Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Tablet blogging

To try something a bit different - also a gimmick can be fun every now and again- I have written this short blog entirely on a tablet. A Google Nexus 7 to be precise (There's your plug for this blog Google).

This is also a bit of an experiment to see how easy the process is before I set off on a new adventure entirely - more on that later. This will involve a whole host of new blogs, hopefully using this handy tool.

As far as first impressions go, using a tablet to write with is easy than it would appear. Don't get me wrong, it does feel slightly alien and I think it may yet take some getting used to but its not too time consuming during the first attempt and is aided greatly by quite intuitive predictive text.

So in conclusion, writing on a tablet is possible even for a clumsy handed fool like me, but may take  few attempts before it stops feeling weird.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Cosy wosy mind slurry for the proles

*Disclaimer: If you haven’t already guessed David is not a very positive person. He is not able to just sit back and enjoy things and finds ways of needling criticism out of even the nicer elements of the world. He has come to terms with this and admits this is curse and not a blessing. If the following offends you please don’t read it.*

I found myself watching Surprise Surprise the other day - another sign that ITV has given up on innovation entirely and is desperately trying to turn back to more prosperous times in the early 90s (funnily enough when advertising revenues for TV had no competition from the internet). For those of you who have never sat down to watch it before, it’s very simple TV. Unsuspecting do-gooding members of the audience are taken by ‘surprise’ and rewarded for their positive work in the community. It’s got a nicey wicey tone, is presented by the cuddly auntie-like Holly Willoby (I’ve been giving her a lot of stick in the last couple of posts, it’s not intentional) tries to lull you into cosy self-satisfied oblivion.  A bit like this.

The show’s biggest crime isn’t even that it’s contrived and cheap TV. The biggest problem with Surprise Surprise is that it’s a bit dull; it lacks punch. The people rewarded on it do good things but it feels like a scattergun approach to celebrating the selfless people in society. So you reward one cancer nurse, or one social care volunteer. Does that then absolve the viewer from not rewarding the others? Not only that, but the gifts the people on the show are given are a bit limp. One lady was given a life-time subscription to Love Film, which isn’t a bad prize but isn’t really all that impressive in the scheme of her unselfish work. A couple of the guests get holidays but that’s about it.

Let me just emphasise, I want to believe in the world of Surprise Surprise. I want to feel rosy and warm inside; satisfied that the world is being run by the right people, with the kind and selfless being rewarded appropriately for their good deeds. Unfortunately that’s not the world I see.

The world I see contains recessions, war, signal failures, corrupt leaders and gloom amongst other things. Don’t get me wrong these aren’t the only things but they do suck a lot of the niceness out of existence and that can’t be undone by saccharine do-gooding celebrations.

I wonder if Surprise Surprise exists as an antidote to the grinding misery of papers like the Daily Mail. I have a feeling a lot of the people within the Daily Mail’s demographic watch this programme. It uses that same kind of lowest common portrayal of good and bad in the world.

Worst still it makes the person watching it feel good about themselves and their position in the world despite not doing anything. The viewer can feel like everything is right with the world and that people who perform thankless tasks no one else wants to do are being taken care of by the faceless mass of the community at large, whilst they shed tears of self-gratification and absolution.

I can’t get behind it personally.

Thursday, November 08, 2012

Mini Analysis: Cameron's coffee morning hell

This is my serious face
Paedophila has become a very hot issue again, as the allegations squared at Jimmy Saville threaten to open up another Paedogeddon. In fact I wouldn’t be surprised if we were close to appointing a Paedofinder General. However, for the first time the child abuse finger pointing has now reached the government.

This came to the fore today for the Prime Minister David Cameron, who during a surreal ‘gotcha’ moment on the cosy daytime TV favourite This Morning - fronted by doddering uncle-like Philip Scofield and dippy auntie-like Holly Willoby - was presented with a list of suspected Tory paedophiles. Not even Paxman pulls those kind of punches.

Obviously, the PM wasn't too pleased with this sudden attempt at guerrilla journalism. He probably came on the show thinking that the worst case scenario would be that the runners wouldn't get the biscuits he liked. His response to the question was interesting given he had little time to prepare a response, saying:

"There is a danger, if we're not careful, that this could turn into a sort of witch-hunt, particularly against people who are gay and I'm worried about the sort of thing you are doing right now - giving me a list of names that you've taken off the internet"

To me it seems that Cameron is skirting around the matter. The issue of paedophilia in politics has been a long time coming and it could be the final nail in the coffin of government trust. We’ve had scandal after scandal. First expenses, second Levinson and now the situation in North Wales, which is easily the most reprehensible abuse of power possible (just look at the Vatican after all).

In Mr Cameron’s favour, he’s right to warn about a witchhunt. Presenting a list of suspected paedophiles to the Prime Minister seemed eerily similar to something Joseph McCarthy would do. We’ve seen before what can happen in the midst of a full blown mob and the results are usually messy with innocents getting caught up in the hysteria. However, Cameron playing the gay card to justify the situation probably wasn’t very wise and does look like he’s desperately trying to divert one sensitive issue away with another.

If he is covering up something to that extent within his own party after the many crises he’s had to face then he should start penning his resignation now.