News on Toast: What the heck is Kony 2012?
The world’s obsession with “Kony 2012″ explained, Apple releases a new iPad without a name, and Hollywood films turning teens to drink: The morning’s hot topics in bite-sized pieces just right for dunking.
iCan’tBelieveIt – new iPad has no name
The wait is over, the new Apple has dropped. Now we can all get over it and hopefully move on. Oh, we can’t? We still have to talk about it?
Sigh. OK then.
Just over an hour ago, hundreds of journalists and geeks rocked up at San Francisco’s Yerba Buena Centre, and tens of thousands around the world tuned in to liveblogs and Twitter feeds, to hear Apple announce its latest toy: “the new iPad”. Yes, that’s what they called it throughout the entire presentation. Well done, marketing team!
The new iPad has four new main features:
- A high resolution display which Apple says can display “text sharper than a newspaper”
- A better camera with face detection, autofocus and HD video recording
- Voice dictation at the touch of a button – tap it, speak and the iPad will automatically convert your words to text
- 4G LTE capability for super high speed internet that’s WAY faster than 3G
Pre orders for the new iPad start today, with the device going on sale on March 16. Prices start at $499 US.
>> Will you be rushing out to buy the new iPad? Are there any features you wish they’d included? Can you think of a better name for it?
Soooo… what the heck is Kony 2012?
This week on Twitter and Facebook the only thing more popular than that possum in the bakery has been “Kony 2012″.
If you haven’t yet been Tweeted this mysterious catchphrase or seen it on someone’s Facebook wall, you surely will.
For the unintiated: Kony 2012 is an activism campaign by American charity Invisible Children to highlight the atrocities of Ugandan despot and leader of the Lord’s Resistance Army Joseph Kony and have him arrested.
The campaign has been spearheaded by this 30 minute YouTube film currently rocketing around global social media:
It’s certainly moving stuff, and easy to see why Kony 2012 has gotten so much attention.
But whenever I’m asked to spread a message – be it political, social, whatever – I like to know exactly what the message is.
So before you rush off to buy a $30 “Kony action kit” from Invisible Children, you may wish to read some wider literature on the charity. Some critics have questioned IC’s spending practices, with its 2011 end of year statement showing that just 32 per cent of the almost $9 million it raised went to “direct services” in Uganda, and with its three chief executives paying themselves an average salary of $87,000.
Invisible Children has also come under fire for its over simplification of the Kony issue, for its seemingly colonialist approach to fixing the problem through US military intervention and for its apparent support of the Ugandan government and army, which many critics allege have themselves played a key role in maintaining the LRA’s dominance through the 1990s.
Many more have criticised the group for the distinct lack of Ugandan voices in the Kony 2012 film. As one critic put it: “It is hard to respect any documentary on northern Uganda where a five year-old white boy features more prominently than any northern Ugandan victim or survivor.”
Obviously Joseph Kony is a monster and should be arrested for the heinous crimes he has perpetrated through the LRA, and the Kony 2012 campaign has done an admirable job of bringing the issue to global attention.
And I’m all for people showing their support for an issue by putting on bracelets or sticking up protest posters – as long as they know the message they’re spreading.
>> Had you heard of Joseph Kony before the Kony 2012 video? What do you think of the campaign?
Hollywood turning teens to drink
Forget the popcorn and the choc-tops, teenagers at the movies these days are more likely to want a martini, the Daily Telegraph reports.
A new study in science journal Pediatrics has found a strong link between youth drinking and movies. The study suggests that films depicting drinking as cool or glamorous, like The Hangover and Sex and the City, have a lasting effect on teenagers who are likely to try to emulate their on screen idols.
I’d argue that Sex and the City 2 was so bad it would drive ANYONE to drink, but that’s just me.
The implication from this study is that fewer images of drinking in movies will lead to less teens hitting the bottle.
I agree that’s probably true, but where do you draw the line with which films can depict drinking and how much?
Obviously you don’t want Alvin and the Chipmunks slamming back tequila shots or the Muppets doing Jaegerbombs, but I don’t want to see Carrie and the gang drinking soda water either. Not to mention the fact you’d have to completely rewrite the plot of The Hangover and retitle it – and a film called “The Time We Drank Orange Juice in Vegas and Then Went to a Wedding” doesn’t sound quite as funny.
>> Should alcohol be banned from teenage films?
And there’s your News on Toast – join me tomorrow for more hot topics. In the meantime, have your say in the comments below!