Monday, February 28, 2011

Printer Ink Cheap!

A friend of mine recently invited me along on a shopping trip to buy a new printer. I asked "Didn't the printer you bought just before Christmas work with your system?" He said "it worked fine, but I can get a brand new printer for just a few dollars more than what I'd pay for a couple of inkjet cartrtidges."

What!?! "Hold it right there," I said!

"That makes no sense!" We looked at the selection of printers at the department store. My friend decided on one of those models that connects via USB. It was already low-priced, and the store had the model on sale!

Before we finalized the purchase, I asked one of the store clerks "how hard is it to find replacement cartridges when the ink runs out?" "Easy," he responded. Then he told us about going ONLINE to buy printing supplies.

99% of online transactions with web-based companies are safe and secure. In these busy times, you can order what you need from your computer anytime, night or day, and have your item(s) delivered right to your door!

When we got home, we checked online and found printer ink for my friend's new Canon printer at low, low prices --- much less than what we'd pay at the department store or office furnishings mart. We settled on inkgrabber.com and bookmarked their website for future reference. I suggested my friend NOT WAIT until the printer runs dry. With the convenience of online ordering, it's easy to buy cheap ink and have an extra supply on hand!

Inkgrabber.com offers new promotional coupons, discount codes and product specials for the highest quality inkjet and toner cartridges. They also offer a free newsletter, and other incentives for the consumer. Their webpage is easy to navigate, without a bunch of flashy graphics or annoying pop-ups!

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Around The Blogosphere 28 February 2011

And now a quick scan of what bloggers are blogging about! (Click here for more evidence that blogs ARE NOT "dying"!)

First up, a real eye-opener::: in Meeting Young Obama (posted on Anonymous Political Scientist by John C. Drew, Ph.D.), we learn about the American president from someone who claims to have had direct contact with him in the 1980s.

One of the biggest surprises in the last century has been that new religions continue to emerge in modern societies. According to The Technium, this was not supposed to happen.

If you'd rather look at photos, XiaXue [#1] has posted a series of snapshots taken in Dallas, Texas last Christmastime. Now, if you are in the mood for racier pics...

Tired of her template, Kimberlycun [#4] did a major blog overhaul... (results)

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Around The Blogosphere 27 February 2011

Google SHOCKS the NET! With what I think is great news for all legitimate bloggers! Google is clamping down on web cheats, like The Huffington Post and J.C. Penney for underhanded behaviour! Naughty, naughty!

The Technium posts an article about Google-unique names...

Now for something really funny... make that stupid. Another stupid statement, and why is it stupid? Because things on the net can change so fast that this week's king of the hill could be next week's memory (anybody familiar with Netscape, or the original iPhone?) Of course, since AOL controls TechCrunch, I'm not surprised TC made a stupid statement like this.

And this is the most popular web destination as of right now:

Muammar Gaddafi - Zenga Zenga Song - Noy Alooshe Remix + Download


Wisconsin Debate Spurs Albany Rally... And More...

Turmoil, turmoil, turmoil!

This is really about the old way of doing things collapsing under what some call "the new normal."

Lots of "gruff stuff" going on as the Wisconsin situation stirs ripples in other states (including good ol' New York!) . It's all about those state budgets as well as Unions vs. Governors.

From what I've heard on the street and through talk radio, civil service employees, government workers and union officials are being targeted by the modern-day equivalent of the old "lynch mob." One thing I kept hearing was how kids are failing in school because schools are failing (think Albany High) while people are resisting the efforts to improve education in Albany (and other places) via Charter Schools...

We are Wisconsin, We are not Egypt

Here are some photos (via the Times Union website) of the weekend rally in Albany. Chanted at the rally: "We are Wisconsin!"

The crowd was bit rougher in Lansing, Michigan at a similar rally.

Here's an interesting snip from the TU Albany newspaper article:

The show of labor solidarity attracted activists for teachers, state workers and trades, as well as local political figures and activists. "It's no different to me than watching democracy spread across the Middle East," said Mark Walsh, president of the Troy Teachers Association, who said he came to the rally to show solidarity for people in Wisconsin and the middle class across the country. 'It's a fight and they're attacking the very fiber of this country and what makes it great. It's a democratic ideal. We have to be out there -- we have to do it now. We can't wait for anything else to come to us.'"
It is hard to gauge what MainStreamMedia is trying to get Americans to believe (if they are trying at all to steer thought) and then act upon regarding Wisconsin. There are many folks who worked all their lives expectiung to retire with a fat pension and free health care, now having the rug pulled out from under them by the real, true culprit: the economy.

From Wisconsin to Libya: Watch this all get worse as gas prices rise.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Technorati's "Strategic Blunder"

In this weekend's Times Union, Kristi Gustafson authored an article entitled How Facebook invaded Myspace's space, with a sub-headline "Strategic blunders" led to dominance in social networking war. It's a great read, and reminded me of another, much bigger blunder.

Once upon a time, circa 2005, Technorati was red hot: think of Google trends on crack! I would write and post an article on a popular topic, and in no time, via Technorati Tags, I'd pull in 200 or more visitors within an hour or two! Such was the power of Technorati. Those who abused the process didn't get far. Netizens knew who the spammers were, and their blogs attracted few hits. Technorati was king... until...

Two things happened. The first was a glitch, one that t'rati caught and fixed. It involved the world's #1 blogger at that time, Chinese actress Xu Jinglei. Approx. 180,000 hits a day - overlooked by t'rati! But they made it right, and in the blogosphere, all was good. But the next thing they did screwed them badly.

