| Teens In The UK Are Calling It: ‘Facebook Is Dead And Buried!’

Teens In The UK Are Calling It: ‘Facebook Is Dead And Buried’ ~ Business Insider.

This year marked the start of teenagers adopting other social networks instead of Facebook as their parents signed up for Zuckerberg‘s site in droves.

mark zuckerberg thumbs down facebook

Illustration: Ellis Hamburger

In a European Union-funded study on social media, the Department of Anthropology at University College London is running nine simultaneous 15-month ethnographic studies in seven countries to find out how teens were perceiving Facebook.

We read about what UK teens think on The Conversation:

What we’ve learned from working with 16-18 year olds in the UK is that Facebook is not just on the slide, it is basically dead and buried. Mostly they feel embarrassed even to be associated with it. Where once parents worried about their children joining Facebook, the children now say it is their family that insists they stay there to post about their lives. Parents have worked out how to use the site and see it as a way for the family to remain connected. In response, the young are moving on to cooler things.

Instead, four new contenders for the crown have emerged: Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and WhatsApp.

This is similar to what teens in the United States think about Facebook.



| Soldier worship blinds Britain to the grim reality of war!

Soldier worship blinds Britain to the grim reality of war ~

    • A Royal Marine’s murder of a wounded Afghan in his custody lays bare the truth of military campaigns.
    • With the official Remembrance Day ceremony closing in, and soldier worship about to hit its tedious annual peak, the public have been given an unexpected glimpse of war’s unsanitised face. A Royal Marine has been convicted of murdering a wounded Afghan in his custody. Two marines were acquitted.

      While the public has for 12 years been told otherwise, the Afghan occupation is not simply a case of good guys and bad guys. Nevertheless, tired references to “bad apples” will now flow. The Ministry of Defence will repeatedly and frantically highlight the supposed “good work” the troops have been doing in the smoking ruins of Afghanistan. A stock statement will be released by the MoD about military values and high standards of behaviour. Allegations of law-breaking, they will tell us, are investigated thoroughly and can result in disciplinary action up to and including court martial, discharge and prison. And all of this will obscure rather than address the issue.

      From the outset this episode has been written through with the brand of self-delusion that has come to typify the “good war”. The original arrest of seven marines in 2012, following the discovery of footage on a laptop, sparked an indignant Facebook campaign to “Support the 7 Royal Marine Commandos arrested for murder in Afghanistan“. To date, it has attracted 63,000 “likes”. If nothing else, this highlights how a section of society can leap to the defence of servicemen long before the facts are known.

      It is my view that Royal Marine commandos are the best light role infantry in the world – bar none. Bootnecks, as they are colloquially known, are capable, professional and robust soldiers. But I can say all this without once gushing about “heroes” and without ever once needing to shy away from an uncomfortable truth simply because it happens to concern soldiers.

      We should not feel compelled to point out that those brave men and women are fighting in Afghanistan to secure our safety every time the military is mentioned. First, because it is not true that they are; and second, because such blustering at the merest glimpse of camouflage clothing is an obvious and embarrassing capitulation to dogma.

      The question at the core of this is not how we can most tastefully play down criminal acts carried out by the services. The question we ought to be brave enough to ask is: why is there such surprise when atrocities occur? There is a belief in moralistic sections of the political left and the more dumbly macho sections of the political right that soldiers, as a rule, relish killing people. Both sides are wrong – a trained killer does not equate to mindless robot.

      To understand why an occupying soldier turns to vigilantism and murder, we can do worse than look at their daily experience, which can never be divorced from the over-arching political context. Killings like this most often occur when soldiers have lost a comrade or comrades. They lose comrades because they are in a war. Killings like these can reasonably expected to be carried out by all sides in any conflict.

      What radicalises soldiers then is not too far from what radicalises lone wolf killers, terror cells and drone strike orphans: the impact of policy on an individual and the people you care about. Marine A, now convicted, was a 39-year-old senior non-commissioned officer. He had done six tours of Afghanistan as an infantryman. He is likely to have experienced countless engagements and lost various friends in a failing war. This does not excuse his actions, but why should he and his fellow marines’ callous attitude to death, shown in the transcripts of the helmet camera recording of the event, be a surprise?

      When a political decision is taken that puts men who are primed for violence into a war, bad things will happen. This is another reason to make sure that war is the very last resort and not, as in the case of the post-9/11 wars, something that is engaged in lightly, in a spirit of hubris or in the pursuit of narrow interests.

