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Uneducated, but can google at least.

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Too sexy to read

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With the spread of news across the internet, you’d think that outlets would try to best take advantage of the medium and wring out the benefits of new technology. Instead, what we’re given is more imaginative ways to place page three girls around the place.

Anything for the clicks, I guess.

Take the story of the lady who was laid off from prominent New York corporation (and therefore ultimately a legit front for a Bond-esque villain), Citibank. To ingest the headline on its own, you could draw the typical conclusions and spend the next day exclaiming to your workmates about how ridiculous this world is, and how evil companies will do anything to lay off people to make themselves feel better.

Within the story hides a small, but important, detail.

“The purported reasons for plaintiff’s termination included that she failed to meet the required new account opening quotas, in addition to the credulity-straining assertion that her clothing choices were ‘inappropriate’,” the suit said.

The section highlighted in italics would be a reason for anyone to be fired, and not just the hotties. The part I bolded indicates that these are the claims made by the poor stunner, and are the things that should be debated.

This is a detail missed by many in the comments. Of course there are the “phwoar, why would you fire that piece of work? I’d love it if she worked for me” comments, but they are as inane as they are ironic.

I mean, why would you leap to the defense of a woman who was allegedly a victim of her appearance… by commenting on her appearance?

I love how people take one instance of possible discrimination and then extrapolate it out to the point where it is the symptom of a massive societal problem. Man comments on woman, and it’s ultimately a sign that it’s a man’s world and that there’d be no wars with women in charge. Woman comments on man, and it’s a sign that women have surpassed their equal rights, are treating men as servants and that if men were in charge, the wars would be over by now.

Or, you can just take this for what it is: a single story does not phenomenon make.

I think this one pretty much beats me to the punch.

Two sides to every story. However, I sincerely doubt that Citibank will come forward and state, categorically, that this lady was “too hot”

However, the fact that story links to a site which has 20-odd, semi glam shots of this lady, model poses and all, does set off my cynic alarm. Will we be seeing photos of this one appearing in FHM or similar soon?

How many hits did Village Voice get from this story from people who were at work? Did they all click on those photos of her bending over, or crossing her legs in that sultry way?

Do you think people got distracted?

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Written by Andy

June 4, 2010 at 8:00 am

AdelaideNow’s Stance on Journalism Content

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I was going over the local rag’s website today, and noted briefly that they were seeking the public’s help with finding content for their site.

ifucit

Nothing outrageous there. It’s something that seems to be happening all over the world as news outlets seek to become more human and in touch with their readership. However, my surprise came from the same banner a few seconds after this was displayed.

\an

Okay, I get the whole “SMS” thing and how it’s supposed to read “If you see it”. However, I can’t get “I Fuck It” out of my head. I also can’t help but also think that this is news.com.au’s mission statement when it comes to journalistic integrity.

Editor (addressing a throng of drooling journalists before they hit the pavement): Alright guys! We’ve got a whole bunch o’ shit happening out there! We need to gather the facts! Then what are you going to do to the facts?

Journalists (chorus): I Fuck It!

Editor: What are you going to do to fair and balanced journalism?

Journalists: I Fuck It!

Alright, I think I’ve had enough fun what that…

Written by Andy

April 25, 2009 at 6:59 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Generation Google

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This story hits probably a little bit close to this site’s heart, mainly because it takes public opinion and then tries to refute it. The inspiration behind this idea lied with constantly hearing people whinge incessantly about something which was well beyond their comprehension, but they thought they were enlightened because their mate had mentioned something to them about it down the pub.

For example, interest rates, the economy, politics, immigration, fundamentalist extremists, aboriginal policy, binge drinking or the hotness of Stephanie Rice (the last two might be related).

There had been a number of occasions where I had been forwarded an email by someone, with the starting comment as “hear, hear” and I would read on in sheer horror as the following thousand words gurgled out an opinion piece that could’ve been written by a bigoted, hateful five-year-old with Tourettes Syndrome.

It baffled me that the internet provided people the world at their fingertips, and yet many seem to use it to spread bullshit. In fact, BIS Shrapnel seem to revel in their blatant circulation of dung.

What was worse was that most people simply swallowed what they were being told, as though the lies were a smooth hot chocolate, that made them feel all warm and gooey inside. Pity no one cared that it all ended up as faeces anyway.

So, I started this small thing up, hoping to refute general consensus with some actual research. Truth be known, it just involves using Google a lot and then forming smarmy sentences like I’m some kind of truth dispensing vending machine that laughs at you before running away.

My faith in my methodology has just been shaken by a story on news.com.au that outlines that the little ones are relying more and more on the Google-tarians for their answers, rather than using the self-flagellating techniques taught by sadist educators of yore.

Comments do make a few points:

google1

I think you might’ve missed the point of the article, though. I don’t think they are advocating that the internet is the be all and end all of information out there. Rather, it is a tool that you work with to get the facts surrounding it, which then assists you in determining your opinion. Of course, if you doubt the source you can always try many other sites to try and validate the other source. Or, you can simply look at a bug and then count the legs…

google2

Fair enough. We don’t ever want to see this kinda thing, do we?

