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

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Latest update : 2014-07-13

Web users react to escalating violence in Gaza

In this edition: web users react to the escalating violence in Gaza; an anti-hunger campaign draws heavy criticism; and an NGO using LEGO to raise environmental awareness.

WEB USERS REACT TO ESCALATING VIOLENCE IN GAZA

There has been a fresh upsurge of violence in the Middle East, sparked by the murder of three Israeli teenagers in the West Bank on June 30. Israel launched a military operation against the Gaza Strip on July 7th, saying it was to quell rocket attacks; a move backed by the people who want to avenge the deaths of the three youths.

Some Israelis however are questioning the Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu`s intentions, and are making ironic comments about the name of the operation; which translates from Hebrew as "Solid Rock". Some say they should have called it “déjà vu”. And this web user thinks it`s just a ploy to bury the corruption scandals hanging over the government. 

Thousands of Pro-Palestinian web users have been posting under the #GazaUnderAttack hashtag over the past week. But some media outlets, including the BBC, are saying some of the images are not authentic, although some do depict the current conflict, others date back to 2009. Analysts have said that some of the pictures are actually from Syria and Iraq. 

The Israeli army meanwhile updates its Twitter account with news on the operation, and web users are posting under the key words #IsraelUnderFire, commenting on the latest developments. Some are using both hashtags #GazaUnderAttack and #IsraelUnderFire in the same post to promote a message of peace.

SOUTH AFRICAN NGO DRAWS HEAVY CRITICISM OVER ANTI-HUNGER CAMPAIGN

This ad produced by South African NGO “Feed a Child” concludes with the shocking statement that "The average domestic dog eat better than millions of children". It`s part of their latest campaign to combat malnutrition. The advert shows a rich white South African woman treating a black child like a pet and feeding him bits of food of her plate. The scene has drawn heavy criticism and an avalanche of commentary on social networks.

Many have slammed the ad, calling it offensive and stupid. Others, outraged by the comparison, say the organization has no regard for the dignity of the black child, that it is racist, and they challenge the NGO`s decision to have a white woman feeding the boy in the controversial clip.

Many web users have voiced a similar viewpoint, saying the organization approach is extremely insensitive, given the history of South Africa and the relatively recent end to apartheid. They feel the hard hitting tactics used in the campaign could be counterproductive. 

"Feed a child" has since withdrawn the contentious ad and released a statement on their website, apologizing for the campaign, saying it was never their intention to cause offense and apologizing to anyone who found the ad distasteful. Researcher Nomboniso Gasa on the other hand has taken to Twitter to defend the NGO. She says they had good intentions and do good work to help children suffering from malnutrition. 

NOW TRENDING ON SOCIAL NETWORKS

Hundreds of web users the world over have been posting under the #PrayForJapan hashtag, with messages of support for people in southern Japan affected by typhoon Neoguri which began battering the region on Tuesday. Twitter users are sharing their thoughts and prayers, sending strength to the thousands of people who have been forced to flee their homes in this latest natural disaster.

STATS OF THE DAY

Over 2 million 700,000 videos are viewed on YouTube in one minute. A staggering figure, which makes the video sharing platform the third most trafficked website. This infographic was put together by the developers of the YouTube Downloader software. And this popularity generates a lot of money for YouTube, which makes an estimated 10,000 dollars + every sixty seconds.

LITERARY CLASSICS DECORATING PUBLIC BENCHES ACROSS LONDON

Decorating public benches with illustrations from some popular classics of English literature ; including 1984 by George Orwell, Oscar Wilde`s “The Importance of Being Earnest” and also “Great Expectations” by Charles Dickens. The UK`s National Literary Trust has teamed up with artists and writers to create the artworks to celebrate the wealth of writing and illustrating in the country. And the works will be auctioned off at the end of summer to raise funds towards tackling illiteracy in deprived communities across the U.K.

VIDEO OF THE DAY

We see an idyllic landscape made out of Lego, but then gradually an ominous black liquid start to cover the blocks … this video was released by NGO Greenpeace to denounce the toy manufacturer`s links with oil company Shell, which it says is guilty of contributing to global warming and environmental destruction.

By Electron Libre

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