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EDITORIAL: How To Kill An Industry
Issue: Vol. 47, No.11, November 2007
Imagine the following scenario:  Blue Skies Airlines launches a “whisper campaign” against its main rival, Happy Airways. Every time BSA talks to a potential customer, it says: “For goodness sake, don’t fly Happy Airways. They’re about to go out of business. You’ll be stuck with a worthless ticket.” Naturally, Happy Airways retaliates by spreading (equally baseless) rumors against BSA: “Don’t you know 5% of all their planes crash? Do you really want to take a 1-in-20 chance of going down?” …By MARCUS WEBB
Author: Marcus Webb

EDITORIAL: Can A Realist Also Be An Optimist?
Issue: Vol. 47, No.10, October 2007
Can a realist in the amusement machine industry also be an optimist? Absolutely. Meet Jim Turntine, CEO of Play-Mor Coin-Op and Wonder Novelty (Sullivan, MO). This industry will survive, and thrive, thanks to people like him. He is a calm and practical realist who looks conditions in the eye and calls things by their right names. At the same time, he is an optimist – but one who believes in creating his own opportunities…By MARCUS WEBB
Author: Marcus Webb

EDITORIAL: Rumble, Rumble
Issue: Vol. 47, No. 9, September 2007
If it feels like the ground is shifting under your feet, it is. Virtually everywhere you look in the coin-op amusements industry today, signs of significant change are becoming more and more obvious...By: MARCUS WEBB
Author: Marcus Webb

EDITORIAL: Warren Buffett, Amusement Operator
Issue: Vol. 47, No. 8, August 2007
Now, here is what you call a little-known fact. Billionaire Warren Buffett, the world’s third-richest man and one of the most successful investors of all time – the “Oracle of Omaha” – got his start as an amusement machine operator...MARCUS WEBB
Author: Marcus Webb

EDITORIAL: The High Cost Of Gray-Area Games
Issue: Vol. 40, No. 11 / August 25, 2000 - September 24, 2000
The amusements industry has a long and painful memory of being classed with illegal gambling. Twenty years ago, trade members began a lengthy, difficult and expensive process to persuade state and local authorities that cranes and redemption machines can be innocent games of skill. Today, the industry continues battling, for the most part successfully, to ensure that online skill-based tournaments are not lumped in with Internet casinos...By MARCUS WEBB
Author: Marcus Webb

EDITORIAL: The State Of The Tavern Market
Issue: Vol. 47, No. 5, May 2007
The U.S. tavern market can be described the same way Winston Churchill described democracy: it’s the “worst…except for all the others.” In city after city, and state after state, bars and taverns are under attack on all sides. Lawmakers pass stronger and stronger smoking bans. Urban renewal planners make fewer and fewer on-premise licenses available. Police and politicians institute ever-tougher DUI enforcement programs. MADD pushes for ever-stricter blood alcohol concentration standards. Traditional venues face growing competition from casino gambling, whether at a racetrack, resort or reservation...By MARCUS WEBB
Author: Marcus Webb

EDITORIAL: Bill Cravens Personified The Industry
Issue: Vol. 47, No. 4, April 2007
VT publisher Alicia Lavay-Kertes refers to the passing of industry icon Bill Cravens as “the end of an era.” It certainly feels that way. Cravens, an outsized personality who died in his sleep during last month’s Amusement Showcase International, personified the U.S. amusements industry in countless ways...By MARCUS WEBB
Author: Marcus Webb

EDITORIAL: Surprise! Industry Leaders Are Upbeat
Issue: Vol. 47, No. 3, March 2007
Don’t look now, but rainbows are breaking out in the most unexpected places – namely, in many top echelons of the amusements industry. Medium-sized traditional street operators like Charles Rowland of Games People Play (Richmond, VA) report they are in the strongest financial shape in their history. Giant FEC operators like American Family Entertainment Centers say their “Wal-Mart strategy” of building multi-use facilities in rural areas is working beautifully. In between, the leading chains of pizzerias with gamerooms are also doing landmark business across much of the country...By MARCUS WEBB
Author: Marcus Webb

