Month: Nov 2013

Google : modification of Internet searches to exclude more child pornography

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Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt has announced plans to censor search results that could direct users to child pornography, responding to pressure from British authorities.

This Sunday, in a column published in the Daily Mail newspaper, Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt said that British users will see a warning at the top of the search results page when they look for  child pornography on Google.

Users using 100,000 search terms and phrases will no longer receive content related to the sexual abuse of kids on the companies’ applying to 150 languages, and a further 13,000 queries will carry warnings, Google and Microsoft said. A “digital fingerprint” will block obscene videos and any duplicates.


The efforts come after a major push from British politicians to impose stricter limits on Internet pornography. British Prime Minister David Cameron’s Conservative-led government pushed for a crackdown on Internet pornography after the rape and deaths of two young girls at the hands of men believed to be addicted to child pornography. “We hope that the technologies developed (and shared) by our industry will make a real difference in the fight against this terrible crime,” said Schmidt.


Emilie Lesur, IEJ 3F1

Former President of Chile Michelle Bachelet on pole position to regain her seat

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CHILEFormer president of Chile Michelle Bachelet won the first round of the general election that took place on Sunday, after campaigning on promises of major changes in education, health, social security and taxes. The candidate of the center-left got 47.5 percent of the vote, and was followed by Evelyn Matthei, an economist of the conservative Alliance political bloc that now governs the country.

But after failing to get more than 50% of the vote, Bachelet will have to face Matthei in a second round that will take place on the 15th of November this year.

Reacting to Sunday’s vote, Ms. Bachelet, 62, said : « people have voted for free and quality education, for an end to profit, for more integration and opportunities for our children. Chileans have voted for a tax reform to enable the needed reforms in public health, pensions, social policies, and for those who have more to contribute as they should ».

Her program is also based on a revision of the Constitution inherited from the 1980 Pinochet’s dictatorship. One of her main ambitions is notably the depenalisation of abortion, now prohibited even for therapeutical purposes.

Ms. Bachelet promised to implement all those reforms at most three months after her election, but is conscious it will be difficult to follow the schedule.


Apocalypse Now : tornadoes in the Midwest of the US

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It was 11am this Sunday in the state of Washington when the sky fell on the 10,000 inhabitants who took shelter in the church. Some people took refuge in their basements or in the refrigerators of stores. Their houses were swept away within a couple of seconds. Everything was gone : their memories, their houses, their whole lives. Fortunately, they were still alive.

Seven counties were declared in a state of disaster area. Indeed, the tornadoes also hit other towns which included Pekin and Peoria. The Red Cross organized rescue and help in the district of Peoria. Pat Quinn, Governor of Illinois, reported nearly 400 homes destroyed in Washington. Many people were injured during the storm and seven people found death, among whom an elderly man and his sister who died in their farmhouse.

People exposed themselves to the storm generating dangerous behaviour. They scrutinized the sky, looking for signs of the imminent tornadoes thinking they were far away enough and they would have time to hide. Tornadoes have such an unpredictable pattern that wherever people are, they can get to them really fast.

Meteorologists explained that tornadoes by that time of the year are not rare and people should have been prepared. Temparatures on Sunday reached between 15°C and 20°C which is hot enough to create a tornado added to strong winds.


International trade unions warn: “More workers will die building World Cup infrastructure than players will take to the field”

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2022 world cup is a huge construction program for Qatar in order to remake the tiny desert kingdom.

Billions of dollars are involved whether they are spent or earned.

So the stakes are huge. But the matter is not the cost in dollars of those infrastuctures but the cost in lives.

The Guardian revealed that dozens of Nepalese migrant labourers have died in Qatar in recent weeks and thousands more are enduring appalling labour abuses.

This summer many Nepalese workers died at the rate of one a day. Most of them were young and in good shape. Between the 4th  June and 8th August the figures from the Nepalese embassy prove that at least 44 Nepalese workers died during work.

The reports show that all of them died of sudden heart attack, hearth failure or work accident.

“We’d like to leave, but the company won’t let us,” said one Nepalese migrant employee. “We were working on an empty stomach for 24 hours; 12 hours’ work and then no food all night,” said Ram Kumar Mahara, 27.

