The 7 best moments of the Cabinet Reshuffle on Twitter

After all is said and done and the dust has settled on the recent Cabinet Reshuffle it’s interesting to look back at the best moment that played out live on Twitter. Click here if you want to read about all latest changes in the cabinet.

As a social media harlot I am ecstatic to see Twitter being used by Malta’s journalists and politicians to break the latest news. The rest of the local community of course joined in the reshuffle fun and the best seven moments have been reproduced hereunder.

Number 7

Filthy cars arriving at Girgenti.
https://twitter.com/DanielaBartolo/statuses/449924030163075072

Number 6

Andrew Borg Cardona calls it! One hour before it is made official.

Number 5

Miriam Dalli, journalist at MaltaToday once again tries her luck and complains about being hungry.

She then posts a picture of the advent of food.

And also manages to get food for the rest of the media hanging outside Girgenti

Number 4

Owen Bonnici is probably the best there is to take Culture a step forward in Malta it has to be said that yet again Culture hasn’t been given its due importance – or respect for that matter – as it’s now been relegated under Justice.

Number 3

Matthew Vella contemplating on the family affair.

Number 2

Franco Mercieca announces his definitive resignation with a tweet that screams relief.

Number 1

Satiristan comes back from retirement and takes the Number 1 spot.
https://twitter.com/Satiristan/statuses/449940351797956608

And finally the Prime Minister’s Twitter account posted the following photo with the caption:
A chat with my good friend Godfrey Farrugia,thanking him for his contribution. Sure he has still more to offer. 

Cabinet reshuffle

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Crowdfunding and the local arts. Photographer Kris Micallef talks about his crowdfunded project REGNVM.

If you fancy yourself as a supporter of local artists make sure you keep an eye out for any crowdfunded projects out there. The amazingly talented, local photographer, Kris Micallef has decided to launch his project, REGNVM on Indiegogo with the aim to publish a limited edition book and host a solo photographic exhibition.

Crowdfunding is a fascinating resource and so many people around the world are making use of websites such as Kickstarter and Indiegogo to gather support and raise funds for their projects. According to Gartner Research Crowdfunding has grown by 300% since 2009 when it generated $1.6 billion to an estimated $6.2billion in the last year. It is the opportunity local artists have been looking for so Melahart.com caught up with Kris Micallef to see what made him choose the crowdfunding route and his thoughts on the process.

REGNVM | Teaser from kris micallef on Vimeo.

1) What made you go down the crowdfunding  route?

I knew from the start that the project is going to cost a lot and that getting sponsors from local companies was not going to be so easy. I had already heard about the idea of crowdfunding and had personally helped out a couple of artists raise their target by contributing to their campaign by buying their books and prints. I thought the idea was amazing and it would really be great if it could work for me too, knowing that it would help me realize my first exhibition in Malta and also my first publication.

Kris Micallef REGNVM2) You reached your crowdfunding goal, did you expect it was going to happen with a week still left to the deadline?

Yes and no. The type of crowdfunding scheme I chose had certain terms – if I reach my goal within the allowed period I receive 96% of what I raised and if not I receive 91% of what I raise. Therefore, I set a target of EUR5,000 which I think is quite a big amount but not too difficult to reach. I was very pleased to see so many contributing to this project – ordering copies of the book, fine art prints, postcards or even simply contributing without selecting any of the goodies! What is even more surprising is that not only did I reach my target in less than 60 days (the allowed period for a crowdfunding campaign), but I have also raised another EUR1,000+ with 5 more days to go! This is great as it will help me pay for other costs such as the exhibition prints, framing, venue fee, invitation printing, model fees and so on.

Kris Micallef regnvm 23) Crowdfunding is not as easy as simply posting your project online.  Tell us what the hardest part was.

The hardest part was preparing the campaign. Together with the help of my creative director, a total of around four weeks was spent working on the crowdfunding campaign. This mostly involves the preparation of the necessary information and ‘perks’ for the contributors while, at the same time, making sure that the campaign is affordable to individuals and feasible for us too.

