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Lighten Up 22 September 2000 Edition
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It's been rather hard to come up with a good lighten-up section this week -- which is a shame, given the state of the Kiwi dollar and our present lack of Olympic medals.

I found nothing particularly strange or funny during my own week's surfing and while some of the reader suggestions were "interesting", nothing really grabbed me enough to solicit even a smile.

So now's your chance -- get those suggestions in and if any are received throughout the day I'll post them here.

Readers Say
No Comments Yet -- send me yours and fill this space!
Have Your Say

Has Your Domain Disappeared?
A number of people have begun voicing complaints that their .nz domain names have "disappeared" from the NZ namespace -- seemingly because the renewal fee wasn't paid.

However, these same people are saying that they've never received an invoice, reminder or warning from Domainz, despite the fact that their registered contact details are correct and haven't altered for years.

What's going on? I don't know -- in my own case, the Domainz reminder/billing system seems to be working almost too well with a regular flow of pre-billing advice emails, invoices, reminders and last-chance reminders arriving on an almost daily basis.

If you've had problems with Domainz billing (or the lack thereof) please let me know.

Afraid To Win?
NZ's Olympic medal count stands (as of Friday morning) at zero -- just another dose of bad news for a country weathering the storms of a sinking currency and declining optimism?

Could it be that our sporting athletes are worried that it's now so politically incorrect to be "successful" that they fear the backlash that winning a medal might produce?

I must admit that I'm only half tongue-in-cheek when I make these comments and worry that perhaps the government may turn around and decide to take 39% of any gold medals won by Kiwis (in order that they can meet the state's obligations under the Treaty of Waitangi of course).

What I'm hoping however, is that if/when we win gold, the national pride that will ensue might just be enough to remind our bureaucrats and politicians that success (in sports and business) is something to be encouraged -- because winning benefits everyone.

At present, the vast majority of NZers, and certainly all politicians, seem happy to promote NZ's athletes and their efforts to win -- but we don't see the same attitude towards those who are risking more than their spare time and some sweat to build a winning business.

Perhaps it's about time we recognised the sacrifices and efforts made by those Kiwis who try to beat the odds and roadblocks to build their own businesses in the new economy.

While athletes who bring home medals may be great for the "warm fuzziness" of the nation, it's the hard working Kiwi entrepreneurs, business-people and workers who pay the bills for health, welfare and education.

Our returning athletes will probably get public accolades and praise -- our hard working entrepreneurs and new-economy workers will, if they're lucky, get taxed at 39 cents in the dollar.

Is it any wonder that we see stories 4 like this in our daily newspapers when the group which have the potential to be this country's real heros, those trying to build the new economy, are the ones getting the least help and acknowledgement.

As always, your feedback is welcomed.

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The Day's Top News
4 = open in new window
New Zealand

4  eBet shares suspended pending acquisition
Trans-Tasman listed online gaming company eBet requested a suspension of trading in its shares on the Australian and New Zealand stock markets, ahead of an announcement...

4  Government moving on parallel imports ban
The Government is close to implementing its promised ban on parallel imports for creative products such as CDs, videos and books...

4  Cut corporate tax to attract foreign investment: tycoon
Irish media tycoon Dr Tony O'Reilly has some advice for New Zealand if it wants to attract more foreign investment: lower corporate tax rates...
NZ Herald


4  World Isn't Waiting for NBC
In the age of instant communication, the good folks at NBC thought it was a cutting-edge idea to present the Olympic Games with next-day service, sending millions to the Web for results...

4  What's the Worst &*#% Filter?
Frustrated by "censorware" that won't let you find information about, say, sextuplets or Middlesex, England? The Digital Freedom Network is holding a Foil the Filters contest...

4  Online bargains vanishing amid e-tail shakeout
Pressed by impatient investors to post profits, a number of high-profile e-tailers have raised their prices in recent months...

4  Iomega to ship the HipZip MP3 player
Iomega today announced its HipZip digital music player, the company's first entry into the portable digital audio market and its latest effort to shift from its dependency on PC storage products...

4  Heavyweights Abandon British Broadband Market
While America Online makes its play for the British Internet-access market, other international heavyweights are pulling out...


4  Telstra lifts rates, cuts jobs
STD PHONE call charges will soar, with Telstra about to increase rates by as much as 21 per cent, hitting hip pockets again just as Australians have absorbed the GST...
Australian IT

4  High-speed US link draws near
The price of high-speed Internet is already falling on the eve of the opening of the Southern Cross Cable Network...

4  eisa gets lost in the Bermuda triangle
A mystery shareholder in the tax haven of Bermuda, who refused to accept Austar United's takeover bid for internet service provider eisa, was yesterday blamed for the company's demise....

4  E-market-places bid for online trade
With a number of Australian industries using online reverse auctions to speed up procurement, the electronic market-place is fast becoming part of the e-commerce environment...


4  Hackers Urge Boycott of Record Industry Bounty
Angered by the music industry's bid to close down Napster and MP3.com, a group of computer hackers are organizing a boycott of a competition to win $10,000 hacking new copyright-protection software being developed by major record labels...

4  Violators Caught With Olympic Video
So far, the Olympics' first-ever round-the-clock effort to keep live video and sound clips from the games off commercial Web sites - pre-empting NBC's exclusive coverage deal - has paid off...

4  Online Honesty Drops for King Books
As Stephen King prepares to post the third installment of his online serial novel ``The Plant,'' it appears fewer people fear the horror writer's threat to pull the plug if they don't pay...

4  XML: Get out your hype-o-meter
It slices. It dices. It cuts through all standards confusion with a single swish...

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Copyright © 2000, Bruce Simpson, free republication rights available on request