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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 : 2014-01-14

Calls to boycott Singha beer in Thailand

In this edition: protesters in Thailand are urging a boycott of a well-known beer brand; a young American man shares his incredible weight loss experience online; and a BMX champ in a stunning performance across Lima, Peru.


For some weeks now activists in Thailand have been using Singha beer or other products made by the same brewery to wash their feet... It’s to show their opposition to the anti-government protests currently underway in Bangkok, where demonstrators are calling for the resignation of Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra’s resignation.

The movement was prompted by remarks made by Chitpas Bhirombhakdi, heiress to the Boon Rawd brewery that makes amongst others, the Singha and Leo beers. As we can see in these photos posted to her Facebook page, the 28-year-old, who was educated in the United Kingdom, is a key figure in the “yellow shirts” movement, loyal supporters of the King, mostly made up of urban elites.

And when interviewed by AFP last month she claimed many Thais did not have a “true understanding” of democracy especially in rural areas.

Comments that have greatly angered pro-government “red-shirt” supporters of former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, who sister is now leading the country, most of them from rural areas. They soon took to social media platforms, sharing and circulating calls to boycott Singha products.

Campaigning to such an extent that Chitpas Bhirombhakdi’s father released an open letter stating his daughter would soon be changing her surname, in an apparent attempt at distancing her political activities from the family business, one of the most prosperous in Thailand. 


One year … that’s how long it took Lucas Irwin to lose 130 pounds, slimming down from 300 pounds to 170. He shared his weight loss experience on community site Reddit, in the hope he could help other web users suffering from obesity.

As Lucas explains there was no special secret to his weight loss, he simply restricted himself to 1 350 calories per day. He has explained that whilst no food was off limits, he did essentially live on tuna salad, vegetables or rice in order to reach his goal.

And he kept his diet a secret so that he could surprise his family. They hadn’t seen Lucas for a year, and in this video which he has posted online, we see their delight when they see the new him. Heartwarming images that bring a tear to the eye, and that have been watched by over one million web users and counting…

The story has been widely circulated online, with many taking to the web to congratulate Lucas. This Reddit user for example who is overweight says Lucas’ story has given him the motivation he needs to continue his own weight loss program. 


Thousands of Venezuelan web users have been posting under the #NoMasViolenciaVenezuela hashtag calling for an end to the rampant violence, plaguing their country. Many have voiced their frustration with the authorities who they say are incapable of dealing with the scourge. The online campaigning began last week when a former Miss Venezuela, Monica Spear, was shot dead in her car by robbers. Web users are hoping that if nothing else, the tragedy will revive debate on violence and safety in Venezuela. 


With this online game released on the website of People’s Daily, the mouthpiece of China’s Communist Party, you can blast corrupt officials with a Taser. You can win points for taking down a cash hungry official or one who’s spending money on mistresses, you’ll lose points however if you accidently hit the police. The game is to help promote the anti-corruption drive launched by the president Xi Jinping who has promised to target “tigers and flies” alike, to refer to corrupt officials working at all levels from simple public servants to highly placed politicians. 


This photo has been doing the rounds on social networks over the past few days. According to the « Lightly Braised Turnip » website, it’s a giant squid measuring 160 feet from head to tentacle tip, washed ashore in California. The article also claims scientists believe the nuclear disaster at the Fukushima power plant, in Japan, triggered uncontrolled growth in sea creatures. Now as Japanese blogger Piyohiko points out, countless web users across the globe took the so called ‘experts’ at their word only to find out it was in fact a tongue in cheek piece accompanied by some pretty nifty image editing.


Pull off some pretty impressive BMX tricks and stunts on a ramp, on the back of a moving trailer driving around the streets of Lima in Peru… Here’s the latest exploit from Venezuelan BMX champ Daniel Dhers. You can check his stunning performance in its entirety on YouTube.

By Electron Libre



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