Whoever it was at Technorati who decided to classify MySpace pages as "blogs" was an absolute lunatic! Overnight, technorati was worthless. Lost all credibility with true bloggers! As soon as that decision was made, I never got another visitor from Technorati! (well, maybe one or two, but certainly not the hundreds I used to see in a few hours.) No matter how hot or how important a topic was, it didn't seem to register anymore on Technorati! To this day, it is extremely rare that I get a visitor who has come into my blog via Technorati.

From WikiPedia: In February 2006, Debi Jones pointed out that Technorati's "State of the Blogosphere" postings, which then claimed to track 27.7 million blogs, did not take into account MySpace blogs, of which she said that there were 56 million. As a result, she said that the utility of Technorati as a gauge of blog popularity was questionable. However, by March 2006, Aaron Brazell pointed out that Technorati had started tracking MySpace blogs.

Well, thanks for nothing dumb ass Debi! MySpace pages were NEVER blogs in the first place!
So I bitched about it and blogged about it at the time. Nobody cared. But one thing was certain: Technorati really blew it! What were they thinking? Technorati had become, in a digital instant, something akin to that favourite old uncle who suddenly lost his marbles.

Today, most people steer clear of MySpace. I myself won't even bother going to a MySpace page. Why? They're great at choking your browser. Like Kristi's article says: They're too busy. You have to scroll up and down and sideways to see the page you're trying to read. No wonder everybody abandoned MySpace for the simple elegance of Facebook!

MySpace became the albatross around Technorati's neck. The Technorati Team is still around, but they lost their chance at being the undisputed dominant authority in the blogosphere when they embraced MySpace. I feel for them, because they used to be so damn good! Hmmmm... Perhaps there was an exchange of cash involved? Or was it all because of dumb-ass Debi? Jones happens to be one of those idiot "blog-her" bloggers... By the way, Jones' last post was in May of 2009 and she only posted 12 articles! THIS IS MY 4,366th POST!

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Friday, February 25, 2011

Pop Clips » 25 Feb 2011

13 Jerks

Calling all BLOGGERS! Check your Google PageRank daily... the big G has tinkered with the mechnaism by which PR is determined, so if you've been posting a bunch of crap, look out!

TOP LINK ON MY BLOG THURSDAY GRABBED 400+ HITS! And in second place, the HOT blogging babes of 2011!!!

Final nail in MyBlogLog's coffin.

Yum yum! What a beverage! And even MORE food for thought: "Baby GaGa Ice Cream" hyped as "free range treat"

Charo is the latest to weigh in on the Lady Gaga vs. Madonna show charade:

Charo: Lady Gaga Is Madonna With Diarrhea: MyFoxNY.com


Great Pirate Radio quotes- are they becoming a reality here?

eMailbag: Death of MyBlogLog Now Official

Dear MyBlogLog Customer,

You have been identified as a customer of Yahoo! MyBlogLog. We will officially discontinue Yahoo! MyBlogLog effective May 24, 2011. Your agreement with Yahoo!, to the extent that it applies to the Yahoo! MyBlogLog, will terminate on May 24, 2011.

After May 24, 2011 your credit card will no longer be charged for premium services on MyBlogLog. We will refund you the unused portion of your subscription, if any. The refund will appear as a credit via the billing method we have on file for you. To make sure that your billing information is correct and up to date, visit https://billing.yahoo.com.

Questions?
If you have questions about these changes, please visit the Yahoo! MyBlogLog help pages.

We thank you for being a customer on Yahoo! MyBlogLog.

Sincerely,

The Yahoo! My BlogLog Team

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

God, Please Make My Blog Popular!

A Real Eye-Opener!

A lady blogger overseas recently made a move to try and increase her online income. Keep in mind that there are a lot of work-at-home moms and work-at-home artists, merchandisers & copywriters throughout Southeast Asia and Hong Kong. This lady (who asked she not be linked to or otherwise identified) had been posting in both English and Chinese, about a 50-50 mix.

She decided to join entrecard and signed up for cmf ads, nuffnang and AdSense. She was forced to stop posting in Chinese, as that is frowned upon by many online services. They demand English. The screengrabs from Alexa (to the left) show the results. From almost the day she made the change TIME ON SITE tanked! Her blog's BOUNCE RATE SKYROCKETED.

I'm not passing judgement here. Just looking at a snapshot of what one blogger did and what happened to her blog afterward. You might get different results. You might not.

Point is, with the world economy a big fat question mark, bloggers are scrambling to make money online any way they can... even the MICROPENNIES count! Some of the services out there pay .0002 per click - do the math - how many clicks to get to ONE CENT? (Those micro-pennies DO add up! I remember seeing financial guru-ess Suze Orman saying on National TV that if she sees a penny on the pavement, she cannot resist picking it up!)

With so many blogs out there - think about this - imagine every house on your street had its own radio broadcasting station that could be dialed in from anywhere in town. Who would be able to listen to all of these stations? Who would want to? Other residents in the same building might find a radio station across town they like better than their own.

That's what the blogosphere is like for millions upon millions of bloggers. Some will never see traffic rise above "10 hits" in a day. Very few will attract more than a thousand visits a day.

