Project Volvo

10 June 2011 0
Project Volvo
If there was any doubt about Volvo’s uncoolness this morning, it has now been resolved. The carmaker published a bizarre statement today in response to the release of Ed Balls’ notes detailing Project Volvo – the secret 2005 plot to try and get rid of Tony Blair and make Gordon Brown PM. Project Volvo was ...

Sound and fury signifying not much

09 June 2011 0
It looks like the government’s proposal to allow longer sentence discounts for early guilty pleas is going to be scrapped. The plan to increase the maximum discount from a third to a half of the total sentence had two motives behind it. Firstly it was designed to save the Ministry of Justice £130m. Secondly it ...

I don’t care who Ryan Giggs shags, but…

05 June 2011 0
I don’t care who Ryan Giggs shags, but I did find the whole Twitter / superinjunction furore fascinating. What we didn’t hear much about in that discussion was the mainstream media’s vested interest in opposing privacy protection and being able to talk about stuff that everybody on the internet is talking about already. It is ...

Triple word score

09 May 2011 0
Hey, Scrabble fans! There’s a bit of a fuss today about the latest revision of the Collins Official Scrabble Words book. Apparently about 3,000 new words have been added to the list (of about a quarter of a million), including ‘thang’, ‘grrl’ and ‘innit’. John Humphrys, predictably, is livid. He should be grateful that things ...

The AV “debate”

28 April 2011 0
The debate on the alternative vote system in the UK, if it can be called a debate, has been spectacularly rubbish. The prospect of electoral reform was sold to us as part of a “new politics” in the wake of the expenses scandal and a general disillusionment with politicians. From the outset the debate around ...

Privacy and press freedom in 2011 – a glossary

28 April 2011 0
The state of privacy and press freedom has become hellish confusing in recent years, hasn’t it? I’ve begun putting together a glossary which I hope will help to clear a few things up: Super-injunctions – A thing rich people use to keep their iniquity private by stopping anyone reporting on it and, for good measure, ...

Made in China?

28 April 2011 0
If you own any Apple products, you may be aware that they are “Designed by Apple in California” but “Assembled in China”. It says so on the back. And it annoys me a bit every time I see it. What does this statement tell us? Firstly it tells us that Apple products are made in ...

Articulating the Big Society

27 February 2011 0
Stumbled across the following letter to The Independent via The Week. As Alfred E Kahn said, “If you can’t explain what you’re doing in plain English, you’re probably doing something wrong.” Philip Blond writes over 2,000 words in defence of the Big Society (9 February), while managing to avoid any kind of concrete explanation of ...

Ctrl+C, Ctrl+V

27 February 2011 0
So have you checked out Churnalism.com yet? It’s quite fun and, let’s face it, overdue. The worst cases are literally Ctrl+C, Ctrl+V jobs, which is pretty bad (it’s actually a bit tricky to dig up shocking examples on the site for yourself – most of the good ones I’ve seen have been linked to from ...

How people don’t talk and never will

22 February 2011 2
I’ve just sat through one of the most unintentionally hilarious and hateful two-minutes of film I’ve ever watched. It’s called We are the Future, and it has been produced by a media agency called Phd to show off their thinking. It consists of a bunch of photogenic multi-ethnic kids earnestly spouting scripted lines about what ...