      At its core, this is a problem at the political level, which can only be resolved or avoided at the political level. It does not diminish the responsibility of the killers to say the issue is more complex than bad apples letting the side down. The culture of irrational and uncritical soldier worship serves only to blind us to the realities of war and occupation – and this contrived, blinding effect, I have long suspected, is rather the point of lionising the military.

    • Royal Marine Commandos in Helmand province, Afghanistan
      ‘We should not feel compelled to point out that brave men and women are fighting in Afghanistan to secure our safety every time the military is mentioned.’ Photograph: Getty Images
    • _________________________________________________________________________
    • WAR_path_Peace2


| Retard TV presenter outrages by posing with lion she killed!

TV presenter causes outrage after posing with lion she killed ~  , New York, The Telegraph.

An American television presenter has prompted outrage by boasting online that she had killed a lion in South Africa!

An American television presenter has prompted outrage by boasting online that she had killed a lion in South Africa  Melissa Bachman after her “Incredible day in South Africa” Photo: TWITTER

Melissa Bachman, a keen hunter who makes programmes on theAmerican outdoors, posted a photograph on Facebook and Twitter of her holding a rifle and smiling beside the corpse of a male lion.

“Incredible day in South Africa,” the self-styled “hardcore huntress” said of her pursuits at the Maroi Conservancy, adding: “Stalked inside 60-yards on this beautiful male lion … what a hunt!”

A furious online reaction led Bachman to deactivate her Facebook and Twitter pages within hours. It also prompted an online petition asking the South African government to bar her from returning.

Bachman has posted many pictures on her Twitter feed of animals she has killed (TWITTER)

“She is an absolute contradiction to the culture of conservation this country prides itself on,” said Elan Burman of Cape Town, the author of the petition, which quickly gathered 3,000 signatures.

“You, lady, are what is wrong with the world,” said Richard Robinson of Maryland, who was among the signatories. “Take with no consequences. Shoot, kill, consume, destroy.

“You didn’t kill a lion, you stood behind a machine and pulled a little trigger, you pathetic, sad excuse of a human.”

While the African lion is rated “vulnerable” on the International Union for Conservation of Nature‘s Red List, it is not officially an endangered species. “The main threats to lions are indiscriminate killing,” said the organisation.

The photograph was in keeping with Ms Bachman’s past activities. Her official website displays pictures of her posing beside dead alligators, turkeys and bears among other quarry.

She was axed as a contestant on the National Geographic programme Ultimate Survival Alaska last year after 13,000 people signed a petition protesting against the inclusion of a “heartless trophy hunter”. Ms Bachman could not be contacted for comment on Friday.

Ricky Gervais, the British comedian, shared Ms Bachman’s comment “what a hunt!” on his own Twitter feed, adding: “Spot the typo”.



| Egypt Bloodbath: Rabaa and Nahda give birth to new victory sign!

Rabaa and Nahda give birth to new victory sign ~ Motasem A. Dalloul, MEMO.

Rabaa SignA sign of a hand with four fingers raised with the thumb closed is fast spreading as a profile picture among Facebook and Twitter users who reject the military coup in Egypt.


This sign became common after the dispersal the pro-Morsi supporters in the two protest camps, Rabaa Al-Adawiya and Al-Nahda Squares, in Cairo last Wednesday.

Administrators of several anti-coup web pages have called for all Facebook and Twitter users to use this sign to show their solidarity with the victims of the crackdown after more than one thousand protesters were killed and several thousands injured.

The origin of this sign, as many activists on social media have confirmed, is Turkey, which is the only country, along with Qatar, that officially and popularly oppose the military coup in Egypt. Its Prime Minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, strongly criticised the coup and the brutal massacres that were perpetrated in an attempt to suppress voices of dissent and opposition.

Initially, the sign was raised by several Turkish footballers in dug-outs after scoring goals. They said that this is a sign to show solidarity with the victims killed in Rabaa Al-Adawiya Square. The first player, it is said, who raised it is Emre Belözoglu. Supporters at various stadia and Turks who took to the streets in solidarity with the Egyptians soon began to raise the sign.

During a speech delivered on August 17 to mark the launch of an urban renovation project in Bursa, Prime Minister Erdogan saluted the crowds several times with this sign. From there on, the sign was adopted by international anti-coup activists.

Those activists called for all anti-coup Facebook and Twitter users to use it to demonstrate the scale of opposition to the military coup both within Egypt and abroad.


