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Published: Monday, September 10, 2012, 12:01 a.m.
In our view / The lighter side of the news


A billion Twitter followers

If you were running for office, is there an accomplishment of yours that might be revealed to be a bit, or a lot, exaggerated? Let's take a run through the headlines:
•"Buy your way to Twitter fans? You bet": Apparently it's fairly easy to purchase "followers" to boost your numbers, just as self-published writers can purchase "reviews" of their books. Gosh, what an ego boost. Apparently it's all for marketing purposes. Oh, well, in that case. Tweet away to your non-existent followers.
"Super Bowl ad slots already 90 percent sold out": Advertisers anticipate viewers' hunger for any commercial that isn't a campaign ad will last well into the new year.
"University pulls Kinsey Institute app over privacy concerns": The mobile app allows people worldwide to anonymously report data about their sexual activity, birth control use, public displays of affection and other intimate behaviors. Or perhaps not so anonymously, worried Indiana University's general counsel, whose concerns about potential privacy issues and data protection, prompted the app's recall. Without the anonymity protections, the app is known as Facebook.
"Tooth Fairy survey: $3 goes under the pillow": It's a modern-day fable when the latte addict shows up at Starbucks with her last $3 and a toothless grin. Oh, wait. The Tooth Fairy only forks over for children. Sheesh.
"'Your Baby Can Read' ads deceptive, FTC claims": The business claims its program can teach your 9-month-old to read. The federal agency had to step in and bust the scam because apparently "Your Parents Can't Read."
"Barbie to set sail on Royal Caribbean cruises": The "Premium Barbie Cruise Experience" is targeted at young girls who love all things Barbie. And presumably their rich parents.
"Texas raises speed limit to 85 mph on busy highway": It's a new stretch of highway, with a toll, that runs between Austin and San Antonio. It would be fun to send down an army of Washington's dedicated highway left-lane campers, just to mess with Texas. And clear our roads a bit.
"Red wine may reduce men's blood pressure -- but only if it's non-alcoholic": However, the news that it must non-alcoholic drove up the test subjects' blood pressure far beyond what actual wine would.
"Annoying Seattle sound may be fish mating call": Or it could be all the fourth graders in the area simutaneously testing out their newly issued, not-really-flute-like musical instruments known as "recorders."
"Feds: Man who made false airplane threat targeted girlfriend's ex because of compromising photo he posted": Whew. He was also upset because he couldn't find the right category to describe his circumstance on the Kinsey Institute app.

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Herald Editorial Board

Jon Bauer, Opinion Editor: jbauer@heraldnet.com

Carol MacPherson, Editorial Writer: cmacpherson@heraldnet.com

Neal Pattison, Executive Editor: npattison@heraldnet.com

Josh O'Connor, Publisher: joconnor@heraldnet.com

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Feel strongly about something? Share it with the community by writing a letter to the editor. Send letters by e-mail to letters@heraldnet.com, by fax to 425-339-3458 or mail to The Herald - Letters, P.O. Box 930, Everett, WA 98206. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We'll only publish your name and hometown.) We reserve the right to edit letters, but if you keep yours to 250 words or less, we won’t ask you to shorten it. If your letter is published, please wait 30 days before submitting another. Have a question about letters? Contact Carol MacPherson at cmacpherson@heraldnet.com or 425-339-3472.