Archive for December, 2010

December 29, 2010

10 Things Men Should Never Say To Women

A friend of mine went on a date this summer with a co-worker and reported back later that she left when he said “I love your eyes. They’re so dark, they almost make you look dead on the inside”. Necrophilia aside, why do some men insist on driving girls away with these lines? The man in question was an upstanding man, had girlfriends before and according to this friend, showed no signs out of the ordinary. Starts out like a compliment and then ends in a restraining order. When typed in to Amazon, relationship advice books are scattered everywhere. But most of these seem to be aimed at women? Well obviously some men out there need a little help as well. Here are 10 things men should never say to women. This comes from personal experience and a little help from others.

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December 16, 2010

Feature Article- Beach Break in Bournemouth

Bournemouth- known for it’s stag-dos, shopping and sand. With the beach being it’s major tourist attraction, it’s not hard to see that it’s a popular place for the surfers of Bournemouth, but if people went to the beach early on a weekend morning, they might see a small group of surfers, all children, trying to learn this amazing profession. It’s hard to know what to expect unless you go there yourself.

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December 15, 2010

Is virtual reality just fun or dangerous?

Anybody else born in the 1990s will remember the Sims computer game which created a virtual family which you could control. A popular 3D website is ‘Second Life‘ which was first launched in 2003. Last month, up to 21.3 million were registered with ‘Second Life’ and one can wonder, is virtual reality safe or dangerous?

Some individuals have a problem distinguishing fantasy from reality as has been seen by many crimes, especially concerning children, where the media influences have been a problem. Most in the UK will remember the case of Jamie Bulger in 1993 where the young two-year old was taken from a shopping centre and subject to torture and was finally murdered by two other children, Robert Thompson aged 10 and John Venables also aged 10. It was suggested after the murder, in court, that the two children enjoyed watching ‘Child’s Play‘ which was a disturbing film and that’s when the question was asked, can media influence actions?

In 2007, the popular television series CSI: New York, made an episode entitled ‘Down the Rabbit Hole‘ where a trained assassin was using ‘Second Life’ to track down victims by gaining their trust through the game and meet with them. In reality, several claims have been made against ‘Second Life’ regarding their privacy settings and their avatars. Some have argued that ‘Second Life’ can’t force people to log out of their Avatars so they have no control over how much time some people are staying at the site. This could have bad consequences for the fantasy vs. reality debate but also imply serious health risks. In 2007, Islamic militants were suspected of using ‘Second Life’ to hunt down new recruits and to practice real-life terrorism in the virtual reality world. This in not uncommon with the increase of technology and the availability of social websites where people are free to roam and talk. It’s unclear how many Islamic militants were hired from the avatar website but it’s clear that it did work.

There are even more examples of individual behaviour which can effect others. In Cornwall 2008, a woman was granted a divorce from her husband when she found him conducting several affairs with avatars in ‘Second Life’. It’s hard to believe, but I found several other divorce cases where the spouse was having an affair on ‘Second Life’. It’s unfortunate but that’s what being another character all together can do to some people. They forget they have real-life consequences.

However, some have claimed that virtual reality sites have positive implications for individuals who use it. ‘Second Life’ has been praised by many for building a strong online community. You can help build a community space for yourself and there have been projects for the community such as building a replica of the Eiffel Tower. The site also encourages people to search for their existing friends and then make more friends through them. The virtual reality element helps make the impossible possible. You can travel around by teleporting and even flying to a destination. The community is made real by even having their own currency called ‘Linden Dollars‘. It has been praised by postmodern surrealists who love the ever-changing scenery and the complex characters.

There is the danger from virtual reality websites such as ‘Second Life’ where the online community can become a reality for those who find it hard to distinguish from real life. Even though there have been cases of criminal activity linked back to the users on the site, these are apparently isolated cases. Mostly, people praise the site for it’s escapism and individuals can delve into a world of flying, avatars and projects. It is fair to say that most people need an escape from everyday life such as watching the television, having a stiff drink or participate in a virtual reality world. As long as those who can distinguish between their online life and their real life do not pose a threat, then it can be just seen as harmless fun.

