A long list of land grabs

What are the odds, do you think, of this Blogger profile being the work of someone in the PR industry?

Posted in Teh Interwebs | 4 Comments

Festive fun with Fasthosts

The Register – Fasthosts customers blindsided by emergency password reset: Fasthosts has announced that “a number” of its customers’* FTP spaces were raided as a result of the major hack that triggered a police investigation last month. It has applied a system-wide reset of thousands of passwords as a result… The firm is sending replacement passwords out via Royal Mail, it says. A Fasthosts statement described the move as a “precautionary measure”. All email passwords that were not changed will also be reset on 9/10 December. We’ve been bombarded by emails from angry webmasters who say no warning was given ahead of the reset, shutting down hundreds of websites.

Say NO to Fasthosts – Merry Christmas from Fasthosts: Fasthosts initiated this on Thursday night, and by all reports have not been able to send out new passwords by post yesterday (Friday). This means many people will not receive their new passwords until at least Tuesday/Wednesday next week. This amounts to a full week of lost business for any online shop or order-taking business hosting on Fasthosts servers. The Customer Service telephone number is permanently engaged, and the technical support lines are offering queuing times of over two hours. (“You are at queue position 54a”)

This latest debacle even rates a mention at the BBC website, and if you check out the Reg article, you will see (so far) a whopping 149 comments!

I’m looking at a copy of the email they sent to their customers right now. How did I get my hands on it? Well, they sent a copy to Clive, who certainly shouldn’t be on their customer database, given that Fasthosts themselves deactivated his account.

The words ‘arse’ and ‘elbow’ spring to mind.

Previously on Bloggerheads:
Fasthosts: a timeline of excellent service
Fasthosts and UKreg: why you should look elsewhere
Yet another reason to avoid Fasthosts like the plague
Fasthosts: I think I may be onto something here…

UPDATE (5 Dec) – The Register – Fasthosts customers still frozen out of websites: Fasthosts has promised it will bring in more support staff to deal with the volume of calls it is still receiving following its poorly-handled password reset on Friday… The system-wide reset was triggered by a hack attack in October. Fasthosts asked customers to change passwords at the time, and said last week that those who did would not be affected by the reset. Many Reg readers say they complied in October, but have been locked out now nevertheless… Customers who haven’t changed all their email passwords will face similar problems when they’re also reset on Sunday.

Posted in The Political Weblog Movement | 4 Comments

Vote for Mr Splashy Pants

Why? Because Greenpeace has a whale-naming competition and ‘Muhammad’ isn’t an option.

UPDATE – Hahahahaha! Having just voted, I can now see that ‘Mr Splashy Pants’ in waaaaay out in front with 73% of the vote.

Posted in Teh Interwebs | 1 Comment

Blogger.com finally attempts to address the identity problem

Blogger.com has now taken action to remove the dirty great loophole in their system that allowed comment contributors on many weblogs to pose as other bloggers – including other users of their own damn system:

Blogger in Draft – New feature: OpenID commenting

It seems a bit of a nuclear option at first, especially as they’ve disabled the link/name facility for *all* users of Blogger.com, but only made the new OpenID system available to those who use (or are vaguely aware of) Blogger in Draft.

But users of Blogger.com who are aware of Blogger in Draft can quickly update their settings to allow OpenID-enabled comments, thereby immediately opening the door to any registered user of OpenID, AOL, LiveJournal, WordPress or TypeKey; these users will then be able to leave a comment using their name/nickname and a link to their main site or profile.

(Using a Technorati profile is somewhat problematic, but it’s early days yet.)

Easy-to-follow instructions can be found here.

UPDATE – Top marks to MatGB, who said nearly a year ago that “Blogger should start supporting OpenID…” (Erm… and that I should as well. A good point, but I’m not feeling terribly confident about MT plug-ins lately. Since the server move forced by Usmanov, the back-end of Bloggerheads has been decidely shaky… and I’m one of the luckier ones.)

Posted in The Political Weblog Movement | Comments Off

“It is Home Office policy to remove political dissidents to Uzbekistan”

Craig reports that Jahongir Sidikov’s deportation has been postponed so his case can be reviewed, but stresses quite rightly that it is the Home Office policy that needs to be reviewed.

Meanwhile, as the government continues in its mission to fast-track one person to their death and slow-track others facing death, the ‘big’ story across the bulk of what is supposed to be an alternative to mainstream media is diddled donations.

