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  • Budget Speech 2017: South Africa protests on the streets & Twitter

    Today, South Africa's minister of finance Pravin Gordhan will deliver his annual Budget Speech to the nation. Although proceedings officially get underway at 2pm in Cape Town, citizens are already making their voices heard. While South Africans are voicing concerns about a possible jump in personal income tax, an introduction of a sugar tax, and a higher national fuel levy, some are also finding time to practice their right to demonstrate. South Africa's finance minister Pravin Gordhan will deliver the 2017 Budget Speech at 2pm, 22 February In Cape Town's city centre, Nehawu (National Education, Health and Allied Workers' Union) members are...

  • Inventor of ‘On Fleek’ Peaches Monroee seeks royalties

    Vine user Peaches Monroee shot to fame with the vine that changed the course of the English language. If you've ever used the phrase "on fleek" you have her to thank for it -- and now she wants you to pay up. Monroee has set up a gofundme to raise money for a cosmetic and hair line she wishes to start. As a nursing student, she doesn't have the funds to get them going herself, and is asking for the money she "deserves" to make. "Everyone has used the phrase/word but I haven't received any money behind it or recognition," she writes. While it may seem...

  • Hlomela Bucwa, SA’s youngest parliamentarian, remembers ‘lost generation’ in fiery speech

    You might think South Africa's Parliament is filled with seasoned individuals who have sat through many a State of the Nation Address and Budget Speech, but it also plays host to parliamentarians like Hlomela Bucwa. At 24 Bucwa is the youngest member of the house, but you probably wouldn't have guessed on her confident, measured maiden speech given in Parliament yesterday. Representing the DA, she took to the podium to oppose NSFAS -- South Africa's student funding scheme -- and suggest a few alternatives of her own. Hlomela Bucwa is Parliament's youngest member at just 24-years-old Although many a parliament member might...

  • Microsoft’s Skype Lite Android app launches in India

    An interesting counter-trend is emerging among the world's most popular apps. With Facebook launching the likes of Messenger Lite and Facebook Lite last year to cater for emerging markets, Microsoft is following suit debuting Skype Lite this week. Like its Facebook counterparts, Skype Lite will be available for low-cost Android devices, and cater exclusively (at least for now) to the Indian smartphone market. Overall the Hyderabad-developed app is said to be more usable on low-speed networks, use less battery and works with India's Aadhaar identification number system to streamline signups and identification. Skype Lite is a direct competitor to Facebook Messenger Lite...

  • Here’s how to request TV shows, movies for Netflix [Update]

    Netflix is arguably the most popular subscription-based video streaming service around, owing to its substantial library and homegrown content. Not all locales are as well-stocked with content though, forcing many to use region-hopping services. But what if your desired content isn't on Netflix at all? You might not know this, but the streaming service actually has a page that lets you request movies and TV shows to be added to the platform. What happens after you've hit the "submit suggestion" button, then? "If you've already submitted a request for a title, you can sit back and relax -- we've received your feedback and there's...

  • Rain in Johannesburg, drought in Cape Town: SA’s weather according to social media

    As boring as it might seem, the weather has been a massive talking point for South Africans in 2017. And no, it's not because 55-million of us are awkwardly engaging in small talk. With Cyclone Dineo passing over the country's extreme north this week (social media had plenty to say about her), we also have Johannesburg and Cape Town on two extreme ends of the rainfall spectrum. Although Johannesburg is a summer rainfall region, the city is experiencing quite a bit this week with the SA Weather Service issuing warnings of possible floods in Gauteng. Cape Town, on the other hand,...

  • South Africa’s box office chart: Fifty Shades Darker comes first yet again

    Sex sells and South Africans are totally buying. This past weekend saw Fifty Shades Darker hold strong in first place at the box office, suggesting that plot and character development are irrelevant when you can watch stock characters get kinky enough for middle-aged white women. So what does that mean for the other films this weekend (17 to 19 February 2017)? The Great Wall starring Matt Damon debuted at number two and proved my theory about plot. Matt Damon in armour and a pony tail is just kinky enough for middle-aged women to get behind. The Lego Batman Movie held its own in third place, as former champion of...

