Monday, March 31, 2008

Around The Blogosphere 31 March 08

Blogger of the Week: Television Traci!

Dallas Penn has our quote of the day: “I can’t leave blogging alone. I need the game. It’s my cocaine.” Sheylara had a BUSY weekend! The Moor Next Door has a new addy!
Why blog? You just might get a book deal. The New York Times has details Who says nobody reads old blog posts? Rethabile reacts to a comment a reader left on Black Looks back in 06!

ProBlogger launches PayPerTweet: Get paid to Tweet!!!

RIP Sean Levert: best known for the song "Cassanova" - Levert died after a medical emergency in jail. He was 39. (thanks, Traci!)

What's big on Technorati, you ask? Sex of course! 15 minutes of fame! It's Max Mosley's turn!
Max Mosley Sex Tape
WTF! Sado-maso: F1 Boss Max Mosley and Five Hookers In Nazi Orgy
Formula 1 Chief Max Mosley’s ‘Nazi sex orgy’ Makes Spitzer Look Like Choirboy

Always erotic, Ambiome blogs [Fr] about Ze Ultimate Sextoy Battle : chic & sobre ou fun & coloré ?: J’entends d’ici les cris de surprise et d’indignation dans les foyers francophones (ouais, enfin, chez mes quelques lecteurs, quoi) : "Mais que se passe-t-il ? Ambiome parle de trucs sexuels sur son blog ?! C’est dégueulasse !" Je vous arrête tout de suite : j’ai déjà parlé de trucs bien pires, alors arrêtez de faire les choqués !

Artistically erotic Mia Mäkilä offers Skivomslaget får en blå venus.

Slate: April Fools' Day defense kit. Don't be “taken for a sucker by the media.”

Supposing that you had one to name, Mona asks “What would you name your very own country?”

CBS is testing high definition streaming on the Internet, blogs Tech Crunch.

Found on digg: List of songs deemed inappropriate by ClearChannel post 9/11

Martin Scorcese has a MySpace (and Queen Rania has a YouTube channel)... A new New York Times blog features contributions from Andrew Bird, Suzanne Vega and Rosanne Cash.

“Ten years ago, exactly on March 31, 1998, I was publishing my first blog, the modest Diário da Megalópole [Megalopolis Diary, pt], which was possibly the first blog ever in Portuguese”, recalls Nemo Nox, who still goes strong!

Blogger lastline has drawn over 400 bookmarks on the Japanese bookmarking service Hatena for a detailed investigation of the question: Why does the video game character Mario run across the screen from left to right, and not right to left [ja]?


Sunday, March 30, 2008

Origins of Racism in the 2008 Campaign

Muslims don't drink alcohol! This squashes another rumor regarding Democratic presidential hopeful, Sen. Barack Obama D-Ill., who sips Yuengling beer after shaking hands in Sharky's Cafe in Latrobe, Pa., Friday, March 28, 2008.
(AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

I think I've figured out where the racism problems are coming from in the 2008 U-S Presidential race. It's pretty darn simple, and it is simply frustrating. The racism is coming from two small groups of WHITE people, and one small group of black. One group is the one of either color that's always been there, bubbling in the background: the hard core "haters" who just don't like anybody of any other color or nationality, period. On the other side of the fringe we have the "apologist" whites, who continue to bend over backwards and backwards and backwards to accomodate blacks. The ones who should have been accomodated, suffered and are gone. Nothing will bring them back or make things right where they are concerned. Build all the memorials and dedicate all the parks and streets you want. All of those who deserved apologies, as well as those who might ask forgivenesses, are long dead. You can't change past history.

This is 2008, not 1868. The Civil War and Slavery in America are done. Over with. The hearts and minds and souls of the black and white people alive today have NOTHING in common with hearts and minds and souls of previous generations. I'm not presenting this in a mean-spirited way. We simply don't think the way our recent ancestors did. We have a differnt outlook on life and we experience the world differently. The modern scheme of things works up so ANYBODY can apply "effort" and make a way for himself or herself, regardless of ethnic or national origin. Poor as dirt today, you can be rich as you want tomorrow with a plan, a dream, willingness to work and a little luck. Yes, for very happy ending there are several not-so happy endings, but that's life. In the U-S today you can basically live where you want, love who you want and enjoy the freedoms those before you fought for and sometimes died for.

Let's put everything in persepective. Obama's minister is not Obama. By the same token, Obama shouldn't be given special favors, he deserves to be treated equally. Case in point: Albany Times Union, Sunday March 30, section B, in a column (quite appropriately) entitled "A Skewed View" columnist Casey Seiler writes "Clinton Shoots Self In Foot" regarding Hillary's bungled version of her arrival in Tuzla several years ago. Skewey Seiler, to be fair, should have metioned how Obama has constantly given speeches tracing his "very existence" to the Kennedys (he said Kennedy money paid for his father to come to the U-s, where he met Obama's mama). Did Skewey write "Obama Shoots Self in Foot?" NOPE! The Kennedy family didn't contribute a plug nickel to the Kenyan airlift until AFTER Obama's Dad was already in this country! The Skeweys of the world are the guys who put bugs in jars and make them fight to the death.

Has there ever been a time when YOU screwed up? Made a mistake? Bad decision? Didn't get it right? Mis-remembered something? Isn't it true that the eventual outcome was colored by the way you HANDLED that mistake? Whether it warranted a correction, an apology, restitution, whatever... The strength within is ultimately measured by the way things turn out.

Having said all that: all candidates deserve to be treated equally. Obama, Hillary, McCain. All are human. Humans make mistakes. Sometimes BIG mistakes (ask Client 9). If we could take people like Skewey Seiler and Obama's pastor and Obama's wife and Bill Clinton out of the equation (to be fair we take George Bush out of the McCain mix) we'd end up with clearer sketches of the triad and we could more accurately judge each candidate.

