Thursday, May 27, 2010

Fact-checking the Freeman

If you've visited the Freeman's website today, you might have noticed this new little box to the right.

That's right. We want you to help us (I'm pointing at you right now, look behind you).

Still, I can't help but feel that if there was a conversation about this new feature between a fictitious and snarky Freeman reader and an equally snarky and fictitious (maybe) Freeman editor, it would probably go like this:

READER: What? Don't you people get paid to do this?

EDITOR: Yes. But we want you to help us be better, because 45,000 people are better than seven and a half editors (the half editor is only legs). And, WHAT DO YOU MEAN 'YOU PEOPLE'?

READER: But who checks the fact-checkers?

EDITOR: We do. But we are trying to crowd-source with our readers to improve the Freeman's news coverage - and to figure out what "crowd-sourcing" means.

READER: You are just trying to pass your work to us, aren't you?

EDITOR: No. But we are trying to enhance and improve upon the coverage you demand every day. We're not perfect and we know we make mistakezzzzz. We're human, after all and ... THIS PROGRAM HAS PERFORMED AN ILLEGAL OPERATION AND WILL BE SHUT DOWN. THIS PROGRAM HAS PERFORMED AN ILLEGAL OPERATION AND WILL BE SHUT DOWN. THIS PROGRAM HAS PERFORMED AN ILLEGAL OPERATION AND WILL BE SHUT DOWN....

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

I think (I'm going to blog), therefore I am (writing something nobody's going to read)

Here's the pulse of the Hudson Valley, in blogs, courtesy of

* Ulster County Legislator Michael Madsen talks about the most important issues to county residents: Parks, mixed martial arts and something called "RACIING"

* Ulster County Comptroller Elliott Auerbach reads the Freeman's police blotter.

* City of Kingston Alderwoman Andi Turco-Levin learns that you don't mess with Crazy Cat Lady.

* Kingston Main Street Manager Nancy Donskoj highlights some local organic dead animal parts.

* Over At The Farmer's Market, Grilled Romaine Salad. It goes great with local organic dead animal parts.

* The Ulster County Development Corp. notices that The New York Times wrote about Rosendale again, because it's like Brooklyn, but without the hipsters.

* A Study Abroad SUNY New Paltz student is in Wales, so he talks about some TV shows.


PERSONAL NOTE: The three of you who follow me on Twitter already know that I'm spending some time at the newsroom of the New Haven Register - where you can read "Hooters waitress files lawsuit - says she lost weight." I'm pretending that I'm helping upgrade the Daily Freeman's editorial system as we enter a new era (did you know there's a thing called The Internets? Wild stuff).

Anyway, here's a present I found at the New Haven Register's mailroom.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Bob Dylan, the mystery

WDST's program director Jimmy Buff send me a curious image today, as Radio Woodstock was celebrating Bob Dylan's 69th birthday.

Buff said the image from Dylan's passport is from the liner notes the the "Bootleg Series Vol 1-3 Boxset."

"Note the date," Buff wrote. "My theory is Bob is happy to let the world celebrate the wrong date. Maybe I’ll ask (Bob Dylan's son) Jakob when he comes to Woodstock in July."

We will too.

Jakob Dylan and Three Legs are performing at the Bearsville Theater on July 9.

Tweets that make less sense than a 'Lost' series finale

* Assemblyman Marc Molinaro is misquoted. Actual quote? "My..."

I don't often do this but feel I must: Friday, I was misquoted in a story published by the Albany Times Union. My... than a minute ago via Facebook

* Alderman Tom Hoffay gears up for a fight by some crazy people.

Ulster Dem Convention tonight at Holiday Inn, food, fights, speeches...less than a minute ago via web

* The New York State Senate did many things, except what it is there for: To pass a budget.

Senate session happening now. Live video here: than a minute ago via TweetDeck

* Radio Woodstock is celebrating the birthday of a dude named Bob.

