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Jeff Bermant is the founder of Cocoon MyData Rewards™, an app that pays users cash just for sharing their online data anonymously. This discussion explores empathetic leadership, selling when you’re not in sales, and how adversity and challenge formed Jeff’s future and what his story could unlock in empowering you.
Well, good morning, good afternoon, good evening, wherever you are, folks, my name is Eric Wright. I’m going to be the host of your DiscoPosse podcast. Thank you for listening.
Wow. We’ve had a really great, great set of shows. It’s 150 this 150 episode. That’s kind of crazy to imagine.
So I’m extremely proud of the conversation that you’re about to listen to.
And it is really good to be true and to end personal reward.
You’re going to hear some really great stuff. But before we get started, I have to give a shout out. And thanks to the sponsors and supporters of our podcast today. This podcast is sponsored by our fine friends at Veeam Software. So everything you need for your data protection needs. That’s right. Your data is not safe. So make sure you do your data protection. Whether it’s on premises in the cloud can cloud native and containers.
They’ve got this really great thing they just bought called Kasten recently. So lots of really neat stuff if you want to find out more.
And trust me, you do you want to go to vee.am/discoposse again, go to vee.am/discoposse. You can check it out, find out more. I’ve been a long time user and supported the platform in the team and I really love it anyway. So go check it out again. Go to Vietnam forward slash. Just go and find out all about it.
It’s also brought to you by the four step guide to delivering extraordinary software demos that win deals. I’ve been lucky enough to be in the industry and learn from amazing folks and see stuff that’s played out and how to better connect with people. When you’re talking about technical demos and doing product management, product marketing. How do you make sure you can connect with people who want to use your product and platform?
So check it out. You can go to velocity closing dotcom and you can download the ebook.
You get access to the audio book read by yours truly. That’s right. So not only am I the author, but I read the audio book, which is super cool, excited by that really neat announcements actually come up. So if you go and you buy the bundle right now, you get set out for an upcoming course as you can go to velocityclosing.com . All right, let’s get to the Good Stuff. This is a show featuring Jeff Bermant.
Jeff is the founder and CEO of Virtual World Computing, and they’ve got a really, really neat product called Cocoon. My data rewards this. The idea of being able to do stuff around, taking your data and monetizing your own search data instead of just giving it away to the big guns over there at those big search providers. At any rate, this is we start off there.
But really, Jeff is a real estate provider.
He’s a CEO and he has gone through some personal adversity which will really open your eyes to the power of people and what you can do for yourself.
So check it out, Jeff, Fermat. Hi, I’m Jeff Permit, I’m the CEO of Virtual World Computing and our flagship product is Kitsune. My reward’s where you get paid for your data and you’re listening to Desco policy podcast.
You’re listening to. Today’s Capozzi. And with that, will will jump right in. Right. So, Jeff, thank you very much for joining us.
I’m I’m really excited by the both your history, your background, where we’re going to talk about how you got to where we are today, but as well, just the platform and the stuff that you’re doing with your team.
But for folks that are maybe new to your name, if you want to introduce yourself and we’ll talk about virtual world computing, we’re going to get into the cocoon, my data rewards platform and kind of why that’s important.
I’m a I’m cheering and cheering for what you and the team are doing.
So but with that, like I said, introduce yourself and talk about.
But where you’re at with things.
Sure. Well, thanks, Eric, and thanks for having me on the show. It’s a real pleasure to speak to you and to speak to your audience. So my journey, which I’ll just give you a brief background. I’m originally from Rye, New York. So I know that Jersey area a little bit and moved out to California to play tennis. I went to USC there, had a scholarship and played tennis there. It was always like the seventh man on the team.
So it wasn’t great. I got into the real estate business after a terrible year on the pro circuit and my father said, go find a job. And I decided, well, I’ll get into something that made sense. My family was in real estate, so I actually got into the real estate brokerage business and I was with Coldwell Banker, which for seven years as a office and industrial development broker and then salesman, and then decided to open my own development company.
And this is in eighty six. So it’s a long time ago. Some of your listeners probably weren’t even born in.
They said, yes, maybe a variety of folks that have been through it. So I was there. I remember those days.
So days of high interest rates of want everybody but 19, I think they went as high as 19 percent. At one point they were busy.
You remember that people were actually locking in long term rates at like seventeen because they were worried it was going to go even higher.
And it’s if you told somebody today that they were going to pay 20 percent on anything, they would lose their minds like theirs. They just can’t even fathom what it’s like to even have double digit interest rates, let alone you heading into the high teens and twenties.
You’re absolutely crazy. And in fact, I remember my dad who passed away many years ago in 2000. He was boasting about his four percent real estate deal interest rates. And today we’re down in threes. And some of them I’m seeing the high twos for off, not for office, but for other spaces. So history does repeat itself. And we’re at a great time for interest rates and and actually pretty good time and business. Overall, though, obviously with covid, it’s been really rough.
And I do feel terrible for the small and I know exactly what they’re going through. For small business owners, it’s a total disaster. And of course, you know, the trade off is you get people sick. So there’s no good answer for this covid, but it’s different for me. You need to find ways to get through even these terrible times.
And it’s it’s really interesting. And I, I say I’m sorry.
Same with the sort of, you know, the the feeling of of, you know, it’s tough to even say like we trying to look for the outside, like the positive outlook, anything we could do to capture like what’s what’s good about where we’re at. Obviously there’s so much that we wish we could I would give up so many things to know that I could get rid of the greater problem, but. You know, the one thing that we haven’t necessarily seen is so I worked at an insurance and investments companies before and seen like the REIT is like the real estate trust was like a really strong area.
It was slow moving, but it was like you could always you always knew it was a gentle but rising returns. And I think we are very much had a really tough spot market wise for that, which is and I heard an ad on the radio and every once in a while they have those things. And of course, it’s like read the prospectus before you do this.
And, you know, but they they’re talking about like we’ve seen, you know, returns are analyzed, like all the little small print stuff gets said. And they said, like we saw like a 15 to 40 percent gain in some areas. And this was a real estate. They’re talking a real estate investment. And I thought, good golly, if anybody’s listening to this now and they don’t understand where this impact is going to be, I feel for anybody who puts money towards those areas right now thinking for like high returns.
Anyway, I’ve heard that. I know the ad you’re talking about and I worry anybody gets on who does this, I start to worry exactly about the company. So I’m I’m I’m in lock step with you, which is this is not my kind of advertising. I’m much more of a person that and I’m really enjoying, by the way, this move from real estate into tech. And, you know, most people say, what the heck?
Yeah, that’s quite jumping crazy.
