Arts, Culture & Entertainment News – January 25

The Academy Awards nominations are in, with HUGO taking out the most for any film, an impressive tally of 11 nominations to Martin Scorsese's credit. The whimsical story of an orphan boy who brings his clockwork automaton friend back to life, with the help of his bookworm friend Isabelle who holds the missing piece, and in turn revives the dormant career of Paris' finest early filmmaker, Isabelle's godfather Papa Georges, the movie speaks to us all about the importance of craftmanship and a life with purpose.  

The Scout About Street Fair is coming to Coventary Street, Melbourne, on February 19 with retailers creating whimsical window displays that depict the theme 'Nursery Rhymes, Fairy Tales, Stories and Myths' in the lead up to the inaugural event. "We’re keen to show Melburnians the amazing array of beautiful things you can eat, wear, experience and take home from South Melbourne," said Sam Tresise, president of the South Melbourne Business Association. Entry is free and kids' entertainment includes Maisy, Spot, Angelina Ballerina and Grug.

'Can Pinterest benefit business?' asks Holly Zuluaga of CommuniquePR. "Pinterest provides a platform for contests and a tool for businesses to demonstrate thought leadership by sharing fresh images. Additionally, Pinterest can help businesses drive traffic back to their sites by pinning content. In fact, Real Simple reports that Pinterest drives more traffic to its site than Facebook."

"The areas I know about are popular culture and the arts, and the media, so I've been looking at things which have those connections," Next Media co-founder and VIP Art Fair investor Phillip Keir told The Australian Financial Review on Friday. The Art Fair replicates a bricks-and-mortar fair in that it brings together galleries and artists from around the world for "a few days of concentrated art consumption", wrote Katrina Strickland in 'Art e-fairs close distance gap'.

"While the long-term effects of Apple’s digital textbook service will take years to sort out, they’ve at least come out to a very strong start," reports Forbes on the launch of Apple's foray into educational textbooks, which resulted in 350,000 textbooks sold in three days.

The beautiful new edition of Spoonful magazine invites readers to look up to the skies in 'Objects of Affection', munch on the Hummingbird cake created by Katrina Meynink and take a walk in the woods of Germany with photographer Toni Weber.

"We have the technology to build a new type of democracy but equally we might create a new type of totalitarianism," writes freelance journalist Heather Brooke's in her new book, The Revolution Will Be Digitised: Dispatches from the Information War with reviewer Richard King taking a case in point: "Thus the FBI an CIA can track the movements of (say) Islamist terrorists at the expense of keeping (say) Islamic extremists in power in other parts of the world: a solid case, if ever there was one, of the unintended consequence."

Additionally, The Times has printed an editorial outlining its views on press freedom and privacy in light of the Leveson inquiry. "The value of journalism is to tell many people what few people know. The public has more to fear from secrecy than to gain from privacy. A muffled press does not make for a quieter world, but for a cacophony of rumour. This newspaper is therefore an unrelenting advocate of press freedom."

Speaking of press freedom, the Afghan Women’s Writing Project is an organisation that mentors Afghan women writers and publishes their work (poems, essays, personal stores) for a global audience who leave words of encouragement for them. The universality of women's hopes, dreams and desires is apparent in their beautiful words.

Salman Rushdie may address India's biggest literary festival via video link, instead of an in-person appearance, after a rumoured death threat followed several high-profile writers reading from his 1988 novel The Satanic Verses, reports The Guardian.

Darren Davidson, the editor of Yaffa Publishing's AdNews, is joining The Australian as business media writer to strengthen the newspaper's leading coverage of media and marketing. Davidson, who starts in March, joined AdNews in 2010 after relocating to Sydney from London.

Jane Hall
Former Neighbours star Jane Hall is joining former The Circle chair-occupier (who left the show last year to order her family priorities and focus on her "old love", radio) Chrissie Swan as co-host of Mix101.1's all-female breakfast show in Melbourne starting Monday February 6. "For a self-confessed morning person, going to work every day with a good mate in my home town seems too good to be true! It’s truly an honour to be part of Melbourne’s only all-girl breakfast radio show with Chrissie Swan…2012 is shaping up to be a great year," said Hall.

Journalist Kathryn Robinson and meteorologist Magdalena Roze complete Channel Ten's new Breakfast show line-up along with hosts Paul Henry and Andrew Rochford. "A self-proclaimed weather nerd, she completed a tertiary degree in Atmospheric Science, winning both the Australian Meteorological and Oceanographic Society Prize and the Biophysical Environments Prize," reports Mediaweek.

Belinda Hickman-Newton
In other media appointment news, Mia Freedman has officially joined the News Limited fold with her columns to be published across the company's stable of major Sunday mastheads ("While I'll admit to more than a little stage fright, I cannot wait to get started," she said), U On Sunday founding editor and The Sunday Mail assistant editor (features) Belinda Hickman-Newton has been promoted to editor-in-chief of Quest Newspapers ("I am very excited about the future at Quest and the challenges ahead, particularly developing editorial initiatives in digital media to expand our relationships with readers," she said) and NewsLifeMedia chief executive Sandra Hook is moving on from the company after eight years ("I have decided after a Christmas break it is time to look for a new challenge," she said). 

Girl With a Satchel