Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Super Glued activists inside the BBC

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

BBC Terminology

400 people being killed by Ugandan rebels constitutes a massacre

360 Palestinians killed by the IDF constitutes a raid

Can you work out what the difference is?

Flying Penis

Watch a flying Penis at a Gary Kasparov press conference

Super Glue protest at BBC HQ

I filmed a dramatic direct action protest today in Cardiff. Just after 2pm, three protesters walked into the lobby of the BBC Wales headquarters and two super-glued themselves to glass security doors.

While one activist handed out leaflets, frustrated reporters were prevented from leaving or entering the main BBC News building.

Draped in a Palestinian flag, campaigner Bob Cotterell said
‘We have super-glued our skin to the main doors of the BBC in protest at the irresponsible reporting of the Middle East issue by the public broadcaster.
He continued to say
‘The Middle East is a sticky situation but if the public has any hope of understanding both sides, then we need the BBC to give the full, rather than partial, facts.
The protesters are upset that the reporting of the Israeli F-16 aerial bombings does not put them in any real context.

Fellow activist D Murphy said, while glued to the gate
'While we hear about rockets being fired from the Gaza Strip into Israel, we rarely hear that this is Palestinian land stolen by Israel. '
She continued
'Since Saturday, Israel has killed more than 350 civilians in response to the repeatedly reported 4 deaths amongst the Israelis. The hugely disproportionate response by the Israel is not highlighted.'

Four Police cars arrived at the scene with sirens and lights flashing. All journalists were ejected from the BBC building and the main entrance was blocked off with metal barriers.The protesters complained that the BBC has chosen to name Hamas as a ‘Militant Organisation’ rather its rightful term of ‘Government’, omitting that in January 2006, with a huge majority, Hamas was democratically elected to govern the people of Palestine.

Wrapped in a Palestinian flag, she added:
‘We do not hear that Israel has violated more United Nations resolutions than any other country, and today it is collectively punishing the ordinary people of Gaza breaking Article 33 of the 4th Geneva Convention.’

They have asked people to fax, phone or e-mail the BBC and urge them to review their reporting of the Middle East and 'not make the situation even worse'.
The activists continued to say
‘We are calling upon the BBC management to revise every news report before broadcast to ensure that the language used to report the attacks is responsible and fair. We ask that wider context is given for viewers to understand the issues on a deeper level.’
The 'Glue Two' are a part of the group who previously locked themselves inside Cardiff Castle to highlight the 50th anniversary of Israel’s illegal occupation of Palestine.
Video images of the protest are available from Undercurrents

BBC also reported
the story
Meanwhile, in the protest at BBC Wales, a man and woman glued themselves to barriers, temporarily closing access via the main reception area.

They said they were unhappy with coverage of the conflict and asked the BBC to refer to Hamas as a government which has been democratically elected.

A BBC spokesman said: "We're satisfied that the BBC's coverage of the events in Israel and the Palestinian Authority has been balanced, fair, accurate and up to the usual BBC standards of impartiality.

"In our reports, we have tried to explain how the current situation started and has since developed, and given air-time to representatives from across the political spectrum."

Western Mail report here

Monday, December 29, 2008

Air Con

Did you ever think airplane air conditioning could be so scary? Especially on a trip to the Philippines, where you're likely to be in dire need of good air conditioning?

Above, on a standard flight from Manila to Boracay, the Philippines' most popular beach resort, a passenger captures the airplane's "sketchy" air conditioning system. The passenger cabin floods with some sort of mist that looks like smoke.

Apparently this effect is common on small planes that fly in humid climates. Is that pollution or not? perhaps we can put up with that and worse every day but it doesn't appear to be bothering the dude in the video that continues to read a magazine despite the constant smoke screen.

On another flying note. Did you know that pilots are given 10 times more O2 than passengers. Try this -

How to Survive in 2009

A-Z of Bushcraft in 2009

Andrew gives you an insight into what we will cover during 2009. Don't let the economic downturn upset you. Treat it as a survival situation and think positve. We will be showing you tips and skills to make the most of the challenging times ahead.

Tune into

Undercurrents scoops another award

This is supposed to be a secret until January 20th but i thought i would share it with you, my loyal blog readers!

Undercurrents has just scooped another award for one of our films. Climate Cycle tells the epic adventure of a young school teacher and her partner Kevin. The couple travel the 12,000km to Sydney using only sustainable transport- the train, bicycle and cargo ship.

We have won the Tokyo Video Festival and the Award Ceremony held on the 1st March 2009 Sunday in Yokohama, Japan.

Yokohama (photo left)is one of the very few cities in Japan with a diverse multicultural population.

The official press release etc will go out on Jan 20th

Would you pay £10 to view higher quality web video?

We may all love watching television and video on the Internet, but the technology allowing us to do so doesn’t come for free. Could we, the consumers, soon have to pay extra in order to watch BBC iplayer web tv.
Would you pay £10 for the privilege of higher quality video?

Introduction to USA foreign policy

Excellent animation from Taking Liberties

Sunday, December 28, 2008

28th December attack on Gaza Strip - bombings in Rafah continue

Eye witness from Gaza

Israel and Palestine in the media

Reporting issues in the Middle East is difficult. Ask anyone who has posted articles about Israeli aggression and you will usually get responses from rabid right wingers determined that all Palestinians are terrorists and that Israel is only 'responding' to attacks. Anyone who bothers to go to the middle East(as i have done),can see the reality for themselves.

Perhaps this is why the BBC tend to sit on the fence or lean more to the the right when reporting about Palestine. The Israeli organised media saturation campaign seems to be working. They wage a word war against anyone with an opinion about the middle east (the comments on this posting will probably be lively). Anyhow here is a compilation of how the BBC can report the Israeli attacks on Gaza in a more honest way.

BBC Reporting- "Palestinians say Israeli F-16 bombers have launched a
series of air strikes against key targets in the Gaza Strip, killing
and injuring dozens of people."
UNBIASED - The Palesting government has confirmed that Israel has used
f16 bombers, funded by the USA, to launch attacks against key targets
in the GAZA strip, killing over 100 and injuring 400+.

BBC reporting - "Missiles destroyed security compounds run by the
militant group Hamas in the centre of Gaza City, killing at least 120
people, Hamas officials said."
UNBIASED - Missiles destroyed security compounds (such as police
stations) in civilian areas, run by the democraticly elected
government Hamas, in the centre of Gaza city, killing at least 120
people, government officials said.

BBC - "The strikes, the most intense Israeli attacks on Gaza in recent
times, come after the expiry of a truce with Hamas."
UNBIASED - The bombing, the most intense israel attacks on the city in
recent times, come after a truce with Hamas has been let to expire.

BBC - "Israel had threatened an offensive to stop the firing of
rockets from Gaza."
UNBIASED - Israel had threatened an offensive in order to try to stop
the firing of rockets from Gaza

BBC - "Israel confirmed the strikes, saying they were launched in
response to continued rocket fire by Palestinian militants against
Israeli towns."
UNBIASED - Israel confirmed the bombing of the city and the killing
and injuring of civilians, saying they were launched in response to
sporadic and occasional rocket fire by Palestinian militants against
Palestinian towns being settled by Israel.

