• 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 Julia Breakey

Julia Breakey
Julia is a UCT film graduate with a passion for dogs, media, and dog-centric media. If she's not gushing about the new television show that you need to watch, she's rewatching The Good Place (which you need to watch).
  • Uber employees sign petition to reinstate ex-CEO Travis Kalanick

    More than one thousand Uber employees have signed a petition calling for the reinstatement of former Uber CEO Travis Kalanick, according to a report by Axios. Kalanick was forced to resign on Wednesday after pressure from shareholders, and has not yet been replaced. The founder had tackled many a controversy in the past year, but it was a personal family tragedy that eventually led to his resignation. According to an email obtained by Recode, employees understand that he is a flawed leader, but believe he should be reinstated anyway. "Nobody is perfect, but I fundamentally believe he can evolve into the leader Uber needs today and...

  • VidCon: YouTube launches VR180 video format, cheap VR cameras in tow

    YouTube intends to make VR content creation and consumption easier with the launch of VR180, CEO Susan Wojcicki announced yesterday at VidCon. VR180 is a new video format that is intended to be easier for creators to work with, as well as visually appealing for viewers. "VR180 video focuses on what’s in front of you, are high resolution, and look great on desktop and on mobile," Product Manager Frank Rodriguez writes in a blog post. The videos can be viewed using Cardboard, Daydream, and PSVR. They also allow for livestreaming. Rodriguez writes that creators will be able to set up and film their videos like they normally would, but...

  • Weekly Round Up Podcast #111: Spur CEO speaks out & #SocialMediaBlackout

    Welcome to Weekly Round Up, our podcast discussing the latest tech trends, innovation and news from the last few days. This week, Andy Walker hosts Stephen Timm, Julia Breakey and Matthew Alexander. Stephen opens the floor with a Ventureburn story about how the Spur founder, Allen Ambor, did not sell his shares despite reports to the contrary. Ambor also refused to make a firm statement on that allegedly racist incident in March. Over on Gearburn, Andy talks of the claim that Steve Jobs created the iPhone in response to a Microsoft executive who he hated. Finally, Andy talks us through the attempted #SocialMediaBlackout...

  • This Google Doodle lets you create calming musical animations

    Today would have been Oskar Fischinger's 117th birthday, and Google is using its latest doodle to celebrate his abstract animations. The German-American was notable for his abstract musical animations long before computer graphics and the concept of music videos came into play. In 1936, Fischinger and his wife fled Germany when it became clear he could not pursue his art under Hitler's regime. When he arrived in the US, Paramount Pictures offered him a job. He went on to animate sequences for Disney's Fantasia and Pinocchio. The artist's work was largely created between the 1920s and 1940s -- and the lack of digital technology meant he often spent...

  • Snapchat now makes it easier to stalk friends using ‘Snap Map’

    Snapchat has added a new feature that allows you to see where your friends -- and other featured stories -- are on a map. The Snap Map is accessed by pinching the screen to zoom out, and adds another layer to Snap's already complex interface. Once on the map, the user can choose who can see their location, with the options of all friends, select friends and Ghost Mode (no one but them.) If their friends have chosen to make themselves visible, users can view where they are and the stories that go along with that location. Along with their friends are other...

  • Everything, Everything movie review: a serious Bubble Boy

    Everything, Everything is every bit your typical teen romance about a sick girl and the boy who loves her. The film is cheesy. It loves love and rejects reality. In other words: it's exactly what you expect it to be. But what sets Everything, Everything apart from other teen romances is that the film is also somehow Bubble Boy (2001). Nearly every beat it hits mirrors that of the ridiculous sixteen-year-old comedy. In Everything, Maddy (Amandla Stenberg) is an 18-year-old suffering from SCID, an immunodeficiency that keeps her locked up in her stringently sterilised house. In Bubble Boy, Jimmy is born without an...

  • MiniMeme Podcast #2: Films that inspire us (the youth)

    Welcome to MiniMeme, the podcast brought to you by Burn Media’s junior staff as they tackle the topics that tickle their fancy. This week Julia Breakey and Matthew Alexander use Youth Day as a reason to discuss films that inspire them, the mouthpieces of South African youth. Matthew comes to terms with his obsession with Will Smith, and the fact that the Taken actor's name is, in fact, Liam Neeson. Julia discusses films that have inspired her both as a woman and an aspiring filmmaker. The team touches on the idea of identity, the depiction of mental health in film and TV, and...

