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TOPIC: media


The Language Of Femicide, When Euphemisms Are Not So Symbolic

In the wake of Giulia Cecchettin's death, our Naples-based Dottoré remembers one of her old patients, a victim of domestic abuse.

As Italy continues to follow the case of 22-year-old Giulia Cecchettin, murdered by her ex-boyfriend Filippo Turetta, language has surfaced as an essential tool in the fight against gender violence. Recently, Turetta's father spoke to the press and used a common Italian saying to try and explain his son's actions: "Gli è saltato un embolo", translating directly as "he got a blood clot" — meaning "it was a sudden flash of anger, he was not himself."

Maria was a victim of systemic violence from her husband.

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Influencer Union? The Next Labor Rights Battle May Be For Social Media Creators

With the end of the Hollywood writers and actors strikes, the creator economy is the next frontier for organized labor.

Hollywood writers and actors recently proved that they could go toe-to-toe with powerful media conglomerates. After going on strike in the summer of 2023, they secured better pay, more transparency from streaming services and safeguards from having their work exploited or replaced by artificial intelligence.

But the future of entertainment extends well beyond Hollywood. Social media creators – otherwise known as influencers, YouTubers, TikTokers, vloggers and live streamers – entertain and inform a vast portion of the planet.

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For the past decade, we’ve mapped the contours and dimensions of the global social media entertainment industry. Unlike their Hollywood counterparts, these creators struggle to be seen as entertainers worthy of basic labor protections.

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How Khomeini Planted The Seeds For Hamas' Holy War 45 Years Ago

Whom should we blame for the death and destruction in Gaza: terrorists, Israel or 'warmongers' beyond them, notably the Tehran regime that envisaged, decades ago, a regional war as the prelude to spreading its "Islamic revolution."

Updated Nov. 3, 2023 at 1:45 p.m.


War has spread like wildfire, first in Ukraine and now the Middle East, as the world looks on aghast. It becomes increasingly difficult now to discern between good and bad, as we're forced to watch the abject sight of ordinary people, and especially children, killed or weeping amid the ruins.

Yet in spite of the anguish, we must be clear-eyed about the source of this calamity. Ordinary Iranians in particular knew in their hearts, from the very moment we learned of the Hamas attack on Oct. 7, that it could be traced back directly to the regime that calls itself an "Islamic Republic," led by a supreme leader busy pursuing a particular and sinister agenda of his own.

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Inciting opinion against Israel and exploiting the grief of millions around the world are part of the ploy to distract the world from the Iranian regime's involvement. Hysterical reports viewed by a vast, unquestioning public convey a simplistic message: Israel is ultimately to blame for the carnage.

But we need to sift through the narrative of commentators, and distinguish between hard politics and a sense of humanity. When certain people lambast the Israelis for killing civilians but adopt a muted position toward Hamas doing the same, we clearly cannot take their humanitarian rationale at face value.

There is a glaring contradiction there, rooted in ideology. They might invoke the respective numbers of victims of course, as Iran's Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei did soon after the initial attack. Sure, he said, some civilians had died — but consider how many people the Israelis have killed in the past, he declared to his devotees in Tehran.

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Gaza's Info War: On-The-Ground Journalism v. Fake News Online

Since the beginning of Israel's attacks on Gaza, journalists on the ground have been on the front lines, and many of them have already lost their lives. Meanwhile, the media machine in the rest of the world has gone wild, with even the most prominent media outlets spreading fake news.

"There’s no safe place, but I’m trying my best to stay safe”. Twenty-two year-old journalist Plestia Alaqad has been reporting on the situation as best she can on social networks, while escaping Israel's bombing raids on Gaza. “I am barely able to do my job under these circumstances”.

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Journalists in the field are on the front lines, trying their best to cover the facts, often losing their lives in the process. Fourteen journalists have already been killed, while others are directly suffering the consequences of the attack: power cuts, water and food shortages and forced displacement.

Meanwhile, false information has been flooding in through the media and online. In fact, several newspapers have been criticized for their biased coverage.

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FOCUS: Russia-Ukraine War
Ihor Myslovsky

How Russia Will Capitalize On The New Wave Of Terrorism Set To Hit The West

Western leaders must take a more resolute stance in addressing terrorism and its hybrid forms, and see the connection with the tactics and strategy of Putin's Russia.