Translation: that blood you smell might just be on your hands.

UPDATE – David Miliband will be taking your questions on international affairs in a live webchat on 30 November from 13:45 GMT

I have no doubt that he’ll be avoiding some as well.

Posted in The War on Stupid | 2 Comments

Iraqi employees: trigger action

Dan Hardie – Letting them die: I’ve had emails from three people who claim to be – and who almost certainly are- Iraqi former employees of the British Government. All three say that they and their former colleagues are still at risk of death for their ‘collaboration’… You’ve heard this before, but it’s now more important than ever. The last lot of letters and emails got the Government to announce a change in policy: an inadequate change, badly implemented. The next lot of letters and emails will force the Government to announce another change in policy, one that will be properly implemented and will not be based on leaving people to die.

Read the post and email your MP. Offer them a personal briefing. The impact of certain information that can’t be broadcast/published for reasons of safety is considerable. It took me a couple of days just to convince myself that I’d come to terms with it… before I unexpectedly collapsed in a blubbering heap in the middle of cooking supper a few days later.

Posted in It's War! It's Legal! It's Lovely! | 1 Comment

Polling day in Australia

Independent – Howard rocked by smear scandal as defeat looms: John Howard, Australia’s Prime Minister, was fighting for his political life yesterday as details emerged of an attempt by senior members of his Liberal Party to smear the opposition Labour Party and whip up anti-Muslim feeling in a key marginal seat.

You’ll want to read that article in full. It describes what is more or less an offline sock-puppeting… and yes, someone (you’ll never guess from which side) plays the ‘stalker’ card.


Good luck today, Australia. Have a schooner for me when* that little cockroach Howard – who has been surviving and thriving on dirty politics for more than 20 years – finally gets Baygon-ed.

(*So I’m an optimist. Sue me. In fact, I’m even going to lay on a happy song, just for the hell of it. Be warned that this music video contains both pigs and humans.)

UPDATE (24 Nov) – BBC – Labor claims Australia poll win: The Labor Party has claimed victory in Australia’s election, after early vote counts suggested Prime Minister John Howard had lost his parliamentary seat.

Ooooh… I bet hope that stings. OK, time for a really, really, really happy song.

Posted in Australian Music, The War on Stupid | 3 Comments

Jahongir Sidikov: who cares?

Craig Murray – A Low Point: Jahongir Sidikov is still in detention at Heathrow, having offered passive resistance to the attempt to deport him today. Next time they will use staff authorised and equipped to use force. I am deeply depressed. All yesterday I was working on trying to save him from being returned to the horrors of the Karimov regime’s treatment of dissidents, and it was like living inside a nightmare… I am still in a genuine state of shock and disbelief that we should start shipping asylum seekers back to Uzbekistan, of all places. It is as though the government have gone into official denial of what kind of place Uzbekistan is. I am also astonished that I have been met with complete indifference from everybody – officials, MPs and journalists. I can’t get anybody to take an interest… Again, I restate my disbelief that we are doing this. How on Earth can we consider deporting dissidents back to Uzbekistan. Do Ministers not know what happens in that country, or do they just not care? And why can’t I get any politician, journalist or official even vaguely interested? Even on the internet, no prominent bloggers have shown any interest.

Ministers do know what happens in that country; people who dare to oppose Karimov’s regime end up dead or declared insane and pumped full of Thorazine.

Ministers don’t care what happens in that country; it takes a shower of bullets just to get them to cluck their tongues.

Blog it, push for press coverage and alert your MP. Please. Just on the off chance that we might make enough noise to get the heartless bastards who run this country to save a man’s life for the sake of appearances.

UPDATE – Question That has more (and a list of supporters), but I’m inclined to agree with Septicisle. If you’re forced to prioritise, pushing for press coverage is the way to go.

Posted in The War on Stupid | 1 Comment

Ellee is officially an ‘expert’

Ellee Seymour – My PR Diploma: I heard today that I passed my third paper for my CIPR Diploma in Public Relations. I distinguished myself with a Merit on my personal project which focused on MPs who write blogs, and how it relates to two-way communication and PR theory.

UPDATE – For those who came in late.

Posted in The Political Weblog Movement | 9 Comments

Unity’s new home

Just a quick heads-up for those who don’t already know:

Until further notice, Unity’s blog will be located at http://www.ministryoftruth.me.uk/

Posted in Updates | Comments Off