Good morning, MTs. Hope you all had a good weekend.
In serious news, it seems as though Chinese hackers have broken into the website for the Melbourne Film Festival because the festival will screen a documentary about exiled Uighur leader, Rebiya Kadeer. The festival and its authorities have been under a lot of pressure from the Chinese government to pull the documentary and rescind an invitation to Kadeer, actions that the festival have declined to take. It’s troubling, to say the least.
Yesterday], two days after the Melbourne international festival opened, hackers replaced programme information with the Chinese flag and anti-Kadeer slogans and sent spam emails in an attempt to crash the site, according to reports in the Australian press.
“We like film but we hate Rebiya Kadeer,” one message said, demanding an apology to the Chinese people.
The festival director, Richard Moore, said staff had been bombarded with abusive emails after he rebuffed demands from the Chinese government to drop the film about Kadeer, The 10 Conditions of Love, and cancel her invitation to the festival.
“The language has been vile,” Moore told the Melbourne Age. “It is obviously a concerted campaign to get us because we’ve refused to comply with the Chinese government’s demands.”
He said the festival had reported the attacks, which appear to be coming from a Chinese internet protocol address, and was discussing security concerns with Victoria’s state police. Private security guards are being hired to protect Kadeer and other patrons at the film’s screening on August 8.
Here in Australia, the show MasterChef Australia was a huge hit, garnering the highest ratings seen in years for any television broadcasts outside of sporting events. It’s no surprise that the show will be renewed for a second season, plus a celebrity version, and now, apparently, the network that runs the show are considering a children’s version as well:
FOR a child of nine, Clara Oxley thinks she’s a pretty hot prospect when the pressure is on in the kitchen.
Like the champs from TV series MasterChef, she and her brother Nicholas, 11, regularly team up with one of their parents each and compete to bake cakes for her older sister to judge.
But now she’s eager to take on some of the nation’s youngest aspiring chefs when Channel 10 cashes in on the success of MasterChef Australia with a children’s spin-off.
Clara, from Randwick in Sydney’s eastern suburbs, is one of the many children who have been captivated by the MasterChef show.
Ten programming chief David Mott admits the network was initially surprised by the interest in the series by children.
But unexpectedly, the show caught the imagination of the entire family and had taught many youngsters the value of good eating, team-building and the importance of accepting constructive criticism, he said.
Although the network’s priority is a one-day-a-week celebrity version of the hit show, executives are already discussing the possibility of a children’s MasterChef series.
Jess and I watched a fair few episodes of MasterChef and really enjoyed it – Jess, who loves to cook, asked a ton of questions on techniques and foods, and thanks to the week where contestants went to Hong Kong to learn how to make dim sum and Hong Kong’s exquisite cuisine, wants to go there to eat “the little pork dumpling thingies.“ What do you think, MTs? Are shows like this good for kids, benign, or evil, evil, evil?
Finally, I’ve long been a fan of Martha Stewart – to me, she’s one of the canniest operators in business today. I read a recent article outlining how she uses Twitter with great interest. By posting 140 character recipes (recent ones included rack of lamb and pico de gallo), Stewart has built a hefty following.
“With minimal effort—and I really mean it: I spend less than five minutes a day on Twitter—I have been able to garner over 1 million followers in a 4½-month period, with very few tweets, by the way,“ Stewart told me.
“You have to sort of look at the different accounts and compare,“ she said, adding that, proportionately, she has been getting substantially more bang for the tweet than Sean Combs (Twitter name “iamdiddy“) and Ashton Kutcher (aka “aplusk“). If you do the math on a per-tweet basis, Martha is twice as popular as Ashton and more than three times as popular as Diddy.
I’d be very interested to see how her Twitter following translates into viewers or subscribers. I don’t have a Twitter account – can’t see the reason for it yet, but if I owned a media business, I’d do it. How about you – do you Twitter? Why and have you been satisfied with the outcome?