Posts by Bart Janssen

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  • Speaker: The government's Rules…, in reply to Steve Barnes,

    if your contractor didn’t set the foundations out correctly then he was not a builder

    That's circular.

    He was a BAD builder

    If you define BAD builders as not builders then all builders are good and hence need no regulation

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3843 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: The government's Rules…, in reply to Steve Barnes,

    why hire someone to do what you should be able to do yourself

    There is a point where I decide that it's Ok to pay someone to do work I could do myself because I'm kinda busy doing work that I've trained for 20 years to do that not many other people can do.

    BUT damned if I'll skip the process of talking to them properly and figuring out for certain that they know what the fuck they are doing.

    AND I'll damn well check on them as they go, the first round of block laid for our foundations would have made our home 20 cm skew whiff if I hadn't measured the diagonals!

    Even then I'm kinda happy to have building inspectors check as well.

    I've never met a good workman who minded having their work checked - what pisses them off is when they have to wait around half a day for someone who then only does a half-arsed job of checking anyway.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3843 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: NZME and you, in reply to llew40,

    I think there are a lot of exceptionally talented people around the world who have been grappling with how to respond to the digital disintermediation of media

    I agree. I don't for a second think the job is easy, but that's no excuse to pay very high salaries for very average performance either.

    I have a suspicion we are looking at the end of newspapers and TV. Nothing about the way people search for and consume content fits with those old models of content supply. The problem is that in losing those traditional content supply modes we are losing access to things we need as a society.

    I don't think we are seeing any sign that the traditional channels are even trying to maintain those things like journalism that are valuable to society. To me that suggests we have to stop worrying about those traditional channels and figure out an alternative that naturally as part of its core embeds those things we value. That's as opposed to the current situation where those things we value were always considered a cost.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3843 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: NZME and you, in reply to David Hood,

    current capitalism’s increasing need for profit increases, means that a lot of jobs in the area are under threat

    Part of the problem comes from poor and average quality managers. Talented managers, and yes even I believe they exist, increase profit by increasing the value of the product they produce to the consumer. That's just plain hard, and likely to involve mistakes and failures.

    Poor and average managers don't have the talent to improve the business so they improve profit by cutting costs. That almost always is a bad thing long term but since most managers think of their job as a 5 year placement in any one business anyway they never see the long term damage.

    What we are seeing now in the media is the result of average quality management a decade ago when change should have been recognised and changes made to adapt. Those changes would have involved failures that should have been tolerated. Instead any failure was treated as a reason to avoid change, followed by a cycle of cost cutting to maintain profit.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3843 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: NZME and you, in reply to llew40,

    A world in which it becomes easier to get things for free is not particularly conducive to being able to retain and pay for quality journalism.

    It's not just getting things for free. Because I can choose to wait and buy content that I specifically want, I can pay the creators without the need to pay for stuff I don't want, including ads.

    That includes buying news content, the more that MSM news becomes lightweight and valueless to me, the more likely I am to pay a subscription. That model screws up MSM and advertisers.

    I'd happily subscribe to a genuine NZ news service that used my subscription to pay journalists. But are there enough people like me to make it work? And would I actually get the news I need rather than just the news I want?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3843 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: NZME and you,

    Sorry for a half formed thought but it seems to me part of the problem with the MSM has to do with how effective advertising is now. Because the audiences are spread far and wide, often to very special interest places, any advertising anywhere is less effective. That makes advertising companies less successful and means they are less able to pay.

    In essence the breakup of the viewing audience(s) makes the model of advertising products or services in order to get business less viable altogether.

    Part of the response to that is businesses rely less on advertising and more on the quality of their own media (web) presence to promote business. We don't flick through a newspaper to find a service or product we search the web which is a model that excludes both advertising companies and MSM from our dollar.

    I'm not sure what that means for entities like The Herald or TV3.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3843 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: NZME and you, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Only stupid people click on ads, clearly.

    It's like reading the comments ... oh wait

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3843 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Refugees and aid - we’re laggards, in reply to Amy Gale,

    Important lesson (take note, Unitec): if you are a communications department setting an assignment to “go online and damage a brand”, do be careful to specify “not our brand, though!”.

    I'd like some alone time with the teacher that set that assignment to discuss the pros and cons of such a project.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3843 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Refugee fear-mongering must stop, in reply to chris,

    You mentioned on that thread that you visited Syria about a decade ago Bart, so I was wondering if you’d be willing to paint more of a picture as to how things were there, especially in terms of attitudes towards the Government, unrest, emigration etc as you’d have a much better idea than most of how Syria functioned before civil war broke out, even if only anecdotal.

    I'm not sure how much help I can be since my experience was as a tourist in 2003. We were on a guided tour, three of us in a van with a driver and a guide. We drove from Jordan up to Damascus, stayed a few nights in Damascus in the old city then toured up through to Palmyra then through Homs (yes that city!) to Krac du Chevalier then back to Damascus before flying back to Egypt. Our driver spoke some English and our guide was fluent in several languages.

    Our contact with locals was in shops, in hotels and at the places we visited as tourists. In every case we were treated as welcome guests and so in that sense I doubt we would ever have been exposed to discontent. At the time Syria was still technically in a state of war with Israel (they never declared peace) and was a police state. But that was not anything we could detect in our travels, it felt like any other place we had been, with the addition of amazing Roman and Persian ruins.

    We never saw any protests of any kind. I never had a sense that anyone was scared of anything, it was like any other foreign country. Yes there were armed police but that isn't unusual in the world. Yes there were military bases in the countryside but I've seen bigger ones in Arizona.

    As I said in the thread that was contaminated by a troll, the people we saw were diverse from white to black with everything in between. I heard multiple languages and those that spoke with us in shops etc had good English. It was, a modern cultured polite society, especially in Damascus.

    Out in the countryside it was definitely more rural and in Palmyra much more obviously muslim (not a fan of dawn call-to-prayer :)) but that isn't any different from rural USA for example.

    There simply was nothing I can recall that made me feel as though the country was in imminent danger of revolution or government oppression.

    That is all with the caveat we were tourists, I honestly don't think the locals would have raised any discontent with us ... that would have been ... well ... rude. And the Syrians we met were all polite likable friendly people

    That's what makes it difficult for me to see the news. It's like suddenly seeing Melbourne as a war zone, and hearing people describe the waiter in a Melbourne cafe as a terrorist and that we don't want Australians here because they all believe different things to us and they dress funny and how could we integrate their culture into our own etc etc

    It's jarring and wrong.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3843 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Refugee fear-mongering must stop,

    Thank you Donna. There need to be more personal accounts like yours to slam home the reality that these are real people, not merely numbers in a spreadsheet.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3843 posts Report Reply

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