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Archive for the ‘internet’ Category

growing up and moving out

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We’ve come a long-long way together, baby.

And by “baby”, I am adoringly referring to– of course — “the internet”.

From my first X-Files fan site over at Geocities or Tripod (or where-ever-the-hell-that-was) (hey, give me a break, it was 1997!), to Blogger, to LiveJournal, (back to Blogger) and then WordPress.com, Facebook, Tumblr and Twitter(with a few others places in between) (OMFG! Fanfiction.net!!), I have basically grown up online.

I’ve gone through (and/or described) a rainbow of human experiences on some sort of online public forum, from puppy-love, family dramas, deteriorating and blossoming relationships, depression, work, politics, activism…  anything and everything.  To this day, my best friend in the WHOLE WIDE WORLD is a lovely young woman I met online over 7 years ago.  If I’ve lived it, it’s probably happened or documented online.

Some may call me a geek, but I like to think that I was more of an “early adopter”.  Because if MC Hammer uses Twitter, and then re-Tweets me, how on Earth can you call it “geeky”, huh, punk?

Yeah. EPIC WIN.

Anyway. I was talking about growing up. And becoming mature and stuff.

Because, yes, I’m getting older and accruing the odd responsibility that I need to start taking seriously.  The time has come for me to settle down with my internet shenanigans; to assess and consolidate my online presence and to set myself up for what the future holds for me.

However, that by no means involves quitting the internet or passively waiting for work, mortgages and come-what-may to smash me into boringness.

It just means thinking about things like “branding” instead of just blogging my brains out for no particular reason (or, like, because I’m angry at a politician or freaking out about my career), and setting my online-presence up in a way that works for me rather than against me.

Oh, gods. That sounds horribly boring, doesn’t it?

Sigh.

But, honestly this was inevitable.

As they say in Swahili, my favouritest language ever: Hakuna matata, the Circle of Life (™?), et cetera…

Because I am old, now, you guys. O-L-D. And I am about to work for a large, influential corporate entity that works for other large, influential corporate entities, and, yeah… I have to be responsible and sensible and stuff so that I don’t get fired or sued or whatnot.  While the property market might be Just Where I Want It as a flash-hot young law grad at a large corporate firm, it will not be so nice to be unemployed or a freelance whinger who does not even have a Google AdWords account.

So while I am not quitting the internet, I am just going to be a bit more grown-up in the way that I use it.

Phase One of this grown-up online makeover has been completed: about a month ago, I quit Facebook.

Oops, sorry, did you spit out coffee all over your screen? Um. I probably should have put a little warning before that little announcement, I guess. Anyhoo…

While I may have been referred to as The Queen of Facebook on more than one occasion — what, with all my friend-approving and blog-importing and link-posting and group-joining and event-creating and wall-writing — it got to a point where, just like for Gretel Killeen, it was Time To Go.

(And we all know what happened there after Grett-Grettz left, don’t we? Just sayin’…)

As cool as it was to see what people were up to, and to have “ambient awareness” or whatever they call it about all these people that I know, Fb was turning into an epic time drain and the people that I interacted with the most on there were people I would see, or call, or text message, or Twitter to, on a regular and more meaningful basis.

And because I don’t have any photos of me drunkenly groping a life-sized cardboard cut-out of a boss’s opponent that might one day cost me a promotion or something (like this guy) (because I am, we’ve pretty well established, a square) there was nothing Fb had to offer me any more.

So buh-bye!

I was told I wouldn’t last a week, but a month later I am doing JUST FINE! I may have Twittered a wee bit morethan I had done so while I had Fb, but otherwise, I have not missed a thing. (Or if I have missed them, I have not noticed I have missed anything, and that suits me fine.)

Upon the successful completion of Phase One, I have continued to push the cogs rolling ever forward.

I now present to you, Phase Three:

sunili.net

Spiffy, huh?

Yup, I went all-out and invested in a domain name and hosting and all that fun stuff!

Hurrah!

Phase Three is still very much under construction.  I now need to save up so that I can pay the awesomeness who is designer extraordinaire Aja West of Swankmob* to design me a website and business cards and some other peripherals (note to self: ask her if she does personalised stationery) so that I can launch my brand — that is (pay attention, children!), ME — so that those who so wish to do so can hire me to write stuff and be fabulous (which is something that I want to do some day, down the track).  But it’s happening.

*Aside: You guys, if you’re looking for a designer and don’t have to get a second job making coffee to pay for one, HIRE AJA!! Because then she’ll give me a cheaper rate and my site will be done sooner, and you’ll have an awesome site too! WIN-WIN-WIN, people, it’s all WIN!

