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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 : 2013-11-03

Internet laughs about being spied on

Today on the net, web users take the latest NSA revelations with a pinch of salt. Hundreds of civilians evacuated from a besieged Syrian town. And the childhood home of Steve Jobs has been classified as a historic landmark.

Internet laughs about being spied on

Between December 2012 and January 2013, the NSA allegedly used its code named “MUSCULAR” program to collect some 181 million records, including metadata, from Yahoo and Google data centers, across the United States and the rest of the world. The revelations first came to light in an article published on the Washington Post’s website on Wednesday. The article came with a top secret hand drawn post-it note explaining how the US Intelligence Agency managed to exploit data from the two web giants…

Web users are having a bit of fun with the revelations. The person who posted this tweet for example has parodied the famous post it note illustrating how the NSA intercepts Google and Yahoo data by putting together an equally basic picture depicting how the US agency would spy on the pope.

An idea that soon inspired journalists from The Guardian who have been coming up with equally wacky creations, they’ve have imagined how the NSA could spy on Father Christmas for example. Yes, the British daily has even set up a game for web users – players just have to fill in the blank boxes on the post-it notes.

Social networkers are also poking fun at the NSA, saying the National Security Agency has helped millions of web users the world over, as their archiving service has provided them with easy access to lost docs.

And finally, instead of going over all the countries that have been targeted by the NSA, the Motherboard website has produced a somewhat sarcastic guide to all the things the NSA has yet to spy on…. A very short list that includes the things we’ve whispered to our pets, or secret thoughts you may have had whilst riding public transport…

Hundreds of civilians evacuated from besieged Syrian town

Hundreds of civilians’ have finally been able to leave the besieged town of Moadamiyet al-Sham in south western Syria, after being trapped by Bashar al-Assad’s army for the past year. As we can see in this footage filmed by activists this week and posted to YouTube, the cease fire between rebels and government troops meant entire families could be evacuated; there was even time for them to gather their personal belongings.

British journalist Lyse Doucet, is in Syria, and has shared accounts from residents on her Twitter feed. They say they are too tired to walk or have been deprived of food and have had to eat grass. As was the case on October 12, the evacuation was supervised by the Syrian Red Crescent, concerned by the plight of the town’s residents, living in particularly difficult conditions.

Residents who posted an open letter online last week, describing the effect of rocket fire and chemical attacks on civilians. They say they are lacking in food, medical supplies and have little means of communication. And as the Syrian opposition reminds us, thousands are still trapped in this daily living hell.

Now trending on social networks

South African web users have been pointing the finger at the Johannesburg police force after officers opened fire on a car driven by hip-hop artist Khuli Chana, leaving him seriously wounded. The police apparently wanted to stop his car as they had mistaken it for a vehicle thought to be involved in a kidnapping. Social networkers aren’t convinced however and have been denouncing the all too frequent cases of police abuse in South Africa, and demanding the officers involved in the shooting blunder receive exemplary punishment.

Steve Jobs’ childhood house now a historic landmark

Steve Jobs childhood home where, along with Steve Wozniak, he created and put together the first Apple computers, has now been classified as a historic landmark. The Californian city of Los Altos made the announcement this week, saying it wanted to pay tribute to a man who made such a major contribution to America’s cultural heritage…

Video of the day

NBA star Kyrie Irving who plays for the Cleveland Cavaliers created a buzz last year with the video that saw him disguised as an old man and taking on some young basketball players – well he’s back! And as we can see in this newly posted video he’s brought some friends along this time: two other basketball stars Nate Robinson from the Denver Nuggets and Maya Moore from the women’s league. They all put on a pretty impressive performance on a court in downtown Chicago - enjoy!

By Electron Libre



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