Friday, January 20, 2012
SOPA and PIPA legislation causes a stir in Missouri political circles.
For procrastinators, Wednesday was especially difficult. That’s because seemingly essential websites, such as Wikipedia, were blacked out to protest the Stop Online Piracy Act and Protect IP Act. The House bill, commonly known as SOPA, and the Senate legislation, known as PIPA, are attempts at curbing piracy of popular media, such as movies and music. But many opponents say the bills could have a much farther-reaching impact that could shut down sites, such as the aforementioned free online encyclopedia. Thus, Wednesday became the day where many sites opposed to the measures spoke out and urged people to contact lawmakers. For this writer, Wednesday’s protest meant a pause in searching for factoids about Pakistani independence or the …
Wednesday, January 18, 2012
Several popular websites will go black Wednesday in protest of anti-piracy legislation.
If you’re hoping to post that old couch for sale on Craigslist or research Maryland Heights Wednesday, you might have to wait awhile. Several websites such as Craigslist, Wikipedia and Boing Boing will go black on Wednesday to oppose House Resolution 3261 and Senate Bill 968, also known as the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and Protect I-P Act (PIPA). The bills would help in the illegal sharing of music and movies and provide protections for movie studios and record labels, according to a ABC News article. Patch and AOL are not participating in the blackout. "As written, we cannot support the bills. We believe an open Internet is critical for innovation, job creation, and the sustained growth of Internet businesses. We are in the process of…
Friday, May 13, 2011
A wrong self-diagnosis eventually lands one mom at a Maryland Heights clinic for treatment during a weekend.
It all started with a pulsing, throbbing pain at my temples. I suspected it was because I hadn’t yet had my morning coffee, but even after two blissful cups of Folgers, the headache persisted. I swallowed a couple of ibuprofen and chalked it up to stress. That was Wednesday. The headache returned with a vengeance on Thursday, along with a fever and body aches. Ever a self-help junkie, I thoroughly consulted WebMD and became convinced I had the flu. I didn’t feel like leaving the house anyway, and even if I did see my doctor I assumed he would say, “Stay hydrated, take fever reducers, and let the virus run its course,” advice I’ve heard many times in nine years of being a parent. But Friday night, as I burned with a record fever, I …
Sunday, May 8, 2011
The launch of the new “Local Voices” feature on Patch sites around the country this week got “Patch” Regional Editor Holly Edgell thinking about what makes a good blog.
When I was in the fourth grade, my mother gave me a diary. It was a beautiful thing, with a brocade cover and a ribbon attached to mark my place. I wrote in it almost every day, even if my jottings only amounted to a paragraph or two. I continued the diary habit off and on through college, by which time a paragraph or two turned into pages and pages of angsty ramblings that make me cringe today. Even though I always knew my diary was for my eyes only, I remember feeling self-conscious about it; like I had better write well, because someday someone might read my diary. Perhaps I always knew I’d end up writing for an audience; I am now a journalist. Today we have the blog, which some people use like a diary--albeit one that has a self-…
Tuesday, April 26, 2011
Edgell reviews six local eateries based on ambience, layout, the meeting factor, and more.
When the tools of your trade can fit into a briefcase, backpack, or computer bag the world is your oyster. A person living the virtual life may work from her sofa, the library or community center, a park bench, a "third space" or--of course--a coffee shop. In the first installment of this column, I focused on Saint Louis Bread Company (Panera) bakery-cafes. The Greater St. Louis area also has a wide range of neighborhood coffee shops and eateries that provide good environments for conducting business. Here are a few where I've plugged in: Kaldi's, Clayton My Daddy's Cheesecake, Clayton Deer Creek Coffee, Ladue Picasso's Coffee, St. Charles St. Charles Coffee House, St. Peters Lindsay's Chocolate Cafe and Coffee House, O'Fallon
Saturday, January 22, 2011
This week we discovered a Maryland Heights business with no individual Web site but a bustling social media presence. Is this a sign of things to come?
Backstreet Jazz and Blues Club prefers to let other people spread the word about its business. The club doesn’t appear to have its own Web site. Instead, it relies on customer reviews on Yelp, Clubplanet.com, Metromix, and Citysearch. The one area where Backstreet Jazz and Blues prefers to speak for itself is Facebook. In fact, it rarely lets more than three days pass without an update. Due to its constant rotation of guest bands, most posts revolve around who is currently playing at the club, including adding links to YouTube videos so people can sample the music before making a night of it. The Facebook page isn't shy about reminding people that Backstreet Jazz and Blues Club is next door to Funnybones, so if you’re in the area to check …
Saturday, January 15, 2011
Maryland Heights Patch thanks its writers and readers for making the first two months great.
Maryland Heights Patch is two months old! We launched the site on Nov. 15 with a mission to bring you news coverage, community information and local stories from around Maryland Heights. I’m proud to say we’ve done just that. We have a great team of people writing news, columns and reviews for Maryland Heights Patch. Their hard work is what makes the site great. From sports coverage to school news, this team of writers has been second to none. I thank them for all their hard work and dedication to helping our Patch surpass its potential. But a bigger thank you goes to you—our readers. Since the day we launched, you’ve invited us onto your computer screens to read about local happenings. You’ve interacted with us via the comment sections, …
Wednesday, January 12, 2011
This week, a woman who never leaves home without her netbook and smartphone is flummoxed by slot machines.
After playing an assortment of slot machines at Maryland Heights’ Harrah’s Casino, I pounced when one of four Star Trek-themed slots become available. Surely Spock could walk this gambling-newbie through the illogical human game of chance. But as I sat down, a man at the adjacent machine rather graphically threatened me with physical violence if I laid a hand on his friend’s slot. “Touch that machine, and I will shove a [expletive] apple up your [expletive],” said the tallish, gray-haired man. She was coming right back, he said. I asked if I could play in the meantime and was suddenly hit with the full glaring force of an entire nursing home. No one believed my assertions that random number generators govern slots. His friend had put in …
Saturday, December 11, 2010
Social Media isn't just for chatting with friends and finding good coupons. Now, it's a place to connect with your local police.
First your dad joined Facebook, then your boss, and now - big brother. That's right - the Maryland Heights Police Department is on both Facebook and Twitter - and they have a sense of humor. The department lists its interests as "fighting crime and evil," its favorite song as "I fought the law and the law won," and its favorite show as "COPS." Their Twitter page used to update residents on useful things like road closures as well as offering tidbits about interesting arrests. However, interest in one social media site seems to have waned while interest in the other surges. They're currently much more active on Facebook, where they have both a page and a fan group. The police department also offers links to assorted local public safety …
Sunday, November 28, 2010
Each week we show you how Maryland Heights businesses, non-profits and organizations use social media.
Facebook pages aren't just for asking if a pickle can get more fans than a politician or reminders that your cousin's high school band is playing this Friday at the Pizza joint. Since it seems everyone under 25 is on Facebook, churches are using social media to reach out to younger members. The Maryland Heights Church of Christ has an active Facebook page that focuses on fun things going on within the church community. This ranges from a 5K Run and games of Bunco for Breast Cancer during National Breast Cancer Awareness Month to reminding people to bring a side dish to special events going on at church like Teacher Appreciation Night and Veggie Tales Live. Since this is Facebook, they also post plenty of photos - more than 200 in one album…