Hubert Lawrence, Gleaner Writer Largely written off, Jamaica’s male track athletes came to the fore at the Birmingham Diamond League meet in England on Sunday. Reigning world 110 metre champion Omar McLeod led the way with a win he described as easy, with Yohan Blake and Akeem Bloomfield also crossing the finish line first. The top Jamaican woman was Danielle Williams who set a meet record of 12.46 seconds in the 100 metre hurdles. Not named as a medal winner in recent World Championship predictions, hurdler supreme McLeod stepped away from American Freddie Crittenden to win in 13.21 seconds and said, “It was pretty easy and felt good.” Apparently, things are coming together for him. “I’m in a new environment with a new coach and I feel like I’m ready to go again.” As is often the case for the man who won the 2016 World Indoor Championship, his mind is on the biggest meet of the year. “Anything can happen, and I need to go there as defending champion and be ready to compete,” determined McLeod. A relaxed Blake just held off fast finishing Briton Adam Gemili in the 100m, with both getting times of 10.07 seconds. “The weather wasn’t great,” he said of the Birmingham chill. “I’m saving the big day for the World Championships and the Diamond League finals in Zurich.” With the confidence derived from a season with three sub-10 clockings and the Jamaican National title, the 2011 World 100 metre champion said, “I can run faster than that and training has been good.” Bloomfield’s 400 metre 45.04 second win was critical as he hasn’t yet gained selection for the World Championships in Doha. The win earned him a place in the Diamond League final and a win there would book his ticket to Doha. Just 5th in the 200 metres at the National Championships, he reviewed, “the eight points puts me in the Diamond League final and that’s the big positive.” Nevertheless, the tall Jamaican is still concerned. “I don’t know how selection will go for the 400m, but we will have to see what happens.” With her selection worries dissipated, Williams beat the harsh conditions with a determined win over world record holder Kendra Harrison, who trailed at 12.66 seconds and watched as the Jamaican equalled her meet record of 12.46. Janeek Brown, a Jamaican newcomer to the League, was 5th in 12.79 seconds. Tall Bahamian Shaunae Miller-Uibo continued her undefeated season with a win in the most keenly awaited race of the meet, the women’s 200 metres. Commonwealth winner last year, Miller-Uibo outlasted fast starting European champion Dina Asher-Smith and recently crowned Pan-Am gold medallist Shelly-Ann Fraser Pryce in 22.24 seconds.
Dear Editor,Guyana is experiencing a massive shortage of insulin, a vital hormone critically necessary for diabetic patients. Such a shortage is already forcing diabetics onto death row. In the absence of insulin, diabetics face life threatening consequences, including lapsing into a coma.The Survival rate of people with diabetic coma stands only at 50%. The severity of this crisis is unarguable.The number of diabetics that have been rushed to hospital emergency rooms within recent weeks has spiked enormously due to this shortage.In addition, the harsh economic situation facing this country forces many diabetics to remain at home and die.This is inhumane.The Ministry of Health needs to urgently address this desperate situation and provide an explanation to the nation. Absolutely no one should ever be left to die because Government fails to provide.Sincerely,Annie Baliram
Fridley, Minn – A dinner tendered here late last October in honor of Vice President Joseph N. Boakai didn’t pass without drama as a small group of Liberian protesters showed up at the Passion Event Center in Fridley, the site of the event, to protest against bad governance in Liberia.Protesters who came from two Liberian community activist groups known as MOLAC and CLACI, denounced the present “Ellen-Boakai” regime for what they said is the regime’s bad governance system in Liberia. They accused the “Ellen-Boakai” government of cuddling corruption, nepotism and abuses of human rights.Protesters further called on the regime to support the international community to establish a war crimes court in Liberia to try warlords and rebel commanders suspected of having carried out civilian genocides during the civil-war.