#AceWorldNews – GAZA CITY – July 26 – As part of Israel’s PR efforts during operation Cast Lead (2009), the IDF has established a Youtube channel to tell Israel’s side. As seen on Arutz Sheva. and supplied by israelnationalnews.com at the time it purported to have 7,000 followers and today as the screenshot shows it is down to 1,981.
Five years later, the involvement of the army in the documentation and dissemination of propaganda has increased, through YouTube videos and official accounts on Facebook and Twitter, which show a constant flow of messages.
Today’s media strategy includes dozens of infographics and visualizations that attempt to depict Israel’s rationale in a graphic and simple manner similar to that employed by the award-winning Visualizing Palestine project, which focused on visualizing the effects of occupation for Palestinians in Gaza.
One of the most viral visualizations shows how a house in Gaza becomes a target. “When is a house a home and when does it become a military target?”, the image reads, in response to accusations that Israel indiscriminately bombs houses in Gaza.
Another one compares “what Israel does to protect civilians” vs. “what Hamas does to endanger its civilians.”
An online struggle for “hearts and minds”
Israeli military operations are always accompanied by robust media reports that seem intended to mitigate their impact on international public opinion. From the sensorial “Cast Lead” in 2009 to the self-explanatory “Protective Edge” in 2014, several fronts of “hasbara” (pro-Israeli propaganda, in Hebrew) have been developed to show the world Israel’s rationale.
In 2008, just before attacks on Gaza began, the Israeli administration decided to replace traditional press conferences of war time with a wide array of initiatives based on social media. Guidelines for the campaign were developed by former army officer Yarden Vatikai, in coordination with the Ministry of Defense and the Jewish Agency.
One of the initiatives consisted of teaching new media workshops to army officers in the Herzliya Interdisciplinary Center.
“In terms of communicating our message, the future is in new media”, Defense Forces spokesman Avi Benayahu said in February 2009. “The IDF has moved online to win hearts and minds.”
Malaysian#AceWorldNews – UKRAINE – July 17 – A Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 with 295 people aboard was reportedly hit by a missile and crashed Thursday in Ukraine near the Russian border, according to an adviser to Ukraine’s interior ministry.
Anton Gerashenko, the adviser, says on his Facebook page the plane was flying at an altitude of 33,000 feet when it was hit Thursday by a missile fired from a Buk launcher, the Associated Press reports.
A similar launcher was seen by AP journalists near the eastern Ukrainian town of Snizhne earlier Thursday.
It was no immediately clear who would have been in control of such a launcher in the restive area where Ukrainian forces are battling ethnic Russian separatists.
Malaysia Airlines said on Twitter that it “has lost contact of MH17 from Amsterdam. The last known position was over Ukrainian airspace.”
Contribution by USA Today
#AceNewsServices – DUBLIN – June 18 – An Irish judge on Wednesday rejected an attempt by campaigners to force an investigation into Facebook’s alleged sharing of data from EU users with the U.S. National Security Agency.
High Court Justice Gerard Hogan, who has jurisdiction because Facebook’s European headquarters are based in Dublin, upheld an earlier decision by the country’s data protection commissioner to refuse to investigate.
Ahead of the hearing, the campaign group europe-v-facebook indicated it planned to appeal any such decision.
(IrishExaminer) 30 April 2014 – The data protection commissioner was wrong to refuse to investigate a complaint that the Irish arm of Facebook could not permit the mass transfer of personal data to US intelligence services, it has been claimed.
Max Schrems, an Austrian law student behind a data privacy campaign group called Europe v Facebook, has brought a High Court challenge claiming Billy Hawkes wrongly interpreted and applied the law governing the mass transfer of personal data of Facebook users to the US National Security Agency when he rejected his complaint.
He is asking Mr Justice Gerard Hogan to quash that decision and refer it back to Mr Hawkes for reconsideration. He says the commissioner’s decision was irrational and wants a preliminary reference on the matter to be made to the European Court of Justice.
The commissioner, who found Facebook had acted within the terms of the EU-US data-sharing agreement called Safe Harbour, is opposing his action.
According to Safe Harbour
The European Commission’s Directive on Data Protection went into effect in October of 1998, and would prohibit the transfer of personal data to non-European Union countries that do not meet the European Union (EU) “adequacy” standard for privacy protection. While the United States and the EU share the goal of enhancing privacy protection for their citizens, the United States takes a different approach to privacy from that taken by the EU.
In order to bridge these differences in approach and provide a streamlined means for U.S. organizations to comply with the Directive, the U.S. Department of Commerce in consultation with the European Commission developed a “Safe Harbor” framework and this website to provide the information an organization would need to evaluate – and then join – the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor program.
The U.S. Department of Commerce in consultation with the Federal Data Protection and Information Commissioner of Switzerland developed a separate “Safe Harbor” framework to bridge the differences between the two countries’ approaches to privacy and provide a streamlined means for U.S. organizations to comply with Swiss data protection law.
This website also provides the information an organization would need to evaluate – and then join – the U.S.-Swiss Safe Harbor program.
In the next fortnight the Irish data protection commissioner will launch a wide-ranging privacy audit of the social network after complaints about how Facebook tracks its users on-line.
The Irish regulator will conduct the audit on behalf of authorities in 27 European states, including the UK.
The commissioner expects to complete the report before the end of the year, a spokeswoman for the regulator said.
- EU Progress on Data Protection: Speaking in Luxembourg this week, EU Commissioner Viviane Reding saidthat the EU Council moved forward two key data protection goals in 2014.
- First, there is “agreement on the rules that govern data transfers to third countries.” Second, “Ministers agreed on the territorial scope of the data protection regulation.
- In simple words: EU data protection law will apply to non-European companies if they do business on our territory.” Ms. Reding said the EU is on track to ensure “the completion of the Digital Single Market by 2015.
- For more information, see EPIC – EU Data Protection Directive, EPIC – Council of Europe Privacy Convention and EPIC – “23 US NGOs Support EU Data Protection Regulation.” (Jun. 9, 2014)
AceWorldNews – BRITAIN – May 14 – Stephen Sutton, the inspirational cancer charity fund-raiser has died peacefully in his sleep this morning.
Mark Zuckerberg is founder of Facebook, which owns Whatsapp
An odd purchase by Facebook
Iran has reportedly banned messaging app WhatsApp because it is owned by Facebook, founded by “Zionist” entrepreneur Mark Zuckerberg. Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported that Iran’s censor has decided to ban the app, which was recently purchased by the social networking giant for $19bn (£11.3bn). Abdolsamad Khorramabadi, head of the country’s Committee on Internet Crimes, reportedly said: “The reason for this is the assumption of WhatsApp by the Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, who is an American Zionist.” Zuckerberg founded Facebook in 2004, and is currently the company’s chief executive.
President Rouhani says he is opposed to any ban
He was raised as Jewish by his family in New York, but identifies as an atheist. News reports from Israel and the US cited Iran’s state news agency IRNA for the story. However, Iran’s president Hassan Rouhani later tweeted that the Government was “fully opposed to filtering of WhatsApp”. Some reports have suggested the conflicting statements point to a dispute within the Government over the ban. Twitter and Facebook have been banned in Iran since 2009, when protests against former president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad gained momentum thanks to social media.