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Expressing solidarity with the Iranian opposition on the net

Video by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2009-07-27

Today on the Net: Net users express solidarity with the Iranian opposition; the US web is divided by the debate surrounding the arrest of a black academic; and an exhibition dedicated to mini-messages published on social networks.

Iran: The opposition remains mobilised


This weekend thousands of people around the world participated in gatherings to mark ‘Global Day of Action for Iran’. The aim is to maintain momentum for the protests against the re-election of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and to demonstrate global support to the opponents of the regime. The web reacts.


Several videos of Saturday’s ‘Global Day of Action for Iran’ protests quickly appeared on video share sites. Demonstrators in Melbourne, LA, Frankfurt and Paris called for more democracy in the country and declared their continued support for the people of Iran.


This call was echoed by famous musicians around the world. The online footage below show Irish rockers U2 demonstrating their backing for the opposition during a concert. Iranian rock star, Dariush, has dedicated a song to his compatriots’ struggle and it I now available to download. Rapper, DJ Spooky and an Iranian female singer have also released a song, ‘Freedom’ signaling their support, which is available for free.


The ‘United 4’ has posted videos of several Nobel peace prize winners giving their backing to the opposition movement. On this page a video form Desmond Tutu – who was awarded the prize in 1984 - and Jody Williams - who won it in 1997 - call on the international community to show solidarity.


Meanwhile, Mohsen Sazegara, a former Revolutionary Guard and dissident, who has been living in exile in the US since 2003, is using the net to offer civil disobedience advice to the opposition in Iran. He recommends they wear masks during demonstrations for example to avoid being identified.


Finally one web user explains the latest technique designed to unsettle the regime, initiated by this Iranian blogger living in Germany, is to identify Bassidji militia men – the most extreme supporters of the Iranian regime and who take an active role in the repression of dissidents - by releasing their photos, addresses and telephone numbers.


Racial Controversy in the US

Although Barack Obama admitted regretting his choice of words - he referred to the action of the Cambridge police as ‘stupid’ in the arrest of black academic Henry Gates as he attempted to enter his own home - the controversy which has reverberated around the US this week, continues in the US blogosphere.

This photomontage, broadcast on line, denounces the attitude judged inappropriate by police who were quick to handcuff an apparently harmless man trying to gain access to his own home.


Many black net users, shocked by the incident, have expressed support for Henry Gates on the renowned Harvard professor’s Facebook page.


And on the site ‘The Root’, for which Gates is a contributor, Gates expresses hope that this episode will bring the issue of race into the spotlight in the US and build a society in which all citizens are equal in the eyes of the law.


Meanwhile, Sergeant James Crowley, who arrested Gates, tells his version of the story in this interview to a Web TV channel. Visibly hurt by Obama’s declarations, he claims that he was only following procedure and that the accusations of racism are ridiculous.


Many police officers have voiced their support for Sergeant James Crowley. The man in the video below believes that with Barack Obama’s comment, he has stigmatised all US police officers and calls on the President to apologise.

Twitter and Facebook

‘Murmur Study’ is an artistic project launched by Christopher Baker. He presents his work on fine strips of paper, this work includes the thoughts of net users expressed in messages on social networks like Twitter & Facebook. Twenty ‘thermal printers’ produce in real-time countless snippets of text which gather on the floor like spaghetti.


Dictionary of the Future

The link below demonstrates what one net user thinks could be the French language of the future. In this “dictionary of the future”, we discover the words of tomorrow and even the day after tomorrow. It includes invented words looking at the possible path of evolution of the French language. For example, ‘carothérapie’ means therapy detoxification for cars while, ‘télessayage’ means to try on clothes or try out items online.


Video of the Day

Viewed over 6 million times in just a week, here is the video currently creating a buzz on the Net. A musical wedding ceremony that the bride and groom and all their guests will not forget in a hurry!


Date created : 2009-07-27