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AuthorAMA with The Expanse Writers -- Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck

Jun 15th 2017 by SocialSyfy • 24 Questions • 104 Points

Hi again Reddit! I’m Chris Voss, the founder and CEO of [The Black Swan Group](blackswanltd.com), a consulting firm that provides training and advises Fortune 500 companies through complex negotiations. You may remember me from last year.

Rooted in hostage negotiation, my methodology centers around “Black Swans” small pieces of information that have a huge effect on an outcome. I currently teach at the University of Southern California’s Marshall School of Business. I’ve also lectured at other schools including Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business, Harvard Law School the MIT Sloan School of Management, and Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management. I’ve been a guest on CNN and Fox News, and I’ve appeared on The Daily Show, Anderson Cooper 360, and NPR.

Before all of these fun things, I was the lead international kidnapping negotiator for the FBI, where I tried out all kinds of new approaches in negotiation. I was involved in more than 150 international kidnapping cases in my over two decades with the FBI, and I learned that hostage negotiation is more or less a business transaction.

On May 17th of 2016, my first book “Never Split The Difference” was published, distilling the skills I've gathered over my career into usable tips that will give the reader the competitive edge in any discussion—whether in the boardroom, at the dinner table, or at the car dealership. It’s now being published in 14 languages by 15 international publishers for 20 countries around the world.

Seriously, I was blown away and really grateful for all the attention the book received. It’s become a national bestseller, was listed as one of the best business books of 2016, and has been called one of the seven best negotiation books ever written on Inc. I hit the front page of Reddit, chatted at Google, spoke on some great podcasts, had more than 1.5 million page views on Quora, and was featured in some great press.

The book's readers used its lessons not just to make more money, but to improve their relationships with others and their lives as a whole.

But my core message from the book still stands… everything we’ve previously been taught about negotiation is wrong: you are not rational; there is no such thing as ‘fair’; compromise is the worst thing you can do; the real art of negotiation lies in mastering the intricacies of No, not Yes. These surprising ideas—which radically diverge from conventional negotiating strategy—weren’t cooked up in a classroom, but are the field-tested rules FBI agents use to talk criminals and hostage-takers around the world into (or out of) just about any imaginable scenario.

Ask me about how men and women negotiate differently, how to navigate sticky family situations, negotiating as a parent, advice for recent graduates, stories from my time in the FBI, or even how to get past a bouncer into a busy club. AMA!

You can also learn more about me at www.blackswanltd.com

Proof here

Q:

Hey Nick, what is your favorite memory?

A:

How is the adpocalypse affecting you and the broader tech YouTube community?


Q:

First, you're absolutely amazing.

Second, what's your absolute favorite experience so far?

A:

What does Ticketmaster do with all the pain they harvest from the souls they rip off at the box office?


Q:

Were there episode ideas that were refused by Disney because of content matter or the company did not think it would be suitable for their general audience?

A:

Is there a decision as a CEO that you regret or wish you could've done better?


Q:

What are one or two easy bits of negotiating advice you'd recommend everyone employ in their day-to-day interactions?

A:

That time when I answered a redditor that my favorite majestic beast of nature was Megan Mullally.


Q:

Since our videos are advertiser friendly, it hasn't hit us too hard directly.. but it was part of what prompted us to build Floatplane Club so that we and other creators would have ways to make money in the event that our adsense revenue got ripped away.. so it's definitely costing us money, but only because we're re-investing what we're making.

A:

It's hard to tell, because there were so many fun things! I loved the airplane rescue with Tuffy Edgington, it was the most exciting and rewarding. He was a gold miner, he didn't check his plane well when he took off, and so he crashed shortly after. He and his 5-month pregnant wife, and an older Native Alaskan lady (she was 50... but I was 28 so she seemed old!) crashed off the Yukon. So the wife and the Native lady dragged him up a steep hill to a cabin, which was good because it was -50 degrees out, they got a fire started so it was warm. He had so many fractures and lacerations! The next morning the old lady walked 8 miles to the Swenson cabin who got on his dog sled and got up to Tanana to the hospital I was working at. Basco, the hospital boy, gathered supplies and a dog sled team and we went up the Yukon (which doesn't freeze smoothly!). Halfway there Basco fell into a crevice and we were worried he broke his leg but luckily it was just a sprain. After 6 hours on dogsled, with me holding the IV fluids between my knees to keep it from freezing, we got to the cabin. By this time there were 30 more people in the cabin because this was a big exciting event. I cleaned Tuffy's wounds and bandaged him best I could, then we cut down branches from the trees to make splints for his legs and wrists. We used a blanket and make a stretcher. We got on a rescue plane with Tuffy, me holding the IV bag and morphine drip, and made the trip to the hospital in Anchorage where he fully recovered.

What a fun experience for me!


Q:

So funny story- there's this machine we kept in the back, right, called the Hate Engine. We have these siphons right underneath the desk that suck up all the complaints to add to the Hate Engine, and the Engine converts that hate into more money, which is why they keep adding service fees. More fees = more money = more hate = more more money.

Seriously though, nobody paid me to be a fan of Ticketmaster's practices. This whole ticket monopoly situation is kind of fucked right now. Best lesson I learned at the job was to always buy from the venue directly when I can.

A:

Actually Disney totally left us alone, we did what we wanted. We got one note from Michael Eisner that said "love the show, could use more history" (EG)


Q:

Thanks for the question. I would say we were very strongly investing in MMOs in the late 90's/early 2000s and we stopped that side of the business because it wasn't performing well enough and we should have continued on with that.

A:

1 - Let the other person go 1st!

There's a decent chance they'll say something you like. If they don't they'll at least appreciate the chance to have their say.

Then, make sure you summarize what they've said back to them. You know you've said it right when they say "That's right". Don't try to make your points until after they've said "That's right".

If they say "You're right" - that's actually code for "Please stop talking & leave me alone". You're on the wrong track.

You get a "That's right" out of someone you will ALWAYS get something you want out of the deal. You may need to add in "What do you want to do?" or "How can we proceed from here?" but something good will always happen. You've just got to let the process work for you.


Q:

Hello Nick! I love seeing pieces of your relationship with Megan; it seems so genuine and you always seem to be enjoying just being together. Is there anything the two of you do specifically to keep your relationship healthy that would also benefit other relationships? Thank you!

A:

Do you see Floatplane expanding beyond LMG soon?


Q:

Did you ever go over to Alakanuk? Maybe around 1967-1972? I lived there with my teacher parents during then.

A:

Best lesson I learned at the job was to always buy from the venue directly when I can.

One time I had decided to attend a comedy show st the last minute. Bought tickets at the venue, a couple of hours before the show started. Still had Ticketmaster fees.


Q:

How did you choose the kids that were on the show? I was always so jealous of those kids, man.

A:

Whats the deal with the rainbow six siege servers man?


Q:

awesome, thanks!!

A:

We enjoy engaging in humor, jigsaw puzzles and a regular diet of each other's genitalia.


Q:

It will. That is absolutely the plan. Even though we haven't been affected we see the need to invest in a "backup plan" for ourselves and provide the same option to other creators.

A:

Alakanuk was one of my villages I worked at, but I didn't go there during that time period! What a great experience for you!


Q:

Makes sense, not all venues work the same way. Can't really speak for the ones I didn't work at.

A:

That was a fun part of the gig, doing the casting. Back then most kid talent in Seattle did modeling or print ads and couldn't really walk and talk on camera. We scoured local school theater programs, talent agencies, friends, relatives, friends of friends....It wasn't past me to dress up my baby as yoda (use the forks Luke for the Structures show) ( http://imgur.com/us2fxSj ) when needed. (EG)


Q:

Bonjour… I am very much aware of the issue and it’s a personal priority for me. Whenever the servers go down, I know within about a minute. I am working with many different teams to solve those problems as I know that this is as important to your enjoyment of the game as the gameplay itself. We are already rolling out fixes like Operation Health that is all about improving the core infrastructure and we hope that this is a step in the right direction.


Q:

What is your favourite majestic beast of nature? (Animal)

A:

Hi Linus! How much shit do you get for your footwear choice?


Q:

Amazing!

  1. Do you still live in Alaska?
  2. Can you describe one, or a few, of the biggest medical advances that really changed life for you and your patients in rural Alaska?
A:

My mom goes to a ticketmaster kiosk at Walmart. Never checked it out for myself. There still fees through the kiosk?


Q:

What do you two think of Bill Nye Saves The World?

A:

Any word on a splinter cell game in the works. What can we expect ?


Q:

Thanks Chris...are you still going at it?? If you could read/master only one other book on negotiation (besides yours) which one would it be and why?

A:

Megan Mullally


Q:

Well I'm getting some now, so that should give you some idea :p

A:
  1. No, moved to down to Oregon 5 years ago to be closer to my daughters because my husband was too sick for me to take care of him. I never planned to leave!

  2. Well, it was back in the 50s so the biggest change was with tuberculosis. I had been in Tanana for 2 years and they had come out with the INH treatment for TB. TB was rampant in Alaska at that time, all over... with infections in the lungs, brain, bones... everywhere. I had one woman, all her kids had TB. She came to the hospital with a mass in her neck. It took us 6 weeks to get cultures done but it was TB in her neck, which had gone to her kids. The CDC started INH treatments up there, and we had amazing results. It was curing people of terrible TB! It was a wonder drug. I took it too because I got a lot of blood on me from these patients. One pregnant lady said she wouldn't take it because she was pregnant and I said "hey look, I'm pregnant and I'm taking it!". It was good that our babies turned out ok! Before INH we had only Streptomycin and it wasn't as fast or as good. That was the most amazing drug!


Q:

I'd imagine so, yeah. When we sold for other venues we had to charge the full TM fee set.

A:

We actually haven't yet seen it. I (EG) just saw the documentary Bill Nye: Science Guy and loved it. I laughed, I cried.


Q:

Hi! Splinter Cell is a brand we talk about a lot. It's also personally one of my favorite series. We don't have anything specific to share at the moment but teams are working on different things, so stay tuned for more.

A:

"Start With No" by Jim Camp. Has a truly great chapter on open-ended questions (he calls them interrogatives). Several other great ideas, (3+, make them feel free to say "no", etc). He also sees negotiations as emotional and has a great layman's take on it all. Jim was a natural born assertive and he had en enlightened and insightful view of the process. (Jim died about 2 years ago).

I used to assign portions of it in the negotiations courses I taught. my company still collaborates with his company.

"Getting More" - Stuart Diamond. Stuart is an analytical guys deep down in his bones and it's a great book on how analyticals see and process things. He's very, very smart.


Q:

If you could pick a theme song for your life, what would it be?

A:

Hi Linus, what was Intel’s response to your video on the i9 and the X299 platform, seeing as you just had a sponsored video with them?


Q:

Thank you!

A:

Also, check the websites of your local free Alt-Newsweeklies and magazines (the free ones that have local stories and culture, like The Village Voice) they almost all have deals with all of the local venues (it's how they survive) and you can get fee-free tickets!


Q:

We actually haven't yet seen it.

Then it's not too late for you then... I still remember the days back when I still had a faint light of innocence shining in my heart. Bill Nye Saves The World took that from me... he took it from all of us...

A:

Do you feel like Ubisoft has improved their reputation lately?


Q:

Did anyone asked for pizza during hostage situation like TV taught us? Can you tell us about some really tough hostage situation with a good ending?

A:

Yikes, that's tough.. Tom Waits Get Behind The Mule/Come Up To The House Wilco I'm Always In Love They Might Be Giants Particle Man


Q:

I've actually exchanged emails with them already and I have a call with some folks over there sometime this week to discuss my concerns. There was a lot of concern from members of our community that our criticism of Intel would negatively affect our relationship with them or our business moving forward..

But I think that's not giving Intel enough credit. They are big girls and boys and can absolutely take the constructive criticism with the praise.

And in response to the folks who didn't understand why our workstations are using Intel after that video.. Even if I don't agree with their strategy, I respect that they build world class technology and I'm not going to stop recommending their products just because we're having a bit of a spat at the moment.

A:

Very good question!


Q:

He was checking out the Village Voice, seeing who was playing where

Pulled his head up out the paper, pushing out a single tear

Five words like a beacon of light in the mist

Ministry Live At The Ritz

A:

Yeah, we understand it didn't go so well.

 

I've been a lurker on Reddit for years, saw the negative comments and it broke my heart. I was concerned it might impact the original series and I'd hate to see the show removed from the curriculum of some school districts because it is still such an effective teaching tool.(jm)


Q:

Hi there, that's a good question. I think yes and no, we have encountered some problems recently and we have some work to do on improving our services. It's a tough learning experience but I think we are progressing well. At the same time I'm very proud of the games we've released over the last few years and the success of live games like Rainbow Six Siege, The Division, For Honor, The Crew and Steep I also am incredibly proud of what we showed yesterday at our E3 conference.

A:

Yep! As nuts as it sounds, sometimes they do. Not a bad sign as it may likely show they are giving some rational thought to their actions and may be engaged in some sort of predictable planning thought process.

I negotiated a bank robbery with hostages in Brooklyn. Though it happens on TV all the time, in real life, where there's actually a negotiation, it's pretty rare (usually, even if they take hostages, they get out of there before the police arrive).

Anytime people are help a gunpoint in a bank, you never know if the bank robber is actually orchestrating a deadly outcome. The negotiation team was comprised of both FBI Agents and NYPD Hostage Negotiators. It was like an All-star team and the NYPD guys were really, really good.

Because we played a strong "team game" - everyone helping everyone else listen - in any conversation there's just too much for 1 person to take in - we got everyone out safely.

During the course of the negotiation, I was handed notes 2 different times that gave me clues to prefect things to say. Both of those notes were right-on and were picked up by me colleagues who were listening intently.

That was a cool day.


Q:

In your recent Wood Support video you stated that you "dislike any finish" on your wood. What's your preferred way to... "finish" your pieces?

A:

So Linus, what video do you hate the most on all of your channels? And why?


