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Tim Challies

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Friday Ramblings

Here are just a few random things I wanted to mention before I post this week’s Free Stuff Friday giveaway.

Book News

I mentioned a short time ago that I was in the midst of putting together book proposals. That was completed some time ago and in the very near future I should have some exciting news about my next writing projects. I’m just sorting through details right now but should be able to bring you an update soon.

Regulating Blogging

A few people have asked me about the new FTC regulations that will regulate blogging (see here for details). Essentially, the FTC wants bloggers to be honest, above reproach, with product reviews, declaring any incentives they are given because of the the reviews they write. Apparently some lucky people receive amazing bribes in return for positive reviews. That hasn’t ever happened to me! From my perspective, I don’t think this ruling will change much, and not only because I am Canadian and fall outside the authority of the FTC. But in case you are wondering, you can generally assume that if I review a book on this site it is a book that showed up in the mail, usually unsolicited. The book is mine to keep or throw away as I see fit; I do not return books I review (for obvious reasons). If the book has not been given me for free, I’ve bought it on my own. I am not paid to write reviews and would not accept any kind of payment if it was offered.

Nobel

Just when you thought that the Nobel Peace Prize couldn’t get any more irrelevant, they go and give it to President Obama. If you thought Al Gore was the low water mark, well, think again. It is important to note that, at least as I understand it, the nominations happened just two week’s into Obama’s mandate, long before he had done anything more than rallied a lot of people to his cause. As the Times comments, “Sadly, it seems they have so bedazzled the Norwegians that they can no longer separate hopes from achievement. The achievements of all previous winners have been diminished.” And beyond hope it is “buzz,” the noise that surrounds a person as popular as Obama. I guess it’s now worth a Nobel Prize. This skit from Saturday Night Live has a better take on it:

Of course I’m not American and, frankly, not much of a fan of the Nobel Peace Prize at all. What’s your take on this?