Tuesday, June 21, 2005

LA Times 'wikitorial' gives editors red faces

LA Times 'wikitorial' gives editors red faces: "Online: Interactive editorial backfires for broadsheet."

The Generation Gap extends only as far as understanding. Wikipedia, the online encyclopedia, allows users to alter facts and input information based, somewhat, on the Honor System that most of us scoff at, but it's a monitored system. What I know of Wikipedia, I've learned from experience and this Wired article. The fact remains...Fact

Newspapers around the nation and globe are experimenting with online technologies to bring back their audiences. Some are proving successful. This experiment was never meant to be. An Editorial is the opinion of the writer or the paper, it's the voice-of-God in Print Journalism - an individual expounding on random local, national, and global Hot-topic issues, in attempt to use his/her voice to speak for the audience he/she writes for. Maybe it is as arrogent as it sounds.

Or, maybe it's not. The writer never claims to have omnipotent knowledge of the subject, only experience, possibly, of the dealing with or understanding the subject of the piece and then clarifies that it is his/her own opinion...not fact.

The LA Times looked at the technology from the wrong angle. Allow the readers to comment, in real-time or even with mild supervision to prevent offensive language, on the editorial, but allowing them to alter and re-create the piece removes the editorialist completely, thus removing his/her existence by taking away his/her voice or opinion.

I definately support newspaper internet "communities" and live feedback/commentary on stories and opinions, but no one has the right to step on someone else's existence. Opinion, moreso than fact, is malleable but only for the individual that holds the opinion.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Apple v Bloggers (again)

In the new issue of Reason magazine, Matt Welch editorializes his take on a new lawsuit Apple has filed on bloggers regarding "trade secret" violations. It's a new angle on the blogger v journalist war; this skirmish, though, identifies a new opponent: the American government.

Welch defines 'trade secrets' using the fine-print definition of the law - information, not just ingredients. Useful information for journalists and bloggers alike.

Finally, bloggers and journalists share common ground. Like the old days, both the "little man" and the media make information available to re-check the powers that be. Eventually, everyone is going to understand the greater good is being sacrificed for individual fame. If fame, money, and power continue to be the great motivator, then a lone voice can never speak for a generation...a generation concerned not with itself, but for prosperity of the individuals involved, and for their prosperity alone.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Stage set for '.xxx' Internet addresses

Porn - the juice is worth the sqeeze

So much is said about the male sex-drive; our 4-wheeling urge to veer off pavement and play in the mud, dirtying our Sunday-, or Monday-Friday-, bests. This stereotype - the cage our mothers and wives try to keep locked in a trunk at the top of the closet next to our father's Playboys - is mostly true. It's an instinctual thing; the male urge to procreate. We have to create territories since our fore-fathers marked everything so long ago.

A country founded by prudes who sought-out heathens and force-fed them the word of God and His morality. When the natives ran scarce, the settlers feasted on their own egos, and sat constipated with their pants around their ankles, frustrated, and not knowing what to do after the entire country had been saved. Procreation of religion.

Damn Sex! Sex, dammit!

I was a teenager before I was exposed to porn. Raised by traditional parents with strong, moral values, I coveted my friends who had access to Cinemax and Showtime late at night. I admired their fathers for their mythical porn collection. It was an age when it didn't matter whose dad could beat up whom, but whose dad had the biggest selection to beat-off to. One afternoon, my next-door neighbor, invited me into his father's collection and it only cost me my innocence. I was a teenager - I'd lost use of it ever since my vocabulary extended to more four- and five-letter words.

When I walked to his house, I wasn't expecting to see it which is why I say I was "exposed" to it. The opportunity presented itself. So, I laid on my stomach and watched and sweated - all the blood in my body disbursing itself into my penis and cheeks. Sex education. Intercourse I knew; sex I didn't.

It inspired me. I wouldn't lose my virginity until I thought I was good enough to fool the girl into thinking it couldn't possibly be my first time. I held out until I was 19, and still ended up being bad. For all the kiddies at home, on-the-job experience is everything, but you have to be ready to be thrown in with the wolves. The price of admission is your precious pride, how ready are you to hand that to someone else - namely a girl who is all-too-willing to say how good or bad you were. And let's face it, they do talk about it.

To this day, my parents don't know that I've ever seen porn. They know I've lost my virginity, but porn is like the step-child no one wants to talk about. Internet porn is a cult all its own and just as dangerous as a drunken, one-night stand, You come home from school, no one is home, and there hasn't been a decent after-school cartoon since the late 90s, what else are you gonna do? Even with spyware blockers, anti-virus programs, and a firewall, internet STDs will swim their way into your computer. It's only a matter of time before mom and dad start asking you questions about all the XXX pop-ups.

As long as there has been religion, there has been sex. It's a religion itself, a sacred practice, the lightening of one's burdens. It will never be regulated, not on the streets, not on the internet. If this .xxx extension idea takes off, porn will be centralized, easier to find and easier to tuck away in a "poor" district. Maybe the extension will act as a fence to keep out trespassers. To get to my neighbor's house, I had to crawl through a barbed-wire fence. After the first successful trip through, it gets easier and the wounds do heal.