My world was dominated by Telstra last week. Apart from my writing and a radio spot about the government’s plans to split the telco, I also spoke on ABC Radio National’s Future Tense on Thursday about the sudden closure of their nowwearetalking blog.
I’d already written about that shutdown here and over at Crikey. However the Radio National conversation was in the more general context of how social media is affecting corporate transparency.
You can listen to the program (at least for now) and read the full transcript over at the ABC’s website. The other guests were Shel Holtz, co-author of Tactical Transparency; Mark Hannah, a New York-based communications consultant; Mike Hickinbotham, Telstra’s Social Media Senior Advisor; and ABC economic correspondent Stephen Long. well worth checking out.
Here’s the full text of my section.
Continue reading “Talking Telstra and transparency on Radio National”
Here are the web links I’ve found for 12 September 2009 through 19 September 2009, posted not-quite-automatically.
- Steak House or Gay Bar?: Can you pick the steakhouses from the gay bars, just by their names? It’s harder than you might thing!
- Greenpeace frees ocean life from Pacific longliner | Greenpeace Australia Pacific: Greenpeace’s report on their ship Esperanza “freeing tuna, sharks, marlin and an endangered sea turtle from a Taiwanese longliner”, the Ho Tsai Fa 18. Or, as I prefer to label it, Greenpeace committing piracy and endangering the lives of mariners going about their business.
- Fish Now, Pay Later | Greenpeace Australia Pacific: Darren Smith told me the article on dolphin-safe tuna wasn’t right, that Greenpeace didn’t support any kind of industrialised fishing. Here’s what Greenpeace is currently doing in the Pacific.
- The ecological disaster that is dolphin safe tuna | Southern Fried Science: By promoting “dolphin-safe tuna” — I prefer to spell it with a hyphen thusly — we’ve ended up with a system that’s unsafe for pretty much everything else.
- Meet my hot new stripper wife / Turns out the mid-life crisis is a cruel global phenomenon. Can it be stopped? | Mark Morford: Mark Morford is rapidly becoming one of my favourite writers. In this piece from February 2008 he explains a man’s mid-life crisis rather too well. And entertainingly. I’ll never be able to listen to Justin Timberlake in the same way again.
- The Lost Seasons | ABC: More details of the Australian Aboriginal six-season cycle, including a nice explanation of the system used by the Sydney basin’s D’harawal people.
- War 2.0: Political Violence & New Media | ANU Department of International Relations: I’ve been invited to attend this 2-day symposium in Canberra on 7-8 October. Now, to figure out who’s paying for it, which will be the key factor in deciding whether I can go.
- Jimmy Carter says that tea baggers hate President Obama because he's black | The Root: The former president points out a truth so self-evident you wonder how it could possibly be controversial. But controversial it is. Has modern journalism become so timid that it can’t handle the truth?
- Understanding the Telstra d-i-v-o-r-c-e | SearchNetworking.com.au: Richard Chirgwin’s backgrounder explains just how difficult it will be to separate Telstra into separate wholesale and retail divisions.
- The next generation bends over | 37signals: The makers of Basecamp, something I use every day, reckon the sale of online accounting software Mint to Intuit, the makers of Quicken and Quickbooks, is “indicative of a VC-induced cancer that’s infecting our industry and killing off the next generation”.
- Kid Cannabis | Rolling Stone: “How a chubby pizza-delivery boy from Idaho became a drug kingpin.” It’s just another product distribution business, just illegal.
- Rudd & Conroy Gambling On Mandatory Internet Censorship Working | broowery.com: An odd statistical analysis of the likelihood of stumbling across banned material online.
- ACMA Blacklists Iran Protest Video & Boing Boing: Another example of why the ACMA blacklist process is seemingly out of step with what the community might want. That’s not ACMA’s fault, they’re just implementing a dodgy policy.
- Why Sol Trujillo should be sued for stuffing up Telstra: Kohler | SmartCompany: There’s so many historical analyses of Telstra coming out this week, what with the government announcing its break-up and n’all. This one is marvellous.
- 2009 Menzies Lecture by John Howard (full text) | The Australian: “In the Australian context the adoption of a Charter or Bill of rights would represent the final triumph of elitism in Australian politics,” reckons our former Prime Minister. A fascinating read if only for its disingenuous use of political rhetoric and coded messages rather than rational argument.
