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Monday, June 28, 2010

Oscar Grant, Johannes Mehserle case graffiti around Oakland Lake Merritt

As the Oscar Grant / Johannes Mehserle murder trial nears and end and fears that former BART Police Officer Johannes Mehserle increase, the fears that a riot, or series of riots, will happen in Oakland, Los Angeles, and other cities and towns in California increase, and for good reason. There are clear and visible signs that individuals and groups will take some kind of action that could include violence and property damage, and nowhere is this more apparent than around Lake Merritt in Oakland.   There, property damage has already happened.

This video blogger received a tip from a YouTube viewer:

Not sure if you're aware, but there is graffiti in red spray paint throughout the running/walking path in Lake Merritt regarding Oscar Grant and Johannes Mesherle, just thought you may want to possibly cover it, and the peoples reactions while viewing it.

Take Care

On Sunday, I did just that. My vlogging (video-blogging) journey started with a message painted in red spray paint at the AC Transit bus shelter at the intersection of Perkins Avenue and Grand Avenue in Oakland's Adams Point District. The message read "Mehserle must die too!" and seemed to imply there was at least one more graffiti tag like it around somewhere. So, I went for a walk.

At first, as I arrived at Bellevue and Grand closer to Lake Merritt, there was no other graffitt tag message. So I continued along the walking and running path through Lakeside park until I arrived at what's locally called "The Columns," the structure on the northeastern shore of the Lake that serves an an informal meeting and viewing place between Grand Avenue and Lakeshore Avenue.

There, starting at the end of The Columns on the Grand Avenue side, was the first of three messages. It read "Mehserle must die." The other two are located in what I call the center court area, and at the opposite end of The Columns on the Lakeshore Avenue side.

But it graffiti tagging didn't stop there; it continued around the path next to the Lakeshore on the Lakeshore Avenue side of the water. The majority of the messages, which varied in tone from bad to awful, were next to the benches along the path.

In all I counted 11 messages, all in the video. A sure and clear sign that someone already took action to send a warning of what they either intend to do or wish someone else would do if the Oscar Grant trial ends with Mehserle going free.

The problem is Mehserle just may walk free.

The reason is the charge is murder, not manslaughter. The prosecution in the case has to prove that Johannes Mehserle intended to kill Oscar Grant last year. This is an issue I talked about with Oakland City Attorney John Russo just weeks ago. While not saying outright that Mehserle would "walk," Russo explained that it was going to be difficult to get a murder conviction.

If Johannes Mehserle is set free, Oakland's not going to be the safest place to be on the day of the verdict.

Stay tuned.

Friday, June 18, 2010

L.A. Lakers NBA Finals win causes riot: taxi cabs set on fire

The Los Angeles Lakers beat the Boston Celtics 83 to 79 in perhaps the most dramatic game in NBA Finals history. But even more dramatic was the after-game-seven celebration in LA, as riots broke out and taxi cabs were set on fire.

This video below, posted at CitizenTube.com, shows the scene just a reported two blocks from Staples Center where the NBA game was played:

According to The Associated Press, 38 people were arrested for "public intoxication, vandalism or inciting a riot."

Between that and the New York City rap riot, I wonder what's going on at times.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

NCAA USC punishment calls Pete Carroll move to Seahawks to question

The National Collegiate Athletic Association, via a source to ESPN, is set to announce that it is going to strip the University of Southern California or "USC" of the ability to play in a bowl game for two years, a forfeiture of wins at least from the 2004 season and possibility the loss of the 2004 National Championship. All of this after an investigation of activities in football and basketball, and related to former students Reggie Bush and O.J. Mayo, was completed.

The death blow to future USC success calls former USC Coach Pete Carroll's move to the NFL to coach the Seattle Seahawks into question, and casts a giant black cloud over all that Carroll did while he was at USC. At first, this blogger believed Carroll's departure was just because a 6 and 6 season and the criticism was too much to stomach...

But in light of the NCAA investigation and its decision to essentially destroy USC Football as we've known it, now it seems that Pete Carroll knew this was coming, even as he told Dan Patrick on The Dan Patrick Show that he "would be surprised" if the NCAA took any action.

Well, Pete Carroll has to express surprise now, but really also has a lot of explaining to do. This level of punishment is too great for Pete Carroll to avoid. He should talk about it, and soon. Indeed, he will have to at some point.

