Stories from Quick Reads and Citizen Media
Honduran president Juan Orlando Hernandes launched the program “Desarrollemos Honduras” (Let's Develop Honduras), and officers and community took part of the event. Hernandes explained that if a house has a damaged or a land floor, it should be replaced with a cement floor; or prioritize according to the family needs, and:
Cambiar los fogones tradicionales por los ecofogones. Yo sé que en muchos lugares, tal vez no sea el caso de las casas aquí, es triste preguntarle a la gente cuánto paga por la leña y la gente no sabe, hay que explicarle (…) A veces a la gente se sale más cara la leña que la comida.
Replacing traditional stoves for ecologic stoves. I am aware that in many places, maybe not here, it's sad to ask people how much do they pay for firewood and they don't know, we have to explain them (…). Sometimes, people pay more for firewood than for food.
Twitter users posted pictures and their opinions:
— Lissi Matute Cano (@LissiCano) julio 29, 2014
LET'S DEVELOP HONDURAS started today at El Reparto community. Painting my neighborhood program will create 150 positions for young people from the community.
definitivamente vale la pena, a contribuir para que se deje ver mejor, Desarrollemos Honduras/… http://t.co/coblUp1jIJ
— Julio César Quiñonez (@jamaica2001) marzo 12, 2014
This is definitely worth while, let's all colaborate so it all might look better. Let's Develop Honduras.
As more details come out about the corrupt LifeSport programme in Trinidad and Tobago, Wired868 focuses its satirical energies on Adolphus Daniell, a contractor who was reportedly paid TT$34 million (just under US$5.5 million) for doing nothing – and says he won't pay back the money:
The people now under investigation for corruption were too busy stuffing their own pockets to bother you while you kept your mouth shut and headed for the exit. And you think you should keep the money just because you were able to hold on to it for this long?
It might be ‘a non-issue’ to you Adolph; but we, the taxpayers, still want our money back.
On Friday June 25, 2015, Venezuela government announced the suspension of all flights between Venezuela and the Netherlands Antilles (Aruba, Curazao, Bonaire, Saint Marteen and other islands).
According to Venezuelan newspaper El Universal, the action would be a consequence of the detention of Venezuelan Army general Hugo Carvajal –former director of intelligence between 2004 and 2009– by request of the American government, due to Carvajal's alleged ties with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (known as FARC) and with drug trafficking. Carvajal was appointed as consul in Aruba, but he didn't have the blessing of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, that is in charge of Aruba's foreign affairs.
Note: later, the decision was revoked, and flights between the two countries were resumed.
The Spanish Congress’ Commission of Culture approved the so called AEDE Tax (for the Spanish name of the Association of Editors of Spanish Newspapers), also known as Google Tax as part of the draft bill of the Law of Intellectual Property.
GurusBlog explains what is this tax about:
A tax by which an inalienable right is created so every journalistic update website automatically generates a collection right on any other website that links to it. An organ like a SGAE (for the Spanish name of General Society of Authors and Publishers) will be in charge of the collection and the distribution among its associates.
On Xataca they note:
Unlike Germany, the media group that is lobbying for this legislation -AEDE- gets the “inalienability” to be added so as to avoid to be self-evident: if Google has to pay a medium for linking from Google News, it would suffice to take it out, and after realizing the sudden loss of traffic, that medium might request to get back without any fee.
After some tweets, some netizens are upset:
— Afrika Winslet (@AfrikaWinslet) July 22, 2014
Angrier than me with the AEDE tax. Überfav, unfortunately.
— Hiddekel Morrison (@IngMorrison) July 22, 2014
This AEDE tax is ridiculous and it goes against the nature of Internet itself! LINKING IS NOT A CRIME!
Other users are promoting not linking to the media:
— Ialza (@Ialza) July 22, 2014
WordPress plugn to block all URLs than link to AEDE y the Spanish Center of Republishing Rights.
CrowdVoice, a user-powered service that tracks voices of protest from around the world, lists a timeline of Israeli air attacks on Gaza in 2014. Here's an excerpt from their “explore the backstory” section:
A series of abductions and murders has inflamed age-old tensions and sparked armed unrest in Gaza. It began on May 15, 2014, when two Palestinian youths were shot dead during clashes with Israeli security forces during a demonstration in the West Bank. Outrage grew when video footage of the killings emerged, showing that the unarmed teens were shot with live ammunition, despite Israeli assertions that only non-lethal munitions were used against protesters. Later, on June 12, three Israeli teenagers were kidnapped as they hitchhiked home from the West Bank. An Israeli military operation was launched to find the missing teens, and on June 30, their bodies were recovered. The government of Israel has blamed Hamas for the murders, and vowed swift retaliation. Hamas praised the kidnapping, but did not claim responsibility. In an apparent act of retribution, Mohammed Abu Khdeir, aged 16, was abducted near his home on his way to morning prayers and burned alive. Israeli authorities have arrested six people in connection with the teen's death. Tensions from the murders have boiled over into indiscriminate Palestinian rocket attacks into Israeli territory, and relentless aerial bombardment of Gaza.
