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When is a book 'published' and when not?
waste disposal & Ireland
Motor insurance for young drivers
 Alice Cooper’s chicken suicide scene

Wider speaking rights in Dail
New evidence on homo sapiens
Don't lose a moment!

Other News
the Writing on the Wall








Wednesday, 30 November, 2005

When is a book 'published' and when not?
When it is assigned an ISBN (International Standard Book Number), according to Peter Mathews, Publishing and Editorial Services Senior Manager at Nielsen BookData, the company managing the ISBN system.

What is not taken into consideration in the equation are the wishes of the book’s publisher or, for that matter, its author. Once a book is assigned an ISBN number, something incidentally that anyone can obtain at a set price, Nielsen BookData then places the book on a list of available books and sends the list out to retailers, books suppliers and distributors around the world. Included on the list is, which then automatically assumes the book is available for sale and places it on the website.

All this happens regardless of the fact of whether the item is actually in print or not, has even been published, or is wished to be made visible in the public domain by the author.

As an example, in response to a query regarding a book that was listed on but was strictly NOT available for sale, Mr Mathews wrote: “I have investigated the history of this record on our Bibliographic database and can confirm that the record was initially set up on 27/7/1998 and that this was the first record for a new ISBN registration by the Schenkelberg Immobilien Publications Ltd company. The information supplied by this company was therefore added to our bibliographic database to register the book they intended [my itals] to publish under the newly registered ISBN. This record is also the only record registered with us using the 09532978 ISBN prefix and, following the initial registration, we have heard nothing further from this publisher.”

We had inadvertently discovered that the book was being listed as available on and we had then actually completed an on-line order, which informed us that the book would be delivered within three weeks.

On writing to and asking why this book was listed for sale without the prior consent of the author or of the publisher, we were informed that the book was on their website as it was on a list supplied to Amazon by Nielsen BookData. Accordingly correspondence was emailed and faxed to Nielsen BookData, with the above response.

Mr Mathews was informed that neither the publisher nor the author had been approached by Nielsen BookData for confirmation and that Nielsen BookData had simply taken it for granted that the book was in fact available, and it was suggested that it would seem logical and appropriate for Nielsen BookData to first establish such contact and confirmation with the publisher or editor before taking the liberty of listing the book on a list of available items, Mr Mathews replied: “The contact you suggest between producer and `potential´ seller (and here I endorse your use of the word `potential´) prior to a listing is simply not possible across the millions of titles listed on our database and in addition, it is reasonably assumed by Amazon and others that the book product listings we produce, as a result of information provided by publishers and distributors themselves, are reliable because the information has come from the publisher in the first place. Clearly these records also need to be updated by publishers (as the vast majority do) to ensure they are a correct representation of the product and its current availability.”

In this case, no information was provided by the publisher (nor were they asked for any as such) as the publisher had applied for an ISBN for a particular work and had then been asked to send off the manuscript as confirmation. As a result an ISBN was assigned to the manuscript and the ISBN was in fact one of 10 granted to the publisher. No authorisation was given for any retail placing of the book, neither was it mentioned that the book was actually available or in print.

Mr Mathews appears to be suggesting that the company is prepared to list books as available without being prepared to carry out the work needed to confirm that this is in fact the case. This does appear to be a simple and straightforward flaw in the current ISBN system that can be as easily and straightforwardly put right.

And surely at the end of the day, it is up to Nielsen BookData to ensure that they have the right to list a book as being available prior to doing so and it is clearly insufficient to simply assume that such is the case because the author or a publisher has purchased an ASBN for the work.


Tuesday 5th March 2002

Govt turning insurers into untouchable elite and driving young men to break the law - Hogan

Government intransigence towards the insurance industry is turning Ireland's insurers into an untouchable elite and is driving young men to break the law due to its failure to tackle soaring motor insurance costs, said Fine Gael's director of organisation, Phil Hogan TD today (Tuesday).

"The failure of the Fianna Fail-Progressive Democrats coalition to tackle the controversial claims structure and address consequent spiralling insurance costs is not so much negligent as immoral.

"Business costs associated with employers' and public liability insurance have increased by over 100% in the past year alone. This is unacceptable by any standards. There is real suffering, especially in smaller businesses, where in a less buoyant economy, small margins are now tighter than ever. Despite repeated pleas, the Government has remained deaf to this suffering.

