I already did. It's us who decide, not Monsanto!!!
Health is all we have and it's supposed to be a priority. Right? Wrong! I gathered quite a long list of articles dedicated to the lie of public health care. I called it a health joke, but it's not a joke, it's more likely a conspiracy. I won't comment each article separately, they are way too much. I would like only to point to the obvious weakness in our attitude in life.
When we suspect something is bad for our health, we don't stop using it, when we know something is good for our health, we pretend we don't know. How stupid is this?! What am I referring to? First, we know how good diagnostic tools are CT scans and MRI. How often do we use them? Very rarely. Why?! I mean these are among the most beneficial for human life pieced of technology we came up with. And yet, they are drastically under-used, because of the cost. Well, what's the point of being technologically developed civilization, if because of the cost you don't use what you know?! How sick this idea of economy is? Human life is suppose to be above all. But of course, it is not. For a long while I repeat that society defines economy and not the other way around. But nobody listens or cares to listen. And people die in vain. Why? Because.
It's funny how we ignore the problem with the cost of health care until we or somebody around us gets sick. And then we suddenly realise just how unfair life is. But it doesn't have to be that way. The absolute cost of the treatment rarely equals the price we pay for it. Usually the price covers research, salaries, resources and genuine profit. Why did personal computers become cheap? Because they are common. True, the production cost is also low, but that also comes from the fact they are common. When scans and MRI become common, their cost will fall. But for that, we need political will. Do we have it? No.
From the other side - when we know something is bad for our health, do we remove it from our lives? Of course not. We still use the nasty plastic bottles, we're still bombarded with tons of chemicals causing all kind of health effects. And authorities still deny to involve with the process of regulating those chemicals. Is it simple to regulate them? No. We're talking about a great number of chemicals, each of which should be risk-assessed separately and in combination with other chemicals. This is absurdly hard and probably it would take forever to say something is "safe". But should it be done? Yes. Most definitely yes. It's impossible to regulate each and every substance we get in contact with. But the most common chemicals and combinations, or those that are suspected to be dangerous should be regulated. This effort should be done.
One would think that the authorities should be interested in public health, since it pays for public health care. Even when the health care is not public, the authorities still pay for various social programs aimed at people who are not healthy. In the least - the sick person is not a good worker. If a lot of people are sick, production will suffer. Economy will suffer. So authorities are supposed to care for public health. They are supposed to, but they don't. If they did, they will act adequately to regulate possible dangers. Instead, they regulate only pharmaceutical finances. How is that for a health care?
Ultimately - it's up to us to require better regulation. If you want something to happen, find similarly minded people and ask your government to provide for your needs. After all, the logic that if something is dangerous, the market will regulate it is kind of stupid. If people die or get sick from a combination of products, they will never know who to sue. Who is then regulating the dangerous substances? Who is regulating aggressive pharmaceutical companies who medicate little kids, when all they need is counseling? Who regulates medical costs when it comes to treatments? Ultimately - what's the point in paying for any kind of health care, if all that "health care" do is suck your money? None!
I think it's time we all wake up and understand that the power is in our hands. And the time to act is NOW.
- Child’s Ordeal Shows Risks of Psychosis Drugs for Young
- In Feast of Data on BPA Plastic, No Final Answer
- Vitamin D found to influence over 200 genes, highlighting links to disease
- Prone to Error: Earliest Steps to Find Cancer
- Push to Market Pill Stirs Debate on Sexual Desire
- Diabetes Drug Maker Hid Test Data on Risks, Files Indicate
- CT Scans Cut Lung Cancer Deaths, Study Finds
- Elevated nitrogen and phosphorus still widespread in much of the nation's streams and groundwater
Child’s Ordeal Shows Risks of Psychosis Drugs for Young
By DUFF WILSON
Published: September 1, 2010
OPELOUSAS, La. — At 18 months, Kyle Warren started taking a daily antipsychotic drug on the orders of a pediatrician trying to quell the boy’s severe temper tantrums.
Thus began a troubled toddler’s journey from one doctor to another, from one diagnosis to another, involving even more drugs. Autism, bipolar disorder, hyperactivity, insomnia, oppositional defiant disorder. The boy’s daily pill regimen multiplied: the antipsychotic Risperdal, the antidepressant Prozac, two sleeping medicines and one for attention-deficit disorder. All by the time he was 3.
He was sedated, drooling and overweight from the side effects of the antipsychotic medicine.
Today, 6-year-old Kyle is in his fourth week of first grade, scoring high marks on his first tests. He is rambunctious and much thinner. Weaned off the drugs through a program affiliated with Tulane University that is aimed at helping low-income families whose children have mental health problems, Kyle now laughs easily and teases his family.
More than 500,000 children and adolescents in America are now taking antipsychotic drugs, according to a September 2009 report by the Food and Drug Administration. Their use is growing not only among older teenagers, when schizophrenia is believed to emerge, but also among tens of thousands of preschoolers. Even the most reluctant prescribers encounter a marketing juggernaut that has made antipsychotics the nation’s top-selling class of drugs by revenue, $14.6 billion last year, with prominent promotions aimed at treating children.
