Are WordPress, Blogger the next Angelfire and Geocities?

In the late 1990s, a host of Web sites democratized the Internet, giving the average Internet-user the chance to have his own online home.

In 2003, MySpace used the model and brought in a new age of social networking.

Last week I posted that MySpace is on the way out, and briefly mentioned that WordPress and Blogger are taking over the role of providing free, easy-to-manipulate Web presences.

Does that make them the next Angelfire or Geocities? Are they just another trend ready to be overcome?

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Why losing a job can hurt men more (Philadelphia Inquirer 2/4/09)

By Christopher Wink | Feb. 4, 2009 | Philadelphia Inquirer

Thomas Schuler is a man.

Since October, he also has been without a job, a combination of characteristics that some say comes with distinct disadvantages.

That’s because unemployment affects men differently than women – research shows joblessness often is emotionally harder for men to bear. And with the economy hemorrhaging high numbers of jobs, disproportionately in male-dominated industries, those disparate emotions – shame, anger, fear, vulnerability – are on display more than ever. These feelings often find their way into other parts of a man’s life, affecting relationships with friends, wife and children.

“Historically, men have been in the breadwinner role in families, and so their sense of self is wrapped up in their ability to provide,” said Jerry Jacobs, a University of Pennsylvania sociology professor whose research focuses on labor. “So even today, when men are unemployed, that comes as a different kind of blow than to women.”

Schuler was proud when he landed his job as a facilities engineer at a struggling hotel in Plymouth Meeting. But when his position became a casualty of his company’s struggles, he suffered.

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Inquirer: How unemployment affects men

David Clyburn reads in the Nicetown Branch of the Free Library of Philadelphia as he waits for a computer to use in his search for a job. (Photo by  BONNIE WELLER / Staff Photographer)

David Clyburn reads in the Nicetown Branch of the Free Library of Philadelphia as he waits for a computer to use in his search for a job. (Photo by BONNIE WELLER / Staff Photographer)

I have a clip in today’s Philadelphia Inquirer on the emotional effects unemployment can have on men.

Thomas Schuler is a man.

Since October, he also has been without a job, a combination of characteristics that some say comes with distinct disadvantages. Read the rest here.

Below see the loads of good information and quotes that didn’t make it into the final story.

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PW: Central library expansion on hold

Artists rendering of the completed expansion of the central branch of the Free Library of Philadelphia. The project has been long delayed.

Artist's rendering of the completed expansion of the central branch of the Free Library of Philadelphia. The project has been long delayed.

I covered the again-stalled addition to Philadelphia’s Free Library central branch for Philadelphia Weekly, and it ran online during the weekend as part of their growing Web presence.

Think of it as the library of the future.

At more than 300 computers, graphic designers work on new projects, musicians record and bloggers and authors write and research, using the quiet of old and the wireless of new. Arching skylights vault over glass walkways, and plate–glass windows open an 8,500–square–foot foyer to light and weather patterns. A Visual and Performing Arts Department lets visitors focus on music instead of books. A Teen Center brings resources to school–aged kids courtesy of tattooed librarians, while the Entrepreneurium offers those who dream of starting a business the tools to make it happen. It’s all designed by internationally acclaimed architect Moshe Safdie, and it’s called Parkway Central—one of the premiere libraries in the nation.

It’s also, for now, a fiction… Read the rest here.

Comment and then come on back for a few items I cut from the story – see them below.

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Number of Views:3349

Inquirer: Zurich bicycle-trip personal essay

Standing with Sean Blanda and his brother Brian in Zurich, on the dock described in my Inquirer story below.

Standing with Sean Blanda and his brother Brian in Zurich, on the dock described in my Inquirer story below.

A personal journey essay of mine appeared in today‘s Sunday edition of the Philadelphia Inquirer.

If I keep my hand steady long enough, I just might get a photograph of me racing down the steepest hill in Zürich on a bicycle. But I’ll have to settle for the shot of me standing on a dock on Lake Zurich, shadowed by the yellow sun, framed in crystal blue skies, as I peer at the Swiss Alps, not 20 miles away. Read the rest here.

See related video, another photograph and read some details on the story below.

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My 10 favorite journalist bloggers

There are blogs and there are bloggers. There are mainstream blogs and there are those that aren’t.

Blogging, in my mind, isn’t necessarily, but a new transition that is one part of a test of big media. Can they develop and innovate quickly enough?

Below find my 10 favorite journalist bloggers: reporters associated with a mainstream medium who actively blog.

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Disclaimer: transparency on a journalist Web site

I have a disclaimer page on this Web site now.

Last week I wrote about my writing a letter on behalf of a mentor of mine. He is leaving my alma mater Temple University after being pressured out. This is a subject about which I have a personal investment.

All journalists should use their personal Web sites as a place to be as transparent as possible about just such an example of potential bias.

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My five favorite pieces of journalism ever (and of 2008)

Ever think about the best stories you’ve ever read?

What’s special about newsprint is how we clip those stories. We save them. I wanted to collect my favorite journalism pieces of my short life and share them with you. I have wanted to do this for sometime.

Below, find my five favorite and a slew of my favorites from 2008, more generally than my favorite Philadelphia pieces of the year that I shared earlier this month.

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Number of Views:2868