Let's give our three candidates the benefit of the doubt. Judge each on his or her own merits, minus the faults. Put race (and sex) (and age) aside. I will tell you in all honesty that I believe Obama or Hillary or McCain is fit to lead this great country. The triad is as rich and diverse as the country its members seek to rule. Yes, they'll each issue commands and set policies from different perspectives along different pathways. Leave them alone to campaign and let's stop setting booby-traps along the way. November is not as distant as it seems.

Saturday, March 29, 2008


Like it or not, Race has become the issue in this year's presidential campaign, which prompted a much-discussed speech last week by Sen. Barack Obama, one of the two remaining hopefuls for the Democratic nod. On Thursday, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said that the U-S still has problems dealing with race because of a national "birth defect" which denied black Americans the opportunities given to whites at the country's very founding.

Video clips of Barack Obama's former pastor, Jeremiah Wright, shouting, "God damn America," ignited the race row that has been dominating the Democratic presidential contest. Wright may become the chicken bone that gets stuck in the Obama campaign's throat... Rev. Michael Pfleger and Rev. Jeremiah Wright together again: “Hallelujah!” Update: Rock star reception, video link added. Conservatives have also accused Obama and his wife, Michelle, of displaying insufficient love for the country. Amazingly, two polls out this week by Pew and the Wall Street Journal both show that the Wright controversy has done little damage to Obama. Even John McCain, when questioned by reporters as to whether a candidate should be held accountable for the views of his pastor, would say only that “knowing Senator Obama..he does not share the extreme views..that I saw on television.”

Condoleezza Rice's success drew heated criticism in 2003 from Reverend Wright, who dubbed her "Condoskeeza" in a sermon.

Rice declined to comment on the Obama speech, saying only that it was "important" that Mr. Obama "gave it for a whole host of reasons."

She spoke quite forcefully on the topic, invoking personal and family experience to illustrate "a paradox and contradiction in this country," which "we still haven't resolved."

On the one hand, she said, race in the U.S. "continues to have effects" on public discussions and "the deepest thoughts that people hold." On the other, "enormous progress" has been made, which allowed her to become the nation's chief diplomat. reports that despite saying she wants to return to Stanford University, Rice has let it be known in Republican circles that she would consider running for vice president if asked.

One source told Newsmax that she expressed interest in the possibility when Rudy Giuliani was running for president. Another source said she has more recently let her interest be known discreetly within top Republican circles, presumably including John McCain’s camp.

On to Hillary Clinton: some Democrats have been suggesting Mrs. C. "make way for Obama" by getting out of the way --- stepping down from her candidacy. Guess who doesn't think that's a good idea? Barack Obama!
Party chief Howard Dean this week warned both sides to unify soon to avoid handing November's presidential election to the Republicans, and a top Obama backer, Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont, called openly for Clinton to quit.

But campaigning in Pennsylvania, a Clinton stronghold where the party's next nominating contest takes place on April 22, Obama told reporters in Johnstown: "My attitude is that Senator Clinton can run as long as she wants.

"Her name's on the ballot, and she is a fierce and formidable competitor, and she obviously believes that she would make the best nominee and the best president," said the Illinois senator, who has a slim lead over Clinton.

"She should be able to compete, and her supporters should be able to support her for as long as they are willing or able."

Clinton herself told a rally in Indianapolis, Indiana, Saturday that she had no intention of giving up before the nominating contests were over.
And that is as it should be! I've said it many time before: the 2008 Presidential Race is one of the best contests I've ever enjoyed watching!

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MediaWatch 29 March 08

Are newspapers coming undone? I found a reference to Jayson Blair on a Michelle Malkin post about the Los Angeles Times, how the paper got duped by one of its own reporters, who himself was duped by a source. You might think the LA Times is trying to take itself out from under the microscope:
The Stephen Glass and Jayson Blair fabrication scandals may have damaged journalism, but those only really affected the small portion of news consumers who read. For us picture-looking news consumers, what I've discovered may be far more disappointing. After a series of phone calls to secret sources, I found out that most of the celeb-mag "editors" who appear on TV don't actually edit, write or in any way help produce the magazine. Instead, Star, US, Life & Style, In Touch, InStyle and People find attractive people and pay them to go on TV and talk about articles as an "editor at large" or "national correspondent" or "television editor." At other magazines, those first two titles refer to an editor or writer who works from home, and the last means an editor who works on the section of the magazine about television. Editors who spend all day talking to TV producers are properly called Graydon Carter.- Joel Stein (more)
Michelle's "Skinback" post paints a bleak picture for newspapers... but, wait. I think the New York Times has picked itself up a bit since the days of Blair. In general, the eastern papers and the SF Chronicle, IMHO, are quite reputable. In the Capital Region, the Times Union has really outdone every other newspaper and TV station newssite (except for Capital News 9) when it comes to posting and hosting on the Net. Here in New York City, nothing beats HDTV2's on-air and website news: The NY Times, as I mentioned, continues to deliver strong, quality content. Then there's the Observer, the Post and Daily News, New York Magazine, New Yorker... the list goes on.

As a working broadcast journalist, I know how difficult it can be to come up with story after story on deadline. But any enterprising writer / reporter can do it, once you're in "the groove" time after time, reputably, honestly and objectively.

The Demise of Borders Books. Once calling itself a collection of individual stores and denying it was a chain, Borders, begun in 1971 by brothers Tom and Louis, is in deep financial trouble.

The recent discovery of a phonautogram by Édouard-Léon Scott de Martinville may be the earliest recording of sound in the world, predating that of Thomas Edison by almost 20 years! The ancient sound file gave BBC Radio 4 news reader Charlotte Green a fit of the giggles live on air.

