Personal is not private

Personal information posted on internet’s social media such as Facebook, Twitter and discussion forums are not private – rather they are public information viewable by unintended people legally

Last week, two of my friends – a journalist and a blogger, both of whom I follow on the popular microblogging site, Twitter – exchanged numerous postings debating the privacy of those short messages called tweets. As hundreds of others who follow them on Twitter, I was silently reading all those postings.

Their debate revolved around whether any newspaper, without informing the person who posted the message on Twitter, could reproduce them in print. There were arguments for and against the topic, and towards the end of the debate, the blogger, to some extent, agreed that newspapers could.

Interestingly, the debate took me to the old fire that’s still burning globally – the issue of privacy in the age of digital media. Although Professor Susan Barnes had eloquently asked in 2005 “ in an age of digital media, do we really have any privacy?” The debate of privacy is still a pertinent issue with various different court rulings, corporate rules and opinions popping up from around the world frequently. Within all that, majority of people now agree that privacy is a tricky issue in the age of digital media, and apart from individual becoming aware of what they post online, there is little that can be done to ensure the privacy.

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Unruly sport stars

  • Last week, two Nepali national footballers — Anil Ojha and Shiva Shrestha — were suspended from their teams after behaving improperly with teammates. Both of them were drunk too to control themselves immediately after the second international match against Bhutan in Pokhara. Their behavior spoilt the victory celebrations.
  • A few weeks ago, an up-and-coming cricketer Pradeep Airee was involved in an ugly brawl that left him with a bandaged head for a match in the MG Trophy in Birgunj. He was drunk and began the fight with his fans who were waiting to meet the cricket star late at night less than 12 hours before the match.

These are only representative examples of the behavior that some of our sportsmen demonstrate. Sadly, many such events aren’t reported; some of them are reported but the players go unpunished and no sports association provides orientation to the players for good social and moral public behaviors.

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Football’s positive step

Bhutan’s national football team is in Pokhara for two friendly matches against Nepal. As expected, Nepal with its superior position in the FIFA rankings, won both the matches against the Himalayan neighbor.

For reasons best known to themselves, many football fans believe that playing against Bhutan is not very fruitful for the Nepali national team. However, I believe that hosting of a friendly is a positive step forward for the Nepali football for a number of reasons.

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Forgotten promises

CAN President Binaya Raj Pandey. Photo courtesy: eKantipur
“Despite having good players, there is something lacking… The players don´t get to play enough matches. Expecting them to do well after playing only three 50-over matches is not justified… Two things I want to do are: hold two-day format national league and arrange for Nepali team to play in India…”

Those were the words of Binaya Raj Pandey recorded on September 30, 2006 — a day after he was appointed the president of Cricket Association of Nepal (CAN). Spoken at a time when the mismanagement and lack of cricket development initiatives had frustrated players and fans alike, Pandey´s words were quite soothing to the ear.

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Police’s dishonor

The Central Jail shooting and other incidents raise questions on Nepal Police’s honesty!

Jashwant Singh who tried to murder an inmate in the Central Jail.

On March 10, Indian national Jashwant Singh went through the security checking of the Central Jail to meet an inmate. In the visitor’s lounge, he produced a pistol and shot at Yunus Ansari – a son of former minister of Nepal who is in judicial custody for his involvement in fake Indian currency smuggling.

Ansari, a person who has been long accused for being an aide to Dubai-based notorious crime don Dawood Ibrahim, was lucky to survive for somebody nearby spotted the pistol. Singh was immediately arrested and police claim that he is a professional criminal and is wanted for four murder cases in India.

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