And now, in case you think I am a moron who cannot count…

I wish to take you back a step to Phase Two:

blog.sunili.net

Tah-dah!

With all the power vested in me upon the installation of WordPress 2.7(hot!) I have set up a new blog in honour of the New Year, and more importantly, the New Me.

I’m going to leave all the old stuff here without migrating it over because I want to make a fresh start of it, and I’m really excited!

So change all yer bookmarks and subscriptions and stuff, and start looking forward to joining me on this next step in my life online.  I’ll see you there!!

Peace out, Team Awesome Readers of Sunili’s Blog — I ♥ you, each and every one!

xoxo Sunili

[Cross-posted @ blog.sunili.net]

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Written by Sunili

7 January 2009 at 9:57 pm

the new poltwittical frontier

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A little while ago Malcolm Turnbull jumped on the Twitter bandwagon (although not before a tech-savvy satirist got in first) and now, with the launch of the re-branded Kevin07 for 2008, www.KevinPM.com.au, old Uncle Kevin has joined in on the fun.

Within hours, of course, @FakeKevinRudd was on board too.

twitstamp.com

And Norg boss Bronwen even did up a new avatar for the Real Kev Ruddy (please stand up) along the lines of the No Clean Feed protest piccies:

kev-pola

Bless! Things move quickly in the Twittscape!

It’ll be interesting to see how Kevs interacts with his “followers”.  Turnbull’s actually replied to people here and there, although you wonder how much they take on board.

Anyway. I’ll sure be watching. Will you?

Seriously, you guys, Twitter is the new Facebook. Sign up already!

Written by Sunili

12 November 2008 at 4:45 pm

The Net Nanny Diaries: the Australian Family Associmorons #nocleanfeed

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I am now very wary of lobby-groups and political parties etc which put “Family” in their name. Because it is usually code for “Tory Bible-Bashing Wanker”.

When I saw that an op-ed proclaiming the net filter as “a great tool to help parents in their difficult vigil” against the Mean Nasty Ninternet was written by a researcher with the Australian Family Association, I snapped over to Google quick-smart.

Their Wikipedia entry probably requires a “neutrality warning” or whatnot, but it totes justified my prejudgment (and I also felt comforted knowing that the AFA probably hearts prejudgment, too!):

According to its stated objectives, the AFA aims “to cultivate within society an appreciation that the integrity and wellbeing of the family is essential to the stability, morale, security and prosperity of the Australian nation”.

In other words, the AFA comprises a bunch of ignorant wowsers, killjoys, and prurient perverts who really ought to keep their pathetic narrow-mindedness to themselves. The cloak of respectability called “family values” is made of transparent fabric, and barely conceals the stench of hypocrisy. (emphasis added)

Teehee!

But, aside from that amusing description, an old news story in the Google results drew my eye, too.

Apparently, Teh AFA once thought that “a ban on smacking children is going too far” and believed:

… to introduce laws which mean the Government has a role to play in deciding who and who isn’t a good parent, we think that’s going too far.

Um. I’m sorry. WHAT?!

So…………… firstly: those laws about, like, taking kids away from abusive parents and stuff goes “too far”? Because isn’t it the whole point of those that the government goes, “dude, you are a horrible, bogan parent — Step. Away. From the bebbeh”?

Welp. Might as well give them back their crack-pipes with their kiddies, no? Good idea, team. That’s a GREAT way to ensure the “stability, morale, security and prosperity of the Australian nation”.

And, secondly: but NOW they think the government should totally step in and decide that all parents (and, oh yeah, everyone else in the fricking country) totes have to have a filter even if they might prefer another method for educating their kids, like, you know, talking to them and stuff?

Urgh. How do morons manage to gather themselves into “Associations”? We seriously need a vetting agency to stop Idiot Collectives putting out media releases.

The pro-filter article, on how “claims of mandatory ‘censorship’ have been unfair and misleading”, totally misses the point of logic in several ways, and this is my fave:

Should we dismiss the effectiveness of the filters due to the fact that they are not perfect? Most would realise that an automated filtering system will never be 100 per cent accurate. However, having almost 90 per cent of unwanted material blocked is certainly a lot better than none.

Uhhh. Don’t be fooled by the apparently reasonable point. Read between the patronising bullshit and look at what they’re saying.

I don’t think we’re complaining about the 10% of nudie pics that are going to get through, love. We’re complaining about the ridiculous and preposterous proposition about this being an “attempt at making the internet safer for Australians”.