Rabaa SisiSome social media users have manipulated the Rabaa sign


Many activists now use the sign carrying a photo of Erdogan as their profile photo. Indeed some have added the sign to their own photos such as the prominent Saudi scholar, Sheikh Salman al-Awda, who is considered one of the main critics for the Saudi regime. Al-Awda has at least 1.3 million likes on his Facebook page and 3.4 million followers on Twitter.

In fact, no one has yet spoken about why the Turkish footballers chose this sign, but the reason may be the close convergence between the pronunciation of number four (Arbaa) and the name Rabaa in Arabic.

Erdogan, it is said expected that this sign would replace the traditional ‘V’ sign to represent both victory and solidarity.



| Just a Few Words, From God: On Iron!

Just a Few Words, From God: On Iron ~ Supererogatory.

Stars are powered by fusion; in their superhot cores, the lightest elements are pressed together, by almost unimaginable force, into heavier elements, unleashing furious bursts of energy, which we perceive as light, though like the fullness of the world, we can only physically capture, through our eyes, part of this output. As stars die, they seek, almost like living beings, to desperately fuse, out of heavier elements, still heavier elements, but their cause is doomed. They die.

Some unimaginably—the weightiest become black holes, disappearing from our horizons—some spectacularly—they implode and explode—and some sadly—fading away, into small and pathetic things. But through their deaths comes life. Yours and mine.   It is fusion, and specifically the fusion at the desperate end of a star’s lifespan, that produces the heavier elements, which in turn have rained down onto Earth from comets and comes into us from afar—needless to say, these elements, which include the elements necessary for our existence, do not come “from” the Earth, but from the cosmos around the Earth.


It is not terribly inaccurate thus to say: Life here began out there.  (When I first posted this to Facebook, a friend added: Iron has the highest binding energy per nucleon, making it the most stable. When stars are making bigger and bigger elements from fusion, they eventually generate iron. However, since iron is so stable, it actually takes more energy to fuse iron into a heavier element. At this point, the star is unable to produce more energy, and it eventually collapses and dies because of this. So that verse in Surat Hadid is additionally significant because Iron specifically is the ‘strongest’ element from the perspective of stellar evolution.)

And then I came across the 25th verse of Surat al-Hadid, which includes this passage: ‘…And we sent down iron.’ Just like that. One simple verb, into which centuries of human knowledge are collapsed. God has spoken Truth. The Universe is His imagination, just as you and I are. Be and it is. And we are. The verb, “anzala” (anzalna, ‘We make descend’) is the same verb, from the same root, as we use for revelation—as in His Word, coming down to us via Muhammad, peace be upon him.

He sent down iron. 

Muhammad Iqbal, the great South Asian philosopher, said the Qur’an includes 3 types of signs (in Arabic, ayahs): The verses themselves (ayahs), historical evidences, and the natural world. Literally then iron is a sign of His Will and His Presence, just as Revelation is, and both came to us from outside and beyond the world, and it is to that realm which we cannot perceive, but which we feel especially in this month, that we are called back. No matter what you are going through right now, and maybe you’re in a bad place, remember this.

He made you not for this place, but for another. And He calls us back.

truth 01

May we be joined in the gardens beyond description and entered into the company of those we love and those we admire, and may we be given peace, may we be healed of all our hurts, forgiven all our wrongs, elevated beyond ourselves, and given fullness and fulfillness in His shade. On these nights, when the heavens are apparent to us—step outside the mosque, and look up, just for a moment—think of what he sends down for us, and how this speaks to His creation of us, but what comes down comes down only for this reason: For us to ascend.


no terrorism in islam1


| NSA Joke: US Military Intervene over Facebook Event!

NSA Joke: US Military Intervene over Facebook EventJudith HorchertSpiegel Online.

As a joke, a German man recently invited some friends for a walk around a top secret NSA facility. But the Facebook invitation soon had German federal police knocking at his door. They had been alerted by the American authorities.

Normally, Daniel Bangert’s Facebook posts tend to be of the serious variety. The 28-year-old includes news items and other bits of interest he encounters throughout the day. “I rarely post funny pictures,” he says.

Recently, though, he decided to liven up his page with something a bit more amusing — and decided to focus on the scandal surrounding the vast Internet surveillanceperpetrated by the US intelligence service NSA. He invited his friends on an excursion to the top secret US facility known as the Dagger Complex in Griesheim, where Bangert is from.

