CBC Filter: I guess parenting in Canada ain't what it used to be. The Senate wants to make spanking your children illegal and a Quebec judge quashes a dad's grounding of his 12-year-old daughter.
Should Michael Reagan be free to say this on syndicated radio? Should Mark Dice be free to say this (NSFW audio) on his website? [more inside]
The Day There Was No News is moving in its simplicity. The music is from Ben Frost's Theory of Machines, which is pretty good in its own right.
Thirty-six years after the National Commission on Marihuana and Drug Abuse recommended that "simple possession" of pot be decriminalised, Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) has introduced a bill, co-sponsored by Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas), to remove federal criminal penalties for possession of up to 100 grams (about three-and-a-half ounces) of marijuana and the not-for-profit transfer of up to one ounce (28.3 grams). Drug reform advocates
lit up hailed the legislation as "an important step toward bringing federal law into line with scientific fact, practical reality and public opinion." Is America, at long last, having a collective moment of sanity?
"Baby Lali with two faces, two noses, two pairs of lips and two pairs of eyes was born on March 11 in a northern Indian village, where she is doing well and is being worshipped as the reincarnation of a Hindu goddess, her father said Tuesday."
As a result of the Dutch film Fitna, Indonesia has blocked several websites including MySpace and YouTube. This follows hot on the heels of a new bill which could see people face six years of jail time or a 1 billion rupiah fine for being caught sending out porn, “false news” or racial or religious slurs on the Web. The Indonesian government will start censoring the Internet next month with specialised software. Very disappointing for a country which had a reasonably free press.
The dangers of being a TV news reporter. A guaranteed context-free three-minute montage of television field reports gone awry.
Super Epic Video Game News. Several Channel 101 alumni are bringing their own distinctive style to game and tech journalism. Perfect for those who love video games, but hate the people that play them. The YouTube comments are an even split between impotent rage and people who get the joke. [more inside]
GeeksOn "A show created by Geeks for Geeks, covering topics that Geeks like to talk about." This is one of my favorite podcasts out there, most topics they cover are talked about in a very smart manner with lots of philosophy and moral quandaries thrown in, and they have gone on to get some great interviews with various people in Geek culture including Christina Hendricks, who plays Saffron from Firefly, and its Producer, Lisa Lassek(Christina is the sister of one of the geeks), Orson Scott Card, George R.R. Martin, Forrest J Ackerman, Garrett Wang, and the man himself Joss Whedon! [more inside]
If burying Old Blue or Fluffy in the backyard just doesn't seem good enough, don't worry, for anywhere between $6,000 and $128,000, you can have them mummified old school style. Or if having to leave them on display in the living room while you leave the house seems just too hard, you could always wear them. Or of course you could always just have them turned into diamonds.
Amsterdam plan to legalize public sex in park from this year September onwards. The police's National Diversity Expertise Centre (LECD) wants this to expand this plan to all public parks of the Netherlands.
You stay classy, San Diego. A television reporter and an anchorman engage in an embarrassing on-air pissing contest in the middle of a newscast.
Kids on Aciiiiid! In order to protect her pupils from internet pervs a British headmistress has censored photos on the school's website by slapping smileys all over them. The result is like some combined fever dream of Chris Morris and Banksy.
The 'bullet magnet' is back. I can't believe that the British press kept a secret for so long (10 weeks is a miniature eternity in journalist time). It was supposed to last six months... I also can't believe that the odious Drudge has broken yet another big story. Was it all just a PR stunt? [more inside]
The Power of Photography (might or might not be NSFW) with accompanying articles: Stricken Child crawling towards a Food Camp  | The Falling Man  | The Youngest Mother  | Born Twice  (via)
The professionalism, reliability and public accountability of a news organization are three of its most valuable assets.
iReport.com - "a brand new beta site for uncensored, user-powered news. CNN built the tools, you take it from there. All the stories here are user-generated and instant: CNN does not vet or verify their authenticity or accuracy before they post. The ones with the "On CNN" stamp have been vetted and used in CNN news coverage."