But it is cheaper to medicate children than to pay for family counseling, a fact highlighted by a Rutgers University study last year that found children from low-income families, like Kyle, were four times as likely as the privately insured to receive antipsychotic medicines.
Texas Medicaid data obtained by The New York Times showed a record $96 million was spent last year on antipsychotic drugs for teenagers and children — including three unidentified infants who were given the drugs before their first birthdays.
In addition, foster care children seem to be medicated more often, prompting a Senate panel in June to ask the Government Accountability Office to investigate such practices.
Kyle was rescued from his medicated state through a therapy program called Early Childhood Supports and Services, established in Louisiana through a confluence of like-minded child psychiatrists at Tulane, Louisiana State University and the state. It surrounds troubled children and their parents with social and mental health support services. source
In Feast of Data on BPA Plastic, No Final Answer
By DENISE GRADY
September 6, 2010
The research has been going on for more than 10 years. Studies number in the hundreds. Millions of dollars have been spent. But government health officials still cannot decide whether the chemical bisphenol-A, or BPA, a component of some plastics, is safe. The substance lines most food and drink cans, and is used to make hard, clear plastic bottles, containers and countless other products. Nearly everyone is exposed to it.Concerns about BPA stem from studies in lab animals and cell cultures showing it can mimic the hormone estrogen. It is considered an “endocrine disruptor,” a term applied to chemicals that can act like hormones. But whether it does any harm in people is unclear.
Where science has left a void, politics and marketing have rushed in. A fierce debate has resulted, with one side dismissing the whole idea of endocrine disruptors as junk science and the other regarding BPA as part of a chemical stew that threatens public health.
About half a dozen states have banned BPA in children’s products, and Senator Dianne Feinstein hopes to accomplish the same nationwide, with an amendment to the food safety bill scheduled for a vote in the Senate next week.
This year, a presidential panel on cancer and the environment said there was a “growing link” between BPA and several diseases, including cancer, and recommended ways to avoid BPA, like storing water in bottles free of it and not microwaving food in plastic containers. Some cancer experts said the report overstated the case against chemicals, but the concerns it raised seemed to reflect growing public worries.
In May, a White House task force on childhood obesity issued a report suggesting that BPA and certain other chemicals might be acting as “obesogens” in children — promoters of obesity — by increasing fat cells in the body and altering metabolism and feelings of hunger and fullness. Perhaps not surprisingly, the issue of whether BPA is safe has become highly partisan.
Environmental groups and many Democrats want BPA banned, blaming it for an array of ills that includes cancer, obesity, infertility and behavior problems. Environmentalists think the United States should adopt the “precautionary principle,” a better-safe-than-sorry approach favored in the European Union. The principle says, in essence, that if there are plausible health concerns about a chemical, even if they are not proved, people should not be exposed to it until studies show it is safe. The United States takes the opposite approach: chemicals are not banned unless there is proof of harm.
Many Republicans, anti-regulation activists and the food-packaging and chemical industries insist that BPA is harmless and all but indispensable to keeping canned food safe by sealing the cans and preventing corrosion, and to producing many other products at reasonable prices.
Linda S. Birnbaum, director of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (part of the National Institutes of Health), said that a new round of government-financed studies with uniform methods, now under way with animal subjects, should help to resolve unanswered questions. In the meantime, Mrs. Feinstein’s ambitious plan to ban BPA from baby bottles, sippy cups, baby food and formula was blocked by partisan battling. She had hoped that the ban would be included in the food safety bill, not merely in an amendment to be considered separately.
The F.D.A. says that infants are “a potentially sensitive population for BPA” because their brains and endocrine systems are still developing, and their livers are less efficient than adults’ at detoxifying and eliminating foreign substances. The drug agency has taken a seemingly paradoxical position, on the one hand saying there is no evidence of harm in humans, and on the other supporting industry actions to get BPA out of baby bottles and feeding cups, and to find alternative liners for food and formula cans. Bottle-makers have found substitutes, but can producers say there is nothing like BPA. Only a few companies are offering BPA-free cans.
Vitamin D found to influence over 200 genes, highlighting links to diseaseAugust 23, 2010
The extent to which vitamin D deficiency may increase susceptibility to a wide range of diseases is dramatically highlighted in research published today. Scientists have mapped the points at which vitamin D interacts with our DNA - and identified over two hundred genes that it directly influences. The results are published today in the journal Genome Research.
It is estimated that one billion people worldwide do not have sufficient vitamin D. This deficiency is thought to be largely due to insufficient exposure to the sun and in some cases to poor diet. As well as being a well-known risk factor for rickets, there is a growing body of evidence that vitamin D deficiency also increases an individual's susceptibility to autoimmune conditions such as multiple sclerosis (MS), rheumatoid arthritis and type 1 diabetes, as well as certain cancers and even dementia.
Now, in a study whose funders include the Medical Research Council (MRC), the MS Society, the Wellcome Trust and the MS Society of Canada, researchers at the University of Oxford have shown the extent to which vitamin D interacts with our DNA. They used new DNA sequencing technology to create a map of vitamin D receptor binding across the genome. The vitamin D receptor is a protein activated by vitamin D, which attaches itself to DNA and thus influences what proteins are made from our genetic code.
