Why Two Young Minority Entrepreneurs Were Arrested at Starbucks



Update: This post,
which first appeared
April 18, 2018, was removed
then reposted because of
a technical issue.

Q: Technology and social movements may help
address profiling issues in the consumer marketplace,
you noted.Recently, cell phone video went viral after the
controversial arrest and jailing of two minority men sitting at
a Philadelphia Starbuck’s.
They were later released without charge.
What do you think about this incident and
how else might technology put an end to such incidents?

A:    The term loitering is often defined in vague terms
in many jurisdictions. Black’s law dictionary is one example
that underscores the issue.

The men were sitting quietly for 15 minutes, according to witnesses.
The Starbucks worker’s exchange with the men, prior to calling
the police (Nestel), suggests anger is evident.
Details in The Washington Post provides further clues
as to why the situation escalated.

Some might argue
that the call to police was racial bias and also a power play.

I would not disagree. The men were later released from jail because Starbucks declined to press charges. One wonders what charges would have applied in this case.

If store owners are concerned with customers who
sit for long periods without buying (CNN),
then if ordinances permit, management should consider posting
at every table a courteous, humorous, and effective
policy guideline enforced equally for all people.

Cell phone technology and social media captured and exposed the incident.
But Virtual Reality may be an effective tool to educate
those who never experience racial bias.

M.L. Nestel
Handcuffing of 2 Black men in a Starbucks
called repressible outcome by CEO
Comedian, CNN commentator
W. Kamau Bell recalls
being kicked out of coffee shop
The Washington Post.com
Starbucks to close 8,000 Starbucks
for racial bias education
money.cnn.com…GMA interview
The men arrested in Philadelphia
Coffeeshop speak out
Dee Adams is the editor of
Shopping & Racial Profiling

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Name Game Revisited


Editor’s note: Portions of this post appeared previously merged with the wrong paragraphs.  The correct copy is reposted below.

What industry would you find these items? And what are they?


  • Purple Fiesta
  • Ruby Crescent
  • Russian Banana
  • Purple Peruvian
  • German Butterballs
  • Rose Fin Apple
  • Magic Molly
  • New Girl
  • Striped German
  • Cobra
  • Valley Girl
  • Paragon
  • German Johnson
  • Yellow Pear
  • Black Prince

Partial Answer: Banana probably pointed you in the direction of the food industry, which would be correct, but if you reasoned that the items were exotic fruits of some kind..insert buzzer. The second group is a different product in the same industry. Can you guess?

Note: The answer to this quiz points to a much bigger issue for aspiring and established entrepreneurs. Details and photos below…


The first list refers to names of potatoes and the second group of names refers to tomatoes. Seed growers around the world have a reputation for coming up with colorful descriptions of their produce.  A practice that some insiders find challenging because it confuses the consumer. For instance, crops, such as tomatoes and squash have more than 1,000 different names! And often times an offbeat moniker makes it difficult to sell the product, so some industry sellers change the name.

And there are cases where foreign growers unfamiliar with the English language have coined names using canned translation services resulting in product names that don’t relate well with consumers.

For other examples, visit the employee owned Johnny Seeds company.
Check out  Spinach and tomatoes for many creative monikers.


  • Even a simple product has to have the right name to generate sales. A poor name will hinder sales. Ironically, seed growers create the often colorful names to get attention in the marketplace yet the practice adds to consumer confusion.
  • Not every mystery can be solved by using Google to find the answer.

Photo Credits
Note: Had I not spoken to industry members across the U.S. I would have been inclined to think some of the photos were Photoshop trickery….

  • First photo purple and white potatoes/Chiots Run Flicker
  • Second photo Bing Images
  • Pink Potatoes from Recipes for 2



Plant Sciences, U.C. Davis/potatoes

Johnny’s Selected Seed Company.com

Pink potatoes
Recipe for 2

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Why Creating a Product Name, Brand, or Title is Challenging


Why Creating a product name, brand, or title is challenging

Imagine having the task of creating a name
for an ordinary
product like carrots.

The World Wide Web has greatly increased
competition and the need to think all around the box.
For instance, a recent search for a title for
a new food column was dismal: every clever, quirky, offbeat,
humorous, or serious food-related term had already been taken.

Creating the right name, brand, trademark or title takes work
and requires identifying a strategy that inspires creative
effort that will attract interest.

Name Game Puzzle, a previous post, highlighted issues and challenges
of entering a crowded field and finding a way to stand out in the food industry.

Check out how one company solved the name game
branding challenge for their carrots, which enables them to…umm, stand out from the bunch…sorry.

Dee Adams is the author of
Finding Your Niche: Discover…

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Q&A: Best Industries for Women Entrepreneurs


Q & A: Best Industries for Women Entrepreneurs

Q: Given the Me Too movement and other gender issues
es, what industries are best for women
with dreams of entrepreneurship?

A: In theory, one should pick a field of interest regardless of gender bias within the industry. Identify possible mentors and influencers. Investigate industry problems beforehand and create a strategy for navigating potholes. Otherwise, based on the issues cited in your question, there would be few fields for women to enter.

