Today on the net, the death of a demonstrator sparks fresh protests across Turkey. Iranian government officials joining social networks. And a mobile phone that lasts: it could be a thing of the future.
Turkish protester Ahmet Atakan’s death sparks clashes
As we can see from these amateur pictures shared on social networks, thousands have taken part in demonstrations across Turkey after a young protester was killed on Monday during clashes with police in the south of the country.
Web users have been circulating calls to protest on Facebook, to pay tribute to Ahmet Atakan the sixth protester to have died since the start of the anti-government protests in June.
And Twitter users have been sharing these messages written in the first person on behalf of the 22-year-old protester. Tweets that claim the police killed him when they threw a tear gas grenade at him, hitting him in the head.
But the Turkish authorities have put forward a different version of events, posting a statement online which claims Ahmet Atakan died after he fell from a building whilst throwing stones at police.
Police are under increasing scrutiny from web users who, in videos like these ones, denounce the excessive use of force. We see footage of clashes between protesters and police, apparently filmed in Istanbul on Tuesday in the vicinity of Taksim Square, the epicenter of the anti-government protests that began three months ago: a movement that appears to have found second wind.
Iran: government officials join Facebook and Twitter
Iran’s new president, Hassan Rohani, who was elected in June, has been encouraging his ministers to open accounts on social networks in a bid to improve the country’s image: a request government officials have been quick to execute.
All fifteen members of Iran’s cabinet have started their own Facebook account in recent weeks, some already drawing thousands of “likes” from all over the world. Pages that see the oil, finance and also transport ministers share information regarding government activity or discussing a variety of international issues.
The authorities have even published a list of some 20 Iranian public figures to follow on the social network; it includes all the highly placed and influential ministers and political advisers.
Twitter is also becoming increasingly popular among officials, starting with the president himself or the Minister of Foreign Affairs Javad Zarif. They both tweet in English so as to reach a maximum number of web users.
A growing presence on social networks for government officials, despite the fact that most people in Iran cannot access these sites as they are banned in the Islamic Republic…
Nasa launches Instagram account
Attention all space exploration enthusiasts, Nasa has joined Instagram. The American agency opened its official account on the photo sharing platform last week, and has been posting spectacular shots like we see here; giving web users unprecedented views of earth and our solar system. The account is already proving highly popular, with some 140,000 followers and counting.
Now tending on social networks
The @AnimalMashups Twitter account, opened at the beginning of September, has been enjoying massive success. It already has around 60 000 followers and features countless brilliantly produced photomontages of animal mash-ups like the duckle, the bear shark or the lionaff. These incredible and somewhat offbeat creations are something else indeed…
Video of the day
Create a mobile phone that lasts … Dutch designer Dave Hakkens is currently working on this ambitious project. It’s called Phonebloks and in this video he gives us an introduction to what it’s all about. The phone is made of detachable blocks that are all connected to the base and which each serve a separate purpose within the smartphone. When one of the pieces becomes obsolete or ceases to function it can be easily replaced without having to throw away the entire phone, meaning it can last forever. And it would seem web users are keen as the presentation video has racked up over 3 million views in just two days…