Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Ups and downs....

I was going to write about the Liverpool half marathon which nearly killed me this weekend but I was really pleased I got done. As the person who was always picked after the class fatty for the netball team, I've always been hopeless at sports. So taking up running years afterwards when Mrs Richards isn't sighing with impatience from the sidelines has proved an unexpected pleasure (although not at around 11.30am last Sunday morning it's true).
Anyway I can't be bothered to say any more; I got a postcard today sent to college, slagging off me for last weeks article. No address and a signature I can't read properly. I don't usually mind stuff like that - it goes with the territory but I think working from 3.30am-6pm two days running on top of all the other stuff last week - and I just feel really down.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Guardian Changing Media Summit.....
is currently happening. I'd have loved to have gone to this - particularly after all the work I did on user generated content for my seminars. But the conference organisers, despite lots of pleas from me, pointing out that I was the GRF, would not waive the £300 fee or give me a reduction in price. I'm currently living on baked beans and toast to finance part of my field trip next month to the tsunami zone so I couldn't pay for this as well.
So I am going to keep an eye on it via the blogs of Roy Greenslade on the Guardian site.
http://blogs.guardian.co.uk/greenslade/conference/ and comment when I see interesting stuff....
UPDATE: Just have to post this Nick Higham quote that Jemima Kiss refers to. A very good point:
BBC correspondent Nick Higham, who is chairing the event, shares his own "Higham's law" with us: "Whenever it is predicted that a new tech will utterly will transform a market, the full impact is ten years away".

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

The stuff of dreams....

I wrote a piece for the Telegraph that appears today after Muriel Gray criticised the submissions for the long list of the Orange Prize. It is a slightly tongue in cheek approach to women's fiction:


I'll try to get the link to work properly later when I am back in college.

I should know that you mess with Heyer fans at your peril. A very kind friend put up a link to it on the Guardian talkboards. I was really touched he did so. However I've immediately been told off by the Guardianista bloggers for my first sentence being cringeworthy, and making them wince. (Ladies, in the spirit of Heyer, I was going for comic exaggeration and contrast - sorry if you took it as boasting).
My favourite is someone who asks sniffily 'what IS a Guardian research fellow?' (I'm not sure I know myself)
Maybe I should blog and reply to my critics. And at least put them out of their misery re the identity of the disabled man. Charles Audley of course, loses his arm at the Battle of Waterloo in An Infamous Army.......

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Is nothing sacred?

What would Peter Purves say?

Happy Birthday D

Have a great day

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Limits of the internet?
Thanks to Adrian Monck for this piece by Eli Noam in the FT a few years ago before we all get too evangelical about the internet

Morning Report

Channel 4 updates its website....http://www.channel4.com/news/watchlisten/morning-report.jsp

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Running water

So this is how you spend a Wednesday lunchtime, feeling the hand of history on your shoulder where Roger Bannister broke the four minute mile barrier, running for 5.8 km round the Iffley track, Christ Church meadow and Donnington Bridge. Or if you're me mainlining Strepsils and hoping it will all be over soon. Nuffield, it is alleged fielded more teams than any other college; what this says about social scientists (and whether this is a good thing) is up for debate.

I would like to say that the abiding memory I will take away from the relay is the team spirit, the feeling of doing something for college, the joy of pushing oneself to achieve athletically. Unfortunately I am sure it will be the sight of someone trying to take a short cut along the flooded towpath and suddenly disappearing with a shriek up to his shoulders in water.

Hey I'm a journalist not an academic. That's the sort of thing we laugh at.....That's why we become journalists.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Killing the messenger....at the rate of two per week

On a more serious note a long overdue and wellwritten report from the International News Safety Institute (and I don't just say that because the bulk of it was written by a former colleague and friend, Ken Payne) into deaths of journalists around the world. More than a thousand journalists have been killed - two a week - over the last ten years. Only one in four are killed in armed conflict - the majority are local journalists working on stories that people don't want published. Here's the actual report - Killing The Messenger
It's a good reminder when lots of journalism is attacked as shallow and frivolous that out there there are people who are paying the price for trying to expose the truth.
I remember in 2003 going to Dhaka to lead a British Council course on journalism, Bangladesh was at that time the most violent countries place for journalists according to Reporters without Borders . Yet young people I taught still wanted to become journalists despite the risks they face. This is the piece I wrote about it then Safety First
Still Ill

I have caught the Nuffield lurgy and have been feeling very miserable and ill. Only cheered up by my cleaner's patent remedy ("You must boil red wine and lemons together and then drink it and go to bed. You will wake up better" she said forcefully*. As if I would need encouraging). Then depressed again by the Guardian's Battle of the Workouts here

I have been running for at least 3 times a week since Christmas due to Liverpool Half Marathon Fear, done one Pilates class a week and now do at least one yoga class and yet am nowhere near the body of a goddess this article suggests I should have.

Oh pants. Life is so unfair sometimes.

*Curiously I do feel better today. Not sure whether that is the lying in bed, the Lemsip Max or the red wine remedy. You decide.....