02-14 March, 2003

This entry was posted on
Sunday, March 2nd, 2003
at
9:01 am and is filed
under Uncategorized.

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Date
20030302

Time
09:01
Childish, but amusing.

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Date
20030303
Riding High on Blogdex
Time
08:59
Taking up positions 1, 2 & 3 no less – the smoking gun we’ve all been waiting for:

The United States is conducting a secret ‘dirty tricks’ campaign against UN Security Council delegations in New York as part of its battle to win votes in favour of war against Iraq. Bus-ted!

Actually, I think it’s a little unfair to rattle on with US this and America that, when articles like this should really read: “The Bush Administration is conducting a secret ‘dirty tricks’ campaign…”

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Date
20030303
Christianity Watch
Time
09:31
Diana Cooper has been touched by an angel. No, it’s true. It even told her to release a series of books and tapes on the subject.

I can tell by that look on your face that you still don’t believe me, so here are some pictures of angels and other manifestations caught on camera that have been sent in by her readers.

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Date
20030303

Time
09:32
This fantastic new anti-rape device is designed primarily for women, but I’m sure men could find it equally useful if stuck up the jacksie. It acts as a protective lining, can capture semen for future evidence and has needles designed to collect ‘penile tissue samples,’ but the anti-penetration airbag is by far my favourite function.

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Date
20030303
Videos, Etc.
Time
09:33
OK, you can stop sending me copies of the Bush/Blair ‘Endless Love’ video. I’ve seen it. In fact, here’s a link to the entire ‘Read My Lips’ collection. Enjoy.

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Date
20030303

Time
09:35
Why does Bush push to silence free speech? Erm, don’t know, sir.

Perhaps he wants to keep his job.

At least for another 609 days, 19 hours and 20 minutes (see The Bush Countdown Clock).

Seriously, is there a way we can legally and efficiently get him out of the White House before then? I’m open to ideas, people.

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Date
20030303

Time
09:40
Read about the racist pit-bull.

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Date
20030303

Time
09:44
A collection of cartoon tributes to Mr Rogers.

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Date
20030303

Time
09:53
If, like me, you’re still waiting for your silver jumpsuit and flying car, then don’t read this. It will only depress you. By the way, I’m enjoying a lot of Tomorrow Stories and Top Ten are especially groovy, but if you want something with more meat on its bones, then you should read From Hell (yes, even if you’ve seen the movie).

BTW, just out of interest, has anyone ever tried to get a movie version of Neil Gaiman’s Sandman off the ground?

UPDATE – Linus wrote in with the following not-at-all-surprising news:

“Yeah, they tried a few years ago, I was attending a book reading Neil did for ‘Neverwhere’ and he was saying that the rights were sold, but it was a shambles. The sandman had superpowers in the first script treatment (obviously, not written by Neil) and was about the first book (when he lost all his Sandman gear) but was nothing like it really…. Neil was rather disappointed. If you know about Death, the High Cost Of Living, Neil was/is trying to get a version of that off the ground, with himself as director. No news on that though.”

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Date
20030303

Time
09:55
It’s… the Google/Blogger FAQ.

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Date
20030303
Flash Games
Time
09:56
An oldie but a goodie via FunJunkie:

Play God and get it out of your system with some serious wrath. It’s pretty basic stuff, but if it gets you in the mood, then you might also wish to rediscover the world’s biggest magnifying glass.

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Date
20030303

Time
10:04
I knew there had to be an ulterior motive:

Items confiscated by overzealous airport security to be sold on ebay.

The Ultimate Insult is also selling a bunch of stuff. Mostly CDs. Personally, I think he’s mad. I sell off stuff from time to time, but I would never, ever sell my music. The last time I was foolish/desperate enough to do this was 14 years ago, and I regretted it less than a week later. Go and buy something before he reads this and changes his mind.

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Date
20030303

Time
10:14
Two results from Friday’s request for feedback:

No, Bloggerheads isn’t getting too political (at least, not in your opinion) and more and more of you are warming to the idea of feedback via direct email.

I know it seems desperately old-fashioned in these exciting days of interactive polls and what-not, but I have my reasons.

A lot of folks drop by here and – after a quick look around – decide that I’m a marketing scumbag. The number of readers who will actually surrender an email address to me is a very strong indication of trust – and of genuine interest.

Voting on a poll takes about 3 seconds. Writing and sending a short email takes close to 30. It’s nice to know that I can hold your attention for at least half a minute.

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Date
20030303

Time
13:38
Like I said, I can be your best customer or your worst customer.

Not that I’m anything special. The same could be said of any weblogger. I just wrote to another marketing bod about this, and part of it is worth publishing for the record:

“Given the rise of personal publishing this format has (finally) brought about, it’s a fair bet that any given company has at least 0.001% of customers that run their own weblog. The effect that this small percentage of customers has on search engine results affects how 80% of online customers (or, most importantly, potential customers) find them and/or view them.”

Basically, they better start being much, much nicer to us. How many times have to talked to a company until you’re blue in the face, only to come up against the brick wall that is ‘company policy’ again and again? Of course, the moment such a complaint reaches a consumer champion in one of them there newspapers or tellyvision shows, they’ll pull out all the stops to (finally) do the right thing.

One can hope that they will soon realise that personal comments published in this way are equally important.

Perhaps we can target two companies as an example of this? One positive, and one negative. It’d make a great ‘Can Weblogs…? experiment. The aim would be to drum up link support for a simple comment page on each of the target companies – that will then turn up in the top 5 search results for that company. Nominations are welcome.

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Date
20030304

Time
08:43
Anti-war protests continue around the globe. (Warning: article contains yet more naked Australians.)

Fellow blogger Anita Roddick is organising a virtual march on London. I can’t see it doing much, but I’ll feed her that email-to-fax address for Tony just the same.

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Date
20030304

Time
08:45
Hussein and Bush face to face at Madame Tussaud’s. It’s War! And we’re all going to die! Bring the family for fun and laughter.

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Date
20030304

Time
08:47
Bush is already quietly planning for the 2004 election. Just like he’s already (quietly) started his little Gulf War.

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Date
20030304
Christianity Watch
Time
08:56
Catholic driver gives up speeding for Lent.

The Catholic church in the Philippines has ruled that SMS confessions count for ddly sqt.

A woman has kept the body of her dead husband at home for three weeks as members of the World Ministries Church prayed that he would be brought back to life. It would serve her right if he actually did come back and started feasting on her spicy brains.

Finally, we close with the excellent gaybeer.com, a site produced by ‘a Christian, pro-family organization’ called the Family Policy Network. The site is designed ‘to expose Anheuser-Busch’s grossly immoral marketing technique of exploiting a deadly lifestyle for profit’. Anheuser-Busch make Bud Light.

I don’t see the problem myself. As an Australian, I’ve always known that light beer is for poofs.

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Date
20030304
Riding High On Blogdex
Time
09:42
Quite a few bloggers have their back up over Dr Pepper’s plans to use weblogs to promote a ‘milk-based product with an attitude.’

As a weblogger and marketer, I welcome this brave initiative.

Like hell.

We should run these wankers out of town on a rail.

What the jokers at Richards Interactive (the agency behind this ‘brilliant’ campaign) have cooked up may or may not be a genuine attempt to simply put products into the hands of opinion makers, but the way they’ve done it screams of ignorance. It’s not unlike walking out the front door with a bloody great Amway folder under your arm yelling; “I’m going to make me some friends today! You! Over there! Mr, errr, um, Brown Shoes! Will you be my friend?”

A note to the folks over at Richards Interactive:

Did you research this at all? Did you perhaps read the following?

“So here we all are, a wide variety of people from all walks of life, getting together purely because we like to interact with each other. Like any form of fulfilling social interaction, listening is as important as talking. Those in your immediate circle know what you do for a living, and this may even form part of your introduction or crop up in normal conversation, but if all you talk about is work, then you’re going to find yourself in a very lonely corner of the room before the ice has melted in your first drink. If you were stupid enough to bring some pamphlets or maybe even an educational slideshow with you, then you can be sure that everybody will be laughing and pointing as well.”

