Despite titles, UCLA can’t win on Title IX

first_img“Rather, it’s an effort to look at whether 35 years later, colleges are continuing to add opportunities for women and making progress,” said Dr. Donna Lopiano, the group’s president. “It’s more of an ethics question. … I have great respect for UCLA. I think they’re trying to do the right thing. But the question is: Are they going to add more women’s sports? And will they do it without dropping men’s sports?” Those are the questions college presidents and athletic directors across the country have long wrestled with as they try promote gender equity. Differing views Officially, there are three ways a school can comply with Title IX: If the number of male and female athletes are proportionate to enrollment; if it has a history of expanding opportunities for women; or if it can show that the interests of its female students are fully met. On one side of the debate are the women’s advocacy groups, such as the Women’s Sports Foundation and the National Women’s Law Center. They argue for strict proportionality between an institution’s enrollment – the national average is 55.8 percent female – and its athletic department. On the other side are such groups as the College Sports Council, a coalition of athletes, coaches, parents and fans. They argue that Title IX has hurt men’s sports programs and that strict proportionality is merely a quota system. Meanwhile, the institutions charged with enforcing the law are left standing in the middle. “When Title IX was written, the male undergraduate population was 50 percent and the football lobby was all for proportionality,” Lopiano said. “Now that the percentages have gone the other way, they want to change the rules. … It’s simple, though. If the female population at UCLA is expanding, they’d build new women’s dorms, right? Why not do the same thing for athletics?” Tennis great Billie Jean King, the co-founder of the WSF, said women continue to be “significantly underrepresented” among college athletes even as there are efforts to weaken Title IX. “They’ve created a false perception that men’s sports participation is on the decline,” she said. According to an NCAA report, 326 men’s teams have been added since 1988-89. But during that same period, Division I programs have experienced a net loss of 245 men’s teams. “The Women’s Sports Foundation has a single definition for who gets an A and that’s strict proportionality,” said Jessica Gavora, the College Sports Council’s vice president for policy. “They don’t care how a school gets there. They’ll give an A to a school that eliminates seven men’s programs to get to that number.” Football tips the scales With its numerous scholarships, enormous budgets and no female equivalent, football is the giant that throws most scales out of whack. The effect is most pronounced at the Division I level, where the football budgets and rosters are the largest. Not surprisingly, schools that eliminate football got higher grades on the WSF report. The eight Big West Conference schools, none with football, have a B-plus average. The 12 Southeastern Conference schools, arguably the nation’s most football-centric conference, had a C-plus. UCLA received a low mark because its undergraduate enrollment is 56.9 percent female, while the percentage of female athletes is only 44.8 percent. Long said assessments of equity need to look at facilities, resources, equipment, recruiting budgets, coaches, training rooms, media guides, academic support facilities and locker rooms. In the 10 years the study was conducted, UCLA had 61 more male athletes than females, but two more women’s teams. In 2005-06, according to its annual Equity in Athletics Disclosure Act report, the school gave $3.6 million in athletic scholarships to females (47.4 percent) and more than $3.9 million to males (52.6 percent). “I think the quality of facilities and support services we provide our female athletes is outstanding,” Long said. “And I feel very positive that our men and women have the opportunity to compete for national championships at the same rate.” Lopiano says that’s good, but not good enough and points to her experience as athletic director at the University of Texas, which got a B-plus. “We were top 10 in almost all our women’s sports, but we were out of whack in participation. So we made the commitment to add three women’s teams. And we did it without cutting men’s teams. “There are things they can do, but they haven’t been willing to do it.” Since 1993, UCLA has added women’s soccer, water polo and rowing while cutting men’s gymnastics and swimming. The road ahead The debate over how best to enforce Title IX is argued publicly by well-spoken athletes, lawyers, politicians and advocacy groups, but many of the battles are waged by those holding the calculators. In some areas, the mathematical gap seems to be narrowing. In others, such as high school athletics, it seems to be widening. There is one thing both sides agree upon, though. “Nobody’s interested in changing Title IX,” Gavora said. According to a new poll, 82 percent favor Title IX, 65 percent strongly. Those figures hold up across every political and social demographic. It’s easy to see why. The success of Title IX in leveling the playing field for female athletes has been societal in scope. Before Title IX was passed in 1972, only one out of 27 girls was given the opportunity to participate on a high school athletic team. Today, that figure has improved to one out of every 2.5 girls. The number of men who participated in college sports in 1972 is nearly identical to the number of women playing in 2006. For a law whose intent was to level the playing field for women athletes, there may be no greater measure. ramona.shelburne@dailynews.com (818) 713-3617160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Hardly. UCLA got a C from the Women’s Sports Foundation in a report released earlier this month titled “Who’s Playing College Sports?” UCLA is not alone. The five universities with the most NCAA women’s titles – Stanford (36), UCLA (30), LSU (24), North Carolina (23) and Texas (22) – averaged only a C-plus. Thirty-five years to the day since Title IX was enacted, the debate continues over how to enforce the landmark legislation that bars gender bias in athletics and other educational programs. “I don’t panic when I see any of those (grades) because I think they’re limited in what they’re looking at,” said Petrina Long, UCLA’s senior women’s administrator, who is responsible for monitoring the school’s compliance with Title IX. The Women’s Sports Foundation says its report is not intended to be a measure of whether schools are complying with the letter of the law. When UCLA captured its 100th NCAA title – the first school to reach the century mark – it wasn’t the men’s basketball or volleyball teams that cut the ribbon. It was women’s water polo. With UCLA holding 30 national titles in women’s sports, that shouldn’t come as such a surprise. USC has the most men’s national titles at 73; UCLA is second at 70, meaning the race to 100 could have been an L.A. showdown. But the Bruin women beat the USC women 30-11 in the title competition. So does UCLA earn high marks for taking the federal mandate for equality in competitive sports seriously? last_img read more

