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Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Tuesday Deadline Linkdump

One week to election day. Lots of election blogging going on. Here's a snapshot:

VDB interviews Matt Dunne.

Freyne comments on the Burlington Free Press endorsement of Rich Tarrant for U.S. Senate.

She's Right takes on VDB.

• Take a risk — write in Fisk!

The sisters LeMay are running a write-in candidate for U.S. Senate. Bibs Fisk, mayor of the Beaver Pond trailer park, has increased portion size for Meals on Wheels recipients and promised to build the circumcisional highway. The ladies have produced this mini-documentary about her campaign. (link via Green Mountain Daily).

• Also from Green Mountain Daily: GMD reprints the normally conservative Randolph Herald's endorsement of Sanders and Welch.

What is a free and democratic people to do when their leaders prod them into an unprovoked and unnecessary war, spilling the blood of their sons and daughters in a desolate land in pursuit of vain and foolish ends?

What is such a people to do when they hear their treasured democratic heritage mocked throughout the world and savaged at home by a government that knows neither truth nor honor?

There remains but one recourse for a people burdened with such leaders, and that is to rise in wrath and drive them out.

Scu-mentum? eeew. Thanks, Hall Monitor, for that exceedingly unpleasant term.

Endorsement roundup from Vermont Hum.

October 31, 2006 at 01:20 PM in VT Blogs | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, October 30, 2006

Circ. drops for dailies

Ouch. A new report shows the big dailies are still losing ground. From Editor and Publisher:

Circulation at the [LA Times], according to the FAS-FAX released this morning, took one of its biggest drops ever with daily down 8% and Sunday down 6% for the six-month period ending September 2006. Many other major metros followed suit and the industry took an average daily hit of 2% to 3%.


The San Jose Mercury News, for example, is off 9.4% daily and 9.7% Sundays.

Yikes. Here's a list of the Top 25 papers. Philly Inquirer's down 7.5 percent. Portland's Oregonian is down 6.8 percent. NY Times down 3.5 percent.

The NYT is losing my Sunday subscription, too. Just got a letter saying the price is going up to $6.30 an issue for delivery of Sunday only. Why would I pay that when I can get the thing at the gas station down the street for $4.90? Although, last time I called to cancel my subscription, the NYT guy was so panicked he gave me a discount rate. Wonder if that'll work this time?

Incidentally, our circ. at 7D is not down. But then, you don't have to pay for our paper.

Not that I'm gloating. I understand the frustration with the big dailies, but I'm not convinced that this is a healthy trend for our democracy. I guess the best we can hope for is that, if/when newspapers perish, something better will come along to replace them.

October 30, 2006 at 11:06 AM in Media/Keeping an eye on the competition | Permalink | Comments (2)

Friday, October 27, 2006

Ho-Ho disses mother-in-law of VT blogger

Yes, it's a small state. Vermonter believes he heard Howard Dean dis his mother-in-law on Air America. But it sounds like she deserved it...

October 27, 2006 at 09:40 AM in VT Blogs | Permalink | Comments (15)

Thursday, October 26, 2006

VCAM Blogging Panel

Busy today. Not much blogging. Here's something, tho, from Bill Simmon of Candleblog:

Blogging and the Democratization of Media: From the Printing Press to Wikipedia and Beyond

Vermont Community Access Media (VCAM) will host a panel discussion about blogging, podcasting, citizen journalism and the future of online self-expression on Thursday evening November 2nd at 6:30pm. Panelists include political writer and nationally renowned blogger Steve Benen (thecarpetbaggerreport.com), Seven Days staff writer and blogger Cathy Resmer (7d.blogs.com/802online), and Front Porch Forum founder Michael Wood-Lewis (frontporchforum.com). The panel will be moderated by filmmaker and blogger, Bill Simmon (candleboy.com/candleblog).

The panel is free and open to the public and will include an extensive Q&A/brainstorming period.

What is blogging? Is it just a fad? Is it a threat to “traditional” journalism? The panelists will discuss these questions as well as the many different ways in which citizens are participating in an enormous online meta-discourse, using blogs, podcasts, video blogs, online forums, tagging, YouTube, Flickr, and countless other web-based tools.

VCAM is a non-profit community media and technology center offering free public access to and hands-on training with state-of-the-art video production and post-production facilities. VCAM operates channel 15 on Adelphia/Comcast Cable in the greater Burlington area.

The VCAM studio is located in the south end of Burlington at 208 Flynn Ave., in the back, facing the RR tracks. For more information or directions, call 651-9692 or visit vermontcam.org.

October 26, 2006 at 12:55 PM in House Rules | Permalink | Comments (6)

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Tuesday Deadline Linkdump: Pre-Halloween edition

What's scary in the Vermont bloggy sphere this week?

A Calamity of Errors, Judgments and the 167 dollar poop. Is that $167 American, or Canadian? A nightmare trip to Montreal.

Pumpkin_slaughterUndead Molly's dead pumpkins. Undead's photo on right.

Darned ol' Ice Age. Global warming is frightening.