  • Uber promises drivers tipping, paid wait times & more

    Just before news of Uber CEO Travis Kalanick's resignation surfaced, the company was trying to grab attention in a more positive light -- with promises to its drivers. The company sent out an email to its drivers yesterday announcing the launch of its 180 Days of Change. The email detailed the "meaningful changes and improvements" it was bringing to drivers' experiences with the app. The campaign appears to be a six month project that reveals a new improvement every month. The first month, Uber assured, was dedicated to earnings. The biggest improvement it focused on was tipping -- "the feature asked for most." Only...

  • South Africa’s box office: Cars 3 buries The Mummy

    Lightning McQueen had one last chance -- one last dream -- and South Africa refused to let him do it alone. If there's one thing we understand, it's loyalty -- and not allowing Tom Cruise to thrive. This weekend saw Cars 3 debut at number one, pushing The Mummy down to third place after just one week at the top. I guess the rebooted franchise... ran out of fuel? Got a flat tire? Look, I don't know a thing about cars, but I do know about movies -- and here's how the others fared in the top ten this weekend. (16 to 18 June) Wonder Woman clung...

  • YouTube updates Restricted Mode to include LGBTQ content

    YouTube has taken advantage of Pride Month to update its Restricted Mode policies that back in March saw innocent LGBTQ content blocked. The company acknowledged that this mode, intended for schools and libraries, was unfairly targeting videos featuring the likes of same-sex kisses at weddings or "personal accounts of difficult events". ALL 3 OF MY RECENT VIDEOS (ABOUT ME BEING TRANS) ARE GONE AFTER YOU TURN ON HE AGE RESTRICTION FILTER I'M SO UPSET. 😡 https://t.co/IpVnL7zfph — Seaine (@SeaineLove) March 17, 2017 YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki asserts that she has personally spoken to teens and creators alike on the importance of sharing this content, and...

  • YouTuber Austin Jones admits to soliciting child pornography from fans

    YouTuber Austin Jones, known for his acapella scene covers, has admitted to soliciting sexually explicit videos from underage fans. The 24-year-old has been released from a Chicago federal court on a US$100 000 bond. He has been ordered to stay in his mother's home at all times until his trial. According to a document released by CBS Chicago, Jones admitted to using Facebook to engage in sexually explicit conversations with some of his followers. "He directed them to make videos of themselves dancing in a sexually explicit way and instructed them on what to wear, say, and do in the videos, including...

  • Last week in trailers: Flatliners sequel & a Groundhog Day horror

    It's the week of the psychological thrillers and comedies, because 2017 is nothing if not an emotional rollercoaster that never seems to end. Please keep your arms and legs inside the ride at all times. Here's a few trailers that premiered last week. Welcome to the trip. Flatliners Last week brought us the much-anticipated sequel to the 1990 film Flatliners -- and while it doesn't star Kevin Bacon, it does see Kiefer Sutherland reprise his role, and welcomes newcomers Ellen Page, Nina Dobrev, and Diego Luna. The psychological thriller tells of a group of medical students who stop their hearts to experience the afterlife, but when past tragedies come back...

  • Here’s how Facebook and Google plan to fight terrorism

    Both Facebook and Google have revealed how they are countering terrorist activity on their respective blogs this past week. These posts come after UK Prime Minister Theresa May criticised the internet for providing a safe space for terrorists to communicate -- and after Facebook itself dodged a lawsuit that claimed it was the reason Palestinian terrorists were able to kill numerous Israelis. Facebook revealed it is looking specifically at how artificial and human intelligence can work together, as well as partnering with other companies, NGOs and governments to bring an end to terror. The company is working on software that identifies when a user...

  • Happy birthday to the GIF: 30 iconic GIFs for 30 years

    It's difficult to imagine a world of communication without the wonder of GIFs, but that's how people had to live just 30 years ago. Today, 15 June, is the 30th birthday of the GIF and we thought it an apt time to pool together some of the most iconic looped images in celebration. It's party time. Dancing Banana Dancing banana came from web classic Peanut Butter Jelly Time and we owe so much of "random xD" culture to it. A blessing and a curse, but today we love you, banana. Perfectly looped rap battle This beautiful GIF feels like its been around since the world's existence, but somehow...

  • Donald Trump’s birthday on Twitter is surreal hell

    If you were interested in reading the US President's statements on a shooting involving US Congressmen yesterday, chances are you went to Twitter first. Of course, you likely got just what you'd expected: a half-hearted tweet by Donald Trump that promised only 'thoughts and prayers' followed by a barrage of partisan views chucking useless words at a brick wall. This activity -- of checking, of regretting, of burying your phone beside an old oak tree -- has become near routine. It's like a recurring nightmare or a stint in a hell -- except this time, Satan has upped the ante. Because yesterday...