Church set ablaze in Madhya Pradesh | UCAN India

Sources said religious books, furniture, musical instruments etc and all things kept in the church were gutted.

via Church set ablaze in Madhya Pradesh | UCAN India.

Paid news should attract disqualification: CEC – The Hindu

Paid news should attract disqualification: CEC – The Hindu.

US court issues summons against Modi – The Hindu

US court issues summons against Modi – The Hindu.

Social Media, Data Security, and Copyright: Workshop

We keep 19 September as World Media Ethics Day. To do this meaningfully, we got in touch with Centre for International Media Ethics (CIME), London, UK. Milica of CIME was very encouraging. We, the Bachelor of Vocation [B.Voc (Visual Media and Film Making) and B.Voc (Digital Media and Animation)] of the Department of Communication at St Joseph’s College Autonomous, took the initiative to spread awareness concerning Media Ethics, first among ourselves and -then- among others.

What emerged was a huge success. Mr Na Vijayashankar (popularly known as Naavi), author and social media expert (who trains police in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu) and Mr M.D. Sharath, Deputy Superintendent of Police, Cyber Crime, Bangalore Police, came forward to carry forward the proceedings.

We were around 175 students of communication, with some more faculty members, lay persons, and students from other colleges. The three hour workshop brought to sharp focus the role of social media, risks involved in our data and potential dangers we pose to ourselves by the irresponsible use of media. And our youth came to life  with their questions and clarifications.

Here is a video capsule made by B.Voc (VMF) student Sreerag under the guidance of Mr Sathish Rajan and assisted by Mr Mervin of St Jospeh’s College Autonomous.

OMG, is this an Indian newspaper!?

Oh my God! Imagine you have the largest circulated newspaper in the world. And that is from India. And what do they do? First, publish an offensive video of Hindi female actor Deepika Padukone on their online platform (and she doen’t like it; she tweets furiously). The newspaper, instead of apologising, justifies using ridiculous arguments!

Dear Deepika, our point of view…


Over the past few days, there’s been a flood of tweets and stories in other media in support of Deepika Padukone’s response to a video and tweet posted in the online entertainment section of TOI.

As one of the largest media houses in the world with interests in print, TV, radio and online, we approach each medium differently, as do our audiences. There isn’t a one-fits-all formula for either distributing or  Continue reading

An open letter to Times of India – The Hindu

An open letter to Times of India – The Hindu. Another point of view Dear Times of India, There are times when one should keep quiet. If most of the online world is lambasting you, even if you think you’re right it wouldn’t hurt to introspect a little and wonder why people are reacting the way they are. Your response to Deepika Padukone’s fuming tweet and post on Facebook against your article on her, or more specifically on her breasts, is both shocking and unexpected. You could have chosen to apologise. Or you could have chosen to keep quiet. But by doing neither and by misunderstanding the issue entirely, you’ve only dug yourself deeper into a hole. You’ve started your article in Bombay Times (‘Dear Deepika, our point of view,’ Sept. 21) saying, “As one of the largest media houses in the world with interests in print, TV, radio and online, we approach each medium differently, as do our audiences. There isn’t a one-fits-all formula for either distributing or consuming content across various media.” It’s true that across media houses each  Continue reading

Differences within The Times of India over Bombay Times’ editorial on Deepika Padukone

Differences within The Times of India over Bombay Times' editorial on Deepika Padukone.

‘Indian films rank high on sexualisation of women’ – The Hindu

‘Indian films rank high on sexualisation of women’ – The Hindu.

About 35 per cent of women characters in Indian movies are shown with some nudity

India tops the charts in showing attractive women in its movies and as much as 35 per cent of these women characters are shown with some nudity, finds a first-ever U.N. sponsored global study of women characters in popular films across the world.

The study, commissioned by the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media, with support from U.N. Women and The Rockefeller Foundation, reveals deep-seated discrimination, pervasive stereotyping, sexualisation of women and their underrepresentation in powerful roles by the international film industry.

Indian films, the study finds, have a significantly higher prevalence of sexualisation of women characters and the movies score low in depicting women in significant speaking roles. While women represent nearly half of the world’s population, less than one third of all speaking characters in films are women and U.K.-U.S. collaborations and Indian films are at the bottom of the pack.

Both, American/British hybrid films (23.6 per cent) and Indian films (24.9 per cent) show women characters in less than one-quarter of all speaking roles. Indian films are third behind German and Australian movies in showing women in “sexy attire”. About 35 per cent of women characters in Indian movies are shown with some nudity, the study finds. The prevalence of women directors, writers and producers in the Indian films is also not at a very high ranking. India had 9.1 per cent women directors, slightly above the global average of seven per cent, while its percentage of women writers was 12.1 per cent, significantly lower than the 19.7 per cent global average.

This data examining gender prevalence behind the camera translated into a gender ratio of 6.2 males to every one female in the film industry in India.