The Beauty Products Amy Schumer Can’t Live Without Are . . . Secret Deodorant and Toilet Paper

first_imgAMY SCHUMER talked about her beauty “regimen” in a new interview with “In Style” magazine.Here are her six best quotes . . .1.  She wears normal-person deodorant.  Quote, “I use Secret.  I tried the natural ones, but my body was just like, ‘Stop all that.  Just die early and don’t smell like a foot.”2.  She also said the one “beauty product” that she can’t live without is . . . toilet paper.  She didn’t name a brand, but she’s pretty down-to-Earth, so it probably isn’t any of that posh, aloe-infused, eight-ply, perforated by hand, fair trade, gluten-free nonsense.  (???)3.  She doesn’t know if she’ll get Botox or filler.  Quote, “I’m not against it.  I’m pretty sure I’ll never get any sort of surgery, but no proclamations.“I cannot imagine a moment when I’ll need filler for my face, as if it needs to be filled.  Can we un-fill this?  Let’s get an emptier.”4.  Her parents raised her to be confident.  Quote, “My parents made me think I was a genius supermodel, and it was kind of too late when I found out that they’d been lying.”5.  But her confidence has been challenged by fame.  Quote, “I’m also realistic because if I look my absolute best and go to an awards thing, I’m still going to be seated next to Blake Lively or Emily Ratajkowski.  So, that can break your heart or you can be like, ‘This is pretty good.  I’ll take this level.’”6.  She’s been with her boyfriend Ben for almost a year and a half, but they can’t ALWAYS be together.  Quote, “I need a lot of alone time.  Right now, I’m getting my period, and I just don’t like him, you know?  My PMS is no joke.”For what it’s worth, Amy is on the cover of the magazine, wearing a one-piece bathing suit.  It’s low-cut, and she looks great.  But of course, that didn’t stop the trolling.A woman named Dana Duggan who owns a company called South Shore Swimwear made this hurtful comment . . .  Quote, “Come on now!  You couldn’t find anyone better for this cover?  Not everyone should be in a swimsuit . . . I don’t think it’s an attractive photo.”last_img read more

