Posts by Rich of Observationz

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  • Hard News: The fake news problem,

    Have an example of news values: Quake update: The Terrace in Wellington cordoned off due to falling debris.

    Fact: two car lengths of the pavement have been taped off while the building is fixed.

    The headline reflects the oh-noes-the-world-is-breaking-up narrative, not any aspect of the revealed reality. Pretty much all the earthquake/heavy drizzle emergency media coverage has been like that when you ground-truth it.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5373 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The fake news problem, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    Such word analyses have proven to be pretty damn reliable.

    Source? Interviews with whom? How selected? Reliable at doing what?

    If you word analyse interviews with NZers or British people (both states who have had two female prime ministers) do you get substantially different results?

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5373 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The fake news problem, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    Short answer is, Americans, particularly those democrats who chose not to vote, were making the choice to not elect a woman.

    And you know this how?

    It's a secret ballot. You don't know who voted, why they voted, how they voted.

    If you did an experiment, and the primary result was out of kilter with reality, would you continue using anything else you measured and couldn't check?

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5373 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The fake news problem, in reply to Rob Stowell,

    This for instance. A trillion dollars lost in 'cyber-attacks'. Where's it come from, where's it gone?

    It's hard to factually disprove this because it's based on no facts, just conjecture from (of course) people with stuff to sell (in this case McAfee, a serial offender).

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5373 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The fake news problem,

    what percentage of what is in the major outlets is in this category?

    In the case of tech journalism, and going back to the print era, I would put it at over 50%, whether it's driven by lack of understanding, sources with an agenda (selling something, often) or desire to create a good story where none exists. I'd say tech is probably about average.

    Financial journalism has been an outlier in terms of actually being accurate - but purely because the professional market pays for accuracy and high end agencies (e.g. Reuters and Bloomberg) competed on that basis, so the 'entertainment' news market had an accurate reference.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5373 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The fake news problem,

    I've known since childhood that there is a substantial dissonance between the information in the media and reality. My father was in the aviation industry, and would explain to us how almost any story in the newspapers on that subject was anything from inaccurate to deliberately misleading.

    Similarly, pretty much all tech stories I see in the general media display ignorance and sensationalism (particularly if they contain the prefix cyber- anywhere in the text).

    In general, I tend to regard any information not evidenced by my own eyes, by the eyes of somebody I know personally or properly evidenced research as 'for entertainment only'.

    Certainly, the best advice with any sort of situation like the recent quakes or killer clowns is to take the batteries out of your radio and disconnect the internet until the hysteria-loop subsides.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5373 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Confessions of an Uber Driver…,

    I don't think the locus of their offices has any bearing on the jurisdiction of the Employment Tribunal. If the work's being done by an NZ resident in NZ, then NZ law applies.

    IANAL, but you knew that.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5373 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The Long, Strange Trip,

    The problem isn't that Trump snorts too much coke and plays russian roulette with The Button. It's more subtle than that:

    - Trump gives his bestie, Putin, the idea that invading Ukraine/Estonia/Poland would not spoil their friendship
    - Putin goes rolling in, hoping to bolster his position as the new Ivan The Quite Bad
    - However, the general view in NATO is that invading Poland *is* going too far, apart from anything else there's a treaty of mutual assistance, so NATO forces intervene and start battling Russians
    - As in Afghanistan (etc) Russian troops and tech don't perform as advertised and NATO rolls over them into the motherland
    - Rather than lose St Petersburg, Putin tries a few nukes
    - Taking out a French division
    - The French fire everything they have and take out Moscow
    - The Russians blow up the world

    This is how wars happen. Look at Kuwait - the US gave Saddam the impression that his invasion would meet with no more than protestation, he invaded on that basis, and then the US (encouraged by Maggie and the Saudis) felt they had to retaliate.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5373 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The Long, Strange Trip, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    teach people, in something like a civics course in school,

    Yeah, but what about the guys at the back watching pr0n under the desk?

    Maybe introduce votes at 16, but make it conditional on passing a short answer and essay paper covering history, constitution and critical thinking.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5373 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The Long, Strange Trip,

    Don’t ‘diagnose’ Donald Trump, it’s not helpful.

    Obviously. Maybe if there'd been more memes calling Trump a fat ugly nutter, then Bubba T Flubba down in Shitsville, FL wouldn't have voted for him. But you know, Trump won't hurt the rich people or indeed New Zealanders who are most fastidious about these things.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5373 posts Report Reply

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