The second hardest part was pushing it publicly. Out of hundreds of people I spoke to regarding crowd funding very few knew it existed and how it worked. This is because it is a relatively new concept. However, once people understood the mechanics, many contributed in helping me reach my target. The campaign was shared several times on Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr and has reached various countries. Not only Malta but also Canada, Brazil, Germany, Spain, UK, Czech Republic, South Africa, Belgium, Netherlands and Italy.

4) And finally, do you think crowdfunding is the way to go for local artists looking to take their work on to the next level?

Definitely! It’s a great tool for artists to help them realize their projects. A successful crowdfunding campaign depends on various factors which need to be properly thought through – a good project is of course one of them but also an achievable target and a good marketing plan.

If you want to support Kris and his REGNVM project you can click here. Only 5 days are left and it would be crazy to pass this opportunity up as some awesome goodies are up for grabs.

Malta Weekly Roundup – A River of Love, MaltaToday laziness (?) and some perspective

Well of course this week this happened:

Which then led to this:

Yes! Some guy called Matthew Grech and his shiny purple tutu went on YouTube to share their opinion about an up and coming theatre production called Jiena nħobb, Inti tħobb which centres around gay adoption. Matthew Grech decided to share his River of Love and tell the rest of us what we should think in semi coherent Maltese. Supressat, really? Xarabank, never missing a beat, dedicated a whole night to it. Since God is punishing us for allowing such a production and he sent all this wind our way, most of Malta stayed in, decided to watch Xarabank and took to Facebook to say how much shit it all was. Circle jerk anyone?

Luckily for the rest of us a local comedian, Matthew Bonnano provided some comic relief.

Have MaltaToday  given up on journalism and are asking you to do it for them? Looks like no one in the newsroom is up to going through the 240 page share transfer agreement between the Government of Malta and Arriva.

(UPDATE) To be fair, MT’s editor explained the story behind this particular tweet and now it all makes sense. MaltaToday were simply looking for some fresh perspective on the agreement. Citizen journalism FTW!

Kurt Farrugia was very right when using the #GetThingsIntoPerspective hashtag on Twitter. On the 23rd January The Times carried a story about MP Justyne Caruana using the AFM helicopter to reach the airport in time because of a last minute decision to take a flight. The PN jumped on the wagon screaming abuse at which point MaltaToday came out with a list of times when PM Lawrence Gonzi used the same service. I fail to understand how this is news. The AFM helicopter is used for a plethora of things. If there is no need for it, then why all this fuss? Surely there are more important things deserving of The Times of Malta’s front page.

Hope you enjoyed this week’s roundup. Did I miss anything? Let me know in the comments below.

GBU!

 

High selfie esteem?

The term selfie is suddenly on everybody’s lips – stessu if you want to go for the awesome Maltese version. It was all started by Ira Losco expressing her concerns, followed up by a few sexual videos shared as revenge porn and picked up by everybody else who has been living under a rock for the past half a decade (selfies are so 2012).

Now it seems to have also been picked up by Social Dialogue Minister, Helena Dalli, who decided to collect some karma points on such a pressing matter. I am sure the Minister does not mean any harm but, in truth, a pressing matter it is not and reading the full page article on The Times today about how the Minister wants to make the sharing of explicit selfies illegal I felt compelled to follow it up with a blog.

image source: The Mirror

Animal selfies are way cuter! image source: The Mirror

In the meantime another blogger beat me to it, mirroring much of my sentiment. Read J’accuse for a clear explanation encompassing the issue of selfies and the law.

As J’accuse explains “you don’t need consent to publish a selfie because technically the only person who publishes a selfie is the same person who took it.” And as J’accuse explains this is not about being pedantic because if you are in possession of someone else’s explicit selfie, and you publish it, then you are already doing something illegal.

But what about all the distress this causes to the people involved I hear you say. And that is where my point comes in. In today’s society people do not think of consequences, and more importantly, people should come to accept a certain amount of responsibility which comes with our digital freedoms.

You have every right to take sexy photos of yourself but do yourself a favor and think of what might happen once these leave your phone.

There should be no need for a Minister to call press conferences and say that her Ministry is looking into making the sharing of selfies illegal, firstly, because the argument is already flawed as pointed out by J’accuse but also because I don’t need my government to protect me from myself. So for everybody’s sake, I hope no more time is wasted on this matter.