More than a year ago when I noticed my blog traffic had taken a mysterious sudden dramatic plunge, I searched for ways to attract visitors - quickly. I found entrecard and immediately put it to work. Fast forward to now. I'm still affiliated with the network but I now get 19 or 20 visits a day from entrecarders. And that's not really a bad thing: I've found a more effective way to lure visitors and get them to STAY ON THE PAGE for more than a minute:

Continuously upload fresh content: post, post, post!

I carry a notebook with me at all times to jot down ideas. When I get on a roll, I can fill up a few pages of that notebook in no time! I don't have to be online to blog, either! I often sit at the computer and write. Sometimes I write posts on my smartphone's notepad or write an email on my VM Kyocera and send it to myself. There have been times when I have as many as a dozen posts in the preparation and/or "rough draft" stage.

Get those "creative juices" flowing! Are you on blogger or wordpress? Both platforms allow bloggers to "save" posts without publishing them immediately. Users also have the option of scheduling posts to appear later on...

You could even be posting articles after you've died! You could "stay alive" on the net for decades, assuming whatever servers were holding your data didn't crash or get corrupted or switched "off."

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Communion w/Andrew Cuomo

My my...

it's difficult to believe people are making a big deal out of this... let's go after every catholic politician who is divorced or who has had an abortion or has broken some other teaching... Meanwhile, back in Washington, newsmedia reports have Barack Obama trying to "come to terms" with the idea of gay marriage...

the founding fathers or whoever it was that figured out it is best to keep church and state seperate certainly knew what they were talking about!

Nowcasting Gasoline and the U.S. Economy

We're at a crossroads. The entire future of the "recovery" depends on what happens next with the price of crude oil and ultimately, gasoline.

With gas now at $3.45 here in the Capital Region, beyond that $3.25 per gallon "tipping point," it won't be long before we start hearing again how "people are cutting back" so they can feed the family car. Retail sales will suffer. (It's happening already, but the "wave" won't make landfall for a month or two or three.)


Last night local economy watchdog Hugh Johnson was on teevee, telling me there was not going to be "double-dip" recession.
"It's not going to turn the current recovery into a renewed recession,” Johnson said. “Sometimes popularly referred to as a 'double dip' -- that's not in the cards. But it will slow this recovery, and slow the important part of the recovery -- which is the addition of jobs to payrolls." ::LINK::
Johnson's half right. There won't be any dd IF things calm down in Arab-rich nations like Libya and the Suez Canal remains safe and free. But until the outcome of the Arab Revolution is finalized, all bets are off.

Worst-case scenario: forces in the middle east put the squeeze on oil. Investors panic. Crude prices skyrocket. $4.50 at the pumps! (By the way, it's already $4 in some parts of California). Now, factor in all those unemployed Americans who have fallen off the unemployement rolls but remain jobless. Factor in rising food prices. You've got a double-dipper on your hands, brother... as in "brother can you spare a dime dollar."

PS - Nowcasting, defined

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Told Ya So! (Post from the past)!

While looking for an old link for another article, I ran across this, which I posted in August of 2007! Wow, I must be an oracle or something!
Recipe for Economic Disaster
Greenspan says the bottom might fall out of the housing market.
Hurricane Katrina whacks crude oil refineries in the USA. Gasoline prices soar. Because of the high prices, more motorists are putting their gas purchases on their credit cards...
We're headed for a BIG setback, folks! D-E-P-R-E-S-S-I-O-N.
Don't think so?
Wait until people start losing their homes.
Wait until they try to unload the SUV's.
I'll betcha 2003,4,5 models will go for a couple grand or less!
Or they'll sit in driveways while the owners make the $400 or $500 dollars a month payments...
So I'm battin' a thousand. Setbacks, lost homes, SUVS absorbed via the "Cash for Clunkers" plan... Here's a link to the original post: you gotta scroll down to find the actual paragraph!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

RIP Oakley Hall III

Local celebrity Oakley Hall III passed into history this month. You'll be missed! Steve Barnes reports.

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Fatwa: Kill Colonel Khadafi! (So we won't have to worry how to spell his name correctly)

Gadhafi: "Hell no, I won't go!"

Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi vows “to fight to the last drop of blood” as clashes intensify between rebels and his loyalists in the capital, Tripoli and witnesseses describe the streets as a "war zone."

Influential Muslim cleric Yusuf al-Qaradawi issued a fatwa on Monday that any Libyan soldier who can shoot dead embattled leader Moamer Kadhafi should do so "to rid Libya of him." This is on the level of, let's imagine, Justin Bieber telling kids to burn any Christine Aguilera CDs they find around the house... :::MoRe:::

Cuba's former leader Fidel Castro warned Tuesday that unrest in Libya may be a pretext for a NATO invasion. Nicaragua's Daniel Ortega has jumped to the support of the embattled leader of the North African nation, saying he telephoned to express solidarity. Qadafy says he's standing his ground. (And won't back down, adds Tom Petty).

World stocks fell on Tuesday as the growing revolt in Libya drove crude prices to 30-month highs in New York and London [prices for North Sea Brent LCOc1 touched $108.57 a barrel before paring some gains], prompting fears the unrest could spread to other major oil suppliers in the region and harm global growth. Gas prices are skyrocketing.

ليبيا ليست تونس او مصر !! - صورة

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Good Riddance!

Didja ever notice that people will "follow" you on twitter, wait awhile, and if you follow them back, they'll un-follow you in a week or two. I avoid all that by never following anyone back unless they DM me or otherwise contact me. I keep the number of twitterers I follow capped at 300, which is more than enough folks to keep track of!

