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Social Media Campaign Takes Aim At Red Bull Following Teen’s Death

Originally posted on TIME:

The sudden death of Lanna Hamann, 16, an Arizona teen who went into cardiac arrest after reportedly drinking many energy drinks while on vacation in Mexico, has caused a stir—and an aggressive campaign—on Twitter. Its target? Red Bull.

Hamann was drinking Red Bull—her drink of choice—on the day she died, and her friends and family believe energy drinks and dehydration are responsible for her death. “Lanna loved Red Bull. She always had it in her hand,” says her friend Brandi Vidal, 15. Medical research has yet to confirm that energy drinks pose a risk beyond that of other caffeine-containing beverages.

After Hamman’s sudden death, her friends launched a social media campaign with the hashtag #GetLannaHome that served two purposes. Its initial goal was to support a GoFundMe campaign to help Hamman’s parents pay the $13,000 it will cost them to get their daughter’s body back from Mexico. Now, Hamman’s friends…

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Paper vs Digital Newspaper Readership/Subscribers – Just Some Thoughts

Why must everything always be an “either / or” thing?

Why can’t they just cater to both sides? Why must we have to pick one or the other? What if I use both formats interchangeably and would rather not ever have to make a reading choice based solely on the fact of print format being inaccessible? I mean, digital media is the newest reading format so obviously all the publishers must jump on that bandwagon. That’s completely understandable and very important to us now and in the future. But, in my opinion, that doesn’t (nor should it) make print any less important!

As someone who was born in the 80′s, went to school in 90′s, graduating high school year 2000, and university in 2004, I am equally comfortable with using both print and digital formats, and I think most others from my generation are likely to say the same thing. Maybe my generation is somewhat unique since we have a little bit of an advantage since we learned old-school stuff early on and then had to adapt to all the tech-based stuff once in high school. Confused? Okay, for example, I recall a penmanship class I had in either kindergarten or 1st grade, learning to write (and read) cursive, using onion paper, frantically trying to keep up with my heavily Swedish-accented teacher’s morning dictation with my eraser-less No.2, and being able to hand-write all my final papers (neatly!) up through 9th or 10th grade. Everything changed in high school when most of our papers were required to be typed on a computer (even though a lot of kids didn’t even have a family computer back then), pagers/beepers were banned because we were all either drug dealers or prostitutes (and cell phones are just so less distracting. Whatever), and we were expected to do actual research on the web, read/answer emails not just use it for spamming friends via AOL/ICQ Chatrooms and Instant Messaging – and take a typing/computer lit. class. of course, my preference for what I like more for reading different things…For example, when I buy a book I want it in print, unless it’s very, very short, article/essay-based, or maybe a haiku. I like household manuals to be printed, too, because I often doggy-ear pages and tend to make quick notes on pages and don’t have the patience for a note-taking program, but I’d rather have a digital copy for self-help or advise or whatnot. Also, I find that I read better (and quicker) with a hard-copy newspaper versus reading it digitally. But that’s just my personal preference if faced with the choice.

Just because sales in print have declined from what the longtime readers switching over to the online version, doesn’t mean print editions are obsolete, less desirable, or that the masses don’t want it anymore! I really wonder what percentage of their sales have, in fact, actually declined due to the decreasingly deplorable quality of journalism, instead aggregating from other outlets who got the info through yet another outlet (remind anyone of the childhood game of telephone??) … That said, most people just don’t want to pay for sub-par ”journalism” with lopsided “research” (or lack-thereof) which reads more like an Op-Ed piece than an investigative article, for instance. At least I know that I don’t which is why I finally cancelled my weekend subscription to a certain nationally reputed newspaper last year. But I’m digressing to a completely different topic, albeit an important one IMO…

 

Dodgeball – Just my opinionated response to the consideration of the game being banished from school P.E., gym class, etc.

Dodge ball … oh lord. I have mixed feelings about this game. Yeah, it was fun and I was the fastest runner in my class (small school), however, I was a very awkward girl shy, and not much a fan of competition girl I also despised it. 

Personal dodgeball story? Ok. So, during PE class (9th grade I think)  I was remember the one of the “popular” boys who a lot of girls had secret, or not so secret, crushes one, launched his ball straight AT MY FACE and busted my lip open, blood dripping down. Yeah, at 31 years old I still remember this whole incident in minute details which I won’t bore the world with except to say that right after school was out for the day, it had been planned tbeforehand that my father would pick me up and take me straight to the Washington Passport Agency to get a new passport photo taken and to apply for a new updated passport book. It was necessary for since I was to be visiting my best friend in France over my Christmas vacation since she had sadly moved back there the following year. So, not only did I Dodgeball diminish my ego by busting my lip open and then publicly humiliating myself because I couldn’t control my tears from streaming down my face, I got to have a PHOTOGRAPH of my face with busted lip et al professionally laminated onto a government document that would remind me (and everyone else in the world, literally!) of that fateful day of Dodgeball whenever it was opened. Ugh.

