Tech News

Europe Bans Hate Speech, The Bible Gets an Emoji Makeover… [Tech News Digest]

Dave Parrack 31-05-2016

Europe hates hate speech, The Bible gets rewritten with emoji, Zenbo helps out around the house, Google gives Chromecasts away for free, and watch a cheetah run really fast.


Europe Bans Illegal Hate Speech

The European Commission is trying to stop the rise of hate speech online, authoring a new Code of Conduct designed to curtail abhorrent viewpoints from spreading. Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Microsoft have all signed up to the Code of Conduct, making a public commitment to prevent their platforms from being used for illegal hate speech.

The companies named above have promised to continue “their efforts to tackle illegal hate speech online,” review reports of “illegal hate speech in less than 24 hours,” “help flag content that promotes incitement to violence and hateful conduct,” and continue “identifying and promoting independent counter-narratives, new ideas and initiatives”.

The difficulty is deciding what constitutes hate speech Is Twitter's Trust & Safety Council a Front for Censorship? Twitter's formed its new Trust & Safety Council to create a friendly online environment. But does the overwhelmingly left-leaning Council membership indicate that the days of online discussion and meeting concensus are over? Read More , and then deciding if expressing that hate speech should be illegal. Most people would agree that direct threats of violence against either an individual or a group should be taken seriously. However, expressing an opinion about either an individual or a group, no matter how abhorrent that opinion may be Free Speech vs. Harassment: Why Did Reddit Ban Five Subreddits? Reddit officially announced the decision to ban five subreddits, due to ongoing harassment problems. Read More , is a different matter.

While this could help make the Internet a nicer place to be, it could also backfire spectacularly. While the European Commission is clear this is not an attack on the right to free speech, any attempts at governing what people say takes us down that route. After all, what’s considered a harmless opinion today could be reconsidered as hate speech tomorrow.


Bible Emoji Adds Emoji to The Bible

Someone, somewhere thought it would be a good idea to add emoji to The Bible. And so, Bible Emoji was born unto the world. Subtitled, “Scripture 4 Millenials,” Bible Emoji is billed as the “first ever Bible translation w/ emojis,” and “a great and fun way to share the gospel”.

This is a serious undertaking too, with Bible Emoji containing 3,282 pages, and “all 66 books chronicling the stories of Abraham, Noah and Jesus”. Which is why it took the author, who is keen to remain anonymous, six months to complete the translation from the King James Version.

The author told The Guardian, “I thought if we fast forwarded 100 years in the future, an emoji bible would exist. So I thought it’d be fun to try to make it. I wanted to make it similar to how you might text or tweet a bible verse, by shrinking the total character count.”


Bible Emoji is priced at $2.99 on the Apple App Store, but for those who don’t like paying for things there is an accompanying Twitter account too. We expect this to cause controversy in some quarters, but is translating The Bible from English to emoji What Does This Emoji Mean? Emoji Face Meanings Explained Confused by the emojis in that text message you just got? Here are the commonly accepted meanings of popular emojis. Read More really any worse than translating it from Hebrew to English?

ASUS Launches the Zenbo Robot

Taiwanese electronics manufacturer ASUS has announced a new product called Zenbo. This isn’t a new laptop or smartphone, but a new robot designed to live in your home. ASUS is officially referring to Zenbo as “Your smart little companion,” and this cross between BB-8 from Star Wars and Marvin from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy certainly has a few tricks up his sleeve.

The ASUS Zenbo will move independently around your house, remind you of important information, answer questions, play music, control smart home devices Save Energy and Money With These Smart Home Devices One of the biggest benefits of a smart home is the energy saving technologies available. As well as saving money, you’ll also be pushing toward a more sustainable, convenient living situation. Read More , and interact with your children. And that’s just for starters. Whether you find that awesome or creepy will probably dictate whether you buy a Zenbo for around $600 when it’s released at an unspecified time in the future.