I mean, you know what it is. So there’s a fascinating story, but my personality is one of inquisitive and trying to solve problems. And I happened to be really I was terrible math. It’s terrible in English, but I was a really good problem solver. And it’s probably because I have dyslexia and have maybe some form of autism or I forget what the other thing is that makes you figure out puzzles that are most people would go, oh, God, that’s way too complicated to figure out.
But for me, it’s it’s what I love to do. And so when I got sort of bored with real estate and it is boring, I mean, it’s hard work.
And particularly if you’re in Santa Barbara and nobody wants you, you’re the most hated person in the world, but not a popular you’re right up there with dentistry as far as popular careers, actually, I was the most loved, hated developer.
I mean, they loved me because I figure out ways to give open space and wouldn’t take all the land for developers and very honest about stuff. But it was a terrible business to be in here in Santa Barbara. So when I finally decided, you know what, I need to do something different just because I wanted to, I got into tech. I didn’t know I was getting into honestly, but and it’s a whole different world. But I’m I’m actually happy I’m here.
I wasn’t very happy last year, the year before as I continue to lose money. But, you know, if you rummage around in in your profession, sometimes ideas come to you and sometimes not even your ideas come to you, which I’ll I won’t take the credit for the my dinner rewards happily give it to my son who said, Chief, did you know a lot about building browser’s what about people’s data. And the lights turned on for me but I hadn’t.
I stayed in this realm. I stayed in this vertical of browsers and left again and going back to real estate, I never would have picked up on this wonderful idea of what we where we’ve been taken for the last 15 or 20 years and the Internet. And it’s kind of like the wool’s been pulled over our eyes and I realize, holy smokes, this could be great for everyone. So, you know, it’s interesting that you get into one business and I will tell anybody who is entrepreneurial stay at it.
I wouldn’t say be foolish. I would almost recognize recognized as being foolish. But if you can stand it and you can figure something out, it can be really fun and rewarding and hopefully rewarding to your customer as well. Well, you bring up a very interesting thing, Jeff, and and I appreciate your openness to and you talk about dyslexia.
I share the challenge you had I, I would have this real problem.
And I talked to more and more folks who are founders.
And it is not uncommon to find a lot of founders and leaders who struggle with dyslexia was the best burgers I have.
That’s what they’ve said. You’ve got a form of Asperger’s, not as heavily as some people, but it’s there. And my wife says you come up with the weirdest stuff and we think we think differently than a lot of people think.
In a in a sense, it’s a necessity, as you talked about, like. Getting into founding a company and taking the is sort of like this idea of risk. Most people it’s really we talk when we describe it is often, you know, delaying and deferring as much risk as you can and eliminating risk, especially as a CEO.
But just the fact that you take the first leap, you have to have a certain sense of a different type of personality that’s willing to kind of step off the diving board the first time when everyone else is looking and saying, no, I’m good. I don’t I don’t need to do this. It’s a very elite set of folks who will say, OK, well, I, you know, risk aside, let’s say let’s go for it.
Yeah. You know, there’s no doubt about it. And I would tell you, in fact, I had a discussion with a guy and we had a bet because he said, well, you have Aspergers. What are you doing running the company as a CEO? And I said, well, let me show you all the people that are just, you know, have Asperger’s that are running companies. And I’m saying I’m not comparing myself to them, but I gave them a list of these and he was kind of in shock.
And he had much more to say to me, because it is true that that we tend to be and I can tell you part of this is your tenaciousness and you’re looking at problems that most people would go, oh, that’s just way too complicated to figure out. And yet you’re in there in your brain undoing the puzzle or doing the puzzle and figuring out the pieces and finding little strikes, a goal that most people would. And I’m kind of surprised that my team is a really great team.
But half the stuff comes for me. More than half of it comes from me going, hey, wait, what if we just did this and it’s so out of the box? Like I came up with this idea, you know, where we should be advertising? Well, you know, they’re like, where? Well, what do we advertise in gas stations? And it’s like, what? That’s not tech. What are you talking about? Well, most of my best customers, in my opinion, are going to be truckers, Uber drivers, people who are on the road a lot commuters.
So if a trucker is going to do sixty or eighty thousand miles a year, how best are you going to get in front of them? Well, it turns out that those gas pumps where they’re sitting to, you know, fifteen to twenty five minutes to to gas up one of those big trucks. And while they’re sitting doing that, you could have a sign in front of them saying, why don’t you sign up and earn money for it? That’s just off the wall.
It is interesting that you definitely have the and I always say, like when people when adults play video games, he sort of another sort of example of the way that your brain is wired that we’ve by nature have built in all these constraints.
And so if you see an adult play a video game, they typically will have swollen thumbs by the end of it. And they’re physically moving, trying to, like, force this thing. You believe that physical effort can change things, but kids.
Because they haven’t got those constraints built in yet, don’t fall victim to that belief that they’re going to affect the outcome in these other ways and that freedom of thought.
Is where it is, and so when we look at Ivancich personality disorders, but differences in sort of like the spectrum of of personality types and where Asperger’s and other things fall onto the spectrum.
A lot of times it is the fact that you’ve got so much. In one area of like capabilities, like cognitive capabilities, and there’s also it’s a trade off of some parts of the personality are very different, but it also means that you probably have less constraints in the way you approach a problem. You just you see through the constraints and say, well, what if we try this?
And most people are before they say that they’re looking for all the excuses why it wouldn’t work before they suggest the idea.
I have a team that will do that to me all day long and I just push through it and go. Now, we’ve got to go test this because it makes logical sense and may turn out to be wrong. I mean, that’s possible, but it makes logical sense. If your best if if you’re paying people for geolocation, for example, that’s one of the things we do that we pay for GEULA location data. Well, that means your best you’re your best customer might be the truck driver that I mean, I have competitors.
I don’t think I’ve thought of that. Like, well, if I want to collect geolocation data, what about truck drivers? What about Uber drivers? What about people that are on the road a lot? Those are interesting customers. And if they don’t mind sharing their data and getting paid for it, so it’s a win for both of us. But that that I had to push through two guys on my team going, I don’t know, that’s really weird.
Why would you think of that? Then I showed him the sign on the Petru on the station where you’re pumping. And I said, so that guy is going to look at the sign for at least two or three minutes while he’s sitting in his car. And he’s going to start thinking, I’m so glad I can make hundreds of dollars just letting this app run in the background. I had we had a truck driver call up our service guys today, and I think they’re a little bit a little bit off.
He says it looks like I’m going to make one hundred dollars in the first month and it’s not. We have something off on our on our data. It’s more like probably twenty five or thirty dollars. But I mean, you make twenty five to thirty dollars doing nothing. I mean where do you get to do that. And I guess this is the perfect time to let’s talk about what it is that that your team is doing and the idea of being able to do this mid to rewards those platforms.
