Thursday, 28 May 2009

Building a better place

Two weeks in and the footings are in!

After 6 years of deliberating, works is in progress on my barn

We pulled down the old barn and garage

In their place will be a place to enjoy, relax and play on the Wii

And a place where the children will become teenagers

Handling the work is a quality builder from Macclesfield

'Mick the Mac' is famed for his white shirts

He is never on site without one, and has not worn anything else on site for the thousand years he has been in the trade

As my late father-in-law said 'people should always remember you for something'

Whether it be for having five sugars in you tea, or producing the most finest/shite graphic on the planet

People will remember you

I'm sure people will remember things about me, but waring a white shirt won't be one of them

Sunday, 24 May 2009

Paper cuts?

Philadelphia has all modern America can offer, for better or for worse: wealth, crime politics, sport, art and culture. But what it might not have soon is a newspaper

Within every city, every newspaper has its problems such as the LA Times, NY Times, Boston Globe. Some newspapers have already died, The Rocky Mountain News, Denver, in print and business since 1859, and the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, which is now a web-only operation also gave up the ghost after 136 years of print

Paul Harris writes an excellent piece in today's Observer

You can choose metaphors to illustrate how technologically outdated newspapers have become in a media landscape dominated by blogs and the internet. They are vinyl records in an iPod world; videotapes in the era of DVDs and Hulu; typewriters in the face of the laptop. They are an old technology no one wants, needs or, increasingly, seems to care for. Certainly not in Philadelphia, where both the Inquirer and the Daily News are in bankruptcy

Wednesday, 20 May 2009

Family day out

Live music and cider

Last weekend we and lots of friend went to the Wood music festival in Oxforshire

Braving the barmy weather, we had a rocking time

Laughs, children running wild

We had a great time

Topping the day off was my mate, Nick Holton performing

A great song writer, playing with his talented set

Check him out

Buy his offerings

But check out these dudes!

Monday, 18 May 2009

MPs expenses: Independent on Sunday

Here she goes... here she goes again!

Cath Levett rocks!

Smashing graphic in the Independent on Sunday at the weekend

Aggregating all of the news from the Telegraph from the past nine days (maths right me thinks)

But taking things further, where most print media would never dare go

This is great journalism



Content based

It has a headline, and an intro, visual driven with text narrative. But its not a graphic

Crikey. New journalism!

Friday, 15 May 2009

Publish the news and raise hell!

Justice at last

Shahid Malik has stepped down as Justice Minister following the Telegraph's revelations over his expense claims

Since being elected in 2005, Malik has claimed the maximum amount allowable for a second home, amounting to £66,827 over three years

Bloody hell. And this from MPs, who launched the 'benefit fraud' campaign earlier this month

How ironic! Or moronic, however which way you see it

A single mother, claiming benefit, who irons clothes for undeclared cash is small beer compared to the 'second home' scams for which the UK tax payer, for years, has supplemented

It is a complete and utter outrage, as today The Council of Mortgage Lenders announce that 'Repossessions have risen by 50pc' year on year

But the MPs expenses stories are good for selling newspapers, and driving traffic online

Innovation in newspapers director, Juan Antonio Giner comments on his great blog:

It’s like a slow motion daily torture.

And if you subscribe to the Telegraph “alerts” you will the first to know about the next discovery.

Yesterday my local press agent in S[t]. Davids was calling to the Telegraph distribution center asking for extra copies.

Today I went around 11 am to buy the paper and I got the last copy.

So, the saga continues.

And the paper is a daily sold out.

The Telegraph is telling us a superb lesson in order to cope with any newspaper crisis:

Exclusive news and stories always sell.

And The Daily Telegraph has plenty of them.

Readers love them.

Not the crooks.

So again and again:

Publish the news and raise hell!


Thursday, 14 May 2009

Right to reply

The plain truth

After publishing MPs claims for the past six days, the Telegraph offered MPs the 'right to reply' to allegations of ethical and moral abuse of the 'Additional Costs Allowance' system

Above is Daniel Kawczynski, Conservative MP for Shrewsbury and Atcham, speaking out for honest MPs who claim little

Only four MPs have exercised their right to reply at the Telegraph TV video booth, although all 646 MPs have been contacted

Which would indicate that they have something to hide, or out of embarrassment, little to say

Friday, 8 May 2009

Tax payers loss, MPs gain

MPs under pressure, again!