For God’s sake (you “Family” peeps usually like God, don’t you? Cool, so you won’t mind me appealing to his Infinite Reason and Wisdom, right? Awesome), get out of our wombs, our bedrooms and our effing computers.

For more deets on the technical issues with the author’s arguments, see the comments, and for more on the net filter proposal itself, see: http://www.nocleanfeed.com/learn.html (which actually includes like, facts and sources and stuff. Gasp).

Written by Sunili

4 November 2008 at 5:31 pm

fun links to keep the masses occupied

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Gah, it looks like I may have called an end to my hiatus too early. But we did have a good couple of weeks up-til now, so I’ll count that as a blessing.

Until I have time to pull together all the notes scattered through my several Moleskines (I try to be organised, but I think I am a scatterbrain at heart) into real blog posts, here are some fun things for y’all to read:

If you think that’s special, then think about this. Pfotenhauer said that she lives in a place called Oakton, Va. Oakton is located in Fairfax County. Pfotenhauer implied that the country was part of “real America” because it was open to the possibility of electing John McCain. Here’s the problem: Fairfax County, like its neighbors, are in the process of turning colors. (We can detect this with a special version of a mass spectrometer called a “ballot box.”)

Like regular charges of left-wing bias against the ABC, the moral panic evident in submissions to the Senate inquiry rests on a certain implicit, though questionable, assumption – namely, that only deviation from prevailing orthodoxy constitutes bias.

Conventional views are presumed neutral, and the possibility is never entertained they may be invisibly, systematically biased in the other direction. It follows that the regular complaints of bias and proposed remedies are a form of harassment designed to maintain doctrinal conformity.

However, the highest educational ideals require precisely the reverse attitude – that is, encouraging the exploration of alternatives to preferred, taken-for-granted views. As Bertrand Russell remarked, education should make students think, not to think what their teacher (or government) thinks.

Found any good web-treats recently? Please share!

Love,
Sunili xoxo

Written by Sunili

20 October 2008 at 6:02 pm

Blog Action Day 08: let’s talk about poverty, baby

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Today, 15 October, is Blog Action Day: where nearly 10 000 sites around the great web of the internets will write, design, speak, or whatever on one topic to get the word out and keep it there.

The topic this year is POVERTY.

Yesterday I wrote rather flippantly about wanting an iPod and going oh, look at me, I’m a 20-something in Australia with no responsibilities and a highly disposable income.   And that was just after I’d read a news story about how millions of people are at risk of dying of starvation in Zimbabwe.

When I did my Arts Honours thesis, I spent a year with my head stuck in textbooks on “international development” (as in from the Millennium Development Goals) and talking to people who were trying to “fix” poverty.  At some points it all got a little disenchanting — particularly when I realised that the concept of “development” was invented/thought up after World War II, as in sixty years ago, and we’re still trying to “fix” it.

It’s a big issue. There’s no denying that.  And yeah, sometimes it seems like there’s too much to do, and that no matter how many concerts Bono organises, or how much coffee Colin Firth drenches himself in (hello), nothing much is going to change anything.

But you know what? I still make the effort to do what I can.

I’ve been a UNICEF Global Parent for several years, donating money to that program every month even when I was a student.  When I have to give people gifts, I get them chickens or seeds or goats or small business grants from Oxfam Unwrapped (my friends get a card; people who could do with a goat get a goat).  I try to only buy coffee from cafés that use fair trade beans and I try to only buy fair trade tea and chocolate, too (sometimes, but, I really feel like a Snickers; I do then try to offset that somehow…).

I also joined the Make Poverty History campaign, and when they send me emails about lobbying projects that asks me to take 2 minutes to click through and sign a petition the government about the travesty of the maternal and child mortality in developing countries, I do it. Oh, and I am hosting The World’s Largest Fondue Party (or at least, a part of it) at my place in November (SAVE THE DATE!!), which is part of the Stop The Traffick campaign to end child trafficking labour in the manufacture of our chocolate.

Yes, I know those are only little things.

Like the way I also take all my recyclables home from the office because our building doesn’t do recycling, some people might think I am an idiot because just little me doing those little things probably isn’t going to make a big impact.  But you know what?  I don’t care what people think about the things I do.

I have a choice.  I have a choice between:

  1. doing those little things that might-possiblymaybe have some positive impact (no matter how small) but don’t require me to go very far out of my way at all; or
  2. not doing anything at all because, psh, that’s what most people are doing anyway, even if that will totally-definitely not have any impact,

My choice is, CLRLY, the first one.

