70 Year Old Newsviner Gets On The Ohio Ballot

Old Fogey working the phones in Coshocton CountyPeople often tell me that we don’t toot our own horn enough at Newsvine. Record traffic, record unique users, a rapidly expanding groundswell of contributors, and we don’t issue press releases, pump our chests out, or thumb our noses at competitors every time something cool happens over here.

Every so often, however, something *really* cool happens, and one of those somethings just happened.

Newsvine writer and community favorite Jerry “Old Fogey” Firman has just worked his way onto the Ohio ballot in the race to replace embattled Congressman Bob Ney in the U.S. House of Representatives. For those who aren’t familiar with the situation, Ney has been implicated by witnesses in the high profile bribery case involving lobbyist Jack Abramoff and former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay.

So who is this “Old Fogey”, you ask?

Well he’s a 70 year old retired Army aviator and newspaper man who provides some of the most enlightening and insightful commentary you’ll see around Newsvine. Although we think he’s giving the site a bit too much credit, he says in his column:

“I must admit that running for any office or even thinking of politics was very far from my mind when I first started to write on Newsvine. Newsvine got me off my duff and made me realize I should be doing something for my friends and neighbors instead of mowing grass and going to Texas for the winter.”

Although Newsvine is not in the business of endorsing political candidates, we’re more than happy to help spread the word of Firman’s candidacy. It’s a shining example of the positive effect online communities can have on individuals. Sometimes you don’t know what you’re capable of until you find the right environment.

No one knows how successful this underdog citizen’s bid for an Ohio congressional post will be, but win or lose, we’ll learn a lot about the civic process from his candidacy and his column.

Like this entry? You can follow me on Twitter here, subscribe via email here, or get the RSS feed if that's how you roll.

6 Responses:

  1. Matt J says:

    Interesting. He seems down to earth considering he calls himself old fogey.

  2. What I find interesting is this 70 year old is tech savvy enough to even know how to use something like Newsvine. My mom who is over 20 years younger is a complete idiot when it comes to anything to do with computers. I remember spending almost 45 minutes trying to explain to her how to copy and paste…..ugh.

    Anyways it says a lot about Newsvine’s popularity and ease of use.

  3. On another note, its refreshing to see a CEO not blog about his company or what blah blah conference he’s going to be at every other post.

    I’ve grown weary of blogs that has become nothing but self-promotion. I know this is one of the objectives of having a blog in the first place, but there has to be a certain ratio of insightful articles to self-promotion. Reading insightful content is why I subscribed in the first place, and that insightful content is what probably opened the door to all the conferences these people are speaking at/hosting in the first place.

    Toot your horn all you want, but don’t blow my eardrums out.

  4. Mike D. says:

    Thanks Chris. Yeah, to be honest, as much as I love Newsvine, I’d rather only talk about it maybe 10% of the time here. Never really enjoyed the self-promotion thing too much. Better to have other people talking about you…

  5. Bradley says:

    Woohoo for Ohio!

  6. Kevin Marino says:

    Very cool. Gonna have to check out Newsvine ( I read your blog but never went to Newsvine, go figure).

    Glad you minimize self-promo here. Self-promo is good, but only in the right context.

    Cream of Wheat rules!!!!

Shared
How to travel around the world for a year:

Great advice for when you finally find the time.

LiveSurface:

A fantastic app for prototyping your design work onto real world objects like billboards, book covers, and coffee cups. This seems like just as great of a tool for people learning design as it does for experts.

50 problems in 50 days:

One man’s attempt to solve 50 problems in 50 days using only great design. Some good startup ideas in here…

How to Do Philosophy:

If you’ve ever suspected that most classical philosophy is a colossal waste of time, Paul Graham tells you why you’re probably right.

TIME: Why Medical Bills Are Killing Us:

Stephen Brill follows the money to uncover the pinnacle of corruption that is the U.S. Health Care system. A must-read article if there ever was one.

DIY Dot Org:

A beautifully designed site full of fun and challenging DIY projects. I could spend months on here.

The Steve Jobs Video Archive:

A collection of over 250 Steve Jobs videos in biographical order

Self-portraits from an artist under the influence of 48 different psychoactive drug combos.

Water Wigs are pretty amazing.

David Pogue proposes to his girlfriend by creating a fake movie trailer about them and then getting a theater to play it before a real movie. Beautiful and totally awesome.

Jonah Peretti's letter to BuzzFeed’s employees:

If you’re wondering what a excellent blueprint for a modern media company looks like, look no further than Buzzfeed CEO Jonah Peretti’s latest email to his employees. In it, Peretti explains a lot of his company’s virtues, the most important being a relentless focus on always providing what’s best for the user. Vox Media (operators of The Verge) is the only other company I can think of which approaches this level of reform and execution.

The Covers Project:

I love this so much: a cross-referenceable database of cover songs, searchable by song or artist. Slowed down, acoustic covers — no matter the song — are so enjoyable to me that I wish it was a requirement to play one at every show. If you like them as much as I do, make sure to check out M. Ward’s Let’s Dance or Sun Kil Moon’s entire album of Modest Mouse covers.

“More and more people in this country no longer make or do anything tangible; if your job wasn’t performed by a cat or a boa constrictor in a Richard Scarry book I’m not sure I believe it’s necessary. I can’t help but wonder whether all this histrionic exhaustion isn’t a way of covering up the fact that most of what we do doesn’t matter.”
- Tim Kreider’s denunciation of the cult of busyness is excellent. (via jimray)
The iPhone and Disruption: Five Years In:

Take your pick of about 20 great quotes from this Daring Fireball article. My personal favorite:

The iPhone is not and never was a phone. It is a pocket-sized computer that obviates the phone. The iPhone is to cell phones what the Mac was to typewriters.

sirmitchell:

Challenges of Getting to Mars: Curiosity’s Seven Minutes of Terror

The precision and innovation that is required for space exploration just blows my mind. I did not realize that Curiosity will have to basically land on Mars completely unaided by man, but it’s so much more complicated than that.