Check out the following three related links about women and entrepreneurship in specific industries.

C-Span’s Book TV with journalist and author, Emily Chang, Brotopia: Breaking up the boys’ club of Silicon Valley, Publishers Weekly article about why women become independent publishers, and Marin Tockman of Dashing Bicycle-Bike Shop, the only female-owned bike shop in the southern US, according to PBS program, Startup.




Dee Adams is the author of
Finding Your Niche: Discover…

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Q & A: Aptitudes and Technology



Q. Does technology and the internet change aptitudes?

A. No, because aptitudes are an innate ability.
What does change are tools used to perform
tasks and how aptitudes may be used.

Dee Adams is the author of
Finding Your Niche: Discover…

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Q & A: Funny or Unusual Business Ideas


Q &A: Funnu or unsual business ideas

Q: What’s the funniest or most unusual business
that you have found or thought up?

A. Well, in the funny category that
has to be Goat Yoga.
Most unusual was
a segment on Shark Tank in which the idea involved
mailing messages that were written on
potatoes to customers.
I still don’t understand that one.
A shark supposedly funded the idea!

The most unusual idea that I thought of was inspired
by the Bulwer-Lytton comical fiction writing contest.
The idea was to start a humorous business contest in which contestants would submit a wacky idea with a two sentence pitch.

The funniest most ridiculous submission would win a cash prize.

I thought the contest would be a great idea and fun way to promote Finding Your Niche, but I quickly dropped the idea when a veteran business counselor said that the marketplace would associate my book with wacky ideas.

Dee Adams is the author of
Finding Your Niche: Discover…(Which has absolutely nothing to do with wacky business ideas.)

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Q & A: How Do I Figure Out My Interests?


How Do I Figure Out Interests?

Q: What resource might best
help identify all my interests?
A. Check out the Interest Assessment
on the Virginia Education Wizard site.
Larry Ferlazzo.edublogs.org gave it high
marks on the cool scale.

VA Wizard.org

 Dee Adams is the author
of Finding Your Niche: Discover…  

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Q & A: Racial Profiling Lawsuit


Q & A Racial Profiling Lawsuit

Q: Regarding the mom of five and the recent Walmart lawsuit,
what news source does the best job of reporting
on the issue?

A:  Reporting on the recent case in the news
differs from the overall issue.

Consider compiling and analyzing articles from
different industry sources…

News One cites
incidents of prior racial profiling stories.
Allure magazine tackles the subject
from a beauty industry perspective
and includes statistics on how much money
women of color spend
on cosmetics.

Many news sources, such as Abc and Newsweek,
report on
data that Walmart uses to justify
profiling practices.
But examining and questioning
the business practice and its effectiveness
is usually missing from news reports.

Abc 7News.com
News One
News Week
Dee Adams is the editor of the ethnic studies
supplemental lesson and book titled
Shopping &Racial Profiling
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Q&A: New Way to Market Cranberries?



 Q&ANew Ways to Market Cranberries

Q: After viewing the program about
 cranberry growers, I wonder, is there a new way
to market cranberries?

A: An answer might be to create an original
product or figure out new ways to package and distribute
the existing product.
Inspiration might come from interviews
with members of the food or farming industry.
Another way might involve
heading into a kitchen or lab to
create a recipe or formula.

The berry was introduced in the 1800s,
notes the Cape Cod Association.
For starters, I would explore
newspaper and magazine archives for
historical ads and articles
to answer a number of
questions. For example…
What are the nutritional elements?
Could the product be transferred to another
industry where it would solve a problem?

Did Native American use them and in what ways?
How is the cranberry sed in other parts of the world historically?



Cranberry Growers Video/PBS

 Dee Adams is the author of
Finding Your Niche: Discover…          

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Why A Talented Student Fled Robitics Class



Pure misery. Onyii Brown’s reaction years
ago after confronting the reality of her
choice: robotic engineering.
Tasked with the frustration of
figuring out how to get the robot to move,
a seemingly
endless repetitive activity.

Brown switched her degree objective.

Although possessing
the IQ for the field,
Brown’s high-level imagination
and independent nature was not
a good fit for a structured and regimented field.

Last month, PBS aired a season five episode
of  Start Up.
Houston mom, Onyii Brown,
was featured in one of the segments.
Brown had started a successful design
enterprise for less than $200.
And in a field, she had always wanted to enter.

The Start Up segment underscores
the struggle many confront when social, cultural,
and economic norms clash with creative talent.

Many creative people minimize the value of their artistic talent
and ignore their dreams to follow a conventional path
because everybody knows you cant make a living dabbling in arts…

Those who succeed understand that key business
and marketing principles have to be part of the plan.

http://start up-usa.com/

Check out Brown’s inspirational blog video…

Johnson O’Connor Research Foundation

Did You Know
Some aspiring fashion designers despite passion to enter the field learn they do not have the ability or aptitude for pattern making to construct clothing. So some enter the little-known field within the industry: Textile design. There are only a few hundred designers in textile or fabric design.
Source: PBS/Articulate

Dee Adams is the author
of Finding Your Niche: Discover…

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