G’Day World #340 – Hilary Mine, MD (Australasia and North Asia) Alcatel-Lucent

This morning I was given an opportunity to interview Hilary Mine, Alcatel-Lucent’s Managing Director Australasia and North Asia, about the launch of the Alcatel-Lucent Broadband Environment Challenge 2008 they did this morning in Melbourne with Senator Stephen Conroy, Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy.

The Challenge looks to award the Eckermann-TJA Prize ($10,000 provided by Alcatel-Lucent) for the best paper on broadband telecommunications applications and/or solutions that have the potential to deliver significant benefits to environmental sustainability.

Hilary and I discussed how the Challenge came together (this is its second year) and some of the ways that broadband might be able to contribute positively to environmental sustainability. Hilary mentioned that she telecommutes one day a week to show her senior team that it is possible and practical. I think more large Australia companies should be encouraging their staff to telecommute. As I mention in the show, we were talking about this stuff back at Ozemail in 1996 and it surprises me that it isn’t more commonplace yet.

More information about the competition can be found at www.tsa.org.au. Entries close Monday 6 October 2008.

To be completely up front (as you know I always am), this is a paid gig and my client is Alcatel-Lucent.

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News.com.au spread Bigfoot hoax

Yep, gotta love that trustworthy media. I can see this one appearing on Media Watch next week.

News.com.au is running a story today which claims “Bigfoot body ‘found and put in freezer'” written by “staff writers”.

news bigfoot

The story links to another site, Searching For Bigfoot, which actually declares the whole thing a hoax. News.com.au’s site doesn’t say that though, it buys the whole deal.

UPDATE 7.29am: NewForestAlex links me to this story explaining how the hoaxers are trying to make money by gaming the media to drive traffic to their site. This is happening more and more these days.

A brief history of Russia & the West

I recently read this post by Richard Moore on the history between Russia and the West and I thought I should share it with you. It provides some interesting perspective on what’s happening over in Georgia at the moment. According to Moore, Georgie is just the latest in a long line of pawns being moved by the West to provide an excuse to ramp up another Cold War.

Here’s an excerpt:

The Cold War, an invention of the West, embodied two primary objectives. First and foremost, it provided an excuse for interventions all over the globe on the part of the US – ostensibly ‘protecting the free world from Communism’ – while in fact exploiting the hell out of what were deemed to be ‘underdeveloped’ nations. Secondarily, the Cold War amounted to a long-term attempt to destabilize the Soviet Union, which finally succeeded in 1990. The Cold War was perhaps the most successful of the historical series of attacks on Russia.

Russia, in concert with China, is beginning to eclipse the US-EU Axis in many areas, including manufacturing, control over energy supplies, productive economic activity, and monetary reserves. Only in military capability does the US continue to hold a #1 rating, and the actual military advantage slips day by day away from the Pentagon, as Russia and China develop their ‘asymmetric’ counter-measures.

This is the context in which US-NATO trained, armed, and encouraged Georgia to launch its brutal and illegal attack on South Ossetia, intentionally killing Russian citizens and peace-keepers, and intentionally targeting civilians generally. Nearly all of the casualties in the overall conflict were inflicted by Georgian forces at the outset of hostilities. The US and UK media refer to the total number of casualties, and imply that Russia is to blame for them. Such is the nature of our so-called ‘free press’.

Read the full post by Richard Moore.

It’s interesting to just quickly run your eyes over the list of headlines about Georgia in Google News to see how the Western press is depicting the events.

“Russians remain in Georgia”, TVNZ, New Zealand

“Deadline passes for Russian withdrawal from Georgia”, ABC Online, Australia

“US Says Russia Must Remove All Military Equipment From Georgia”, Voice of America

“Russia’s Might in Georgia Reflects Pattern, Rice Says”, Bloomberg

“Rice: NATO won’t let Russia succeed in Georgia”, San Diego Union Tribune

“Russia moves SS-21 missiles into Georgia: US defense official”, AFP

“US says Russia should withdraw from Georgia”, Reuters

“Despite Cease-Fire, Russia Stays In Georgia”, NPR

Any guesses who the bad guy is here?

Alternative headlines might read:

“Russia Continues To Defend South Ossetia Against Georgian Attacks”

But good luck finding that one.

How To Salvage Googlerank: WKP-Spier = Warren Kremer Paino reborn

Remember that New York ad agency that sued a small time blogger when he picked up some mistakes in one of their campaigns for Boston? If you don’t, you can read my post on it at the time (April 06).

What did the blogger, Dutson, do? He criticized Maine’s tourism office, which hired New York agency Warren Kremer Paino, on his blog. What seems to have specifically upset the agency is that he caught them out:

“… he posted a ”rough draft” advertisement pulled from Maine’s Department of Economic and Community Development website showing a collage of iconic images of the Maine seacoast, woodlands, and ski slopes, with a dummy phone number that turned out to connect to a line promoting a phone sex service. The agency had inadvertently placed the phone number on the draft advertisement for a presentation made to state tourism officials.”