Terrorist violence often follows a dangerous spiral. If not promptly curtailed, it can escalate, resulting in more frequent and severe attacks.

In recent years, we've observed a rise in violent incidents displaying certain recognizable characteristics of terrorism, involving both state and non-state actors, which involve a wide array of ideologies and methods.

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The ongoing Russian war in Ukraine offers another trouble model, where such tactics as nuclear threats, targeting energy infrastructure in winter, and missile strikes on civilian areas have been employed as tactical acts of terrorism.

There are others more recognizable: like the brutal attacks against civilians like those recently seen by Hamas in southern Israel, the murder of a teacher in France and a fatal shooting in Brussels of two Swedish soccer fans.

It is evident that both Western political leaders and societies need to respond. Political leaders should take resolute action, and societies should unite to safeguard their countries from destabilization by these adversaries. Failure to do so could ultimately benefit terrorists and authoritarian regimes.

The connection, in other words, is legitimate between the Middle East's sudden outbreak of violence and the way Russia conducts itself in international affairs.

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Riccardo Luna

Collateral Tech Damage Of Hamas Attack: The Final Demise Of Twitter

Elon Musk has been criticized before for his management of Twitter, now known as X. But it was not until Saturday that the social network revealed just how inept and dangerous it had become, as fake news spread far and wide. It may never recover.


No, Twitter didn't end on July 24, 2023 — that's when Elon Musk, seemingly out of the blue, decided it would be called X.

Twitter, as we'd come to know it and appreciate its usefulness, died on the morning of October 7, following the surprise terror attack by Hamas and the Israeli response. The platform's deeper transformation of the past months was revealed to us that day, in all its ugliness: Rather than a natural evolution, Twitter has experienced a ghastly genetic mutation.

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X has failed to live up to Musk's old dream of a single app that does everything for everyone. But X has also become something far from the once-loved social network that invented microblogging in 2006, helping users share their insights into the world in 140 characters.

The little blue bird today is an unrecognizable beast. It's like a public intersection without traffic light and signs, and chances are you've also heard the sound of the crashes on your timeline.

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FOCUS: Russia-Ukraine War
Kyrylo Danylchenko

How Vulnerable Are The Russians In Crimea?

Ukraine has stepped up attacks on the occupied Crimean peninsula, and Russia is doing all within its power to deny how vulnerable it has become.

This article was updated Sept. 26, 2023 at 6:00 p.m.

Russian authorities are making a concerted effort to downplay and even deny the recent missile strikes in Russia-occupied Crimea.

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Media coverage in Russia of these events has been intentionally subdued, with top military spokesperson Igor Konashenkov offering no response to an attack on Russian Black Sea Fleet headquarters in the Crimean city of Sevastopol, or the alleged downing last week of Russian Su-24 aircraft by Ukrainian Air Defense.

The response from this and other strikes on the Crimean peninsula and surrounding waters of the Black Sea has alternated between complete silence and propagating falsehoods. One notable example of the latter was the claim that the Russian headquarters building of the Black Sea fleet that was hit Friday was empty and that the multiple explosions were mere routine training exercises.

Ukraine claimed on Monday that the attack killed Admiral Viktor Sokolov, the commander of Russia's Black Sea Fleet. "After the strike on the headquarters of the Russian Black Sea Fleet, 34 officers died, including the commander of the Russian Black Sea Fleet. Another 105 occupiers were wounded. The headquarters building cannot be restored," the Ukrainian special forces said via Telegram.

But Sokolov was seen on state television on Tuesday, just one day after Ukraine claimed he'd been killed. The Russian Defense Ministry released footage of the admiral partaking in a video conference with top admirals and chiefs, including Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, though there was no verification of the date of the event.

Moscow has been similarly obtuse following other reports of missiles strikes this month on Crimea. Russian authorities have declared that all missiles have been intercepted by a submarine and a structure called "VDK Minsk", which itself was severely damaged following a Ukrainian airstrike on Sept. 13. The Russians likewise dismissed reports of a fire at the headquarters of the Black Sea Fleet, attributing it to a mundane explosion caused by swamp gas.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov has refrained from commenting on the military situation in Crimea and elsewhere, continuing to repeat that everything is “proceeding as planned.”

