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Day January 16, 2010

Haitian Earthquake Weekend Thread

I’ll be updating this as I come across links related to the Haitian Earthquake.

Richard Morse’s twitter updates from Haiti gives you an first hand account of things he has been experiencing and seeing since the quake.

The Missing in Haiti – From the NY Times: Photos of missing people submitted by friends, family members and colleagues. Readers can make a submission or read comments from people seeking information.

Also from the NY Times is this map of Port au Prince showing which neighborhoods were the worst hit.

50,000 dead bodies collected so far in Haiti.

Haiti from Above. Aerial pictures of the damages.

TwitPic Worth More Than $10 Million?

From Mashable:

We’ve seen a host of deals recently in the Twitter app space, but here’s one that we now know didn’t happen: TwitPic selling out for north of $10 million.

Although he doesn’t say who the prospective buyer was, TwitPic (Twitpic) creator Noah Everett has revealed in an interview with Andrew Warner of Mixergy that he turned down an offer of “much higher than $10 million” at some point last year.

Beyond that, Everett says that Twitter (Twitter)’s most popular photo sharing site brought in $1.5 million of revenue during 2009, 70 percent of which went to the bottom line. Not bad for what started as one man’s side project without outside funding.

Why Some Comics Aren’t Laughing at Jay Leno

From the Wall Street Journal:

After taking over “The Tonight Show” everything changed. In the words of comedy guru Patton Oswalt, it was as if a switch had been flipped. Leno stopped evolving and began devolving rapidly. Leno no longer seemed interested in the art of comedy. He pandered to the lowest common denominator with material that didn’t even attempt to hide his contempt for his audience.

To me, the quintessential Jay Leno bit is Jaywalking, a sourly misanthropic endeavor where Leno derives cheap laughs from the abject stupidity of everyday folk. Leno asks these dullards easy questions, then luxuriates in a smug sense of superiority when they come up with “comically” idiotic answers. What makes this enterprise so abhorrent, beyond the overwhelming air of snide condescension, is that these easily amused half-wits double as Leno’s core audience.

To comedy writers, Leno’s massive success represents the triumph of mediocrity. It’s the tragedy of a prodigiously talented stand-up making a conscious decision to dumb down his material to reach the widest possible audience. He won over the masses while alienating comedy geeks. He came to symbolize everything crass and mercenary about comedy. As the years went on, Leno became synonymous with Monica Lewinsky and O.J. jokes. His name became shorthand for lazy, dumb and obvious comedy. To comedy snobs, “The Tonight Show” under his nightmare realm was one long Dancing Itos sketch.

Fox News Has No Idea How to Cover the Crisis in Haiti

From Alternet:

As this Media Matters research item indicates, Fox News has been much less interested in covering the Haiti earthquake as compared to the cabler’s competitors. This doesn’t really surprise me, and for two reasons.

First, outside of Iraq, Afghanistan and Israel, Fox News doesn’t do foreign coverage. Period. It has no commitment to global journalism. And second, because the Haiti natural disaster does not have an obvious partisan angle, Fox News doesn’t really know what to do. Without an RNC, Obama-hating talking point to guide the newsroom, Fox News seems clearly adrift as they grapple with practicing actual who/what/where/why/how journalism. (It’s like trying to speak that second language that you haven’t used since high school.)

But Fox News’ abdication of its news gathering responsibilities is not new. The cabler did the same thing in the wake of the 2004 tsunami.

Gorillas in the Snow Love Hot Jacket Potatoes

(via Arbroath)

Ebert: A Letter to Rush Limbaugh

From the Chicago Sun Times:

You should be horse-whipped for the insult you have paid to the highest office of our nation.

Having followed President Obama’s suggestion and donated money to the Red Cross for relief in Haiti, I was offended to hear you suggest the President might be a thief capable of stealing money intended for the earthquake victims.

Here is a transcript from your program on Thursday:

Justin of Raleigh, North Carolina: “Why does Obama say if you want to donate some money, you could go to whitehouse.gov to direct you how to do so? If I wanted to donate to the Red Cross, why do I have to go to the White House page to donate?”

Limbaugh: “Exactly. Would you trust the money’s gonna go to Haiti?”

Justin: “No.”

Rush: “But would you trust that your name’s gonna end up on a mailing list for the Obama people to start asking you for campaign donations for him and other causes?”

Justin: “Absolutely!”

Limbaugh: “Absolutely!”

That’s what was said.

Unlike you and Justin of Raleigh, I went to Obama’s web site, and discovered the link there leads directly to the Red Cross. I can think of a reason why anyone might want to go via the White House. That way they can be absolutely sure they’re clicking on the Red Cross and not a fake site set up to exploit the tragedy.

But let me be sure I have this right. You and Justin agree that Obama might steal money intended for the Red Cross to help the wretched of Haiti.

This conversation came 48 hours after many of us had seen pitiful sights from Port au Prince. Tens of thousands are believed still alive beneath the rubble. You twisted their suffering into an opportunity to demean the character of the President of the United States.


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