Stories about Eastern & Central Europe from January, 2012
Russia, Syria: Anti- and Pro-Assad Facebook Comment Attack
Facebook pages of some Russian media outlets (e.g., Afisha, Bolshoi Gorod, Esquire Russia, Channel 1, MTV Russia) were deluged with copy-pasted comments [ru, ar] from users who appeared to be supporters of the Syrian opposition earlier today. An excerpt from a typical comment [ru, ar]: “Syria's regime is killing people...
Moldova: Anti-Government Protests Receive Little Endorsement From Netizens
For the past two weeks Moldovans have been out in the streets, protesting. These protests, however, have received very little endorsement from Moldova's online community. Diana Lungu explains why.
Macedonia: “Conformism, Hypocrisy and Opportunism”
Human rights activist, journalist and artist Xhabir M. Deralla candidly expressed his view on the role of the civic sector in contemporary Macedonia: “The choir of indolent subjects stands mute. As media get quieter, the stench of the decay prevails. The civil society forgets that media are civil society, too....
Ukraine: The Story of Anna Boiko's Life
"She is a cheerful, talented, strong person. A person who has been through a lot, who is full of knowledge and memories," writes Olya Suprun about her 75-year-old grandmother, whose memories she is sharing on the award-winning blog called "The Story of Anna Boiko's Life." Tetyana Bohdanova reports.
US, Russia: The Flying Balalaika Brothers Bridge Cultural Gaps in Texas
Like many of their compatriots, musicians Zhenya Kolykhanov and Sergey Vaschenko emigrated from Russia after the fall of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s and have since established themselves in Austin, Texas. Through their band, The Flying Balalaika Brothers, and a non-profit called Musical Connections, they work to bridge cultural gaps by exposing Texans to international art.
Bosnia & Herzegovina: Citizens Policing Traffic Violations in Sarajevo
Using the Facebook page [bs] “Moj grad, moja sigurnost, moja odgovornost” (“My city, my security, my responsibility”), Sarajevo residents are uploading pictures of illegally parked cars and reckless drivers, trying to convince the authorities to take action and protect pedestrians. According to the administrators of the page, there has been...
Hungary: “We Voted For Orbán, Not For Goldman Sachs”
Last Saturday, after several protests against the government's policies, Hungarians supporting those in power decided to hold a rally of their own, too. Marietta Le reports.
Slovakia: Protesting Corruption, Protesting “Gorilla”
The Economist's Eastern Approaches blog writes about Slovakia's corruption scandal caused by the leaked info from the 2005-06 wiretapping operation codenamed “Gorilla” (more – here). On Friday, Jan. 27, an anti-corruption rally – “Protest Gorila” [sk; Facebook page]- took place in the capital Bratislava (photos are here, videos – here)....
Slovakia: Roma “Apartheid” – and New Housing?
According to this report [en], a US-based Hindu group was shocked by the “maltreatment” of the Roma in Slovakia, calling “to end Roma apartheid.” At the same time, the Slovak government announced [en] a new wave of social housing construction for the Roma, expecting that “the number of illegal Roma...
Slovakia: More News on Overly Expensive Website Design
Aktualne.sk reports [sk] that, following the initial financial inspection by the Ministry of Culture, the Slovak National Gallery is now required to pay 140 euro back, from the 25,000 euro that it reportedly spent on its new website (more on this here and here). Meanwhile, according to the World Association...
Slovakia: Competition to Re-Design the National Gallery's Site
In response to the 25,000-euro “minimalist” website design of the Slovak National Gallery, zajtra.sk started its own competition [sk] for the website's re-design, offering 100 euro to the winner. Authors are mostly students, and they often declare how many hours – and, sometimes, minutes – they spent on their re-design.
Video Highlights: Music, Indigenous Initiatives, Indignation and Wonder
A selection of Global Voices' recent and interesting stories including video from Latin America, East Asia, Middle East and North Africa and Eastern and Central Europe, selected by Juliana Rincón Parra.
Serbia: The Media War Against Angelina Jolie
Angelina Jolie was concerned about the reception of her director's debut movie, 'In the Land of Blood and Honey', in Bosnia and Serbia, and some of her fears turned out to be justified. Sasa Milosevic reports on the virtual battle that Jolie's film has caused.
Russia: The Fake Political Twitter Account Phenomenon
Online anonymity provides perfect conditions for human creativity and humor. In the Russian context this manifests as Twitter accounts belonging either to dead politicians or those that deliberately avoid publicity.
Poland: Government Will Sign ACTA Despite Massive Protest
Despite a massive Internet protest and controversies around the secret manner of negotiations, the Polish government will sign the anti-piracy agreement ACTA on January 26, as planned. Katarzyna Odrozek reports.
Macedonia: Analyzing Skopje 2014
Jasna Koteska published an analysis of the implications of Skopje 2014 project in the light of the concepts developed by foremost contemporary philosophers and other thinkers. Informative and readable, full of juicy details on the use of history to create a new nationalist ideology.
Romania: “I, the Citizen”
Street protests in Romania have been going on for over a week now. The protesters are demanding early elections; they do not yet have a leader, but they nevertheless have a powerful voice. Oana Maria Dan reports.
Russia: Community of Election Observers Launched
Creators of popular citizen crowdsourcing projects RosYama and RosPil Alexey Navalny and Georgiy Alburov launch a new project RosVybory [ru], a community of election observers. Users submit their data to the website, then project moderators apply for the necessary observer documents and send registered users to the nearby voting ballots.
Russia: “Mikhail Dmitrievich Prokhorov: An Unpredictable Kremlin Project”
Although some believe the 2012 Russian presidential election's outcome to be pre-scripted, the complexities surrounding Mikhail Prokhorov's candidacy should not be overlooked. Donna Welles reports.
“Russia Without Fools,” a Crowdsourced Feedback Portal Launched
A committee of supporters of president Dmitry Medvedev had launched a crowdsourcing citizens-to-government feedback portal “Russia Without Fools” [ru] that allows to submit cases of officials’ stupidity or abuse. So far, the cases can be submitted freely and censorship hasn't been reported. Dmitry Ternovskiy, popular photoblogger, however, notes [ru] that...
Poland: Netizens Protest Government's Plan to Sign ACTA Next Week
With the world still talking about the aftermath of the SOPA/PIPA Blackout Day, Polish netizens are confronted with another backstabbing development in the fight for free Internet. Katarzyna Odrozek reports.