It's All About Bob today on Live at 5! We'll celebrate the Great American Singer/Songwriter's 69th birthday with a... than a minute ago via Facebook

* West Shokan writer Martha Frankel is not celebrating the birthday of a dude named Bob.

Happy b/day to the amazing 38 year old @roseannecashless than a minute ago via UberTwitter

* The Associated Press covers the most important issue of the day.

Six seasons and some 120 episodes later, what did you think of much-awaited #Lost finale? #lostfinale -FWUless than a minute ago via CoTweet

* WAMC-FM CEO Alan Chartock's tweet does not go beyond the headline.

Going beyond the headline that you read - than a minute ago via TweetDeck

* The Kingston Digital Corridor doesn't know I won't be there because I wasn't invited and/or I will be out of town and/or working and/or sleeping.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Meet featured blogger Claudia D'Arcy

Wearing her hat as a social media-person-expert-something, featured blogger Claudia D'Arcy has developed a personal policy for her online presence.

It's a good read, especially in the wake of the whole Facebook privacy issue.

You don't want to end up on some crazy person's video, after all ...

Meet 'The Kingston Neighborhood Watch Guy'

Michael D'Arcy, founder of the Kingston Neighborhood Watch and avid SeeClickFix user, introduces himself at an informal meeting of the Kingston Digital Corridor at Keegan Ales in Kingston in April.

The Kingston Neighborhood Watch is having its first 'Watch Walk' on Thursday.

Friday, May 21, 2010

City Hall welcomes you to 2001!

Kingston alderman Bill Reynolds has an important announcement:

Ok, geeks, non-geeks, and anyone else who likes to take their laptop, iPad, iPod Touch (iPod Touch fan/owner here), and netbooks where ever they go – Kingston City Hall has officially become a wi-fi hot spot. Choose the “public” option after your comp finds a wi-fi signal, and key in: “cityhall2001.” You’re in!

That's right, "cityhall2001"

They are not in the map by the Kingston Digital Corridor, yet, but should be soon. Regardless, log in and complain about cats!

Funny Pictures
see more Lolcats and funny pictures

Don't vote for Kingston (because you can't)

Remember the Kingston Digital Corridor's attempt to bring Google Fiber to the city?

Well, apparently, Kingstonians didn't either, as the city didn't make the final list for voting at, the unofficial page for all things Google Fiber." The public poll (Round II started May 7, you guys!) by the site doesn't include the first capital of New York. Or Woodstock. Or Saugerties.

I won't tell the Kingston Digital Corridor if you don't.
UPDATE: They were told. The folks from the Kingston Digital Corridor have been aware of the site for weeks, I'm told - and "it's solely about traffic and not legit," so I stand corrected.

So the city is not officially out. But given the interest kept by other communities, I sense that Kingston needs to pump up its efforts.

The Kingston Digital Corridor is meeting at Keegan Ales, 20 Saint James St., Kingston, at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday.


Troy made it to the next round. The city's efforts were commendable. So send them some love. They don't have Joe Bruno for freebies anymore.

There, there. At least Google has given us Pac-Man today.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Mid-Hudson Valley blogging-heads

Your indispensable source for useless knowledge. Here's the latest pulse:

* Kingston Alderman Bill Reynolds doesn't know how to spell "and" in his announcement that city greenbacks for the Andretta Pool and Kingston Point Beach have been restored. That's good news. Once again, you'll be able to swim in other people's pee. WIN!

* Legislative Barbie (?) Brittany Turner needs an explanation about why Democrats, Republicans, Greens and Progressives suck (I'm badly paraphrasing, obviously. She said "WTF").

* The Ulster County Development Corp. advances a seminar that will tackle the question, "How can we give our Main Streets the best chance for success?" Here's an idea: Don't put it in Newburgh.

* Also, the UCDC mentioned that the Mohonk Mountain House was featured on the "Today Show," not today. It's a great trip if you live in New York City! Oh, yeah, but you don't.

