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Scripting News, the weblog started in 1997 that bootstrapped the blogging revolution.

Vlogging comes to mass murder Permanent link to this item in the archive.

A picture named cho.jpgThe Virginia Tech shooter sent a package of video and pictures to NBC.

In other words, vlogging comes to mass murder, in ways no one anticipated (or no one I know).

It makes perfect sense, in a perfectly senseless way.

He sent the package in the 2 hours between the first and final killings.

Note: I took this post down for a few hours this afternoon because it wasn't clear what was in the package, and if it would be released. We're watching it on MSNBC now. It's amazing stuff. The videos are Quicktime files.

NBC should release all of the videos in Quicktime form as downloads. It's wrong to withhold them.

They're sifting through them and deciding what to release and what not to release.

It's 2007, and it's a decentralized world. We should all get a chance to see what's on those videos.

GIven enough time the focus will go on their process, much better to just let it all out now, with no editorial judgement.

If you have contacts in the blogging world or MSM that could influence NBC's decision, please pass this on.

A picture named envelope.jpg

Micah Sifry: "There's no obligation to put it all out there..."

NY Times: Package Forced NBC to Make Tough Decisions.

Xeni Jardin at Boing Boing is chronicling the release (or lack) of the Cho "multimedia manifesto."

Via email, Doc Searls nails a bunch of angles on this:

"Cho sent those recordings to a major broadcast network. Not to the police, not to other individuals. (Far as we know.) Clearly he wanted his recordings broadcast -- after the deeds were done, and he was dead as well.

"We don't know if he thought about uploading them to YouTube. But, since he planned to fill the rest of his morning with murder, it's likely that he didn't want to post his plans on the Live Web -- where somebody might see it and get authorities to stop him. So he opted instead for snail mail and a big bang later on the small screen. YouTube would come, inevitably, later.

"From what I gather, the police have seen and cleared the recordings for disclosure. So, presumably, there is no reason to protect anybody (for example, individuals Cho may have targeted for murder) other than broadcast viewers. (This is required by law, fwiw.)

"So I think Dave is right. If there is nothing to hide here, other than obscenities that cannot be broadcast on TV or radio, there is no reason why NBC should withhold the recordings other than the belief that they own them, and hold them as property. That's their right; but it does not help the rest of us get clues that might help prevent another tragedy like this one.

"And this tragedy isn't just about Cho and NBC. It's about the rest of us.

"So I agree with Dave. More eyes will make the this bug shallower. It may save lives. Even if we see a zillion mashups of the original video, which we'll see eventually anyway."

Best online bank? Permanent link to this item in the archive.

A couple of years ago when I started using my bank's online system to pay bills, I was in awe. How much easier and faster it was than paying bills by hand. What used to be a chore that I put off and as a result paid late fees, and my credit rating suffered, had become a pleasure. My queue of unpaid bills was never very deep or very old.

A picture named donquixote.gifNow the thrill is wearing off, I'm a homeowner with a mortgage, and a business owner, which means I have two checking accounts and all of a sudden my bank's online system isn't working so well. Things that would be easy if the software were designed by Google or Yahoo isn't so easy. For example, I have to use two browsers, one set up to pay bills from my personal account and the other to pay from my business account. I haven't been able to figure out how to choose an account any other way. I've tried repeatedly to convince the bank that I don't live in Massachusetts, but there are all these replicated copies of my address in their system, and they keep presenting the wrong address as the default.

So I decided to check out Consumer Reports on this subject (you must be a member for that link to work) and they don't yet rate banks based on their websites. I suspect this will change soon.

Anyway, I thought I'd ask you to share your experiences. You don't have to name the bank if you'd rather not for security purposes (as I am) or you can use a fake name so you can name the bank without risk. I'm just interested in getting an idea if my experience is bad or typical or good, for 2007.

Today's links Permanent link to this item in the archive.

Fantastic rendition of My Generation.

New coffee maker. Key feature: hot coffee.

A YouTube group for OPML users.

Dvorak on the Web 2.0 Expo.

Andy Carvin: "Virginia Tech's students are about as wired as any other school, with laptops everywhere and cell phones close to ubiquitous."

CNN: "Insurgent bombers launched a series of attacks across Baghdad on Wednesday and killed at least 171 people and wounded scores -- a particularly violent day in a bloody capital city enduring sectarian warfare and an aggressive government crackdown against insurgents."

NPR segment on a blogger's code of conduct.

Republican rhetoric Permanent link to this item in the archive.