(Excerpt from WTF is Weblog Marketing?)

Guess what? Everybody’s laughing. Everybody’s pointing. For you, the party is over. Don’t let the door hit your arse on the way out.

Use natural and genuine activity to get my attention and I’ll promote something valid until the cows come home. Try to recruit me with a formal campaign, and I’ll expect to be paid – and not with a few drinks and freebies, but a wad of the green stuff Dr Pepper wasted on you.

UPDATE – There’s a great debate on this in the comments relating to this post over at MarketingFix. One chap insists that:

“Meanwhile, I see on Blogdex that more than a dozen bloggers have already linked to the Newsweek story. I had never heard of Dr. Pepper’s Raging Cow product launch before this, and now I (and a whole lot of other people) have. So, is that so clueless? Seems to me that they’ve already succeeded in creating a buzz around the product.”

Oh, yeah. It’s all good stuff. BTW, ignore that whoosing sound above your head.

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Date
20030304

Time
10:00
Richard Thomas wrote in with the following regarding the image of Luke and Leia at the tail end of The Star Wars Photoshopping Project.

Dear Mr Ireland,

The use of un- or badly corrected cleft lips as a way of poking fun at people is pretty damned offensive to me and other clefties. Please take down the picture of Luke and Leia, or modify to make fun of some other bunch of weird looking people.

(Cleft lip and palates are now routinely corrected but still a source of deep emotional trauma for people living in a society obsessed with the way you look.)

Richard Thomas

I agree with Richard’s concerns about image obsession, and told him so when I wrote back to point out that – in this case – cleft palates (and crossed eyes) were merely used as a device to poke fun at the melodrama that George Lucas paints into his movies with the thickest of trowels.

Still, I felt he had a point about ignorance and what-not, so to correct this imbalance I urge you all to visit the website for Cleft Lip and Palate Association to familiarise yourself with the problem.

UPDATE – Yes, I have noticed that both Richard’s first and last names are euphemisms for a certain part of the male anatomy, and I’m sure he remembers the days of his youth fondly as a result.

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Date
20030304

Time
12:37
Found via The Blackwood Channel:

The adbusters take on ready.gov

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Date
20030304

Time
13:49
That full collection of Read My Lips video thingies (including Bush and Blair singing Endless Love) is here. I blogged it yesterday. That’s why the link is in the archive and not on this page. Oh, wait… now it is on this page. Oh, you know what I’m trying to say. Anyways, you’ve got your link – now stop emailing me. Please.

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Date
20030304

Time
16:58
Heh. I’ve just been blocked from making comments at RagingCow.com (the promotional site for Dr Pepper blogged earlier).



I don’t know which comment was the final straw, but I’m pretty sure it was either:

“Interesting that a cow should understand so little about herd mentality…”

or

“Somebody got milked, that’s for sure!”

UPDATE – It’s not a very effective block. A web proxy gets me right back in the game. I may poke my head in tomorrow. In the meantime, please enjoy the following comment – spotted while posting a simple ‘I like milk’ message to test the proxy solution. It’s sure to be deleted soon, so I figured somebody should enjoy it:

“Speaking of raging cows… We had a bull when I was a kid that broke into daddy’s meth lab. It not only ate all of the sudafed but also got cranked up on the speedball he kept out there to ‘take the edge off’ when the monotony of the plowing got to him. Anyway, the bull, Ol’ Moses, as we called him (because the heifers would part like the Red Sea to let this fine stud pass by), so, Ol’ Moses sets off into the barn and ultimately busted up the artificial insemination equipment pretty bad. Squirrel, our best technicians, lost three gloves before he could really grip Moses’ prostate for milking. That’s none too purty.

Long story short, Squirrel ended up with the head injury that changed his nickname to Twitch, Moses ended up suffocated under a pile of feedcorn, and with all of the money lost from the meth, the crank, and bull-milker, I had to drop out of St. Smibbens Academy and forfeited my scholarship to Sacramento State.”

I have a true story from my school days about a gay goat that won the carcass competition at the Easter Show, but it seems pretty pathetic by comparison. I’ve also had my hand up a cow’s bum, but simply I refuse to tell that story until at least five people email me offering gifts to help offset the trauma involved. (Yes, cash is fine – but please try to show a little imagination.)

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Date
20030304

Time
17:47
Simon Carr on war by the back door. Worth it just for the fact that it notes that last week’s vote and debate in parliament counted for sweet bugger all.

As it moves on it also – for me – raises a serious question. With all these bloggers about (able to feed into Google within days) and with all these Usenetters about (able to feed into Google within about 30 minutes) doesn’t a slip of the lip become much more serious now?

Will we see cases of ‘information bombing’ (i.e. individuals – inadvertently or otherwise – revealing troop movements, weak spots in terror defence and so on)?

Will we see government censors madly trying to control this feed of information as a result?

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Date
20030304

Time
18:30
Oops. Almost forgot. here’s a very detailed study of the RagingCow thing. There’s even an interview with one of the perpetrators. As it turns out, a disturbing amount of research went into the whole thing… but they still – somehow – managed to miss the point. Tragic.

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Date
20030305

Time
08:51
Community helps replace boy’s bunny. Bobby’s previous bunny went missing on the night of Feb. 24. He found her head in a nearby field.

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Date
20030305

Time
08:54
How alcohol works. BTW, this is Day 6 of my booze strike. This is the longest I’ve gone without alcohol in about 5 years (Don’t bother scanning through the archive – this is the first time I’ve mentioned it.)

I feel pretty good, to tell the truth. Only problem is, now I’m hooked on flavoured milk.

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Date
20030305

Time
08:59
Meet Ginger ‘Drummer Girl’ Gilmore. She’s an Elvis Impersonator. (Link via The Ultimate Insult.)

Damn. I’ve yet to make time to check out the restaurant in Hornchurch called Jailhouse Rock. Apparently it’s full to the rafters with Elvis Impersonators, and I still need to recruit a reasonably local one…

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Date
20030305
Oldies but Goodies
Time
09:03
Is it meat or an accident?

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Date
20030305
Riding High on Blogdex
Time
09:05
How hackers use Google.

There’s also a bunch more on Raging Cow, but I’ll get to that in another post…

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Date
20030305

Time
09:10
Doogie Howser goes hardcore. “Dear Diary, life is a cabaret… and these crotchless panties are really starting to itch!”

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Date
20030305

Time
09:12
Chrissie Hynde abuses audience and generally loses the plot. The crowd started to get ugly when, erm, she called them ‘ugly.’ Go figure.

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Date
20030305

Time
09:15
Vanity Fair claims that Michael Jackson once paid $150,000 for a ‘voodoo curse’ to kill Steven Spielberg – and 23 other people on his list of enemies.

IIRC, the previously chummy pair have had a falling out. I think it was over Jackson asking Spielberg for a testimonial/tribute thingie for the publicity drive that was HIStory. Spielberg happily complied and was prominently featured in the sleeve folder for the album. Of course, Spielberg didn’t find out until the album was released that it featured a track (They Don’t Really Care About Us) which contained the line:

‘Kick me, kike me, don’t you black and white me.’

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Date
20030305

Time
09:48
Right! Raging Cow time…

After posting and watching for a bit yesterday, it became pretty clear that the moderators on RagingCow.com were operating mainly to protect their arses from the client. Anything mentioning the online PR disaster and/or awareness of corporate manipulation was swiftly removed.

Then the Farkers got involved and from here it may have been a little hard to keep up with the torrent of comments.

It also seems that they’re unaware of comments connected to older posts – or unable to moderate them. One of my original posts is still there.

I shall get involved yet again today.

Why?