Pete Carroll and Charlie Weis (ESPN)

And one has to wonder what former Notre Dame Head Coach Charlie Weis thinks of this news. Weis famously implied that Pete Carroll gets a pass from the media, and dropped an allegation about Pete Carroll that he later retracted. But it's clear Pete Carroll has not been one of Charlie Weis favorite people because he thinks Weis got special treatment from the media.

Also, how does the NCAA action impact the 2010 Pac-10 race, which was already wide open? Does Cal or Stanford have an open shot at the Pac-10 title? Will the Cal Stanford Big Game finally have real meaning for the first time in years?

Stay tuned for updates.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Social Networking is really Social Broadcasting

Social Broadcasting
OK. To the view of this blogger, the term "Social Networking" is not only inappropriate, it's illogical. The correct term is really "Social Broadcasting" and if more people thought that way, they would understand how media has really changed over the last two decades and how to take advantage of the tools available to them.

Two events led to the use of the term Social Broadcasting for this blogger. First, on April 10, 2008, James Earl Buck used Twitter to get out of an Egyptian jail. What happened was that Buck, a University of California at Berkeley, or "Cal student", was in Mahalla, Egypt reportedly covering an anti-government protest when he and his colleague Mohammed Maree were arrested.

While being transported to jail, James Earl Buck used his cell phone to send a message that read "Arrested." (If it were me, I'd have sent a tweet rather than a message.) Eventually, bloggers and friends at Cal and around the World were activated. They got him a lawyer, and got him out of jail.

The second event is that a number of people, generally over 40 or 50 years of age, and for the most part in the advertising industry, ask why they should "do" social networking. They want to know why they should connect with people they do not know.

On Linkedin, the busines-oriented social broadcasting system, that question comes up so frequently it's become annoying. I give the same answer all the time: to get out a message. That's when I realized the reason many don't do social networking is because the very term itself is misleading. It's social broadcasting.

According to Wikipedia, the definition of "Broadcasting" is:

"..the distribution of audio and/or video signals which transmit programs to an audience. The audience may be the general public or a relatively large subset of the whole, such as children or young adults."

But that definition is outdated because it implies the use of electronic communications as practiced in the 20th Century with television and radio. The Internet changed all that, as websites and blogs, and mobile devices allow us to send text messages.

So, to that old definition of "broadcasting" one only has to add the word "text" to understand my point, so the definition now looks like this;

"..the distribution of text, audio and/or video signals which transmit programs to an audience. The audience may be the general public or a relatively large subset of the whole, such as children or young adults."

Think about that: "The audience may be the general public or a relatively large subset of the whole, such as children or young adults." It can also be your Facebook friends and Twitter followers or YouTube subscribers. Or all of them.

In my case, it's all of them. Zennie62 YouTube video distribution is done at times using Tubemogul, which permits me to upload one video to as many as eight different video distribution sites. Then the same video automatically goes to my Facebook, Friend Feed, and Twitter accounts. This is also true for Zennie62.com blog posts.

The distribution to my network of followers, friends, and subcribers is something I call my "horizontal broadcast network." Why? Because its "cross-platform," that is from Twitter to Friend Feed to Facebook and so on. Each one of those systems is a platform.

My "vertical broadcast network" is simply the number of people in that platform I have as friends, followers, or subscribers.

So by adding platforms you expand your network horizontally. By adding more people in each one you grow it vertically.

I use the Social Broadcasting System to get out information. My Facebook page is listed as for "networking." I'm not concerned about privacy issues on Facebook because there's nothing on it I don't want people to see. Many of my Facebook friends are people I have not met before. I'm using it for Social Broadcasting.  On Twitter, I practice "retweeting" which is just a way of passing on information from one broadcast network, or set of Twitter followers, to another - in this case, your own.

This is no different than the old newspaper distribution system of subscribers. In that case, one newspaper had so many subscribers. From the newspapers perspective, some knew the writers and publishers, but most did not.

But Social Broadcasting's cross-platform reach brings in the concept of going to a Twitter stream which is a lot like tuning into a radio station while driving. You can stay there or find another station. On Twiter, you can follow and unfollow with ease. That action alters the flow of information to you, and changes your broadcast reach as well.

Note that I did not mention who you should follow or friend. That's not the point, and marks the difference in thinking. The objective is to have a wide a reach as possible. Period.

You're in the broadcast business, like it or not, and for the simple reason that you can't perfectly control what anyone consumes that you chose to put out there.  If it's something that your friends, think is worth sharing with someone you don't know; you're plan of control is trashed. Once it's out, it's gone.