The researchers found 2,776 binding sites for the vitamin D receptor along the length of the genome. These were unusually concentrated near a number of genes associated with susceptibility to autoimmune conditions such as MS, Crohn's disease, systemic lupus erythematosus (or 'lupus') and rheumatoid arthritis, and to cancers such as chronic lymphocytic leukaemia and colorectal cancer.
They also showed that vitamin D had a significant effect on the activity of 229 genes including IRF8, previously associated with MS, and PTPN2, associated with Crohn's disease and type 1 diabetes.
The first author of the paper, Dr Sreeram Ramagopalan from the Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics, adds: "There is now evidence supporting a role for vitamin D in susceptibility to a host of diseases. Vitamin D supplements during pregnancy and the early years could have a beneficial effect on a child's health in later life. Some countries such as France have instituted this as a routine public health measure."
The main source of vitamin D in the body comes from exposing the skin to sunlight, although a diet of oily fish can provide some of the vitamin. Research has previously suggested that lighter skin colour and hair colour evolved in populations moving to parts of the globe with less sun to optimise production of vitamin D in the body. A lack of vitamin D can affect bone development, leading to rickets; in pregnant mothers, poor bone health can be fatal to both mother and child at birth, hence there are selective pressures in favour of people who are able to produce adequate vitamin D.
This new study supports this hypothesis, having found a significant number of vitamin D receptor binding sites in regions of the genome with genetic changes more commonly found in people of European and Asian descent. source
Prone to Error: Earliest Steps to Find Cancer -
As it turns out, diagnosing the earliest stage of breast cancer can be surprisingly difficult, prone to both outright error and case-by-case disagreement over whether a cluster of cells is benign or malignant, according to an examination of breast cancer cases by The New York Times.
Advances in mammography and other imaging technology over the past 30 years have meant that pathologists must render opinions on ever smaller breast lesions, some the size of a few grains of salt. Discerning the difference between some benign lesions and early stage breast cancer is a particularly challenging area of pathology, according to medical records and interviews with doctors and patients.
“There are studies that show that diagnosing these borderline breast lesions occasionally comes down to the flip of a coin.”
There is an increasing recognition of the problems, and the federal government is now financing a nationwide study of variations in breast pathology, based on concerns that 17 percent of D.C.I.S. cases identified by a commonly used needle biopsy may be misdiagnosed. Despite this, there are no mandated diagnostic standards or requirements that pathologists performing the work have any specialized expertise, meaning that the chances of getting an accurate diagnosis vary from hospital to hospital.
Push to Market Pill Stirs Debate on Sexual Desire
By DUFF WILSON Published: June 16, 2010Now, a German drug giant says it has stumbled upon such a pill and is trying to persuade the Food and Drug Administration that its drug can help restore a depressed female sex drive. The effort has set off a debate over what constitutes a normal range of sexual desire among women, with critics saying the company is trying to turn a low libido into a medical pathology.
On Wednesday, an F.D.A. staff report recommended against approving the drug, saying the maker, Boehringer Ingelheim, had not made its case and that the benefits of the daily pill did not outweigh its side effects, which included dizziness, nausea and fatigue.
That staff report came ahead of a meeting Friday by an F.D.A. advisory panel of experts who are to vote on whether to recommend that the agency approve the pill, which would be the first drug aimed specifically at a low sex drive in premenopausal women.
F.D.A. staff reports carry weight but do not always sway how advisory panels vote, and advisory votes do not always predict what the F.D.A. might finally decide.
Some analysts forecast that if the drug does reach the market, it could have annual sales in this country of $2 billion — or about equal to the current combined annual American sales of the men’s drugs Viagra, Levitra and Cialis.
There is no dispute that some women have a depressed level of sexual desire that causes them anguish. Boehringer cites a condition — hypoactive sexual desire disorder — that is included in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, a reference book for psychiatrists and insurers. But many experts say that unlike sexual dysfunction in men — which has an obvious physical component — sexual problems in women are much harder to diagnose. And among doctors and researchers, there is serious medical debate over whether female sexual problems are treatable with drugs. Some doctors advocate psychotherapy or counseling, while others have prescribed hormonal drugs approved for other uses.
Boehringer developed the drug, flibanserin, as an antidepressant, but it failed to lift depression. The company says it learned serendipitously that the pill, taken daily for weeks, could restore female libido. source
Expert panel: Carcinogenic chemicals in environment threaten AmericansMay 7, 2010 by Lin Edwards
PhysOrg.com) -- An expert panel in the U.S. has warned President Obama Americans face "grievous harm" from a bombardment of largely unregulated and often carcinogenic chemicals in their food, air and water, both at work and in the home, and has urged the president to adopt a new national strategy to focus on the threat.
The panel’s report, released on May 6, said there was a “growing body of evidence” that linked exposure to chemicals, radiation and pollutants in the environment to cancer, with children being especially at risk because they are smaller and still growing. It pointed out U.S. Federal laws in the area are weak, with regulation split between too many agencies, and that research funding and enforcement in the country are inadequate.
The 200-page report said rates of some cancers in children were rising inexplicably, and recent research had found umbilical cord blood contained industrial chemicals, which meant children were being “bombarded” with exposure to a combination of dangerous chemicals before they were born. The report also noted that the impact of chemicals on fetuses, babies and young children is not known.