1. This is an insult to our intelligence.

2. I’m of the opinion that the client has been ripped off – and that Richards Interactive will do their best to hide this disaster from them (or at least dress it up as a success).

Some clues as to how they will do this are included in the usual industry justifications being bandied about in the ongoing debate over at MarketingFix.

Oh, and there’s a short piece on RagingCow over at junkfoodnews.com (scroll down to see – it’s under the Dairy Queen article). I’ll be back with more once Blogdex updates.

UPDATE – The best non-moderated comment left by a Farker? In my opinion, it just has to be:

“I clicked ‘Forget Personal Information’ and now I can’t find my car. Maybe I have cancer? Is this my house?”

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Date
20030305
Tony Blair’s Email: The Letters
Time
10:12
—– Original Message —–

From: Henry Huber

To: tony-blair@prime-minister.co.uk; president@whitehouse.gov ; vice.president@whitehouse.gov; senator@clinton.senate.gov; etc. etc. etc.

Sent: Tuesday, March 04, 2003 6:00 PM

Subject: HARD FACTS

–>

–> A BITTER PILL TO SWALLOW.

–> Regardless of your feelings about the crisis between Israel and the Palestinians

–> and Arab neighbors, the following two sentences really say it all.

–>

–> If the Arabs put down their weapons today there would be no more violence.

–> If the Jews put down their weapons today there would be no more Israel.

Dammit Henry, I can’t be bothered with this right now – I have a flavoured milk crisis on my hands!

Regards,

Tim Ireland

(on behalf of Tony Blair)

http://www.bloggerheads.com/can_weblogs/tony_blair.asp

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Date
20030305
Repeat Post
Time
10:16
Why do people make themselves so hard to find? For (hopefully) the last time, the collection of Read My Lips video jobbies (including Bush and Blair singing Endless Love) is here.

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Date
20030305

Time
10:34
An excellent piece on Raging Cow by Glenn Harlan Reynolds.

Best quote is presented in edited form below (I removed most of the charm, for it is in my nature to do so):

“What’s more, bloggers who ‘Get Behind The Cow’… will probably be subjected to merciless ribbing from other bloggers – especially now that word of the campaign has gotten out. The upshot is likely to be that even people who actually like the drink… will probably be embarrassed to say so…”

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Date
20030305
Tony Blair’s Email
Time
11:27
Tom Watson has kindly pointed out a rather telling update on this page, which now informs us that:

‘A facility to allow you to email the Prime Minister will be available very soon.’

Still no confirmed delivery date from Downing St, but there are things going on in the background, I can assure you. As soon as I have something concrete, I will let you know.

Oh, a bit of gossip I can probably let slip now. Remember when I tried to get the Conservatives onside to put a little pressure on? They punked out because Iain Duncan Smith has a 0% response rating to emails and faxes, and they were afraid the Labour bods would bounce straight back with this.

BTW, Tom looks to be off the booze, too. Hooray for him! We should both go out for a beer and celebrate. No, wait…

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Date
20030305

Time
13:23
Do any readers live in New Jersey? Perhaps you’d care to call and/or visit Meecorp (201-944-9330) and ask them to stop spamming me with 185Kb emails…

FFS, I got three copies this morning!

Is anybody else getting this oversized garbage?

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Date
20030305

Time
13:53
I just found out that a copy of the Bush/Blair pic appeared in a protest in Seoul. The Sunday Mirror ran a picture of it. Did anybody buy a copy this Sunday? I’d love to see it.

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Date
20030305

Time
15:32
Raging Cow has just updated with the usual nonsense. No acknowledgement of any recent reactions. If it were a real and genuine blog, there would at least be mention, wouldn’t you think?

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Date
20030305
Tony Blair’s Email
Time
15:44
Those wishing to join the virtual march on London being championed by Anita Roddick can now add Tony Blair’s email-to-fax address to their arsenal.

To paraphrase the legendary Richard Vernon: mess with the bull, and you’ll get the horns.

(Holy Cow! I just found via the facsimile Dick that Adam West, Burt Ward and much of the original Batman cast are to star in a reunion film! I am so there!)

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Date
20030305

Time
16:07
Yay! An image gallery for Return To The Batcave-The Misadventures Of Adam And Burt. This is turning into the bestest day ever.



Time to send a few emails and find out when it’ll be showing here in the UK, methinks.

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Date
20030306

Time
08:29
Man arrested for wearing peace t-shirt.

Actually, he’s a lawyer.

Here’s a copy of the complaint, courtesy of The Smoking Gun.

Protestors gather at Crossgates Mall.

Activists protest mall after arrest of man wearing peace shirt.

Mall Wants to Drop Peace T-Shirt Charges.

It’s all over people. Move along – there’s nothing to see here.

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Date
20030306

Time
08:34
MSR Productions are ‘the oldest and most reliable distributor of racialist musical products in North America.’

Be it country, hard rock or music of the Third Reich, this is the place to get it, people. Finally, a place where I can express my Anglo Saxon rage!

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Date
20030306
Oldies but Goodies
Time
08:40
Man of Steel, Woman of Kleenex. Is having sex with Superman dangerous? Of course. Even if he moderates his stroke, his semen will still be faster than a speeding locomotive.

If you haven’t seen it before, this is a good read. Save it for lunch.

(Link gratefully rediscovered via FunJunkie.)

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Date
20030306

Time
08:44
Two girls find out they are dating the same man and take it out on his car.

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Date
20030306

Time
08:45
A man employed by CBS News to speak the words of Saddam Hussein during his interview with Dan Rather last week reportedly adopted a fake Arabic accent.

A bit crass, isn’t it? I think they should have taken the Eurotrash approach and had him speak redneck.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030306
Long and Boring, But Kind Of Important
Time
09:38
A comment from a moderator in yesterday’s Fark thread:

Hmmm…

Dr Pepper contacts Fark about pissing off user base with popups and interstial ads…

Drew declines, but asks for suggestions…

98% of users start babbling about Dr Pepper and including it in PS contests. Becomes a big thing.

Dr Pepper pays Fark zero.

Dr Pepper now using a blog and tricking idiots into linking to said blog to promote a new product.

Fark turning this garbage down in its original format is quite telling. For the record (and you’ll see why I need to state this a little further on) I have gone to Fark with a commercial proposition – and had it accepted. In fact, it was openly noted that I had done so on this blog. It was accepted was because it was open, honest, in context and not at all intrusive. The client was even aware what to expect from the average Farker.

Another service I offer is Weblog Seeding. How is this different from what Richards Interactive has done? Well, for a start, what weblog seeding mostly involves is placement here – from where (if the creative is on the money) it spreads naturally. Some links are spread to weblogs or sites that actively seek the kind of material included in the creative. These are spread via requests that note my involvement (if any) in its creation. If I require the solid support of another weblog in a commercial project, that blogger is paid for their time. In cash. If I’ve paid you money in the past, then you know this to be true.

Yes, I’m in marketing. Yes, I advocate the intelligent use of weblogs for marketing purposes. This isn’t the problem I have with Raging Cow.

I don’t even have a problem with the creative. I’ve said in a number of places (though – crucially – not here, I’ve just noticed) that the content is quite good. It’s the thinking behind it that’s seriously flawed.

Why am I so uptight about this? Well, I saw this coming, but I was powerless to stop it. Raging Cow is everything I feared, and ultimately quite lame, but it won’t stop RI and others from selling it to their clients as ‘the next big thing.’

Why is this such a big deal to me? I’ll tell you why… Richards Interactive are sure to hail this clueless wonder as a success. This will result in a number of commercial entities adopting more or less the same approach. Managers and directors will read about it in their marketing mags and think; “That’s the jobbie for me!”

The result? More of the same. Much, much, more of the same. Sure, we’ll give each mindless intrusion the mocking it deserves, but this won’t stop it invading our space. Just like spam and banner advertising, it will proliferate because it appeals to the limited mindset of your average marketer. Or perhaps I should say below-average marketer.

