Time Out New York Goes Open Access

Posted in NYC on August 16th 2003 by Randy Reichardt

:: I have subscribed to Time Out New York since Feb 1999. Although it consistently arrives 3-6 weeks late in my mailbox, there are always articles and news of interest to me within each issue. Its late arrival would prevent me from using it as a guide to NYC for that week of publication, but I don’t live there, so it doesn’t matter.

TONY has created an online archive of their past issues, and begun posting the contents of each issue one month after publication – a brilliant move, and one that supports the concept of open access, to some degree anyway. In TONY’s case, it makes sense: consider that the “current event info” in each issue of TONY is good for that week only. Once the week is over, the events are in the past, and the need to refer to and use that particular issue of the magazine as as such is over. However, the articles do not (necessarily) outdate themselves.

Issue 406, 10-17 July, has (at least) three fascinating pieces.

    1) What’s eating Sean Penn? is a fascinating interview with this brilliant actor. To answer the question: “Plenty. The “heartbroken and angry” father talks about fear, terrorism and what fueled his segment of the film September 11.”

    2) Weapons of Mass Communication details the frightening grip of Clear Channel, a media conglomerate based in San Antonio TX that, within its growing empire, owns or operates 1,248 US radio stations, and promotes ~25,000 concerts, sporting events and stage shows, many of them in 41 amphitheaters it owns (not The Gorge, however – that belongs to the House of Blues.) Clear Channel’s presence in NYC is strong, although not everyone on the street knows about the long reach of CC.

    3) Friendster or foe? Friendster is an online social network that allows people to meet each other via their friends and contacts who are already in Friendster. To join you need to be invited. A friend in NYC invited me to join, then another in Edmonton as well. Through three friends, I’m “connected” to 124,938 people as of today. No, I haven’t met any of them. The article notes that Friendster began as a more discriminating alternative to online dating sites, but has grown to over 750,000 users in 200 countries, with 50,000 users in NYC alone. The idea of the site is that you meet new people on the word of a friend, who might almost function as a virtual chaparone. A feature on Friendster appeared in July 2003 in Wired.

:: Next weekend I hope to be in Calgary to attend The Blues and Roots Festival, and see, among others, Los Lobos and Solomon Burke.

Spam by numbers

Posted in Internet on August 15th 2003 by Randy Reichardt

:: The document described in the entry below, from the current issue of The Scout Report, details the destructive power of Spam. We all hate spam.

Spam by Numbers [pdf]

    Facts about the disturbing trend of spam exceeding valid email have appeared regularly in a variety of news sources, but this document goes one step further to demonstrate the seriousness of the problem. Published by the ePrivacy Group in June 2003, it shows that spam is not simply a nuisance; it is a surprisingly expensive problem that can reduce Internet bandwidth and adversely affect people’s productivity. After perusing the five pages of remarkable percentages, dollar amounts, and other figures, readers can find much more information about spam at the ePrivacy Group’s homepage.

Power Failure

Posted in NYC on August 15th 2003 by Randy Reichardt

:: The power failure on the eastern seaboard, through to Detroit and Toronto, is incredible. How could this happen in 2003? Check out the photos on The Gothamist for a peek at life in NYC this afternoon.

A moblog (mobile blog) is up already, with photos from various blacked out areas. See my NYC page for links to other NYC media.

Nine months after the Great Blackout on November 9-10, 1965, in the same area (NE USA and Ontario), the number of babies born in the region was higher than normal. Was the blackout the cause?

The Ides of March – The Man-Pop Festival

Posted in Music on August 14th 2003 by Randy Reichardt

:: When I was in high school some 32 years ago, I played lead guitar in a rock band called Ram. (The Paul McCartney album of the same name appeared some months afterwards, btw.) We were an eleven-piece band: bass, drums, 2 lead singers, 2 guitarists, Hammond organ, and saxophone, trombone and two trumpets. The first song we learned to play was “Vehicle“, by the Chicago-based group, The Ides of March. Now Rhino Handmade has issued “The Ides Of March – Friendly Strangers: The Warner Bros. Recordings“, a limited edition release of 2,500 numbered copies.

From the above web site are these words: The Ides spent most of 1970 on the road, opening for Led Zeppelin, Janis Joplin, and Iron Butterfly (one entertainment headline read “Ides Of March Steal The Show” after an off night for Zeppelin). I can report that I saw The Ides of March play on that tour, sans Joplin, but with The Youngbloods, led by Jesse Colin Young, on August 29, 1970, in Winnipeg, at what was called the Man-Pop Festival.

The festival began in the Winnipeg Stadium earlier that day, but rain forced 18,000 of us into the Winnipeg Arena – a decision made behind the scenes so as to allow the concert to continue. Imagine the sound technicians having to move the equipment in the rain from the stadium into the arena on a few minutes notice! I still am in awe of how they did it. I was 18 at the time. I can’t remember how it was that we didn’t trample each other trying to get into the arena. I remember ending up sitting in a chair on the arena floor, watching (in order): The Youngbloods, The Ides of March, Iron Butterfly, and Led Zeppelin. Tickets were $5.50, and if we turned in a receipt or something, we got a dollar back.

I don’t remember much about the show. I recall that after moving into the arena, The Youngbloods almost put the audience to sleep. Remember: “C’mon people now, smile on your brother, everybody get together, try to love one another, right now.. ” A great tune, but gentle country rock wasn’t what we needed right then and there. The Ides followed, and rocked out the arena. I remember Led Zeppelin coming on around 2:00 am, opening with “Immigrant Song” (which no one knew, as their third album had yet to appear), and moving right into “Heartbreaker“, which we all knew at that time – a big FM hit from LZ II.

When the show was over, around 4:00 am, we left the arena, not sure how we’d get home, only to find dozens of Winnipeg Transit buses waiting to take us home.

Edmonton Folk Music Festival Redux

Posted in Music on August 14th 2003 by Randy Reichardt

:: What follows are my observations from attending and volunteering at the 24th Edmonton Folk Music Festival this past weekend. I apologize for continuing confusion regarding previous posts on PBD.
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Blogospherics: Whither the weblog?

Posted in Blogging on August 13th 2003 by Randy Reichardt

:: From Blogcritics comes word about a review by Mark Bernstein of Rebecca Blood’s book, The Weblog Handbook. Read “A Romantic View of Weblogs” for an different view of why people blog. I read Blood’s book last year, and found it a valuable resource with which to begin a blogging experience.

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