The Scottish Referendum from an Outsider’s Perspective

I have lived in Scotland for 5 months as part of my American study abroad program, and the one topic that is always inescapable, is the issue of Scottish independence. It is my understanding that Scotland is a part of the United Kingdom, and I can see why a nation would want to be free of a greater rule. However, when I talk to most people here, I get two answers; either they are vehemently for independence or they do not really know what is going to happen.

I can already foresee a few problems if Scotland attains their independence. First, taxes will immediately rise, and no one will be happy about that, considering taxes are already very high in the United Kingdom as a whole. Secondly, the issue of which currency to use will be hotly debated. Will they use the Pound or will they revert to Euros? Lastly, the benefits of free healthcare and free university might not be so free anymore. These two things are extremely valuable and speaking as an American, I wish these came free for me as well. Yet, these problems may never exist because no one can tell the future, and we will just have to see what happens when the time comes.


Break-ups via Facebook – Surely not?

Charlotte Anderson, Nicola Park and Islay McDougall
Listen here:

Facebook Break-ups – Surely not okay?

According to UberFacts on twitter, 21% of people think it’s okay to break up via facebook.
I don’t know how correct this is but it got me thinking and reminded me of the episode of Sex and the City where Carrie gets broken up with via a post-it note. Is there really a good way to break up with someone?

I do believe there is. In this day and age we conduct our lives on facebook and twitter. We take cameras out on nights out purely so we can upload them to facebook the next day. Is this to keep memories or to show off to our cyber friends? Whole evenings can be spent chatting to friends online rather than a phone call and we often find out what people are up to via facebook without even speaking to someone. Although being called “social” media it can often take away from real sociability. Today it is acceptable to conduct a conversation online rather than by phone but I do not believe it will ever be okay to end a relationship over facebook.

I believe everyone deserves to be broken up with face to face. It’s out of respect to the good times that you may have once had together, even though now you are faltering. Relationships endings often makes us feel like there is no pain worse, I couldn’t even imagine the feeling of breaking up via facebook.

Of course, relationships spanning over 2 weeks or so people may see it to be more acceptable. However if you have been intimate with each other, the least you can give them is a phone call. Although the percentage is low, it is crazy to think people do end relationships via facebook.

Have we become such a cyber world that relationships and adult conversations can now be turned into the quiet sounds of fingers on a keyboard? Hopefully this is not a trend that will catch on. My heart goes out to anyone who has ever been broken up with via the internet. If they were the sort of person who thought that was okay – well, then they weren’t worth it in the first place!

Singer’s use of social media propels her into limelight (Online Report)

Destined for the top

by Scott Thomson

Up and coming music artists are using social media as a stepping stone to bigger things. Local Edinburgh teenager Nina Nesbitt is just one of many artists using social media to reach a wider audience. Her YouTube Channel has attracted over 30,000 views while she also has a loyal Twitter following of over 2,000.
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Arrest of Al-Jazeera Bureau Chief raises level of Anti-Israeli chatter on Social Media sites

By Heather C Thomson

Samer Allawi, Al-Jazeera’s bureau chief in Afghanistan was detained by the Israeli military for 49 days after he visited his family in the West Bank. 

He was finally released on Sunday, 25 September, after a plea bargain that resulted in a suspended sentence and a fine of $1,600 (£900).

Within days of the arrest Facebook pages had been set up such as “Free Samer Allawi” and twitter accounts were established to continue the campaign for the journalist’s release. Continue reading

Free Speech: A Given Right.

by Morag Robertson

A few days ago, Labour MP, Ivan Lewis, stood up and suggested restraining the malpractice of journalists with the threat of being ‘struck off’ as a journalist. Social networking sites did not take long to explode with angry comments, as every listener and reader of this speech grabbed their phone or their laptop and blogged furiously with their thoughts on this matter. Continue reading

BBC Scotland Cuts

By Amy Louise Grant

With an annual running cost of £2.4 billion, the BBC has decided to introduce spending cuts throughout the country with BBC Scotland being faced with a £16 million decrease in budget. With a cut this large it comes as no surprise that up to 150 redundancies are to be expected in Scotland alone.

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