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Archive for March 2012

Lonestar – Walking In Memphis

Saw the ghost of Elvis
On Union Avenue
Followed him up to the gates of Graceland
Then I watched him walk right through
Now security they did not see him
They just hovered ’round his tomb
But there’s a pretty little thing
Waiting for the King
Down in the Jungle Room

Then I was walking in Memphis
I was walking with my feet ten feet off of Beale
Walking in Memphis
But do I really feel the way I feel?


A Day in The Life of a Blissdom 2012 Attendee

To give those seriously considering attending a future Blissdom conference (which you should) I put together a series of photos highlighting a typical day and night of a BlissDom conference attendee.

Blissdom 12 Logo



Snark Factor Tonight!

Listen live to the Snark Factor every Wednesday night at 1opm EST on FTR Radio where I will be joining Fingers Malloy, Irish Duke to bring news bites at the top of the hour followed by sparkling chats with invited guests. If you are a fan of my blog, you’ll know that I have an eclectic taste in news of the day.

On tap for Wednesday night:

SCOTUS debates Obamacare – Day 1 and Day 2 – via The Foundry

This might be bogus – Eating lots of chocolate helps you stay thin.  I say lots of Bootcamp sessions helps you stay thin!

Spike Lee’s twit-tardness results in the terrorizing of an elderly white couple. #pagingericholder

It has come to this – luggage profiling thieves at JFK International Airport. No worries though,  passengers still have to take off their shoes and endure a body scan.

Post of the Week – The Right Hook – F*** It, Vote For Romney


Springtime at Philadelphia Museum of Art

Philadelphia Art Museum

Philadelphia Museum of Art – a great place to check out when visiting Philly.

This is my bootcamp and running home. I feel quite lucky to workout amid such beauty.


A Snapshot of BlissDom 2012 – Nashville

Prep for BlissDom 2012

Finally getting my thoughts together and blogging on my experience attending Blissdom 2012 Nashville.  I’m frequently discovering I’m always the last to post on this subject.

Several months ago I wrote a post comparing women blogger conferences and posted the following question:

The number of conferences marketed towards female bloggers is quite staggering. I have yet to attend a conference of this nature, being a single woman, I get the impression a large part of the conference tends to focus upon the  ’mommy blogger’. While this is a perfectly reasonable demographic to focus on conference-wise, I often wondered if the information provided at these conferences would be relevant to the ‘non-mommy’ blogger?

After extensively reading blog posts and reviewing photos of both BlogHer and BlissDom, I chose to attend BlissDom 2012 in Nashville, TN.  The conference appeared more intensely blogger focused and I encountered a more positive vibe from 2011 conference recaps from BlissDom attendees then of Blogher attendees. Since I budgeted for one blogger conference this year, I chose BlissDom.  I am  happy to report, I chose well.

The Bliss Chicks – Alli, Paula, and Barbara created an open, inclusive culture within this conference for bloggers of every stripe. Equal parts amazing organization and excellent content mixed together 750 smart, passionate, creative women (and men) and you get magic, baby!

Oh, I didn’t mention the venue - Gaylord Opryland Hotel – 9 acres of indoor gardens, waterfall, and indoor river. It’s like sleeping over in a tropical conservatory – I always wanted to do that.  This is what I walked by every day – a double waterfall – seriously amazing venue.


A differentiates BlissDom from other conferences was a take home expectation from the speakers and organizers to use the connections, inspiration and knowledge shared at this conference to build something beautiful and meaningful. You can see this idea percolating  within numerous conference recap blog posts.

From the pre conference welcome kit, insightful keynote speakers, content rich lectures, engaging sponsors, to the stylish entertainment, this conference is well worth the investment of your time and money.

There is no way I can briefly summarize BlissDom 2012 in one post. . Follow along this week as I post my thoughts on conference content, entertainment, sponsors and point out some outstanding bloggers I had the good fortune to meet.

 You can query all my BlissDom posts to date by clicking on this link:  ’Blissdom 2012‘.



Pinterest Updates Terms of Service

Pinterest proposed changes to Terms of Service, Acceptable Use Policy, and Privacy Policy will go into effect on April, 6th 2012.

In email sent to Pinterest users, several proposed changes were noted that address the copywrite and trademark concerns voiced online:

  • Our original Terms stated that by posting content to Pinterest you grant Pinterest the right for to sell your content. Selling content was never our intention and we removed this from our updated Terms.
  • We updated our Acceptable Use Policy and we will not allow pins that explicitly encourage self-harm or self-abuse.
  • We released simpler tools for anyone to report alleged copyright or trademark infringements.
  • Finally, we added language that will pave the way for new features such as a Pinterest API and Private Pinboards.

Many online comments have pointed at Pinterest TOS taking ALL rights of original content uploaded to the site, including the right to sell you work. Honestly, it is good to read in the email the Pinterest team clearly defining their intent of NOT selling your original content.

Will this update solve all copywrite and trademark issues? Probably not. Pinterest did not kick off copywrite sensors, it is just a new iteration of a decades old debate.

