Monthly Archives: July 2009

Monty tells of strange Indian tales

I’M REALLY enjoying reading Monty’s  (Paul Munford) Indian Outlook.

I worked with Monty years back at Castle Despair, or VNU UK as it then described herself.  Monty is on a sabbatical in India for a year, and he’s up to issue number 34 right now.

The latest newsletter says that the Indian government has asked ISPs to ban a web site called http://www.Savitabhabi.com. This is an adult cartoon site, but it’s very mild by our standards, says Monty.

People who want to defend web content have set up a site called www.savesavita.com. The paradox is that India in the 21st century has rather a puritanical streak. This is despite the fact that India is the land of tantra and the Kama Sutra, and the Sanskrit language and a great deal of its literature is sensuous and even erotic.

Places like Khajuraho and Hampi (Vijayanagar) are full of carvings and statues that express the joy of sexuality and love. But now,  the ra-ra girls in 20/20 cricket matches are shown only for seconds, in case they excite viewers too much.

This picture is from Khajuraho. Some of the carvings have been defaced.

khajuraho

You can subscribe to Monty’s Indian Outlook by sending an email here. I’ve tried to contribute to understanding Indian culture on this web site.

Lights go out at Personal Computer World

TO THE CLACHAN in Kingly Street to attend the wake of British magazine Personal Computer World (PCW).

Practically every hack that worked for the mag over the years was there – Guy Kewney, Simon Crisp, Barry Fox, Manek Dubash, Clive Akass – heck the packed gig was full of people and I was there because I gigged as a freelance for PCW in the early 1990s.

The magazine was a real force to be reckoned with for many years, and it’s a shame to see a fine publication go.  It’s another example of the schizzy problem big publishers have – they know that online is the way to go but are fettered with existing paper publications with all the overheads, including distribution and printing, that go with that.

It was great to see some familiar faces again, and I wish all the guys the best in the future.  The magazine was latterly owned by Incisive – that company bought the assets of VNU UK, the publishers that bought theinquirer.net from me a few years ago.

* Guy Kewney said Peter Jackson tipped up. I missed him. I don’t think Felix Dennis, the founder of PCW who has a gaff on Kingly Street managed to make it. He was on the flannel panel until the end.