I’ve often used this case as an example of “how to fuck things up royally” when it comes to dealing with bloggers. Back in April 06 when it all hit the fan, I wrote an email to WKP’s senior VP Bill Crandall saying:

Bill,

I just read about your legal action against Dutson. Take some free advice – retract the charges, admit your mistakes, and get on with business. This is a no win situation for your agency. He doesn’t have the money and you will forever tarnish your reputation. Every time someone Googles your agency in the future they are are going read about your sex phone incident and how you sued a small-time blogger. This isn’t a winnable situation for you. Bail out now.

Cheers,
Cameron Reilly

Well… a week later WKP surrendered their lawsuit against Dutson but I never heard from Bill Crandall.

Until now.

Today I got an email from Crandall. TWO YEARS LATER.

In his email, Bill says he knew nothing about the case against Dutson until he got my email and was “aghast” to learn of it.

Bill goes on to say claim it was unfair to list his name on the site, “as unfair to me as the very subject you were covering”. But if you read my post, I never blamed it on Bill, I just put him down as a contact person. Hey Bill – if you’re going to put yourself up on the site as the contact person, what were you expecting it to be used for? Just new business inquiries? He says the agency’s owner/partners were the people who made the decision to sue, not him. Bill says he was let go in April 2008 and is now looking for work but my blog post, and others like it, are making it hard for him to find new work as Google searches on his name bring up the Dutson affair. Sorry Bill. Hey, employers – give Bill a chance to redeem himself. He says it wasn’t his fault and I believe him. Although, as I said to Bill in my reply email, if he wanted to set the truth straight, he should have done it TWO YEARS AGO.

I think Bill might want to take a leaf out of WKP’s book and change his name. It seems to have worked for them:

I looked WKP up and it appears they have treated themselves to a little re-branding. Warren Kremer Paino recently changed their name to “WKP-Spier”. Cute, huh?

Google “Warren Kremer Paino” and you find LOTS of references to the Dutson debacle. Google “WKP-Spier” however and you don’t find ANYTHING, at least not in the first five pages.

Now they are all shiny. They even have a blog, a flickr stream, and a youtube page. Huzzah! Hey Rocky, watch me pull this rabbit out of my hat!

But don’t be fooled – WKP-Spier contains two of the partners (Peter Warren and Bob Paino) who sued Dutson for pointing out their mistakes. Tsk tsk tsk.

So what can we learn from all this?

1. Don’t fuck your Googlerank.
2. If you DO fuck your Googlerank, re-brand.
3. If you DO fuck your Googlerank, and you do re-brand, don’t tell anyone. Or they might out you on their blog.

DIGG IT.

My Photo in Schmap Paris Guide!

You know how I’m a big Napoleon geek, right?

Well a photo I took of Napoleon’s tomb in Paris back in 2004 has been selected for the Schmap Paris Guide! Check the link below.

http://www.schmap.com/templates/t011py.html?uid=paris&sid=sights_tourism&ultranarrow=true&si=SCHMAP-160808170173#mapview=Map&tab=map&topleft=48.854017325,2.31240375&bottomright=48.866550175,2.34402325&c=f6f6f6A72122A62122A62122FFF88FFAF5BBffffffFFF88Fd8d8d8A4A7A6A621226990ffECEBBD0000005C5A4E5C5A4E000000929292F0EFDA

SHOCK REPORT: America Respects International Law

In the comments section to my post on the Pentagon’s propaganda, Marcelo pointed me to this post in ConsortiumNews.com about how Bush and the American media are screaming about Russia’s invasion of Georgia is pretty interesting.

Apparently, context is everything. So, the United States attacking Grenada or Nicaragua or Panama or Iraq or Serbia is justified even if the reasons sometimes don’t hold water or don’t hold up before the United Nations, The Hague or other institutions of international law.

However, when Russia attacks Georgia in a border dispute over Georgia’s determination to throttle secession movements in two semi-autonomous regions, everyone must agree that Georgia’s sovereignty is sacrosanct and Russia must be condemned.

U.S. newspapers, such as the New York Times, see nothing risible about publishing a statement from President George W. Bush declaring that “Georgia is a sovereign nation and its territorial integrity must be respected.”

No one points out that Bush should have zero standing enunciating such a principle. Iraq also was a sovereign nation, but Bush invaded it under false pretenses, demolished its army, overthrew its government and then conducted a lengthy military occupation resulting in hundreds of thousands of deaths.

I wasn’t aware of all of the background to the South Ossetia War but this Wikipedia article contains some interesting information.

The Pentagon’s Propaganda Game Busted

From the Center for Media and Democracy:

Today, we struck a blow against propaganda, and for transparency and accountability.

