Friday, 28 August 2009

Tappin keeps tappin' away

More Wikipedia trouble for Steve Tappin, the former headhunter-cum-author-cum-executive coach whose online encyclopedia entry flatters a touch.
You'll recall that I pressured him into altering the page once before, after he used it to claim he was a "CEO confidant for some of the CEOs of major global corporations such as Tesco, Deloitte and RSA". Sadly for Steve, Tesco, Deloitte and RSA didn't agree.
Despite the minor correction, however, it seems Tappin's tinkering has not satisfied the Wikipedia independence police, who have slapped a health warning on the Steve Tappin page.
"This article is written like an advertisement," it informs the website's contributors. "Please help rewrite this article from a neutral point of view. For blatant advertising that would require a fundamental rewrite to become encyclopedic, use {{db-spam}} to mark for speedy deletion. (August 2009)".

Thursday, 27 August 2009

My Teddy where?

Am I the only person who's already forgotten where they were when Teddy Kennedy died?

Is that a book contract in your pocket?

Congratulations, of sorts, to Sheryl Weinstein, the former lover of mega fraudster Bernie Madoff, who's achieved the improbable goal of disgracing herself almost as much as her one-time squeeze.
As you'll all know by now, Weinstein has written a book which lifts the sheets on how she got off with Madoff, revealing such gems as her achieving a climax despite Bernie's miniscule genitalia.
The thoughts of hubbie Ronald on his wife's new found taste for honesty appear to have been unrecorded so far, although if he's a crossword buff he may have long suspected his errant missus.
Sheryl Weinstein, I discover, is an anagram of Relishes Wen Tiny.

Wednesday, 26 August 2009

Tidal turns into an exclusive exclusive

Exclusive! brags the Guardian's business pages today about its own splash on a plan for Scottish Power to supply all the electricity to one of Scotland's most famous islands using tidal energy.
Sadly, the tweeting and blogging community don't seem that impressed. In particular, points out that Scottish Power put all of this on a press release which was sent out in September. So, it was an exclusive in the sense that no one else bothered to copy it out. It may well remain exclusive for many years to come.

Tuesday, 25 August 2009

Media news...

I hear that the bookies favourite, Dominic Mohan, will be confirmed as The Sun's new editor tomorrow - following the promotion of Rebekah Brooks (née Wade) to chief executive of News International.
It is also strongly rumoured that his deputy will be David Dinsmore, editor of the Scottish Sun, who is in London tomorrow. This will of course create an interesting vacancy at the top of the Scottish Sun, which is now Scotland's biggest-selling daily.

Update 26/08/09: Dominic Mohan has now been confirmed as editor.

Friday, 21 August 2009

It pays not to watch

It seems my old friend, the dreadful "money saving expert" Martin Lewis, has again misplaced his sense of self-effacement.
Musing on his blog, the professional meanie blames "property porn shows" for punters overextending themselves and defaulting on their mortgages - before heartily congratulating himself on having the genius to foresee this entirely foreseeable pickle.
Still, Lewis should know how even the most brilliant financial telly presenters can sometimes stitch up the humble viewer. Thanks to his stupid campaign to help feckless people claim back money they have been rightly charged by banks, we are probably going to lose free banking. Solid work.

Footnote to Lewis: it is most unseemly to slag off rival (low grade) television genres when your own pisspoor show has been dumped.

Tuesday, 18 August 2009

Meltdown for Baker

Just what has happened to the sequel to Meltdown - the financial thriller penned by Martin Horlick (né Baker)?
The self-regarding husband of embattled City Superwoman, Nicola Horlick, has long promised a follow-up to his dreary debut novel, writing in Square Mile magazine two years ago: "I wanted to make the change from journalist to writer. And that’s something I’m doing. You could argue, given a three-book fiction deal with Macmillan ... it’s something I’ve already done ... Meltdown is being promoted as a major title in Macmillan’s list on its publication in January 2008."
Over to Macmillan. "We have no plans to publish Meltdown II," blocks a spokesman.
Or, as the great writer himself penned, back in 2007: "I’m in limbo, 34,000 words into novel number two, and still unsure how to manage the entrepreneurial change from journalist to author."
The man's a prophet!

Thursday, 13 August 2009

Parky works over-time on unemployment

Postscript to my story yesterday about Lord Parkinson's spot that unemployment has been higher at the end of every Labour government than it was when each one came to power.
The former Tory Trade Secretary's statistic got lots of coverage at the time, and at a cabinet meeting shortly after his proclamation, Parkinson tells how he was taken aside by Michael Heseltine (as was).
"Is that stuff about Labour and unemployment really true?" he asked.
"It was at that point that I knew the challenge I had to persuade voters," Parkinson recalls. "I couldn't even convince my own cabinet I was right."

Wednesday, 12 August 2009

Labour statistics keep on repeating...

I see that unemployment has reached 2.4m - the highest level since 1995.
Plus ca change. Former Tory Trade Secretary, Lord Parkinson, is fond of telling a story of how he once pointed out that every Labour government has left office with unemployment higher than when it arrived. An incredulous reporter asked the then opposition leader, Neil Kinnock, if Parkinson's claim was indeed true.
Kinnock's reply? "Well, statistically speaking."

Friday, 7 August 2009

Black and white and red all-over

Is everything even remotely touched by Newcastle United destined to plummet in value?
Retail tycoon Mike Ashley is desperately hawking his comedy football club around the City for a £20m cash down payment, and now I learn of a struggling property deal.
Swainston Hall, an 8,000 sq ft neo-Georgian mansion based on a Robert Adam design, is located on the Wynyard Hall estate developed by former Toon chairman Sir John Hall.
It is currently being offered at a 15% discount for £2.95m and estate agent Jackson-Stops says: "The house is a real one-off, so quite hard to value."

Thursday, 6 August 2009

IG bargy for unpaid debts

Is spread betting group IG Index a little short of cash?
The company's eager credit controller, Catherine Crowther, writes to one SlackBelly reader: "I am contacting you regarding the debit balance due on your IG Index account. The amount due is currently £6.60. We require this balance to be cleared in full as soon as possible."
Steady on, luv!

Wednesday, 5 August 2009

More Babs...

More on Barbara Stcherbatcheff - the fruity, young intern who turns out is the irrelevant columnist City Girl (see below).
Her CV makes fascinating reading - revealing under her "interests" that (apart from writing her debut novel) she has recorded her first album. First!

Tuesday, 4 August 2009

Babs fails to reveal all

I see that some dolly bird called Barbara Stcherbatcheff, pictured, has revealed herself to be "City Girl".
For those people who passed an A-Level, City Girl is the pseudonym for some pisspoor columnist in the free rag, thelondonpaper, who used to drone on about about life in the Square Mile from the perspective of some clueless bint who could never keep her knickers on (I paraphrase, slightly).
So what is Stcherbatcheff's high-powered job that gives her this unique insight into the workings of the City?
Fund manager? Investment banker? Er, nope. She's just an intern! - filing news stories for the well known wealth management website,
For some reason, this is not mentioned in the PR guff accompanying her first (and last) novel: Confessions of a City Girl. Space contraints, I expect.

Monday, 3 August 2009

Jeeves still searching for a better answer

With Microsoft and Yahoo clubbing together in an effort to form a competitor to dent Google's dominance in the search engine market, you have to fear for the remaining (small) rivals.
The butler-branded search engine, Ask Jeeves, still seems to be stoically plugging away in this space, so I ask Jeeves: "Is Ask Jeeves finished?"
His first response? "Ask Jeeves warns of wider loss; CEO resigns - CNET News".
I think that answers my question.