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For my photo gallery project, I decided to use the pictures I took last summer while visiting family in Colorado.

My photo gallery tells the story of my journey through the state of Colorado while exploring Denver, Boulder, and hiking through Rocky Mountain National Park.

Hiking through the Rockies is one of the greatest experiences of my life.  I felt like I was on top of the world, gazing at picturesque view after picturesque view, growing more amazed and inspired by the second.

I also put together a slide show.

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I think my first definition of on-line journalism is still correct; any form of journalism practiced on the Internet. 

That includes on-line newspaper sites, blogs, journals, and other websites. 

However, I would also like to add on-line multimedia, such as audio and visual slide shows, photo galleries, or other photo/video related material.

Over the course of this semester, The Boston Globe’s blog began posting videos into their blog posts. Although I enjoy the more conventional print forms of on-line o journalism, I’m sure there are many people who appreciate the new video feeds. It also shows the direction which on-line journalism is moving.

In a nutshell, on-line journalism is any on-line journalism medium. That is not to say anyone can write about anything on the Internet.

Credibility is the most important component of journalism, and that fact is not lost on the Internet. Viewer ships make a good on-line site, and he only ay to get views and loyal readers is to produce quality, informative, entertaining stories in a timely manner. 

Although anyone can practice on-line journalism, only the most quality sites will survive. Easy accessibility does not mean all journalistic rules and ethics are thrown out the window. Being on-line is ever more of a reason to produce quality, credible work.

Lorraine Henderson, the Boston area port director for the Department of Homeland Security, was charged with hiring three illegal aliens to clean her house. illegal-immigrant-sign

According to a New York Times story, the housekeeper in question wore a wire for federal authorities who were investigating Henderson on suspicion of hiring illegal workers.

“Ms. Henderson is in charge of all international points of entry, including airports and shipping terminals, in Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island, and she supervises more than 200 Customs and Border Protection agency employees. She was also responsible for preventing illegal immigrants from entering the country and processing all foreign citizens at ports. She was appointed to the post in 2003.”

Henderson knew the employee was illegally in the country throughout her service.

“You have to be careful ’cause they will deport you,” Ms. Henderson told the woman, who is from Brazil, after she asked about filing immigration papers for her new baby, the federal complaint says.”

Henderson was released on $25,000 bond and is facing up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine if found guilty. Read More »

The picks have taken a back seat for awhile, however, they are making a comeback this week for the conference championship games.

I’d like to take this opportunity to say each and every conference should have a conference championship game, especially if the NCAA higher-ups are not going to consider a playoff-system to replace the current BSC/bowl games.

Without further adieu, back to the picks.
MAC Championship

Ball St. (-16) over Buffalo

Quarterback Nate Davis (24 touchdowns) and running back MiQuale Lewis (20 touchdowns) have led Ball St. to a 12-0 record so far this year. The Cardinals defense ranks 10th in the NCAA in points allowed, averaging a meager 16.7 per game. Ball St. will roll to an easy win, however, will not be awarded a spot in a BSC bowl game.

Conference USA Championship

Tulsa (-12) over East Carolina

The Cinderella season for ECU ended abruptly after they started the season on a roll, capturing the hearts of college football fans nationwide. Tulsa is led by stud quarterback David Johnson (42 touchdowns). Tulsa is getting a lot of points, but look for them to cover, beating a team who peaked after Week 3.

ACC Championship

BC (-1) over Virgina Tech

Can’t go against my eagles in this game. It is hard to beat a team three times in a season, and BC is without their starting quarterback Chris Crane (broken collarbone); but BC finds a way to win this game. The Eagles defense is rock solid (1st in interceptions, 8th in total yards, and 7th in rushing yards). Defense gets the job done, scoring a TD, while putting the Eagles in good field position with key turnovers all day. Boston College will be heading to the Orange Bowl.

SEC Championship

Alabama (+10) over Florida

Very tough game to predict with the winner going to the National Championship. I’m giving Alabama an edge to cover the points only because Florida’s Percy Harvin will be limited (if he can play at all) after suffering an ankle injury last week against Florida State. Tim Tebow will struggle against Alabama’s stout defense without Harvin, and the Tide will take advantge, wearing down the Gators defense with running back Glenn Coffee. True-freshman Julio Jones will also have another big-game on a big-stage, being the go to guy for Alabama and quarterback John Parker Wilson.

Big 12 Championship

Oklahoma (-17) over Missouri

Another semi-final type game for the Sooners, as they may be destined for the National Champhionship win a win. Too much offense for Oklahoma, with sophmore sensation Sam Bradford (46 touchdowns) leading the way through the air and DeMarco Murray (18 touchdowns) pounding the Missouri defense on the ground. Missouri has had a dissapointing season, and will get trounced by the Sooners, who are arguably playing the best football in the country right now.

Tomorrow, my sports journalism class will be taking a field trip to ESPN headquarters in Bristol, Connecticut. It’s a great opportunity; once again, the journalism department gets screwed.  610x

Each student is required to pay $35 for gas money and other transportation costs. Apparently, $350 is too steep a price to charge on the university credit card.

Just last month, my roommate took a field trip all across New England observing various wetlands. He went a similar, if not the same, university van. His trip cost a grand total of $0.

A number of my friends are in the Stockbridge program. They receive a free winter jacket and numerous sweatshirts. When was the last time anyone in the journalism department received anything for free?

It seems the journalism department always get the shaft. We are the black sheep of the University of Massachusetts family, settling for leftovers. But I guess, in the end, it will only make us stronger.