British Movietone News - Digital Archives :: Apparently complete archives of the UK Movietone Newsreels from 1929 - 1979. Free registration required. Uses Quicktime. Beware of many lost hours ahead. Via DaddyTypes
... a small, heavy package wrapped in brown paper arrived in the mail at the Woody Guthrie Archives in New York City. Inside was a mess of wires. It wasn't a bomb - it turned out to be the only live recording of Woody Guthrie known to exist. The wire was fragile, bent, stretched and twisted. Jamie Howarth applied some algorithms he had developed to restore old recordings, and the result has been nominated for a Grammy.
Saddam's Confessions - Given Saddam Hussein's central place in the American Consciousness over the last couple decades and particularly in recent years, I found 60 minutes' interview with FBI interrogator George Piro pretty fascinating.
'Race' graphically illustrated - "most Europeans" vs. Ashkenazim (previously; see also IQ & Gladwell, viz. ;) [more inside]
Everyblock has launched. It's local news culled from (any and all available) services, including photos, news, restaurant inspections, classified ads, and civic announcements. Sounds pretty dry, but looking at my old neighborhood in San Francisco, there's a wealth of hyperlocal information that you can't get in one place. They're currently in three major metro areas of the US with many more to come -- their launch announcement has more. This site was spearheaded by Adrian Holovaty, a pioneer of the intersection between journalism and computer science, and winner of a $1million grant last year to build such sites.
Got Questions About the News? Ask AP (Associated Press) All you have to do is "send your questions to newsquestions(at)ap.org, with "Ask AP" in the subject line. Then keep an eye out for installments of the new Q&A column, where you'll finally get some answers"... maybe... if they feel like it. Instant Analysis: No threat to Ask Metafilter.
Are we recording all this, Nick? I hope we are. Right here we go... In 2005, the BBC's royal correspondent Nicholas Witchell was preparing a "two-way" regarding that year's VJ Day 60th anniversary commemorations. He and the interviewer Richard Evans just couldn't see eye to eye as to how the story should be covered. Luckily for us, their tetchy conversation and the fall out with the producers was recorded (transcript/mp3). Despite the vintage, it's a rather revealing behind the scenes record demonstrating the process that's often gone through to decide how news is best communicated to we listeners.
...GE had long done business with the bin Ladens. In a misguided attempt at corporate synergy, I called GE headquarters...
"You Don't Understand Our Audience" --what John Hockenberry (formerly of NBC, now at MIT Media Lab) learned about network news--good guys and bad guys, the "emotional center", synergy, facts, and why fewer and fewer watch nowadays.
Fairytale of New York... censored! No, not now... Shane will make 50 this Christmas... Sadly not Kirsty.
Hammer films are back! ... The classic British horror film company has returned from the dead with the first new film in 20 years to be first broadcast in instalments via MySpace. This has allowed some news programs to camp it up just a little... See the trailer here. Behind the scenes. [more inside]
"'It's been a magical evening,' Joel says as the Great Khali hits the Undertaker with a dustbin lid." Jon Ronson (and son) journey into the world of WWE to investigate the death of Chris Benoit.
Mark Wallinger has won the Turner Prize for 'State Britain' his recreation of Brian Haw's Parliament Square peace protest. [more inside]
Norman Mailer has posthumously won this year's Literary Review Bad Sex Award for his novel on the early life of Hitler, The Castle in the Forest. He was up against some stiff competition but Norman managed to rise to the occasion (sorry). Safe for work, but you might feel a bit dirty in the morning.
The media begins to awaken. Recently, Tom Curley, the President and CEO of Associated Press lashed out at the absurd conditions surrounding the detention of Bilal Hussein. After being detained for over 18 months, the US Military has finally decided to charge him, but nobody can say for what, or when, or why, or what evidence might be brought forth. Strangely, Mr. Curley writes this without a hint of the irony present in being caught in the net of lies, deception and constructed memory hole that the media has participated in the creation of. Playing patsy comes back to bite. AP hosts a timeline of articles.