Q:

I'm a medical student, and oddly enough, my TB skin test just turned positive this year, despite having had the BCG vaccine as a kid. So I'm probably going to be taking INH (isoniazid) as well for a while. Fascinating how much this drug has helped people. Some places, it's not working super well anymore, but to work for over 60 years when so many other bugs have become resistant to drugs is pretty amazing!

A:

What "insider tips" do you have to get good tickets? Can I bribe a Ticketmaster employee for good seats?? :-)


Q:

I wouldn't worry about that too much. It may have hurt Bill's reputation a bit, but the original series will stand for a long time as a standard for getting kids excited about science. You guys did an amazing job.

A:

Are you the Grand Master of the Templar Order?


Q:

Do you have any "non-hostage rescue" related negotiating advice?

A:

I prefer to build up thin coats of oil and wiping varnish. We use different products and recipes at OffermanWoodshop.com based on the function of the piece, but we generally shoot for the richest and deepest color and figure whilst leaving the wood feeling as naked as possible. Sometimes we just apply a soft wax and call it a day. A beautiful and fragrant day.


Q:

Firetruck unboxing video. I wouldn't even hate it so much if it didn't have more views than all of the GOOD STUFF I've ever done.

If it didn't make so much money in adsense from 5 year olds just watching "the next suggested video about firetrucks" I'd pull it down. It's an embarrassment.

A:

It was truly a wonder drug!


Q:

It doesn't really work that way anymore, unfortunately, at least according to my experience. A lot of it's the usual "get in early and get lucky".

With casino tickets specifically, though, there is the VIP angle to consider. Good casinos reward their players really well, and for us in particular we had presales a day before public sales just for our players. Also, depending on circumstances we'd sometimes get tickets back from our VIP folks for sale if they just weren't doing the numbers they expected, which would lead to some last minute openings- usually in the primo seats too, just because the VIPs get the good stuff to keep them coming back.

A:

Thank you so much, that means a lot. (jm and eg)


Q:

I believe in free will...

A:

Lots of them! Mostly with me negotiating myself out of a jam!

I’m about to miss a flight out of Malaysia on my way to Australia. I’m facing an immigration line to leave the country that looks every bit of 40 minutes long and my flight boards in 20 minutes. The breakdowns that have caused me to get in this position were all under my control or oversight.

I cut the line (of 40 people) to the Malaysian government bureaucrat who is taking his time and likely not impressed with the selfish concerns of an American who’s failed to get out in front of his schedule.

Me: “I am so sorry. I’m afraid I’m late. My flight boards in 20 minutes and if you don’t let me through I’m going to miss my flight.”

Him: “Why were you late?” (Unsmiling – He is also looking at the next guy in line that I have jumped in front of and clearly thinking about sending me to the back.)

Me: “It was completely my fault. I’m probably going to be the stupidest person you talk to today.” (What do you think he was thinking at that moment? FBI Empathy /Tactical empathy to the rescue.)

Him: (What is he now thinking? “That’s right.” He smiles, reaches for my passport and ticket – stamps them) “Have a nice flight.”

Later that week I’m delayed in the TSA security checkpoint at Newark Airport. They’ve snagged me because I’ve left a few ounces of water in my “Voss” water bottle in my carry-on shoulder bag. I want to keep the bottle because it’s “Voss”! (and it also has a larger opening to pour in the bizarre vitamins I take.)

The TSA guy is giving me sideways glare/glances as he’s got several bags to check & would clearly rather be doing something else. I smile. No smile in return.

He walks over to get my bag, and when he picks it up I say, “Bless me father for I have sinned.”

His expression remains unamused.

He takes 3 steps towards me to walk me to the table where he’ll open the bag and says. “How long since your last confession my son?”

“An hour. I do a lot of things wrong.”

He lets me drink the rest of the water in front of him (they’re supposed to throw it out), personally walks me back to the front of the security line (once again cutting in front of 40 people – they’re just supposed to expel you back outside the secure area) and makes sure I get on my way with only momentary delay.

This FBI empathy stuff works!


Q:

Hey Nick,

Do you ever get tired of people requesting Ron Swanson advice?

A:

When & how did dropping products become a habit?


Q:

I have a distant relative, Sam O. White that was the first/one of the first (so says the Internet anyway) bush pilots/wardens in Alaska from the 1920's until '76. I wonder if you ever ran into each other......if you don't ask a question the AMA sends the Gestapo out to delete your comment I guess.....so, did you ever run into him?

A:

The best deal I ever got on a ticket was actually not long ago. A few months actually, for an event happening next week. Ticketmaster ran an "official exchange" program (stubhub essentially) for the event since all the wristbands are registered to names and a lot of people got screwed over by other sites since they were relying on the original purchaser to send them the ticket once they got it.

Anyways, someone fucked up... Hard. The seller accidentally fat fingered​ the price and typed 55.55$ instead of 555.50$ (facevalue was 800$). The seller was supposed to have a 24hr period that he could change the pricing, but I bought the ticket before that could happen. I was so shocked by my luck I even called Ticketmaster to make sure it wasn't fake and was told that I was good to go and all tickets are garunteed.

Fast forward to the next day. I receive a call from Ticketmaster and they asked me to give the ticket back. I honestly was a bit pissed at this point because I and already been told that I was good to go and they'd handle the situation. I asked the guy why they suddenly changed their minds and he explained everything I said in the first paragraph. My response was that it seemed like they owed that man a ticket but mine was already garunteed and I didn't see how this was my problem since in multiple places on their website it said it was garunteed and that all purchases were final. I know this because I read everything I could about it the previous night. After telling him this he said he'd talk to his manager and figure it out.

Gotta call 4 hours later saying I could keep the ticket and that they'd be giving that guy a ticket back as well... I felt like an asshole but fuck Ticketmaster even more


Q:

You guys seemed to create the genre of E/I television shows at the time. I'm sure budgets were tight. Did you have difficulty getting funding for a series?

A:

What's the most difficult thing you've had to do as CEO?


Q:

I loved the book. There is an audiobook format for those who are interested.

Questions:

  • Does Al Pacino impersonate you, or do you impersonate him?
  • Which negotiation by you, or others went the most sideways? The airline hijacking in the book comes to mind, but I'm interested to hear others.
A:

The kind interest of folks is vastly preferable to their indifference.


Q:

Being in a huge hurry to blitz through booths and see all the coolest stuff then run off to the next one (our first year at CES we did over 50 videos with 3.5 people)

We had no time to do B roll a lot of the time so I would have to manhandle the product to show what I was talking about.

These days it's just part of the fun of doing shows. I love tech and if this "dropping stuff" persona lets me argue to a brand they should let me get up close and personal then I'll keep playing it up!

I'm not actually (usually) that clumsy. Just in a hurry :P

A:

Yes, I knew him! He seemed very nice, but I never flew with him as I used Garfield Hanson as my pilot always. That's such a coincidence!


Q:

Hey man, you did nothing wrong there. More power to you.

A:

YES (both of us)


Q:

Hi there, it would probably be decisions about which projects to persue and which ones to cancel. Telling a team who've been focused on a project for several years that they won't be able to continue it is very tough. However what I have seen is when we do cancel projects it is almost always for the best, it gives us an opportunity to learn to refine our ideas and come up with better games.

A:

Al Pacino?! "Heat" was awesome right? What about Christopher Walken?

The Burnham/Sobero case in the Philippines (I talk about it in the book). 2 out of our 3 Americans and several Filipinos died. Terrible tragedy. But we didn't let any of those deaths be in vain. We learned, we got better. Lives were saved in later cases because of how we got better there.

We used the intel we gathered in the case to bring justice to the kidnappers. The US system of justice has a long memory. That's why we have indictments and that's what the FBI does best.


Q:

Hi Nick, I'm a real fan.

Do you have any advice for a young person about to graduate college looking for a first job?

A:

Who's the 0.5 of a person?


Q:

What was it like being a woman doctor at a time when it was more unusual?

A:

Interesting! I also worked at a box office at a casino that used Ticketmaster, but we absolutely had control over some of the good seats to an extent. Couldn't be super obvious about it and wouldn't do it on super popular shows. But we held tickets for so many different things - media, community (tribe), artist, giveaways, VIP, business council, etc. with so many good seats on hold, if the community seats weren't selling well it was super easy to just swap out the community holds and get someone tickets in the first 5 rows. We also had the ability to go in and snag tickets before the presale/on sale although that was a huge no no and fire-worthy so people didn't do it very often. I'm also curious if your VIPs were crabs about it haha! I remember so many people feeling so entitled to tix in the first 10 rows, who were not anywhere near our highest level of play. Fun to read your answers though! Thanks for doing this!


Q:

Did you think that years after the show was cancelled, kids would still be screaming "BILL BILL BILL BILL" every opportunity they got? That song is like 90s kids national anthem.

A:

When one of your teams has been working on a game for years, what would make you change your mind and come to the decision that the project has to be stopped? I'm only asking out of curiosity!


Q:

I loved the book. There is an audiobook format for those who are interested.

Questions:

  • Does Al Pacino impersonate you, or do you impersonate him?
  • Which negotiation by you, or others went the most sideways? The airline hijacking in the book comes to mind, but I'm interested to hear others.
A:

Focus intently upon what it is you love to do, then find a way to get paid to do it. I have been much happier doing good work that I love for less pay. What good is wealth if you are miserable?


Q:

One of Luke's friends who wanted to meet folks in the industry and agreed to help us carry our tripods and stuff in exchange for tagging along

A:

When I was in Tanana they were stuck with me! But after I left Tanana they sent a male doctor there. But he ended up getting sick so I had to go back up there and he was not happy having me treat him! Some of the children were so used to having me that they didn't want to go to him. They believed he wasn't a doctor because he didn't wear a skirt! I thought that was funny.

When I was in medical school there was a lot of chauvanistic tendencies. In fact, when you applied to medical school the board would look at all the photos of the applicants. If they thought the woman was too pretty they would say "she'll just get married" and toss out the application. But I got in!


Q:

Yeah no problem!

We had a bunch of those holds too, definitely. It wasn't at all uncommon to get a handful of holds back here or there, but just as often we would use up all the holds and sell out.

A:

Never imagined the success of the original show. We talked about the show being relevant for 3-5 years, max. Almost 25 years later, to have so many millennials say they got into science from the series is so amazing to me. And just a shout out to Mike Green, composer of the theme song.-(jm)


Q:

Changes in the industry either competition or technology are definitely a factor. Similarly the breakthrough that we thought we had may no longer be relevant and sometimes we do realize that we are unable to execute what we had hoped to achieve.


Q:

If you could pick any tool that resembles your personality best, what would it be & why?

A:

When are you upgrading to RGB sandals?


Q:

Did you experience many preterm births? How did you stabilize these babies? Did you transport them out by dog sled?

A:

How could you recognize professional ticket scalpers? Did they ever try to bribe you?


Q:

What are some funny bloopers or accidents that occurred while filming the show with Bill Nye?

A:

What is your personal opinion on Rainbow Six Siege?


Q:

How would you respond in a sales call if a customer refuses to consider a change even after you have offered better pricing and better service?

A:

The shovel, specifically the spade. It is not known for its finesse but can be relied upon to do its job with gravity and dogged persistence, and that job is: to dig.


Q:

It's a matter of time. We've actually reached out to the brand that makes the sandals I wear about doing an LTT edition sandal. They got back to us saying it "didn't align with their brand values" or something to that effect.

I was like "WHAT?? The ONLY person on EARTH who proudly rocks your dad sandals as a keystone of his image and supporting that is not part of your brand values?? What ARE your brand values??"

A:

I did have preterm babies. I would deliver them and then keep them in a box in my office because we had no incubators in the villages. They would be 3 or 4 pounds. Some of them died when they were born but that was uncommon. The nurses were really good, they would come into the office and check them all the time. Since I didn't know how to use the preemie needles, I would give them transfusions and fluids through the bone, and would sit with them to make sure it didn't clog up the entire time it was in.

In my hospital in Tanana, half the 30 bed hospital was Tuberculosis, 1/4 was women's ward for birthing, and 1/4 was for everything else. We would sometimes have so many kids in the hospital that we would have to put them in cardboard boxes or in the same crib, if they had the same diagnosis! Medicine has come a long way!


Q:

A lot of times we didn't really care- once the ticket's been sold we have no way to police what you do with it (and honestly probably shouldn't, there's very little fundamental difference between giving a ticket to a friend and selling it on the internet beyond the exchange of money).

Back when we were able to do outside sales for other venues we'd get a guy coming in every once in awhile around 10am PST, right when shows went on sale. Dude's name was Dave, he scalped and knew TM back to front (he showed me where to find the macro commands and whatnot). Nice guy, we knew what he was doing but as far as our "jurisdiction" went he was a guest buying tickets. We didn't really have the ability to deny him tickets or anything like that.

There's significantly less power to combat scalping at the cashier's end than people seem to think there is. We're not paid to guess what you're going to do with your tickets, we're here to sell you tickets.

A:

There were a few moments of pure terror that I remember. For the rivers show, we watched as Bill paddled right into some hole in the current and disappeared. He was gone for about 18 seconds and I remember the panic. The safety boat was already below him! Suddenly he popped up and just continued on as if nothing happened.

Another time, for the Forest show, we got lost in the middle of a monster forest fire. Well, we had to shoot something, so Bill jumped out of the van and we started rolling. A huge fir tree exploded into flames right over our heads and started raining a shower of fire. I turned to Jen, our PA and asked her to back the van up and I still can see the pure terror in her eyes. We lived...(JM)

Bill was invited to fly with the Blue Angels. They warned us that the guest usually passes out from the g forces. We decided that Bill should focus on trying to say simple words like "Flight!" and "Science!" They knocked him out three times, once for about 22 seconds. Each time he woke up, he'd yell "Science!"and then pass out again. Here's a picture of him getting strapped in! http://imgur.com/NXrb64r (EG)


Q:

I love it! It's the first time that we have seen that level of engagement and passion around a game we've created.

