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first_imgAirbnb recently released the results of the first quarter of this year, which showed that their marketing costs are rising quite sharply, so this move to work with Google could have important financial implications when Google starts monetizing the feature. Airbnb’s trial debut on Google, in case it becomes the standard way to distribute their offerings, is strategically important to the company because of the planned initial public offering next year. Airbnb doesn’t seem to be afraid to rely on Google to a greater extent than the advertising itself through the platform, as they have done so far. Google’s new service works in such a way that when users search for accommodation, through the Google search interface, they can select an online agency such as Airbnb and make a reservation on the website of the said agency. Airbnb’s participation in this program is a “victory” for Google, which seeks to make its travel platform comprehensive, and without players like Airbnb, there would be a big hole in the supply of offers. But Airbnb’s involvement in this project could only be a small test to see if it’s worth participating.center_img Earlier we wrote that Airbnb refuses to participate in the new program of renting accommodation within Google search, but in recent days their offer of accommodation facilities has started to appear on Google. For now, the offer of holiday homes and apartments appears only in a few European cities such as Paris, Amsterdam and Madrid, reports Shift. Airbnb’s participation in Google’s program, which could be a shorter or longer-term experiment, is significant because until recently, Airbnb was one of the few major players among online travel agencies that was absent from Google’s private rental rental site, which launched this year . Source / photo: Skift; Google Tripslast_img read more

first_imgBen Brickman stood off to the side of the Ensley Athletic Center on an early August afternoon. In front of him sat children of Fort Drum families. They had just finished a skills clinic, run by Syracuse football team, and were now waiting to hear from some of the players before getting autographs.Alongside Brickman was quarterback Eric Dungey and linebacker Zaire Franklin. The two are arguably the most known SU players and they frequently handle public appearances. Both shared personal stories they had in the past: Franklin on how he wanted to quit football as a kid, Dungey on the respect he has for all military personnel stemming from his own brother’s involvement.Then Brickman, a former Marine, shared part of his story. He told the kids that he knew what some of their parents were going through, because he also spent months away on deployment serving in Afghanistan.He didn’t share everything, though. How two kids whom he met at the start of his junior year of high school convinced him to join the Marines. How his friends, the lance corporal and the staff sergeant, were killed in action. And how a 25-year-old wide receiver, who never played football in high school, walked on to a Power 5 program.“He was a kid,” his father, Stephen Brickman, said. “He came back serious. He came back a man.”AdvertisementThis is placeholder text•••Brickman remembered a purple sky.It was about 4 a.m. and the air was hazy in Parris Island, South Carolina. Brickman had recently graduated high school in June 2009, and now he had stepped off the bus for boot camp.“It was insane,” he said. “And then there was this guy in my face screaming at me … Just being yelled at, being pushed around, shoved places.”A journey Brickman wasn’t sure he’d ever take was underway. The Albany native was always active growing up, but he wasn’t sure what he wanted to do after high school. One grandfather served in the Air Force and the other in the Army. He didn’t speak much with his family on the decision, though, only coming to them when his mind was already made.One day near the start of his junior year at Shaker (New York) High School, he ended up sitting together at a table with two other students. They invited him to a function for “poolees,” the Marines term for individuals who had already signed up but who hadn’t left for boot camp yet. He had thoughts of joining the military before, specifically the Marines because he had heard that was the best branch. To him, the poolee event confirmed those beliefs.Brickman said one of the hardest parts of his time in the Marines was adjusting to life in boot camp. The poolees got “treated like crap,” he said, but that the treatment forged bonds between them. He remembered one day where several things went wrong in every drill. His gun jammed and he couldn’t figure out how to fix it. He wanted to quit.“I just thought, what would happen if I had to tell my parents that I failed, and tell my friends that I failed?” Brickman said, his usually loud voice dropping lower. “I found a way and I pushed through it.”Eventually, Brickman finished the boot camp and joined the first battalion, eighth Marines in Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. One of his proudest moments came after boot camp, on a 12-mile hike in Fort Pickett, Virginia. He carried a full machine gun system, including the ammunition bag, for the length of the hike. He estimated that the full system weighed about 47 pounds, on top of the standard pack every marine had to carry, which was about 65 to 70 pounds.Brickman served two tours in Afghanistan, the first from August 2010 through March 2011, the second from New Year’s Day 2012 to July of that year. He’d already adjusted to life aboard a fleet or at a base, but now he was faced with completely new challenges.At first, there was the loss of some amenities. He thought the food quality “outright horrendous” as the Marines ate mostly from delivered crates of Unitized Group Rations. Brickman remembered his group constantly receiving the Szechuan chicken UGR, which he said almost everyone hated.