It may interest you to know that the TAB in NSW has been in the past few months sending out builders to measure up all of their TAB outlets for the installation of their “Trackside” game – this is a computer game that simulates horse racing based on random numbers. They have it at Crown casino and in Victorian TABs, it’s sort of like a fancy Keno I guess but definitely a gaming device and one TAB has been unsuccessfully trying to get approved for years, going right back to the days before Victoria even took over. I have also seen TAB mention “Trackside” in a promotional news calendar they send to their agents …. in their promo news it said nothing up until January and then “initial rollout’ in February, “rollout” in March, “trade launch” in April, “incentives” for staff in May and “consumer launch” in June. Have they done a secret deal with NSW government for more gambling tax or is this what TAB want in return if the government open up competition in NSW, or have they just jumped the gun? Needless to say their sales have been flat as a tack for the past month despite the return to feature racing.

Last Wednesday I was sitting in a restaurant in Shanghai trying to read Crikey. All the URLs in the articles (along with YouTube and strangely, many News Ltd sites) are blocked by the Great Firewall of China. Most people I spoke to here knew nothing of the “troubles” in Tibet!

As of last Thursday (20 March), copies of The Latham Diaries are now available for $15 in one of Canberra’s remaindered bookshops. Funny, as Stephen Mayne wrote last week that: “The Latham Diaries are well worth another read now that many of the central characters are in positions of great power.”

Facebook has the following cause: “Dr Nelson for Prime Minister”. It has 110 members and $0 has been donated. Not exactly compelling figures as Facebook has around two million Aussie members these days …. you do the math!

Channel Ten reversed decision on showing Formula 1 live on TenHD. Ten has heavily promoted TenHD and its unique programming including live sport (e.g. Live NASCAR and Golf). Ten’s motoring program RPM released a schedule stating that the Malaysian Formula 1 Grand Prix would be broadcast live on TenHD on Sunday from 5.30pm. Ten subsequently changed their mind and had both Ten and TenHD showing the race delayed from 11.00pm with simulcast all night. The ten.com.au forums were littered with complaints and abuse – Ten removed/deleted the Sports-Motorsport and RPM forums from their website to hide the change – both of which had hundreds of comments.

Peter Fray

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