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Tell the telcos where to go


Vol. 3, No. 30, 4/9/2002

In This Issue:
* From the editor
* Next workshop
* Web content tip
* Email tip
* Readers write
* The Y Files
* Surf Club (web site reviews)
* Reader choice
* Weekly chuckle
* Media clipping
* At your service
* Things that make you go huh?

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From the editor
##first name##

Have you been invited to join Telstra's "exciting
Internet Calling trial"?

Don't feel too miffed. After reading the fine print, I
think I'll stick to the phone.

Internet Calling lets you make phone calls direct from
your PC via your broadband Internet connection using a
microphone and headset or speakers.

Sounds great until you check out the charges - calls
are timed (local and long distance) and a 10-minute
PC-to-phone call will use up 1Mb of your download

Give us a break. We can already make free phone calls over
the Net but now they want to charge us for doing it over an
already over-priced broadband connection using our own
$2000-plus computers?

Five years after competition was introduced into the
Australian telecommunications sector, we have 683 Internet
Service Providers (ISPs), 31 voice providers and 66
combined voice and ISPs on the Telecommunication Industry
Ombudsman's (TIO) lists.

Bring on the competition, I reckon.


PS good news - the whale entangled in shark nets off
Australia's Gold Coast last week survived (just goes to
show you can't believe everything you read online). Amazed
rescuers have dubbed him Enduro - http://www.whaling.com/

PPS we have a new treat for you this week - an easy,
healthy recipe for the tired, hungry and
information overloaded (this chef cooks the way
we should write online - quickly, simply and fuss
free). See Readers Write below for healthy fast food.

Next workshop
"I expected a lot and got what I wanted. Refereshing to
have a trainer who practises what they preach." - part-time
web content publisher, Sydney.

Brisbane - Thursday and Friday, October 3-4
* customised in-house workshops anywhere in the world can
be arranged at discount rate

More: http://www.brizcomm.com.au/workshops/

Web content tip
Content is king (or queen, as I prefer to say) but only if
it is managed.

Journalist Sue Bushell reports on the state-of-play in
content management in Australia, particularly with
government web sites.

You might recognise one of the "experts" quoted ;-)

More: http://tinyurl.com/1aea

Email tip
Companies have been warned to brace for a flood
of hoax emails to coincide with the anniversary
of September 11.

Hoaxes are generally chain letters warning of computer
viruses, disasters, freebies, new laws and other
upsetting lies. When you follow instructions in
hoax messages you're acting as a "manual version of a

Do the Net a favour and never forward scary
emails unless you've checked them out at an urban
legend site or via a search engine such as Google.

Read ZDNet Australia's article on the expected hoax email

More: http://www.brizcomm.com.au/freetips/

Readers write
Smokers have enough problems without hot dottles. What's a
dottle? Find out with Pollyanna.

At last, help for the culinary challenged with chef Gabriel
Gate's new book, How to Teach Kids to Cook. Read the

While on the subject of food, don't miss the first column
from our new contributor and chef, Flash in the Pan. It's a
quick and easy recipe for Asian Omelette (I had it for
lunch and it's great).

Send your reviews or other content contributions to

The Y Files
Reader Des Shannon asks -

Q - I'm sure that I recently read somewhere how to get
rid of those annoying indented arrows >>>> when
printing off emails - I use Outlook Express.

A - Just type "character stripper" into any search engine
and you'll find a useful tool to strip out unwanted symbols
in text. Here's one for starters -

Email your answer or question to yvette@brizcomm.com.au

More: http://www.brizcomm.com.au/freetips/

Surf Club (web site reviews)
Grand Illusions
Grand Illusions is a site for the inquiring mind with
optical illusions, scientific toys, visual effects “and
even a little magic”. Find the missing people, see the
amazing jolly jug and memory teaspoon, or solve the
brainteaser that potential Microsoft employees are asked.
In a net shell: My head hurts.

Word Oddities and Trivia
Did you know that the only countries in the world with one
syllable in their names are Chad, France, Greece, Laos and
Spain? Wordies will enjoy these 19 pages of word
strangeness and factoids including vowels, palindromes and
names of people that became words.
In a net shell: A mouthful.

At last, help for adults having trouble understanding text
messages sent by their ultra-cool, mobile phone-toting
teens. The abbreviated nature of SMS (Short Message
Service) can seem like another language to the uninitiated.
Just type in your SMS lingo and let transL8it! convert to
plain English or type in a phrase in English and convert to
In a net shell: XLnt.

Daily Photo Project
What a difference a day makes – one man, 365 photographs.
The creator of this web site has taken a picture of himself
every day since October 1998. Why? Who knows but it shows
how the human face can change over time.
In a net shell: Time-lapse photography.

Asylum Sand Art Therapy
Like sands through the hourglass, so are the days of our
lives. When you’re terribly bored with daytime television,
create your own sand art – just click and watch. The longer
you hold down the button, the more sand will fall.
In a net shell: Sands of time.

Crop Circle Cereal
If you thought crop circles were strange, what about the
creators of Crop Circle Cereal. Read their marketing
proposal for a breakfast cereal made from wheat grown in
fields where crop circles have appeared. See the box,
sample ads, merchandise and music.
In a net shell: Nutty tasting.

More: http://www.brizcomm.com.au/surf/default.asp

Reader choice
This is for people who do not indulge in violent,
aggressive and
speed-addicted computer games. These shareware
games are logic puzzles. I am addicted to
Sherlock, with Honeycomb Hotel running a close
second. They are suitable for children and adults, as
many games include size options.
Reviewed by Margaret Greer

NetGuideWeb is compiling a list of its readers' favourite
sites for 2002, to be featured in the December issue.
Nominate a great site you've found (Australian or
international) then visit agin later to vote on the 50
most popular. You could win a new or renewing subscription
to NetGuide magazine, valued at $40.

More: http://

Weekly chuckle
"Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind
don't matter and those who matter don't mind." - Dr Seuss.

More: http://

Media clipping
List-A-Day - Thursday, July 11, 2002

"If you're involved in any way with online publishing,
whether you write for Web sites, email newsletters,
email-marketing messages or any other channel, you'll enjoy
this brisk, breezy read from Yvette Nielsen of Queensland,
Australia. Brizcomm is all over the Internet map, with
tips, helpful advice and a comment or two on everything
from getting more out of your email to interesting sites
you might not otherwise come across. Yvette's primary
interest is with email-newsletter publishing, especially
for business owners who publish their own newsletters for
public relations or marketing. The HTML format gives you
plenty to read in an easily digestible form. To subscribe,
visit Yvette's Web site and fill in the blanks." - Janet
Roberts, Associate Editor, List-A-Day.

More: http://www.brizcomm.com.au/extras/about.asp

At your service
If you'd like me to do an in-house web content, e-newsletter
or online writing workshop for your organisation - or if
you need an in-depth site or e-newsletter critique - email

Things that make you go huh?
Ready for some extreme surfing? Want to be titillated,
taunted and tempted?

Buy a copy of Odd Bods - 50 bizarre sites about the human
body and shock your dinner party guests with tales from the
dark side of the Net.

Grab your credit card to pay online for instant access to
professionally reviewed sites that could take years to find
among the millions of dead links, scumware and pop-ups.

Only .95 (about ) incl. GST - that's less than a
bottle of red wine and the wicked pleasure will last
Available in .exe format for PCs (.pdf for Macs coming
soon). Don't worry, we'll tell you how to do it - it's
super easy.

Go on, live dangerously and get it while it's hot -

More: http://


Bobby Approved (v 3.2) Unusual Corporate Gifts other than a Gift Basket

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