Treehugger – ads in the RSS feed

Treehugger was recently bought, and today I noticed graphic, animated advertisements in their RSS feed. Not. Happy. Jan! The animation is incredibly annoying, especially because it’s animated, and it’s the same ad in a number of posts.

I hope they come to their senses and give me my clean, ad-free RSS reader back. I post links to Treehugger and visit the site all the time – they can get their eyeballs there, not in my RSS reader.

Update: Seems the ads have disappeared again. Perhaps just a glitch in Feedburner or something?

Update 2:Nup – they’re back. V. annoying… And to make it worse, the same ad appears over and over and over again and are completely irrelevant to the content. Meh…

Damian recently launched Sydney Cyclist – a place where those of us who ride and Sydney can get together and chat. I’ve joined (though not been as active as I’d like due to work and life commitments this week). But I’ll hopefully get some time to play on the weekend…

(For the techies: it’s built using Ning and Damian seems to be enjoying the process so far.)


South Australian students have constructed a biodiesel powered bike.

That’s cool ‘coz it’s an Aussie invention (we need more of them). But like most – likely to go off-shore (“There are no plans to produce a commercial version of the bike, but several companies in Asia have expressed interest.”).

That’s so frustrating – these talented students can do more than manufacturers with R&D budgets infinitely larger that the students probably had to work with. We need to see more of this kind of R&D happening in Australia – thankfully we have the education system to do that hard work eh?

Global warming – swift action required

Well – we already knew that. But as Treehugger reports, the ice is melting faster than the official predictions of the IPCC. The IPCC is the same organisation that conservatively suggested that humans are 90% likely to be causing global warming. In the face of reality, their conservative estimates on ice melt seem to be very conservative indeed. Perhaps they are also understating our impact?

Vincenze also posted a simple argument for why we need to act – risk management 101 really. Makes common sense – so why is it still in question?

Anyways – very interesting. And with Al and the IPCC getting the Nobel prize, mebbe more action is on the way? I sure hope so…

Q&A with Priscilla

Just a quick note to point you to a Q&A I did with Priscilla at as part of a series she is doing with a number of digital agencies.

The Q&A covers a bit about Digital Eskimo’s approach, ways non-profits can leverage the net and more. (Thanks to Priscilla for the opportunity).

Not with our money

Not with our money

You may have noticed, like I have, just how many government ads have been on telly the past few months. It’s a long running trend – starting some years ago.

These ads bug me on a number of levels, but I have often wondered just how much public money (our money) is being spent on what often amounts to little more than propaganda for the government’s (mostly unpopular) policies.

GetUp have just launched a campaign that puts the figure at $2 billion since the government took office – $200,000 of that this year.

Yep, you read that right – $2 billion! GetUp claim that that works out to be around $1 million a day.

This is what GetUp are asking for:

GetUp is calling for the introduction of a new law that ensures that:

  1. All future government advertising costs (from focus groups to media buying) are publicly available and easily accessible to the community via an annual report
  2. All advertising above $250,000 is to be approved by an independent auditor who applies strict guidelines to limit advertising to the dissemination of public information
  3. These guidelines are to be developed with public consultation with the final guidelines to be publicly available
  4. These conditions to apply in both the federal and state governments within 1 year
  5. A cap of $100 million p.a for total government advertising spending is to be imposed with any additional money to be approved by parliament.

The $100 million cap even seems high to me – I’m amazed that rules like this don’t already exist. Time we had some methinks…

Free Burma!

International bloggers are taking action on 4th October to support the peaceful revolution in Burma. We want to set a sign for freedom and show our sympathy for these people who are fighting their cruel regime without weapons. Bloggers will refrain from posting to their blogs on October 4, except for one banner with the title “Free Burma!”.

Free Burma