Why am I boring you with all of this? Well, it looks like Richards Interactive has gone on the offensive by getting staff/associates to make a few ‘genuine’ posts that have a go at me. It’s also pretty obvious that this has been followed up by a request to their tame webloggers to jump in and have a say also. The content of the posts alone should make this pretty clear, but the questionable sources of these posts clinch it for me.

(A hint for RI: Not a smart move. You should have moderated quietly and got on with life. Yesterday’s post probably would have been my last. Now you’re forcing me to speak out on the matter yet again – and actively driving traffic to this site as a result.)

One person has called me a hypocrite, and even suggested that I’m in the business of creating search engine results that are somehow misleading. Yet another has questioned my priorities given the amount of genuinely worrying crap that’s going on these days. Bloggerheads, it seems, has done nothing to act against this kind of thing.

Regular readers will know that this is 100% bullshit, but new visitors to Raging Cow will not – so they’ve been invited over to Bloggerheads to decide for themselves. I’ve had to do it this way because any solid argument I post must obviously include the kind of overt material that gets instantly moderated. Of course, posts containing negative comments about Bloggerheads (and copyrighted text from this site) are not subject to this same level of moderation. Funny, that.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030306

Time
09:59
Martin sent some stuff I’d noted about Raging Cow to Doc Searls and Bloggerheads has been blogged as a result. Pardon me for being a marketing/web geek and losing it for a moment, but..

Cannot. Cope. Level.. of… coolness.. (*choke*) Rising!

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030306
Misleading Search Engine Result Of The Day
Time
10:27
Good to see The Porn Report is still reaching those who need it most. It’s now No.1 for searches on ‘top ten profitable porn sites’ in Google and No. 9 for the much more generic query ‘selling porn.’ Only half a dozen people found it this way yesterday, but that’s – hopefully – half a dozen ultimately pointless spamming campaigns you won’t have to worry about.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030306

Time
12:04
Despite using frames and a format that isn’t easily recognisable, Tom Watson has been correctly identified by VoxPolitics and others as one of the first true blogging MPs.

I’m as proud as punch to be involved with the development of a new site with a more useful format for Tom, and would invite those who are interested to drop by from time to time and watch it being built from scratch.

Step one is obviously the display width. Heh. Bear with me – it’s my first time on MovableType. The host has been less than helpful with the set-up (this initially caused a long delay, but I won’t name and shame – it’s water under the bridge). However, the folks at Movable Type had the whole thing sorted out within a day or two with their excellent – excellentpaid installation option. I even sent them a $20 tip out of my own pocket. It really is the mutt’s nuts and I would recommend this path to anybody considering adopting this blog format.

Obviously, I’m going to be a little busy over the coming days – but do hang in there. I’ve got some groovy stuff happening on the public display side of The Star Wars Photoshopping Project that you won’t want to miss. (I need a public display by the 31st of May to be eligible for a Turner Prize nomination. No, I’m not kidding.)

On that note, now is as good a time as any to ask:

I need a semi-public interior space to host a ceiling-to-ceiling wall-to-wall display of this project. An office foyer, restaurant, or Internet cafe would be ideal. If you own or run such a place, do get in touch.

Cheers all.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030306

Time
18:12
Another busy day where I’ve only just now had a chance to look at the newpapers. My son almost heard a brand new word when I saw this:

“A chemical plant which the US says is a key component in Iraq’s chemical warfare arsenal was secretly built by Britain in 1985 behind the backs of the Americans.”

Makes you proud, doesn’t it?

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030306

Time
18:38
Behold the Declaration of Bloggerdom.

Do you think I need some blog directives, or are the web directives enough?

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030306

Time
18:42
Here’s a MetaFilter thread on Raging Cow and here’s a balanced and informed article at Beverage Online. From this latter link, we get the gem:

“For their part, the bloggers who have agreed to discuss Raging Cow on their sites seem mostly flattered to have been asked.”

And therein lies the tragedy…

Carlo from BoyMeetsLife is one of their tame bloggers and actually thinks that this is a way of standing up and taking action to make the world a better place.

Pardon?

I tried to set him straight with a short comment under his post, but it looks like he moderated me, the cheeky little cam-scamp. So, I’ll just react to his words (in italics) here:

“In a world full of corruption, there has to be a shining light… someone who makes it happen. What will you do?”

I’d like to think that I’m already doing it. I don’t necessarily think you’ve sold out. More like you’re being exploited.

UPDATE – Well how about that? Suddenly I gets un-moderated. Perhaps it was just a glitch in the reload. Ho-hum.

Of course, Carlo should be free to do whatever the hell he likes. I’m not attacking him or his actions at all – but I reserve the right to question his justifications.

Anyways, here’s yet another discussion thread. Worth noting because Rebecca Blood (first off the mark with a book on blogging, don’tcha know?) pokes her nose in.

UPDATE II – The mod thing at Carlo’s site was a glitch. My bad. I’ve been moderated a lot lately, so I’m kind of edgy. I’m also dying for a beer. Carlo wrote to me with some very encouraging thoughts. I’ll be back with more soon.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030306

Time
22:22
Y’see, this is what happens when you don’t do your research.

Regulars!

Hi.

Sorry it’s been such a hard slog of late, but perhaps you can tell these chaps what happens when I see a fight worth fighting?

Exactly.

Click here to join The Raging Cow Boycott.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030306

Time
23:40
Ahahahahahahahahaha!

Sorry, I’m laughing too hard to write anything coherent.



(Via Catch.com, which has a great crop of stuff today, including a link to a new flash game on Orisinal.)

UPDATE – Hooters Air ‘in danger of going bust.’

I’m sorry, this is far too much for me. I’m going to bed. Good thing I’m wearing my boxing gloves.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030307

Time
09:15
Want to live a little longer? Steer clear of Gwinnett Place Mall!

3rd March: Woman collapses, dies outside Gwinnett mall.

6th March: Store manager has heart attack while chasing shoplifter – at the same mall.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030307

Time
09:21
Save Harry Potter from the clutches of Coca-Cola!

It’s sad some of the things that are being done in the name of this character – and his creator.

I actually read a legal letter or two sent out by Warner Brothers in 2001 to shut down any Harry Potter site that wasn’t controlled by them (including perfectly legitimate – and some would argue quite beneficial – fan sites). They claimed to do so in the name of the author – who, as it turns out, was quite surprised that the action was being taken. Still, she’d signed a contract worth squillions of pounds, so wasn’t able to say much about it.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030307

Time
10:06
I’ll have some longer stuff to stuff to blog on The Raging Cow Boycott soon. First, I have some work to do – and I’m waiting for a few emails to come in from so-called ‘tame’ bloggers.

In the meantime, I’d like to direct you to this post on Ethical Weblogging over at Plasticbag and thank Doc Searls, FunJunkie, The Ultimate Insult and yes, even TTR2 for their support in this matter.

It’s not an easy issue to understand, so I’m still not sure how many people will take it on (or possibly misconstrue the whole thing as sour grapes from a rival provider). We shall see.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030307
The Raging Cow Boycott
Time
11:00
I found it very interesting talking to someone who’d actually been involved with the Raging Cow campaign, so I dug a little deeper last night. I noticed the same thing other people started to email me with this morning. Lots and lots of teen webcams. Mmmm, nothing sells flavoured milk quite like a gallery of young, corruptible flesh. One reader described the line-up connected to this campaign as a teen booty-call. Me, I have echoes of the Raging Cow copy style bouncing around my head, so the phrase that immediately springs to my mind is Extreme Teen Webcams.

Another reader described one of the girls as callipygian, which confirms that they’ve not only been paying attention, but they’ve also been reading I Love Bacon this morning. Heh. Rob is is right. It doesn’t have the same ring to it as ‘Baby Got Back.’

Now don’t get wrong. I like big butts. And I cannot lie. Erm, you other brothers can’t deny. (Uh-oh, slipping into DJ mode. It’s been a while…)

nerenernernernernerner….