WordPress 3.9: What To Do If You Have Issues After Updating

first_imgWordPress 3.9 “Smith” was released yesterday, with several new updates, including enhancements focused on making it easier for you to edit and add content. Named for jazz organist Jimmy Smith, WordPress 3.9 is available for download or you can update through Dashboard > Updates.Check out the WPTavern post for a description of the new features and enhancements in WordPress 3.9. But what happens if you have issues after updating and need to troubleshoot? Where do you go? What do you start with?First, I’m assuming you took steps to backup your site before updating WordPress. Backing up your database and all your theme and plugin files is essential so you can return the site back to its original state before updating. Second, visit the WordPress 3.9 master list which contains great information and tips for troubleshooting. The 3.9 master list is a gold mine, with recommendations to read what’s in version 3.9, updates on known issues with themes and plugins found in 3.9, and known “oopsies”. I visited the page last night when one of my Twitter followers tweeted about an issue after updating to 3.9. And I visited this morning to see a couple new updates to the page. Shoutout to Jan Dembrowski for doing a great job keeping the master page current. Third, before you post an issue in the WordPress forums, follow Jan’s recommendations to:Troubleshoot in your browser to identify any JavaScript issuesFlush your caching plugins. Also clear your server/browser cacheDeactivate all your plugins. Reactivate the plugins one-by-one to determine which plugin is causing the issue.Switch to the Twenty Fourteen theme to rule out any theme-specific problemsUpgrade manuallyMost WordPress updates work without any problem, but if you run into issues, the steps I’ve described should help you find and resolve the issue quickly. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Like this:Like Loading…RelatedThe 5 Most Popular Posts for 2014Like many others, I’m finishing off 2014 with a review of my work, and that includes a review of the posts I’ve published for 2014. I’ve learned a lot this year about working on the web, and shared what I discovered with you. In no particular order, here are the…In “Blogging”Share Your Favorite WordPress Plugin: WP RollbackImagine you log into your WordPress site and notice in the dashboard that you have a plugin update notification. You know it’s important to always stay current with the latest version. So you select the “update” link for the plugin. Only to see the new update has caused issues on…In “WordPress”Weekly Roundup of Web Design and Development Resources: April 18, 2014It’s been quite a week of weather for us in southeast Michigan, from three inches of snow and temperatures in the teens, to sunny skies and warm temperatures almost reaching 70 degrees. And we beat the record! I can now say I survived the snowiest winter in Detroit (since they…In “Web design & development links”last_img read more

Charter ‘boosted banking access in SA’

first_img27 September 2012The percentage of South Africans with a bank account increased from 47% in 2005 to 63% in 2011 after the launch of the country’s first Financial Sector Charter in 2004, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan said on Wednesday.Addressing more than 350 delegates from over 70 countries at the opening of the 4th Global Policy Forum in Cape Town, Gordhan said South Africa’s experience of the Financial Sector Charter provided a lesson on how to confront the challenges of financial inclusion.The first charter was negotiated in 2004 and resulted in the Mzansi bank account, which has been taken up by three-million users, while banks also began rolling out more branches, he said.The second Financial Sector Charter was gazetted for comment by the Department of Trade and Industry in March.Gordhan said the long-term sustainability of financial systems hinged on the ability of these systems to serve all citizens.“The inequality, the social and political distrust of elites, and the neglect of the poor and the impoverishment of millions as a result of the financial crisis, that we still haven’t recovered from, poses serious challenges to the economic, political and social stability and progress of ourselves,” he said.He said the National Treasury was developing a “twin peaks” regulatory framework for financial services which would come into effect in the next 18 months.The new model would see the development of different regulatory focuses between prudential regulation and consumer protection, while the National Treasury would remain responsible for policy implementation, including one of encouraging greater financial access.He said an IMF report on financial stability released in April was concerning, as it indicated that innovative products were already being developed to sidestep the new financial regulations.The financial sector is faced with various challenges, include a disconnect from the real economy, said Gordhan, who pointed out that banks needed to serve more people and entrepreneurs to generate growth and create jobs.Another challenge was how multi-national banks were serving emerging markets, he said.It was also important to develop regulations to ensure that the poor were protected should new crises emerge.Central banks also needed to ensure that their respective banking sectors weren’t overly dominated by a few big banks, as this could stifle competition and the development of new and affordable financial products.Also addressing the conference on Wednesday, the deputy governor of the central bank of the Philippines, Nestor Espenilla, said the central bank’s policy of focusing of micro finance had led to 200 community banks providing financial services to almost a million micro entrepreneursEspenilla said that along with increasing micro finance, the Philippines government had also encouraged more financial education and consumer protection.Source: SANews.gov.zalast_img read more

