Tag Archives: Facebook

Trying to describe South Africa without ‘overkill’

The novel I am writing has its opening scene in Cape Town on the day Mandela was released from prison. This manuscript is my project for the masters degree in creative writing programme at Auckland University in New Zealand. My protagonist, Ruth, is a young South African, and Chinese in appearance. She does not know, among…

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EFF/DA/ANC/Agang: Same mess, different party

“Power belongs to the people until they vote, then they are represented.” This is the time of pledges and hope. A time when misogynists are promising to uphold women’s rights, homophobes championing LGBTI rights, racists speaking about the struggle and xenophobes talking Pan-Africanism. A time when you realise who really shares your views and who…

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On voluntary tech servitude

I’m one of the many Android users who recently installed the Blackberry Messenger (BBM) application on their phone. Big deal. Doing this as I did, however, on the day Germany and Brazil were introducing a draft resolution on the Right to Privacy in the Digital Age at the UN General Assembly, I found myself confronting…

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Beeld’s irresponsible journalism leads to irresponsible conversation

Let’s talk about the front page of the Beeld newspaper today and the way journalists need to be held accountable for the kind of conversation they inspire. The cover story in the paper is about a father who was upset about the relationship his daughter was having — he then went ahead and shot his…

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Facebook: A life laid out in linear form

Newborn babies have started appearing on my Facebook news feed, lovingly cradled by people that not too long ago (it seems) were holding bottles of cheap vodka with such tender care, playing disastrously drunken games of table tennis together, still in their first year of university, innocent and unaffected, with delusions of adulthood. I recently…

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FHM to blame for corrective rape ‘joke’

Here are some simple rules, people of the world who have jobs. If you work for a food manufacturer, don’t post something about food hygiene. If you work for a media organisation, don’t post something prejudicial. If you work for a woman’s magazine, don’t post something sexist. It’s not brain surgery. Yet, for some people…

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Facebook’s ‘other’ gender problem

By Gcobani Qambela I have always kept the “About” me section on my Facebook very minimal. But recently I decided to update it and fill it up a little. I was shocked when I got to the icon on “gender” to find that it offered only two options for me to choose from and those…

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The slow descent into social media’s superficiality

I think I know why social media is good for everyone. I just think I do, but don’t really. Besides being a vehicle for sparking Arab Springs, social media is first with the news and enhances your brand if you’re a journalist, editor, social commentator or political analyst. In fact if you’re none of these…

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The online world is not the story of South Africa

We live in an age where real-time information is very accessible owing to the internet and social media networks. We hear people’s opinions on almost every major story as it happens as can be witnessed in the coverage of the Oscar Pistorius case. This has led to the increasing reference of social media networks in…

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Prejudice, racism and entertainment

“South Africans here in New Zealand have a reputation for being aggressive — especially the Afrikaners,” groaned Mark, a fellow English-speaking South African, over a beer. “Why Afrikaners?” I asked. He shrugged his shoulders. “They arrive here with a huge chip on their shoulder, walk into our workshop demanding a WOF for their car and…

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