Amy Novogratz: New Charter for Compassion Website to Launch Sunday

This Sunday, as part of the three-day World Peace Through Personal Peace Conference in Vancouver, British Columbia, His Holiness the Dalai Lama will join TED Prize winner Karen Armstrong for the official launch of the Charter for Compassion website, www.charterforcompassion.org.

Using the website as a starting point, they will call on the world to begin the world-wide, grass-roots movement to restore compassion to the center of religious, moral and political life. TED will live-stream the Sunday afternoon discussion on compassion, free to the public, at http://www.ted.com/webcast/watch/event/peacesummit

Compassion, as Armstrong explains, is not the feeling of good will or pity. Instead, she writes in an editorial co-authored with Archbishop Desmond Tutu, to be published this week, "it is . . . the principled determination to put ourselves into the place of the other [that] lies at the heart of all truly religious and ethical systems." The Charter for Compassion website will explain the principles that have guided the Charter's creation and its writing, and will offer website visitors ways to put those principles into action by hosting events organized around the Charter's official launch on Nov. 12. We are hoping website visitors will sign up to host events and encourage their friends, colleagues and religious leaders to do the same.

During this weekend's World Peace Through Personal Peace Conference, Archbishop Tutu and the Dalai Lama will receive the Fetzer Institute Prize for Love and Forgiveness for their inspiring commitment to advancing humanity's understanding of the power of love, forgiveness and compassion. The recipients will be awarded $100,000 each to support their work. Unfortunately, the Archbishop has had to cancel his appearance for personal reasons.

Armstrong and Mary Robinson, former President of Ireland and former United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, will lead the Sunday afternoon discussion on compassion with the Dalai Lama. The session will begin at 1 p.m. PDT, with a musical interlude, after which Armstrong will speak and introduce Robinson. They will then be joined by the Dalai Lama's fellow Nobel Laureates, Betty Williams, Mairead Maguire and Jody Williams. The afternoon conversations will be live-streamed here.

A 2008 winner of the TED Prize, Armstrong has been working to establish a document that would bring attention back to the principles of universal justice and respect that are central to all the world's great religions. Each faith has its version of the Golden Rule, she explains -- always treat others as you would wish to be treated yourself -- and those "others" include all the peoples of the Earth, not just our own familiar community, religious congregation or group of friends.

Achieving such a goal is not a hopeless pipe dream, Armstrong says. "The great sages who promoted the Golden Rule," she writes in the editorial, "were nearly all living during periods of history like our own, when violence had reached a terrifying crescendo." Combating that violence and creating a genuine climate for peace through compassion will enable all of us to shape the world's future in a positive direction.

During the Charter-writing period, people of all faiths, from around the world, contributed their ideas, suggestions and stories. A Council of Conscience, made up of fourteen renowned religious thinkers and leaders, then wrote the final version. The Charter for Compassion will officially launch on Nov. 12, 2009, and is, as Armstrong and Archbishop Tutu explain, "above all a summons to creative, practical and sustained action to meet the political, moral, religious, social and cultural problems of our time."


Google, Yahoo Going Shopping Again

big_spender_singleRemember the good old days of the last Web boom, when startups sold to Google and Yahoo instead of going public? They’re back!

Yesterday, Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz said she had she was in the market for acquisitions — specifically “small and medium-sized opportunities.” Today, Google CEO Eric Schmidt said he’d use his $11 billion cash hoard to do the same thing. At the G20 gathering in Pittsburgh, Schmidt told reporters that now that “it’s clear that the worst is behind us,” his checkbook is open again. Reuters:

“Acquisitions are turned on again at Google and we are doing our normal maneuvers, which is small companies. My estimate would be one-a-month acquisitions and these are largely in lieu of hiring,” Schmidt said.

“There may be larger acquisitions, but they really are unpredictable,” Schmidt said.

