Regular readers will know I have a thing for T-shirts; I'm also fond of Signal, the locally produced blog. (Our titles are kind of fishing from the same [Deadman's] pond.) Signal is now selling some swag: check it out here.
(Before we continue: Aside from the Lolcats trend that has kind of overstayed its welcome by, oh, many moons, I think Huh has something to answer for because of the Fail meme. I've quite had it with teens and young adults, with no practical life or work experience, instantly and angrily labelling something as "FAIL!!!" - not because it doesn't work, but because they simply don't like it.)
Huh's sites (more than 20 of them) are making a mint:
These spellbindingly inane blogs were built with the kind of
user-generated content that has made Facebook and YouTube tremendously
popular. But unlike these bigger sites, Huh's company has been in the
black since its first quarter. Pet Holdings managed to haul in seven
figures from advertising, licensing fees and merchandise sales during
the first six months of this year, according to a report given to Huh's
I got a note today from Stephen Harris, who voluntarily looks after the Newfoundland and Labrador BlogRoll, that Dot Dot Dot is the blog of the week. Thanks, folks! You can see the members of the roll to the right.
The NL BlogRoll is back in operation after something of a hiatus, brought on when the Blogrolling.com site effectively ceased operations for a number of months. It's back, and so too is the updating on this and many, many other blogrolls around the world. If you're a blogger, I highly recommend that you manually ping your site; mine is supposed to do so automatically with each post, but it doesn't happen. The 20 seconds or so it takes to ping through this form is time very well spent: it means you get an asterisk, or some other marker, on blogrolls, which is a flag to readers that you have fresh stuff to read.
I groan when I see typos in public places - and not just on TV screens. (My colleagues will vouch for this.) I've made a few in my time, admittedly, but I like to think I've prevented thousands of spelling mistakes from ever seeing the light of day. English Fail Blog collects samples from users of how the language is being failed. It's also often quite funny.
CBC is putting a bit more pizzazz into how it's following blogs and other online chatter about this year's election. Susan Ormiston is piloting Ormiston Online, which is watching what Canadians are scribbling about the election.
Ryan Snoddon (above) joined us at the CBC bureau in St. John's a few weeks ago, to fill in for Krysta Rudofsky during her maternity leave. Last week, Ryan launched NL Weather 24/7, a new blog on the local weather. Ryan, who came to us from Peterborough, is still getting used to RDF-drenched June weather in St. John's; check out his posts as he keeps up with the one topic that is never dull.
It's always a treat to get something from the Ricky Gervais podcast; a new video entry pointed me to the blog that Gervais is keeping on the making of This Side of the Truth, a comedy he's writing and directing ... and for which he has put together a cast that culls together the cream of American comedy: Christopher Guest, Tina Fey, Jonah Hill, John Hodgman ... and those are just a few. The setup is that humans have evolved to not lie, and that Gervais's character realizes he can tell a whopper. Can't wait.
I learned something interesting about one of my colleagues this morning. So, too, did anyone who had Weekend A.M. tuned in, as host Angela Antle spoke with a local hockey blogger named "J.T." ... which turns out to be the handle of Leigh Anne Power, who cohosts CBC Radio's central Newfoundland Morning Show.
I've been trying to keep this blog updated somewhat consistently ... but it's been a little more difficult than usual lately, and that's partly because I have another blog to keep up and running.
Check out Campaign Trail, a group blog that I and some colleagues have been working on at cbc.ca/nl. I launched it a week before the campaign kicked off, and it's been busy enough so far. I imagine it will get only more hectic as we roll along to voting day on Oct. 9.
In the meantime, poke around Newfoundland and Labrador Votes 2007, the election site I'm editing as part of my day (and, it feels sometimes, night) job. Busy days, indeed. Anyway, there's lots and lots to read - check it out.
I've started my vacation, and will be blogging irregularly (well, I've been doing that for three-plus years) over the next while. Some pre-programmed material will show up, and I may post from the road when I'm on it ... regular programming will resume in a couple of weeks or more.
