爱尔兰 | ireland | 아일랜드

Just say no?

Reading Time: 2 minutes

While I was over in Ireland I landed in the middle of the campaigning for a referendum on June 12, 2008. The referendum was to pass or reject The Lisbon Treaty. This hasn’t been a news story in the UK because we haven’t had to vote on it, however Ireland has a constitution and its citizens have to vote on anything that is likely to alter or come into conflict with the constitution.

It is a very convoluted document that constantly references earlier EU treaties and runs to some 400 pages. If you are really interested you can download The Lisbon Treaty here. The treaty is designed to help the EU organisation scale to accommodate new and recently joined members.


However, there are a number of Irish organisations including Libertas and political party Sinn Fein that object to the treaty. In addition, the treaty vote is being used by members of the Irish Farmers Association (IFA) to protest against the World Trade Organisation talks. These organisations got themselves organised and have fought the treaty. In contrast the main political parties have been slow to get behind the treaty campaign and have been providing weak arguments for the treaty.


I got to see a live debate that pitted  Fianna Fail minister Brian Lenihan, Brendan Butler of IBEC, Declan Ganley of Libertas and European parliament member Mary Lou MacDonald of Sinn Fein. You can see the interview here on the web (Real Player required). My impressions of the debate were that the yes arguments were defensive and offered little reason to vote yes, the vote no team came across as being better prepared and better at getting their arguments across. The yes campaign looks like a classic example of how not to do public relations:

  • Don’t have your messaging ready
  • Don’t do your research
  • Don’t have rebuttals to competition arguments
  • Don’t provide the audience with a compelling reason to listen to you
  • Don’t get creative
  • Don’t take the initative
初 | hygiene | 기본

Vote now, vote often

Reading Time: < 1 minute


Not one but two requests on your time. My ex-colleagues Mark and Lisa have been involved in making a video for a Doritos competition, this is what you need to do according to Mark:

Hello, it’s vote spam time….a friend of mine has done a video for a Doritos advert competition, and it’s just made the shortlist of 5, from 900 entries. My connection is that I did the music for it – and nearly drove myself insane with Victorian fairground samples in the process.

It’s now all down to public voting, which means that faster than you can say ‘Robert Mugabe’ I’m trying to get people to vote for us.. If you’ve got a second please go to , click the “Vote” link then vote for “Mexico in your mouth” – there could be a bag of crisps in it for you!

Secondly, I was involved in a cooking competition Food 2.0 – Nom Nom Nom. You can make a difference by voting for my team, give a donation to Action Against Hunger and get the chance to win a prize. Vote here, and vote often!

对照 | good bad ugly | 비교

The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Cazal 977

In this edition of The Good, The Bad and the Ugly we have web trends, sunglasses and green footwear:




Web 3.0: the semantic web – the web is hitting a plateau and needs a paradigm shift

Web 2.0: what was a philosophical leap forward in web development has become overburdened by suits and and the great unwashedMobile web: whilst I use Twitter and Bloglines on my mobile phone, the mobile web has yet to deliver its true potential

Vintage Ray-Ban – I am currently rocking a set of Ray Ban Shooter with ambermatic lens from the early 1990s. Thanks to the whole 80s revival I have a lot of people admiring them. I am glad that I left them in the back of the drawer for the past decade rather than throwing them out like I stupidly did with my Oakley T-wires

CAZAL – Cari Zalloni’s more outrageous designs were rocked by the famous in the 1980s from Tim Simenon of Bomb The Bass to MC Hammer these glasses are a triumph of form over function

Modern Ray Ban – comparatively poor build quality leaching off the reputation the brand gained for quality optical instruments under Bausch and Lomb. The new Italian owners Luxottica Group have a lot to answer for. Scarily, they now own Oakley as well.
Nike Considered – now Nike may employ children on pitiful wages, but their Considered range of outdoory wear combines style with green credentials and they have made some shoes ideal for client meetings and comfortable enough to wear on a long-haul flight. adidas Grun – adidas have been the dons at raiding the design archive to bring back classic shoes and styles. I have their gear but their environmentally-friendly range looked as appealing as a 3-day-old lentil casserole.

Converse Chuck Taylors – why when shoe technology has moved on would anybody want to wear this medieval basketball boot? While we’re at it should we bring back foot-binding for all female offspring?