Speaking of GIGGLES: the Rip and Read method has arrived at the New York Times. Just when I was so sure the NYT had reached a new level of credibility, the paper got punk'd:
NYT falls for cheesy internet hoax

When Brian Selter writes on the front page: "According to interviews and recent surveys, younger voters... are replacing the professional filter — reading The Washington Post, clicking on — with a social one" you've got to sit up and take notice.

Ngourlay announces that Qatar Telecoms has blocked some of Facebook's applications. The blogger also lists five reasons the telecom provider censors sites: pornography, political criticism of Gulf countries and anti-Islamic sites; some sites are also blocked ‘by mistake' and others are banned because they may be offensive to some people.

Kenya NOW

I received an email Friday from Binyavanga Wainaina: the noted Kenyan writer is due back in the Capital Region next week. It appears that things are calming down in Kenya: I have selected a few articles which you'll find below. I found Bin making a "cameo" appearance on the blog Kenyan Jewels (that's where the picture is from --- go there to view a larger version). Also, Bin has written an inspirational feature that appears on Rescue Kenya's blog. It is entitled "A ‘third force’ for peace in Kenya - Continental Drift" and is available here, and here is a snippet:
…A “third force” for peace is gathering around honest brokers like Ambassador Bethwell Kiplagat, a gentle man of great empathy and intellect, trusted by all in Kenya; retired general Opande – known in military circles around the world as a formidable UN peacekeeper; and retired general Sumbeiwo, a man of honour, trusted as a mediator by both sides in the Sudan conflict. At times like this, these three men are the most valuable real estate in Kenya...
In "Kenya Back to Normal" Rebecca Wanjiku writes: It is funny how life can turn around. A country that was tilting on the edge and threatening to follow the legacy of Africa's failed states, is now back to full life and life is back to normal.

Residents of Nairobi, who were adversaries and concerned about their ethnic background, are now united in attacking the local government minister for changing the public transport routes and forcing people to walk long distances. Hawkers and small scale traders are now united in calling for an expanded market and proper lighting for them to do business at night. The ethnic hatred seems to have been pushed aside and now people are pushing a common agenda and pursuing economic survival.

Online discussions also reflect the diversity, bloggers are concerned about the Initial Public Offer (IPO) of East Africa's largest and most successful Mobile phone company- Safaricom. In the political front, the discussions are more balanced and sober compared to discussions two months ago.

African Loft has an article about SLUM-TV in Kenya: “Operating from Mathare, the biggest slum in Kenya, the SLUM-TV was created to document the lives of the people in the slum and to ‘reevaluate’ these lives through the camera.”

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Around The Blogosphere 29 March 08

Juan Arellano of Globalizado [es] reports on this morning's earthquakes in Lima and provides links to what bloggers and users of twitters have been saying:

Lima se ha visto sacudida por dos temblores en lo que va del día de hoy, 29 de marzo, el primero fue a la 1.40am (de 4.4 grados) y el segundo a las 7.50am (de 5.4 grados). Los epicentros han sido en el mar, frente a la ciudad de Lima, por la zona sur. Si bien los medios informaron y siguen reportando adecuadamente sobre el hecho, los bloggers no se quedaron atrás y ya sea desde Twitter y luego desde sus propios blogs también se preocuparon por diseminar la información que iba conociéndose y aportar sus propias experiencias al respecto.

Lola: Race in America - Real Talk Quite frankly, I’m tired of hearing about Barack Obama and his pastor...

Roxzen offers Stemplate: Free web template elements Stemplate provides web template elements for free download

DeeinAustin bookmarked a link: MySpace Goes Mobile

Robson Santos: Agenda de palestras e eventos Atenção, amigos, para os próximos eventos em que estarei presente. Será muito bom poder revê-los

A news report [ja] (summary in English) that Nissan has decided to back out of a contract for a TV commercial with actor Richard Gere because he supports the Dalai Lama has triggered hundreds of comments in posting forums [ja] and responses from bloggers. While some wonder whether the news is really true [ja], others are already proclaiming the stupidity of Nissan's move [ja] .

MomBlogger: Winners of The WikiPilipinas Filipina Stories

Eliot Undone: Silda In The World's Eyes

<—– And here she is... looking haggard during her husband’s official “I’m quittin’ cuz I got a thing for hookers kthnxbye” resignation speech. ...

Eliot Spitzer's fall from grace grabbed the headlines as soon as newsmen caught wind of the scandal. MSNBC, FOX and CNN couldn't pump the word out fast enough! Bloggers followed closely on their heel, including those from the Middle East and North Africa, whose attention was turned to the humiliation Client Number Nine's wife must have suffered from and indignation of having her to stand by him as he announced his resignation.

Larry Morse writes (in comments on TitusOneNine blog): The good thing is this: That we have called this man to account and he will be severely punished. In another country - France, one thinks of - Spitzer would have his picture taken with both this tart and his wife together. Other cultures might be annoyed but shrug their shoulders because men’s and prostitutes are inevitable roommates. His abuse of state money is more venal than resorting to prostitutes. But, say what you will about America’s decadence, we find the Spitzers of the world intolerable and worthy of condemnation, and I’m not sure how many other countries would be so forthright.

Spitzer's network of ho's seems to have worldwide connections... from Brazil to Israel...

YouTube - Eliot Spitzer Scandal Survey - What do YOU think?
What do people around the world think of the Spitz? Read on!

