear them all. And says please don’t blow up my car.

Well not only did I blow it up, I also, it was such an explosion that the fire department apparently showed up. So I blew up his car, and the kid burst into tears. (audience laughing) And then his mom came on the headset. I recorded that.

I’m now going to play you, no I didn’t record it, I’m just kidding. (laughing) Boy everyone’s on the edge of their seats there though, aren’t they? They’re like can’t wait to hear this shit. (laughing) You’re all sick people. But he was absolutely distraught, because unlike Watch Dogs, and unlike a lot of other video games, in fact most video games, there is a real cost to this. It’s not that you necessarily have to play with real money, but when you see a car in GTA V you can just go steal one, or you can buy yourself a nicer one.

Now there’s two way to earn money in this financially abstract world, the first is to play it in game. Right, you’re always just sort of playing the game you’re doing missions, you get a mission, you kill some people, it’s worth 80 bucks, or something like that. But it takes a lot, it takes a lot to get there. The other way, of course, as I’m sure we all know, is paying with real money. And so you go to EA, and you buy a card, a card with 1.2 million in game dollars costs 25 bucks in real money.

I added up how much money I spent on Plants Versus Zombies, after I paid for the game, it was 212 dollars. I am not proud of that. So this kid either, poor kid whose car I blew up, and there’s no undo, there’s no like restore save, his car was gone. So he either paid with his actual allowance.

Shut up, I didn’t know okay. Look, I came from Watch Dogs what do you want from me? There’s no user manual. Or, the alternative is, he did it in game, which is great.

Right? I calculated how many hours it would have taken him to have earned that car in game and it was 82 hours. Um, but it was his fault really. Because he had failed to buy insurance for his car, which is something you should do in case dicks like me show up in your game. This is actually true.

One of things that you can do. ‘Cause he started to cry and he’s like I didn’t have insurance for it. I’m like what are you talking about.

In the game you can buy insurance, in case dicks like me show up. Or you wreck you car. Right? So there’s a little less abstraction here, but for the most part the young people today are playing without, and not just playing, but also using devices without a clear sense of the direct connection to money. That impacts payment and commerce in amazing ways. We see this every week in the news, don’t we?

You know, kids are buying in game currency without understanding that it’s real money that they’re dealing with. Those lines are more than blurred now, they’re practically invisible. And some brands are exploiting this. Disney invested a billion dollars in what they called the Magical Wristband. It’s your hotel key, it’s your park pass, but most importantly, it’s your wallet.

Because it’s connected directly to your credit card. And I should tell you, this kind of experimentation with payment is not just a flight of fancy, it is built into the ethos of Disney, of that corporation. When you look at what Walt Disney was trying to do when he initially announced EPCOT Center, it was to be the world of the future. The whole positioning around it was come in and see the future. And in many ways you’ll probably recognize this model from the cruise ships, right?

This is the exact same thing. Your card is your ID to get back on the boat, it’s your wallet, ’cause it’s connected to your credit card, it’s your room key, and so forth. But again, these trends are all beginning to come into place now.

Where the act of transferring money, even an NFC tap to actual cash, even those things are becoming even more blurred and even more invisible. The sense of financial abstraction is going to change dramatically the way people buy. And how is it going to change it? They’re going to buy more.

Dun & Bradstreet already says that 12 to 18% spend more money when they use cards than when they use cash, which makes sense. If you think about you, right, I mean it’s like it’s different with a card. You’re sort of tapping it. Shop at the drugmart you got to pay with cash, you’re like really? Three dollars for egg nog, where have I been? You know on a card you just don’t think about it that way.

And so as this abstraction gets even more and more blurred this is good news I suppose for payment processors. Good news for retailers, bad news for people with student loans, and so on, consumer debt. But interestingly though I think is this lack of connection between the money, the payment, and the results actually is bringing some really interesting new models to town. This is a great little app that will connect to your main bank account. And everyday it trickles a little bit of money into your savings account, without you knowing about it.

So everyday it takes 45 cents, buck 20, wouldn’t that be great? Like I don’t know how you save right now, but ours is like every month it takes every, at the end of every month it takes a chunk out, and boy we feel that chunk, don’t we? But this, it just trickles it out.

And how does it know the amount of trickling? It spends the first four weeks monitoring your spending habits. And it understands how do I get these people on the line between just the right amount of savings and not being able to survive.

And it let’s you adjust it accordingly. And because of financial abstraction, people don’t even realize it’s happening. The app communicates with the user through another trend we’ll cover in just a moment, conversational commerce. In this case, Facebook Messenger, the bot can do all sorts of things. It can report things to you. It’s even smart enough to say random things.

If you say awesome, it’ll reply with a gif that says you’re awesome. And these bots are beginning to personalize the relationship in a very human way, ironically. When was the last time your bank said you’re awesome to you. Like I don’t know about your bank, but this is how my bank communicates with me. (audience laughing) I would rather have you’re awesome, frankly.

This is part of the reason that some financial players are now playing into the spaces. Well this is Chime, it’s essentially a bank. You get regular savings account, but what’s neat about their credit card here is that every single purchase it makes, it rounds up to the nearest dollar, takes that money and dumps it in your savings account. And then at the end of every week it adds up all of those round ups that you’ve done, the total of those and gives you 10% of it in cash, well not in cash but in money in your account.

It’s genius, it’s genius. This is the direction the banks will be going because they have to, because they’re gonna get their butt eaten alive by these little players like this. They’re gonna steal these ideas, you watch.

A year from now, all the major banks will have something like this. This is some video from just a couple of weeks ago, at CES, the big nerd conference down in the US. One of the most, no, no I wear nerd like the badge of honor it is. (audience laughing) I’m an alpha geek. This is one of the most talked about spaces, one of the most talked about products in your space. Does anyone recognize it?

Tappy. Tappy is, brace yourselves, a payment enabled wedding band. Insert joke here. Of course it’s not just a wedding band, right. It’s any kind of band.

It’s ceramic, so it doesn’t interfere with wifi. But my point is that these devices are being put everywhere. The ability to pay is being put everywhere. This is a massive opportunity for you.

Maybe not for your spouse, God help us all, in the case of Tappy. But one thing is clear, that the more devices we have that enable payment the less connect our relationship to payment has. Which is part of the reason the big companies have been investing in biometrics.

And we are beginning to see the trickle down of big data, which had been sort of initially just sort of used for the large players. Being used for the smaller ones as well. And I have to say, big data is a complicated thing. And business has never been good at explaining complicate procedures. – Here at Rockwell Automation’s World Headquarters, research has been proceeding to develop a line of automation products that establishes new standards for quality, technological leadership, and operating excellence. The original machine had a base plate of prefabulated amulitem surmounted by immalleable logarithmic casing.

In such a way that two sperving bearings ran a direct line with a panametric fam. The line up consisted simply of six hydrocoptic marzel vanes. So fitted to the ambifacient lunar wane shaft, that side fumbling was effectively prevented. The main winding was of the normal lotus-o-delta type placed in panendermic semi-boloid slots of the stator. Every seventh conductor being connected by a nonreversible tremie pipe to the differential girdlespring on the up end of the grammeters. – I love the little thumbs up he does too at the end.

Like I know he’s saying the up end, but it doesn’t it look like the actor is like fucking nailed that line, yeah, nailed it. (laughing) This is page one of the 2,000 pages or manual for the turboencabulator. Which I am happy to report to you is not a real thing, but in fact just a bit of a running joke between engineers. If you go on the, I just about said on the YouTube.

(laughing) If you go on the tweeters, if you go on YouTube every major industry, GE, Honeywell, and so on, have got their own version of that. And part of what makes it funny is that it’s true, right. I mean you have probably gotten into this discussion with your customers about tokenization. I have tried to learn about tokenization. I am an idiot.

Right, and so that ability to, again, solve that problem, the problem isn’t the technology that they’re having, the problem is they want to get their money faster. The problem is they want returns to go smoother, they want fraud detection to be easier. Right. It’s that ability. That part of where that is going to come in, at least from their end, and you’ll have a role to play in here.

Because think about all the data points that you as payment processors have on their customers. Perhaps more than they do, to be perfectly honest. And your ability to use that big data as it relates to biometrics, is gonna be one of the major, major assets that you will have, that no other organization will have.

Big data of course is not as complicated as it sounds. I would like to explain it by showing this horribly embarrassing photo of me. (audience laughing) When I was 10 years old, I was kind of a bouncy kid, I don’t know if you can tell. I was kind of a bouncy kid, bounced around a lot, and I got diagnosed with what was then called hyperactivity. Today it’s ADD or ADHD or something, and I’d be on meds.

But my mom decided that she would go to the internet of the day, which I understand were called libraries, to research, like maybe this is a food allergy, maybe Tod’s just bouncing off the walls because of a food allergy. And she came across this diet called the Feingold Diet, written by a Doctor Feingold. Now this diet has since been completely debunked, it’s kind of the antivax of the nutrition movement. But this diet had one very important part, and it would eliminate from your diet all additives, all preservatives, it’s all the bad things you think. But it would also eliminate all sugar from your diet.

And the idea was if your kid goes without sugar, they will calm down. I have to say it worked actually. I kind of became a different kid. Problem is my mom decided to implement the Feingold Diet on October 31st.

(audience gasping and laughing) Halloween. So I would go and collect, the way it would work was I’d still go out and trick or treat, I’d still collect all the candy, but I’m kind of a data nerd, I always was, so I would exchange it for the stuff I could eat. So all the sugared stuff I exchanged it for sugar free. All the chocolate I exchanged for carob. Has anyone here had carob? Has anyone tried carob?

Yeah, carob is a well protected industry secret. Carob is actually manufactured from sawdust and wood stain. That’s not true, please don’t sue me. Sure in the heck taste like it though. And so I would try to group all of these things into different piles.

That’s how I had my entertainment for Halloween sadly, was I would try and group it. I’d put all the ingredients stuffed together in buckets and then I’d dump them all out and I’d arrange it by color, and I’d dump them all out, I had a lot of time on my hands, I’m an only child, what can I tell you. And really when you think about big data, that’s basically all big data is. It’s taking all these different buckets and dumping them out, and mixing them up, and seeing what different patterns you can come up with. Here’s the great news about you in the next decade, you control a whole lot of buckets. You already have the buckets that most of your customers are going to need.

You might have, as I mentioned, more than they do. So let’s talk about some easy buckets to acquire in the case of a furniture store or a clothing store, right. This is stuff that they’ve already got at the customer level.

They’ve got the account status, you know payment, they know what past purchases they’ve bought, they know your home postal code, and so on. And then there’s this sort of second group which is also structured data, but it’s a little tougher to get, because it might be in different places, right. It may not be in the store itself. I’m thinking about things like visits to the website, they’re running Googly Analytics, it’s still in a database somewhere, all that data, but it’s offsite, it’s down in the US.

Or responses to the satisfaction survey, might be in Polldaddy, or something like that. Or engagement level with emails, right. GetResponse, or MailChimp, or your own internal email processor. It’s all still structured data, you can still export it as a CSV or an Excel spreadsheet if you want. And then there’s also these sort of random completely unstructured events, right. Random ideas.

On the phone, the customers service rep is on the phone with one of their customers, and their customer says you should do such and such. Well where does that idea go? Most cases it just gets written on a Post-it note and then forgot about. Or other little things like that. Like the metatagging that’s existing. Take a photograph of let’s say a community event, let’s say lululemon decides to go to a community event, right?

Photos of those check-ins all contain metadata. If there’s text attached to it we can understand the sentiment attached to it. That’s what my company MineFly helped develop, was that sentiment analysis. All big data is really is you take these three categories of buckets, the stuff that’s on site that’s already structured, the stuff that’s off site that’s already structured, and the stuff that’s not structured and is kind of random.

But will you take all of that stuff and we put it in one big bucket. And then we begin to ask the bucket some questions. Like for instance, how many customers who attend our community events are unhappy?

We got the attendance event from check-ins, we got the happiness level from the sentiment analysis on emails for instance. Or what outdoor wear SKUs are happiest, high net-worth customers are already likely to be interested? Remember you, as mineras already control some of the data.

You’ve already got a sense of some of this net worth, you’ve already got a sense of spending patterns. That data is going to be so critically important and luckily for you you’re already positioned there. All that stuff comes from various sites. Big data is also helping a whole range of other organizations.

UPS for instance, here’s something fun to do. Follow a UPS truck for like an hour, or five. Just go, like don’t leave right now, don’t do it right now. But just spend an afternoon. Just find a UPS truck and follow it.

Now they’ll call the police, so don’t tell ’em that this idea came from me, ’cause it’ll creep them out, but one thing you will notice about UPS trucks, is that they never make left turns. UPS trucks do not make left turns. And the reason for that is that they discovered that if they take all of that big data, right they’ve took all of those different buckets, they took traffic conditions, weather patterns, accident reports, fleet management, fuel consumption, satisfaction level of the drivers, all of these buckets they put them together and they realized, you know what guys, if you actually make three rights it’s better than making one left. What happens on the left? Well you’re sitting in that lane for about an hour and a half right, until you go left. There’s a much stronger increased chance of people running and accidents, it’s safer, they burn less gas, and so on.

So big data is coming up with some really amazing things. But it’s not just going to be that, it’s going to be some of the technology that we’re starting to see our customers use on the retail side, and that is biometrics. Police departments have used biometrics, and terrorist hunting organizations for ages now. We know for instance, that if we’re able to identify someone’s face, and for instance, the heat mapping on their face, we’ll be able to tell what kind of emotion that they’re experiencing. This is just beginning to trickle down on to the marketing side of this, right.

So how does this play out, let’s say for a resort? Say a resort on Costa Rica, right. And maybe the Costa Rica Resort has got a timeshare booth, ’cause they all do don’t they? You know when you can’t get to the elevator, can I help you find anything? We’re not interested. I was giving a speech last month in the Dominican Republic.

I think 30 people called to offer my wife and I the welcome package. Have you picked up your welcome kit yet? I don’t want the welcome kit. And so how does this play out right now? Well they just bug you.

But imagine a world where they’re using biometrics to identify people likely to buy. They have cameras, and this by the way is already in use. In some markets, Dallas and Denver, the two primary markets where this has been the end of last year where they started to experiment with this, right. So they put the heat registry cameras, infrared cameras and so on looking through the lobby looking to identify facial heat and pattern recognition which we’ll talk about in a moment, to identify people that fit into one of four criteria, relaxed, curious, happy, or bored. Because if you are either relax, curious, happy, or bored, you are much more likely to buy a timeshare than I am.

Because when you call me for my welcome kit I am none of these emotions. Incredibly powerful, incredibly powerful. And as I mentioned it’s not just biometrics in terms of facial, it’s the way that people move through a store is being analyzed now. You think about casinos, right? We have all been to a casino. You know that they’ve got those little cameras, those little circular cameras.

And I think people believe that in the casino, like if you watch too much Ocean’s 11 or something that there’s massive room with a hundred people all staring at these cameras. That’s not what these security rooms look like. Oh, the cameras are being watched, but they’re being watched by software.

And they’re being watched for specific patterns. They have hundreds of walking patterns built into the software itself. And just to break it down to an incredibly simplistic level there are two patterns when someone walks into a casino, someone who’s just there to play a game and someone who’s there to do harm.

Now within those two categories there are hundreds of thousands of combinations, but here’s what it looks like for someone who is just normal like me right. You walk into a casino normal speed, you sit down at the first, roulette’s my advice, I don’t know about anyone else. Sit down at the first roulette table, roulette I like ’cause it’s the simplest game.

You can literally just take your chips and throw them on the board and that’s a bet. That means something. People next to you go oh he’s split the five and nine, very clever. And I’m like. (audience laughing) Yes, I split the five and nine.

The chip in your drink mean anything? Sorry about that. So I play a few rounds you know, and I get up, and I get the free drink from the free drink girl and I go away and I play and I lose all my money, and I go to the snack bar and I drown my sorrows in chow mein. That’s my pattern, that might be registered positive pattern 134. Now this is what a negative pattern looks like to the casinos. First of all it happens right as soon as someone comes in.

Because people who intend to do harm to a casino, to a retail store, someone with nefarious things on their mind, it has been shown that those people walk on average 25% faster than people who do not. So right away the fact that you’re moving quicker puts you on alert. Now it hasn’t escalated it up to a human being yet, but now the cameras are really watching, now that software’s watching. And do you sit down at the first roulette table? You do not. ‘Cause you’re looking for a mark.

So you kind of look around, no these people aren’t drunk enough. You stand over here. Now the cameras are really watching, right? Maybe at this point it’s noticed that you walked in fast, it went to three or four tables, waited three or four seconds of each, maybe at this point the software has escalated it to one of these humans you’re used to seeing, right? And so then I sit down. And I say to the person next to me, do you mind if I tap your chip for good luck, I’m having kind of a bad day on the other table.

And they’re like yeah no problem. And you take your glass and you tap their chip for good luck, and you’re like thanks buddy, and you maybe sit there for a little bit and then you leave. And what the person doesn’t realize is that you’ve just stolen $100 from them. Because on the bottom of your glass was double sided duct tape.

And so when you tap their chips, you sucked up one of the chips. So this kind of technology, right using big data, using some of the buckets that you already have at mineras, which will become so incredibly valuable for your customers and of course for you, combining with biometrics the way people walk, pattern recognition, all of this is radically going to change. And your ability to communicate this to your customers is going to help right?

It’s not solving equation. They’re going to be hearing about it, they’re going to retail conferences. I’m at those retail conferences, I’m telling them all this stuff too.

So they’re already getting a sense of that, they already does really want to be out there using it. So let’s talk a bit about something no one wants to talk about at these events, and that is the role of hackers. But I don’t want to talk about the security side of things, excuse me, because I actually think hackers are good for you. And to be fair, what we’re really talking about here is not hacker culture, as much as maker culture. People who want to extend the things that they love. Maybe they love your brand, maybe they love your payment app, they will build upon it.

