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Taiwan considers coronavirus lockdown as island registers record 16 domestic transmissions - rt

Taiwan considers coronavirus lockdown as island registers record 16 domestic transmissions

Taiwan is tightening its coronavirus restrictions after 16 new domestically transmitted Covid-19 cases were detected, marking the highest-ever daily increase on the island, which has largely kept the pandemic under control.
rt - 7 minutes ago
Japan’s booking platform for Covid vaccine appointment crashes as Tokyo struggles to kick-start inoculation program - rt

Japan’s booking platform for Covid vaccine appointment crashes as Tokyo struggles to kick-start inoculation program

Japan’s platform for booking Covid-19 vaccinations has crashed in parts of the country because of a technical issue with US cloud computing vendor Salesforce, compounding frustration with the government’s handling of the pandemic.
rt - 16 minutes ago
WATCH: Maori Party co-leader kicked out of New Zealand parliament after performing HAKA in protest over ‘racist propaganda’ - rt

WATCH: Maori Party co-leader kicked out of New Zealand parliament after performing HAKA in protest over ‘racist propaganda’

Maori Party co-leader Rawiri Waititi was ejected from New Zealand’s parliamentary chambers after accusing a fellow MP of engaging in racist rhetoric, and then performing a ceremonial dance to express his displeasure.
rt - 1 hour ago
Remains of Grenfell Tower may be pulled down after fire that killed 72 - metro

Remains of Grenfell Tower may be pulled down after fire that killed 72

Survivors, bereaved relatives and the community will be consulted.
metro - 2 hours ago
‘Our intel was better’: IDF brags about killing top Hamas spies, as retaliatory strikes blamed for deaths of Arab woman & 7yo girl - rt

‘Our intel was better’: IDF brags about killing top Hamas spies, as retaliatory strikes blamed for deaths of Arab woman & 7yo girl

The Israeli military has claimed to have “neutralized” two high-level Hamas intelligence officials during air raids on the Gaza Strip, as local officials claim Palestinian rocket fire killed two Arab-Israelis, a woman and a child.
rt - 3 hours ago
The Domestic Abuse Act, a bittersweet victory for women? - channel 4

The Domestic Abuse Act, a bittersweet victory for women?

At the end of April, the Domestic Abuse Act was signed into law closing loopholes around rough sex claims that favoured defendants in court and strengthening the laws on revenge porn.
channel 4 - 3 hours ago
ANOTHER Gaza tower reportedly goes down, Israeli Iron Dome intercepts dozens of missiles in night of tit-for-tat strikes (VIDEOS) - rt

ANOTHER Gaza tower reportedly goes down, Israeli Iron Dome intercepts dozens of missiles in night of tit-for-tat strikes (VIDEOS)

An Israeli air strike has reportedly leveled another major high-rise in the Gaza Strip – the second in the span of 24 hours – as a barrage of Palestinian rocket fire continues to rain down on Tel Aviv and other Israeli cities.
rt - 5 hours ago
Canada

Canada's Ontario province halts use of AstraZeneca's Covid-19 vaccine after risk of blood clots proves higher than expected

Health officials in Canada's Ontario province have suspended use of AstraZeneca/Vaxzevria Covid-19 vaccine, saying that escalating concerns over risks of blood clots merited a review amid increasing supplies of competing jabs.
rt - 8 hours ago
UN Middle East envoy warns of ‘full scale war’ in Gaza as diplomats claim US is holding up Security Council statement - rt

UN Middle East envoy warns of ‘full scale war’ in Gaza as diplomats claim US is holding up Security Council statement

An eruption of violence in Israel and the Gaza Strip is headed for “full scale war,” a top UN envoy warned, even as Washington reportedly resists efforts to issue a similar call for deescalation in the UN Security Council.
rt - 9 hours ago
Greta Thunberg tries to walk fine line of neutrality on Israeli-Palestinian clash, but Twitter mob demands that she take a side - rt

Greta Thunberg tries to walk fine line of neutrality on Israeli-Palestinian clash, but Twitter mob demands that she take a side

