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News seen on the web and about the web. From Monday to Friday at 8.20 am Paris time.



Latest update : 2011-09-06

American student joins Libyan rebels

An American student spending his summer vacation alongside the Libyan rebels. Wikileaks sparks controversy by releasing uncensored diplomatic cables. And 100 years of fashion in 100 seconds…

American student joins Libyan rebels

Chris Jeon decided to spend his summer break alongside rebel soldiers in Libya. Two weeks ago, the 21 year old student from California bought a one way ticket to Cairo and then travelled to Benghazi by train and bus. He trekked miles across the desert and on Wednesday met two American journalists 130 kilometers outside of Sirte, one of Muammar Gaddafi’s last remaining strongholds.

The mathematics student spoke about his unusual summer vacation to one of the journalists, Bradley Hope, who explains the student does not speak any Arabic and does not appear to have handled weapons before.

His story has since been circulated all over the web; a Chris Jeon Facebook page has even been set up and has drawn a lot of comments. Most web users are praising his bravery, but are concerned for his safety. Others however are criticizing his decision, saying that war is not a game.

The most recent reports on the student, who is described as a “thrill seeker” by one of his friends, are pretty contradictory.

Al Jazeera journalist, Evan Hill, has tweeted that the rebels have now grown weary of the student and have asked him to leave.

But according to Bradley Hope, the young man has become a sort of mascot for the Libyan rebels, and he continues his road trip, moving from one brigade to another.

Wikileaks releases uncensored cables

Whistleblowing website Wikileaks has released an entire archive of some 251 000 US diplomatic cables. This decision has triggered fierce debate as the organization, which was founded by Julian Assange, has chosen to publish all the names featured on the telegrams, something it has never done with the thousands of documents released in the past.

Wikileaks has tried to justify this decision by saying all of these diplomatic cables were already available on hundreds of websites, and that the vast majority of web users were in favour of uploading these documents in their entirety. The organization is in fact asking web users to get involved by looking for additional information and sharing it on Twitter using the key words #wlfind ».

But despite this reasoning, five newspapers that have collaborated with Wikileaks as publishing partners since December 2010 have condemned the move. The Guardian, The New York Times, Der Spiegel, El Pais and Le Monde have issued a joint statement, voicing their disapproval and saying these latest revelations may put the sources named in the documents at risk.

« Reporters without Borders » has also criticized Julian Assange’s organization and has announced it will be suspending its Wikileaks mirror site. The NGO has said that as the protection of sources is now in question, it must temporarily dissociate itself from Wikileaks.

Virtual museum of modern Nigerian art

The Virtual Museum of Modern Nigerian Art is now officially open. Accessible solely online, it currently has 400 artworks, but this number is set to increase by the end of the year. The project was set up by the Pan African University in Lagos to showcase the vitality of Nigeria’s artistic community.


The best street art works

The best Street art works are now available online, on the site “street art utopia” which has selected over a hundred pieces of urban artwork from anonymous artists and street art celebrities. The works on display range from simple graffiti to elaborate optical illusions and also reworked street furniture.


Video of the day

100 years of East London style in just over 100 seconds… this video highlights the different styles that marked the past century, and is part of a viral campaign for a well-known British clothing company.

By Electron Libre



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