You might have thought a six month hangover was bad enough but now in 'binge-drink Britain' there's a reported rise in 'exploding bladders'... safe for work but you might want to read it with your legs crossed. Or a least spend a penny first.
Everybody has heard a story of someone being struck by lightning. People who survive such a strike can even join a support group. But if you do survive a strike, beware, as you will undoubtedly suffer adverse side effects!
Live footage (in Georgian) as special police forces shut down dissident Georgian TV station IMEDI amid Tbilisi protests; the anchor staunchly trods on (transl. English by RussiaToday). IMEDI TV is co-owned by News Corp.
Scary and amusing in equal measure, If you like it so much why don't you go live there? is a compendium of bigoted opinions, idiocisms and zenophobic remarks posted on the BBC's Have Your Say site. [more inside]
Pictures of California Wildfires. Some fire resources: Fire maps, Official Information and an up to the moment news blog. In related news, Twitter proves to be useful, while anger rages as evidence of arson mounts. More Photos here and here.
Microsoft buys stake in Facebook. Microsoft has paid $240m (£117m) for a 1.6% stake in Facebook that values the hugely popular social networking site at $15bn (£7.3bn). Facebook spurned an offer from Microsoft's rival Google, which was also keen to invest the site. Microsoft will also sell internet ads for Facebook outside the United States as part of the deal that took several weeks of negotiating. Mark Zuckerberg started the online social networking site in his Harvard University dorm room less than four years ago. [more inside]
Amusing Ourselves to Depth: Is The Onion our most intelligent newspaper?: "While other newspapers desperately add gardening sections, ask readers to share their favorite bratwurst recipes, or throw their staffers to ravenous packs of bloggers for online question-and-answer sessions, The Onion has focused on reporting the news. The fake news, sure, but still the news. It doesn’t ask readers to post their comments at the end of stories, allow them to rate stories on a scale of one to five, or encourage citizen-satire. It makes no effort to convince readers that it really does understand their needs and exists only to serve them. The Onion’s journalists concentrate on writing stories and then getting them out there in a variety of formats, and this relatively old-fashioned approach to newspapering has been tremendously successful." The article is based on the premises of the late media critic Neil Postman, especially from his book "Amusing Ourselves To Death: Public Discourse In The Age Of Show Business."
The World Conker Championships sponsored by the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health! Health and Safety gone mad, again? No, they are fighting back against being blamed for taking the fun out of playing conkers. Mine's a fifty-sixer!
Censored: The scariest news may be the stuff you haven’t seen yet. David Phinney thought he’d struck journalistic gold. The veteran reporter, who has done freelance work for PBS, ABC, The New York Times, and other news companies, learned from a disgusted American contractor that the Kuwaiti company hired to build the U.S. embassy in Iraq was using forced laborers trafficked in from Asia. [more inside]
The ability of Postsecret to reach out and touch everyday lives has not waned with its increased popularity and reknown. "I feel the same way. I often wonder why I even have a phone because I rarely receive calls." Then he offered a metaphorical ear. "If there was a way we could contact each other, that would be cool. My phone number is 605-212-7787." [more inside]
Recently an opinion writer for The Age, Catherine Deveny unleashed a firestorm of sorts when she wrote an article entitled 'Why Do Some Wives Still Change Their Names?'. The reaction to her article (from both men and women) was strong; so much so that in a recent follow up article entitled 'I Don't Give A Stuff What You Do. I'm Paid To Write What I Think' , she jokingly wrote that it had had the effect of reducing her readership to three. But when an article penned by a professional comedian employs such pointed rhetoric along the lines of "Insecure or conservative or stupid women are bowing to the wishes of their husbands", can she truly claim surprise at the level of vitriol her article generated or is this simply a case of an opinion writer trying to get opinions?