The Automated Thanking Machine

This video truly brought tears to my eyes and goosebumps to my arms. TD Bank in Canada gave every customer at least a $20 bill on July 25. However, some received something even more.

More than 12 regular customers were selected ahead of time, and given gifts that would touch them in a very moving way. A woman who’s daughter lived in Trinidad and was suffering from Cancer, received two tickets to fly to Trinidad and be with her. A man who has a love for baseball not only got jerseys, hats and gloves, but met one of the players and was selected to throw the first pitch.

A woman who struggled financially, received two piggy banks with $1000 checks for her two kids to be put into a savings fund. Not only that, she was given a trip to Disneyland for her and her family, completely paid for.

TD Bank really hit the head on the nail with this publicity stunt. They picked twelve people who may have needed something to make them smile. It showed that the bank is more than just that, they’re a friend. They’re someone who you can trust, and want to have in your life. By creating the Automated Thanking Machine, TD Bank has strengthened and created relationships with customers that will (most likely) be ever-lasting.

http://www.buzzfeed.com/tasneemnashrulla/this-banks-atm-surprised-its-customers-in-the-most-incredibl

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Is America Next? The Ebola Scare

If you haven’t been keeping up with whats been going on around the world medically lately, then I’m sure you have no idea what this means. Nigeria has been infected with Ebola, a deadly disease that is incredibly contagious, and it’s the biggest outbreak in history. It’s a terrifying infection that has yet to find real treatment.

Humanitarians Nancy Writebol and Dr. Kent Brantly are the two currently known Americans that have been infected with Ebola. They are in the process of being sent back to the United States for treatment. However this seems a little dangerous.

The disease is spread easily through the air, or direct contact with someone infected. It has spread rapidly throughout Africa, and now we want to fly an infected victim to a country that is currently not at risk in any way. It seems like this is just asking for trouble. All it takes is one little cough or sneeze before someone else gets it and the outbreak begins. Sure, the United States has better resources than Africa. But no matter how isolated they may be, there will always be someone in contact with them. I guess only time will tell.

http://www.buzzfeed.com/jimdalrympleii/ebola-infected-american-is-coming-to-the-us-for-treatment

Bieber vs. Bloom

According to sources of Buzzfeed, two of Hollywood’s iconic hotties, Justin Bieber and Orlando Bloom, (almost) duked it out in front of a restaurant in Spain last week. Of course, being the little trouble maker that he is, Bieber got Bloom riled up while he walked by saying “Whats up bitch?”. Bloom, in turn, swung at Bieber but missed while body guards and security got involved. No worries everyone, neither of their pretty little faces were injured in any way.

Sources say that they were fighting over Miranda Kerr – Orlando Bloom’s ex wife. Apparenlty she was sneaking around with Beiber before the marriage was actually over. However, things start to get messy. Not only were Kerr and Bieber rumored to have been sneaking around, but now Bloom and Bieber’s ex-girlfriend Selena Gomez have been sighted together.

It seems to me that this looks like a high school-love-triangle sort of ordeal that shouldn’t really even be news worthy. It’s no surprise that Bieber is once again in the lime light in a not so positive way. I’m sure that his Public Relations agent has a never ending job of cleaning up after that kid’s messes.

What I’ve learned and loved about blogging

My favorite part about writings blogs was learning how to find current events going on, ones that I may never would have noticed otherwise, and relating them back to public relations. I liked the fact that I was able to find articles that were interesting to me and give my own point of view on the situation. My favorite blog that I wrote was my most recent, “Plagiarism isn’t just in college”. I found it interesting that plagiarism is pushed so heavily all throughout our education, but hardly anyone thinks it’ll ever effect them in the real world. To find one of my favorite websites having an instance of plagiarism, and publicizing it, was interesting to me.

Plagiarism Isn’t Just In College

Buzzfeed is one of the most widely recognized source of news and entertainment articles on the internet today. Their articles are anywhere from comedic, reminiscing on decades past, sharing world and US politics and events. They also cover topics for how to do things yourself, or new foods you must try. I personally have the app and check the website daily for once source of entertainment or another.

That’s why it is shocking to see an act of plagiarism take place within the company. It’s surprising to see that college isn’t the only place that has a major threat of submitting false work. Buzzfeed journalist Benny Johnson has submitted over 500 articles, and has been found guilty of 41 of them being plagiarized.

Buzzfeed is taking great action to apologize for this matter. They created an editors note publicly sharing the journalists name and where he found information from. They shared that all editors involved take real responsibility in the matter. Buzzfeed then proceeded to share al 41 links to the articles that have been submitted with stolen information.

I find this refreshing to see a business standing up and almost shaming the culprit. They were extremely public about the mistake and I find that very respectful. It’s just a nice reminder of why I still have a love for the glorious website that helps me procrastinate on a daily basis.

http://www.buzzfeed.com/bensmith/editors-note-an-apology-to-our-readers

The Black Plague Resurfaces

Last week a man died of a pneumonic plague last week in Yumen City in China. This form is a direct strand of the Black Plague and over 150 citizens have been quarintined. They have also put the entire Yumen City on lockdown, hoping to eliminate any spreading of this deadly disease.

