Derryn Hinch no Hero

2 06 2008

Derryn Hinch is again publicly naming sex offenders, purportedly in a bid to ensure public safety.

This particular example is not the only one and is likely to continue until such heavy penalties are applied that media outlets can no longer weigh up ratings against time in jail.

The Internet and the Right to a Fair Trial speech from 2005 contains an absurdly appropriate quote from 1846:

“The discovery and vindication and establishment of truth are main purposes certainly of the existence of Courts of Justice; still, for the obtaining of these objects, which, however valuable and important, cannot be usefully pursued without moderation, cannot be either usefully or creditably pursued unfairly or gained by unfair means, not every channel is or ought to be open to them. The practical efficacy of torture is not, I suppose, the most weighty objection to that mode of examination … Truth, like all other good things, may be loved unwisely – may be pursued too keenly – may cost too much.” – Vice-Chancellor Knight Bruce, 1846.

Keep in mind that those who are determined as unable to receive a fair trial are simply released. Naming sex offenders and pedophiles may seem like a good idea to protect the public, but you do not have that right (despite your ego) and your very actions may result in a criminal walking free, never able to be tried on that charge. Hinch is no hero, he’s a vigilante with an ongoing disregard for the law.


The folks that built

24 04 2008

A shout out to the folks at Flow Interactive, who built the amazing AJAX interface over at [Correction: helped test and refine their ideas on the amazing AJAX interfaceThanks Stef.], who are quoting me in their Moo Print Case Study.

“ is awesome – where have you been all my Flickr’d life?”
Knowledge is everywhere

You should all know by now, I love Moo. The AJAX interface on is fantastic, if you have yet to use it, what are you waiting for? I have now bought several packs of Moo MiniCards, and everyone who sees em wants em. I can’t believe they released the new MiniCard holders the day after my last order. That’s on my next shopping list, along with stickers. Now if only Moo did non-paper stuff too. [A shout out to the folks who did build, love your work!]

My favourite tools of 2007 and the biggest tool of 2007

31 12 2007

My favourite tools of 2007:
Twitter – if you don’t get it, you don’t have enough contacts or you’re not asking the right questions
Akismet – oh how I love you. Akismet has caught 23,003 spam for me since I first installed it.
WordPress – a bit neglected this year, but a favourite none the less

But the biggest tool of 2007 is Senator Stephen Conroy, Minister of the Digital Economy, who has wrapped up 2007 by announcing mandatory internet filters, which will be opt-out only.

“Labor makes no apologies to those that argue that any regulation of the internet is like going down the Chinese road,” he said. “If people equate freedom of speech with watching child pornography, then the Rudd-Labor Government is going to disagree.”

Filtering the internet isn’t democratic.

In 1948 the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). Article 19 affirms the right to free speech:

Article 19. Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.

Is a filtered internet what you want for your kids? Unable to research breast cancer, religion, censorship, politics and missing out on news such as Prime Minister Kevin Rudd’s visit to a strip club.

The Librarians are asking, who is in charge of the filter? What is being filtered? Why no announcements on government websites?

All of this at a time when any child can easily subscribe to hard core porn via SMS, great job Conroy! Way to protect the children.

Would you like a peanut or a pistachio? That sounds rather like an election choice

14 10 2007

This post is titled in honor of one of my favourite cartoons, by Michael Leunig.

This year, the election will be a little different. Online media is going to have a stronger role than it has in the past. Politicians have been keen to try new ways of campaigning and even the political coverage is changing to meet the needs of the online generation. However, the tools have changed somewhat, but the policies are all pretty much in the dark ages.

The Australian Federal Election will be held on the 24th of November 2007.

Liberal Party of Australia
Liberal’s YouTube Channel
John Howard’s opening speech – Right Leadership (transcript)

Labor’s YouTube Channel
[Waiting for Kevin Rudd’s speech to be uploaded – New leadership doesn’t including fast updates for the public] – [transcript when available]

Mixed Nuts – MyElectorate, Hot Issues, Rolling Debate, Blogs
Google’s Election 2007 – Follow Australian politics with Google’s map, videos, gadgets & more
For the Nut Intolerant
Leadership seems to be a key topic for this election, so here are some videos from thought leaders on the subject.
Dr Peter Ellyard – Futurist
Al Gore on Leadership in Global Warming
Barack Obama: Leadership On Energy

The truth is, we can’t afford to let the same old politics stand in the way of our future anymore.

MODM 6 – Come and join us at Federation Wharf for drinks and good company

30 09 2007

On October 4th, MODM 6 will again be at Riverland Bar. If you haven’t been to one yet, what are you waiting for?
Free drinks, attendees from all over Melbourne (and a few in town from afar) and a regular topic on Twitter.

If you create digital media or want to create digital media, come along, meet some people and get started.
Add MODM to your list of Events on Facebook

MODM 6 is sponsored by Simon Chen from Eight Black,

Cory Doctorow at the Melbourne Writer’s Festival

26 08 2007

Cory Doctorow & Charles Firth debated in the Free & easy event, which was held at the Merlyn Theatre in Southbank. I had front row seats to see Charles Firth get his ass kicked in the debate, see videos below. Free & easy photoset on Flickr. Microblogged on Twitter here and here.

Charles Firth was surprisingly inarticulate for someone from The Chaser, also very stuck on old business models which seems in stark contrast to The Chaser in general. [Update 29/08/07: see Cory’s comment below – I am disappointed at the Melbourne Writer’s Festival’s approach to this event, fake debates are best left to comedians. This was just a waste of two talented people. I would have preferred a non-debate of their actual opinions.] Most interesting item from Charles was that the ABC is considering a paid archive model if the public does not complain. It’s odd that they are considering this as even the New York Times has finally figured out that’s a stupid way to go. Biggest irony of the night, Charles criticising Cory for giving work away for free, after which he supplied free copies of The Manic Times to the audience. I got my books signed, and no Cory, yours isn’t going on eBay.

Cory’s not in Melbourne for long, and for those who missed his open dinner invitation, you’re out of luck as his schedule is full.

[Update 29/08/07: More coverage of Cory’s speech here on Views from Orbit]

Talkin’ bout my Generation – Boomers, X, Y & beyond

7 08 2007

There’s always discussions about generations, what generation are you (take the test), but increasingly when people talk about Generation Y, the main point is technology. Any generation embraces the technology of their era (radio, vinyl records, boom boxes, CDs, the internet), but it by no means is the only thing that defines them.

Many Boomers remember advertising with fondness, not many members of Gen X or Y would say the same. Many members of Gen X & Y want more work/life balance, as they’ve seen the costs paid by their parents. The survivors of the World War II Generation appreciate the simple things in life, like bombs not falling from the sky on a regular basis.

The first thing that defines any Generation is their perception of other Generations. As a member of Generation Y, I quote the Simpsons: I used to be with it, but then they changed what “it” was. Now, what I’m with isn’t it, and what’s “it” seems weird and scary to me. All Generations think the other Generations are weird and scary (even if it’s just a little bit), but they’re all just born of a different social environment.

Generations different to yours aren’t weird and scary, they’re just different. Hopefully all the generations can learn to collaborate (instead of wanting others to “fade away”), combining the collective wisdom of all generations, to solve problems that we all face together. How many friends do you have outside your own generation? Is that number really enough?

I’ll leave you with the generation-mashup, the Zimmers, talkin’ bout their g-generation.