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

* Kingston Main Street Manager Nancy Donskoj want's you to check your teeth and eyes.

* The Kingston Neighborhood Watch met on Tuesday and decided to take a hike.

* Uber photographer Jen Kiaba talks about how to get some freebies, for $15

* Mid-Hudson music follower Ethan Barnett writes a sentence using "Onderrock," "Dusk," "Seminal Stain," "Very Important Businessmen" and "Loud Youth."

* Bistro-to-Go talks about grilled vegetables, which would look even more delicious if they were next to a dead chicken.

* The Kingston Digital Corridor is drinking again.

Unintended consequences


Tuesday, May 18, 2010

YouTube turns 5, so here are five YouTube videos

YouTube turned five years old, and a number of notables, including Conan O'Brian and Pedro Almodovar, curated their favorite videos. Katie Couric chose her best picks of YouTube citizen journalism.

I thought I could share my own favorites. So let's go, or - as we say online - "LEEEROOOOOOOY JENNNNKINS!!!!"

1. Slap! (I'm kind of cheating here, because I posted this one)

2. "Star Wars Cantina." Eddie Izzard. "Star Wars." Legos. 'nuf said.

3. "Saturday Morning Watchmen." Wrong in so many levels.

4. Sleepy Cat. because he's sleepy. And a cat.

5. The whole "You Suck at Photoshop" series. Originally located at Here's part one.

Monday, May 17, 2010

When Tweeters tweet, the world still doesn't care

Tweets from around the Mid-Hudson Valley:

* Kingston Alderman Tom Hoffay makes an important promise to his constituents, which has to do with moving furniture.

Okay...I vow...never to change my home office around again....ever..less than a minute ago via web

* Chickens: the new tomatoes.

In my town, backyard chickens are the new tomato plants. Everyone seems to be growing their own! #HudsonValleyless than a minute ago via web

* Marist College has a BIG ANNOUNCEMENT, but it won't tell you what it is.

BIG announcement will be made at these events that will impact HS Class of 2011 and beyond.less than a minute ago via TweetDeck

* The New York State Senate has live coverage of the New York State Senate not passing the late budget.

Joint hearing "From Battlegrounds to Classrooms" happening now. Details & live video here: #Education #Veteransless than a minute ago via TweetDeck

* Assemblyman Marc Molinaro is an angry man.

Back to Albany... I share your anger. than a minute ago via Facebook

* Chrissie Hynde of The Pretenders comes to the area:

Chrissie Hynde of The Pretenders will be playing a live show with her new band at the farm Saturday 5/29! than a minute ago via web

Wait! Did I just learn something on Twitter?

Once upon a blog

Blog posts from around the mid-Hudson Valley, courtesy of

* Ulster County Legislator Michael Madsen is not in Ulster County.

* Ulster County Legislator Mike Sweeney has another post that can be summarized in one word: "No."

* The Kingston Neighborhood Watch has a Korrecshun.

* Rebecca Martin at talks about a "City Gardens Coalition" or "Coalición Ciudad Jardín Conjunto," which actually translates to Coalition of the Garden City Band. But "A" for esfuerzo (If you need to know, that's "A," in Spanish).

* Bistro-to-Go has something to say about dead chickens.

* If, for whatever reason, the idea of a large number of dead chickens doesn't make you hungry, you can try Rhubarb Ginger Oat Squares, courtesy of At the Farmer's Market.

* 90MilesNorth is not interested in your list of cool web sites.

* Over at SUNY New Paltz, nostalgia, good-byes and emoticons, :P Also, why study if you can go to Paris? or Wales?

Friday, May 14, 2010

'Law & Order,' Ulster edition

'Law & Order' has been canceled, but the memories live on.

Used WITHOUT permission. MUAHAHAHA!