A:

Here are some killer "closers" that could open things back up!

"It sound like there is nothing I can say to make this deal." "It seems like you really want to get this right." "It looks like you're powerless here."

Any of these are stand-alones. They have to be followed by silence on your part (effective pause). Count one-thousands to yourself if you have to (you won't get past "seven one-thousand").

These work if you've used a process leading up to it where you were listening closely. Using labels and calibrated questions (open-ended questions that are almost all "what?" and "how?" questions.

A good process puts you in a position to find deals and pull victory from the jaws of defeat at the end.

Good luck!


Q:

Nick, what is your best hangover cure? asking for a friend...

A:

Hey Linus, what's probably the most exciting project that you've done on the channel (LTT)?


Q:

Great to see you online doing an AMA.

In 92 years, what has surprised you/changed the most?

A:

Why don't you care about people abusing the system


Q:

Do you have a favourite episode or project of Bill's that you worked on?

A:

How does one become a CEO? What was your early life like?


Q:

Do you miss the hostage negotiation days with the FBI? I'm sure it was very rewarding although extremely stressful...

A:

Digging post holes by hand.


Q:

7 Gamers 1 CPU was one of the most exciting projects I've done. I'll always remember the moment it worked as one of the highlights of my career.

That's really where I get off - spending a TON of time on something, not being sure that it's going to work, and then seeing the end result be awesome.

Scrapyard Wars Season 1 will also hold a special place in my heart forever. That was where we began experimenting with the idea of being a "Tech Top Gear" rather than just a review channel and that path we took continues to shape our content (even our reviews which contain more personalities and funny stuff and more little sketches than ever) to this day.

A:

That I'm still having to tell people the same thing... vaccinate and eat well! That surprises me!


Q:

Me specifically? It's not my job.

The venue? We didn't really have a way to easily police it without seriously diminishing the guest experience with some form of check at entry, which would slow down an already glacial process at times. Add to that that it's not a huge venue that gets sold out immediately and there's no real reason to focus on that over other improvements elsewhere.

A:

We did 100 episodes in four years. It was crazy and I really have to say there were so many different moments and episodes.... Wetlands stands out to me, personally. I love swamps. Also, the Watercycle show. The kid in the music video still brings a tear to my eye. We also spent two weeks in Japan in one of the most incredible science adventures one could imagine. Here's a picture of me in Japan on this adventure... they made me stay in the outfit the entire time. http://imgur.com/7nwK8E8 (JM)

 

One of my fave episodes is The Eyeball - great sketch - props - music video, I think it was one of the few times we got a scathing letter about how someone's daughter went running from the room because she saw a glass eye in one of the profiles (EG)


Q:

To become a CEO I would say pick a fast growing industry you are interested in, surround yourself with the best and work hard!

A:

I don't miss it because I love this so much now. Putting this stuff to work in the business world and in people's everyday lives is awesome! I'm helping people make their lives better and helping them bring better lives to their families.

As far as the stress back then? I felt it was a privilege to do the work. It was my mission at the time. My purpose. Read Daniel Pink's book "Drive". He talks about that kind of thing.

Among the things I've been doing lately is working with real estate agents. They are doing so much more to support their clients in the sale of their homes, one of the most stressful things you can go through (short of a kidnapping). It's very cool. A new purpose for me.


Q:

What are your best facial hair grooming techniques and/or tips?

A:

That's awesome! Also, same question regarding Channel Super Fun.


Q:

I had a roommate many years ago who'd go up to Alaska during tourist season to work, she had like 4-5 rotating boyfriends there who were out to sea on fishing boats at various times. They all had some vague awareness of each other and were cool with it.

Did you get into the dating scene there and what was Alaska social life like in your experience?

A:

ive been doing that for almost 3 years! my theater is going dark for 3 months now and i am jobless try as i might.

which ticketmaster did you use? we had an old school version TMWin99


Q:

What do you think it was that set BNSG apart from other shows such as Beakman's World?

A:

What is it like working with Shigeru Miyamoto?


Q:

Cool, thanks for doing this.

In one of the finest movies to ever grace a screen, 1998's poignant 'The Negotiator', who was the better negotiator in your opinion: Keven Spacey or Samuel L Jackson?

A:

Don't shave.


Q:

Rocket League in Real Life was really exciting at the time. It hadn't really been done and we thought with some more production values Channel Super Fun had the opportunity to go viral.

But it didn't really work out that way.

A:

Well, I figured early on that you have to keep the nurses happy. So everytime I went to a village or to Fairbanks, if I found any eligible men I would invite them to Tanana to the Saturday Night Dance, which was held in the nurses hall. And boy, they came and were fascinated! We had lots of fun, the nurses and me, with those boys. The head nurse was supposed to chaperone but I found I (at 28 to 30) had to take over the chaperone duties as the head nurse was sleeping with some of the men! And we would dance until 4 AM, and then I would sit on the sofa and cut all the men's hair-but all I knew was a crew cut so they would all go home with a crew cut!

Oh! And they would all come to Tanana on their planes. It was an event!

I used to go to the pot lucks with the natives in the village, and they wouldn't let me eat bear meat. According to them, if I had eaten bear meat before I was married I would never had children!

(This is her granddaughter right now... I asked my grandma if that was 4 PM or 4 AM and she looked at me and said "oh 4 AM , obviously").


Q:

Yeah, we used the old-school DOS-ass TMWin99. When I was training people I always said it's like using a program written in Swahili or something- you can learn a phrase or two and learn your way around to do some basic stuff, but beyond that it's really tough to figure out unless you've been doing it forever. It's a lot of rote memorization and repetition, which takes new guys a while to figure out.

A:

Bill was a real scientist.


Q:

Hello! What is fantastic about working with Nintendo and with Miyamoto in particular is that you are working with the best. It's easy to work with the smartest people in the industry and they have a great understanding of what works and we are very often on the same page about how to solve a problem.

A:

The character as written overall for Kevin Spacey was better (with a couple of exceptions - negotiators are never in charge - decisions don't go through them). Samuel Jackson as a good guy backed into a corner was a better hostage taker!

We used to use several clips from that movie as teaching points. One we always loved was where the Samuel Jackson character is "schooling" the less talented hostage negotiator to not say "no" as an outright rejection. If you google it, it's hysterical!


Q:

Do you have any advice for young people working their way up in the entertainment industry about remaining humble?

A:

Linus, did the "walking in the rain" video have the effect you wanted? Just curious as it's quite out of character from the rest of your content.


Q:

Wow! That is amazing. If you don't mind the questions: were there any "difficulties" with unexpected pregnancy among the nurses? Do you feel that the isolation in Alaska led to a more equal footing between the genders or a more stark imbalance? How did the native peoples handle gender relations as you saw it?

A:

next??: reclas cff0923/x1/rd/s4-7


Q:

Were you ever approached about working on the new show? I would think if they were going for a reboot then they would want your opinions. At this point the new show is destroying what you guys helped Bill create, he needs you guys to come back to him and recreate the magic you once had!

A:

What is your most beloved franchise within Ubisoft? (Not just now, all over the past 30 years)


Q:

Hi, Chris. Thanks for taking the time to do this AMA.

Has any of your knowledge in negotiation been adapted to the healthcare industry, specifically in patient-doctor interactions?

What negotiation tactics would you employ to make a person more likely to change a negative health behavior, such as smoking?

A:

Hmm. Yes. Do that. The vocation of delivering medicine to others by means of entertainment is an immense privilege, like all work that is good to do. Thinking about that, and also maintaining a healthy relationship with my wife keeps me aware of my foibles and therefore humble. Also in my case looking in the mirror goes a long way towards fomenting humility.


Q:

Yeah Dennis and I were both really pleased with it.

A:

I had no sexism really, and most of the natives ended up believing that women could be doctors just as men could and therefore no one really questioned it.

As for the natives, they were very certain in their roles as the men would hunt and the women would be child bearers. But there were medicine women in the villages and the midwives were wonderful.


Q:

But I wanted the aisle. You have the aisle right?

A:

Thanks - we were never approached though always happy to help out (eg)


Q:

It's tough to choose by I would say Assassin's Creed because it gives me an opportunity to explore history. But I love all our games so it's very tough to pick.

A:

Interesting thought!

We (my company - The Black Swan Group) have done a lot of training in the healthcare industry, but mostly with people negotiating with doctors. Talk about hostage takers!

There's also a lot of research that shows if doctors get better at empathy (not sympathy), not only are they better at finding out what's wrong with a patient, even when they get it wrong they are less likely to be sued for malpractice.

Seems that people don't mind so much you're not perfect, they get a lot madder when you're a jerk about it too!

The application of the ideas of tactical empathy and Prospect Theory (fear of loss) do have a place as past of an overall solution. It can be harsh though. By a non-physician, a Tony Robbins coach helped a good friend of mind (Carolyn Rim) break her smoking addiction. Carolyn talks about it in her book "Awakening The Heart". The coach essentially held her pack of cigarettes up to her & said "Imagine a picture of yourself and your daughter on this pack of cigarettes. Now, rip yourself out of that picture." That's what your addiction to these will cost you.

Tough stuff. But effective. Empathy is understanding what drives people and then using it. Use your powers for good and not evil.


Q:

My dad died several years ago to cancer. Fathers day has always been a little bittersweet since.

I have no remaining male ancestors. I often feel like I don't have any male authority figures I can approach on a personal level when I am feeling overwhelmed or just want to talk. What would you do?

Thank you for the AMA. Never stop being you!

A:

Not sure if you frequent reddit, but there has been huge support and want for a "tech talks with linus" sorta thing where it is just down to earth discussion


Q:

Lady you don't look a day over 79. What's your secret?

A:

Sigh... (types in a string of code to release print flag and start all over!)


Q:

How important do you think striking a balance between entertaining your audience and informing them is? Was there ever a time or topic where you found it difficult to keep it fun enough for kids to stay glued to the TV but still educate them?

A:

Hi Yves,

what old game would you want to be remastered with today's graphics ?


Q:

Chris - what do you do if you negotiating counterpart directly asks you how much profit you are making or similar questions that would give your bottom line away?

A:

Depending on where you live/what you do, I imagine there are some older fellows who wish they had a young person to talk to as well, so maybe start poking around down at the lumber yard or gravel pit. If that fails, I have never had any trouble finding an old boy to talk to at the tavern.


Q:

duly noted.. It's something we're considering, but we also don't want to force ourselves to create content because it's "popular". There's a fine line between engaging with the community and pandering.

Just trying to stay on the former side of it.

A:

(She laughed for a long time and shrugged)


Q:

That's why you use the shopping cart in SELL and hold onto that shit until you're SURE they've made up their damn minds.

A:

Good question. Bill leaned more to education, we leaned more to entertainment, a constant battle so to speak. We always felt if they are not having fun they will tune out. Bill kept us on point with the message. We always tried to present different ways to learn, I (EG) got the most out of the sketch/humor parts, so I always leaned towards that. Bill always had great real world analogies. There were times we felt a show might be a little flat and then it went thru audio post at Bad Animals and we were always cracking up in the final review.


Q:

I would say Far Cry 3 on the Xbox One X would be amazing :)

A:

I like that question!

That kind of a move is pretty much the style of the typical "procurement" negotiator. Surprisingly enough (or maybe not so surprisingly) the stereotypical procurement negotiator is almost the same animal as an kidnapper negotiator. Same profile. We used to say "The hostage won't be released until the kidnappers feel they've gotten everything they can."

The procurement guy (generic) will push you until they feel that can't push you any farther. They push you until you say "no" and they'll make you say it at least 3 times. Asking you directly about profit is one of their 1st moves.

Deferential, smiling, soothing passive aggression is your best counter-measure.

1- Move #1 - "How am I supposed to answer that?"

Said calmly, with a likable smile and tone of voice. Not angrily. Not as an accusation. You may have to say it more than once.

2 - "I'm sorry, I'm afraid it just doesn't work for me to share that kind of confidential information."

3 - "It seems like you want me to share confidential information with you."

The person who is asking you this is really testing you. Most likely, if they are testing you this hard, they really want you. That's the good news. No one ever encounters procurement unless you are the preferred vendor.

Be polite. Don't give in. Use patience and respect as both swords and shields. You'll win.


Q:

What techniques would you recommend to help me improve my precision with wood working, specifically for detailed cuts like box or dove-tail joints, and also specifically for cuts on a bandsaw?

A:

When you created Linus Tech Tips and then Linus Media Group, is that what you envisioned from the beginning or did it take a lot different of a turn then you expected?


Q:

Medical resident here, incredible to hear about your experiences! What are your thoughts regarding the future of physician practice in rural/austere environments in Alaska? What were the biggest changes there you noticed in the latter part of your career?

A:

when i was first training i wrote a python code that printed and responded to TM commands so i could practice. building it also was super fun and probably helped me learn it faster. wish i still had the code.


Q:

What did you think of Beakman's World?

A:

Comment comptez-vous lutter contre Bolloré dans le futur ?

How do you intend to deal with Bolloré/Vivendi (a French industrial group which planned to takeover Ubisoft) ?

Source : https://www.gamespot.com/articles/vivendi-will-reportedly-pursue-a-ubisoft-takeover-/1100-6449572/


Q:

great advice, thanks! BTW, I loved the online course on your web site. It saved me 5x the cost of the course the first week.

A:

Practice x3. Knowing my own strengths and weaknesses, I just cut close to my line with as much accuracy as I can muster and then pare down to the line with a chisel. The paring is the key - knowing you will always be coming in to finish refining by hand lends a sense of security that your bandsaw cut doesn't nee to be THAT good.


Q:

It's really different. I imagined that after 5 years we would have 4-5 people and that as long as we could afford to pay everyone a fair salary to do what we loved it would be awesome.

I also had in my mind that I wanted to be a "real company" with things like employee benefits and a dental plan and stuff.

Well if you want to do that you add some administrative overhead unless you want to do everything yourself.