Keywords: Sexualisation of women, Indian films, film industry in India, woman characters

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SCAENA: Social Media, Data Security and Copyright with CIME

Workshop on Social Media, Data Security and Copyright

                                   International Media Ethics Day – 19/09/2014

                                                            Orgnanised by

                          Dept of Communication, St Joseph’s College Autonomous, Bangalore

                           In association with Centre for International Media Ethics &

                                        Indian Journalists Welfare Foundation

SCAENA, a workshop on social media and data security hosted by the B.Voc section of the Communication Department of St. Joseph’s College – in association with the Centre for International Media Ethics (CIME) and the Indian Journalists Welfare Foundation – on the World Media Ethics Day.

discussion principal feliciates Naavi rear-view RR introduces Sharath_DySP Sharath_RR-Naavi StudentsFollowing a prayer song by students Ankur Peter & Sanjana Bhatt and a brief introduction by Fr Richard Rego SJ, Head, Communication, Mr. Na Vijayshankar (Naavi, as he is popularly known) and Mr. M.D. Sharath, Dy SP Cyber Crime Police addressed the gathering.

Mr. Naavi is the founder secretary of CySi, founder trustee of IIIT Law, Chairman of the Digital Society of India, editor of the monthly e-mail newsletter ‘Cyber Laws For CxO, and founder of pioneer virtual cyber law educational institution, Mr. Sharath is the DySP of the Cyber Crime Police Station, a division of the CID and head of the CID forensics laboratory. He holds a Masters degree in law, a post-graduate diploma in cyber law, and was awarded the Chief Minister’s gold medal in 2008.

Mr Naavi took the students through the role of social media in mass communication and the implications of their usage.

He spoke about the use of Facebook, Twitter and Whatsapp for businesses, the differences and similarities between print and virtual media and the integration of the same – web versions of magazines and newspapers, online publications, etc – the rise of the concept of blogging, which removed the old editor-reader model of publishing, difference between personal and mass communication, and the debates within the ethical framework.

He also spoke on the relatively sudden, drastic changes in how we use media to communicate, and the need to change the modes of journalism and publication to keep up with this and ensure safety of the masses.

Because of the fast nature of this transition, application of laws can also be confusing – laws made for print journalism being applied to virtual media can end up with disastrous consequences because the same rules cannot apply to both.

He discussed the implications of a simple thing like hyperlinking can have, citing cases like the trisha video case, where an anonymous comment on a blog containing a link to a defaming video nearly caused a complaint to be filed against the blog owner.

The case of a web designer who used the algorithm of metatags, to his advantage, the person concerned used fonts with a colour identical to that of the page background to insert keywords that the human eye would not see but the search algorithm would pick up. He used his competitor’s name in these keywords, and he was slapped with a copyright infringement case.

Mr. Naavi pointed out how, although there are advantages to the instant access and sharing that the Internet allows, a challenge faced every day is that of retracting a statement or article once it is published on the web. A common problem is the false security provided by the “delete” content/account option: people impulsively post what is on their mind believing that they can always remove it. They don’t consider the fact that once something is on the Internet, copies, screenshots, archives and forwards are saved, and it can have huge negative effects, either immediately or later.

More debatable copyright infringement hyperlink-related cases include the case filed against the website by virtual newspapers because it hyperlinked specific articles according to what a user searched for, and the news companies objected because it apparently reduced the number of advertisement-hits they would get on their own homepages.

The attendees learned about steganography, a lesser-known method of data exchange where content is hidden behind pictures. This has been used by terrorists in the past and is not easily detected.

Many more cases were discussed where individuals unknowingly got themselves into trouble because they were unaware and their content was misinterpreted; Mr Naavi explained sections of the IT Act and Copyright Act which deal with this; these often end up working against social media users.

He concluded with a few guidelines to avoid these dangers – consciously not posting impulsively, checking the source before hyperlinking it or forwarding, keeping in mind international laws when travelling abroad or sharing data. We need to be aware of the legal issues entailing it before downloading or advocating it. simple precautions can go a long way in staying safe side of the online world.

Mr. M.D. Sharath, DySP, dealt with issues from impersonation, defamation, suicide, “hypertexting”, depression, substance abuse, poor sleep patterns, poor academic performance disastrous impulsive posts, and even murder. With the help of case studies and shocking statistics reflecting every imaginable issue stemming from the virtual world, Mr. Sharath drove home the point of risks involved in the enticing world of social media.

He explained a few more laws and emphasised the ambiguity that comes with their wordings, using strong examples.

He said that 75% of cases that come to his desk are specifically Facebook-related; he said that thousands more cases remain unreported. From a 9th standard schoolgirl to an IIM student, people from various walks of life have ended their lives over things like failed virtual relationships and cyberbullying.

Discussed at length were the cases of a crook impersonating as a film producer on Facebook to obtain obscene pictures of unsuspecting people hoping to make it in the film industry, a gang in Hyderabad who compromised an ATM machine and with each swipe, cloned the cards of hundreds of people, a Russian hacker who hacked and released 4.93 million Gmail passwords, and the infamous case of the arrest and detainment of two girls after one posted a comment on Bal Thackeray (Mumbai politician) on Facebook and the other “liked” it – all from both the side of the alleged offender and the law/law enforcers.