If you think about Social Networking as Social Broadcasting, then you see we're all really social broadcasters. And that's how media has changed and why Old Media suffers. Communications technology has caused millions of small media production efforts to spring up, if we consider cell phone and especially smart phones.

An advertiser can chose to sponsor a media effort with someone you and I never heard of just because of that person's reach. And that person may have just a computer, a blog, and a cell phone. Two decades ago, that was unheard of; ad money flowed to newspapers like The New York Times and The San Francisco Chronicle and The Chicago Tribune.

Not any more.

What, then, is the answer for The New York Times and The San Francisco Chronicle and The Chicago Tribune? To team up, or buy up, blogs and websites. That's the only way to expand the Old Media brand. Not one of the Old Media companies can make as many blogs that have the same impact as buying existing ones with set a audience Social Broadcasting base (because they're likely to have a Twitter account and YouTube accounts as well).

The other answer is to copy Associated Content, Examiner.com, and Gather.com, and add writers and pay them based on a traffic-based estimate.

Or perhaps the best approach for Old Media (The New York Times and The San Francisco Chronicle and The Chicago Tribune as examples is some combination of both.  

From the ad agency perspective, the idea that Social Networking doesn't work can be changed if the agency thinks of it as Social Broadcasting. Then the idea of "media buys" is much different and extends far beyond television and into not just blogs and websites, but someone's Twitter account too.

But even with all that, it's only a dent (but if played correctly a big one) in the total sea of media producers. Why? Because that set of people includes you and me, and the teenager with the cell phone who texts every minute about every thing, and uses Twitter to retweet any tweet on Justin Bieber.

We're all social broadcasters. We're just too busy thinking of social networking to see it.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Tila Tequila tries to commit suicide via "Jane" personality

From Tila Tequila's blog and Zennie62.com
Wow. Proving once again that she's a troubled soul, Reality TV Star Tila Tequila tried to commit suicide Friday, tweeting her actions and posting a photo. It's a sad story broke by Zennie62.com's Nikky Raney who blogs:

Tila Tequila's "alter ego" or "multiple personality" Jane tried to kill her.
We just found out that celebrity rehab was just postponed.
I know I said I wouldn't post anymore about her, but this was just too much.
I also have a vlog that I will be posting.
She also posted a long blog entry about how Jane is trying to kill her.

Tita Tequila's reported multiple personalities first surfaced during the assault accusation controversy with San Diego Chargers Linebacker Shawne Merriman last year.  Then, Tila Tequila was revealed in this space to be a person who has real mental problems, even posting a message on her website about her personalities and their behavior.

While such reports are easy to laugh at, in reality they're no laughing matter at all.  Nikky Raney posted the shocking text that Tila left just below the bloody photo you see above.  Here it is:

I don’t know what happened. People don’t believe I have multiple personalities but this morning the last thing I remember was falling asleep cuz I was so tired. I blacked out and now that I just woke up from excruciating pains all over my body, there was blood and dope everywhere! She is evil! She single handedly smashed and broke EVERYTHING in my bedroom! Both nightstands, the bed lights, all of the surround sound system, my tv boxes and there’s glass everywhere. There’s even chunks of meet coming out of my arm from the deep slits from her slicing up my arm from all the broken glass! My arm meet from inside is starting to bubble up and seep through the cuts. This is so fucked up. Now that I’m awake, she just left but I have no recollection of what happened to me. I’m just crying right now hiding in my toilet… my entire room is in shambles. All the new furniture is broken and glass all over the bed. I don’t know whats happening! =(

Little Tila"

Raney has the full account at Zennie62.com. Check it out.

And here's a wish that Tila gets the help she needs.

Stay tuned.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Stephen Hill: killer porn star called 'wacky guy' (like Rand Paul)

Stephen Hill
Steven Hill, the porn star who killed one person and stabbed two others at the Ultima DVD office and distribution center in Van Nuys, California, outside Los Angeles, California, on Wednesday, is said to be a "wacky guy" who was involved in an inappropriate act in a night club, according to an email tip sent to this blogger.

The email, posted in such a way as to protect the identify of the source, reads as follows:

...I saw your article on porn star killer, Stephen Hill, and just wanted too add my two cents (I've seen Stephen at different porn events). If he was going to be fired for inappropriate behavior, it had to be pretty bad, because porn company employees can get away with a great deal, especially if they also double as performers for company movies. I was at a night club party where Stephen was thrown out due to having sex acts performed on him publicly by a female in attendance. He was a wacky guy...I hope Stephen is caught soon!

