Sky News: COVID-19: 10 patients killed in fire on coronavirus intensive care ward in Romania. “Ten people have died after a fire broke out on an intensive care ward treating coronavirus patients in Romania. Seven others are critically injured following the fire at Piatra Neamt county hospital on Saturday. Apart from one person, all those killed or injured are COVID-19 patients, according to emergency services spokesperson Irina Popa.”
The Calvert Journal: A digital photo archive shows everyday life in 20th-century Romania. “A curatorial collective has started to digitise one of Romania’s few historical photographic archives. The collection belongs to Mihai Oroveanu (1946-2013), an art historian and photographer who worked as the director of Romania’s National Museum of Contemporary Art between 2001-2013.”
NBC News: Romanian villagers re-elect mayor who died from Covid-19. “Romanian villagers have re-elected their mayor by a landslide even though he died two weeks ago from Covid-19 complications, saying he had done a good job and deserved his posthumous victory. A video shared on social media showed dozens of villagers visiting the grave of Ion Aliman, a Social Democrat, to light candles after voting had ended in Sunday’s local elections.”
Balkan Insight: Journalism, Activism Combine to Preserve Riches of Ancient Romanian Port. “In early July, when a court in Romania declared null and void the 2003 sale of a century-old palace on the country’s Black Sea coast, it marked a milestone in a journalistic fight to preserve the rich cultural heritage of the port of Constanta. Built in the early 1920s at the behest of Queen Mary of Romania, the Royal Palace of Mamaia became a nightclub and eventually a depository for mouldy mattresses after the state sold it to a local businessman 17 years ago. But the battle to save it from ruin began only in 2014, with the investigative reporting and public campaigning of Info Sud-Est, an online publication on Constanta affairs with a rare focus on the preservation of the city’s cultural heritage.”
BalkanInsight: Online Photo Archive Brings Romania’s History Back to Life. “If we take the 20th century, we can find a significant amount of digitized content that reflects that part of our history. But most of it comes from public institutions, newspapers, magazines and other organized archives. It scarcely represents people’s life in that time. This void in the graphic collective memory of most countries, which is perhaps most significant in post-communist societies, where archival sources were even more centralized, is being filled in Romania by Azopan. An amateur free online archive, it digitizes and publishes analogue pictures donated by the public.”
Calvert Journal: A digital archive is recovering half a century of communist Romania’s eclectic visual culture. “Romanian culture zine Kajet Journal has launched a digital archive of the country’s communist-era print culture, marking 30 years since the December 1989 Revolution that toppled the country’s socialist regime. The research project makes hundreds of scans from books, booklets, DIY manuals, newspapers, and periodicals, produced between 1947 and 1989, available to the general public.”
European Interest: Votul Meu: A new tool lunched in Romania. “The Center for the Study of Democracy in Romania has launched the independent vote matching tool, Votul Meu, ahead of the European elections. The interactive tool aims to match political preferences between parties and potential voters for the European elections, based on political parties’ campaign messages.”
Reuters: Romania’s witches harness the powers of the web. “The power of the Internet has allowed Romania’s busy witch community to gradually migrate their ancient practices onto the Web. Witchcraft has long been seen as a folk custom in the eastern European country, and many of its estimated 4,000 witches are luring customers from Europe, Asia and the United States.”
Romania Insider: Govt. launches Romania’s Digital Library project. “The Government approved on Wednesday, September 5, the launch of the E-cultura: Romania’s Digital Library project.”
Romania Insider: Romania will have a national database of its mineral resources. “Romania will have a national database of its mineral resources after the Government approves the Geological Research Program, Anca Magdalena Chiser, state secretary in the Economy Ministry, said yesterday.”
Romania Insider: Romania wine map available in English. “The map is aimed at identifying distinct areas in Romania, as well as helping tourists find the wine cellar they want to visit. It contains an updated list of local vineyards and wine cellars. It does not necessarily work as a tourist guide, but rather has an educational purpose, being an instrument by which wine lovers can discover wine cellars and wine-growing areas from Romania. The new map is focused on wine cellars known to be involved in wine tourism.”
Romania Insider: Romanian medieval documents compiled in digital database. “Over 55,000 medieval documents from Romania have been digitized and compiled in the first such database in the country, Digi24.ro reported. The database… is the result of a project implemented by the University of Bucharest, in a partnership with the Romanian National Archives, the Babeș-Bolyai University in Cluj-Napoca and the National Archives of Norway.”
The government of Romania has launched a new site to fight against illegal logging (PRESS RELEASE.) “The ‘Forest Inspector’ portal allows users to view ongoing and historical data about all timber transports in Romania. This new interface builds upon a series of previous government initiatives. In 2014, Romania’s government created a hotline where citizens could call to check if logging trucks seen on Romania’s roads were officially registered. Public statistics show that a quarter of all phone calls since 2014 identified illegal trucks. A mobile app version introduced in 2016 led to a 30% increase in the number of trucks registering official transport documents, which would seem to indicate a dramatic decrease in the number of log trucks illegally transporting timber.”
In development: an online archive to preserve the architecture of the former Eastern Bloc. “Described as Socialist Modernist, the buildings captured were all constructed after the second world war within the former Eastern Bloc – the group of Central and Eastern European states that were under Soviet influence – and neighbouring Yugoslavia.” The images in this article are absolutely stunning.
Romania has a new online museum for corruption. “Romania’s new Corruption Museum hosts the Bribes’ Gallery, where visitors can find some of the most famous cases of bribery in Romania, and the Bribe Test, which lets people test their knowledge on local corruption. The museum’s website is currently available only in Romanian.” Dang. I tried translating this site with Google Translate and no luck. No good with Bing either.