Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Some things I've been meaning to link to

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  • Joanna,

    Hey Russell, if you're in town tonight and you're looking for something different to do other than the usual drinks at Mighty Mighty, may I suggest coming to the <a href="http://kiwiprowrestling.co.nz">RASSLIN'</a> tonight? I suggest ear plugs though, because I tend to scream a lot it's so exciting.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 723 posts Report Reply

  • Joanna,

    Hey Joanna, might I suggest you learn to use the site properly? Here's the RASSLIN link.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 723 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    No, I'm back up to AK this evening.

    Down again for Homegrown next weekend though ...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18513 posts Report Reply

  • Joanna,

    Oh boo. Well I still recommend the rasslin' to the rest of the Public Address readers anyway. Hmm, I'd better post to the Wellingtonista about it I suppose.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 723 posts Report Reply

  • andrew llewellyn,

    Hmm, I'd better post to the Wellingtonista about it I suppose

    Sigh, more pictures of men in tights.

    Since Nov 2006 • 2073 posts Report Reply

  • Joanna,

    Sigh, more pictures of men in tights.

    Well, we do our best to cover the big issues.

    Back on topic, I had the chance to do some user-testing on the NZ on Screen site, and it was fantastic, I can't wait for it to launch. And for it to get the rights to Gloss...

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 723 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    I read the Simon Grigg article. What do the Chinese put in the water? They seem to seduce so many people who go there into thinking that it's a fully wonderful place whose people are wonderfully happy with progress and don't need any of that nasty democracy stuff.

    Actually, I think the NZ/China relationship is pretty much a mirror of the UK/Saudi one, with the exception that the Chinese aren't bribing any NZ politicians (I hope). In both cases one country (UK/NZ) is convinced that they need the other (China/Saudi) and are prepared to sacrifice any principle in order to keep the other onside.

    Incidentally, we're not the only favoured trading parner of China, it seems.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4361 posts Report Reply

  • LegBreak,

    Does anyone know if the new Portishead album is any good?

    From what I’ve seen it’s had mixed reviews. It’s a very long time between drinks; that’s for sure.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1162 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    I haven't heard it, or anything about it. But I think they're always going to struggle to match Dummy, which is simply wonderful.

    And if they did match Dummy, I suspect it'd be dragged down for 'just being the same as...'.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6150 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg,

    I read the Simon Grigg article. What do the Chinese put in the water? They seem to seduce so many people who go there into thinking that it's a fully wonderful place whose people are wonderfully happy with progress and don't need any of that nasty democracy stuff.

    No, I noted my reservations, and I defy anyone to spend anytime in the place and not be seduced and awed. China defines awe.

    But I also have problems with pronunciations made from afar. It's easy to be self righteous from a distance and whilst I don't claim to be any expert on the Chinese psyche clearly, from personal observation, the the day to day reality of oppressed masses might play well in the west but its simply not accurate.

    Incidentally at a local level, officials are elected, and those that go to the higher levels of power are elected by those elected at a lower level, albeit in a rather controlled way of course, but I witnessed extensive political discourse whilst there and i would argue that the internal divisions within the dominant party are often wider than found in many Westminster styled democracies.

    What is very evident is that there is a very strong resentment towards foreign 'direction', or activists, which, given the past 150 years, is not really surprising.

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3201 posts Report Reply

  • Lyndon Hood,

    More Friday linkage:
    http://www.righttosmack.co.nz/

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1094 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    I spend a few weeks in Zimbabwe in 2001, and from casual observation, you could think the place was going ok. You had a semi-black market for money (as opposed to the rest of Africa where that sort of thing's died out and you just go to the bank) and the range of toppings at the pizza shop was pretty limited, but apart from that it all *seemed* to be going fine. I even met some English people who had just bought a campground.

    But that was pretty much illusory then, and it all looked a bit sicker when the ZID went from 60 to 25,000 against the US and Gadaffi stopped sending cheap oil.

    I'll go to China one day (if they don't sniff me out and ban me) but I'm unconvinced that the tiki tour gives you a real view of a country.

    For a (very moderate, but realistic) view on China, I'd recommend Chris Patten's book East and West.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4361 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg,

    I'll go to China one day (if they don't sniff me out and ban me) but I'm unconvinced that the tiki tour gives you a real view of a country.

    I agree, but at least it gives one some sort of perception as to what it may or may not be and my observation is that in it's simplest terms that without seeing any of it, you simply have no idea as to what it is or isn't. That is especially true of China which is gobsmakking in it's enormity. I travel a hell of a lot and I'm wary of making wide ranging 'I've been there' statements but quite clearly what I saw of China did not match the Western perception. In parts of the country it may well.