- Oil Rocks | BLDGBLOG: Imagine a city of 5000 people built on stilts and causeways some 45km out into a lake. Well, it exists, and it’s called Oil Rocks, in the Caspian Sea in Azerbaijan.
- The Mushroom Tunnel of Mittagong | BLDGBLOG: A fascinating look, with photos, of a mushroom farm inside a disused railway tunnel. The tunnel itself is still government property, with the farm existing on a 5-year lease.
- Death by Information Overload | HBR.org: “New research and novel techniques offer a lifeline to you and your organization,” it says.
- The Economics of Sex Work | Core Economics: Good to see an update of knowledge since I did a little research on the sex industry for ABC Radio all those years ago.
- CHART OF THE DAY: Primetime On Facebook Is Monday To Wednesday | Silicon Valley Insider: “Social media marketers, take note. The best days to spam, erm, publish wall posts on Facebook that you want your ‘fans’ to pay attention to are Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays.”
Stilgherrian’s links for 29 May 2009 through 08 June 2009. Yes, another delayed posting which will give you plenty of Queen’s Birthday holiday reading.
- How Twitter Will Change the Way We Live | TIME: Yes, TIME magazine’s cover story is about Twitter. It starts extremely badly: that clichéd, lazy trope about people tweeting what they had for breakfast. Despite that inexcusable slackness, it’s a useful addition to the cornucopia of Twitter-based articles.
- 10 Things I would do differently | Still A Newspaperman: Written with the benefit of hindsight, a former newspaper journalist considers how he’d have handled running a metropolitan newspaper. He’s spot on in many ways.
- Can the EU play Battleships? | Global Dashboard: Is it time for Europe, as a united entity, to develop a naval strategy? The article’s illustration is also a remarkable example of period gender stereotyping.
- How IT Can Save Africa | SAP Network Blogs: While clunkily-written, this piece outlines why getting decent IT to Africa isn’t a “waste”, but in fact a core element of getting rid of poverty.
- How Twitter’s Staff Uses Twitter (And Why It Could Cause Problems) | ReadWriteWeb: It turns out that the staff of Twitter don’t use it like “power users” like me use it. Could this affect the tool’s development?
- The oldest sculpture ever discovered is a 36,000 year old woman with really big breasts. Is anyone surprised? | 3quarksdaily: Dubbed the “Venus of Hohle Fels”, this 6cm tall sculpture us about 36,000 years old. And it has large breasts.
- Live Streaming Video From Livestream.com: The live video streaming service Mogulus has re-branded as Livestream. That should Hoover them into some generic wordspace, yeah. (Google it!)
- Spootnik: A tool to automatically synchronise information between 37signals’ Basecamp (which use extensively) and OmniFocus (which intend to use).
- Tom’splanner: Another software as a service start-up, this time about “creating and sharing project schedules”. Their website’s menu bar is the clichéd list of Home, tour, product Info, Pricing and — of course! — “Buzz”, so it must be good. Sigh.
- How Journalists Are Using Twitter in Australia | PBS: Julie Posetti’s rather reasonable article which responds to “the views of resistors and detractors” who argue that “Twitter isn’t journalism”. “Sound familiar to veterans of the great blogging vs journalism debate?” she asks. “Of course Twitter isn’t journalism, it’s a platform like radio or TV but with unfettered interactivity. However, the act of tweeting can be as journalistic as the act of headline writing. Similarly, the platform can be used for real-time reporting by professional journalists in a manner as kosher as a broadcast news live report.”
- Light Rail to Summer Hill | Metro Transport: The other Monday, yet another proposal for a new transport line in Sydney went to NSW state cabinet. This one involves extending the existing light rail line by 3.7km from Lilyfield to Summer Hill by converting the Rozelle freight line. It also has the advantage of running through the state seat of Balmain, where sitting Labour member Verity Firth runs the risk of losing to The Greens in the 2011 election.
Stilgherrian’s links for 19 March 2009 through 29 March 2009, posted not-quite-automatically in a great lump for your weekend reading pleasure:
I really must think of a better way of doing this…
- The World As Seen From Chang’an Street | Strange Maps: A nice piece of work from The Economist, in the style of Saul Steinberg’s ironic as well as iconic The World As Seen From New York’s 9th Avenue.
