Monday, 30 November 2009
Sunday, 29 November 2009
Why 1983? Because it is one year away from 1984, I suppose...
Elsewhere: Wired Magazine, via the blog of a young woman called Lily Sussman, report that the MacBook's hard drive is capable of withstanding gunshot damage. How do they know? Because the nice fellows in charge of the Israel's security decided that it was a security risk and put three bullets through it. Charming...(there's another report in The Marker)
Saturday, 28 November 2009
Friday, 27 November 2009
Wednesday, 25 November 2009
Wednesday, 4 November 2009
It is an interview with Ada Yonath, Professor of Chemistry at Machon Weizmann, and who was awarded the Nobel Prize for Chemistry last month.
Or two interviews with Prof. Yonath
As you'll see from the clip, Yonath was interviewed on Channel 10's evening news programme by Miki Haimovich. The interview was then lightly repackaged, and rebroadcast as new the next morning, making it seem that she was being interviewed anew by the breakfast show hosts, Haim Etgar and Sivan Cohen.
It might seem like a small thing. It is Channel 10's content, after all?
I disagree. Nothing would have been lost by re-broadcasting the original interview, Haimovitch and all, the next morning. Except the veneer of 'exclusivity'.
More to the point, I think that this is only a small step away from creating subtlely different questions to fit the answers that Prof. Yonath had helpfully provided earlier.
Which is only a short hop and skip away from creating radically different questions to fit Prof Yonath's answers - and misrepresenting her in the process, of course.
I don't think it is a small thing. If I'd wanted entertainment of this nature, I'd go take out a Woody Allen film. To be honest, I find it rather patronising. Perhaps the editors at Channel 10 rate their viewers so lowly as to think that they can only engage with the news if it is live and direct? It's that 24 Hour rolling news thing again...
Okay, I'm being a grouch this morning. I promise that my next post will be more positive.
Again, hat tip to frgdr.com for pointing out the chicanery on the part of Channel 10.and setting up the clip. I didn't notice it. I mean, it isn't like I'd be paying attention to the news in Hebrew...
Monday, 2 November 2009
(incidentally, I loathe rolling news channels...well, that's not entirely true. I have a love/hate/hate relationship with them, I suppose. I always come away from half an hour with Sky News or BBC feeling slightly less informed than I was previously. Maybe it's just me, grey cells corroding and all that...)
and for another, the wonders of the World Wide Web mean that I can get pretty much anything I want, gratis
(although Mr Murdoch seems determined to change that)
but this aside, the truth is that - in the news sections, at least - there is rarely anything worth reading. Straightforward news accounts are generally rather scanty, and more often than not are not followed up, leaving the curious reader with the duty to go get his detailed stuff elsewhere. Opinion and thinly-veiled partisan commentary generally trump sober analysis and fact; and, a lot of the time, new reports are plucked from the same general sources - Reuters, AP, AFP - and gently recycled and spun according to the whims and inclinations of the outlet.
(On the last point, it's worth reading Nick Davies' excellent Flat Earth News. You'll never look at a newspaper the same way again, I promise you...)
A couple of contemporary examples from Eretz Yisrael:
Goldstone: Has effectively become a football game, with the press merely keeping score. The fundamental questions have been lost beneath what is charmingly referred to as the PR War.
The Amnesty report on the (mis)use of Palestinian water resources: Even if one accepts every word to be true...it just ain't news. It hasn't been news for years. As proof, I recommend reading Bernard Wasserstein's Israel & Palestine, particularly pp 80 - 97. Covers pretty much the same ground, in cool and coherent language...and was published six years ago.
Maybe I'm just getting cantankerous and crochety as I ease belly first into middle-age...
Anyway, these days I get a paper just at the weekend, which keep me happy for the week. The supplements, thankfully, run to different deadline priorities; write ups tend to have more of a consistence and narration-al coherency to them, I think. It's pretty easy, I think, to bullshit with 500 words, but it becomes much more difficult with 2500.
And I subscribe to a couple of magazines...
There's an interesting piece in this weeks New Yorker about Gaza, Gilad Shalit and the Guys in Green. Long enough to remind us of the historical antecedents to the sorry state of affairs down south at the moment. No one comes out of it looking good. Worth reading.
On a completely unrelated note: Is there any chance of someone getting the rain to, like, stop? I know I sound ungrateful and all, but my clothes are all wet, I can't do the laundry and I have to dash out for a cigarette between breaks in the rain that's been thundering down since Friday. Most inconsiderate.
On the good side, the Sukkah has come down. Not quite sure how - perhaps the wind dismantled it - but frankly, I don't care. As someone said once, Mission Accomplished.
Somehow, I think I'm going to regret saying that.