The Obamagasm shadow

Reading some comments and blog posts, I came across the wonderful word. “Obamagasm

The magic of hope, joy, explosive power, change, challenge, and mystery; all in one word. And although I am not a skeptic, I can’t help but be concerned about what the truth is. Has Obama been groomed to appear to be the best thing that ever happened to this world? Or is he simply a charismatic being who really could be the best thing that ever happened.

Approachable enough, with his blackberry in his hand, a huge smile on his face, and his wife by his side, Obama represents not the ‘American dream’ but the dream of every single person on earth. Happiness, family, wealth, and power. And all that in the context of an evangelist for “Change” – change towards the better.

The Obamagasm felt across the earth, has left us hoping. Hoping for a better tomorrow. But most of all, after a dark era in the international and national scene (of every single country in the world), a financial crisis which is just setting in, and mass business meltdowns; most of all, the Obamagasm has left us praying that he is not a fake.

Child of Europe

Advertisements – No take-off, No crash-and-burn

Gawain Towler has announced the death of with the followup of Jon Worth .

The project was simply a waste of money. A project which didn’t take off so it doesn’t crash land! Because the project would simply crash-and-burn.

Sometimes I wonder who comes up with these great ideas…

Instead of finding new projects to fund with a few million euros, why not fund existing projects that are successful. Blogactiv (which I am not crazy about but at least have some respect for) is an example of such a project. (note that I have absolutely no affiliation with Euractiv or Blogactiv…

So,etimes it’s like they have competitions for who the most useless projects…

Press… Many Media- one picture… Saddening…

A post i read in a blog post of WHAT’S NEXT: INNOVATIONS IN NEWSPAPERS was so strong, I thought it was justified to “pirate” it…

All I can say is that i am saddened by the picture below…. Too bad…

The original post can be found here, and was published by Published by Juan Antonio Giner :


Grzegorz Piechota is right.
These front pages speak for themselves.
The same picture everywhere.
Clone journalism, again and again.”

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EBS Plus- Thank God, but Why, Why, and Why


I’m very happy to see that EBS is expanding with a plus channel… Thank god that there is expansion. There are however three small things I don’t understand:

1) why (since they have the raw material) don’t they use a more userfriendly platform? (Realplayer is absolutely TERRIBLE)

2) why don’t they add embeding codes to the darn videos so they can REALLY circulate the internet and be seen by the citizens of Europe…

3) Why didn’t they put EUROPARLTV on this platform as well, with both a website and a satelite channel playing a playlist of selected parliament videos and live coverage at the same time? There was nothing to stop the company from making a user-friendly, approachable interface AND having an EBS type platform. ..

Why Why Why?

See below the press release for EBS+



EU launches Europe by Satellite ‘Plus’ channel: Test phase from October to December 2008

The European Union institutions are launching an additional Europe by Satellite channel at the beginning of 2009 in order to offer more EU-related raw material to broadcasters and more access to EU-related events to the media and the general public. The test phase of the new channel, EbS+, is scheduled from 6 October to the end of December 2008.


EbS is an inter-institutional TV service established in 1996 that provides broadcast-quality, up-to-the-minute and free-of-charge audiovisual coverage of EU news to media professionals and other interested parties around the world. It offers live transmissions of EU news through the SIRIUS IV satellite and through the EbS portal on the Europa server ( The material on offer also includes archived images and sounds.


Due to the increased number of events of major importance taking place in parallel, an additional EbS channel: EbS+, will be launched on 1 January 2009.


The two EbS channels will have the same mission of transmitting EU-related raw content without editorial comment, whether live coverage or edited news extracts.


This expansion will allow transmitting more live coverage of EU-related events, giving access to more EU events not only by the media but also by the general public. And so that the general public may use the service to follow important EU events, such as open debates of the Council, presentations of the Commission’s proposals or plenary sessions of the European Parliament and committee meetings, the enlarged service will also offer a multilingual web streaming service.


How to receive EbS+


EbS+ is on the same satellite with the same reception details as EbS. Reception details at:


A satellite receiver that has been tuned to receive EbS will automatically have set itself to receive in EbS+.


Depending on the make and model of satellite tuner, EbS+ either will be listed in the programme menu or will be available as a service to be selected manually. If, for some reason, EbS+ is not listed, then a simple re-scan of the transponder will correct the situation. Each service carries the same range of language channels and these are selected via the menu.

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New Europe gives Gawain Towler a bulletproof vest

Following up on my previous post on the situation of Gawain Towler, an official of the European Parliament to whom it was suggested that he shut down his not pro-european blog, or face penalty equal to 4 months wages, I am very happy to see the response of a European Newspaper. Towler’s story hasn’t reached the FT yet, but there is still time 🙂

The first medium to react (to my knowledge) on the matter of Gawain Towlers persecution is New Europe, with a full page article (pdf)… including excerpts from a few bloggers!

I can only hope that this article is one of many to come; or that this article will be enough for the Parliament officials involved to come to their senses…

Hope to see some more reactions on this. I’m eagerly awaiting some feedback…


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European Parliament attacks blogger… So much for pluralism!