*ding*

(boom)

That when a cam pops up in with an itty titty taste

Of a teen bod in your face

You go schwing!

Check the whole webring

Though you know this cow is stuffed!

Weblog marketing’s landed

I’m here surfing sites one-handed

Oh, baby – I wanna get with ya

And grab your picture

My homeboys tried to warn me

But that milk you got makes

*ugnh*

(Me so horny)

So fellas (yeah), fellas (yeah)

Are weblogs being butt-fucked? (hell yeah)

Well link it (yeah) link it (yeah)

Tell everyone it sucks

Get your own back

Ahem. Sorry about that. Back to reality.

Feedback from these people? Well, obviously they’re pretty shy – and under strict instructions not to rock the boat (despite RI assuring us that they’re not telling people what to say).

I wanted to quote one or two of them here, but no go sadly. There’s the small matter of a signed contract to deal with. (Man, would I love to see a copy of that little document.)

Selection on the basis of teen sex appeal? Written contracts? Me, I’m convinced that the campaign is doomed to fail, not in spite of these measures – but because of them. Ah, yes. Perhaps I’m actually reaching RI now. See that small, bright thing off in the murky distance, chaps? It’s called a clue. Reach out for it.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030307

Time
11:04
Ahahahahahahahaha!

Ladies and gentlemen, The Raging Cow Boycott now has the full support of Labour MP Tom Watson. Of course, this support is only forthcoming because I’m sending him a free t-shirt. Well, I am now.



The mission today for my US readers (that’s about 80% of you) is to see if we can’t get link support from a United States Senator.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030307
The Raging Cow Boycott
Time
18:26
Yay! I’ve been granted permission to quote an emailed remark from one of the bloggers who has signed up for the whole Raging Cow deal. Anonymous or not, this took guts. Here’s the quote in full:

–> I’m well aware that Dr Pepper/Seven Up are really are not interested

–> in us as people but in how we can help promote their product. Well,

–> I’m not really interested in how much money I can earn them, but how

–> much traffic I can get across my site to let my voice be heard. I really

–> don’t care for those who come on my site because of pics or the other

–> superficial reasons, but more so about those who come with an open

–> mind and are willing to think about things as well as put up a good,

–> clean argument.

RI aren’t going to find out who this is from me, but if the person quoted above is thrown off the squad as a result of this, I have the feeling they’ll earn themselves one hell of an audience as a result.

Even if I’m wrong about that, I’ll be throwing a fair degree of traffic their way out of sheer gratitude.

Now, if only I could get my hands on a copy of that contract…

My spider senses tell me that an email has gone out to squad members from RI reminding them of their responsibilities. I have a message for all squad members, too:

1. You’re teenagers! Please don’t leave the rebellion entirely to us old folk. We’re tired, and out hearts can’t take it.

2. I am not attacking you for selling out. I just happen to think that you’re being unfairly exploited. You are providing an invaluable service, and being woefully underpaid for it.

3. What have you got to lose besides a few freebies? RI is not going to sue you. They wouldn’t dare.

4. Finally, if you want people to pay attention to your brain, then you might want to stop showing them your body. Turn off the webcam.

That’s probably it until Monday. I’m not going to email/hassle you with this info. Feel free to read it here and distribute/discuss it in private as you see fit.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030307
Riding High on Blogdex
Time
18:42
World of Ends – What the Internet Is and How to Stop Mistaking It for Something Else.

This timely snippet of wisdom from Doc Searls and David Weinberger has topped the chart with an impressive 40 references in one day. Isn’t that some kind of record for a common sense post?

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030308
Raging Cow
Time
07:44
It’s a bit in the technical side, but you should still get the idea: TNL.net’s modest proposal for a full disclosure xml feed.

Oh, thanks also to Groovymother, JordonCooper.com and Sleepyhead for the link support.

I made a post regarding the boycott to a UK marketing mailing list on Friday. I was expecting a few ‘Why are you pissing on our fire?’ replies, but so far everything that has come back has been positive.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030308
Feedback Friday (or Saturday)
Time
10:43
Sean from deeplinking.net found us via comments left at Raging Cow, but isn’t quite sure what to make of the whole thing. I’ve invited him to check out the boycott page (which pretty much outlines my position) and the archives for the last few days.

Regulars: I’ll try to move on from this as soon as I can. Sorry things are so focused on the cow right now, but it’s the thin end of the wedge we’re dealing with here, and we stand a much better chance of breaking it off at the tip. Thanks for your patience.

The day-late feedback question is:

Now that Tony Blair’s Email looks to be ticking along to an inevitable conclusion, shall we finally move on to a new ‘Can Weblogs…?’ project?

1. No, we have to nail Tony Blair down first.

2. Yes, time for something new. In fact, I have the following suggestion…

Emails to the usual address.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030308
Same Time Last Year
Time
11:02
Bloggerheads: 8th March 2002

I never did find out what was up with the plastic-wrap woman.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030309
The Raging Cow Boycott
Time
10:00
Oh dear. Oh dear or dear.

To start a blog-based campaign of this type and not expect some kind of backlash is bad enough – but to fail to protect the most obvious target points?

Unforgiveable.

ragingcow.net has just been purchased by person or persons unknown

ragingcow.co.uk is – for now – still available.

ragingcow.blogspot.com (which would have cost them nothing to protect) is now the home of an excellent parody site.

Incidentally, the parody site above is currently the No.2 search result for ‘raging cow’ in Google.

The Raging Cow Boycott is at No. 3.

(This version of the database just went live, so mileage may vary. Similar results in Yahoo! should show up sometime tomorrow.)

I’ve been reviewing the comments I’ve made about this at a number of places and do you know what I’ve noticed?

The majority of replies used to counter my stance come from conveniently anonymous sources – and usually spend more time attacking my integrity and/or the validity of this blog than they do outlining the worth of the Raging Cow campaign.

It seems to me that this noise is coming direct from Richards Interactive… or at the very least from individuals who don’t have a justifiable core belief to back them. Still, this technique is an effective way of defending the indefensible, and its widespread use will probably continue.

There is a business aspect to the boycott for me, but it’s more about sustainability across the board than it is about personal gain. I’m expressing a personal belief that has been voiced publicly on numerous occasions long before Raging Cow came along.

As for my integrity? Well, let’s look at it from a practical standpoint (just for those who don’t know or trust me):

1. I could have just as easily attacked this campaign anonymously, both with comments and the boycott.

2. Further, an anonymous boycott could just have easily gone down the far more seductive anti-corporate route rather than relying on links only from those who understand the industry-oriented reasoning behind it.

3. After making all of this noise, how far do you think I’m going to get on an equally flawed campaign before somebody calls me on it?

I made an offer in one thread (responding to yet another anonymous post) to back my beliefs with proof of their worth, and I’m going to repeat that offer here.

If Richards Interactive have the guts to get real about this, they can still turn it around by making a charitable donation as suggested at the close of the boycott page. If they want, I can use this to create a site that takes almost exactly the same creative approach as Raging Cow, but builds an audience by its genuine contribution to the weblog community.

Hell, if they want to ease the pain on their wallets, they can build it themselves according to my specifications. This will not only prove my point, it will allow them to leave the field of battle with honour – and perhaps even go on to win an extra campaign or two.

All that’s left to them now is a statistical victory and very little credibility. If they want projectblogger.com to grow, they should consider this offer very, very carefully.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030310

Time
07:55
Budget cuts shrink role of internet ‘envoy’

Anybody who’s lived through the dotcom crash will recognise this for what it is, that desperate round of budget and staff cuts that comes just before the hammer falls. And it’s no tragedy; this outfit has sucked pretty much from day one.

I think the only time I ever came close to getting involved with this whole mess was when they hired a private contractor, who hired a PR company, who approached a consultant who said ‘I know just the man.’ Meanwhile, the web team at Downing St won’t even answer my calls.