Why is Crimea such a touchy topic? And why is it proving to be so hard to defend?

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This Happened

This Happened — September 23: Women Enter The King Fahd International Stadium

On this day in 2017, women were allowed to enter the King Fahd International Stadium in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, for the first time ever. The women attended the stadium’s 87th anniversary celebrations and a qualifying World Cup match.

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eyes on the U.S.
Michael J. Socolow

Murdoch Resignation Adds To Biden's Good Luck With The Media — A Repeat Of FDR?

Robert Murdoch's resignation from Fox News Corp. so soon before the next U.S. presidential elections begs the question of how directly media coverage has impacted Joe Biden as a figure, and what this new shift in power will mean for the current President.

Joe Biden was inaugurated as the 46th president of the United States of America on Jan. 20, 2021.

Imagine if someone could go back in time and inform him and his communications team that a few pivotal changes in the media would occur during his first three years in office.

There’s the latest news that Rubert Murdoch, 92, stepped down as the chairperson of Fox Corp. and News Corp. on Sept. 21, 2023. Since the 1980s, Murdoch, who will be replaced by his son Lachlan, has been the most powerful right-wing media executivein the U.S.

While it’s not clear whether Fox will be any tamer under Lachlan, Murdoch’s departure is likely good news for Biden, who reportedly despises the media baron.

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9/11 Front Pages: World Newspapers Coverage 22 Years Ago

History happened instantly before our eyes 22 years ago on September 11, 2001 — and the global press was there to offer a first view on a day that continues to live in infamy. Here are 31 newspaper front pages and magazine covers.

Updated Sep. 11, 2023 at 5:30 p.m.

By the time United Airlines Flight 175 sliced into the second tower, news reporters and editors around the world knew they were facing the most monumental story of their lifetime. The Sep. 11 attacks forever changed the world, and put the powers of modern journalism, from real-time video coverage to deep news analysis (on deadline), to the test like never before.

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Vijayatharsiny Thinesh

How The Demise Of Traditional Newspapers Looks In Sri Lanka

As newspapers reduce or fold, the elderly find themselves with less connection to their community and at risk of misinformation in an online world that is unfamiliar.

JAFFNA — For the last 30 years, Thambiah Paraparam, a retired tea factory officer, has been spending most of his evenings at a local library in the town of Inuvil in Jaffna district, reading newspapers. Before the economic crisis, there were plenty of newspapers in the library for him to read, publishing a variety of content. At 80, Paraparam thinks about his health often and mostly relied on newspapers for health-related content. But all that has changed now.

“Such information is not being published every day,” he says.

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Zhao Xiaoning

Imperfect Victim: What A Chinese Series About Sexual Assault Can And Can't Say

A new melodrama broadcast in China about sexual assault in the workplace is a sign that some difficult questions are being addressed, but that serious taboos remain in Chinese society and public life.


BEIJING — Seeing the trailer for Imperfect Victim on TV was a harrowing experience: on a screen that is usually used as a backdrop, the face of an overwhelmed girl suddenly appears, along with several keywords, including "power imbalance." The advertisement explains that a drama about sexual assault in the workplace is being broadcast on Beijing Satellite Television and multiple other channels. It looks from the spot like a repeatedly banned subject is diving straight into the drama.

The story begins with a rape case reported anonymously by a third party. The victim, Zhao Xun, is a successful female assistant to the chairman of the board of directors, Cheng Gong. She is questioned by the police, her lawyer and the perpetrator of the crime, who sometimes affirms and sometimes denies the case.

During the course of the investigation, it was also discovered that after working in the company for only three months, she was transferred to a position that other colleagues had not reached despite working for several years, and that she had received luxury items purchased by Cheng Gong on the company's dime, which made her an "imperfect victim."

Cheng, as a perpetrator of sexual violence, was by no means unaware of Zhao’s conflict, or else he would not have covered up for himself by repeatedly bribing people who knew about it. Even he himself admitted that he likes Zhao not only because she is young, but also because he likes to see her "troubled face." However, Cheng still refuses to admit his crime on the grounds that Zhao did not resist.

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