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Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki has thrown hard-won political stability in Iraq into disarray by stoking tensions with Sunni politicians, and strained ties between Turkey and Iraq is only a small fallout of an increasingly deepening political stalemate in the country…

Coroner: Amy Winehouse Died of Alcohol Poisoning — The late singer’s mother Janis leaves the St. Pancras Coroner’s Court in London, where it was announced Amy had consumed a massive amount of alcohol and was five times over the legal limit for driving.
see more — Amy Winehouse: Her Short Life


Coroner: Amy Winehouse Died of Alcohol Poisoning — The late singer’s mother Janis leaves the St. Pancras Coroner’s Court in London, where it was announced Amy had consumed a massive amount of alcohol and was five times over the legal limit for driving.

see moreAmy Winehouse: Her Short Life

The protest by popular websites against proposed online piracy legislation was a top story for young people. Nearly a quarter (23%) of those younger than 30 say they followed news about the online piracy fight most closely. That is about the same as the percentage following the 2012 elections most closely (21%).

According to the Pew Center, the online SOPA/PIPA protest was the single most avidly followed news story last week by young adults – those ages 18-29.

Read more on the  Pew Research Center for the People and the Press.

(via onaissues)


The rape accusation against Greg Kelly, the police commissioner’s son, is front page on the tabloids, but the stories are pretty different. The Post has information about the messages the accuser sent Kelly after the incident, making it sound like she was hoping to see him again.

From The Post:

If the woman was upset about the randy romp, she gave no clue in follow-up messages to Kelly, the son of Police Commissioner Ray Kelly, the source said.

“They continued to text,” the source said. “Part of it was about arranging another date.”

In total, there were 17 text messages between the two.

“You don’t text your rapist — other than to say, ‘You’re awful,’ ” the source said.

The News has slightly different info:

“Why’d you do that?” she asked Kelly in a phone call, sources said…Her [Facebook] entries  for October, when the incident with Kelly occurred, showed nothing out of the ordinary.


It used to be pins, then letterman jackets, and jewelry; now, according to The New York Times, it’s passwords.

Our recent report on Teens, kindness and cruelty on social network sites found that one in three online teens has shared a password with a friend or significant other. You can read the full report here.


Results Show No ‘Safe’ Period For Drinking Alcohol In Pregnancy

Researchers at the California Teratogen Information Service (CTIS) Pregnancy Health Information Line, a state-wide non-profit organization based at the University of California, San Diego, have found new links between the timing of alcohol consumption during pregnancy and certain characteristics of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS). The results will be published in the April 2012 issue of Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research and are currently available at Early View (online version).

The study uses data obtained by counselors at the CTIS Pregnancy Health Information Line, a toll-free service offering evidence-based clinical information about exposures during pregnancy and breastfeeding.  It focuses on 992 California women who contacted the CTIS Pregnancy Health Information Line between 1978 and 2005 with questions about a wide variety of exposures and, after being counseled, agreed to participate in a follow-up study of their pregnancy outcome. The study specifically examines the timing of the mother’s reported alcohol exposure in relation to known physical features of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS). Importantly, all infants in the study, whether identified as exposed to alcohol or not, received a special screening for birth defects by Kenneth Lyons Jones, MD, chief of the Division of Dysmorphology/Teratology at the Department of Pediatrics and CTIS Medical Director.

The physical features of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome can be very subtle and not easily recognizable, particularly in newborns. These features include a smooth upper lip with thin/smooth red portion of the lip, short eye openings, smaller head size, and reduced birth weight and length.

Researchers found that every pattern of higher prenatal alcohol consumption (no matter the timing in pregnancy) was associated with an increased risk of having an underweight infant or one with a reduced birth length. However, there were also significant associations between higher alcohol consumption in the second half of the first trimester and certain facial features of FAS, in addition to lower birth weight and length. “For every one drink increase in the average number of drinks consumed daily, there was a 25 percent increased risk for smooth upper lip, a 22 percent increased risk for thin red portion of the upper lip border, a 12 percent increased risk for small head size, a 16 percent increased risk for reduced birth weight, and an 18 percent increased risk for reduced birth length,” said Haruna Sawada Feldman, PhD, MPH, CHES, post-doctoral student and lead author of the study.

