Archive for February, 2009


Be part of a ‘Happening’

February 10, 2009


I’m having so much fun on Twitter, it’s unreal. I signed up about two years ago, but I didn’t really understand it until Jonathan Ross ‘outed’ me  and my followers list went from 4 to 3000 in 24 hours. Suddenly, everything I wrote in that little box had an audience…an audience that responded! Instantly!  Share a link on Twitter and within seconds someone will send you something back that casts it in a new and interesting light. Tell a joke and dozens of people are suddenly trying to better it. Ask a question and people trip over themselves trying to help. And that’s just scratching the surface–the manifold possibilities of  Twitter are enough to make you giddy. This is a new world, people! We are officially in the future, not with jetpacks, but with something much cooler–the hive mind. Ignore those grumpy luddites in the broadsheets and elsewhere, who don’t understand it, can’t be bothered to learn how it works and are frightened at the prospect that people are entertaining themselves in a way that doesn’t involve accepted media forms.

By way of illustration, I’m organising a Bad Film Club event online for Friday night (13th Feb). At exactly 9.00pm, myself and some like-minded Twitterers will be pressing ‘play’ on M Night Shyamalan’s ‘The Happening’,  and blogging our responses to the magic as it unfolds. Now, this is uncharted territory for me, and I have no way of knowing whether it’ll work, but dammit, it’s worth a shot, isn’t it? Isn’t this what ‘Why Don’t You’ told us to do, all those years ago? (Actually, it’s the polar opposite to what they told us to do, but never mind).

If you want to be part of what should be a vaguely amusing evening, here are the steps you need to take.

Sign up with Twitter. Click ‘follow’ on whoever takes your fancy. If you have a friend on it, check out the list of who he or she is following and build up your list that way. Send a few Tweets and get a feel for it.

Download Tweetdeck, for free, for Mac or PC. It’s a beautiful App and gives you a much better idea of how Twitter works than the slightly bare and functional homepage. (If you have an iPhone, download Tweetie).

On Friday night, at 9.00pm GMT, line up ‘The Happening’. I don’t have the DVD yet, so I’ll grab a copy and see where the best place to start is. We can’t time it exactly, but we can be pretty close. There are a few more details I need to iron out, but we’ll fine-tune the details on Twitter.

By the way, I chose ‘The Happening’ because it should be relatively easy for everyone to get their hands on it, and by all accounts it’s a massive stinker (thanks to @skinbro for the suggestion!).


Terence Blacker meets the internet

February 8, 2009

To see how Terence has been getting on since then, have a read of his enlightened take on Twitter.

(also from Everything is Terrible)


“They must be millionaires!”

February 8, 2009

(via Everything Is Terrible)


Man, I’m going to have to start getting into Beck again

February 6, 2009

(via Offworld)


Well, this is a first for me…

February 3, 2009


I just got locked out of making any new comments on an  anti-Chavez post on Boing Boing. I was told I wasn’t linking to enough ‘reputable news sources’ to support my arguments. That is true–I wasn’t. I didn’t realise I had to. Instead, I suggested that everyone watch the incredible documentary on the 2002 coup in Venezuela,  ‘The Revolution Will Not Be Televised’.

I always feel that this is a good place to start with any discussion on Chavez as it shows very clearly the motives and tactics of those lined up against him, and so helps balance the narrative coming from various ‘reputable news sources’ (essentially… he’s an evil dictator, despite such non-evil-dictator-type behaviour as conducting fair elections and winning them).

My last few posts, the ones which presumably angered the moderator the most, offered a deal.

“Why do you expect me to spend my time tracking down news stories that support my argument, when you don’t want to spend seventy-five minutes of your time watching an excellent documentary that was filmed from inside the 2002 coup? And why have you decided that the documentary is not reputable?

How about this…I’ll go Google ‘Chavez’ and find a few dozen things that support my argument (you could do this yourself, but never mind) if you watch the doc.”
Well, time is tight in the world of  internet discussion groups, and the moderator banned me instead. I include the link here again in case any of you haven’t seen this  thrilling film and can spare the whole hour and fifteen minutes it takes to watch it.

‘The Revolution Will Not Be Televised

(Update: Got a nice surprise today–a very kind e-mail from Cory Doctorow, saying that he didn’t think what happened to me was “fair or appropriate”. Xeni, too, wrote to patch things up. She disagrees with the content of my posts, but she also didn’t think I should have been blocked. Apart from the joy of being visited by two of the actual Elders of The Internet, I’m grateful they took the time to respond in such a gracious way.)


Lunch bags in hell!

February 1, 2009

This guy posted about doing art lunchbags for his kids, which is very sweet and one of the great things about the internet–that every so often it brings to light the ingenuity and thoughtfulness of some people… things you’d otherwise never have heard about.

That said, I wouldn’t actually have posted a link to it had I not noticed this totally awsome thing. The ad that I had to click to get into the site accidentally looks like a Jack Chick cover and is therefore a little disturbing!

For those of you who haven’t had a jack Chick tract fall into your lap when you opened a comic, here’s a taste (warning! He’s insane!).

I nominate this as a possible meme! Innocent things as Jack Chick covers!