And when you send lawyers after them, it just goes to hell. Take this example, this a guy, Jose Alvares, he’s a student in Tempe, Arizona. And like most students, he was completely broke. So, what did he do?

As you can see, when out to the dumpster and got FedEx boxes, and made furniture out of them. And built all sorts of furniture. Now, before we talk about how FedEx responded, what does this say about FedEx’s products? Yeah, right. Doesn’t it, that’s what it says to me.

Sturdy as hell. FedEx didn’t this so, and they sent him a cease and desist. Here is the important thing, when people love what you do, the apps you create, the service you provide, they’re going to want to build on it, and you should embrace this when it happens, it’s going to happen to you.

In fact, it may have already happened. Municipalities are quite far ahead of this. This is the city of Vancouver’s list of accessible databases, where it’s. It’s not real time, some are CSV or Excel spreadsheets, but you can download any of these lists and use them any way you want.

It’s open data. There are some downright depressing list, like this list of dead animals, updated hourly, it’s horrible. Some are useful, this is every called to Vancouver’s 311. How would someone in an app use this, I don’t know. I don’t know. But you should encourage this.

Not only because they might be good at finding security flaws for you, but they might be building new ideas. That’s why the big players like IBM security are publishing actual step-by-step tutorials on YouTube showing people how to hack Mobile payment apps. This is a YouTube video that is on the website, it’s on the YouTube channel of IBM security. Look at this, clutch mobile banking. There it is, it’s correct.

Sorry to all the security folks in the room. Hackers, makers, whatever you want to call them, are being taught, this is part of the culture today, right? Decrypting this technology, getting in there see how it works see what doesn’t work, it’s going to happen to you no matter what. And in fact one of the more popular gatherings these days are these things called hackathons, people gather for 24 hours powered by pizza and energy drinks, and companies turn their source code of apps and websites over to these people, who are not really hackers, I mean they have hacking skills but they’re not really bad hackers. To see what they can make from them.

The one in Vancouver, look at these big-name sponsors. Microsoft was a sponsor of a hackathon. Most notably, excuse me, two law firms are sponsors of an event dedicated to people hacking, and Telus’ software, they went after Telus’ software, with Telus permission and money.

Hiking incredibly strong. Out of hackathons how come products like GroupMe, which was so successful that Skype bought it a year later. Stock image company Shutterstock found it so helpful it’s now an annual event and a lot of what gets created at these hackathons turns into real products. When the hackers come for you my friends you should embrace them. You should be having your own hackathons. All the brands you see here and hundreds more have hackathons.

The Amazon Go store, right the one worth all NFC, the one you just walk out, I’m sure you’ve heard about this, came out of a hackathon idea. You are going to be hacked, hopefully in the best way possible, and you should embrace these. Because some of these things might come up with some great things. I mean through a maker’s eye, and with the open APIs as you provide we might see a whole new different type of payment process where customers can choose from any number of combination of wallets. You’ve got some room left on your Visa, throw it in there. Oh you got some Facebook credits kicking around, done.

I’ve got a bit of cash on my PayPal account, and I think AMEX owes me some loyalty points. All that to build, I mean it’s kind of the way it’s sort of happening right now. Like I fly WestJet, you can pay with cash or you can pay with the WestJet dollars, it there just sort of bumping up.

All of these things will be coming out, probably hackers first, if you’re not there first. And either way embrace them. So let’s move out of the foundational type of stuff on to some of the social buying. You’ll see a lot in social buying, of course in conversational commerce, ecommerce has been around since I guess really 91.

91 is when the internet opened up sort of to commercial activity. And so people have been buying things online forever. This is the T-shirt I bought for my wife in the middle, I really did buy her. To the huge players like Amazon, and of course we know everything from there. Parallel to the ecommerce world. As the ecommerce world has been sort of growing, the social world, as you know, has been going phenomenally strong.

Facebook is up to 1.8 billion monthly active users, 1.8 billion, it’s amazing. Social buying is simply the intersection of those two. So let’s talk a little bit about that.

Some of this stuff you probably already know, some of it’s really quite interesting. Pinterest is actually one of the big leaders here. Pinterest got this new buyable pins button where it connects directly to and through other shops, right it connects through a lot of the BigCommerce, and the engines like that, Shopify, and so on. Interestingly enough by the way, Pinterest doesn’t take a cut.

It’s an interesting model, that surprised me. So they’re just erupting that traditional purchase path, right, because it used to be where these pins would bounce over to the retailer’s website and you’d buy it on the retailer’s website, well now that buyer’s functionality is happening right inside the app itself some are doing this really well, some are not. Twitter had this and two days ago Twitter announced they were killing it.

They’re not going to do the buyable tweets anymore, they’re just pulling out of it for some reason. So it’s changing all the time. So here’s a real-world case study, this is a company called shophearts. Very clothing boutiques old kind of chic dresses and so on, certainly already popular category on Pinterest. And they already had a pretty popular presents, 4700 pins. But over the holidays they enabled payment on those pins, meaning people could buy right from within Pinterest itself and not have to go to a store, not have to go to the website.

Those buyable pins drove 15% of sales, the actual pin button themselves, and perhaps even more important for this company, 90% of those customers were new. So trust me when I say that your customers, especially the retailers, are taking this very seriously. They are getting hit from all corners, from the Pinterests, the Facebook’s of the world, and so on.

Inside Pinterest customers even better were spending 30% more than people in store or on the website. And this trend toward deep learning in big data is built right into this itself. What backs this?

You have probably heard a lot about the buyable pins in the past, but you probably haven’t heard about all the rich algorithms behind here. Based on data that you already have, crazy world, this is the power of that social graph that is so incredibly important. The power of recommendation.

And this is where Facebook became so successful. I speak to a lot of realtors, I sometimes show them the slide, which is the average monthly number of searches for the phrase real estate Toronto, in Google, this is in Google. And they are surprised by this ’cause they always think God I thought it would be more. Didn’t that number look low to you? Like I hope he’s not going to say that’s a big number ’cause that kind of looks low to me. For the last 10 years the number of searches for the phrase real estate Toronto has steadily declined year over year over year.

Here’s a different chart. Guess what chart this is a search term for? Realtor reviews. So the difference here is really clear. It used to be you just go online and find anything that looked good and buy.

And increasingly this recommendation engine Yelp, and so on, Google reviews, and Facebook now has reviews, all of that stuff is really really important. The granddaddy of course is Facebook. Little surprised they’re getting into it as well, people are even starting to call it F-commerce instead of ecommerce, because of the influence that it will wield. And here’s a part of the reason why Facebook will be a pretty major player in this space. Their user interface, especially on mobile, is outstanding. It’s fluid, it’s frictionless, and if you think people will be hesitant to use this technology, to give Facebook their credit card, think about Apple.

One of the most genius things that Apple did was to convince people to give up their credit card number. Even for a free app. It’s like while we’re not going to charge your card, but just give us your credit card number. So now Apple has billions of credit card numbers there.

Which makes getting apps as easy as buying that blue Get button. No matter what you’re buying. I’m not here to judge.

Another thing that your customers are increasingly experimenting with, to some level of success, and others not, is conversational customer, this is sometimes known as chat bots in the industry. The first chat bot was invented by this guy, who has a bot called Eliza, back in the 60s. It was like a computer science experiment. Eliza was painfully stupid.

This is Joseph Weizenbaum. Here’s a conversation I had with Eliza. My slides aren’t very pretty. Your slides aren’t very pretty? No, they aren’t. Are you just saying no to be negative?

This is kind of like conversation with my wife actually, now that I think about it. No, they really truly suck. Why, no? So you see what happens here, all it’s doing is looking for one or two key words and spitting it back. And we’re a little bit better than this today in terms of conversational commerce, but not much.

We’re a little bit better but not much. Bots didn’t really come into the world consciousness until this happened. – Open the pod bay doors, HAL. – [HAL] I’m sorry Dave, I’m afraid I can’t do that. – And now, I present to you the stupidest slide I have ever made in my 20 year career of keynoting. (laughing) We are somewhere in between these two.

The people who sell bots will tell you that we are at the HAL level, and we are not. But we’re close, we’re close. Bots are already taking reservations at restaurants. They’re selling everything from clothing to take out food, the space is moving incredibly fast.

And February of this year, I guess of last year now, there were no bolts on Facebook Messenger, 5 months later there were 18,000. And just by comparison it took Apple about eight months to get to 18,000 apps on their store. So soon you will not be hearing there is an app for that, we will soon be hearing there is a bot for that. Driven by enormous growth in chat apps. In fact, this might surprise you. More people use messaging apps today than Social Network apps.

I’m going to say that again, ’cause it’s so incredibly important to where the future of commerce is going. More people use the messaging apps, we’re talking Facebook Messenger, WeChat, Kik, Telegram, Snapchat even, although that’s more of a publishing platforms, but more people are using those messaging apps than are using the Facebook app, the Twitter app, and so on. In the first 3 weeks of KLM’s boarding pass bot being live they delivered 50,000 boarding passes that way. We’ve built some of these for some of our clients by the way. Anyone hear from Winnipeg?

Anyone, anyone? One guy? (audience laughing) In the discount seats too, why do you accept this? So you know Kildonan Place? Kildonan Place is one of our clients. And so they have their whole thing is Shop Happy.

And so all of their messaging is sort of around happy things and so forth. So we manage all their social media for them, we manage all their digital marketing. And I don’t know if you’ve seen this, but actually in the mall they have a bot.

But it’s a real bot, and his name is Happy Bot. (whirring) – Huh, what? Where am I?

Hi there, nice to see ya. (whirring) Special coupon for a special customers. (dinging) Almost ready just need one more second. (dinging) See ya later, alligator. Well, my job’s done here.

– He just basically gives you a choice of one of two coupons. He’s not that bright. But there’s a line up to use him. It’s really amazing.

Isn’t the voice great? The voice is just like from one of their ad agencies, it’s like one of their guys there. So we built a messenger bot that reflects that, right. We built this for them that has, you’ll notice, the same kind of language. Anyway, how can I help you? And so these bots are fairly active, you can choose from one of these things.

It’ll understand words, so you don’t have to select with buttons, it’ll understand specific things you can type in. For instance food court, and it’ll understand those sorts of things. At the back end of this you may have noticed that Happy Bot spent a little bit of time typing, that was fake.

Because these engines now will simulate human behavior. To the point that it will even put a fake I’m typing message, the little three dots that you see when someone’s typing, it’ll fake that. We have actually noticed that people are willing to engage more with it when they see that.

Paradoxically when they’re told to wait a little bit because they know it’s a bot right, right away he says it’s a bot, but for some reason instead of it just blasting stuff out. And so we program into it any number of potential replies. These are the real world bot responses for Kildonan Place.

You know. Returns, refunds, you’ll notice that these are kind of stupid right, they’re not that bright. And this is sort of the level that we’re at with conversational commerce.

Is it kind of, like tell me a joke for instance. So it knows some things, you know. It knows to randomize. So if you say any of these things, like hi, hello, how are you, or so on, it has one of four options. It’s gonna spit out one of those things for you. If you ask it for a joke, and how do we find the robot jokes?

We literally Googled bad robot jokes, and punched them in. But sometimes emergencies right, so it’ll understand these phrases, please, fire, stabbing. It’ll understand different types of emergencies.

But it’s imperfect. Because it might understand puke, sorry for that analogy. But it won’t necessarily understand I just puked. I’m gonna have to pick a different example, I think next time.

But these sorts of things are incredibly powerful, they are becoming more and more, and these will develop even more so, especially especially, now that more people are using these messenger apps. On my own website I published a whole bunch of the most common chat bot responses that we’ve programmed into Happy Bot. It’s had 10,000 downloads, it has been up for three weeks.

The demand is there. But the real marketing power for your customers is not necessarily gonna be in the responses, it’s in the ability to reach out to people afterwards. As Rob was talking about, retargeting. These bots will have retargeting built in as well. And you could have it under certain conditions.

If they’ve chatted through Facebook, Facebook already knows everything about them. It knows their gender, it knows their age, it knows what time zone they’re in. And so one day after, if you chatted about sweaters and you’re a woman and you’re in your 20s, it can automatically push something back out into messaging for you. Like he was saying.

That warming up of the channels that’s gonna be so incredibly powerful. Another app that’s sort of more in the saving space. Right, understanding language. So it’s an expense report essentially.

Automatically sort of calculates stuff, incredibly strong. I put beacons in here because certainly it’s gonna be pretty enormously popular. I’m sure a lot of you are already in that space and know quite a bit about beacons. But I do want to talk about the outlier that’s here, that no one seems to talk about.

And that is the iPhone headphone jack. The whole Apple, if you ask Apple why they removed the headphone jack, do you know the word that they use for it? Courage. (audience laughing) Swear to god, that’s what they say. Why did we remove it, because courage.

Like are you running for president too, like? No, the real reason that they did this was to force the adoption of beacon technology. Until now it’s been hard to get beacons out in the real world. Beacons of course are these little devices that sort of hang on walls, and it’s very tight geolocational space. And marketers are using, retailers are using in store, to identify where people are in a store, give them opportunities and offers based on that.

But it’s been reliant on the technology of Bluetooth. And most people have their Bluetooth turned off on their phone. You probably have it turned off on your phone too ’cause you’ve read one of those 40 million web articles that says is your iPhone draining power all the time, turn off Bluetooth, right?

Haven’t we all done this? So we’re like hell yeah I want six more minutes out of my iPhone, I’ll turn off Bluetooth. So really what this is about is less about audio and more about driving the technology of beacons.

Because you bet Apple is in this space. Apple and Google competing very heavily for it. So they’re forcing people to leave Bluetooth on, which of course has great opportunities for the beacons of the world. Soon as they come into a store, the retailers are gonna be able to target them with all sorts of messaging, opportunities, and so on.

Another space that I think you’re gonna wanna watch is augmented reality. Augmented reality has actually been around since the 60s. It really only became popular, God help us, when Pokemon Go came on the scene. Did anyone here play Pokemon Go? Come on. Yeah, for like an hour, right?

Yeah, exactly. Pokemon Go was enormously, and this guy can’t even catch a goddamn Zubat. Like honestly, those are the easiest things to catch in the world. Look at this idiot. Oh it stopped, I could have watched forever.

Zubats, come on buddy. These things were incredibly popular. Pokemon Go apps, it was actually. Now we’re gonna find out who the real nerds in the audience are.

Did anyone actually play Ingress? Oh, two people. Yay, my people are here. (audience laughing) Ingress was the app that Pokemon Go was based on. It was a much better app. And they’ve just recently reskinned it and made Pokemon Go.

But this had enormous impact for those of you who remember, during the 12 minutes that Pokemon Go was popular, enormously popular. So much so that I had to put out an emergency email to all of our shopping center clients with the headline, Holy Christ, What The Hell Is Going On. Because all of a sudden they were getting swarmed with people playing Pokemon Go. And about two weeks after I sent this out, the whole thing died. But the interest in augmented reality has stuck around.

And what Pokemon Go did was introduce people to using augmented reality through their phones, and is training a new shopping experience. That spike there that you see, the red line is the previous interest in augmented reality, this is a search for the phrase on the Google. The spike is obviously Pokemon Go, but you can see what happened right.

Increased interest because of Pokemon Go. And so for your customers, in the retail sector especially, there is an enormous amount of interest around that, and spending. This is what some marketers think it’ll look like. Either through your phone or glasses, it’ll light up products that your Facebook friends have recommended. So if they’ve liked a particular product, it’ll light that up for you.

It’s got a shopping list. It’ll ask you if it’s connected to the payment system, right, whether you want to use the points in your wallet, or so on. These are actually some real world hybrids that are connecting social to retail. This is one of a handful of gadgets, where if you go and you like the brand’s page on Facebook, it has a direct connection to this actual physical box that will change the number to 8673.

And not just for store wide, but this level of influence is being built through to the product level. These hangers have Facebook like counts for the individual products. If someone goes on the Facebook page and click I like this jacket, the hanger will note popularity. So you don’t even need to rely on your friends now. What would be a better experience than rely on the advice of strangers?

Well apparently it can happen now. Some of these attempts will be misguided. This is Lowe’s attempt at it. And this isn’t even augmented reality, this is virtual reality, right. So they’ve decided to put these Holorooms in two of their Toronto stores last year. They’re putting them in 19 of the stores down in the US this year.

But the problem with this is it’s a lot of floor space, it’s expensive technology, it requires a Lowe’s representative to be there with someone, and the graphics are not very good either. I mean, Pokemon Go has better graphics. So what you’ll begin to see, and probably have already began to see, is this shift away from these big sort of instillations that are more for PR than anything, and more into the buyer’s own tablets, the buyer’s own phones. In the future your customers, your customers that is, the retailers at least, will be focusing less on bringing people in to their stores and more on bringing the store to their customers.

This is a great example of a product called Wayfair. Uses augmented reality, right. The difference between augmented and virtual is virtual designs everything for you, augmented is it shows you something inside your world. So it uses the camera, and it does this so you can walk around and see it. My favorite example is the sofa, which they’re gonna do in just a moment. They basically point it at the floor where they want the sofa to be.

They drag it out onto the floor. And it opens like a shipping box would. And then you spin it around. And of course one tap, and you’ve bought it. Once someone finds something they like, they’re going to want to find an easy way to pay for it.

The Gap has been experimenting with this as well. Right, in this case you have to tell it your body size. And then you basically, it’s like a catalog, it’s just like any other catalog in sort of the real world. You go in, you pick what you want it to be, and then you can walk around.

This is done on stage. So you’re able to kind of see a bit of the guy that’s doing it. But he can get right down and turn around, and look at the back and look at the front. And get right up and see the weave pattern if he wants to.