He described the outing as though it were a nature walk. He wrote on Facebook that its purpose was to undertake “joint research into the threatened habitat of NSA spies.” He added: “If we are really lucky, we might actually see a real NSA spy with our own eyes.” He suggested that those interested in coming should bring along their cameras and “flowers of all kinds to improve the appearance of the NSA spies’ habitat.”

Perhaps not surprisingly, not many of his friends showed much interest in the venture. But the authorities did. Just four days after he posted the invitation, his mobile phone rang at 7:17 a.m. It was the police calling to talk about his Facebook post.

‘I Couldn’t Believe It’

Bangert’s doorbell rang at almost the exact same time. The police on the telephone told him to talk with the officers outside of his door. Bangert quickly put on a T-shirt — which had a picture of NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden on it along with the words “Team Edward” — and answered the door. His neighbor was outside too so as not to miss the fun.

The police wanted to know more about what exactly Bangert had in mind. “I couldn’t believe it. I thought: What? They are coming for such nonsense?”

Bangert says he answered all of the questions truthfully, saying that, yes, his intention was that of heading out to watch the spies. “The officers did smirk a bit,” he notes.

How, though, did the police get wind of Bangert’s planned “nature” walk? A spokeswoman for the police in nearby Darmstadt told SPIEGEL ONLINE that the US Military Police had found the Facebook post and passed it along to German officials. The Military Police are responsible for security within the Dagger Complex, but outside the fence, it is the Germans who are in charge.

Not long later, Bangert got another call asking him to report to Central Commissariat 10 of the German federal police. They too then sent an officer to his home. “The wanted to know if I had connections with (anarchist groups) or other violent people,” Bangert says. He told the officers that he didn’t, repeating over and over that he “just wanted to go for a walk.”

Ignoring the Police

The officers, says Bangert, were unimpressed and called him a “smart aleck,” before hinting strongly that he should obtain a demonstration permit before he embarked on his outing. They then told Bangert not to post anything about their visit on the web.

Bangert took their first piece of advice, registering his “demonstration” even though, as he says, “it wasn’t supposed to be one.” But he ignored the police’s second suggestion and reported on their visit on his Facebook page. “How much more proof do you need,” he wrote. “Everyone says that they aren’t affected. But then I invite people for a walk and write obvious nonsense in the invitation and suddenly the federal police show up at my home.”

The police spokeswoman sought to play down the incident. The officers from Central Commissariat 10 are responsible for public demonstrations, she said. And the fact that the American Military Police reported the Facebook post isn’t surprising either, she said. The police, she noted, usually only learn of publicly announced Facebook parties when they are notified by those affected.

More Walks in the Future?


Nevertheless, news of the incident spread rapidly via Twitter and blogs, and the local media reported on it as well. “My grandma was angry with me,” Bangert says. “She said: ‘You have to be careful or you’ll get sent to jail.'”

He wasn’t sent to jail, of course. But the added interest in his invitation meant that some 70 people gathered on Saturday for the NSA safari in Griesheim — along with two police cars, one in front and one behind. “Some members of the group tried to get the NSA spies to come out of their building,” Bangert wrote on Facebook afterwards. Unfortunately, they didn’t see “any real NSA spies.” But they had a good time nonetheless — to the point that many suggested another walk just like it.

So is he planning a repeat? “I didn’t say that and I didn’t write it anywhere,” Bangert replies. The smart aleck.

Daniel Bangert just wanted to go for a walk.Zoom

Daniel Bangert

Daniel Bangert just wanted to go for a walk.



| Mursi calls for coalition government as army ultimatum expires!

Mursi calls for coalition government as army ultimatum expires ~ Al-Akhbar.

Egyptian protesters wave the national flag outside the Republican Guards headquarters in Cairo on 3 July 2013, during a demonstration against President Mohammed Mursi and the Muslim Brotherhood. (Photo: AFP- Gianluigi Guercia)

Published Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Updated at 6:05pm: Tens of thousands of Egyptians poured onto the streets on Wednesday, as a controversial army deadline to impose a political solution expired, after a defiant President Mohammed Mursi vowed to see out his term regardless.

At 5:00pm local time, half an hour after the ultimatum, the Egyptian army had still not issued a statement, leaving Egyptians unsure of what to expect from the situation.

In a statement on Facebook, Mursi’s office declared that “The presidency envisions the formation of a consensus coalition government to oversee the next parliamentary election.”

Egyptian troops were securing the central Cairo studios of state television as the deadline neared, the head of state television and radio said.

Shoukry Abu Amira said in remarks carried by state newspaper al-Ahramthat Republican Guards had been securing and protecting the building for the past several days.