“We need a war crimes court in Liberia for accountability,” screamed one poster. And another said, “Ebola exposed the failed and corrupt leadership of Ellen-Boakai’s administration.” The demonstrators were led by community activist, Seyon Nyanwleh, and didn’t seem deterred by the cold Minnesota weather either. They stayed outdoors and protested through the night.Liberians at home and abroad appear divided over establishing a war crimes court in the country. Similarly, they’ve remained divided on the implementation of recommendations presented by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission ((TRC), which suggested people bearing the greatest burdens for genocides in the wars should face trial, while others should be barred from seeking public office for 30 years.Nyanwleh, a University of Minnesota political science graduate, has become known in the African immigrant community here for rallying communities together in incidents of tragedy. Earlier this year, he helped organize search efforts that led to finding then missing Liberian 10 year-old Barway Collins, whose father later confessed to killing him.Recently, he also helped organize searches for missing Mounds View Liberian resident, Henry McCabe, whose body was found Nov. 2.Hours before the protest, Nyanwleh, along with Rev. Harding Smith, a Liberian community pastor who comforted the Collins family during the Barway tragedy, participated in a church opening ceremony at Brooklyn Center where both called on Liberians to stand together.The dinner for VP Boakai was organized by “Patriots for Liberia’s Transformation,” a new organization.During the event, a struggle among members of Unity Party-Minnesota branch and Patriots for Liberia’s Transformation came to light. Erasmus Williams, identified as head of UP MN chapter, was denied entry to the banquet hall. He told our correspondent that he had personally bought a ticket at $100 for the dinner.VP Boakai hails from northwest Liberia’s Lofa County, a mountainous region where mineral deposits were discovered in the Wologizi Mountain few years ago. He came under severe criticism in 2013 when he lobbied House officials in attempts to pave the way for an Indian mining company, O.P. Jindal Group, to win mining contracts for Mt. Wologizi.He had earlier expressed interest in the same company after he returned to Liberia following a visit to India. Boakai’s lobbying was strongly rejected by Liberians, particularly Lofans, given the level of corruption that exists in the current administration.While Boakai’s government has aggressively fought in past years to purge the country’s rich and enviable cultures, including the performing arts, his supporters in the US, on the other hand, have, ironically, continued to rally local artists to provide entertainment for the aging vice president each time he comes to the US.At the Fridley dinner, a group of local freelance Liberian cultural artists opened the event with traditional African drumming that added color to the occasion.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
The head of the organising committee for Euro 2016 has promised France will take the “necessary decisions” to ensure next summer’s tournament takes place in safety.Jacques Lambert made the pledge in the wake of Friday’s terror attacks in Paris, where 129 people were killed and hundreds more injured during a series of incidents across the French capital.It is the second time this year that Paris has been hit by terrorism after 12 people were killed by gunmen in January, and the attacks raise serious concerns about fans’ safety at Euro 2016, which is being held in the country between June 10 and July 10 next year.However, Lambert has sought to ease fears about security and played down any suggestion of the tournament not going ahead in France.He told French broadcaster RTL: “To ask questions about the cancellation of Euro 2016 is to play into the hands of the terrorists.“The risk level was up a notch in January, and it just got up a notch.“We will take the necessary decisions for Euro 2016 to take place in the best safety conditions. I will not reveal what we are going to do because that would alert our opponents.”He added: “The security in stadiums works well, the risk is more out in the streets, in spontaneous gatherings.”French Football Federation (FFF) president Noel Le Graet had earlier said: “We will do whatever it takes to ensure security despite all the risks that entails. I know everyone is vigiliant. Obviously this causes us to be even more vigilant. But it is a permanent situation for the Federation and the state.” 1 Jacques Lambert
BREAKING NEWS: The Department of Finance has confirmed tonight that Ireland’s debt will be 2% or €3.6 billion lower than previously thought….thanks to an accounting errors!Unions are already calling on the Government to halt massive cuts planned in next month’s Budget which will hit thousands of families across County Donegal.A spokesman for the Department of Finance said that, as a result of a “re-classification”, the country’s debt to GDP ratio would be lower. It is understood the development has occurred as result of double-counting. It’s all very complicated….but here’s our attempt to explain it!A statement from the Finance Department said that the NTMA has recently made both the Department and the Central Statistics Office aware of the fact that there was a change in their relationship with the HFA that has an impact on the accounts of the two entities.It said that previously, the National Treasury Managment Agency had acted as agent for the Housing Finance Agency (HFA). Since late 2010 the NTMA has loaned directly to the HFA. These loans appear as assets in the NTMA accounts and liabilities in the HFA accounts.”The liabilities of the HFA are included in general government debt; the corresponding