Archive for March, 2001

foot and mouth

I expect that this is the last thing the poor Cumbrian farmers need. Our nation is in turmoil, the countryside may never recover, we’re an international laughing stock, and the best we can do is come up with is Shockwave animation games mocking the entire chain of events? Cool. (via Dave).

genghis blues

The power of email. At the weekend I received an SOS to a mailing list I’m on, a desperate plea for a copy of Genghis Blues to be shown in a cinema in Germany. Owning a copy of said film and being a fan of throat singing in general, I answered the plea. And so it came to pass that last night my DVD was shown to an audience in Offenburgh, a town in Southern Germany near the border with France. I hope they enjoyed themselves.

link cull

Time for an occasional cull, and an update of the links section.

Gone! Kitschbitch. Accused of committing the cardinal sin of neglecting to update. Gone! /usr/bin/girl. Gone! kottke. Gone! Plasticbag. For no other reason than they’re all superstars and don’t need my help. Plus I sent an email to Tom at Plasticbag once, and he never bothered replying.

New! bluishorange, for no other reason than having a splendid and beautiful haircut. New! Pie In The Sky, for no other reason than she wrote me a nice email asking to be linked. Welcome aboard! New! methylsalicylate, for no other reason than a cool design and great taste in music. Jim White! Merle Haggard! I wonder if she likes Johnny Dowd.

blogyou blog me

Big news, just in: Those devilish types at blogyou! blogyou! blogyou! finally got round to blogging me. I’m very pleased to receive the expected poor review, and delighted that they’ve drawn my attention (unwittingly) to the fact that blogger has chewed up my archive. If only I could remember how I fixed it last time…

stop canvassers

Do you suffer from phone canvassers ringing up all the time? I know I certainly do. Visit this page, call the numbers, and the little bleeders will never darken your earpiece again. (This announcement comes courtesy of blogjam’s public service arm).


I’m not usually the type to reproduce press releases verbatum, but this one intrigued me…

napster was only the beginning. an introduction to [v0.5]

a spectre is haunting the corporate world — the spectre of organized world-wide file-sharing. mp3, to name the most common synonym for the becoming-distributor of millions of former customers, has clearly shown that the flows of digital data are much more driven by people and formats than they are determined by legislation, ownership or the new global rules of the corporate-political. napster has reverse-engineered the ideology of a whole industry, and it has finally proven its total, complete and absolute obsolescence. the transnational companies that are now trying to break it up have started a war they will never be able to stop. there are going to be thousands of napsters. is not even zero-point-five of them.

we are not the dot in dot-com, neither are we the minus in e-book. the future of online publishing sits right next to your computer: it’s a $50 scanner and a $50 printer, both connected to the internet. we are the & in copy & paste, and plain ascii is still the format of our choice. it shouldn’t require a plug-in to read a book on the net, nor should it require a credit card. the text industry is a paper tiger. along with the mass erosion of their proprietary rights goes the vanishing of their digital watermarks. packed today, cracked tomorrow. whatever electronic gadgets they will come up with — they are all going to be dead media on their very release day. forget about your new kafka dvd. i already got it via sms.

this is not project gutenberg. it is neither about constituting a canonical body of historical texts (by authors so classical that they’ve all been watching the grass from below for almost a century of posthumous copyright), nor is it about htmlifying freely available books into unreadable sub-chapterized hyper-chunks. texts relate to texts by other means than a href. just go to your local bookstore and find out yourself. the net is not a rhizome, and a digital library should not be an interactive nirvana. the conceptual poverty of today’s post-academic, post-corporate public online services — and we haven’t seen dot-museum yet — is not and has never been a desirable alternative to a future that will be controlled by the super-pervasive data-streams of the upcoming military-entertainment complex. there are still other options. nostalgia is slavery. stay home, read a book.

information does not want to be free. in fact it is absolutely free of will a constant flow of signs of lives which are permanently being turned into commodities and transformed into commercial content. is not part of the information business. they say there was a time when content was king, but we have seen his head rolling. our week beats their year. ever since we have been moving from content to discontent, collecting scripts and viruses, writing programs and bots, dealing with textz as warez, as executables — something that is able to change your life. this is not promotional material. facing the unified principles of information — the combined horror of global communication and so-called guerilla marketing — there is no more need for media theory or cultural studies. the resistance against corporate culture can itself no longer remain in the cultural domain. you make a mistake if you see what we do as merely apolitical.

we are studying the coils of the serpent, watching the walk of the penguin, mapping the moves of our wired enemies. intellectual, digital and biological property — cornerstones of the new regimes of control — are the direct result of organized corporate piracy. they are not only replacing such obsolete notions as freedom, democracy, human rights and technological progress. all these new forms of ownership are, in the first place, attempts to expropriate people’s work, data and bodies — just as the they begin to acquire, for the first time in history, the technical means to organize them differently. today’s global media and communication conglomerates are mafias, and we shouldn’t count on what’s left of the national governments when it comes to fighting back. “humanity won’t be happy until the last copyright holder is hung by the guts of the last patent lawyer.” napster was only the beginning. the nineties of the net are over. let’s move on.

a.s.ambulanzen, berlin/germany, march 2001. no copyright


I like the idea of truly innovative improvements in transport. This isn’t one. Boy, is that ugly.

dream job

The link from my post on 13th of this month referring to a £45,000 per year “dream job” has been changed. As always, The Register carry the full story.