About #theDress
Feb28

About #theDress

Of course, you’ve heard of #theDress by now. I initially thought the Tumblr post was trolling. In other words, I thought the controversy was fake. But by late on Thursday night I was convinced it was real, and I shared it on Facebook. Of course, I shared it in an attempt to explain how it could be possible. Perhaps this all-in-fun story will help us understand that, literally, everyone does not see the world the same way. I know...

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How Selma and women’s inequality got tangled at the Oscars
Feb26

How Selma and women’s inequality got tangled at the Oscars

I am southern, southwest-Georgia-southern. My Oscar night boycott arose in part because of the Academy’s shameful treatment of Selma. But I have also grown weary of the uphill battle for equality for women of all colors. My husband and I saw Selma on the heels of the electrifying, Tony-award winning play, All The Way, which explored LBJ’s first year as president. Seattle playwright Robert Schenkkan won the 2014 Tony Award...

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This., a new link-sharing network
Feb16

This., a new link-sharing network

Someone get me an invite to @THISdotcm already — Jessica Reed (@GuardianJessica) November 14, 2014 About nine months ago, Capital New York noted that Atlantic Media was entering the social network business. It had a link-sharing site in development. Heading the effort: Andrew Golis, who had been appointed general manager of The Wire in January. The project’s name, This., may be a nod to Twitter but it harks back to early days of...

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Ohio cop threatens journalist with arrest on Facebook
Feb16

Ohio cop threatens journalist with arrest on Facebook

In the “it’s too wild to be true but it is” department. In Xenia, Greene County, OH, panhandling is a 4th degree misdemeanor. Greene County Herald editor Virgil Vaduva deliberately violated ordinance 13-31 on Saturday, panhandling on the sidewalk in front of the Xenia City Hall. He raised $41.98 for charity. According to this screen capture from CounterCurrentNews, in a discussion of panhandling laws on the Green...

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U.S. Army pulls tweet for using the word “chinks”
Feb01

U.S. Army pulls tweet for using the word “chinks”

On Friday, the U.S. Army used the word “chink” to describe  intelligence community vulnerability to terrorist use of social media communication. Twitter exploded with cries of race baiting. The Army deleted the tweet. chink: (1) a small cleft, slit, or fissure <a chink in the fence>; (2) a weak spot that may leave one vulnerable <his lawyers found a chink in the law>; (3) a narrow beam of light shining through...

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GoDaddy pulls SuperBowl ad featuring puppy sold online
Jan28

GoDaddy pulls SuperBowl ad featuring puppy sold online

Just six days before the 49th SuperBowl, GoDaddy revealed its heavily teased “puppy ad” in an exclusive on the NBC Today Show. (An “ad” on a “news” show means free advertising. Well played, GoDaddy.) The response was immediate and negative. Shame on @GoDaddy for their absolutely reckless and heartless Super Bowl Commercial. #nodaddy — Aracely Vega Worley (@daytrippingmom) January 27, 2015...

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Seahawks mania grips Puget Sound
Jan17

Seahawks mania grips Puget Sound

Seattle is going a little bit crazy in preparation for Sunday’s playoff game, where the Seahawks play the Green Bay Packers, as these photos make crystal clear! From enterprising business employees (with creative tweaks to point-of-sale displays) to unusual flag locations … from individuals to groups … from landmarks to fantasy … these photos illustrate the depth of Seattle’s #12Man. Enjoy! [View the...

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What do the most popular news stories for 2014 say about us?
Jan17

What do the most popular news stories for 2014 say about us?

There were some awfully big news stories in 2014: Cuba, Ebola, Ferguson, ISIS, Malaysian Airlines, mid-term U.S. elections, Russia/Ukraine/Crimea, Sony/Korea, and the Winter Olympics. We landed a robot on a comet. High profile celebrities died (Philip Hoffman, Joan Rivers, Robin Williams). So what can we learn from this New York Times list of most visited digital content? Where the top five stories have nothing to do with world events...

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Meme-busting: Michelle Bachman quote seems made up
Dec17

Meme-busting: Michelle Bachman quote seems made up

It came across my Facebook timeline, as most of these things do. I read the report, Sean, and there’s nothing in there at all that says we tortured these terrorists. If anything we fed and cared for them, just as Jesus would have. - Michele Bachmann, Sean Hannity Radio, 12/10/14 The source: Stop the World, the Teabaggers Want Off. First, Michele Bachmann was not a guest on Sean Hannity Radio on December 10, 2014, according to the...

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Latest Twitter self-destruct: #PhillipWhite, San Jose cop
Dec16

Latest Twitter self-destruct: #PhillipWhite, San Jose cop

Veteran police officer Phillip White may have tweeted himself out of a job. Buzzfeed reported on Sunday that White was making threatening comments on his Twitter account. His account settings were soon set to private; the account has now been deleted.   On Monday, the San Jose Police Department placed him on administrative leave. According to the San Jose Mercury News, department policy is that police officer posts in social...

