Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

Apparent beheading of Steven Sotloff sees more calls for #IsisMediaBlackout

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Lesotho Coup: Exiled Prime Minister vows to return home after fleeing

Read more

DEBATE

Child Migrants In America: What to do about the wave of unaccompanied minors? (Part Two)

Read more

DEBATE

Child Migrants In America: What to do about the wave of unaccompanied minors?

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Abbas Araghchi, Iranian deputy foreign minister

Read more

THE OBSERVERS

More of this year's best Observers stories

Read more

FOCUS

When water becomes a weapon of war

Read more

ENCORE!

Eve Ensler: 'In The Body Of The World'

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Ed Husain, Author of 'The Islamist'

Read more

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

WEB NEWS

WEB NEWS

Latest update : 2012-10-15

Chinese bloggers expose more corruption

Chinese bloggers expose more corruption. Syrian activists highlight the problem of forced marriages in refugee camps. And a British DIY enthusiast has developed the world’s fastest pram…

Chinese bloggers expose more corruption

A sumptuous three story villa, several apartments in well to do neighbourhoods across the southern city of Canton, not to mention boutiques, factories and parking spaces… a web user posted these photos and official documents online last week claiming all these properties belong to local government official Cai Bin. 21 properties with an estimated value of 40 million Yuan, that’s around 5 million euros.

These revelations were soon relayed online, sparking outrage among Chinese web users. Social networkers have been wondering how the urban management official who earns in the region of 10 000 Yuan per month can afford such luxury homes.

Given the scale of the scandal and suspicions of corruption the Canton authorities have suspended Cai Bin from his post whilst they carry out an investigation. He has been accused, amongst other things, of concealing much of his real estate portfolio.

A victory for cyber activists who have been going through property assets belonging to their government officials with a fine tooth comb, looking for anomalies. A list of China’s flushest officials has found its way online in recent days. And at the top we find a local communist party official who owns no less than 84 properties.

This isn’t the first time web users have exposed the luxurious tastes of corrupt politicians. A high ranking official from Fujian province was recently named and shamed on social networks after reportedly blocking a newspaper from printing an article about him. The story featured these photos showing him wearing a designer watch and belt, an image that has since been widely relayed online.

 

Syrian refugees forced into marrying off their daughters

Syrian activists have launched a Facebook and Twitter campaign with the tag line “Refugees not captives”… some Syrian refugee families are indeed being forced to marry off their daughters to wealthy men from Libya, Jordan and other countries across the region. It’s becoming increasingly common practice, and web users are highly concerned.

As this Egyptian blogger explains, what makes it particularly alarming is that the main victims are underage girls who are bought for paltry sums of money by men with no scruples, exploiting the financial distress of families living in refugee camps. She says it’s obscene and must be stopped immediately.

And although most of this human trafficking is taking place directly in the camps, according to the people behind this Facebook page, social networks also have a part to play…. And to illustrate the extent of the problem, they have published some of the many messages posted online by foreign men looking for a Syrian wife.

More and more people are now taking to the web to post signs and photos expressing solidarity with the young women living in the refugee camps. Here for example, Syrian men are holding placards slamming these forced marriages. But although campaigning is intensifying, the situation looks set to worsen over the coming months. The United Nations estimates that there will be over 700 000 Syrian refugees in camps across the region by the end of the year, and three quarters of them will be women and children.

 

Connected vest gives hugs for Facebook likes

This vest was developed by Melissa Chow, a researcher at the prestigious M.I.T. Media Lab. Each time one of your Facebook friends “likes” your photo, video or status update, the vest inflates, to squeeze you, and makes you feel like you’re getting a hug. It’s one way of adding a more human touch to social networking.


Imitating Lana Del Rey

On this Facebook group called “Your face Del Rey” web users are asked to try and imitate Lana Del Rey’s various pouts! And the idea is taking off, as we can see from the numerous photos posted to the said page, illustrating once again that the American singer is a popular target for ridicule.

 

Video of the day

This is without a doubt, the world’s fastest pram, complete with an engine and gear stick, reaching speeds of up to 80 km/h. It was invented by wacky British DIY enthusiast Colin Furze, who may have some difficulty persuading parents, as in this unusual pram, the ride for baby is anything but smooth…

By Electron Libre

COMMENT(S)

Archives

2014-09-02 Social Media

USA: Thousands pay tribute to Michael Brown

In this edition: in the USA, tributes to Michael Brown continue to flood in; the story of a young gay man disowned by his family outrages the net; and New Yorkers head to the...

Read more

2014-09-01 civil war

Ukraine: Web users call for international assistance

In this edition: Ukrainian web users call for international assistance; an anti-rape nail polish stirs up lively debate; and some surfing action along the Indonesian coastline.

Read more

2014-08-30 French politics

France: Fighting political corruption with transparency

In terms of transparency in public life, France has always performed poorly. A law introduced at the end of 2013 is now forcing French parliamentarians to disclose their revenues...

Read more

2014-08-29 Social Media

Using the web to further the cause: ISIS vs USA

In this edition: the mother of an American hostage issues a desperate plea to ISIS; Venezuela set to introduce mandatory fingerprinting in supermarkets; and the faces people make...

Read more

2014-08-28 Social Media

'Ice Bucket Challenge' angers anti-abortion activists

In this edition: the "Ice Bucket Challenge" angers anti-abortion activists; web users in Spain show support for a rape victim; and a tribute to Ghostbusters... in Lego.

Read more