Then you realize part of being a real company is giving people reasonable work/life balance and covering for them when they need vacation time.. so you hire some additional bodies..

Then you realize that now that you've got to manage these extra people and you have no time to work on sales deals with brands anymore.

So you hire a sales guy who manages to use all the extra time he has (because he's not making videos) to double your ad rates and find new buyers for them.

Then you've got more resources to build out the team further and make better videos than ever..

And it continues to snowball from there.

I had this realization at one point that if you're employing world class people they won't want to be in entry level positions making entry level pay forever. You have to give them opportunities to improve their craft and get promotions and raises if you want to retain them.

And the only way to do that is to keep growing and building out a support structure for them.

And I don't think there are many who would argue that we don't have a world class team of YTers here.

A:

Well, it's changed a lot now. Because they have a base in Anchorage where they can send EKGs and xrays electronically from the villages, and then doctors there can read the reports and then send out a specialist if needed. When I was working there we were lucky to have a specialist come out once a year!

The biggest changes was having everything put onto computers and having consultants and specialists... I retired in 2006, so you can imagine there is no comparison from 1950 to then! Most of it was all for the good.


Q:

Yeah, coding's never been my strong suit. Glad you figured out a way to pick it up quickly though, that shit gets complex.

A:

Very high production quality. We were so bummed when we first heard about the show actually hitting the airwaves before us, we thought we were doomed. But then we said - hey - there's more than one Oprah, as in talk shows....can there really be too many kid science shows out there. We embraced it. (eg)


Q:

Freedom and independence are key to what we do – they are what allow us to take risks, try new things, and create games like the ones we showed during E3 this year. We will fight to continue to be able to keep doing that in the future.

A:

That's great to hear! Well done!


Q:

What's your opinion on veganism?

A:

What a great way to describe how to grow a business. I love that you value the folks that are making your company succeed.


Q:

in 2006? That means you were already 81 when you retired? That is really impressive!

What made you want to become a doctor? As far as I'm informed, it was very uncommon in that time for women to study in genereal.

A:

Used to work with Ticketmaster too, but at a venue. I actually sort of enjoyed TMWin99. Autypes ftw.


Q:

How was Bill off camera? How much did he play up his personality?

A:

How do you deal with the negative comments from so many players about your games?


Q:

great advice, thanks! BTW, I loved the online course on your web site. It saved me 5x the cost of the course the first week.

A:

I applaud it for two reasons - 1) People can eat whatever they damn well please, and I understand that veganism can be very healthy both for the consumer and for the planet. 2) More bacon for this guy.


Q:

It's really important to me personally. I believe the wealth gap in 2017 is a big load of bullshit and I don't want anyone working here to feel so far removed from me that we can't relate to each other anymore. No one is so valuable that they should make 100x what their average staff does.

By the same token if someone isn't pulling his or her weight, I'm not slowing down the bus..

We believe in hard work and being rewarded for it.

A:

My mother had parotid cancer, which is a tumor in the neck. So I decided to go into medicine to cure cancer! Haven't quite done that, but I've tried!


Q:

Only ever learned WCPRTDOS, honestly. I still keep in touch with everyone I worked with so if you know any good ones I'll send them their way to mess with.

A:

On camera, Bill played the Science Guy. Off camera, Bill was Bill Nye, human- one that loves, laughs and is passionate about what he does. To be on camera, you have to push that personality.


Q:

Hi there, first things first I read them! I very often dispatch and share them with our teams with my comments and I think they help us prioritise what we need to fix and get a good insight into the biggest concerns of our communities.

A:

Where are my bonus points!?


Q:

What's your advice to someone that's trying to get the courage and talk to that girl?

A:

What's the most expensive thing you have ever broken?


Q:

How did it feel being the only doctor? I'm a nurse in the ER, and while we never can tell what will walk in the door, there is at least one or two other doctors in the building that can help if needed. Did you ever feel ill equipped to handle an injury or condition? I imagine it must have been scary sometimes.

A:

Why did they switch to Ticketmaster?

Did Ticketmaster convince them to through a sales pitch or did they just go out and select the most famous and biggest broker without looking at all the competitors of Ticketmaster?

Why did they no longer sell in house? What reason did they give?


Q:

Wasn't bill nye the science guy on pbs?

A:

After Berlin, do you have actual plans to open further studios globally in the nearest future?


Q:

Would you rather fight 1 horse sized duck or 100 duck sized horses?

A:

Dive in. We're human, therefore we will make mistakes, and yet people seem to love us anyway. So you might as well get started.


Q:

I think Berkel holds the record for most expensive stuff broken... He got out of his chair, which caused the air shock to spring up, knocking over a 34" LG Ultrawide back when they were brand new (about $1500US iirc).

I was also (somewhat) responsible for taking our Sony FS700 out for a shoot in the rain (Brandon LET me do it, so it's partly on him). It didn't work for a few days and we had to disassemble it to the greatest degree we could to dry it out.. Scary times. That was in the early days when we couldn't have afforded to replace it :p

A:

Well one time somebody was flown to me with a severe eye injury, and I knew that I couldn't handle that so they ended up taking him to St Jo's in Fairbanks for me. I lucked out on surgery... we had a fully equipped surgery unit but I was always reading books on how to do certain surgeries if the need arose.

We used to treat the villagers appendicitis with penicillin because I couldn't remove it there... and look, now they do that anyways! I also taught people how to deliver babies over radio in the village!


Q:

We still sold in house, we just used an in-house ticketing system that worked in tandem with the room reservation system before (I think it was called Showgate) and switched to all Ticketmaster in tandem with a major remodel about two years back. The difference in show quality was noticeable- we were getting good shows before, but we jumped from D-listers on average to B-listers. No Taylor Swift or Metallica or whatever, but still a lot bigger draws that pulled in a lot more sales. I'm willing to bet a lot of them got on board because their agents or record labels or whatever work exclusively through Ticketmaster. Like it or not, they opened doors.

A:

Yes both PBS and syndicated on network affiliates, as well as internationally


Q:

We have to go where we can find the best talent! We're always looking for very talented engineers, so I would be happy to open a studio anywhere we can find great people :)

A:

Are you crackers?


Q:

What advice would you give someone thinking about moving from a midsize town in the Midwest to a major city like New York, LA, or Seattle?

A:

Any recommendations for best cable management practices? Zipties? Velcroes? Twine?


Q:

Hey, your replies so far have just been amazing to read. I have to look into your book!

I just want to know if you ever considered a different career or rather a different setting. If so, why did this lifestyle win?

A:

Might as well get the obvious out of the way - what's your best and worst customer experience stories?


Q:

Why did the show end?

A:

What are some of the key things you look for when being presented with a new game idea?


Q:

Its a question everyone on reddit who does an ama gets asked

A:

I moved to LA in 1997 steeped in ignorance. Given the extreme convenience of the internets and social media, I would do a lot of research about your chosen metropolis, scrutinizing neighborhoods, amenities, transit systems, plus the affordability or not of these items, and then if you can, go stay there with some friends and soak up the vibe - try on the pair of shoes before buying, if you will.


Q:

Yes. I highly recommended Linus brand cable ties. They are available in any colour and style you want as long as you want orange with my face on it.

A:

Because I was having fun! I was in New Mexico when I heard about the Alaska job. I actually applied to Alaska and Japan at the same time. In Japan I applied for the job that was the "Atomic Bomb Casualty Commission", where a friend of mine was working. I think I would have liked that too, but Alaska responded to me first and so I went up there. Crazy!


Q:

Best is kinda hard, just because I'm usually pretty happy when a customer is just a normal dude. One that comes to mind is this blind guy that called us every once in awhile to have us read the show schedule to him. He usually called when it was slow so I didn't really mind taking the time to talk, and he was extremely friendly and liked to share stories about shows he'd seen. Normally people who share stories get dull, but I loved talking to him.

Worst is a lot easier- this one guy came up a year or so before we remodeled, when the seat plan was a bunch of tables and booths. The booths seated 4, but there was one at the perfect spot that seated 8. It was the owner's booth, as in The Owner Of The Casino Sits Here So Do Not Fucking Sell This To Anyone.

This guy comes up one day dressed like he was late to his job as an extra for Tom Cruise's character in Tropic Thunder (only with hair) and asks for the owner's booth for a show. I told him no, I'm sorry, we can't sell that booth, and he drops a $100 bill on the countertop like he just unlocked the keys to the kingdom. I told him no again, then he started getting all kinds of huffy with me, trying to bargain and stuff. Eventually he goes "look, just get me your manager", so I turn around to my manager (who's standing right behind me talking to his boss and heard the whole thing) and ask if he can help. The guy tries the same shit again with my manager like five times and eventually, while I'm standing right there, points at me and goes "Come on, I'm trying to show him what it's like to have money."

Obviously not a guest that flung shit at me or threatened me or anything, but that one's really stuck with me. Casinos get a lot of entitled guests, it comes with the VIP rewards program, but that was fucking insulting.

A:

Funding. We got up to 85 episodes in the can and Disney said no more. Our Exec Elizabeth Brock brilliantly went to PBS and said Disney wants to fund 15 more to get us to 100 episodes. Then she went back to Disney and said PBS wants to fund 15 more episodes...so they both kicked in and we made it to 100 episodes and then money dried up. (eg)


Q:

Thanks for your question. I look for a few important things. I want to know what I’m going to learn about myself and the world by playing this game, is the game rich enough that am I going to want to play for a long time and that it’s engaging enough that I’ll want to progress. I also want to know if I can play with my friends and in a way that each person can bring something unique to the experience. Lastly I look for an innovation brought by the game that has the potential to disrupt the industry.

A:

Then I should have said "Are you quackers?!?"


Q:

Who is the best kisser from Parks and Rec?

A:

Can you make one more computer with your son?? The earlier one was really cute


Q:

Thank you for doing this! I'm enjoying your stories very much. What drove you to apply for such wild assignments? Surely you were seeking a very different kind of fun than many of your peers. Where do you think your sense of adventure comes from?

A:

"One that comes to mind is this blind guy that called us" -> ".. liked to share stories about shows he'd seen."

i feel terrible but was he always blind or..?


Q:

Why was the part about chromosomes determining gender taken out of the Netflix version of the series?

A:

Quick follow-up question to you saying you look for unique multiplayer experience, does that mean you aren't necessarily interested in pursuing any style of single player and or campaign heavy titles? Also thanks for taking time to do an AMA


Q:

Chris, what items for sale and services can people negotiate the price for that 95% of people have no idea that those prices are negotiable and could you give us a short example on what to say to negotiate the price?

A:

The answer may surprise you.

Jim O'Heir has tongue like a goddamn anaconda and that is no shit.


Q:

Got a father-daughter build planned :)

A:

The Persons family has always had adventurers. My father was a missionary in Cuba, and my uncle's were also crazy. One was the chief of staff for Eisenhower, one was the governor of Alabama... so I wanted to have grand adventures like them. And there was so much to see in the world, too.


Q:

No idea. Weird language on my end, my bad. We've gotten blind people coming in before, they just take the cheap seats way in the back since the sound's good through the whole place.

A:

We were as surprised to hear about this as anyone. We actually found out about it through Reddit comments. We have no idea who did the edit. (jm)


Q:

One of the things I am proud of is that we have something in our line-up for many types of players and this is something we will continue to develop. We will still make games that are only solo or only multiplayer as long as they provide super rich and engaging experiences.

A:

Nearly everything is negotiable, if the person you're dealing with just feels like it. Consider this phrase - "Never be mean to someone who could hurt you by doing nothing". That pretty much covers everyone you deal with right?

If everyone could hurt you, then by the same token, they can help you if they just feel like it. The trick is how to get them there? How to get them to give you the "employee" discount that they give to their friends ALL the time.

I (we) call this "The Chris Price". It the "(Your name) Price". Here some examples and what's behind it:

As a hostage negotiator, I know that getting a hostage taker to use the hostage’s name humanizes the hostage and makes it less likely they will come to harm. This process is what we in The Black Swan Group now refer to as “forced empathy.” It makes the other side see you, and see you as a person.

A few years ago I was in a bar in Kansas with a number of other FBI hostage negotiators. The bar is really packed with lots of people having a good time. There’s an empty chair at the bar. As I get ready to sit in there the guy next to it says “Don’t even think about it”.

So...I say “Why?” He says “Because I’ll kick your ass.” I hesitate a moment, sort of shrug and scratch my head and say “Well...I don’t need that.”

I hold out my hand to shake his. “My name is Chris.” He freezes.

The hostage negotiators with me quickly move in, pat him on the shoulders, greet him warmly and offer to buy him a drink.

Conversation ensues and we find out he’s a Vietnam veteran at a particularly low point in his life. He’s sitting there in misery while he “perceives” that everyone around him is having a wonderful time. The only thing he can think of is to fight someone.

When I was some unnamed person he was ready to hit me. As soon as I became “Chris” everything changed.

Getting a Discount in an Outlet Mall

Flash forward in time, I’m in an outlet mall. I pick out some shirts in one of the stores. I go to the front counter and the young lady behind the counter asks me if I want to join their frequent buyer program. (This is of course, I think, a way for them to get my e-mail address so they can spam my inbox.) I ask her if it costs me anything. She says “no”.

I ask her if I get a discount for joining. She says “no”. So I say in a friendly manner “My name is “Chris”. What’s the “Chris” discount?”

She says “I’ll have to ask my manager.” She turns to the other woman who’s been standing next to her the whole time and says “Kathy, he wants to know if there is a “Chris” discount.”

Kathy says “The best I can do is 10%.”

Another Discount

A couple of weeks later I’m in a clothing store shopping for a cummerbund (I know how it sounds, okay? I’m sorry but I needed one.) I also try on a bunch of shirts and don’t buy any of them (which always makes me feel guilty). I check out the price for the cummerbund and it looks a little high to my unsophisticated eye. So I tell the guy I’ll be back, and I walk out the front door. (I feel lame doing that, especially since I figure the sales guy thinks “That’s nonsense. That guy’s not coming back”.)

