Helping China, the world’s largest smoking country, move away from tobacco farming

Curbing tobacco use by growing less

In China, 350 million people smoke. Each year, 1 million die from smoking. Many more become disabled. Approximately 20 million Chinese farmers produce the world’s largest share of tobacco, nearly 40 percent of the global supply.

A compelling story of how one scientist created a for-profit organization for the farmers. It teaches them the skills to grow other crops, like fruits and vegetables, which allow them to increase their revenue while decreasing the supply of tobacco, something China is committed to doing.

 

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Amazing overhead shots of the U.S. open of Surfing in Huntington Beach

Surfer magazine has posted 16 amazingly large overhead shots of the U.S. Open of Surfing and the Orange County coastline.

Here is one of them, mightily shrunk:

 

 

See the rest – Above the Open – an oddly serene look at the U.S. Open

How nonpartisan are national parks? 95% of voters want them protected

New Poll of Likely Voters Finds Unity in Public Support for National Parks

According to a new public opinion poll commissioned by (two nonpartisan groups), national parks are cherished by Americans and an overwhelming 95 percent of voters want the federal government to ensure they are protected for the future and available for their enjoyment.

The new poll finds that more than 80 percent of voters have visited a national park at some point in their lives, and nearly nine in 10 say they are interested in visiting a park in the future.

 

via @NPCA

 

You can count me in on that – our next trip is to Yosemite Valley in September.

 

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A hundred million dollar exit in blogging means mixing Pulitzer Prize content with photos of kittens

One of the hardest decisions a writer makes is “who to write for,” also known as your audience. For this blog I have chosen to assume that my readers are smart rather than dumb, well-educated, and interested “good” stories (not controversy and bad-mouthing).

Sarah Lacy wrote an interesting piece on the audiences that both the Huffington Post and Bleacher Report have catered to. Made even more scintillating because both blogs are the only ones to sell for hundreds of millions of dollars:

 

Huffington Post bifurcated its site between very high end content — celebrities who didn’t blog anywhere else, and more recently very highly paid poaches from organizations like the New York Times– and the rest. Pulitzer Prize material and photos of kittens. The two might seem like they don’t belong on the same site. But having high notes and low notes, is far more effective (and only half as soul crushing from a journalism point of view) than a site that maximizes just for the middle of the spectrum– which is far more common in professional blogging.

 

I like to think that I come down somewhere above the middle, just short of Pulitzer Prize material.

Does that mean I need a few more animated gifs of kitties?

 
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