EDITORIAL: From Edison To iPhone: Fun Trumps Technology
Issue: Vol. 47, No. 2, February 2007
This year marks the 130th anniversary of recorded sound – It was 1877 when Thomas Edison patented his cylinder phonograph. Initially marketed as a businessman’s Dictaphone or an educational device, it failed commercially – at first. Twelve years later, San Francisco entrepreneur Louis Glass rolled out the Nickel In The Slot, which was history’s first coin-operated music playback machine and a simple adaptation of the Edison phonograph …by Marcus Webb
Author: Marcus Webb

EDITORIAL: Machine Sales, Squaring The Circle
Issue: Vol. 47, No. 1, January 2007
Why aren’t more operators buying more new equipment? Certain manufacturers say the reason is, “We haven’t communicated our message to the operator.” In other words, they believe the problem is operator ignorance. For example, a top sales pro who represents photo booths says, “Many operators still don’t seem to realize that modern digital imaging products no longer involve all those messy chemicals.”  ...by Marcus Webb
Author: Marcus Webb

EDITORIAL: Crystal Ball Gazing
Issue: Vol. 46, No. 12, December 2006
A magazine’s final issue of the year is the traditional spot for a year-in-review story and a forecast of the coming year. VT actually began this twin focus (both retrospective and prospective) with Frank Seninsky’s article in our December issue, headlined “In Five Years, This Will Be A Very Different Industry – With Phenomenal Opportunities.” If you haven’t read it yet, go back and give it a careful study... by Marcus Webb
Author: Marcus Webb

EDITORIAL: Three Problems, One Solution
Issue: Vol. 46, No. 11, November 2006
One of the few members of this industry who works, earns and thinks both as a manufacturer and as an operator every single day is Rick Caviglia. The owner of California Amusement Group (San Leandro) and president of View Interactive is forced to think through every issue from both perspectives. So when he talks about the industry’s biggest challenges today, we should listen...by Marcus Webb
Author: Marcus Webb

EDITORIAL: The Glue That Holds Deals Together
Issue: Vol. 46, No. 10, October 2006

We hear a lot of talk about “good faith” in business dealings, particularly when it comes to contracts. But we rarely hear a comprehensive definition of what “good faith” means. One source identifies good faith as “the key essence of a contract,” adding, “the parties are expected to act in good faith in their dealings.” Which means what? ...by Marcus Webb

Author: Marcus Webb

EDITORIAL: How To Transform The Industry
Issue: Vol. 46, No. 9, September 2006
The heart of this industry’s problems today is not a lack of new technology, lack of aggressive marketing, nor the negative elements of its history. The heart of this industry’s problems today lies in its widespread public image as a lower-class, or at least “less classy,” services provider...by Marcus Webb
Author: Marcus Webb

EDITORIAL: The Hottest Selling Machines of 2008
Issue: Vol. 46, No. 8, August 2006
Our colleagues at RePlay Magazine recently published a stunning statistic based on a reader poll, to the effect that 55% of U.S. operators do not reinvest profits into their routes in any systematic way. Paradoxically, the lend-lease professionals at Firestone Financial Corp. and Betson Financial Services have reported (in VT) that their volume of transactions in the coin machine industry increased by double digits from 2005 to 2006.
Author: Marcus Webb

Jukebox Challenges – And Solutions
Issue: Vol. 46, No. 6, June 2006
Author: Marcus Webb

The Real Name Of The Game
Issue: Vol. 46, No. 5, May 2006
Author: Marcus Webb

The Biggest News, So Far, Of 2006
Issue: Vol. 46, No. 3, March 2006


Author: Marcus Webb

Rescuing The Family-Owned Business
Issue: Vol. 46, No. 2, February 2006
Author: Marcus Webb

100,000 Amusement Machines Online In U.S.
Issue: Vol. 46, No. 1, January 2006
Author: Marcus Webb

Why Don’t You Do Right?
Issue: Vol. 45, No. 12, December 2005
Author: Marcus Webb

Coin-Op Sales Are Booming
Issue: Vol. 45, No. 11, November 2005
Author: Marcus Webb

Counting Blessings, Sounding Alarms
Issue: Vol. 45, No. 10, October 2005
Author: Marcus Webb

Driving Ambition...
Issue: Vol. 45, No. 9, September 2005
Author: Marcus Webb

The Neighborhood Bars Are Disappearing In Chicago
Issue: Vol. 45, No. 8, August 2005
Author: Marcus Webb

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