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Everything posted by Malachy

  1. Hi Marvin Just tested it and got 0.4 mbps through the router and 1.25 mbps when plugged straight in. That's obviously better, but still much slower than we were getting two weeks ago. Is it possible there's some problem between the 'receiver' thing outside and the router? Still no iPlayer either. Cheers Malachy
  2. Yes, I'm in Vidlin. And since the problem that occurred in Vidlin school the weekend before last, our speeds have been, as I said, 80% slower than previously. Ian also said he wasn't aware of the issue, but BT have been known to say the very same thing, and it doesn't necessarily mean there isn't one. We also have the problem with iplayer, which we're hoping will be resolved soon (?) and an apparently similar issue with our Vodafone SureSignal, which stopped working the same evening. Vodafone are (slowly) looking into that one.
  3. So is it the puffins that are responsible for reducing the speed of Shetland Broadband by 80% or so these past ten days, Marvin?
  4. Bryan, this is completely and utterly wrong, and you ought to be ashamed of yourself! It should be 'far fewer audience members', not 'far less'.
  5. Hi there I'm looking for someone to put a new profile sheeting roof on my garage. Does anyone have a suggestion of who'd be do a good job? I called someone advertising in the paper a while back and they never even showed up. Cheers Malachy
  6. It's Davy Inkster at Da Smiggins, East Burra. Should be in the book. I did one of his courses last year and really enjoyed it.
  7. Ah, another classic Shetlink thread. Unintentional hilarity all round. And is it just me, or is this one of the strangest and most outlandish claims on here in quite a while? A 'large percentage [of?] humans' do all that? Really? What are we talking here: 50, 60, 70 per cent of 'humans' actually try to browbeat the owners of rundown-looking properties into selling their houses? Is this just in Shetland, or is it a worldwide fact? I suspect the OP might have got a more polite and useful answer to their question had they posted it on the Bernard Cribbens fanclub forum (if such a thing exists, which it should). Welcome to Shetland!
  8. Well an editorial is, almost by definition, written by the editor. So even if the name is not directly on the column (such as in the 'Auld Rock' section in the ST), it would be hard to call it anonymous. As for commentary columns, I think that, yes, unless there's a good reason for anonymity (and there are some good reasons), they should have a name on it. I suppose it would be possible to argue that articles published anonymously can serve to provoke a serious discussion, but I think that an anonymous debate, ultimately, is not a serious debate.
  9. Is there not a slight contradiction between your fondness (understandable, in my opinion) for all things Norwegian / Scandinavian, and what you say here? Surely if Shetland were to become more Scandinavian in its outlook (or return to Norway, even) we'd be cementing exactly those things you claim not to like. Scandinavian society and politics is essentially social-democratic (ie left wing), with high taxation. It's state dominated and, to at least the same extent as Scotland, services-led. It sometimes seems that your love of Norway is not a love of the Norway that actually exists today - which, along with the other Nordic countries, I happen to think is a pretty good model for where Scotland ought to head - but instead some hazy, historic Norseland that isn't actually real. As it happens, I agree that there's an opportunity coming to make some changes in Shetland, in terms of our relationship with Scotland or the UK (though I don't think anything as radical as you're suggesting would be at all wise in a single leap). I also agree that it's good folk are talking about it. Sadly, talking about it on Shetlink is about as useful as not talking about it at all. Until the issue becomes the subject of proper public debate, using real names, it will go nowhere.
  10. Remember the Althing debate tonight: "Shetland's future lies in an independent Scotland". Jean Urquhart MSP and Danus Skene supporting; Alistair Carmichael MP and Ben Raikes opposing. In Tingwall School at 7.30. Be there or be . . . somewhere else.