Hi davelucas,
Since we last spoke 26 user(s) stopped following you on Twitter;


When The Lights Go Out: Blogging "Dead or Alive"

I had an idea to write a post entitled "Winter Lantern" (inspired by a fuzzy snapshot of a streetlamp) and schedule it to appear here on the blog in early December 2011. I was going to talk about the topics of the day, including what recently happened in Egypt, with the revolution, Lara Logan, Mubark's ugly face, The Muslim Brotherhood and all that, but then I thought, gee, suppose I croak in the meantime or something. Do I really want to be posting articles when I'm dead?

That is an interesting question. Should bloggers pre-post articles way ahead of time? Assuming the blogger or wordpress or whatever system didn't get corrupted or otherwise fail, bloggers could be dispensing advice and anecdotes to readers (and relatives & their descendants) for years after they've departed this mortal coil.

Do we have a social responsibility to leave such a legacy? Imagine your own son or daughter reading dear dead Dad or Mom's blog 10, 15, 20 years after they've passed away? "This may be a rough time in your life. Or maybe not. I hope you are happy! I want to tell you a story about... blah blah blah."

And if a blogger should leave such articles behind, would readers, family members, descendants feel an obligation to read them or a sense of guilt if they didn't?

Monday, February 21, 2011

Freedom Fighter Gigi Ibrahim جييييج

Gigi Ibrahim, an Egyptian blogger and activist — she wears the 'hat' Gsquare86 on Twitter — spoke to The Lede via Skype in late January from an Internet cafe in Cairo - she's part of the youth movement that sparked the uprising in Egypt. Ibrahim and other Egyptian youth appear on this week's Time magazine cover.

Ibrahim is familiar to BBC viewers — her webcam a TV studio, her Twitter account a tool to connect with journalists across the world. “It’s important to me to be kind of like a citizen journalist, because our press here, not everything gets broadcast,” she says.

The 24-year old Ibrahim, the subject of a PBS report (video below) is one of the new generation of Arabs. There are many, many more just like her, waiting to answer revolution's call. Perhaps more importantly, in need of solid leadership once the revolution is complete.


PS - Steve Rubel, if you're reading this, this girl is everything "Life-streaming" is all about! Wouldn't you agree?

Bloggers Cup-date! Nominations NOW!


Nominations have begun and run through MARCH 22 with Voting to follow March 22 to March 31st. Winners will be announced on April 1.


Presenting the 1st Dave Lucas Cup Awards to bloggers and social networkers worldwide!

Fans and followers get to nominate and ultimately choose the winners in various categories:

Best Blogger
Best Twitterer
Best Facebooker
Best Social Media Personality
Best Social Media Celebrity
Best Blog about Social Media
Best Micro-Blogging Platform

Best Social Media Politician
Best Social Media Site
Best Social Media Activist
Best Social Media Designer
Best Social Media Thinker
Best Social Media Community

Best Social Networking Site
Best Social Media Newspaper
Best Social Media TV Station
Best Social Media (news)Radio Station
Best Social Media (talk) Radio Station
Best Social Media (music) Radio Station

Nominations are underway NOW and run through MARCH 22 with Voting to follow March 22 to March 31st. Winners will be announced on April 1.

NOMINATIONS may be cast via the COMMENTS link below! Simply cut + paste the list above and add the names/urls of your favorities! It's that simple!

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Now is NOT the time to buy a new car...

A little while ago I sent out a tweet after driving past the Voorheesville Stewart's Shoppe, where GASOLINE was selling for $3.45 a gallon! "Uh-oh," I thought to myself, "how long before people start cutting back on other purchases." A few minutes later when arriving at my destination, Saki Tumi had her tv on, watching the NBC Nightly News, where the top story of the day, the Arab Revolution spreading to Libya, carried additional information that "oil company workers from various nations are being evacuated" --- well, that was all I had to hear! The fate of the American economy now rests in thewinds of change sweeping across North Africa. And earlier today, I heard a radio talk show host mention he "wouldn't be surprised if revolution fever didn't break out in China," and sure enough, NBC news reported that revolutionaries staged protests in China that were quickly snuffed out by the authorities.

What next, world? What next!

Template Tweaking!

Whilst bloghopping this Saturday past I noticed Aldon Hynes using a Facebook "like" feature on his blog Orient Lodge.

I've always been an advocate of using any tools that enhance your visit to my humble weblog. For years, I've incorporated technorati, digg, MyBlogLog, C-Box and other services. I've got a couple of "tweet this" style buttons, which seem to work best when you tweet from the actual page URL of the post you're tweeting about.

I've used "share on facebook" before, but the requirement of changing code for every article posted got old really fast! So this little "Facebook Like" feature will hopefully do the job.

If you run just one blog or a few, as many of the "blogging for income" bloggers do, it can only help offering connections to Facebook, twitter, entrecard et al.

Here are the instructions I followed to add the "like" button to this blog.

Around The Blogosphere 21 February 2011

Prophesies of McLuhan - "Products are becoming services." (1966) "The future of the future is the present." (1968) "The global village is nosy busibodies..." (1968)

LIBYA ::: feb17voices has begun interviewing and collecting audio testimonies of people throughout Libya. Bob Dylan's "The times they-are-a-changin'" has more than social oomph this time around! (And just WHEN were the Grammies EVER in touch with American pop culture?)

