Yale News: Digitally rebuilding a lost city

Yale News: Digitally rebuilding a lost city. “The ancient city of Dura-Europos, on the bank of the Euphrates River in present-day Syria, has long fascinated archaeologists and historians for its cultural diversity — Jewish, Christian, Mithraic, and other religious groups lived and worshiped close to each other…. [Holly Rushmeier and Anne Chen] recently received a $350,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to develop a digital archive of materials related to the archaeological site of Dura-Europos.”

BBC: TikTok profits from livestreams of families begging

BBC: TikTok profits from livestreams of families begging. “Displaced families in Syrian camps are begging for donations on TikTok while the company takes up to 70% of the proceeds, a BBC investigation found. Children are livestreaming on the social media app for hours, pleading for digital gifts with a cash value. The BBC saw streams earning up to $1,000 (£900) an hour, but found the people in the camps received only a tiny fraction of that.”

40 thousand gigabytes: An archive of Assad’s war crimes in Syria (TRT World)

TRT World: 40 thousand gigabytes: An archive of Assad’s war crimes in Syria. “Tamer Turkmani stares at his laptop screen for hours every day. A Syrian national, Turkmani has been collecting photographic and video evidence of people who have been killed in the course of the Syrian civil war. Turkmani’s goal is to maintain a digital archive of the victims who have been shot dead by the troops loyal to Bashar al Assad.”

Pitchfork: The Syrian Cassette Archives Explore a Pivotal Era of Middle Eastern Music

Pitchfork: The Syrian Cassette Archives Explore a Pivotal Era of Middle Eastern Music. “In February, he launched the website for the Syrian Cassette Archives, a multimedia project that focuses on a vibrant cassette culture that flourished in Syria from the 1970s to the 2000s. Since founding the project in 2018, [Mark] Gergis and a small group of collaborators have spent countless hours digitizing his collection of around 400 tapes. He’s also amassed new acquisitions of tapes and conducted interviews with artists and tape sellers from Syria.”

Deutsche Welle: Lessons from online investigators in Syria help Ukraine

Deutsche Welle: Lessons from online investigators in Syria help Ukraine. “In Ukraine, open-source investigators are gathering videos posted to social media of missile attacks, counting destroyed tanks and collating the names of soldiers killed. Some investigators work remotely from anywhere in the world while others are in the country. Open-source investigators did similar over the past 11 years in Syria. But while in Syria, the field of online open-source research was only just evolving, in Ukraine it has matured.”

Byline Times: How Russia’s Disinformation Apparatus RAN AGROUND IN UKRAINE

Byline Times: How Russia’s Disinformation Apparatus RAN AGROUND IN UKRAINE. “Unlike in Syria, Russian disinformation in Ukraine has so far failed to gain traction. Some of the reasons are specific to Ukraine: Russia’s aggression is too blatant to be covered up by propaganda; Ukraine’s long exposure to Russian disinformation has left it in a heightened state of preparedness; and, most significantly, the effectiveness of Ukrainian messaging and the character of the messenger.”

The National: Syria outlaws social media posts that ‘undermine the economy’

The National: Syria outlaws social media posts that ‘undermine the economy’. “Syria will penalise social media users with jail terms and fines if they undermine the economy with their posts. The new measures are part of a broad cybersecurity law to prevent online crime, including credit card fraud, defamation and blasphemy. Breaches of the new law would attract a jail term of four to 15 years and a fine as high as 10 million Syrian pounds ($4,000).”

University of Notre Dame: Literatures of Annihilation, Exile, and Resistance Launches New Website

University of Notre Dame: Literatures of Annihilation, Exile, and Resistance Launches New Website. “The new website includes an archive of recorded events featuring transnational writers and scholars from Iraq, Iran, Palestine, Syria, Egypt, Lebanon, Colombia, Chile and the United States whose work bears witness to truth and history and to the global struggle for freedom.”

Jerusalem Post: Post six-day war footage of Egyptian Monastery made public by Israel’s national library

Jerusalem Post: Post six-day war footage of Egyptian Monastery made public by Israel’s national library . “Some 1,600 Christian manuscripts and numerous photographs and film footage from after the Six Day War are now available for free public viewing, the National Library of Israel (NLI) has announced. The documents were originally archived at Saint Catherine’s Monastery in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula. Founded by Justinian I over 1,500 years ago, the monastery is home to the oldest functional library in the world.”

Error 403: Syrians Blocked From Online Learning Platforms (Techdirt)

Techdirt: Error 403: Syrians Blocked From Online Learning Platforms. “Individuals in dictatorships need more freedom not less. Syrians have for years been unable to work remotely or pay for remote services, even educational ones. Do we want to do the same now to Afghans, who are already in fear of the Taliban? Examining in detail the experiences of Syrians, can maybe lead us to a better solution.”

Ekathimerini: Valuable Syrian mosaics on show in Athens

Ekathimerini: Valuable Syrian mosaics on show in Athens. “An online database of Syrian mosaics is also available and the aim is to use this digital archive for the publication of a single tome. It contains more than 7,500 images of 365 mosaics, a fraction of the large number of artifacts that were brought to light in years of archaeological excavations.”

The Register: Syria and Sudan turn off the internet to suppress … cheating by kids sitting exams

The Register: Syria and Sudan turn off the internet to suppress … cheating by kids sitting exams. “Access Now reports as a part of its #KeepItOn campaign that there were 115 internet shutdowns in 2019, 60 in 2020 and 50 between January and May of 2021. Of those so far in 2021, 24 affected a whole country or region, 11 took in more than one city or area, and 13 cut off only one city, county or village.”

Hunting for books in the ruins: how Syria’s rebel librarians found hope (The Guardian)

The Guardian: Hunting for books in the ruins: how Syria’s rebel librarians found hope. “These young Syrians cohabited with death night and day. Most of them had already lost everything – their homes, their friends, their parents. Amid the chaos, they clung to books as if to life, hoping for a better tomorrow, for a better political system. Driven by their thirst for culture, they were quietly developing an idea of what democracy should be. An idea that challenged the regime’s tyranny and Islamic State’s book burners.”

International Business Times: Activists In Race To Save Digital Trace Of Syria War

International Business Times: Activists In Race To Save Digital Trace Of Syria War. “From videos of deadly air strikes to jihadist takeovers, Al-Mutez Billah’s YouTube page served as a digital archive of the Syrian war until automated takedown software in 2017 erased it permanently. The page exhibiting footage that violated YouTube’s community standards could not be restored because Al-Mutez Billah, a citizen-journalist, had been executed by the Islamic State group three years earlier over his documentation efforts.”