In this edition: peaceful protests against the military coup in Thailand; Egyptians react to government plans to tighten controls on social media; and surfer Robby Naish conquers the Amazon river…
THAILAND: WEB USERS PROTEST AGAINST MILITARY COUP
The three-finger salute from the « Hunger Games » movies… the gesture has become something of a symbol online and on the streets where hundreds of Thai protesters gave been showing their opposition to Thailand`s military leaders who took control of the country in a coup at the end of May. The gesture is becoming increasingly popular and is one way of defying the military junta which warned on Tuesday that people flashing three fingers could face arrest under its ban on public protests.
But opponents of Thailand`s military coup have other ways of getting their message across. As we can see from these pictures doing the round son social networks, come army critics have been quietly assembling in small groups in public to read books on dictatorship and totalitarianism, such as George Orwell`s 1984 or A Guide to Civil Resistance.
Peaceful protests, like this one coordinated by "The Sound of Silence" Facebook group. Web users are asked to show their opposition to the military coup by posing for photos in which they cover part of their face with a sheet of blank paper. It`s one way of letting the authorities know that despite multiple attempts at curtailing freedom of expression in Thailand, the people will continue to fight for democracy.
EGYPTIANS REACT TO SOCIAL MEDIA MONITORING
As reported on Egyptian media over the weekend, Egypt`s government is seeking to implement tighter controls and monitoring of social media at the earliest possible opportunity. The official reason is to help the police combat terrorism and criminal activity … and the news has sparked strong reaction and lively commentary online.
The “We are watched” hashtag has begun trending on Facebook and Twitter with web users voicing their outrage over the program, saying it jeopardizes Egyptians` privacy. Many are questioning the need for intensified web monitoring and urge the authorities to halt these plans for extra surveillance and respect individual freedoms and democracy in Egypt.
And while the overriding sentiment on Egyptian social media is that of concern, some have responded to the government`s announcement with a touch of satire; like these tweets for example posted under the “a private message to the person watching” hashtag; comments that openly mock the government and it`s fondness for spying…
As the site "Ahram Online" reports, controlling online content is nothing new in Egypt. The authorities have been monitoring social networks for some months now, resulting in the arrests of several opposition activists, accused of inciting violence against the police and armed forces.
NOW TRENDING ON SOCIAL NETWORKS
Suzi LeVine who uses the @AmbSuzi Twitter handle has been trending on social networks following the publication of this photo on Monday. We see the US diplomatic representative for Switzerland and Liechtenstein taking her oath of office using a digital device – an e-reader. A first for a ceremony of this level and its certainly gone down well with web users who have hailed the diplomat`s modern approach as she swears allegiance to the United States Constitution.
HOAX OF THE DAY
Did one of Google`s roving Street View camera cars capture a murder in Edinburgh, Scotland? This image of a man standing over a lifeless body certainly got web users wondering … police officers were deployed to investigate but it turns out the photo was actually staged by a pair of quick thinking jokers who saw the Google camera car coming …
"EVERYDAY ASTRONAUT" BY TIM DODD
American photographer Tim Dodd`s latest series is called "A Day in the life of Everyday Astronaut”. It features him dressed in a retro looking space suit carrying out normal, everyday activities like brushing his teeth, food shopping or sleeping underneath the stars. You can check the entire collection on Tim Dodd`s blog.
VIDEO OF THE DAY
Robby Naish recently set a new world record for the widest ride of a river bore on a stand-up paddleboard. As we can see here the fifty year old American water sports athlete rode over 450 meters on the Amazon River ; a fantastic feat available to view online, on YouTube.