What Khloe Kardashian’s Latest Dating Woes Can Tell Us About Ourselves
Feb28

What Khloe Kardashian’s Latest Dating Woes Can Tell Us About Ourselves

While global citizens everywhere grapple with the continued wrath of polar vortexes, prolonged violence abroad and mounting civil rights unrest right here in America, the question du jour remains: Who is Khloe Kardashian dating, after all? The prominent socialite and reality television star filed for divorce from NBA player Lamar Odom in late 2013, but recently, she’s been linked to rapper The Game. Khloe even uploaded an innocent photo of the pair to her Instagram account! Does that mean The Game is her newest beau? There’s no definitive proof yet, which means it’s probably too early to tell. Shortly after her divorce was announced in December, tabloids tagged Khloe with another professional sports star, Matt Kemp of the Los Angeles Dodgers. Both parties denied the rumors, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s not happening. After all, 43% of women say they’re attracted to a man based entirely on his appearance alone, and Kemp’s certainly a looker. It seems like Khloe’s been playing her latest flings pretty close to the chest — but what about a possible re-connection with the estranged hubby? “She has absolutely no plans to get back together with Lamar,” a source close to Khloe told RealityOnline.com. Well, it looks like that one’s settled. For now. But who Khloe dates (or marries, for that matter) isn’t really all that important on a cosmic level. In fact, obsessing over celebrity couples too much can actually be hazardous to your health. That’s according to Dr. Eric Hollander, who runs a program studying compulsion and anxiety disorders at New York’s Mt. Sinai School of Medicine. Hollander says that using celebrity gossip as a means of entertainment is fine, but there’s a darker side to watch out for. When we start replacing the details of our own lives with the glamorous ones we see in the tabloids, that’s when the problem starts. Since our brains have wired us to be social creatures, we begin to look for the folks who are leading the social trends. At a certain point, we may even end up wanting to be just like them — instead of being ourselves. So, what can we do to avoid falling into the trap of celeb worship? Look at what your favorite famous stars have achieved, then try to use it as inspiration for doing similarly accomplishing in your own life. If you’re trying to live someone else’s life, that means you’re not living your own. Focus on yourself and your own goals whenever you can. If Khloe Kardashian’s having dating trouble, there just might be hope for you and me on the singles scene after...

Read More
In 2015, More Teens Will be Killed by a Bullet Than a Car Accident
Feb28

In 2015, More Teens Will be Killed by a Bullet Than a Car Accident

According to a new report by the Center for American Progress, guns are soon expected to surpass car collisions as the number one cause of death among young people — driving home the point that gun deaths are not rare, tragic events, but a surprisingly common danger across the country. Three years ago, in 2010, the leading cause of death among 15 to 24 year olds was car accidents, which killed 7,024 people. In the same year, guns were the second largest killer, with 6,201 dying by bullet. The number of young people involved with fatal accidents, however, has been steadily declining over the past several years, while the number of deaths by gun have remained fairly unchanged. If this trend continues, guns will tie car accidents for annual deaths of those under 26 years in 2014, and pull ahead in 2015 to be the leading cause. While death is not something to celebrate, there is one silver lining in the data: billions of dollars have been spent over the last decade in researching accidents and developing responsive technology, better guidelines, and new laws that help to prevent fatal crashes. Everything from stricter drunk driving laws, to anti-lock brakes, have helped to keep an increasing number of young people alive. About five million car crashes occur every year, but they are less and less likely to result in a tragic and irreversible loss of life. When it comes to guns, the outlook is less positive. On the one hand, gun violence hasn’t gone up, in spite of its increasing media coverage. On the other hand, however, gun violence has barely budged even though there’s been a huge drop in violent crime over the past 20 years. Take Part wonders at this incongruence, and theorizes that, while car manufacturers have become increasingly stringent in their approach to public safety, gun laws and regulations have become even more lax, limiting any potential reduction in the number of deaths. The Center for American Progress report indicates that, statistically, someone under the age of 25 is killed by a gun about every 70 minutes in the U.S. Surprisingly, though, this isn’t the highest it’s been. The 1980’s and 1990’s were a far more gun-happy time, with deaths peaking in 1994 at an incredible...

Read More
Studies Confirm: Video Marketing Is Savagely Successfully, Shows No Signs of Slowing Down
Feb28

Studies Confirm: Video Marketing Is Savagely Successfully, Shows No Signs of Slowing Down

