Online coverage of the 2012 Paralympics. The mayor of the Tajikistan capital meets with Facebook users. And portraits of Barack Obama and Mitt Romney made from dehydrated meat.
Following the 2012 Paralympics online
Jiri Jezek gets in some last minute training ahead of the London Paralympics. The Czech cyclist, who lost one of his legs in a car accident at the age of eleven, regularly posts videos online, taking web users behind the scenes of the competition which runs until September 9.
The five-time Paralympic gold medalist is one of the 50 athletes who also blogs, and who for the text ten days or so will be sharing info on what’s going on in the Paralympic village. The scheme was the brainchild of the International Paralympic Committee, and with the help of a sponsor, aims to give the general public insider glimpses of the games.
One of the objectives of the event is to change public perception of disabilities, and judging by the success of this viral video clip uploaded by British TV network Channel 4, which will be broadcasting live the sporting events across the UK, the Paralympics are proving highly popular with web users.
And there are all sorts of online initiatives aimed at boosting coverage of the Paralympic Games. The Australian committee for example, has got a team of volunteers on hand to ensure every one of their athletes competing in London has their own Wikipedia page which will be updated as the games progress.
Communication campaigns have also been launched on social media platforms. Many of the athletes and teams have Twitter accounts or Facebook pages, via which they can connect with fans and encourage them to continue their support once the games are over.
Tajikistan’s capital mayor meets with web users
Tajikistan has been ruled with an iron fist by President Emomali Rakhmon since 1992, so when Mahmadsaid Ubaidulloev, the mayor of the capital Dushanbe, announced plans three weeks ago for an open discussion with Facebook users, to share opinions and express concerns, the news was met with skepticism.
But despite doubts, the meeting did go ahead last Thursday, and opposition activists and independent journalists were permitted to take part. The meeting began with the mayor talking about his accomplishments and responding to criticism from netizens, and then he answered questions from the audience.
Many citizens have been pleasantly surprised by the initiative, and hope other politicians will follow Ubaidulloev’s example.
The Mayor of Dushanbe is indeed one of the few government officials active on social networks. Many are wary of the Internet as the Tajik authorities are often criticised online. Facebook had been briefly blocked back in March and most independent information sites cannot be accessed by local web users.
Censorship has indeed been tightened following last month’s deadly clashes between security forces and rebels in Khorog, located near to the Afghan border. Very little information has filtered through from this small province in recent weeks; a region that supported the Islamist-led opposition during Tajikistan’s five year civil war that ended in 1997.
Las Vegas launches online campaign to promote code of silence
« What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas ». The Town of Temptation is reminding people of its motto, after pics of a naked Prince Harry found their way online last week. Las Vegas has taken out an ad in a popular American daily and launched an online campaign, condemning those who broke the famous code of silence. Around 100 000 web users have already signed an online charter, committing to respect these rules.
Now trending on social networks
Photos of web users saluting in their birthday suits … this is the latest trend on social media platforms following the publication of the famous naked Prince Harry shots. As we can see from these snaps recently posted online, social networkers have been having a field day poking fun at the Royal’s latest indiscretion. A Facebook page has been set up in honour of Prince Harry and already hosts dozens of highly amusing photos.
Video of the day
The US Presidential election is fast approaching, and the people behind this video decided to pay tribute to Barack Obama and Mitt Romney by creating portraits of the candidates from dehydrated meat. It’s all in the name of fun and took around 50 hours to complete.