And this is not just augmented reality, it’s happening already. Some of you may know the Sephora app, which I tried last week. Much to the confusion of our renovators, like why is Tod truing on virtual lipstick? So it’s augmented reality again. And in fact this is a kind of brilliant application for it, it’s really the same technology that Snapchat uses for its stickers. I like that one a lot.

Come on, it was pretty. Made me look like a pretty girl. And some marketers are using AR as an ad delivery vehicle. Not all with great results. Here it’s just like hold up the dollar bill in front of you. So good brand presence, good awareness I suppose, you know not a lot of conversion going on there.

And finally we should talk about the internet of things. Which is the biggest buzz word we’ve had since ecommerce, right. And that’s my wallpaper for Watch Dogs, ’cause I pressed the wrong button. To be fair what we’re really talking about is two devices, at least today. We’re talking about Amazon Echo and Google Home. There are other devices, Microsoft will have an entry, there are other ones out there on the marketplace, but these are the two vying for it, they are not available in Canada yet.

Although I got an Amazon Alexa, I got the Dot, through eBay. The Dot is usually, like in the US it sells for 39 bucks. They’re inexpensive. And it’s not, as I said, available in Canada. So on eBay it’s about 12,000 dollars Canadian, but it still works. You can see that IHS and the Gardner Group believe this market will be enormous.

We’re just at the very end of that scale there. In terms of economic impact, second only to the mobile internet and the automation of knowledge work. This is gonna be absolutely enormous. And we could see the power of how easy it was in the purchase phase. Right, on the payment side. We can see how easy it was because of this girl.

Have you heard of this story? This is Megan, she lives in Texas. And she learned that if she says Alexa order me a dollhouse, that it will ship a dollhouse to her.

And in fact, she also had the wherewithal to say and four pounds of cookies, swear to god. And the next day Amazon heard it, and the next day it arrived. And so it showed up on a local newscast, it was like a cute little story, right. They sort of ended up talking about the Amazon Alexa, and the Dots and so on.

And they went to this kids house, you know, and all that stuff. They talked to the mom and it was a great story. And then at the end of this newscast, which was remember a newscast about accidentally saying words into Alexa, at the end of the newscast the anchor said this. – I love the little girl’s take on it, Alexa ordered me a dollhouse. – And hundreds of people’s Alexas all heard it, and I swear, I couldn’t make this stuff up if I tried, and started ordering it.

So we have a long way to go. Little devices, you will see things like this from a purchasing point of view, look at how easy this is. This is from, again a massive leader in this space right, Amazon. These are literally little buttons you push.

You can buy these for 5.99, and then you get a 4.99 credit for your extra order, it pays for itself. And how do these work? Really, really easily. It’s one button for one product. They’re wifi enabled to the internet of things. When you run out of coffee, you push the coffee button.

When you run out of Tide, you push the Tide button. And it’ll alert you on your phone, so you don’t have to run in that problem little girl had. All of this, crazy world. And by the way they’ve got these things now as web buttons. They’ve just announced this, this morning.

When I booted up my computer this morning they had just announced this. These are the same buttons now, they’re on the website essentially. And so when you think about how quick this is.

You could be using just Amazon systems. You could be on the toilet, using Dash to order new toilet paper, Alexa to confirm it’s on its way, and Prime Now will deliver you the toilet paper while you’re sitting on the seat. That’s progress ladies and gentlemen. So let me wrap up.

We’ve talked about a lot of different things that are certainly coming down this space. In terms of how it’s gonna be impacting commerce, how it’s gonna be impacting your business, this is the only bot that I want personality, has not be invented. But one thing is really clear, and that is that the way people are buying is changing. And so the way you sell has to change as well.

It’s not going to be good enough anymore to just sell a terminal. It’s not. You know, you’ve got to be in that. Your retailers do not want to be in this space either, to be perfectly honest, they are just as terrified, when they see those little buttons and so on. Your ability to communicate to solve those problems is what’s gonna be paramount here.

PlayerUnknown Says ‘PUBG’ Has What Other Esports Don’t

It’s not just your stereotypical video game. There’s like six, seven people around this area. Who’s got the high ground, who has the angle is going to win this one. It’s the adventure they go on and the path they take in order to try to win.

I think it’d make a great eSport, it’s quite easy to understand. He’s got it running, got it going, he’s out in the open, shots are coming in (Inaudible) and it’s a complete mess. That guy needs to stay alive, that guy needs to win the chicken dinner. Goes for the kill and then you have it.

Mithram seals the dinner. Look in the biggest games that have come the last like 15 years. Like Dota, CS Go. They’ve all kind of come from mods. The modder has this kind of freedom that a lot of like say triple A game developers don’t.

Executive level going, well you must do this, you must do this, because a study group, or focus group tells me that this is what gamers want to play, so I got to do a very pure idea. I think, because I’m ultimately a consumer, I’m not an industry veteran, I approach it slightly differently. I’m not skilled in game design or sports betting software. I wasn’t really paying attention to typical game design rules, but I’ve apparently followed a lot of them (Inaudible) knowing it. I think that’s why it’s been a success, because I just got to make a game I wanted to play, and other people wanted to play it too. When I made the mod my goal was to create a space that would test the player against other players.

You know, it wasn’t based on your knowledge of the weapons, or the map, or basically, it was a unique place where you could see every single game was unique, and every skill single game was different. And so, it was really testing you as a strategic and a tactical player. Didn’t matter what age you were. Didn’t matter how quick your reaction speeds were. If you were a smart enough player you could went against just 100 levels.

This play is everywhere. They’re getting tagged up. But he doesn’t want these fights. And you’re going to see holding on for dear life. He needs to get into the circle, he needs to get in. >> He does go down.

I mean, it’s been my dream since Battle Royale is to make I think it’s quite easy to understand, like a lot of the bigger eSports like Dota and League, unless you play the game and know the game, and we find it very hard to understand what exactly is going on. With (Inaudible) G you get a chance to tell a character’s story and explain, you know, that it’s not just a shooter game. It’s the adventure they go on, and the path they take in order to try to win. >> (Inaudible) Basically, left to die on the bridge. There’s no going back for him now.

It’s those kind of interesting stories that the game lends itself to. That I think would make it an interesting eSport, because it’s not just your stereotypical video game. It’s more about the stories that the characters have. As much as people talk about like the orangey nature of it. You know you see with the competitions that we’re running, that it’s the same top teams that tend to finish in the top, because they know how to play the game. I think it could be a very successful eSport, but it’s one we don’t want to rush into.

We’re doing a format that the players suggested. We went what do you think is fair for a Battle Royale event. We really believe that building a strong foundation, and building it up with the community will lead to the possibility of a great eSport.

Community is super important for balance in the game and giving us feedback on features and stuff like that. But really, having a good vision, it’s like that thing, the horse designed by a committee, you end up with the camel, I think you have to be careful when designing with the community that you really try to keep the vision pure. But use them to really sort of polish division and balance of. It’s releasing on Xbox One game preview on the 12th to December, especially for pledge the knees for. You have to grow your community in all regions, and across all platforms. That’s what we want to do, is build a community up.

If the community wants an eSport than I think one will grow from it. No, I mean, my life hasn’t changed all that much. I live in a lot more hotels now, and I travel a hell of a lot more, but I’m not an extravagant guy, you know. I have a daughter, and I have a family, and I kind of look after them, and that makes me happy.

Agression From Video Games

Remember when we had some researchers saying that violent video games creates violent kids and then we had another group of researchers saying no no no no. Then they started to argue and there was this whole clash. Well we’ve got some new research on the situation, but before we jump right into the news I’d like to thank our sponsor Best Fiends. Best Fiends is a puzzle adventure game where you collect a team of fiends to defeat slugs by matching same colored objects. It’s pretty addicting. I’m already on level 42. If you play or want to play, let me know what level you’re on. This month they’re doing an Easter Egg challenge where you can win amazing and rare rewards. If you beat all 16 challenges, you win a new bunny character and who doesn’t like bunnies?

You can download the game free. I’ll link it down in the description and as a bonus you’ll get five dollars worth of gold and diamonds for free…in the game of course. Back to the news. Ever since the emergence of violent TV shows, movies, and now video games the topic of those things causing aggression has been hotly debated. A majority of studies have found violent video games to be linked to increased aggression and decreased empathy. There’s just one problem, a majority of those studies were focused on short term results. This means past studies typically had someone play a violent video game and right after the game’s done researchers would test aggression and empathy levels. What do you know?

Aggression levels were up and empathy levels were lower. But here’s the thing those same results can be found after any competitive or frustrating task, whether that be not being able to solve a math problem or not being able to pass level 40 of Best Fiends. Because of this researchers in Germany decided to test for long term effects. Instead of requiring participants to play games like in past studies scientists recruited people who already regular played violent video games and people who don’t play video games. Gamers and non-gamers were then shown a series of images that would evoke some sort of emotional response. For example, according to past studies this image would not move a gamer as much as a non-gamer. Once shown the images neural responses were examined via Fmri results show both groups having the same level of empathy contrary to previous studies.

Our last study comes from the Massachusetts institute of technology where scientists have developed an AI system that can detect a conversation’s tone. So how this works is that users wear this watch like device. The device analyzes audio, text transcriptions, and physiological signs. For example, more sad and negative conversations are usually associated with more pauses, monotonous vocal tones, and increased cardio vascular activities. The device takes record of this and is able to classify the emotional tone of a conversation with 83% accuracy. Now they researchers of this system claim its most use for those who need some sort of social coach. People with Aspergers or anxiety but imagine how conversations would be if everyone had a watch like this. That’s all the news we have for you today. I hope you enjoyed it. Click here at Casinoslots, we would like to know your opinions and what you learned today. Do you think violent video games causes increased aggression? What do you think about this new device?

Washington D.C. Vacation Travel Guide

Washington D.C. is situated on the east coast of the USA, along the banks of the Potomac River. The city has an area of just under 70 square miles, but it sure packs a lot in! Washington was founded as the nation’s capital in 1791.

As soon as you land here you get a sense of the power and history that this metropolis represents. Most visitors start at the National Mall, a two-mile green strip often referred to as “The Nation’s Front Lawn”. Clearly there’s no shopping to be done at this Mall.

What it does offer is a sweep of the country’s most famous monuments and museums, all in one place. Begin your tour of the Mall at the Zero Milestone, the proposed reference point for distances on all US maps. To the north you’ll see America’s most famous residence, The White House. To the south stands the Washington Monument. Rising 555 feet, this marble obelisk is the centerpiece of the National Mall.

The US Capitol Building, on top of Capitol Hill, is the nation’s seat of federal government. Rest a while by the Reflecting Pool. Surrounded by America’s most iconic tributes to its heroes and founding fathers, it’s easy to let your mind wander back through the various chapters of America’s history. Nestled in the trees is the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. Engraved in its walls are the names of tens of thousands of soldiers who lost their lives in the battlefields of Vietnam.

The nearby Lincoln Memorial is where Martin Luther King Jr. made his famous ‘I Have A Dream’ speech. Admire the many sculptures and waterfalls at the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial further along the Mall. Across the Tidal Basin, Thomas Jefferson keeps a watchful eye on the White House from his own memorial, built in the style of ancient Rome.

The Mall is also home to many of the nation’s Smithsonian buildings. To learn more about this interesting collection of museums and galleries, stop by at the Information Center in the Smithsonian Institution Building called the Castle. The whole family will enjoy the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, where you can let your imagination fly high among historic airplanes and spacecraft. Create your own headlines at the Newseum, an interactive museum dedicated to the world of news media.

The Botanic Garden of the Capitol Building offers an escape from monuments and museums. But the Mall is not the only attraction in D.C.. To explore the many attractions outside of the Mall, the convenient Capital Bikeshare system is available all over the city. In picture-perfect downtown neighborhoods such as DuPont Circle, browse bookstores by day and try the cafés by night.

Another charming central suburb is Foggy Bottom, named after the fog that rises from the Potomac River. Here you’ll find the Watergate Hotel and the Kennedy Center. Pass Washington Circle to get to Georgetown. With its eighteenth-century buildings, it is the oldest district in D.C., and today university students give it a lively atmosphere.

Wisconsin Avenue and M Street offer many boutique stores and galleries. North from here is the National Cathedral, one of the largest churches in the United States. In the nearby Smithsonian National Zoo, the residents are sure to delight monument-weary children. Another family favorite is the International Spy Museum.

Play undercover agent in an interactive game where nothing is as it seems! Just across the river in neighboring Virginia is the nation’s most hallowed ground, Arlington National Cemetery. Wander among rows of tombstones dedicated to those who made the ultimate sacrifice for their country. President John F. Kennedy’s final resting place, marked by an ‘eternal’ flame, is one of the most visited graves. From Arlington House you can look back over D.C. and its surrounding suburbs.

Washington has a lot more to offer than the political buildings and stately monuments that it is so famous for. And no matter how often you’ve seen these landmarks in the news or in movies, nothing beats the real thing!

NBA Playoffs Betting Preview and Picks

The regular season is over and the playoffs are finally here in the nba. The outlook in the postseason is as wide open as it’s been in recent memory, and that means bettors have a ton of options when it comes to finding value on the hardwood. Here’s a preview of how i’m expecting things to shake out in the 2018 playoffs. The nba has been criticized for its lack of parity over the years, and three straight matchups between the cleveland cavaliers and golden state warriors hasn’t exactly disproven that theory. While it’s far from the most exciting prediction, i’m anticipating on the powerhouses to meet at Neither club finished in the top spot in their respective conferences, but playoff experience is so important in this league, and each team has it in spades.

The odds of the cavs and warriors playing in the finals sit at +345, which is fantastic value for hoops bettors. The warriors have +135 odds to win the title, and i’m taking them to win their third championship in four years. The dubs won’t have an easy path to the finals whatsoever, and a date with the top-seeded houston rockets likely awaits them. The rockets finished the season with 65 wins and were far and away the top team in the nba this year, however i still like golden state in this series. Expect the west finals and nba finals to be as thrilling as we’ve seen in quite some time, but i’m giving the warriors the edge to go all the way.

As for a sleeper team, give me the philadelphia 76ers. The sixers have come a long way in the last few years, and a 16-game winning streak to end the regular season proves this club is in peak form ahead of playoff time. Philly gets a first-round series against the miami heat and will play the winner of boston and milwaukee in the second round. If the celtics win, they won’t have kyrie irving, which is obviously a massive blow for boston.

The path to the eastern conference finals is solid for the third-seeded 76ers, so don’t be surprised if they make a deep run. That’s it for our nba playoff preview. Let me know what you think of my picks in the comments section below and don’t forget to give us a thumbs up if you like the vid and subscribe to our youtube channel so you don’t miss anything from oddsshark!



Karma Playhouse

– I think we’re playin’ this wrong. (beep) – If we playin’ this wrong, then, we just played this wrong. (beep) (laughs) That’s all I can say. (beep) ♪ I’ve got it, got it ♪ ♪ I’ve got it, got it ♪ ♪ I’ve got it, got it ♪ ♪ Boy you know I got it ♪ ♪ I’ve got it, got it ♪ ♪ I’ve got it, got it ♪ ♪ I’ve got it, got it ♪ ♪ Boy you know I got it ♪ – [Both] On Karma Playhouse! What’s up K Army?

– Today we are back with another video! – We are back with another game, y’all. A classic game with a twist.

We are playing Giant UNO. Yeah! – These cards are heavy. – [Kirsten] It’s for two to 10 players… – [Miesha] For age seven and up… – Giant UNO Cards retail for $19.99 at Toys “R” Us, and $5.99 at Target.

So without further ado, – [Both] Let’s get into the video. (both exhale) – It even has a few cards in here that you can customize yourself and write whatever you wanna write on them. So, here are our cards, I’m just gonna shuffle ’em like this. – We both get seven cards and then we set the deck in the middle of us. There’s no way that you can shuffle those big cards!

(beep) – Seven cards. One, two, three, four, five, six, – [Both] Seven. – One, two, three, four, five, six, seven. – A little big, it’s hard, to have to try to hide ’em.

(beep) – I can’t see anything, so don’t worry. (beep) – Red, two. Draw two. – Wait, hold on! (beep) – I gotta draw, hold on. We playin’ like speed UNO?

(beep) – Right? – Yeah, skip you, back to me. What’s the color? – I don’t know, but it was ’bout time you gotta draw four. Color is green. – Draw four.

– Ugh. – My color is yellow. – Reverse back to, who, you? – You. – Reverse back to me. Reverse back to me.

And again. Hold on. What am I playing? (both laugh) (beep) (laughs) I can’t see. Oh my god.

You ain’t got nothing? (beep) – I said skip you, so… – Oh, skip me. And you don’t have nothin’? – No.

– Why you draw another? (beep) – Okay it’s my turn now. – Yeah. I’m gonna need this.

Wait, yeah now you gotta put it in. ‘Cause neither one of these… – I think we playin’ this wrong. (beep) – If we playin’ this wrong, then we just played this wrong. (beep) – (laughs) – That’s all I can say.

(beep) – We played it out. – Maybe that’s how you play, though. – Havin’ big cards makes it way more difficult. – Skip you. It goes back to me. Three.

Skip you. UNO. – I need my online casino games in Canada – Ohhhh. – Wait, actually, no, it was still my turn.

– How? – You put a skip down? No, you put a seven. Draw two.

(beep) – Swap hands. – Screw you. What’s the color? – Yellow. – Color is blue. – Yellow, skip you.

Draw four, and the color is green. – There’s a green. – One.

– That’s game. – This game, this game is long! – It’s harder having fat cards ’cause you can’t see all what’s in your hand. – And then, like this card?

Never seen this card before in my life. They have a new card, it means swap hands. – I think the newest UNO has like a bunch of different new cards.