Let’s open up.
Jeff, what exactly is it that that you folks are doing? It’s you know, I don’t want to call the Lexar because Alexia’s don’t work, so I don’t. I can tell you that this is not something you’d get at one of those shows. So what I what I discovered in my years now nine years in the technology business, and I’ve gone through a lot with the browser, dealing with browsers, trying to figure out how to make money with browsers.
Browsers are difficult. It’s a difficult vertical to be in, and particularly because the word free means you’re not going to get paid. And also on top of the browsers, unless you. I was big on price target, big on privacy. But I’m learning to realize that honestly, there’s very little privacy now in in the Internet and your geolocation. You might, for instance, have a VPN that you’re using and that will give you a certain degree of privacy.
But OK, so how is that VPN going to help you when you get in your car and you’re driving around? Well, if you have your VPN on all the time, I guess it might block the Geode geolocation data. I don’t think it does, though. So you’re just being tracked everywhere. And my son said something to me in one day and he says that, you know, your a plan is not working out with your browser. What about a B plan, which would be the data?
And although you like privacy, there are a lot of people like me that, you know, I don’t really care where my my data goes because I’m not doing anything that I would offend anybody with or do anything wrong. So to me, it was like, yeah, they already have my data, so why don’t we figure out how we can profit, how people can profit off of this. And I would tell you five years ago, I don’t think we had the machinery or the servers that could do that for an individual today with the power of the servers and the computers, it’s a lot easier to track somebody.
And obviously they’ve been doing it for the last five or six years. And I kind of came up with the idea, why don’t we why don’t we I’m including myself. Why don’t we get paid for our data? Who’s making all this money off of it? And obviously became a parent with a little bit of a background study, which was, you know, Google, Facebook, you name it. All these advertisers, they’re all collecting your data and selling it.
And guess who’s not making any money?
Well, you me. Right. And it dawned on me like, well, that doesn’t seem fair to me, that Google, Google, I think revenue last year and don’t quote we have is right or wrong. I think with three hundred and sixty billion dollars. And a lot of it was not the sale of data. It was they give this data away to their advertisers in order for the advertisers to then serve you ads. And they make money off the ads, right?
Yeah. It’s the right. You are not the fish, you’re the bait. And the fish is the purchaser of ads, and that is the business they’re in. But you are, in fact, beating every hook.
You are right. And I would say, you know, as we say in the business, if it’s free, you’re the product. Yeah, right. And so I thought of it in this sense. And, you know, I’ve done pretty well in my real estate career. So this was just like, holy mackerel, you know, maybe I could help change the world. And in fact, this morning I was just reading about a lawsuit that Google, the Justice Department filed against Google for a monopoly.
And I thought I started reading This is Me, because when I went out to Google to start advertising Cocoon, where you could you could actually make money off your data, they called me a scam and they they denied me advertising. I wrote them six different letters, begged somebody to come on to talk to me. No one would. And I realized after reading what’s going on with the Justice Department, they’re doing this to a lot of people. Anybody who is in competition with them, they’re like, we’ll make something up and they won’t be able to advertise on our site.
And it’s a very opaque system, too, like that I I’m in a similar challenge, so one point I don’t even know, probably 10 years ago I I was doing some testing of of like website performance testing for I was setting up a site and let me just see how it works.
And I had Google ads on my site. And so I was basically like battering my site with hits. And I realized that as it’s scraping the site, it’s also scraping the ad and effectively probably virtual clicking the link. And so all of a sudden I get up in the morning and I look at my Web site and it’s just got a bunch of gray boxes on it because there was no ad there. And I look in and says, you’ve been banned from the ad since platform.
And and they said, and that’s it. Like that’s literally all you get is an email saying if you wish to appeal, fill out this form. And there’s no phone numbers, no people, there’s no nothing. And every year, like the way the same way that, you know, Charles Manson’s family goes back and they apply for parole and it gets denied every year. I do the same thing with accents. Every year I say, hey, by the way, I’ve been kicked off the platform since probably the beginning of Google.
And can you tell me why? And then, like, we can’t tell you why.
And I say they a form response from, I guess you we due to the complexities and not being able to expose the algorithms that make the decisions, we cannot tell you why.
We can only tell you that you’ve been denied. Please feel free to reapply again in the future.
My my gal, by the way, over at Google, her name is Elizabeth. She’s not a real person. She’s a I. So every time I’ve tried to go up the ladder now I might give it a go up the ladder with Google only because they’ve just become a tenant of mine in my office park and they’re just about they took like twenty thousand square feet and they’re just about to take twenty five thousand. And what they’re doing in our office park in Santa Barbara is quantum computing.
So no secret there that’s been announced. And they’re taking up as much office space as I can. And I own we own about three hundred thousand square feet. I wouldn’t be surprised if most or all that goes to them in the long run. But my my point was I didn’t even bother to talk to them. But I was like, you know, the government because it’s not just the right. It’s both the left and the right do not like the monopoly that’s going on.
And they could find themselves in deep trouble with this kind of attitude, which is, well, if you’re a competitor of ours, we’ll just block you. And that’s what they did to you or they thought you’re doing something you didn’t have as a way to appeal it. I gave up. I was like, I don’t really need you guys. And that’s by the way, this is how people with Asperger’s look at things a lot of times. Like what?
I’ll need you. I’ll figure this out without you. And I do this all the time, I just go, OK, that road is not working, I’ll just go a different road. And so the gas stations for me, sitting at the gas station with, you know, with the truckers as a bus. And I actually like people. I like people who are like that. So I’m happy to go sit and chat with them over coffee.
Then I am going over to talk to Google and talking some intellectual nonsense with them.
Well, enough to talk about an example of, you know, a big bit of a roundabout of of how things come back together in this weird you know, the convergence is remember Microsoft when they were taken and their answer to antitrust lawsuit by the U.S. government and the the firm that represented them was and was Boies Schiller. And if it was boys and at the time I was. But David Boies, famous lawyer, famously struggles with dyslexia, all sorts of really, really interesting, you know, cognitive challenges that he faces and the way that he dealt with it, stuttering and also with memory challenges.
And so he had a terrible rote memory. And so he had to do was like to really train himself to respond. And as a result, when it came to doing legal briefs, he had this incredible ability to sort of attack it in a very different way. And like you talked about, is that you just kind of you see the puzzle and it’s not even a puzzle. You just you see the solution and you end up. He said he would look around at people saying, why aren’t you willing to do the work?
This just this just makes sense to me. And and thus it created the success.
