Monthly Archives: February 2013

Here is a post I wrote a year ago about my experience interacting with a paper mill.

business government society 2

As you know, we have been doing short vignettes-“What Would You Do?”-all semester.  A survey sent to BU faulty about “dishonesty among students” got me thinking about the ability to buy papers on the Internet.  I surfed to .  The following transcript is verbatim.  I only changed the name of the customer service rep a I worried she would potentially face some retribution.

Interesting points:

  • The company claims they sell papers to be guides only.  I did not see the disclaimer anywhere.
  • The cost to do my white paper assignment seemed around $425.
  • Maria thought it was sad how many “lazy” students would use the service, but she seemed to suggest it was more acceptable for students also working or with other extenuating circumstances.
  • I posed as a student for awhile.
  • I left spelling errors in for accuracy.

Now online: Please leave your question here and one of our agents will attend to…

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Ideas for Questions and Themes for Arianna Huffington

Today, as part of the tech/no Forum series at Bucknell, we are hosting Arianna Huffington.  I had imagine I would do some deep research on her background, her role as founder of HuffingtonPost, her role as CEO of the merged AOL-Huffington company  her ideas on the relationship between media, democracy, and profit, the death (?) of the newspaper, and so on.

Well, that didn’t happen.

Instead, I’ll have to generate some from what I have in my head (as opposed to research-based).

If you are coming to the afternoon session, feel free to read these, use these, modify these, and so on.

Business and Technology

* Is the content-for-eyeballs formula of the Internet dying?  Are advertisers not willing to pay?

* Are we at the end of an innovation burst as the Internet and mobile platforms are merging?  Is the heady period of “social media” and its rapid expansion done?

* Who are HP’s or AOL’s competitors?

Media and Profit

* Is it the responsibility of the media company to provide what “customers” want or what they need?  Does a media/news company create its own demand and then project that onto the audience.  “See, they want _____________ (tits, blood, murders, horse-race politics)?” Continue reading

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Filed under Business, economics, Future of Technology, higher education, Information and Communication Technology, innovation, Media, Network Society, Politics, Power, Activism, Social Networks, sociology, technology, Technology history

Teach for America’s hidden curriculum

Teach for America’s hidden curriculum – Need to finish reading this. I still don’t see enough of teacher unions working on good reform .

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Filed under activism, equality, Media, Protest

The Schedule Rules- Schedule Reform Ideas for Higher Education (Bucknell)

I have a conflict.  I can’t go.  I have a meeting.  I have to be with my kids.

Read on to take the poll!

These are the various reason why students, staff, and others can not come to various worthy events at Bucknell.  For example, Tuesday nights are the one day without classes at night (lol except Friday, Saturday, and Sunday).  So the Bucknell Forum, as well as others, use Tuesday as the ideal night for these events.  Guess what?  It is also when students schedule their various clubs and organizations including the powerful Greek orgs.

At the same time, I have ahd students avoid 4-5 or 02-5 commitments because of sports practices or games/events.

Meanwhile, no one likes 8 a.m. classes.

And, most weeks there are 2-3 events which I would like to participate in but can’t because they are in the 7-9 at night window when I am with my family.

The schedule rules.  It is not sexy.  It is not “cool” like smart boards in classrooms, service-learning, or student-led expeditions to tag pythons for an ecology class.  However, I suggest that in terms of making life better AND using current resources better (as in more attendance at more events), the schedule is the most over-looked and also most urgent area of reform.

I have imagined various STRUCTURAL changes to the schedule which might help lessen some of these inherent conflicts.   Continue reading


Filed under higher education, liberal arts, Org Design, Uncategorized

Rule 34 and a Sociological Variant

A random email string with a colleague/friend brought up rule 34.

I am embarrassed I did not know it.  So true… prompted the following riff…

LOL.  Didn’t know rule 34, but once, in jest, said to [names omitted to protect the innocent] something about Darth Vader fetish.  And one google search later…. oh my….

Definitely true.

 I have a more sociological variation on Rule 34 which is that anywhere in human history or cultures or societies, people screw each other- in other words, if we had full genetic histories of all people and groups, we would see none are as pure as any thinks they are.  African-Americans are a clear example, but it goes the other way too.  I make “white” people annoyed sometimes that pointing out that any non-Jew with tight curly hair probably had an ancestor who “passed.”  This is part of my larger interest in smashing these ideas that social groups are in any existential way, or biological, “real” becauce they actually have more internal variation than they do between groups.  Celebrating custom and all is great.  Just don’t assume anything about purity of the group as the basis for its existence.  
In Spain, the jews, moors, celts, Romans were all rolling in the hay.    
In Ireland, in the Balkans, in India (castes), whatever.  
There is some theory I heard once that Colulmbus’ sailors were all like a weird Mediterranean mixing bowl of  Moorish, Jewish, and African and that they may have ALREADY known about the Americas.  Ok, can’t find any Internet confirmation of this one… bad memory?
The general point holds: people screw around undermining any claims of pure groups.  if there are different groups of people living in proximity, no matter the  amount of taboo, racism, ethnocentrism, any-other-ism, sex happens (and I am not belittling assault here).  

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End Applause at SOTU Speech

Through BeyondPod, I can get the official White House feed of speeches.  That is more political geek than CSPAN.  Still, I wish that someone could pass a law banning applause during the SOTU until the very end.  It is SO tedious to listen to.

Brad Tuttle, in this 2010 blog post, counted 18 minutes (!) of applause in that SOTU.

Maybe the White House could start an online petition center to allow this kind of pressing issue to be aired.

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Filed under humor, life, Politics, Power, Activism

Protests, Political Art, Democracy, Social Change

.....Catania: la fiera
Thälmann, die Dienstleistung...luchando"Sexistische Kackscheiße"USMCEstif!"Snoballer" Stencil 2013
(detail)Entarteter Löwe  by Jan Theuninck1000 chômeurs de plusHafencity - Drachen"Man of the day"glorious light
Ubahncheck checkInauguration: Woman, Self-PortraitBerlin 6.02.2013 Hausdurchsuchung Protokoll   IMG_7211Berlin 6.02.2013 Hausdurchsuchung Protokoll   IMG_7210Berlin 6.02.2013 Hausdurchsuchung Protokoll   IMG_7209

Great Gallery

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Carrots to Pull (veggie variation)

There are bigger carrots to pull.  I propose this as an alternative to “bigger fish to fry.”

I was writing to a colleague, who is a committed vegetarian, and wanted to write,

“There are more important fish to fry.”

That didn’t seem right.  So I suggested “there are bigger carrots to pull.”  Same idea.  More palatable to the non-carnivores out there.

Good phrase?

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Shades of Grey meaning subtlety not sex

I can’t say “shades of grey” anymore thanks to that annoying book.  I’m looking at you EL James.

Can we sue her for changing the language and the connotations of an idiom?


Filed under humor, writing

Your Friends Know You Better

Funny, odd, touching chat with an old and dear friend….


how are you?
 me:  today good.  Overall, pent up ambition of 20 years trying to fit through the small nozzle of what can be done….
friend:  have you ever seen a sea horse penis?
 me:  ?? auto correct damn you?
are you getting fresh with me?
Friend:  i imagine your flow is something like that
 me:  oh…
that is a touching and icky compliment
LOL- later- I think he meant cuz the male carries the eggs…  and is “impregnated” by the female…
"Two sea horses mating"

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