In early 2002, the Pentagon began cultivating retired military officers who frequently serve as media commentators to help make the case for invading Iraq. The pundit program continued — promoting the Bush administration’s stance on the Guantanamo Bay detention center, warrantless wiretapping and other controversial issues — until New York Times reporter David Barstow exposed its existence in April 2008.

Thanks to Blake Hall of our IT staff and senior researcher Diane Farsetta, now you and anyone with web access can search the massive cache of military documents detailing the Pentagon’s illegal attempts to shape U.S. public opinion. The New York Times first obtained the documents. After the Times reported on the covert pundit program, the Pentagon posted the documents online in a desperate attempt at damage control. But the documents weren’t text searchable, making systematic analysis of this important information nearly impossible.

But we’ve now cracked the Pentagon’s code and made the 8,000 pages of Pentagon documents fully text searchable, posting them all on our SourceWatch website, for journalists, researchers and concerned citizens.

What’s great about this is that it is a further demonstration that the media has been compromised. We all need to understand that EVERY time we see a so-called “expert commentator” on mainstream media, the chances are they are a front for one organisation or another and CANNOT BE TRUSTED as an impartial source. This, by the way, goes for leftist commentators as well as those from the right. The system is played the same way by both camps. Our initial position on anything you see on the news or any current affairs show is “TRUST NO1” unless you are really sure of their credentials as an independent commentator.

How The IOC Gags Athletes At The O-LAME-pics… and more.

A few weeks ago I had director Matt Norman on the show. We talked about political protests at the Olympics (with reference to his Uncle Peter Norman’s protest at the 1968 Olympics). There was some debate afterward in the comments section about whether or not the Australian Government has gagged our athletes. It turns out they don’t have to – the IOC has done the dirty work for them.

Jason Slater told us how it works:

# Jason Slater Says:

Just so you are all aware, Matt Norman made a great point in an interview i’ve just heard.. The athletes are being gagged by the AOC as they have signed what he called a section 51 which states “Athletes may speak about Political issues but if they do so will not be entitled to any financial gain through winnings from Gold, Silver or Bronze medals”. They are also entitled to speak their mind but not AT the Olympics and not AT the Olympic Village. They are also NOT allowed to wear any type of free tibet t-shirt or carry any banner which has any political affiliation. The facts are very clear. To protest in China you will never be a part of the Olympic team again and your views of civil and human rights issues will not be tolerated unless you do or say something about it outside the country.

I found this site which contains the clause in question. Basically any athlete that does speak out or even wear a badge signifying a political protest can be kicked out by the IOC. What an appalling state of affairs. The Olympics brings athletes from the world together but then gags them. Pretty fucking lame for an event which is supposed to be about peace and harmony.

oLAMEPics

Somebody on Twitter called me a jerk the other day for saying the Olympics was all about money. He said “Realize we have one place in the world -right now- with everyone together.”

Oh bullshit. Ever heard of the United Nations? The whole world gets together ALL THE TIME to discuss solutions to real problems, not running around in circles and jumping up in the air. Get the hell over it people. It’s a carnival, it’s not the second coming of Jebus.

The media loves it because it’s just another chance to them to increase their advertising revenues, as if people watching the Olympics really care more about buying tampons than they do on regular days.

So the media turn up their hype-o-meters, ranting and raving about the Olympics like it’s a cure for cancer or Britney Spears turned out to be the Messiah. And you pack of salivating Pavlovian dogs run slobbering up to your TV or your paper gobbling it all up like Homer Simpson chasing a donut. It’s obscene and sickening. WAKE THE FUCK UP PEOPLE. It’s just a bunch of steroid-laden children seeing who’s got the biggest dick.

What I hate the most (not that I’m watching, but I’m recalling a distant time when I did watch 5 or 10 minutes of it) are the television commentators who call bullshit like “HE’S TAKEN THE GOLD FOR AUSTRALIA!!!”

No. Noooo, he hasn’t. He’s taken the gold for HIMSELF. HE is the one that gets the sporting goods sponsorship. HE is the one who is going to turn his sporting career into another lame television gig once he’s over the hill. HE is the one who is going to use his profile to charge $10,000 an appearance for corporate speaking fees. He’s not doing it for Australia. He’s doing it for himself.

Meanwhile…. Russia invades Georgia on the opening day of the Olympics and hopes that no-one notices.

Meanwhile…. Thailand’s ex-Prime Minister has escaped, once again, back to London instead of facing corruption charges in his own country. And the Brits let him in.

Meanwhile… the US-backed Philippines “liberate” more villages.

Meanwhile… China spends $40 Billion on hosting the Olympics and $100 million on the opening ceremony alone while 130 million Chinese live below the poverty line.

And how much press coverage of the opening ceremony did you see that even SUGGESTED it is a total waste of money? Any at all? Or were they all jerking off about it? I didn’t watch it, so I don’t know, but I can take a guess.