Dos and don’ts regarding Copyright Law for blogging

I love to blog about current events and interesting things in the news. I am mindful of the copyright laws however…here are two points that make the web a great viral environment for those who wish to pass on the latest news.
Copyright Law protects the expression of facts and ideas by bloggers. We are free to use facts and ideas reported on articles or websites. The Copyright Act also defines that short quotations for the purpose of criticism, commentary or news reporting are considered “fair use”.

I have been criticized a bit about my blogs on Hallmark and OnStar…both stories all over the news but because my blog was written for purpose of criticism and commentary I think I exercised “fair use” of the facts.

One more “comment” on Hallmark…last night Conan spoke about how depressing it was to have “recession” cards…but the really depressing part was that the cards were made in China.

Andy Rooney’s Last Show on 60 Minutes

Sunday will be Andy Rooney’s last regular appearance on “60 Minutes,” CBS News announced Tuesday. Rooney, 92, will deliver his 1,097th original essay for the broadcast and then make the announcement.

The show will feature a segment with Morley Safer interviewing Rooney and will reflect on the award-winning career of the writer, essayist and commentator, according to a press release from the network.

“There’s nobody like Andy, and there never will be. He’ll hate hearing this, but he’s an American original,” CBS News Chairman Jeff Fager said. I certainly agree and will miss his take on things.

Rooney’s commentaries and essays have been featured on “60 Minutes” since 1978; he joined CBS in 1949 as a writer for “Arthur Godfrey’s Talent Scouts.”

He attended Colgate University until he was drafted into the Army in 1941. In February 1943, he was one of six correspondents who flew with the 8th Air Force on the first American bombing raid over Germany. Last year, Rooney received the Overseas Press Club of America President’s Award for these reports.

The new Facebook changes and what they mean for Business and Fans

Ordinary people and small businesses using Facebook are going to have to come to grips with two new terms after the big announcements Mark Zuckerberg made yesterday, the Facebook Developer conference.

The first is “self-expression,” which means your friends will know a lot more about what you read, what music you listen to, and even what you cook. The second is “serendipity,” which means if you see a friend of yours has watched a movie on Netflix, you can click on that app in your timeline and begin watching it immediately from within the app.

This could lead to a great deal of inadvertent “over-sharing”, especially if you use Facebook for business, or if you are not a student of how it evolves. It is always evolving into a platform for sharing more of your life, never less. Facebook’s newest idea is to make its platform a 21st century form of scrap-booking, and to help you “scrapbook” your entire life “frictionlessly.” I must say it will be beautiful, compared to the old Facebook. It looks like a Tumblr blog.

Here are some fast and easy tips on how to make the most of the new features and not fall into unexpected traps. 

As CTO Brett Taylor says, “when you change from the current profile view to the Timeline, you forget how much stuff is there.” That can work for or against you. We’re used to burying much of the past on Facebook and hoping it went away. Now it’s all going to be very retrievable, by anyone you friend.
In the next few weeks, you are going to get an entire new interface that will convert your life into a timeline. That timeline will have photos, updates, and a new set of “OpenGraph” apps.  While in the past, you could authorize apps and nothing might happen that you didn’t expect, that’s no longer going to be true.

Much more “passive sharing” will now be possible. Be careful what apps you authorize, because by default, much of what you do on Facebook with apps, or even outside Facebook with Netflix and Spotify, and Facebook’s other integrated partners, will be shared auto-magically. Once you add an app to your timeline, you don’t have to give it permission to add stuff to your feed: “Adding an app to your timeline is like wiring a real-time connection between your app and Facebook…There is no step two,” says Taylor.

Third, you will be encouraged by the new interface to make Facebook your permanent home on the internet, which means the “walled garden” is pulling more partners in, rather than helping you get out to the wider world. So if you are a business, and you have a Facebook presence, you are going to need a much broader Facebook marketing strategy in order to find your new customers solely within the Facebook platform.

The good news is that 800,000,000 people from all over the world are now on Facebook. The bad news is that creates a lot of noise, and doesn’t necessarily help you reach the “right” people, especially since Facebook search is notoriously inferior.

Facebook’s new design is based on better data visualization. The bad news is that all that data is probably better for Facebook’s advertisers than for you. Remember that as long as you do not pay for Facebook, you are the product, not the customer. That’s why when you complain, Mark Zuckerberg often ignores you. 

