08 June 2012

public image ltd

"For all the talk of aspirations, voters do not seem to connect reform with progress. xxxx’s liberalisers over the past two decades, including xx xxxx himself, have reformed by stealth. That now looks like a liability. No popular consensus exists in favour of change or tough decisions."

"Its best xxxxxxx, xxxxx xxxx...is divisive and authoritarian."

Where in the world?  Sounds a bit like home, eh?

Not so.

If I could bring myself to sit down at the computer for half an hour and write something, that would be a start.

It seems we are witnessing a substantial shift in attitudes to, and usage of, the net.  I guess it's largely down to social media?  As I'm not on facebook or twitter I can only surmise that people have moved to these two platforms en masse, as even the old blogs that I regularly visited are either gone or in permanent mortal decline: Larvatus Prodeo; Things Bogans Like; Speak you're Branes, GG Sedgwick.  At the same time, the platform has moved from the desk or laptop at home to phones and tablets.

Two of the best and most prolific of more recent vintage, Greg Jericho at Grog's Gamut and Jim Parker (Mr Denmore) at Failed Estate now write under their own names, with Greg having been outed by the country's foremost journal of record, the Australian.  Which organ, not coincidentally, is often the target of well constructed criticism by Mr Denmore.   Greg gets some more public exposure at ABC online.

I've got a few other more obscure places I visit like The Rising Storm for interesting music, but as the regular haunts drop off so does the interest.

I can only imagine that people spend extraordinary amounts of time on social media: certainly if the numbers you see walking around looking at their phones is any indication, not to mention in workplaces all over.  Does this get factored into national productivity figures?

I do enjoy, as a sociological experiment, looking at newspaper articles online, where you get comments threads.  Actually, it's quite depressing.  Particularly the local rag.  Thank goodness for anonymity.

Although, not necessarily. Today's print edition carried a letter to the editor in which the writer suggested, in all seriousness, that one public official responsible for environmental issues, in this case bat colonies, should be executed for every person who dies of Hendra virus (transmitted from bats).  Or if the person simply gets very ill, the public official should merely be harmed permanently in some way.

I really thought a paper couldn't print stuff like that.  I'll be fascinated to see if there's anything in tomorrow's edition. 

More than depressing, really.

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