But… that ad was for an internet service provider. Telstra says that their internet has the right answers…? Oh, who to believe?!

I am reminded, though, of a recent story which outlined that Wikipedia is just as reliable as Britannica. This sorta again reinforces the point that the internet is just a tool to use, rather than an answer. You can scour the pages of Britannica, and yet it still isn’t a full replacement for a dedicated reference book on a specific subject, written by recognised experts in the field.

It all boils down to the intellectual curiosity of the individual, I think. Are the kids vapid enough to simply accept the Googe-tarians’ algorithms as fact, or will they delve a bit deeper, getting their hands dirty and coming out more enlightened as a result?

Oh, and 1 + 1 isn’t 3. It’s a Ukrainian-speaking TV channel. Idiot.

Written by Andy

December 2, 2008 at 5:14 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Best defence a good offence

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This story has been going on for a little while, due to the courts pushing things back and constant reschedules. So, for legal reasons, the court of public opinion has been silenced, and we largely have been spared the vitriol.

But, I think something needs to be said, and it’s up to a traffic-less site to say it.

Swimmer and part-time thug Nick D’Arcy has pleaded guilty to the charge of recklessly causing grievous bodily harm. D’Arcy has maintained throughout that his attack was purely in self-defence, and therefore totally justified.

You know, like how our defence forces are currently in other countries, “defending” our great nation.

I guess there are different ways to defend yourself, and even avoid situations in where things get inflamed to the point where we break out into fisticuffs. I mean, I can understand if people have a few too many, they are inclined to not be thinking too straight. In fact, by monitoring the bodies lying on the side of the road and viewing the antics on any given Saturday night in the city, I think that thinking is far from the agenda for people.

Some people may react by walking away from a confrontation. Some might yell a bit before walking away. Others might push others around before pretending that they can’t fight because their mates are “making” them walk away. These still seem like far more better ideas than slamming someone’s face in… you know… in self defence.

But in this black and white world, where Google can give us an answer – and therefore make you feel like your opinion is credible – I cannot look past this site. But what would the Police know?

Of particular note:

Further, self defence cannot amount to retribution. If an accused was assaulted by another person, then while defending him or herself, continued to fight the original attacker to the point that he or she becomes the aggressor, then self defence will not apply. The reason is that the victim did not do what was needed in the circumstances, but went beyond what was needed to defend themselves.

I’m no lawyer, and I’m sure that these things can be massaged a little to work out a defence that sorta fits with all involved. And yes, I wasn’t there either, so I don’t have any right to weigh in on this.

But, I’m sorry. I’m still not convinced that smashing in another person’s head is “self defence”. Just as much as I’m not sure that burping loudly and farting is “scintillating dinner conversation.”

Written by Andy

November 26, 2008 at 6:49 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Eating cake

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The world is in a funny state at the moment. There’s been meltdowns so crazy that it’s caused a wee bit of mayhem on Wall Street. Big companies which might’ve been considered unshakeable have been brought to their knees by the realisation that investing make-believe money into houses which occupy people with make-believe personalities, who work in make-believe industries who then take out more make-believe money to purchase trash, with the belief that their house is making them make-believe-rich… isn’t exactly the most sustainable business plan.

But more has been written about that by more smarter people than I. Besides, this site and its lack of traffic is testament to people contributing to a make-believe cause.

A story was just published about how Australians believe that we’re already in recession, despite the fact that Australia has shown no signs of negative growth, let alone a continued period of negative growth, which is the technical definition of recession.

Solutions to our current turmoil have been to stimulate things by giving breeders money, through to simply using methods not unlike The Secret to simply wish it away.

The latter seems to have been run with in some of the comments.

secret

They probably missed the constant stories of politicians reassuring us that our economy is just apples.

Although they do raise the point about how the media should only report the facts, which is a little bit of a no-brainer, especially for someone like me who prays idealistically for an educated and ethical press, but is instead force-fed shots of either Australian Idol losers or headlines about Jennifer Hawkins’ boobs (which leads to a story about everything but…). But they mention fully gagging the media unless they only say things that are factual and don’t do any damage to Australia.

… which seemed to be where most of the controversy about Australia’s anti-sedition laws stemmed from. Or, for a more tenuous link, the proposed mandatory net-nanny which is looking to ban things that are unsavory for Australians.

So… what the fuck is it? Free information, unhindered by the powers that be, and therefore a more informed populous which can make informed decisions about the direction of the country, or a state in where we have fields of tulips broadcast on 12 foot screens, and have sunshine systematically blown up our arses every two hours to remind us that all is well?

Geez, and I thought we preferred people telling it like it is…

Written by Andy

November 24, 2008 at 10:53 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Dearly De-folded

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I’ve only just recently been tuning into the commercial radio stations in the morning for some reason. There’s something strangely compelling about listening to people ramble and then giggle inanely at each others’ jokes.