The Black Plague is dangerous – it took out a large portion of Europe in the 14th centuray and commonly referred to as The Black Death. It is so deadly that it can kill within one day. The disease reaches the lungs and then is spread to others with a simple cough.

Much to my surprise, the plague is still common in the tropics, however just not in humans. It has been detected from rodent to rodent within fleas. This is still highly contagious, but has less opportunities for outbreaks. It seems that such highly populated areas such as China become infected by serious illnesses on a more frequent basis. In 2003 there was an outbreak of bird flu. And apparently this isn’t the first time China has seen a form of the plague.

“This month’s plague occurrence isn’t the first time in recent history that China’s put in place quarantine measures to prevent a potential spread of the plague. In 2009, three men, including a herdsman, in the remote town of Ziketan in Qinghai province died of the plague, prompting authorities there to isolate 332 people for observation. The source of the outbreak in that case was also a marmot.”

It’s a terrifying feeling knowing that something so deadly can cause an epidemic at any moment if it is not carefully monitored. Millions of people travel in and out of the US on a regular basis. It makes you wonder…maybe souvenirs aren’t the only thing they’re bringing back.

http://blogs.wsj.com/chinarealtime/2014/07/23/chinese-city-locked-down-after-brief-appearance-of-black-death-plague/

How much harm is spanking your child causing? – Response to Claire Cox

Claire’s post shares a study on whether spanking your children effects their brain matter. It’s an issue that has been around for years, whether or not spanking is a proper punishment for children. According to the study shared, there were significant effects on the brain development of children that have been spanked. It showed that a child “…regularly spanked had less gray matter in certain areas of the prefrontal cortex that have been linked to depression, addiction and other mental health disorders.”

For myself personally, I don’t believe in spanking. My parents never spanked me nor will I spank my future children. I believe that any time of physical harm should never be an answer for an unruly child. Sure there are plenty of people who never showed negative effects from this form of punishment as a child. I just think there are different ways to go about it.

Dream Internship

If I were to create a dream internship, it would be for an advertising agency. The agency would be a company with good moral and great clients. I hope to one day be a creative director, so it would be incredible to be able to start off in an internship that gives direct training for this career.

I would love to travel for a job, but reside in Seattle. I’ve had offers for internships in Boston and San Diego, but decided to stick with one local. However my dreams of traveling are not gone forever. Ideally it would be a great experience to travel for an internship. You are not limited to any one position or responsibility in such a temporary point in your life. I have no idea what company I would want to work for, or what my responsibilities would directly be. However I would love to do more than just “office work” and claim it as an internship.

A once-in-a-lifetime kayaking experience

An Argentina couple went out for what started as a relaxing kayak ride. Yet what happened while they were out on the water was completely unexpected. The couple saw something off in the distance, that at first was unrecognizable. Although, it’s apparent that it was something large.

As the couple neared the object, they realized it was a whale. Not only one, but a pod of whales. It was apparent that these large mammals were not threatened, but instead friendly. It was as if they were “playing” with the couple on their kayak. They hoisted the kayak on their back. It even took them under for a minute. The calm and collected nature of the couple is quite astonishing.

They filmed the entire thing, and the woman was seen smiling and laughing. After a few minutes the whales went along their way and let the couple finish their leisurely activity.

I was blown away by this experience. It’s incredible to see animals that have been negatively portrayed in the media since Blackfish. However, it just goes to show that these animals are not meant to be captivated. They interacted with the couple as if they were old friends. It just goes to show that such large and beautiful creatures belong in their natural habitat. Blackfish shows whales aggravated and acting trainers. But I’m sure that if they were in the wild the attitude towards humans would be less aggressive. If only people would realize this and let animals be free where they belong – in the wild. Accidents like those that happened at SeaWorld could easily be avoided.

Epileptic woman has brain surgery – now seizure free!

When someone says the word “Epilepsy” most people are either scare, shocked or completely confused. They think of the worst case scenario or they think it’s a disease where you fall asleep (Narcolepsy). However this is far from what it is. Epilepsy is a neurological brain disease that comes in a variation of types. It can be calmed and treated with medications, but there has yet to be a successful cure.

However, there was a breakthrough for one woman who has been helped. Naomi Lewkowski is a 23-year-old stay at home mom who suffers from grand-mal seizures that last for up to three minutes. They happen ay any given time, with no rhyme or reason and no warning. This became a problem with a new baby, so the Lewkowski’s hired an in home caregiver. After trying a variety of medications that did not work out due to side effects or ineffectiveness, Naomi’s neurologist made a daring suggestion – Vagus Nerve Stimulation therapy.

“Called vagus nerve stimulation (VNS) therapy, the device is implanted in the chest and sends rhythmic impulses to the vagus nerve in the neck, which in turn sends impulses to the brain,”. It acts as a pacemaker for the brain.

Since the surgery Naomi’s seizures have drastically decreased. She is now down to one or two seizures a month.

As an Epileptic, it’s encouraging hearing stories like this. It may be a breakthrough or it may be luck, but to know there are blessed individuals who have the help they need is such a heart warming feeling. I hope that one day there will be a cure so that no Epileptic has to struggle with things as simple as taking a shower or driving a car.

http://www.foxnews.com/health/2012/11/13/cure-for-epilepsy-new-device-can-reduce-stop-seizures/