As the deadline approached when the army high command is expected to step in and reorder Egypt’s political institutions, security sources said staff not involved in working on live broadcasts had left the building.

Amira denied reports that the studios had been evacuated.

Security sources have said that armored vehicles are patrolling the streets outside the building.

The interior ministry warned that police would respond firmly to any violence after a week of bloodshed – which has now killed almost 50 people – intensified as Mursi supporters and opponents again squared off overnight.

Mursi’s opponents accuse him of having betrayed the revolution by concentrating power in the hands of the Muslim Brotherhood and its Islamist allies and of sending the economy into a freefall.

His supporters say he inherited many problems, and that he should be allowed to complete his term, which runs until 2016.

As the clock ticked down on the army’s deadline for Mursi to meet the “people’s demands” by 4:30pm, General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi held talks with top brass, a source close to the army told AFP.

Sisi, who is also the defense minister, later went into a meeting with opposition leader Mohamed el-Baradei, Coptic Christian Patriarch Tawadros II and Sheikh Ahmad al-Tayeb, the grand imam of al-Azhar, Sunni Islam’s highest seat of learning.

A spokesman for the Muslim Brotherhood said on Twitter that the political wing of the group, the Freedom and Justice Party, had declined to attend the meeting.

The crunch talks came as thousands of protesters opposed to Mursi massed in Cairo’s Tahrir Square, epicenter of the 2011 uprising, after the Islamist leader delivered a televised address to the nation rejecting calls for him to step down.

The army will issue a statement after the deadline passes, said the military source, without giving a specific time.

Some of Mursi’s opponents have welcomed the army’s 48-hour ultimatum, which was followed by a spate of resignations from his cabinet.

But others accuse the generals of preparing a return to the unpopular military rule of the months between the overthrow of former president Hosni Mubarak in February 2011 and Mursi’s swearing-in on June 30 last year.

Government daily al-Ahram reported details of the army’s demands.

Its plan provides for an interim administration, of up to one year, which would include the head of the supreme constitutional court and a senior army figure.

The controversial constitution, approved by Mursi’s Islamist allies in December, would be suspended for up to 12 months while a new one was drawn up and put to a referendum, before presidential and legislative elections.

The opposition June 30 Front coalition said it was ready to join urgent talks on the negotiated transition called for by the army.

(AFP, Reuters, Al-Akhbar)




| Ad brainwash: 15 biggest LIES ever told by major advertisers!

The 15 Biggest Lies Ever Told By Major Advertisers ~ Laura Stampler,  Business Insider,


As if you didn’t know …
Ads brainwash you into becoming non-thinking consumers!


Kim Kardashian Sketchers Shape-Ups Ad Super Bowl XLV


Advertising doesn’t have a reputation for being the most honest profession. 

While most people know that banner ads from companies you’ve never heard of that promise to melt away “20 pounds in a week, no exercise required!” should be taken with a grain of salt, some huge and highly respected brands are also guilty of telling their consumers major lies to make sales.

You’d have to be pretty dumb to believe some of them. Skechers once claimed that by simply putting on a pair of their shoes you’d magically get buns of steel. Others  went so far as to cite fake studies to prove their false selling points.

Here are the 15 biggest offenders.

15. That Dr. Koch’s Cure All cured all.

Starting in 1919, Dr William Frederick Koch created a medication with a drug that he claimed could cure “all human ills, including tuberculosis” and cancer.

But when doctors tested the drug in 1948, doctors found that glyoxylide, the drug in question, contained little more than distilled water. Koch treated cancer patients, many of whom died, primarily with the drug.

Although the FDA was vocal in their disgust with Koch, they couldn’t find enough evidence to press charges. Koch ended up fleeing to Rio de Janeiro in the late ’40s.


14. That Classmates.com will find your classmates.

Before there was Facebook, people were chomping at the bit to sign up for Classmates.com and contact their old high school friends and flames. The site eventually introduced a “Gold” membership, which allowed members to email their old friends.

Anthony Michaels was lured into the Gold membership after Classmates.com sent him an email saying that an old friend was trying to contact him. That turned out to be a marketing ploy, so Michaels filed a class action lawsuit for false advertising.

Classmates.com ended up paying $9.5 million — $3 per subscriber — in 2010.

13. That Airborne cures colds.

Airborne — marketed as “the one designed by a school teacher” — got failing grades when it became public that there were no studies supporting its claims to kill germs and bacteria that caused flues and colds.

