Dual Loyalty

As writers and bloggers are so fond of saying; you couldn't make it up. You don't cross the Iron Curtain and come out without scars ...
· Jozef Imrich, Survivor of the Iron Curtain Crossing

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Bloggers are proud of having taken their views public -- well, sort of. We know we often hit the radar and issues get amplified. Often we do have an impact ...
CIA contractor's classified blog ruffles agency - Software testing firm fires woman after posts about torture   
Axsmith, 42, said in an interview this week that she thinks of herself as the Erma Bombeck of the intel world, a "generalist" writing about lunch meat one day, the war on terrorism the next. She said she first posted her classified blog in May and no one said a thing. When she asked, managers even agreed to give her the statistics on how many people were entering the site. Her column on food pulled in 890 readers, and people sent her reviews from other intelligence agency canteens.  Sharing Stories: Poking a Stick Into The 'Hive Mind'

The Blog, The Press, The Media: MySpace, Google Ink $900 Million Search Deal
IN A DEAL THAT WILL vastly expand Google's available ad inventory, Fox Interactive Network has tapped Google to power paid search on all of the company's Web properties, including the hugely popular social networking site MySpace.com, gaming site IGN Entertainment, and movie site Rotten Tomatoes    

Media Dragons [BLOGS from space? Why not, now that the internet is everywhere, giving even extreme travellers almost instant connection. Extreme blogging takes off ; To misquote Shakespeare in Twelfth Night, some people are born famous, some become famous and other have fame thrust upon them. ... Google are for men - Yahoo for women ]
• · When he's not playing guitar, a ponytailed musician named Charles Johnson likes to sit in his Los Angeles home office, listen to jazz, and make mincemeat of the mainstream media. He's tangled with CBS over the authenticity of documents about President Bush's National Guard service. This time around, he's uncovered doctored war photos distributed by Reuters, forcing the news service to retract them. A blogger shines when news media get it wrong ; ‘Inside PCIJ’ nominated for best Asian group blog
• · · Once upon a time, unhappy customers had little leverage against big companies and their poor customer-service procedures Internet taking gripes: Consumers find more power ; Beating Terrorism: It's the Grievances, Stupid 
• · · · Bloggers want traffic to their blog. One way to get traffic is to write in your blog a list of ways for other bloggers to get traffic to their blog, like "56 ways to get traffic to your blog." The most common piece of advice in these "way to get traffic lists" is to write lists. It's brilliantly self-fulfilling and it works. Five Reasons You Shouldn't Link to Blog Lists ; How to make your blog more useable in 3 steps
• · · · · Blogs Cashing in on Tom Cruise What kind of salary do you need? 50 Common Interview Questions & Answers ; The government in Iran controls the media and censors the internet. But Iran’s President has become the latest high-profile user of the world wide web. Blog by Iranian President
• · · · · · Be the first to leave a comment for this blog! Good, bad and mediocre ; Blog SEO is no different. If you want higher search engine rankings in Google, MSN, and Yahoo Search, it's important to remember your blog themes and topics. Fortunately, it's what you post about on a daily basis. Blog SEO: Higher Search Engine Rankings Tip

Friday, August 18, 2006

Yet another divine winter weekend in Sydney. The Bondi Beach is peppered with people and the temperature is over 18 degrees celsium. Having brunch at the Iceberg with the Irish Kevin and Jenny as well as Mal Wendy is always memorable and catching up with Christopher after his trip to Europe is like putting icing on the cake of Good Life ;-)

Forests were felled for the literature that explored the mysteries of Google and the next era of advertising. Google is building a new "traffic cop" layer into its search engine to help internet users dodge websites containing spyware and malicious code.     New 'neighbourhood watch' for Google search

Chas Licciardello et al ... The Chaser's "censored" sketch

The Blog, The Press, The Media: Online will just keep getting bigger: Women Prefer Plasma TVs Over Diamonds?
Online advertising is expected to be the third biggest generator of advertising revenue in the Australian media sector.

A plasma television is a girl's new best friend, says a U.S. study that found three out of four women would pick a plasma TV over a solitaire diamond necklace.
According to the Women's Watch: Girls Gone Wired survey, women are increasingly passionate about technology. The modern woman prizes cellphones, iPods and digital cameras over fancy shoes, holidays and even the iconic little black dress.

