by Gregory Peake
Human augmentation is a long way off. Especially the kind of augmentation I've been writing about, the sci-fi, becoming a genius overnight, incredible reaction time stuff. So why is it such a contentious topic?
We've been using technology and medicine to enhance human qualities for quite some time, from surgery to inoculations. What we need to wonder, is when does something stop being ok, and start being aberrational?
My RSS feed accurately reflected this headline "R40m to turn govt paper into daily" (see below), prompting two thoughts:
1. WTH ... is government now escalating its mouthpiece to a daily?
2. That's damn cheap if that's the case...
Clicking on the actual story showed the screw-up (See the first para). So the headline reflects a sub asleep on the job, I guess. Cheapo subbing.
The SA Press Council has called for submissions as part of its review. So I started writing... and writing. Almost 4000 words and nine pages later, there are more than a couple of ideas about how press self-regulation can be strengthened. In a nutshell:
1. Change the name of the whole institution to "Press Accountability South Africa" (PASA).
2. Create separate bodies for adjudication and appeals.
3. Provide a Public Advocate to assist complainants, and an Advocacy Officer to drive public awareness.
What to do about the sad state of unionism amongst South African journalists? This was the conversation I had today with International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) leader Aidan White (pic below).
My explanation for the state-of-play is that it’s a journalists’ job-market – so that classic labour issues of pay, conditions and security are not pressing. An unhappy journo today can find alternative workplaces with ease – in advertising, corporate or government comms, in NGOs and in educational institutions.