“It was so bad,” David Schardt, a senior nutritionist with the Center for Science in the Public Interest, told NPR.

In fact, Airborne had as much effect on a cold as a placebo or a Vitamin C pill.

Airborne had to pay $23.3 million in a class-action lawsuit.

12. That certain pills are “scientifically proven” to increase the size of a certain part of the male body.

Both Extenze and Enzyte falsely promised to give men a “big new swing of confidence.”

Extenze ended up paying a $6 million settlement in 2010, and Enzyte’s Steve Warshak was sentenced to 25 years in prison after he over-billed his customers.

11. That L’Oreal’s face cream will make you look as good as Photoshop can.

11. That L'Oreal's face cream will make you look as good as Photoshop can.

The U.K.’s Advertising Standards Authority banned this ad for being “misleadingly exaggerated” due to excessive photoshopping.

The same goes for this Julia Roberts Lancome ad.

The same goes for this Julia Roberts Lancome ad.


And Twiggy’s spot for Olay.

And Twiggy's spot for Olay.


11. That electric shocks cure AIDS and cancer.

Dr. Clark’s Zapper made a series of ridiculous claims that its supposed parasite-killing zapper could cure cancer and AIDS.

Hulda Clark’s book, “The Cure for all Cancers,” states: “All cancers are alike. They are all caused by a parasite. A single parasite! It is the human intestinal fluke. And if you kill this parasite, the cancer stops immediately.”

The Swiss-based company agreed to pay U.S. citizens refunds in 2004, and the director of enforcement at the FDA called the device “fraudulent.”

10. That gas is cleaner if it’s “crystal clear.”

Amoco launched a multi-million dollar campaign in the ’90s claiming that its gas was more environmentally friendly because it was “crystal clear” rather than a murky brown.

According to Mental Floss, “at the time the country was going through a clear revolution.” Even Pepsi made a clear drink.

But the claim was unsubstantiated by any factual evidence and, therefore, Amoco was slapped with a fine by the FTC.

at the time the country was going through a clear revolution.

Read the full text here: http://www.mentalfloss.com/blogs/archives/17036#ixzz2DMettjz9
–brought to you by mental_floss

9. That wearing sneakers makes you skinny.

Skechers‘ used celebrities like Kim Kardashian to shill its Shape-up sneakers, claiming that you only had to tie your shoes to lose weight.

The FTC disagreed, and the shoe company ended up paying a $40 million settlement.

This ruling shouldn’t have come as a surprise. Just a year before, also working under the assumption that people wanted to dress for work rather than go to the gym, Reebok claimed that its EasyTone shoes and clothing would automatically make people lose weight.

It ended up settling for $25 million, and everyone who bought the product was entitled to a refund.

8. That Hoover would fly people to the U.S. for free if they bought a vacuum. (Read the outcome below.)

8. That Hoover would fly people to the U.S. for free if they bought a vacuum. (Read the outcome below.)

In 1992, Hoover promised Brits two free round-trip flights to the U.S. if they spent just £100 on any Hoover item.

Sounds too good to be true? That’s because it was.

When Hoover found out that it was unprepared to provide consumers with the free flights, it extended, rather than call off the campaign. Consumers wanting their prize then had to contact the company and send form after form after form to claim their tickets. Hoover hoped that they’d tire people out before they’d realize that the plane tickets didn’t exist.

It lead to a parliamentary inquiry and cost Hoover £48 million.

7. That One A Day vitamins prevent prostate cancer.

Bayer had to pay hefty fines for claiming that one of its vitamin ingredients, Selenium, prevented prostate cancer.

In fact, studies have shown that Selenium not only fails to prevent the cancer in healthy men but can increase the risk of diabetes.

Bayer had to pay $3.3 million in Oregon, California, and Illinois for corrective advertising.

6. That Rice Krispies will save your children from Swine Flu.

In 2009, Kellogg’s Rice Krispies claimed, in big letters, that the cereal “Now helps support your child’s IMMUNITY” by providing 25 percent of daily recommended antioxidants, vitamins, and nutrients.

The FTC told Kellogg to halt these “dubious” and unproven claims. Kellogg’s removed the wording on the boxes and explained that “While science shows that these antioxidants help support the immune system, given the public attention on H1N1, the company decided to make this change.”

One year before, Kellogg also got in trouble with the FTC for saying that Frosted Mini-Wheats increased kids’ attentiveness by nearly 20 percent — without the studies to back it up.