Around 1.5 million Americans were diagnosed with cancer in 2009, and over half a million died from cancer the same year, making it the biggest killer of Americans after heart disease. source
Diabetes Drug Maker Hid Test Data on Risks, Files Indicate
By GARDINER HARRIS Published: July 12, 2010
But the latest documents demonstrate that the company had data hinting at Avandia’s extensive heart problems almost as soon as the drug was introduced in 1999, and sought intensively to keep those risks from becoming public. In one document, the company sought to quantify the lost sales that would result if Avandia’s cardiovascular safety risk “intensifies.” The cost: $600 million from 2002 to 2004 alone, the document stated.
CT Scans Cut Lung Cancer Deaths, Study Finds
Published: November 4, 2010
WASHINGTON — Annual CT scans of current and former heavy smokers reduced their risk of death from lung cancer by 20 percent, a huge government-financed study has found. Even more surprising, the scans seem to reduce the risks of death from other causes as well, suggesting that the scans could be catching other illnesses.
The findings represent an enormous advance in cancer detection that could potentially save thousands of lives annually, although at considerable expense. Lung cancer will claim about 157,000 lives this year, more than the deaths from colorectal, breast, pancreatic and prostate cancers combined. Most patients discover their disease too late for treatment, and 85 percent die from it.
Patients wishing to get a CT lung screen will most likely have to pay the roughly $300 charge themselves, since few insurers pay for such scans unless an illness is suspected. The federal Medicare program will soon reconsider paying for such screens, a Medicare official said.
Since 46 million people in the United States smoke and tens of millions more once smoked, a widespread screening program could cost billions annually. Any further refinement of those most at risk could reduce those costs. Low-dose CT scans expose patients to about the same radiation levels as mammograms. Little is known about how the cumulative risks of years of such scans would balance the benefits. source
Elevated nitrogen and phosphorus still widespread in much of the nation's streams and groundwaterSeptember 27, 2010
"Despite major Federal, State and local efforts and expenditures to control sources and movement of nutrients within our Nation's watersheds, national-scale progress was not evident in this assessment, which is based on thousands of measurements and hundreds of studies across the country from the 1990's and early 2000's," said Matthew C. Larsen, USGS Associate Director for Water.
USGS findings show that widespread concentrations of nitrogen and phosphorus remain two to ten times greater than levels recommended by the EPA to protect aquatic life. Most often, these elevated levels were found in agricultural and urban streams. source
First, Happy Birthday To Me!
Today, I'll be 27. I'm not sure how happy I should be because of that, but after all, life is so fragile, every new year that we survive is a remarkable achievement. So there is a reason to celebrate. And I will.
What happened during that year for me? Actually a lot. True, I spent most of the time recovering from my head trauma and working on my research, but in more personal plan, it was a lot. I had to re-discover my self. I found out what I really really love doing and I made sure to find more time to do it. It was of course about writing and I'm quite happy with everything I did and wrote. One day, hopefully, I'll present my projects here. But they are far from finished and so am I. With all that blog-madness I forgot so much about me.
I was kind of depressed at some point, because time passes so quickly. In a blink of an eye you get 40 and 50 and 60 and then, then what? How do you wake up when you're 60 and what's the perspective for you then? I still feel the same way when I was 17 (or 11 or 5) and still, time passes. I'm 27. And I start feeling the frame people try to put me in and that's kind of heavy for me. People and society expect so much to happen during someone's life, they make you feel how you age and how you change. I felt so old! And I'm not old! I'm young.
Seriously, do you realise how short human life actually is? Mere 65-75 years. That's so little. I think that it's not biological clock that makes us feel we age, it's the realisation that half of our lives might just have passed. And we're still nowhere near the person we want to be. And then you suddenly feel the need to rush and to do things you thought you had so many years ahead of you to do. Isn't this why the idea of "age" exists? Because after you get say 25, age is useless - your body won't change too much in the next 20 years. And what's even more - you never know how much time and life you have ahead of you. So if we have to be realistic, we should count every day we wake up as a great achievement. But that's way too depressing for everyone, so we just ignore that. And instead, we prefer to count our years and to put ourselves in certain groups and to expect everyone to respect our age and to rest assured that we'll behave just like we're supposed during that part of our lives. So sucking boring! And so limiting. I mean, what's the difference between a 60 years old and a 6 years old? Only their experience. But look into their eyes - it's the same individuality inside. The same basic desires - to play, to be loved, to be understood. Or to be naughty. We just find different ways to express those desires with time. But we're the same people!