I caught the tail-end of a competition on SA-FM’s breakfast show in where the winner gets their loved one flown home from halfway around the world in order to reunite people in a sea of tears and clusters of hugs.

Apparently a loved one had to answer a series of questions, and the amount they answered correctly determined the length of time the loved one was going to stay in the country.

So, the competition winner was flown all the way home from the other side of the globe, where they could potentially be back with their family for a whole hour. Of course, this beggars the question, who on earth thought that this would end well?

Because he only could stay for an hour.

I’ve done the leg all the way around the world, as many Australians have. When you get to the other side, your temper is a bit on edge. You could snap within a minute. Considering the contempt with which I treated the poor lady at the Charles de Gaulle train station, I’m not surprised that the French are considered arrogant pricks.

If I were to fly halfway around the world to get to a destination in where I spent an hour before nicking off back from where I came, you can be pretty sure there would be blood. Lots of it.

After considering this idea, it seemed to smack of the usual Reality TV philosophies, ie promise the world to contestants only to instead prod incessantly at their weak spots until they eventually snap in an explosve tantrum, the size of which Naomi Campbell would “tsk-tsk”, shake her head in disdain and utter “well that was a bit over the top”.

But the community of Adelaide rallied behind the family, demanding that the breakfast team stop being Hitler-esque jerks and allow him to stay a bit longer.

Their blog exploded with comments:

Sarah says

This sucks – this is a CRUEL and HURTFUL game – Your should never have done it in the first place – Playing with peoples emotions for your own sick pursuit of ratings – How Dare you do this to a family that have been apart for 2 years – it is DISGUSTING – You have lost me and a lot of people from my work as listners – Absolutly horrible. What did you think would happen Amber – Did you think it would all be happy familys – Questions were far far far to hard!! What sister knows her siblings favourite Football star – I know i dont – For god sake rSAFM redeem yourself and stop this stupid game and let chris stay!!

Posted Thursday 20 November, 2008 8:26 AM

I can’t find the rules on the website, but I’m pretty sure that there’s no clause in there about how the questions have to be easy. Also, the “pursuit of ratings” point seems to lose its sharpness when you realise that’s how these stations function. That’s right, if there’s no ratings you can be pretty sure that your trip in the car to and from work will either be silent or blasting with the sound of starving Uni students (both presenting and playing the music).

Regardless, the fear of being lynched by an angry mob of family supporters and irrational, ravenous girls that make up their core demographic got too much for the suits and they folded quicker than an origami champion. It was possibly helped along by Amber Petty, who steadfastly and repeatedly maintained on air that this competition “never sat well” with her. Pretty easy to say that when you face being spat on in the street and being called a witch.

Although, I can understand that when it was another department that dreamed up this car crash, and the breakfast team were simply the blaring car horns.

I must say, though, that I bet the competition organisers are rueing bringing a soccer player back, though. We all know how peaceful and calm soccer supporters are, don’t we?

Written by Andy

November 21, 2008 at 12:12 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Chinese Internet

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Let me just first say that I oppose the current gubbermint’s idea of putting in internet filtering. It’s pointless. Sure, we need to protect the kiddies out there, but I’m pretty sure most responsible parents would be monitoring their children’s usage of the internet.

And I’m also of the impression that if you deny someone access to something, the harder they’ll work to get it.

See prohibition in Chicago, back in those days. Yep. The city was free of drunks, I’m sure.

I read the story on the http://www.news.com.au website, and I see that the majority of the comments agree with me. So I’m not going to have a dispute with the gist of what they’re saying. However, it’s this little chestnut that has me raising my eyebrows.

China

Well, there were so many to choose from, so I doubt I picked the best example. Either way, what they’re saying seems to be along the lines of:

OMG!!! They’re taking away our freedoms!!! We’re going to be the next China, and have everything taken away from us. We’re a communist nation now!!!

Seriously curious about how the Chinese filter their internets, a rudimentary search turned up the wikipedia article on it, and a list of things that the Chinese aren’t allowed to look up.

ChinaNetWiki

As far as I can gather, what is being proposed in Australia is about restricting access to illegal material. I’m pretty sure there’s nothing in there about anti-Government material (which was supposedly covered in Australia’s anti-sedition laws… which seems to be working well, if judging by comments that flagrantly encourage people to vote against Labor), previous protests, alternative Government structures, and content relating to incarnations of a religious master (who might’ve pissed off the Government at some time).

So, in short, what is being proposed is ludicrous and I feel only encourages more stupidity. However, comparing our stupidity to China’s stupidity is a little… misguided, I feel.

Late addition: It appears that the UK Cleanfeed is an opt-in only, thereby the link between our ISP filtering and the UK filtering is bunk. Shove your response up your arse, Conroy.

Written by Andy

October 29, 2008 at 11:05 am

Posted in Uncategorized