The BS you hear from Republicans on radio, TV and in print would never play if it were repeated in an offline political discussion between citizens. With a majority favoring withdrawal from Iraq, even though the President is against it (which indicates a fairly strong conviction, imho), you can't get away with the kind of idiocy that Vice-President Cheney said in his Face The Nation interview last Sunday with Bob Schieffer, who patiently put up with it because it's his job to.

The Republicans repeatedly say the consequences of withdrawal is failure in Iraq. Which is easily pushed aside. We've already failed, and you're right, the consequences suck. What now?

Last night on Countdown, Olbermann asked the same questions I asked here yesterday, although much more politely. Why are the lives of the Virginia Tech students any more precious than the lives of our soldiers in Iraq, and please explain to me why they're more precious than the lives of Iraqi children, some much younger and more helpless than the Virginia students. They aren't. A life is a life, all are equal. And as Olbermann pointed out, the deaths in Iraq are more preventable than those from a random act of violence.

I had a radical idea watching a debate on TV about the war, between a Republican and a Democrat. Maybe now it's time to have some discussions of the future without the Republicans. They drop the level of discourse to the lowest level I've ever seen, and these days it's all about covering their ass for the disastrous things they've done to this country, and the rest of the world. Maybe it's time to stop giving them equal time so we can get on with fixing the mess they created and stop debating why they're not to blame.

No, you don't get it! Permanent link to this item in the archive.

A while back I was being lectured, in a blog post, by a woman, about how sexist I am.

She explained that one way to tell you're being sexist is to reverse the genders in a story you tell, and sometimes the sexism reveals itself. Your prejudices about one gender are influencing you, and by switching them, you switch the bias around, and what was invisible before now is visible.

I knew about this, and agreed, it is an excellent way to see sexism or any kind of ism for that matter -- racism, ageism. For example in a TV commercial, a woman hits a man in the face, as a joke. Or turns the sprinkler on him. Or says he's so predictable, in a dumb way, because he likes black cars. Or doesn't remember something like an anniversary. We're supposed to laugh. But if we were getting physical that way with a woman, or being so condescending, it would evoke a completely different reaction.

The irony, is that if the person lecturing me were to flip genders in her own story, she'd probably see her own sexism. Would she lecture a woman the same way she was lecturing a man? Might she consider the possibility that the woman is smart, and might be offended by the assumption that she's not? Especially if the woman she's talking to is 20 years her senior? Basically it's always a mistake to assume you understand something that the other guy doesn't.

Another thing like that is the zealot's proclamation that You Don't Get It. Michael Gartenberg indulges in that today. As with my sexism teacher, the danger in saying that about someone else is that it likely applies to you as well. Michael has no idea what I get or don't get. In fact he's basing his conclusion on old data. I've refined my position. Even so, I haven't used it once so maybe I have to refine it again.


Last update: Wednesday, April 18, 2007 at 9:35 PM Pacific.

Dave Winer, 51, pioneered the development of weblogs, syndication (RSS), podcasting, outlining, and web content management software; former contributing editor at Wired Magazine, research fellow at Harvard Law School, entrepreneur, and investor in web media companies. A native New Yorker, he received a Master's in Computer Science from the University of Wisconsin, a Bachelor's in Mathematics from Tulane University and currently lives in Berkeley, California.

"The protoblogger." - NY Times.

"The father of modern-day content distribution." - PC World.

"Helped popularize blogging, podcasting and RSS." - Time.

"RSS was born in 1997 out of the confluence of Dave Winer's 'Really Simple Syndication' technology, used to push out blog updates, and Netscape's 'Rich Site Summary', which allowed users to create custom Netscape home pages with regularly updated data flows." - Tim O'Reilly.

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Scripting News

On This Day In: 2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001 2000 1999 1998 1997.

April 2007
Mar   May

Things to revisit:

1.Microsoft patent acid test.
2.What is a weblog?
3.Advertising R.I.P.
4.How to embrace & extend.
5.Bubble Burst 2.0.
6.This I Believe.
7.Most RSS readers are wrong.
8.Who is Phil Jones?
9.Send them away.
10.Negotiate with users.
11.Preserving ideas.
12.Empire of the Air.
13.NPR speech.
14.Russo & Hale.
15.Trouble at the Chronicle.
15.RSS 2.0.
16.Checkbox News.
17.Spreadsheet calls over the Internet.
18.Twitter as coral reef.

Teller: "To discover is not merely to encounter, but to comprehend and reveal, to apprehend something new and true and deliver it to the world."

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