Yemeni Omar Barsawad is outraged at the indignity suffered by Spitzer's wife and family. He writes:
For a man who espoused high morals and a man who seemed to have a solid and impeccable integrity; for a politician who rose on a sword of righteousness and who went after official corruption and malfeasance with a vengeance, Eliot Spitzer has not only fallen, but made a big fool of himself. And enormously betrayed his wife and children...For a married man to fall in love with another woman or be swayed by the charms of another woman - I can understand. But for a married man - especially in Spitzer's position - to seek the services of a prostitute, and several times, I utterly fail to comprehend. I never knew there were such grotesquely expensive prostitutes! America is truly a land of extremes and excesses.
Barsawad further explains:
Of hypocrites, few can match Spitzer. He went along fooling every one that he was special and is no common American politician. In the end, he has made a big fool and a buffoon of himself. Very unfortunately, he is married. And that's what I find most sad: his hurting his family so deeply and as terribly as he has done.
Al Falasteenyia too cannot hide her disgust with the way Mrs Spitzer was paraded by the side of her fallen husband. She also draws a parallel of how the situation would have been described had Spitzer been “someone” else. She writes:
“I don't know why she stood up with him on that platform.”” i would not have done it.”“Oh yea, I would be up there with him, alright, chocking him!”
…the conversation continued among these three women as I stood in the elevator with them. And then occur ed to me, had this happened at another time, in another place- if Spitzer's name was ‘different', if his wife ‘looked different', then the conversation would sound different.
I imagine it would sound something like this
“those poor women over there.”“it's such an oppressive culture- the way they stand in the shadow of their husbands like that. ““seriously. if only they could come here and see the way we live- how liberated we are.”
Though many do not agree with Silda Spitzer and criticize her for standing with her husband, no one has said that she is oppressed. I'm not saying she is- I am simply questioning the use of the word here. It's funny how easily people label other people in other places as oppressed; as if oppression (of any form) does not exist in the US.
From Israel, Sharvul too can't understand why Mrs Spitzer was seen besides her husband.
I watched a few seconds of the press conference at which Eliot Spitzer resigned. There's something I don't understand: why was his wife there, besides him? Given the circumstances, wouldn't she have preferred to stay home? What is it with politicians insisting that their wives be there in this moment of public humiliation? After all, it's not like there are any doubts and she's standing there to show support for some baseless accusations, right? I can't figure it out.
Saudi Arabia:
And last but not least, Dotsson, who lives in Saudi Arabia, turns his attention to the 22-year-old prostitute Eliot Spitzer was caught with. He adds:
Ashley has a MySpace profile and several pictures that I've already uploaded to a safe place in case she decides to make her profile private…Not bad. Not bad at all. Ashley beats Bill Clinton's Monica Lewinsky but I'm not convinced she is worth $4,300 an hour. I see a book deal in Ashley's future and hopefully a couple of poses for Playboy.
Adapted from an original article by Amira Al Hussaini which appeared on Global Voices. You may add your comments below.

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Zig Zag Zog

Pollster John Zogby, President and CEO, Zogby International, issued Election 2008: A Review So Far on Thursday 27 March 08:
UTICA, New York – As we hit a bit of a lull in-between primaries and caucuses, it is appropriate to stop, take a deep breath, and evaluate our performance so far this year in measuring the race for the presidency.

To say this has been an interesting political year so far is to understate the case to a ridiculous degree. We have experienced only the opening chapters of this election, and already it has been nothing short of unprecedented.

Unprecedented candidates. Unprecedented election calendar. Unprecedented technology. Unprecedented money. Unprecedented voters. Unprecedented news coverage.

All of this has made the science and art of polling more difficult than ever before. But, as the crush of primaries and caucuses passes, I thought this might be a good time for us to stop, take a collective breath and look back before pressing on...
In other words, we're doing a little pre-emptive damage control just in case our poll figures stray. Zogby and other pollsters are faced with a huge challenge: most polls are conducted by telephone. Most of the people who in previous years contributed to the core of any poll have cast off their landlines... they're using cellphones, BlackBerry devices and services like Skype for their communications needs. The "home phone" is following the VCR on a one-way march out of contemporary society. Zogby et al are as good as they ever were, but the accuracy of the polling is dependent upon getting the right mix of people, which may no longer be an attainable goal using 20th century tactics.

How can we help the pollsters refine their techniques and restore the balance to the art and science of polling?

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Guest-post by Bettina Perroni.

Camille Stein is asking about the status of the puzzle I am trying to solve. My answer: "The same"

Sometimes I need direction, a guide. Someone to take me by the hand and lead me in those moments when my decisions clash with the question: Is it the right time?.

Today, after a long time and while I was driving to the office, I look at the sky. Yes, long time that I did not ask for his help. I was ashamed. Long time that I did not talk to "him", that I did not request his support. I don't know if I avoid him accidentally or just because I forgot him… according to me, I just needed time to understand, to accept?

Today I realized that I miss "Him" a lot… that to be far away from Him was not good… especially now when I am feeling alone, vulnerable to certain circumstances… then a ray of sun light appears and touch something in my soul that I cannot describe.

I do not know why my feelings run in cycles like this, when I have a terrible need to do something important. An innate need, like an impulsive and sudden wish… something like an extraordinary strong that inspire me to do it. I am not worry when I have a clear idea of my objectives but in moments like this when I am confused… I get hopeless, I get broken.

Sometimes I wonder if someday I'll tire. Perhaps this desire of mine to consider every little thing as an important issue, make space for it, giving life to an idea,to transform and make real that almost impossible dream. That is the point. I don't believe in impossible things, my mind was worked to believe that everything is possible if I work and concentrate my effort to my goals.

Today, when I saw that sun light I just thought: "HELP ME"… and unconsciously I started to work on my goals and I felt better. I sat down but then my thoughts turned to the extreme and I found few questions to myself: what about that "other" pending item?, do I have to postpone it?...was not that subject my priority?

God I need your help tonight!