The Mumbai case was debated at length; Mr. Sharath revealed that it was not only Section 66(A) of the IT Act (which, when applied, is bailable and does not allow for immediate arrest) that was exercised in that case, but also Section 259 of the IPC (religious hatred) – and the IT Act was wrongly emphasised by the media. Media manipulates information and law enforcers manipulate or misinterpret the law – increasing the need for caution as well as action by the democracy.

Mr Sharath increased awareness about a greater threat for the future – now, it is only data that is being misused, but research has shown that it is possible for pacemakers to be hacked and this can be used as a tool for murder.

The workshop wrapped up with a question and answer session; doubts regarding various areas of security were cleared. The guests emphasised the importance of understanding the interpretation and implementation of laws, and making the voice of netizens heard.

The seminar brought awareness that the risks and possibilities are endless; the Internet is no child’s playground, and we are all vulnerable whether we know it or not. Attendees are definitely safer and smarter now. SCAENA was the first of many such awareness programs that could help safeguard our data and perhaps even save lives.

even amazing facts about Alibaba’s Jack Ma, who failed to land a KFC job

19 Sept.

Seven amazing facts about Alibaba’s Jack Ma, who failed to land a KFC job

Founder of the Alibaba Group Jack Ma. Reuters

  • The story of Jack Ma, chairman of Alibaba, the Chinese internet giant that just raised $21.8 billion in the US initial public offering, is the stuff that dreams are made of.
  • Ma started his career as an English teacher and failed in many ventures, including to land a job in KFC, before he started Alibaba in 1999. Today, he is China’s richest man with a net worth of $21.8 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaire’s Index.

The company was started with support from 18  friends in Ma’s apartment in Hangzhou. After 15 years, when the company is making waves in the business world for the biggest IPO in the history, Ma’s life serves as an inspiration to all entrepreneurs, young and old, across the world.

Here are seven amazing facts about the man.

1) Learning English: Ma started learning English at the age of 13, from foreign tourists who had then just started trickling into China. He would wake up at 5 am, walk to the Shangri-La hotel and hang around there, chatting up with the tourists and taking them for sightseeing. That was how he practised spoken English. He did this for nine years. But, as he told Xiao-Ping Chen of University of Washington in an interview, he learned not only English, but also the “Western people’s system, ways, methods and techniques”.

2) Teaching English: He started off his career as an English teacher. But he admits he was only a good teacher and not the best. “I knew I couldn’t be the best in China, so I decided to step into the business world,” he says. So he set up a translation company. On one of his trips to the US in 1995, he found out the magic world of Internet through a friend. And that made all the difference.

3) Tryst with the Net: On the internet, which his friend showed him, he searched the word ‘beer’. Curiously for him, all beers – American beer, German beer — threw up but no Chinese beer. “So I was curious. I searched ‘China,’ and all search engines said no China, no data,” a Bloomberg reportquotes Ma as saying in a a documentary. This prompted him to create a home page in Chinese. According to the Bloomberg report, in about five hours of posting the page, he got five emails from various countries, including the US and Germany. The power of the Net world surprised him.

4) China Pages: This was his first internet company, a yellow pages site. Ma invested 7,000 yuan of his personal savings in the company and also took a loan from his sister, the Bloomberg report said citing a book in Chinese by Ma’s personal assistant Chen Wei. However, this was not successful and so he joined the commerce ministry in Beijing. He quit the job and went back to his home province Hangzhou. Alibaba happened in 1999, which Ma hopes will last for 102 more years.

5) Mad Ma: Thus, he believed in the power of internet, while nobody else in China did and so he was dubbed crazy, this USA Today report says. But then Alibaba is Alibaba because there are many more like him in the company. “I gave a speech at Harvard in 2002. After my talk, a CEO from a foreign company said that I was a mad man. He said he had been in China for many years, and didn’t believe that my way of managing a company would work. I invited him to visit Alibaba. After a three-day stay, he said “Now I understand. Here you have 100 mad men just like you”,” he told Xiao-Ping.

6) Family life closely guarded: Ma was earning just $15 a month when he married his classmate Zhang Ying. Zhang was also one of the first two employees of Alibaba. Many in China didn’t even know that Ma had siblings until a black and white photo of himself, his brother and sister went viral there earlier this month, says the USA Today report – a proof that how much Ma has managed to keep his family life away from the media glare. His son is an undergraduate student at the University of Berkley.

7) His management philosophy: It is a mix of Tai Chi, Taoism, and Buddhism. “In Taoism, the best leadership is not leading at all,” he says in the interview with Xiao-Ping. “If someone warns me about an employee who is trying to overstep me, I reply that I’m a teacher and that’s the way it should be,” he says. According to him, a real leader’s responsibility is to give his or her team overall guidance and principles and be the source of your company’s culture.

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