Tonight the Daily Telegraph revealed the full extent to which MPs will go to furnish their lavish life styles

Benedict Brogan, and an incredible team effort by Telegraph reporters, have uncovered what members of Parliament hoped would never see the light of day

The most widespread of abuses, comes under the 'Additional Costs Allowance', which reimburses MPs for the cost of running a second home, either in their constituency or in London, to be able to attend Westminster

Its all going to come out in the wash

Blimey, you couldn't make it up!

Thursday, 7 May 2009

Chelsea robbed

Quite right too!

The referee was inexperienced and way out of his depth for a Champions League semi final. It makes the game look like a joke! As a United fan, I feel sympathy with the Blues, although I'd much rather be playing Barca in the final on their current form

Great online analysis here at

Monday, 4 May 2009

PCF fever sweeps UK

Grimwade discovers new pandemic sweeping UK

Hardcore supporter and fan of information graphics based on journalism and illustrative abilities, JG reckons there has been an outbreak of 'PCF' in the UK press: Proportionate Circle Fever...

Ha ha ha. Fantastic, and one has to agree!

Grimwade, pictured above and graphically pointing to one of his masterpieces, said of the UK infographics posted on this blog "all we wanted to know and more". What a gent.

Thanks to infographic meister dude, Karl Gude for allowing me to plunder his pic archive!

Sunday, 3 May 2009

Swine flu: UK press [4]

Hoovering up of explaining more?

The Sunday press hoovered up from what was left to explain from the last seven days of swine flu

The Sunday Times (a) followed the trend of showing how many cases, by country, using the circular chart method, as noticed in the Daily Telegraph, The Times, the Independent and the Guardian, while not really developing the story further.

In the Sunday Telegraph (b), Stefan Bayley and Ciaran Hughes updated the UK and global figures as shown during the week, but their is a nugget of information in the bottom right corner, as shown above, which looks at the 1918 pandemic, and how the 'case rate' peaked and troughed during the following seasons

The Independent on Sunday (c, d + e) produced a fabulous guide and infographic explainer along the base of the compact spread, of the swine flu crisis. Based upon a timeline, Cath Levett and Richard Burgess explained the past week's news in an incredibly clean and clear fashion. The infographic culminates by date, and by pandemic rating, of the death toll, and confirmed cases, by volume

Is there any more to explain?

Has any print or online platform missed anything?

Surely all has been covered, please tell me if I am wrong

Friday, 1 May 2009

Swine flu: UK press [3]

And there we have it. Day 4

Firstly, lets start with the Times. What the hell (pic 3)? Is anyone supposed to read this? Insane. The Times have produced the greatest of infographics over the past year or so, but this? It's a bio hazard symbol, over a globe, with a load of zero's around it. What kind of editorial decision is this?

Yesterday's heroes, the Independent (pic 1), have finally followed the trend and gone global. Following the hysterical trend of reporting the 'suspected cases', they show where and by what quantity the countries in the spotlight are harbouring their illnesses

The Guardian (pics 4+5) went nuts, over the centre spread, showing the same thing. It feels great. But do we really learn anything new that we don't already know. Similar to the Independent. The global issue was yesterday.

We need to go local. Push the news agenda with infographics. Data maps only get you so far. Why not explain something different? Data is everywhere, on the radio, on TV, on the Internet and all over our newspapers.

So why tell people what they already knew yesterday. OK. This is the life of the printed news. Always playing catch-up. But we should be trying to explain much more...

At the Telegraph (pic 2), not that we are right or wrong, but we decided to develop a different agenda. I had a chat with the online director, who said that users (traffic from were not interested in how many cases where around the world, but how it directly involved them.

Basically, what and how the virus was spread, and what happens to the body. So there you are. Our graphic in the Telegraph yesterday. A radically different approach to what the press has covered, but what our readers wanted and needed to know!