"Allow that my eyes can clearly identify a signal; allow that my feet find the right path, that my hands work and mold the image of my dreams, allow that my free will decides cleverly, and my mind… please work on my mind… touch it, bring me light and make it ready to perform your work, your plan of perfect design. Thank you"

"Deja que mis ojos identifiquen la señal, que mis pies encuentren el camino correcto, que mis manos fabriquen… moldéen a imágen y semejanza de mis sueños, que mi poder de elección decida sabiamente y mi mente… si mi mente... dale luz, púlela, prepárala para entonces realizar tu obra, tu plan de diseño perfecto. Gracias"

Después de todo, creo que mi vida siempre será azul.

Friday, March 28, 2008

RIP Jayci Yaeger

She got her wish, and died last night. God rest her soul.

...Father Released From Prison To Visit Dying Daughter

Around the Blogosphere 28 March 08

Things are tough all over: The Frugal Duchess offers an Improved Savings Plan: 9 Ways to Save More by Earning More Hey, do you think you could save 35 to 55 per cent of your salary? One blogger did and her story is HERE...

While we're counting, have a look at xplane's The Twenty-Five Most Valuable Blogs

Gene Expression has a post authored by Razib: Religion is good (broadly speaking)

Serious reading on BlackLooks (authored by Sokari): A different type of sex

Cédric Kalonji writes about the mixed blessings [Fr] of life in Europe for Africans: “I ask myself what's better, living in an African hell or all of the less-than-positive looks and judgments [Africans get] in paradise.”

PopCandy: Here's some good news for South Park fans: Every episode of the series is now available online for free -- legally!

South Park Studios is offering all 12 seasons of the show. New episodes will appear on the site shortly after airing on Comedy Central, and series creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone don't believe the effort will hurt the show's DVD sales. Into documentaries? The Documentary Blog offers reviews and news about documentary films. Check out their list of the Top 25 Documentaries.

Chris Pirillo has announced a new, large scale open source CMS project that aims to “de-geekify” website tools... (via TechCrunch)

The blogosphere was abuzz Thursday with the launch of Adobe's online photo-editing and storage platform, Adobe Photoshop Express. The new tool isn't so much of a web-based version of Photoshop as people had hoped, but more of a simple online photo editor, more on par with a service like Picnik.

Dolores Labs recently did an interesting experiment where they showed many people samples of colors and asked them what they should be called. They posted a graphic that showed the color names that people used for the various colors.

Perhaps inspired by Taco Bell's World Series Stolen Base promotion, Dr. Pepper has promised to give every American a free soda if Guns N' Roses' long-awaited "Chinese Democracy" is released in 2008.

According to a Nifty Laboratory survey, 40% Japanese Blogs are spam.

Anti-Qur'an Film Posted Online, Crashes Site

Iranian Blogger Kamangir shares his idea about Geert Wilders' infamous video:”the video contradicts itself when at the end it asks for the Islamic ideology to be defeated. If that’s what you are asking for, Mr. Wilders, which I totally agree with you in it, then why offend billions of Muslims?”

The Raw Feed Blog reported Sunday that Network Solutions shut down a web site created to host the 15-minute anti-Koran film "Fitna," made by Dutch politician Geert Wilder. So Wilder posted "Fitna" on the web site of his political party, the PVV. However, at the time of this posting, it appears that GOD'S WRATH SMOTE THE SITE or, more likely, traffic by all the people who want to watch the film has overwhelmed the site's servers. Here comes the (very graphic and disturbing) VIDEO. Pajamas Media Blogger Michelle Malkin is helping spread the clip.

Read on if you'd like to learn more about REAL Muslims!

Back in 2004, I interviewed people involved with the film “Nothing To Hide,” which tells the story of Iman, a Muslim girl who struggles to be an American teen-ager while preserving her outward image and identity as a Muslim. HERE'S A SNIP OF WHAT I POSTED AT THAT TIME:

Schenectady High School junior Sharara Kazimi stars as Iman; other students acted in and worked behind the scenes on the movie, produced over the summer by High School Fine Arts teacher Tom Sarnacki for the Blue Roses Theatre Company’s annual Festival of Short Films. The event was held in July at Proctor’s Theatre and at the High School.

The movie was written by High School English teacher Noura Badawi, a 26 year old Muslim woman who has taught at Schenectady for three years.

“`Nothing To Hide’” tells a story about recognizing the inner beauty in ourselves and becoming comfortable in one’s own skin in order to find inner peace, said Badawi, who also appears in the film. “As an American Muslim, I feel that although Islam and Muslims are covered daily in the news, the American public has not been exposed to Muslims as everyday Americans who sometimes struggle with what it means to be American and Muslim.”
I think no one says it better (what it means to be American and Muslim) than a dear friend, who guest-blogged for me in 2005. Read:
"A young girl's response to anti-Islamic sentiment."

Being a young Muslim in the US got much tougher after 9/11, so a brother-sister team came up with a book to help peers in their faith. Jane Lampman Staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor:
"I went to bed on Sept. 10th an American, and on Sept. 11th, I became a Muslim in people's minds," says Imran Hafiz, a high school sophomore in Phoenix. And not just any Muslim.

He was only in fourth grade back then, but that shift in perceptions affected Imran directly. A few days later, all of a sudden his pals at school told him, "You can't play soccer with us anymore." When he asked them why not, they responded, "Because you're a Taliban."

The youngster was shocked and scared, but his family helped him see that his friends' reaction "came from ignorance, not from hate," he says.

Since then, Imran, his older sister Yasmine, and their mother, Dilara, have been hard at work on a dual project: to write a book that could dispel that ignorance and at the same time help Muslim youths deal with the many issues that confront them. The family discussed their five-year project in a recent phone interview from their home in Paradise Valley.


Being a young Muslim in the Middle East is no picnic, either. Blogging out of Iran, Jomhour says[Fa] some fundamentalists in the Islamic world consider the US and Israel responsible for what happens in their societies. The blogger expresses surprise that some in Egypt blame US-Israel for homosexuality in their societies.

