Thursday, 12 March 2009

Barnet council attempts to bribe residents: Barnet in soft focus

So far Barnet residents have shown little interest in contributing to council social media sites like, so now they are being induced by a competition, with an iPod Touch as first prize. Read a local Times report about the council's new photo competition here.

I for one will be happy to contribute some pictures that
'...capture the people, places and images that make the borough unique... in three different categories: community, people and events; landscape, urban images and green spaces; and “what I like about Barnet”.'
I strongly urge my many readers to take up this challenge as well. Competition rules can be found here.

The title of Barnet council's competition is 'Barnet in Focus', but I suspect that the council's competition will only show:
- green grass and nodding daffodils
- groups of people with smiles on their faces
- boy scouts helping old people across the road, etc.
In short, 'Barnet in soft focus'. While all of these things exist in Barnet, and I love them too, the reality of Barnet life can be rather more challenging.

Therefore I am announcing my own photo competition, to supplement that of the council's. It will feature a more 'edgy' Barnet. It won't be all droom and gloom - even though it will be hard to take a pretty picture of the Edgware Road, even on the sunniest of days.

No, I mean to show rebellious Barnet: what I value most about Barnet is all the people I have met who are willing to say no to things they don't like, eg, Future Shape or the proposed 'cessation' of wardens for sheltered housing. And I have never seen so many happy, smiling faces as when on a protest or picket - they can be very uplifting places. But I somehow doubt such sights will feature among the council's own competition winners.

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