Friday, December 25, 2009

Dead Ringers - The Queen's speech outtakes

The Queen releases a DVD of her Christmas speech outtakes in this comedy sketch from BBC impression show Dead Ringers. Funny video, but watch out for the Queen's strong language!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Christmas Wouldn't Be Christmas (Without your M&S)

M & S christmas advert 2009 Myleene Klass, Stephen Fry, Philip Glenister, Noemie Lenoir, Jennifer Saunders, Joanna Lumley and James Nesbitt.

Friday, December 18, 2009

This hour has 22 minutes - Christmas

Pavement Christmas

Auckland City Mission, New Zealand, launched the 2005 Christmas Appeal with “Pavement”, a poignant TV ad featuring a young homeless Aucklander imagining his perfect Christmas day with the help of a piece of chalk.

The young man (Rangi Ngamoki, star of Two Cars, One Night) opens his eyes to the sounds of street traffic. “It’s time to get up for me”. His bed, pillow and sound system are all drawn in chalk. The boy gets dressed as he lies on the pavement, with bed, dresser and Christmas stocking drawn in chalk. “Christmas Day. I can’t wait to see what’s under the tree. Better wash my face and clean my teeth first. And we look in my wardrobe and find my favourite shirt.” We see that he has only one shirt. “Shh. Go quietly downstairs to the livingroom. Check out my presents.” The boy ’sneaks’ down stairs drawn in chalk. We see that the Christmas tree and all the presents are drawn in chalk. “Everyone else will be awake soon. They’re all mine! This one’s from Dad. Haven’t seen him in a long time. Playing my XBox.” Once again - it’s an imagined luxury. “Mmm I can smell the turkey. I wish it was Christmas every day.”

The voiceover is provided by Sam Neill: “One in five children are living in poverty. We’re on a mission to make Christmas happen - for every Auckland child.”

Ellen MacArthur: Eye of the Storm

The Kingfisher 2: Formula 1 of sailing

Wednesday, December 16, 2009


“What word best sums up 2009? How about the word ‘unfriend?' That’s the new Oxford American Dictionary’s 2009 word of the year. Unfriend means, of course, to remove someone as a friend on a social networking Web site such as Facebook. Each year, Oxford University Press tracks how the English language is changing and chooses the word that best reflects the mood of the year.” (KCAL)

That was the CBS affiliate in Los Angeles, talking about the Oxford American Dictionary’s Word of the Year, ‘unfriend.' Other terms considered include ‘netbook’ and ‘sexting’. The Oxford University Press’s decision has sparked a conversation in the media about the English language, and how it has changed in response to the Internet’s rising popularity.

We’re looking at perspectives from ABC News, CTV, KPIX and Urban Dictionary to see what they think about unfriending.

CTV News talks to David Stover, the president of Oxford University Press. Stover explains the process of picking the word of the year, and why unfriending deserves the title for 2009.

“Well there’s a number of ways a word gets in contention. We look for things that are topical, things that are coming into use across the board, and to be honest, the lexicographers want something that’s fun as well so this one hit it on all three criteria."

Urban Dictionary, a user-generated online dictionary, has multiple entries defining what it means to unfriend. Here’s one example.

"Compulsive people prune their friend list periodically, removing people that they no longer have contact with. More often though, unfriending is only done when a particular friend's updates and self-promotions become so annoying that you can no longer stand hearing about them."

But some debate that the term is inaccurate. ABC News talks to an assistant editor of a publishing house. She says that the term “defriending” is a better fit for the description.

"Unfriend… implies a complete lack -- that you are absolutely not friends… Defriend implies that you were once friends…Defriend seems to apply more to the action. Unfriend seems to apply more to the state of being."

Finally, San Francisco’s CBS affiliate takes a look at how the Internet, and Web sites such as Facebook, are changing definitions in the English language.

“Dana, I remember when my daughter was in kindergarten she came home after a little disagreement over a jump rope and said Jordana Rock was not her friend anymore, unfriending was just that simple. Now you gotta have a laptop, the Internet, a Facebook account to unfriend someone, of course preceeding that, you have to friend. Unfriend, as the new Oxford American Dictionary’s Word of the Year, gains that distinction simply because there are more than 300 million users of Facebook." (KPIX)

So is it unfriending or defriending? And what do you think of the Internet's impact on the English language?

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Always blow on the pie: Safer Communities Together

'Always blow on the pie': A traffic policeman's bizarre advice to a car thief which has become an internet hit

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Saverjet: Low cost airlines

Anyone who has ever flown with a low cost airline will have experienced something similar to this short little clip that pokes fun at all the little tricks used to sell you a seat. How many times have you fallen for the cheap airfare that ended up costing you more than you thought?

This hour has 22 minutes - Air Canada: The Board Game