assets of the NTMA have been included in the ‘liquid assets’ of the NTMA, which are also part general government debt – effectively a double count,” the statement added. ”Removing the impact of this double count reduces the estimate of 2010 general government debt by €3.6 billion or 2.3% of GDP,” the Finance statement concludes.It’s kind of like the Government winning the EuroMillions (about 100 times over).Below is the CSO statement in full:Correction to Ireland’s end-2010 General Government DebtThe end-2010 General Government gross debt (GGDebt) figure reported to Eurostat last month by the Department of Finance and the Central Statistics Office was overstated by some €3.6bn. This means that the correct figure for Ireland’s GGDebt at end-2010 was €144.4 billion (92.6% of GDP) rather than the published €148.0 billion (94.9% of GDP). The GGDebt is defined by EU regulations as the total gross debt owed by all government bodies to third parties outside of government. If one government body owes another money, this does not count towards the GGDebt.In 2010, one government body, the Housing Finance Agency (HFA), for the first time borrowed €3.6 billion from another government body, the National Treasury Management Agency (NTMA). In previous years, HFA borrowings had been sourced on the open market.When compiling the end-2010 GGDebt figures, this €3.6 billion was mistakenly treated as external borrowings and was wrongly added to the GGDebt.On the General Government balance sheet, end-2010 financial assets were also overstated by the €3.6 billion, as the loan from the NTMA to the HFA was incorrectly recorded as an open market bank deposit. The error was recently drawn to the CSO’s attention by the NTMA. The CSO has informed Eurostat of the error, and the figures shown in respect of Ireland’s gross debt and the associated debt/GDP ratio will be corrected in future releases relating to Government debt.The General Government Deficit (GGDeficit) figure for 2010 reported for Ireland is not affected by the revision, and neither is Ireland’s net debt position (GGDebt less liquid assets).Overall, the State is no better or worse off as a result of the correction.BREAKING NEWS: (YOU COULDN’T MAKE THIS UP) IRELAND OWES €3.6 BILLION LESS THAN THOUGHT! was last modified: November 1st, 2011 by BrendaShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:ireland’s debt reduced
“They totally outfaked him,” Angelides said. Schwarzenegger campaign spokesman Matt David said Angelides is too partisan to forge deals across the aisle. “While leaders of both parties are celebrating a very successful legislative year, it’s not surprising that Phil Angelides would try to take credit for these accomplishments,” David said. “Angelides only knows one brand of politics – hyper-partisan politics.”160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! SAN FRANCISCO – Despite trailing in fundraising and public opinion polls, state Treasurer Phil Angelides said Monday that this year’s governor’s race has been dominated by his ideas – not those of Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. “I mean, thank God I’m in this race. It’s the only reason we’ve gotten three months of any kind of action from this governor that makes sense for Californians,” Angelides told The Associated Press. In a wide-ranging interview, Angelides tried to counter the notion that his campaign has been too reactive, saying many of the governor’s accomplishments on typically Democratic issues in this election year originally were his ideas. He said he was first to propose doubling the number of school counselors – which the governor adopted within weeks. He said he was first to propose lowering college tuition and fees – then the governor froze fees this year for the University of California and California State University, and lowered them for community colleges. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORESurfer attacked by shark near Channel Islands calls rescue a ‘Christmas miracle’“On global warming, long before he was interested or engaged in the issue, I led our pension funds to invest $1.5 billion in renewable energy and environmental technology,” he said. Schwarzenegger last month signed a bill to cut industrial greenhouse gas emissions, the most far-reaching such plan in the nation. On Monday, he was in New York to announce that California would join a partnership with Northeast states to help power plants reduce their emissions. “I think what’s interesting is how much time Governor Schwarzenegger has spent trying to fake that he’s like me,” Angelides said. But the most recent independent polls have given Schwarzenegger leads of 10 to 17 percentage points and shown the momentum appears to be on Schwarzenegger’s side. For most of September, the Republican governor appeared at well-publicized bill-signing events, often with some of the state’s top Democrats. Angelides said those appearances don’t bother him. In fact, he praised fellow Democrats for taking advantage of Schwarzenegger’s generous election-year mood to win concessions from him.
