Tuesday, 28 January 2014

My Father’s Order of Australia Award for Services to Education- and progressive causes.

My Father’s Order of Australia Award for Services to Education- and progressive causes. 

Thanks to all who have shown support by congratulating my father, Malcolm Skilbeck, on his Order of Australia award for services to education in Australia and internationally (Australia Day 2014 award). As my internet and phone service is so poor I only received the news today, and have now exchanged messages with my father who expresses that what pleases him is the pleasure taken by family and friends and colleagues in his award and that this shows there is a shared sense of the value of the public sphere of education. But he also expresses his hope that this sense of value also extends to the efforts he, along with many others, have made to advance progressive causes, since many of these progressive causes  are being resisted or ignored by governments (regardless of which party is in power), the media, business and perhaps even the community in general. He urges that this is an opportunity to once again raise the flag, if only in a small way. So I am passing on this message to family and colleagues here.

My father has always supported my own small efforts to advance the causes of refugees, writers and human rights, and feminism, in my academic publication in journals, and in my research. I thank him for this, and his enormous contribution to public education as an inspired and dedicated teacher, educator and author, in Australia and internationally.

The world needs more such dedicated teachers and educators and authors, to support public education and progressive causes, in many fields.  We must speak up and out and continue to support the causes that are ignored by governments, media, big business, and even increasingly it seems, the community which turns a blind eye to what is happening in the world, the wars and destruction, in the name of profit for a few.

Friday, 24 January 2014

Researchers Joke (?) of Facebook Epidemic in Decline Goes Viral

Researchers Joke (?) of Facebook Epidemic in Decline Goes Viral

In what seems to be an inherently flawed project, or a joke, Princeton University researchers claim that Facebook use will soon decline. They liken facebook use to an epidemic of an infectious disease that they predict people will soon become “immune” to.

Their premise is that facebook is “an idea” and they base the research conclusions on the “methodology” of counting how many times people type the word facebook into google (and their revelation that this has declined).

But any social media savvy ten-year old could have told them this is a flawed methodology. Facebook is not an idea but a means of communication, and most people who use it do not type facebook into google, as it is already in their computer as a favourite site, or if users do type in facebook, it is into the address bar.

This story is already hitting the headlines, and may well go “viral” on social media. Sounds like their prediction of an “epidemic” we will become immune to could be based on nothing more than a play on the word “viral”, in other words, a joke. Hmmm.

Ruth Skilbeck

Monday, 13 January 2014

UFOs and Telepathy Fugue Anthology Call for Contributions

I am editing an anthology of art writing and creative writing, with the theme of UFOs, Aliens, Spacecraft, and Fugue, to be published mid year by Postmistress Press. The anthology is titled UFOs and Telepathy @ the Post and Telegraphy Office, and is open for submissions from professional art writers, and MA and PhD art writing graduates. The anthology will be published as a print book and an eBook, with global distribution on Amazon.
You can find details at the site on this link. For further details or information on submissions, send a message to skilbeck.ruth@gmail.com.