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All posts tagged "politics"

  • Twitter’s flawed notion of news and public interest could kill us all [Opinion]

    In September this year, North Korea's foreign minister Ri Yong Ho claimed that the US had declared war on the country because of something US President Donald Trump had tweeted. "If echoes thoughts of Little Rocket Man, they won't be around much longer!" Trump wrote. Twitter users were outraged, declaring the tweet in clear violation of the platform's rule against threatening violence. North Korea interpreted it in the same way. Twitter's response? That the tweet was newsworthy and in the public interest, and therefore deserved to stay up. Now, two months later, Twitter is doubling down on this position by elaborating on...

  • #ZumaQandA: DA walks out of Parliament after verbal scuffle

    South Africa may have expected a relatively smooth question and answer session between President Jacob Zuma and the rest of Parliament today, after the EFF's absence from the House. But, nope. The Q&A session, conducted Thursday afternoon, required the president to answer a number of questions posed by member of the House, including rising poverty, the appointment of a SAPS national commissioner, and climate change. President Jacob #Zuma is at the National Assembly to field oral questions. #ZumaQandA Questions to the President: pic.twitter.com/WkmOaZU5Cd — SA Gov News (@SAgovnews) November 2, 2017 But DA leader Mmusi Maimane had another question in mind. Posing a query regarding...

  • #CabinetShuffle: axed Blade Nzimande, nuclear deals and President Zuma memes

    Oh, but it's a busy news day in South Africa folks. President Jacob Zuma, on the back of appointing a new board for the SABC, has reshuffled his cabinet once again. The news broke Tuesday morning after the Presidency issued a brief press release. Ministry of Higher Education and Training Blade Nzimande was one of the more notable scalps, replaced by David Mahlobo The presser is copied in below: After careful consideration, I have decided to make the following changes to the National Executive; Professor Hlengiwe Mkhize is the Minister of Higher Education and Training Ms Ayanda Dlodlo is the Minister of...

  • Watch: Uganda’s politicians clash in Parliament in violent viral video

    If you thought the EFF being thrown out of Parliament was spectacular, this video of Uganda's Parliament this week will likely change those perceptions. The politicians gathered in Kampala to discuss an important amendment to the Constitution: adjusting the presidential age limit beyond 75-years of age. This would give current leader, 73-year-old Yoweri Museveni, another possible term in office. Museveni has been the Ugandan leader for over three-decades. To add to the mood, Speaker of the House Rebecca Kadaga requested that the opposition be removed from the chambers deeming their attire unacceptable. "I know sometimes people enjoy colours, but let me call on...

  • Ted Cruz likes porn video on Twitter, trends worldwide

    Republican senator Ted Cruz was the laughing stock of Twitter on Tuesday, after the politician's Twitter account liked a pornographic video from another account. The account in question, the aptly-named @SexuallPosts, posted a video to the social network featuring two women and a man engaging in sexual activities. While over 520 people liked the post, Cruz was among the most influential with over three-million followers. "Thanks for watching ted," @SexuallPosts tweeted, taking full advantage of the blunder. It also changed its bio to this gem: "Follow for the Same Porn @TedCruz Watches." Twitter users soon noticed the unashamed like, which remained on Cruz's...

  • Elon Musk: WW3 will be caused by AI, not North Korea’s nukes

    Tesla and SpaceX founder Elon Musk isn't shy when suggesting that robots and artificial intelligence (AI) will lead to humanity's demise. But according to a new tweet, he doesn't believe that North Korea will be much of a threat, if at all. Citing Russia President Vladimir Putin's stance on artificial intelligence -- and the benefits for nations mastering the new technology -- Musk simply retweeted: "It begins". China, Russia, soon all countries w strong computer science. Competition for AI superiority at national level most likely cause of WW3 imo. — Elon Musk (@elonmusk) September 4, 2017 "China, Russia, soon all countries w strong...

  • Bell Pottinger ousted from PR body but South Africa isn’t happy just yet

    UK-based public relations and marketing agency Bell Pottinger has been expelled from an industry trade body after its business with the Gupta-owned Oakbay Capital was found to bring "PR and communications industry into disrepute". This comes after a complaint lodged by the Democratic Alliance in July prompted an investigation by the Public Relations and Communications Association (PRCA). The news also signals Bell Pottinger's removal from the PRCA for at least five years. PRCA announces expulsion of Bell Pottinger | Newsroom PRCA https://t.co/uuJsqyOJav — PRCA (@PRCA_UK) September 4, 2017 "Bell Pottinger has brought the PR and communications industry into disrepute with its actions, and...