December 14, 2010

Undeck the Halls- Annoying Celebrities

I’ve been a bit too excited with Christmas this week and I think my bank balance is baring the brunt of it but I decided to list the top 10 annoying celebrities that make you want to cancel Christmas all together and ban them from New Years and Easter as well. Obviously people may disagree so just write the celebrities you want and why.

 

 

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December 13, 2010

Paparazzi vs. Celebrities

Who hasn’t had a skim through a magazine and seen a celebrity in a compromising position? Or had a look on HeatWorld or Perez Hilton‘s blog to read the latest celebrity gossip? Many may just think of the images as a crucial element to any article or feature but now there are several celebrities who have said that they want the “stalking” by the paparazzi to stop so they can live a normal life. Should celebrities been granted more privacy or, having their careers made by the public, should they just accept that this is the lifestyle of being a celebrity?

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December 13, 2010

Are student protests helping or hindering?

University Students all over the UK have been participating in protests in the last few months to protest against the proposed rise in University fees under the coalition Government. These protests have been posted in news all across the Country but some have claimed that the protests are getting out of hand after protestors attacked a car carrying Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall, Camilla last Thursday. These events have sparked a major security concern over the royals and it could be claimed that the student protests are hindering the image of students more than helping the cause.

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December 9, 2010

Are children becoming too difficult to control?

Times have changed over the generations. There used to be caning, punishments and detentions whereas now psychologists are stating that unruly child behaviour can be treated with behaviour modification and that it is down to the child’s emotional state which needs to be addressed. Is it true that we are becoming a nanny culture? Do you think that considering the psychoanalysis of children will tame unruly behaviour?

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December 6, 2010

Did Paedophiles Start the Facebook Cartoon Trend?

There have been many blogs and individuals claiming that paedophiles started the Facebook trend, where thousands, or possibly even millions of people changed their Facebook profile pictures to cartoons to support the work of the NSPCC and take a stand against child abuse. Over 130,000 users have joined the Facebook page for the cartoon trend, but how true are the rumours that paedophiles started the trend in order to be accepted as a friend easier by children?

There has been no mention of this story by BBC News or The Guardian Online. This makes it seem like this story could be a hoax. According to several blogs today, this story is untrue but many also claim that the NSPCC didn’t start this trend either. It could be that this is an individual trend by one person or a group of people that spread through the power of the viral social media. If so, then Facebook users shouldn’t get so worried. The Hoax Slayer has described the origins of this trend to be “hazy” but little is known about its exact original post. Even CHRIS (Children Have Rights In Society) has said that this trend is harmless as long as everybody has correct privacy settings.

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December 5, 2010

Conspiracy Theories- madness or clouded truth?

I am a bit of a geek when it comes to conspiracy theories. I enjoy others views on world events but most simply think of crop circles and Roswell when asked about conspiracy theories. There are several websites that detail Government plots, elitist groups and plans on World domination. I visited a conspiracy theorist’s website last night to watch a documentary about the conspiracies surrounding the JFK assassination but soon afterwards I was bombarded with emails from different groups talking about the most outrageous conspiracy theories that I myself, had to look out for.

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December 5, 2010

Abuse of Children- Spotting the Signs and Stopping it.

If you have been one of the thousands on people on facebook who have changed their page picture to a childhood cartoon character then you will know that this is to show support of the NSPCC, the charity to help stop abuse to thousands of children across the country. However, many do not know of what else to do to help children of child abuse. The NSPCC makes hundred of suggestions and ideas for those to help them show their support and help to stop the horrible statistics. Some are as easy as keeping your eyes and ears open.

The NSPCC has reviewed that almost 40% of children on the child protection register were under four years of age in 2006 meaning that babies and toddlers are at risk from child abuse and that two thirds of children killed at the hands of another person where under five years of age in 2005. Children over this age are also at risk of harrowing abuse with 16% of children under the age of sixteen experiencing sexual abuse. This is also a risk of boys as well as girls with 11% experiencing some form of sexual abuse under the age of sixteen.

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