When overtime becomes the norm

It’s weird reading drivel like this in 2014.

They’re out the door by 5.00pm. Or whatever time they’re supposed to finish and not a minute later. Ten minutes before the end, they’re already packing up. And, if you look carefully, they’re winding down even when there’s thirty minutes to go.

It drives me nuts how some employers here in Oz expect employees to work for free.

If your employees need to constantly work overtime, you either don’t have enough employees or your workflow is atrociously ineffective.

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Using geocode to monitor events on Twitter

Hashtags can be great to monitor an event on Twitter. When clicking on a hashtag on Twitter you will be able to view the latest tweets using that hashtag around the world. Sometimes you want to narrow that down to a certain area. This is where the usage of the search term geocode becomes very handy.

This is how a template syntax looks like when searching with geocode: geocode:LOCATION,5km
LOCATION is where you insert the coordinates of the location you want to monitor on Twitter.

How to find a location and search using geocode

  1. Go to maps.google.com and locate London.
  2. When you have located London, the URL should look like this: https://www.google.com/maps/@51.5093387,-0.104296,16z
  3. The part of that URL needed to do a geocode search on Twitter is: 51.5093387,-0.104296
  4. Insert that into the syntax above and it should now look like this: geocode:51.5093387,-0.104296,5km
  5. Copy/Paste that into Twitter’s search box and it will show you tweets originating from that location within a 5 km radius.

If you want to narrow it down to, let us say, 500 m, the same syntax will look like this: geocode:51.5093387,-0.104296,.5km

Sources: think disaster / Thoughtfaucet

Blogging or Microblogging?

When I started to do the Dokter’s Weekly Report again, I did it because I enjoyed it the first time around. Last Sunday should’ve been the last post before it went on hiatus again. Unfortunately I was so busy that weekend I forgot about it — not an excuse, only an explanation.

With that said, you will see less posts on here and on Utskremt Reporter as I’m back at academia.

I will however continue to nurture my new project, Dokter’s Notes. Strangely enough, my Notes project seems to be somewhat more popular than the main blog — which is interesting and awesome at the same time.

Of course, as most people who publish their writing for all to read, I want to make it even better. If you have any suggestions, let me know via my contact page.

Dokter’s Weekly Report #35

Here is a random list of good reads for you’ll to enjoy this Sunday.

Linkage

25 Greatest Pieces of Wisdom From Hunter S. Thompson — Read it
A good collection of, what you might call, gonzo wisdom. My favourite quote is: Play your own game, be your own man, and never ask for a stamp of approval.
Hunter S. Thompson: 4 essential reads — Read it
Another good list to consider. Again, I will add my own suggestions. Kingdom of Fear. It was relevant when it was published and still relevant, maybe even more so now, if you take a look at what is happening around the world. Hells Angels & Fear & Loathing in Las Vegas are important books, but Kingdom of Fear is my favourite book. Of course, the ingenious column The Kentucky Derby Is Decadent and Depraved is also a must read.
RT Reporter Resigns Over Coverage of Malaysia Airlines Disaster — Read it
Imagine if more journalists had this kind of self-respect, and maybe more importantly, respect for the public. Journalists would not only be more respected, but also feared.
It Is Idiotic To Hand Out Your Twitter Password To Prove Passwords Are Dead — Read it
A tech writer with such poor understanding of tech is a bit shocking. The password isn’t it, but it’s something that needs to die. All he proved is that a password is still something you need to keep to yourself. Not to mention that as tech writer, you would assume that person to use a more secure password than christophermims. This silly stunt also revealed his phone number, +13013353298, which now he has to change. Let’s not announce the death of something until we know it’s death has been confirmed.
Snowden: Dropbox is hostile to privacy, unlike ‘zero knowledge’ Spideroak — Read it
At this point I only keep Dropbox as it’s connected to my O’Reilly account. I stopped storing stuff there and trust iCloud far more. Hopefully more iOS apps will implement the use of webDAV soon.
The WHO calls for decriminalisation — Read it
As I wrote in last week’s Dokter’s Weekly Report, the war on drugs has failed. Time to sit down and find new ways to reduce harm, as the zero-tolerance approach is doing more damage than good.
Breaking up with Facebook — Read it
A bit of a long read, but worth it. It is time we start to question all these free services. Not just question how they use our data, but if they truly are of any use at all.
Swedish court upholds arrest warrant for Assange — Read it
As would happen to most people who are wanted for questioning.
Journalists will face jail over spy leaks under new security laws — Read it
Yet another reason I’m glad I’m leaving this country. However, I do see a business opportunity with this law. I’ll earmark it for later to write a longer piece how the media can capitalise on it and avoid it.
Australia may have breached key element of refugee convention in return of Sri Lankans intercepted at sea: UNHCR — Read it
It’s 2014 and about time Australia realises that countries need to take into consideration what other countries think of them. The excuse that you shouldn’t have to is of course valid, but then you must also accept the impact that has.
Player one: the gamers who only want to play with themselves — Read it
I guess I fall into this category. As much I would enjoy partaking in online play, it’s far too focused on fighting — basically proving Machiavelli right in his view of humans. As much as I enjoy playing The Last of Us Factions (online part of TLOU), it has only one focus, and that is to rise in the ranks by killing each other. While the single-player part I can take my time, enjoy the scenery without hearing some angry shitcock yelling at me for killing them for the nth time.
Queensland flood victims pin hope on class action — Read it
Good! Every year, during the transition from winter to spring, there is a risk of flooding in Norway. Being in Brisbane during the 2011 Floods I was shocked how poorly managed it was, and knew the outcome was exactly what we witnessed that year.
Man charged with 21 counts of rape over 2012 Alice Springs gunpoint sex attacks on backpackers — Read it
Non-Australians view snakes and spiders good reasons for not visiting Australia. As you see, there are far more dangerous things here. I’ve come across piousness snakes and spiders and they never hurt me, because they don’t attack unless you antagonise them.
Calls to dump Chris Lilley’s ‘racist’ Jonah From Tonga from US TV — Read it
The reactions in the comments are priceless and moronic. The excuse I’m not offended, so why should you be is a common theme that actually highlights why this kind of humour is not outdated but also dated. Time to move on.
There’s Blackface, And Then There’s… Well… This Idiot — Read it
This just shows how out of touch too many Australians are with the world.
It’s rooted: Aussie terms that foreigners just won’t get — Read it
An innocent, and a bit funny, article fuels chest-thumping jingoism and protectionism. A good example of how ingrained imperial ideas are in Australian culture, strengthened by cultural cringe. One of those examples of, don’t read the comments if you don’t want to facepalm yourself.