YouTube Red = Free Chromecasts

Google is giving away Chromecasts to YouTube Red subscribers as a thank you for supporting the service. For the uninitiated, YouTube Red is a $10-a-month ad-free version of YouTube with added content, including Scare PewDiePie, which we watched to save you the bother We Watched Scare PewDiePie So You Don't Have To Are these YouTube Red Originals worth the price tag? We watched the first batch so, well, you don't have to. Here's what we thought... Read More .


Multiple YouTube Red subscribers Is YouTube Premium Worth the Cost? 7 Things You Need to Consider Is YouTube Premium's cost worth it? We look into the pros and cons of YouTube's paid version. Read More have reported receiving emails from Google, with the Chromecast billed as “just a little treat for being one of the first people to join the party”. It’s unclear whether signing up now will qualify you, but if you do so, and it works, please let us know.

Strapping a GoPro to a Cheetah

And finally, what happens when you strap a GoPro to a cheetah? No, this isn’t the opening of a crap joke, it’s a legitimate question, and one which is answered by the video embedded above.

We all know cheetahs are the fastest land animals, reaching speeds of up to 120 km/h. But being told that is very different than being shown, which is where the GoPro 8 Things You Probably Don't Know About GoPro Cameras GoPro action cameras have enjoyed a rapid rise in popularity in the last few years, but despite their prevalence, there is a lot you probably don't know about the devices. Read More comes in to play.

Keepers at the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden strapped a GoPro to one of their resident cheetahs, and the footage will leave you breathless. It shows an animal sprinting faster than most of us travel in our cars, and all while keeping its head fixed firmly on its prey. [H/T Gizmodo]


Your Views on Today’s Tech News

Should we be legislating against hate speech? Is Bible Emoji a bit of fun or actually quite offensive? Would you ever consider buying an ASUS Zenbo? Is a free Chromecast enough to make you sign up for YouTube Red? What animal would you like to see a GoPro attached to next?

Let us know your thoughts on the Tech News of the day by posting to the comments section below. Because a healthy discussion is always welcome.

Tech News Digest is a daily column paring the technology news of the day down into bite-sized chunks that are easy to read and perfect for sharing.

Image Credit: K-Screen Shots via Flickr

Affiliate Disclosure: By buying the products we recommend, you help keep the site alive. Read more.

Whatsapp Pinterest

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  1. jim
    May 31, 2016 at 11:33 pm

    People with real disagreements with Obama over policy are called haters all the time. I know where this is headed.

  2. Anonymous
    May 31, 2016 at 10:21 pm

    People don't have emotions/hate for no reason. It is apart of their beliefs. A such it is protected by our civil right to freedom of belief.

    It is the expression of our beliefs/emotions which is restricted by the right of others not to be directly threatened by others. As such, it is ONLY the threat which may be criminalized.

    That being the case, the concept of hate speech being made illegal is a violation our civil right to freedom of belief and freedom of expression and in my experience promoted mostly by political "liberals" (I use that term very loosely) for the purpose of suppressing those rights.

  3. Philip Bates
    May 31, 2016 at 7:54 pm

    The emoji Bible? That's nuts. You have to admire the effort that went into making it, of course, but it's a little patronising, no? I'm not sure it's any more accessible - in fact, I'm not even sure why it's been done, aside from being a gimmick.

  4. Anonymous
    May 31, 2016 at 4:38 pm

    "Europe Bans Illegal Hate Speech"
    Rampant and pernicious Political Correctness rears its ugly head yet again!
    Ooops, can my statement be considered "illegal hate speech" by the European Commission?

    Hate, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder. People are quick to label those with opposing views as "haters". To religious fundamentalists, converting unbelievers is part of their dogma. To the "unbelievers" that dogma sounds very much like hate speech. In the history of mankind, legislating morality has never worked.

  5. Marco Barreto
    May 31, 2016 at 3:58 pm

    "The European Commission is trying to stop the rise of hate speech online, authoring a new Code of Conduct designed to curtail abhorrent viewpoints from spreading." Sooo, its censorship. Again.