It almost makes you weep.

Me, I’d like to see government information being made available to the population at a grass-roots level via a network of webloggers operating more or less in the capacity of town criers.

Local weather, neighbourhood watch info, details of local facilities and representatives (and all government information from there on up with a basic yet beefy back end), all on one page with what will really keep people coming back: relevant news and a few interesting bits besides from jolly chaps who wave their bells around the place. They could be paid for their time with tax breaks. And a pig every month.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030310

Time
07:56
Toys! Star Wars toys! Very, very big Star Wars toys! Oh! (Sorry, I’ve just come.)

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030310

Time
07:58
Clare Short, the international development secretary, has warned that she would quit the cabinet if there is no second UN resolution supporting war in Iraq. Tony had better start listening soon, or there may very well be more sudden and unexpected changes.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030310

Time
08:05
Now that’s art! Yes, I do hope to attend The 2nd Circle Line Party. Click along, investigate (a lot of details are hidden within the flash show) and do consider attending yourself. It should be a blast. (BTW, I’ll be the guy dressed as a government agent.)

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030310

Time
08:12
Do you know this girl? Hmm, I’m not sure – but judging by that top pic, we’re supposed to be on the lookout for a young lady with massive biceps.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030310

Time
08:16
Afghan Internet Domain Launches. I can’t wait to see who will be the first person to try and cash in on the fresh crop of .af’s

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030310

Time
08:19
Find out whatreallyhappened.com. Oh, and don’t forget that regular visits to The Memory Hole are always a good idea. Here’s what I spotted on Friday:

Recently Captured al Qaeda Leader Was Killed Last Year. It doesn’t get any more Orwellian than that, I’m afraid. Perhaps now he is an unperson, they can finally torture him with gay abandon and not get hassled by the human rights softies.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030310
Riding High on Blogdex
Time
08:25
Here’s an interesting little number rising up the charts. I’ll leave the speculation up to you.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030310
The Raging Cow Boycott
Time
08:29
I can see AKMA, I can see Princess Evilina, I can see Wieland, I can even see Lisa. I can see Kevin & Troy, I can see Pedrof, I can see Bene Diction, and… yes, I can see Sean making a very kind follow-up post. Oh, and I can see you, too. Do join us here again soon. There’ll be laughter and games and learning for all.

UPDATE – No joy in Yahoo! just yet, but we’re still holding steady at No.3 for ‘raging cow’ in Google. It’s even funnier when you consider that the campaign has a significant ‘tease’ element to it. Hello to all of those people who wondered what the hell Raging Cow was before arriving here and finding out exactly what it represents.

UPDATE 2 – Congratulations to William Anderson, who was first off the mark and is now the proud owner of ragingcow.co.uk

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030310

Time
09:03
Ahahahahaha! Check out the latest post from the ‘real’ Raging Cow weblog. Perhaps now there are two, I should make a clear distinction between them.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030310
Can Weblogs…?
Time
09:12
It has been 172 days, 22 hours and 45 minutes since we first asked the question:

Can Weblogs Make a Politician Keep a Promise?

We’re not done yet, but I’m confident that we can leave this one ticking over until it reaches its inevitable conclusion.

A lot of excellent suggestions have been coming in for the next ‘Can Weblogs…?’ project, but I think I’ve pretty much arrived at a solid idea all by my lonesome.

I have to let it simmer for a few days, but do watch this space. This one will be fun and deeply fulfilling for all concerned.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030310
UK Virtual March On Today!
Time
11:07
It’s the 10th of March, people. That means you have to get off your arses and call, email or fax someone in charge. Be nice to your local MP – they may very well be on your side without you knowing it. Oh, and do try to avoid cutting and pasting. Be brief if you like, but try to take the time to at least speak your mind.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030310
Raging Cow – The Manure
Time
16:28
Well, the bullshit has begun. The same article by Michael Liedtke (surely not this Michael Liedtke?) has gone out via AP and now features in a long list of high profile publications such as the Wilmington Morning Star, the Grand Forks Herald, and the Wichita Eagle. Oh, it also (finally) found an incarnation that nudges the mainstream at CNN. There’s a bit of a tie-in with the Blogger buyout here to make it more of a story, but the sentence that appears to be a copy and paste from their press release still appears in all its glory:

“Dr Pepper/Seven Up is already testing this theory by mining the Blogosphere to launch an unusual marketing campaign for a new flavored milk drink called Raging Cow.”

My dream is to have such articles immediately follow up with the words: “What a pity they fucked it up.”

If you’re a first-time visitor, here’s how you can help to make that happen.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030311
It’s War! And We’re All Going To Die!
Time
08:45
U.S. says it might accept changes to Iraq resolution. But not before they’ve finished putting the screws on Hans Blix for that all-important ‘smoking gun’. The latest shocking discovery is drone aircraft. Hang on, doesn’t the U.S. use drone aircraft? Oh well. Not a big deal. At least they don’t have weapons of mass destruction or undertake research into chemical warfare.

Speaking of which, you too can hunt down WMDs with this great pac-manesque flash game: Dr Strangeblix (or How I Learned To Start Worrying & Looking For Bombs).

You may also wish to take a refresher course in nuclear awareness with this great collection of civil defence videos. You too can avoid being burned to a crisp, merely by huddling under the desk. Seriously – it works!

Finally, we close with a collection of propaganda leaflets the U.S. has been dropping on Iraq. My favourite is the ‘Information Radio’ leaflet with a ghetto blaster that looks like a double-ended dildo. To me, this is a subliminal message that says: ‘Either way, you’re going to get it in the end!’

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030311

Time
09:00
This teacher was fired after sending a student a valentine that read: “I hate you, I wish you would die, Happy V Day, Die, Die, Die.”

He followed this up by writing ‘Die!’ on the blackboard. (Repetition aids retention, y’see.)

Meanwhile, this teacher has been placed on administrative leave after telling students that they could earn extra credit by writing a protest letter to President Bush. That’s just plain wrong. Everyone knows that he’s not the real president.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030311

Time
09:09
Security guard fired for arresting t-shirt protester.

“I guess that when it comes down to it,” he said, “It’s the people who sign the paperwork who get the blame, not the people who told you to do it.”

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030311

Time
09:11
Man killed after losing a staring competition. He copped a bullet outside the biker club where the challenge took place, which I think is completely out of order. He should have got two for flinching.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030311

Time
09:16
Flying sheep’s head fractures skull of heavy metal concertgoer.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030311
Tony Blair’s Email: The Letters
Time
09:33
–> —– Original Message —–

–> From: Camille

–> To: tony-blair@prime-minister.co.uk

–> Sent: Monday, March 10, 2003 5:18 PM

–> Subject: Irak – USA – England

–>

–> PERSONAL to Mr. Tony Blair

–>

–> Sir,

–>

–> Like your friend George Bush, you have a greater tendency towards dictatorship

–> than democracy.

–>

–> The great majority of English people are against this war, and several of your

–> own deputies and Ministers are against your idea, and one of your Minister had

–> already given her resignation, whilst some other ones are prepared to give

–> their resignation if you continue to support this dictatorial President of USA.

–>

–> Moreover, you have not been elected by American people, but by English voters,

–> but you favour the American style to control the World.

–>

–> There are International organizations to take care of international affairs,

–> but you said that you will ignore those international organizations if they

–> don’t agree with Bush-Blair’s ideas.

–>

–> Who do you think you are to disobey to the whole world and the majority of

–> citizens of this earth ?

–>

–> Camille

–>

–> Montreal Canada

Dear Camille,

How dare you speak this way of our democratically elected leader? Next you’ll be telling us that he’s up for a lifetime achievement award for attacks on civil liberties.

Please note that in this great country of ours, there is no longer any need for an effective opposition. This is because His is the only truth and His is the only way.