The National Development Plan aims to create more jobs, especially for the youth. (Image: Media Club South Africa) MEDIA CONTACTS • Jabulani Sikhakhane Department of Finance spokesperson +27 012 315 5944 RELATED ARTICLES • SA is ‘Country of the Future’ • African integration on Brics agenda • Team SA to call for investmentLucille DavieSouth African finance minister, Pravin Gordhan, focused on the 2030 National Development Plan (NDP) in his mid-term Budget Policy Statement, delivered this week, stressing that it would be used to boost economic growth and create much-needed jobs.Gordhan soberly pointed out that times are tough, for the country and internationally.“We are living through turbulent global economic circumstances. Taking the National Development Plan as point of departure, Cabinet has agreed to a budget framework which protects our fiscal position and supports policies and programmes that support inclusive, sustainable growth.”He said the ambitious NDP would be implemented in several ways:• Expanding electricity, transport and communications capacity;• Promoting industrial competitiveness and job creation;• Addressing challenges in mining and community development;• Supporting growth of our cities and special economic zones;• Broadening rural development and expanding agricultural opportunities; and• Strengthening public service delivery while combatting waste and corruption.Government is now implementing the NDP, with provinces and municipalities aligning their actions to the plan.Gordhan highlighted some of the projects in progress and fulfilling the NDP programme.• Construction of the Medupi and Kusile power stations, which is well under way.• Rail capacity is being expanded to support manganese and coal exports.• Over the next 12 years, government would replace more than 300 trains for the 2-million people who use Metrorail every day.• Tax incentives for industrial development projects amounting to R10-billion have been approved over the past three years, which will support investment amounting to R35-billion.• The manufacturing competitiveness enhancement programme has approved 387 applications since mid-2012, to the value of R2,6 billion.• The expanded public works programme created 970 000 work opportunities last year. The Jobs Fund has approved allocations of R3,4-billion to more than 60 projects, which will generate 90 000 permanent jobs and about 100 000 training opportunities over the period ahead.Furthermore, in support of regional infrastructure development, the Development Bank of Southern Africa has provided almost R1,5-billion for road projects in Angola this year and committed R3-billion in funding to energy projects in Tanzania and the Democratic Republic of Congo.Private/public partnershipsThe minister stressed the importance of private/public partnerships, like The Bridge City project, which aims to create a new urban centre linking Phoenix, Inanda, Ntuzuma and KwaMashu, north of Durban, Kwa-Zulu Natal province.Another private/public partnership is the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Programme. In the programme 47 projects have been approved, to be completed between 2014 and 2016. The first 75-megawatt solar plant in the Northern Cape was connected to power-supplier Eskom’s transmission grid last month, three months ahead of schedule. Two wind farms in the Eastern Cape will be connected by May next year.“These are just some ways in which implementation of the National Development Plan is proceeding. In many cases, it builds on initiatives that were already under way. In other areas, new programmes or reform proposals are being introduced,” announced Gordhan.He emphasised that the government needed to keep debt on a sustainable long-term path; to direct public spending “to ignite inclusive growth and complement increased private-sector investment”; to support job creation and skills training, particularly for the unemployed youth; to cut waste and extravagance in government; and to support black entrepreneurs as investors and partners in industrialising and broadening economic participation.Also important is managing the risks emerging from current and future global economic turbulence. And perhaps most important, ensuring inclusive growth.Job creationTo encourage job creation in special economic zones and particularly for young job seekers, the revised Employment Tax Incentive Bill is to be introduced in Parliament this week.“This forms part of the multi-pronged approach to expanding work opportunities, especially for young people, envisaged in the National Youth Accord,” explained Gordhan.