30 October 2013

Russell Brand says don’t vote, Grads apply for 20 jobs each, Lecturer strike…

Russell Brand tells Students that voting is pointless

Russel BrandComedian Russell Brand gave a controversial interview on Newsnight (video here), in which he claimed that it’s pointless for students to vote, as no one running will represent their interests anyway.

Brand said he had never voted, and had no intention of doing so in the future.

Our take: Political apathy seems to be the easy way out in our book. It’s too simple just to roll over and say “no one’s listening to us anyway,” and decide not to take part. Real progress is made through students getting involved and making a difference with their votes and their (non violent) actions.

Grads expected to apply for at least 20 Jobs

Graduate SchemesA study by YouGov has revealed that graduates are likely to apply for at least 20 jobs before they find full time employment, and expect an average starting wage of just over £20,000.

The figures prove just how difficult the job market is for young people in the current economy.

Our take: It’s demoralising to apply for so many jobs, especially when you’re mainly greeted with rejection letters or stone cold silence. Don’t give up though! There are jobs out there, and if you’re on the ball, you can be the one getting that all important first step on the job ladder.

University Lecturer Strike to go ahead

Lecturer StrikeA large scale teaching strike planned for this Thursday is set to go ahead, even as staff meet employers for eleventh hour talks.

The UK’s higher education system is set to be brought to a standstill as lecturers take industrial action over their pay, of which employers had only offered an increase of 1%.

Our take: While we support the right for lecturers to strike, there must be a better way of taking action than punishing the students by stopping classes? UK higher education is in a poor state at the moment, with many of senior managers proving to be completely clueless and out of touch. They should be penalised, not those paying through the nose for education.

Kim Jong-Un awarded Honorary Doctorate in Economics

kim jong unThe Supreme Leader of North Korea, Kim Jong-Un, has been awarded an honorary doctorate in Economics.

The leader of the communist state is said to have earned his degree for “untiring efforts for the education of the country and the well-being of its people” and there’s nothing suspicious about it at all.

Our take: In our opinion Kim Jong-Un deserves this doctorate ;). He is the amazing almighty leader of a great country and we’re sure he worked as hard as others to earn it… *ahem*

McDonald’s to drop Heinz Ketchup

heinz ketchup mcdFast food chain McDonald’s has announced plans to stop serving Heinz tomato ketchup in their restaurants, as a reaction against the company hiring the former CEO of Burger King as their Chief Executive.

The companies are planning to slowly transition the Heinz Ketchup out of the restaurants over the coming year.

Our take: It’s always nice to see multinational corporations acting like children, McDonald’s has literally taken their ball and gone home. And as for the ‘sauce’ of the problem, it looks like there’s the chance for some of Heinz’s competitors to play ‘ketchup’ and really ‘squeeze’ the market. Daddy’s anyone?

State of the Machin: On EA and Tiger Woods

Tiger Woods EARegular readers (dare I say fans?) will notice that I mostly write about either video gaming or sports. Just to mix it up, this week I’m talking about both!

Electronic Arts (BOOO!) have dropped the Tiger Woods name from their yearly released golf simulator game.

There’s not a lot to like about EA, they’ve made some downright despicable moves in the games industry in recent years eg. an IOS version of Theme Park in which a basic rollercoaster cost £67 in micro-transactions and making Sim City always online just to stop people pirating it.

They get away with releasing the same sports games every year, not only because everyone else does it (Call of Duty, Assassins Creed, et al. (that referencing lecture is finally paying off!)),  but also because of the fluid nature of sport.

Football teams change every six months, so the updated database almost justifies an annual new release of FIFA.

This is why it’s so surprising that, for the first time since 1999, that the EA sports PGA golf game won’t carry the name of Tiger Woods.

Obviously Tiger has had a fair few years of bad PR and played some poor golf, but he’s still easily the most recognisable name in the sport. It’s almost a measure of how bad things are for Tiger that EA, who were voted worst company in America in two consecutive years, are distancing themselves from him.

And that’s the State of the Machin.

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