Regards,

Tim Ireland

(on behalf of Tony Blair)

http://www.bloggerheads.com/can_weblogs/tony_blair.asp

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030311

Time
09:36
Tips on making your trailer park a nicer place to live.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030311
The Raging Cow Boycott
Time
09:37
Yahoo! search results were FUBAR for most of yesterday, but they came good with a fresh database in place and, yes, there we are at No. 3 for ‘raging cow.’

It’s worth noting that the official ‘subtle sell’ site for Raging Cow does no better than No. 7 in Google or Yahoo! – and that the No.1 result is the Dr Pepper press release that reveals on our behalf what a sham this whole thing is.

If I were the client, I’d be asking all sorts of awkward questions about that – yet Richards Interactive (the agency behind this clueless initiative) still remains firm in their belief that they have done the right thing.

Recent posts at Raging Cow (the ones directed at Farmer Bob, i.e. little old me) suggest that they have their heads so far up their arses that they think that I’m angry and frustrated because I wasn’t a complete twat about weblog marketing before them.

Incidentally, they’re no doubt wondering where my site comments have gone. I haven’t been making any since the start of the boycott, because I don’t need to. Any weblog campaign relies heavily on Google and Yahoo, and us reality protesters own the zone. (Still, word has reached me that any use of the word ‘boycott’ at the Raging Cow site results in instant moderation.)

Will common sense prevail, or will they keep fighting the battle they’ve already lost? Time will tell.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030311

Time
09:49
Cory, in case you’re wondering, I plan on posting your photo when you get back from holiday.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030311

Time
10:41
Clare Short is in for a hard time today, so I’ve sent her an email to cheer her up. If you’d like to send her a few nice words, just contact me and I’ll send you the email address you’ll need (I don’t want to publish it here; it might get picked up by a spambot).

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030311
Tony Blair’s Email: The End Of The Blair Porn Project
Time
11:28
I’ve finally had the chance to speak to someone senior on the Web Team at Downing St. He’s quite a reasonable chap, but while he recognises the degree of urgency, he isn’t able to give us that long sought-after delivery date. Still, delivery of an email facility for Tony Blair has been promised ‘very soon,’ and I’ll be alerted by email when it goes live. An announcement here is sure to follow almost immediately, but if you’re not a regular visitor and/or wish to hear about this the moment it happens, just drop me a line.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030311

Time
12:42
Tom Watson has alerted us to tomorrow’s big news story. You may be feeling a little jaded after a few seemingly cynical and well-timed terror alerts, but this all rings true to me, especially these first two points:

1. It is easier for a terrorist organisation to plant people as members of staff at Heathrow airport than it is for the public to buy a ticket to fly. Security vetting is clearly derisory.

2. BAA plc (they run the airports) do not give adequate space to the police to do their jobs because they derive huge revenues from renting out shop-space to companies like Tie Rack.

This information comes from Lord Carlile’s report to the Home Affairs Select Committee (of which Tom is a member). There’s more information at Tom’s current site.

Tom’s new site should be up and running – and a work of sublime beauty – by late next week. It will include outgoing syndication for important material such as this.

Of course, being part to the wider web community has also resulted in Tom being approached by the inevitable collection of trolls and/or nutbags. Again, details are at his ‘currant’ site.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030311
Via Usenet
Time
12:53
The following information was posted to the all-but-deserted newsgroup alt.irony: The U.S. Defense Department has produced a training video that instructs its staff on how to handle requests under the federal Freedom of Information Act. Thing is, you and I are not allowed to see it. The video itself is a secret.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030311
The Raging Cow Boycott
Time
15:53
Whew! I’m going to hang back on retroactive data entry for about 5 minutes – or at least until my eyes stop spinning counter-clockwise. That should be more than long enough for me to thank Those Bears, Blogtrooper and Exploding Cigar for their link support. If anybody else has linked and not got the ‘thank you’ they deserved, please do email me and let me know. I’m mostly tracking via referral data, and some links can get lost towards the tail end of the list.

Oh, the Raging Cow Boycott is also top of the Best Rated Links list today over at Milk And Cookies.

Of course, the boycott could stop at any time – but Richards Interactive still cannot admit to themselves that they’re wrong about this, despite many folks dropping by their site with some valuable clue-by-fours.

None of the current stuff is from me, BTW – but quite a few folks have started to pick up on how many posts made in defence of Raging Cow are either from teen squad members, fake URLs, or dodgy email addresses.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030312
It’s War! And We’re All Going To Die!
Time
08:42
I remember the weeks leading up to the end of Hong Kong’s lease. What sticks in my mind most is the huge, well-timed military ‘training exercise’ the Chinese had just off the coast. Of course, this isn’t the only example of this kind of behaviour – it’s just the best one I can think of before my morning caffeine hit.

The U.S. has tested a device known as the ‘MOAB’ (Mother Of All Bombs) by blowing a good-sized chunk out of north-western Florida.

This Is London (has a picture of the bomb)

CNN (includes video footage)

Philly.com (has a map showing the bit of Florida that’s not there anymore)

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030312

Time
08:54
Student who videotaped sexual encounter with his girlfriend and showed tape to his mates gets five years’ probation and a month in jail. He also has to take out a half-page advertisement in the local paper to apologise.

Seems as good a time as any to blog this:

Captain amErika – The Sodomy Comedy.

Amazing true story or best-ever ‘sell’ of a pornographic product? Judge for yourself, but do be careful which links you follow from this page – there’s some very nasty NSFW material only a mere click away. But, for the benefit of those who do follow these links, I’d just like to say:

“Next time, soldier, try standing a little closer to the razor!”

(Link via the sickos at FunJunkie.)

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030312

Time
09:00
Anti-fur protesters wrapped in fur coats before being bundled off stage. Huh. Jean Paul Gaultier knows how to employ basic irony. I’ll have to store that information for future reference.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030312

Time
09:03
U.S. government cafeterias change name of ‘french fries’ to ‘freedom fries.’ No, that’s not a link to The Onion.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030312

Time
09:06
Thomas the Tank Engine may be making children frightened of travelling by train. Well, the Isle of Sodor does have an appalling safety record, but just like in the A-Team, everybody walks away.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030312

Time
09:12
Before you follow this link, try to finish the headline yourself:

Drunk woman wakes up:

1. with hangover

2. with stranger

3. on floor

4. on ice floe

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030312

Time
09:14
Mmmmm…. what could be more appetising than a McDonalds ‘cheese’ and ‘tomato’ toasted sarnie?

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030312
Flash Thingies
Time
09:19
How to take a crap in the woods.

Sadly, it’s not a bear giving this point-by-point lecture, but the advice is spot on: “What is toilet paper made from? Trees! The forest is full of trees and similar plants. Go ahead and use what’s nearby.”

I remember the first time I tried to wipe my arse with a 30ft conifer. It didn’t go well. Of course, now I know that it’s a good idea to remove the pinecones first.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030312

Time
09:29
“Why, Jim.. that’s why very home needs (pause) The Love Rocker!”

“Mike, is that the product that allows you to do things that are impossible in a bed?”

“Well, yes it is, Jim. But unlike other sex swings, there’s nothing to mount in your ceiling, and you don’t have to be an acrobat to use it!”

“It looks like a piece of exercise equipment…”

“That it does, Jim – and do you know why? Because the Love Rocker is the only sex swing that lets you tone your abs and enjoy greatly increased penetration.”

“Amazing! Hey, do you think we can get an audience member up here to test it out?”

“We sure can, Jim. Meantime, we’ll go to a short break. Call this number now, folks. Operators are standing by.”

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030312

Time
09:37
40 Labour MPs call for Blair to resign.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030312

Time
09:39
Give the kids nightmares.

Give yourself nightmares.

No home is complete without blood-curdling screams in the dead of night. And a Love Rocker.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030312
Most Important Link Of The Day
Time
09:43

****************************************************

I need all fans of The Ultimate Insult to get in touch with me by email today. It’s nothing to worry about, but it is important. Drop me a line as soon as you can. That means now, dingleberry.