Dear European Institutions, Bloggers are not rebels (you idiots...), they are concerned citizens of Europe who have an opinion, and have a right to share their opinion with other concerned citizens...

Dear European Institutions, Bloggers are not rebels (you idiots...), they are concerned citizens of Europe who have an opinion, and have a right to share their opinion with other concerned citizens...

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Gawain towler, with his numerous blogs and fancy Press position, is very well known in Eurocircles, and surely does not need an introduction.

He has been ordered (in European terms- asked politely…) to close the blinds on his England Expects blog and surrender quietly into the blogosphere’s night. From the grapevine, I understant that the wrath of the Parliament’s secretary general trickles back to a post on Mr. Towler’s blog on September 1st:

Dear ColleaguesThe Bureau of the European Parliament adopted on 19 May 2008 the language specific guidelines for gender neutral language as outlined in the report by the High-Level Group on Gender Equality and Diversity.

DocEP is already ensuring that gender-neutral language is employed in all translations. You are kindly invited to respect the proposed options (e.g.: Rapporteur instead of Drafts(wo)man).

The models of the RdM will be updated as soon as possible.
The report of the High-Level Group is annexed.


DG Internal Policies

Div.General CoordinationBurotics/Informatics

LIST OF RECOMMENDED NAMES OF PROFESSIONS AND FUNCTIONSIt is generally not difficult to find a gender-neutral term for professions, occupations, functions, etc. in English, although there are some exceptions. The following is a non-binding list of recommendations, with alternatives where relevant.

Actor/actress (actor is now commonly used for both sexes; use actress if the person’s sex is relevant)
Ambassador (for both sexes)
Author (not authoress)
Business person / executive (plural: business people) (not businessman; alternatively and in plural contexts, use: business circles or business milieux)
Doctor/physician (for both sexes, including for ‘Ärztin’, etc; avoid lady/woman doctor; also applies in the sense of ‘Ph.D.’)
Firefighter (not fireman)
Flight attendant or (in plural) flight crew (not air hostess)
Head/head teacher (of primary or secondary school; not headmaster/headmistress)
Lawyer (for both genders)
Lay person (plural: lay people; not layman)
Lecturer (for both genders)
Manager (not manageress)
Mayor (not mayoress)
Midwife (for both sexes; there is no accepted alternative for male midwives)
Nurse (for both sexes; avoid male nurse)
Police officer (not policeman/policewoman unless the officer’s sex is relevant)
Sales representative (not salesman)
Speaker (for both sexes)
Teacher (for both sexes)
Translator (for both sexes, including for ‘traductrice’, ‘Übersetzerin’, etc)
Usher (not usherette)
Waiter/waitress (no gender-neutral term has been successfully proposed)
Weather reporter/forecaster (not weatherman)
Writer (for both sexes)Unless a person’s sex is relevant, do not precede professions, occupations or functions with ‘lady’, ‘woman’ or ‘female’.

We (Europeans), regardless of political affiliation, position or internal rules… stand behind Mr. Towler, as the outcome of this situation will set a paradigm to the way the Institutions treat bloggers.

Commissioner Wallstrom has set high standards when it comes to discussing the development of the European Public Sphere; and carries a very popular blog. I would very much like to know what her opinion is.

Should a political opinion be limited to those with political power?

We are aware Mr. Towler has broken 1 internal rule as he disseminated (onto the internet and with ironic tone) an email which was very carefully supplied to its readers on a need to know basis. Not more than 7,000 other people…

The politicians responsible should feel ashamed of themselves!

Gawain Towlers post:

Other Bloggers protesting the matter:

Bloggers are not untouchable, but they can be smart

We don’t exactly know what is going to come out the European Parliament concerning blogging and the rights of individuals seeking to put their personal thoughts on the internet for communication with other likeminded (or not) individuals.

One thing is for sure; with the impact of a few large-fanbase blogs, politicians are starting to worry.

We have even heard of Euro-politicians accused of being under investigation by OLAF, the European Anti-Fraud Office, in blogs without a shred of evidence. Things like this lead to law suits….

We have seen bloggers leaking information from the companies they work for. And of course that leads to dismissal.

Many bloggers have to realise that we/they are not above the law. Bloggers have the right to remain anonymous in so long as they don’t break the law. Yes the internet is quite unregulated, but blogs are now being treated like any other medium; as public forae.

So, like in any other public forum, you cannot make allegations without at least having some evidence. If you do make allegations of scandal and corruption, at least be smart about it. As the law is observed its not a problem… Just like you cant go out on the street screaming very very bad words at someone, you shouldn’t be able to do so on the internet. Bloggers can be a little careful. Not that they shouldn’t make allegations they believe are true- but they should probably use journalistic phrases like “it is believed that”, or “some citizens think that”, or, “though there is no tangible evidence, it is a possibility that…”

And the thing is, if it is done within the scope of the law- it hurts them even more!

Be wise, and Blog on…

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