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16 April 2015

Stories from 16 April 2015

Japan's ‘Vagina Artist’ Denies Obscenity Charges

Japanese artist Megumi Igarashi, nicknamed "The Vagina Artist" by the Western media, says there's nothing obscene about artwork based on her genitalia.

New Internet Rules in China Target Usernames, Avatars as Subversive Tools

Advox

More than 67,000 user accounts have been deleted due to a new rule that prohibits screen names and profile pictures that threaten national security, destroy ethnic unity, or defame others.

Battle-Weary Colombians Demand Peace on Day for Armed Conflict Victims

On National Day of Memory and Solidarity with Victims of the Armed Conflict, Colombians turn out in droves to march for peace, a goal that overcomes traditional differences.

Liberland, the Balkans’ Newest Micronation, Is Looking for Citizens

To apply for citizenship, just send an email with a photo ID and cover letter. But will Liberland, set between Croatia and Serbia, really become Europe's third smallest microstate?

What Does Censoring Nude Art Say About Us and Our Social Networks?

Advox

This post is the first in a series exploring the different ways in which artists face censorship online. Our base will be the experience of Venezuelan artist Erika Ordisgotti.

A Filipina Woman Shares How She Ended Up on Indonesia's Death Row for Drug Trafficking

"We believe that Mary Jane was a victim of large drug syndicates who take advantage of the unawareness, vulnerability and desperation of our people."

The European Union Won't Give e-Books Reduced VAT

Kuwait, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia Silence Anti-War Voices on Yemen

Gulf Arab countries are stepping up the war on anti-war activists in the region. Both Kuwait and Bahrain have jailed activists for speaking up against the Saudi-led war on Yemen.

Cartoon Mascots in China Make Social Policing Cute

The mascots model “civil” behavior” and spread new norms about acceptable public behavior, specifically targeting newly urbanized migrants learning to share urban public spaces for the first time.

Is South Africa Off Limits to Other Africans?

South Africa has witnessed xenophobic attacks involving beatings, killings, and burning and looting shops and property owned by foreigners. Five people have been killed, including a 14-year-old boy.

There’s Already a Rap Song Dedicated to Russia’s Twerking Bee-Costumed Teens

RuNet Echo

Young people in Orenburg are changing their profile pictures on VKontakte, Russia’s most popular social network, to a banner that reads, “We don’t want to fight, we want to dance.”