I considered for a while to write a post on time and age, but somehow, it's not yet ready in my head. So count this like an intro. People's personality changes with every second, but our souls remain the same. They are always the same. Only the body changes and with it, some of our ways to communicate. Oobviously, if you're body is old and sick, it's hard to run around laughing even if that's the only thing you want to do. But it's only the body, inside, we're the same. It's also the personality, which often dictates how our body will age - mostly with age we feel more confident in our views and we're harder and harder to be convinced about anything, so our body stiffen and loose it's plasticity. But the personality is just a virtual psychological creature. It's basically how your brain reads your memories in every moment. You have certain preferred pathways that create YOU but they are only preferred, not absolute. In the moment you see more appropriate way to read those memories, you change. So the personality is not absolute. It's the soul that holds your most inner desires and yearnings, and it's always there, one and the same throughout the years. You're not 40, you're still 4. You're the same little boy and girl that likes to play with trucks, only now, you can actually drive them. You still love candies, only now, you have to make sure you exercise enough before eating a candy. I'm the still girl who saw computers everywhere and loved pressing the button and watching the display in my imagination for the results. I do that now almost every day. We're the same kids. Only now our brains are developed to grasp much more about life than then. But we still don't get everything. Because life is much more than work, kids and hospitals. It's more than critical friends or drunk parties. It's much much more even than our own Planet. But that's for another story.
Today, I'll just say happy birthday to me and I'll enjoy this day the best way I can. As you see blogging is one of those ways :)And as a gift for you,I'll recommend you a movie - The Time-Travelers Wife. It's enlightening in so many ways. It tells about a guy who has the talent, the gift and the curse to be able to travel in time. It's amazing story. Putting so many of our understanding under question! It's just...Well, watch it and you'll see what I'm talking about.
As I promised, this time we'll focus on even more practical sides of Internet businesses. Before getting into such endeavor, you must be absolutely honest with yourself - e-business is just like any other business. It's not a game, it's not watering your farm in Facebook, it's a normal business. As such, it requires research, business plan, capital, preparation and of course - a lot of work. Also, you must be prepared for failures, because there isn't a direct road to financial perfection even if for some people things happen easier than for others.
How to make money online - part 2: plan and toolsBefore you start, you must spend some time on thinking about what kind of thing you'll like to do. The best thing about Internet business is that there are so many ways to profit from it, you just need to pick a direction you enjoy.
As I already mentioned in Part 1, there are basically few ways to earn money online. The essence of all of them (except probably "the dirty work"), however, is very simple.
Developing an area of expertise -> Creating a Product/Service/Website -> Promotion of the Website -> Expanding of the area and development of the profits
Whatever you do, those are your step-stones. So the first thing to do when you start something like this is to create a list of your current areas of expertise or of interests that you are willing to expand and make deeper. This is important, because if you're going to spend hours a day working on your project, you'll feel happier if you have a genuine interest in whatever you do.
Also, it's good to choose only a few directions (1, 2 or maximum 3), because it's easier for you to develop your expertise and it'll be more tempting for the consumer/buyer on the other side.
After you choose your areas, or the so called niches, you should research them. Usually people think in terms of keywords and other marketer's nonsense, but my focus is on creating stuff, not just selling them. So you research them (type in Google that niche, product or whatever, then read in forums and blogs what's interesting about them, what's new and what's needed). Make yourself familiar with people's desires, because if you want to "sell", you need to address them.
Making yourself an expert is crucial and that's why it's good to choose areas that you care about and that will enrich you too. Don't spend forever reading, but still, spend few days (or more) about getting familiar with the current state of the art about this thing you chose.
The information that you gather is very important, because this will form your new product (if we call a product whatever you create product, service, website, blog, forum and so on). Think about what's lacking in this field, what could you create that people will need and appreciate. If you write a blog, you'll write about it, if you create a product, it will deal with that problem (be realistic, you don't have to deal with the biggest problem, just pick something you can contribute with). If you want to sell trough Affiliate Marketing (see part 1 for the links) search for products that address that problem and make them your products or combine them into something bigger and better.
Also, think in perspective. It's not about one product or one blog post, you want to make something that will last and develop - think of what you can do/write now (or next week), what you can do next month, what you can do in a year's time and what you'll need in order to achieve all this.
I listened a recording of seminar of Russel Brunson and I liked a lot one statement - all good marketers create a plan for months ahead and they know exactly what they'll promote next month. If you're a creator, you'll know it's hard to foresee what will happen with your work, but still you have to be able to make some sort of plan and to STICK with it. That's important! Otherwise, you'll start something, it will give you some profits eventually and then what? You have to have a plan - if you don't know where you're gong, you cannot get there (or it's very hard)!
All this forms you business plan. Picking a niche and getting an idea of a product. If you do it thoroughly, that will be probably 1/3 of the work.The creation of the product itself, once you have a crystal clear idea about it, should be VERY easy. The problems are until you get that clear idea. And to get there, you need very thorough research (as in everything in life, actually).
I won't discuss creation, because that's different for everyone. Usually people think in terms of e-books, but let's face it, people rarely buy or read e-books. Think of something different, something substantial. Something that people can touch or feel or really enjoy! Something special that only you can provide - be it information (like weekly articles on something) or software or service - whatever! I know I speak very generally, but with proper research, the product shouldn't be that hard to get. Or shouldn't be that complicated neither. A good thought is to think what people are likely to buy, but that somewhat limiting. If you create a good product, you'll find people to buy it one way or another.
After we have a plan, we move on to the tools we'll need.
Since you do business in Internet, you'll need to be computer-literate. There is no other way. Forget about it "no technical knowledge required"! The only way not to need technical knowledge is if you're ready to pay for it. And many people are not. What's even more, that knowledge is SO easy to be obtained. All you need is Google and time/patience.
