• BURN MEDIA
    • Motorburn
      Because cars are gadgets
    • Gearburn
      Incisive reviews for the gadget obsessed
    • Ventureburn
      Startup news for emerging markets
    • Jobsburn
      Digital industry jobs for the anti 9 to 5!

All posts by Andy Walker: Editor

  • Uber’s selfie security system arrives in South Africa

    Transportation service Uber might've changed the way many travel about in South Africa, but it's also changing the way we use selfies. The company today announced a new security measure called Real-Time ID Check, which will require its drivers to occasionally send a selfie to Uber for verification purposes. The company then compares the picture sent to records of the driver, to allow said driver to operate the app. "This prevents fraud and protects drivers’ accounts from being compromised," the company writes on its official blog. "It also protects riders by building another layer of accountability into the app to ensure the...

  • RIP Joe Mafela: Chicken Licken ad from 1996 trends on YouTube

    Beloved South African actor Joe Mafela died this weekend aged 75. According to sources, Mafela succumbed to injuries sustained by a car accident in the early hours of Saturday morning in Johannesburg. He was a mainstay in South Africa's film and music scene in the 1990s, with his 1996 track Shebeleza earmarked as the African Cup of Nations theme track -- a tournament Bafana Bafana won. And while Mafela was known most recently for his role in soapy Generations, there's one particular clip you might remember him for. Currently trending on YouTube is a Chicken Licken advertisement from 1996. Yes, back when...

  • YouTube is killing annotations, and the community isn’t well pleased

    Thanks to internet users' gradual but constant move to mobile, YouTube is killing its video annotations editing tool. The tool, which launched in 2008, allowed users to "layer text, links, and hotspots over your video. They help you enrich the video experience by adding information, interactivity and engagement," YouTube writes in its Help section. But the company feels there just isn't any place for the tool in 2017, with more than 60% of the company's watchtime residing on mobile devices. "Effective starting May 2, you'll no longer be able to add new or edit existing annotations, only delete them. Existing annotations will...

  • Lancewood cheeses Facebook Messenger bots to bring you novel recipes

    Humans have been sending other humans emoji for thousands of years now, so it's only right that the system should be used by brands. Speaking of which, South African cheese brand Lancewood has announced a nifty little marketing campaign relating to its Ultimate Braai Master partnership. Dubbed Lancewood Emoji Meals, the company's using a Facebook Messenger bot and your choice of emoji to receive related recipes featuring one of the company's products. "By sending a food Emoji to LANCEWOOD®’s Facebook page via private message, the Bot instantly responds with a recipe or tip related to the Emoji. As an example, Clarissa...

  • Hout Bay fires: ravaged Imizamo Yethu photographed on Instagram, Twitter

    It seems that Cape Town has been hot, dry, and on fire for much of the summer. The latest blaze however has inconvenienced more than just fynbos. Hout Bay's Imizamo Yethu was this weekend the scene of a post-apocalyptic movie, as a blaze swept through the township. The fire, which began on Saturday, has affected more than 15 000 people. According to reports, 3500 homes were destroyed. At least two people have died as a result of the fire. Another fire began to burn, also in Hout Bay, on Saturday evening, covering much of the Karbonkelberg in flames. Social media was awash...

  • Durban’s North Beach promenade lashed by huge-little waves

    Visitors to Durban's North Beach today likely got wet whether they wanted to or not. The usually-busy beachfront was this afternoon lashed by huge waves which broke beyond the promenade, filling parking lots and nearby shops with salt water. Before you get worried though, no, it wasn't caused by an earthquake and resultant tsunami. Although, searching for "Durban Tsunami" in Google does bring up some interesting videos... Nope, Durban did not experience a tsunami earlier, but rather a large ocean swell The below clip was snapped by Rescue Care, and published to IPSS Medical Rescue's Facebook page. Another clip, this time snapped by Craig...

  • Cape Town Cycle Tour cancelled as dangerous gales wreak havoc

    The Cape Town Cycle Tour, the world's largest timed event, has been cancelled "due to extreme weather conditions". It's an unprecedented move in a race involving over 35 000 participants, but gale force wind in some areas of the city forced the organisers to draw the curtain. At the time of the announcement, the elite ladies race had begun, but was red flagged before the cyclists could complete the route. Ladies Elites lining up at the start chutes! #CycleTour2017 pic.twitter.com/pnqqDLnHRH — Cape Town Cycle Tour (@CTCycleTour) March 12, 2017 The route was earlier shortened from 109km to 78km due to "protest action unrelated...

