Archive for September, 2012

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Old News and New Projects

17/09/2012

Newspapers are having a hard time, I don’t think anyone could doubt that. When it comes to news people have long turned towards the internet or turned away completely. We live in a world where we are constantly bombarded with information, it can be easy to switch off.

This has left many newspapers with a massive problem. How are they supposed to sell something that is free online? The answer is the quality of the content. That is easy for broadsheets, but for tabloids, how is this achieved. Through any means possible seems to be the answer arrived at by many recently. The victims of this have been very real and very human.

No sooner than the journalists of Britain had been awash with the inquiry into the phone hacking scandal then had the British royal family been the subjects of numerous attempts to not just breach their privacy but also the sanctity of their most private lives.

Whether this is a group of girls entrapping someone or someone stalking a young woman and taking pictures of her relaxing from a mile away, I think it is easy to denounce it. However, that does not make it any less important to. There is no ambiguity in the line between journalism and attacking the very fibres of a person’s life, their most fundamental rights ignored by a group of people whose ship is sinking and needs the buoyancy of floundering celebrities and those who were born into positions of jealousy, stalking and isolation.

When we look at stories like this it is easy to only see part of it, to fail to connect the dots, not just as readers, but also as writers. You might just see the pictures and forget the stalking, or the phone hacking. We are awash with information, and it is easy to shut off to all, or even just some of it.

We at DFTBANews want to stop this, so soon we are hoping to create a way of telling news that allows you to know everything (yes, you can use it to chat someone up, though I advise sticking away from the story mentioned above, my cheek still hurts,) with minimal effort. To do this though we need help, this will be a new project for us, and we want new people. I am excited by the projects that are forming in the back studios (I swear, they are totally real in my head) of DFTBANews, and I really believe that they represent solutions to problems that news has always faced. And we promise that no matter what, we will never defile someone’s privacy, not even for a multi-million dollar name.

If you are interested, email us at dftbanews(at)gmail.com

Thanks,

~Sean

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Key To Success, Not So Simple

03/09/2012

I was talking to someone recently, and they were furious. Why were they so angry, well it was simple, they got a perfect 625 in the leaving cert and didn’t get the course they wanted, medicine because they hadn’t done well enough in the HPAT. (I realise that any American reading that has no idea what I just said but imagine getting a perfect GPA and, like 1550 in the SAT and then not getting medicine because you failed the interview.” It was for them, needless to say, bitterly disappointing. I empathise with that, I felt bad.

However this person went on to say that he had sent a letter to the minister, because, as he put it “I was always told that if you worked hard enough you would get what you wanted.” That shocked me, plenty of people got their college offer two weeks ago,and put their head in their hands, wondering how the hell they were going to deal with not getting that perfect course, many more wondered whether they could ever get the points to go to college.

Ireland is a country that puts a huge focus on exams, almost every course in university, be it for arts or science only cares about how well you did in the last exams of secondary education. That is tough, for so, so many reasons. I dislike this system I find it unfair, and totally unreflective of real-life. I think it is stupid for the exact reason that the person who had missed medicine thought it was commendable. Ireland’s exam system only rewards a plodding learning curve.

There are so many different types of intelligence, some people are good at the memory it takes to do well in exams, but others are good at solving problems, or thinking of ways to do things. Some are good at caring for others, so are good at entertaining them. Is that person who is able to sit and learn facts for 12 hours a day somehow better than anyone else as that person suggested? That is the hard work he talked of. Some say hell is other people, I would say it is just that.

Humanity has a problem, it has limited resources, we cannot go to Mars, discover everything, devote vast amounts of time to every type of art. We cannot push faster, higher, stronger, better, more inspiring, more intelligent, so on so forth with infinite power. We respect the achievements of Neil Armstrong as the quote goes “not because they are easy but because they hard.” That is the macro scale of the problem, but individually they same problem stands. People call the university application system in Ireland a joke, that the method comes down merely to supply and demand for places. That is because it must, they are a limited number of places, the world is not a wish granting factory. Hard work may got you many things, but so should the other skills humanity needs, like proper intelligence, or, you know, the skills doctors actually need like emotional intelligence, that are tested in the exam that guy failed.

What do you think, perhaps you have a better system, I’m all ears and perhaps when the world is mine I may implement it, thank you for it even, before I extinguish your life

Till next time, all the best 🙂

~Sean