– Yeah, I mean I haven’t played it in so long but like, y’all this was fun! – It’s a little bit different because you have bigger cards so you can’t see what’s all in your hands. – Yeah, so, I mean, it was fun. If you guys wanna see us do a rematch, then comment that down below, because we will do it for you guys. You wanna see us add more players, do it with more players, comment that down below. And as always, if you enjoyed this video please like, – Comment, – Share, – Subscribe, and don’t forget to turn on your bell notifications so you get a– – [Both] ping every time we post.

– We love you guys, and we’ll see you guys next time on– – [Both] Karma Playhouse. Duces. – Hey I’m Kirstsen! – And I’m Miesha Michelle, and you’ve been watching– – [Both] Karma Playhouse. – If you like challenges, – And DIYs remember to watch more of our videos. – And smash the subscribe button below.

– [Both] Duces.

Red Sox Nation: Exploring Sports and Citizenship || Radcliffe Institute

– All right, good evening, everyone. My name’s Anthony Brooks. I do political reporting with WBUR.

[APPLAUSE] Thank you. Thank you for that. Thank you for coming out tonight.

I know this is going to be a great discussion. My job is to introduce the panel, but first I want to acknowledge Radcliffe for hosting this event and say a couple of things about that. So we’re meeting in a really fitting location. This is, as many of you probably know, the former Radcliffe College gymnasium, where generations of female athletes played basketball, hung from ropes from those rafters, ran around that track. And today, the building is the Knafel Center, which is the central meeting place of the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study. And the Radcliffe Institute is Harvard’s Institute for Advanced Study dedicated to sharing transformative ideas across all disciplines.

Tonight’s event is part of a two year initiative that the Institute is pursuing about citizenship in anticipation of the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment. That’s the one that gave women the right to vote, so it’s an important one. [APPLAUSE] One little housekeeping note. This program is being broadcast live on Facebook tonight by WBUR, and it will be available in a few weeks at Good.

So, before I introduce the panel, I want to just say a couple of words sort of how I ended up here, because it’s sort of related to what you guys are going to be talking about. So your moderator this evening, who I’ll introduce in a moment, is my colleague Shira Springer, WBUR sports and society reporter. She asked me if I would introduce this program, and I said, well, OK. And she said, no, no. You’d be perfect.

You’re a reporter. You’re a journalist, and you’re a fan. And I thought, does she mean I’m a Red Sox fan? Because I’m kind of a Red Sox fan, but I think I’m more of a Red Sox hostage.

That’s sort of the way I think about that, and I want to explain that. And my story is certainly not unique, but I had a grandfather who was born sort of late 1800s. He was passionate about the Red Sox. He saw them win the 1918 World Series. That’s the last one he saw.

And one of my earliest memories is my grandfather, who was sort of a repressed Yankee who didn’t say a lot, would come to the table, and just shake his head, and say they break your heart every day. This is one of my earliest memories– that my dad, who was born in 1918, the last time at that point that they had won a World Series, spent his entire 82 years waiting for a World Series victory. Never saw one. Again, a lot of us in this region have these stories to tell. We suffered.

It was painful. And then came Pedro Martinez and his fellow– [APPLAUSE] –and his fellow idiots in 2004 when our entire world and really our entire regional sports identity just changed. It was just overnight it changed. I was telling Pedro just before we came up here I have a 21 year old daughter, and she’s blase about the Red Sox. It’s like, dad, they always win.

What’s the big deal? It’s like, how did this happen? Anyway, but here’s the point about tonight. So being a fan, or a hostage, whatever you want to call it for all those years is significant because it’s not just about rooting for your home team, because sometimes I didn’t. Sometimes I got really angry, and I just wanted them to lose quickly so I could stop the pain, but this sort of unrequested involvement with the Red Sox brought with it an opportunity to think about a whole bunch of other things that had nothing to do with baseball.

I mean, something to do with baseball, but not only baseball. Winning and losing, obviously, but other more complicated things. The way our country has changed– in the Red Sox case, our difficult relationship with race. I mean just think about this week and this whole debate about getting rid of the name of Yawkey Way. So I’m grateful to have this team in our midst for a lot of reasons, including the richness and complexity of issues that sports can bring to the fore. And I’m just going to tell very quickly one more story about the 2004 American League Championship Series game four at Fenway Park, which I had the total honor of covering for NPR.

Now, you all know what happened, but just in case you don’t, here’s the quick, quick synopsis. So the Red Sox were down three games to nothing against the Yankees. Mariano Rivera is on the mound, so it’s over.

The Red Sox are losing the game, facing elimination, another disappointing season. Kevin Millar gets the base hit. Dave Roberts steals the base. Bill Miller gets the base hit.

They tie it up. Extra innings. Bottom of the 12th, David Ortiz, winning home.

They win game four. And you know what happens after that. They win seven more games and finally take the monkey off of our backs.

My job was to cover that game, and as a good NPR reporter, I wanted to get the sound of the end of the game just in case it was a Boston victory. I wanted the sound of Fenway erupting. So bottom of the ninth inning I go out in the stands with my microphone, stand there, and wait. Nothing happens.

Bottom of the 10th, stand there, nothing happens. Bottom of the 11th, nothing happens. Bottom of the 12th, I’m there with my microphone and up comes David Ortiz.

Boom– hits the home, walk off home run. Fenway comes to its feet. Huge cheer. My microphone is going.

Yes, I’ve got the sound. It’s fantastic. So I go back to WBUR to write my story, and I start listening to the tape, and I get to that great moment where I’m going to hear 37,000 people cheering for the Red Sox.

The only thing on that tape is me screaming yeah! It’s all that I could hear. So– [APPLAUSE] So that’s the end of the story.

So Shira’s right. I’m a fan. I was trying to be a professional journalist that night, but I was a fan. So now it’s my pleasure to introduce this terrific panel. So ladies, gentlemen, will you come up, and I’ll introduce you all.

[APPLAUSE] To my immediate left, Shira Springer, your moderator tonight, who invited me here. So she’s WBUR’s sports and society reporter covering stories at the intersection of sports and society, and before that, she wrote for the Boston Globe as the Celtics beat writer, then as an investigative reporter and Olympic columnist. She grew up in Connecticut cheering for the Hartford Whalers and the New York Mets? Come on, Shira. But– hold on now– in high school, she saw the error of her ways. She took down the pictures of Keith Hernandez, and Darryl Strawberry, and Dwight Gooden, and she became a Red Sox fan.

[APPLAUSE] To my far left at the end, Sam Kennedy has been with the Red Sox for 17 years. This is his second year as president and CEO of the Red Sox. He’s a native of Brookline. He grew up within walking distance of Fenway Park. And get this, he was captain of the Brookline High School baseball team with his friend and classmate Theo Epstein.

Is this true? – He was our third base coach. – That’s amazing. To Sam’s right, Rebekah Splaine Salwasser is executive director of the Red Sox foundation, which is dedicated to making a difference in the lives of children, families, veterans, and communities. She joined the Red Sox this past January.

Thank you for being here. [APPLAUSE] And finally, last, but certainly not least, he’s a special assistant to the president of baseball operations with the Red Sox, but most of us know him simply as one of baseball’s greatest pitchers. He’s a veteran of 18 major league seasons, seven of them with the Red Sox, including that 2004 season.

Thank you for that. He’s a three time Cy Young award winner, eight time all-star hall of famer inducted into the Hall of Fame, by the way, in his first year of eligibility. [APPLAUSE] – Thank you, Anthony, for that very kind introduction, and thank you WBUR and the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard for hosting this event. And of course, I want to thank the panelists, Pedro, Bekah, and Sam.

Before we begin, just a few words about the game plan for the panel. This panel will run for about 50 minutes– this discussion– then we’re going to open it up to audience questions. We will take audience questions for about 25 minutes. There will be a microphone placed in the center aisle, and I’ll let you know when it’s time to line up for that.

I’m sure there will be lots of people with questions for everyone up here. And now we’re just going to– I have some framing remarks for this panel, sort of what went through my mind as I thought about what we wanted to discuss tonight. And I think what’s interesting is baseball looks at itself not only as America’s pastime, but as a social institution. And in Boston, probably more than anywhere else, it’s easy to see baseball as a social institution, because, as everyone knows, the Red Sox are more than a team. The organization is woven into the cultural and social fabric of the city, of New England in a way that creates, I think, a sense of belonging and a sense of community both inside and outside of Fenway Park. And yes, as Anthony said, sometimes you can feel like a hostage of Red Sox nation, but I also think that the Red Sox ability to create a sense of belonging with the team with the most prominent– or one of the most prominent social institutions in the city– it begs the question.

You want to know, how do the Red Sox– the executives, their players, current and past players– see their roles and responsibilities to the community? And so that’s the guiding question for this discussion, one that I hope we’ll answer as we talk about Yawkey Way, inner baseball initiatives, building homes in the Dominican Republic, and ticket prices, among many other topics. So I think we have to start with the most recent news.

Yesterday, as many of you may be aware, the Boston Public Improvement Commission– a commission I’d never heard of– unanimously voted to rename Yawkey Way. That, as you know, is the front street– the street in front of Fenway Park. The Red Sox requested that the road be changed back to its original name, Jersey Street, because of what many see as former Red Sox owner Tom Yawkey’s legacy of racism.

So I guess I want to first to you, Sam, because I know you’ve been outspoken about this in the past. Why was it important for the organization to push for the name change, and perhaps more importantly now that the name change is here, what message do you hope that sends to fans, to players, to staff members, to people who partner with the Red Sox? – Well, thanks for the question. I knew we’d dive right into the topic du jour, but let me just first say it’s an honor to be here on behalf of the men and women of the Red Sox organization joined by a few colleagues. Guys, thanks for being here, and it’s an honor to share the stage with Bekah and Pedro. We have a great time at Fenway Park, and we’re lucky to be a part of the organization.

This is my 17th year, and I’m as energized as ever about the present Red Sox team and our future. And I mention future, because that’s what this whole process and initiative has been about. It’s less about sort of dwelling on the past than some of the negative, unfortunate, regretful, reprehensible history of the Red Sox. When we arrived in 2002, we were very quick to point out the shameful past with respect to race relations. Simply put, we were the last team to integrate. We had a poor record of hiring not just on the field, but off the field.

Diversity was a huge issue for us. There were lots of things that went on that the organization wasn’t and shouldn’t be proud of. That said, the move to change or restore Jersey Street and remove the name Yawkey Way is really about people and people’s feelings. When we went around and talked to our constituents, whether it was community leaders, employees frankly, players, a consistent refrain that we heard in the community was, look, we never knew Tom Yawkey and never met him in person, but that symbol had been a reminder for many people that Fenway was not always the most inclusive welcoming environment. And unfortunately, in 2017, last year, we were told that we’re still not where we need to be. And it’s just one step.

It is a symbol. It’s a street name. We don’t fool ourselves and think it’s going to change things overnight.

We still need to walk the walk and do the right thing with respect to making Fenway welcoming to everyone, but for those of us who grew up in Boston and New England, like I did, and like Bekah did, Fenway Park should be for everyone. It should be everyone’s team– the Red Sox– not just a certain group of people. So this was a step towards that goal, and it’s a journey that that never ends. You need to keep doing the right things each and every day, and we have an ownership group led by John Henry and Tom Werner that are really committed to making Fenway welcoming for everybody. So that’s what this has been about.

– I’m curious, Pedro, as a former player and somebody who’s now still associated with the organization– sort of ambassador for the organization– what did the name change mean to you? I mean, how do you view it? – Well, thank you for the opportunity. Thank you, everybody, for coming over, like always, being loyal and supportive. I think that’s what he is trying to say when it comes to the people. But in my own perspective, it’s totally different.

I came from a country where diversity is– it’s all over. Simple– I just never realized what being a minority. We were all minorities.

We were all the same. We were all the same color. It didn’t matter. But for me, coming to Boston, when I heard earlier– and you were referring about my partner– is he’s a true Bostonian. Isn’t he?

He’s a legit Bostonian. And we were talking about Theo and those things, and I’m thinking this kid is a Bostonian. That’s what he is. He has an ID. He’s a Bostonian.

Ever since I got to Boston, I feel the same way, because for me, it was totally different. I did not realize it, maybe because of lack of knowledge and stuff like that, or maybe I didn’t know that the history of Boston, but for me, it’s just like the little girl that you were talking that said, oh, they always win. The Red Sox always win.

Well, it depends on the generation that you came in. For me, it has always been like a parade. [LAUGHTER] Ever since I got to Boston, it’s been all hugs.

Me and David have a little competition between the two of us, because I said to David, as much as you love to hug, I’m going to lead you every year. So here in Boston for me has been a great experience. Being from the Dominican Republic born and raised, I know that a lot of that has to see with the kind of success I had here in Boston.

I think this is the place where it’s almost impossible to think about a defeat for me. For me, it was impossible. I did have some success, and I know that leads to a lot of happy moments for the people in Boston, but it’s not just in the field that I have felt the love that Boston has for me, and the respect, and the good feeling, the mutual feeling between me and the city of Boston. So for me, it’s really difficult to go deep into those details, because I’ve always been treated right. I’ve always been treated with class.

So I don’t know if my story is really relevant when it comes to that, because I’m a different breed. I’m just– – I’ll say. [LAUGHTER] – My ID is hanging in the right field wall– number 45. And my name is Pedro the Bostonian. II never felt anything. I’ve never been a victim of anything in Boston, so I’m not the proper person to probably go into details.

For me, it’s a loving hug and respect. That’s my own opinion. – I think it’s worth pointing out that we waited.

For those of us who were born a little bit after 1918, but before 2004, we waited a long time. And it’s worth pointing out that it wasn’t until the Red Sox were a fully integrated organization on the field and off the field that this team and this region were able to come together and climb the mountain top. And you had Pedro Martinez, and David Ortiz, and Kevin Millar, and Dave Roberts, and Bill Miller, and this group of guys who came together from all over the world, all walks of life to win a World Series championship. And that had never happened in our lifetime.

And I think what Pedro is saying is exactly right. He and his teammates changed the course of history, and he changed the course of the trajectory of the mindset in New England for kids that we can win. We can do this, because I grew up here with Theo Epstein at Brookline High thinking, how are we going to lose this game? How are the Red Sox going to lose to the Mets in 1986, or whether it was ’75, or ’78?

The mindset in New England is now about winning, which is really special to watch. – You mentioned the kids, which I think is an interesting area to go into. It’s one thing to believe the Red Sox can win, but it’s another thing for the kids in the area to feel that they are part of Red Sox nation, and I know that the Red Sox foundation, Bekah, which you head– you’re executive director of the Red Sox Foundation– is working hard to have some initiatives and some programs that promote diversity and inclusion. One of those is RBI.

That’s Reviving Baseball in the Inner Cities, which, if you’re not familiar with the program, part of it is to get young kids in the inner city to play baseball and softball, but it’s also about instilling leadership and life skills. You also have the Red Sox Scholars, which is where you select kids in seventh grade, and you take them through the college process. You work on their academics, and you really mentor them through their college years from seventh grade through their college years. So I guess when you have programs like RBI and like the Red Sox Scholars that are designed for kids in that inclusive, diverse vision, what do you hope are the goals short term and long term? – So I’m going to back up and start with why I think this job has been the most amazing opportunity for me, and I will get to your answer, but I think there is relevance there.

So I’m born and raised in Cambridge. I grew up in– yes, I know. – Another Bostonian.

– Real [INAUDIBLE]. – Shes’ the only one who didn’t get lost here tonight. – Right here. – Anyway. – Right, so I was born and raised in Cambridge to a biracial family, and I started playing soccer for Cambridge U soccer when I was four years old. And I say that to say that sport has always been an instrument that I’ve used in my life to be successful.

I went to BB & N, and I graduated there. I played soccer at Brown. I went on to play professional soccer here in Boston for the Boston Breakers, and I worked for the Boston Celtics for five years. And now here at the Red Sox it’s just been a dream, and in between there, I ran a couple other small non-profits. But I say that to say I know the power of sport. I believe in the power of sport, and so heading a foundation like the Red Sox Foundation that has quite arguably the best resources, the best brand in the entire world, in my opinion, when it comes to leveraging a pro sports team against its charitable endeavors, has just been a dream come true.

And to run programs like Red Sox Scholars and RBI– to really and directly direct some of those resources from the Red Sox into the community has just been amazing. I was a Jackie Robinson scholar. My parents worked for Boston public schools for 34 years, and being one of five, it was not in our reality to go to college– or have my parents pay for it, rather.

So I know the power of being able to provide funds to young people to pursue higher education. And so for us, we have now 275 young people that have been through the program, and making sure that we can always, always be there for them, whether it’s connecting them to local resources, connecting them to national resources– we actually just employed one of our graduates. And so really just seeing it come full circle for me has just been amazing. – I’m going to turn– Pedro is another person who has sort of devoted your life to doing things for kids and giving kids opportunity both here in Boston and here in your native Dominican Republic.

I hope I can do the Spanish well enough. Lindos Suenos? Am I– – Lindos Suenos, yes. – So this means beautiful dreams in Spanish.

It’s a program that you are part of– that you take part of in the Dominican. You are building homes. You are making sure people have in the Dominican what they need. I’ve heard you also have taken up a hammer and nails on occasion to– – Oh, believe me. And that wasn’t the first time. [LAUGHTER] – I’ve heard that you do that.

You were also here last August playing in the old time baseball game to help raise money for ALS. – In your city– Cambridge. – That’s right.

– Cambridge. – Right down the road, as a matter of fact. You have been, as I said, building schools, homes, everything, here, the Dominican, all over the place. It’s so hard to keep track almost of everything you do, and I’m wondering how do you choose.