Well, at least, back then anyway, teens needed a new picture every 5 years so I was beyond thrilled when 1999 rolled around and I got to get another photograph taken –  albeit it being equally as awful looking, but without any personal “stigma” attached.

 I don’t necessarily think the game should be banned from schools, but maybe aiming for the head should not be allowed and should it happen would cause the THROWER to be “out” instead. It’s a cruel game, but so is school, really, and taking dodgeball out of schools is NOT going to make being in school any easier whatsoever…In fact, teens need an outlet and some teens don’t get the chance to have a proper way to ‘let it out” once they leave school property. Having an emotional outlet, even if it’s in something as silly as a game of the much loved/hated dodgeball game, is a million times better than the possible alternative of drugs or, god forbid, another mass school shooting.

Just my two cents and experience.

Thanks for reading.

xo

Anna

A few days ago I stumbled upon this utterly scathing investigative report about the various networks of American “parents” looking to terminate their adoption for one reason or another. It’s a five part series about an underworld network in which adopted parents who no longer want their adopted child (usually foreign born) for whatever despicable reason  can fundamentally advertise and trade/sell “their” child to whomever answers the ad without any legal recourse and many times without even meeting the prospective “highest bidder(s),” so to speak. It is utterly disgusting and beyond abhorrent. I just really think people need to know that this is going on right under our very noses and there’s no one doing a damn thing about it… :pullhair:

No matter the adopted parents intentions, the fact of the matter is is that all parties involved in this “re-homing” are perpetuating, either directly or indirectly, the vileness that is human-trafficking and sex trafficking, not to mention contributing to abuse of all sorts and creating an all-too-easy supply of readily available children – a predators dream come true.

As someone who worked in various orphanages in Russia and have seen firsthand just how vulnerable these needy kids are who are already abandoned within their own country, let alone abandoned/neglected over and over in their new country. Ugh… My words can’t express my own personal feelings enough, not to mention the unimaginable ones that these poor children must go through.

Please read and watch about it from the below sources. Thank you

Please read here about the Child Exchange:
http://www.reuters.com/investigates/adoption/#article/part1
http://www.reuters.com/investigates/adoption/#article/part2
http://www.reuters.com/investigates/adoption/#article/part3
http://www.reuters.com/investigates/adoption/#article/part4
http://www.reuters.com/investigates/adoption/#article/part5

and here:
http://gawker.com/how-parents-use-facebook-and-yahoo-groups-to-sell-adopt-1278659585

and watch an interview conducted (with written transcript available) here:
http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/nation/july-dec13/adoption_09-11.html

Screenshot of FB Group dedicated to "re-homing" from Reuters investigative report 5-part series

  Screenshot of FB Group dedicated to “re-homing” from Reuters investigative report 5-part series

Uppercase Stationery Guide – via issuu.com

If you are, as I am, one of those people who can’t seem to get enough of all things patterns and paper ephemera, and could use a little bit more inspo in your life at the moment, than have a look at the latest issue of the magazine, UPPERCASE The Stationery Guide Is free to view and read on the web.

Referrer by Lotte Loves  for FREE!

Issuu.com + UPPERCASE

http://issuu.com/uppercaseyyc/docs/uppercasestationeryguide

NYT article Evolving Russia Finds a Recorder of Its Moment .

NYT article Evolving Russia Finds a Recorder of Its Moment .

“The director Andrei Zvyagintsev’s film “Elena” has led to his regard as a seer of contemporary Russia” – New York Times

I really want to see this movie, ‘Elena’. How come I didn’t know Andrei Zvyagintsev had a “new” film?! I say this because I normally am told about these sort of important things by my husband, who also happens to be Russian, and is an utter movie geek, always in-the-know of the latest-and-greatest stuff in the film world, especially if an award-winning director and screenwriter is a compatriot! Oh well. Moving on…  I am still haunted by Zvyagintsev’s ‘The Return’ even though I watched it many years ago (2004I believe it was). It’s is one of the very few movies whose imagery and moodiness have been ingrained into my mind – and probably forever will be. So yeah I want to see his newest work – ‘Elena’. If anyone likes art-house cinema type stuff and doesn’t mind subtitles (they’re all in Russian, naturally) than I highly recommend his films. Oh, and also some of Alexander Sukurov stuff too.

Anyway, has anybody seen this? If so, thoughts?

xo

Anna

A terribly executed reply to an article on a popular forum that I luckily decided not to post *whew*

This is in reference to an article I read online regarding “Big Data” – Facebook, Google, Amazon, web advertising, second and third-party middlemen, and the whole general data-mine profiteering of personal information.

