August 19, 2020

Had you asked me the meaning of the word derecho on the morning of Monday, August 10, I likely would have said, “Derecho? No idea. It sounds Spanish.” A few hours later I knew exactly what derecho meant…

It turns out that a derecho is a long-lived, straight-line, wind storm that is associated with a fast-moving group of thunderstorms. In other words, a derecho is a tornado that is not spinning, rather it is just going straight ahead like a locomotive.

Shortly after noon that same Monday, a derecho devasted my town, my business (Syncbak), my wife’s business (Marion’s West End) and just about every living human being for a hundred miles, if not more.

Back in August 1992, I survived hurricane Andrew while in New Orleans. That was the last time I was scared during a storm. This time, I can honestly say, I have never seen anything like it and I hope to never see anything like it again.

It is popular to add the word “strong”, as in #iowastrong or #marionstrong in the aftermath of devastation. I always got it, like when I saw #BostonStrong or the venerable #ParisStrong, but now I “get” it.  In times of strife, human nature kicks in, we rally together and the best in us comes out. That is where the “strong” part comes in.

Syncbak is responsible for making sure +14 million hours of live local television gets to the rest of the world via OTT, or over-the-top of the Internet. That is what we do. It may not seem that big a deal, but it is. No company anywhere is better than us at that. Period.

So, #SyncbakStrong is the tag of today, because strong is what we are. I have been leading tech teams since 1989 and never have I been prouder than I have been in the wake of last weeks derecho. We have not missed a beat. My team made sure people watching live local television on Hulu, Fubo, CBS All Access and others continued without a hitch.

We are #SyncbakStrong and, when it comes to live local TV on the Internet, there is simply no comparison. Not even close – people, technology or soul.