Doug Levy's Observations

News, comment, and advice by Doug Levy

Hawaii false alarm shows importance of focused emergency planning

By Doug Levy | Jan 15, 2018

The errant missile warning that alarmed people in Hawaii on January 13 showed the importance of emergency planning that includes anticipating possible errors. Apart from other issues with the response, there can be no defending that it took more than 10 minutes after the mistaken wide-area alert for corrective messages to start going out. In…

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Individual writing coaching now available

By Doug Levy | Jan 10, 2018

 In response to requests, Doug is now available for 1-on-1 video or in-person writing coaching sessions. As a multiple award-winning journalist, Doug loves working with writers – professionals, students, anyone who loves words – and helping them refine their work. Whether you are working on a personal essay, a magazine article, or your life…

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Great time to check your personal safety plan

By Doug Levy | Jan 4, 2018

The dangerous weather in much of the United States and a light earthquake near San Francisco are good reminders to check your personal safety plans. Every individual should have emergency supplies ready. You also should think ahead about where you would go and how you would get there if you needed to evacuate. In winter,…

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Do you have a good plan for your personal safety in an emergency?

By Doug Levy | Dec 6, 2017

The firestorm in Southern California highlights the importance of being prepared in case of a sudden emergency. Here are a few things to do now, while you have time. This post focuses on evacuation plans. Know at least two ways out from every room in your home or office. Pre-plan where your family or colleagues…

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Legal and regulatory issues for bloggers

By Doug Levy | Nov 27, 2017

Recently, I was part of a panel on the legal aspects of blogging, at the 2017 Wine Bloggers Conference in Santa Rosa, Calif. A report on the discussion and some helpful tips is on at this post: View story at  

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Bloggers must disclose freebies or discounts

By Doug Levy | Aug 12, 2017

 (This is a 2017 update of an article that I published in 2016 on Medium.) Many bloggers and other writers rely on product samples or invitations to events to get what they need for their writing. This is particularly true among travel writers, especially when an article requires transportation, lodging, or meals in order for…

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Protecting your business from polarizing politics

By Doug Levy | Nov 21, 2016

Many of us hoped that politics would fade as a top driver of consumer sentiment as soon as Election Day came and went. Now, preventing being dragged into a political firestorm needs to be as much a part of business emergency planning as fire safety and IT recovery, because there is no sign that public polarization…

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VIDEO: The Changing Brain

By Doug Levy | Nov 17, 2016

Over the summer I had the privilege of working with Scientific American and AARP to produce a series of videos about brain health and the science of how the brain ages. The first of the segments has now been published. This one features Dr. Richard Lipton, professor of neurology at Albert Einstein College of Medicine.…

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Share of voice and sentiment in presidential campaign media coverage

By Doug Levy | Oct 30, 2016

With one of the candidates complaining about the “corrupt” and “lying” media on a daily basis and another who has had reporters singularly focused on everything except policy questions, many of us face questions about media bias. While the debate will never end, some facts may make our conversations more productive. The comprehensive media database…

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