“Good Lord, it’s my past,” Morris says as he leafs through a box filled with folders labeled “Manson Girls” and “Lobotomy.” Many of the boxes are cardboard coffins for movies he pursued for years but couldn’t fund.
[life] A Field Guide To Bullshit … Intellectual black holes are belief systems that draw people in and hold them captive so they become willing slaves of claptrap. Belief in homeopathy, psychic powers, alien abductions – these are examples of intellectual black holes. As you approach them, you need to be on your guard because if you get sucked in, it can be extremely difficult to think your way clear again. [via YMFY]
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Media pundits say the News of the World’s seven million-strong readership will now divide into those who will spend the rest of their lives washing their hands 300 times a day and those who will continue to enjoy stories about fucking.
Wayne Hayes, media analyst at Donnelly-McPartlin, said: “At this stage it’s anyone’s guess, though one does have to question the commercial impact of Guardian readers boycotting the News of the World.
“Nevertheless I am sure those Guardian readers will cancel their Sky subscriptions the very moment the second series of Boardwalk Empire finishes sometime next year.”
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Then – in 1995 – Murdoch begins to change. He decides he likes Tony Blair and tells [Woodrow] Wyatt he may support him at the coming election. Wyatt can’t believe it. He had thought that Murdoch would always support the Conservatives.
And then Murdoch does something worse. He tells the editor of the News of the World to cut back on the column that he had allowed Wyatt to write every week.
Wyatt is in despair. There is a wonderful moment in the diaries when Wyatt sleeps all night on the floor of his study next to the phone waiting for Murdoch to ring.
As one of his former top executives—once a close aide—told me, “This scandal and all its implications could not have happened anywhere else. Only in Murdoch’s orbit. The hacking at News of the World was done on an industrial scale. More than anyone, Murdoch invented and established this culture in the newsroom, where you do whatever it takes to get the story, take no prisoners, destroy the competition, and the end will justify the means.”
[twitter] Grace Dent: 100 things about me and Twitter … ‘I unfollow my friends all the time. I think life’s too short to have someone pissing you off in your timeline. It’s like radio interference in your brain on a lovely day.’
[comics] The Artists’ Artist: Graphic Novelists … with contributions from Peter Kuper, Bryan Talbot, Posy Simmonds, Ariel Schrag, Martin Rowson and Lynda Barry. On Chris Ware: ‘Chris Ware is an American cartoonist whose work is so unusual that some hesitate to call what he is doing “comics”. When I read his work, I get a Wright brothers feeling of being in something big, right as it’s being invented. Eventually we will know what to call what he does, but for now “graphic novel” is all we have.’
[web] Panopticlick … How unique, identifiable and trackable is your web browser? ‘…web sites may be able to track you, even if you limit or disable cookies. Panopticlick tests your browser to see how unique it is based on the information it will share with sites it visits.’ [via Lifehacker]
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In police inquiries, the most sensitive moment is generally considered to be when those involved start to turn on one another. James Murdoch and the then News International chief executive Rebekah Brooks had turned on Crone and Myler – particularly the long-serving Crone – in their testimony.
[comics] Grant Morrison: My Supergods From The Age Of The Superhero … Grant Morrison Chooses His Favourite Superhero Moments … On Marvelman: ‘There are beautiful sequences where the superheroes are escorting Thatcher out of No 10 and she’s sobbing helplessly: suddenly there’s this new power that bombs can’t stop, weapons can’t stop. The whole last issue is this fabulous liberal fantasy of what the good guys would do if they got in charge and got rid of all the bastards! I like it much more than Watchmen; it was a real triumph for lefties everywhere!’
[hackgate] What’s in a Name? … How did Operations Elveden and Weeting get named? ‘To Norfolk people Eleveden is a notorious bottleneck on the A11, the main road into and out of the county. You can, literally, queue for miles and for hours to get through Elveden in either direction. It is a place notorious to Norfolk for frustration, obstruction and never getting anywhere.’
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[blogs] This Blog’s 10th Birthday … a remarkable achievement – Feeling Listless completes ten years of consistently well done longform blogging … ‘If I was to sit down and write a thesis, perhaps something I’d also consider is whether blogging existed initially because it was insanely difficult for most amateurs to post anything to the web but text. In 2001, although some video and picture sites were available but not a lot of people, at least in the UK, used broadband and it took hours to upload anything via dial up.’
[comics] Alan Moore Takes League of Extraordinary Gentlemen To The ’60s … yet another wide-ranging interview with Alan Moore … ‘My position on punk was that I loved the music and I wanted to be involved in it. But unlike some of my associates, I wasn’t going to go out and get my haircut or spiked up. This was their generation, they were all much younger than me, and they deserved to explore it in their own way. Of course, I found out later that John Lydon was about, what, eight months younger than me! [Laughs]’
[web] Internet protocols: Removing the internet’s Relics … On the long slow death of FTP … ‘The internet never throws anything away. Instead, engineers twiddle, update, and overhaul. The e-mail system in use today has a strong resemblance to that of 1971, just as transferring files between two machines in 2011 is, at heart, a 40-year-old relic…’
[hackgate] Murdoch Scandal’s New Top Cop … a profile of Sue Akers – the head of the Police phone hacking investigation … ‘She was one of the first female cops to carry a weapon and the fifth woman in Scotland Yard history to lead a borough. Through her years on the force, she earned an aura of a lone ranger, beholden to no one. “She didn’t hitch herself to anyone’s star,” says her former boss, Brian Paddick, now a politician and the Liberal Democrat candidate for mayor of London in 2008. Before she took on the phone-hacking investigation, Akers had become London’s top gang cop and was known to broker no nonsense, even from her bosses. “She’s the kind of cop who wouldn’t give you a break if you parked on the double line,” says one person closely involved in the phone-hacking case.’