NEWS: US publisher brings Muslim Girl magazine across Atlantic

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Thursday, March 27, 2008

From aslongasicandream Blog: Waiting For A Dream Match!

This is amazing! I was intending to post something similar, more with words tahn pictures, but this quite really says it all! I do think the November election would be spectacular were these candidates the "final four."

Around the Blogosphere 27 March 08

Blogger of the Day: Kimberlycun!
Photo Copyright © 2008 Star Publications (Malaysia) Bhd

15+ Minutes of Fame: Eh, I’m on The Star today, hehe. Kimberlycun blogs "Well, nothing gratifies a narcissist more than seeing her own face on national papers..." Kimmy is one of our 10 Hottest Blogging Babes to Watch in '08, and it's much more than 15 little minutes! More evidence that bloggers are and blogging is crossing over and mixing into mainstream media. good for you, Kim!

Michelle Malkin
blogs her way into the world of thug HipHop. What's going down when The LA Times gets conned? [Re: Los Angeles Times Editor Russ Stanton said he will launch an internal investigation into the authenticity of documents used in a recent story asserting that the paper had uncovered new evidence implicating associates of rap impresario Sean “P Diddy” Combs in a bloody 1994 assault on hip-hop superstar Tupac Shakur.]

Elsewhere on the HipHop blogging trail, MissInfo has posted Trailer: Ego Trip presents Miss Rap Supreme, coming April 14...

Portnoy blogs via Global Voices on Racism, Asian style: Taiwan: Racial Commercials Everywhere

Geoffrey Philp posts Saunders and Pouchet-Paquet: Caribbean literature and popular culture.

From Robson Santos: Música e vinhos em Laranjeiras

Kizzie: Revolutionary Sudan
الحكومة دي كاتمة على نفسنا ليها 19 سنة انا خلاص زهجت

World’s Tallest Man Rides a Bicycle. Do You?

As if any further evidence were required, Yume Neko DS proves that cats are overly fussy buggers, considerably more complex and high-maintenance than their canine counterparts. read more...

Lotta Holmström (Citizen Media Watch) offers a number of posts touching upon Social Networking:
At Facebook Garage Stockholm
Myspace: We’ve been pioneering the monetization of social networking

muxtape-t.jpg You can't get anymore simple than Muxtape. The online service does one thing — let you create and share mixtape-like MP3 playlists with... Visit Uncrate for the full post.

Steve Pavlina blogs about Resourcefulness:

Few men during their lifetime come anywhere near exhausting the resources dwelling within them. There are deep wells of strength that are never used.- Richard Byrd Steve wonders "When you think of someone who’s extremely resourceful, what images come to mind?"

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

MediaWatch 26 March 08

The Clear Channel Communications radio deal may very well collapse, as the banks involved are reportedly apprehensive about going through with it [New York Times & Associated Press.] Clear Channel, which owns 1,200 of the most powerful and dominant FM and AM stations in the U-S, may sue to force the banks' hands, according to Reuters. & Media Daily News...

Following the race for the U-S Presidency? Take a read of "Just How Did John McCain Obtain What He Has in the Bank with the Press? " via Pressthink blog. This is one you may want to print out!, one of the most popular Arab blogging platforms, has been recently blocked in Yemen cutting off Yemeni Internet users from the more than 46960 blogs the service hosts. According to MaktoobBlog, there are currently 1226 Yemeni blogs hosted by the service. All of them disappeared from the Yemeni Internet.

Want to get the Cuban blogosphere talking? Block access to a popular blog.

Dan Gillmor blogs "In a brief but illuminating email thread leading up to a small conference on Friday in LA, we’re looking at key questions about citizen media’s future. One, obviously, is sustainability, which we all agree is key..." (continued)

Lotta Holmström has been "back in action" posting a variety of insightful articles on Citizen Media Watch. One of my favourites is entitled Personal transparency, the eleventh change for journalists and here's a snippet:
As a consequence of blogs, wikis and citizen media sites becoming more important sources of information for the general public, I think we’ll see a new awareness of the importance of trust, and knowing who your source of information is. Bloggers are often open about what their views are and who they are affiliated with. If they’re not, you bet someone else will find out and make it public.

I am convinced this openness will be demanded of journalists as well. You might not need to reveal details about your private life, but you will need to give your readers/viewers/listeners an idea och what you represent. This is an important distinction, since for instance journalists working with sensitive information, infiltrating or walraffing will need to remain fairly anonymous when it comes to for instance how they look and sometimes even what their names are in order to do their job well. But they can still build up trust. Swedish blogger Beta Alfa is a good example that you do not need to reveal your real name in order to achieve this. Being open about your affiliations, for instance, and anything else that might influence or be suspected to influence your work, is a good start. Also simple things like providing a list of links to what you’ve written before on a subject.
I call this personal transparency.
Be sure to read the complete article. The new "openness" Lotta speaks of doesn't just apply to bloggers and journalists: it cuts across many professions, many walks of life. Take politics for example. Look at the "new transparency" touted by NY Governor David Paterson.

Wealthy consumers are using social networking sites online, according to a research brief filed in Media

Slavery Now

Police in Italy are investigating "trafficking in humans" by organised crime to supply circuses with cheap labour. Three men have been arrested and charged with holding the Bulgarian women in slavery and breaching international human rights conventions. Police say that a Bulgarian couple and their two daughters, aged 19 and 16, had lived in the back of a cockroach-infested lorry used for animal transport. The girls were forced to swim with piranha fish and handle dangerous snakes.