I shop every other store in the mall and find all prices higher than the first. I know I have to go back there. I hate it every step of the way, because I know soon as I walk in the front door they know they’ve got me. I walk in and both of the salesmen are standing right there and they say “Yes, we’ve got your cummerbund right here.”

Now of course there is a sign in front of this clothing store saying “Buy 1 Shirt, Suit or Sport coat and get 3 free!”. This tells my consumer mind that maybe there’s some leeway here in the pricing. I say “Hey, buy 1 get 3 free?”

They say “No, no, no, that’s not on cummerbunds, that’s shirts, suits and sport coats.” I say “Yeah, because what am I going to do with 3 cummerbunds?

So there’s no discount on cummerbunds?”

And they say, “No. No discounts on cummerbunds.” I then playfully say...“But I’m “Chris”, there has to be a “Chris” discount. What’s the “Chris” price?”

And the manager says... “The best I can do is 20%.”

Use your name to introduce yourself. Say it in a fun, friendly way. Let them enjoy the interaction too. Get the “Chris” price. Get the “(your name)” price.


Q:

What dorm were you in at Illinois? 6 pack/Hopkins Hall man myself.

A:

Hi LTT, what's the progress on those 3 computers running behind the walls? Or is it super secret? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5r58fGVaaDQ


Q:

When you arrived in Tanana were you frightened? Were you prepared for the wild adventures you'd end up taking, and did it ever feel like "just another day at work"?

Also - you're amazing. Thank you for being a caregiver and a pioneer to boot!

A:

So what did your boss end up doing to show him what it's like to have money?

Did he take him out back and kneecap him like the good old days of the Casinos?

Did he take him to the high rollers room and let him see thousands of dollars being poured into a single tug on the Helllooooo machines?

Did he show him the vault then kick him out?

I'm burning with questions as to how this ended.


Q:

Who would win in a fight, Bill Nye, or Mr. Wizard?

A:

I've heard it said multiple ways. I'd like to know from the source. What is the correct pronunciation of the word Ubisoft?


Q:

Are you going to write any more books? If so, what would they cover?

A:

Scott Hall, neighbor.


Q:

STILL RUNNING!

A:

Well when I got to Tanana and flew in I saw this little village under me... in the summer they would go to salmon camp and the winter to caribou camp so I wasn't sure what to expect. I didn't know if I could take care of Tanana itself, let alone 18 other small villages!

When I got there I was in my light blue suit, heels, my dog Tinker with me... and I got off the plane and Tinker ran between my legs and I decided then that I wouldn't be very dignified. There was a big black truck from the hospital and all the staff was in the bed waving at me, it was very friendly!

My first day on the job I walked into clinic and I saw this shadowy figure sitting in the waiting room... but when I went up to him he was dead! It turns out they put the dead people in sitting positions so they fit in the plane better to fly them to their village or the city.

I guess I never felt frightened because everyone was so friendly and my dog was with me too. I do remember hearing the radio call and mentally prepare for whatever crazy fun experience I would be heading into now!


Q:

Nah, see, that's the old school. These days that kneecapping stuff is, yknow, a crime. Instead we just chucked pennies at him and called him names.

Really though we just kinda kept refusing until he got pissed and asked for the casino manager. Gladly gave him the number so that guy could tell him no too.

A:

Hands down Bill Nye (cuz Mr Wizard is dead) eg


Q:

Hi... we actually made a video about this last year, you can see it here >> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IU61WkEVFWY

A:

Not yet but here are some ways to both get some free stuff and stay ahead of anything we publish!

My colleagues and I in The Black Swan Group (Derek Gaunt and Brandon Voss) keep putting out articles in our weekly newsletter "The Edge". Both Derek & Brandon write powerful stuff (and the newsletter is free).

At some point, both Derek and Brandon will probably publish e-books under our company's umbrella.

In a couple of years, we'll likely update "Never Split the Difference" but in the meantime, most of the ideas that would be in that update will come up in some way or another in our newsletter "The Edge". If you're interested you can find it on our website www.blackswanltd.com or you can text message the number 22828 with the message "FBIEmpathy" (all one word - don't let your autocorrect change it - under upper or lower case letters don't matter).

Much of the newer stuff we're writing about now focuses on what we refer to as "cold-reads", other aspects of tactical empathy and "proof-of-life of the deal" and it's not just proof-of-life of the deal, but proof-of-life of the deal with YOU. Not the same thing.


Q:

Thank you for doing this ama Nick. What advice/tips would you give to an aspiring woodworker?

A:

will there be a short update video at all or just waiting until its been a year?


Q:

My mom wants to know if you ever had any close encounters with bears?

Kind of a weird question, but my mom is genuinely curious.

A:

Tropic Thunder is still one of the greatest movies of the past few decades


Q:

How did you pick Nye?

Were there other candidates with more academic credentials passed over in favor of Nye's stage presence?

A:

Obviously a long shot, but would it be possible to meet you at E3?

So excited to see all of Ubisoft's projects at E3!


Q:

I learned a lot of from your book and it's one of my favorites.

In sales i'm given the objection "if you're so good, why don't you do it for free?" or "If this works so well, why are you sharing it with me?"

What is the thinking behind this in order to put a label on it?

A:

That's a vast question, but I have been admirably served by the periodicals Popular Woodworking and Fine Woodworking, and also I wrote a book that should help, called Good Clean Fun, and I would just suggest that you start small and learn to sharpen and employ hand tools and make simple items - many pieces, as in the Shaker style for example, remain very simple in design and yet continue to provide great satisfaction even to masters like Christian Becksvoort. Just start getting to know the beauty of wood in a hands-on relationship - find a local sawyer and commune with the woods of your area - visit furniture shows/museums/craft fairs/tool shows and find other initiates, and also look at lots of work to discern the path you wish to pursue...


Q:

We're gonna wait the full year :)

A:

Well, we used to fly over them all the time in Tanana... my pilot would fly down and the bear would rear up and we'd fly away... but we never walked around with guns or anything but we weren't afraid. My one encounter was when one time, just for fun, a nurse and I decided to camp in a tent by the Yukon. We had Tinker (my dog) and another little black dog. We were sleeping in our sleeping bags and we heard a noise and there was a grizzly outside our tent by the tree. The black dog chased the grizzly away and it almost ran over the tent.

We also used to go to the garbage dump and watch the bears try to get into the canisters. But they never threatened us! Lots of moose too.


Q:

Black Dynamite tho

A:

We all worked together at KING-TV in Seattle. There was no picking. It just was. (EG)


Q:

If you see me on the booth please come say hello!

A:

These will get them!

"Sounds like you're skeptical." "Sound like your guard is up high." "Sounds like you're thinking I'm trying to hoodwink you." "Sounds like you've trusted in the past an been let down."

These objections are both skepticism based and based on feelings of insecurity, likely as result of being betrayed in the past. They were likely conned at some point and feel very stung by it. There's an old saying that someone who's been bitten by a snake is afraid of ropes.

Recognizing fears (an aspect of emotional intelligence) and then articulating it (street smarts, aka good people skills, aka tactical empathy) is the absolute best way to not just overcome objections, but make them dissolve.


Q:

Could you chuck more wood than a woodchuck could if a woodchuck could chuck wood?

A:

So... are you friends?


Q:

I start my internship in about a week... any advice? I'd be interested to hear any tips on interacting with patients

A:

My rule is always accept free money. Never be bribed. I would have pocketed his hundred and asked him if he would like a different seat.


Q:

Did you guys get a slice of Saves The World? You deserve, at minimum, a nibble.

A:

Google has this thing called Google 20% which is set up to allow to spend 20% of employees time to work on their own projects and ideas instead of what they're hired to do. This encourages innovation. Does Ubisoft have anything in place for encouraging innovation?

P.S Not just for employees, do you allow other people to pitch you ideas and how have you made it easy for them to do it. Do you try and do anything to make their ideas or projects a reality? what's the best way to approach you with an idea?


Q:

Do you prefer Redditors address you as Chris or Mr. Voss?

A:

I don't care to speculate about any of my abilities in the service of braggadocio, but I can certainly chuck a shitload of wood. Bring on your woodchuck.


Q:

Linus' status was changed to: It's complicated

A:

Be sure to sit down and make eye contact and listen to the patient. That is 90% of the job! And remember that nurses will make your life easy if you treat them well!


Q:

I would absolutely have considered it were it not for the two bosses standing beside me and the cameras covering every square inch of floor space.

A:

you're very kind, but no. (eg)


Q:

Thanks for the question! At Ubisoft what we try to do, when we can, is take ideas that people have and then try to make that 100% of their job. For instance Star Link which we announced yesterday came out of a Game Jam we had in Toronto and we were able to make that into a full project, For Honor was also a passion project that we were able to turn into a reality. And it has happened for many games we've published over the years!

A:

I like "Chris"!

Thanks for asking!


Q:

Who is your least favourite Spice Girl?

A:

What are the reasons for sock and sandals?


Q:

what patient stands out to you the most? also, my life is better knowing that awesome people like you exist. :)

A:

Point taken. That must have been frustrating.


Q:

Hey guys, I think we may have a mutual connection with the fellow standing on the far left of that photo you're holding. Spencer McCulloh here. Didn't expect to see you two on Reddit this morning! But anyways here my question haha. How did Bill Nye end up being the science guy for the show?

A:

I saw the gameplay for Assassin's creed origins and it looked amazing. Can't wait to play it! But can you please tell me as why the pirate aspect of assassin's creed was removed and made into a seperate game (skull & bones) ?


Q:

Whats the best thing I can do to get a job with the FBI in the future?

A:

KellyAnne Conway Spice


Q:

they're the ulltimate.

A:

There were so many that were great patients. One of my favorites was in Anaktuvik Pass, there was snow everywhere but we landed and made our way to the WW2 quonset hut and set up for the clinic. The next day this beautiful tall Native woman came in with her Parkie and reached into her hood and pulled out a 3 month old baby and sat it on the bench. Then she reached back and pulled out another, just over a year old and set it on the bench. And then she reached out and pulled out one more baby and set it on the bench. That was my favorite memory from my favorite town.


Q:

I was too busy being extremely pissed at that guy for being an incredible asshole, honestly.

A:

Hey there! To answer your question, he was born into it. (eg)


Q:

Hi there, for Skull and Bones it really needed a full team dedicated to that specific type of gameplay to create the best pirate game possible.

A:

There's a couple of simple things...DON'T GET ARRESTED! Don't use any drugs. (Maybe smoke a joint ONCE.) Stay clean, don't break the law.

It doesn't take any guts to break the law anyway. Outlaw?! Really. Boring. Going you own way legally, being totally your own person? That takes guts.

After that, you can give yourself an edge with military service (quick and easy way to already have a security clearance - shortens the time the FBI's got to do a background on you) go to law school, become an accountant or become fluent (reading and writing) in a couple of key languages (Arabic, Farsi, Spanish, Chinese, Russian to name some important ones).

The FBI is a cool job and it's got the perfect place for you somewhere no matter what type of person you are. Just work hard, show up and have fun!


Q:

First, you and your wife are glorious and I think you are both fantastic.

Second, is that the same shop used in the Parks and Rec episode when Mark visits to survey it? Did they shoot in your woodwork shop?

Third, I really enjoyed the song and subscribed to your channel. You can make your own ukelele, play it and then also accompany it and that's just amazing.

Fourth, what kind of whisky were you drinking with your Dad?

Thank you!

A:

Hey Linus, I'm a long time fan! I've got your Noctua fans in my system and I'm a floatplane pilot. It's been mesmerising seeing you jump from height to height, going from NCIX to where you are today and it's truly inspiring.

My question to you is, how do you unwind and relax at the end of the day after working so hard for so long?


Q:

Excuse my ignorance but I'm from the other side of the globe and I don't imagine that there was a huge variety of fresh fruit and vegetables in remote parts of Alaska. As a doctor how did you recommend that people eat to have a balanced diet? I imagine that some rural people would laugh at you if told to eat multiple servings of fresh fruit and vegetables each day.

A:

liked to share stories about shows he'd seen heard.


Q:

Hey guys! Big thank you for Bill Nye the Science Guy. I grew up watching it for my middle school science curriculum (I was homeschooled). I probably wouldn't have gotten my degree in Chemistry in college otherwise. Big thank you!

For your new show, have you had pushback in regards to finances being too "adult and boring" to teach kids?

A:

What are the requirements if I wanted to be a game designer for ubisoft?


Q:

Another question: How do you detach yourself from the outcome of a negotiation?

Even in business scenarios, I find that I tie a certain amount of self-worth to the outcome of a negotiation and that tends to hinder me more often than not. I imagine that feeling is much more amplified when the stakes are higher in hostage scenarios. How would you emotionally remove yourself from the scenario and free yourself to focus on only the best outcome for everyone?

A:

First, that is very generous, thank you. Second, yes, Ron's shop was filmed in my shop, OffermanWoodshop.com . Thirdly, thanks very much, I love my clumsy music fun and I would point out that that ditty was brought to you by Mark Rivers, who also wrote all the Mouse Rat tunes (and is their drummer!). I love collaborating with him and I do it often. Fourth, that glorious beverage is Lagavulin 16, for which the video is an ADVERTISEMENT. Pretty lucky fellow who gets paid to advertise his favorite drink making hijinks with his old man.


Q:

reading positive, supportive comments like this one.

I also love spending time reading stories to my kids and playing with them and playing badminton.

A:

Hahaha! Well everybody grew vegetables throughout the entire summer, which grew huge and they had a very long growing period. The cabbages could be a hundred pounds! So they would have a good diet in the summer, but in the winter they would not have a great diet. They used to bury eggs in the snow and then dig them up and eat them in the winter. It was definitely much better health wise in the summer! They would also have a lot of different berries in the spring, summer and fall.


Q:

There we go.

A:

You went on to be a scientist because of the show? Thank you! That was the plan.

