Words matter. Whether it's in a marriage, the way our politicians talk, or putting our view on the same-sex marriage debate. And it's awfully hard to take back words spat out in hate, or anger or hurt. And this week, on the streets of Charlottesville in the United States and among the fine leather of our own Parliament House, it was a timely reminder of how quickly things can spin out of control.
Sometimes, children go to the heart of an argument; their position full of common sense, and without the politics and rancour that can colour adult debate. My example came yesterday, in attempting to answer questions from a Tweenie, about the debate on same-sex marriage. This is roughly how it went. DAUGHTER: Mum why can't people who love each other get married? ME: They can. Unless they are gay, Sweetie, because that's against the law. DAUGHTER: What's against the law - being gay or being in love?
In more than 25 years' of journalism, I've never interviewed a leader who topped his or her class at school. Not a business leader like the steel-minded Gail Kelly or international scientist Professor Ian Frazer, whose science helped deliver the cervical cancer vaccine. Not church leaders or politicians, merchant bankers. Not even Queensland's chief entrepreneur Mark Sowerby. So why do we continue to push along – and judge our teachers – on the success or otherwise of a NAPLAN test?
Muck Rack makes it simple to find people, tweets, or articles that mention any name, keyword, company, hashtag etc. We've compiled this guide to help you make the most of your search.
Selecting a term
Start searching tweets, articles from media outlets, articles mentioned in tweets, journalists'
names, titles and bios with some suggested searches:
Companies or Topics (e.g. iPhone, Microsoft)
Phrases (e.g. "cloud computing") — use quotes to keep the terms together
Twitter handles (e.g. @username) — returns those who have mentioned or replied to
Names (e.g. "David Pogue")
Hashtags (e.g. #sxsw, #london2012)
Bio details (e.g. vegan, Olympics, father)
Muck Rack's Advanced Search allows for many boolean operators.
Find results that mention multiple specified terms, use AND or
+. For example, ensure each result contains both Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg by
searching Obama AND Romney or Obama + Romney.
Use the operators OR or , to broaden your search when you'd like either of
multiple terms to appear in results. (This is the default behavior of our search when no operators
are used.) For example, search for democrat OR republican to find results that refer to
Democrats and/or Republicans.
Use NOT or - to subtract results from your search. For
example, searching Disney will yield results about the Walt Disney Company as well as Walt Disney
World Resort. To exclude mentions of Disney World, search for Disney -World or Disney
When using one of these operators with a phrase, enclose it in quotation marks. For example, you can
find results about smartphones excluding Apple's iPhone 4S by searching smartphone -"iPhone
Exact case matching or punctuation
If you're searching for a brand name or keyword that relies on specific punctuation marks or capitalization, you can
find results that match your exact query by adding matchcase: before the keyword you're searching for, like matchcase:E*TRADE .
Use parentheses to separate multiple
boolean phrases. For example, to find journalists talking about having fun in Disney World or
Disneyland, search for ("disney world" OR disneyland) AND fun.
An asterisk can be used to search for any variation of a root word truncated by the asterisk. For example, searching for admin* will return results for administrator, administration, administer, administered, etc.
A near operator is an AND operator where you can control the distance between the words. You can vary the distance the near operation uses by adding a forward slash and number (between 0-99) such as strawberries NEAR/10 "whipped cream", which means the strawberries must exist within 10 words of "whipped cream".