"The Government's abject failure to rein in insurance costs for young drivers contrasts with Government lip service which is forever telling us that our educated young population are our greatest asset.

"Even in 2002, no male driver under 21 can get cover in his own name, and at 21, will pay around 3,500 euro for third-party fire and theft cover for the smallest car on the market. Where is the recognition of the supposedly vital role they're playing in the economy?

"Government intransigence is driving young men to break the law - is it any wonder there are so many of them driving without insurance?

"In Government, Fine Gael proposes to pay 400 euro to young drivers - on completion of a rigorous road training programme - to supplement their insurance premium for the first insured year. This will help young drivers enormously, as well as improving safety on the roads.

"In five years, this Government has done nothing for businesses or young drivers in relation to insurance."

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MORE than 20 years after Alice Cooper reportedly bit the head off a living chick during a stage performance, Newsmedianews can exclusively tell the truth of the fabled incident.

Alice, the son of a US preacher, had taken several chickens he had rescued from an animal experiment centre when he went on his tour of the United States in 1970.

He said he had intended mimicking the act of biting off the head of the chicken on stage and had concealed a tube of theatrical blood in his mouth, ready to burst and splatter over the microphone as he pretended to bite off the chicken’s head during one of his songs.

However, it is thought that the chickens, who had been rescued from an uncertain fate and had been suddenly thrust into a road show that was to take in the whole of the United States, had grown apprehensive of whatever fate might lie in store for them.

Speaking on the telephone to Newsmedianews from his Hollywood home, Alice said he had taken the most senior chicken from the luxury coach they had travelled in and carried it out onto the stage, feeling that the older bird needed a break and might enjoy the bright lights and the music.

"I was really having a gas with the creature like, man, you know, talking to it between the lines of my song and saying ’hey kid, this is gonna be great, when we get to the line about headless chickens I’m gonna bite your head off in front of all these people’," said Alice.

"How was I to know the stupid bird would take me seriously. The next thing - it all happened so fast like there was nothing I could do - the next thing, just as I opened my mouth to pretend to bite its head off, the chicken looked me deep in the eyes with this awful look that said it said it knew it had nothing at all left to live for and then it plunged its head deep into my open mouth.

"At the same time it dug its talons deep into my hand and that made me snap my jaw shut in pain. That’s how I ended up biting the fucking thing’s head off. Man, it just committed hara-kiri, right there on stage, in front of all those people," said Alice.

He said he had purchased a quiet corner in Arlington Cemetery and had held a private funeral for the dead chicken.

"Every single person who had been on the tour, including the other chickens attended. It was a very sad occasion," said Alice. 




SDLP Deputy Leader Brid Rodgers has said that it is extremely important that all voices are heard in Dail Eireann and that both unionist and nationalist representatives should make use of speaking rights in the Irish Parliament.

She said: "From my point of view I know that having a seat in the Irish Senate was extremely important. It gave me a voice at an important time in the 1980s when we were facing many difficulties. I was able to articulate and put forward the views of the nationalist community.

This development should be seen as a threat to no one. It is essential that there is genuine dialogue between all the people on this island.'







Dramatic evidence has emerged from the ice linking the evolution of the human race with a chance encounter between a giant cockroach from the Cretaceous period and frozen worm sperm from the Jurassic.

The perfectly preserved 115 million-year-old cockroach was discovered by chance by a paparazzi Royal photographer chasing after pictures of Prince Harry who was on a skiing holiday in the Swiss Alps.

The photographer, Waldo Zuchenstein, of Woollagong, Australia, said that his zoom lens fell off his camera and into a 1000ft deep crevasse.

"By the time I’d climbed down and recovered it and climbed back, Prince Harry had flown back to England," said Mr Zuchenstein.

"Then I tried fitting the lens back on the camera but it wouldn’t go. That’s when I found the cockroach, jammed in the lens fastening mechanism," he explained.

Mr Zuchenstein put the five-inch long insect into a vacuum ice pack and sent it to a friend, Abdullah Abdul, at a weight-losers club in Pakistan. Mr Abdullah Abdul also works for a scientific research institute.