How do you figure out what it is– where you want to put your energies, what you want to do, and what do you hope is your personal legacy with all of this philanthropy? – Well, I grew up extremely poor. So as you grow up, you become an expert at identifying opportunities, identifying the weak points, identifying what it takes for you to come out. You identify so many things. You become a veteran at a very, very early age. And for me, it was no exception.

I became a survivor. I became someone that needed to find sources to continue to go to school. My mom and dad could barely supply for us clothing to go to school, meals on the table, and I can’t go really deep on the things that my mom and dad were able to supply. So right away, I was introduced sometimes, or at an early age, very young to what a nail and a hammer was to different things that you have to do to help out in a big family– six kids and mom and dad. And both of them not the best educated people when it comes to school, but at home the best teachers that you could ever have. And that’s all we needed.

And the reason I have that drive is because thanks to baseball and the support of many people like you that support baseball and support different ideas I was able to become a baseball player. I was granted an opportunity. As an immigrant, I was fortunate enough to make it through baseball and become a US citizen, something that I’m really proud of– to be able to enjoy the rights that you guys that are born and raised here enjoy. I think for me it was pretty cool that if I was able to do anything for the future was help out education, help out the less fortunate, because I’ve been there. I’ve been on the other side, and I know what it’s like to need something and not have it.

So if I’m in a position to grant anybody an opportunity to be better, to get educated, to become a better man for society in the future, I think it’s– even though it’s not a written rule like we do in baseball– we have unwritten rules. Like if you hit one of my teammates, nobody– [LAUGHTER] [APPLAUSE] Nobody needs to tell me that– nobody needs to give me a piece of paper. Pedro, you know that guy over there that’s coming up.

It’s the same position as your player that just got hit. It’s not written on the paper, but I know that my first instinct will be drill him. [LAUGHTER] It’s the same thing. I would like my legacy to be remembered not really as the guy that posted all those numbers that you just mentioned, and the awards, or my curly hair face in Cooperstown.

I want to be remembered as a sign of hope, as a sign of opportunity, as a sign for others to follow and try to emulate, because just the fact that I was traveling to the states my first year as a 17-year-old was a huge, humongous step towards the future. Just getting the opportunity to come out of the Dominican with a visa to look for new opportunities was a huge step, and I was so grateful. And I will always be. So I want to do the same thing. I want people to look at me, see the opportunity, take advantage of it, take advantage of the things that are granted for them, and see hope everywhere I go, because if I did it, even though I got into many fights in baseball, well, they can also do it. I also fight with life, and adversities, and stuff like that, but like I told you earlier, coming from where I come from, adversity is an everyday deal.

So I wasn’t intimidated, and today I can serve as a testimony of faith, hard work, dedication, integrity, and I represent my family really well. I told George Steinbrenner one time, you know, you might call the league and have them suspend me or do whatever they want, but you just don’t have enough money to buy fear and put it in my heart. [APPLAUSE] It is the same thing with life– adversity. And for people that want to look up to the future, don’t let adversity intimidate you.

Just go forward. Same thing. George is big, but if you have to drill him, you drill him. [LAUGHTER] Right? So that’s my perspective, and that’s why I do it.

That’s why I want to help some more people do the same thing. – Isn’t it interesting how the game has changed? Joe Kelly– it just got away from him. [INAUDIBLE],, and with Pedro, no, I drilled him. I drilled him.

You drilled him. – Different times. – Different times.

– We have been talking about different times ever since we started. – Yes. – His dad never saw a World Series. He got to see one. Now he’s daughter is like, yeah, dad, I know the Red Sox are going to win.

She’s accustomed to winning, right? Well, those are different times. – Exactly. – When I pitched, drilling a guy was a thing of nature. [LAUGHTER] – I think it’s interesting.

We’re talking about different times. I think another thing that’s happened sort of off the field that you might not have seen 15, 20 years ago is the Take the Lead initiative that the Red Sox started. And if you’re not familiar, this came in the wake of the racist incidents that took place last summer at Fenway. And it’s sort of a combined effort of the Red Sox, Celtics, Patriots, Bruins, and Revolution. They got together and basically said, we’re going to stand up to racism, stand up to hate speech, and you talk about players being a sign of hope and role models.

And we’re going to put our players out there in public service announcements. And so I guess the question is– and not only that. I think you, Sam, have said we want our players to speak out. We want our players to speak out.

– Well, I’m representing the players. I’m old, but I’m representing the players. Hey, I still throw a little bit.

[LAUGHTER] – Well, if you go back, it’s just about a year ago when I was home after– it was May 1, I think– May 2, maybe. I got home after a night game, and maybe like many of you in this room– I know my colleagues probably share the same addiction, this device right here in my pocket. And got home, and I’m just checking text and email before going to bed. And on Twitter pops up Bob Nightingale. Adam Jones was called the n-word at Fenway Park tonight.

And it just hit me like a ton of bricks. I’m this 45-year-old Caucasian white guy from Brookline, and you just don’t think about those things. You just don’t when you’re in my shoes, but you read it, and it hits you like a ton of bricks. God, how could this be in 2017? You realize how sort of ignorant you are, and it really just was so– it just angered me so much, and we knew that it was going to be really important to handle this the right way not from a PR perspective, but from a human perspective. And so the next morning John Henry called me and said, what do you think?

And I said, well come over. Let’s sit with our players first. And so we went to talk to Mookie, and Jackie, and Xander, and John Farrell, and Dustin Pedroia, and Rick Porcello. And we said, we’re going to go talk to Adam Jones and apologize for what happened, and the players thought that was a good idea.

And it was Jackie who said, you know, this isn’t new. This isn’t something that doesn’t happen all over the place. And I said, yeah, but it’s Boston and Fenway Park. We have this reputation as this racist city. It’s just so frustrating. He said, Sam, you know, it’s not Fenway Park.

It’s not Boston. This is everywhere. It’s malls.

It’s airports, public gathering places. This stuff happens. So we left the clubhouse, and we went over, and we talked to Adam Jones, and he basically had the same attitude. Like, hey, what are you apologizing for? You guys didn’t do anything. It was some idiot out in the stands, and so anyway that happened, and incredibly we put out this clarion call to our fans.

We said, look, we don’t want hate speech in our venues. If you hear something, please say something. Please let us know. And later that night, we had a woman from Nigeria singing the national anthem, and a white male in the stands used the n-word to describe her to another person in the stands. And thankfully, someone heard it, pointed them out, identified them, and our security, and BPD– we were able to identify the person and eject them from the ballpark. The individual admitted to it.

And it was just within 24 hours these two incidents happened at Fenway Park in Boston in 2017, and for us as an organization I think it was a big wake up call. And so a lot of us got together, including Pam Kenn, my great colleague who’s been with us 20 years, a few others. And we said, look, what are we going to do? And we got resources and people around the table– elected officials. We had started to build a relationship with the NAACP, and a brilliant woman, Tanisha Sullivan, said, you know, you guys have a choice.

You can lean into this and take it on as an issue, or you can just do what most companies do and sweep it under the rug and hope that it goes away. And so we sort of looked at each other, and said let’s take this on, and let’s talk to the other teams. And I can’t tell you how incredible the Patriots, the Celtics, the Bruins, the Revolution have been.

It started with a campaign around our venues. We don’t want hate speech in our venues. In the case of the Red Sox, if you engage in hate speech in our venue, we will kick you out.

We will ban you from coming back. In some cases, we may ban you for life from coming back, and that’s what we’ve done. [APPLAUSE] The next step is a continuation of that. We need to try and provide economic opportunity. We started the Take the Lead job fair, which we just held at the Boston Garden about two or three weeks ago, to really give tangible ideas and teach young people to how to get into the sports business, because it’s a great business.

For someone like me, sitting on stage with two professional athletes, that’s pretty cool. And the only reason I’m doing it is because I work in the sports business. So it’s a great career. It’s a great business whether you work in a front office, for a league, a broadcast outlet, an agency, but people need to know how to do it, and how do you actually get in?

So we wanted to give tangible direction to young people about how to get into the sports business. So we’re going to continue to work with this umbrella program called Take the Lead, and Bekah, I don’t know if you want to add to it because you’ve been a big part of it since coming in. – Yeah, so as much as it may seem reactive to the incidents, I also think it’s worth noting that programs like RBI and Scholars have been in existence for a long time. And I think that was one of the things that was really attractive to me, and my personal mission of always giving back attracted me to the foundation to know that they’d been committed to charitable work in the community for so long. RBI is 25 years old. Scholars has been in existence since 2003.

There have been millions of dollars donated in the community throughout New England, particularly inner city communities, whether that’s a monetary gift or auction items, really making sure there’s an intentional allocation of resources to ensure that we’re connecting to our communities of color, because as a person of color, I know firsthand how difficult it is to break barriers. And to break into this industry is very, very, very difficult. And so I do want to say, though, that I believe the Red Sox have always been committed.

It’s never ending work. I think that’s one of the things I love about being in philanthropy and being in nonprofit– is that there’s always more to do. And being behind an organization that is truly committed to this cause and has basically said to me like any resource you need, Bekah, we’re behind you. Go and do it.

And so one of the things that we’re exploring is larger, again, more intentional allocation of resources into bigger communities outside of Boston. And one of those communities that we’re looking at is Lawrence, making sure that we can step into gateway communities, and be present, and make sure to recognize some of the great work– academic, economic– that are happening in communities outside of Boston to ensure that we can keep that connection and keep the pipeline open for young people, adults to come into Fenway Park, and so they know it’s an accessible, open, welcoming venue and space for them to partake in. So I think it’s just relevant to note that.

– Yes, and I was going to say one of the other things that– other components of Take the Lead, as I mentioned earlier, is the encouragement, empowerment, for players, whether past or present, to speak up and speak out. Pedro, I know you are someone who enjoys speaking out and doesn’t shy away from that. And I’m just curious– advice?

Because you have such a big platform in the city, and at the same time there’s so much scrutiny to what players do in this city. Advice to players who might want to speak out, whether it’s against hate speech or whether they have some other issue that’s near and dear to their heart? – Well, I think everybody deep inside has a feel for the things that are right or wrong. I know we have a lot of young players that are playing right now, but a lot of them, when you look at them– and I was talking to you earlier about those things– some of those guys are now barely old enough to go buy a drink. And they are already dealing with the responsibility to be one Red Sox, to be one very known person, social media, the phones, everything being documented makes it so hard on those kids that are bound to make mistakes because of lack of experience– all those things that people normally don’t stop to think about when they’re playing the game and when they get off the field.

So my advice for them would be understand really what you’re doing, who you are, what you mean to the people, and understand also that it’s not just baseball. There’s a lot of responsibilities that come attached with it, and I think they have to understand that baseball doesn’t stop between the white lines. And when they walk in society, when they walk in the neighborhoods, when they walk in the residential areas and they drive their nice cars, they have to realize that everything they do has a little bit of responsibility with it. And it’s not written on the papers that you’re supposed to go to communities, but they look at you.

Kids look at you as a role model. They want to be like you. I couldn’t believe during the winter caravan that we have here at Foxwoods I saw so many young little kids growing their hair.

They wanted to be like Benintendi. [LAUGHTER] And so many jerseys that said Mookie on the back, and they wanted to look like Mookie. They dressed up. They had their own little uniform.

They had the rubber bands. They have everything, just like the players do. And that is part of their responsibility that they have. And they’re probably not thinking about it, but my advice would be to really pay attention to those little details and understand that everything they do means something to someone. And even if it is in a good way, you’ve got to be responsible and accountable for the things that you do.

And part of the society, part of community work comes with the package. So I will advise them to really look into the things that are behind their back, not just in the baseball field. – I think it’s interesting you mentioned the things that you see and that are so visible, especially in this city with the spotlight on the players, but there are two examples I wanted to bring up that happened recently that you may have missed. And I want to get the panel’s reaction– the panelists reaction to it.

First of all, I think you have in newly hired– or recently hired Red Sox manager Alex Cora somebody who leads in the way that Pedro was talking about. You have to really think about what your responsibility is. You all know he is the first minority manager of the Red Sox in team history.

I think you may also be aware of the fact that, in the off season, he took a trip down to Puerto Rico, where he grew up, where his family lives to provide aid to the victims of Hurricane Maria. What you may not know is that that was part of his contract negotiation, and in the final stages of that negotiation, it wasn’t about more money. It wasn’t about more years. It was about getting a plane that could go down to Puerto Rico with that aid.

That’s one example. Another example is Christian Vazquez with his recent contract extension, a three year, I believe, $13.3 million contract extension, but that’s not what’s interesting about that. In, I think, a move that’s pretty unprecedented as far as I know, he asked that there be a provision in his contract that was a donation to the Red Sox Foundation. So kind of mind blowing when you think about a player having the presence of mind– and a manager– during the contract negotiations to think of the community. Rebecca, because you’re the beneficiary of that contract donation, when you heard that that was coming your way, what was your reaction? What did you make of it?

And did you think there was something of a change taking place? – No, I think my reaction was, no way. It was like that when I got the phone call. Yeah, I mean, again having worked for the Celtics and worked with those players for five years, I’d never seen anything like that.

And this was the first time that I’d heard it at the Red Sox, as well. So hearing it, to me, was– I mean, my immediate thought was, wow, money. Less money I had to raise to meet my bottom line, but beyond that I just felt that it was a real indication that players I feel like are starting to finally recognize the inherent value of being invested in the community, and how giving back can be good for your own personal brand, and how working in the community and being present in the community is really, really helpful for themselves both as individuals, but also as members of a professional sports team. And so to have that carve out was just remarkable– that there is kind of an element of philanthropy going on in our players’ brains is incredible.

And I think there’s only more opportunity for more. I think the other element of that contract was that I get to work with the player now to think about where we can allocate those funds. So making sure that it can be kind of part of the either portfolio of the player or against one of his philanthropic priorities is really interesting, because what I’ve seen with players is the moment that you can really have them bought into where that investment is going is the more they’re going to want to make the appearances, the more they’re going to want to say, Bekah, I’m available to do this.

And so making sure that it can really go to something that he’s himself supportive of, whether it’s a cause or a nonprofit, is really exciting for me. And so I hope– I hope– that we can continue to do this, and that it catches on, and that we can really have an element in contract with players to make it a philanthropic mandate that they’re part of the community. – Sam, you look like you have something you want to say about it, either Cora or– – No, I’m remembering back. It’s hard to believe that is hasn’t even been a full year. Going back to the end of last year, we had a really good season. We won 93 games.

We had early exit from the playoffs, and only in Boston would you win a World Series, win two division championships, and then lose your job. So I have to give a big shout out to our friend, Pedro’s friend, John Farrell, who did an amazing job for us, as did Tito. But there clearly is a shelf life in that position, especially in Boston.

So when we made the decision to move on from John, it was unanimous before the process started that we thought Alex Cora would be the right guy, but we went through a process sort of like the process to hire Bekah. We were proven right, that after interviewing the other candidates, Alex stood out just the way Bekah did as the right person to join the Red Sox. The problem was he was under contract in the postseason with the Astros on their way to a World Series championship. So we had to navigate the Major League Baseball waters of no tampering and getting permission to interview him.

And he was literally flying in to interview on off days in the American League Championship Series, and then we needed to get him in front of John Henry and Tom Werner in New York at a hotel at midnight after a game, so it was a little bit tricky. But when we ultimately got the green light to make a deal with him, Dave Dombrowski negotiated directly with him. It took, I think, about five minutes to reach agreement on a first year managerial contract for Alex Cora to join the Red Sox. And everything– it just seemed to be too good to be true. He was the hottest managerial candidate on the planet. We’ve had an agreement with him, and we’re ready to send him a term sheet.

Then Dave calls back and says there’s one little problem, one little issue. And I’m thinking, oh god, here we go. As you said, more years, more money, bigger suite on the road, first class travel in the off– something.

No, no, no, no, no. He wants a plane. I said, what do you mean, he wants a plane? Planes are expensive. He said, no, no, no, no.

He wants a plane to go from Boston to Puerto Rico this off season to shine a light on what’s going on in Puerto Rico. He’s got supplies all over the country that can come to Boston that we can take down there. So anyway, we called up our friends at JetBlue. We got a plane, and we went down to Caguas, Puerto Rico to Alex’s hometown. And I think it really just says a lot about who this guy is as a person. Look, he’s a rookie manager in the American League East.

It’s going to be difficult. It’s going to be hard, but from his time with us from 2005 through 2008, as Pedro knows a lot better than me, he was a fantastic teammate, a go to guy. When we needed him to do things in the community, I think he was someone– Pam would probably agree– pick up the phone, and call him, and he was there for you.

So he’s been a great addition, and he’s a very special person. – And just, Pedro, as you hear these stories both about Cora and Vazquez, what goes– I mean, I can also see you smiling. There seems to be a certain amount of pride that this has become the Red Sox legacy and that this is where it’s at with both the manager and young players. – Well, that’s a clear sign of what you were saying about the future, about the legacy that some other players are living out there. I’m part of it.

I feel proud of those guys doing that. I’ve been part of so many things that the Puerto Rican players do in Puerto Rico, just like they have been part of the things that I do in the Dominican Republic, and we support each other. And it’s no surprise to me that Christian wants to do that as soon as he gets a little bit of money.

He’s seen that before, and that’s what it’s all about. They have seen the examples of the Carlos Beltran, Carlos Delgado, and those guys– the Alomar brothers, Roberto Clemente living his life in the middle of the sea to go help people in Nicaragua. That’s the legacy. That’s what you want. That’s what you want to see. Pretty soon we’re going to have to sign another player, and it doesn’t have to be precisely from Puerto Rico or the Dominican, but that player is going to try to be another Christian Vazquez, or an Alex Cora, or a Pedro Martinez.

It doesn’t matter who they choose to be, but they are probably going to be doing the same thing because they saw it on someone else, and that’s what makes these kind of things that we do in the community important– is that the future that’s coming over has something to emulate when they go forward. – I think also it seems like the community expects it now perhaps more than they have in the past. And I don’t know if, Bekah, you see that in your work that they expect this philanthropy. They expect this connection among the players.