“The evidence on this is very clear: if young people find work within a reasonable timeframe after leaving school, this greatly improves their lifetime career prospects.”He added: “These are steps towards faster, more inclusive growth – and these are all areas in which private sector and civil society involvement is no less important than the role played by government.”Gordhan stressed how the country’s economic growth was tied to the euro area, South Africa’s main trading partner. The International Monetary Fund has revised the 2013 growth outlook for developing countries from 5% to 5.4%.South Africans can expect growth projection of around 2.1% this year, rising to 3.5% by 2016.Consumer price inflation is expected to average 5.9% this year, while jobs growth shows around 275 000 new jobs created this year to July.“We have a duty to broaden opportunities for those who do not have secure incomes, formal jobs, solid homes, electricity, water or access to health care. We have to share the benefits of growth, so that those of our people who are most vulnerable and disadvantaged can say ‘This economy works for me’,” said Gordhan.
29 November 2013With many South African motorcycle competitors regularly competing in the annual Dakar Rally, a South African “rally raid”, the Namaqua African Rally, is set to be run in the Western Cape for the first time in 2014, from 25 April to 3 May.Initiated by off-road motorcycle enthusiast and businessman George Booker, who is also the organiser of the event, the Namaqua African Rally will start and finish at the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront in Cape Town, with the bulk of the racing taking place around Vredendal on the Cape west coast.Vredendal will be home to the overnight bivouac at the Vredendal Show Grounds. The riders will return there after each of the four days of racing and will travel back to Cape Town on Saturday, 3 May. A final racing section will be held at the Atlantis Dunes before a ceremonial finish at the V&A Waterfront, which will also host the awards ceremony.Three categoriesThe rally, which falls under the auspices of Motorsport South Africa, will cater for motorcycle riders in three different categories. Motorcycle and quad competitors will be able to enter the competition category in various classes, while riders who do not want to race can either enter in the “Rally Raid” category or the Adventure Tour section.“Rally Raid” riders will cover 350 or more kilometres a day and will share some of the same sections as the competition riders, while those in the Adventure Tour will follow the race according to reference points supplied to them each night at the Riders’ Briefing. All riders will stay at the overnight bivouac.‘A spectacular event’Booker said he was extremely excited about the new event in a statement. “This is going to be a spectacular event and we would like to see the enthusiastic South African dirt bike riders, be it competitors or the more adventurous riders, getting involved in our own Dakar Rally type event,” he said.“This is, however, not only about the race, but also about the Cape and the Western Cape coast and all the communities who are to benefit from it.“We are working together with the Western Cape Tourism, the Matzikama Municipality and Wesgro [the Western Cape destination marketing agency] to ensure the maximum involvement and benefit for all.”Booker added: “South Africa has produced many famous off-road motorcycle and quad riders, who have represented the country on the world stage at the beginning of each year participating in the Dakar Rally. Many riders will, however, never get to the Dakar Rally and are now getting a chance to get a taste of the ‘Dakar’ and to compete in their own country, while riders who are not competing can get a chance to be part of the event,”Fuel sponsorVarious companies have already confirmed their partnership with the Namaqua Africa Rally, including Brent Oil SA, which will be supplying the race competitors and “Rally Raid” riders (not Adventure Tour entrants) with fuel for their motorcycles and quads during the race as part of the race package.Entrants from Gauteng and the northern part of the country will also be able to have their bikes and quads transported to Cape Town and back with Junior Smith Trucking. The service is included in the entry fee, as is the Selftrack tracking system for each competitor.Online entriesEntries for the event, with a 10 percent discount for those made before 17 January 2014, can be made online at www.racecontrol.co.zaThe organisers say they have already been contacted by riders from as far as Namibia and Europe about the event and are hoping to have a few well-known international riders competing.SAinfo reporter
The HR Roller Coaster Ride: Are Key HR Metrics Back to Prerecession Levels?HR metrics have not reached prerecession levels, although they are moving in that direction. But reaching past results could be elusive. A new normal may exist whereby organizations will continue to work with a lean workforce, placing more emphasis on doing more with less.To view the full report, please go to Workforce Analytics: A Critical Evaluation