I'll make a list on what you'll need, with some brief descriptions and also links for you. Some of the links are affiliate links - but they are of products I thought that might be useful. For all of them, however, there is free substitution and it's available online with simple google search. Those products are just more coherent and they are dedicated to teach you. And yes, if you buy them trough the links, I'll earn from them. Which will be very nice for me. But the point is that you NEED to get computer-literate. It's either that, or you should prepare to pay money on services!
1. You need a website - Hosting Plan (from $10/month-$60/month).
There are free options, like Blogger.com for blogs or blog-like promotions, but usually, it's better to buy yourself a hosting plan.
Hosting is a place on a web-server, just like a folder on your computer, where you'll store the files of your website. I personally prefer to buy myself some hosting plan, than to use free services, because I have complete control over what my site will show. No additional ads, pop-ups, and so on. Just you and your imagination.
The hosting plan itself you have to decide for yourself. There are cheaper options, or more expensive (for example the VPS option that offer you full control over your server and also additional IPs which is useful if you want to have 2 or 3 separate projects or just to fool with Google). For a beginner, I'll recommend GoDaddy.com. Yes, I'm not using it, but only because I paid for my hosting before I knew about it and then, I decided it will be too much of a trouble to change the Hosting servers. But this company is certainly on the market for quite long time now and people are happy with it.
After you pay for your Hosting, you'll have User/Password and a link trough which you can log to your server folders and sometimes, you also have installed blogging platform (and sometimes you don't - it depends how much you pay for it). I also noticed some cheaper options but reading the reviews told me they are not very good ones. So if you want to try different hosting company, please use Google in the form "Name of company review" to see if it's any good.
P.S. After searching a little more on hosting, I found one site that rates different hosting companies (from there you can see that ipage.com is number 1 and it looks quite promising and easy to use for people with little experience. Also this hosting plan seems quite cheap and with 1 good review...)
2. Your website needs Domain ($15-$20/ a year)
The domain is the address people will write to get to your site. So you need to think about a good name. It's best if the name includes words of the niche you'll work with. So if you want to discuss pregnant cats in your blog, it's best your domain to be "pregnantcats.com" or "pregnant-cats.com" or "cats-pregnancy.com" or whatever it's available. Also, practice shows that .com domains are better than the other, but how much better is not clear - you'll have to choose if to buy your ".com" domain with different name or to keep the name and buy another domain "- .net" for example.
Usually, you'll buy the domain when you buy your hosting plan, so the new address will point to your site.
Congratulations, now you have a site!
3. cPanel (~ a day to get familiar with it)
Usually, you log to your website trough cPanel. It's like Control Panel from where you can do various of stuff with your site. You can upload files, you can rename them, you can create a database and so on.
I can't describe all the functionality, so I'll recommend some paid products that seem to be good. If you don't have money for them, use Google. Navigation with cPanel is very easy, you just have to get used to it.
* cPanel (r) Basics Videos
* cPanel for newbies.
And for backup (though my hosting plan has its own backups, so that one you may not need it, you'll have to check)
cPanel Website Backup Software - Must Have
4. Blogging platform/or a site
Now, for those who are Internet illiterate - your site consists of files that stay on a remote server and every time someone types the URL, the address of your site, they are loaded to show your site with all of its shiny pictures, animations, articles or whatever.
Depending on what you'll need your site for you have two options:
a) Simple HTML - that will mean that you have one or ten static page that won't change dynamically - this is so 90s! People usually don't do that anymore, because blogs are essential for good traffic no matter what you actually produce.
Anyway, if you prefer such site, you'll need someone to create it for you or you to create it. Here's a link I found on Google: www.createafreewebsite.net/
to give you an idea of what's all about. I'm sure if you want to buy a website, you'll manage to do so, so I'll post some links for doing your site yourself (not ready-to-use sites, but manuals and tools). You can also find someone to create your site on the out-sourcing sites in part 1!:
* Multi Profit Websites
* Web Design Mastery - Professional Web Site Design Made Easy
* Web Design Business Startup Kit
* XSitePro 2 - Total Site Management
I must remind you - you can create a website for free using only MS Office or Open Office Writer (or Quanta for Linux) or with number of free applications! I'm posting paid links for people who want to get familiar, to watch video tutorials and step by stem explanation. I have no idea if that will speed up the process, but creating a web site is something relatively easy. You just need to spend some time learning it. That's all. I never watched any paid tutorial on I'm a decent web-designer (not a pro, but I can make my own sites).
So this is the first option.
b) Blogging systems
I must say, I prefer blogging systems - they are more dynamical and you can make much cooler stuff with them - add static pages, add cool plugins and so on. And after you set the system up (takes few hours in the worst case), you're ready to write with just few clicks.
Free web-based system is Blogger (and also a lot of others). But if you paid for hosting, then you can make your own blog, hosted on your own server. This is good, because Blogger (Google) likes to block some blogs which is very annoying in the least. But it can also be very painful (happened to me once or twice). And if your product is "sensitive" (like...say porn), Blogger is not an option. You need your own blog.