We were working on the idea of a financial literacy show for years called Financial Genius. We met our Canadian partner, Jeannine Glista, with her idea for a show on kid entrepreneurs called Biz Kid$. Now, we do about five stories on kids and their money per episode, all wrapped around one general theme.

So many kids think they can't do this, but when you see where some of these kids come from and the ways they are building their financial futures, it can be mind blowing. Some have become multi-millionaires. And I think if these kids can do it, anybody can. (JM)


Q:

If you don’t have any experience in the industry a great way to start is as a game tester. After that, more and more we are seeing the emergence of game design as something that can be formally studied. Since the video game industry moves so fast, keeping an eye out for what new skills are required can also be a good strategy. Lastly, for Ubisoft, we look for people who are enthusiastic about games and dedicated to their work. In other words, we look for passion, imagination and expertise.

A:

Ah! Interesting question also!

Please allow me to shift your focus?

Focusing on the outcome gives you blinders. You'll miss better opportunities.

It's also a little like walking a tightrope. If the tightrope walker looks at her/his destination she/he falls off the rope. If they focus on each step they stay on.

Focus on the process. Have a "sense" of the outcome and then you will sense it as a better outcome begins to hint it's there.

Focus on how the other side is seeing things. There's an interesting thing that happens when you really turn your radar on to pick up where the other side is coming from. You get out of your own head and pick up their clues better. You read between the lines better. You "hack" their true meaning and motivators.

Then the deal emerges. Since it's impossible to know everything the other side is hiding (unless you discover it in the process) you can never know in advance what the best deal is.

Learn a great process, let yourself be imperfect and you'll make great deals.


Q:

Mr. Offerman,

Which is your favorite LOTR novel?

A:

How often do you work with other tech YouTubers like Kyle Jay, Paul, and them? Is it more a business relationship or do you all text and talk often?


Q:

Fascinating. What sort of items did you carry in your field medical kit(s)?

A:

blind guy

shows he’s seen

( ಡ ﹏ ಡ)


Q:

"Eat your crust Richie" is still one of my favorite quotes of all time.

How do you feel knowing that whenever the big tube tv was rolled into a science classroom, everyone in the room knew that we were going to watch the Science Guy, and we were all over the moon?

A:

Anything interesting on the horizon that most people don't know about yet?


Q:

Who is your favourite Beatle?

A:

This is not a question that I can suitably answer as I rather consider them all of a piece. Favorite highlights include Gandalf and The Balrog and the character arc of Samwise Gamgee.


Q:

Being up in Western Canada makes collaboration a little tougher.. and I'm pretty asocial by nature so I haven't generally gone out of my way to "collab" - especially because many collabs are just blatant subscriber swaps

"hey sub to me and sub to him/her and get a chance to win"

But I've also known a lot of the people in the tech tuber scene for YEARS and really enjoy spending time with them. So it's nice to have an excuse to hang out and make a video.

I'm not like sending them dick pics on snapchat or whatever though.

A:

Stethoscope, otoscope, tongue blades, dental instruments, injectable Novocaine and ephedrine (for teeth pulling), bandages, a splint or two, ace bandages, antibiotics (only streptomycin at the beginning, but penicillin once they got smaller dosing, IV fluids and a few IVs. That was normally what I took to the villages.


Q:

i cri everytim

A:

Like a proud momma! That is one of my favorite quotes as well as is "keeping shaking science guy the sapphires fall to the bottom" (eg)


Q:

As video game creators we have the fantastic power to anticipate and build games that allow us to experience what the world could look like in ten years-time. Playing these games is a way to test and learn and this I believe will have a positive impact on the world.

A:

Me!

No seriously...Paul. Super cool guy. Pops up in LA now & then (where I'm at now). He pulled a super-cool "negotiation" move with a friend of mine.

My buddy (who's also a musician) see's Paul jogging in a park in the Hollywood Hills. My friend tries not to be a giddy fan, but can't help it & runs after him & catches up. My buddy is almost beside himself that he actually standing there talking to Paul McCartney. He's so excited he can't hardly speak & Paul reaches over to him & puts his hands on his shoulders. Then his says "Yeah, I say that TV show too. It was cool" My buddy had mentioned a Beatles related show that had just been on.

With that touch, Paul then turned & went back to his jog. Totally cool way to give a great fan an amazing moment with complete class & then get back to his day!


Q:

Nick! big fan! :)

My dad is too!

What should I get my dad for father's day?

A:

Will LTX become a regular yearly thing? (PLEASE? :D)


Q:

Hello! Thank you for doing this :)

What were some of the biggest health problems you dealt with that in your opinion were unique to the north?

A:

I'm sure it was that guy personally pocketing your after tax dollars and laughing maniacally.


Q:

What was it like working with Bill?

A:

What's your favorite kind of cheese 🧀?


Q:

Do you ever find yourself using your negotiation skills in your everyday life, like to return an item that was nonreturnable?

A:

Make something. No matter how large/small/simple/complex, giving a gift into which you have put the effort of your hands and mind and heart carries more weight than most purchasable items. In short: Love. Give him love.


Q:

Depends how the first one goes.

If we lose buckets of money, then no.

If we lose a little bit of money, then probably.

If we break even or make money, then GAME ON!

A:

Turberculosis. It was absolutely rampant when I was up in the bush, with it infecting everything from bones to skin to brain to lungs. Outside Alaska there weren't nearly as many cases as in Alaska. It wasn't until we got the wonder drug INH that we were able to even start to control it!


Q:

That was basically my job description for the casino, yeah. Also the toilet clogging in your room was my fault, I spent the service fee money on six gallons of chili the night before.

A:

He was an excellent talent, did anything we asked, took direction well. And like the energizer bunny...he kept going and going.It was the perfect team. We all felt we had a mission (to nudge the world as Bill would say) it was a very passionate group, over worked and under paid. (EG)


Q:

I would say Époisses de Bourgogne! You can see it here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%C3%89poisses_de_Bourgogne

A:

All the time. Stuff like that is great practice, because after all, what have you got to lose? And if you do it in a nice and friendly way, & still fail, you get a chance to make somebody else smile.

Start off by saying something like "This is going to sound INSANE..." or "You're not going to like this..." or "I'm so sorry, this is going to sound ridiculous and I am going to seem like the biggest jerk you ever met."

Stuff like this completely catches people off guard in a delightful and refreshing way and leans them towards wanting to help you. Smile when you say it. "Out-nice" them. If they work in returns they are used to being yelled at & threatened.

Never be mean to someone who can hurt you by doing nothing. Everyone you come into contact with could probably hurt you by doing nothing. The flip side of that is, literally everyone you come into contact with could help you, if they just feel like it.

Make them feel like it and some really good things tend to happen.


Q:

Did you actually make any of the woodworking items featured in Parks and Rec?

Edit: My most upvoted post ever is talking with Nick Offerman - I love it!

A:

What upcoming product are you and the team most excited to get a review sample on?


Q:

Wow, that sounds awful. I should've guessed, here in Canada some of our most remote northern towns still get TB. Thanks so much for the answer.🐿🍭

A:

oh, even if it's true, you really shouldn't say things like that on the internet. That just encourages even more people to be assholes acting entitled to something.


Q:

I have been wanting to ask this for YEARS: Who is responsible for the Drew Barrymore sketch? That was absolutely brilliant.

A:

Which chocolate do you prefer?

  1. Swiss
  2. Belgian
  3. Whatever's melting on my tongue
  4. White, because I don't know what I'm talking about ;)

Q:

Most of the items were made much to quickly for any woodworker I know to pull off (except maybe JimmyDiresta.com) but I did make the canoes and paddles, as well as the large mahogany dining table Ron sold at Donna's school fundraiser...usually though I was too busy making the show to be able to make things like the Irish harp or the award-winning chair...

A:

Threadripper.

Super stoked.


Q:

An astronaut pirate might be a good secondary career, ha ha!

A:

I said it in the other response to this, it doesn't really change what I offer (I'm always out to find people the best seats possible), just the level of customer service I provide. For assholes, it's pretty much just "polite and to the point" to get it over with faster.


Q:

It was very impromptu. There was a script Jim can't remember if he wrote it, or Bill, or one of our writers.... but here is an old photo of Drew and Jim together! http://imgur.com/ExAfApD (EG)

A:
  1. Swiss Dark Chocolate! I always have a stock on my desk for long meetings.

Q:

What was the subject of the most heated argument you've had with your father?

A:

How do you balance your personal time with your wife and kid against work time?


Q:

I'd like to start off by saying how honored I am to read about you, Alaska's (American) history is incredibly short, but here you are with all of these incredible stories with so much wisdom and kindness.

There's a little backstory to my question...

I was the very first member of my family to be born in Alaska (Anchorage in '93), with a bunch of cousins born after as my mom's siblings followed her all the way from Texas and Mexico. I grew up camping every weekend in summer and wearing snowsuits with a princess dress stretched over every halloween, and I grew up making tamales, frijoles, and tortillas with my grandma, eventually going from knowing only Spanish as a child to recalling mere fragments as an adult.

My question is: spending any amount of years in Alaska is amazing, but I'd love to know what parts of having lived there do you think have had the biggest impact on your life? On your children's and grandchildren's lives?

Thank you again so much for doing this AMA, I'm having such a good time reading your answers and learning even more about home.

A:

paid less in service fees buying it in person ($2.50 per as of the time I left)

BO wasn't service-fee-free? I've always figured box office was always the baseline "inconvenient" option to justify "convenience fees" for all the rest. Where I am it is-- no fees on buying at the venue.


Q:

Are there any statistics that detail the effects the Bill Nye show has had on young people? Is there any hard evidence that suggests there could be a trend between the amount of millennials pursuing science based degrees and professions and the original airing of your show?

A:

Can you tell those of us who couldn't be at E3 today what's comin' down the pipe from Ubisoft? Please and thank you!


Q:

Canvas vs. Leather Converse High Tops in 6th grade

A:

I suck at it :p

But seriously, I have no social life, so it's just work/family, which makes it a bit easier. I get one night a week to go out and play badminton and other than that I go home and spend time wiht the kids. I've also SIGNIFICANTLY cut back on the time I spend working on the weekends. So it's not too bad at this point.


Q:

Tanana was my favorite, and I definitely learned a lot. The weather was amazing! The summer was amazing, with beautiful days and the roaring Yukon right next to us. In the winter it would get down to -67 degrees... I always wanted to see if I could get to -80 degrees but couldn't! I used to walk home when it was -50 degrees from the 3 reel movies on Friday nights, and it would feel like my lungs were frozen. All my children grew up in Alaska and California and became very independent, I think that the Alaska way is to make the children independent.

A:

The $2.50 "facilities fee" was a very recent change. A month ago you'd have been right on the money. Dunno the thought process behind it.


Q:

I would absolutely love to see some statistics on the effects of the show. We hear from someone almost daily about how the show impacted their lives and they made a decision to go into a field of science because of it. That is very gratifying. (JM)

A:

We have plenty coming, if you haven't seen it yet I hope you can watch our E3 conference from yesterday >> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Q1s3lOzQ1A


Q:

NICK what is your best fathers day meal??

A:

Hi Linus, how much of your time actually goes into making content nowadays, compared to how much of it is needed for managing the business?


Q:

You said that you were treating people in villages. Were any of the villages groups of Native Alaskans? Did you learn a lot about the Native culture?

A:

What about for a really popular show? My fear with going in person is that if you aren't at the front of the line at the box office when tickets go on sale that you'll end up with nothing. For a show that's likely to be a quick sell out is there any advantage to going to the box office or are you better off on the website?


Q:

Scientists like to debate almost everything. How did you deal with members of the scientiffic community taking issue with certain subjects that were covered on Bills show?

A:

What's the first game you've ever played?


Q:

One at a table with my family in Minooka, Illinois.

A:

It's not that I'm not spending time making content, it's just that I'm involved in OVERSEEING the process rather than actually DOING it.


Q:

I was immersed in native culture! Even now I have many items the native Alaskans made for me around the house and raised my kids on their stories and tales.

A:

You're usually better off on the website. It's generally the fastest, even if you pay more.


Q:

The original Disney Presents Bill Nye the Science Guy series had very little negative comments from the scientific community. At the time, we tried to do the best research our budget allowed. We had a team of qualified young science researchers and a broad based science advisory board. We did our best with the information available at the time. Now, of course, there is this thing called the internet... (JM)

A:

The first game I played was a Space Invaders arcade machine, which I loved!


Q:

Do you watch game of thrones?

A:

Given unlimited Budget, what would be a video that you would like to shoot? Most interested in answers from Linus and Brandon.


Q:

This is truly an amazing story!

My question(s):

How did you balance modern medicine with the traditional native practices? And with that, to what extent did cultural sexism and superstitions affect your work?

A:

Did you primarily do business in sports or theater sales where you were located? Always wondered what these jobs entailed, to be honest.


Q:

What were your first reactions when you met Bill in person?

A:

Hello! You guys rocked E3 this year, the only one who did better IMO is nintendo, really good work :) now, I have to ask: Do you play other games in your free time? If so, what is your favorite non-ubisoft game that you are playing at this time?


Q:

I have read the books voraciously and am wating to binge the show once the books have faded in my memory a bit to temper the inevitable disappointment from book to screen.

A:

I want to make a movie trailer.

Not a movie.

Just a trailer.

But with BADASS high production values so it would be a TON of fun to shoot. It'd be basically a bunch of sketches back to back without having to deal with the boring parts of making a movie like real dialogue and a story arc and character development.

I just can't figure out how to fund it other than stealing $100,000+ from the LMG coffers and putting it in a firepit...


Q:

Well there was no sexism there because I was the only doctor there in the 30 bed hospital! It was so nice. When I got my letter from Juneau with my job description, it had said I would make rounds with the head doctor and consult with the other doctors-but I was the only doctor there! Because of this I got a raise from $1250 to $1500 a month. I was only about 28 years old, and when I first came to the village all the old men came to the clinic and seemed to approve of me... then the old women came and they passed on me. But they brought their kids and that was that. My reputation spread quickly and people seemed very comfortable that I was there.

