Monday, April 21, 2014

Internet Wading for April – Tittynope

These Internet Wading posts are a home for the leftovers, the bits and pieces that never become published posts. They are blogging tittynopes.

That’s a real word, one I’d never heard until Roger Green shared it. Which is as good a place as any to start this month’s wading, since I basically copied the idea for these posts from him.

Fist up, and oldest leftover, Lambda Legal has a map where people can “check any state to learn more about its legal protections for LGBT people and their families” in the areas of “Marriage and Relationships” and “Workplace”. It’s the easiest way I’ve yet seen to check on the legal status of LGBT people in various US states.

Throughout the world, most of the resistance to the full legal equality for LGBT people comes from those with a conservative/fundamentalist religion, and the ABC (USA) programme This Week asked, “Are Evangelicals Out of Touch With Mainstream Views?” I would’ve thought the correct answer was, “DUH!”, considering their rapidly declining influence in the USA, but apparently the Evangelical leaders and activists see things differently. Who would’ve guessed?

Speaking of religion, Pew Research Center’s Religion & Public Life Project recently published their The Religious Diversity Index (RDI) listing the Religious Diversity Index Scores by Country. Users can click on the tables to re-sort them by any of the column titles.

It turns out that “the less Americans know about Ukraine’s location, the more they want U.S. to intervene.” Surprised? Me, neither.

A classicist said the quote from Virgil inscribed on the 9/11 Memorial in New York City is “shockingly inappropriate”. As Abraham Lincoln once said, you can’t trust everything you read on the Internet.

What about the future? The BBC presented a “Timeline of the far future” and drily notes, “There may be trouble ahead…” Yes, but interesting.

Speaking of reading things on the Internet, NZ Herald reporter David Fisher (who I kind of know in real life) published an opinion piece, “Life is meant for living, not tweeting”, in which “he explains why he's become a Twitter quitter.” I was sorry to see him go: He and I had had quite a few interesting and/or amusing exchanges in the time he was on Twitter. I think David lays out what in my opinion are legitimate reasons for the move. I think Twitter (like Facebook) is most useful when used the least, and when it’s used for a reason, not mere entertainment, nor to cause trouble. But, that’s me.

Something else that gave me pause was “Completely Surreal Photos Of America’s Abandoned Malls”. They said of it, “An inside look at nine abandoned malls. There is nothing creepier and more fascinating.” I think that’s a fair assessment. About the same time, I saw a bunch of commentary about the “de-malling” of the US, but most of that wasn’t nearly as interesting as the photos.

Speaking of the past, I was intrigued by “Blast from the past: Teacher mails letters students wrote themselves 20 years ago”. It was a story about a 72-year-old retired teacher from Saskatchewan. For some 25 years, he required his 14-year-old English students to write 10-page letters to their future selves. Then, after 20 years, he started mailing them to the students he was able to track down. I’d say about this, too, that “there is nothing creepier and more fascinating”, but I have old diaries I can always read, and that’s not usually creepy.

Speaking of old things that are new again, there are apparently “129 movie sequels currently in the works”. This is the longest list that Den Of Geek has ever complied. They wondered, is this: “a sign of the times? It may just be.”

And, I suppose, each of these Internet Wading posts is a sequel to the one before it. Or, maybe it’s just a tittynope. In either case, maybe it’s time to stop wading and dry off for this month.

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