Reports said 19-year old Giusi had a tumour on her ear for which she had twice been operated in Bulgaria. Doctors had told her never to get water in her ears, especially cold water. However the water tank in which she was forced to swim with eight piranhas was kept at a temperature just above zero in order to make the piranhas lethargic.

The Bulgarian family has now been taken to "safe premises". Police said that the raid on the circus followed an undercover operation in which plain clothes officers took their families with them as cover and filmed the show as evidence. [LiNk]

A startling new study, which finds that children are being bought and sold for sex in the U.S. on a regular basis. The non-profit group "Shared Hope International" studied minors involved in sex trafficking in ten locations nationwide. [LiNk]

See Also:
Somaly Mam
Human Trafficking in NY
(Another day in) Human Trafficking

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Around The Blogosphere 26 March 08

Fun Politics (from Michelle Malkin): The Tuzla hustle: Enter the irresistible Hillary “sniper fire-dodger” Clinton photoshop/photo caption contest; Update: “Sleep-deprived”

Liz Benjamin: The Obamas posted their tax returns on the Web and called on Clinton to do the same. Tonight at 7 Liz is interviewed by online radio host Roberto Perez, of the Perez Notes.

Fun Facts (from Pop Candy Blog) : Researchers have discovered that Obama is distantly related to Brad Pitt, and Hillary is distantly related to Angelina Jolie. The Sci Fi Channel has posted the 47-minute press conference with most of the cast of Battlestar Galactica... hear Kinky cover the '80s hit Mexican Radio. Heads-up, rock 'n' rollers: Lollapalooza tickets have officially gone on sale. If you plan to go to the fest, head to for an early deal. This year's event runs Aug. 1-3 at Chicago's Grant Park.

Miss Info reports "Lisa Evers hit me tonite to tell me that Cavlar, aspiring rapper and producer of the “Step Your Game Up” dvds, was shot and killed in Fort Greene. Rest in peace."

André and Luciana present their first podcast, LoveLive [pt]. The name is self explaining, but Luciana explains: “We do not want to be relationship gurus, no way. We are just people who prefer speaking up to silence”. “To start with, we debated the act of sharing among couples: sharing problems and multiplying solutions, for example”, adds André [pt].

How to Download Youtube Videos Directly to iPod Touch

Molly writes on the big felafel: There is this new song that Galgalatz is already starting to overplay on the radio. It is called “New Soul”, and it is bubbly and fun. After listening to it twice, you’ll get the melody and the lyrics stuck in your head for the rest of the day. Best of all, as I discovered yesterday, the singer, Yael Naim, is Israeli. Not only that, but her album has Hebrew songs on it!

A bunch of links from Ypulse:

- Interesting new music model (Grooveshark) (The Gainesville Sun)

- The next wave... (of "green" songwriters) (Chicago Sun Times)

- Booking Talib Kweli (college students swarm the rapper's MySpace page and convince him to stop at their campus) (Modesto Bee)

- Google gets into the kids' safety space (with some help from Common Sense Media. The site is here....for those of you familiar with Teen People or Current TV, that's Anne Zehren the founding publisher of Teen People and former President of Marketing at Current. Plus Woomail promises "safe email for kids" and no spam!) (

The Internet population in the U.S. is skewed toward females, and will continue to be for the next several years, according to eMarketer.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Around The Blogosphere 25 March 08

Blogger of the Week: Abdulrahman Warsame

The blog is entitled "No Longer at Ease - On politics, development, journalism; East Africa & Middle East" which Abdurahman co-blogs with Hanna. A Somali born in Saudi Arabia, educated in Egypt and Australia, and currently working for Al Jazeera in Doha, Qatar, as a Senior Analyst in New Media, Warsame shares his thoughts on blogging in his country and the rest of the Arab world. Co-blogger Hanna hails from the U.K. - she is a final year undergraduate Literature student with a fast growing interest in politics, postcolonial writing, forced migration, general theories involving diaspora and human rights (especially that of refugees). They have a MyBlogLog community which I'm proud to say I've joined. I've also added No Longer at Ease to my blogroll.

Art can be a powerful tool for raising social awareness, blogs Sugar Pop... Nico Pitney has done a mosiac of the 4000 americans who gave their lives in Iraq.

Foreign Policy Watch: A biweekly feature of news and opinion pieces from the Israeli and Palestinian press.

Hack a Day offers Make your own Aerogel

Rory of Carbon Copy posts a recipe for seed bombs which can be thrown into “…vacant lots, pavement cracks, long-standing rubbish piles, or anywhere that would benefit from a bit of random greenery.”

Sara Emily Lin / 貓式手套織法圖解(一)

MediaWatch 25 March 08

Clifford Stoll calls BS on the internet in 1995

Signal vs. Noise from Signal vs. Noise

In this Newsweek article from 1995, Clifford Stoll suggested it would be unlikely we’d buy books over the web or read newspapers online.

But he didn’t stop there.

A new study shows that TV is rarely watched without a web browser close at hand, and that kids are growing up multitasking even their entertainment options.

Hopes for wireless cities with free Internet service are fading as Internet companies are pulling out, says the New York Times.

Once news of Tibetans slicing children's ears off and burning people alive sunk in, Chinese netizens worldwide seized onto initial misreported details concerning the situation in Tibet and don't seem willing to let this one go. In fact, they've declared cyberwar on major western mainstream media outlets, and is campaign headquarters.

China might bar live television broadcasts from Tiananmen Square during the Beijing Olympics, apparently unnerved by the recent outburst of unrest among Tibetans and fearful of protests in the heart of the Chinese capital. A ban on live broadcasts would wreck the plans of NBC and other major international networks, who have paid hundreds of millions of dollars to broadcast the August 8th through 24th games and are counting on eye-pleasing live shots from the iconic square. The rethinking of Beijing's earlier promise to broadcasters comes as the government has poured troops into Tibetan areas wracked by anti-government protests this month, reports Business Week.

