An alternate universe

My plans to use a Chromebook over the weekend didn’t go as well as I had hoped… In between family events I was pretty wiped out and didn’t have much time to experiment. After just 3 years as an Apple user, I found myself feeling very frustrated by a brief return to Windows (because I had left my MacBook at work). That in turn made me feel nostalgic for Sierra…

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Why Writing Matters When You Advertise a Cragslist Giveaway

The latest example of why writing matters in the real world. Be careful of that word “everything.” Here is the online ad that the family placed Tuesday night: “Fairly large, free yard sale. Moving and we want everything to go for free. So come over and take whatever you want and how much you want. Here are a couple of items that will be there: Couch, chairs, lots of household…

Dennis G. Jerz | Associate Professor of English -- New Media Journalism, Seton Hill University | jerz.setonhill.edu

Broken on Purpose: Why Getting It Wrong Pays More Than Getting It Right

I have recently started managing the Facebook page for a local arts nonprofit. Tracking the number of views, likes, and shares generated by the items I post has been a lot of fun. I’ve definitely played fewer rounds of Civilization as a result of doing more Facebook page management. The recent experience means I am more attuned than I might otherwise be to the significance of Facebook’s new strategy to…

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‘Exploring J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit’: A Reminder To Tolkien Fans Of Their First Love : NPR

Yet though it’s widely celebrated, The Hobbit’s always kind of existed in the shadow of Tolkien’s other great work, The Lord of the Rings. Corey Olsen, self-described “Tolkien professor,” tells Guy Raz, host of weekends on All Things Considered, that Tolkien fans tend to fall in love with The Hobbit as children, then move on to The Lord of the Rings and never come back. That’s a great shame, Olsen…

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Churning Out More Non-profit Arts Promos

As part of my volunteer work for a local nonprofit arts group, I make promotional videos for online marketing. Thursday I was sitting in the waiting room during my daughter’s ballet class, when the artistic director asked me to interview the new ballet mistress. I went and got some video of my daughter learning that glissade is not a “glee slide,” and also recorded some more advanced students at the barre.…