Why South Africa’s Karoo is a palaeontological wonderland

first_imgSouth Africa’s Karoo region provides not only a historical record of biological change over a period of Earth’s history but also a means to test theories of evolutionary processes over long stretches of time.A typical landscape in the Karoo semi-desert region of South Africa. (Image: Media Club South Africa)• Newly found ape-man lived alongside Lucy, 3 million years ago• South African scientists track the sun’s storms• Cape bones add new chapter to human history • Bloggers take a trip back to humanity’s origins • South African research funding fourth-highest in the worldBruce Rubidge and Mike Day, University of the WitwatersrandSouth Africa’s Karoo region has been in the headlines in recent years because of the prospect of a controversial fracking programme to exploit its potential shale gas resources. But, to palaeontologists, the Karoo Supergroup’s rocks hold the key to understanding the early evolutionary history of the major groups of land vertebrates – including tortoises, mammals and dinosaurs.More than 200-million years ago, South Africa formed part of the southern hinterland of Pangaea, the great single supercontinent, which was inhabited by a diverse flora and fauna.In only a few places, where conditions were conducive to their fossilisation, can palaeontologists catch a glimpse of these ancient ecosystems. The Karoo is one such place.A representation of the ancient supercontinent of Pangaea, showing modern country borders. Some 200-million years ago, South Africa formed part of of the southern hinterland of this great continent. Click image for a larger view. (Image: Massimo Pietrobon) Why it’s such a special placeAbout 265-million years ago, the Beaufort Group of rocks within the Karoo sequence was beginning to be deposited by rivers draining into the shrinking inland Ecca Sea. As these rivers filled the basin with sediment they entombed the remains of land animals that lived around them. The youngest Beaufort rocks are around 240-million years old.Today, more than 30 000 fossils of vertebrate animals from the Beaufort are to be found in museum collections across the world. The Beaufort was followed by the Molteno and Elliot formations. The Elliot formation is made up of a succession of red rocks that records some of the earliest dinosaur communities.The area plays a crucial role in revealing the distant origin of mammals, tortoises and dinosaurs. It also covers two great extinction events, the end-Permian (252-million years ago) and the end-Triassic (200-million years ago).Because of its continuity of deposition, the Karoo provides not only a historical record of biological change over this period of Earth’s history, but also a means to test theories of evolutionary processes over long periods of time.Map showing the formations of the Karoo Supergroup. Click image for a larger view.The 400 000-square-kilometre area is internationally noted for its record of fossil therapsid “mammal-like” reptiles. These chart anatomical changes on the path to mammals from their early tetrapod forebears.The Beaufort Group has also yielded the oldest recorded fossil ancestor of living turtles and tortoises – the small, lizard-like Eunotosaurus. The younger Elliot Formation preserves a record of early dinosaurs that could help palaeontologists understand the rise of the giant sauropod dinosaurs of the Jurassic Period.Physiology and behaviourMany studies are still being done on the identification of new species from the Karoo. But a lot of current research is also focused on the relationship between the extinct animals and their environments.The story of the therapsid’s burrow is a good example of how insights are being gained on the behaviour of prehistoric animals. Roger Smith was the first palaeontologist to recognise therapsid vertebrate burrows in the Karoo. He described helical burrows, which he attributed to a small species of dicynodont (two-dog tooth) therapsid called Diictodon. In the fossil record, burrows are preserved not as hollows, but as the plug of sediment that filled them.X-ray tomography at a facility in France was recently used to scan one of these burrows. This showed that it was home not only to its maker – the meerkat-sized therapsid Thrinaxodon – but also to the early amphibian Broomistega. Further research revealed that the Thrinaxodon was probably hibernating, which was why it tolerated the intruding amphibian which was using the burrow to convalesce while suffering from broken ribs.Partners forever, the amphibian Broomistega and mammal fore-runner Thrinaxodon preserved in a fossil burrow. Click image for a larger view.Studying how fossil bones are preserved – a discipline known as taphonomy – can provide similarly rich insights. For example, it has been suggested that changes in preservation style between skeletons in the latest Permian Period (about 253-million years ago) to those in the earliest Triassic Period (about 252-million years ago) can be attributed to changes in climate. The region developed from being seasonally dry floodplains with high water tables to predominantly dry floodplains.Because of the abundance of fossil tetrapods in the rocks of the Karoo Supergroup, they have been used to divide the rock succession into fossil zones, called biozones. This has enabled the biozones to be correlated with equivalent sequences elsewhere in the world and forms the basis of reconstructing global patterns of diversity.Understanding the sequence of events is crucial for testing hypotheses of evolutionary processes. It is an area of research being pursued for both the Permian and Triassic periods.The big wipe-outsThe end-Permian mass extinction, the greatest, was responsible for the elimination of 90% of species living in the sea and 70% of species living on land. Roger Smith’s work on Karoo fossil vertebrates shows this extinction to have lasted some 300 000 years, terminating at the Permian-Triassic boundary 252-million years ago. It was followed by a lesser extinction pulse approximately 160 000 years later in the Early Triassic.Our current work is focusing on the more obscure Guadalupian extinction which occurred 8-million to 10-million years before the end-Permian. This is recognised from marine sequences. For the first, time empirical evidence for this event on land is being discovered from the Karoo fossil record.What’s next?These are exciting times for palaeontologists. Technological and scientific developments have opened up new vistas for their work.A comprehensive database of all the Karoo fossil vertebrate collections in South Africa has been built. This is the first database of Permian-Jurassic continental vertebrates. It is available to scientists globally, an invaluable tool for biogeographic and biostratigraphic studies.Better dating techniques are opening up the possibility of working out rates of evolution in fossil tetrapod lineages. High-resolution scanning techniques are also enabling palaeoscientists to explore areas which were previously inaccessible, or at least not without damaging the fossils.There are a myriad questions that remain unanswered. Were the early mammal ancestors of the Karoo warm-blooded? What can the Karoo tell us about the reaction of terrestrial ecosystems to mass extinction events? How can the Karoo’s shifting ecological make-up shine a light on evolutionary tempo? These are questions we can now attempt to answer.Bruce Rubidge is Director, Centre of Excellence in Palaeosciences at University of the Witwatersrand.Mike Day is Postdoctoral Fellow at Organisational Unit:Evolutionary Studies Institute at University of the Witwatersrand.This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article.last_img read more