Last Friday, Japan's national broadcaster aired a special on the "New Era of Video" predicting changes in the industry of broadcast television that will shake the foundation of mass media. But why would a broadcaster as big as NHK air a TV special about the end of TV? Wouldn't that be against its own interests? Blogger Kobayashi Akihito asked if there wasn't more to the NHK special than meets the eye... more via Global Voices

With BlogTalkRadio, the commentary is expanding, according to the Washington Post.

Andréia Schwartz Back in Brazil

Filipe Araújo/AE A cafetina brasileira Andreia Schwartz

Deported from New York for exploiting prostitution and for carrying drugs, Andréia Schwartz made a triumphant return to her native Brazil on Saturday... Schwartz rode first class on the American Airlines flight from New York to São Paulo, courtesy (according to flight records) "Bishop Macedo, the Universal Church of the Kingdom of God."

Schwartz availed herself to the media frenzy first in a TV interview, by telephone, from Guarulhos airport. "Alguns veículos estão me levando a sério, como a Record. O bispo Macedo pagou minha passagem na classe executiva para eu voltar dos Estados Unidos", that is: "... Bishop Macedo paid my passage in the executive class for me to return from the United States."

Also on the flight was soccer superstar Pelé... airline personell had their hands full in keeping the other passengers away from both the madam and the soccer player. The pilot took to the P.A. systemn at one point after a New York Post reporter desperately tried to move closer to the celebrities.

From the Village Voice blog: The Post interviews madam Andreia Schwartz, who has been deported to her native Brazil. She claims that Spitzer paid to watch couples have sex, and that he had a penchant for brunettes.

... the Post hits it out of the park with clever wordplay:
Former law-and-order Gov. Eliot Spitzer took surveillance to a whole new level when he indulged in watching couples getting it on, a Brazilian madam said yesterday in an exclusive interview from her tropical hometown

Wonder if the Post reporter was the one on the plane... What follows is a mixed-text Portugese to english translation of newspaper accounts.
Andréia embarcou em Nova York com o brasileiro Dival Ramiro. Andréia embarked in New York with Brazilian Dival Ramiro. Ele se apresenta para muitos como jornalista free lancer, que vende matérias para o Daily News e para o New York Times. He presents as a journalist for many free lancer, which sells materials for the Daily News and the New York Times. Mas, usa também no bolso um cartão de visitas no qual aparece como diretor da fábrica de bebidas energéticas Flash Power. But also uses a card in the pocket of visits in which appears as director of the plant in energy drinks Flash Power. Na casa da mãe da cafetina, na semana passada, a identidade era outra: policial. In the home of the mother of cafetina last week, the identity was another: police.

O que Ramiro tenta mesmo é intermediar as entrevistas de Andréia com órgãos de imprensa. What is even tries Ramiro intermediate interviews, Andréia with organs of the press. Já ofereceu as declarações dela pelo preço de R$ 15 mil dólares. We offered her explanations for the price of $ 15 thousand US dollars. Para que ela não falasse com os repórteres em Guarulhos, ele desviou sua saída pela sala de embarque ea conduziu a um shopping, onde ela cuidou dos cabelos e das unhas. What she does not speak with reporters in Guarulhos, he shifted his departure hall of the board and led to a shopping, where she attended the hair and nails.

Não é à toa que em Vila Velha até os amigos mais próximos da deportada torcem o nariz para ele. It is not for nothing that in Old Town to the closest of friends deportada torcem the nose for it. Também seus familiares confessam não estarem satisfeitos com esta aproximação. I also confess their relatives are not satisfied with this approach. Maldosamente, foi apelidado por alguns repórteres como "cafetão da cafetina". Maldosamente, was dubbed by some reporters as "the arse cafetina." Andréia domingo, 23, o classificou como um bobo, mas admitiu que irá contratar um assessor de imprensa. Andréia Sunday, 23, the classified as a fool, but admitted that it will hire a consultant of the press. Ela pretende cobrar cachê pelas suas entrevistas a órgãos estrangeiros. She wants to charge cache for their interviews with foreign bodies.

Os momentos de glória da brasileira culminaram com sua chegada ao Espírito Santo. The moments of glory of the Brazilian culminated with his arrival at the Holy Spirit. Para evitar a "ameaça" dos jornalistas que desde cedo se postaram no aeroporto de Vitória, a Infraero providenciou que ela descesse do avião direto em um carro, no qual foi levada ao estacionamento externo do aeroporto, sem passar pelo terminal de passageiros. To avoid the "threat" of journalists who were postaram early at the airport in Vitoria, Infraero provided it padla the plane right into a car, which was taken to parking outside airport without going through the passenger terminal.

"Sempre que solicitado, a Infraero dispensa tratamento especial a passageiros muito assediados. Foi uma decisão pontual para evitar o risco à integridade dela", justificou neste domingo, 23, o assessor de imprensa da Infraero em Vitória, Luiz Ximenes, sem explicar que risco era este já que apenas jornalistas a aguardavam às 22h30, quando o avião pousou. "When requested, Infraero dispensing special treatment to passengers very harassed. Punctual was a decision to avoid the risk to the integrity of it," justified this Sunday, 23, the assessor of the press of Infraero in Vitoria, Luiz Ximenes, without explaining what risk This was because only the journalists waiting to 22:30, when the plane landed.

Sources include Marcelo Auler, especial para O Estado de S. Paulo

Veja também:

linkCafetina que ajudou derrubar governador de NY chega ao Brasil

linkBrasileira envolvida no caso Spitzer continua presa nos EUA

linkBrasileira é testemunha-chave no caso do governador de NY

linkVeja imagens da chegada de Andréia mais imagens

linkFamília vive drama à espera da Andréia

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