BBC - "They targeted "Hamas terror operatives" as well as training
camps and weaponry storage warehouses, the country's military said in
a statement."
UNBIASED - The Israel military killed people suspected of unauthorised
military action, with disregard to innocent bystanders or agreed
methods of international arrest. Suspected but unquantified training
camps and weaponry storage warehouses, as well as proven homes,
streets, businesses and communications have all been destroyed in the
bombardment said an unnamed Israeli military official in a prepared

BBC - "Hamas quickly vowed to carry out revenge attacks on Israel in
response to the air strikes."
UNBAISED - The elected government, Hamas, has stated that they will
respond to the killings in an appropriate yet unequal manner.

BBC - "In the West Bank, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas
- whose Fatah faction was ousted from Gaza by Hamas in 2007 -
condemned the attacks and called for restraint."
UNBIASED - In the West Bank, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud
Abbas, the preferred political choice of western governments, wisely
condemned the Israeli bombings and killings and called for restraint
from all sides."

BBC - "Offensive planned?"
UNBIASED - Did the planes take of by them selves and bomb? No of
course not!

BBC - "Reports of the casualties in Gaza mounted swiftly after news
broke of the Israeli operation."
UNBIASED - Reports of the deaths, suffering, injuries, trauma, damage
to businesses, financial costs and disruption caused in Gaza city
increased after reports of the planned Israeli bombings became know

BBC - "Palestinian militant group Hamas, which controls Gaza,
initially said at least 40 people had been killed when a missile hit
security headquarters in and around Gaza City."
UNBIASED - The freely elected government of Gaza, Hamas, initiaky said
that 40 people had been killed when an American supplied bomb hit
security headquarters in and around the city.

BBC - "That figure quickly rose, Hamas saying 120 were killed and some
400 people injured, the BBC Katya Adler reports from Jerusalem."
UNBIASED - As bodies were discovered and the extent of the Israeli
bombings became known, the death toll increased with government
sources saying 120 were killed with around 400 injured.

HAPPY XMAS and a peaceful new year to you all.
Be sad that we live in a country that supports these kinds of actions directly through technology, government investment, tourism, and much more. Be glad that we do not have American supplied war planes bombing our Parliament, even though none of us voted for Gordon Brown.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Mini Camcorder

The Flip Mino camcorder is a clever budget cam with 60 minutes of recording time. Sells for around £120

While this is not the highest-spec camcorder around, it works well in low light and is certainly great for capturing short clips for sites such as YouTube.

When you realise that the product is squarely aimed at this group, it makes sense that the resolution is only 640 by 480, and the internal memory is 2GB.

I like the fact that it plugs into the USB port on a Windows PC or Mac, and all the editing software is built in, meaning you can upload your video activism from virtually anywhere. If anyone has one i would love to hear your opinions about it.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Police threaten a gay catholic with arrest over Pope poster

I just received a call from a friend with this story breaking in Portsmouth-
On Christmas eve, Police have threatened a Portsmouth shop owner with arrest for displaying a poster today.The photo montage of Pope Benedict XVI with painted lips and eyelashes, holding a dildo with the caption 'Ho Ho Homophobia', was spotted by eagle-eyed cops this morning.

The poster is a reference to the Pope's end-of-year speech to senior Vatican staff. The Pontiff stated that saving humanity from homosexual or transsexual behaviour was as important as protecting the environment.

Four Police officers have been sent to the Avalon shop on Fawcett road, Fratton to interview the shop owner about the colourful poster in his window.

Quoting section 4 of the Public order act ,Police informed the owner that if he failed to remove the poster and was found guilty, he could face imprisonment of up to 6 months.

Andrew, the owner of Avalon Headshop felt pressured enough to remove the A3 size poster. The twist is that Andrew is both Gay and Catholic.

However, three doors down the street a copy of the poster still remains on display in the window of a popular wholesale company. Police have now threatened to enter the premises to remove the poster themselves. Staff have politely replied to Police that it is a matter of free speech.

' The Pope has the world media to incite his views about Gays- we only have a shop window to give our views about the Pope' said a staff member.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Merry Midwinter to you all

Independent Media - London

Independent Media London has a Meetup in two weeks!
What: Independent Media London - January Meetup
When: Tuesday, January 6, 2009 7:30 PM

Where: Inspiral Lounge
250 Camden High St
London meetup1
020 7428 5875

To see who's coming and to RSVP:

Come join us at the Inspiral Lounge on Jan 6th!
We have a brilliant subject and a brilliant venue confirmed. All we need now is some
brilliant people to come along and make it all together worthwhile!
We’ll be having at least one presentation on:
- various independent media outlets
- possible methods of production
- ways to package and distribute
- ways to consume (i.e. consumer devices)
- trends
- licencing possibilities
- and more

Please come along for a 7.30pm sharp kick off. The venue serves some great nosh, so
perhaps come early to eat before the event.
Presentations aim to be rich in information, quick, concise, inspiring and
delivering value to attendees.
If you might be interested in delivering a short presentation please get in touch or
leave a comment at

Monday, December 22, 2008

Important message from the underground activist movement

Imagine a blank sheet of paper and you're considering ways of organising a political
movement. One that seeks to challenge and destroy capitalist class society. What
would that movement look like? Would it look anything like the one we have now, or
would it, could it, look different?

Does what we do at the moment work, when we are marginal, fragmented, and almost
invisible to the very people we seek to address?

Lets ask ourselves this question, "if our ideas are so brilliant, why are they so
irrelevant to the daily lives of most working class people?"

Once before, in Bradford in 1997, we asked these questions, and more, and although
ultimately nothing came of it (some will strongly disagree with this), being as we
are still more or less in the same position, some of us believe that we need to do
it again. To go back to basics and question everything that we say and do. And
hopefully we mean all of us - not just bits of our movement.

Can we generate the confidence that would change our ideas and the way we work with
each other? Can we generate the confidence that would play a small part in changing

To this end we propose to organise a conference sometime in 2009, that will be
organised in a creative manner, challenge assumptions, and any preconceived ideas we
have about each other. We hope it will break down rigid and ossified ways of
thinking and acting, to turn everything about our world upside down.

Some are suggesting this should be a London wide event. Some are suggesting it
should be a national event. The verdict is still out on this; as well as where in
the country it should be; how many days it should run over; and should it be an
annual event. These and many more questions about the event are still undecided.
This is why we want to have a large gathering of interested people to come and
discuss what we should be organising. But, this initial meeting is to decide
practical thing, and it is for people to take on helping organise the event - not
just a talking shop. It is not the conference itself. That will be a bit down the
line and needs a lot of though and organisation.

So, do you want to come and have a say about how the conference should be organised;
for who; where; and what format? Then come and discuss the ideas at Conway Hall, 25
Red Lion Square, London WC1 (nearest tube: Holborn). We have the small hall on the
ground floor from 1.30pm until 6pm (should we need it that long).

It is long over due for the lot of us to get together and talk through our politics
in a friendly atmosphere with no other pressing issues. This conference is for ALL
aspects of our movement and beyond.

For further information or any questions email us at:

Important message from the undergrond movement

Imagine a blank sheet of paper and you're considering ways of organising a political
movement. One that seeks to challenge and destroy capitalist class society. What
would that movement look like? Would it look anything like the one we have now, or
would it, could it, look different?

Does what we do at the moment work, when we are marginal, fragmented, and almost
invisible to the very people we seek to address?

Lets ask ourselves this question, "if our ideas are so brilliant, why are they so
irrelevant to the daily lives of most working class people?"

Once before, in Bradford in 1997, we asked these questions, and more, and although
ultimately nothing came of it (some will strongly disagree with this), being as we
are still more or less in the same position, some of us believe that we need to do
it again. To go back to basics and question everything that we say and do. And
hopefully we mean all of us - not just bits of our movement.

Can we generate the confidence that would change our ideas and the way we work with
each other? Can we generate the confidence that would play a small part in changing

To this end we propose to organise a conference sometime in 2009, that will be
organised in a creative manner, challenge assumptions, and any preconceived ideas we
have about each other. We hope it will break down rigid and ossified ways of
thinking and acting, to turn everything about our world upside down.

Some are suggesting this should be a London wide event. Some are suggesting it
should be a national event. The verdict is still out on this; as well as where in
the country it should be; how many days it should run over; and should it be an
annual event. These and many more questions about the event are still undecided.
This is why we want to have a large gathering of interested people to come and
discuss what we should be organising. But, this initial meeting is to decide
practical thing, and it is for people to take on helping organise the event - not
just a talking shop. It is not the conference itself. That will be a bit down the
line and needs a lot of though and organisation.

So, do you want to come and have a say about how the conference should be organised;
for who; where; and what format? Then come and discuss the ideas at Conway Hall, 25
Red Lion Square, London WC1 (nearest tube: Holborn). We have the small hall on the
ground floor from 1.30pm until 6pm (should we need it that long).

It is long over due for the lot of us to get together and talk through our politics
in a friendly atmosphere with no other pressing issues. This conference is for ALL
aspects of our movement and beyond.

For further information or any questions email us at:

Banks and the strong arm tactics

In the mid-1800s Corporations were made into legal "person." What is the personality of that person today?

In the movie The Corporation- the filmmakers charts the development of the corporation as a legal entity from its origins as an institution chartered by governments to carry out specific public functions, to the rise of the vast modern institutions entitled to some of the legal rights of a person. They discover that the person would be in psychopathy, i.e. callous unconcern for the feelings of others, incapacity to maintain enduring relationships, reckless disregard for the safety of others, deceitfulness (repeated lying to and deceiving of others for profit), incapacity to experience guilt, and failure to conform to the social norms with respect to lawful behaviors.

This sums up the bankers of the world who have been going crazy like a crazed maniacs, spending and loaning to anyone without any thought for the outcome.
So if the system is nuts - are we just constantly finding ways to keep it under some kind of control to make sure that the 'right' people don't get hurt.

So from that thought i ask -is this how the system works?
Banks cause the credit mess we are in now.
Banks expect bailouts from the people (ie: Government= representative of the people)
Government/people tell banks - Yes we will bail you out but only if you agree lay off the strong arm tactics on the people.

That's what i hear when i read that the Irish Government has pumped 5.5bn Euros into saving the banks.

Newspaper quote
'In return, the three banks have agreed to provide more help to small businesses and individuals, and to give mortgage-holders more time if they fall behind in their repayments.

Bizzare that we are helping greedy people who exploit the poor when they need to but once the money is rolling in...doesn't want to know. Why are we putting our money with these bastards?

It’s no secret that banks and insurers are in business to make profits. One way they do this by taking your money and lending it to someone else at a higher rate of interest.But what they rarely tell you is who they lend it to.

With other banks and insurers, you have no say in where your money is invested and how these companies behave.

For example, your money could be loaned to companies involved in the fur trade. arms dealers who supply oppressive regimes, or multi-national companies with poor environmental records. And you wouldn’t know a thing about it.

Open up an ethical bank account. Look at the Cooperative Bank

We have to take the power back from the banking Nut jobs

Plane crash survivor texts Twitter updates

On the spot reporter!

Holy fucking shit – I was just in a plane crash!" were his exact words or should I say ..'texts'

Read more

G.W Bush and the flying Shoe

I wonder when the shoes thrown at G.W Bush will appear on ebay?

Try this game tho' and throw your own shoe at Bush
The game was made by a British-based internet media company who sold the site on ebay for £5,215 pounds ($7,818).

Meanwhile according to the New York Times, sales at the Istanbul-based Baydan Shoe Company have spiked after it claimed to have made the footwear hurled at Mr Bush.
Ramazan Baydan told the newspaper it was definitely his shoe, and boasted of new orders coming in from across the world.
read more

Welcome to the Winter Solstice

Traditionally fires were kept burning through the longest night of the year which is tonight- the midwinter Solstice unless you are not in the UK or Ireland. It is known as DōngZhì, Yule, Şabe Cele/Yalda, Soyal, Şeva Zistanê, Solar New Year, Longest Night
I don't have a fire sadly but i will have a candle going all night.

Astronomically tonight marks the beginning of shortening nights and lengthening days. Great news.

It is cloudy here but tonight look out your window (or even better-go outside in the northern sky that is) and find the three stars in Orion's Belt. They should align with the brightest star in the eastern sky Sirius to show where the Sun will rise in the morning after winter solstice.

The winter solstice may have been immensely important because communities were not certain of living through the winter, and had to be prepared during the previous nine months. Starvation was common in winter between January and April, also known as the famine months. In temperate climates, the midwinter festival was the last feast celebration, before deep winter began. Most cattle were slaughtered so they would not have to be fed during the winter, so it was almost the only time of year when a supply of fresh meat was available. The majority of wine and beer made during the year was finally fermented and ready for drinking at this time.

The winter solstice occurs at the instant when the Sun's position in the sky is at its greatest angular distance on the other side of the equatorial plane from the observers hemisphere. Depending on the shift of the calendar, the event of the winter solstice occurs some time between December 20 and December 23 each year in the northern hemisphere, and between June 20 and June 23 in the southern hemisphere, during either the shortest day or the longest night of the year, which is not to be confused with the darkest day or night or the day with the earliest sunset or latest sunrise.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Government sells off Uk Nuke production to Yanks

So the Government has now sold off their last remaining shares in the Aldermaston Atomic Weapons Establishment in Berkshire. This means Britain no longer has any stake in the production of its Trident nuclear warheads.

So who bought the shares? - A US Corporation- California-based Jacobs Engineering joining the other two thirds already in private hands. They are split equally between American defence giant Lockheed Martin and the British plc Serco.

The Government 'announced' the sale in a one paragraph statement on the BNFL website. See above
The Lib Dems said it was staggering that Parliament had not been properly informed.


Solstice Greetings

I got this great card from Alan 'Tash' Lodge the photographer today

Street Art: Joshua Allen Harris' Inflatable Bag Monsters

Great use of rubbish!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Debt and patience

Man's £5 debt repaid 39 years later

A Sheffield man who lent a penniless Australian tourist £5 to pay for a ferry trip in 1969 has been repaid nearly 40 years later.

Climate Change Job

I was a trustee of COIN, a hard working charity raising awareness of Climate Change action. They have a job going now.

COIN is looking for an experienced researcher/manager to run a very
exciting 9 month project. The project involves working with at least 5
refugee NGOs to help them explore how the impact of climate change affects
their primary charitable purpose. You will be communicating with
beneficiaries, supporters and staff, producing reports of the results of
this work, lobbying Government and other policy makers and making detailed
recommendations for the voluntary sector. You will also be overseeing
carbon footprint audits of the organisations concerned.

This is part of a larger programme with four other groups of
non-environmental voluntary charities. The aim is to vastly increase
climate change mobilisation of the non-environmental voluntary sector. The
project is funded by the Baring foundation

The successful candidate will need to have: research experience, the
ability to write effective and powerful communications, knowledge of the
issues around climate change, knowledge of refugee/migrant protection
issues, experience of managing events, excellent interpersonal skills and
experience in establishing and maintaining partner organisation

The post is for 9 months 2.5 days per week.
The office is in Oxford but you may work away from the office.
The salary is £21,250 pro rata
The holiday entitlement is 25 per annum days pro rata
COIN is looking for someone who can start work very quickly.
Applications to be returned by e mail to the Executive Director, Tim
Baster at by Wednesday January 7th 2009. Interviews will
be on Saturday 10th January at the COIN office in Oxford.

Swedish pirates

Photograph: RocketRaccoon/Flickr/Some rights reserved

Sweden could be considered the world's unofficial home of internet piracy largely thanks to the work of Pirate Bay, which claims to be the largest global tracker of BitTorrent files. That doesn't mean that all those are illegal... but a study of P2P file sharing, reported by AP, in Sweden estimates that 38% of young males illegally share files online and the 16-24 year-old age group used it most intensively.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Undercurrents dramatic footage of open cast mine

Undercurrents supplied dramatic footage of an open cast mine for the Guardians latest film which was released online today.

George Monbiot gives the head of the countryside watchdog, the Campaign to Protect Rural England, an unforgettable grilling, asking why it opposes windfarms - but not opencast coal mines

Government gets heavy against Climate Change protesters

You know the Government/corporations are losing when they try to rush in daft laws to stop effective protests. This turn they are trying to stop protests against Climate Change.
Correspondent Afua Hirsch explains why the attorney general, Baroness Scotland, is considering asking the courts to get tough with high-profile direct-action protests. The move follows the decision in September by a jury at Maidstone crown court to clear six Greenpeace activists of criminal damage to Kingsnorth coal-fired power station. The jury accepted the protesters' argument that they intended to protect property from global warming.

Understand copyright for your video images

I get asked a lot about copyright by video activists so here is a handy guide from the NUJ

MANY, OR even most, of the problems that freelances face these days involve copyright. Amid all the detail, you may lose track of the basic issues. So, boiled down from reams of specialist debate, here they are. (Note: this applies to the UK only, except where stated. Irish law is similar: for details, NUJ members should contact the NUJ in Ireland. The law in joined-up Europe is very different, and much friendlier to authors.
0 What you create as a freelance, you own. Photo, news story, radio feature, crossword clue... if you made it, it's yours.
1 What you own is the "expression": the actual arrangement of words in the article, or objects and people in the photo, or whatever. There is no copyright in facts or in ideas. If an editor or producer commissions you to produce work based on a particular idea, in law this has no effect on your ownership of the work. You make it, you own it.
2 Traditionally, what you sell to an editor or producer is a licence to use your work, once, in one territory, in one medium. Examples are First British Serial Rights, World Wide Web Reprint Rights... or Second Babylonian Clay-tablet Rights.
3 Publishers and producers are vigorously trying to get freelances to "assign" our rights - for no extra money. "Assign" is jargon for "sell outright". This means that they want the freehold in your work for the price of a month's rent.
Publishers with smarter lawyers may generously allow you to keep copyright in your work, then demand a licence to do anything with it, anywhere, forever. This means that they want a 999-year lease for the price of a month's rent.
4 Some freelances ask why they shouldn't hand over their reviews for What Fridge? - will they be worth anything in a couple of months' time? We say: if not, why is the publisher going to all this trouble to get the right to re-use them for free? If you license only first use rights you can get extra money - perhaps from syndication to Quel réfrigérateur?
And you can get money from businesses that photocopy your work. To do this, UK freelances need to register with ALCS (for writers) or DACS (for photographers, illustrators, etc). This is free to NUJ members. Contact the Freelance Office for forms or see ALCS forms here.
5 The main reason for the publishers' rights grab is new technology. They want to put stuff on the World-Wide Web and sell content to database archives. These are clearly separate editions, with separate income to the publisher - so you should negotiate a separate payment for those uses.
Databases syndicate your work to individual readers. If they pay $3 for a single article, shouldn't you get a share?
Even if a publisher does not (yet) charge people to see its Web site, it can still make money. RBI's New Scientist, for example, increased its classified advertising rates by ten per cent because of its Web site.
6 Wherever possible, do not "assign" your rights. Ask the editor or producer what they actually want to do with your work. Negotiate a specific payment for each use. See your Freelance Fees Guide for suggested rates and negotiating advice and the Rate for the Job for what's been paid.
Put what you agree in writing - use the Confirmation of Commission form. This stops your client claiming an "implied licence".
If you find unauthorised use of your work, contact the Freelance Office for help objecting in writing and taking it further if need be.

That's the really basic stuff. You can stop reading now. But there are more questions which people often ask...
7 Publishers and broadcasters sometimes claim that cashing their cheque means that you accept their terms. This is nonsense. Under British law, cashing a cheque cannot do anything except increase your bank balance. The NUJ's Freelance Industrial Council advises you always to challenge such cheques.
8 The "Moral Rights" are the right to a by-line or credit, and the right to object to distortion of your work. In UK law, you do not have either right in work which appears in newspapers or magazines. You can't object to distortion of work which reports "current events", wherever it appears.
You do have moral rights in your book - so long as it contains the magic phrase "Moral Rights Asserted". You don't in a front-page newspaper story. But defending the integrity of your work ought to be especially important for news!
* Remember: as a freelance you start out with economic ownership of everything you produce independently - even when you are denied moral rights.
9 Under British and Irish law, you do not own work which you produced "in the course of employment". And employees do not have moral rights in the UK. Why not?

'The Bling Kings' protest music video for Christmas number one !

Anarchist film festival wants your films

For the 9th year the Chicago anarchist film festival will present a sample
of films from mainstream sources, rediscovered classics and the works of
filmmakers engaged in social change with an anarchist vision. Most media
of all types launch attacks that distort, discredit and deny anarchists
entirely. Anarchists and their allies respond with a relentless volley of
images and stories that reveal, revive and invigorate a rich anarchist
presence in society.

Chicago anarchist film festival organizers seek un- and under-distributed
films and videos to include in the 2009 Chicago Anarchist Film Festival.
We also welcome suggestions for titles that may inadvertently allow
anarchy to seep through the cracks of the status quo. Movie collage, music
videos and trailers for works-in-progress will also be considered.

April 1, 2009

All entries must be submitted with an entry form. A contributors statement
and any promotional material is appreciated. Please also indicate if you
are available and interested in attending the festival.

Submissions should be DVD (2 copies, any zone) or vhs (pal or ntsc). It
may be possible to screen 16mm as well, but we need video for purpose of
review. Selection is based on time allocation, relevance, quality and
resonance. There are no rewards or prizes beyond our invaluable
appreciation and heartfelt thanks, but we will be collecting audience
feedback which can be provided to contributors on request. All entrants
will be updated on the status of their submissions. We ask the
contributions be made with the anarchist spirit of community and
celebration with which they will be received. Solidarity!

Shipping costs are the responsibility of the entrants. Videos will be
returned upon request. To ensure prompt return of material, please enclose
$3 per submission. Otherwise material submitted to the festival will be
donated to a suitable community recipient.

Chicago Anarchist Film Festival (CAFF)
1321 N Milwaukee Ave #453, Chicago IL 60642

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Consuming Kids-The Commercialization of Childhood

Consuming Kids
The Commercialization of Childhood
New film about how the relentless multi-billion dollar marketing machine that now sells kids and their parents everything from junk food and violent video games to bogus educational products and the family car. Drawing on the insights of health care professionals, children's advocates, and industry insiders, the film focuses on the explosive growth of child marketing in the wake of deregulation, showing how youth marketers have used the latest advances in psychology, anthropology, and neuroscience to transform American children into one of the most powerful and profitable consumer demographics in the world. Consuming Kids pushes back against the wholesale commercialization of childhood, raising urgent questions about the ethics of children's marketing and its impact on the health and well-being of kids.

"Consuming Kids" pushes back against the wholesale commercialization of childhood,
raising urgent questions about the ethics of children's marketing and its impact on
the health and well-being of kids.

For more info on "Consuming Kids", to view a trailer, or to buy the DVD:

What am I?

I have been trying to work out what to label myself for years

I am a video activist- using video to either bring about social change or inspire people to get involved in having a say within their own country or community. But it is a bit limiting.

Film maker- sounds too 'hollywood' or people raise eyebrows in that..'oh you make porn do you?' way or they go on about their son, nephew who is making a film about vampires in the Welsh Valleys....yawn.

So how about Factual filmmaker? that has a ring to it that I like. It is clear that i don't do drama or soap operas..

So i am going to try it for a while..Let me through-I am a factual filmmaker!

Train to make films in the East

application deadline : February 1 2009

The Ex Oriente Film workshop is a training program that supports the
development and funding of creative documentary films in the entire region of
Central and Eastern Europe. During three sessions that take place over the course of one year, filmmakers and producers receive assistance from experienced European producers, directors,trainers, AV experts and TV commissioning editors in order to develop their tory, draft a financing strategy for their project and find international
partners. Ex Oriente Film leads into the East European Forum - pitching session for East European creative docs.

What is unique about the 2009 Ex Oriente Film workshop?
- participants work simultaneously on production as
well as on the storyline, content and visual style, supporting primarily innovative
and fresh film language;

- creative directors are invited to offer participants inspiration;

- Ex Oriente Film helps creative projects that cannot be funded through
standard TV sales by trying to find alternative channels and opportunities;

- filmmakers are supported not only during the sessions, but also through consultations in between theworkshops; they also get support to travel to the main industry events where they attend consultations and receive assistance with networking;

- after the workshop we keep in touch with all our participants, and through
other IDF activities we offer comprehensive follow-up support, providing
international PR for any new developments, festival release or distribution.

Participation Fee:
Participation fee is EUR 1.150,- per selected project; this covers the
accommodation and part of catering at all 3 workshops for 2 pers.


Participants from Poland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Czech Republic, Slovakia,
Hungary, Bulgaria, Slovenia and Romania can apply for a scholarship (at IDF),
when they prove that there is no possibility to get any scholarship in
their own country and the project is not supported by any development grant.
Participants from other countries unfortunately cannot receive the scholarship
in any case.

Ivana Miloševič (, Hana Rezkova (
Institute of Documentary Film (IDF)
Skolska 12, Prague 1, 110 00
Czech Republic

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Few games left - War on Terror

Buy your War on Terror boardgame from Undercurrents

Hoping for an award in Japan

Good news- my film- Climate Cycle has been shortlisted for an award in Japan

31st Annual Tokyo Video Festival, TVF2009
Sponsored by Victor Company of Japan, Ltd. (JVC)Supported by the city of Yokohama
Assisted by Landmark Hall and Victor Company of Japan, Limited (JVC)

Entries have been evaluated by the TVF2009 Judging Committee including film director Nobuhiko Obayashi, novelist Makoto Shiina and animation film director Isao Takahata. 100 Selected winning entries are planned to be announced in January 2009.

Excellence Award winners will be chosen from among the 100 Selected winners. The
Announcement and Awards Ceremony will be held at Landmark Hall in Yokohama, Kanagawa
Prefecture near Tokyo. Selected and Excellence winners will be given their awards and the Grand Prize winning entries will be announced.

Last years festival, the 30th Tokyo Video Festival, TVF2008, received an all-time record of 2,010 video entries, including 750 from Japan and 1,260 from 53 countries and regions worldwide. Approximately 50,000 home video works from about 100 countries and regions have been submitted since the first festival in 1978.

So watch this space and keep fingers crossed for me!

Naked Art in Paris

I used to go to Life drawing classes in Dublin and know how difficult it is to hold a naked pose for 30mins. So i always gave the models a tip afterwards (as well as paying the standard fee).

But now the Paris city hall, which runs an array of life-drawing classes, banned the tradition of the "cornet", a piece of art paper rolled into a cone and passed round for tips as a model gets dressed after class. Surviving on the minimum wage with no fixed contracts, holiday pay, security cover or job security, the crash-strapped models said the tips allowed them to survive.

So the models held a naked protest!

Batman and the pirates

The batman movie-Dark Knight has been the most pirated movie of 2008. But it is also the second highest grossing film of all time, with only Titanic above it.

The Dark Knight also sold 3 million copies on DVD on its first day of release in the U.S., Canada, and the UK. It also managed record Blu-ray sales. And there are plans to re-release the movie in theaters around the world early next year for those who missed out the first time around.

Does this put answer to Hollywood cries that piracy is killing its business?

The first pirated copy of Dark Knight made its way on to the Web just 38 hours after it was released. Warner Bros. saw this as a victory which shows how rattled the movie studios are by the speed and efficiency demonstrated by online pirates time after time.

The MPAA (Motion Picture Association of America) has consistently tried to get pirate online site - The Pirate Bay closed down but has always being thwarted by fact that The Pirate Bay’s base of operations is in Sweden, out of the jurisdiction of U.S. copyright law.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Iraqi Journalist Throws His Shoes At GW Bush

Iraqi Journalist Hurls Shoes At 'Dog' Bush

Baghdad, Iraq, 14 December 2008 (AFP) - An Iraqi journalist hurled his
shoes and an insult at [War Criminal] George W. Bush, without hitting
him, as the US [Israeli-ZionCon] President was shaking hands with the
Iraqi premier at his Baghdad office on Sunday.

As the two leaders met in Nuri al-Maliki's private office, a
journalist sitting in the third row jumped up, shouting: "It is the
farewell kiss, you dog," and threw his shoes one after the other
towards Bush.

[THIS IS THE FAREWELL KISS, YOU DOG! "This is a gift from the Iraqis.
This is the farewell kiss, you dog," the journalist shouted (in
Arabic), Steven Lee Myers of The New York Times reported in a pool
report to the White House press corps. Myers reported that the man
threw the second shoe and added: "This is from the widows, the orphans
and those who were killed in Iraq." - AP]

Maliki made a protective gesture towards the US [Israeli-ZionCon]
President, who ducked and was not hit.

The journalist, Muntazer al-Zaidi from a correspondent for Iraqi-owned Al-Baghdadiya television based in Egypt, shouted was frogmarched from the room by security staff, an AFP journalist said.

The man, later identified as Muntadar al-Zeidi, "this is the end" as he hurled them at the American leader.

Soles of shoes are considered the ultimate insult in Arab culture.
After [Iraq's President] Saddam Hussein's statue was toppled in
Baghdad in April 2003, many onlookers beat the statue's face with
their soles.

Some Iraqi journalists stood up to apologise.

The White House said Bush ducked to avoid the first shoe, while the
second narrowly missed the [Israeli-ZionCon] President.

Bush said: "Thanks for apologising on behalf of the Iraqi people. It
doesn't bother me. If you want the facts, it was a size 10 shoe that
he threw."

Playing down the incident, the [Israeli-ZionCon] President later
added: "I don't know what the guy's cause is... I didn't feel the
least bit threatened by it."




How to boil a frog!

Friends of the Earth 2008 competition winners

They remit was 'Which bit of the Earth are you a Friend of?'

Now the votes have been counted and the judges have chosen their favourites. Drum roll please...

Overall Winner: 'Winberry Hill'

People's Choice: 'How to Boil a Frog'

Under 21 Winner: 'A Day in the Spinney'

Go to
to read more about the winners.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Mark Thomas Vs McDonalds

An oldie but a goodie

Mark Thomas Comedy Live (Part 01)

Have a laugh as G.W Bush is on his way out.

Net Neutrality

Save the internet against corporate control

Earth First! moot in Brighton

Brighton, February 6-7-8th 2009

The Earth First! Winter moot is an opportunity for people who feel affiliation with the ideas behind Earth First! to network, discuss and reflect on the ecological direct action movement and to plan for the future. In contrast with the yearly EF! Summer Gathering, which is held outside for around five days, the winter moot is a shorter weekend meeting, inside, less aimed at skill sharing and more at looking where we are at as movement and where we want to be going. A session is also reserved for discussing a UK mobilisation for the UN climate conference in Copenhagen late 2009.
Earth First! is not an organisation, but a banner for non-hierarchical organising and the use of direct action to confront, stop and eventually reverse the forces that are responsible for the destruction of the Earth and its inhabitants.

Some topics on the agenda:
· UK mobilisation for the climate summit in Copenhagen at the end of 2009
· Communication and security
· EF! Action Update and Summer Gathering
· Coal
· GM

The agenda is open. Please contact the organizing collective ( know if you want to add anything, want to help with facilitation or have any other queries. You are welcome to use our PGP key.
Suggestion: read the activist security guide on

Greek activists occupy TV station

When the news doesn't show your views..occupy the station. Thats what Greeks did.
The video of the broadcast from the occupied station SuperB Patra, a major TV station of Western Greece from the Patra area.

The station was occupied from demonstrators and students protesting the shooting of a teenager by police.During the occupation news was broadcast with videos and photos of the protests. After the broadcast the station was left to continue normally.

Ten youths seized state NET TV studio, holding banners saying "Stop watching, get out onto the streets".

Sorry but it will all be Greek to you (and me) but what a coup!

A seasonal message for you!

Leeds protest against Open Cast mine

This may be a protest undercurrents will film. We have been supporting the No open cast protests for years.

The campaign says-
It’s time to say NO!
We don’t want a dirty opencast coal site adding to climate change
Join us on Saturday 10th January 2009 to march around the proposed open cast coal mine site at Newton Lane, near Fairburn Ings nature reserve and Castleford. Meet at the White Horse in Ledston at 12 noon for a 12:30 start. We will take a route on public rights of way around and through the proposed open cast site. The walk should take no more than an hour.
This protest event will be a joint venture between YANC (Yorkshire Against New Coal) and RAGE (Residents Against Greenbelt Expansion).
For a map of the area including location of Ledston, see the RAGE website at:

White Horse pub postcode is WF10 2AB. Add this postcode to multimap for directions.

Multimap link:

We will have some banners and placards but please feel free to make and bring your own.

Media will be invited.

If we are to tackle climate change, coal must be left in the ground. We need clean, green renewable technology, energy efficiency and decentralised energy.

Your New Years Resolution? To stop climate change!

For further information see the YANC website: or find us on Facebook.

Yorkshire Against New Coal
- e-mail:
- Homepage:

Mad Party.

Christmas Party
Food, Music, Songs, Poems,
Stories, and Surprises…
Hope to see you there

If you want to perform anything call Rufus on 07984 480224

Evolving Minds is a public meeting that looks at different
ways to our emotional well being and living in what is often a mad world!

Monday 22nd Dec 7.30pm, Upstairs at the Stubbing Wharf Pub,
Hebden Bridge,
Everyone is welcome.

Dowloada poster at

find us on facebook

The Bradford and Hebden Bridge Evolving Minds groups take their name from the film
Evolving Minds produced by Melissa Gunasena and Undercurrents about the relationship between psychosis and spirituality and alternatives to
psychiatry. It is available from

DIY adventurer

Outdoor Adventurer, Filmmaker, Singer-Songwriter
He remains the only producer in the history of television to produce an internationally broadcast series entirely written, videotaped and hosted alone. Les Stroud with Survivorman has gone on to become the highest rated show in the history of both OLN Canada and the Science Channel US and quickly became one of the most popular shows on the Discovery Channel.

He spent a week surviving alone without food, water, equipment or camera crew. He single-handedly created, produced, wrote, filmed, hosted, edited and composed the theme music for these first two original, one-hour pilots for what would eventually become the Survivorman series.
Best known as star of the three time Gemini nominated hit TV series Survivorman (OLN Canada, The Science Channel US, Discovery Channel International), Les Stroud continues to forge new pathways as a prolific, creative force.

Great video about building a low impact life for himself

Friday, December 12, 2008

Thoughts from Woody

Hunter S. Thompson with Guns and Booze

If you were inspired by the outrageously larger than lifestyle and books of Hunter S. Thompson (Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas)then watch this..Hunter challenges a TV presenter to join him shooting guns and getting drunk.
Funny stuff.

Get out of the less

Great article and film promoting we do less to save ourselves

The writer argues...
Firstly, once adjusted for inflation, wages in North America have barely kept up with inflation. In a global context the situation is much more serious. When jobs are exported to third world countries with minimum labour standards, it creates a labour force that can’t afford to buy all the goods and services being produced. This is a virtual identical repeat of the problem that caused the great depression

One potential solution that was implemented in 1933 by President Roosevelt during the great depression is to reduce the workweek from ten hours a day to eight hours a day. Instead of having a high unemployment rate, the work is shared so that more people can become employed.

Technological efficiency gives us a choice; we can either continue to work just as hard and exponentially consume and grow the economy, or we can translate those gains in efficiency into other more meaningful activities such as child rearing, education, arts and holding elected leaders accountable. It is not surprising to learn that countries that do have lower workweeks such as Norway, Holland and Germany are more egalitarian and have lower crime rates. This might be coincidental, but I suspect that when people have time to invest in other types of work besides trying to endlessly fill up landfills with junk, we create the opportunity for a healthier and wiser society.

In 1933 we changed from a 10 hour day to a 8 hour day. Maybe its now time to change to a 6 hour day.

Also he has made his lecture into a film

Pirates of the Amazon

Illegal actions as I understand them are creating, hosting, or downloading pirated content. What happens when students who did none of those but got a law suit slapped on them. What did they do? They only provided a weblink.

Amusing? Yes.
Frightening to Amazon? Yes.

"Parody... is imitation with a critical difference, not always at the expense of the parodied text." - Linda Hutcheon

Earlier this week, two students from the Piet Zwart Institute in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, made headlines by releasing a plug-in for the Firefox Web browser that made it easy for people who were browsing books, music and movies on to download the same products free through the Pirate Bay, the illicit BitTorrent site.

"Pirates of the Amazon" was an artistic parody, part of our media research and education at the Media Design M.A. course at the Piet Zwart Institute of the Willem de Kooning Academy Hogeschool Rotterdam, the Netherlands. It was a practical experiment on interface design, information access and currently debated issues in media culture. We were surprised by the attentions and the strong reactions this project received. Ultimately, the value of the project lies in these reactions. It is a ready-made and social sculpture of contemporary internet user culture.

One day after publishing we received a take down request by the legal department of

Piracy is NOT stealing, and the US Supreme Court has specifically made that distinction. See Justice Blackmun’s majority decision in Dowling v. United States:

“The infringer of a copyright does not assume physical control over the copyright nor wholly deprive its owner of its use. Infringement implicates a more complex set of property interests than does run-of-the-mill theft, conversion, or fraud.”

Whether or not piracy is wrong, it should be noted that “stealing” removes ownership from the rightful owner, and wrongfully transfers it to the thief. Piracy does not.

Jury believe that armed Police lied

The jury at the inquest into the shooting of Jean Charles de Menezes has returned an open verdict since it was the only option left to them since they were not allowed to find the police guilty.

The jury of 10 were asked specific questions about whether or not a series of events on 22 July 2005 contributed to the 27-year-old's death.

A majority of the jury said that they did not believe officers had shouted "armed police" before opening fire.

DVD distribution

Just a quick reminder about the opportunity to distribute your film on DVD and Video
On Demand via CreateSpace. With no upfront costs, you have nothing to lose and
everything to gain - making this program very popular. Respond to this offer and
get a free proof copy of your film, available for a limited time.

What is CreateSpace?
CreateSpace is an on-demand distribution platform, enabling filmmakers to make their
products available to potentially millions of customers on and other
channels without requiring an upfront investment. You start making money with your
first sale, and again with each subsequent sale. Your films will appear as in-stock
DVDs for sale on, as well as be available through other distribution
channels. They will also be eligible for possible email and/or online promotion as
part of the CreateSpace disc-on-demand program. Other great benefits:

* Membership and title set-up provided at no charge
* A Free UPC will be assigned if you do not already have one
* DVDs are produced when customers order, so there is no need for inventory and you
don't have to hassle with order fulfillment and customer service
* Your title becomes eligible for listing on
* DVDs can be made available as video downloads through Amazon Video On Demand
(formerly Unbox)
* Multi-disc set, multi-case collection, and combined DVD and CD set options are

How can I distribute through the CreateSpace program?
Just open a free CreateSpace account. With this account, you will be able to select
distribution options, track the sales of your film, and receive any payments you are
owed. You will be asked to submit some basic title information, upload artwork for
your DVD, and send in a copy of your film.

What is the relationship between Withoutabox and CreateSpace?
Withoutabox has made CreateSpace our preferred independent distribution partner.
Originally founded as CustomFlix Labs in 2002 and acquired by in 2005,
CreateSpace shares Withoutabox's mission of connecting filmmakers profitably to
their worldwide audience.

How do I get started?
To Create Your Free CreateSpace Account:
To Get More Details:

Or, login to Withoutabox at and look for "Distribute on DVD and
VOD" next to any film title on your Account Home Page:

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Net Neutrality

How greedy US corporations threaten to end the level playing field of the internet, meaning some information will be more equal than others. Barack Obama has declared his commitment to net neutrality, but now he needs holding to that in the face of the lobbyists.

BBC policy on credits for use of our footage

Here is an odd one from the BBC

Undercurrents provided footage for a BBC panorama documentary about Open cast mining which was broadcast recently. The programme never gave us a credit for the use of our footage (but we will get paid).

When i asked Carl Johnston, the producer why we did not get a credit, he replied

'I'm afraid that generally it is not BBC policy to credit footage gleaned from other sources - unless there are exceptional circumstances.'

But he did offer some praise for our footage
'I thought the material you provided really helped. It was nicely shot and reflected
the events of the day very well indeed.Many thanks for all your help and please let me know if obtain any footage in the future that you think may be of intereest either to Panorama or BBC News.'

So I followed it up and challenged Carl about the BBC policy and got this further insight..

In the first instance, because we paid for the material, there is no obligation to credit footage unless specifically asked for. Only if the programme could not have been made without your contribution would we have been obliged to credit the footage during the end roller.

Sometimes credits are given at the time the footage is shown on screen - but only in exceptional circumstances. Some archive suppliers have strict guidelines about credits before they will even consider handing material over but in this instance that was not the case.I hope this clarifies the BBC position

So a case of you don't ask you don't get!

I will know next time

Learn to make Documentaries

ESoDoc - European Social Documentary is a EU's Media Plus training
initiative that encourages documentary film makers to work in the
areas of human rights, social justice and environmental protection,
particularly in the developing world. ESoDoc offers three 1-week
sessions held over a 6-month period, during which participants, either
individually or in groups, develop a documentary film project.

Deadline for Application: March 3, 2009

Further info:

Download application form:

Power to the people

Last week Hazel Blears, Secretary of State for communities and local government, invited local councils to ‘opt in’ to the Sustainable Communities Act – a groundbreaking piece of legislation that aims to give local people the power to change laws within their communities to encourage sustainable living.

The Act has been pushed from start to finish by Local Works, a coalition of 90 national organisations including the Ecologist, which has sent out a letter urging local councils to sign up to the Sustainable Communities more

Coal activist turns off power station!

The £12m defences of the most heavily guarded power station in Britain have been breached by a single person who, under the eyes of CCTV cameras, climbed two three-metre (10ft) razor-wired, electrified security fences, walked into the station and turned off a giant 500MW turbine before leaving a calling card reading "no new coal". He walked out the same way and hopped back over the fence.

All power from the coal and oil-powered Kingsnorth station in Kent was halted for four hours, in which time it is thought the mystery saboteur's actions reduced UK climate change emissions by 2%.

Undercurrents reported at the Climate Camp at Kingsnorth in August.
Read more

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Christian far right win the battle?

If you read Northern Lights by Philip Pullman or any of His Dark Materials trilogy, you will know about the Golden Compass movie..His books have been controversial with some Christian groups accusing him of using them to promote his atheist beliefs, a claim he has denied.

Pullman was asked this -
Do you know if and when The Subtle Knife and The Amber Spyglass will made into films?

Pullman-I doubt whether they will now. The film lost so much money in the US that I think the studio will be very careful about making a sequel.

So it looks like the Christian far right have won the battle.

Burn the Christmas tree

On Monday, protesters against capitalism and police murdering a teenager burned down the Christmas tree in Syntagma Square in the centre of Athens. The best sentiment against the ridiculousness of Christmas i have seen!

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

African Condom Ad , As big as a umbrella?

Made me laugh

is this the End of Capitalism?

End of Capitalism
I have reading Robert Peston from the BBC today and he expects that a new capitalism will emerge from the current rubble of financial collapse.

Arguably the global economic crisis will turn out to be more significant for us and
other developed economies than the collapse of communism.

Households borrowed too much, £1200bn on mortgages alone. Big companies
borrowed too much, especially those taken off the stock market in private equity deals. Note however that for all the political fuss about the need for banks to maintain lines of credit to small companies, they're the unsung heroes of our tale of monumental financial folly: even today, the aggregated savings of small companies exceed their debt.

For the past decade, millions of Chinese slaved away on near subsistence wages and still managed to save, both as a nation (China has £1,400bn in foreign exchange reserves) and as individuals. And to a large extent they were working to improve our living standards, because they made more and more of the stuff we wanted at cheaper and cheaper prices - and clever bankers took their savings and lent the cash to us, so that we could buy the houses we cherished, the cars we desired, the flat-screen TVs.

So now we have a situation where you and I, as taxpayers, came to the rescue and filled the gap caused by the banks. Over just the past few months, British taxpayers have provided loans, commitments, guarantees and capital to our banks in excess of £600bn (in the US, the equivalent figure for taxpayer support is around £5,500bn). Which is probably just the beginning.

So whose fault is it?
Our own Government turned a blind eye to all the evidence that a rampant lending
binge was taking place, because the Exchequer was receiving all those lovely tax
revenues from the housing and City bubbles – and because there was kudos to be had
from the world renown of our financial services industry. But it is the banks and bankers – because they systematically failed to do what they were handsomely remunerated to do, which was to properly assess the risks of all that lending.

Why didn't the media shout louder about what was going on?
The media certainly could have shouted louder about the risks of all that debt being accumulated – but perhaps the volume control was set a little too low because of all the splendid advertising revenue that was generated by the property boom.

Now we have a a semi-permanent nationalisation of the banking system and will soon see significant taxpayer support for real companies in the real economy, then our banks and private- sector companies will have to work much harder to sustain the goodwill of those who are keeping them alive: millions and millions of taxpayers.

No to ID cards

On Tuesday 25th November, the British state began its rollout of biometric ID cards by imposing them first on migrants. From this date foreign spouses and nationals from outside Fortress Europe who apply for, or renew, study visas will be required to attend a UK Border Agency Centre for interrogation and fingerprinting. They will then be issued with cards which will hold their name, photograph, nationality and immigration status, along with a biometric chip that will hold their finderprints and digital image. The details will be held indefintely on the UK Identity Service database. Over the next three years, other groups of non-EU nationals will be forced to undergo the process.

On Monday evening, NO2ID activists in Leeds expressed their resistance to the scheme with a public burning of a mock ID card. A Liverpool action followed on Tuesday, with a picket, leafletting and a samba band. A No Borders banner drop on one of Newcastle's busiest inner motorways on Tuesday morning alerted commuters to the rollout, whilst Lunar house in Croydon was picketed by No Borders London. Meanwhile in Birmingham a picket of the UK Border Agency in Solihull was met by a disproportionate police presence and in Cardiff there was a picket of over 60 people. Noborders Manchester joined forces with Merseyside activists to protest outside Reliance House in Liverpool.

Monday, December 08, 2008

The Matrix

MAtrix spoof about PC computers..very funny

A fishy tale

To watch the latest film produced by the Ecologist Film Unit, 'Greed of Feed'
- a short film which reveals a host of unreported environmental & social costs
linked to the fishmeal production industry in Peru, please visit

The elite

In the media elite people are portrayed as reasonable and nice people. I
wondered about the enthusiasm around the election of Obama, after Kennedy
the next American president who is elected because he wants "change". Did he
specify what he was going to change? No, just "I want change" and then he
surrounds himself with people from the old political establishment.

*Is he going to change that millions of (mostly black) petty criminals who
are languishing in American jails are being replaced by big criminals who
steal millions as the bankers who caused the financial crisis?*

Will he withdraw American troops from Iraq because the reason to invade Iraq
was fabricated by the government of his predecessor Bush?

Will he withdraw American troops from all these countries where the American
army has seven hundred military bases?

Of course not, the elite will continue (with or without servants as Obama)
to amass money at the cost of mass public and to send people in wars
where only the public and not the elite will die.

These elite people are not "nice and reasonable", they are driven by money and not
by the destiny of common people.

Protest shuts down airport

Dozens of flights at Stansted airport have been delayed or cancelled after more than 50 protesters occupied a secure area near the runway.

Climate action group Plane Stupid said it started the protest at 0315 GMT by breaching security.
Watch video of breaking into airport..sorry about the crap advert before it tho'

'We're here because our parents' generation has failed us and it's now down to young people to stop climate change by whatever peaceful means we have left.'
Lily Kember, Plane Stupid campaigner

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Japnese Animation

Hauru no ugoku shiro or in English

Howls moving castle

Stunning animation feature film- watched it for the first on New Years day at 8am in a French chateau! Open the door to new world every day

Riots in Greece

From the BBC
'Thousands of protesters have attacked banks and shops in Athens and the northern city of Thessaloniki, angered by the police's killing of a teenager.Demonstrators threw firebombs, rocks and other objects at the buildings and at police, who responded with tear gas. '

But watch the footage and the photograph opposite and then ask yourself- Why is the footage only showing from the viewpoint of the Police? This only gives the perspective of the event from the perpetrators (Police- as they did shoot dead a citizen) rather then the victims (the citizens)

Watch more here

The BBC's Malcolm Brabant looks at why student anger has erupted across Greece over Saturday's fatal police shooting of a teenage boy.
A youth clashes with riot police in Athens on 7 December 2008
Young people have been clashing with police in cities across Greece

The riots that have swept Greece for the past two days and look set to continue for the foreseeable future underline why the most important day in the national calendar is "Oxi" or "No" day. read more