- A battle rages for control of the internet in China | PM: ABC Radio’s current affairs program PM covered the Grass Mud Horse phenomenon on Thursday.
- Conroy’s Blacklist Responses | TinyPic: A satirical take on who Senator Stephen Conroy planned for his appearance on Q&A.
- “conroy fail” T-Shirt Design by disgruntled [2807035-3] – RedBubble: Available in 15 colours, and only AUS$30.
- Song of the Grass Mud Horse (Cao Ni Ma) | YouTube: One version of the song, with handy subtitles showing both the respectable words and the anti-censorship subtext.
- Blocking the Net | SBS Insight: Senator Stephen Conroy has a chance to make up for his stumbling performance on Q&A with a guest spot on SBS TV’s Insight this coming Tuesday 31 March at 7.30pm (plus repeats).
- Podcast of The Tangled Web: Beyond an Internet Filter | Peter Black’s Freedom to Differ: The audio recording of New Matilda‘s public forum on Internet censorship, with Greens Senator Scott Ludlam, Irene Graham of Libertus.net fame, and Nic Suzor from Electronic Frontiers Australia. The panel was chaired by the infamous QUT law lecturer, Peter Black.
- Right To Know Free Speech Conference | Alliance Online: The record of a liveblog of Tuesday’s “Right To Know” Free Speech Conference, run by the Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance.
- 60-foot penis painted on roof | BBC News: An 18-year-old has secretly painted a 60ft drawing of a phallus on the roof of his parents’ £1million mansion in Berkshire. It was there for a year before his parents found out. They say he’ll have to scrub it off when he gets back from travelling.
- How do you get others onboard with using 37signals tools? | 37signals: I love 37signals’ tool Basecamp for managing communications on client projects. One perennial problem, though, is getting people to actually use it, rather than just replying to random emails.The comment stream for this blog post has some useful thoughts.
- DBCDE wouldn’t agree to blind filter trial: iiNet | iTnews Australia: iiNet’s chief regulatory officer, Steve Dalby, said the ISP had told the Department of Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy (DBCDE) that if customers knew they were being filtered, they were more likely to attribute any problems to the filters. This would likely skew the results of the trials. Several customers calling into iiNet’s call centre already to complain the filters were slowing their connection speeds, even though the ISP isn’t part of the trials.
- David Weinberger: 4.5 lessons from Twitter| The Huffington Post: Amongst the flood of articles about Twitter, here’s one which offers some genuinely new observations, well expressed.
- The Tangled Web | newmatilda.com: On Tuesday night, newmatilda.com hosted the first in a series of public forums about internet regulation in Australia. If you’ve managed to miss the raging “clean feed” debate, here’s Rachel Maher’s overview to get the conversation started. Obviously nowhere near as good as mine.
- iiNet quits Conroy’s filter trial | ZDNet Australia: “It became increasingly clear that the trial was not simply about restricting child pornography or other such illegal material, but a much wider range of issues including what the government simply describes as ‘unwanted material’ without an explanation of what that includes,” [iiNet CEO Michael] Malone said in a statement.
- Google submission hammers section 92A | New Zealand PC World Magazine: In its submission regarding the controversial new s92 of New Zealand’s copyright law, Google notes that more than half (57%) of the takedown notices it has received under the US Digital Millennium Copyright Act 1998, were sent by business targeting competitors and over one third (37%) of notices were not valid copyright claims.
- Stilgherrian on Lateline | TwitPic: I look rather scary when appearing later than life on someone’s 42-inch TV.
- Mandatory internet filtering. It’s not a debate. | Wazzapedia: In summary: The pro-filter lobby are offering a solution to the “problem”. It’s not enough for the anti-censorship campaign to demolish their argument — if we don’t start offering an alternative workable solution as part of our strategy, we will ultimately fail.
- Govts website black list leaked on internet | Lateline: I appeared on last Thursday night’s ABC TV program Lateline as part of a report on the leaking of a secret blacklist of naughty websites.
- Blog, Podcast, Vodcast and Wiki Copyright Guide for Australia | CCI: I think the title explains it all. A handy reference for everyone, it’d seem!
- Social Collider: Whatever this visualisation is visualising about my Twitterstrean, it’s pretty. I’ll come back to this later.
- World War II: If Maps Could Fight | Strange Maps: A cartoon and cartographic interpretation of World War II by artist Angus McLeod.
