In this edition: an online campaign to free 9 Ethiopian bloggers; the White House takes on the problem of sexual assault on campus; and a diver swimming with seal pups.
ONLINE CAMPAIGN TO FREE NINE ETHIOPIAN BLOGGERS
Online campaigning is well underway for the release of nine Ethiopian bloggers and journalists, members of the “Zone 9” group, arrested at the end of April on allegations they were using social networks to incite violence and create instability in the country. The accusations have been met with lively commentary online and many have been speaking out in support of the jailed opposition activists.
NGOs including Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International have posted statements on their respective websites condemning what they describe as arbitrary arrests and urging the Ethiopian government to release the prisoners at the earliest possible opportunity. Both organizations are concerned about the crackdown on dissenting voices in Ethiopia over the past few months and ask the authorities to respect the right to freedom of expression.
As do the dozens of web users who have posted their photo to the “Zone Niner” Tumblr blog set up to campaign for the jailed bloggers. Social networkers from all over the world have posed with a sign reading “blogging is not a crime” and are calling for the nine detainees to be released as soon as possible.
A growing number of messages are appearing on Twitter under the #freezone9bloggers hashtag. Outraged micro bloggers are slamming the way the 9 activists are being treated and insist they must be freed immediately.
WHITE HOUSE LAUNCHES CAMPAIGN TO END CAMPUS SEXUAL ASSAULT
Hollywood actors including Benicio del Toro, Daniel Craig and, Steve Carell feature in this public service ad alongside America`s vice-president Joe Biden and the president Barack Obama… it`s part of Washington’s “1 is 2 many” campaign to combat sexual violence on college campuses in the US.
According to the White House`s “Not Alone” report conducted for the campaign, one in five women is sexually assaulted in college. The document also provides basic guidelines for schools, urging them to take action, by, for example, providing emergency services and support structures for victims.
Colleges and students can also access the purpose built “not alone” website. The platform provides valuable resources for victims of sexual assault, so they can learn about their legal rights for example or how to file a complaint. There is also a map listing all the groups and organizations that can help them.
The White House campaign has been hailed by the instigators of the “7,000 in solidarity” movement set up by students from the University of California in Los Angeles, UCLA, back in September with a similar objective. They also point out that one in sex men will have survived sexual violence in college.
NOW TRENDING ON SOCIAL NETWORKS
Police in Prince George County, in Maryland in the US are planning to live tweet a prostitution sting this week, by posting the names and photos of people they catch soliciting a prostitute to the microblogging platform. The initiative has been met with mixed reactions with many questioning just how effective this method will be in combating prostitution.
CROWDFUNDING CAMPAIGNS SPRING UP TO BUY THE CLIPPERS
Ever since the NBA imposed a life time ban on the owner of the Los Angeles Clippers, there has been much speculation as to who will buy the team. And while some well-known faces like Magic Johnson and Floyd Mayweather have expressed interest, web users are joining forces and a number of crowd funding campaigns have emerged in recent days trying to raise the hundreds of million dollars needed to buy the Clippers. Campaigns started on sites like Indiegogo which have yet to really take off.
PORTRAITS OF DICTATORS CUDDLING WITH STUFFED ANIMALS
The world’s most notorious politicians and dictators cuddling stuffed toys… These shots are available to view on behance.net and are the work of Beijing based Chunlong Sun. His “Celebrity” collection features five retired or late dictators like Fidel Castro and Muammar Gaddafi and was created using models with the same body characteristics and some nifty digital image editing…
VIDEO OF THE DAY
In this video we see diver Jason Neilus encounter some very curious and very friendly seal pups… it was filmed off the wild Farne islands in north-east England, and is available to view on the YouTube channel ran by video camera maker, Go Pro.