What is libel?

The standard defense against any statement accused of being defamation, libel or slander, is the truth of the statement. Some even define libel as “An untruthful statement about a person, published in writing or through broadcast media, that injures the person’s reputation or standing in the community.”

However, a new ruling, reported in several places, is raising eyebrows throughout the publishing community because it suggests that if you’re saying bad things about someone, you could be successfully sued, even if what you wrote is absolutely true. Not that I’m in the habit of writing bad things about people, but if you ever needed another reason to follow the old adage “if you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all” this would be it. But it also got me thinking about the consequences of saying nothing at all.

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Yosemite Webcam – new location

I now officially have site envy. Even though we are trying hard to get the money for a new YosemitePark.com site, the budget gods have been looking in other directions. It’s a tough economy to get funding for big projects, but Yosemite Association seems to have pulled it off, and I love the new big … Read more

Sixth Sense – like Minority Report, but better.

The internet has given us an incredible amount of information, all at our finger tips – if we’re sitting at a computer or using a cell phone. What if there was a product that allowed you to conveniently get that information as you interact with your environment? Researchers at the MIT Media Lab are getting … Read more

Biodegradable ‘plastics’ in Yosemite

Keep an eye out if you’re drinking from a disposable ‘plastic’ cup in Yosemite, or get a ‘plastic’ take-out container. The embossed markings on these can be sometimes hard to read, but most of these items aren’t plastic at all. Look for the words, “Made from Plant Products”, which indicate that a container, cup or whatever is biodegradable and compostable. DNC recently blocked orders of plastic items to make sure managers are ordering biodegradable items instead of the (often cheaper) plastic versions. That means that as existing stocks disappear, more and more of these containers will be environmentally friendly instead.

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Silver Ski Race

Today Tom and I volunteered as Gate Keepers for the Silver Ski Race, held annually at Badger Pass. Although I haven’t been around ski racing much, Tom has, and being a spectator at the Eastern Championships was a bunch of fun, so when the Head Coach of Yosemite Ski Team asked if I could help … Read more

YouBar – the Search for the Perfect Bar

For my part, it’s pretty hard for me to stomach most of the commercially available bars out there. Never mind that they are a convenient source of calories packaged nicely for consumption on the trail. They’re mostly … well… yucky. If I were going to design the perfect trail bar, it’d look, taste, and function … Read more

No More ‘Freedom’ Water

Water Bottles (taken by shrff14 on Flickr)
Water Bottles (taken by shrff14 on Flickr)

Living in a place like Yosemite, it’s easy to get passionate about protecting the environment. I’m fortunate enough to belong to a team of similar-minded people who get together regularly throughout the year to talk about ways that we can help conserve energy, reduce waste and make our operations more earth-friendly.

The most recent meeting was last Wednesday and I left feeling proud of the progress that we’ve made. Sure, we’re part of a big company, and that means that sometimes (read usually) we run into the red tape and delays that comes with any big company, but there were lots of new things going on that I think we can be proud of.

One of them is that we’re getting rid of imported bottled water in our stores. I mean, really. We have some of the cleanest, sweetest, most pure water coming straight out of our taps, why in the world do we need to ship gallons of water from France?

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