- Metropolitan Skin | Out to Space: Some of ’Pong’s photos are in this this exhibition on the video displays at Sydney’s World Square (George Street) through to 25 March. Also featured are images by Robert McGrath and Vitek Skonieczny .
Stilgherrian’s links for 31 January 2009, arranged by intensity of floral attitude:
- Twittering away standards or tweeting the future of journalism? | Reuters Blogs: Reuters News editor David Schlesinger tweets from Davos, beats his own news wires, and then blogs about the experience. If Twitter is changing journalism, his response is “Bring it on!”
- The LEGO Turing Machine | YouTube: The Turing Machine was a hypothetical computing device created by Alan Turing in 1936 to explain basic theoretical concepts in computing. While very simple, a Turing Machine is mathematically equivalent to any other general purpose computer, if slower. So, these guys have built one using LEGO Mindstorms components. The video has a bonus soundtrack via The A-Team.
- A radical idea: Charge people for your product | 37signals: The blog post is from November 2008, but the message is current given all the media flutter about Twitter — which has yet to earn a single dollar of revenue. Need income? Um, charge for your product!
- FORA.tv: “Videos Covering Today’s Top Social, Political, and Tech Issues.” I haven’t checked them out properly yet, so this is really a reminder to self.
- GoodBarry: These guys provide an integrated “Software as a Service” (SaaS) system for small business, covering eCommerce, content management (CMS), customer relationship management (CRM), email marketing and analytics. All hooked together, and all at good prices. I’m checking them out for a client.
- Life Matters’ Mandatory Internet Filter Transcript | Off Topic with Ashley: An unofficial transcript of ABC Radio National’s Life Matters program with network engineer Mark Newton and Jim Wallace, Managing Director of the Australian Christian Lobby.
- Mandatory internet filter | ABC Life Matters: On Thursday, ABC Radio National’s Life Matters interviewed network engineer Mark Newton and Jim Wallace, Managing Director of the Australian Christian Lobby. Audio available for download.
- The Economy According To Mint | TechCrunch: Mint is an online accounting system for consumers. Tracing their 900,000 customers through 2008 shows how their spending patterns have changed as the Global Financial Crisis worsens.
- Labor’s “deafening silence” as web censorship trials delayed | theage.com.au:
- Newspapers Saw the Digital Train A-Coming | Advertising Age: Bradley Johnson points out that the newspapers themselves were exploring digital delivery of news in the 1980s, but failed to do anything about it in terms of reviewing their business models.
- OpenNet Initiative: “ONI’s mission is to identify and document Internet filtering and surveillance, and to promote and inform wider public dialogs about such practices.”
- The Unmistakable Smell Of Decay | newmatilda.com: With the NSW Labor zombie army smelling worse all the time, party hacks are considering swapping their front-line cadaver, writes Bob Dumpling.
Following established mainstream media tradition, my year-in-review pieces will start appearing well before Christmas. He’s a list of the most-read items on this website for (most of) 2008.
- Heath Ledger dead: jokes here please. It’s rather depressing to discover that my tasteless little experiment was this year’s highlight. Maybe I should’ve put advertising on this page.
- So this is human sexuality?
- How do you treat your staff? Like 37signals, or like this prick?
- Topic 9 to discuss Australia 2020 Summit’s government topic. This is actually spurious, as most hits are from link-following robots attempting to spam my blog at topic9.com.au (which has been since been abandoned).
- 67 Australian SAS captured airbase defended by 1000, though most of this traffic is to see the photo. The miltech fanboys are incapable of hosting their own photos, it seems, because most of their troll-filled forums don’t allow people to upload photos. Dark Ages.
- About Stilgherrian, which would seem to be a popular second page for people to visit once they’ve arrived here for other reasons.
- Corey Delaney, freedom fighter (for the right to party) — and increasingly I think Mr Corey Worthington Delaney is one of the true heroes of 2008. But not thereafter.
- Spaceport America, designed by Foster+Partners.
- Jason Calacanis and the Evil Cult of the Internet Start-up.
- Achtung! Die grosskapitalistischen Hühner kommen!
As with last year’s list, I’m somewhat disappointed with the results. I’ll therefore choose my own selection of “best” posts, just like I did last year.
Continue reading “Most popular posts of 2008”