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Victory Speech of Indonesia's New President

Indonesia's President-elect Joko Widodo or Jokowi delivered a victory speech recognizing the spirit of voluntarism among citizens:

This presidential election has sparked new optimism for us, for this nation. Free souls and political responsibilities blossom within the souls of the new generation. The long-lost voluntarism is now back with a new spirit.

And in the spirit of promoting “volunteer participation”, Jokowi asked Facebook users to vote and choose the 34 Cabinet ministers he should include in his government.

PHOTOS: Typhoon Glenda Left Trail of Destruction in the Philippines

Typhoon Glenda (International name: Rammasun) damaged many structures in Southern Luzon, located south of Manila in the Philippines. Photos shared by Citizens’ Disaster Response Center.

Impact of typhoon Glenda in the Philippines. Photo from Facebook page of Citizens' Disaster Response Center

Impact of typhoon Glenda in the Philippines. Photo from Facebook page of Citizens’ Disaster Response Center

The Arrest of CCTV News Anchor and Refection on China's Public Relation Business

The arrest of CCTV news anchor Rui Chenggang was related to his ties to PR firm Edelman subsidiary in China. Silicon Hutong took the opportunity to reflect upon public relation businesses in China:

Two issues prevent widespread improvement in PR industry ethics in China. First is a persistent exclusivist belief that because this is China, things are done the Chinese way, and always will be. Operating ethically is seen as naive at best, and culturally imperialist at worst (“how dare you impose your values on us!”)

The second issue is fear. PR executives and their agencies believe that if they don’t take advantage of every opportunity, however morally ambiguous, they will lose revenue and clients to competitors who lack – or opportunistically ignore – their moral compasses.

English Learning Business in China

Soho Business' info-graphic on learning English in China. Via China File. Currently, there are more than 3,000 companies in China offering English classes. Fees range from several hundred to several thousand dollars.

Soho Business’ info-graphic on learning English in China. Via China File.

Currently, there are more than 3,000 companies in China offering English classes. Fees range from several hundred to several thousand dollars.

Typhoon Glenda Batters Luzon Island in the Philippines

Typhoon Glenda (International name: Rammasun) wrought havoc in Luzon Island in the Philippines. Netizens are using the Twitter hashtag #glendaph to monitor the situation.

A fallen tree in front of the presidential palace in Manila. Photo from the government's Tumblr page.

A fallen tree in front of the presidential palace in Manila. Photo from the government's Tumblr page.

“Shrinking Democratic Space” in Myanmar

The new United Nations Special Rapporteur on Myanmar, Yanghee Lee, has concluded a visit in the country and issued an initial report about Myanmar's human rights situation:

The opening up of democratic space for people to exercise their rights to freedom of opinion and expression and to freedom of assembly and association is widely acknowledged as one significant achievement in Myanmar’s continuing reform process. Yet, in recent months many of my interlocutors have seen the shrinking of that space for civil society and the media.

There are also continuing reports of the excessive use of force by the police and the authorities in breaking up protests.

Yanghee Lee also expressed concern about the “spread of hate speech and incitement to violence, discrimination and hostility in the media and on the Internet, which have fuelled and triggered further violence” against minority ethnic groups and Muslims.

The Special Rapporteur stressed that Myanmar “needs further encouragement and understanding in order to address these challenges and to continue on the path of reform.”

Was Singapore Airlines’ Facebook and Twitter Message After the MH17 Crash Insensitive?

A Singapore Airlines flight on March 29, 2014. Photo by Flickr user Aero Icarus. CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

A Singapore Airlines flight on March 29, 2014. Photo by Flickr user Aero Icarus. CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

After news broke out about the Malaysian Airlines MH17 crash in eastern Ukraine, Singapore Airlines posted this message on Facebook and Twitter:

Many netizens accused the airline of being insensitive. Sophie Chang commented on Facebook that “a better way for the airline to do is to express condolences first.” But Stephen Chapman believes that the statement “was intended to bring calm in a general sense.” Ryan Ik appreciated the clarification but he also felt that “without any words of sympathy, the update feels very cold.”

Insensitive or not, this short update has since then become a viral message in a matter of hours.

China's National Mahjong Team Loses To Japan

Mahjong, originated from China is considered a national game. The fact that China's national mahjony team lost the the fifth Open Mahjong Championship in France and finished in 37th place out of 51 teams came as a shock to the country. Worse, the individual title was claimed by a Japanese competitor. Nanfang.com translated an article from New Beijing Daily on the reasons behind China's defeat.

Chinese Activist Hu Jia Attacked

Prominent Chinese activists Hu Jia was attacked last night on July 16 in Beijing. He reported the incident in his Twitter:

Today (July 16), just now at 20:12, I was attacked by a number of plain clothes cops near the east wing of Caofang subway station at Chaoyang district, Beijing. They drove away immediately. As I dropped my glasses, I could not see the car plate number. Now I feel sick and have to rest on the pavement. Will call the police. Hu Jia.

A red cross was marked on the white fence next to the spot where I were attacked. My car was parked at the spot where I was ambushed.

I have just filed a written report at the Changying police station. The police officer (035658) escorted me back to the spot where I was ambushed. Now he has left. I will drive to the nearby Minhang Hospital to treat my wound before going home. The police had gone through the surveillant video and told me that they could not identify the number of the attackers’ car plate.

I remember clearly, a top guy wearing black clothes kicked my abdomen. They were very professional, caught my throat and hit my eye. In gangster's language, the method is called “eye blocking”. It was a heavy hit and my nose bled. Then came a round of random hits and kicks.

Warning Against Racial Nationalism in Hong Kong

Evan Fowler told a story about a conflict happened to his friends in a subway train. He compared the incident with its Sydney version in which a Chinese descend was called a “gook” and found Hong Kong passengers’ indifference to the racist remarks disturbing:

I believe the incident that my friend experienced was not only an unfortunate rarity, but also one that deserves to illicit a level of condemnation Hong Kong people rightly expected and did see in Australia. I also believe that our condemnation should be focused not only on the superficial racism of the remarks, but on the underlying racial-nationalism of the position.

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