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Blocking Online Ads Isn’t Just Good for You—It’s Good for the Planet

Research suggests that for every popup and banner you avoid, the environment stays a little greener as a result.

Adblock Plus. Image via Wikimedia

There are few things more annoying in this world than an online ad. Well actually, there are many, but pop-up ads are at the top of the list. Recently, Adblock Plus, an application designed to block online ads, came up with some surprising facts. Using the plug-in actually allows researchers to save up to 40 percent on network bandwith—saving you headaches, and the environment, energy.

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Help Transform Times Square into a Forest

Bring green to Times Square that isn’t just dollar$.

Times Square has been through several iterations over the last few decades, morphing from smut kingdom into shiny, IRL Disney wonderland. But, if botanist and urban ecologist Marielle Anzelone gets her way, and we certainly hope she does, it might soon be transformed into a lush oasis. Anzelone recently launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise $25,000 by April 17 to transform part of the iconic neighborhood into a nature refuge, albeit temporarily. The installation, PopUP Forest: Times Square, would bring shipping containers of trees, flowers, and soil, along with the amplified sounds of recorded birds and wildlife, to the area—replacing the normal din of shouting cabbies, flapping pigeons, and lost tourists. It would also be part of a first step towards eventually creating a more permanent installation in the city. Anzelone, in an interview with Grist, said the goal of the project is to highlight the remaining natural areas of New York that desperately need our protection.

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Pop-Up Concerts for a Cause Catching On Nationwide

By now, there are few city dwellers who haven’t Twitter-stalked their favorite food truck or ravenously nabbed way too many cupcakes at a...

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By now, there are few city dwellers who haven’t Twitter-stalked their favorite food truck or ravenously nabbed way too many cupcakes at a pop-up bakery. Pop-up retail is a growing trend that gives shoppers and diners the sense that they’ve stumbled upon something special, memorable, and exclusive. Now, a partnership between four Bay Area music start-ups and organizations is marrying the natural urgency—and fun—of pop-up culture with San Francisco’s thriving music scene.
This summer, Pop-up Concerts for a Cause will host at least 50 pop-up concerts to benefit five local nonprofits—with more than one hundred Bay Area musicians and bands ready to play in living rooms, backyards and at office parties. There’s word that one radio station might sponsor a pop-up concert on a busy sidewalk and air what ensues. On the opposite coast, New York’s YouNow, with a user base more than one million, will be hosting an online pop-up concert. Businesses like Couchsurfing.org, Switchcam.com and VonChurch are all hosting pop-up concerts at their offices this summer in San Francisco.
A collaboration between booking platform Hear It Local, Party Corps, Local Music Vibe and The Bay Area Music Collective, Pop-up Concerts for a Cause’s online platform allows anyone to sign up to host a pop-up concert. Event hosts can search musical acts by categories like genre, amplification needs, and performance type. You pick a date; pay the artist (or allow guests to chip in); choose a fundraising goal; and set a minimum donation per attendee. From the site, you can send out invites to your guests (friends, work colleagues, or neighborhood listserv).
For this summer’s concert pop-up concert series, the campaign partners have vetted and approved five causes to benefit from funds raised—LYRIC, WOMAN, Inc., 5 Gyres, City Youth Now, and Bread & Roses—and hosts can choose one or all to benefit from their pop-up concert. All of the selected causes will also be hosting their own pop-up concerts.

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