HONG KONG: Thousands of candles flickered under leaden Hong Kong skies on Tuesday evening, and among those holding them were Chinese mainlanders, determined to breach the censorship and taboos that surround paying tribute to Tiananmen’s fallen back home. Hong Kong’s annual vigil is the only place in China were mass commemorations can be safely held, the huge crowds in Victoria Park a testimony to freedoms that are denied to so many on the Chinese mainland. Inside China itself the anniversary was marked with a wall of silence and extra security, with authorities arresting activists and tightening internet censorship ahead of the politically sensitive anniversary. Yet Chinese mainlanders still made their way across the border to attend Hong Kong’s commemoration. There they heard fiery speeches calling for the end of one-party rule — and learnt more about an event authorities in China have tried to scrub from the public’s consciousness. One woman from … [Read more...] about Mainlanders defy authorities to attend Hong Kong Tiananmen vigil
Book advances for first time authors
I have always admired those men with chiseled abs shown on billboards and commercials. If they can do it then so can I but there is just one problem. If you have seen billboard ads featuring a “Before” and “After” look; I would surely belong to the “Before” category, and no matter how frequent I imagine myself to have chiseled abs overtime I still stay in the “Before” category. But it's not wrong is it? And so I spent money buying all those contraptions infomercials featured “Just 15 minutes a day...” or “Show those abs in just three months...” For the next 2 weeks, I followed directions and instructions shown on the video that came with the equipment. By the third week, the equipment was left in one corner of the house. And I did not touch it again. Incidents like these did not happen to me just once or twice but many times and it was not just about having abs but also about trying different things. I did piano … [Read more...] about Do you really want it?
WASHINGTON (WASHINGTON POST) - Twitter, used by 126 million people daily and now ubiquitous in some industries, has vowed to reform itself after being enlisted as a tool of misinformation and hate. But new evidence shows that the platform may be inflicting harm at an even more basic level. It could be making its users, well, a bit witless. The finding by a team of Italian researchers is not necessarily that the crush of hashtags, likes and retweets destroys brain cells; that's a question for neuroscientists, they said. Rather, Twitter not only fails to enhance intellectual attainment but substantially undermines it, the economists said in a working paper published this month by the economics and finance department at the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart in Milan. "It's quite detrimental," Gian Paolo Barbetta, a professor of economic policy at the private research university and the paper's lead author, said in an interview with The Washington Post. "I can't say whether something … [Read more...] about Twitter is eroding your intelligence: Study
This is not a typical famine, however, but a “book famine”. This is a situation where people with “print disabilities” have minimal access to books, textbooks and other print materials in a format they can read due to conditions such as blindness, poor vision or paralysis. They therefore require accessible formats such as braille, audio, ebooks and large print. Thailand has recently acted to end the book famine by joining the international Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for Persons Who Are Blind, Visually Impaired, or Otherwise Print Disabled”. The Marrakesh Treaty came into force two weeks ago. The World Blind Union estimates that less than 10 per cent of published books are published in formats accessible to people with print disabilities. In developing countries, that number falls to less than 1 per cent. This lack of accessible formats is a violation of their right to information and knowledge. It prevents them … [Read more...] about Thailand acts to end a famine
SINGAPORE: Every time freelance writer Clare Lee, 27, uses a changing room when trying on clothes in fashion outlets big and small, she will take a few minutes to inspect every nook and cranny in her cubicle for hidden cameras before feeling safe enough to undress herself.For 27-year-old Fiona, who did not want to give her full name, she will always double-check that the curtains in her bedroom or hotel are fully drawn such that there is not even a teeny-weeny gap for anyone to peek through, and steer clear of unattended baskets in supermarkets.Freelance content creator Hilary See, 27, would refrain from standing near the edge of the escalator where people can look up her skirt, and try to use either a bag or a file to cover the back of her skirt while climbing the stairs.With spycams and phone cameras taking voyeurism to unsavoury new heights, these women are among a growing number of people who have taken extra precautions to protect themselves and their private spaces.As Fiona, … [Read more...] about The Big Read: Singapore’s voyeurism problem – what’s wrong with men, or the world?