REPORT: Military jets attack protesters in Tripoli...
Two pilots refuse, fly to Malta, defect...
Oil companies move staff...
U.S. military chief visits Gulf to urge restraint...
Khamenei: America must be removed from Islamic world...
AL-JAZEERA LIVE FEED... REUTERS WIRE...


Breakup Notifier Emails You When People You’re Stalking On Facebook Change Their Relationships

Creators of crowdsourcing mapping service blog-map.ru ambitiously aim to “unite all bloggers on one map.” Despite many incorrectly mapped blogs, the service offers quite unusual experience of finding Russian bloggers even in the most distant places [RUS].

Witnesses Scramble To Loot Cash Spilled On Street In Beijing - Images of Beijing residents scrambling to grab the many 100 RMB cash notes that apparently spilled out of a motorcyclist's backpack during a traffic accident...

Internet Access: Keep it Fair and Free

Two excellent articles appear side-by-side [pp. 12-13] in the March 2011 edition of Scientific American magazine (the only print publication I subscribe to!) ~ Illustration by Harry Campbell, courtesy Scientific American

Anyone remember when the likes of CompuServe (too bad AOL poisons every company it comes in contact with) and Demon ruled the internet? With Demon the websurfer had to carefully watch his or her minutes because on the web, time was money, and the pennies added up fast! There were a variety of programs written for earlier Windows computers so you could track your time online: I recall using Pegasus email because it allowed me to download my mail, go offline, read and respond, then return online to upload outgoing emails.

Let's get back to MONEY. MONEY is why TV went digital. We were at the point where one could pick up a HUGE cathode-ray tube TV with all the trimmings for $149 at Walmart. Gone were the days when TV viewers would make monthly payments on sets. But now with digital TV, sets are up in 4 figures so folks can once again pay monthly installments.

And now the ISPs - Internet Service Providers - are champing at the bit to return to providing Net that YOU PAY FOR - by the minute if possible, the good ol' Demon/CompuServe way! (They're scratching their heads, wondering how they ever let the ca$h cow escape from the barn in the first place!)

Like it or not, providers are already restricting speeds, service and access to the infobahn. This ain't how it was supposed to be - is it? Scientifc American: "Instead of the “all you can eat” data plans of today, Internet service providers could sell customers access by the gigabyte. They could limit performance at peak times of the day to help balance network load or offer superfast plans at higher prices." Oh, great. Just what we DON'T want/need!

The second article in Sci Am is titled "Freedom and Anonymity" - all about "what makes the Internet special" and why it shouldn't be tinkered around with. I'm all for that. I can't tell you how many times I've scolded blogger and Google for "fixing" things that aren't broken!

Bianca Jagger & Hydro-power in Latin America

Why does this scenario remind me of the movie "Avatar"?

Wish I could attend the presser! (And stay for morning tea!)

TUESDAY 1ST MARCH 2011
PHOTOCALL: 10.30AM
PRESS CONFERENCE: 11AM
FLOODING OUR FUTURE: THE THREAT TO INDIGENOUS LANDS FROM HYDRO-POWER SCHEMES IN LATIN AMERICA.
• Bianca Jagger, Bianca Jagger Human Rights Foundation/Council of Europe Goodwill Ambassador/Amnesty International/Amazon Charitable Trust
• Ruth Buendia Mestoquiari, President of Central Ashaninka Del Rio Ene, Peru
• Sheyla Yakarepi Juruna, Belo Monte, Brazil
• Almir Narayamoga Surui, Brazil
Main Auditorium, The Human Rights Action Centre, Amnesty International, 17-25 New Inn Yard, London EC2A 3EA.
The press conference will be followed by morning tea.

First Egypt, then... Wisconsin?

The last great social upheaval passed through the United States during the 1960s. Something has disturbed the passion for change, awakening it from hibernation (no, the Obama "change" movement was not the catalyst) and it is now moving through the Arab world and another of its seeds is germinating in America's Wisconsin.

People have reached their breaking points - no longer willing to tolerate things as things stand now. Nothing lasts forever. Not me. Not you. Not any system of governance.

Grassroots folk in Wisconsin and in Egypt are seeking demanding change. Yes, we're talking about opposing cultures on opposite sides of the planet - but channelling choice via the same conduit - essentially forcing things to "be different."

While the Union system revolutionized the American workforce and vastly improved quality of life for millions - unions ultimately bore the responsibility for the economic, social and municipal fall of Detroit, Michigan. Accustomed to the easy life, change is a bitter pill in Wisconsin.

While the iron fist of Hosni Mubarak pushed Egypt forward for three decades - it is to be seen whether the nation will experience the infighting that broke out in Iraq when Saddam was removed from control. Let's hope the Egyptians can cast a better example for all Arab Nations... indeed, for all nations!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

al-Qaradawi, The Muslim Brotherhood & The Future

Muslim televangelist Yusuf al-Qaradawi says he knows what the Muslim Brotherhood in Egpyt thinks -- and he provides clues to how they might act. A profile in Germany's Der Spiegel called him the "Muslim Dear Abby." He made an appearance in Cairo on Friday.

Washington may reconsider the Muslim Brotherhood and engage with the moderate Islamist movement. Or not...