Stephen Hill is a wacky guy, but a killer. And Stephen Hill's still at large and considered dangerous. Ultima DVD has a $2,000 arrest award out for Hill.

As of this writing, Hill has not been seen at large.

Stay tuned.

McDonalds Shrek glass recall: thank Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA)

Movie product tie-ins are common and many new products are aimed at kids. That's why the news of the McDonalds Shrek glass recall is so terrible. But first, thank the Office of Congresswoman Jackie Speier for the discovery of the problem.

According to the San Francisco Chronicle via the Associated Press, there were 12 million McDonalds Shrek glasses on the market: all of them must be recalled after a discovery by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.

The glasses are tainted with Cadmium, a carcinogen that can cause "long term adverse health effects." While that's in the recall notice, along with the news that the discovery came from the Office of Congresswoman Jackie Speier from California, that news is buried way down deep in in the Associated Press article.

The article also makes it seem as if the Consumer Product Safety Commission made the discovery. You have to read the entire, long work to see that it was Rep. Jackie Speier's office who made the find base on an anonymous tip. Spier issued this statement:

"Our children's health should not depend on the consciences of anonymous sources. Although McDonald's did the right thing by recalling these products, we need stronger testing standards to ensure that all children's products are proven safe before they hit the shelves," said Speier. "Cadmium is a toxic substance that is extremely dangerous to the developmental health of children."

Here's the text from the recall notice and the link to the web page containing it:

McDonald’s Recalls Movie Themed Drinking Glasses Due to Potential Cadmium Risk

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product. Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed. It is illegal to resell or attempt to resell a recalled consumer product.

Name of Product: “Shrek Forever After 3D” Collectable Drinking Glasses

Units: About 12 million

Manufacturer: ARC International, of Millville, NJ.

Distributor: McDonald’s Corp., Oakbrook, Ill.

Hazard: The designs on the glasses contain cadmium. Long term exposure to cadmium can cause adverse health effects.

Incidents/Injuries: None reported.

Description: The “Shrek Forever After 3D” collectable drinking glass are 16 ounce glasses that came in four designs, Shrek, Fiona, Puss n’ Boots, and Donkey.

Sold exclusively at: McDonald’s restaurants nationwide from May 2010 into June 2010 for about $2.

Manufactured in: United States

Remedy: McDonald’s is asking consumers to immediately stop using the glass out of an abundance of caution. Visit www.mcdonalds.com/glasses for additional instructions on how to obtain a full refund.

Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact McDonald’s toll-free at (800) 244-6227 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. CT Monday through Friday or visit the firm’s website at www.mcdonalds.com/glasses

Note: CPSC was made aware of issues with this product through the Office of Congresswoman Jackie Speier from California.

If you want to thank Rep. Jackie Speier's office, visit their website here:  http://speier.house.gov/

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Steven Hill, porn star, killed 1 and stabbed 2 in L.A with sword

Also: Porn Actor Kills, Porn Actor Steven Hill, Porn Star Steven Hill, San Fernando Sword Attack, Stephen Hill, Stephen Hill Porn, Stephen Hill Porn Star, Steven Hill, Steven Hill Porn, Steven Hill Porn Actor, Steven Hill Porn Star, Sword Attack, Van Nuys Sword Attack, Los Angeles News

Van Nuys, CA- Steven Hill is an until now largely unknown 34-year-old porn star who according to ABC 7 News in Los Angeles, killed one person and stabbed two others with a "Samurai-type sword," and is on the loose.

It happened at the Havenhurst Airport Business Park, in Van Nuys, in the offices of a company called Ultima DVD, which is in the video distribution business but "there is filming going on their as well" according to ABC News in LA. Here's the video:

A Samurai Sword
Steven Hill was reportedly about to be fired for "inappropriate conduct" which is saying something considering the line of work he was in. The ABC 7 News' Carlos Granda obtained video from a surveillance camera that showed Hill getting out of a car and carrying what looked like the reported sword.

Steven Hill reportedly lived and worked in the office park, which one witness said she didn't event know was legal to do.

According to The Huffington Post, the incident started at a small "social gathering" late Tuesday at Ultima DVD; Hill had been told to leave the studio by Wednesday.

Los Angeles police Detective Joel Price said Hill just "went off and and stabbed people that probably had absolutely nothing to do with him being let go."

Steven Hill is now the focus of a manhunt around the L.A. Basin area.

Stay tuned.

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