Jake Ellison

Online Managing Editor

Jake Ellison is central to providing overall accuracy, timeliness and creativity to KPLU's online product. He has spent over 17 years in the news business, 10 of which were as a reporter, editor and online producer at the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. He spent the last third of those years working solely in the online environment as a writer, curator and editor and has the distinction of being among Seattle's pioneering web-first reporters.

Jake has won a number of journalism awards and honors, been a panelist and speaker on journalism and leadership, and has a Masters Degree in creative writing.

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protesting wall street
1:06 pm
Wed July 18, 2012

Why King County nixed woman’s marriage to a corporation in Seattle

In this photo taken from Initiative 103's Facebook page, Angela Marie Vogel embraces her new "husband" or "Corporate Person."
Alex Garland www.alexgarlandphotography.com

A woman married a corporation in Seattle yesterday, and today King County says it was all a mistake.

“It was just an error,” a King County spokesperson said of why the woman was allowed to get a license and marry “Corporation Person." An error the county said it has fixed by voiding the license and returning the $64 fee.

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Comics and litigations
5:13 pm
Tue July 10, 2012

How a lawsuit over 'Oatmeal' jokes turned into $211,000 for charity

One of the images showing "mom" and the amount of money raised for charity that was published by The Oatmeal website after the lawsuit by FunnyJunk.com was dropped.
The Oatmeal

In a lawsuit centered on rude internet humor, accusations of copyright violations and a counter claim of defamation, some undeniable good has occurred:  Two national charities will split more than $211,000.

That's the amount Matthew "Oatmeal" Inman raised from fans of his Seattle-based comic website in an in-your-face game of one-upmanship against the lawyer of the collector website FunnyJunk accused of stealing his work.

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Obituary
2:50 pm
Sun July 8, 2012

Oscar-winning film star Ernest Borgnine dies

Ernest Borgnine
The Associated Press

LOS ANGELES — Ernest Borgnine, the beefy screen star known for blustery, often villainous roles, but who won the best-actor Oscar for playing against type as a lovesick butcher in "Marty" in 1955, died Sunday. He was 95.

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odd news
12:22 pm
Thu July 5, 2012

Man files $20,000 insurance claim for dead cat ... but cat wasn't dead or real

The cat that wasn't dead ... nor did it belong to the man who file a $20,000 insurance claim for it.
Washington State Insurance Commission

OLYMPIA, Wash. – A Tacoma man is facing attempted theft and insurance fraud charges after filing a $20,000 claim for a fictitious dead cat, using pet photos he lifted off the internet, according to a press release from the Washington State Insurance Commission.

“We’ve handled some pretty unusual fraud cases, but this is one of the stranger ones,” said Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler.

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Science
3:24 am
Wed July 4, 2012

Video: 'We've got the Higgs,' UW and CERN scientist declares

Screen grab from the video of Gordon Watts, University of Washington physics professor who helped announce to the world that the 'God particle' has likely been found.

In this video, shot just after results of the Large Hadron Collider at the European Organization for Nuclear Research or CERN were announced, University of Washington physics scientist Gordon Watts declares – "We've got the Higgs."

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Search for the God Particle
12:01 am
Wed July 4, 2012

CERN finds Higgs-like (God) particle; UW scientists, up late, celebrate discovery

Gordon Watts, a physics professor at UW, shared the news of the likely discovery of the Higgs boson announced in the evidence presented by CERN tonight.
Jake Ellison KPLU

A University of Washington physics professor with connection to the experiments at the CERN Large Hadron Collider said a Higgs-like particle has been discovered.

"We have discovered something ... and quite frankly I can't see how it can be anything other than the Higgs but  we need scientific proof to close that door," said Gordon Watts, a physics professor at UW, at a tavern-based seminar tonight in lower Queen Anne with nearly 150 colleagues and science aficionados. "We just do not have the data yet to determine what the flavor of Higgs it is that we see.

"I am positive. My gut tells me that is what this is."

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Science press release
10:52 pm
Mon July 2, 2012

'Strong indication of Higgs (God) particle' found, scientists report

The Tevatron typically produced about 10 million proton-antiproton collisions per second. Each collision produced hundreds of particles. The CDF and DZero experiments recorded about 200 collisions per second for further analysis.
Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory

(Press release from Fermilab)

After more than 10 years of gathering and analyzing data produced by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Tevatron collider, scientists from the CDF and DZero collaborations have found their strongest indication to date for the long-sought Higgs particle. Squeezing the last bit of information out of 500 trillion collisions produced by the Tevatron for each experiment since March 2001, the final analysis of the data does not settle the question of whether the Higgs particle exists, but gets closer to an answer.

The Tevatron scientists unveiled their latest results on July 2, two days before the highly anticipated announcement of the latest Higgs-search results from the Large Hadron Collider in Europe.