  • #HelpFindDurbanBaby: baby Siwaphiwe found as SAPS arrest her mother

    Update #2, 12 March, 12.50pm: Baby Siwaphiwe has been found at Marianhill toll plaza in the early hours of Sunday morning, Police tweeted. The toll plaza is located along the N2 in Pinetown, on the outskirts of Durban's metropolitan area. #sapsKZN Baby #SiwaphiweMbambo found unharmed at roadblock in Marianhill in the early hours of this morning. NP https://t.co/uh5qgieJvQ pic.twitter.com/JXU2Mcuzmy — SA Police Service (@SAPoliceService) March 12, 2017 However, a new twist has emerged in the story. Police have arrested three suspects -- a woman, a man, and Siwaphiwe's mother -- due to "too many inconsistencies" in the latter's story. "Too many inconsistencies emerged during...

  • Johannesburg’s anti-Uber #TaxiStrike according to Twitter

    Update: We've received the following comment from Uber South Africa regarding the #TaxiStrike: Our technology is open and pro-choice and we are keen to offer it to a broad number of taxi drivers to boost their chances for profit. In fact many metered taxi drivers are already using our technology to boost their incomes and we would welcome more who wish to join their colleagues. We do not feel that it should be about Uber or Taxi but rather Uber AND Taxi. Threats and intimidation against those who want to use Uber to boost their income is unacceptable. Today’s protest only...

  • 15+ everyday South Africans doing beautiful things on Instagram [Digital All Stars]

    Digital All Stars is a series of articles which aims to celebrate the best of South African digital. The articles, which will appear on Memeburn and Ventureburn, recognise and celebrate South Africa’s best digital entrepreneurs, business people, advertisers, and media professionals among others. Forget the influencers for a moment, or accounts with millions of followers. Think about the first few months Instagram hit South Africa. The platform was laced with pretty images of landscapes, buildings, people and cats, taken by those either just starting their careers in photography or trying out a new platform. While corporate use has largely become a...

  • WhatsApp testing a direct business-to-customer messaging system

    According to a new report by Reuters, Facebook-owned WhatsApp is trialing a service that will allow businesses to talk directly to users on the service. The project was "seen" by Reuters, and is believed to be used by a "handful of companies" from the Y Combinator startup incubator. While the nature of the service isn't yet fully understood, the report believes that this will allow Facebook to finally use WhatsApp as a revenue tool. Be it advertising revenue by allowing companies to send select users messages, or simply provide ads within content rolls like Status -- much like what Facebook's Instagram...

  • Cape Town, think your water is bad? Onoway, Canada wants a word

    Cape Town's suffering from a bit of a water crisis at present. With less than 32% capacity remaining in our dams, the city has been declared a disaster area. But hey, at least we don't have bright pink water, right? A town in Alberta, Canada called Onoway is this week freaking out largely thanks to bright, luminous water flowing from the resident's taps. And by bright, we mean raspberry red. It's not Cream Soda or pink lemonade but a sample of what is coming out of the water taps in Onoway. @ctvedmonton pic.twitter.com/hvxJm3eZuR — Susan Amerongen (@SusanCTV) March 7, 2017 According to reports from...

  • Cyclone Enawo in pictures: Madagascar laced by strongest storm in a decade [update]

    Update, 9 March, 10.24am SAST: More images are surfacing on social media from Madagascar in the wake of Cyclone Enawo's landfall. According to reports, at least five people have died as a result of the storm. "36 hours of stress, 24 hours of fear and 8 hours of hell", @CAREMadagascar colleagues describes the impact of cyclone #Enawo pic.twitter.com/3obLshOoFh — CARE International (@CAREemergencies) March 9, 2017 Just been out for the first time since #Cyclone #Enawo passed by #Tamatave. Rivers are very high and the road to #Antananarivo is cutoff pic.twitter.com/RL04OyNTAm — Mike deCoster-Milman (@mike_dc_m) March 9, 2017 Strong winds in the town of Sambava yesterday...

  • Twitter talks security after OR Tambo International heist

    Johannesburg's OR Tambo International Airport was last night the scene of an estimated US$15-million heist. According to airport operator ACSA, the "armed robbery" took place around 7.45pm on Tuesday evening. "No shots were fired and no injuries have been reported. The robbers fled and it is not known at this stage what, if anything, was taken during the incident," the operator adds. Armed robbery at O.R. Tambo International Airport: https://t.co/lPVDEgWErJ — ORTambo (@ortambo_int) March 7, 2017 The SAA flight transporting the goods was due to travel to London. SAA spokesperson Tlali Tlali explained that the incident "happened at a time before the consignment, which contained...

  • Instagram Stories debuts ‘Geostickers’ for NYC and Jakarta

    Instagram Stories just became slightly more convenient for jet-setters and travel bloggers. Instagram has this week announced the introduction of Geostickers, which is awfully similar to Snapchat's Geofilters. These contextual, geographically-relevant stickers are only available for New York City and Jakarta at present, but this is likely a simple trial for more cities to come. But how does it work? Well, similarly to the service's traditional stickers with a few added perks. "When you take a photo or video and tap the sticker icon, you’ll see geostickers at the top," Instagram explains. "No matter where you are in New York City or Jakarta,...