It’s too bad that weas the users, aren’t the ones to reap the financial benefits that Facebook, Google, etc. gets for mining our (“us” being the users) own personal info. We’d all be seriously loaded by now! Then again, if this were the case, said companies/corporations probably wouldn’t be anywhere close what they are today, or even exist for that matter, therefore probably not making the payout we’d collect not nearly as sweet as they currently receive. We just can’t win, I suppose. Hah.

 
OK, this is probably going to come off as a bit fruit-loopy and will undoubtedly be misconstrued in some way by some, but I’ll take my chances and spit it out. I’ve no shame – I keep telling myself that…

So, as most of us already know, the people (i.e. users) whose info is getting mined, collected and sold off by and to the “Big Data world” is what’s making these corps/companies so wealthy and/or is the entire reason for their existence in the first place! Meaning, many of them are absolutely nothing without us. Yet, even though all that data and info is originally and personally our own, we don’t get a dime of it. It seems that keeping touch with long-distance friends is what justifies this for some companies as though we can’t just pick up the phone or text those friends instead? But I digress from the point which I am at long last trying to make… This bizarre “relationship” we have with web services and “social networking sites” (need I really name who they are?) where we are choosing to essentially hand over our own lives, and freely, for them to sell and churn out a profit, is akin to a prostitute working for a pimp. Not to mention the slight feeling of being repeatedly violated more and more (in another way; not in a sexually/bodily way, of course!). There’s definitely some parallel between these two “industries” in that exploitation is what they bank on, albeit the drug addiction, mental and physical health issues, and murder which normally goes with the former business (ie being whored out and virtually owned by evil pimp for his own income).
 
I know, I know, it’s a just a wee far-fetched and an utterly crap analogy that is figuratively and quite literally stupid/laughable! But I can’t help it that this metaphor continues to pop into my head more and more lately. Until I get a better analogy, this is where it’ll stay. Besides, getting this off my chest and typed out (even if less than mediocre) was necessary and I feel better already. Plus I was bored and daydreaming when I start writing this. 
 

Web Sleuthing The Boston Bomber: Reddit and 4Chan Are on Boston Bomber Case By Alexander Abad-Santos for The Atlantic Wire

Reddit and 4Chan Are on the Boston Bomber Case theatlanticwire.com

The Boston Marathon bombing investigation, now in its third day, is not just the largest crime scene in the city’s history — it’s the most crowdsourced terror investigation in American history. With the FBI, the ATF, and Boston law enforcement soliciting videos, cellphone pictures, and anything that could lead to the capture of whoever set off those pressure cooker bombs, the plea has more or less turned the interested and the Internet into amateur investigators armed with what we know the remains of the bag and the bomb look like. On Reddit, where they can now apparently track murder by way of Google Maps and where some of the most detailed information on the Boston case has surfaced publicly, the FBI’s plea for info has spurred the “Find Boston Bombers” subreddit, with all kinds of analysis. But here’s the find they’re most excited about: They’ve found a photo of a man with a backpack that has straps which resemble what federal officials believe is the detonated backpack. (Update: Authorities appeared to have a suspect — follow here.)

We have obscured the man’s face because, well, the only suggestion of a connection to the bombings comes from people on Reddit who have been looking at photographs:

And one more angle, showing extreme close up of the straps.

Again, we can only vouch for the image of the detonated bag, which the FBI says contained one of the pressure cooker bombs. There are no details on where the image of the man in the blue jacket came from, or at what time it was taken during the marathon, or the location— the only reference we have is that it trickled down from social media and Flickr,and down to sites like 4chan andReddit. Redditors, to their credit, haven’t been shy in voicing the skepticism and concern with pinning this terror attack on an innocent man:

The Atlantic’s Alexis Madrigal has a compelling point about how this Internet vigilantism movement is troubling, and could end up in people being unfairly singled out. And yes, there’s a deep, and problematic potential of that happening. The blue sweater picture isn’t the only other photo popping up however, like this one who one poster believes could be smuggling a pressure cooker bomb because of the shape of his backpack:

Internet sleuths believe this a photo of that same man without his backpack (we can’t tell one way or another):

And this, one, which we sorta have no idea why things are being circled:

Reading through the amateur forensics feels like an intense and puzzling game of Where’s Waldo.  But it’s a byproduct of what you get when the FBI asks the public for help. Jittery nerves lead to things like the New Yorkers who reported 77 suspicious packages in the wake of the Boston bombings, and multiple incorrect Chris Dorner sightings in February. And the blue robe man, along with the pressure cooker backpack man, are all tips—tips that part of the thousands the FBI receives. As The Washington Post reported:

[Richard] DesLauriers said cooperation from the community will play a key role in the investigation. He said the range of suspects remained wide open, but by midday Tuesday more than 2,000 tips had been received.

By Alexander Abad-Santos for the Atlantic Wire
For the source click HERE