5. That Nutella is good for you.

For those who subscribed to President Reagan’s “ketchup is a vegetable” belief system, Nutella created ads that claimed that its delicious, hazelnut spread is actually a nutritious part of a kid’s breakfast.

Still, a mother of a 4-year-old sued, and Nutella settled for $3 million. People who bought Nutella between January 1, 2008, and February 3, 2012, could get reimbursed up to $20.

4. Another big advertising lie is that fast food looks as good in real life as it does in ads. Here’s an advertised versus actual Whopper:

The same goes for Taco Bell …

… and McDonald’s.

2. That Listerine cures everything from dandruff to cuts and bruises.

2. That Listerine cures everything from dandruff to cuts and bruises.

It couldn’t. Obviously.

Listerine claimed to be a cure-all since 1921, remedying colds and sore throats as well as acting as an after-shave tonic.

It wasn’t until 1975 that the Federal Trade Commission ruled the ads misleading and slapped the company with a $10 million fine to pay for corrective advertising stating: “contrary to prior advertising, Listerine will not help prevent colds or sore throats or lessen their severity.”

Then Listerine said that it was as effective as floss.

Then Listerine said that it was as effective as floss.

BillTsiakarosCreative via Flickr

This claim also proved misleading.

A U.S. District Judge ordered Pfizer, Listerine’s maker at the time, to pull the ads in 2005.

Although a 2010 class action suit against Listerine for the false advertising was thrown out for going “overboard.” The ads were pulled quickly and, therefore, weren’t exposed to a lot of people.

1. The classic lie, of course, is that cigarettes are healthy. This old ad for “Asthma Cigarettes” claimed to reduce bronchial irritation. “Not recommended for children under 6,” though.

1. The classic lie, of course, is that cigarettes are healthy. This old ad for "Asthma Cigarettes" claimed to reduce bronchial irritation. "Not recommended for children under 6," though.

Even Santa said cigarettes cured throat sores.

Even Santa said cigarettes cured throat sores.


ad hom 1


| Hasbara Blues: Israel’s blind eye on social media backfires!

Israel’s blind eye on social media backfires ~ Yara al-Wazir,  AL ARABIYA.


Israeli soldier Mor Ostrovski posted this image on Instagram.
Yara al-Wazir – AL ARABIYA

Over the past two weeks, Israel’s image has been smeared because of the use of social media, both by international activists and by one of its own soldiers. Joining the viral craze of the “Harlem Shake,” and the exponentially growing Instagram application, online activity is proving that it is not just Facebook that can affect governments.

Yara al-Wazir

Israeli soldier’s Instagram photo

The emergence of a photograph that soldier Mor Ostrovski posted on Instagram serves as a reminder of the power that social media has on public opinion. The Israeli government is no stranger to using social media to try to polish its image, with several officials having accounts in multiple languages to reach out to the public.

However, it seems that the puppet masters are losing control of their puppets. The photograph depicts a crosshair pointing to the back of presumably a Palestinian child’s head. The photograph is a reminder of the cruel cycle of barbarity that the military occupation breeds.

As distasteful and shocking as it is, it is not the first time that the Israeli Defense Forces have had to deal with a dent in its public-relations campaign. Images of Mohamed al-Durrah being shot as his father attempted to shield him still resonate in my mind, despite being eight years old when I saw them.

“Harlem Shake” for Palestine

At the opposite end of the world, just a few hours away from Ostrovski’s hometown of Tampa, Florida, a group of activists in Brooklyn, New York, shook their messages of resistance to the viral theme of the “Harlem Shake.”

Traditionally, it features people dancing frantically to DJ Baauer’s song of the same name. The activist group Existence is Resistance jumped on this craze to communicate the plight of Palestinians to the world.

The placards held by the dancers in the activists’ video show solidarity with hunger strikers. The video also calls for justice, basic human rights such as an integrated road system, and a system that allows one to see their family freely.

Israel’s double-edged sword against anonymity

One notable discrepancy between the video and the photograph is the anonymity of the producers. Ostrovski’s Instagram account was public at the time he posted dozens of photos documenting his life in the military and resentment towards Arabs, until it was taken down on Feb. 19. However, the activists in the video shield their faces with the traditional symbol of resistance, the kuffiyeh.

Whether wearing it was intentional to hide their identities, or if it was symbolic to emphasize the lifestyle of resistance led by the activists, it does not change Israel’s notoriety in monitoring online activity.

