… It Isn’t Your Dad’s News


I met someone the other day and having looked over their website, I happened to mention that the RSS feed from the site’s blog was called ‘RSS Feed’ – and not something useful like ‘John’s RSS Feed For All Things Amazing’ …..

The reply :

“It’s so funny when you mentioned the RSS feed – I didn’t know people still did that so I’ll definitely look into it.”

This person strikes me as very bolted into the world of business and tech, definitely switched on to the social media circus circuit … and her response is all too typical of what I hear from so many people. Which in turn means that I think it is one of the most serious issues we face today.

Surely you jest Mr. Philpin? I do not ….


(Consider the news that emerged over the weekend that Facebook 'unknowingly' sold advertising to Russian Troll Farms ..

"The ads -- both traditional advertisements and sponsored posts -- were intended to sow discord among the American electorate by amplifying "divisive social and political messages," Stamos said. These ranged from "LGBT matters to race issues to immigration to gun rights."

Allow that to sink in for a moment - and I know you would never be caught out by such obvious false influences .... except you are. We all are. All the time. That is why the art of the con is alive and well.

And no, RSS doesn't fix that all by itself - but it sure does help.

I wrote a long reply to my new friend about why RSS was important … and when it was finished, decided not to send it, but rather turn it into a blog post and just send the link, because it is something I come across a lot. This article is a personal position on RSS, a recognition that it needs to get easier and a plea that really – if you want news – getting it from your Social Feeds is not a good idea. Continue reading

Nice Article …

… from the team at Teamrock, where Steven Wilson guides us through ten ‘concept albums’ you may have missed.

Delighted to report that there was only one that I had missed …. Tom Newman’s Faerie Symphony – which I found in full on YouTube for your delectation (if you like Horslips – give it a whirl) … and in fact only 3 that I don’t actually own ….

  • Tom Newman’s Faerie Symphony (hard to own if you have never heard of it)
  • Virginia’ Astley’s ‘From Gardens Where We Feel Secure’
  • Serge Gainsboro’s Histoire De Melody

[When I say ‘own’ … my vinyl collection needs to be checked – because I definitely do not have all of them in my CD/Digital collection – can someone check the vinyl for me – you KNOW who I am talking to ….

BTW – talking of Faerie’s – why oh why do the Enid get left out of all the lists …


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… or does he mean broader?

I guess what I’m trying to say is, if, as Boas famously claimed, the Eskimos have dozens of words for “snow,” then in an emerging knowledge work society, we should have more than a handful of words to describe the mental efforts on which, more and more, our livelihoods depend.

Needless to say, I agree completely with the sentiments.

I am not an advocate of never changing language – but I do like it to be used correctly. e.g. (or ‘i.e.’ as too many people write), the use of ‘e.g.’

Read The Whole Thing Here.

All From Dave Winer


Sometimes he just hits it ….

Everyone should know how to run a web server

I know what he means – but wow – when you come to understand that most people don’t know how to use Word or EMail properly – that is one hell of a stretch …. but yes – definitely a goal. I have don’t that – as a learning function. It still sits there … though I no longer put content there …. sorry Dave. (It was his software I installed and continue to run).

I’ve been advocating teaching journalism students to run servers. because it’s so central to freedom of the press these days, to not be controlled by techies. And techies love to control users. If the journalists knew what was possible and weren’t scared of running a server, they might be able to just do things for themselves without waiting for permission. I’ve seen very powerful things created with gutsy users who didn’t like to hear NO from devs. 😉

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The inadequacy of online payments

It is amazing that after twenty years – this is still a problem. I have my own problems – no single place to point the finger – it is everywhere.

She had to spend the money at Amazon in the US, which meant shipping costs to the UK would have been huge. They didn’t say this up front, or I would have used Amazon UK to give the gift. We’ve been using the web for commerce for 20 years. These glitches should have been worked out long ago.

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Posterity

This one was so good – it is getting it’s own post.

Sharing The Words Of @DSearls

I was only a year old when Gandhi was shot, so I don’t remember that one; but I was involved in both the civil rights and antiwar movements in North Carolina when Martin Luther King was gunned down in June 1968, and Bobby Kennedy a few days later.

I cannot overstate the senses of grief, despair and hopelessness that followed those two assassinations. (And of Malcolm X three years earlier. And again when Nixon got elected a few months later in ’68.)

Two things were clear to me at the time: that violence won, and that the civil rights and antiwar movements were set back decades by those events.

Doc Searls

Read It All Here.

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