When I first came, there was a medicine woman in the village. An old man had had a stroke and she took a hair from the man's head, threaded a needle with it and put it in his cheek down to the bottom of his lip and back up, then tied it together. This was to help his lip which was sagging. But she never felt the need to step on my toes and the like.

In New Mexico it was different though. I once had 5 medicine men on the ward (ill), and I would show them how I used the stethoscope and otoscope and they were very interested. They then showed me how to use the sand paintings when they were treating people. It was very interesting! But never any animosity towards each other.

That was such a good questions!

A:

Our venue did music and comedians mostly. Before we renovated a few years back we'd have amateur MMA live, which was interesting, but also tricky to handle since the theater wasn't designed for that sort of setup (since all the seats are on one side and whatnot).

The stage was actually enormous, which gives a lot of room for some of the real showmen that have come through (Alice Cooper, Empire of the Sun, and KISS come to mind) to work with cool set designs.


Q:

I thought he was cute (eg)


Q:

Mr. Offerman,

Been a big fan of yours and your wife for years! I just have a couple questions:

  1. Do you use beard wash? And if so what is it and where can I get it?

  2. When you do your woodworking do you have any specific music you listen to?

A:

Hi Linus, would you ever take your ear piercings out/get any more?


Q:

In today's dollars that means a raise from 13K/mo to 15.5k/mo.

For a woman in the 1950's, this gal was doing alright for herself. As well she should have been with talent like that!

A:

That's pretty cool...sounds like a neat venue for specialty events. Amateur MMA? That must have taken some logistics to get right as you alluded to...wonder how the turnout was.


Q:

Does science rule?

A:

What is your favorite collectors edition?


Q:
  1. I do use beard wash, it is water and soap. You may find it in the creek and at the soap store, respectively.

  2. We love music in the shop - it's a great blessing. On any given day you will hear: Nancy And Beth, John Prine, Warren Zevon, Wilco, Patty Griffin, Iron and Wine, Neil Young, The Mills Brothers, Gillian Welch, Kool and the Gang, The Gap Band, Parliament, Ween, They Might Be Giants, Laurie Anderson, Talking Heads, T. Rex, Liz Phair, Louis Armstrong, The Andrews Sisters, Tom Waits, Randy Newman, Radiohead, Arcade Fire, Rhett Miller, M. Ward, and like that. Willie, Johnny Cash, Dylan, Stones, Beatles, Beach Boys, Pink Floyd, The Who...we love it

A:

one of them is literally fused in there.. I"d have to cut it off. So... no...


Q:

I guess that makes sense! I supposed just comparing to other people I graduated with I was making less than them.

A:

The turnout was alright for awhile, although they stopped working with us after the renovation. Dunno if they found a better place or what, but I don't mind. Those shows went on for hours and someone had to stick around till the last fight started so I was usually getting out after midnight.


Q:

Yes. I had a fear of science in high school. I met Bill and discovered how cool science can be. It changed my life! (JM)

A:

I really liked the For Honor collectors edition with the 3 helmets.


Q:

Mr Offerman, I'm a novice woodworker slowly making my way through Good Clean Fun.

What is your favorite wood to work with which most of us would find affordable?

A:

Is there something that you have always wanted to do on YouTube (maybe as a fun challenge) but didn't really fit on any of your channels so you decided against it?


Q:

To be clear, for the work you were doing you should have been insulating your cabin with Benjamins and it is absurdly unfair that you made less than your peers.

That being said, you were obviously a pioneer when it came to women in the workforce (not that you need me to tell you that) and it is wonderful that you were able to be successful while navigating a whole extra set of challenges that your male peers may very well have been entirely oblivious of.

A:

What was the average "convenience fee" for tickets there?


Q:

What do you think of the politicization of science in our culture?

I find it despicable and dangerous.

A:

Thanks for the AMA! What would you say is Ubisoft's greatest masterpiece?


Q:

If you can find a local sawyer who knows what he/she is doing, the removal of any middleman/woman really brings the price down. In Los Angeles, our pals at Angel City Lumber provide this luxury for us with a lot of Live Oak, California Sycamore, Black Acacia, Elm, Silver Maple and others...

A:

LOTS of things... If I ever stop making tech videos, you'll see them.


Q:

Thank you! The male doctors who followed me never ventured out to the surrounding villages either.

A:

In person it was free, $3 extra per over the phone. Recently they added a $2.50 fee on top of that to everything, no clue why. Still dirt cheap in person.


Q:

The pilot episode of our series was funded by a Republican administration. The series was funded by a Democratic administration. This is one of those important discussions we should have over a beer. (JM)

This is not a one beer discussion. (EG)


Q:

What would you say the defining moment was in your relationship with your Dad? What advice would you give to new parents?

A:

What is the one video you regret making?


Q:

In my experience, actual Healers, regardless of nation or background or experience, all have a healthy respect for each other.

A:

How do companies feel about scalpers?


Q:

He's a great Dad, so it's a lifetime of moments. He (with my Mom) taught me to be polite, work hard and be honest. I didn't always succeed, but fortunately I'm not done, so I get to keep improving my batting average, and I'm grateful he's around to see my improved swing. I have also grown fonder of the bunt.

A:

I don't regret making the video where we simulated Ryzen 5 performance, but I regret titling it in a deceptive manner..

Other than that the only video I've ever actually taken down was a detailed tour of my house. I was trying to show the reception issues with some early ASUS tablet and had inadvertently shown a lot of personal details that didn't belong on the Internet.

I'm also still not sure how I feel about some of the videos that feature my kids. They LOVE making videos with Daddy (especially my son) and they only appear once in a while so I don't think I'm going to be destroying their lives or anything, but they're also too young to really understand what it means to be on the Internet, so I don't know how they'll feel about that down the line.


Q:

It was a wonderful experience for me.

A:

I really don't know anything from the legal side of things, but from a sales side we can't really do much about it beyond saying "hey don't scalp around us". Once you bought a ticket from us, we were hands-off: what you do with it after that is up to you. When people asked me I would always always always recommend against buying from them since I only ever saw it when it went south and someone got scammed, but that's as much influence as we had on it. We're not just gonna not sell to someone, no matter what we think they might do with the tickets.


Q:

Mr. Offerman! Every time you do an AMA I try to catch you, but it's usually too late.

My wife once gifted me a signed copy of Paddle Your Own Canoe; you dedicated it to Misth. I've always wanted to hear about what prompted you to dedicate it to Misth (if any reason in particular) so I have some sort of connection to the book signed by you?

Also, every year my wife and I have a tradition of taking a road trip to New Mexico and listening to the Paddle Your Own Canoe audio book along the way. It always brings me such great joy and makes me seriously rethink my life choices and want to quit my job. Just thought you should know what an impact it has on me.

We're from Oklahoma and seriously hope to run into you some day! Cheers!

A:

Hi Linus,

In what year will you finally admit that spiky gel hair is a relic of the past?


Q:

How would they use the sand paintings? Did they seem to work?

I think they did that for Mulder in one episode of X-Files.

A:

Have you ever done the water driving range at the GSR?


Q:

I am very grateful that my work has had positive repercussions for you and your bride, thanks for saying so. I often sign my books to oak, or to pith, or bacon, but in your case, that would be "to mirth". I apologize for what was apparently a crap-ass "r".

A:

I'll admit it today. Still gonna rock it.


Q:

So there were certain patterns that they would draw in the sand for certain ailments. They would also come to the hospital (the medicine men) in covered wagons while I was in Crown Point, and they would park in front of the hospital when they would visit the other Native American patients.

A:

I haven't, golf was never really my thing. Went to the arcade as a kid and tried a bunch of the restaurants during my time there, though.


Q:

Hi Nick, neither my Father nor I are overly fond of Whisky, how do I fix this?

A:

What's the farthest northern Alaskan community you've been to?

Weirdest food you've tried?


Q:

What was the busiest day of the week at work?

What was the slowest hour of the week?

What was the busiest hour of the day at work?

What was the slowest hour of the day?

A:

Nothing wrong with that. Your livers are probably pretty happy about it.


Q:

The farthest I've been was Barrow to visit. That's the northernest you can get! We slept under the plane we flew up in. The Northernest place I worked was Anaktuvuk Pass, which was my favorite village. One native lady came in and had 3 babies in her Parkie Hood! Anaktuvuk had so many pregnant women... it kept me busy!

The weirdest food was probably Walrus. It was so gummy and thick. Not very appetizing!

A:

It varied a lot- show days were almost universally busy, whereas any day that wasn't within a few days of a show was slow as hell.

I had days where I didn't speak to another person all day long, and then I had show nights where I sold nonstop for hours straight and on-sales where we didn't stop selling until we closed.


Q:

Hi Nick! I love all of you're books and was curious as to if you will be writing a fourth?

A:

That's awesome, I want to visit Barrow. Kotzebue is the farthest north I've visited. What time of year were you there?

Have you tried muktuk (whale blubber & meat)? If so, is it similar?


Q:

Was the turnover at the box office as bad as it was everywhere else at the GSR? Also, how did you feel about the horrible management?

A:

Thank you very kindly, I love writing my books. There will be a fourth (according to my contract and my affections) but first my beautiful bride and I are writing a book together due out next year. HAVE YOU SEEN HER SHE IS MAGNIFICENT I highly recommend you peruse NancyAndBeth.com to see her incredible videos and purchase her astonishing music record. I love books!


Q:

I was in Barrow on 4th of July weekend... we couldn't sleep very well with the sun out all day and night!

I have had muktuk... it did taste similar to walrus but was better tasting. I still didn't really like it all that much.

A:

Turnover at the box office isn't as bad as something like the front desk, which was nonstop and dealt with complaints and was high-visibility. As far as management, I liked my direct superiors a lot, but more than a couple steps up the chain I didn't really hear from anyone. That could be a whole lot worse, but it wasn't great either.


Q:

Oh my goodness I actually have a relevant question! What type of wood would you recommend using for an axe handle? For Father's day i'm restoring one of my Grandpa's axes for my dad. Got the head done, but the handle is proving tricky. Initially i was going to use a baseball bat because i thought it would look cool, but after giving it a second thought, that may be prone to turning in the hand while swinging so i figure i'll just make a more traditional handle. Thoughts?

A:

Who is your favourite Beatle?


Q:

How often are you on Reddit and what are your favorite subreddits?

A:

Traditionally (in the states) Ash or Hickory is used for an axe handle because of the intense and ultra-badass hardness contained in their cells. I have found great inspiration in many makings including axes on the YouTube channel of Jimmy Diresta.


Q:

The whole bunch were good!

A:

Allllll the time, dude. This is a throwaway so I don't wanna be specific, but a lot of gaming subs.


Q:

Nick! My husband and I are big fans. He is a first time father this year, got any life advice for him in honor of Father's Day, or a favorite memory of your own father to share?

A:

Two things:

  1. GEAUX TIGERS!

  2. Where do you live now?


Q:

Hey there fellow Reno area guy. What happened to the prop airplane from Hello Hollywood, Hello?

A:

Just keep applying your affection to good work, for it is a project that never ends.

My best Father's Day treat - read Wendell Berry's short story MAKING IT HOME (and while you're at it, read all of FIDELITY, the book it is in)


Q:
  1. "Hahahahahaha!"

  2. I'm now in Central Oregon! Not Alaska, but it's a nice town to live in.

A:

It's still there, dude. Saw it a few days ago when we ate backstage for my little going away party.


Q:

Nick, what's your favorite book of the past five years?

A:

Firstly, thank you so much for doing an AMA!

Secondly, whats the wierdest procedure you have ever had to perform?


Q:

Haha have any other acts used the plane in your tenure there?

A:

Lincoln in the Bardo by George Suanders, easy.


Q:

There were a lot that I had to perform! The one I didn't expect to do was treat a toddler who had been mauled by a bunch of dogs in Tanana. I accompanied her to the hospital in Fairbanks, sutured her up and stayed with her reading to her until the next morning when she woke up. I saw her years later and she was perfect!

Another one was when I had to fly up to help a merchant's wife. Acute chest pain and upper gastric pain, gave her morphine and loaded her on the plane to head to Fairbanks. It was the roughest flight I've ever taken from Hughes to Fairbanks. We finally got into Fairbanks, and found out she had had a heart attack and also an acute gallbladder. She ended up going right back to work. People were tough up there, they had to be! She was also the godmother of two of my girls.

A:

I think David Copperfield vanished it once, but that was before my time. These days it just sits backstage with some other old sets and stuff.


Q:

Dry Aged or Wet Aged Steak?

A:

Do your grandchildren appreciate books like The Hatchet, and pre-internet world they live in?

Do they appreciate that their gramma had those kinds of adventures?


Q:

So how did GSR feel after Amy Schumer spent the first 15 minutes of her act talking shit about the venue?

For background: she was originally booked for their Grand Theater, which is one of the best venues in town. Then they decided to do renovations on the theater and they moved her to a convention room with ziptied dining chairs and a temporary stage.

A:

Yes, please and thank you.


Q:

As her granddaughter, we actually grew up with a lot of Native Alaskan books and stories! It was great... we spent a lot of time up in Alaska running wild.

A:

I can't speak for anyone but myself of course but man, I think she can go fuck herself. Heard from one of my bosses at the time that she was being an asshole to the people working at wardrobe and all that too.

I'm sure she's probably nice to some people but that was a pretty dickish thing to say.


Q:

What is your favorite brand of whiskey?

A:

Did you or your nurses teach any locals first aid or other medical techniques?


Q:

Why?

A:

It is with sincerity and a bit of discomfort that I say it is Lagavulin 16, because while that's the truth, I am also involved at this very moment in an advertising relationship with them, which is a funny circumstance. Scott King bought me my first glass of it in 1999 at the Chicago Film Festival and I have never found a drink enjoy quite so much. What a lucky bastard then, me, to land on a show (Parks & Rec) where they paid me to enjoy it, and then on top of that, the fine folks from the lovely island of Islay now shake hands with me when I go to visit the distillery and the neighborhood sheep with whom I am happily (and platonically) friends.