Early this summer we wrote a post titled Why Online Noise is Good For You. It was all about the personal and professional benefits of spending time consuming unfiltered information from the blizzard of sources proliferating daily on the internet. It was a fun post and was responded to with thought provoking replies by readers in the comments section.We decided to follow up on and reprint that post here on a late Friday afternoon. We’re sure many of readers either didn’t see it at the time or hadn’t yet discovered ReadWriteWeb. Not everyone who did read it agreed with our conclusions, so after the post below we’ve added some of our favorite pro and con comments from the original, plus a cool personal story from a member of the RWW community. What do you think? Does online noise play a meaningful role in your life? Why Online “Noise” is Good For YouBlogs, RSS, IM, Twitter and FriendFeed – the number of sources of sources of information online can feel like it’s multiplying exponentially every day. It’s easy, natural even, to feel overwhelmed. Especially when we are more familiar with the tightly controlled editorial policies of mainstream media.The social media space is noisy, though. There are many times when filtering that noise effectively makes a lot of sense (some tools discussed below) – but there are also many times when noise is just what we need.Experiments in Noise ControlThere are many ways you can roughly cut down on the noise in your information stream. More emerge all the time and this is a very valuable direction for services to be exploring. We don’t want to argue that noise is always good, it’s clearly important to spend some time without it every day. The most recent entry into the noise filtering scene is probably FriendFeed’s new “best of” feature. Late last night FriendFeed rolled out the ability to view just the items most popular with your friends on the service for the last day, week or month. It’s something many people have been hoping for and there’s no doubt it will prove useful. If you’re not using FriendFeed yet, you can check it out and add me as a friend if you like here.Other services that are good for filtering out noise are del.icio.us popular for a particular tag, AideRSS and Google Reader’s overly friendly shared items from friends feature. We’d love to read about your favorite noise filtering tools in comments below.One way to break down two ends of the spectrum, by Hutch Carpenter. Of course most of us jump from one end to the other and live somewhere in between.On the Beauty of Noise Filtering isn’t everything it’s cracked up to be, though, and you wouldn’t want to live in a fully filtered world all the time. Social media noise is an essential part of learning and living on the web. Hear are some reasons why.Unexpected opportunities.Some people call it “serendipity,” others call it “passive and opportunistic information acquisition.” (Erdelez, see below.) The less limited the boundaries of your scope of view are, the more likely you may be to find things you didn’t even think to look for.Scanning quickly over large quantities of roughly relevant information can turn up invaluable resources, opportunities, context and contacts that you can passively process or opportunistically leverage at will.Future Needs It’s one thing to find something you didn’t know you needed right now, it’s a whole other skill to be able to recall information that seemed marginally useful at best in the past at a time in the future when the need for it arises. Who can’t remember doing that before? The ability to recall passively collected information that was gathered purposelessly in the past and put it to use in the future is a particularly powerful form of intelligence. A person with a substantial reservoir of generally relevant information is a great person to have on any team.Maximizing RecallSome people worry that being exposed to too much information will lead to not remembering very much of it. Scientists say that’s not necessarily the case, though. Sanda Erdelez, for example, wrote the following in her study Information Encountering: It’s More Than Just Bumping into InformationA majority of participants in my information encountering study, when asked about their past experiences of “bumping into information,” were familiar with the notion of accidental discovery of information and could recall these experiences clearlyWe may be afraid that we won’t remember key information that rushed past us in a river of news, but Erdelez argues that when prompted about a particular incident of accidental discovery our memories are better than we might think.We