  • Twitter uses #EFFFacts to both mock and praise party

    The EFF has long been the ruling party of Twitter, marketing itself well to the youth on the platform. One need only look at followers to recognise the popularity: leader Julius Malema has over 1.5-million followers, as opposed to DA leader Mmusi Maimane's 646 000, and President Jacob Zuma's 429 000. It's thus no surprise how often the party trends nationally, but it's not always positive. Thursday morning, #EFFFacts was trending in third place, ostensibly coined to make fun of everything for which the party gets credited. The first tweet seems to have come from user @bslekgoathi1. "Did you know that EFF members are the producers...

  • #G20: Here’s what the web thought of the global summit

    The G20 (or Group of Twenty) is an annual forum for the governments of 20 major economies to discuss policy issues around international financial stability. This year's summit was held in Hamburg, Germany, and was notable for a myriad of reasons -- including US President Donald Trump's debut at the summit, his first meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, and a spate of violent protests that shook the city. Naturally, social media had a lot to say about all of it. The handshakes Donald Trump is notorious for his aggressive handshakes, in which he asserts dominance by yanking the other's hand towards him. Due...

  • South Africa’s politicians react to Secret Ballot ruling with subtweets

    The Secret Ballot (or #SecretBallot) ruling has come and gone but the reaction from politicians are only now filtering through social media. To clarify, Chief Justice Mogoeng has ruled that Baleka Mbete does in fact have power to declare a secret ballot during the motion of no confidence against President Zuma. Previously she cited the law as a limiting factor. For some, this is a clear win for South Africa's justice system, but it also now puts emphasis on Mbete -- she can now declare a secret ballot, or choose not to. As for South Africa's other politicians, the ruling was a...

  • Dubai the Beloved Country: South Africa responds to #GuptaEmails on Twitter

    Yesterday, The Sunday Times and City Press revealed a series of emails between the Gupta family, some of their trusted lieutenants and President Jacob Zuma's son Duduzane that show just how tight the Guptas' grip on South Africa is. Some of the emails show how the Guptas were sent CVs of potential ministers before their appointments, paid for government officials' luxury trips to Dubai, and advised the ANC Youth League on how to respond to media questions. They also revealed President Zuma's desire to make Dubai his "second home," and how he drafted letters to the crown prince of Abu Dhabi and the prime minister of...

  • ‘Sunflower worth more than a human life’: #Coligny trends in South Africa as accused granted bail

    #Coligny is the hashtag currently dominating Twitter in South Africa, not #MondayMotivation. The farming town in the North West has for the latter weeks of April, and the early days of May been embroiled in a simmering cultural, racial and judicial showdown. Two farmers, who were accused of killing a 16-year-old boy caught stealing sunflowers from their farm, were granted bail in the region's magistrates court Monday. The boy, who the farmers were reportedly transporting to the police station, allegedly jumped from the bakkie they were travelling in, and broke his neck. Eyewitnesses however suggest that the boy was pushed. The incident...

  • John Oliver, Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner probably won’t have dinner together soon

    Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner -- two White House residents that you've probably heard of, but have no idea what they actually do. That's the message the latest episode of John Oliver's Last Week Tonight highlighted this weekend. As President Donald Trump's daughter and son-in-law respectively, Ivanka and Jared have been given fairly significant jobs without actually being elected. They're effectively Donald Trump's shoulder angels, with Ivanka taking a formal "assistant to the president" tag, while Kushner... well, the actual President, it seems. For a man who "can't even get nepotism right", Oliver quips, Donald Trump isn't devoid of criticism in this...

  • The most Instagram-famous world leader isn’t who you think

    When considering world leaders on social media, it's usually Twitter or Facebook that first comes to mind. US President Donald Trump has made waves with his sweeping tweets about foreign policy, and New Zealand Prime Minister Bill English caused an uproar when he put spaghetti and pineapple on his pizza. But over the past five years, world leaders have increasingly decided that Instagram is as worthy a contender for politics as any other platform. After all, a picture is worth a thousand words. A recent study by Burson-Marsteller looked at the way politicians around the world communicate via the photo- and video-sharing platform, and the results aren't as predictable...

  • 15 South African politicians worth following on Twitter [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. Social media has evolved rapidly over the past 15 years, becoming an essential tool for many rather than a mere curio. In fact, Twitter has gained a reputation as the leading news and entertainment source for many around the world. With that (and our current political climate) in mind, we take a look at some of the South...