Newsletter: Lady Gaga Emojis & Facebook Crisis in Thailand!

Quote of the Day

“Social media is not about the exploitation of technology but service to community.” ~ Simon Mainwaring

 LADY GAGA EMOJIS ARE HERE


 THE STORY

The eccentric pop diva recently launched stickers that will help you emote.

WHEN DID THIS HAPPEN?

As recently as May 11! Unlike her music, this bit didn’t make waves far and wide but we thought this is quite an interesting development! Aside from her musical career, the petite Brit has dabbled in TV acting. Launching her own set of emojis certainly looks great business idea in times when ‘pictures’ indeed speak a lot louder than words!

WHERE CAN I GET THESE EMOJIS?

The ‘Gagamojis’ pack is available for download on iOS for $1.99. The pack has been customized by Gaga herself. It includes animated iMessage stickers and GIFS as well.

WHAT’S SO SPECIAL ABOUT GAGAMOJIS?

Well, if you are a Gaga fan, it’s special for you. Even if you are not, you are likely to find the look and feel amusing. A cross between Gaga’s trademark fashion statement and Andy Warhol-like artiness, the tiny creations are bound to brighten up dull chats! Peppered with popular Gaga symbols, such as the Pink Hat from her more recent and mellow “Joanne” period, and familiar terms like “DOPE” (with Gaga’s head plastered in the middle), the emojis are a notch above your average stickers.

WHO HAS DESIGNED THE EMOJIS?

Well, like we said, the singer-actor was personally involved in their creations. However, if you want to know who the tech partner is, the answer is Snaps. Founded by Vivien Rosenthal, Snaps has fashioned itself as a platform driven chatbots, iMessage Apps and Emoji specialist. The 3-year-old tech venture has already worked with the likes of Coca Cola, Starbucks, McDonald’s, and Victoria’s Secret among others.

WHAT DOES SNAPS HAVE TO SAY ABOUT GAGAMOJIS?

“Lady Gaga truly made these for her fans and was very involved in the actual creation of these (emojis). We’ve loved working on these for the last six months with Lady Gaga and her team. There’s truly a GAGAmoji for every moment of life. These emojis are about being yourself and having fun,” Vivien Rosenthal

“iMessage is a powerful platform for launching celebrity content. There are over 1 billion people using the popular messaging app every day. By launching this sticker pack, now Lady Gaga’s true fans can share this personalized content directly in conversations with friends and family,” Snaps Director of BD & Marketing Jonathan Shriftman.

(as quoted in Business Insider)


FACEBOOK CENSORS MORE THAN 100 PAGES IN THAILAND

 THE STORY

Facebook was forced to block 178 pages in Thailand after allegations of threat to national security.

HOW CAN FACEBOOK PAGES THREATEN NATIONAL SECURITY?

Thai authorities found ‘inappropriate content’ on some pages that apparently threatened the country’s security. Some were also deemed to be insulting the monarchy. However, Facebook is still looking at legal action, if all other pages deemed offensive are shut down by Tuesday.

HOW MANY MORE PAGES NEED TO BE BLOCKED!

309 to be exact! On Thursday, the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) said that Facebook has restricted Thailand users’ access to 178 out of some 309 pages on the criminal court’s blacklist. These 309 web addresses on the social network’s platform supposedly ‘threatened security or violated the lese majeste (monarchy) law”. Under the lese majeste law, any content that defames, insults or threatens the king, queen, heir to the throne or regent, is considered illegal/criminal.

ARE YOU KIDDING ME?

America might get away with trumping Trump but things obviously aren’t so easy in one the World’s most cheap and popular tourist spots. Let alone speaking against, even the mere perception of insult to the Monarchy can probably land you jail! Since seizing power in a military coup in 2014, the military government has heightened online censorship to a dizzying level. The most austere of such bans falls within the category of ‘perceived insults to Monarchy’.

IS FACEBOOK THE ONLY VICTIM OF THIS ‘LAW’?

Maybe the only high-profile victim but certainly not the only one. Thailand’s criminal court has ordered nearly 7,000 “inappropriate” web pages to be shut down since 2015, if the Ministry of Digital Economy and Society is to be believed. Prior to this, Facebook had reported that it had blocked 50 pieces of content which were found to have violated the lese majeste law in 2016, following government requests.

Well, there are worse places to be on Earth, eh!

 

Gargi Sengupta

Gargi is working with Systweak Software as Content Editor and Strategist. She believes Technology laced with Pop Culture, makes for an interesting combination. Beyond her work space, she fancies herself as a left-brained, right leaning conscientious individual with a weakness for good food, films, and fiction.

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