would argue here in fact that the more total information our minds are exposed to, the more particular items we’ll be able to recall in the future. One useful strategy may be to spend some time going through a large amount of information just a touch more quickly than we’re comfortable with.General KnowledgeBeyond simple recall of particular information in the past, internalized noise can be just as useful in the formation of wisdom and perspective as introspection, thoughtfulness and other forms of attentiveness can be. Spend some time skimming, it’ll make you a better person. You’ll meet new people, learn new things – don’t worry, it’s fun.Personal Growth Serendipitous search in the offline world is believed to be one of the ways our understanding of the world expands. David Pescovitz at BoingBoing writes about Swedish ethnologist Erik Ottoson’s PhD thesis titled Seeking One’s Own: On Encounters Between Individuals and Objects:“Ideals of what is beautiful, useful and reasonable,” Ottoson argues “materialize in conjunction with the experience of what is available and what is absent or out of reach.”That’s more than just a beautiful reason you should read BoingBoing, it’s an interesting understanding of the way that swimming through noise helps us become who we are.ConclusionQuiet time, time off-line, deep thoughts and long books are all beautiful things – essential to a healthy intellectual, psychological and social life. We argue, though, that the opposite of all those things – online social media noise, is also a great opportunity that deserves to have its worth recognized at a time in history when many of us are struggling to deal with it.So take some time for yourself when you can, find a nice place to sit with a cup of tea and blow through a few hundred items in your RSS reader. If you can relax into it, it’ll help you remember some of the reasons why you love the internet.Creative Commons photos, Christmas 2007 series, by Flickr user Kevin Dooley.Following up on this postWe write enough here everyday and read enough around the web that sometimes looking back at a post from earlier in the same year can feel like we’re visiting another planet. This post, though, still feels pretty familiar.A few things have changed, for sure. Hutch Carpenter, the blogger who made the chart in this posts about different ways to relate to noise, got a job at enterprise social bookmarking startup Connectbeam – in part, he says in announcing his new position, because of his use of FriendFeed! That’s pretty heart warming. In announcing his new job, Hutch wrote the following:FriendFeed opened my eyes to the possibilities of knowledge as the basis of relationships. The ways in which content from a variety of sources is a powerful, addictive basis for learning, conversations and collaboration. How activity streams are compelling reads. I’ve been active on FriendFeed since March, and it shocks me how much I know about web 2.0 and technology in general versus last year. I’ve still got much to learn, and FriendFeed will continue to be a good source for that.Diverse Reactions from ReadersHutch’s is a pretty happy ending to a story about noise, but not everyone who read our original post agreed with it. One dissenter summarized a number of peoples’ positions well when he wrote: “The web is about ME first and then comes the noise driven by the hype and the false version of truth that is popularity.” That commenter, who went by the name “directeur,” is building a startup based on this belief of his called FeedEgo.com. It’s a personal relevance based feed reader and it’s worth checking out, even if we do disagree with its creator about relevance vs. noise.Some commenters said that balance was really what’s most important. “Portland Broker” for example, wrote that “As with most everything, I think it’s a matter of balance. Noise is everywhere; sometimes it’s serendipitous, often it’s not. A world that is overly filtered is lacking, just as one that is not filtered at all.”How can you as a person online create that kind of balance? Iconoclastic tech/culture blogger Stetoscope suggested the following: ” I think what makes noise unbearable is the guilty feeling we have to not read everything. But if we takes some times to dive in the noise, without feeling guilty of what we have missed, it is just a positive habit.” We like that advice and it sounds like it could work well with some of the tips we shared in a post last Spring titled Seven Tips for Making the Most of Your RSS Reader.What do you think? Is social media noise good for you? How has it been treating you lately? If you believe in the need for balance, what are your favorite ways to create it? Tags:#Analysis#web marshall kirkpatrick Related Posts 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting