And the beat goes on, or blogging a dead horse

July 23, 2008

I’ve been keeping an eye on the Beat Blogging trend in journalism. I’m not sure where it’s going, but, as I suspected, something’s got to give.

Beat blogging is the reportorial art of encouraging, inveigling and cajoling your local contacts to help you out via social networking. It’s a cool idea and one that journalists with a digital brain will one day figure out.

But, if you’re going to do the beat blogging shtick, what are you – as a savvy young reporter, with a job – going to ditch?

Read the rest of this entry »

20,000 unique hits can’t be too far off the mark

July 18, 2008

Thanks to my subscribers, regular readers and drop-ins. For what it’s worth Ethical Martini has now had over 20,000 unique visitors. That’s Ok in just over a year, for a blog that came from left field.

And I’d just like to say: “You’re all unique.”

I hope I keep you informed and entertained. Drop me a line, or join the fun. Applications now open for keen, ethical, martini-friendly and outspoken accomplices.



Gopalan Nair – a new charge and a tight chain

June 17, 2008

Singapore blogger, lawyer and general pain in the ass of the Singapore government, Gopalan Nair was back in court Monday. He is now facing new charges and his bail conditions mean that he has to report to the police station every morning at 9am and can be held there all day.

His life is on hold, but there is virtual silence from the blogosphere. What’s happened to all of the hype about freedom of expression.

Turn your back until it’s your turn to be persecuted, then wonder why you’re alone.

Do not forget the case of Gopalan Nair. Singapore today, where next?

Chia Ti Lik’s update 17 June 2008

Gopalan Nair free on bail – still facing charges

June 6, 2008

I just saw an AFP news feed, 8 hours ago [around 7 on Thursday evening Sydney time], saying the Singapore blogger Gopalan Nair has been released. As of now I can’t find any coverage in the NZ Herald or the Dominion Post.

Nair posted $5000 bail and walked out of prison after four days, but without his US passport. Nair arrived in Singapore on 25 May and challenged authorities to come and get him from his hotel.

He had posted his room and phone numbers on Singapore Dissident [link inside]. Gopalan’s charged with insulting a judge in a defamation case involving two of his political allies. His blog, regularly criticises the government.

The Committee to Protect Journalists is protesting Nair’s arrest. He was in Singapore to cover the defamation trial involving Democratic Party activists Dr. Chee Soon Juan and Chee Siok Chin.

That trial is also a story worth following as Nair is trapped in Singapore and now facing serious defamation charges himself.

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Blogging on the move

June 1, 2008

I’ve just installed a Firefox extension called ScribeFire, it is to allow on-the-move blogging. I’ll test it over the net few weeks.
You can check it out at ScribeFire.

Blogs, bar talk and corridor commentaries – shorthand #2

March 29, 2008

My colleague Helen doesn’t like the idea of virtual discussions, she doesn’t really fancy blogging as a way of having a “conversation”. As a “hackademic” she still thinks like a journo and prefers to yarn with mates and peers in the bar. It seems a lot of journos feel that way.

I’ve had a few comments on my recent “why do we need shorthand” post, but it’s been interesting to find out from doing the rounds of newshound watering holes that it has been much more widely read and discussed than the few comments on the blog would lead us to assume.

A meeting in my office with Mike Fletcher of the JTO elicited the information that my comments have caused some traditional hacks to palpitate at the heresy of thought that shorthand might no longer be a core skill for our young graduates. The day before, a phone call from a senior Auckland news editor alerted me to the fact that there’s a subterranean conversation about shorthand underway. “Ah,” I thought, “this is interesting”. Read the rest of this entry »