For the illiterate - setting up a blog means, uploading a folder on your web-server and then running a config file to set all the options and then you have a control panel from where you add plugins, write content and so on. It's easy, but it's not a piece of cake. And it requires your hosting to have "php" and "mysql" (in order to have the database).
Best free Blogging system is ,of course, Wordpress and next best is Drupal (but this is even more complicated to set up since it's more than a blog). On my server I use "Serendipity". It's very easy to configure it, but if you're an absolute beginner use Wordpress - there is a lot of support and add-ons and plug-ins and so on. And yeah, be ready to spend one day on this!
Now I'll paste some links with manuals and goodies on blogging:
* The Ultimate Blogging Theme - 70% Commission, $147 Product!
* WordPress User Manual Plugin
* 20 Wordpress Sales Templates
* WordPress Crash Course Videos
* The Ultimate Guide To Drupal - step by step Drupal videos
I haven't tried any of them, but they promise tutorials and I believe they provide them. Before buying anything, please research them properly. And don't forget - there is always a free option! Those links are only if you're looking for shortcuts, but they will also require time to watch them and work to train with them. There is no way that this knowledge can come into your head without work and time.
If you want to skip the "knowing" part, then my suggestion is to either start with a hosted blog like Blogger or to search for an online WorPress tutorial (or buy that crash course) and just spend a day to start it. All you have to do is to start, afterwards you just log into your control panel and write a new entry. Everything is VERY easy. Don't get fooled by the many links I post - it is easy. I post them here for the people who know nothing. To have a starting point, not to shy away from the new experience. But there's nothing complicated in this, ok?
5. Website statistics
You need to analyze the statistics of your website no matter what. Totally free is Google Analytics (you need to already have a site for this). It's pretty straight-forward how to use it - you should add a piece of code to your "home" page (index or whatever you call it) and then it will monitor the traffic for you. Blogger also has statistics.
A good paid tool is:
Intelligent Website Analysis - "Spider Any Website And Find Out The Rank Of Each Page On That Site In Mere Seconds!" - Obviously with it you can monitor not only your site but others too. But such tools there are many. And I'll mention more in my traffic section.
6. Adsense account (optional)
If you plan to monetize your blog/site trough Adsense, you'll need an account for it too. But if your site will sell your or someone else's product you don't need that at all. If you sell something, you want your visitors on your site and not off it - clicking on ads. And anyway, it's hard to earn well trough ads. You need a lot of visitors and well-targeted site and so on. I'll discuss that in the next part.
7. Paypal account:
If you don't have one already, I'm not going to even give you the address. This one is pretty clear - you need a paypal account to get paid, so this is the final tool that you really really need in order to get started.
So that's it. Or at least I could think of, when it comes to tools for Internet business. There are many more and more advanced stuff, but the idea here was to provide the absolute minimum - business plan, product, hosting, domain, design analytics and paypal. After you set those up, you're ready to play.
The only thing that's left is to write a sale's letter (if someone reads those at all) or to prepare a good product/service-oriented site or to put the ads on your site and to start promoting. But this I'll discuss in Part 3 : the traffic (jam)! I got my hands on some seminars dedicated to this, so I hope that next week, I'll be full of useful information on this. See you.
Етикети: internet business
Today I offer you my little research on get-rich-quick schemes. I try to focus on the practical information and not so much on the ideology (because that ideology pisses me off).
First, let me clarify, I'm NOT going to discuss the normal guru e-books, courses and video tutorials/seminars that you can easily find in your spam folder. I have read/listened/viewed some of those and I must say, I'm not impressed. They all tell you how easy it is to start, how you just have to buy the next up-sale product and you'll be filthy rich and eternally happy by not doing anything (and usually by tomorrow). I even bought one or two of those (to test, you know) and while they are very entertaining, they are not particularly profitable. So, let's avoid them and go the other way. Let's pretend we know it all and turn to the practical side.
In short, what do you need in order to start earning from Internet:
1) Time to research - depending on your skills and projects from day to weeks.
2) Money to invest - again it depends: from very little to hundreds dollars per project.
3) Patience and probably stubborness to go to the end - that also implies to have another source of income until you start earning from your project and that time may vary
4) Some basic skills, knowledge - nothing complicated, but if you don't have them already, you should be prepared to spend some time (and/or money) on that too.
5) Will to do it.
Let's say we have all of those.
What are the basic methods of earning trough Internet (links included)?
1. You have a site and you "monetize" it.
That means you either show paid ads on it, like those offered by Google Adsense, or you write paid articles to promote certain product on your blog (never been interested in that myself, so no examples, sorry). In both case, in order for your site to make money, you'll need HUGE traffic to it. Having less than 100 visitors/day won't do the job. You need more. Probably much much more. Generally, this is the big problem - it's hard to get all those visitors. And if you write a blog like me, you will want your visitors to read your articles and not to click on ads. So basically there is a paradox - they either appreciate your work and you get nothing or they click away from it and earn you money. Go figure how stupid that is!
(I skip on some of the variation on the ads part, like text links, people who might pay you directly to advertise on your site and so on, because in the end, it's all about traffic and Google Search ranking).