Sings of the Times

The New York Times' ridiculously popular slideshow, "A Sampling of Chinglish," above, which accompanied an interesting story but still was a completely original ripoff of "Engrish Funny," below, prompted the gray lady to ask readers for photos of strange signs from around the world.

The feature, "Strange Signs from Abroad" showcases some of the weirdest and funniest signs I've seen in a long time.

Yet, I can't help but feel the the New York Times' is turning into the LOLCat Network.

Oh, well.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

This week in blogdom-land-place-stuff-WHAAAA?

* Ulster County Legislator Michael Madsen talks about the Hudson Landing and probably needs a reminder that he's not in the Kingston Common Council anymore.

* Ulster County Legislator Mike Sweeney has a post that can be summarized in one word, "No."

* Kingston Alderwoman Andi-Turco Levin says that the city's planning board, "gave away the store." This being Kingston, I bet the store was a pharmacy.

* Kingston Alderman Bill Reynolds touts the bike racks on Broadway, and then posts this photo of people not using them.

I've got a better one:


* Also by Reynolds: CATS ATTACK!


* The Ulster County Development Corporation likes booze.

* The UCDC also notes that The New York Times wrote about Rosendale (in April, you guys!) and the Walkway Over The Hudson on Monday. Unrelated attraction (as in, not in Ulster and not quite an "attraction"): the Newburgh gangs story by the Times on Tuesday - and FBI raids today.

* Kingston Main Street Manager Nancy Donskoj reminds you that Kingston is a destination. Also good for Kingston: Not being called Newburgh.

* The Kingston Neighborhood Watch IS WATCHING YOU! The group also has a new writer, Allison Teetsel, who - spoiler alert! - writes.

* talks about very foreign concepts called "taxes" and "voting." Strange stuff.

* In a moving post, Claudia D'Arcy shared that she did not quite enjoy Mother's Day and needed one more card, hopefully not like this one:

Thanks for always thinking about me to the detriment of your own mental health

* Jen Kiaba talks about ... HER CAT!

* Ethan Barnett posts a video of a band with a name I can't pronounce. For the record, I also can't pronounce "juice." I'm told it sounds like "jews," which sounds pretty weird. Example: "Who drank my jews?"

* Bistro-to-go has a Popeye moment.

* Something's rotten in the state of Hudson Valley Gardens online.

* At the Farmer's Market shares a recipe for Rhubarb Ginger Syrup, not to be confused with high-fructose corn syrup.

* Over at Dragon Search, a blog about how to blog (Hint: don't write about how to blog); an online marketing post about peanuts; the successful UCDC tourism conference not being so successful; and hoking up (not in that way).

* Kingston Digital Corridor's Alex Brown talks about "common grounds" and drops the name of a crazy person who works at the Freeman.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Kingston, the hot spot

As mentioned previously, The folks at the Kingston Digital Corridor are producing a Hot Spot map of the city's, um, hot spots, highlighting the venues and locations in and around the city that provide a series of magical waves that go into your computer to let you watch porn, or whatever it is that you're into, you pervert.

The map is still in its infancy, but it is growing. And it will get better - with your help. So if you know of a hot spot, let them know, and they’ll put the venue in the map and get them a sticker, shown at right.

You can't pass up a free sticker, can you?

View KDC HotSpot Map! in a larger map

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Formspring soup for the soul

For Wednesday's column, I decided to write about - the up-and-coming social networking site that's all the rage with teenagers - according to The New York Times. So I set up an account and Tweeted about it to see what happens.

If clicking on links proves too difficult, there's a box on the right hand bar of this blog. Feel free to ask me any questions.

What follows is my first day of questions and answers:

Questions Answered

Why don't you like

I actually think it could work - especially to crowd-source, if I ever figure out what that means.

But since the question assumes that I don't like it, I'll let the New York Times' readers answer:

42 minutes ago

Where in the world is Carmen San Diego?

Arrested, in Arizona.

1 hour ago

I checked the fridge. No dice, just ice. Where are my keys??????????????