Digital marketing company Regalix released its 2014 Video Marketing and Advertising: Trends and Tactics Report, which had some surprising finds. The survey found that 83% marketers prioritized creating brand awareness and 77% thought triggering customer engagement more important than other goals. In less than a decade, video marketing has become one of the most essential online marketing tactics. Online analytics experts comScore Inc. released a report in December that reported more online videos were watched last year than ever before. The report showed that 188.2 million American watched 52.4 billion online content videos in December, while the number of video ad views came to a total of 35.2 billion–a huge leap from the 11 billion that were watched in the December of 2012. The meteoric rise of video marketing isn’t slowing down, either. A whopping 60% of marketers are using video production as part of their email marketing campaigns. What’s more, network equipment manufacturer Cisco forecasts that video traffic will reach 69% of all consumer Internet traffic in 2017, up from 57% in 2012. To put that statistic in perspective, Cisco says it’d take a person 5 million years to watch that amount of video.   Keeping in mind Regalix’s findings that marketers prioritize brand awareness and customer engagement as their video marketing goals, it’s easy to see why Dove’s three-minute Real Beauty Sketches film was the stand-out winner of 2013’s race to create the most viral piece of video marketing. The Guardian reports that this was found by Visible Measures, a “company that tracks the online performance of branded videos and collects metrics on how audiences engage with them and share them with others.” With this findings in mind, is it possible to extrapolate what secret formula it takes for a video marketing campaign to go viral? Social media director at Ogilvy & Mather Advertising London James Whatley, who helped create Dove’s Real Beauty Sketches, says that there’s really no easy answer. “You may as well read an instruction manual on how to win the lottery,” he says. “Yes, you might pick up a few tips, but any major success will be purely accidental.” While there may be no obvious success formula, it’s obvious that in order to increase brand awareness and trigger user engagement, the video content has to be well crafted. According to video marketing resource ReelSEO, there are some simple things a marketer can do to make high quality video. The video should be simple, hook the viewer, address the audience, compel the viewer, and have a clear call to action amongst other things. While these studies and reports provide no definitive answers about video...

Read More
Chicago Transit Authority Set to Upgrade its Fleet With 300 New Buses
Feb28

Chicago Transit Authority Set to Upgrade its Fleet With 300 New Buses

Using public transportation every day is a way of life for people in big cities, and the Chicago Transit Authority is working to make residents of the city more comfortable when they ride. It is currently inspecting and testing a new prototype that is intended to be used for a fleet of 300 new buses that will be put into use starting in April through 2015. The new low-emission 40-foot long buses will be manufactured by Nova Bus, which is a subsidiary of Volvo. They will feature LED lighting, 10 security cameras, and a fortified safety barrier that will be used to protect bus drivers from riders who act violently. Of course, rider safety will also be paramount. Every year, some 17,000 kids have to be taken to the hospital after suffering injuries while on a school bus. While certainly not every rider will be heading to school, the new buses and old ones that are going to be improved and upgraded will help make sure riders are safe should an accident occur. “By upgrading a fleet of buses and rail cars, we are continuing to invest in providing customers with a smooth, reliable and comfortable commute and ensuring our City has world-class transit system for the 21st century,” said Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel. “This milestone shows the significant progress the CTA is making to provide quality service to customers and increase economic opportunity in Chicago by creating good-paying, local jobs that support families.” The initial order of 300 new buses will cost about $148 million, said CTA spokesman Brian Steele. The CTA also has the option of purchasing another 150 buses under the contract signed with Nova Bus. New seats are a major component of the new bus designs. They will be lighter than their older counterparts to help reduce fuel costs and are produced by 120-year-old company Freedman Seating, which is based in Humboldt Park. The partnership between the company and the CTA will result in the addition of 100 local jobs. The newest additions to the CTA’s 1,800-vehicle fleet will replace buses that were purchased between 2000 and 2002. In 2009, the fleet was upgraded with 58 new hybrid buses that were bought with stimulus...

Read More
Firefighter Benefits Fueling the Flames in Baltimore’s Workers’ Comp Debate
Feb27

Firefighter Benefits Fueling the Flames in Baltimore’s Workers’ Comp Debate

Mary McElroy spent 22 years with the Baltimore Fire Department working as a firefighter-paramedic. Unfortunately, the 52-year-old developed cancer that she believes can be attributed to her career. Last fall, the state Workers’ Compensation Commission announced that they agreed with her claim and ordered that the city pay for any cancer treatments she needs now and in the future. They also said that the city had to pay tens of thousands for the permanent physical damage that stems from the disease. However, the city is challenging the ruling in Circuit Court, saying that recent changes in state laws are too generous and make it easy for firefighters to receive up to $500,000 in benefits. While nobody is denying that being a firefighter is dangerous, there is some debate about whether or not the cancers listed in the new law actually stem from fighting fires. Officials have pointed to research from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health that casts doubt as to whether the nine types of cancer listed in changed laws are actually connected to firefighting. Since Baltimore’s government spent a huge $49 million on workers’ comp payments last year, they appear hesitant to provide benefits that they think are unnecessary. The decision to appeal these types of awards is not one that is easy to make, and the process of finding middle ground is complicated. “You got emotion, you got science and you got politics all involved in this issue,” said Sen. Katherine Klausmeier, a Baltimore County Democrat.”You’re trying to balance all three of those things, and it gets a little hairy sometimes.” Other issues that might come into play have to do with ethics. For instance, Prince George’s County Del. Benjamin S. Barnes has authored or co-authored a dozen bills that have brought millions of dollars to the company he works for, though his actions do meet General Assembly ethics guidelines. “It’s a serious concern,” Jennifer Bevan-Dangel, director of the government watchdog group Common Cause Maryland notes. “It’s one we can’t really rectify as long as we have a part-time legislature. It’s hard to avoid these conflicts when your legislators have to get a second job.” “This is one of the beauties of the citizen legislature,” Barnes said in defense of his actions.”People take their expertise and put them to practice in our assembly.” There were nearly three million non-fatal injuries and illnesses reported by private industry employers in 2012 alone, according to data from the U.S. Department of Labor, and government agencies spend millions on workers’ comp as well. Because of that, laws and rules need to be constantly monitored and updated to make...

Read More