‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ was not a success in it day and didn’t become a Christmas classic until its copyright expired and television stations could play it for free. Yeah, sometimes the value of art isn’t recognized because of copyright. Sometimes, a public good isn’t valued until it’s shared.

Asa Dotzler

Enquirer to shrink, move printing to Columbus

Although previously announced in August, it’s now official that the Cincinnati Enquirer will close its Cincinnati printing plant, laying off 200 employees, and move printing operations to the Columbus Dispatch’s plant.

Gannett, of course, glossed over these details and chose to tout the new “easy-to-use format” coming soon to the Enquirer. Although the new format will allow for more use of color, it will shrink to just 10 1/2 by 14 2/3 inches.

To me, an “easy-to-use format” would consist of an improved website, RSS feeds, and perhaps a good iPhone/iPad app. Of course, these would only be relevant if I were interested in the Enquirer’s content.

The Enquirer frequently publishes anti-city attack pieces, often bordering on absurdity, in an attempt to cater to its largely suburban readership. The closure of their printing plant is another strike to a city they don’t care about and have no desire to serve.

The winning quote goes to Jake Mecklenborg:

I can’t wait for the first time I-71 is shut down by snow and no old people get their papers.

The End of Cheap Coffee: Why the Diner Staple Is About to Become a Luxury

“It’s interesting to me that the same consumer that will go to 7-11 and buy a bottle of Fiji Water for five dollars will go crazy and complain about a cup of coffee,” says Geoff Watts, Intelligentsia’s vice president and green (unroasted, that is) coffee buyer. “This is a meticulously grown agricultural product from halfway around the world that was hand-harvested, hand-picked, and roasted and brewed. […]”

Copyright and remix culture: The new Prohibition?

Andy Baio:

Under current copyright law, nearly every cover song on YouTube is technically illegal. Every fan-made music video, every mashup album, every supercut, every fanfic story? Quite probably illegal, though largely untested in court. […]

No amount of lawsuits or legal threats will change the fact that this behavior is considered normal — I’d wager the vast majority of people under 25 see nothing wrong with non-commercial sharing and remixing, or think it’s legal already.

‘Vocal Fry’ Creeping Into U.S. Speech

A curious vocal pattern has crept into the speech of young adult women who speak American English: low, creaky vibrations, also called vocal fry. Pop singers, such as Britney Spears, slip vocal fry into their music as a way to reach low notes and add style. Now, a new study of young women in New York state shows that the same guttural vibration—once considered a speech disorder—has become a language fad.

The Book of Jobs

For the past several years, Bruce Greenwald and I have been engaged in research on an alternative theory of the Depression—and an alternative analysis of what is ailing the economy today. This explanation sees the financial crisis of the 1930s as a consequence not so much of a financial implosion but of the economy’s underlying weakness. […] The underlying cause was a structural change in the real economy: the widespread decline in agricultural prices and incomes, caused by what is ordinarily a “good thing”—greater productivity.

My Occupy LA Arrest

I was arrested at about 1 a.m. Wednesday morning with 291 other people at Occupy LA. I was sitting in City Hall Park with a pillow, a blanket, and a copy of Thich Nhat Hanh’s “Being Peace” when 1,400 heavily-armed LAPD officers in paramilitary SWAT gear streamed in. […]

Each seated, nonviolent protester beside me who refused to cooperate by unlinking his arms had the following done to him: an LAPD officer would forcibly extend the protestor’s legs, grab his left foot, twist it all the way around and then stomp his boot on the insole, pinning the protestor’s left foot to the pavement, twisted backwards. Then the LAPD officer would grab the protestor’s right foot and twist it all the way the other direction until the non-violent protestor, in incredible agony, would shriek in pain and unlink from his neighbor.