Lone Star Ride kicks off new season

LSR team Slow Spokes (more photos from Sunday's party below)

Lone Star Ride Fighting AIDS kicked off the new season with a party at the new Irving Convention Center. LSR event manager Jerry Calumn announced new sponsors and fundraising tools, and handed out copies of the new route.

The two-day, 175-mile ride takes place the last weekend in September and benefits Resource Center Dallas, AIDS Services Dallas and AIDS Outreach Center.

The first day of this year’s ride begins in Irving and makes a 100-mile loop through Dallas. The second day, the ride heads through Arlington and Fort Worth.

A new corporate sponsor is Microsoft.

“Microsoft is invested in the community and diversity and helping people realize their full potential,” said Jeri Johnson, leader of Microsoft’s citizenship and public affairs outreach in the DFW area.

The LSR will ride out from Microsoft’s Irving campus.

“This is the first time we’ve hosted anything on this site,” she said. “We want to make a difference.”

Microsoft’s sponsorship will have an impact on the ride. She said the company is fielding a team of 50 riders. For the past few years, Dallas Voice has fielded the largest team, but Microsoft could present a challenge.

In addition to what those riders will raise, the company donates $17 an hour for volunteer time. As the team’s riders and additional volunteers participate, the contribution from the company will grow.

—  David Taffet

Gamer suspended over name of W.Va. town: Fort Gay

VICKI SMITH | Associated Press

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Microsoft Corp. and Xbox Live are apologizing to a West Virginia town and a 26-year-old gamer accused of violating the online gaming service’s code of conduct by declaring he’s from Fort Gay.

The town in western West Virginia is real. But Seattle-based Microsoft and the Xbox Live enforcement team wouldn’t take Josh Moore’s word for it.

They suspended his gaming privileges for a few days last week until he could convince them his Wayne County hometown is real.

Xbox Live chief enforcement officer Stephen Toulouse acknowledges the agent reviewing a fellow gamer’s complaint against Moore made a mistake. He says keeping up with slang and policing Xbox Live for offensive language is challenging, but mistakes in judgment are rare.

Toulouse says training has since been updated.

—  John Wright

Fort Gay, rugby slurs and Tea Party hatefulness: Learning the lesson that words matter

Former Tea Party official Tim Ravndal, left, and Olympic champion swimmer Stephanie Rice, right, both learned lessons this week about the power of words.

I have two sons in middle school, so I know for a fact that children call each other names all the time. Some are silly. Like the time the younger son called his older brother a butthead, and the older brother responded with, “Well, you’re a butt-er head.” I don’t think that one came out the way he intended.

But one day, when the younger brother was calling the older one names, the older one responded, “Sticks and stones may break my bones. But words will never hurt me.” Then he hesitated, turned to me and said, “But that’s not really true, is it? Words can hurt a lot.”

Yep, I told him. Words matter very, very much. Below are three examples how they matter:

—  admin