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Myth-busting: a tale of two shooters
Dec15

Myth-busting: a tale of two shooters

When I saw that the Montgomery County Pennsylvania shootings were trending in Australia, I discovered a tweet that sent me down a content analysis trail. In that exploration, I spent more time on “television” news sites in a day than I normally do in a month! From Storify: [View the story "Myth-busting: a tale of two shooters" on...

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Who was the first president to guest on a comedy show?
Dec15

Who was the first president to guest on a comedy show?

When President Barack Obama appeared on The Colbert Report last week — as part of the countdown to the show’s being shuttered on December 18 — some groused that he shouldn’t have. Certainly, Obama has set a record when it comes to connecting with popular culture through niche television shows. But who was the first president to appear on a comedy show? (Hint: it was a Republican.) The first to appear on cable...

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DA last minute pivot re legal use of force in Wilson case
Nov28

DA last minute pivot re legal use of force in Wilson case

Update 1: DA Robert McCulloch has a history with grand juries and cops that kill citizens   Update 2: SCOTUS Justice Antonin Scalia wrote, in 1992, that the subject of a grand jury investigation, the suspect, has never “been thought to have a right to testify, or to have exculpatory evidence presented” and presenting exculpatory evidence “would be incompatible” with the grand jury system. Yet DA McCulloch...

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The Ferguson grand jury proceedings, dissected
Nov26

The Ferguson grand jury proceedings, dissected

Prior coverage: We anticipated the decision, but nothing prepared us for this much bumbling If there is any justice in this world, the aftermath of the Ferguson grand jury proceedings could trigger a deep discussion of not only the racial divide in America but also much-needed reform of our “criminal justice system” and how we make our neighborhoods safe. I downloaded the almost 5K page testimony PDF Monday night and...

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We anticipated the decision, but nothing prepared us for this much bumbling
Nov26

We anticipated the decision, but nothing prepared us for this much bumbling

Followup: The Ferguson grand jury proceedings, dissected About 3 pm Pacific on Monday, I said to a friend, “Did you see that the grand jury reached a decision?” He said yes, and we began a short discussion about race in America. I didn’t have to say any magic words like “Ferguson” or “Mike Brown” or “Darren Wilson.” This is the first time we had talked about the August shooting or...

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Sandy Hook murder: report documents system failure throughout Lanza’s life
Nov22

Sandy Hook murder: report documents system failure throughout Lanza’s life

[slider] [Updated 12:25 pm Saturday, Pacific] Although hindsight can often provide a false sense of clarity, a report on Sandy Hook mass murderer Adam Lanza suggests there were many warnings about Lanza’s mental health issues, warnings that were were ignored or dismissed by parents, educators, doctors. The report (pdf), prepared by the Connecticut Office of the Child Advocate, reviews “the circumstances that pre-dated his...

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The Keystone Pipeline votes: who voted how?
Nov18

The Keystone Pipeline votes: who voted how?

If you see a headline saying that the Senate defeated the Keystone XL Pipeline project by one vote, your mind might imagine a 51-49 tally. You’d be wrong. The Senate roll-call vote today that suspended action on the Keystone XL Pipeline was a 59-41 vote on ending the Democratic filibuster. The bill under filibuster (according to the Senate Democrats website), S. 2280, was introduced May 1 (Sen. John Hoeven, R-ND) and would have...

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As the clock ticks in Missouri, the KKK rises from the shadows
Nov17

As the clock ticks in Missouri, the KKK rises from the shadows

While Anonymous deals the KKK digital blows A grand jury in St. Louis County, MO, has been hearing testimony for months regarding the August 9 shooting death of Michael Brown, 18, by Officer Darren Wilson of the Ferguson police force. A shooting that took place in less than 90 seconds. As the clock ticks closer to a grand jury decision, the Traditionalist American Knights of the Ku Klux Klan (KKK) have become more visible, with flyers...

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This is our government’s war on privacy
Nov14

This is our government’s war on privacy

It’s becoming increasingly evident that governments see our phones as personal tracking devices. Read on for a new slant on these words: dirtbox and stingray. *** Boeing is at the center of the latest Department of Justice privacy story that broke in the Wall Street Journal ($) Thursday. The claim: the DOJ, via its US Marshals Service, has been using airplanes to secretly collect cellphone data from phones on the ground since...

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When being pregnant means the mother’s civil rights are MIA
Nov09

When being pregnant means the mother’s civil rights are MIA

Anti-abortionist rejection of Roe v Wade (22 January 1973) has given way to a flurry of “personhood” legislative proposals at the state level and very public and political attacks on Planned Parenthood at the local, state and national level. But the real action in a woman’s right to agency over her body may be taking place in the shadows, decisions made by (mostly) male judges under the guise of Lady Liberty. Last year, two...

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