– Yeah, I mean what I’ve been thinking about as I’m listening to Pedro is that representation matters, and I think it’s critically important that, as much as we can– and I know this is in Pam’s team, the Community Relations Department– we’re getting our players into the community so that our young kids of color can see individuals that are successful and know that they can make it. And making that connection, I think, is the most important thing. I know baseball plays 700 games a season– very different than basketball. So the players are far less available than they are in basketball, but they do make an effort, and they do make time. One example is that we have Jackie Bradley Jr. Every home game on a Friday he’s agreed to come out and meet with some of our Red Sox Scholars, and so we’re making a connection, a personal connection. He spends about 30 minutes with them away from cameras, away from people, just talking.

Taking pictures, of course, signing autographs– that’s fine. But more than that, it’s really just talking to them about what they’re doing and helping to create some sort of inspiration of a pathway for them, and vision for them that they can be successful. And so really trying to make those little connections as often as we can, either at the park or in the community is, I think, what it’s all about.

– I think we’d be sort of remiss in this conversation if we didn’t mention some of the criticism that players get for speaking out, for being activists. I’m referencing here, of course, the take a knee movement in the NFL that has players kneeling during the national anthem. Trump has spoken out about it.

The NFL owners, and players, and coaches have had a difficult time figuring out how they’re going to handle it, how they’re going to deal with it. And out of that, I think what’s interesting is that sort of this– has come the players should not be involved. The phrase is the shut up and dribble part of this– that there’s that fallout.

And I’m curious, Pedro, when you hear somebody say, essentially, you shouldn’t care about your community, you should just stick to sports, what’s your reaction? – That’s a no-no for me. I think I care about my– [LAUGHTER] I will always care about my community. My community is my strength.

My community is my support. I can’t ignore my community, but at the same time, it’s so complicated to try to explain why we see mistakes that probably a Dominican that’s not as well educated wouldn’t commit– why are we seeing some mistakes so high up on the top where the leaders of the world are thinking like little kids sometimes? [APPLAUSE] And just like good things could be copied by serving as an example, I think the same message needs to go to the people– the leaders of the world.

When it comes to the sports, to the respect for the fan base, for the community, for the people that pay our salaries, I think we should continue to just respect the sport, respect the people that come to see you. You should respect your flag. You should respect the integrity of our job. We should always take that in consideration. Never forget that people help people. I remember I was landing in Tampa in 2001 as those planes were hitting the twin towers.

It was early in the morning. We had been stranded in New York for such a long time. We were tired, beat up, getting our luggages to our rooms and stuff like that when that happened. And I remember how the entire country just came together and gave each other a hug. I don’t know how you felt, but I felt it.

I felt that, at that moment, when so many innocent lives were going away, that’s when we really got strong. We started holding hands. It should be the same way all around the world.

If a bunch of aliens came down to erase us, we will all be fighting together. So why not here? Why not in these kind of situations?

Let’s stick together. People help people, and people respect people. Let’s treat everybody like a human being, not really as an individual.

Humans are humans, and we all look out for each other, and we respect each other. That’s my point of view when it comes to that. – This panel is about citizenship.

We’re talking about citizenship. It’s so great to listen to Pedro talk, because you’re just– if you’ve ever needed a reminder about what leadership is all about, at the end of the day, it’s about bringing people together, not dividing them and tearing them apart. So I think as a Red Sox– [APPLAUSE] –yeah, I agree.

I grew up a mile from Fenway Park, and we couldn’t– we just couldn’t win. We couldn’t quite get there in the ’70s, and ’80s, and ’90s. And it took leaders to come in and bring people together, and David Ortiz talks a lot about Pedro as his mentor.

So these guys, they did it together, and they showed us how to win in 2004. And then as special as ’04 was and how much it meant to all of us, and our fathers, our mothers– in my case, my grandmother– it was amazing. But Pedro, you talk about 9/11, and it got me thinking about April, 2013. And when those bombs went off at the finish line, I guarantee you every single person in this room has got their own story, and they were affected in some certain way. And the Red Sox– we felt it was critically important to just do everything we could that year to be sort of a part of the healing process. Pam’s team was unbelievable at bringing in survivors and their families, but it was David Ortiz who said what needed to be said on April 20.

I mean, it’s just unbelievable. – Didn’t put any makeup on it either. – No. [LAUGHTER] And when we went to the White House, Obama said, you got a hall pass. You can say whatever you want.

And David takes a selfie with him, and that’s whole other story. But it really is important, I think, for organizations to support their players and lift up their status as role models, as leaders. Now, not every player wants that. We certainly understand that, but as an industry, as a sports industry, Commissioner Manfred and his group– I think they’re really working hard to try and celebrate the great personalities and players. And with the Red Sox, ever since I walked through that door my first day in 2002, we’ve had that.

And we have the next generation coming behind Pedro and David with Mookie, and Jackie, and Xander, and Benintendi, and Devers. And we’re so fortunate to be a part of this era in Red Sox baseball, because it wasn’t always like this. – Yes, and with success comes higher ticket prices. – This was going so well. [LAUGHTER] – You may be aware, if you’ve gone to a Red Sox game, they have one of the most expensive– they call it game experiences.

That’s the combination of tickets, parking, and concessions. I think they’re actually now ranked third behind the Yankees and Seattle Mariners– latest check. And let’s be honest, that makes the actual game inaccessible to a significant portion of the fan base. So you talk about the importance of representation.

You’ve got to have the representation, I would think, not only in the community, but also in the ballpark. What are you doing to address that? – Well, I’m glad you asked.

[LAUGHTER] Do you have any other questions before we come back to that? [LAUGHTER] – No, I’m just kidding. We have very expensive ticket prices.

No, we don’t hide behind that. We have corporate revenue that we pursue aggressively, broadcast revenue that we pursue aggressively. We try to stage non-baseball events to drive revenues. We make no bones about that. At the end of the day, we are a business.

We’ve got a payroll north of $200 million this year, so we do need to run a business. That said, I would challenge your premise and your assertion that it’s not accessible, because we have to make Fenway Park accessible. Look, we talked a lot about teachers.

My mom was a teacher. My dad was a teacher in his own right– an Episcopal clergyman. I got to go to Fenway Park on his clergy pass for $2.

So I know what it’s like to have parents who can’t afford season tickets or even tickets, but to get into Fenway for $2. – And you re-instituted the clergy pass, right? – And not everyone has a father who is a clergyman, especially if you’re a Kennedy from Boston.

That’s a whole other story I’ll tell you about later. But we decided two years ago that we didn’t want to have to answer that question ever again moving forward. So we started our Student 9 program. So now, for every single game, every year at Fenway Park we have $9 tickets for students– high school, middle school, college, graduate students– $9 tickets, less than the cost of a movie ticket, for every single game. We have tickets available.

If we’re going to be approaching a sell out, we affirmatively hold back tickets to make $9 tickets available specifically for young people. Now, you may get a standing room ticket. You may get a seat behind a pole. On a night like tonight, you may get a field box ticket, because we’re only at 32,000 paid tonight.

So one of the benefits– we sold out Fenway Park for nine years straight, which was great. We had a wonderful sellout streak. Everyone wanted to see Pedro and David, but one of the benefits of having more inventory is that it is accessible. So we have this student ticket program. We have $15 tickets, $20 tickets, $25 tickets. We have tier five games, where tickets are priced more affordably.

Yes, we have luxury boxes, dugout seats, very, very expensive tickets in the Dell EMC Club, the State Street Pavilion, but we sort of look at it as the Robin Hood theory of pricing. Let’s charge corporations and people that can afford higher end ticket prices, and keep the low end low so it’s accessible. The other thing that we’re trying to do is open up Fenway Park year round with new and different exciting events, whether it’s soccer, outdoor ice hockey, college football, ski jumping and snowboarding. We’re trying to bring in a new young demographic to Fenway Park, because if you don’t care for your sport, things can happen. If you look at the state of boxing or horse racing in the United States right now, those sports used to dominate the landscape. And we don’t ever take that for granted, so we want to get people into Fenway, and we are making it affordable and accessible.

– And the foundation has events like Picnic in the Park. – Yeah, so this is my favorite question because I get to give away free tickets as part of my job. So actually just in April we donated out 1,100 tickets to the foundation, which is incredible. So I do get– I have the fortunate job of getting access to a lot of donated tickets back from season ticket holders either the day of a game, or pre-game, several days out. And so what I do with my team is allocate them to nonprofits in the community that we know are making an impact.

And so again, 1,100 in one month is a good number. We continually get tickets from the team, as well. So we have chunks of 75 throughout the season that we’re able to give out to large groups. We have tickets from the team that we have every single game that we’re able to donate out to nonprofits and to organizations that are trying to raise money through raffles, or silent auctions, and whatnot.

So we do have an intentional effort against making sure that we can donate out to the community to make sure we’re getting people in that might not have the means to be there. So the other thing that we’re making sure to do is have other access points for Red Sox nation and/or their fans to get into the ballpark. And so my foundation team runs about 12 events a year varying from Picnic in the Park, which is we basically put on a concert in the outfield. And so paid fans come in, and you get to meet every single player. We line them up at a table.

You get an auction, and you get a picnic blanket, and some food, and some drinks, and you get to sit down and hang out, and hear a band play music for the afternoon. So it’s events like that that we want to make sure we’re getting people into the stadium– or Fenway Park. I’m still learning terms for baseball. Sorry.

– Larry Lucchino would never let you call it a stadium, right, [INAUDIBLE]? It’s a ballpark. – Yeah, no, I call Alex Cora the head coach all the time. – Head coach.

[LAUGHTER] – All the time, all the time. And spring break, preseason. It’s just soccer games are never going to go away from me. – And wait until you have to learn all of those in Spanish. [LAUGHTER] [APPLAUSE] – So it’s really fun that we’re able to put on different events– like we have concerts in the right field roof deck at much, much, much lower prices– sometimes free.

We can get individuals from the community into the ballpark. – I’m going to turn shortly to audience questions. I know the microphone is going to be coming down the center aisle, and you can line up to ask questions, but while we wait for that to happen and wait for everyone to line up, I wanted to ask the panelists– you mentioned Red Sox nation. It’s a unique term for this unique fandom, and I am sure– and it speaks to the devotion of the fan base and the far reach of the fan base.

So I would like to hear from each of you if there’s an experience you’ve had that sort of really typifies what it is to be one of the most visible members now of Red Sox nation, if there’s been a moment, an interaction, something that you’ve experienced where you’re like, wow, this is what Red Sox nation is all about. – I have one. It’s not going to be as good as Pedro’s. Let me go first so I don’t have to follow him. – I’ll be last.

I’ll be the last. – So one of my children– I have three kids– goes to a Boston public school in Dorchester called the Henderson, and I was there the other day picking him up. And I hear from across the room– I’m walking through a hallway, and this teacher goes, can I have your autograph? I was like, who? Is she talking to me? And she runs up to me, and she’s like, oh my god, I saw you on NESN, and I’m the biggest Red Sox fan in the world.

And so that has never happened to me ever, ever, ever. Not even when I was a professional athlete has that ever happened, unless they are five years old and a soccer player. So to have people that actually watch pre-game on NESN is amazing, and that they now know my face because I’m on TV every home Friday on NESN is amazing. So I gave her the autograph. No, I’m just kidding.

I didn’t sign an autograph. So that for me just, I think, is telling that she, again, watched all of– I was going to say pre-season– all of spring training and watches every pre-game on NESN, and every single game, course. So it’s just one small testament to Red Sox nation.

– Sam, you’re next. – I’ll never forget getting off the plane after coming back from St. Louis and Pedro was grabbing laptops. Remember we were teasing Theo? And we rolled right into the parade, and obviously I’m back office– front office, but you’re in the background, where you should be behind the scenes. But thanks to Mayor Menino at the time, we were all allowed as front office members to go on the floats in the parade.

So that was sort of our 90 minutes of feeling like a rock star. You would just look at these people in office buildings, and wave to them, and they would just go crazy, and you’d say wow, this is pretty cool. And my wife, who was on the float with me, kept saying, stop doing that. They’re not here for you.

Shut up. [LAUGHTER] But I don’t know how many people were actually there, but I think it was close to five million people. I mean, it had been 86 years, and the estimates– I heard all sorts of different estimates, but now I sound like Donald Trump promoting how many people were at the inauguration. Sorry. [LAUGHTER] It was a lot of people, and it was really loud, and it was an unbelievable feeling that I’ll never forget. – Well, you were talking about giving away tickets and stuff, and talking about Fenway Park, I might be the most unique person for the most unique place for the most unique fan base and the most loyal fan base I’ve ever seen in Boston.

And let me tell you why. I was here for seven years, and I took the mound– every single time I took the mound, it wasn’t a baseball game. It was an event at Fenway. And I never threw a pitch in Boston since I got here that the stadium wasn’t sold out. And why am I saying this?

I’ve never seen a game from sitting in the stadium that Fenway is the most unique place– and I’m saying this with pride– Fenway is the most unique place that a big leaguer can probably think of to pitch a game or to play a game. And at the same time, I’m saying this because I believe, expensive or not expensive, this is the most loyal fan base in all of baseball. And I’m sorry.

We’re not disrespecting any other organization. – That’s OK. You can disrespect. [LAUGHTER] – This is the fan base.

This is Red Sox nation. [APPLAUSE] That was the biggest impression for me. It was the fact that I never got to pitch a game without Fenway being sold out, and that showed me a lot about loyalty, because you had your heart broken many times way before I got here and after I got here.

But thanks to god, we made it up. [APPLAUSE] – We’ll turn to audience questions now. If you could just identify yourself before you ask your question. – Sure. My name is Matthew, and I’m a freshman at Harvard. I spent the past two summers teaching in Samana in the Dominican Republic.

– Really? Beautiful place, huh? – Yeah, I agree. So my question is for Pedro.

So first of all, [SPANISH]. – [SPANISH]. – [SPANISH]. – [SPANISH].

– [SPANISH]. So my question is, what do you think needs to happen in the Dominican Republic to reduce poverty within the country? And do you think that baseball has a role in that? – Baseball not only has a role, I think it’s a great ambassador for the young athletes that we have, but always remember not everybody is going to get the opportunity to be a Pedro Martinez, a David Ortiz, or– as many players as you hear from Dominican, there are far more that fail on the way over to the big leagues. Put it this way.

1 out of 450 will be probably an accurate average– will probably make it to the 40 man roster, have an opportunity to play in the big leagues. That’s not counting establishing himself in the big leagues. What makes you a big leaguer is the consistency, and not all the time you get a player that’s going to be consistent in the big leagues. And that’s what gets you money, too, is being consistent.

And for the Dominican Republic, I think the first step that needs to be taken is to get rid of corruption in the system from top to bottom. The Dominican Republic is corrupt. I’m not saying it’s everybody, but the politicians have a bad rap around them. And I’m not saying it’s all of them, but the system is messed up. And that’s where new leaders have to be born, and education needs to be the center of the Dominican Republic right along with Haiti.

For people that don’t know, Dominican and Haiti share the island divided by a river. It has no walls. You see as many Haitians right now and you see Dominicans, as you see Venezuelans. There’s no borders there. There’s not really.

There’s no order. So that’s why we struggle more, and more, and more. And the education system is one of the worst in the world, and that needs to be addressed.

The corruption needs to go away so that people don’t start thinking about filling their pockets in order for the Dominican to become a little bit better. And it’s not any time soon. It takes a lot of work, but I think getting rid of corrupt people that are there to fill up their pockets– right along with Haiti, too. It’s the same problem. It’s the same problem that we have.

If we don’t get rid of that and we center ourself towards education, and putting it in the hands of people that want to be clean and want to have a better future, we’re standing in front of a lot of struggles. – Thank you. – Hi, my name is Brian. One thing that disappoints me– and maybe you could explain why this is– so many diehard sports fans in Boston– maybe across the country– are really misinformed in American politics. So many of them are right wingers, and they’re diehard Republicans.

They’re so loyal to Republicans it’s like their sports team. Why don’t more players step up, use their platform, use their position of loyalty that they have, and educate their own fan base, and endorse specific candidates for political office? It just seems to be so rare.

And I’m not talking about the people in this room, but I’m saying from my experience, and observation, and listening to talk radio, and sports talk radio, it just seems– – I have some advice for you on that topic– don’t listen. [LAUGHTER] Turn it off– country-western. Let me take a shot of that, Pedro. I think the premise is flawed that, just because someone like Pedro Martinez or David Ortiz has the ability and the willingness– or let me throw our another name, Curt Schilling– have the ability and willingness to speak out, and they have a platform, doesn’t mean that all athletes, or even the majority of athletes, are comfortable doing that. And I can give you a firm example. Last year, in the wake of the Adam Jones incident, we had many one on one conversations, group conversations with guys in our clubhouse– and they’ll remain nameless– who are young in their career and just simply said, you know, I’m not comfortable talking about issues of race or issues of politics.

And so it’s not for every player. They’re asked to do a lot of things, and I’d also say that, while players– it’s great to celebrate players’ social views or have them speak up on different things from time to time– there are a lot of sports fans that I hear from that say, enough. I turn on MSNBC and Fox News, and I hear Trump this or Obama that, or Charlie Baker this, and Marty Walsh that. I want to watch sports to get away from it.

I want to enjoy sports. I don’t want these issues of the day brought into sports. So it’s a tricky issue, I think, for players, and you put a lot of pressure on players who might not be comfortable dealing or speaking out on these issues, because every word you said gets dissected over, and over, and over.

And unless you’re the great Pedro Martinez, who can say whatever he wants– – Not really. [LAUGHTER] – It’s a lot of pressure on these players. – There’s social media right there looking at us. Everything is documented. You have to really be cautious now.