The Beta test of Timeline starts today, and with it, the common news apps that you might want to see. You can sign up for it if you are an early adopter. Just click on the Timeline Facebook page. If you don’t want to be rushed into anything, stand back, but watch out–it’s all coming soon to a neighborhood near you in the next few weeks.

The takeaways?
Be careful who you friend.
Carefully explore your privacy settings and make sure you understand them.
Think twice about adding apps

Senna The Movie

Senna is a marvelous, gripping, emotional piece of documentary filmmaking. You must go see this movie.

I knew quite a lot about Senna because I was lucky enough to be selected to film a commercial for Goodyear tires years ago…we had full access to Senna and his team to show how the technology that Goodyear used on the F1 track was transferred to the family car. Tall task for sure but off I went with little or no knowledge of F1, directly to Imola, Italy for a week of immersion into the lives of a Formula One driver and his team.

Even after that experience I still didn’t know much about Ayrton Senna’s life and career before watching the film. I know that he was perhaps the greatest driver ever – not just of his era, but ever – and his life was cut short ironically one year exactly after my week with the team and even more ironic at the exact same track.

When Senna begins, most of its viewers already know how it ends: With the life of Ayrton Senna, one of the greatest race car drivers ever to walk the planet, suddenly and tragically killed in a racing accident.

So it was with a sense of foreboding and slight apprehension that I settled in to watch a documentary which has already created worldwide buzz and been a success at the European box office.

I forgot all about the ending because I was quickly drawn into the images and excitement and joy of Senna’s vibrant life, fascinated by his love and passion for racing and excellence. 
In many ways, the film was an education. And it certainly serves that purpose. But even for longtime Formula One fans who adored Senna or simply followed his career closely, there are many new things to see.

Senna is packed with rare footage dug up from Bernie Ecclestone’s F1 archives. The filmmakers had unprecedented and unlimited access to thousands of hours of film as well as video from the Senna family’s private collection.

The director Asif Kapadia never needed the viewers to take their eyes off Senna for even one second. Most documentaries lean on showing us modern-day interviews to fill the gaps between the archived footage; in Senna, though, we only hear the voices of the interview subjects as the film keeps rolling with shot after shot of the fascinating Brazillian.

Even though nothing was scripted it has all the elements that make a great blockbuster movie: Tension. Action. Conflict. Joy. Tragedy…the film is very, very real…a fact we’re reminded of when Senna’s demise eventually arrives .

Don’t miss Senna. The film does justice to the greatness of the man himself and the sport of Formula One.

Does Chaz Bono being on “Dancing With the Stars” bother you?

I expected controversy and a huge outcry following Chaz Bono’s Dancing With The Stars selection, but the heated public debate is showing no signs of waning. I am watching HLN now with a panel discussing the subject…one of dozens of shows tackling the topic.

For the first time, the man himself spoke out, admitting the naysayers have only strengthened his resolve to continue with the competition. “It’s made me realize I’m really glad I’m doing this, because America really needs to see this,” he said. His mother Cher has taken to Twitter to defend Chaz numerous times over the past few days.

According to ABC much of the resistance has come from One Million Moms, a Christian public interest group,wrote in their blog that Dancing With The Stars is providing “visibility for the LGBT community”.

Here’s an excerpt from the essay…
“Some families have already decided against watching Dancing with the Stars because of the skimpy costumes and provocative dance routines, but now they have gone too far! This year, not only are they casting Carson Kressley from Carson-Nation, Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, and How to Look Good Naked, but also transgender Chaz Bono- child to Sonny and Cher- from the documentary Becoming Chaz will be appearing in the show. Both are LGBT rights advocates and promote this destructive lifestyle.”

It is truly incredible the amount of time and energy people spending hating. Do television and the media have some impact on children? I think it’s fair to say they do, but what effect they do have pales in comparison to the influence parents have over kids.

Dancing With The Stars will not turn anyone gay, nor has any other show convinced someone to change gender or sexual preference. I support ABC’s right to cast Chaz Bono, obviously it is good for ratings. My view is simple, if you are uncomfortable with the show…don’t watch it.. What do you think? Does his casting bother you?

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