And sure enough, Google has been on a mini-buying binge as of late. Last month, it was video compression company On2 for $106 million (though angry owners of the penny stock insist it should be for much more). Earlier this month, it was reCaptcha, the um Captcha company, for an undisclosed sum. One decent bet for the future: Ad technology companies like Teracent.

Pretty sure I haven’t embedded any Bob Fosse clips before. Time to change that.

Eric Dane, Rebecca Gayheart Sex Tape Lawsuit: Gawker Sued Over Video

Dane and Gayheart filed a lawsuit today in L.A. County Superior Court, claiming Gawker.com had not only unlawfully posted almost 4 minutes of the private video that was shot behind closed doors, but "maliciously" distributed the video and included nude shots of the fabulous threesome -- the third wheel was former beauty queen Kari Ann Peniche.


TwonkyBeam: An Easy Way to Beam Your Web-based Media

Watching video and listening to music using your web browser is great…when you don’t mind sitting in front of your computer. But when you want to take that content and view it somewhere else, well, you don’t have many options. As of today, though, you have a free, easy-to-use browser plug-in that can help: TwonkyBeam.

TwonkyBeam is from PacketVideo, the company that rolled out the TwonkyMedia manager app earlier this year. TwonkyMedia manager, now in version 1.2, is a $40 application that helps you manage all of your multimedia content and share it between devices (such as TVs, computers and more) throughout your house. The software allows you to, literally, drag the content from its location on your computer and drop it to where you’d like to view it.

The new TwonkyBeam plug-in takes the same drag-and-drop concept that’s behind the TwonkyMedia manager app and brings it to the web. It’s a bit hard to understand until you’ve tried it out, but this YouTube video from the folks at TwonkyMedia helps clarify things a bit.

Currently in beta, TwonkyBeam only works with Internet Explorer version 6.0 or higher running on a Windows PC, but the company expects to expand the product to other browsers and operating systems in the future. Setting it up is easy: You download and install TwonkyBeam, and you’re up and running — the entire process takes less than a minute.

TwonkyBeam runs in a pane alongside your browser window, and is divided into three sections: content, devices and Beam. In the content section, you can toggle between videos, music and photos. When you select the type of media, a list of all of the available files found on the web page you’re currently viewing will show up in that pane. Unfortunately, though, the file names don’t carry over into TwonkyBeam, which can lead to some confusion. If you open a YouTube page with multiple videos, for example, the TwonkyBeam Video pane will display a list that reads: YouTube Video 1, YouTube Video 2, and so on.  The same is true of images and music files. (The names of some files do appear after you’ve beamed them to antwonkybeam_paneother device.)

Once the media files are listed, you can send them over to your compatible media players, which automatically appear in the Devices section of the TwonkyBeam plug-in. PacketVideo lists compatible players on its site; the list includes a variety of set-top media streamers, connected HDTVs like those from Samsung, and audio streamers like the Roku SoundBridge. If you have the TwonkyMedia manager app running on another computer, you’ll see that device listed there, too. To send (or “beam”) a file, you click its title from the content list, select a gadget from your devices list, and then press the play button, which is found in the Beam menu.

I had no compatible media devices on hand, so I tested TwonkyBeam using two computers: one with the TwonkyBeam plug-in installed, and another running the TwonkyMedia manager app. The setup was flawless: Both apps installed easily and found one another with no help from me. And content was beamed over nearly instantaneously. I would click play on TwonkyBeam, and by the time I turned my head, the photo or video would already be showing on the other computer.

TwonkyBeam only lets you beam compatible files, which is a nice touch. (You can’t, for example, beam a video clip to your audio player.) That’s the good news. The bad news is that the content didn’t always look great once it made the move. Photos often looked pixelated and stretched. YouTube videos fared a bit better, but even HD videos didn’t look quite as sharp when they were beamed over, and I had to wonder how they would fare on a bigger screen.

twonkybeam_hulu

TwonkyBeam also doesn’t work with all video sites (and the app does include a list of recommended sites for finding content). I had no problem beaming YouTube videos, but TwonkyBeam was unable to work with Hulu because that site’s content is protected. If I could use it to beam Hulu’s awesome collection of video to my TV, I’d be in heaven. Alas, that may be asking too much.