    For example those "banned in China' web badges are a nonsense. I was able to access pretty much every website I wanted with the exception of external blogs..and that was from public places.

    I also have good Hong Kong Chinese friends who deal daily with mainland China and visit there weekly including time in what they refer to as the hinterland. Some of the answers to the questions I was asking myself were answered by them.

    I'd also note that Patten's book, which I've read, was written a decade ago, and that, truly, is a lifetime ago in China.

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3201 posts Report Reply

  • Shep Cheyenne,

    The thing that gets me is the *Right to Smack* crowd et al quote Deuteronomy 21:18-21 but ignore Deuteronomy 17:08-13, Legal Decisions; 17:13 "All the people will hear and be afraid, and will not act presumptously again."

    Scripture battles are pretty pointless, but if I can paraphrase - The decisions on bashing kids has been made - stop it and get over it.

    Since Oct 2007 • 927 posts Report Reply

  • Shep Cheyenne,

    Whoa - Scripture Battles - pointless ?! = $$

    Scripture Battles (c)

    Scripture Battles name and concept are now copywrite for reality TV as gameshow & panel discussion.

    Since Oct 2007 • 927 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    For example those "banned in China' web badges are a nonsense. I was able to access pretty much every website I wanted with the exception of external blogs..and that was from public places.

    Did they function the same? I'm wondering (for example) what you would have found if you searched for Tiananmen Square etc.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6150 posts Report Reply

  • LegBreak,

    …or “Olympic torch relay”

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1162 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg,

    Did they function the same? I'm wondering (for example) what you would have found if you searched for etc.

    There seemed to be little restriction on most of them. And yes I searched Tiananmen Square and got a raft of sites as per normal.

    …or “Olympic torch relay”

    Yep...and it was covered on on state TV at length although I had no idea exactly what they were saying.

    And, as an aside, the net was blisteringly fast.

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3201 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg,

    Incidently the Google I use is by default .co.nz and that came up as per usual when I did a search in China

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3201 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    According to Wikipedia: As of March 31, 2008, China has unblocked access to some Internet Web sites, including English Wikipedia, at the request of the International Olympic Committee (IOC)

    The banning appears to be mostly uncoordinated and ad hoc, with some sites being blocked and similar sites being allowed or even blocked in one city and allowed in another.

    You could imagine that you'd get a lot more restricted access if you tried to access www.freetibet.org from Lhasa, maybe.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4361 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg,

    The same Wikipedia story actually carries a lot more information though

    During the APEC summit in Shanghai during 2001, normally-blocked media sources such as CNN, NBC, and the Washington Post suddenly became accessible. Since 2001, the content controls have been further relaxed on a permanent basis, and all three of the sites previously mentioned are now accessible from mainland China. In fact, most foreign news organizations' web sites are accessible, though a small number (including the Chinese-language service of BBC News) continue to be blocked.

    Mainland China agencies frequently issue regulations about the Internet, but these are often not enforced or are ignored

    And I suspect that the BBC China service is now also unblocked as the guy I mentioned in my blog with the image of Helen Clark on his phone had it from the BBC China news which he watches on said device daily.

    What I couldn't access though were RSS feeds although aggregators like Netvibes worked perfectly.

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3201 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg,

    And Public Address came through loud and clear!

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3201 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg,

    One final thing, I'm fairly badly informed on Tibet although I'm making an effort not to be. This thread, from a year back on PBS, if you can wade your way through it, makes for an interesting discourse.

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3201 posts Report Reply

  • David Ritchie,

    While we're on the subject of random linkage, I've cobbled together a Greasemonkey script for Firefox which should add direct links to the downloadable FLV files on the Media 7 pages on the TVNZ On Demand site. You can download it here.

    It adds links to the individual chapters just below the episode number (as per this screenshot) -- you should be able to download the FLV files and watch them using a player such as the mighty VLC. Experience suggests this should (hopefully) ensure folks considered "overseas" can watch the show.

    I've tried it out with Firefox 2.0.0.13 on Windows and Linux and it works fine, although Steve-not-at-my-work did have a problem with it which I haven't been able to sort out despite having the same client and OS. If you have issues with it, feel free to let me know via email.

    I suppose potentially this could be extended to other shows on the TVNZ OD site -- let me know if you have much success with it.

    Wellingtron • Since Nov 2006 • 163 posts Report Reply

  • Deborah,

    And, of course, there's always something good at The Hand Mirror.

    Linky love! Thank you, Russell.

    Manawatu City • Since Nov 2006 • 1296 posts Report Reply

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