****************************************************

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030312
The Raging Cow Boycott
Time
12:05
The Raging Cow Boycott is now No. 2 in Google for ‘raging cow’ searches. Raging Cow itself has actually taken a step up – to 6th place.

Still no response from Richards Interactive. Perhaps they’ll get in touch after today’s crisis meeting.

While we’re waiting, perhaps you’d care to read about Chris Pirillo’s encounter with their marketing team. His thoughts follow on to cover the whole marketing/blogs thing, and it’s a good read.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030312
Complaints?
Time
12:48
From an AOL user (no doubt connected in some way to a Canadian who got

awfully confused and uptight when I answered her email to Tony Blair yesterday):

“Your site is disgusting and you should be ashamed of yourself in

denegrating a good and honorable man who has learned the lesson of

apeasement and has vowed that his nation will not fall for that garbage again.”

Lady, I’ll tell you the same thing that I told your friend… Tony Blair

is aware of this campaign, and I’ve even been in direct email contact with

his wife over the matter. If they can understand the validity, legality

and importance of our actions at Bloggerheads, then I’m sure you can

find it in your heart to do likewise.

PS – Even AOL comes with a basic spill-chucking function. Try using it sometime.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030312

Time
13:24
There’s a rumour going around that Osama bin Laden has been captured in Pakistan. Well, it is one of the places they’re looking. Me, I wasted most of yesterday staking out the Tie Rack outlet at Heathrow.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030312

Time
13:51
Zoran Djindjic, the Serbian PM and one of the key leaders in the revolt that toppled Slobodan Milosevic, was today assassinated in Belgrade.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030312

Time
17:39
What are you talking about? Of course it’s real.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030312

Time
17:40
The Guardian reports early on Tom’s new and still-being-built weblog. Bit sloppy on the name-checks, too.



BTW, I’ll be busy for most of Thursday training his staff on the back end and chipping in with the retroactive data entry. 2001 is done, but there’s still all of 2002 and some of 2003 to do before we can set the designer loose on it.

Oh, if you have any questions about the Ultimate Insult thing (see below), Scott himself now has all of the details and will be happy to bring you up to speed if you can’t wait for a response from me.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030312
The Raging Cow Boycott
Time
21:00
Now we’re No.2 in Yahoo!

The people have spoken.

Still nothing from RI but the usual spoutage at Raging Cow. Looks like they still believe this is a success of some kind – or at least that they can sell this idea to the client.

Perhaps if I put it to them as simply as possible…?

Even if you have a brand/URL all over your posters and TV ads, the majority of web users aren’t confident or adept enough to type a URL into the address bar and go directly to that address. Instead, they will use the URL (or, in most cases, just the name used as the brand/URL) as a search query in the search engine or directory of their choice.

Person see expensive ‘tease’ poster/advertisement.

Person use search engine.

Person see:

1. Press release at client site

2. Boycott of campaign

…..

6. Site you had client pay good money for to reach this very audience.

I’m willing to bet that – even when this whole mess does become too obvious to ignore – they will try to convince the client that it represents the activities of a competitor with a grudge or the unpredictability of the Interwebnet.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030313

Time
12:57
I’m very busy working on Tom Watson’s new weblog today, so there’s very little time for personal bloggage. Sorry about that. Back on deck tomorrow.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030313

Time
14:59
Only about a year of back data to go. I have just enough time to thank Weatherpixie for her link support on the Raging Cow thing and smile at the efforts of Dug Falby.

The Star Wars Photoshopping Project has suddenly and inexplicably spread into a number of web forums, foreign and otherwise. I’m not sure what started the whole thing, but this well-travelled link at LockerGnome looks to be a likely suspect.

Anyway – enough stat-masturbation.

Time to end this 12-minute lunch and get back down to it.

Cheers all.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030314

Time
08:17
The beer drought was interrupted last night by celebratory drinks. Sweet buggering Christ, what a hangover!

I’m crawling back on the wagon the moment I can see straight enough to do so.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030314
When Monkeys Run Amok
Time
08:23
There was only one on the loose in Yokohama. Folks in Covington, however, still have four to deal with four remaining rogue monkeys after two dozen of them escaped from a research centre. More escaped monkey updates as news comes to hand.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030314

Time
08:31
Enjoy some Weight Watchers recipe cards from 1974. Shades of the Gallery of Regrettable Food here, folks. Approach with caution.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030314

Time
08:34
McDonalds worker stuck on grill work due to birthmark. She was allegedly told by senior staff that they couldn’t put her on the till because she would ‘make babies cry or scare customers off.’

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030314

Time
08:38
Man drives around for months with dead mother in passenger seat before expiring quietly in the driver’s seat. Are we there yet, Norman?

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030314
It’s War! And We’re All Going To Die!
Time
08:41
I’m finding that I enjoy Popbitch a lot less lately, especially now that they’re going begging again. Bad enough that they bend over for banners – now they want my money, too? Sorry, I’m not playing.

Anyway, yesterday’s issue touched on the issue of war, but failed to feature this latest effort by the Beastie Boys, which is charting quite well on Blogdex.

There’s also this collection of anti-war posters that you may find useful. Or not. I think we’re past the stage where posters do any good. It seems to me that a little civil disobedience is called for.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030314
Tony Blair’s Email: The Letters
Time
08:52
—– Original Message —–

From: “ta day”

To: president@whitehouse.gov; tony-blair@prime-minister.co.uk

Sent: Thursday, March 13, 2003 10:22 AM

Subject: JESUS’S SAKE

–>

–> WE IMPLORE YOU; STOP THE WAR ON IRAQ FOR GOD’S AND

–> JESUS’S SAKE. DON’T SHED HUMAN’S BLOOD. OTHERWISE,

–> THÝS BLOOD WILL STIFLE AND SMOTHER YOU TOO…!

–>

Alright! Alright! Just stop shouting, for Christ’s sake!

Regards,

Tim Ireland

(on behalf of Tony Blair)

http://www.bloggerheads.com/can_weblogs/tony_blair.asp

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030314
Yet Another Lame Quiz
Time
09:00
Which political sterotype are you?

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030314

Time
09:01
Nothing says ‘humanity’ quite like mobile death vans. The opening paragraph makes me laugh for all the wrong reasons:

“China is equipping its courts with mobile execution vans as it shifts away from the communist system’s traditional bullet in the head, towards a more ‘civilised’ use of lethal injection.”

The statement from an official that follows this also speaks volumes.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030314

Time
09:06
My favourite headline today: AOL probe widened. One microscope isn’t enough, it seems.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030314
The Raging Cow Boycott
Time
09:13
Well, what do you know? We made the news.

This is the quote they used when referencing the boycott:

“The people who make the cash decisions need to know that charging into our arena expecting it all for nothing is a very bad idea,” reads a message on the site. “If people want to reach us, they need to know that it’s going to be on our terms, and that we will not be insulted by offers of cheap freebies.”

Seems as good a time as any to ask you chaps to do something for nothing. Sorry there’s no direct link to this. You’ll find out why when you visit the page:

http://www.bloggerheads.com/can_weblogs/perfect_job.asp

We go live on Sunday. All link support and feedback is welcome.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030314

Time
10:58
Lots of new visitors today for all sorts of reasons, so I should probably direct them to recent entries in the archive and the ‘stuff’ page.

Oh, and a reminder: the Circle Line Party is on tonight.

UPDATE – Yes, I will be there. I’m taking some art along, too.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20030314

Time
23:16
The Circle Line Party was without doubt the most enjoyable and uplifting public event I have ever – ever – attended (this includes the million-strong march in London and the Olympic bid announcement in Sydney).

SpaceHijackers are masters of the urban art field, and have created something truly remarkable – not only in concept, but in execution.

My hat goes off to them.








About Tim Ireland

Tim is the sole author of Bloggerheads.
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