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Seattle police department
5:18 pm
Mon July 2, 2012

'Catch a Killer' - Seattle PD launches newsy site to fight crime

The front page of the Seattle Police Department's revamped blog.

The latest version of the Seattle Police Department’s blog shows a department striving to build an online audience with catchy headlines and timely posts.

“We’re looking to do even more,” said department spokesman Detective Mark Jamieson. “The blotter was good. If people were interested that was a place they could go, but ... now we need to go to the next level (be) more like a news site.”

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Medical Marijuana
1:57 pm
Wed June 27, 2012

Marijuana businesses, patients struggle to get insurance for damaged plants

Neeta Lind Flickr

Turns out, you may not have a good claim if your pot plants are stolen, wrecked or confiscated, even though more insurance policies are being offered.

Yesterday a Clarkston, Wash., woman whose medical marijuana was stolen found out she can’t recover the loss under her renter's insurance policy, because no legal value for the drug can be established. Even growers who get specific policies for their crops worry that their insurance will be no good if the feds bust them.

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healthcare controversy
12:18 pm
Fri June 22, 2012

Survey: Will politics tip the scale in high court's healthcare ruling?

The U.S. Supreme Court
The Associated Press

As potentially millions of people collectively held their breath, again, Monday morning waiting for the U.S. Supreme Court to decide the fate of Obama’s health care reform, one of the many questions lingering in the air is will the justices keep their politics out of the decision? (Update: The court did not issue its ruling Monday and will likely do so on Thursday.)

And, we must also wonder: Will Americans keep their politics out of their assessments of whatever the court decides, when it does? (Warning, this is a “Take our survey” story … see below.)

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College education costs
1:31 pm
Thu June 21, 2012

Student protesters run into police trouble on Capitol Hill

In this screen grab from the video shot by someone with the #MicCheckWallStreet protesters, Seattle police officers make an arrest.

An increase in the number of people protesting with the student group #MicCheckWallStreet last night on Capital Hill brought an increase in police presence with it.

And, not long after more than 80 people took to the streets to “peacefully” protest the rising costs of a college education, according to one organizer, the gathering turned hostile when a single arrest was made.

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Seattle freeze
12:08 pm
Tue June 19, 2012

'Seattle Freeze' strikes northern neighbor - Vancouver, B.C.

A woman wheels her cart along West Hastings Street in Vancouver, British Columbia, in 2010. A lonely place.
The Associated Press

Apparently the social phenomenon known as the “freeze” – or social indifference and avoidance of strangers – extends north of Seattle.

A new survey of living conditions in our northern neighbor Vancouver, B.C., conducted by the Vancouver Foundation discovered:

“One in three people living in metropolitan Vancouver say it can be difficult to make friends here. Seventy per cent have never had a neighbour over. And 47 per cent do not trust or do not know if their neighbours trust each other.”

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Diversions
1:59 pm
Mon June 11, 2012

5 embarrassing videos involving Microsoft and dance

Screen grab from the "dancing Azure girls" video causing Microsoft plenty of headaches this week.

The latest video involving Microsoft and dancing is causing not only a lot of cringing but some apologizing as well. It’s also the latest video pitting Microsoft against good judgment when it comes to song and dance.

Below, starting with the latest, are five videos that should give any Microsoft employee (or leader) pause before busting out the moves in public:

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Japanese Tsunami Debris
1:07 pm
Fri June 8, 2012

Japanese dock suddenly makes tsunami debris threat real

In this photo provided by the Oregon Park and Recreations Department, an unidentified worker burns off debris from the Japanese dock float on Thursday.

When a massive concrete and metal dock – 66 feet long, seven feet tall, 19 feet wide and covered in alien species – hit an Oregon beach this week, the threat to the Northwest’s economy and environment from millions of tons of Japanese tsunami debris suddenly became more real.

Even with the haunting appearance of a Japanese ship floating off the coast of Alaska, reports of what we might expect to hit our coastlines centered mostly on plastics, soccer balls and even some human remains in running shoes – all of which carried more curiosity than alarm.

But then the dock just showed up on the beach one morning and now the threat of ships colliding with significant tsunami debris, and the invasive species that can hitch a ride from the coast of Japan on them, has officials significantly worried.

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Washington volcanoes
3:23 pm
Wed June 6, 2012

When Rainier blows, volcanic mudflow could cost us $6 billion

Section of the map produced by the Washington State Department of Natural Resources showing lahar flows.

“It’s not a question of if, but when, the next volcanic event will occur”

When it blows, Mount Rainier might produce “Lahar,” or volcanic mudflow, that could cause property losses of up to $6 billion in the Puyallup Valley, a new study by the Washington State Department of Natural Resources shows.

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