Monday, April 13, 2009

Russian Journalism In The "Shadow Of Death"

I recently read a story ran by The Observer called “Journalism in the shadow of death and Putin.” The article centers on the Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta and how the journalists working there have dealt with the deaths of their comrades. This paper is the “last major publication consistently critical of Kremlin power,” and they continue to condemn the workings of their government even as their colleagues fall prey to attack.
In my opinion, what they do at Novaya Gazeta is very admirable. They face a realized danger in the form of lethal censorship from a fascist government, yet they trudge on. They’re brave men and women fighting for the spirit of journalism.
It’s unsettling this paper is the only major newspaper or mass medium striving for truth in the whole country, and I find it odd they’re allowed to continue operating. It is fortunate they have been able to function in such a situation, and I think it is amusing the paper is used by the government to both fight the charge of a lack of freedom of speech in Russia and for competing factions to gather info on each other.

“Journalism in the shadow of death and Putin”

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Arming Tanker Crews In The Face Of Piracy

I just read an article on the New York Times website titled “Rescue Fuels Debate Over Arming Crews.” The article refers to the rash of piracy off the coast of Somalia that has been taking place in the past year, and it questions whether or not tanker crews should be allowed to arm themselves in the face of increasing threats on the seas.
I have to say the article raises some valid points. It says “most ports severely restrict vessels from having any weapons,” and it mentions the U.S. Coast Guard has qualms as well, saying the arms could be used for terrorism. I think it would be difficult for a slow-moving tanker to offload and take on arms between the several stops they make, but with the panic buttons that have been installed in commercial vessels, it would be difficult for a group of terrorists to dock a tanker without port authorities already knowing of their presence.
The article also says an increase of patrols combined with other preventative actions curbed piracy near Indonesia in the 1990s. That would probably be the most effective action without further endangering the lives of tanker crewmen forced to defend themselves and their employers’ cargo.

"Rescue Fuels Debate Over Arming Crews"

The Most Powerful Blogs

A little over a year ago, posted an article titled “The world’s 50 most powerful blogs,” and as the name suggests, it is a list of 50 blogs believed to be the most “powerful.”
The list, if anything, was very eye-opening. A very large bulk of the sites listed I had never heard of and did not know there was a market for. I think it’s pretty neat that some of these bloggers were able to mold businesses from their passions to make a living for themselves.
Personally, I’d like to know what the grading criteria were for the selection of the blogs, though. I didn’t notice an explanation, but within the summaries of each respective blog was a list of its merits or, at least, a description of why the blog was on the list. I suppose I just don’t understand why the list is in the order it’s in. Sure, I agree The Huffington Post should be at or near the top, but what gave Angry Black Bitch the edge over Stylebubble?

"The world's 50 most powerful blogs"