  • 9 animal livestreams too adorable not to bookmark

    We've all had those days. You wake up late, your toast is burnt, your boss is angry and two hours into the work day your anxiety is through the roof. Luckily for humankind, scientists have discovered a bad day antidote. No longer does a bad morning mean a bad afternoon. There exists on the internet multiple live streams of any kind of animal you fancy living its daily life and you can watch them whenever you want. Two minutes watching one of these, and your day is turned around. Here are my favourites. Keeping up with the Kattarshians These kittens live in a beautiful mini-house designed just...

  • Weekly Round Up Podcast #95: LG Innofest, Nintendo Switch, Cyclone Dineo & more

    Welcome to Weekly Roundup, our podcast discussing the latest tech trends, innovation and news from the last few days. In this week's edition, Hadlee Simons plays host to Andy Walker and Graham van der Made. This time we discuss Hadlee's trip to LG's InnoFest 2017 in Barcelona, and his experience around its new product announcements. Graham also discusses his hands-on review of the Nintendo Switch to round off our Gearburn coverage. Dineo, LG and Nintendo dominate this week's coverage Over on Memeburn, we chat fake news circulating on social media about Cyclone Dineo. We also discuss Samsung's group chairman's recent arrest. On a lighter...

  • WhatsApp Status: will it be a Snapchat clone?

    Who knew that WhatsApp originally started out as a way to leave status messages, so others knew what you were up to? Well, it looks like that feature is finally receiving an overhaul this week. "The original idea behind the project was to build an application that lets your friends and other contacts know what you're up to . This was months before we added messaging," said WhatsApp co-founder Jan Koum in a blog post. Koum explained that the team had always wanted to updating and "evolving" the feature. Who knew that this evolution might be rather similar...

  • #AskThePublicProtector: South Africans troll Busisiwe Mkhwebane on Twitter

    The South African government should know by now: Twitter does not take anything seriously. So when it created #AskThePublicProtector, it should have come as no surprise that no one was using it to ask Busisiwe Mkhwebane questions she would ever read aloud. Mkhwebane has only been working as Public Protector since October last year, so she may not fully grasp the way South Africans deal with politics on Twitter. The platform allows a certain level of anonymity -- and the users hold the power. On Twitter, the public are able to throw comments they never would in person. They can post without...

  • Last week in trailers: sexy La La Land, funny Godzilla and sadly Adam Sandler

    "Why, oh, why is Adam Sandler still making movies?" and other questions in this week's trailer round up. Let's do this. Sandy Wexler Let's quickly rip off this plaster. Adam Sandler is starring in Netflix original Sandy Wexler.  Watching the trailer for the first time, I thought it was the biopic of a poor soul who worked his whole life only for Adam Sandler to cement his legacy. The reality is sadder: this is a fictional story about an annoying talent manager whom everyone hates, but seems to do well anyway. After only two minutes, I was ready to rip out my ear drums if it...

  • Cyclone Dineo aftermath: cleanup begins in Mozambique, Zimbabwe

    Cyclone Dineo is no longer a threat to South Africa after the storm dissipated over Namibia this weekend. That doesn't mean it didn't have devastating effects for those in Mozambique, Botswana or Zimbabwe. A number of Twitter users this weekend took to the social network to publish images of the aftermath of Dineo, as the storm swept through their neighbourhoods. In total, at least seven people died as the result of the storm, with over 100 000 people affected in Mozambique alone. At least 20 houses have been damaged in South Africa. But numbers alone can't reflect the true damage of...

  • #DeleteUber 2.0: ex-Uber engineer details sexual harassment

    Less than a month after users boycotted Uber due to CEO Travis Kalanick's ties to US President Donald Trump, a former employee has sparked new outrage over a blog post detailing institutionalised sexism at the company. Susan J. Fowler, now an engineer at online payment company Stripe, left Uber last December. She is but one of many female engineers who left the company after human resources (HR) allegedly refused to deal with the inherent sexism in the workplace. In an essay posted Sunday, Fowler listed the many failings of both the HR department and the men she worked with. Fowler says she became aware of...

  • YouTube reportedly ditching long, unskippable ads

    YouTube's in-video advertising will undergo a transformation in the coming months, this according to a new report by Campaign. The report suggests that the Google-owned video powerhouse is looking at a new advertising strategy, and will ditch its 30-second unskippable ad format looking instead to more user-friendly, bite-sized ad snippets. The company has "decided to stop supporting 30-second unskippable ads as of 2018 and focus instead on formats that work well for both users and advertisers," according to a Google spokesman quoted by Campaign. According to a new report, YouTube will be ditching longer advertisements on its platform in favour of more...