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Distracted Drivers and Tainted Meat

A column highlighting the trends, thoughts and news from Facebook and Twitter.

Here at Marlborough Patch, we take social media pretty seriously.

The platform is one way we look to interact with you, answer your questions and get to see what's on your mind. Social Media Saturday is a weekly feature where we highlight your questions and thoughts you've shared on FacebookTwitter and other media throughout the past week.

We'll also point you to some new and interesting pages you may not have known about before.

Highlights of the Week:

Currently, we've got 909 fans liking us on Facebook, which is a great thing. We've also got 621 followers on Twitter, with numbers growing every day. Here are some highlights of what took place this week:

1. There was an enormous response to a about whether or not the use cell phones should be banned for drivers of all ages. The article links to a national story about the federal government's urge to ban mobile phone use on a state level. An overwhelming 76 percent of polltakers voted in favor of the ban and this reader had this to say on Marlborough Patch's Facebook page, "Hands-free only! Use Bluetooth."

How do others feel? Many people, like this reader, believe that mobile phones are not the sole culprits competing for a motorist's attention, "...cell phones aren't the only source of distraction. A Nav[igation] system, XM radio, iPods, DVD players for the children, chatting with my passenger(s), drinking coffee, eating breakfast, etc... I could go on and on."

Another reader commented on this same issue as well as the difficulty of enforcing the ban, "If you hurt someone while driving distracted it shouldn’t matter if you were talking, texting or eating a cheeseburger. Second, there really is no enforcement mechanism beyond what already exists for other distractions (i.e. a marked lanes violation, running a stop sign, or crashing). How does someone know I’m talking on a blue tooth device vs. singing or yelling at a talk show host?..."

"...since it is very difficult to prove, it seems like a waste of time to me. I would rather [the authorities] focus on drunk drivers, unlicensed/uninsured drivers, elderly drivers and habitual traffic law offenders. Those people are much more dangerous than me calling home to see if we need milk and bread." One person cited a current law in the state of Connecticut, "...no person shall engage in any activity not related to the actual operation of a motor vehicle in a manner that interferes with the safe operation of such vehicle on any highway..." to which readers reacted with support.

2. supermarket has voluntarily pulled hamburger meat from its shelves due to a risk of salmonella contamination. See Marlborough Patch's . The article contains more information about how to find out if you've purchased any of the recalled meat. The store is offering customers a full refund.

This news has readers expressing concern on Marlborough Patch's Facebook page. "I just bought and cooked hamburger from Hannaford's this week," says one person, "[I] was planning on using the last of it tonight..." Another Facebook commenter shared a frightening personal experience she had with salmonella in her family, "...Salmonella is better than E.  coli, but still...it is awful. My youngest had it when he was a baby and nearly died. Culprit was thought to be a grocery cart as no one else in our family got sick or even remotely affected."

3. The holiday season is here and that means that flu season is imminent too. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, this year's season has begun with fewer cases of the disease, but that it is still important to vaccinate against strains of H1N1 and H3N1. Marlborough Patch reports on . Readers showed that the community has mixed feelings on getting flu vaccines or even trusting any immunization. However, this person's comment warns, "Please read up from reputable sources before deciding whether or not to get a vaccine for you or your children. There are a lot of half truths out there which are allowing deadly diseases back into circulation. Just look at all of the recent measles outbreaks and deaths."

For more Facebook pages Marlborough residents might find interesting, check out our list of "liked" pages on Marlborough Patch's Facebook. And don’t forget to follow us while you are there.

If you follow us on Facebook or Twitter you know that whenever there is breaking news in Marlborough you'll hear about it first through our social media outlets.

Social Media Page of the Week

Do you like Texas Hold-em? Dancing? Karaoke? Live Music? Then, you've got to visit The Lazy Dog! This restaurant not only has all of these activities every single week, but the food served is made entirely from scratch. Check out the website here. The Lazy Dog is also on Facebook. The restaurant is planning to be hopping this New Year's Eve until 1:45 a.m. with a DJ as Marlborough rings in 2012!

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to keep up to date on the latest Marlborough news, or simply hit the "like" button at the top of this page.

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