Losing the Family Jewels. Lucky's unlucky day.

Satanist at the bus stop. Not sure which is scarier — the Cherry Street bus stop, or a guy who uses it as proof that "maybe Hitler was right about a couple of things."

Links via Mama Says, Undead Molly, Tom's Astronomy Blog, Tremors in the Fog, Diabologue.

October 24, 2006 at 03:03 PM in VT Blogs | Permalink | Comments (3)

Just in time for Halloween...

Blair Witch? Meet Drake Mountain. Creator Davy Russell explains his "nonfiction" video blog project:

SYNOPSIS: Six amateur paranormal enthusiasts camp out for five days on a mountain in Vermont with a reputation for being haunted. The team will explore the mountain, learn more about its mysterious history, visit the abandoned ghost town and record anything strange that happens. The expedition will be broadcast on a video blog via a satellite Internet connection from the mountain.

The show will run from Monday, October 23 - Friday, October 27. Two 5-10 minute episodes will appear daily.

This clip shows the first episode. Four more have already been posted.

October 24, 2006 at 01:34 PM in VT Blogs | Permalink | Comments (0)

We the (Mainstream) Media

I gave a citizen journalism workshop last night organized by Burlington's Center for Communities and Neighborhoods, an office of CEDO.

There was a lot of talk about blogs and citizen journalists vs. mainstream media. Funny, this morning, I saw Steven Johnson writing in the Chicago Tribune about how blogs are mainstream now.

Says Johnson:

"If it's not mainstream, blogging is pretty darn close," says David Sifry, founder of Technorati (technorati.com), a burgeoning site built on the idea of tracking and sorting through blogs. "We're seeing about 175,000 new Weblogs created every single day, about two every second of every day."

Hard to be alternative, eh?

Incidentally, this is not the brilliant Steven Johnson who wrote Emergence: The Connected Lives of Ants, Brains, Cities and Software and Everything Bad is Good For You.

October 24, 2006 at 10:29 AM in Media/Keeping an eye on the competition | Permalink | Comments (1)

Monday, October 23, 2006

UVM science fraud case in the Sunday Times Magazine

If you missed Jeneen Interlandi's story about Eric Poehlman, former UVM researcher sentenced to prison for fraud, check it out. It's a fascinating account of how a whistleblower lab assistant exposed his boss for fudging data.

I know this got covered by the local media, but I really enjoyed reading the Times' long-view perspective.

My only quibble?

After the hearing, Poehlman walked through downtown Burlington with his mother and a group of young colleagues from Montreal who had come to show their support. The rain had stopped and the sun cast a bright shimmer over the wet cobblestone streets.

What cobblestones? We don't have any cobblestone streets downtown. Church Street is paved with bricks.

October 23, 2006 at 09:50 AM in Media/Keeping an eye on the competition | Permalink | Comments (1)

Friday, October 20, 2006

The Weekly Post

This week it's Magog Nights from Candleblog, which you can read by clicking on the link, or flipping to the Letters to the Editor section of this week's Seven Days.

When I emailed Bill Simmon to tell him I'd selected a post from his blog, he thanked me, and sent this critique of the weekly post feature:

It's a great idea, but the implementation is weird.  This post is a great example, actually.  The last sentence, where I wrote "She did, however, treat me like a king," makes absolutely no sense unless you follow the linked words "treat me like a king" to the BJ snowden song "In Canada," which contains those lyrics.  Print's lack of hyperlinks makes the translation not really work. 
Also, it's a little ironic that the one part of the letters page that's not reproduced online is the part that's about the web. I'm just sayin'...

I agree with Bill's assessment, but I don't have a solution. Unfortunately, we can't expand the column to explain the hyperlinks. And it would sort of kill the joke to explain it, I think.

As for not being reproduced online, I think the idea was that the post would be reproduced, or at least noted, here on this blog, instead of being on the actual online letters page. Maybe that's faulty logic, though. I know it keeps the online paper audience from actually seeing the post, which is unfortunate. Not sure if that's critical, though, as my real point with it is to introduce the print readers to content they can find on the web.

Anybody have any thoughts about this? We haven't tinkered with this column since we introduced it a year or so ago. Should I suggest some changes? If so, what should we change?

PS — BJ Snowden is back in town this Saturday, to share her quirky songs about Canada. She's at Langdon Street Cafe in Montpelier at 4, and at Radio Bean in Burlington at 8.

October 20, 2006 at 09:29 AM in The Weekly Post | Permalink | Comments (5)

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Blogger ousts Swedish public official

Here's Vincent Maher's account of the Ljungkvist/Borelius incident. An excerpt:

Recently, Magnus Ljungkvist (press secretary for Sweden's Social Democrat party and a blogger), revealed  financial mismanagement and tax evasion by Maria Borelius, the Swedish Minister for Foreign Trade. This led to her resignation this week after just six days in office. (Note: Ljungkvist's blog is in Swedish. For background in English, and more links, see Media Culpa.)

October 19, 2006 at 09:17 AM in Media/Keeping an eye on the competition | Permalink | Comments (0)