“These findings show that drinking alcohol between week seven and 12 of pregnancy are clearly associated with a risk for FAS facial features, as well as a decrease in birth weight and length,” said Christina Chambers PhD, MPH, professor of pediatrics at UC San Diego and CTIS program director.  “However, this should not be misinterpreted to mean that drinking during weeks 1 through 7 is safe. This study only looked at data that included live births. It does not include women who had miscarriages or stillbirths possibly resulting from early alcohol exposure,” she explained. “If anything, this further supports the idea that there is no designated ‘safe’ period for drinking alcohol in pregnancy, and that discontinuing alcohol consumption as soon as possible, and, ideally, prior to pregnancy is the best approach to preventing FAS.”

Questions or concerns about alcohol or any other exposure during pregnancy or breastfeeding can be directed to the CTIS Pregnancy Health Information Line at 800- 532-3749 or via instant message counseling at Outside of California, please call the Organization of Teratology Information Specialists (OTIS) at 866-626-6847.


Right now the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) is being debated in a mark-up session in the House Judiciary Committee. (You can catch a livestream here.)

Elizabeth Flock of the Washington Post reports on how journalists are jumping into the debate:

“First came the critiques of civil…

What is TERMS?


TERMS: Techniques for electronic resource management

Two decades after the advent of electronic journals and databases, librarians are still grappling with ways to best manage these resources in conjunction with their print resources. In addition, economic pressures at most institutions of higher learning are resulting in librarians having to justify each dollar spent on collections and resource management. Furthermore, ebooks are becoming yet another stream of purchasing and management with the added complexity of patron driven acquisitions. All this results in the need to codify the management of electronic resource management more than ever.

“Our job over the next five to ten years is to provide a way to access these valuable resources in an intuitive, easy to use one-stop shop, and not to be afraid of running continual beta test where new services and functions can be added when necessary. To do this we need flexible, interoperable resource-discovery systems based on open source software. In addition, we must keep evaluating users’ needs and reach out by adapting our systems to fit their requirements, rather than expecting them to come to us; indeed our very future depends on it.” (1)
In the past, we have been able to afford ‘nice to have’ resources and renew our electronic resources without real evaluation of their worth. In times of budgetary constraints and staffing reductions we are now working our electronic resources harder than ever in order to extract maximum value for money from them. We must now look closely at all of our electronic resources at all steps of the e-resource life cycle (2).
There has been a lot of discussion about the implementation of ERM systems in recent years (3), however, use of these systems is still far from ubiquitous and many academic libraries have yet to implement or even purchase a system. Despite early expectations Collins and Grogg see the current crop of ERM systems as ‘less like a silver bullet and more that a round of buckshot’ (4).
A growing area of recent research has been around workflow management. Collins and Grogg (4) found that over 1/3 of academic libraries in their survey put workflow management at the top of their prioritization list. This area has also been highlighted as a gap by the National Information Standards Organization (NISO) ERM Data Standards and Best Practices Review (5). In the UK, two projects, the SCONUL shared ERM requirements project (6) and the Managing Electronic Resource Issues (MERI) project at the University of Salford (7), have looked in depth at workflows.
Both the University of Huddersfield and the Portland State University will be sharing their workflows as part of TERMS, and we encourage others who would be willing to share your own workflows to contact us at the email addresses given below.
Over the next 3 months TERMS will look at each of the stages in the e-resources cycle on our blog:

1 Investigating New Content for purchase/addition

2. Acquire New Content

3. Implement

4. Evaluation and Ongoing Access

5. Annual Review

6. Cancellation and replacement

Read More


The recent acquisition of Gowalla by Facebook is just the latest incidence of the potential tension between investors and founders when a company is acquired primarily for the team rather than for the technology, product or business that they’ve built. People around the web will take the…


Step 1: Get a Kindle
Step 2: Acquire Dr Who skin
Step 3: Sit and be proud of things.


Step 1: Get a Kindle

Step 2: Acquire Dr Who skin

Step 3: Sit and be proud of things.