Q:

Not during my time there, but a few years later the Natives would train in Anchorage to treat minor injuries and basic health care. They would then go back to their villages to help. It is a really great program that provided care to a lot of people who needed it!

A:

College.


Q:

What an amazing role model and story! I am about to move to Alaska in August--what are your top things to see while I live there?

A:

What is/was your college major?


Q:

Where are you going to live?

A:

Graphic design. Left this job for one in my field.


Q:

You are the kind of person I really look up to! Women like you paved the way to me being able to go to college and get a Masters degree. (And I may go back for more!) So thank you!

Onto my question: What experience would you say gave you energy to keep going strong when you were tired?

A:

Before tickets go on sale to the public, what percentage of tickets are already sold off?


Q:

I just knew that there were always people that needed me and so I had to keep going. Now that I'm 92 I get to relax sometimes, which is nice!

A:

It varies wildly depending on the show, location, venue, all sorts of stuff like that. I'm sure you don't need me to tell you that super popular acts sell out instantly.

From the angle of this specific venue, the casino and presales are what take the lion's share. Casino gets a couple hundred tickets at various price levels to offer their players based on their play rate (and I've seen players with an average daily wager rate from the single digits to the thousands), sometimes five or six hundred if it's a big show. Beyond that, our presales were pretty open so a lot of times the a good chunk of the front half would go before the on sale. At a guess, that means about thirty percent of a theater seating about 2500-2700.


Q:

4th-year medical student here, going into rural family medicine next year. All of your answers have been fantastic. What advice do you have to offer the next generation of rural physicians?

A:

When does the buffet have crab legs? I forget.


Q:

Always know that someone needs you! You may have to learn new tricks on the job but you should be able to pick them up as you go along.

A:

Fridays iirc


Q:

The most amazing iama, and woman, I've ever encountered. Thanks for being here.

My question; Ulu much?

A:

Hey man, thanks for doing this. I'm a little late to the party but hoping you see this.. have a couple of questions.

1) What's to prevent people from using Ticketmaster as a "showroom" of sorts then converting to the venue's website and purchasing from there to avoid the Ticketmaster fees? Does Ticketmaster own the inventory or do they have exclusivity via the contract, etc. Could you shed some light here?

2) What's Ticketmasters opinion of the secondary market (stubhub, seatgeek, etc.)?

2a) Does Ticketmaster price to discourage resale? Or are they in collusion with the secondary market to maximize value to each channel?

3) Do you have an opinion of Nathan Hubbard? Think he probably predates you but he seems to understand the pain consumers go through when acquiring tickets (although he didn't really do too much about it).

4) Final request - give me your insider's-opinion on how we fix this market for the consumer.


Q:

We always used Ulu! They are so convenient.

A:

Hey! I can't really comment on too much of this since I worked for a venue, not for Ticketmaster themselves, but I'll answer what I can.

1) Back when we were using our own in-house system we recommended doing this. Their online map looked better than ours in some cases so we'd tell them to look at the map on Ticketmaster and then come to our site and buy them cheaper. Since we went to 100% Ticketmaster sales there's no difference except fees. As far as I was aware we still owned the inventory the whole time, they just worked as a third party for us early on and later became our distribution mechanism. Our contracts and promotions were (again as far as I was aware) between us and the talent, unless they had an outside promoter like JMAX or Another Planet or something.

2) No clue. My own personal opinion is that the whole system is pretty fucked, but I wouldn't know the first thing to do to fix it.

2a) No clue, I never really got insight into why prices were set to what they were.

3) Never heard of him before now, to be honest.

4) See 2, I'd much rather leave that issue to people with more passion and expertise in the subject than myself.


Q:

Hi, you have an amazing story! I was wondering what made you start to want to be a bush doctor? Thank you for doing this AMA

A:

So I read that the whole idea of Ticketmaster is to throw extra fees on and take the pressure off of the artist or venue. For example. Better for your favorite singer to charge $50 a ticket with Ticketmaster throwing on $20 in fees as compared to $65 for the ticket and $5 for the fees. Their whole model is to take the ire of the fans off of the artist/venue. That is why they don't have competition. Have you heard this, do you know if it is true?


Q:

I wanted to have an adventure! And Alaska seemed like a good place for that.

A:

I have heard that, yeah, but it wasn't really true for our venue (max fee total outside of online was $5.50) so I don't really know how accurate it is, sorry.


Q:

Hi Jean, great read and thanks for doing this AMA. Swedish anesthesiologist here.

Practicing medicine in different fields (internal med, surgery, psychiatry etc) while being the only doctor means you've probably encountered a couple of situations where you hadn't a lot of formal prior training under supervision.

Any particular situations that were the most challenging to deal with?

A:

What's it like to work for literal Satan?


Q:

I never had any training in orthopedics so I had to learn quickly how to set bones and relocate joints and do splints. I also wasn't trained in OB but I got a lot of practice. There was only one baby I couldn't get out because he was breech... I had not learned about forecep deliveries and so I had to learn on the job. I also pulled a lot of teeth which was new to me as well. It was very difficult but you end up making due with what you know!

A:

A couple weeks ago I went over to the water cooler and my boss was there.

"Hey Satan," I said.

"Hey Throwaway," he said.

"Hey, so I got this job in my field out of college..."

"Oh wow, congratulations. I knew you'd been looking around."

"Yeah, yeah, I'm really excited. I guess this means I'm putting in my two weeks' notice."

"Could you put that down in writing for me? HR needs it official before they'll open up the spot for me to start hiring."

"Sure, no problem."

"We're gonna miss you around here."

"Don't I know it, Satan."

"All the same, I'm really happy for you."

"Thanks, I really appreciate the support. It was a pleasure working here."

"You know this means I've gotta spend twice as much time flaying the skin from your bones before burning you alive, then reversing the process by reconstituting you from living ooze and ensuring you feel every instant of the incredible pain since you're leaving, right?"

"Yeah, that's pretty fair. In the meantime, I'll make sure the manual is up to snuff before I go."

"Sounds like a plan. Let me know if you need someone to call me for a reference."

"Will do. Seeya later."

Yeah, Satan's pretty chill. Would recommend unless you have problems with the whole eternal hellfire thing.


Q:

Thank you for doing this! I'm going to pick up your book and your answers to these questions have been amazing! My question is did you meet your husband through your time in Alaska? Was he also in the medical field?

A:

What hours of the day did you work?

How many hours did you work per week?


Q:

Yes, my first husband was Dutch and traveling through Alaska at the time. My second husband was also a general practitioner that I had gotten to know during my time in Anchorage.

A:

Swing/night shift for three years, then morning for the last year. Given that my new job is normal business hours, I'm glad I had time to adapt.

I was part time, but for awhile we were really understaffed, so I did more hours including a lot of overtime pretty frequently.


Q:

I have read many Alaskan stories and books. Being from central Europe, this place has always been a favourite to me for the vast, empty landscape.

I spent a month vacation there years ago and yearn to return again. While there, I picked up Shadows on the Koyukuk, the story and life of Sidney Huntington. I re-read that book many times and it starts to fall apart!

Sidney had a large family, did you ever meet any of them, or even the man himself? I believe he died in the late 90's?

A:

How often do you get to Lake Tahoe and the Ski Slopes nearby?


Q:

Yes, I met him somewhere along the road! That is very funny, but I do remember him somewhat.

A:

Not at all, honestly. I'm not a very outdoorsy person. Tons of people come through the casinos for that stuff, though.


Q:

Hello! My family is from northwestern Alaska, I was wondering if you went to any villages out there? My Dad was from Nome. Did you ever fly with Foster Aviation by chance? Thanks for the AMA!

A:

No, we never ventured that far, but I only ever flew with Hansen, my pilot. That is really great though, I have been to Nome to visit many times! It's a nice town.


Q:

What was medical school like in the late 40's?

A:

Well, the first time you got in your anatomy class the professor said "look at the person on the right and on the left... one of you won't be here next year". Not very comforting!

In anatomy all the grades were in the 50s the first exam to scare us all. But I hear that is pretty similar to nowadays! All the bodies were in these big tin vats, and you had to crank them up so you could get to them and it was so smelly with the formaldehyde. After a couple weeks you stopped smelling it! When we were drilling into the brain it all spilled out and I wasn't able to eat tapioca pudding for about 40 years!

Medical residency in New Orleans was fun though. I used to ride the ambulance and the guy was still shooting from the rooftop, and the driver and I had to crouch down behind the ambulance to get the victim and try to avoid getting shot by the man on the roof. That was fun. Then there was a seizure patient another time and all the bystanders held him down so I could get an IV in. They liked to help! I paid $40 a month at the apartment I stayed in for rent and 2 meals a day. It was a good experience!


Q:

Ma'am, I am struggling to come up with a good question because you just seem like such a fantastic lady. Thank you so much for doing this!

Do you have any vices? What do you like to do for fun and relaxation?

A:

I do sitting yoga twice a week and water aerobics three times a week. And I do like a martini with a good olive sometimes!


Q:

This has got to be one of the most enjoyable AMA's that I have ever read through!

  1. What is some life advice you can give to a 21 year old who is currently studying to be a nurse?
  2. How did you meet your husband?
  3. What was your favorite meal in Alaska?

Again, I know so many people have said this, but thank you so much for this AMA! It has honestly made my day :)

A:
  1. Just know that people always need you, even if they say otherwise in a hospital setting! My daughter and granddaughter are both nurses and you have a world of opportunity open for you.

  2. I met my husband in Anchorage as he was also a general practitioner there.

  3. I ate a lot of really good chocolate in rural alaska.


Q:

Was your salary comparable to Dr's in the lower 48?

A:

Oh heaven's no! Not even comparable! I did not make much compared to my friends in the continental US. Since I was the only doctor I was also on call every night, and on duty every day! When I went to the villages I worked around the clock. I was still paid for 5 days a week from 8-2 AM. And less than most of my friends!


Q:

Hi, ma'am! You're an incredibly inspiring human being. Thanks for doing an AMA!

My question is - as one of the first female bush doctors, did you face any struggles/discrimination due to your gender? How did you deal with it all?

A:

Not really much sexism in Tanana! I was the only doctor there so they just accepted that a doctor could be a woman. When I was at LSU it was more obvious that there was sexism. But that's why I liked alaska so much!


Q:

Amazing, indeed.

My question(s):

  1. How did you cope with having to abandon your country of origin?

  2. What was life like after moving to the US? What challenges did you face, in terms of residency, job opportunities, finances and what not?

A:

So I was actually born in Philadelphia, but moved to Cuba when I was a few months old. My father was a missionary there and so we stayed in very small villages, underwent a few hurricanes and the start of the revolution. When we came back it was fairly simple for me to integrate back into the American lifestyle. We just couldn't go shoeless everywhere in America!


Q:

My sister-in-law is a pediatrician outside Anchorage treating primarily native Alaskan peoples, with a hope to become a bush doctor/bring more complete medical care to the isolated villages. Do you have any suggestions for her to fulfill her dream? Any way for her to become a more effective resource for them to use?

A:

Apply to the bureau of Indian Affairs and start making connections. She can also try to get small jobs working as a specialist or something with the native villages. Good for her!


Q:

Okay I need to know what a Bush Doctor is and google keeps telling me it's some Jamaican album

Bush Doctor is the third studio album by Jamaican singer Peter Tosh. It was released in 1978.

Someone help?

A:

Rural Alaska is called the Alaska Bush sometimes. But I like Jamaica too.


Q:

Hey, Thank you for doing this. I am currently in second year of medical school and contemplating doing my residency and to practice Family Medicine in Alaska.I've always been in awe of the state for some reason even though I have never been there. What are your opinions on medicine there? Why did you select to go there?

A:

I went there for the adventure! You can choose the adventure side and you can usually work pretty independently. I would not have left Alaska but my husband was very sick so we moved to Oregon 5 years ago.


Q:

Hi there! Thanks for doing this AMA. I'm curious to know about your early childhood in Cuba. What are some of your memories from the island? Strong contrast between Alaska and the tropics. My father was Cuban and he and his nuclear family emigrated to the states in the early 70's when he was 10ish. He always missed the place but never went back.

A:

I've never gone back either, it's difficult. I loved to tan and be mistaken for Cuban when I was little. I used to play marbles with the boys and beat them. I loved to swim and climb up on the mens shoulders and dive off the top. I loved going barefoot and walking in the mud. We ended up with every parasite you can imagine from that. The doctor in Philadelphia was shocked when we got back to the states.

We survived a huge hurricane while we were living in LaGloria, and saw our house and the church blow away, but we are the rest of the villagers were huddled in the one stone building. We ate a lot of rice. But we loved the Cuban lifestyle and miss it as well.


Q:

WOAH! so how hard was it to walk villages without roads?

A:

We would either fly or go by dogsled actually.


Q:

My grandmother is said to have known you. She had your book since it came out I think. She read it often, as did my mom. How many plane crashs did you have to deal with ? I know super cubs seem to go down every couple of weeks.

A:

Who is your grandmother? I dealt with quite a few plane crashes, several a year!


Q:

You sound like an amazing woman, I'm so happy to see this AMA!

Are there any advancements in modern medicine you find particularly exciting?

A:

Surgical procedures, medical changes, new medicines... the cancer advances have been the most amazing things. Love seeing the improvement in pediatric care too!


Q:

Wow, awesome AMA, a very unique one as I've been on reddit for a while for sure. Here's a simple question, how did you deal with all the snow and cold?

A:

I love the snow and cold... I was hoping that it would get down to 80 below while I was there but it was only 67 below. I just wear a parka!


Q:

If you could impart one piece of knowledge to our generation. what would it be?

A:

Keep helping each other. Every person can make a change in the world.