Rasvanth Chunylall

The problem with the ACDP’s anti-abortion Facebook post

If there’s one thing South African politicians should know about social media, is that it’s a double-edged sword. When used correctly, it can add value to the party’s concerns. Think about the successful Twitterviews held by the ANC, the engaging Twitter Town Halls run by the DA and the highly publicised online Q & A…

5 Comments Continue Reading →

Why Idols SA is so important to Gareth Cliff and Naspers

Idols SA is a chimera of sorts. For some people it’s wish fulfilment at its best — the chance to be South Africa’s next great singer or just that person who got their 15 seconds on television. It’s a delightful bit of escapism, providing the opportunity to laugh at the poor souls that enter the…

2 Comments Continue Reading →

The Mazda CX-3 advert — slick, stylish and sadly sexist

Have you seen Mazda’s latest advert for their new CX-3 model? It’s an animated production that the company describes as “telling a true African fairytale story”. It begins at the scene of a beautiful wedding. A beautiful bride-to-be, Thandi, approaches her traditionally and somewhat royally dressed groom. But, something is wrong. She cries tearfully indicating…

5 Comments Continue Reading →

Dear Facebook, colour me unimpressed

On Saturday night I logged onto Facebook and noticed a curious pattern. Several of my friends (and people that Facebook tells me are my friends) had begun changing their profile pictures to a filtered version corresponding with France’s national flag colours: “Show your support for the people of Paris by temporarily updating your profile picture…

11 Comments Continue Reading →

How the #HelloChallenge brought Mzansi closer

Does the internet have the potential to unite people? Or does it merely alienate and isolate its users? It’s a debate that continues to rage on as internet usage increases and more people become netizens. A social media prank that has captured the interest of South Africans proves that the former is possible. It began…

Leave a comment Continue Reading →

Could compulsory UKZN laptops be a game-changer?

On May 7 this year Renuka Vithal, University of KwaZulu-Natal’s deputy vice-chancellor of teaching and learning, sent out an internal email indicating that the university would be adopting Moodle as its on-line learning management system. All disciplines would be required to place first and second-year module material online. And first and second-year students would need…

4 Comments Continue Reading →

#FeesMustFall: A movement of shares, likes, tweets and posts

In 2011 Chilean students began a protest movement to challenge the education system of their country. Known as the “Chilean Winter”, their dissatisfaction poured onto social media platforms. The students leveraged these sites to great effect to mobilise fellow academics, draw international support and express their own narratives which were ignored by the media. Fast-forward…

2 Comments Continue Reading →

Parents, think before you post photos of your kids

I’m at an age where several of my fellow millennials are in the full flush of parenthood. My social media feeds are filled with photos and videos of babies and toddlers doing what babies and toddlers do. Of course, not everyone is happy when this happens. The German police released a statement on Facebook last…

Leave a comment Continue Reading →

The People vs Peeple: A case study in how not to create an app

Wouldn’t the world be a better place if people could be united through friendship and positivity? These intentions motivated the creation of Peeple, a mobile application that would allow people to rate other people (on a scale of 1 to 5 stars) on their personal, professional and romantic appeal. A sort of Hellopeter but for…

Leave a comment Continue Reading →