Philly 360° Playlist: Brianna Cash – “Kisses In The Rain”

first_img Philly, get to know Brianna Cash. This Philly-based singer/songwriter has been generating plenty of buzz in the local music scene. So, it’s definitely time for her to shine on the Philly 360° playlist. Cash just released her EP The Journey After June to much acclaim from music makers and fans alike. This week, we’re spotlighting her single, “Kisses in the Rain.” The heavy, warm, guitar-driven track automatically makes you reminisce about summertime in the city. Cash’s raspy voice sings of the complexity of love—when you’re all in but the other person doesn’t quite get it. The production on the track is light and leaves plenty of space to get into the lyrics and the song’s laid back vibe. Also, who isn’t a sucker for a well-played guitar solo?  The Journey After June was written, composed and produced by Cash. When explaining her relationship with the music from the EP, Cash explains “Each song has gotten me through a lot in my life, and I feel like they can help others as well. I love to share good music.” As a young artist, Cash already has a distinctive sound that sets her apart from others. Originally from Philadelphia, this up-and-coming singer/songwriter been working hard on the the locallive scene circuit—performing with recognizable Philly talent like Chill Moody, GoGo Morrow and Roc Nation’s Bridget Kelly. Also, just last week, Starr Island Group announced Brianna Cash as one of the performers for next week’s The Winner Circle II music showcase at Underground Arts, along with MPrynt, Jeremy Isaac & Hangover and Good Girl.   At just 21, Brianna Cash has a voice and musical sensibility that are well beyond her age, yet her music remains fresh, current and relatable to today’s audiences. She’s definitey the epitome of Philly music, and the perfect representation of the heartfelt sound that has always come from our town.   Make sure you catch Brianna Cash at her upcoming show and download The Journey After June now. You’ll definitely be pleased. Brianna Cash – Journey After June(Courtesy of Brianna Cash)last_img read more