“You literally just take everything,” Brickman said, “and you mix it together and you dump a bunch of Texas Pete and salt and pepper and pinch your nose.”He also couldn’t phone home as much. Once or twice a month, there’d be access to a satellite phone to call home. His parents learned to answer any call, because it might be their son. Then came the nights when he had to man a post for 12 to 16 hours, because the group was understaffed.“The first deployment was grueling,” Brickman said.Andy Mendes | Digital Design EditorBoth times, as news spread through the patrol base, Brickman went over and stood alone on the side. He had dealt with the unglamorous parts of military life before, but now he faced a deeper, harder comprehension: loss.Lance Cpl. Raymon Johnson was Brickman’s superior from the beginning, but he never yelled at Brickman the way other higher-ups did. Johnson always checked in on him to ensure he was OK near the start of Brickman’s time as a Marine. Johnson was killed in October due to an explosive device, near the start of Brickman’s first deployment.Then, in December, Staff Sgt. Stacy Green was killed. In both deaths, Brickman and his team did not learn of it until a few days afterward. Green was the one who took care of the soldiers in the patrol base, and they affectionately called him “Daddy,” because he made sure everything was in order. That day was the toughest for Brickman in his four years as a Marine.“He was close with us,” Brickman said. “Always took care of us. … When we heard about him dying, that was pretty tough.”•••In August 2013, Brickman came home.After his second tour, his final year in the Marines was spent in various training programs. He knew he wanted to go to school, but wasn’t entirely sure where, so he enrolled at Hudson Valley Community College. It was a local school close to home, which was important to Brickman after being gone for long.He wasn’t even sure if the school had a football team, but found early on that it did. He’d had always wanted to play football in high school, but he never did, so he went for a tryout and made the team.At Hudson Valley, he played for head coach Mike Muehling, a former defensive quality control coach at SU. Muehling saw in Brickman the same thing that the wide receiver’s father had seen. When his son returned home from the Marines, Brickman carried with him a newfound resolve that the Marines taught him, to see tasks through. Muehling saw that inner fire, too.Brickman found the learning curve for someone who had never played football before difficult. He barely played his first year and sat out his second year due to injury. Still, his work ethic on the field and in the weight room stuck with Hudson Valley coaches.Players often asked coaches which numbers they’d receive for the following seasons, Muehling said, and coaches responded they’d get what they’d get. At the start of Brickman’s third season, he received the coveted No. 1.“He’s a hard worker,” Muehling said. “He’s a kid that I can trust. He’s accountable for everything. Overall I’d say he’s pretty much the ideal football player from an off-the-field standpoint.”After that season, Brickman received a business degree from Hudson Valley. He never plans on using it, he said, because he doesn’t like business. Brickman decided to transfer to Syracuse, mainly to enroll in the school’s health and exercise science program, which he was interested in. But then, he couldn’t imagine giving up the sport that had come to mean so much to him.In January 2017, Brickman’s first semester on campus, he started asking Roy Wittke, director of football player development, about a potential tryout. The Orange typically holds its tryouts in the fall, but eventually Wittke gave Brickman his chance.Brickman has acclimated well with his new teammates, his father said, and he’s earned their respect through stories of his life as well as his work ethic. He spent extra time after training camp practices running extra drills while fellow wide receiver Adly Enoicy looked on. Franklin met him for the first time when he put his hand on Brickman’s shoulder in the egg line. Brickman felt tense to Franklin when he did that, and Syracuse’s linebacker joked Brickman “could flip me over the table or something.”“He came in and I was like, ‘Hey man, how are you doing,’” Dungey said. “And he told me his age and I was like ‘Wow, pretty old.’ Once I found he was in the military, you automatically have the most respect for those guys and what they do.”Brickman’s teammates will never fully understand the experience he had. But the impact it’s had on him, and those around him, is clear.He’s four years removed from his time in the Marines but its impact isn’t lost on him. He said he feels at home with football because it’s “the closest approximation that sports can come to war.” He made the team because of his relentless desire to finish things, which he developed as a Marine.On deployments, Brickman used to get jitters every time he’d get on a helicopter. Now, when Brickman walks out from the tunnel and onto the field on game day, he gets the same feeling. Comments Published on September 17, 2017 at 10:55 pm Contact Tomer: [email protected] | @tomer_langer Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more