Monday, June 27, 2016

Rolling Stone Dumbs Down Ringo

There's this thing called a magazine.

You might not know it from looking at Rolling Stone, which is so thin, if you rolled it up to swat a fly, you'd miss every time.

There are so few pages in it, one of 'em tells you to visit their WEBSITE instead.

A tease to visit: an interview with RINGO.

It turns out, it's in some kind of VIDEO-MORON format. While a dull, generic rock instrumental plays in the background (probably snatched from one of the recent Ringo albums), questions and answers slowwwwly appear on the screen.

You not only have to read them at grade school speed, the white lettering oozes into red lettering, apparently to help you keep pace.

Attention spans being what they are, you get exactly THREE questions, and you're done in less than 2 minutes.

What could've been a quick glance on a portion of a magazine page, has taken a tedious amount of time to go on the Internet to find, click, and then read.

Another tease, on a separate web page, was Ringo recalling the time The Beatles and Ali posed for a photo. Ah. What would he say about that, and how long before the sentence or two was revealed?

Er, an eternity.

WHERE was the quote from Ringo??

A lot of SNOW WHITE on the page.

OK, Time Wasters, is it YOU or is it ME?

I hadn't downloaded the latest version of Adobe Flash yet today, and I usually do that at least seventeen times every day, so maybe that was the problem.

Or had I downloaded it, gotten an ERROR, and was told to go to some forum or other to get advice?

Or had I forgotten to stop everything for five or ten minutes, turn off the computer, and then turn it back on?

I opened a different brand of browser, one that would take me on SAFARI.

There was a time when there was this thing called a magazine.

No "read along" to Flash videos and background music. No silly graphics. No time wasting.

And it had so many pages, you didn't NEED to go on the Internet to find what they left out.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Look How Long it Took to Plagiarize A News Item...

Yes, the BIG story is that some reporter bought an assault rifle in under 7 minutes. Another aspect of this is... That it took even less time for every Buzz Feed, Gawker, Decider, Huffy-Puff, Stealy-Wheel website to publish the story, too. And how many pay ANY royalty?

At the "aggregate" sites like Yahoo or "Google" (is your friend), they'll give you your choice of where to read the story. Don't most of these websites simply steal the facts (which can't be copyrighted) and at best, give a source attribution. Gosh, how nice. Try buying a cup of coffee with source attribution. There are fewer and fewer news organizations and photo agencies. There are fewer responsible journalists to make sure a story is factual. On the positive side? There are plenty of websites and blogs making chump change, with the owners proudly claiming to be "writers" or "editors." Right, and keep your day jobs as garbage collectors and sewer workers. Making a living in writing, reporting and photography never was easy, and it's much worse now. But I could be wrong. I can't afford a fact-checker or proofreader.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016


Yahoo's Second Hand News: Conan O'Brien on Ass Salt Rifles

You know these Gawker Buzzfeed Decider Daily Beast sites. They all steal from Associated Press (quotes can not be copyrighted). They pretend THEY are the news source.

All they add is some fluff around the quotes.

Yahoo was among the hundreds of sites reporting that Conan O'Brien has called for an assault weapons ban.

First off, WHO is Conan O'Brien? A cult figure on cable TV. Nice that he called a halt to twitching his pants up and down and touching his nipple to do something serious. But let's be honest, most every talk show host now spends more time moaning about a dead rock star or a terrorist shooting than telling jokes.

Who gives a DAMM?

Yes, in stealing Conan's quotes, Yahoo declared that what Conan said was "damming." Really? The guy was preventing water from flowing somewhere?

I know seizing on a typo may seem trivial in this moment of crisis. But if nearly two dozen school kids getting blown away by automatic weapons in the hands of one lunatic doesn't change things, 49 people in a gay nightclub won't, and nothing some cult comic says on TBS will.

Yahoo might as well have spelled it "ass salt" rifles. Shrug shrug, "We know what they meant. Why hire proofreaders when the CEO can enjoy a ten million dollar salary?

What next?

Ellen Degeneres announcing there should be a $10 surtax on jock straps.

Paris Hilton declaring she won't leak another sex tape.

Stephen Colbert insisting he won't leer into the camera with a smug expression on his face.

Kylie Jenner limiting a change in lip color to only once an hour.

Nice try, Conan, but nothing matters. Not literacy, not having more than one or two news and photo agencies, not what any celebrity says or even a politician.

By the way, America's infrastructure is collapsing, with roads buckling, sink holes devouring cars, bridges on the verge of collapse, and train tracks in dire shape. Nobody's doing a thing about non-controversial matters that would seem to be no-brainers.

Ocean tides are rising, as various disasters on Long Island and New Jersey have proven, and rivers routinely swell and overflow, from the Seine to the Mississippi. Nobody gives a dam. Damming, isn't it?