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Ticket scalping could be legalized | 3/11/14 | @thesnews Michigan State University’s independent voice Bill hopes to decriminalize secondhand ticket sales campus+city, pG. 3 Ham, eggs and victory Chef Kurt Kwiatkowski cuts through a boiled egg Erin Hampton/The State News campus+city, pG. 3 ACADE M ICS University sees jump in worldwide rankings 1:09 By Olivia Dimmer THE STATE NEWS nn Tech affair Technology and social media could be isolating us from meaningful connections illustr ation by paige grennan | sn By Michael Kransz THE STATE NEWS nn S he tried to quit. She got rid of the temptation. But in the end, it pulled her back. Astrophysics sophomore Jessica Martin said she isn’t addicted to social media, but the desire to constantly check it prompted her to delete her accounts. “It only lasted a couple weeks, but I got rid of Twitter, Instagram and Facebook off my phone,” Martin said. “I was checking up on too many people and I was just like, ‘I need to stop,’ so I got rid of the apps.” Despite her efforts, Martin said the desire to keep in contact with her friends, acquaintances and others overwhelmed her resolve to break away from technology. The world has entered the age of interconnectivity — the possibility of digital communication with any person halfway across the room or across the world. Mobile devices have made it even easier for people to stay up-todate on the latest news. People can share, converse, discuss and receive feedback from friends, acquaintances and strangers without leaving home or looking from the screen. Although the variety of social media platforms provides new methods of social interaction, some argue social websites and mobile devices are stifling human interaction and negatively affecting mental development. A convenient distraction At parties and other social outings, kinesiology senior Richard Szczesny said he often notices students face-inscreen, checking Facebook, tweets and texts, rather than enjoying company. “When you go out to dinner and DEVELOPMENT Park district project faces $8.4 million financing gap By Sara Konkel THE STATE NEWS nn Despite an $8.4 million gap in funding for the Park District project, developers and East Lansing city officials are still optimistic the company they entrusted with the redevelopment can recover and move forward. DTN Management Co. was awarded the opportunity to redevelop the 2.8 acre property near the intersection of Grand River and Michigan avenues, made up of six buildings and two parking lots owned by the Downtown Development Authority. The area was formerly designated as part of the failed City Center II project. A project update memo released March 7 to City Manager George Lahanas from Community and Economic Development Administrator Lori Mullins highlighted several concerns the city has for the project, includ- ing questioned financial feasibility. The company apparently is $8.4 million short of the estimated $206 million needed to complete the project at this point. Among other concerns the memo cited were issues such as zoning, legal descriptions and ownership agreements. DTN Management Co. Vice President Colin Cronin said the initial financial discrepancy is in part because the company is “trying to absorb a lot of work that the city would do in a project like this,” including site preparation, streets, roads, sidewalks and some of the public infrastructure. “A lot of those costs make it challenging, and the land itself is very expensive,” Cronin said. “That’s why the financial feasibility has always been the biggest question in our minds.” Throughout the selection process conducted in 2013, DTN See FINANCE on page 2 u all your friends are sitting on their phones, it’s like, ‘Well, why are we even here?’” Szczesny said. “Why don’t we just stay home?” Distraction from seeking company or hitting the books because of social media is an issue for many students, MSU Counseling Center Acting Director Scott Becker said. “Clinically, we have been hearing from more students that they have identified their media usage as problematic, interfering with their academic performance and taking the place of actual, face-to-face social interaction,” Becker said in an email. But Szczesny said he understands why some want constant connection when he returns from vacation and turns his phone on. “When you’re on vacation, and you do put it away for awhile, and you get back and you realize, ‘Oh, man, what did I miss?’” he said. “I think that people get that constant feeling that they’re missing something because they’re not on social media or on the phone.” In an attempt to alleviate issues associated with technology, the Counseling Center is considering “unplugged” initiatives featuring support groups and workshops in the residence halls. An easy escape In class, browsing social media is like playing virtual hooky. It can be a way of escaping the lecture to converse with friends, but some professors take notice. Telecommunication, information studies and media professor Bob LaRose realizes that students in class are using social media when they display what he calls the Facebook stare: an open-mouth smile, bulging eyes and short distance between their face and the computer screen. “Students are social animals; they like to keep up with their circle of friends,” LaRose said. “Some peoSee TECHNOLOGY on page 2 u MSU’s reputation has grown positively throughout the world, according to the World University Reputation Rankings, released March 5. The annual rankings, conducted by Times Higher Education magazine, grouped MSU in with schools ranked 61 to 70. This rank is up from last year’s, when MSU came in between 71 and 80. The magazine doesn’t individually rank schools that fall below the top 50. The University of Michigan ranked higher on the list, but dropped three spots from last year and landed at 15. The rankings this year come from the compilation of 10,536 invitation-only poll responses from a diverse population of academics who reported an average of 18 years working in higher education. “As one of the world’s top universities, we compete with the best in many areas of research and academics,” MSU spokesman Kent Cassella said. “While we are pleased to see MSU’s See RANKING on page 2 u By the numbers MSU’s world ranking compared to other Big Ten universities 15 University of Michigan 23 University of Illinois 28 University of Wisconsin 48 Purdue 51-60 Ohio State 61-70 Michigan State 71-80 Indiana State Source: Times Higher Education magazine World University Reputation Rankings Comeback win could revitalize MSU hockey Freshman forward Mackenzie MacEachern scores on Michigan goaltender Steve Racine halfway through the third period to put the Spartans in the lead on Saturday at Munn Ice Arena. — Danyelle Morrow, SN See the story on page 6

Tuesday 3/11/14

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