Online community not a monoculture

“The global village has been wrongly portrayed as one global culture, with everyone living in harmony. Our genetic coding doesn’t allow us to trust billions of people. We only have about 150 relationships and we only have a strong trust for about 20 of those,” said Paul Hoffert, a professor and director of the CulTech Research Centre at York University and Sheridan College, reports the Era-Banner Feb. 22. “Online, you don’t know if you’re speaking to a 13-year-old girl or a 63-year-old man.” Hoffert was speaking at the launch of the Smart Newmarket campaign for an online community.

York grad new environment deputy minister

Effective Jan. 21, Virginia West became the new Ontario deputy minister of the environment, reports Solid Waste & Recycling magazine Feb. 1. West has an LLB from Osgoode Hall Law School.

Marijuana marches toward mainstream

When someone’s mom or dad comes into the Friendly Stranger, a boutique that specializes in pot-smoking paraphernalia, it can only mean one thing: the times, they are a-changin’ once again, reports Canadian Press in a wire story Feb. 27. It’s all very exciting for lawyer, cannabis crusader and Osgoode Hall Law School Prof. Alan Young, who represented participants in Canada’s medical-marijuana program during their successful court challenge late last year. “Something changed in the 1990s,” said Young. “What changed, I don’t know. But something definitely did.”

Distinguished alumnus known for service

John H. (Jack) Yocom, recipient of York University’s Schulich School of Business Distinguished Alumni Award, died on Feb. 22 after a lengthy career in education, journalism, corporate communications and community service, says an obituary in The Globe and Mail Feb. 25.

On air

  • Erich Weingartner, research Fellow in York’s Centre for International & Security Studies, talks with CBC’s Michael Enright about issues pertaining to North Korea including security and US policy, on a special national program Feb. 23.
  • “Night Beat News” (CFTO-TV), Toronto, reported a tribute to African influences in Cuban music held at York University Feb. 26.
  • David Dewitt, director, York Centre for International & Security Studies, explains the issues behind the two deadlines set for Iraq before the UN, on “Windsor Now” (CKLW-AM), Feb. 25.
  • Moshe Milevsky, finance professor at York University’s Schulich School of Business, is interviewed on “Canada`s Business Report” (CFRB-AM), Toronto, Feb. 25.
  • Margaret Beare, sociology professor in York’s Faculty of Arts and expert on organized crime, is interviewed on “The National” (CBC-TV), Feb. 25, about a Quebec law allowing the province to divide the proceeds worth millions from raids on biker gangs 50/50 with the cities where the raids took place.