Stories from 5 April 2011
Azerbaijan: Novruz Bayramı
Novruz, a holiday celebrated in Iran, Afghanistan and other countries, was once again also observed in Azerbaijan on 21 March although festivities started weeks before. This year was no different, and Peace Corps Volunteers (PCVs) in the former Soviet republic once again commented on the event.
Japan: The only native Japanese Imam in Tokyo
Uchujin/Adrian Storey realized a photofilm [en] that tells the story of Abdullah Taqy, the only native Japanese Imam in Tokyo – a metropolis of over 13 million people.
Costa Rica: Video Game Based on Real Time Tweets Seeks Funding
Six young video game designers in Costa Rica are looking for crowd-sourced funding for TweetLand, their real-time twitter powered games. The games are called Route 140 and LoveCity and both use real time twitter updates to influence actions that take place during the game.
Russia: Tandem under the carpet
Streetwise Professor discusses various scenarios on relations between Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and Premier Vladimir Putin against the backdrop of the most recent white paper [RU] of opposition politician Boris Nemtsov.
Belarus: Sickening statement on homosexuality
Ihar Ivanou of Belarus Digest reports from a medical conference in Minsk where homosexuality once more has been characterized as an illness that needs treatment, despite the fact that same-gender relations are not prohibited in Belarus.
Russia: LiveJournal under attack
Putin Watcher reports on how a cyberattack by DDOS and hacking against top blogs on LiveJournal, Russia's most popular blogging platform. This attack follows earlier incidents this year, aiming to knock out LiveJournal.
Ecuador Tells US Ambassador to Leave Over Leaked Cable
The Latin Americanist reports that Ecuador has requested U.S. Ambassador Heather Hodges leave the country: “The main gripe against Hodges has to do with a cable uncovered by Wikileaks where she alleged that corruption was entrenched in Ecuador’s national police […] She also claimed that President Rafael Correa was aware...
Ecuador: Latest Study on Internet Use
Christian Espinosa in the blog Cobertura Digital writes two (1 [es],2 [es]) posts on a recent study about Internet in Ecuador. The study, by the INEC [es] (National Institute of Statistics and Census), shows that “29 out of 100 Ecuadorians are connected,” and other information by region.
D.R. of Congo/Republic of Congo: A thorn in Brazzaville and Kinshasa relations
Is Gen. Faustin Munene, a thorn in Brazzaville and Kinshasa relations?: “After many theories, the police told the media that the February 27 coup attempt was organized and executed by the exiled General Faustin Munene who is in Congo Brazzaville. DRC has been requesting Congo Brazzaville to extradite Gen. Munene…”
Argentina: 29 Years Later, Argentinians Remember Heroes of Falklands War
On April 2, 29 years since the conflict between Argentina and the United Kingdom over the Falklands, Argentines paid tribute to the fallen heroes of the war in 1982.
Haiti: Martelly Declared Election Winner
Bloggers are reporting that Michel Martelly has emerged victorious in the recent run-off election to become Haiti's next president; Throwing Down the Water, meanwhile, is unhappy with the Miami Herald's early declaration of the winner: “I don't appreciate news agencies interfering with Haiti's attempt to actually hold a legitimate run-off...
Trinidad & Tobago: Mohammed's Sacking
“Trinidad’s unerring instinct to do the wrong thing at the wrong time continues in spades,” says B.C. Pires of the firing of the Police Service Commission Chair, adding: “Instead of Nizam Mohammed being made to see the error of his ways, he has now been made a martyr.”
Cuba: Carter's Visit
Different perspectives on former U.S. President Carter's Cuba visit, here and here.
Guyana: Knowledge in Bloom
Guyana-Gyal can't believe how stingy some people can be with their knowledge, which is why she wants “to start a knowledge-sharing revolution.”
Japan: Journalist Takashi Uesugi exposes Tepco and govt lies
Blogger TokyoTom published an interview [en] with Japanese freelance journalist Takashi Uesugi, “a critic of the Japanese news reporting establishment who now is lancing some of the lies and half-truths coming from TEPCO and the Japanese government with respect to the Fukushima nuclear reactors.” The interview appeared on online journal...
East Timor: Satire on expats working in development
Read the satirical blog Stuff Malai Like for some humor on “the wide spectrum of strange malais presently living in East Timor”. Malai is the Tetum language word for foreigners or expatriates.
Gabon: Documentary Wins Prize At Web TV Festival 2011
WebDocu.fr [fr] has announced that the documentary “Gabon : violence d'un coup d'état électoral“[fr] (“Gabon: violence of an electoral coup d'etat”) is the winner of the Jury Prize in the Web-Politique category. The documentary was produced in 2009 after the violence that followed the controversial election of Ali Bongo as...
China: Student Consultation or Thought Control?
Peking University, a major research university located in Beijing and a center for progressive thought in modern China, will introduce a consultation program in May 2011. The University has explained that the program is designed to help students, but many believe that it aims to blacklist radicals.
Israel: Goldstone Op-Ed Taken on a Media Spin
The Washington Post published a highly controversial op-ed by Richard Goldstone, who led the UNHRC fact-finding mission to investigate international human rights and humanitarian law violations related to the Gaza war. Netizens debate the article in this post.
Russia: Online Fundraising Changes Transparency Standards in Politics
Oleg Kozyrev, popular Russian blogger, writes [ru] about the effects of online fundraising (this year online opposition activists had fundraised nearly $230,000): 1. it improves transparency standards of opposition politicians, thus making them resistant to corruption allegations and criminal cases, 2. it brings activists closer to their supporters, 3. it makes...
Russia: Anti-Corruption iPad Application Beats “Angry Birds”
iPad application for Rospil.info, Russian crowdsourcing anti-corruption service created by Alexey Navalny, has taken over [ru] “Angry Birds Rio HD Free” application in the Apple App market. The application has been created voluntarily (and free of charge) by Russian iPad app developers.