And if people want to think I’m a little odd for my choice, all I want them to know is that I don’t give a shit about what they think.

And until I have time to set up a Kiva fund, or the guts to quit my job and go work somewhere like Cambodia like Laine, or the inspiration to set up a program for indigenous people in the Kimberly like Dan, I will keep doing those little things.  Actually, I’ll keep doing those little things even when (that’s right, not if, when) I get around to taking the bigger steps.

There’s a list on the Blog Action Day site about the Things One Person Can Do, but if you can’t be bothered to read that, they’ve got a video too.

Watch it, yo:

I hope this post encourages people to think about the little things they can do that will be part of a bigger effort to deal with the issue of world poverty.

Look, I know that with all these talks about recession and credit crunches a lot of people have issues to deal with that are even closer to home. But that’s exactly why, right now, it is just as important to talk about poverty which has been affecting entire countries, heck continents, for decades and decades.  Think about it. I guess that’s all I’m asking for. If you want to take it any further, and kinda maybe talk to me about it, my email is sunilisblog via that google internet communication thing.

Love,
Sunili

xoxo

Written by Sunili

15 October 2008 at 8:25 pm

I’m participating… are you?

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Written by Sunili

11 October 2008 at 7:00 pm

the media and timewarps

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The Cookster wrote a post today about a journo at The Age who stretched the truth about a pic of Richie Benaud… there was this pic that was on The Perth Files and The Worst of Perth several weeks ago, right, but the colunmist thought no one would mind if he said the snap was co-inki-dinkly taken “a few days ago”, ie a few days before the old chap’s birthday (which is in another few days).

Well I’ve got another story ferr ya!

There was a raucous in the rags this morning (The Herald Sun, SMH, The Age, even the ABC!) about the OUTRAGE! (™ David Cohen) over the title of a play at the Melbourne Fringe Festival.

Beaconsfield: A Musical In A-Flat Minor is apparently a piss-take satire over the media circus around the fatal mine collapse in Tasmania couple of years ago (Kochy and Mel, Richard Carlton), and the fun-police were having quite the go over how insensitive the title choice is.

Creator Dan Ilic, one of the team behind the AWESOMENESS that is The Ronnie Johns Half Hour (full name The Ronnie Johns Good Times Campfire Jamboree Half Hour Show (Now on Television)), was quoted as saying he hoped the “offensive” title would gain media attention.

I wish he’d also said they should all “harden the fuck up“, but Ilic isn’t the guy behind Chopper, so I won’t hold the omission against him.

Anyway, later this afternoon, one of the headlines on ABC was Playwright caves on Beaconsfield musical title (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!).

Especially since the inquest into the death at the mine is still on and stuff, it probably makes sense.

Good job, media! You changed the world!!!!!!!!!!!

Or did they?

On Ilic’s website, the “news” section lists the following [chronological order changed for dramatic effect]:

6th August 08
We haven’t even opened Beaconsfield, and we’re already getting bad press. Excellent!
Check out The Age article here. Beaconsfield; A musical in a-flat minor opens on wednesday night in workshop mode. It’s a pretty funny show, come see it before we patch it up and send it off to the Adelaide fringe.

7th August 08
In light of recent events, and in respect for Larry Knights family, we’ve the changed the name of the show to simply; Beaconsfield; The Musical.
I still maintain that it’s still “The feel-good piss-take event of the year!”

So wait. WHAT?

All the OUTRAGE! (™ David Cohen) happened TWO MONTHS AGO??

But the ABC is only reporting it NOW, the day before the show opens?

I guess that makes the following quote even more awesome:

“That title is purely there just to gain media interest in our musical,” [Dan Ilic] said. “So congratulations, you’ve done your job.” (ABC)

Hahaha SATIRICAL GOLD!! I want to go to Melbourne right now to see it.

No. Wait. Now I am even MORE confused: the link from the 6 August blog post on Ilic’s site (link to screen cap taken today) goes to a story dated 6 October in the URI but listed as 7 October (today). So wait. WHAT? It did all happen today?

That totally makes this whole post pointless.

DAMMIT. Damn you and your shoddy website skillz (dude also needs to work on apostrophes and Proper Noun Capitalisation), Dan Ilic, I thought you were leading me to post something awesome and observant about the sneakiness of the “meedya“.

Oh well. At least The Cookster got one up the bastards. That’s still one for the team.

Written by Sunili

7 October 2008 at 5:39 pm