  11. ^^ No point spoiling a good conspiracy Johan! Just to clarify something here. Four people have now suggested that my original post was made because I don't like people disagreeing with me. Nothing could be further from the truth. I enjoy debating, and if everyone thought and felt the same about everything then there would be nothing to discuss at all. My argument is that, for the most part, making a point on Shetlink is about as likely to result in sensible debate as going into a school, grabbing hold of a 15 year old boy and saying "Your Mum's a slag!" I don't think I'm being overly nostalgic if I suggest that four or five years ago there were considerably more active contributors on these forums. There was a greater variation in the views expressed, and the quality of the debate was much higher. Let me stress again here that by quality I don't mean the extent to which people agree with me, I mean the ability of people to express their views in a logical, sensible and calm way. What seems to have happened is a self-perpetuating process whereby, as some of these people have drifted away, the proportion of ranters, trolls, illiterates and extremists has risen. As that proportion rises, so more people are persuaded that it's no longer worth bothering to post here (that's the most common reason I've heard from people who've given up on the site). And that's the point I suppose. Making a reasoned argument in a reasonable way takes just a little bit of time and effort. If everyone else is just writing the first thing that comes into their heads (and if you're anonymous then that's always more likely) then why bother getting involved? And before anyone mentions the fact that the number of users is still rising, I don't think anyone can doubt that the reason for that is the classifieds section, not the forums. More than one person has said something along the lines of "If you don't like it then go away". Surely though, Shetlink would be improved by more people bothering to post, not fewer. Finally, to respond to unlinkedstudent's first point. I'm truly sorry if you (and apparently Ghostrider) are distressed or offended by satire. I shall never attempt to make a point using humour again, just in case anyone doesn't think it's funny.
  12. Bryan, I have some questions about Mareel, and if you don't answer within 20 minutes I'm going to put in an official complain and ask for you to be sacked. 1. I've heard that the roof of the building is made of tin foil. Is this true? And if not, what is it made of, exactly how big is it, where did you source the materials and, to the nearest penny, how much did they cost? 2. Does the building have enough doors? I've looked at photos of it, and it seems to me that there is inadequate doorage space, especially if a lot of very large people want to enter it all at exactly the same moment. Did you consider that possibility during the design process? Doors are important you know! I've been in at least three buildings in my life, so I consider myself something of an expert in this field. 3. The kind of materials that are being used are quite obviously not adequate for Shetland's extreme climate. By my calculations, most of the building will have evaporated by next Christmas, and all that will be left will be the dance studio and Kathy Hubbard's desk. Is this true? And if not, why not? 4. Will you be showing the kind of films I like? 5. Have you ordered enough popcorn? Me and my friends eat a lot of it, you know, so I suspect you haven't. I look forward to your (no doubt inadequate) reply.
  13. I must say, this poll is remarkably close given that it's essentially asking Shetlink users whether Shetlink is worth using. I should add that I fully agree on the issue of names. I think if there were a forum (or part of this forum) where real names had to be used then the quality of the debate would undoubtedly be higher. Employing a pseudonym allows users to write absolute nonsense without any fear of comeback. In fact, another side of the names issue was brought home to me quite some time ago when a post appeared that was vaguely threatening towards me. What was said was not a direct threat, but the implication of it was: "Watch out! I know who you are but you have no way of knowing who I am." That made me feel seriously uneasy, and I stopped posting for quite a long time. That user has since disappeared (banned perhaps?) but the power issue remains - using a pseudonym gives you a certain power over those who use their own names. It gives both the means and the excuse for irresponsibility.
  14. I would like to propose a motion for debate, partly though not entirely tongue-in-cheek. Namely, that Shetlink has outstayed its welcome; that it no longer serves its purpose as a forum for intelligent debate about local and current affairs; that it now appears to be little more than a haven for trolls, extremists, those with too much time on their hands and the intellectually and grammatically challenged; that it has a great classifieds section but not much else worth looking at. The case for the prosecution rests, for now. Thank you very much.
  15. Good to see the quality of debate on Shetlink remaining consistently high.
  16. Your conspiracy theories are all very entertaining, but the fact is that SCT is a charity, and as such it has to play by the rules, as set out and enforced by OSCR. By ignoring those rules, councillor-trustees merely risk losing the trust's charitable status. Then the trust will be liable for tax. You can't have it both ways - if you want the benefits of being a charity you have to live by the rules. This has nothing to do with anyone trying to get their hands on SCT's money. It's just about trustees' arrogance, foolishness and desperate desire to cling on to power as long as possible.
  17. The oil companies and the stock market. Not sure what this means. The CT doesn't 'fund' the council. I suppose it depends how you define it. The money doesn't come from taxation, so it's not public in the usual sense of the word.