Leakage of my letter to PM should be treated as high treason: Army chief

first_imgFacing demands for his dismissal, Indian Army Chief General V.K. Singh on Thursday said the leak of his letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh presenting a grim picture of the force’s defence preparedness should be treated as “high treason” and the source of leakage dealt with “ruthlessly”.The assertion by the General to trace the source of the leak came even as Defence sources said that Intelligence Bureau has been asked to inquire into leakage of the letter to the media.As tensions between him and the government escalated over the leak of his official letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Gen Singh hit back saying a “cynical approach” to tarnish his reputation should stop.In a brief statement released by Army Headquarters, Gen Singh, who is currently in Jammu and Kashmir, further said his official communication with the Prime Minister and Defence Minister A.K. Antony is “privileged” communication.”The leakage of the letter should be treated as high treason. Cynical approach to tarnish my reputation should stop. Sources of the leakage should be found and dealt with ruthlessly,” said Singh, who is due to retire on May 31.Singh’s leaked letter led to demands by political parties — Samajwadi Party, Janata Dal (United) and Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) — for his dismissal on Wednesday even as government and Opposition were agreed his concerns should not have come out in the open.There was a strong demand to launch a probe how the letter was leaked to the media. It was also felt that the Army chief should have first raised his concerns on the risk to the country’s security directly with the Defence Minister. The General was also accused of breach of discipline.The media leak of the letter came on top of an acrimony between the Army chief and the government since early this week over his media interview in which he had claimed that he was offered a bribe of Rs 14 crore by a retired Lt Gen for swinging a sub-standard defence deal.”I have made serious note of the observations. After consulting the prime minister and colleagues, we will take appropriate action,” Antony said in Rajya Sabha on Wednesday after members expressed serious concerns over issues of national security.advertisementlast_img read more

Help! I Don’t Exist Online

first_imgDear Liz,I am an employed and pretty well-connected Marketing Manager in the consumer packaged goods field, but I haven’t delved into social media at all. I know I need to get up to speed to stay competitive in my field. At this late date, how do I start to build an online persona and do whatever else one is supposed to do online? I am afraid that I’m at the tail end of ‘late adopters’ and hopelessly out of date.Thanks,Gayl___________________Dear Gayl,Relax! It’s not difficult to begin building your online soapbox. Here are eight tips to get you going:LinkedIn.com is your first stop. This massive profile-and-connection site is the 800-lb. gorilla for business-oriented online networking. LinkedIn has over 50 million users, and it’s easy to see why – the site is a free billboard for every working person, a fantastic research tool and a powerful ‘introduction engine’ that makes it easy for you to connect your friends to your other friends. It’ll take you 45 minutes to an hour to get your LinkedIn profile up and running, and another hour or so to download your contacts (from Outlook, Gmail, etc.), pick which folks you’d like to invite to join your LinkedIn network, and create customized invitations (a must!) to send to them.It takes almost no time to set up a Twitter account, and read other folks’ tweets if you don’t want to send out your own. A ‘tweet’ is a quick, 140-character post that a Twitter member uses to let his or her friends and other followers know what s/he’s reading, or doing, or thinking about at any given time. A good start-up process for Twitter is to create an account, follow a few friends and opinion leaders in your industry, and then eventually, if you feel like it, to start tweeting yourself. Like LinkedIn, a Twitter membership is free.If you don’t already have one, craft a compelling email signature and attach it to each of your outgoing email messages. Since you’re working for someone else, your employer name and title will be in your signature, but your signature can also include the link to your LinkedIn profile (you can create a customized url with your name in it, a la http://www.linkedin.com/in/gaylsmith) and your Twitter account name as well, if you like.Join an online discussion community, or more than one, to grow your online soapbox and get used to sharing your ideas in an online-community setting. Yahoo!Groups hosts ten million online communities, so you’re sure to find at least one Yahoo!Group populated by people who share your interests. (My online community, Ask Liz Ryan, is a great source for business and career advice, at http://www.yahoogroups.com/group/asklizryan. If that one isn’t your cup of tea, there are nine million, nine hundred and ninety-nine thousand others to choose from!)Leave comments on sites like Glassdoor.com (you could leave a comment below this story, in fact) in order to begin getting comfortable putting your thoughts concisely in writing. The ability to say what you want quickly and in a conversational way is a huge asset online! If you’d like to be reachable to other commenters or visitors to the site, leave your LinkedIn profile url (not your email address!) beneath your comment.Remember that your employer’s brand is attached to your own, so be careful of what you put in writing online. “I think the Cheesy-Oh’s Twitter campaign was provocative but missed its mark” is one thing; “The Marketing people at Cheesy-Oh’s must have rocks in their head” is something else entirely. As the Marketing Manager for your company, you’re speaking for yourself AND for the company, so keep in mind that discretion is the better part of valor.Back on LinkedIn, use LinkedIn Answers to ask and answer questions that’ll not only clue you in to what’s happening in your industry and function, but also put you in touch with smart people you should know. LinkedIn Groups is another great way to meet thought leaders and connect with them either on LinkedIn itself or in the three-D world, or both.What about starting a blog, and what about Facebook? Blogs are terrific for people who love to write and who can keep a blog updated with twice-or-thrice-weekly new posts. The rest of us may find a blog more trouble than it’s worth. Facebook is a fun and engaging social-networking tool, and becoming more of a business tool every day, especially for marketers looking to build community among users and fans of their products and services. For a beginner, our suggestion is to create a Facebook profile and make some connections, to get used to the site’s functions before launching a FB marketing campaign.Don’t be afraid to put a toe in the water — but don’t feel obligated to make a splash in every social networking pond, either! Take our steps in order, one or two at a time, until you feel comfortable taking your social networking to the next level (by starting your own LinkedIn group or launching a Facebook fan page, for instance). You can exist online by dinnertime tonight, Gayl. There’s no time like now to get started!Cheers,Lizlast_img read more