The Society of the Muslim Brothers (often simply الإخوان Al-Ikhwān, The Brotherhood or MB) is an Islamic transnational movement and the largest political opposition organization in many Arab states. The group is the world's oldest and largest Islamic political group, founded in 1928 by Hasan al-Banna, a 22-year-old elementary school teacher, as an Islamic revivalist movement in Egypt, after the collapse of the Ottoman Empire. The group has followers in 70+ countries. The Brotherhood was not the lead actor in the demonstrations in Egypt leading up to the resignation of Hosni Mubarak, but it played an important supporting role and made a conscious effort not to hijack the revolution away from idealistic young people brought together by social networking.
Related: A Young Girl's Response to Anti-Islamic Sentiment in the USA.
Readers can get a better understanding of the Muslim Brotherhood influence in America by reviewing Sayyid Qutb’s works ‘Milestones’ [ pdf ] and ‘In The Shade of The Quran’ (15 volumes, also downloadable in pdf form here). Chris Gaubatz has written "My Life Inside CAIR and The Muslim Brotherhood" - in which he purports to reveal the true aim of the organization.

A Look At The Youth Of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood

Journalist Charles Sennott recently returned from Tahrir Square, where he was filming a documentary on the revolution for PBS's Frontline. It focuses on the young members of the Muslim Brotherhood [official website] who played an important role in Egypt's revolution. [Audio report].

So where exactly is all this leading to? It's that little bug of social revolution, of political upheaval, of "time for a change." Once it gets momentum going, it is very difficult to stop.

We cannot and should not FEAR change, but we can ACCEPT it and DEAL WITH IT! Remember, nothing is forever!

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For The Chinese Islamist organization known as the Muslim Brotherhood, see Yihewani.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Glee, Gaga, Minaj, Aguilera and Lara Logan

Two current pop culture icons have the savviest teams of public relations people behind them.

Lady GaGa and Nicki Minaj.


You may think Ms. Minaj [#6] is relatively new on the scene. She's been with us for awhile, like one of those programs that runs silently in the background on your computer. When enough foundations and associations were made, her PR team sprang into action in a "Minaj Barrage" that truly catapulted her to stardom within and beyond the hip hop community.

Lady GaGa emerged as a cheap imitation Madonna wannabee. I heard from people who have an in with the Lady's PR folk. They actually read my post about Gags NOT being the new Madonna. That prompted a little thinking outside the box... they decided to exploit that very idea, which blossomed at the Grammies. This is a remarkably rare occurrence where a star gives her blessing to a wannabee. And that lifts the "wannabee curse" immediately!

* * * *

Recent news that GLEE charted a whole bunch of tunes and supposedly "beat Elvis" is straight-out BS. The music industry is a ghost of what it once was, and this GLEE "news" is utter nonsense.

I posted this several years ago:

The New Information Age (and co-incidentally, the beginning of the total collapse of the music industry in America) began around 1999. The critical event was the making of a star, Christina Aguilera, by use of the Internet.

Soon, the downloading of pirated music CDs (and a bit later on, Movies) changed the face of so-called "Top 40" music and the radio FOREVER: When executives at RCA Records were plotting ways to create buzz around teen pop singer Christina Aguilera's debut album, they knew the Internet would play a crucial role.

The trick was marketing Ms. Aguilera without making teens feel they were actually being marketed to. On a 1-10 scale, Internet marketer Ken Krasner says, teens "have their B.S. detectors on 11." So RCA hired a team of young cybersurfers to swarm the Web and start chatting about the 18-year-old Ms. Aguilera on popular teenInternet sites such as www.alloy.com, www.bolt.com and www.gurl.com. They posted information casually -- sometimes sounding like fans, sometimes like official spokesmen -- but always making sure not to come off as lame adults trying to be cool or marketers pitching a product. It worked.

Thanks in large part to the advance buzz online, the album "Christina Aguilera" was No. 1 on the charts when it debuted in late August. Doesn't sound like much of a big deal, does it? But that's the day "Top 40" died. Today's so-called "Top 40" does not accurately reflect what music the general public is listening to.

WHAT? YOU THINK I'M KIDDING? Think again!

Moral of the story:

Once upon a time, Christine Aguilera had a crack team of PR people behind her... too bad she must have lost them, or they got too fat and happy.

* * * *

Last week this humble weblog enjoyed sky-high traffic thanks to a 2008 post about Lara Logan.

The search terms that brought visitors in by the droves were "Lara logan swimsuit pics" "lara logan nude" "lara logan sex" --- you get the idea!

In August 2005 my blog featured multiple posts about Albany area teacher Beth Geisel, a hot blonde who admitted having sex with boys at the military high school where she was employed. A single post about Geisel brought 20-thousand visitors to my over a 9-hour time period! Such was, and is, netizen's interest in sex.

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Friday, February 18, 2011

Around The Blogosphere 18 February 2011

Apocalypse Now: Wisconsin vs. Big Labor; Plus: More out-of-state union recruiting & another teacher speaks up for Walker; police order for AWOL Dems; America agrees: End public union monopoly -

Millions of viewers witnessed CBS2 Reporter Serene Branson’s medical emergency live on TV during the station’s newscast following the Grammy Awards. The Los Angeles TV station has posted an update with explanation on its blogpage...
The World’s Most Powerful Man Meets President Obama!

Ciudad Juárez, en la sombra del narcotráfico [es] (”Ciudad Juárez, in the shadow of drug trafficking”) reports that on February 16, Malú García Andrade's house was set on fire. Malú is an activist against femicides and human trafficking. Her mother, Norma Andrade, is a co-founder of the non-profit “May our Daughters Return Home.” Malú's sister, Lilia Alejandra, was murdered in February 2001.