Environmental activist Greta Thunberg, normally a figure revered by her protective left-wing allies, has learned the hard way that rocket attacks over Israel are a touchier subject than solar panels and carbon-trading schemes.
rt - 9 hours ago
Teenager in court accused of murdering man, 21, in Brent Cross shopping centre - metro

Teenager in court accused of murdering man, 21, in Brent Cross shopping centre

Gedeon Ngwendema (pictured), who was described as a 'wonderful boy', was stabbed to death in front of shoppers.
metro - 10 hours ago
Rare ‘footballfish’ washes up whole on beach from deep sea - metro

Rare ‘footballfish’ washes up whole on beach from deep sea

It uses bioluminescent lures on the tips of a fishing pole-looking projection from its head to draw in prey
metro - 10 hours ago
UK records another 20 Covid deaths and 2,474 new cases - metro

UK records another 20 Covid deaths and 2,474 new cases

The latest government data shows that 53,675,733 vaccinations have now been administered.
metro - 11 hours ago
‘Civil war’: Lod mayor laments ‘Kristallnacht’ in Israeli city as Netanyahu sends troops to stop rioting & clashes - rt

‘Civil war’: Lod mayor laments ‘Kristallnacht’ in Israeli city as Netanyahu sends troops to stop rioting & clashes

As IDF jets bomb Gaza and Palestinian militants fire rockets into Israel, the city of Lod has erupted in violence its mayor compared to a Nazi pogrom. PM Benjamin Netanyahu is pulling troops from the West Bank to restore order.
rt - 11 hours ago
Turkey & Saudi Arabia agree to keep mending relations during Turkish FM

Turkey & Saudi Arabia agree to keep mending relations during Turkish FM's first visit to Kingdom since Khashoggi's murder

The foreign ministers of Saudi Arabia and Turkey met in Mecca on Tuesday, expressing readiness to keep working on improving ties between the states which deteriorated after the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in 2018.
rt - 11 hours ago
Cameron’s Greensill lobbying texts published - channel 4

Cameron’s Greensill lobbying texts published

The scale of David Cameron's lobbying efforts on behalf of the finance company Greensill were laid bare today, revealing the former prime minister sent 62 texts and 11 emails to ministers and officials including Michael Gove and the chancellor. 
channel 4 - 12 hours ago
Israel and Hamas attacks escalate with airstrikes and rockets fired - channel 4

Israel and Hamas attacks escalate with airstrikes and rockets fired

Israel has halted flights at Ben Gurion Airport, after a Palestinian rocket fired from Gaza hit a building in a suburb of Tel Aviv.
channel 4 - 12 hours ago
WATCH: Huge BLAZE at Israeli oil pipeline reportedly hit by rocket strike from Gaza - rt

WATCH: Huge BLAZE at Israeli oil pipeline reportedly hit by rocket strike from Gaza

An energy pipeline between the Israeli cities of Eilat and Ashkelon has been hit by a rocket fired from Gaza, setting a large oil tank on fire for several hours, according to the Channel 12 TV broadcaster.
rt - 12 hours ago
‘All parties culpable on social care’ – Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham - channel 4

‘All parties culpable on social care’ – Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham

We spoke to Andy Burnham, who was re-elected Labour Mayor of Greater Manchester by a landslide last week.
channel 4 - 12 hours ago
Boris Johnson says UK must turn ‘jabs into jobs’ after pandemic - channel 4

Boris Johnson says UK must turn ‘jabs into jobs’ after pandemic

A promise to "level up" and redistribute spending after the inequalities exposed by the pandemic might sound like an excerpt from a Labour manifesto.
channel 4 - 13 hours ago
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vice
‘National Rape Day’ Isn’t Real, But TikTokers Keep Spreading Panic Anyway

‘National Rape Day’ Isn’t Real, But TikTokers Keep Spreading Panic Anyway

vice - 2 weeks ago

Sitting in her car, the woman stares directly into the camera as she records the TikTok video warning viewers to prepare themselves for April 24.

“I need to make sure you guys are aware, that there is a video going around on TikTok of disgusting men, rapists, child molesters, predators, just disgusting human beings—and they literally came up with a date to go around and rape women and children,” the woman says, pinching the air with inch-long, bright-blue nails. She adds, “Carry what you gotta carry.”