TwonkyBeam still has some rough edges, but this beta shows promise. To really take advantage of all of its features, you’ll need one or more of the networked media players that support the app. If you have the right device — and if TwonkyBeam could get support for sites like Hulu thrown in there — it could be killer.


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TV Ratings: CBS Dramas Bite Reality Back


MINNEAPOLIS (AdAge.com) -- Three CBS dramas -- "NCIS," "NCIS: Los Angeles" and "The Good Wife" -- easily beat unscripted series on rival networks to give CBS its strongest start with overall viewers since 1993 and the best beginning with the ad-centric adults 18-49 since 2004, according to the network.


Online Stock Photo Consolidation: Shutterstock Buys BigStockPhoto

Shutterstock is buying BigStockPhoto, another stock photo site, as it looks to introduce new payment methods. BigStockPhoto lets users purchase individual photos by buying “credits,” while Shutterstock only offers subscriptions. Both sites let photographers upload photos. Shutterstock is keeping BigStockPhoto as an independent site. As CNET points out, the acquisition follows a wave of consolidation in the industry. Getty Images (NYSE: GYI) purchased Jupitermedia’s online images unit for $96 million last October. Release.


FNC Tops Competition Combined In Total Viewers During Prime Time Tuesday Night

Cable news ratings, September 22, 2009: Check out the highlights, and see the full ratings below:

• Fox News averaged 2,504,000 total viewers in prime time last night, topping CNN, MSNBC and HLN combined. Bill O’Reilly had the top show on cable news, in the A25-54 demographic and total viewers. Glenn Beck at 5pmET was #2.

• The top non-FNC program of the night was HLN’s Nancy Grace at 8pmET in the demo and MSNBC’s Countdown with Keith Olbermann during the same hour in total viewers (Lawrence O’Donnell filled in for Olbermann).

Check out all the ratings below, and leave your own thoughts in the comments:

TV NEWS RATINGS: 25-54 DEMOGRAPHIC (L +SD)
Fox News CNN MSNBC CNN Headline News
5 pm Beck

683

Blitzer

146

Matthews

152

Prime

158

6 pm Baier

447

Blitzer

209

EdShow

166

Prime

117

7 pm Shep

498

Dobbs

229

Matthews

234

Issues

144

8 pm O’Reilly

811

Brown

199

Olbermann

297

Grace

312

9 pm Hannity

639

King

260

Maddow

281

Issues

156

10 pm Greta

480

Cooper

289

Olbermann

227

Grace

225

11 pm O’Reilly

488

Cooper

283

Maddow

133

Showbiz

248

TOTAL DAY 429 186 144 163
PRIME TIME 643 250 268 226
Data by Nielsen Media Research. Live and same day (DVR) data.
TV NEWS RATINGS: TOTAL VIEWERS (L +SD)
Fox News CNN MSNBC CNN Headline News
5 pm Beck

2983

Blitzer

689

Matthews

613

Prime

297

6 pm Baier

2120

Blitzer

809

EdShow

566

Prime

305

7 pm Shep

2053

Dobbs

697

Matthews

790

Issues

390

8 pm O’Reilly

3242

Brown

724

Olbermann

896

Grace

857

9 pm Hannity

2396

King

825

Maddow

884

Issues

466

10 pm Greta

1874

Cooper

858

Olbermann

573

Grace

542

11 pm O’Reilly

1572

Cooper

727

Maddow

382

Showbiz

492

TOTAL DAY 1649 590 437 358
PRIME TIME 2504 802 785 605
Data by Nielsen Media Research. Live and same day (DVR) data.