You don’t want your unflattering pictures to make the rounds on the internet? Then DO NOT SHARE them.

10 most shocking comments on Cecilia Malmstrom’s Facebook Page

For all this talk about patriotism and nationalism I am surely feeling ashamed of being Maltese, and this is not the first time in the past few days. Never have I seen such abusive behavior online, especially on Facebook. Even during the general elections there was a more serene feel when browsing through comments. All this abuse is being thrown about on Cecilia Malmstrom Facebook page. She is the EU Commissioner for Home Affairs and during the MT Salamis debacle pleaded to Malta to take in the 120 immigrants rescued at sea.

Once again the Government decided to stomp its feet and the immigrants were sent to Italy. Yet what happened after this decision was taken sent a cold shiver down my spine. A considerable amount of Maltese took to Malmstrom’s Facebook page to shout out their opinion. Their opinion being;

  1. The why don’t you take them yourself argument,
  2. The we are Maltese, no one steps on us, argument, and
  3. Abuse, lots of it.

This is shameful, and frankly, useless. The only thing this flock of sheep is managing to do is show what a xenophobic nation the Maltese really are – and this not just to the rest of us, who are sitting here reading these comments incredulously, but to the rest of the world.

Thankfully Cecilia Malmstrom’s page seems to be well maintained and most of the abuse is being deleted. However going through the hundreds of comments you still find the shocking utterance here and there. Here are a list of the 10 most shocking comments I could find.

Shocking comments on Ceciliam Malmstrom's page

Special mention goes out to this person (below comment) who posted something like 17 times on Malmstron’s page. What annoys me most about this breed of people is this presumption of speaking for the rest of us in Malta.

image 2

I understand that this has nothing to do with politics – red, blue, whatever – but there does seem to be this feeling that it is OK to do this because the Prime Minister is on ‘our’ side.

image 3

Joseph Muscat better take his own advice and wake up to smell the coffee. A stratum of Maltese people are showing off their true colours – pure ignorance and racism that is – because they are misreading your message (yes I’m giving the benefit of the doubt). It is high time for the Prime Minister to start condemning such talk.

This post has been amended to remove the names of those who spouted such abuse on Malmstrom’s page becuase apparently a lot of people are OK to dish it but then cannot take it.

Melahart is now on Bloglovin

Follow my blog with Bloglovin – about time right? I’ve finally awoken from my slumber and got around to setting up my profile on the amazing Bloglovin.

With the impending doom known as the discontinuation of Google Reader, Bloglovin is a great alternative to follow the blogs you love and also find new ones. When you sign up, you also have the option to import all your Google Reader RSS feeds. The process is painless and is done in a minute or two. Whilst there are other alternatives to Google Reader, such as Digg Reader, I suggest you give Bloglovin a try, you really won’t regret it.

So now I can calmly reclaim my status as Social Media Harlot. You can find melahart on most social media networks and here goes the full list;

Facebook
Twitter
Google+

Pinterest
Tumblr
Instagram

and of course…

bloglovin

Day of reflection – where to draw the line?

Social Media is a beautiful thing but in the wee hours of the morning, on the 9th of March 2013, when Malta had to wake up to vote in the general elections, social media turned ugly.

It was a whirlwind of events. Daphne Caruana Galizia, a well known journalist and blogger was arrested for expressing her opinion on her blog on the day known as the day of reflection. On this day, (for 24 hours before the crucial vote) no political propaganda is allowed to be broadcasted.

Timesofmalta.com reports this law was drafted in 1991 – when internet access was the stuff of science fiction movies – while on MaltaToday it was reported that social media and bloggers were defying the day of reflection.

Going back to The Times, the article concluded by saying that the Police didn’t answer questions about the prosecution of individuals who breach the day of reflection.

Well I guess we all got our answers now.

Now everyone is in agreement that this law is archaic, very vague and for lack of better word (it’s 4:00 am – what am I doing up?) is stupid. With its vagueness, if taken to extremes, would even take into consideration private conversations. But then what about freedom of expression? Does one law trump the other? And what is the difference between a media organisation and a private individual expressing their opinion, and what about blogs, Facebook and Twitter; are these regarded as private means of communication similar to private conversations?

