February 6, 2011
AOL has agreed to acquire the Huffington Post for $315 million. The combined entity will be known as the Huffington Post Media Group and will have Arianna Huffington as president and editor-in-chief. We recently heard from AOL when they posted a rather disappointing quarterly result for the end of 2010, and again when their latest master business plan (read: SEO, SEO, and more SEO) was leaked by Business Insider.
“My bet is that, within two years, you’re going to read something about me in a scandal that looks like it has nothing to do with the church.”
Paul Haggis Vs. the Church of Scientology. Haggis' defection was discussed previously on the blue, as were allegations of abusive practices in Scientology's Sea Org. This week's New Yorker includes a massive investigative piece by Lawrence Wright, part of an upcoming book by Wright that has already been the subject of some speculation.
Groupon's Superbowl Ads were controversial - The social networks were full of discussion on the ads. Groupon's blog entry about the ads. First takes by the Wall Street Journal, PaidContent, and CNN
"CIA OFFICER PELEG: Your mission, Ishmael, is to travel up the Nung river and find Colonel Moby. When you find him... you are to retire Colonel Moby. ISHMAEL: You mean... harpoon Moby. CIA OFFICER PELEG: Harpoon... with extreme prejudice." Yes, it's the script for Apocalypse Moby, described by Bruce Sterling as "a very deft piece of writing".
FOX, Fox News, and The White House all used the ginormous television audience that comes with the Super Bowl to their advantage today when a 15 minute interview with the President by Bill O'Reilly was aired as part of the pre-game show. Full video here.
"Uniforms have been stolen in the past for this kind of thing." An update on the investigation into the Mumbai terrorist attacks of November 2008. (Previously)
Macho Chinese men need purses. To hold their fat wads of cash, of course.
Happy belated birthday, William S. Burroughs! Here are 97 Things You [probably] Didn't Know About Him. (Via MeFi Projects)
Drag Me To Hell As Remembered By Bunny and Coco Armed with the actual props and actual locations and actual stand-ins, Mefi's own Max Sparber (Astro Zombie) recreates Sam Raimi's spook-machine Drag Me To Hell from memory. [via mefi projects] [more inside]
From the folks who brought you Chad Vader: eHow Do Magnets Work?, eHow To Express Feelings To A Girl, eHow To Prevent Beatdowns, eHow to Summon a Shoggoth, and many more.
Flight to Dallas? $400. Hotel Room? $179 a night. No seat for you at the Super Bowl, even with a ticket? Pricel... 3 times face value of ticket
Apparently the NFL was looking for a record crowd at Cowboys Stadium, and tried to add temporary seating. 2 hours before kickoff, workers were still installing that seating. That status later changed to 400 fans being denied entry and instead being offered 3 times the face value of their tickets. Fans are not happy, and the screw-up is news, both locally, and in Pittsburgh and Green Bay.
Tura Satana, the actress whose authoritative presence, exotic looks and buxom frame commanded the attention of viewers of Russ Meyer’s 1965 cult movie “Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill!”, died on Friday evening in Reno, Nev. [Previously.]
The show Empire on Al Jazeera collects experts on various subjects and holds a roundtable discussion. This week was Obama 2.0, on the President's first two years, with focus on foreign policy. Guests this week are Ralph Nader, Roger Hodge, Stefan Halper, and As'ad Abu Khalil. Earlier weeks include: [more inside]
Large elk antler arches in Jackson Hole & Afton, WY. (Btw, it seems that that antlers fall off naturally, so most of them are collected by Boy Scouts, not shot by hunters) [more inside]
Introducing The Real Reagan. "There is much to appreciate and even like about America's 40th president, and his two terms in office were not without significant achievements. But Ronald Reagan and his presidency are also badly misunderstood. To mark the 100th anniversary of his birth, we are offering what we hope will be a respite from the hagiography that has taken hold elsewhere -- a critical, but fair and respectful, exploration of the real Ronald Reagan." [Via]
Guitarist Gary Moore, former member of Thin Lizzy and accomplished solo artist, passed away today at the age of 58. [more inside]
Experience the art of Jerry Pinkney [Artists webpage], a master of the American picturebook whose unforgettable visual narratives reflect deeply felt personal and cultural themes, bearing witness to the African-American experience, the wonders of classic literature, and the wisdom in well-loved folk tales. A belief in the ability of images to speak about and to humanity is at this legendary artist’s core. His artworks celebrating life’s small but extraordinary moments and significant historical events reflect the power of visual storytelling in our lives, “becoming the voice that others may not have had.” His commissioned work, and illustrations are an incredible body of work, but also don't miss his independent creations either. [more inside]
A spectacular 24-hour photographic exposure of the sky transforms the Greek Church of Saint John into an island floating in space. A technical explanation of the shot. Crescent moon and Poseidon Temple, by the same photographer, Chris Kotsiopoulos. Much more at greeksky.gr and Earth Science Picture of the Day. [more inside]
Do you only have one turntable and a microphone? Do you have a few thousand to drop on a turntable unlike any other? Well, Mike Disher and Joel Scilley are your men. But that's not the only way to get a one-of-a-kind turntable. This one was made from motorcycle parts. Stell Moebel has one that's wall mounted and one that's a functional coffee table (beware of the audio, click mobeldesign). If you can really afford to go all out, pick from one of the world's most expensive turntables.
"We've had revolution in Tunisia, Egypt's Mubarak is teetering; in Yemen, Jordan and Syria suddenly protests have appeared. In Ireland young techno-savvy professionals are agitating for a "Second Republic"; in France the youth from banlieues battled police on the streets to defend the retirement rights of 60-year olds; in Greece striking and rioting have become a national pastime. And in Britain we've had riots and student occupations that changed the political mood. What's going on? What's the wider social dynamic?"
I've never known of a single colleague who has been tortured, or who lives with the threat of death and persecution for their work, in such a confused state of mind that they believe that working in the defence of individual and collective freedoms is an act of heroism. We know full well that it is nothing more than an exercise in survival and shared dignity. [more inside]
The former head of the US Embassy in Bangkok describes an extraordinary dinner at which Crown Prince Vajiralongkorn's poodle
dressed in formal evening attire complete with paw mitts ... jumped up on to the head table and began lapping from the guests’ water glasses. Apparently the poodle, Foo Foo, holds the rank of Air Chief Marshall. [more inside]