Plus, let me bring something from a baseball player’s probably standpoint. The season is so long. We’re always 24/7, like you hear in WEEI– 24/7 talking sports.

We’re under the scrutiny every single moment. And I was saying that earlier, too. It’s hard to believe that a 20-year-old is going to be held responsible for probably something so small like cursing at someone over having a bad day. And it’s documented. You throw it out there in social media, and it’s right away blown out of proportion that this guy is a bad guy, or he has a bad attitude just because he was young, snapped one time, and he was caught on a cell phone. That’s how simple it is for a player to get in trouble.

And sometimes they just want to really concentrate on the long season they have. They’re busy thinking, how am I going to figure out the little slump that I’m going at 20 years old? And all I want to do is really play baseball and let the older guys, or the guys that are ready to explain those things go do it instead of me having to take that load on my shoulder when I don’t really understand what I’m going to say, maybe because of lack of experience, too. So they try to simplify things, and baseball is really complicated.

And for a long season, where you want to be established as a baseball player, you don’t want any distractions, so you try to stay away from those things. – Thank you. [APPLAUSE] – Hi, I’m Maggie, and I’m a sophomore at Harvard. So that means that I would have been in first grade in 2004, and one of my favorite memories is my parents running upstairs to wake me up after my brother and I had already gone to bed to come back down and watch the ninth inning. So I was hoping that you could share one of your favorite baseball memories.

– My favorite memory– and it still rings my head– is just coming that morning. It was like the last out. Took forever. For a guy that had been in the baseball field for so long that surely should understand what finishing a game is like, the anxiety that I had to see that last out be recorded for Boston seems to me like it was in slow motion.

And ever since we got that last out, it was like a dream come true for me. And when I finally got here in the morning, and Sam is talking about so many things that I probably did. [LAUGHTER] – It was a fun, fun flight. When I was about to step out of the bus, I had the trophy in my hands, and the oldest players– the oldest player that we had in the team was Ellis Burks. He told me, Pedro, wait a minute. I know you’re the one handing it out to Boston, but I want to be the one receiving it, because he went through the struggles.

I don’t know if you remember, but Ellis was part of those teams that got their heart broken. He goes, I want to be part of what you helped create. And I went. I took the step on the last step of the bus, and I handed the trophy to the land in Boston. That was, to me, the biggest memory.

The last out was great, but the trophy meant, Boston, here you have it. Now I’m totally settled with Boston. [LAUGHTER] [APPLAUSE] – That’s so good. So good. – Hi, I’m Jay. Last time I went to a Red Sox game it cost $1 to sit in the bleachers.

That was in ’75. So I think we have to give Mr. Yawkey a little bit of credit of keeping the game accessible to the working class, not just to students. And it seems to me that lately over the years the game has become more of a marketing vehicle for advertising than it has for sports or community development. You go to the stadium.

It’s saturated with ads. The broadcasts are all saturated with ads. This is really a means not of developing community spirit, but of integrating out groups into a consumerist society, isn’t it, more than anything?

– Is that a Boston Globe reporter, or? [LAUGHTER] I appreciate you question. And it’s interesting, if you look at photos from the 1920s, and ’30s, and ’40s, you’ll see ads on the Green Monster. I mean, you’re not wrong in that we have to generate revenues as a company, as a club, because we have players to pay.

We have front office folks to pay. So it is a business, and we recognize that, but we also recognize the Red Sox here in this market are so much more. It’s a public trust. And I can tell you, having worked there, since day one– February 27, 2002– when John Henry, and Tom Werner, and Larry Lucchino arrived as the new owners, 17 years in they’re still the new owners of the Red Sox. It’s what we do in Boston. It takes 30 years to get native status.

These guys, they care. We’ve had some high highs, like ’04, and ’07, and ’13. We’ve had some low lows, but they care.

And we are doing everything we can to be active participants in the community, to give back through the foundation, through our community outreach. I mentioned how we’re trying to keep ticket prices affordable for tier five games, tier four games, having lower prices to complement the higher prices. But we do recognize it is expensive, and we appreciate the fan support that we get.

And at the end of the day, it is a business, so we have to balance that challenge. – Hi, my name is Duncan. This is my 40th year as a season ticket holder for the Sox. – Thank you.

– And through those years, I’ve coached my son in Little League and travel teams, watched a lot of high school, college baseball. I’m a baseball junkie. And I just get very concerned in the youth of America that interest in baseball is fading. And a lot of it to me I think is because baseball– I think hitting a baseball is the hardest thing to do in sports, and so a lot of people give up in instant mediocrity, and lacrosse, and off you go.

[LAUGHTER] But it’s inner city kids, suburban kids, whatever. And what major league baseball has done in Latin America with the camps, and the academies, raising kids up and everything, why can’t we do that in America, too, and maybe get the interest back in? – Well, I’ll kick it to Bekah and Pedro for a minute, but we do have a bit of an image or a PR problem. I don’t think so much in New England, but we have 75 million fans attending our games, which is more than all of the other major sports combined. We have more consumers consuming baseball as a product on television, and radio, on the internet than the other sports given the amount of games, the amount of inventory we have. And there was a very, very bright spot at the last major league baseball owners meetings, where we learned for the second time in two years over the last two years participation rates in baseball have increased by 2.5 million people from ’16 to ’17, which is big.

So we’re just under 25 million boys and girls playing baseball and softball, and that’s something to be celebrated. It’s seven or eight times the amount of young people playing lacrosse, for example, the sport that you [INAUDIBLE]. So I really do think it’s something that– we need to focus on that product to make sure that kids have the excess, and they fall in love with it, but I think baseball, especially in New England, is healthy. I think one major issue we have– you mentioned it– is the infection of AAU and club sports coming into baseball. And Bekah, maybe you want to talk about that, given your experience as a youth athlete.

You really need to have kids playing and not turning to these pay for play programs and playing year round. I think you’re better off playing Little League and then playing another sport. – Yeah, and that’s why we invest so heavily in the RBI program, making sure that we can have close to over 700 inner city Boston young people participating in baseball and softball every single summer, and we actually have seen retention there growing. One of the things we’re trying to do is build in some social and emotional development, gender specific social and emotional development, particularly for young girls, to ensure that we can have them coming back and having a fun experience.

I was actually just in Springfield this morning with MLB running a clinic for 150 fourth through sixth graders out there, and had an interesting conversation with the gentleman that runs their community relations department. And hearing them talk about their investment that they’re going to be making across the country– he was just telling me about a 24 hour game that they’re playing out in– I was going to say Springfield. Not Springfield.

Alaska– not even close to Springfield. So they’re going out there to do a whole 24 hour midnight game. And he was talking about going to Hawaii.

I’ll definitely try to get into that one. [LAUGHTER] But they are really being intentional about going into communities and doing what– one of the programs they have is called Play Ball, which is literally just fun. It’s bringing out Wiffle balls, softballs, and soft bats, and teaching kids how to ground.

There’s no mitts. So everything is really, really basic, but there’s music playing. It’s making sure young people have a fun initial experience with the sport to hopefully build a retention and love for the game so that they keep coming back, because you’re right. I think we are losing out to elite athletes that want to only be specific in one sport, and that they don’t want to be diversified in their portfolio, to be fairly formal. But I really believe in having young people participate in as many sports as possible as young as possible to really be exposed to the game, because it’s a beautiful thing, A, and, B, obviously we know that there is a proven– I know there is a proven link between academics and athletics. And so when you can introduce sports to young people, they’re going to be academically successful.

So all that to say I think there is an intentional effort with MLB and us to make sure we’re investing deeply. We fund over 200 Mass Little League programs right now. So enabling 3,000 young people to play sports across Massachusetts is incredible. So we’re making the investment, and we know the importance there.

– My name is Sal Bolanos. I live and work in Boston. Part time student here at Harvard. Combat veteran.

I met you at the Army-Navy game last week, Sam. [SPANISH], Pedro? – Gracias [SPANISH]. – Anyway, two part question. You have a way with words, Pedro.

– [INAUDIBLE]. – People help people. – Way with words. – Humans are humans. Who, in baseball, has helped you not only adjust to the baseball life, but in life in the United States? And also, who have you mentored as far as adjusting to life in baseball and being an immigrant in this country?

– Thank you. That’s great, and some great questions. First of all, I must say faith in god– basic in our house. Mom and dad, the influence. Most of the things that you probably don’t relate to baseball, but they are. When they teach you to be strong, to work, to do all those things, they’re holding you responsible.

And they want you to be the best that you can be in everything you do. If I start mentioning names of people that really influenced my way of being, my way of thinking, and my experience, I probably wouldn’t finish tonight, but I would have to say that the base– and I will say it again. It’s all about the base, because we do have here a base program that we visit.

And that was, I guess, the national anthem that they have at the base. The base– it’s all about the base to me. It was all about the base. How my mom and dad were able to raise us right and make us strong to actually face adversity, and face whatever we had to face, and also be respectful of what we were doing and respect human beings as human beings.

Like you said, a human helps a human, and I said it earlier. It’s all because of my mom and dad and the strong faith and belief that they introduced to us. – Gracias. – Hi, my name’s David. My last Little League season was in 1999, which was Pedro prime time. So I’d love to ask him about Don Zimmer or his amazing change up, which, by the way, 25% of batters swung and missed at the change up in 2002, and that wasn’t even Pedro’s best season.

– Statistics. [LAUGHTER] – So, but I have to ask Sam a question, which is you talked about the pain that you felt when you heard what had happened with Adam Jones. And I think all of us who grew up as fans and feel the way you do can also read the history about Jackie Robinson’s sham tryout at Fenway and feel that same type of pain, and shock, and really embarrassment, because this is a team that we feel ownership of. So with that in mind, why isn’t the Yawkey Morse code coming off the Green Monster? – A very timely question and something that we’ve been talking about internally.

For right now, we have decided that we’re going to keep recognition of Mr. And Mrs. Yawkey that exist inside the ballpark. Tom Yawkey’s in the Red Sox hall of fame. He’s in the Cooperstown hall of fame, and the Morse code initials have been on that board since the ’70s. And really our thinking around that could change, but right now we’ve been focused on the message of inclusion at the ballpark.

And the name on the front door where 85%, 90% of our fans come through gate A and gate D has been what we’ve been focused on. And you have a tricky time going back and looking at the history of every single player, for example, that’s been recognized in the Hall of Fame either in Cooperstown or with the Red Sox, but that’s where we are right now, and we’ve really been focused on that symbol on our front door, but that position or that decision could change in the future. But that’s where we are right now. – I know we’re all very engrossed in this conversation, but in order to keep things moving, I think we’re going to take two questions at a time and try to make sure everybody gets where they need to go.

– Thanks. My name is Ronald Herman, and thank you, folks, for being here and spending some time with us. I’ll try to sneak in two questions. Dominican born, my dad would be really upset if I didn’t get a question in. So to make him proud, I’m going to ask two. The first is for you, Pedro.

I think one of the things that made you great was your competitiveness. And so now that you’re retired, how do you continue to feed that competitiveness in you? And the second question is for you, Sam. In baseball today– or more so in the Red Sox organization, what kind of programs are there for foreign born players that struggle to fit in culturally into baseball or into Boston? How do you help those? And I ask that because I moved to this country when I was eight years old, and I struggled with that in Boston.

And so I wonder what the Red Sox is doing for players. – Well, how do I deal with the competitiveness that I have? I pitch to my kids. [LAUGHTER] I’m still eager to go and compete.

When I see those series that come over special with the Yankees and stuff, and the rivalry and stuff, my god, I wish I was there sometimes, but my time is done. But the reason why I was so competitive was really I was hungry. I wanted it.

I wanted it against the best. I wanted it against the biggest. And I wanted it well done. And so I really dragged myself to compete in the best way possible against the best.

And I did not want to fall short, because I would be dishonoring what my mom and dad told me. And I told you. It was all about the base. They told me to be strong, and compete, and kick and scratch for whatever I wanted to get.

And that’s why I was fearless out there. Regardless of what happened, I was going to try to go forward. So that’s my pure answer.

Now you. – Well, in terms of our international signings and bringing players into the Red Sox organization, it’s a hugely important part of what we do each and every day. We’ve had players from the Dominican, from Puerto Rico, from Venezuela, from– – Panama. – From Panama.

From China. – Nicaragua. – Nicaragua. – It’s expanding. – And we go on, and on, and on.

And we have many people that focus on the development of our young players on the field. We also have a very important support network off the field, and there is a 20 year incredible employee of the Red Sox, a woman named Raquel Ferreira, who was our Vice President of Baseball Operations. She was actually just on a panel with Bekah the other day. She is also a rock star, and she deals with the players and all of the issues related to getting anything they need in terms of financial services, or transportation, or residential, medical, and dealing with families living in another country.

So she has a department of folks that work on those issues. And the second thing we do is something we started about a decade and a half, maybe 12 years ago, as the Red Sox rookie development program. So when players come in, when they’re in that sort of triple-A year, we think they’re going to get ready to make that jump to the big leagues, we have them come to Boston for a week in January to try and make sure they know how to get everything they might need in the city of Boston– where to live, where to stay, how to make the transition from Rhode Island, Pawtucket, up to Boston. So we have about 330 men and women that work at the Red Sox and about 150 in baseball operations set up as that apparatus for support.

– And I wouldn’t be a true feminist without saying that we also have support for the wives of the players that come. – Yes, good point. – So it is a huge transition for, I think, a wife or partner of a lot of these players to come into a new city with nothing– with no friends, with no knowledge of where to go for what. And so we have staff that are dedicated to making sure that the wives feel comfortable and assimilated, and have their needs met for their children, for themselves.

And we make sure that there are connections there between the wives and the players, and their agents, and front office staff. So just making sure that we can also– the whole family is taken care of, not just the players, as well. – And we’re going to try this again. Just two questions– – Two people. – Two people at a time. – Thank you so much for involving us in asking questions.

I’m Ray. I’m a public library volunteer, and I just wanted to shine a light on the excellent program, Read Your Way to Fenway, that’s been a part of my children’s lives and the communities’ lives for as long as I’ve lived in Boston. And I just wanted to ask quickly, what are your plans to support the program in the coming years?

– So I’m going to– sorry, you want the second question now? – Wait, wait. Second– just if you could come forward. Just going to try to speed things along a little bit. – My name is Francisco, and I’m first generation, born Dominican, born here in Boston. So played in the RBI league and did all that.

– Yay. – And growing up, when Pedro pitched, I felt like in the Dominican community it was like a holiday. And I want to know if– – It’s called a curfew. It was called a curfew that day in the Dominican.

– Yeah, seriously. – Even the president would take it off. [LAUGHTER] – When you were taking that mound, was that something that was in the back of your mind, knowing that here in Boston there is such a strong Dominican community that was rooting for you? – Yes, it was. It was always a sense of responsibility for it. Like I said, there are things that you don’t know that come with the package.

Being Dominican, representing the Dominican Republic was something that I was always aware. I was aware that I was carrying the Dominican flag, as well so I was competing. So for me, it was really important that I did it right and that I carried the honor of representing my country. It was always important. – Then I can take your first question.

I’m going to pull my I’ve been on this job for three months card right now and say that I have not yet learned or know in depth about that program, but I’m happy to give you my card after, and we can follow up and make sure to support. – Thanks. – And the Read Your Way to Fenway program is still going on and will continue.

– [INAUDIBLE]. – And we’d be in big trouble if we didn’t, because my mother-in-law is a librarian, and big time in the library. So we can talk offline. – Hi, I’m a teacher. [SPEAKING SPANISH] I want to kind of just present that Pedro has been a person who has inspired everyone in this room, but especially my students.

– Thank you. – Back when I first started, I had Tony Pena, who came to my school, and the town lit up. I was a teacher in Boston and also in Salem.

But there are other people who were predecessors– Mike Fornieles, Earl Wilson. If you study what happened to Earl Wilson, the legacy is there that is so sad, but we have in front of us someone who is celebrated instead of denigrated. And that, to me, is extremely important going through the years. If we looked at Reggie Smith, if we looked at Elston Howard, I was there for the first game for Pumpsie Green.

My father had season tickets. Can you imagine, in the ’50s, season tickets? But we did.

Jim Rice has stories– Reggie Smith. 1967 in my life was the most integrated team. That was the first time that we– gee, we were in the World Series. I also have to mention, while I was in Boston was in the early ’70s. My student was the first black bat boy for the Red Sox. – And do you have a question?

– My question is I wanted to get all to the good stuff. Now I’m going to something else. Two things. When Pedro was pitching, no one talked in our house. We only watched the game.

But we have a problem here in the United States right now with immigration, and I see families being torn apart in my community, and I want to know, as I look up here exploring sports and citizenship, how the Red Sox can help with our families being torn apart and deported? – We’ll take another question, and we’ll kind of address– – [INAUDIBLE]. – You sure you don’t want to handle that one? I don’t want anyone to forget.

– Sam, you said you can handle– – Well, why don’t we– in the interest of keeping this– pace of the game is an initiative for baseball these days. Just to quickly thank you for sharing your memories and your question. We said it before, but Fenway is a community gathering place, and it’s a place that hopefully people can come together. We’ve actually had immigration ceremonies at Fenway Park. – Latino night.

– We have Latino night, Latino festival. We have Latino youth recognition days each and every month. In fact, tonight was one of those at Fenway.

We missed it because we were here, but I just think Fenway is a place where we can all come together and be one cheering for a common cause. When Pedro pitched, boy, it was– you’re right. It was not a game. It was an event. So hopefully we can keep that spirit going at Fenway Park. – And I’ll just quickly add that we also– our Red Sox Scholars program can be given to undocumented students.

