The Thing About 9/11

My sister Michele asked me this morning what the mood was in New York City on the anniversary of the terror attacks. I’m sure she wasn’t expecting the rant I texted her, stream-of-consciousness style. But I realized it was a pretty good summary of how I feel about 9/11 so many years on, and I figured it was time to update my original Sept. 11 post, so I decided to share (and amplify) my thoughts…

The city typically feels sad on this date, but it’s not an ominous thing. There’s a real sense of community on the surface that is usually only a subtext among the denizens of NYC. There is a sense of community loss. It’s usually much quieter on the streets — though nothing like the eerie silence that dominated on the afternoon of 9/11/01

The hustle of Grand Central Terminal is much more hushed, even among the throngs of tourists, who somehow seem to perceive the public mood. There’s a genuine pall over the entire island of Manhattan, and an almost palpable longing. It’s hard to articulate, but it’s a longing for what the world was like before the World Trade Center towers fell.
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2014 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 35,000 times in 2014. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 13 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

2013 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 41,000 times in 2013. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 15 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

2012 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

19,000 people fit into the new Barclays Center to see Jay-Z perform. This blog was viewed about 100,000 times in 2012. If it were a concert at the Barclays Center, it would take about 5 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

A New Year, a Task Ended

typewriter

©JOE DILIBERTO

Welcome to 2013. Please hold your applause until Dec. 31, in case this year turns out to be as rotten as 2012.

One year ago today, I committed to the Postaday 2012 program with blog and my companion photoblog, Joe’s Camera Obscura, meaning that I pledged to post at least once a day on both blogs every day of 2012. I don’t know if I could do it, but I saw it as a challenge and test of discipline — and I managed to succeed. I posted every day without fail. Of course, not every one of them was a gem, but I was proud of a great deal of them.

I’m not fishing for compliments or applause. I know this is largely a personal victory. Most people I mention this to stare blankly, as if I’m speaking Klingon. But I’m proud that I did it, and on two blogs, no less.

That said, I will not be repeating the feat in 2013. Been there, done that. I will still blog, to be sure; just not every day. I’d like to think that fewer posts will mean more high-quality entries, and more enjoyable reading for anyone who sticks around to read. (I’ve also heard that people get annoyed by bloggers who post every day because it clogs up their queues of unread material, but… well, that’s on lazy readers, not productive writers.)

Anyway, I wish everyone a healthy and happy new year, and I’ll meet back here next time…

SOPA/PIPA Taken Off the Table – For Now

In an extraordinary change of heart today, Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas) has changed his mind about the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) – and the forces allied against it – and pulled his bill from consideration by the House Judiciary Committee indefinitely. In addition, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nevada) has canceled the Jan. 24 Senate vote on its version of the legislation, known as the Protect IP Act (PIPA).

I applaud these reasoned actions, because now the conversation can shift to where it should be focused: on how to protect intellectual property intelligently. Nobody wants content to be pirated. As a creator of content myself, I most definitely want to be paid for my work. But there are better ways to do it than wiping out the Internet. After all, printing presses weren’t outlawed to stop libel. This is clearly a victory for those looking to preserve free speech and innovation on the Internet. However, the fight is far from over – for both sides. But without the threat of a flawed “fix” being rushed into law, all sides can work together to stop criminals.
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Is America Still the Land of the Free?

Today, Jan. 18, 2012, I am blacking out my personal blog, Read at Joe’s, in solidarity with thousands and thousands of other websites in order to protest PIPA/SOPA legislation in the United States of America. Y’know, that country that boasts a First Amendment to its Constitution that states:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

That wording is truly awe-inspiring, and makes the United States the world leader in innovation. Ironically, it’s the main reason the U.S. entertainment industry dominates the globe. So why does Hollywood want to strangle free expression? Because Hollywood cannot bottle free thought and sell it to you. If you think original thoughts, you won’t need to buy Hollywood’s prepackaged ideas. And the monolithic entertainment industry cannot charge you for thinking your own thoughts. Well, not yet, anyway….

After you’ve watched the video, please consider taking action to help defeat this horrifying legislation, which is bad for the United States — and the rest of the world. The website AmericanCensorship.org   makes it easy to sign petitions and take other constructive action, including a painless way to write to your representatives in Congress.

And now I’d like to express my thanks to you for your time and effort on behalf of freedom of expression. I’d also like to thank WordPress for giving its members the freedom to black out our pages — and leaving anyone who supports SOPA free to express that opinion and not block their pages.