On her blog Historias de una mujer lobo (Stories of a female werewolf), Natalia Cartolini reflects on the reasons why a trip can be beneficial as, in her opinion, “the fact of visiting new places or meeting new people from another perspective is important at any moment. It doesn't matter if you go out within your own city or its surroundings, just open your eyes to a new point of view. Do something different. [...] But as the further from what you are familiar with, the more you will be able to find yourself, as you are aware you are the only one needed to survive.”
She ends up her reflections saying:
Entonces, imagínate escuchar tu música instrumental favorita mientras caminas por la calle. Todo se transforma. Ahora tú eres el protagonista.
Por un momento eres un Gatsby, en otras, un vaquero o un montañista. ¿Quién detiene a la imaginación? Sólo tú. Sal de tu sitio y aprovecha lo que tienes alrededor tuyo. Porque es tuyo.
So, just imagine you listen to your favorite instrumental music as you walk down the streets. Everything gets transformed. Now you are the leading character.
For a while, you are a Gatsby, some other times, a cowboy or a mountaineer. Who can stop imagination? Just you. Get out from your place and take the most out of what you have next to you. Because it's all yours.
Owen Arthur has resigned from the political party he led for 14 years – a move which Barbados Underground thinks should give Barbadians pause:
The incapacity of a former Prime Minister…to carve out an effective role to serve his political party in the twilight of his career leaves a sour taste. If our leaders are unable to find ways to resolve conflict to the greater good of country what message does it send to the general population?
Jamaican author Kei Miller's blog post about “the anxieties of being a black poet in Britain” draws from several personal experiences, leading him to the conclusion that “the act of writing certain black experiences has to be one of translation – as surely as we translate from one language into another”:
Blackness itself is still seen to exist in a place outside of language, or at least outside the refined language of poetry…And I do not know whether the old dictum about the economy of translation is true – whether or not something is always lost…But this much seems to be important, that we keep blackness in check. In this way, the anxieties of being a black poet in Britain are obviously part and parcel of the broader anxieties of being black in Britain.
On a judicial ruling that sets a dangerous precedent in Colombia, the Supreme Court of Justice refused to reconsider an appeal taken on the verdict that orders 18 months of imprisonment and a 9,5 milon pesos fine (about US$5,1000) for netizen Gonzalo López for comments published on El País newspaper website, in the Colombian city of Cali.
On 2008, López called Gloria Lucía Escalante, former officer at a public utilities company, a “rat”.
Newspaper El Espectador wonders if this is not a threat against the freedom of expression and shares opinions by lawyers who consider there is a confunsion between information and opinion.
— Nosepasedelaraya (@Nosepasedelar) July 22, 2014
One and a half years without cassation by Gonzalo López to dismiss verdict for slander.
Y Su derecho a expresarse libremente? Corte Suprema de J. condena a Gonzalo Hernán López por un decirle a Gloria Escalante lo q piensa, mal!
— Juan Becerra (@Dipolitician) July 21, 2014
What abot his right of free expression? Supreme Court condemns Gonzalo Hernán López for telling Gloria Escalante what he thinks. Wrong!
Some netizens have sarcastic opinions that the decision should be for former president Alvaro Uribe:
Uribe acusaba a Santos sin aportar pruebas, está libre. Gonzalo Lopez acusa a Gloria Escalante en internet y paga 18 meses. Igualdad?
— Hugo Gómez (@hugo_gomez87) July 22, 2014
(Former president Alvaro) Uribe accused (former president Juan Manuel) Santos without producing evidence, he is free. Gonzalo Lopez accuses Gloria Escalante on the internet and he serves 18 months. Equality?
On September 1, 2014 the Customs Service of the Republic of Cuba will begin enforcing new regulations intended to combat illegal trafficking of merchandise by relatives, friends and ‘mules’ (a slang term for couriers of goods from overseas through airports and port facilities).
Iván's File Cabinet considers this “one more turn of the screw”, explaining that since 2011, there have been new measures every year to try and stop the illegal importation of goods by families and private businesses on the island.