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Digital Asia links: Model UN, Blued, China's nukes, WeChat, West Papua and more

Digital Asia links: Model UN, Blued, China's nukes, WeChat, West Papua and more
Published 13 Feb 2015   Follow @DaniellesCave

The Asia Pacific is the most dynamic digital landscape in the world, home to the fastest adopters of new technologies, the largest concentration of social media and mobile users, and some of the world's most innovative tech companies. The rise of mobile messenger apps, use of big data and online activism are shaping the region's engagement with the world.

  • A spat involving Taiwan, high school students and a Harvard-based model UN conference has set the Chinese web alight.
  • Popular Facebook groups in PNG and West Papua are teeming with discussion about Prime Minister O'Neill's recent public acknowledgement of West Papuan oppression (and the PNG Foreign Minister's subsequent back-peddle).
  • Bad open source intelligence claiming China has deployed nuclear-armed missiles on its border with North Korea, targeted at Japan, has been debunked by the Arms Control Wonk blog, using specialist open source techniques.
  • Millions of Facebook users in Myanmar, Indonesia, the Philippines and Thailand (and Africa) don't know they're on the internet, creating data anomalies on global internet uptake.
  • Bouncing off North Korea's cyber ambitions, Alan Dupont argues cutting-edge cyber skills are now a key measure of national power and economic prosperity (the US obviously thinks so).
  • Everything you wanted to know about China's social media landscape in 2015. The big news: while social media use continues to grow rapidly (WeChat remains the most popular), users are showing increasing concern for how it impacts their lives.
  • Unbeknown to most, the world's largest gay mobile dating app is Chinese. Called 'Blued', the app has international expansion in its sights, this week launching in its first overseas market, the Netherlands.
  • India, despite having one of the smallest diplomatic corps per capita in the world (only 930 diplomats representing India's1.25 billion people), continues to invest heavily in digital diplomacy. Watch how India's Ministry of External Affairs is using ICT platforms to expand its presence in China (below) and Egypt.

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