News: Kony 1986

I opened my Facebook yesterday and was greeted by a flood of Kony 2012 faces all over my news feed. I watched the 30 minute documentary, and then thought about it for a bit. How did a 25-year-old conflict suddenly become so popular? How did the video go viral? Of all the documentaries I’ve seen, this was definitely nowhere near the top. And it’s not like Joseph Kony just abducted hundreds of children; he’s been doing it for a while now. Yet obviously, regardless of all that, it’s an amazing cause. It’s not like Invisible Children are greedy pigs. They unquestionably have good intentions, and while they do glorify themselves a bit too much, they are clearly trying to do good… continue reading →

Food for Thought: The Internet in Society

RSA Animate – The Internet in Society: Empowering or Censoring Citizens?

Does the internet actually inhibit, not encourage democracy? In this new RSA Animate adapted from a talk given in 2009, Evgeny Morozov presents an alternative take on ‘cyber-utopianism’ – the seductive idea that the internet plays a largely emancipatory role in global politics.

Exposing some idealistic myths about freedom and technology (during Iran’s ‘twitter revolution’ fewer than 20,000 Twitter users actually took part), Evgeny argues for some realism about the actual uses and abuses of the internet.

News: 9/11 – A Legacy of Manipulation?

The day is September 11th, 2001. I am certain that you are familiar with the details, but I will rehash them for those of you that are not. It is a bright morning, indistinguishable from any other. The seemingly innumerable citizens of New York City maneuver through the tangled lattice of avenues and catacombs of subways and tunnels that form the city’s public transit apparatus. The streets are permeated with the sounds of everyday life: dogs barking, casual conversation, children’s laughter..continue reading →

Food for Thought: Robert Fisk

An interview with Robert Fisk in which he discusses Afghanistan, Obama , the War on Terror and power... see post →

Food for Thought is weekly column in which we post something that we find especially stimulating. This can vary from graffiti to quotes, from videos to blogs, anything that we find particularly special and intellectually challenging.

Opinion: Parents Keep Child’s Gender Secret

Storm, of course, is the “genderless” child that a Canadian couple are hoping to bring up so that it is free from any sort of influence on its personality regarding gender. Apart from different views on society that people might have, the sheer impracticality of this task strikes me; the mother already had to rush one of her sons out of a shop because the shop assistant wouldn’t sell him something that was for a girl. While it is categorically unfair and possibly illegal, this sort of thing is going to happen. It is a fact that a boy who dresses like a girl in school will be isolated and discriminated against, unless all of the children are brought up in the same ultra-liberal way… continue reading →