The Israeli government has a history of doing so, and using the information found for just about everything, including whether or not to allow in tourists. Thus, it is somewhat convenient that a blind eye is turned when its own soldiers act “against the IDF’s spirit and values,” as described in a statement to YNet.

The few activists who are allowed into the country admit to wiping their digital footprint, deleting their Twitter accounts, changing their names on Facebook, and replacing their names with a pseudonym on their personal blogs. Since it is clear that online presence is monitored, why did the IDF not spot this activity from within?

Making the military cool again

The IDF has tried many tactics to encourage young people to serve for periods longer than the conscription law requires. Letting its soldiers post photographs of themselves smoking cannabis and ‘enjoying’ military life may be just another tactic.

For many, serving in the military is a box they need to tick on university applications. The IDF has gone to great lengths to entice people to join it. In July 2007, the Israeli Consulate partnered with Maxim Magazine in the United States to print borderline-pornographic images of former female military officers. It described the idea as a “creative solution” to their image problem.

A job that entails playing with guns and rifles, and smoking illegal substances while getting paid in a country with soaring youth-unemployment rates, would certainly look more appealing than playing cards to pass time as one waits for a call-back from a job interview.

Social media is a thin rope, and users must tread lightly. In this case, turning a blind eye has backfired on the IDF, but that is merely because the photograph was exposed.

The fact is that it depicts the reality that Palestinians face every day, and the very thought of wanting to change this reality on the ground keeps activists from getting on the ground, making them resort to social media to fight the system. However, online awareness is just one step in the ladder to have a free and just Palestine.

(Yara al Wazir is a humanitarian activist. She is the founder of The Green Initiative ME and a developing partner of Sharek Stories. She can be followed and contacted on twitter @YaraWazir)



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| Quit Posting Facebook Copyright/Privacy Messages — It’s a Hoax!

Quit Posting Facebook Copyright/Privacy Messages — It’s a Hoax ~
, Time.


Have you seen the one where you’re supposed to post a legal notice to your Facebook profile to ensure the social networking titan can’t use anything you’ve written without your permission?

No, doing so won’t accomplish anything legally speaking, and yes, it’s a hoax — an old one that already made the rounds earlier this year according to urban legend tracker Snopes.com.

I scraped a copy of the message off my own Facebook NewsFeed this afternoon (one of my friends had posted it), and other TIME editors confirmed seeing it in their feeds this morning. Here it is, in full:

In response to the new Facebook guidelines, I hereby declare that my copyright is attached to all of my personal details, illustrations, graphics, comics, paintings, photos, and videos, etc. (as a result of the Berner Convention). For any and all commercial use of the above my written consent is required in every instance.

(Those reading this may copy and paste this text on their Facebook walls. This will place them under protection of copyright laws. By the present communiqué, I hereby notify Facebook that it is strictly forbidden to disclose, copy, distribute, disseminate, or take any other action against me on the basis of this profile and/or its contents. The aforementioned prohibited actions also apply to employees, students, agents, and/or any staff under Facebook’s direction or control. The content of this profile is private and confidential information. The violation of my privacy is punishable by law (UCC 1 1-308-308 1-103 and the Rome Statute).

Facebook is now an open capital entity. All members are recommended to publish a notice like this, or if you prefer, then you may copy and paste this version. If you do not publish a statement at least once, you will be allowing tacitly the use of elements such as your photos, as well as the information contained in your profile status updates

The idea seems to be that by posting this, you can somehow override the privacy strictures you agreed to when you signed up for Facebook. Let’s be clear: You can’t. It’s that simple. Posting such messages, whatever you’ve read about your rights and the power of self-declared legalese, will simply clutter up your timeline and annoy your friends. If you have a problem with Facebook’s privacy policies, you can either stick it out and lobby for Facebook to amend its terms, or you can quit Facebook.

Part of the appeal behind this particular version of the hoax lies in its citation of the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC), Section 1-308, which supposedly confers certain legal privileges if you drop it somewhere in the vicinity of your signature. In short, it doesn’t, and it certainly doesn’t protect you on Facebook. The only thing that’ll protect you on Facebook is you, in other words — taking care not to post anything you’d rather stay private.

Perhaps “hoax” is too strong a word. Sometimes these things are just viral mistakes — someone taking a well-intentioned misunderstanding and driving it viral (though that’s often also a definition for “conspiracy theories”). People pick it up thinking they’re immunizing themselves with, as Snopes puts it, a “legal talisman.” No such thing exists. The person who devised this particular message may have been going for viral clutter, or they may simply have been misinformed.