Links for this section: Adsense.com
2. Affiliate marketing.
You have a product or you have a link for someone elses's product. Whose the product is makes no difference. The point is that you have to sell. And selling is a tricky thing to do. Some people are very good at it, some are not. What's more, it's all about traffic again. If nobody sees your excellent Sales Page/Letter, nobody will buy from it. As simple as this.
And people generally don't like sales pages. They are boring, they offer you tons of testemonials and well-targetted words, but in the end, you know that if the product was so good, it wouldn't need such a page, because everybody will be talking about it. So, product marketting sucks. I realise that US citizens have different view on this and they are so used to marketting, it's almost part of their culture, but things are different in the rest of the world. I'm not interested in buying, I'm interested in getting knowledge for free.
A personal draw-back for me is that usually, marketing requires recording a video of yourself presenting the awesome product - which I don't want to do. After all, most of us have other jobs and it won't make good impression to show yourself in that light (unless you're a marketer in real life too).
Anyway, if you're interested in that, check: ClickBank.com, linkshare.com, commissionjunction.com. And I must add here that there is another road here, different that the traditional "product marketing" and I'm testing it right now.
3. Selling websites.
This is simple - you create a website, you promote it, you make it delicious and then you offer it to people who know how to make products out of everything. Such things do sell and I think they sell well. But then, that requires almost as much work, as the other options - you'll have to get an idea, to develop it, to promote it, to get the precious traffic flow and so on. And in the end, when it's finally profitable, to sell it. This certainly is not for me, I take creation of sites too personally. But if for more info on this, try flippa.com or read: http://www.entrepreneurs-journey.com/266/how-to-sell-a-website-how-much-is-your-website-worth/
4. The dirty work.
By this, I sum up all the out-sourcing work that one can do - writing articles and e-books, creating software and sites for the big guys. They pay you cents and they profits dollars. You get it. Maybe I should call it "dirty labor". It's one of the reasons I despise Internet Marketing so much - because it thrives on the backs on many underpaid and badly working guys and gals who write their so-called "products" without their name ever get heard. Yes, I know, call it capitalism.
Anyway, I think if you have moderate talent in writing or programming, this thing should be the easiest way to earn from internet.
If you're interested in that kind of work, check http://www.topsite.com/best/outsourcing: the top sites are : guru.com, elancer.com, getafreelancer.com. From there, Google will help you find something even better.
So basically, those are the most famous ways to earn money online. There are, of course, others. But usually, they require some specific skills making them too similar to day-time job.
My personal opinion is that all of the mentioned above require a lot of job to return any money and/or time invested in them. There isn't a straight forward way to just buy something and turn it into gold. Not if you're not a well-known name, a well-known blogger or so on, in which case, you're not goig to read this review. Or you'll read it only for fun.
But it is doable. It's perfectly possible to start a well-earning Internet-business. I thinks the key moment is to stay away from "get-rich-schemes". Because what people usually do is to buy a guru product and to start immitating him/her. They record an audio or video of themselves presenting that product. They set up very similar page with very similar content. They record their success story and offer that to the visitors. That's ok and obviously works for some. But it's impossible to work for everyone. True, this niche is practically limitless. But the key is that it doesn't produce real richness, it doens't produce anything real. If you research the niche, you'll discover that basically, all those people produce one product per month (1!!!) and then each and everyone tries to promote it in various ways. This ONE product. And usually that product isn't new, it's just a new version of the old ones. Only the videos and sales letters change. The product usually doesn't say/do anything new or it gives you just a little little new information. But that's it. And that's why I consider that niche a bad idea. It simply isn't moral to sell as new, something that isn't really new. In the end, it turns out to be a pyramid - the ones on top earn well, because of the ones on the bottom that buy to product deceived by the promises of easy profit and then they never earn anything from it.
Maybe that's not fault of the gurus, but of normal people who instead of applying the knowledge they buy from the gurus in their own area of expertise, they prefer to imitate and not to create anything new. But that's not my problem. My problem is that I believe real prosperity comes from creating new products, real products, stuff that change your life, that make it better, that allow you to do new and exciting stuff. Re-writing 1000 times the same e-book adding a line or 10 every time is hardly an innovation. It is just an excuse about not-doing anything better.
I don't want to offend any of the gurus, some of them are very charming and they do believe they empower the people they talk to/sell to. The problem is far deeper, but I won't discuss it here. I just want to make it clear. I believe we all have to create. Not to re-brand, not to present the same product in new and every time my expensive forms, not to change a word in a book and sell it as the next best thing - no. We need to create, to discover, to fight for knowledge and then to share it. Because that is what is precious. Everything else is just a variation of the same social game - I lie you that I work, you lie me that you believe me.
That's the end of part 1, the overview. In the next part of my "internet money howto" I will review what you need to start your e-business and how to get it - hosting, domain, useful tools, knowledge you need, important strategies and so on. My idea is if you're ready and willing to start a business to be able to quickly do it by following my plan.
I don't claim it's the best plan, but then, I'm not a guru and I don't charge you $1000 for that plan. I did a research, I share my knowledge with you. Some people would make a product out of this, but my blog is my product. I love it and I want to always provide the best content. (that do sound like a marketer statement, doesn't it?! Damn, it's contagious :P)
I hope you enjoy what I wrote and if you do, please show it in the best way you fit.