Tonight, hundreds gathered in the auditorium of the University of Massachusetts Campus Center to celebrate the African-American holiday Kwanzaa.13478110_kwanzaa

Kwanzaa is a week long (Dec. 26-Jan. 1) celebration of African heritage. Founded in 1966 by Maulana Karenga, Kwanzaa allows African-Americans the chance to celebrate their history, as opposed to conforming to and imitating other traditional cultural customs. Karenga said of Kwanzaa:

“It gives Blacks an opportunity to celebrate themselves and history, rathe than imitate the practice of dominate society.”

Kwanzaa celebrates the “Seven Principles of Kwanzaa” which are:

-Umoja (unity)

-Kojichagulia (self-determination)

Ujima (collective work and responsibility)

-Ujamaa (cooperative economics)

Nia (purpose)

Kuumba (creativity)

-Imani (faith)

Kwanzaa is traditionally celebrated with a lights ceremony, cultural objects and artifacts, traditional art pieces, traditional cloths, and accompanying song and dance. A giant feast (Karamu marks the end of Kwanzaa, usually celebrated on New Year’s Eve. Read More »

The easy answer to whether or not athletes are role models is yes, they are. Athletes are everywhere; from television, to radio, to print publications, one would be hard pressed to spend 20 minutes walking the streets without seeing the face of some sort of athlete.

However, many athletes do not act as role models. They paint the town red, frequenting strip clubs, dance clubs, and other establishments which harbor trouble. They do drugs, womanize, and wave around guns like Yosemite Sam. Hell, at times the last few years, it seemed more Cincinnati Bengals were showing u in the police blotter than the post-game box score.

Over the years, athletes have done their best to rove they are the furthest thing from a role model. Examples include:

-Michael Vick. The former quarterback phenom is currently playing his only ball in prison, where he is serving a 23 month sentence for his role in a dog fighting ring. Vick disgraced his family, friends, and organization, sending his off-season committing federal crimes, rather than study tape and learn the playbook.

-Plaxico Burress. The soon to be former New York Giant essentially ended his playing days in the Big Apple, and most likely brought a three and a half year prison term onto himself, bringing a fully loaded weapon into a New York nightclub and accidentally shooting himself last Friday night. Talk about putting yourself in a bad spot.

Adam Jones. Good ole Pacman. His laundry list of felonies, misdemeanors, and run-ins with the law is far too long to name here. He has been suspended by the league countless times for alcohol, drug, and assault related activities. It seems the poor guy can not go to a strip club without causing a scene, especially the time he and his crew were responsible for the shooting of a bouncer who is now paralyzed.

-O.J. Simpson, Ray Lewis, Ray Carruth all have been accused, with Simpson and Lewis eventually “acquitted”, of murder.

The list could go on all day. Trouble always seems to find athletes. If I had a kid, I surely would not want to look up to most athletes.

However, athletes are not asking to be role models. Their giant exposure, with their enormous television contracts, day long sporting programs, and the non-stop blogging sub-culture force role model status onto athletes.

They are merely playing a children’s game, doing what so many of us did throughout our childhood. Athletes will continue to be role models, like it or not, as long as society continues to hold them to such a high pedigree. Until then, the firefighters, teachers, and every day hardworking Joe’s of the world will continue to be overshadowed.

lhc_otThe Large Hadron Collider, the world’s largest particle accelerator, is once again out of service. Built to test different theories regarding the movement of various particles, the LHC has spent more time on the shelf JD Drew the last couple of years.

Built at a cost of roughly 3.2-6.4 Swiss francs, this fascinating machine is one disaster after another.

Initially, the LHC was scheduled to be repaired by  April  2009. But now, CERN is saying it may be repaired until the summer of 2009, pushing back the expected due date for what seems like the thousandth time.

“According to spokesperson James Gillies, the complicated repairs can be simplified into modest Plan A and Plan B approach.

Plan A is a quick and dirty fix, getting the particle accelerator online as quickly as possible (late summer 2009) at the cost of operating at lower power. In this scenario, 3 of 8 pressure relief-system segments are replaced (only the broken ones) with the other 5 getting upgraded at unsaid maintenance dates in the future.

Plan B is the more extensive but also more delayed approach, requiring the complete redesign and replacement of the LHC’s entire pressure-relief system. Under this scenario, the LHC wouldn’t go online until 2010 at the earliest, though at that time the system could operate at full power”

Hopefully this colossal waste of money will be back in action sooner rather than later, accomplishing what it set out to, not collecting dust on the sidelines.

I’m back to the world of blogging after a couple week absence due to an injured finger.

I sliced two of my fingers down to the bone and cracked a few bones in my hand during some late-night horseplay, rendering my left hand useless, making it almost impossible to type.

Fear not, the healing process is well on its way, nearing completion. The stitches are out, the splint is off, and I’m ready to return to action.

These two have a history, and Thursday night, in the third period, Milan Lucic and Mike Komisarek squared off and settled their differences the old fashioned way.

Komisarek and Lucic have battled other since the beginning of last season. Their feud boiled over in the first round of the playoffs last year, as Komisarek delivered a number of cheap shots to Lucic, while refusing to drop the gloves each time Lucic challenged him.

Much of the same in the team’s first meeting this year. At one point, the 20 year old Lucic, pawed at Komisarek’s face with his glove, trying to goat him into a fight. Once again, Komisarek backed down, choosing to stay out of the penalty box (although both players were issued 10 minute unsportsmanlike misconduct penalties).

Finally, with the Bruins winning, 5-1, they engaged in battle. Lucic absolutely destroyed Komisarek, pumping his fists and urging on the sold out Boston crowd with boyish enthusiasm after the bout.

The next time these two teams meet, Nov. 22 in Montreal, look for more fireworks. Read More »