“When I complained, my manager assaulted me, kicked me out of the labour camp I lived in and refused to pay me anything. I had to beg for food from other workers.”

“The evidence uncovered by The Guardian is a clear proof of the use of systematic forced labour in Qatar,” said Aidan McQuade, director of Anti-Slavery International.

So the question is no longer « Is quatar still using slaves ?» but « How long will the international authority let them do ?» And maybe more importantly, «How long will we let money and power crush the life of the voice-less ?”

                                                     Hugo Pascual 3F1

Blockade of farmers in Ile-de-France

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les-agriculteurs-manifestent-avec-leurs-tracteurs-contre-l-11017104cjdzh_1713The Minister of Agriculture, Stéphane Le Foll, doesn’t intend to give in to the demands of the farmers.

The movement of Young Farmers in Ile-de-France stands up against the new law farmer policy for 2015. The labor unions asked for the resignation of the Minister. The Ile-de-France farmers threaten to block the access to Paris on Thursday.  As the minister doesn’t want to give up, all farmers will affect highways or national roads close to their homes. The goal of the protest is to stop the circulation with trucks and tractors. Every road to Paris will be blocked.

The first cause of protest is  lowering of European aids. Indeed, 30 percent of farmer’s earnings will be lost by the beginning of 2014. The second subject of anger is the ecotax law which forbids farmers to use tractors in case of pollution peak. According to farmers, the big trouble is the high taxation in a sector that already is affected by the crisis.

This labor union is known for dumping several tons of straw at the Palais Elysee in December 2009. Will this protest have the same impact? We will know that on Thursday.

Juliette Barrat 3F1

2014 French budget far too optimistic

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budget calculationFrench’s Finance Minister Bernard Cazeneuve expects much lower revenue due to the European crisis.

As Brussels just approved the French budget for 2014, the government made a significant revision of 5.5 billion less than estimated.

The previous French budget had been established at over 11 billion euros but the crisis had a great impact on the French economy.

The growth had been around 0.5% in the second quarter but now the third quarter is down to 0.1% from the gross domestic product (GDP).

Indeed, the French government has been dealing with the crisis since 2008 and still doesn’t succeed to reach their economic aim.

Furthermore, French companies are still dismantling, which doesn’t incite both investments and purchase.

The most important consequence is that factories have not sufficient growth to invest, pay taxes and revenues to the French government.

“About the VAT, there is a gap of about a billion euros, and four billion euros on the tax imposed on the factories,” said Bernard Cazeneuve on French news TV, BMFTV.

Steeven Ballein 3F1

British Nobel Prize author Doris Lessing dies

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doris-lessingAs the leaves fall from the trees the 94-year-old bestselling author, Doris Lessing decided to slowly penetrate the underworlds .

She left us novels, poetry, press articles and a sense of humour that just sizzled a generation.

Doris May Tayler was born in Kermanshah, in Iran, where her British father was a clerk with the Imperial Bank of Persia.

In 1925, her family moved to Southern Rhodesia, now Zimbabwe where crimson sunsets were contrasting with social inequalities.

Lessing suffered from an education at the opposite of her personality. Her mother was obsessed with the idea of raising a « perfect daughter ». She also sent Doris to a convent with nuns.

Through the author’s rigid education we can imagine what influenced her to write « The Fifth Child », one of her most famous novels. A novel about childhood, loneliness, full of horror and marked by the impression of feeling different.

Lessing is better known for being the first British author of 88 years old who recieved a Nobel prize in 2007. A true consecration for the million pages she covered with her words .

Considered as being a little weird and anti-conformist, the author was engaged in politics and social concerns. She wrote against social inequalities especially the apartheid. She was also a self actualization’s fighter.

 For a woman of her age, she had a life that we could qualify as exceptional. Lessing’s trips around the world from Iran, to south Africa and finally the UK contributed to her awareness of world’s problems. Her words are relative to what she suffered from her education. Her engagements are as huge as her intelligence. An intelligence coming from two organs : her brain and her heart.

What we can say is that the unfeminine Doris Lessing was always free, even in her marriage from whom she ran away leaving her husband and two children behind.

In our libraries and memories she will remain.

Doriane Ligorio – 3F1 – Chloe Kerommes – 3F2