And then so I said the roundabout thing was Microsoft, you know, it led the way for what I believe Google is probably about to face and.
Exactly, exactly. I mean, they’re now faced with I don’t know what I don’t know if there’s a political hiding place for them or not, but their soon to be faced with this. And, you know, I say to myself, well, just how similar these guys for blocking people with other good ideas and they need to go. The way I look at this is they need to keep up with the other guys, too. So it is a problem for them.
And I’ll explain why. So in in this world and remember, I’m a browser and an app, so I’m not a search engine. And people sometimes get confused. And they’re they’re their biggest profit center, I believe, is their search engine. And everything else is smaller, but still it’s all revenue. But by them blocking other people instead of just saying, oh, yeah, it’s competition now, people are in my interest. I think they’re going to a lot be a lot of knives coming out and hurting Google because they’re not following the new path and the new path, which is what I believe it is more of a shared path you’re doing have to work on your computer or you’re driving around there collecting all this data for free.
You think they’ve kind of talked you into, hey, you’re getting free service and that’s why you’re giving up all this data? Well, I did the math, sat down one day and went, that’s not necessarily true. I could give my user sixty seventy percent of the profit take 30 or 40 percent, which is far better than what you’re getting today, which is zero. And yeah, it’s small dollars to start. But if we start a movement and people catch on to this and go, yeah, I’m giving up my data anyway for free, so why not get paid for it, that will hurt Google in the long run because their model of not paying anybody for anything will eventually eventually make it hurt.
I say May because, you know, they’re the giant gorilla of one point five billion people using their browser. But, you know, there could be a lot of knives coming out. And I don’t mean in a bad way, but just in a fair way for people. After all, why shouldn’t you get some of the profit? And I by the way, I commend Andrew Yang, who is a, you know, the presidential candidate for going after Google and trying to get them to do something.
I don’t have high hopes for him because, you know, a hundred or two hundred thousand, unless they can he can pull something off politically on them. They’re not going to give up anything.
No. And but it’s interesting that you raised the idea of it’s effectively a margin business. Right.
So we are in the it’s you know, you can’t get it all.
But if you can at least take a margin, give folks a way in which they can recapture value in Little League revenue from their own data consumption, that not not them consuming, but their data being consumed, like, why shouldn’t we do that?
Why shouldn’t we we’re seeing it in other areas of the industry, like what Rakuten does with with shopping. Effectively, they’ve looked and said that we can at scale do something that effectively is a margin. Business, so we will share that margin with you and that works out to discounts, everybody, in effect wins because you are going to do the stuff anyways.
So why wouldn’t you, you know, put something in the middle that allows you to personally have gains from from what you’re doing anyways, instead of giving it all to the these massive back end providers?
You’re 100 percent right. In fact, I built the Staats. It’s in the weightings. I built my own rack store because what I wanted to do is when you come to NDR, I want you to get all the savings or all the profits I possibly can give you because I want the customer to be the winner. I mean, I ran this real estate company and I was always looking out for my tenants, giving them the best possible deal. I could lose one guy who showed up one day and he invited me to lunch news that one of my competitors and he said, let me ask you a question.
I’m a window broke in my building and it cost me a thousand dollars. I could not convince the landlord to fix it. It cost me a thousand dollars and I just moved in. What would you have done? I said I would have just fixed it for you. I wouldn’t ask any questions. So stupid. He said, as soon as my lease is up, I’m coming to you. Well, four years later, indeed, he showed up and signed a 10000 thousand square foot lease with me.
It’s right, we just made common sense to to work with people and to and if you can figure out I’m excited about nonprofits for interest, I would love to work with nonprofits. Not only had people share some of their profits with them, I’m happy to share some of my profits with them as well. Well, and this is another thing that came up recently, and I’ll say I’ll say this is my point, Jeff, because I want to pull you into my sort of opinion piece here.
But somebody raised that the concerns about Amazon Smil, where they take a sort of a percentage of of every sale and it goes towards charities, you can select the charity. Right.
And because it’s hosted by Amazon, they effectively are getting so you do the charity, you give the money, and then Amazon as the collective gets the tax rebate for it.
So there are a lot of people are sort of torn and they said, well, I don’t like that.
I say like Boo on Amazon smile because it’s just another multibillion dollar company getting more billions of dollars.
But at the same time, like, the charities are getting money.
And so it is an interesting conundrum, like you said, with privacy, where, look, we’re we have 100 percent privacy laws. If we can ratchet it back, we’re not going to get zero. But there are somewhere in the middle where we can at least find some medium where we can we’ll never be fully satisfied.
But that was another is again, like margin level major, you know, at scale model where stuff can have a drastic effect. A lot of companies can get some good money in. Non-profit is a place where I think people would really agree we should put our attention. Right.
I didn’t even think of the tax. I don’t think that way. So I didn’t think of the tax ramifications. I just, you know, I really care about people. So for me, sure, I’m happy if we can get something going. And look, it helps the company. So our company grows because we’re active with nonprofits. People are happy that we’re doing that. They want to give they don’t have to give a penny. You know, they could choose not to take all the money.
And I wouldn’t think anything, you know, less of them. But I just think it’s a great way and here’s what I’m seeing, and this is kind of a cultural change. I think it’s a cultural change is coming is that we is growing up and I’m I’m pretty old. So I’m I act like a 12 year old or 16, but I get it.
And we’re much more of a sharing type of thought process than than we are. And I’m not saying it’s it’s bad to go and make a profit. And it’s and I believe in, you know, in some great American dreams. But I also think that there’s a there’s a little bit of a wave coming where it’s not just about me, the company. And so I’m one of those guys, which is, well, wait, I can help see, I love this.
This is the biggest win win you could possibly have in business where you’re not taking anything from the customer. You’re actually on the customer side making money for the customer and you get to make some money with. And I look at them go, oh, my God, how great is that? It’s it really is a win win and. It it definitely comes out in everything you say, Jeff, that the the focus is always on the customer like the person, the somebody, a real human, you really seem to focus very much first on them.
And you are the secondary benefactor in every way you describe things.
Is that something that’s kind of always been in your personality?
Oh, I have always thought like that. I have always been for the other guy first. And I figure out I may not be the richest guy in the world, but I’m very happy with putting people before me. You know, you can ask my wife, I have that personality like I’m the last guy off the ship. And I really think that way, although, you know, I have to work really hard at what I’m doing. I’m always the last.
I always think of myself as last. Let me get her taken care of. Let me do this for people. You know, let me people ask me, why did you give me one hundred bucks? It’s like you look like you needed some money. You know, I you know, I’m just that way. And I look at business that way, like I don’t have to have every penny in the world. It’s not necessary. And I actually have told people if I had a billion dollars, I would never owned a yacht.