Possibilians vs Agnostics

Hugo from Serbolivianoes [es] posted a video interview with blogger [es] Patricia Vargas (@arquitecta on Twitter), “one of the first bloggers and one of the most influential Twitter users in Bolivia.” In the interview she talks about the local and international blogosphere, as well as the Bolivian twittersphere.

Fluffy Friday ::: SPHINX!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Headline News 2.17.2011

Was CBS complicit in Lara Logan coverup?

ULTIMATE FIGHTING, New York City Style!

Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA) receiving gift of 114.4 acres in Lake Luzerne, NY

Conservative U.S. pundit Glenn Beck said he will no longer use Google or its products because of perceived ties to government agencies and its involvement in the uprising in Egypt, he said on his Fox television program Wednesday. [details]

Fighting homelessness 140 characters at a time!
WARNING! GRAPHIC IMAGES! It's tough being a dog in China: Golden Retriever Dog Skinned Publicly On Street In Shanghai
Obama proposes 7% increase for Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

The National Democratic Institute partnered with popular Ugandan musician Bobi Wine to release a video encouraging young voters to avoid election violence and to encourage them to report any election irregularities to UgandaWatch2011.

Calling all BLOGGERS! The CUP is Coming!

The explosive growth of social media/networking continues to impact pop culture and mainstream media.

Presenting the 1st Dave Lucas Cup Awards to bloggers and social networkers worldwide!

Fans and followers get to nominate and ultimately choose the winners in various categories:

Best Blogger
Best Twitterer
Best Facebooker
Best Social Media Personality
Best Social Media Celebrity
Best Blog about Social Media
Best Micro-Blogging Platform

Best Social Media Politician
Best Social Media Site
Best Social Media Activist
Best Social Media Designer
Best Social Media Thinker
Best Social Media Community

Best Social Networking Site
Best Social Media Newspaper
Best Social Media TV Station
Best Social Media (news)Radio Station
Best Social Media (talk) Radio Station
Best Social Media (music) Radio Station

Nominations begin February 20 and run through MARCH 22 with Voting to follow March 22 to March 31st. Winners will be announced on April 1.

More details to follow!

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Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

12 x 12 ::: HoTTest LadyBloggers of 2011!

Some day when you're sitting at the pc with too much time on your hands, take a look at a blog that crystallizes everything blogging should be: a personal account of life as seen through the blogger's eyes and experiences. Imagine being a happily married wife and young mother, then being diagnosed with cancer. Read Sandi's blog.

Sandi debuts in our 12x12 at #12. "This blog is to document my experience of pregnancy with cancer. I was diagnosed with Hodgkins Lymphoma 2 weeks after finding out I was pregnant. I went through chemo from 10 weeks into my pregnancy throughout. Gabriella was born healthy at 36 weeks on November 17th 2007. I am in remission since February 2008. This is mine and Gabriella's story." Could you be as courageous in all the years of your life as Sandi has been for three?

#11 the “Oprah of the Web”, GenY Technology Blogger, Speaker, and Consultant Corvida Raven ::: blogs at SheGeeks, where she shares great content about social media and technology in general.Bold

#10 Cynthia Occelli! ~ "I very clearly remember laying on my bed in the freezing garage I lived in, staring at the nails protruding from the rafters and beaming with intense joy while picturing myself living in a grand home, with my every need met, my child receiving the best education, being surrounded by people who loved me..." ..::MoRe::..


#9 - Tavi Gevinson!

Teenage fashion blogger Tavi Gevinson is recognized by most people in the fashion industry. She is a 14-year old gal from the burbs of Chicago, who has been writing her fashion blog, Style Rookie, since she was 11! She appears in a full-page photo in one of August's New York Magazine issues. Tavi's blog readership quickly grew to fifty thousand daily viewers and won the ear of major designers. In 2010, she was chosen by Mattel to be one of “Barbie’s Ten Women to Watch”—a group of female high achievers who mentor young girls, and she was named one of fastcompany,com's "Most Creative People of 2010." Tavi recently hired a publicist, Dana Meyerson, who is working on a plan to help her sell advertising on her blog.

#8 - Miss Info!

Minya Oh, known by the stage name Miss Info, is a radio presenter on Hot97 in New York City. Miss Info first did her Hot 97 "Celebrity Gossip" reports back in 2003.

Min is also a journalist who has worked for the notable hip hop industry publication The Source. Oh was a Music Lifestyles editor at Vibe Magazine (where she presently pens the monthly advice column "Ask Miss Info"), Rolling Stone, and a former Managing Editor for XXL. She has appeared as a popular culture pundit on the weekly VH1 program, Best Week Ever.

Whether on radio, on television, or on the net, Miss Info has made a blend of wit, news, and good ol' gossip her multi-media trademark.

#7 - Yuka Yoneda! Yuka is a writer and designer from Queens, New York. She received her bachelor's in Business Management from Stony Brook University, and holds a degree in Exhibition Design from F.I.T.

In 2008, Yuka looked in the mirror and didn't like what she saw. Always feeling like there was something missing from her life, she had turned to excess, amassing a mountain of clothes, shoes, bags and random tchotchkes to fill the void. In an act of desperation, she founded Swyyne.com as a guide for urbanites wanting to change their piggish ways and has been learning and smiling more ever since.

