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Is Newsbreak Just Mainstream Central or is my local community too small for them?

 Funny, I thought Newsbreak and Substack Local would be the voices of the people!

photo-1610527976250-b55b10541342 by Jorge Maya Unsplash
I started blogging around 2007 because I was tired of the one-dimensional mainstream news in my state and local community and of not having a voice anywhere in anything. My local newspaper, The Boothbay Register features blog columns but I do not approach them, knowing that I am too off-the-grid for publication in any local mainstream media, and I like my freedom to tell it as I see it.

To begin with, I read the bills and the statutes. There seems to be an unwritten law that mandates that one is only permitted to read bills and statutes if one is certified by the authorities to do so. That is an effect of living in a centrally managed state. We all have our assigned spots on the grid, whether the cell fits us or not, we are assigned to it and are expected to stay with its boundaries, but I do not do that, in part because I was born and raised off the grid in a business in a home that designed and handcrafted ceramics.

An independent lifestyle, producing a line of ceramics as a business in a home. The Salad Bowl with the natural brown tree pattern is a classic. Photo by author.

So I have gone through a long tug of war, which I appeared to have won, with my local newspaper, just to NOT have my comments deleted and otherwise messed around with. No one from the grid understands why anyone, not authorized by the grid, would be reading the statutes. At one point the editor of my local newspaper asked me who I was, implying that I did not live in the region where I was born and raised and my family started a well-known, but off-the-grid business, Andersen Design of Maine. Andersen Design is known nationally and internationally, but I do not know if the extent of our business is known in my local community, where we are just a business in a home, or were once before we lost our historic Mansard style home and it was bulldozed over and replaced with what appears to be a city apartment building without any front doors. One must enter the replacement structure through garage doors and a long tunnel to get to the “master suite” as the real estate agent called it, as the structure also contains two studio apartments for the “workforce”, another popular real estate term, these days. The contemporary marketing language is indeed very telling.

I started studying the Maine economic development statutes around 2009 after encountering central management in the course of conducting our business. I uncovered a history that begins in 1968 with an act passed by the federal government of the United States, The United States Intergovernmental Cooperation Act of 1968, Public Law 90–577i, a design to centrally manage the entire economy of the United States through wealth redistribution. The federal government met its co-ordinating partner in Maine in Governor Longley, who centralized Maine’s economy in 1976, following the federal lead, and so began the long transformation of a wide middle class into the ever-expanding wealth divide.

In 2019, I made a simple addition to Governor James B Longley’s biography on Wikipedia, to include what I consider to be the most impactful and long-lasting effect of his administration, that of instituting the centralized economy of Maine. As my “reliable source” I used a document of record obtained from the Maine Legislative Library, Legislative Recommendations of the Governor’s Task Force on Economic Development of 1976. This I was told by the Wikipedia MaineTeam does not pass muster as a reliable source, a case in point that one must be certified by the appropriate authorities before one can read the statutes and other historical documents and use them to substantiate facts.

Hello, I’m 331dot. I noticed that you added or changed content in an article, James B. Longley, but you didn’t provide a reliable source. It’s been removed and archived in the page history for now, but if you’d like to include a citation and re-add it, please do so. You can have a look at the tutorial on citing sources, or if you think I made a mistake, you can leave me a message on my talk page. Thank you. 331dot (talk) 21:16, 11 December 2019 (UTC)

I would also add that the passage seems to be your personal commentary or research; original research is not permitted on Wikipedia. If your research is published in a peer reviewed scholarly journal, or reported on in independent reliable sources, please bring up these sources on the article talk page. 331dot (talk) 21:17, 11 December 2019 (UTC)

After submitting, once again, that my “reliable source” is the Maine Legislative Library, I received this further confirmation that one must be properly certified by the authorities to read historical documents and use them as a basis for factual substantiation:

Please read Verifiabilty, not Truth. Wikipedia does not claim to offer what is true, only what can be verified in independent reliable sources. Original research is not permitted. As I indicated, if your research is discussed in such sources, it can be mentioned here, but otherwise, no. You may want to find an alternative forum where what you want to do is permitted. 331dot (talk) 00:42, 12 December 2019 (U

My Dad always told me that if I ever needed anything, to start at the top. I have found this advice to be wise. Doors that are slammed in one’s face at the local level, open effortlessly at the top. As it happened, out of the blue in 2020 I was recruited by Palgraves Journal, now called Humanities and Social Sciences Communications, a subsidiary of Nature.com, which partners with international academic institutions. I was recruited by said international academic journal to do reviews and as a result, I now have my Orcid(research)ID- and rated as a “preferred source”/

Mackenzie Andersen’s Orcid ID

Recently I was reading the Wikipedia page on midcentury design, where I found mention of all my parents friends, and colleagues, ceramic companies that existed alongside Andersen Design, stores we sold to, and so forth, but Andersen Design has no mention.

I knew that Wikipedia has a policy about entries NOT being made by principals, but I thought it was a preference, not a mandate. I have been waiting years for a third party to write a profile of our company and no one has and so I decided to add a simple two-sentence edit to include Andersen Design in the Wikipedia midcentury design history, of which Andersen Design is very much a part, but that too was deleted. I need someone else to write a profile on Andersen Design. I can be their reliable source since I understand what our company was and is about like no other can. You can also find our company highly recommended in the Collectors Eye, by Christine Churchill, but that is not a journal. There are also other articles that have been written, and most significantly, our work has been collected and handed down through the generations of many families across America and the world because it was started with the intention to create a handmade product affordable to the middle class, during an era when there was a thriving middle class.

However, this recent incident reminded me of the earlier rejection and I connected the dots to my new status as a preferred researcher for Humanities and SocialSciences Communications. I negotiated a waiver of the fee for publishing a paper months ago but had not acted on it.

Now I have acted. Yesterday I submitted my paper. I had to acknowledge that a version of it is already published as a blog post. I hope that will not be an issue because the academic journal world is a different one than the blogging world, and it is the academic journal world that I need to validate my authority to report the facts of history. and my associated insights.

Wikipedia is important because it is mainstream. It's usually at the top of any Google search and is the easiest source to reference.

Local news is also very important. Online venues could be a real voice of the people challenging the mainstream media hegemony, but so far I am not seeing that yet.

Meanwhile, my substack newsletter is all about local news, and I am getting read the most there. My publication is called Butterflies and Rocketships

Originally published in Medium's Age of Awareness May 27 2021

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