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Venezuelan proverbs: Uncertainty

There are moments in our existence when we find ourselves hopelessly at a crossroad. In these moments common sense or any kind of clairvoyance is useless to know what will happen. Moments that fill with uncertainty because we don’t often have the power to influence on the development of different situations, and on occasions one way or another depend on the good or bad will of third parties. However, we can find comfort by saying: “The sun will rise and we’ll see, said the blind man”.

Los números de 2013

Los duendes de las estadísticas de WordPress.com prepararon un informe sobre el año 2013 de este blog.

Aquí hay un extracto:

Un teleférico de San Francisco puede contener 60 personas. Este blog fue visto por 440 veces en 2013. Si el blog fue un teleférico, se necesitarían alrededor de 7 viajes para llevar tantas personas.

Haz click para ver el reporte completo.

Venezuelan proverbs: dealing with the contempt from those who don’t know you

This Venezuela proverb came to mind many months ago, while we were living in a far and inhospitable country of the far south of Latin America and it was time to write it down here.

In my homeland, we use to say this proverb, “no one can say you didn’t dance” when we have to deal with other people underestimating us or showing us contempt, usually at a professional level. These negative attitudes toward us may be motivated because they don’t know anything about us (nor they want to), because of jealousy, selfpreservation instinct or even envy of our features. What “you danced” refers to all experiences and knowledge that we have gathered along the way, no matter if they are empirical or formal. For example, if anyone underestimates our expertice (which we have) at the moment of applying for a job and the result is that we are discarded for a mere whim instead of an objective assessment, we should not despair, because we know that we know, we know that we are capable and we can prove it, because no one can say you didn’t dance!

Original: “Nadie te quita lo bailao”

English equivalent: “No one can say you didn’t dance”

2012 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The new Boeing 787 Dreamliner can carry about 250 passengers. This blog was viewed about 1,200 times in 2012. If it were a Dreamliner, it would take about 5 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

Venezuelan Proverbs: for someone pointing out a defect you both have

This Venezuelan proverb, one of my absolute favorites, is for those cases when someone is pointing out a defect you both have, or he/she is telling you something they have no business or moral authority for saying it. It is a wonder that an equivalent to this proverb do exist in English, so I will put the original in Spanish (involving two animals with shells), its translation, and the English language equivalent.

Original: “Cachicamo diciéndole a morrocoy conchúo”

Translation: “The armadillo calling the red-footed tortoise shelled”

English equivalence: “The pot calling the kettle black”

Libraries & Information in Media: The Daily Planet (as in Superman: Earth One)

Superman: Earth One (2010) represents a re-imagination of Superman’s origin story. Written by the author of Babylon 5, J. Michael Straczynski, it is set in the time when Kal-El leaves Smallville to go to Metropolis. I find some elements of his take more believable (yes, I know the idea of a Superman is not so believable). For example, when Kal-El’s ship crashes, the Kents of course find it, but there is a shady organization looking for the object that crashed, which they retrieve and keep looking for its occupant. This graphic novel has some of the qualities I expected from Straczynski, as with Babylon 5, he delivers an engaging, interconnected and entertaining story. Although I expected more. Perhaps Superman fans would enjoy it more than I did, as I’m a Batman guy. But enough background. In order for this to fit in this section of the blog, I wanted to point out some things related to libraries and information present on this piece of media, in this case: its portrayal of some issues around the Daily Planet (Metropolis’ newspaper), which is journalism. Ah, journalism.

It’s funny to note that although Perry White (editor of the Daily Planet) advices Lois Lane to “write about what you are writing about, not about you writing about what you are writing about”, what we see in her enclosed pages of the Daily Planet is the latter. I think this was either a bit silly, or very faithful to her character, as she often gets away with being a smart-ass. Lois displays some soul on her writing, but White also advices to use soul on news writing, so I don’t find this very congruent within all his recommendations. Because, is it ‘writing about you writing about what you are writing about’, putting some soul into your writing? (See the last part of this post, where I write about this issue further).

Jimmy Olsen seems to be taking at least 12 megapixel pictures, hence, ‘chocking the server with the files’. Shouldn’t a newspaper have a better server? If the server chocks with a picture, what would happen with regular, worldwide traffic? Perhaps a 20 Mb picture is not good for a printed black and white newspaper, but we see in the enclosed Daily Planet pages that you ‘may find more about on dailyplanet.com’. It would have been very clever for White to point out that these pictures are good for the website version of the paper, but advice him to crop them for the print version, put them on a grayscale, or something. This might be extreme librarian nitpicking, but ‘the devil’s on the details’.

Now the most serious stuff, and I must cite White more extensively as he states “Thanks to the Internet, every yahoo with a keyboard thinks that just because he can type, he can write, as for you [referring to Clark] look, I read your articles, and they are fine, but nothing special. A good writer writes from his soul. You write like you’re holding something back.” I find his two statements about Internet journalism and writing from his soul, not too congruent between them. Furthermore, they are not congruent with the guidelines given to Ms. Lane. Firstly, his position towards Internet journalism is very understandable, coming from an editor for a ‘Big and Old Media’ device. Although showing perhaps too much contempt for an alternative journalism that is becoming more and more valid everyday, this adds to his character. But it’s a worn out and expected discourse from an old business model perspective. We see traditional media, or as I like to call ‘Big and Old Media (BOOM)’ as failing to inform, to entertain, and let alone: educate. Fox News anyone? We see a highly sensationalist BOOM, one that miserably copies models from new media in order to keep being pertinent (SMS, social media integration or attempts to do so). And we see BOOM giving wrong publicity through their misguided scandals regarding videogames (for example the case of Rapelay, or P2P technology). These scandals create the wrong effect, instead of raising conscience or awareness towards and issue, they promote it through scandal and sensationalism. Thus turning low profile and extinct topics into high profile, blown out of proportion problems. So, perhaps BOOM exhibits too much soul, or no soul at all by doing these things. Apart from this, BOOM is against soul, against personal perspectives, or it displays too much of it, it’s not a consistent criteria, being in news or scholarly/scientific communications. New media on the other side, has a personal commitment and often a disregard for corporate or financial interest within its content. Moreover, it has crowds approving or disapproving, and adding value to the information. Is this not better? Who knows…

On Pinterest: What I love & Featured Content in the Blog

I have been taking some time to sign up and try things in Pinterest, you should take it out! It’s a social network based on the posting of images, some are saying that it could drive visits to your blog. So I am trying to do two things with this tool.

1. Post images from the featured sections of the blog, to see if I can get a bit more visits, the sections are: Micro Reviews (yes, they’ll be back!), Internet Classics, Libraries & Information in Media, and Venezuelan Proverbs.

2. I believe that you are what you enjoy and love, so I started posting about the anime, movies, albums, and books that I love, check it out! Do you find your favorites?

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