And so in my past life, being an ED for a nonprofit called Scholar Athletes, we actually sought out undocumented students because they’re not eligible for federal aid. And so our dollars are critical to help them pursue education. So that’s yet another way I think that we’re really helping. – Can I add something? I’m just going to say something on behalf of immigrants. The reason I’m here, and celebrated, and not denigrated, like you said, it was because I was granted an opportunity.

So if in any way, this panel is going to be useful for this kind of matter, it’s saying I don’t have a problem. We don’t have a problem with investigating who’s the right fit or maybe the right person to give an opportunity, but please do it. You never know where you’re going to find another guy like me. [LAUGHTER] And you never know what kind of human is going to be helping another human. This gentleman over here asked me who I probably influenced. I don’t like to talk about myself when it comes to that.

This moment that I have here that I can probably express myself and express my feelings– those are the kind of things that I would like to do. If anybody wants to be influenced by what I’m saying, grant an immigrant that you feel is right an opportunity. And the results might be surprising. Give some opportunity. [APPLAUSE] – Hi, I’m Jim Solomon.

I’m not a plant from Shira, I promise, but I’m one of the owners of the Harford Yard Goats, Colorado Rockies double-A team. And I want to first applaud everything that the Boston Red Sox do for their community. It’s noticed, and it’s truly appreciated. I’m wondering if you see opportunities with regard to– well, you define this evening as Red Sox nation, not just Boston Red Sox. And so I imagine that includes Pawtucket, Portland, and the organization as a whole, and that you have an interest in protecting the brand vertically throughout the organization and reaching out into the community at all levels. And so what I want to know is there are great cities like New Hampshire– Manchester for New Hampshire Fisher Cats, Portland for the Sea Dogs, and Hartford for the Yard Goats, but there are also a number of minor league clubs that play in areas that really need help even more than those cities.

So what I want to know is if you see opportunity for the big team, the major league team to reach down to the minor leagues, one, to encourage the ballplayers to have more contact. Like the way you said Jackie Bradley Jr. Talks to the kids doesn’t really cost money, but it’s something that’s really doable, or the possibility of people in your minor league organization, say, working with you on community to get some more ideas of what they can do. So anyway, I want to know– and I don’t know the experience for a minor league player and how nervous they are about just making the team, how that affects their desire to get out and do anything with the community. So I throw it out there for anybody. – We’re going to try to do the two person thing. We have one more, I think, question behind, so we’ll get to some of that.

Yes? – Hi, I’m Josh Coen, and I’m in the eighth grade, and I’m a huge Red Sox fan, so this is really cool. So, thank you.

[APPLAUSE] So I just have a pretty basic question. What is the biggest change that pro athletes need to make in order to be better role models for youth? – I’m guessing you’re asking this pro athlete, not this one. [LAUGHTER] – I think if you’re raised the proper way in every aspect I think the change is not drastic. Just like I said before, because of the way my upbringing was made me strong in everything I did. And baseball is no exception, and when you get to the big leagues or you get anywhere, what you have to do is stress what you learn before you got there, execute, remain loyal.

Like I said before, you have to be consistent about what you did to get you to where you are. You don’t have to really go through a dramatic change in things in order for you to be from Pawtucket to the Red Sox. You just continue to do the things that you were doing right and do it with consistency. Same thing with your goals, whatever they are in life, in baseball, sports, whatever. Just be consistent of the things that you were taught before you got there.

– That addressed those questions in some way, and I think we’re going to have to wrap it up here. I want to say thank you again to the panelists– Pedro, Bekah, Sam– and also thank you to the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard, and to BUR, Boston’s NPR news station, for hosting the event. A special thank you to Radcliffe’s Becky Wasserman, who’s been my partner in crime, and to Amy MacDonald– lots of late night e-mails.

And I look forward to seeing what the Red Sox are going to do in the future both on the field and off of it. Thank you all for coming. [APPLAUSE]

Improvisation in Bingo

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Through History of Slots

During the 1930’s the Mills Co. began to theme the slot machines with colorful depictions such as the Lion Head, the War Eagle and the Roman Head in 1931, and the Castle Front in 1933. As these new flashy models were produced, new features were also added. The Lion Head still used the gooseneck coin acceptor that was introduced in the twenties, but later models such as the War Eagle highlighted a new coin acceptor that showed the coins moving across the top of the slot machine.

In the 1930’s the popularity of slot machines increased greatly. In the forties, a man named Bugsy Seigel added the machines to his Hotel in Las Vegas called the Flamingo Hilton. What’s interesting is that the machines were originally introduced to the hotel as a way of entertaining the wives and girlfriends of high rollers. It was not long after, when the revenue from the casino slot machines began to supersede that of the casino’s table games. Forty years later in the mid eighties, both slot machines and table games were on par with eachother, and by the nineties, slots were the leader, capturing more than two thirds of all casino revenue in the United States.

The term ‘slot machines’ was originally used to define both automatic vending machines as well as the gambling devices, however, in the twentieth century, the term only refers to slots as we know them today. Slot machines have gained a universal appeal in casinos. Unlike other games involving skill and strategy, slot machines are played, and money is won and lost solely on the basis of the laws of probability. Today, slot machines are able to accept multiple bets simultaneously and create jackpots that can pay $5,000-$10,000 but can even run to more than $1 million. In 2003, the U.S. state governments taxed casino gambling and raised an astonishing $6 billion.

The modern day slot machine has indeed come a long way since 1895. It has survived a difficult era during the early part of the 1900’s when the anti-gambling movement emerged, but has flourished and evolved to become an important part of today’s gaming industry.

Adventures with the Asian Grandmothers Cookbook

Understanding cooking as a communal act is a central premise in Patricia Tanumihardja’s The Asian Grandmothers Cookbook. That’s why when I first decided to tackle making a dim-sum favorite from scratch, I didn’t attempt it alone. I asked my friend and neighbor, Jeanette, someone more experienced in the art of Asian cooking than I, to join me.

Asian GM

Jeanette is also the one responsible for my newfound love of the 99 Ranch Market. Mark my words. Do not be intimidated by your local Asian grocery. Explore. Enjoy. If your trips are anything like mine, they will undoubtedly yield simple treasures (pristine portobello mushrooms for significantly less money than seems reasonable) and unexpected delights (red bean ice cream!—who knew?). The Asian Grandmothers Cookbook is also an informative resource for those who are unfamiliar with the staples of Asian cooking. Hint: White pepper and sesame oil are versatile must-haves for your pantry!

So after rigging a makeshift steaming operation using a mismatched skillet/basket/lid and investing some time prodding and primping the skins . . . the gloriously authentic result is pictured here: Our shiu mai was a hit!

Though my grandmother happened to be Norwegian and not Asian, I know she would be proud of our accomplishment. Like many of the women who inspired Tanumihardja’s collection, my grandmother knew the value of a well-cooked meal and wasn’t afraid to spend extra time and effort making something special to nourish her family.

Maybe your grandma taught you how to make Norwegian rømmegrøt, or oyako donburi, or nothing at all. Regardless, The Asian Grandmothers Cookbook offers a wealth of ethnic specialties that are accessible to the modern home cook. And whether they’re of Chinese, Japanese, Indonesian, Vietnamese, or Indian descent, it’s clear that all of these Asian grandmothers have something delicious to add to the mix. So follow their lead: Take some time to slow down and savor the legacy of another generation’s or another culture’s culinary favorites. You won’t regret it!

Shiu Mai (Pork and Shrimp Cups)

Dried black mushrooms give these tidbits an earthy flavor while water chestnuts add crunch. And this dim sum staple is easier to make than you may think. Look for fresh or frozen round shiu mai skins in Asian markets—the thinner the better. If you can’t find shiu mai skins, thicker gyoza or wonton skins (trim off square corners before using) will do. The skins come in packs of about 50.

Time: 2 1/2 hours

Makes: 3 dozen (10 to 12 servings)

Super Foods College Students Can Benefit From

The most common items that can be found in most college students lives include, but are not limited to: fast food, sweets, gallons of coffee, energy drinks and soda. While good for a quick fix, these boosters only serve as a temporary solution not to mention that the ingredients contained in these foods and beverages often have little to no nutritional value. So how do students stay alert and focused while still being able to maintain their busy schedules? By turning to food choices that are not only healthy but naturally chock full of energy.

Before reaching for a bag of chips or cookies as a snack in between classes or while studying at home, why not grab a yogurt instead? This food item contains naturally high levels of B-vitamins, which play the role of converting nutrients into energy. Good for you and good for your body. These days there are plenty of varieties of flavors and types to choose from, so even students with the pickiest taste palettes are bound to find the yogurt they like best.

Are you a compulsive snacker? This particular eating habit can make or break a person’s daily eating regimen but if the right foods items are chosen then you’ll be doing right by your body. Turn to nuts and seeds as your prime snack of choice. These can be purchased at any store or, for you do-it-yourself types, put together your own healthy bag of snack mix. Great items to throw in include soy nuts, almonds, sunflower seeds, peanuts and pumpkin seeds. What makes these little buggers so powerful is the fact that they are naturally rich in energy-boosting properties namely, iron, B vitamins, protein, vitamin E, fats (the good kind), magnesium and even omega 3 fatty acids. All of these properties help promote a healthier lifestyle and don’t take much effort to implement into a daily eating regimen.

Need a meal that’s not only good for you but will help during a late night study session? Then you’ll want to begin tossing in key green and leafy vegetables, such as spinach, sprouts, asparagus and broccoli. Full of magnesium, calcium, iron and beta-carotene, among others, eating more leafy, green vegetables will not only keep you alert and focused, but also reduces your chances of developing debilitating conditions, such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease and cancer. Additionally, these foods also improve immune function.

While on the topic of meals, don’t forget to include eggs! Chock full of protein, eggs are one of the most affordable and easiest food items to prepare. Students have the ability to enjoy a tasty omelet for breakfast, as part of a sandwich for lunch or in any number of dinner meals. However, health experts recommend limiting yourself to no more than three eggs per week.

It may be tempting to stop into a coffee shop and order a tall cup of the strongest brew or reach for the closest, cold energy drink in the store, but students would be well advised to make a healthier switch that still provides effective results.

A drink as simple as good ole orange juice gives the body plenty of vitamins, the most obvious being vitamin C, which actually have the power to fight fatigue and keep students energized throughout the day. Homemade fruit smoothies also contain ingredients guaranteed to jolt you awake in the right way. There are tons of DIY fruit smoothie recipes that can easily be found online.

Vintage Musings III: complexity and when to pick

We all love wine, different taste of wine. Is it safe to assume most people understand that a little bit of character from Brettanomyces enhances the complexity of a wine?

Sure everyone’s threshold is slightly different, but when 4-ethylphenol or 4-ethylguaiacol hover around the threshold an already wonderful wine can become sublime and an ordinary wine compelling. In other words, flavor compounds generally recognized as a fault can often enhance and augment a wine helping the whole be greater than the sum of the parts. Of course it is a risky line to walk, but I think most would agree with this premise.

It is with this in mind that I follow-up the recent post regarding picking by flavors. If it is true that flavor compounds generally recognized as a fault can often enhance and augment a wine than is it true for methoxypyrazine specifically? While working with Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon this compound is something we often ponder since it contributes to the relatively unsavory bell pepper aroma.

Studies (Allen et. al. (1991); Lacey et. al.(1991)) with white wine have shown that when methoxypyrazine was added to wine that otherwise had none, concentrations as low as 1 part per trillion significantly influenced the aroma of a methoxypyrazine-free white wine (emphasis mine) but was not necessarily perceived as pyrazine (bell pepper, chili, ect.) per se. In fact the threshold in this study was determined to be around 8 ppt in white wine. Typically aromas such as these have even higher thresholds in red wine. Why bring this up? Well the problem with scientific studies is that they understandably avoid more subjective conclusions regarding perceived quality and limit themselves to analytical quantification. What interests me is that the compound contributed to the overall aroma as low as 1 ppt, but while scores for veggie increased with increasing concentrations of pyrazine, there was no significant difference between 1, 2, 4, and 6 ppt. It was not until 8 ppt that the tasters effectively said, Whoa, now that is different.

Therefore since the tasters do not indicate whether or not they liked the aroma, I am free to use this study amongst other corroborating evidence to make my own speculation about aroma contribution. This is a 3 paragraph intro to get to this point: at these low levels the contribution to the aroma certainly could have been positive contribution to complexity, to interest, to intrigue in the wine.

Don’t let their term used to train the tasters – veggie – throw you off track. Why shouldn’t the pyrazine compounds improve and complex the aromas and flavors of the wine that would otherwise have none? Indeed, Allen has said elsewhere in regards to Sauvignon blanc: [pyrazine] concentration in Sauvignon blanc wines is typically 5-30 ng/L. Below 5-10 ng/L, the aroma is subdued; at 15-20 ng/L it provides an aroma that is distinctive, characteristic of the grape variety, and frequently balanced with other flavor components in the wine; at only 30 ng/L it begins to be rank and overpowering. Too little of this compound leads to an undistinguished wine, but too much gives one that is unbalanced (emphasis mine).

Vintage Musings IV: getting a picture

The blocks that generally require such tractor passes in order of frequency are the Syrah blocks followed by the young Chardonnay (representing 2 of 4)and then the young Merlot (representing 2 of 3).

After tasting all lots I continue to be convinced that indeed the blocks just mentioned improved the most that year.

So what of the other old vine blocks (Chard, Merlot, and Cab.)? Well, they are tremendous but that is par for the course. I think it is typical for the exact reason that 1) they already have low vigor and generally require 0 (sometimes

1) hedging pass to address excessive shoot growth in normal years. Of course there are other factors involved here that make the site wonderful, but what I have outlined above consistently produces wines of weight and concentration that is gained from methods other than extended ripening.

2) At least for white wine it is generally accepted that early water stress (or severe water stress in general for that matter) is less important for improving quality that it is in reds. Interestingly, the early stress not only impacted canopy vigor, but also clearly impacted fruit and cluster size. Most obviously in Chardonnay.

But as noted, even though cluster size was down 50% in Chardonnay, I would not say quality was up 50% or even close to that. Another indication that yield is not so simply linked with quality but how you get that yield probably is. And this year lower vigor and lower yield as a result of low water availability early has clearly positively impacted quality in the blocks where vigor is generally the greatest.

OK, so the whole post is a general simplifications but the main point is that quality across the board is up and the vintage devigorated blocks that need devigoration the most and this has resulted in serious quality gains in those blocks. The message is clear: buy your futures now.

Vit Practices: Color and Cab

Here is the bottom line on this fairly well done study: Increasing your hang time will impact your color. However, there was no difference between 1 and 2 weeks after normal harvest dates.

Although the authors try to sell this as a study about wine quality, no sensory work was performed and they really only looked at color. Nevertheless, slightly riper grapes seemed to have a little better color stability after 18 months.

Reading this article after another recent gem on light and color highlights the possibility that looking at total phenols, or phenols in general is largely deficient in determining quality (an opinion I am developing). The grapes used here may have had more color later, but what about vegetal, peppery, or fruity flavors? Was there a difference at all in characteristics such as these? It seems to me most of us would take the diminished color at ripening stage 1 (about 22.5 Brix) and subsequent lower alcohol if we were confident the flavors were delectable and weren’t going to get any better. But do they get better? Or just stylistically different? If you want a summary of study details see below.

Perez-Magarino, S et. al: J. Agric. Food Chem. 2004, 52, 1181-1189

Tinto Fino (TF) and Cabernet Sauvignon (CS) were used to assess the effect of the degree of grape ripening primarily on wine color. Color changes during ageing of each treatment was also examined. The levels of flavanols, anthocyanins, and derivatives of both types of compounds, were assayed immediately after fermentation and at different times during aging in American oak barrels and in the bottle.

The ripening stages were approximately as follows:

1)conventional’ 22.5 Brix, pH 3.36, TA 7.76 (CS) ; 2) 1 week after (23.6 Brix); and 3) 2 weeks after (~24.2).

Fermentation between 25 and 28 °C with 40 mg/L SO2. The maceration time was ~ 14 days. Pressed at ~ <3 g/L sugar, transferred into barrels where malolactic fermentation and wood aging were carried out.

The results showed that “maturity date” or “ripening stages” effects were detected, but these are different for each individual component as well as for each of the two grape varieties studied.

In general, the dimer and trimer flavan-3-ol derivatives reached higher levels in the unaged wine made from the grapes collected on the later harvest dates which indicated that the degree of flavanol polymerization increased with the degree of grape ripening. However, this was only true in the CS. The TF had its peak in the middle ripening stage. There seemed to be only small differences between ripening stage 2 and 3, and certain compounds were even statistically higher in stage 2 than in stage 3. No difference in total phenols existed between stages 2) and 3).

WINE AGEING: “No clear trends with grape ripening were observed. In fact, the CS wines with the highest color intensity values were the wines made from the grapes collected on the 2nd harvest date.” The wines made from more mature grapes had higher levels of flavanols and their derivatives.

The free anthocyanin content decreased sharply during aging, the greatest losses taking place in the first months of aging. After 18 months of ageing, any initial differences in anthocyanins and its derivatives (termed ‘new pigments’) due to ripening stage were virtually erased. However, color intensity differences were maintained after 18 months and in all cases the percentage of blue increased as ‘new pigments’ increased (i.e. anthocyanin products that are not antho-tannin complexes). Wines made from ripening 2) 3) showed higher levels in these ‘new pigments’, in both TF and CS wines.

Summarizing: delaying harvest date between 1 and 2 weeks produced grapes with greater color intensity and a higher percentage of blue pigment. This increase in anthocyanin derivative levels contributes to color stability by maintaining color intensity and increasing the blue component.

Additionally, the results showed that the amount of time the grapes are left on the vines may need to be limited, because wines made from the grapes collected on the 3rd harvest date did not exhibit better color quality characteristics than the wines made from the grapes collected on the 2nd harvest date.