The interesting thing is that a quick Google search will come back with blogposts from the previous election asking the same questions and J’accuse contemplating on the matter ahead of the divorce referendum.

What raises concern in this instance is the case of two weights and two measures. Why was Daphne Caruana Galizia arrested but the rest of the people expressing their opinion on Facebook – and yes this also included politicians and half of Malta – weren’t. Political ads on Google were still running, and so were Facebook ones.

More worrying is a page like this one who wants to appear independent at all costs yet has no shame in posting these kind of statuses;

So much for being independent!

So much for being independent!

In the mean time a page has been set up on Facebook to show support for Daphne Caruana Galizia. I understand she is not Malta’s favourite blogger but for now this cause represents freedom of expression, it represents someone being arrested in 2013 for expressing their opinion – think about it!

Daphne Caruana Galizia arrested

The Ghost of Muscat’s Twitter account

I missed this one! I was out celebrating a little bit of Christmas time.

Reading the news I was surprised to what had unfolded but it was late and I yearned for sleep. First thing I did this morning was to read the various news reports, watch all the videos and go through Facebook and Twitter to see what everyone else had to say.

I will not be delving into Xarabank’s happenings, it’s not a program I free my Friday nights to watch. However, if you would like to read all of yesterday’s faux pas head over to J’accuse for a top notch account.

What I found interesting about yesterday was the lack of an opinion from Joseph Muscat on Twitter. This is not the first time I’ve criticised Joseph Muscat’s use of Twitter, click here for a previous blunder of his/theirs.

Throughout last night there was a constant feed of retweets from his account, but not one single tweet from him. I find it very hard to believe that the Leader of the Opposition didn’t have an opinion about what was undolding, or wasn’t even available for a quick 140 character comment. Retweeting other people’s opinions is all well and good, as long as you also add something to the mix, but Joseph Muscat, or whoever is running his Twitter account didn’t, and that reflects very badly on the Leader of the Opposition.

I hear you say, what about Lawrence Gonzi, no 140 character comments from this either. The only difference is that there wasn’t a constant flow from the Prime Minister’s twitter. This shows a level of maturity the PL Social Media “gurus” lack. A person’s Twitter is about a person’s message, not a notice board where you plaster all kinds of rubbish. Out of 35 retweets, 32 were about the Xarabank debate, and yet Joseph Muscat had no personal opinion about it?

I expect more from the person running Joseph Muscat’s Twitter account – Grow up for everyone’s sake, especially the party’s sake, Twitter users were not impressed.

Find your next treasure on Reuse.com.mt

I am a hardcore recycler so I was pretty excited about this new initiative by WasteServ. Reuse.com.mt was launched just a few days ago but it’s already gathering a lot of interest.

The concept is simple. You have something you don’t want? Instead of throwing it away you can advertise it on this website and give it away for free. Very simple, and environmentally friendly.

Couple reuse.com.mt with Pinterest and you have a sure win formula. One item available on the website? Pallets… And look what you can do with Pallets.

1) Shelves

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2) Coffee table

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3) More shelves

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Reuse.com.mt, Pinterest; for turning junk into awesome stuff, we thank you!

It’s not just about the billboards stupid.

taken from www.maltastar.com

Maltastar’s recent Facebook campaign to get more likes is simply destroying all the hard work the Labour marketing team have been putting into producing some quality billboards. The campaign, which was launched at the start of October, apart from conflicting greatly with the billboard’s campaign sleek designs, comes with a crass message; “Min se jirbaħ l-iPod għax jagħmel like tal-Facebook tal-Maltastar jaqbillu ma jdaħħlux miegħu meta jagħmel pipi għax jista’ jaqgħalu fit-toilet” (whoever wins the iPod better not take it with him when he goes to pee just in case it falls in the toilet).

A party which resorts to toilet humour is not the kind of party “futur li jgħaqqadna” Labour have been trying to portray so far, even if the message is constantly being attributed to a comment Austin Gatt once made. This particular campaign is a real dent in their branding, especially since it gives an impression of old Labour seeping through.