5 March 2008

Stories from 5 March 2008

EU: Towards a European Global Online Freedom Act

  5 March 2008

The European Parliament has passed a proposal (571 in favor, 38 against) to treat Internet censorship by national governments as a trade barrier. The proposal was submitted by European Parliament member (MEP) Jules Maaten of the Dutch conservative VVD party. The proposal will now pass to the European Council. If adopted as a European Union (EU) law, the proposal could have an impact on future trade negotiations between the EU and governments engaged in Internet censorship.

Armenia: Reflections on Political Unrest

Blogian reflects on the recent political unrest in Armenia. The blog blames both the government and the opposition for clashes at the weekend which left at least eight people dead and criticizes the mindset which now exists that has turned Armenians against each other.

Turkey: Mock Armenian Hangings

Blogian posts some disturbing photographs of the celebration of the 90th Anniversary of the Turkish liberation of Erzurum. Claimed by both Armenians and Turks, the city featured re-enactments of the hanging of Armenian bandits which were viewed by children. The blogger notes that even nationalist Turkish newspapers were critical of...

Nigeria: Fictitious names in voters’ register

  5 March 2008

Grandiose Parlor writes about rigging in gurbenatorial elections in Nigeria: “The Mimiko legal team revealed how the voters’ register was manipulated and filled with fictitious names and photos by the ruling party PDP during the gubernatorial election last year.”

Armenia: Samizdat & the Internet

After a 20-day state of emergency was declared in Armenia when clashes between security services and the opposition broke out on the streets of the capital, access to the media has been severely restricted. According to presidential decree, local media outlets can now only publish official news and political propaganda is banned. However, the situation has created an unprecedented opportunity for bloggers to move in to fill the gap.

Kenya: Vote for ushahidi.com

  5 March 2008

Daudi asks his readers to vote for ushahidi.com: “I have lost count of the number of radio and print interviews that have come my way because of interest in the project. Now Ushahidi needs your help again. Ushahidi has been entered in to the $100,000 Netsquared Mashup Challenge for further...

Nigeria: First online bookstore

  5 March 2008

Timbuktu Chronicles writes about the first online bookstore in Nigeria: “Emmanuel Magani and Debola Omololu are the founders of Debonair Publishing, an online bookstore ,a first for Nigeria.”…A fully integrated online bookstore.”

Russia: Journalism and Politics in Chechnya

LJ user oleg_panfilov (of the Center for Journalism in Extreme Situations) reports (RUS) that Chechen president Ramzan Kadyrov has joined the Russian Union of Journalists. LJ user timur_aliev, on the other hand, has quit as the editor of the Chechen Society newspaper to become Kadyrov's aide. (The Chechen Society is...

Nepal: Campaigns and Elections

  5 March 2008

United We Blog! on the election fever gripping Nepal as political parties start their Constituent Assembly Elections campaigns all over the country.

Japan: Justice served in contaminated blood scandal

  5 March 2008

Martin at Kurashi reports on news that the Japanese supreme court upheld a suspended prison sentence for a former health official, Akihito Matsumura, for having failed to prevent the use of HIV-contaminated blood products in the mid-1990s. Martin finishes his post with the question: “When will this debate start for...

Korea: Religious Encounter on the Subway

  5 March 2008

Religious issues always generate a lot of opinions from Korean netizens. One person's experience on a subway with a Buddhist monk has gained a lot of attention in the last week on a popular Korean website.

South Africa: Another Manto Blunder…

  5 March 2008

The controversial South African Health Minister, Manto Tshabalala-Msimang, who you might remember a couple of posts back as being under fire for her antics…is back in the spotlight, this time bloggers are venting anger at an address she gave to the presidential task team on traditional medicine.

Kenya: Google hosts Skunkworks meeting

  5 March 2008

Bankelele attended Skunkworks meeting hosted by Google in Nairobi: “Skunkworks (blog) meeting yesterday was hosted by (7 month old) Google Kenya, and it was attended by an interesting mix of engineers, webhosts, designers, admins, bloggers and rivals of Google, – who all listened as Google employees explained their aps and...

Africa: Africa Reading Challenge

  5 March 2008

Tuko Pamoja comes up with “Africa Reading Challenge” idea: “In recent years I’ve become increasingly interested in reading books dealing with Africa, and so I present the Africa Reading Challenge. Participants commit to read – in the course of 2008 – six books that either were written by African writers,...