"I didn’t realise it was a cockroach. I just knew it was a big, frozen insect of some sort," said Mr Zuchenstein.

DNZ spectro-analysis revealed that the cockroach had swam through a puddle of melting frozen worm sperm and had become accidentally impregnated.

The cross-sampling of over 15-million eggs taken from the cockroach revealed a DNA structure identical to that of the very first known Homo Sapiens.

"I know people will think this is a crazy thing," said Mr Abdul.

"However, the evidence is indisputable. Samples from the worm sperm are 100 per cent identical to the DNA structure of the human body and samples of the cockroach brain cells show them to be 100 per cent identical to human brain cells. Only an idiot would dispute the evidence," the scientist added.

Links have now been drawn between collected Ranns evidence and the cockroach.
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There will always be someone ready and willing to cash in on the gullibility of others. And there will always be those willing to mess up our own lives in their ignorant greed. The latest of just such a breed is the quango cyber quacks who are trying to tell us we need SPEED SPEED SPEED. In reality they are trying to SELL us their idea that we need speed. Definitely not the same thing.

Those who regularly receive web newsletters will be aware of some of this. CUSTOMERS will FLEE, the newsletters warn in temple shaking tones of doom, if it takes longer than a few seconds for your web site to load.

People WON’T BUY, they thunder and roar if customers get BORED waiting for those few seconds longer.

Hang on here. What are they making us out to be? Of greater worry is what they might be turning us into. Most people using the web are using what is in reality a recent development. Words from those providing professional Internet services can often be mistaken for gospel.

If supermarkets yelled at us to forget the speed limits and drive at 120mph to the shops the law would close them down without hesitation.

SLOW DOWN. Is the world going to really fall apart if we don’t see an immediate 5-second result while browsing the web? Just what is anyone going to lose? Websites will still be there - customers will still be looking for what they require.

Forget the bullshit about speed, for that’s all it is. Those who shove it down our throats do not do so in philanthropic terms - look closer - they too are SELLING something - speed.

Few web sites these days take longer than at very most 30 seconds to display and those that do will generally have regular visitors who are aware of the matter and continue to go there for a reason. If you cannot spare 30 seconds of your time then I suggest that you have a serious conditioning problem.

Now hurry up and e-mail this story to your friends!



Towards Reaching A Sustainable Habitat

Waste disposal is not just about getting rid of the garbage. It is also about how it is disposed of and that is where waste management has its part to play.

To be effective, good management must be based upon meaningful and workable practice.

Ireland has the highest dependency on landfill disposal in Europe and has been penalised several times for failing to meet EU requirements. It looks set to fail in reaching all EU waste disposal targets up to 2005.

Ireland has not developed a cohesive national waste strategy. Its existing landfill sites are inadequate to handle the country's growing waste volume and recycling is almost non-existent except in token experimental schemes.

Goverment has over the past decade engineered a rapid growth of wealth in Ireland and with that has come the hand in hand rapid growth in waste output.Government has a responsibility to ensure that adequate and effective waste disposal systems are in place.

Although the number of landfill sites was reduced from 70 to 50 between 1998 to 2000, no alternatives were introduced and so the situation is that a smaller number of utilities are handling an increasing load—a sure recipe for trouble.

The EU has taken the view that those who create waste must pay for its disposal. In its document Waste Matters, the Irish Labour party comments on the lack of alternatives to landfill and the absence of a full scale national infrastructure for option other than landfill:

“In this context, the introduction of domestic charges for landfill disposal becomes more of a revenue generation exercise for local authorities than an instrument to change our ways on waste. This is especially the case where fixed levies are applied as opposed to a weight or volume based charge.”

Over the past two years attention has focussed sharply on illegal waste dumping on a major scale. Punishing the offenders is fine and necessary, but so too is removing the existence of the need for a black market in waste disposal that has seen a growing number of unscrupulous business operators cashing in on the opportunity.

Politics is not about scoring points. It is about putting in place effective infrastructures within society.Landill has never been a truly effective process. It simply moves the garbage 'out of site'.

Unless proper credence is given to the requirement of effective and sustainable methods of waste disposal, we may see an unwanted reality to the phrase "it's a trash country".