I would give my money away before I’d get a yacht. It’s it’s funny. You want to go on a nice vacation, you want to rent a yacht because you’re worth a billion dollars. Go ahead. Yeah, but to own one and then instead you could you could help other people with that money. Maybe I’ve gotten too old to be that greedy.
Well, another thing that’s interesting is you’re you’ve had many careers.
And I would say that you’ve approached them all. But the one that I’m interested in because you have a you have a let’s just get it done like you are definitely willing to do stuff. And so competitive tennis was your example where. You did very well at that, you’re getting scholarships for it. So it’s an interesting dichotomy that you have that competitive capability, but you also have the very human, empathetic understanding of experience.
So how did that how did it feel to you when you were a competitive sportsperson?
Did you ever sort of struggle with. You’re being competitive and successful in the sense of you probably didn’t celebrate as much as you deserve to because it’s in your purse. Now, think about somebody else first. So intense, is it it’s interesting you bring that up and it’s once again, it’s part of my personality. I was not a good tennis player. In fact, I had a match one time with a kid. I won’t mention his name. And if he’s still around and he told me he walked up to me after we played two sets, he said he’d beat me love and love the 00.
And he said, you’re never going to be any good at the sport. You should go do something else. And I was heartbroken. I was what I go I didn’t go home and say I’m quitting. I went home and asked my dad to build me a backboard, you know, so I could hit a thousand four hundred thousand back and forth. And I was out there every single day practicing practice until, you know, until it became a really good tennis player and I had to play it, which means I have a problem with my eyes.
My eyes don’t fuse like everybody else’s. So a ball will jump around on me. And yet, you know, I turned out as a really good tennis player and with all these things that I had to overcome. And so, you know, I just had this personality where, like, if if the ball was close, I’d call it in for the other guy. It just it was like, well, I don’t know. And it was clearly not out.
And it was clearly, you know, I couldn’t tell. So I actually could actually I won’t mention the coach’s name, but actually when I looked at USC and UCLA, a school, I actually wouldn’t go to UCLA because I knew the coach, a few of the kids on their team cheat. And then we thought I was just kidding. One of my fellow tennis players about that, that we had a saying that he would say the kid would say out and we’d all say, mutter under my breath, under water of your reach, out of your reach.
That’s what it was. It wasn’t out. It was out of your reach. So, yeah, it’s it’s an interesting thing to have this this kind of dual personality that wants to be successful. But I want other people to be successful along with me. But that’s not unusual. But what’s unusual is, is so focused on your customer rather than your company. And I think that is a little bit unusual.
And it needs to be celebrated more and unfortunately, the reason why it’s as you even even you describe what you’re saying, it’s tons of people out there that are like me, like, well, it’s that may be true, but I the problem is the news is sort of filled with the hubers of the world.
And, you know, while we talk about the Uber of something being an idea of like the way in which they approach business, unfortunately, there’s also many negative connotations to sort of the early management team at Uber and sort of their some of their business techniques. And there’s lots of companies that, you know, have done that also.
At the same time, though, I think inside inside some of those folks, they just they were much more willing to do things that were negative in hopes of doing a positive thing versus you just don’t have that in your you when you’re when your needle goes to 50 percent and it says someone’s going to get hurt as a result of this decision, you’ll never let it go to 51. Judging by the way that you’ve, you know, the way you do business, the way you treat people, you sure try.
And I have to say, you sure try and think like that. I like to get up in the morning, look at myself in the mirror and go, you’re doing a good job and you care about others. Now, that’s not to say so. An investor doesn’t say, gee, I don’t know if I’d invest with this guy. He’s not after every dollar. And the truth is, this is the greatest part about this is I’m after every dollar I can get because I’m helping my customers make money.
And to me, it’s like, sure, I’ll bargain the heck out of other people if I could earn a little more. Not being unfair, I’m not the type of person. I’m not I don’t I’m not a person who takes advantage of you, but I am. But I’m aggressive in getting the best deal I can for my particularly for my customers, because they’re my clients and they’re making I mean, this deal is, you know, if there’s there’s right now, it’s the cocoon is MVR by data rewards is a desktop and it’s also a mobile.
And the mobile does two fabulous things. One, it collects your geo data and we can sell that. And then two, it does the browsing and hopefully other things will come to pass that we can sell for you. But by doing that, I’m actually making money for you and I’m getting just a piece of the action. And the more you make, maybe the more I can actually give you. Right, because we’re all doing great together. We’re in the boat together and it’s so unusual to be on the same side as the customer.
Even in real estate, it’s hard to be you can’t really be on the same side as a customer. But here my customer and I are simpatico. We’re we’re together. And I just can’t think of a better all my business career, I can’t think of a better position to be in a lot of us both making money together and and also doing the right thing.
It’s it is a wonderful thing and. I’m I’m betting that this started fire before your your tennis days and your real estate days, when when was the first time, Jeff, that you realized that you were thinking differently in the way that you were looking at life? I know exactly when that would be, I was in the third grade and my parents held me back and they told me, don’t worry, you don’t have to tell anybody. We’re moving to a different city.
We moved from White Plains, New York, to Rye, and that was musclemen health for me. It was hard for me to realize I thought I was stupid. I literally thought I was stupid. And today I still sometimes think I’m dumb. So this goes all the way back to my eye surgery. So when I was a child, I had eye surgery, I had a clubfoot. I didn’t talk until I was I think I was almost either four.
I didn’t say a word. My parents were. I remember having, you know, I whatever all those things on your brain to see if you had a functioning brain because they’re all going, what is wrong with this child? And there was nothing wrong with me in that way. I just thought differently. And so there was different. And I use all these different things to I hope to be a better person and to, you know, think out of the box.
And if you’re going to be an entrepreneur, even in my real estate career, I was the first guy in Santa Barbara to figure out how to bring workforce housing to the marketplace. Nobody had figured out how to do that. And I did. I mean, it took me a long time to figure it out. You know, I was proud of building things that that most people go to. This case, it’s weird to me, was creative.
Right? So, I mean, if you ask people in our town, if you love the most hated developers who you hated the most love developer, it was always, yeah, this guy I mean, I was always true to my word. If I said I was going to donate land, you know, people just to try and kill the project, which is not going to donate the land. And of course, I did. You know, just.
That’s how I act, I tell you, I’m going to do it. We’re going to get it done. There’s a very strong. Story and and like the the adversity that you faced from from early on.
And the way that you built sort of compensating capabilities for those things, like when did when did you understand that you were, you know, as we say, sort of different in the way that you described it or that, but you knew.