Yuka is Senior Editor at Inhabitat.com where she researches and writes articles about progressive/sustainable design.

Onika Tanya Maraj (born December 8, 1984), better known by her stage name Nicki Minaj ), is a Trinidadian Hip hop and R&B recording artist and songwriter.

#6 - TIE!

A *P*I*N*K* tie is a good thing! "Nordic XiaXue" Monica Tang is more and more emulating the Singaporean Blog Princess: Monica recently appeared in EGG magazine! Monica: "I’ve been posted on gyaru secrets a lot, and here are all the secrets with me on – good and bad ones. I might miss some, and if you remember one I don’t have here – please tell! I want to collect them all lol."

If there's one thing you gotta give Nicki Minaj, it's CREDIT! Credit for being everywhere. Ok. Maybe she has a publicist. Or a team of them. And minions. Everyone should have minions. It doesn't matter. What matters is, in 2010, where there was music happening, there was Nicki Minaj. Sort of like one of the ideas showcased here: "Live the fantasy. Imagine you’re confident, beautiful, strong and creative, take the mic in hand and the initial approach will work for you." It worked for Nicki. She imagined herself a star. And she is.

#5 - Michelle Malkin!

Michelle Marie Malkin (née Maglalang; born October 20, 1970) is an American conservative blogger, political commentator, and author. Her weekly, syndicated column appears in a number of newspapers and websites nationwide. She has been a guest on MSNBC, Fox News Channel, C-SPAN, and national radio programs. Malkin has written four books published by Regnery Publishing.

In June 2004 she launched her blog, MichelleMalkin.com. A 2007 memo from the National Republican Senatorial Committee described Malkin as one of the five "best-read national conservative bloggers", and Technorati ranks MichelleMalkin.com consistently in its "Top 100 blogs of all types".

After Malkin criticized hip hop artist Akon for "degrading women" in a Vent episode, Akon's record label, Universal Music Group, forced YouTube to remove the video by issuing a DMCA takedown notice, but decided to retract the notice after the Electronic Frontier Foundation joined Malkin and Hot Air in contesting the removal as a misuse of copyright law.


#4 - Kimberlycun shares her life in 2010 in a single post!

Malaysian blogger Kim's web presence follows a similar track to that of nearby Singapore's Wendy "Xiaxue" Cheng... there's a subtle difference in styles, situations and life outcomes. Through thick and then, Kim has remained true to her blog, which, even in her darkest times has always been an interesting read. I hope she never stops blogging!

#3 - Yarah Bravo!

In a time where music has evolved to exist largely as a monster money-making machine and a shallow showcase for stripped-off sex-kittens, there stands a young lady willing to show the world it’s all about the heart.

Yarah Bravo (born in Sweden to a Chilean mother and a Brazilian father) is a musician blurring the lines between spoken word, hip-hop, and RnB. Notable appearances include collaborations with French avant-garde emcees TTC and Polish acid jazz duo Skalpel. However, she is best-known for her appearances on DJ Vadim's USSR—The Art of Listening compilation, and together with Vadim (her husband) and New York City MC Blu Rum 13 as the London-based supergroup One Self. Yarah also stinted as the front woman of The Soundcatcher Soundsystem(BBE).

Ever heard of the saying "Don't Sleep"? Yarah took it literally: she books her own shows, runs her own label, designs her own clothes, makes her own videos, records her own vocals, makes her own flyers, hosts her own parties, promotes herself (and her friends) through her myspace and facebook, and she finds time to be a stylist and cut hair too... all while touring the world and partying with the locals almost every night of her life.

#2 - Bai-Ling!

Bai-Ling is - well - Bai-Ling! She posts to her blogspot blog "Naked Seduction" directly from her cell phone. She welcomes comments and often engages in discussion with the blog readers.

Bai has described herself as a very shy child who found that she best expressed herself through acting and performing. She has said that acting allows people to ignore how society tells them to behave and allows other parts of themselves to be expressed.

Her blog exactifies what the "personal weblog" is: a chronicle of one's life and time, in words, pictures and with opinions tossed in for good measure.

Nobody deserves to be, or has truly earned the top spot among our ladybloggers as much as XiaXue! #1 and she deserves it!

#1 - Wendy Cheng!

Although she fell into a pile of luck and made a career as a "blogebrity," Wendy Cheng aka Xiaxue has remained true to blogging's promise and purpose: she blogs about her life, her opinions, and posts photographs. She can have fun, she can be sassy, she can be controversial. She's a straight-shooter!

Wendy was a teenage in Singapore. An ordinary girl, who, had there been no internet, probably would have lived the life that any ordinary girl in Singapore might have lived. She started a blog, as many ordinary girls in Singapore did. But for some reason, the blog hosting platform known as "blogger" or "blog*spot" decided to make Wendy's "XiaXue" their "featured" blog on the blogger homepage.

Things went up from there. I guess you could say her blog went "viral" and then "international" and she was able to use her cute looks to attract sponsors. She also enhanced her beauty with Photoshop, and made no apologies for it!

All kinds of great things happened for Wendy, and all she did to get them was to be Wendy! She even met her American husband thanks to the net! Their story is a bit longer than that, but suffice to say once again, without the internet, none of that good stuff would likely have ever happened. And I don't think Wendy ever bothered worrying about "better blogging" or "increasing traffic" or "bounce rate" or any of that rubbish! Wendy recently placed on the 10 Blogger Chicks We Want to See Naked list...

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