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Give Up the Blackberry? Obama Will Have to


When Barack Obama moves to the White House, he’ll have to give up his one biggest addiction: the Blackberry. It surely will be one big sacrifice for Obama, who, like most professionals in this day and age, always has a BlackBerry/phone/laptop within arm’s reach.

That will have to change soon. According to the Presidential Records Act, all of the president’s correspondence will be considered official and will be reviewed.

For all the perquisites and power afforded the president, the chief executive of the United States is essentially deprived by law and by culture of some of the very tools that other chief executives depend on to survive and to thrive. Mr. Obama, however, seems intent on pulling the office at least partly into the 21st century on that score; aides said he hopes to have a laptop computer on his desk in the Oval Office, making him the first American president to do so.

It will be difficult, and I guess that’s just one of the many things you have to sacrifice when you become president, but he’ll live. He’ll get used to it. Before the Internet, what were we?

If it were a life-or-death things and you were asked to give up your online life, would you? I would be happy to go back writing on my notebook, no violent reactions about that. I just don’t know about e-mail. I can imagine how difficult it is not to be able to send off a quick message to a friend.

Read the full-length article: Say Goodbye to BlackBerry? If Obama Has to, Yes He Can.

Why an Online Presence Is Important for Writers


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If it were difficult to penetrate the international literary scene a decade ago, today many young Filipino writers are getting published in international magazines all because of the Internet. Furthermore, with the advent of Guru, Elance, and other job markets, Filipino writers are able get projects and commissioned work abroad. That means a wider market and more jobs (and more money!) for writers.

Many years ago when I applied for admission at the University of the Philippines, I was weighing the pros and cons of taking creative writing as against journalism. My parents’ advice echoed in my mind: You can never get rich by writing.

Of course, these days, making money through writing is not altogether impossible and one can actually live comfortably by doing copywriting, manuscript editing, and Web content work. While this isn’t the type of creative work that most writers aspire for, it brings food to the table, and whoever said you couldn’t write a novel or a short story on your days off, eh?

A project fell onto my lap a few weeks ago, courtesy of a forgotten profile on Writers.net. Perhaps things like this don’t happen frequently, but it bolsters what I have always believed in: for you to break borders and find jobs elsewhere, you must have an online presence.