That you could do you could have a good outcome despite that, and in fact, maybe even because of it, I would say that you’ve through adversity, you became much stronger than if you hadn’t faced much of the adversity that you faced.
First of all, I’m hiring you as my therapist and you’re dead on, right? And I think it was you know, I really had some dark moments growing up where I really was convinced that I didn’t have the self-worth and that was part of the driving force for me. I mean, when, like your parents say you’re going to be left back, you know, maybe today it’s not as bad. Back then, I was like the most horrible thing they could ever say to me and I interpreted as being done.
And so it wasn’t true. I wasn’t dumb. I just I still can’t write a sentence properly and I probably can’t do all the math. But it’s interesting. I can do math in my head and do fairly complex math and figure it out and be pretty close and not know how to do it on a piece of paper. And just, you know, I have no clue, but I can do it in my head. So probably after college, when I first got my job, my first job and I worked my whole way, I was from a fairly well-off family.
I worked all the time. I loved to work. I mean, as a kid, I tweet tennis courts. I run an indoor tennis club. I worked on a grocery store truck. Anything to me was fun. Working was fun. And so I’ve kind of grown up that way. And I’ll admit, maybe I haven’t been the best. I’ve tried to be a really good parent, but, you know, it’s I don’t want to compare myself to Steve Jobs, but it is hard to be this kind of person and have these struggles going on.
But yet you have these talents that most people don’t understand. And when I hear these guys, as investors say to me, I don’t know if I want to invest in you, they may have good reason, but they certainly haven’t talked to me. They just maybe don’t like the product. But if you sat down and talked to me, you’d go with this guy is you know, he’s got a purpose. He’s he’s out there to win. And in fact.
I never asked my current investors for any money, I just put the money in myself until I think, hey, we really have something and I think now, hey, we really have something. But I didn’t for seven years. I didn’t ask anybody for any money. And I just put it in myself like, it’s not really I can’t ask people for money. It’s a challenge in the industry that, of course, like venture capital and the whole basis of the system is that their investors who are looking for outsized returns in general within a fund, and that means that they are going to bet and they know that the the bets are mostly losses.
And so they have to bet moderate amounts across a spectrum of companies knowing that, you know, in the preto sort of principle that 80-20 that 20 percent of the investment will return 80 percent of the value, but they have to go their whole purpose.
People always say, you know, hey, they could celebrate. Yeah, we just had a funding round of, you know, forty eight million dollars or whatever.
It’s like whatever that thing is, it’s it’s funny when I talk to folks that are on there that are receiving that that fund, that they’re receiving dilution, they’re receiving all of these side effects and IOUs and obligations. But it’s sort of the nature of the industry that they have to take that’s they’ve just accepted, that’s what it is.
And you’re on the right side of the model, in my belief, because you are you probably when you do take an investment, it will be for a fantastic return for that investor, because you’ve already done the hard yards. You’ve already taken the risk yourself, because in the same way you treat people, you’re going to treat your investors the same way that you wouldn’t let them put money in if you didn’t fully trust that you are going to be able to deliver an outcome that will be in their favor.
That’s 100 percent right. I mean, that’s exactly what you should be my therapist, because that’s exactly how I actually think of it. And I wouldn’t put it. I wouldn’t take anybody’s money. I had a woman who said I want to risk more money. And I was like, no, you’re not putting any more money in until I tell you. I think we’ve put all these pieces together and we’re still compiling all these pieces. I mean, today, I couldn’t tell a user that they’re going to make unless they’re a long term driver that are make three or four dollars a month from this.
It’s really hard to do. But I can tell you, if we stay at it and we all collectively work together, all of a sudden that four dollars return and eight dollars and eight dollars turn into twelve dollars. And it’s the tenacity. The smartness is letting our investors know I am their one hundred percent to make this a winning hand and a fair hand so that, you know, the investors may not like to hear that. And I would tell you if if I think treating people fairly is a good way of going and and it’s not always about the dollar, because treating people fairly is about the dollar.
And I can prove it in my office buildings. I had less vacancies that anybody around because they took care of my customers. They never wanted to leave. I mean, I got guys going, fine, you know, they need to downsize. I talked to a tenant today. I need to downsize. OK, let’s downsize you. I got a tenant. I think I can step into your space. What do you want from me? I don’t want anything will help you move and we’ll bring in this other tenant.
And so it’s thinking out of the box that’s super important in in any kind of technology, any kind of thing. It’s super important. And I would say about investors vs.. As I look at them and they seem like they follow each other and they wonder why they don’t make any money in it is because they’re all they’re all following each other. If it’s food that’s hot, they’re all in it. And ninety six percent are going to lose their shirts.
But they’re all in and it’s like, wow, why would you guys all step into that same room? Why don’t you? Take a bit off the wall, I’m in off the wall idea and you go, oh, you’re competing with Google? Yeah, in a way I am, but I think in the long run will hurt Google and you’ll make money doing it. I’m not doing it on purpose to Google. Google really can’t afford to do my business plan because their whole business plan is based on 100 percent.
Yet they’re giving up their own margins to run away from themselves. It would be a fundamentally bad business practice in their mind. Right? Right.
It would be a terrible business idea. What about a search engine? What if we developed a search engine that paid you for your data and then they’d even be more hurt? So this is what they have to worry about is, is people finding ways. And so the time has come where sharing is OK? It doesn’t always have to go just to our bottom line. It could go to. You know, to to my customers bottom line, and it’s it’s it’s a great model and it’s it’s hard to beat up on that LOL.
And in the end, when you look at there, they are still obviously vastly successful. There’s no doubt that even if you were able to scale, you know, and when we see the scaling of of what you’re doing with Cocoon MDR.
You’re still not putting them out of business, in fact, you’re keeping them in business because you still they still have customers, they still have flow of data. We’re not cutting them off. They’re not cutting us off. It is a beautiful sort of.
And it’s fair is a is an odd word because I think of like sort of the Chris Voss method of talks about, you know, fair is a difficult world in negotiations because fair is really the ideal non negotiated outcome is. But each side has a sense of fair.
And when we think of fair in a human term, it’s it really does move to a binary sense of fairness. But in fact, that’s not what it is.
It’s that both sides have to agree to accept some non negotiated outcome of both gain and loss, right?
Exactly. Absolutely. You know, in my in my real estate career, I did really well, a taking care of my customers and B, being smart about how I used money, how we build things. And that’s just a matter of then just as you’re saying, is that compromising that you can’t get it all? And in my case, you know, I like the sharing and I love the idea of building something that’s good for a lot of people.