In recent days,  Leela Cyd, a photographer by trade, sent a scathing letter  when she discovered her photo included in an article on Pinterest published in the New York Post.  The photo was incorrectly credited as “Courtesy Tory Burch via Pinterest.”  In her letter, Leela vents her frustration at having her original content re-pinned with out proper credit. She makes her living from photography and is not inclined to give freebies.

Trey Ratcliff writes extensively on the dilemma facing photographers who publish their work online and his solution to online sharing of his original content.

The links above give a good briefing on both sides of this issue.  I can empathize with Leela’s frustration over her work being unaccredited. I’ve encountered an instance of a photo of mine on a blog post that gave no photo credit. The author clearly was not making money off of the post, so I let it go. In most cases, however, authors do properly credit my photos – and they have appeared in articles, blog posts and even an online veterinary resource.

At the same time, Trey points out that open sharing can lead to real revenue and not everyone is out to steal your content. Trey relates that 15% of his blog traffic comes from Pinterest. Considering his blog has substantial traffic, this indicates that social sharing sites are rich resources to grow interest in your work.

What is the best way to protect your original work? That depends upon your personal comfort level in sharing your work online. There are several tools including digital watermarking, and registering your photos with a U.S. Copywrite. There will be unauthorized sharing of your online work, that is the nature of online social sharing sites, you have to decide upon an action threshold. What unauthorized use of your images will you accept and what use will cause you to pursue other options?

For Pinterest, if you chose to join, make sure to properly credit y0ur re-pins and if you post your original creations please note your sharing permissions in the about section of your board. Users will certainly appreciate your willingness to share your work and clarity on how you would like your content shared and attributed. For example, I’ve  given permission for Pinterest users to re-pin my photos.  I’ve also updated my Disclosure Policy to reflect Pinterest sharing permissions of my blog posts.

Full disclosure, I license my photos on Flickr to Getty Images and will soon migrate photos to Pitcha Global.

What are your thoughts on copywrite and photo sharing in the social media setting?


Chris Mann – You Show Me Stars

You show me stars in my dark hours.
You show me stars..


Hallmark Secret Admirer – Nominate Someone Today!

A few weeks ago I attended an amazing conference – BlissDom 2012. A fabulous sponsor of this conference, Hallmark, included a beautiful Blooming Expression flower in our swag bag.

With the push of a button, the flower opens and reveals a sweet message tucked inside.

It is so cute!

Hallmark is hosting a Secret Admirer program and will give away one Blooming Expression a day from now till May 13th. You can visit www.Hallmark.com/secretadmirer to nominate someone in your life you’d like to show your love, admiration or appreciation.

Hallmark provided me with a Blooming Expression flower that is shown above.




Tonight on the Snark Factor

Listen live to the Snark Factor every Wednesday night at 1opm EST on FTR Radio where I will be joining Fingers Malloy, Irish Duke to bring news bites at the top of the hour followed by sparkling chats with invited guests. If you are a fan of my blog, you’ll know that I have an eclectic taste in news of the day.

On tap for Wednesday night:

Ohhh..Johnny Depp and director Tim Burton unite in a stunning remake of ‘Dark Shadows’.


Pisanki – An Easter Tradition

It is the first day of Spring and Easter is right around the corner! I’d like to hop on Hershey’s Bunny Trail and share a colorful Polish Easter tradition.

Today, I carefully unpacked an assortment of Pisanki or “written eggs” in the Polish tradition.

Decorating eggs, a symbol of life and rebirth, is found in many eastern European cultures. The eggs are typically decorated with images reflecting Easter traditions. These eggs are shared with friends and family as a symbolic wish for a healthy and fruitful life.  The two pictured below were designed and crafted by a relative who gave them as gifts when we last visited her in Poland. She is a master at mixed media artwork and I’ve several of her woven wall hangings and illustrated books decorating my home.

Pisanki - Written Eggs

Pisanki - Written Eggs

Melted beeswax is used to create the design on a cooked, raw or blown egg. The beeswax is applied with a stylus then the egg is placed in a color dye. More beeswax is applied and the egg is placed in a different color of dye. Once the final dye color has been added the wax is removed with gentle heat and the intricate design is revealed. If you are thinking this sounds laborious, it is. Once upon a time, I tried to create my own Pisanki with beeswax and food coloring and found I liked collecting the eggs far better than creating them.

The eggs pictured above are decorated in Nalepianki style where paper cut outs or straw is used to create an intricate patterns on an eggshell. I’m really liking my cousin’s modern twist on the centuries old tradition of Pisanki.

What Easter egg design looks like at chez Tania – simple, colorful, but mostly simple to design:

Freshly Dyed Easter Eggs
Easter Eggs

I’d like to thank Hershey for sending me a custom designed Easter Basket filled with Hershey goodies.

Hershey's Easter Basket

Hershey Easter Basket

For more Easter tips and craft ideas and to follow the Hershey’s Bunny Trail visit CelebrateWithHersheys.com

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