Our 30 swing voters were given “people meters” small, handheld dials that they turned up or down to register their second-by-second reaction to speeches, news clips or party political broadcasts. Up is good. Down is bad.
We showed them the first few moments of the recent White House press conference where President Bush and Mr Blair stood side-by-side and talked about “a clear way forward” in Iraq. The dials plummeted. Never in 17 years of moderating people-meter sessions have I seen an audience react so negatively even before the first word had been spoken. Every dial fell.
I can see it now: Lib Dem posters plastered throughout traditional Labour constituencies of a smiling Tony Blair looking wistfully at a smirking George W. Bush over a simple four-word slogan: “Need we say more?” Trust me, it would work.
Police in Malaysia are hunting for members of a violent gang who chopped off a car owner’s finger to get round the vehicle’s hi-tech security system.
The car, a Mercedes S-class, was protected by a fingerprint recognition system.
Accountant K Kumaran’s ordeal began when he was run down by four men in a small car as he was about to get into his Mercedes in a Kuala Lumpur suburb.
The gang, armed with long machetes, demanded the keys to his car.
It is worth around $75,000 second-hand on the local market, where prices are high because of import duties.
The attackers forced Mr Kumaran to put his finger on the security panel to start the vehicle, bundled him into the back seat and drove off.
But having stripped the car, the thieves became frustrated when they wanted to restart it. They found they again could not bypass the immobiliser, which needs the owner’s fingerprint to disarm it.
They stripped Mr Kumaran naked and left him by the side of the road – but not before cutting off the end of his index finger with a machete.
I don’t know if “second hand” is the right pun to use… but expect this kind of theft to occur more regularly when biometric security becomes more wide-spread.
19% van de bevolking is geraakt door de dood van de kerkvader. De rest doet het weinig tot niets. Nederlanders hebben veel kritiek op de paus en dan vooral op zijn standpunt over seksualiteit en condoomgebruik.
49% vindt dat hij een negatieve invloed heeft gehad door het condoomgebruik te veroordelen. 17% vindt dat hij met zijn anti-abortusstandpunt de samenleving negatief heeft beinvloed. Positief worden zijn bijdrage aan de val van het communisme en het bevorderen van de wereldvrede genoemd.
De paus heeft volgens de Nederlandse bevolking duidelijk te lang zijn functie vervuld: 79% vindt dat hij eerder met zijn werk had moeten stoppen. De rooms-katholieke achterban denkt hier nagenoeg hetzelfde over (81%).
An employee of the Sea Life Aquarium in Dresden looks at a seahorse part of an exhibit including about 80 seahorses of different species. (AFP/DDP/Norbert Millauer)
The more television 4-year-old children watch the more likely they are to become bullies later on in school, a U.S. study said Monday.
At the same time, children whose parents read to them, take them on outings and just generally pay attention to them are less likely to become bullies, said the report from the University of Washington.
United Virtualities is offering online marketers and publishers technology that attempts to undermine the growing trend among consumers to delete cookies planted in their computers.
The New York company on Thursday unveiled what it calls PIE, or persistent identification element, a technology that’s uploaded to a browser and restores deleted cookies. In addition, PIE, which can’t be easily removed, can also act as a cookie backup, since it contains the same information.
According to JupiterResearch, a division of Jupitermedia Corp., 58 percent of Internet users have deleted the tiny files, essentially making many consumers anonymous during site visits. In addition, 39 percent of consumers are deleting cookies from their primary computer monthly.
United Virtualities’s PIE helps combat this consumer behavior by leveraging a feature in Flash MX called local shared objects.
Mookie Tanembaum, founder and chief executive of United Virtualities, says the company is trying to help consumers by preventing them from deleting cookies that help website operators deliver better services.
“The user is not proficient enough in technology to know if the cookie is good or bad, or how it works,” Tanembaum said.
While United Virtualities, as well as marketers and publishers, focus on the benefits of cookies, consumers often see them as an invasion of privacy and resent having them loaded into their computers without permission, experts say. In addition, unscrupulous marketers can abuse the tracking capabilities of cookies.
combat this consumer behavior? Is this how companies are viewing the general public? Are we now officially enemy combatants?
here is info on how to disable this new tracking mechanism.
An american website has breached the publication ban protecting a Montreal ad exec’s explosive and damning testimony at the AdScam inquiry. The U.S. blogger raised the ire of the Gomery commission this weekend by publishing extracts from testimony given in secret by Jean Brault last Thursday.
The American blog, being promoted by an all-news Canadian website, boasts that “Canada’s Corruption Scandal Breaks Wide Open” and promises more to come. The owner of the Canadian website refused to comment yesterday.
AdScam inquiry spokesman Francois Perreault expressed shock at the publication ban breach, and said commission co-counsel Bernard Roy and Justice John Gomery will decide today whether to charge the Canadian website owner with contempt of court.
“We never thought someone would violate the publication ban,” Perreault said yesterday. “Maybe we were more confident than we should have been.”
Gomery slapped a ban on Brault’s testimony last week to ensure the Montreal ad exec would be able to find an unbiased jury for his fraud trial set for next month.
Gomery also ordered a publication ban on the upcoming testimony of former sponsorship head Chuck Guite and former ad exec Paul Coffin.
The weblog in question is here. Sometimes the Canadian courts put a ban in information to ensure a fair trial. If you look at the OJ circus or more recently the Michael Jackson trial, this makes sense. Sometimes. In this case however, the ban may influence an election outcome:
Most of the testimony heard by the Commission has been public, but Judge Gomery has decided to create a publication ban on the testimony of three key witnesses: Jean Brault, president of the ad agency Groupaction, Charles Guité, an officer of the Public Works ministry who worked on the Sponsorship Program, and Paul Coffin, president of the ad agency Coffin Communications. The potential damage of their testimony has so unnerved the Liberal Party that they have reportedly started working towards a snap election so that they will not have to face the voters once the facts surface from the record.
So, if you’re canadian, visit the weblog, and inform yourself before you vote.
According to an independent study conducted by Alex Malik, a former general counsel for the Australian Recording Industry Association, the popularity of one P2P application — BitTorrent — in Australia is driven in part by local television networks which “have adopted a strategy of being slow to air current episodes of popular TV shows”.
Malik believes that by delaying the broadcast of these programmes, Australian TV programmers have increased the domestic demand for the shows. “As a result, impatient viewers have increasingly turned to BitTorrent to download their favourite shows,” he said.
If you insist on treating your customers badly, eventually they’ll walk. In case of TV Networks, it’ll take a bit longer – their customers are not the viewers, but the advertisers, and it’ll take a while longer before the advertisers walk away.