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In studio: Literacy Center of West Michigan

This dispatch was added by one of our Nonprofit Neighbors. It does not represent the editorial voice of The Rapidian or Community Media Center.

This week on Catalyst Radio, Chris Belding of the Literacy Center of West Michigan joins us in studio.
Underwriting support from:

About Catalyst Radio

Catalyst Radio is a weekly radio show with hosts Linda Gellasch and Denise Cheng that looks at the behind-the-scenes of Rapidian reporting as well as grassroots and nonprofit efforts around the community. The show comprises a media analysis and developments portion, interview segment and calendar of events. You can catch it on air at noon every Friday on WYCE 88.1 FM or streaming on the Grand Rapids Community Media Center Website.

This week on Catalyst Radio, Chris Belding of the Literacy Center of West Michigan joins us in studio. The featured song is "Who Cares?" from local musician Nicholas James Thomasma's newest release, Barefoot.


Wired, Bits
Nick Bilton, the New York Times' lead tech blogger, recently tweeted about Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg's lack of belief in privacy. Bilton had been talking to several employees and asked them what the Facebook CEO's thoughts were on privacy shortly following the new privacy changes on Facebook. In late April, Facebook made the change to connect users' preferences and personal information to services outside of Facebook, such as Pandora music service or Yelp business reviews, to better tailor outside products and services to individual users. Zuckerberg explained the change as one way in which Facebook is keeping up with Twitter and Google

Mother Jones
A Seattle cartoonist's work has sparked a flurry of commentary and excitement among first amendment enthusiasts. In Islam, it is forbidden to depict the Prophet Mohammed. After Comedy Central refused to air an episode of South Park because it depicted the prophet, the cartoonist published a satirical poster declaring "Everybody Draw Mohammed Day," complete with several items such as a tea cup, cherry and thread spool claiming to be Mohammed. The work went viral, and Reason Magazine has asked readers to submit drawings of the prophet to be published on May 20. Since then, the cartoonist has denounced her work for fear of retaliation.

Gizmodo, FastCompany, PopTech
48 Hour Magazine launched with its issue zero this last weekend. The magazine was assembled in 48 hours, the first 24 devoted to submissions and selection process, the next 24 devoted to creating the print product. Anyone could submit based on the theme "Hustle." It was a concept that editors from many well-known tech firms in San Francisco started to push the project via social media two weeks prior to the 48-hour start line. The magazine was intended as an experiment to push magazine print boundaries.

The Observer, Poynter Online: Mobile Media
When Time Square was evacuated late last week, Wall Street Journal informed its Foursquare followers with an update. FourSquare, a location-based social network, allows users to follow friends and organizations when they "check in" to a location, which means an update sent from a smartphone. Wall Street Journal broke the news of the evacuation to everyone following their FourSquare updates and warned New Yorkers to stay away from the area.


On Monday, May 17, the presentation, "Better, Faster, Cheaper: The Business Case for Rebuilding Local Government" will be held from 3:30 to 8 p.m. at the DeVos Center. This event will tackle whether there is a better answer than raising or adding taxes to help government costs? For more information, check Grand Rapids Chamber of Commerce's website at

On Tuesday, May 18 from 7 to 10 p.m. at the DAAC, 115 S. Division, "Think Outside The Bomb," sponsored by The Bloom Collective, Pax Christi Grand Rapids, The Institute for Global Education, and the Aquinas College Social Action Committee will be held. Think Outside the Bomb is a national movement to abolish nuclear weapons. This spring they are touring the United States bringing their message to cities across the country with art, bands, and speakers. Think Outside the Bomb will stop in Grand Rapids on Tuesday, 18 May 2010. The event will be held at the DAAC with an art exhibition, speakers from the national movement and from the local peace community, and local and regional musicians.

On Wednesday, May 19, "Not Your Average Speaker Series - "Community Brain Storm"" will be held from 5:30 to 8 p.m. at Wealthy Theatre. This event will delve into what it takes to retain top talent in West Michigan and ask the question, what’s missing here in West Michigan and how can we change that? Rapid Growth’s fourth speaker series will attempt to put some concrete ideas together to help make our area world-class. Partners of this event are the Great Lakes Urban Exchange and Grand Rapids Young Professionals.

On Wednesday, May 19, the Michigan Ride of Silence will be held from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Riverside Park and locations all over Michigan and the world. This bicycle ride is meant to bring attention to the issue of the accidents and deaths that occur on bicycle each year.

On Friday, May 21, "Friday Nights at GRAM" will be held at the museum from 5 to 9 p.m. There will be a panel discussion for musicians and music fans. Admission is free for members and $5 for non-members. Find out more at

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With all of the controversy surrounding Facebook, Bits crowdsourced questions to send to FB privacy executives. The FB privacy uproar also resulted in a briefing with Congress. Since many people are considering leaving FB and looking for an alternative, an "open Facebook" startup out of New York University is gaining traction. Prominent techie Robert Scoble's letter to Mark Zuckerberg concerning the recent privacy changes is also making the rounds online.

To catch up on the FB privacy discussion, check out New York Times' infographic visualizing the 170+ privacy options.