Next to your memory.

31 minutes ago

Is there any subject that you, personally, feel is off limits for humor? How about for journalism in general? Is there any story that shouldn't be told (or joked about)?

If one is creative enough, there's always a way to make things funny. But, generally, I try to stay away from anything regarding dead kittens. I'm told they're not funny. At all.

In journalism, however, nothing should be off limits. A story is a story is a story. If it's news, it must be covered.

Great question, by the way.

32 minutes ago

How many licks does it take to get to the center of a Tootsie Roll pop?

Three, if you are an owl

47 minutes ago

Is it ever socially acceptable to spit on people?

Only if they ask if it's ever socially acceptable to spit on people.

49 minutes ago

Where are my keys?

In the fridge

49 minutes ago

I didn't get my newspaper this morning. It's supposed to be delivered to me every morning. What recourse do I have? Will the Daily Freeman fire the louse responsible?

Call circulation at (845) 331-5000. Tell them I sent you and I bite.

51 minutes ago

Why is there an invisible 'r' in the word 'sherbet'? So, that when you say 'sherbet', you actually pronounce it 'sherbert'? I realize this isn't so much about you, but I really need an answer on this.

Ask Stephen Colbert

1 hour ago

What do you do for a living?

I get paid to afflict the afflicted and to comfort the conflicted, or something like that.

1 hour ago

Who let the digs out Ivan? Seriously. by MikeVaz

No comprendo tu pregunta, muchacho.

1 hour ago

How would you describe your style?

Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Sidney Schanberg once called it "quirky," but I don't think he meant that as a compliment.

1 hour ago

What's the worst show on TV?

The one reality show where people dance or sing or model or do anything and then they get berated by a judge and kicked off the show.

3 hours ago

Chocolate or Vanilla?


3 hours ago

If you could rid the world of one thing, what would it be?, without a doubt.

3 hours ago

Monday, May 10, 2010

A live chat with photographer Jen Kiaba

Twitter fails, and the Twitterverse declares Twittmageddon

Someone discovered a bug yesterday that allowed Twitter users to force people into following them.

After Twitter discovered the bug, it set everyone's follow/follower count to 0.

Follow count display is set to 0 and follow/unfollow is temporarily offline while we fix a bug.less than a minute ago via web

Shortly thereafter, Twitter fixed the problem.

Follow bug discovered, remedied. Read our status blog for details. than a minute ago via web

But not before the Twitterdom declared the end of times. Here are but some examples:

* Trentonian columnist Jeff Edelstein decided to use one social network to talk about the other.

* Social Media guru (and Journal Register Company advisory board member) Jeff Jarvis had a moment of maturity.

You mean no one is following me right now? I can do anything? OK: Fart.less than a minute ago via Echofon

* Teen sensation Justin Bieber put his army into motion.

hackers i send a warning...u have now pissed off over 2 million teenage girls. They are more dangerous than Navy Seals.less than a minute ago via web

* Conan O'Brien thinks of the future, probably IN THE YEAR 2000!

Twitter exploded today! I guess my dream of a world where Twitter runs our stock market, phones, and nuclear defense is still a ways off.less than a minute ago via web

* Ashton Kutcher was happy.

twitter is being hacked by some turkish hacker. haha I have 0 followers.less than a minute ago via Brizzly

* Tom Fletcher of McFly was sad.

I have no followers...It's the end of the world! I'm alone and miserable again. HELLO...hello...hello (echoes through the empty void)less than a minute ago via web

* Wired Magazine freaked out. says everybody has 0 followers and is following 0 people. Twitpocalypse!less than a minute ago via Tweetie

* P. Diddy decided to use his magical powers to solve the problem.

I will use my magical powers to fix this! Never fear @iamdiddy is here! HERE I COME TO SAVE THE DAY! Nothing nor no one can keep us apart!:)less than a minute ago via UberTwitter