And look at this. I mean, the advertisers, when they get the data they want, the customer wins finally because they get money in their pocket and and we win because we’re helping the customer make money. And so to me, this is the this is like a I mean, this is a dream come true for a businessman who has strong ethics, which is, hey, everybody wins. And I think the I’m actually seeing a stronger move nowadays that some of the folks that went through sort of Silicon Valley, the you know, so we’ve got the we’ll see the old school, the Sandhill Road, like the classic, you know, big groups of voices.
But they have spawned a lot of companies, which spawned a lot of founders who made a lot of money. They had a good, good, you know, windfall. And they’ve taken that now and they’re doing seed investment, angel investment.
And what’s interesting is that we’re seeing a move towards a very ethical investment method because those people benefited, but they understand that they benefited. And what the wins and losses and what those trade offs were, what how fair worked in that market, and so I really like that we’re seeing folks that took that capability and they’re doing what you’re doing, Jeff.
And they’re seeing look, can I take this money that I’ve made?
And recognize that I did it and I won the lottery in effect, but with that, can I help somebody else feel like they won the lottery? And we are really seeing this new batch of founders that are being given the the chance where a traditional VC investor would just purely have looked at the spreadsheet and not cared about the business like the the human outcome of their business.
Yeah, I. I totally agree. We’re still you know, we’re still underfunded and looking for the investors. But I have to say, I met somebody on the street who just was looking out for themselves, period. I might not do the deal with them because what I want is if you hear, I guess, the perfect answer, which makes this really a lot easier for an investor to understand, because my customers making more money and I’m out looking for them, you, the investor, are actually ending up making more investment versus saying to me, well, why don’t you just keep cutting their margins?
And I can say, if I keep cutting the margins of the customer, the customer is going to go away. And that four dollars turns into two dollars. Sure. For two months you got a little more money, but now I don’t have a customer. Why would you do that? That doesn’t make so being in business for 25 or 30 years makes me a lot smarter about how this whole system can work and what I can say to an investor.
Sure, we’ll take 50 percent, but now I don’t have a customer because I took too much money from that. So they’re not around anymore, so now I have to buy a new customer. Thanks a lot. Yeah, well, and in the area that you’re working, we know the business model that you’re effectively pitted against is certainly not going away. And in fact, their margins are increasing.
There’s definitely a win for your customers all the way through, like the end for the foreseeable future.
This is not a it’s not a temporary win.
This is something that we are going to be up against in the economics of advertising and data sales and data privacy, subjugation.
To to that stuff. It’s. It’s not going away, and in fact, this is an opportune time for for what you’re doing. And and like I said, I appreciate, you know, how you’re approaching it.
What you’re doing is amazing. What the way in which you’re approaching it as a person is even more important, I think, in what will derive a positive outcome for you and for your customers.
I sure hope so. And let me say this. You touched on privacy. I think privacy. I actually built the browser, which will eventually combine into this browser that’s I think one of the most private secure browsers ever built. That was the first thing I ever built. So I like the idea of privacy. But when you get to the point of realizing, well, OK, so maybe my browser could be private, but my geolocation is really not private.
It’s kind of like, you know, unless this is really harming you a lot, either sit home and don’t go anywhere or you kind of have to go, well, you know what, they’re getting it anyway. So why don’t I get a piece of the action and maybe it’s, you know, you kind of given up in a way. But the answer is, well, maybe I had to, because really, you’re fighting these giant companies that are going to take all the information they possibly can get about you and turn it into monetizing because that’s their model.
My model is different, which is a you and I together are going to do this with your data. But finally, you’re going to get paid for your data versus just giving it to some company and you never get anything out of it. Now, it may be only a few dollars to start, but I guarantee you, if we stick together and we build the company, this will turn into a lot more money, maybe as much as, you know, a couple of thousand dollars a year for a person.
And that that’s a dream right now. But it’s you know, it could be reality in years and still have some privacy. But at least you’re making some money off of what everybody else is using on you and you don’t even get it. You don’t even know that you are the product. It’s it’s a terrible, terrible situation to not realize that you are the product and you’re not getting anything for your data.
Yeah, it’s it’s the problem we face of like the some of the like the pundits, the strong voices out there that are very like, you know, and I’m all I’m pro privacy.
I’m I’m I would say I’m island. And instead of a lot of libertarian categories and sort of the like, the way I think about, you know, like Google, I’m like, hey, I love the idea of free markets at some point, then I’m torn of how do we regulate it, because there is a point where sometimes it’s necessary, but when it comes to privacy and whatever, so the people like me, you know, or the really strong advocates for privacy, they’re going to do kind of what you talked about, where they’re going to use a a Tor browser.
They’re going to do VPN everywhere.
They’re going to do all this crazy stuff. But the truth is, it’s a minuscule percentage of the population. And what you’re doing is you’re effectively creating opportunity for the larger mass of the population who just can’t they don’t have the technical know how to do that and nor they should they.
So why not reward them with the data that they’re already giving away, at least in. Let’s let’s find a way that we can I think through that.
You know, even as the second phase of of what your team will do is there’s there’s a next chapter and it will probably be can we empower more privacy through now that we have a customer base like it’s your customers are in the beginning of a journey and it’s a journey towards them getting value from their own.
Selves. Well, how would you like. Let me put this out as a big as a big picture. How would you like that? You have the control, I’ll say, on almost everything you have to control to decide. I want to sell it just like you do it today. I want to sell it. And I don’t want to sell. I mean, to me, that’s how we act as human beings. We don’t have this one side like, oh, I’ll just sell everything or we don’t have the side that I’m just going to be private about everything.
There’s these you know, we have two different personalities going on. And I would submit to you what we’re building when I eventually match in Cocoon, the private browser, you then have the best of both worlds. So you can say to yourself, instead of spending one hundred and twenty dollars on a VPN, unless you’re sending documents through, I don’t see a need for that. But if you’re on the Web, you could use our browser, which hides your IP address, stores, everything in the cloud, nothing is on your computer.
I mean, I’m a whiz kid at this part. It’s probably one of the better browsers ever had built in that sense of privacy. And and we have know antivirus on it. So all types of things. And yet you could have best of both worlds. So you in a switch, which is what I plan in the future, is you can hit I want to be in stealth mode. Nobody can see anything you’re doing. And to me, that’s the perfect solution, which is take your choice, you know, if you want to be private, you don’t want anybody know what you’re doing, put that on.
If you don’t care about where you’re going day to day, turn on your geolocation, let it flow and make some money. It’s a. It’s a win. It truly is a win win, and I think that for folks who who need to look into this will we’ll include some some links in the show notes as well.
