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For information on Dan Kennedy's book, Little People: Learning to
See the World Through My Daughter's Eyes (Rodale, October 2003),
Thursday, August 21, 2003
Mistakes were made.
D'oh! What can I say? The Curse of Blogging strikes again.
Within minutes of tweaking
the Poynter Institute for dropping the URL "www.medianews.org" from
Jim Romenesko's media-links page, I heard from Romenesko and his
editor, Bill Mitchell.
It turns out that way
back last February, Poynter
announced it was dropping the name "MediaNews" because of a letter
sent by a lawyer for Dean Singleton's MediaNews
Group expressing, uh,
Media Log takes full responsibility
for a boneheaded error.
Media Log pre-Labor Day
break. I'm posting tonight because I'll be leaving tomorrow
morning with my son, Tim, his friend Troy, and Troy's mother for
three days in the White Mountains. We're staying here
(hope it doesn't look like that!) and here,
and on Saturday afternoon or Sunday morning we'll be here.
See you Monday.
posted at 7:38 PM |
comment or permalink
A perfect excuse to hype my
book. Not that I need any excuses! But Boston Globe
columnist Alex Beam today has a must-read
(right now!) piece on three authors named Dan Kennedy. Two of us have
books coming out this fall, and the third -- a sales-and-marketing
guru -- seems to put out a motivational book or a tape every other
week or so.
I am DK1 in Beamspeak, and
the link to more
information on my book, Little People: Learning to See the World
Through My Daughter's Eyes, which will be published in October by
If you want to find out more about
DK2 and DK3, check out the links in the lower-right corner of my
More creeping Poynterization.
(Note: This item was later corrected.)
The last I checked, it costs somewhere in the neighborhood of $10
or $20 to register a domain name for a couple of years. Are they
really that cheap at the Poynter
A few years ago, obsessive
media-linker Jim Romenesko went to work for Poynter, which
necessitated his changing the name of his site from MediaGossip.com
to MediaNews.org. Then, last November, the site was completely
The new MediaNews was and is more
attractive and useful, although it took some campaigning by
Al Giordano to get Poynter to restore the left-rail items, which had
initially been reserved for institutional (a word I use advisedly)
purposes. I called it "creeping
As it turned out, the redesign also
resulted in the dropping of the name "MediaNews" -- something I
didn't really pay much attention to until this morning, when I
item. According to
Romenesko, "The medianews.org domain expires in September and won't
be renewed by Poynter."
It's easy to make too much of these
things. After all, the name of the page is "Romenesko," which hardly
suggests that Poynter is trying to depersonalize it. Still, it's been
MediaNews.org practically forever -- and now, for the want of 10
bucks, the link will cease to work.
Then again, "www.medianews.org"
doesn't have the word "Poynter" in it anywhere, does it? I suppose
that's the point. Sigh.
New in this week's
Phoenix. Roger Ailes's "fair
and balanced" lawsuit
against Al Franken seems crazy -- until you take a closer
Also, thoughts on "Ben," Governor
Mitt Romney's secret Internet
posted at 8:18 AM |
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Wednesday, August 20, 2003
Ex-Phoenicians buy Bay
Windows and South End News. Bay Windows is the
largest gay-and-lesbian newspaper in New England. The South End
News is a neighborhood paper. I've got the details on
BostonPhoenix.com. Click here.
posted at 2:27 PM |
comment or permalink
Under cyberattack. Between
yesterday at 3:52 a.m. and today at 8:49 a.m., I received 91 copies
of the SoBig virus. So incessant was the invasion that I had to delay
posting yesterday's Media Log for several hours.
Because of a peculiarity in the way
I choose to have my Phoenix e-mail delivered -- I actually
have it forwarded to a different account -- the viruses never get
intercepted by the paper's server-level virus-scanning software. So I
get every damn one of them.
Fortunately, I can't actually be
affected by SoBig: I use a Mac, and can't even open the infected
attachments, which carry names such as "application.pif" and
"thank_you.pif." But, as many of you already know, the SoBig attack
-- one of several virus invasions over the past week -- has slowed
down the entire Internet and crashed some sites.
Moreover, each copy of the virus
runs around 100 KB (I remember when floppy disks for the Apple II
held a maximum of 140 KB), which would make downloading my mail an
endless task if I were still on dial-up. That's 9.1 MB of crapola in
just a little more than 24 hours.