Turning Climate Action into a Reality

first_imgThis post was written by Ricardo Lagos, former president of Chile and a member of the high-level advisory panel for the Climate Justice Dialogue. The Climate Justice Dialogue project is a joint initiative between WRI and the Mary Robinson Foundation-Climate Justice. This piece originally appeared on Reuters Alertnet.Global emissions just crossed 400 parts per million, an ominous threshold for the climate. Despite this marker, there are signs of new life for international climate action, including during the recent United Nation’s climate meeting in Bonn, Germany.It’s become abundantly clear that in order for the world to reach an international climate agreement by 2015, the usual approach isn’t going to work. World leaders need to find common ground and work toward solutions. They need to engage their citizens and infuse new passion into the issue. Climate change is not just an environmental issue – it is one of the great moral tests of our times.In Chile, we know all too well the impacts of climate change, marked in particular by more frequent droughts and increasing water scarcity. This affects people and our economy across sectors, from agriculture and manufacturing to mining and energy. Sadly, the people most affected by climate change are the poorest and most vulnerable members of society.In the face of this challenge, we need a new narrative that engages people and presents the issue as a social and economic story rather than as just an environmental one. We need to create a world in which people prosper but without increasing pollution. This is not a distant dream, but a real possibility.Chile has an advantage compared to many richer countries, as we are still building our infrastructure and can do so in a clean, green way, rather than waiting to retrofit later. This requires planning and investing for the long-term in the type of society we want our children and grandchildren to live in.Latin American Leadership?Across Latin America, there is an opportunity to demonstrate global leadership in solving the climate problem. We are the region with the highest rate of deforestation in the world, accounting for more than half of our greenhouse gas emissions. Anything we do to slow down and reverse the rate of deforestation can have a global impact and will ultimately reduce the negative effects climate change.We can benefit from the measures agreed in the Kyoto Protocol, which allow us to access funding to plant trees and reduce deforestation. Immediate action makes sense. It is less expensive to tackle the causes of the problem today than to wait for the impacts to worsen, which will be increasingly costly and deadly.We have another advantage in Chile: The amount of greenhouse gases we emit per person is already at the level that other countries need to reach to stabilize the climate. For many countries, such as the United States and Europe, this means making significant changes in the way they do business. For us, we just need to find ways to grow without polluting – and this is most definitely within our grasp. At the end of the day, climate change is caused by people and will be solved by people.An Issue of JusticeActing as the world is now–like climate change isn’t happening and the impacts aren’t real–is an issue of justice. Climate change is causing droughts and exacerbating food shortages. This undermines people’s basic rights to food, to water, and to health. It hits poor and vulnerable communities the hardest.Climate justice requires us to acknowledge our responsibility and then orient ourselves towards a new kind of future, one that is hopeful and filled with opportunity. Developing countries don’t need to copy the outdated version of development that produced great growth, but with the cost of destabilizing the climate system. We can follow a better, more sustainable, and ultimately, a more just and equitable path.I believe in a new paradigm of development based on dreams and hopes. To achieve this, we need to win hearts and minds. We need the minds to produce rational thoughts and creative ideas and the hearts to have the passion to tackle the problem.Over the coming months, we need to listen to the voices of the vulnerable and the rich alike. We need to disregard old pathways and knock down the barriers of inaction. Countries need to move closer together around a common plan. Emerging countries, including those in Latin America, can do their part by making commitments to action. Big players, like the United States, must also come to the table with a strong will to reach an international agreement.We can imagine a better and safer future. Now, we need to turn that future into a reality.LEARN MORE: Visit the Climate Justice Dialogue webpage.last_img read more