But just to go back to your. Your way of approaching things, Jeff, adversity very much played a part in your ability to succeed because of the way you’ve developed methods to deal with that adversity, which resulted in you being able to deal with other externalities, other adversity for folks that.
If they came to you and they said, Jeff, I love your story, I haven’t, I want to be able to.
Take on risk, I want to be able to move they start a business, do a thing.
What’s the advice that you would give, maybe just to folks that how do they prepare themselves for that adversity when they may not have experienced it yet?
Yeah, great question. So a couple pieces of advice from my staff. First of all, which I’ve made a hundred mistakes, so make sure you do your research, whatever, you’re going to go in to do a deep dive and twist this around before you spend a penny twisted around. You’ll still find when you start to develop it that you’ll have surprises you never thought of. Like who would have thought that? Maybe Mike, maybe the trucker’s or or Uber drivers would be my best customers and their best customers, so to speak.
So would you have to do is you need to have an idea. You need to focus in on it, do the research, and then don’t be afraid to twist and turn as it comes along, because the people who get just like tied into their one idea and if it doesn’t work, they give up, then I would tell you, you probably shouldn’t be an entrepreneur. You’re probably and it’s not for everyone. Taking these kinds of risks is a scary deal.
And, you know, I woke up this morning thinking, how am I going to get all my bills paid? And, you know, I’m done really well in business, but you take these risk and you’re willing to take them and you have a spouse that doesn’t mind, hopefully, if you’re married, but you have to be able to twist and turn, persevere, and then you have to know when to let go if it’s not working. I mean, I’m a perfect come see me on my first project and I tell you, you should learn a lesson for me.
I should have let it go. However, when I didn’t let it go because I had the money to keep going and my own money, I think that hurt. I think because I’m not there yet. I think I’ve turned this into a wonderful project. So that’s my advice to people, is focus and do your research first. Do not go out and think you’re going to create the next pair of glasses if they’re already existing or if you’re going to compete, you’ve got to have an angle that the other guy doesn’t have a price point, something that the other guy doesn’t have.
Otherwise it may not work out for you. Restaurant, even a restaurant. You’ve got to look in your marketplace. If there’s four Thai restaurants, I wouldn’t be proposing opening a Thai food Thai restaurant unless you have a special formula that the other guys don’t have. And I do hope that people take a lot from your story, Jeff, it’s inspiring both as far as what you’re doing through your team, your platform and personally, it’s it’s been a real pleasure to share the last the last seventy five minutes with you.
And I hope that folks enjoy it.
And if so, if somebody wanted to get a hold of you or wanted to get in contact. Jeff is there what’s the best way that they could do that?
Well, if they want to reach me personally, which I’m always happy to take people’s e-mails, it’s Jeff. I’m a different kind of CEO. I will answer you. You send me something, I will respond. And I learned this, by the way, from the president of American Express. I was a customer of theirs for 20 some odd years. And all of a sudden during the last recession, big recession, they said, we’re going to cut off your credit or do something.
I wrote the CEO, the president of the company, and he responded in writing back to me with not only I’m sorry, but with a gift card of one hundred and fifty dollars. So don’t be afraid to send me an email. It’s Jeff Jeff at the Lake and Victor World, WRAL, D. C. and Charlie dot com. No crackpots, please. I don’t think I have time for that. You have an interesting question or you liked what I was saying.
And if you want to look at our website, go to try Cun Seo Seo. And if I’m from Jersey, you get to see a bit fast growing. That’s great.
Seo Seo and dot com try cocoon dot com. It’s only unfortunately it’s only Android for mobile and for desktop. It is both an. Both desktop is Apple or Mac and and PC. I will warn you about the desktop. I so far have not found the formula that I think pays people enough money. I’m not discouraging you from coming. I’m being honest with you. But I think mobile is a seriously great play. And as soon as we can get iOS out, we will.
But if you if you do have an Android, come and try us and write back to me. If you find something that was, you know, you couldn’t figure out, let me know was fantastic, Jeff.
And thank you. And try and talk about the platform differences.
Probably one of the reasons why iOS is more of a challenge is because they have actually more aggressively put better walls out to protect privacy for their customers. And Android is entirely based on, you know, like let’s let’s get this free OS out there because it allows us to capture more data ultimately that feeds the the machine behind the scenes versus Apple has taken a very privacy forward approach.
You’re not entirely but there more more privacy forward and more customer forward, I think.
Let me just say one last word about privacy. I think this should be up to the customer. I don’t think this should be iOS or Apple making the decision for you. They should put the safeguards in place. And then if you say, hey, listen, I want to sell my data, they shouldn’t be blocking you from doing that. I hope to God they don’t because they’re ruining not just my platform, but they’re ruining the opportunity for other.
They know this other people getting a small piece of the action. And I would have high disregard for them for doing that to people, because to me, it would just be greed if you want to turn it off. So there is just don’t download our app or don’t use our app if you want total privacy. But if you want to share in the profit, I would hope to God I so far, I think they will you know, they’ll let you do that because you said I want to do that and the power should be in you, the customer, not in them.
Cheers to an opt in lifestyle, and when it comes to privacy, that’s where it should be. I agree. Jeff, thank you very much for taking the time today. It’s been a real pleasure. And as as you mentioned, we’ll include some links for folks to get in contact. I really enjoyed the conversation.
Eric is great and once again, ready to hire you as my therapist. All right.
I’m available. I’m available now. But it’s I tell you, it’s I’ve I, I feel like every day that I get to do this thing is a part of, you know, like sort of a side gig, I guess you’d call it my my side hustle is learning.
And and what I’ve been able to be lucky enough to do is to hear all of these incredible stories of perseverance and adversity and and see these patterns and see that how stuff gets through it. And it’s it’s inspiring. I, I, I’m going to walk at it today, right now. And I’m going to be on a real high.
I’ve got a customer event I’m doing in a in a couple of hours and they are going to get a whole lot of cheer and positivity because you’ve, you’ve, you’ve given me a smile and and anybody who’s listening will will share with me and be positive.
I mean, every day I get up, I may be discouraged one day and next more. My secret is I get up and I’m positive, like, I’m going to go I’m going to go solve this problem.
It was and of course, the day we’re recording, this is what’s funny to people, that the time machine is interesting. So General Chuck Yeager sadly passed away last night. And he one of the quotes that that he has is I butchered every time.
I’m sure that everybody does. But the idea is, is that a landing that you walk away from is a good landing. A well, if you can use the plane the next day, it’s an outstanding landing.
I where I try to live by, I still use the term. Did we give up when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor? From Animal House, and so that’s one of my mottos, is did we give up when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor and and today we will not give up.
And so thank you for the story. Thank you.
It’s been really great. Great. Thank you so much for your time.