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Analysis and Comment (14)

“Hey, where are u?” “Ummm, right next to you”. “Hey, where are u?” “Ummm, right next to you”. TonZ

Watch where you put that emoticon AND KEEP YOUR VOICE DOWN

Emoticons, punctuation and creative spelling have been debated, condemned, and regulated since the very beginning of online text-based communication. We’ve all seen “netiquettes” on how not to use ALL…
Is the digital world making communication easier or harder? Is the digital world making communication easier or harder? Envato

Does Skype help or hinder communication?

Speech is the one of the most important forms of communication between humans. The internet has opened doors for us to communicate with people across the globe – but the technology often leads to misunderstanding…
What do you think of when you think about climate change? What do you think of when you think about climate change? Wikimedia/NOAA

Four Hiroshima bombs a second: how we imagine climate change

The planet is building up heat at the equivalent of four Hiroshima bombs worth of energy every second. And 90% of that heat is going into the oceans. Right, now I’ve got your attention. It’s widely acknowledged…
Stay still, I’ve missed a bit. Stay still, I’ve missed a bit. PA/Tim Whitby

Doing Arnie impressions can activate your brain

The voice is an important tool which we use to communicate and express ourselves. But our voices convey so much more than the words we say. Just a few words can reveal clues about someone’s gender, age…
“If the trumpet give an uncertain sound, who shall prepare himself to the battle?” Research shows that plants spread news of trouble. “If the trumpet give an uncertain sound, who shall prepare himself to the battle?” Research shows that plants spread news of trouble. Flickr/Peter Nijenhuls

Heard it on the grapevine: the mysterious chatter of plants

Sound and its use in communication have shaped the ecology, evolution, behaviour, and ultimately the success of many animal species. But are animals the only lifeforms to communicate with sound? Do plants…
Gillard shines when she is closer to voters, such as at this week’s community cabinet in Paramatta. Gillard shines when she is closer to voters, such as at this week’s community cabinet in Paramatta. AAP/Tracey Nearmy

Community cabinets could be the cure for Gillard’s communication conundrum

By all accounts, in person Prime Minister Julia Gillard is relaxed, funny, engaging and a good listener. Her ministers say she is tough, masters briefs well, leads, and takes decisions. On top of that…
The ALP should be talking about getting a headstart on the industries of the future. The ALP should be talking about getting a headstart on the industries of the future. AAP

Building a new nation: a better way to tell the story of climate change

One of the arts of politics is storytelling, establishing a narrative that people can engage with. It is why politicians often talk about great teachers when explaining education reform, cancer patients…
Sending the same message to everyone at once is an old-fashioned approach. Sending the same message to everyone at once is an old-fashioned approach. Boston Public Library

Australians need more than one message on the carbon tax

The Federal Government is once again hitting difficulties in communicating its carbon pricing proposal, with polling finding Australians don’t like the word carbon. The government is reconsidering its…
Rudd might think he’s the messiah, but Gillard begs to differ. Rudd might think he’s the messiah, but Gillard begs to differ. AAP/Alan Porritt

The messiah or a very naughty boy? Kevin and Julia’s war of the words

He’s not the messiah … or is he? This morning Nicola Roxon went to the heart of the matter when she said of Kevin Rudd, “he’s not the messiah”. Most of us were hoping that she’d complete the statement…
Kevin Rudd will only give a smug smile when asked about his designs on Julia Gillard’s job. Kevin Rudd will only give a smug smile when asked about his designs on Julia Gillard’s job. AAP Image/Alan Porritt

Will he or won’t he? Why Kevin Rudd won’t give a straight answer on his leadership aspirations

Watching Kevin Rudd in his almost daily struggle to avoid giving a straight answer to questions about whether he’ll challenge Julia Gillard is as painful as listening to a smoker justify why they won’t…
Barack Obama’s web campaign helped him win the presidency. Parties should learn from it. Barack Obama’s web campaign helped him win the presidency. Parties should learn from it. Flickr/Scorpions and Centaurs

Democracy.net: How to create better political engagement

The increasing spread of information and communication technology has changed just about every aspect of Australian society – except democracy. The opportunities to engage citizens in the democratic process…
The UN is protecting your right to express yourself in social media. The UN is protecting your right to express yourself in social media. Flickr/-lucky cat-

Click, like, comment? The UN goes digital on freedom of expresssion

General Comment No. 34 on Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights may sound like something from a bureaucratic nightmare, but it drags your right to freedom of expression into the digital…
Spoilt for choice: neither Tony Abbott nor Julia Gillard are inspiring climate leaders. Spoilt for choice: neither Tony Abbott nor Julia Gillard are inspiring climate leaders. AAP

The courage to lead: Gillard, Abbott and the climate change conundrum

Both Julia Gillard and Tony Abbott have staked their political futures on their climate policies. So perhaps they should also be asking what the hallmarks are of a climate leader? The German political…

Research Briefs (5)

Moths' sex talk

Moths can communicate about sex according to a University of Southern Denmark study. Moths have highly sensitive ears which…

Don’t forget Facebook

Chatty updates on Facebook are easier to remember than carefully-worded sentences. Researchers from the University of Warwick…