Web users concerned over the possible effects of the Icelandic volcanic ash cloud. Hosni Mubarak could be set to make a public apology, which Egyptians refuse to accept. And YouTube has set up a channel devoted to France’s 2012 presidential election.
Volcanic ash cloud worries web users
These images of the eruption of Icelandic volcano Grimsvöetn bring back bad memories for travellers. One year on from Eyjafjöll, European air space has once again been disrupted by a volcanic ash cloud. Numerous web users have their eyes riveted on Grimsvöetn, fearful that air traffic will once again be brought to a standstill.
Telecommunications Company Mila has a webcam pointed towards the volcano, which is the most active in the country. Although most of the time, the volcano is hidden behind the ash, these live images are proving to be highly popular on social networks.
The site Flight radar 24 is showing live aircraft traffic in Europe’s airspace on this interactive map. You can monitor the progression of the ash cloud and how it is affecting commercial flights; the information is based notably on data from the British Met Office, which provides forecasts on its web site.
Eurocontrol, the European Organization for the safety of Air navigation, is hoping to allay travellers’ concerns via Twitter. But it’s the airlines themselves that are in most demand on the micro blogging site. Last year, the companies had made great use of social networks to share updates. This means of communication is proving to be much quicker and more efficient than call centers.
And in anticipation of any problems, the help network established last year is already back in action: like this carpooling group set up on Facebook by web users in Sweden.
Egyptians do not accept Mubarak’s excuses
The former Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak is said to be drafting a message to the people of Egypt to apologize for abuses of power during the revolution, and to announce he will be transferring all his assets to the country. This is what independent daily Al–Shorouk reported in an article published last week, which also claims that Mubarak is hoping to be granted amnesty in exchange. The news has spread across the web like wildfire, and has been given a hostile reaction.
A Facebook group has been set up for Egyptians who refuse to accept the fallen President’s apology. Thousands have posted comments on the page, saying that Mubarak’s words are of no value, and he should pay for his actions. This is notably the case for Faten Tantawy who explains here that the people do not want an apology, they want immediate political reforms, and the youth of Egypt are more motivated than ever to make this happen. And proof that the people are not ready to forgive the former dictator, a mass rally is being planned in Tahrir Square in Cairo on the 27th of May, to demonstrate their refusal to accept Mubarak’s excuses.
Blogger Zeinobia wonders ironically when the Pharaohs’, ‘Pharoah’ being Mubarak’s nickname, will make a public apology and give back everything they stole from the people. She feels that the message the former president will finally deliver will be nothing short of provocation and will prompt fresh demonstrations.
In view of this growing discontent and in a bid to calm people down, the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces has denied any intention of granting amnesty to Hosni Mubarak, on their Facebook page. Local judicial sources have said he will be facing trial.
YouTube and the French presidential election
YouTube has launched a new channel called YouTube Elections 2012, and presents itself as a place for citizens to engage in online debate and discussion over the 2012 presidential election in France. Web users will be able to follow and question the various candidates and political parties during the entire campaign period. Citizens will also be able to submit questions to YouTube or via Twitter in either a written or video format. They can vote for their favourite questions which will then be directed to candidates who have agreed to take part in the project.
Bob Marley, the Beatles, B.B. King and also Ben Harper. Previously unseen or signed photographs of over 1 000 musical icons are up for sale on the site “RockPaperPhoto.com”. These limited editions can cost up to 10 000 dollars each so if you are not a collector, or rich, then perhaps you could just visit the virtual gallery set up by Madonna’s manager.
Video of the day
This time lapse video shows German Shepherd dog Dunder from 8 weeks old to his first birthday. A touching piece which is fast becoming a web sensation, as the clip has already been viewed near to 700 000 times in less than one week.