I also received several
computer-generated e-mails from other sites telling me that I had
attempted to send the virus to them. I opened them up, and sure
enough, the e-mails appeared to be from dkennedy[a]phx.com. But they
had been sent to addresses I'd never heard of, and that are
definitely not in the address book of my e-mail program, Microsoft
No surprise there. This is how
insidious SoBig and similar viruses have gotten. Once it infects a
computer, it burrows into the address book and sends out a copy of
the virus to every e-mail address that it finds. All I can be certain
of is that someone out there has an infected Windows-based computer
with dkennedy[a]phx.com in its address book.
Bray has a good story on
the latest virus invasion in today's Globe. If you want to
know more, check out InformationWeek
The Wired piece, by Michelle Delio,appears to make a good case
that the endless proliferation of viruses is at least partly the
fault of Microsoft.
I'm not in a position to judge, but
a little Bill-whacking is always in order.
Horror and quagmire in Iraq.
Media Log has been Iraq-free for a bit -- not because I'm not
horrified by the way the US-led invasion has descended into
all-too-predictable chaos, but because I've been at a loss to find
anything that really puts it all in perspective.
But after yesterday's terrorist
attack on UN
headquarters in Baghdad,
it's clear that the quagmire is deepening. On today's New York
Times op-ed page, Harvard
terrorism expert Jessica Stern
offers a brilliant -- and disturbing -- analysis of the situation.
Yesterday's bombing of the
United Nations headquarters in Baghdad was the latest evidence
that America has taken a country that was not a terrorist threat
and turned it into one.
Of course, we should be glad
that the Iraq war was swifter than even its proponents had
expected, and that a vicious tyrant was removed from power. But
the aftermath has been another story. America has created -- not
through malevolence but through negligence -- precisely the
situation the Bush administration has described as a breeding
ground for terrorists: a state unable to control its borders or
provide for its citizens' rudimentary needs.
How do we get out of it? On the
same page, Tom
Friedman, as usual, offers
some ideas that are both idealistic and useful. But it would have
been a lot easier not to have created this disaster in the first
posted at 9:15 AM |
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Tuesday, August 19, 2003
More questions than answers.
But what great questions! Frank
Phillips reports in the
Globe today that Governor Mitt Romney may have profited from a
dubious stock deal.
Follow the bouncing wad of cash: a
Lehman Brothers analyst was pressured into giving a higher
recommendation to a stock than it deserved. The company that issued
the stock, DDi Corporation, was backed by Bain, Romney's
venture-capital firm. Romney himself invested in DDi. Romney bailed
in May 2001, selling his shares for $4.1 million. The stock collapsed
There are many, many questions that
need to be asked, but the big one is the classic. What did Romney
know and when did he know it?
And, of course, what will
say about all this?
Elevating us all. Okay, one
doesn't turn to the Herald expecting a surfeit of political
correctness. But, really, now. Today the paper follows up
Globe story on a
mentally ill man who gouged out his own eyes. The Herald's
headline: "Eye-Plucker Was
in Mass. for Care."
posted at 10:36 AM |
comment or permalink
Monday, August 18, 2003
Raisins and terrorism. The
Globe's Sunday Ideas section has an interesting profile by Lee
Smith of Ibn
Warraq, the pseudonym for
an agnostic critic of Islam who is the author of a 1995 book called
Why I Am Not a Muslim.
An anecdote: during Easter weekend
in 2002, I covered
the annual convention of American
Atheists, which was being
held in Boston that year. Warraq -- who spoke at the convention --
got off one of the best lines of the weekend. He noted that recent
scholarship suggests the Koran promises holy warriors "white raisins
of crystal clarity" rather than 72 virgins. The lesson, he said, was
obvious: terrorists should "abandon their culture of death and
concentrate on getting laid 72 times in this
Smith enlists Khaled Abou El Fadl,
a scholar of Islamic law, to critique Warraq. El Fadl participated
this past April in a roundtable-style piece on the future of the US
role in Iraq, which you can read here.
El Fadl also wrote a cover essay
for the Boston Review this past spring titled "Islam
and the Challenge of Democracy."
Warning to Mac users: for some
reason the piece displays in Zapf Dingbats if you try opening it up
in Safari. Mozilla seems to work fine.