Stamped across her video, which has upwards of 300,000 likes, is a plea: “PLEASE SHARE AND STAY SAFE PLEASE.”

This woman is just one of dozens of TikTok users who’ve posted videos talking about the rumor that April 24 has been designated “National Rape Day.” As of publication Tuesday afternoon, videos tagged with #april24 have more than 57 million views.

There’s just one issue: “National Rape Day” isn’t a thing.

VICE News has not uncovered any evidence that men are gearing up to carry out sexual assaults en masse on “National Rape Day. (The creator of the above video didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.) Fact-checkers at Snopes and USA Today have similarly been unable to find original content where people earnestly urge others to celebrate a so-called National Rape Day. Media Matters for America has compared the spread of the narrative around April 24 to “a bad game of telephone,” pointing out that multiple outlets shared stories about National Rape Day without including any evidence to prove its existence.

But there are reams of content on social media platforms, including on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook, where people condemn the rumored holiday. And regardless of their intent, these posts ultimately spread fear-mongering misinformation that suggests that men are going to embark on a sexual assault spree on April 24.

The trend appears to have been born on TikTok, where the hashtag “April 24” is rife with rants about the alleged National Rape Day. Some of these videos have hundreds of thousands of likes. Many feature men staring straight into the camera and threatening to fight the phantom perpetrators behind National Rape Day, playing into the time-honored tradition of men trying to stop violence with more violence. A few users pose like Aileen Wuornos, a woman convicted seven charges of first-degree murder who’s been dubbed the “first female serial killer” (and, recently, become something of a cult hero). The joking suggestion is clear: Watch out.

Several users have started using a snippet of the Falling in Reverse song “Popular Monster” as the backdrop for their commentary on April 24, indicating that the trend is, at least, viral enough to have a shareable “sound” (in TikTok parlance) associated with it. That common sound might only help spread the misinformation, because TikTok recommends videos to users using a holistic set of factors—includes sounds that they engage with.

A few users are, clearly, totally convinced that National Rape Day is a threat. One woman urges viewers, “Wake up. This is a real thing.”

Others do acknowledge that the rumor about April 24 may be just that: a rumor. But they’re not having it.

“Joke or not, that shit’s not funny,” one user tells the camera in one video. “Some shit should not be joked about. And so the motherfuckers that think they want to be cute on that day—the wig comes off, bitch.”

The flow of misinformation on TikTok is being mitigated in a few ways. Searching for “national rape day” will yield no results; in fact, simply searching for “rape” will return zero results. Users may also be trying to avoid TikTok’s community guidelines, as several don’t say the word “rape” aloud or stylize it as “r@pe.” TikTok community guidelines prohibit content that “depicts, solicits, promotes, normalizes, or glorifies non-consensual sexual acts or non-consensual touching, including rape and sexual assault.”

"The supposed 'National Rape Day' trend being reported upon is abhorrent and would be a direct violation of our community guidelines,” a TikTok spokesperson told VICE News in an email. “While we haven't seen evidence of this trending on our platform, our safety team remains vigilant and would remove any such content."

Reactions to National Rape Day and April 24 have also trickled onto Instagram and Twitter. “Even if all of this is just rumors, if one person takes it seriously, it can damage or even kill someone for the rest of their life,” one person tweeted.

Facebook has managed to flag at least a few of the posts warning about “National Rape Day” as misinformation. Facebook has added a note to one shared image, which describes April 24 as a “‘national day’ for carrying out sexual assault,” observing that the image is “missing context.” It’s labeled another post, where a user tells people “DON’T GO OUT!!!!” on April 24, as outright “false information.”

Yet it’s clear that this misinformation is still freaking people out. Kristen Bolinger, an officer with the Taylorville Police Department, which serves a small town in Illinois, said that the department had issued advice regarding sexual assault after people reached out to the department.

“We haven’t seen any original videos” in support of so-called National Rape Day, Bolinger said. “We were seeing a lot of Facebook shares, people commenting on warnings about this, and giving what they thought was good advice on trying to stay safe.

“We’d like to think that this is just a nasty prank or someone basically being an internet troll, as they call it,” Bolinger added. “We wanted to make sure that we’re addressing it.”

sauce: vice
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