Wednesday, January 23, 2008

less clueless than commonly supposed

The FT has a little Flash movie explaining monolines, how they work and why they matter, here. Good news. (For all of you who've been taken aback by yet another crisis in the finance industry, again triggered by some obscure financial entity of whose existence you were previously unaware.) But they have billed it as an interactive graphic. I don't know about you, but when I am promised interactivity I expect something more than the opportunity to click the arrow for Play. It's always inexpressibly cheering to find someone has plumbed depths of cluelessness unknown even to me.

In the same issue of the FT I find a piece by Peter Carey, who has taken his website live. Carey had a look on Google and was appalled to find that, as one of THE great living writers in the English language (my words, not his), his fame had gone before him - that is, the first 85 hits or so for Peter Carey were for totally unrelated sites with idle chit-chat about one of THE GREAT LIVING WRITERS IN THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE (my words, not his), with the result that the fledgling website was waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay Down Under. I'm actually baffled by this, because he paid someone to set up the site, and normally when you pay someone one of the things they do is register it with Google and Yahoo! as the eponymous website. Google does not say, What do you think we are, dumb or something? when you suggest that people running a search for YOU would probably be deeply thrilled to have your very own personal website at the top of the hitlist - they have a mechanism in place that enables you to accommodate the madding crowd. For reasons that remain unclear Carey's designer skipped all that boring stuff. I used to be aggrieved because my ex-webdesigner seemed to be more interested in her gigs with Sugar Cowboys than in my website, but she certainly did the boring paperwork (or rather etherwork) to get it squared with the search engines.

Carey's life, it has to be said, has not been made easier by coming late to the parade. A realtor in San Jose has staked a claim to, the domain name on which fans are likeliest to gamble a dime, and he seems to have rejected pleas to relinquish it to the more famous bearer of the name. (Talks about talks have clearly taken place, since the site of the California realtor includes a tip: Are you looking for Peter Carey, the Australian Author? If so, go to, or Click here!) Anyway. Even if you weren't LOOKING for Peter Carey, the Australian Author, but just hoping for more idle chit-chat about Our Man in Port Moresby (another Australian Author), why not Click here?

1 comment:

Jenny Davidson said...

I am not one of THE great living writers in English unfortunately--but I am sorry also to say that a Swedish copywriter has, I have been forced to fall back on .net--not that I have set anything up there--I paid a bunch of money but could not get it together to do anything with it, ARGHHHH!!!