Tweetage

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Saturday

Sunday

Am I responsible for all journalists?

In film and TV series journalists are often depicted as either ethical heroes or devious bastards. Mostly it is the latter that seems to be popular. Because that’s how most of us are, right? We only think about ourselves, have no regard for laws or ethics — we just want to write the story and get our fame via the byline. The more nasty it is, the better.

Which makes me think about the good old saying, life imitating art. Because that is what seems to be happening in some countries. Not that these journalists are praised for what they do, except for their editors asking them for more, but what they produce is lapped up by the masses — then, for some reason, the masses spits it out back at them, accusing them for being bad journalists.

Ironic isn’t it. We seem to want hard-hitting, investigative journalism, but secretly many seem to love the drama these bastard journalists and reporters create.

So am I responsible for these bastard journalists? What more can I do, other than working ethically and criticising their unethical ways. Should I hunt them down like animals? Then what?

I can of course also say that not all journalists are like that, but then I’ve suddenly used, what has become, the most hated phrase at the moment. A phrase that, when used, suddenly means admission that you’re not only part of the problem and don’t understand the issue, but also guilty of the acts committed by these bastards.

So logical, right?

Suddenly the idea of not painting everyone with the same brush isn’t valid anymore. It’s actually rather ironic, as we live in an age where we are very focused on not generalising and labelling each other, we suddenly admire the power of painting everyone with the same brush.

I see four logical fallacies emerge here.

The first is known as tu quoque, where if you try to argue that it’s wrong to paint everyone with the same brush, you will be told you’re wrong for claiming it’s wrong to generalise.

The second is known as bandwagoning, where the validation of painting everyone with the same brush is that it’s how the majority views it, therefor the majority is right and you’re wrong.

The third is known as no true scotsman, where you are accused of being part of the problem because no true journalist would never use the phrase not all journalists are like that.

The fourth is known as appeal to emotion, where you are accused of being emotionally detached for not wanting to paint everyone with the same brush.

Basically these four fallacies legitimises the use of strawman arguments and especially ad hominem attacks.

What is important to understand, and even accept, is that in some situations it is fair and valid to retort with not all X are like that. It might be difficult to accept in some situations, and more so difficult to accept that reality, but in the long run it can be extremely damning for a large group of people to be painted with the same brush.

Even worse, it can hurt a cause far greater than those whom’ve been painted with the same brush.

It’s not something that exclusively happens to journalists. This happens to police officers, politicians, bankers, companies, doctors, hipsters, musicians and even citizens of certain countries (I could go on in ad nauseum).

Not everything is black or white. Sometimes there are more shades in between these two colours.

Unfortunately it’s easier to view the world in black and white, because trying to understand something, removing the chaff from the wheat, takes time, patience and understanding — sometimes even a bit of humility.

If you are going to ~~generalise~~ be passionate about a cause, at least see to it you don’t end up as a hypocrite. To quote Friedrich Nietzsche, He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And when you gaze long into an abyss the abyss also gazes into you.

So no, not all journalists are bastards. And by saying that doesn’t mean or validate I am one of those bastards. I do my best at adhering to good journalistic ethics and criticise poor journalism when I see it. If that’s not good enough for you, that’s your problem, not mine. Especially if you want me to support your cause for improving journalism.