How rocky is the digital economy? [Diamonds are no longer a girl's best friend, according to a new United States study that found three of four women would prefer a new plasma television to a diamond necklace Women love Media Dragon and Technology: Girls Gone Wired ; Today's rate increase has nothing do with bananas. Women Crave Latest Tech Gadgets as Much as Men Do ]
• · Sydney Morning Herald. 02/08/2006. Careers. page 11. Tax cuts for lower-income earners are more likely to ease the nation's labour shortage than relief for higher earners, says economist Dr Nicholas Gruen. Dr Gruen said the threat of losing welfare benefits as income rises was keeping many out of the workforce. Welfare to work. ; Terry Lane: mea culpa - Club Troppo Nicholas Gruen
• · · How public servants frustrate the FOI process Dead letter office ; Nicholas nicholas at Larvatus Prodeo Cross posted from Troppo
• · · · Rupert Murdoch To Offer Tony Blair Senior Role In Media Empire...

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Paddington cafes are alive with all kinds of stories some more amazing than others. I rather like the references to Sensational Soy Story

The Minister for the Arts and Sport, Senator Rod Kemp, has announced a review of the Government's funding for film production. Mr Kemp said the review will take a broad-ranging look at the effectiveness of current Government direct and indirect support, including film tax incentives.

In releasing an Issues Paper, " Review of Australian Government Film Funding Support ", the Minister said it will investigate options for the most effective ways of improving the long-term viability of the film industry in the future.

In particular, the review will examine the effectiveness and continued appropriateness of different mechanisms of Government support for the industry, including:

* investigating whether, and to what extent, tax incentives and other Government support measures are appropriate and effective in attracting private sector investment to the industry; and

* developing possible options for improving the effectiveness of tax incentives and other government support measures, where necessary.

The review will also take account of the findings of the 2005 review of the Div 10BA and 10B ITAA 1936 tax incentive schemes, which is examining issues relating to the clarity of the operations of these schemes. The findings of the 2006 statutory review of the Refundable Film Tax Offset scheme under s 376-110 of the ITAA 1997 (see2006 WTB 22 [921]) will also be taken into account in this review.

The review is expected to be completed by October 2006.
The Government notes that the current tax incentives designed to increase private investment in film tend to fall into 2 main types:

* tax credits, rebates and refunds to production companies, which operate in a similar manner to the Australian Refundable Film Tax Offset; and

* tax incentives for investors, like Div 10BA of the ITAA 1936, which accelerate deductions.
Where the direct beneficiary of an incentive is a producer, this is classed as a tax incentive for producers. These may be claimable on completion of the film, or a component of the incentive can be provided upfront (eg Div 10BA).

The Government notes that, in some countries, like Australia, a tax incentive for producers is offered principally to attract runaway productions where eligibility criteria are expenditure-based. In other countries, a mixture of direct and indirect support is offered for national product. The Government says this support is provided either solely on cultural criteria or by using a combination of cultural and expenditure criteria.

In relation to the film tax incentives, the Government is seeking specific comments on:
* whether tax incentives are still an effective and appropriate mechanism;
* the appropriateness of the current Div 10BA/10B schemes;
* whether a tax incentive for producers should be considered instead of a tax incentive for investors;
* the criteria which should apply for Australian participation in any incentive scheme; and
* any other models that might be effective in encouraging private investment.
The Issue Paper, " Review of Australian Government Film Funding Support ", July 2006, is available on the Department of Communications, Information Technology and the Arts Website [http://www.dcita.gov.au/__data/assets/file/40782/Austalian_film_review.rtf].

Further information can also be obtained from Rhonda Thorpe - tel: (02) 6271 1713; email: rhonda.thorpe@dcita.gov.au [mailto:rhonda.thorpe@dcita.gov.au]

Submissions on the review are due by 11 August 2006to: Mr Peter Young, General Manager, Film and Digital Content, Department of Communications, Information Technology and the Arts, GPO Box 2154, CANBERRA ACT 2601 - email: filmreview2006@dcita.gov.au [mailto:filmreview2006@dcita.gov.au]

Source: Minister for the Arts and Sport media release  
RTF version:Review of Australian Government Film Funding Support