Golden Dawn pushes Greek-only blood bank

Given that far-right parties tend to somewhat moderate their positions when they're actually in government, the degree to which Greece's Golden Dawn party has thoroughly lived up to its reputation for buffoonish, neo-Nazi thuggery since its electoral success has been a bit suprising.  Their latest provocation is a Greek-only blood donation drive

Golden Dawn, which enjoyed unprecedented success in last month's election after promising to rid Greece of all immigrants, put up posters in Athens calling for volunteers to donate blood "only for Greeks who need our help."

"All the bottles of blood we collect will be handed over to patients we choose and to no one else," the party said in a statement. "This right to choose belongs not just to Golden Dawn members, but to all volunteer blood donors."

The party, which denies it is neo-Nazi, said it had managed to get such a blood bank up and running at a state hospital in Athens.

Right... nothing Nazi about policing racial purity in blood donations.  A Greek doctor's union called the plan an "insane, unscientific, illegal and racist action"

The Times reported on Tuesday that Golden Dawn members have also been threatening immigrant shopkeepers in Athens. 


Uzbekistan rips off Facebook with 'YouFace'

Global Voices Uzbekistan blogger Ekaterina has a new post discussing Uzbekistan's recently launched Facebook competitor, amusingly called "YouFace." As you can see from the image above, it's pretty clear where the site got its design inspiration. Ekaterina writes:

The domain name is owned by an Uzbek national named Ayubhon Abdullaev. He has admitted [ru] that the new social network service resembles Facebook “at first sight”. However, according to Abdullaev, the service's design “will be changed” as soon as its Facebook look helps attract more users. He also announced that the goal of Youface is to “boost patriotism among young people in Uzbekistan”. It is not surprising than that the website's welcome page quotes Uzbekistan's President Islam Karimov: “Our children must be stronger, smarter, and happier than we are”.

Some security experts worry that the site's design might confuse users who think they're logging on to Facebook but wind up putting their personal information into YouFace instead. The site's administrators are upfront about the fact that they can keep archived versions of all content posted to user profiles. 

Savvy Facebook users probably won't be fooled, but this is a subtler approach than Iran's proposed "halal" Internet or North Korea's Kwangmyong. I'd imagine China's enormously successful but carefully monitored Weibo might be more the inspiration here.