Two things about me are true: one is that I chafe with being called the "web guy" at work ... I'm a writer who works almost exclusively on the web, but trust me, I know almost nothing about what's under the hood. Two, I get a kick of song parodies.
Sooo ... I had a real chuckle on Joey deVilla's blog this morning, reading about (and then watching) his parody of Radiohead's Creep at a conference for developers working with Ruby on Rails, the open-source language that's like catnip for people who, well, love looking under the hood. I don't have a clue what they're talking about - well, not much of one, anyway - but I got a kick out of Joey's joke.
Liam O'Brien says he will be posting less frequently at Responsible Government League, which seems a shame; he's one of the local bloggers I follow regularly. On the other hand, he says he will be putting more of his attention into Buchans, a blog about - surprise - his hometown.
There's been a bit of chatter lately about a voluntary code of conduct for bloggers. You can read about it here, and see how things are shaping up here; here's a recent post by web personality Tim O'Reilly on what's driving it. The gist: bloggers should be civil, not say anything online that they wouldn't say to a person directly, keep the comments above board and on-the-record, and so on.
That being said, my own rules for this blog are pretty much in line with what's being discussed. Because I work at CBC, I told my supervisors and colleagues that I will never say anything here that I wouldn't say on the air. Indeed, I don't engage much in the news and current affairs, because of the likelihood I'll be writing on it or potentially interviewing someone on air during a guest stint at CBC radio or television. Besides, there's enough opinion on the web already, and I set up this blog as a creative outlet more than anything else.
As someone who sees pedantry as a goal, not a curse, I was pleased to come across Style & Substance, a running bulletin for Wall Street Journal journalists, which just happens to be available to the world at large. Paul R. Martin updates Style & Substance on a monthly basis. (Hat tip to Blogslot.)
More craft singles - my queue of journalism-related posts - can be read here.
I spent a chunk of time on Thursday dealing with a variety of piles of things around the house ... I would be inclined to call the stuff junk, although I was pleased that little of the stuff is going out of our home as garbage. Much of the rest is going out of the house, but in orderly piles to be recycled. So, the cans, glass, plastics, cardboard, newsprint, beverage containers (one of the few things that organized recycling in St. John's entails) are sorted, and we'll soon have a pile of clothing to donate to a charity. It's earnest, I guess ... and not the easiest thing to do.
Coincidentally, Andres, my wife's Manhattan-based cousin, pointed me on Thursday about a fellow New Yorker who's putting the recycling bit to shame. No Impact Man is a blog that documents he and his family's effort to go a year with no negative effect on the environment. As the author, Colin Beavan, wrote in an op-ed in the New York Times this week:
This means we’ll get as close as we can to creating no trash (so no takeout), emitting no carbon dioxide (so no driving or flying) and pouring no toxins in the water (so no laundry detergent), as well as mitigating impacts we can’t avoid (so planting trees). Not to mention: no elevators, subways, buying products in packaging, plastics, air-conditioning, TV or toilet paper.
Jeepers. There are some things I'll do - I save kitchen scraps year-round for composting, which in the winter months means, because indoor worms are not an option if I want to keep my marriage intact, stocking dozens of containers outside my back door till the snow melts a bit more - but that's a tall order. (Although I'm pretty sure I could go a year without subways, and maybe even elevators.) Interesting premise for a blog; no wonder there's a book deal and possible movie already in the wings.
Sam Javanrouh sees Toronto through the eyes of a newcomer to Canada; his Daily Dose of Imagery blog is well worth a visit. The above shot is a sample of a slideshow on CBC.ca in which Javanrouh describes his photo blog and what draws his eye. It runs about three minutes. Check the slideshow out here.
Dot Dot Dot is Morse code for the letter 'S,' the full message Guglielmo Marconi claimed to have received atop Signal Hill in St. John's in 1901. It ushered in the age of telecommunications. My maternal grandfather worked as a telegraph operator for Canadian Marconi on Signal Hill for many years.
As well, I have a habit of overusing the ellipsis when I write ... as frequent readers might notice.