  18. Two points. First, Shetland Arts is not funded by the council; it's funded by Shetland Charitable Trust. Second, the stakeholders meetings are, I believe, open to anyone. I've never been myself, but I've certainly seen info in the paper - if you want to attend you just have to get in touch with SA. That's my understanding anyway. So in a sense you're right - we did all get an invite. They probably just decided it was better value for money to put a notice in the paper rather than send out individual invitations to each household. People might have complained if they'd done that.
  19. http://www.thehousedesigners.com/mediterranean-house-plans.asp http://saterdesign.com/mediterranean_house_plans http://www.theplancollection.com/mediterranean-house-plans Some lovely foreign mansions to cheer you on a wet Friday
  20. http://profile.ak.fbcdn.net/hprofile-ak-snc4/261184_163226717090241_1813752358_n.jpg
  21. Your implication seems to be that real Shetlanders aren't interested (or shouldn't be interested) in anything produced outside Shetland. That's strikes me as a very peculiar attitude, and not one that many people would agree with. Also, my understanding is that most/a large proportion of the money spent on those festivals comes from Creative Scotland and various sponsors (Bryan might be able to offer some less vague information). Ie, it's not Shetland's money being spent - it's money being brought in to Shetland to provide entertainment to people here who are interested in literature and cinema. Surely a good thing?
  22. I'm afraid this is completely incorrect - an oft repeated myth. Elected representatives are not there to reflect exactly the views of their constituents. For one thing, how are they to know what their constituents think on every issue? Ask them, one by one? Totally impossible. Or perhaps conduct a referendum? Similarly impractical. Plus, if you conduct democracy by referendum then you have no need for representatives. In addition, elected representatives must consider the views and well being of all their constituents, not just the majority. Rule by majority on every issue can very easily result in minorities between trodden upon. This is one of the real benefits of a system of representatives - it allows for balance. It's often said that people can be more stupid collectively than individually, and a 'pure' democracy can easily become mob rule. Further to this, politicians, because of their roles, have access to more information on many issues than do the public. They are in a position to make 'informed' decisions (though there's no guarantee of course that they will do so). The public mood on certain issues can be shaped by many things - particularly the media - and on the whole can be very susceptible to undemocratic influences (like Rupert Murdoch, for instance). Equally, on certain issues - capital punishment is a good example - the law is out of step with the public's view, but the reasons for this are to do with maintaining a civil, humane society. Finally, politicians' job is in part to represent but also (and perhaps equally) it is to lead. Politicians must listen to the public, but they should also be brave enough to express their views, and to try and persuade people to change their minds on certain things. There's been a move away from this in recent years (with Tony Blair's obsession with focus groups etc), and I don't think it's particularly healthy. Politicians should be able to say "This is what I think and this is why I think it. If you agree and if you trust me, then vote for me. If I disappoint you, don't vote for me next time". Obviously it's all a bit more complex than this, but I've gone on long enough... This is totally off topic now, but nevertheless, this is a modern myth that bothers me quite a bit, so I thought I'd throw my thoughts in.
  23. I believe the Shetland Honey that has been for sale in the Olive Tree is produced by Angus at Frakkafield, but I may be wrong on that so please correct me if so. I've heard that Shetland is free of the varroa mite, so it would definitely be worth contacting a keeper here about it to ensure getting healthy bees and keeping the mites out.
  24. I would say the population and general social situation in Shetland in 100 will be very much dependent on the situation elsewhere, and we will have to see what Peak Oil, a changing climate and a fragile global economy bring in order to know that. If Shetland's in a slump and everywhere else is flourishing then of course we'll see mass depopulation. But if the rest of Britain/Europe is also struggling (and there are many who believe it will be even worse than struggling) then Shetland will probably be in a better position, at least population-wise. There will certainly be fewer reasons to leave.
  25. Interesting prediction. The first point on population size is plausible enough, though really nothing more than a guess. The second point is highly unlikely - as long as the land is suitable for rearing and growing food here people will be using it. Increasingly so in the future I'd say, particularly as oil gets harder to come by and imports become too expensive. The final point is bizarre (quite apart from the weird term 'transplants'). Where do you expect all the 'native' Shetlanders to go exactly? Are you anticipating some kind of ethnic cleansing?
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