Facebook: Play Zone or Danger Zone?

What’s your privacy status? Tracey-Lee investigates the potential dangers of your so-called ‘safe haven’.  

Facebook burst into cyber space for most of us in early 2007. Julia*(19), a Law student at the University of Cape Town, logged in for the first time when she was just sixteen. “Facebook was new and exciting and I loved the applications and the easy way I could connect with friends” she explained. For Julia*, everything seemed fun and entertaining but what she didn’t know was the potential danger she would soon encounter. She had no idea about the very many cyber-stalkers lurking between the pages of her beloved Facebook. Soon after using Facebook, “a man started sending me dodgy inbox messages like ‘I wanna F*ck you’ but I managed to block him” she said. For Julia* and many other teenage girls, this would be her first threatening experience and certainly not her last.

According to a study done by Sonia Livingstone, more and more teenagers seem to be unsure about their Facebook privacy status. In her study, many teens have explained that they are not sure where their privacy settings are, owing to unfriendly navigation or internet illiteracy, even though they’ve been using the site for quite some time. Alexia* (20), a friend of Julia*, explains that Facebook and other social networking sites “can be potentially dangerous if you don’t know what you’re doing like putting up addresses and stuff which is basically asking for stalkers”. Just last year, the Facebook community issued an ultimatum to multi millionaire 26-year-old Mark Zuckerburg; “give us more privacy or we’ll log off forever.” By 2010 Facebook had implemented new simplified privacy settings that were more user friendly than in the past. The truth though, is that the majority of teens nowadays have been educated about the dangers of social networking sites and now with Facebook’s enhanced privacy settings, it’s making it harder for such predators to penetrate teens cyber-worlds.

With that being said however, the possible cons are not eradicated by simply ticking a box in your privacy settings, unfortunately there still begs the question about internal privacy from family members, colleagues, bosses and friends. One may think they are private but are you really protected? Your biggest threat may come from inside your private network. Whilst enjoying their time on these social networks, teens often forget that nearly all who know them can see what they are doing. Alexia* explains that “having family members, your boss/teacher and other friends’ parents as Facebook friends definitely limits what [she] puts on Facebook.”  Something that we all need to remember is that social networking sites like Facebook, will not always be completely private.

Read more…


Osama Bin Laden, The Dead Terrorist.

Osama Bin Laden

I along with many others in the world today have been glued to CNN or Sky News in the hopes of learning more about Osama Bin Laden’s death. Bin Laden,  the mastermind behind one of the most devastating terror attacks of our modern times and the most wanted man in the world, was killed in a raid by American Navy Seals in his compound in Abbottabad in the early hours of this morning.

President Obama Addressing the Nation.

President Obama announced the news at around 11.30pm eastern time. The President has given an official statement confirming the death of al-Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden and his body has since been buried at sea. Obama said that it has taken many years to find him but “last week I determined that we had enough intelligence to take action and authorised an operation to get him”. The operation is said to have started with an intelligence lead last August, which  ended in this mornings operation involving a small team of America’s Navy Seals. Obama has assured the public that no Americans were killed in the operation and also that Pakistani co-operation “helped to lead us to him”

I was woken up at 5.30am by Dean screaming ‘OSAMA IS DEAD’. We quickly ran downstairs and switched on CNN to be confronted by crowds (mostly students of the local universities) gathered outside the gates of the White House in Washington DC and at Ground Zero, singing the national anthem, cheering, shouting, crying with joy and the waving of 1000’s of US flags. Throughout the early hours of the morning, long after the President had retired to his room, drivers were still hooting in downtown Washington in utter jubilation.

Crowds outside the White House

Crowds at Ground Zero

The Mansion/Compound where Osama was killed.

Despite the obvious assumptions, “Bin Laden was found not in the remote tribal areas along the Pakistani-Afghan border where he has long been presumed to be sheltered, but in a massive compound about an hour’s drive north from the Pakistani capital of Islamabad.” (The New York Times).

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Digital Story – What Is UCT Radio?

Hello everyone.

I promised so many of you that I would upload my Digital Story so here it is! This was a really wonderful project that was given to us in my media seminar this semester. I really had such an amazing time shooting the film as well as putting it all together in post production.

In a nutshell, the brief was as follows: Create a digital story about a UCT society of your choice. If you do not wish to do a story about a particular society, an alternative topic can be discussed with your seminar leader. Be creative, using sound (for voice-overs and background music), pictures and video to aid expression of your digital story. Do not forget about ethical considerations, as you will be asked to upload your digital story to YouTube and link it to the seminar blog. (Students were asked to include signed consent forms from their participants upon handing in their projects.)

I chose to focus my digital story on UCT Radio not only because we were asked to focus on a society on campus, but also because I have many friends (including a boyfriend) who have been very involved in the radio. I too, auditioned to be on the radio in first year and was chosen to be a Radio DJ but due to work constraints, I had to withdraw. Because of this, I immediately felt an emotional connection to the subject matter and I knew it was a video I could be passionate about producing. What I aim to achieve through my story, is a well produced promotional video for UCT Radio that explains what the Radio is and why first years should get involved.

Thanks to everyone who participated, I hope you enjoy the final product 🙂


she has something to say to him

but her thoughts are incoherent

utterly random and dis-joint-ed

she tries to say what her heart truly feels

but stumbles over her tongue

hoping that he hasn’t noticed

her mortifying attempt

she quickly denies it but

he knows the truth now

she is left vulnerable

her head hangs low

embarrassed and broken

comical so it seems

she knows he’s laughing

at her and her naivety

gathering fragments of shattered dignity

she turns to walk away but

his empty words call at her

he begs her to stop

it’s too late now

S h e ’ s   t o o   f a r   g o n e

– Tracey-Lee Lusty

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Close Up Shop

As the winter draws closer, many of our favourite Restaurants, Bars and Clubs have (unfortunately) reached their sell by date. It seems such a pity to say goodbye to these places that have afforded us many good times, funny memories and down right fabulous motherjols!

I did some research and here is a list of all those who will be leaving us this winter (and forever).


1. Blonde (Gardens, CT)

2. Cheyne’s (Bree Street, CT)

3. Jardine (Bree Street, CT)

4. The Wooden Shoe (Sea Point, CT)

Image from eatout.co.za

5. Kink (Gardens, CT)

6. Wild Woods (Hout Bay, CT)

7. The Green Dolphin (V&A Waterfront, CT)

8. JayCees (Rondebosch, CT)

9. Sand Bar (Camps Bay, CT)

10. Café del Mar (Camps Bay, CT)

11.  Donatella’s (V & A Waterfront, CT)

12. Boer and Brit (Alphen Hotel, CT)

13. Tequila Town (Buitengracht Street, CT)

14. Club 91 (Claremont, CT)

And wait for it……..

15. Tiger Tiger (Claremont, CT)

Branches of Melissa’s, the Cape Town Fish Market, Wangthai and Vida e Caffé have also closed.

Catch up

Hello everyone!

Wow, I am sorry for the absence. My life has been very VERY hectic at the moment. Loads of work, tests and essays! I haven’t had much time to breathe let alone relax and just…blog 🙂 Law is going very well but I have to admit, I’m getting a little nervous for the exams coming up. There is one Law subject in particular that I’m not too sure about. I think I share that boat with quite a few. I literally have a stack of notes on the subject, but I’m not that certain about their content.

Image from zazzle.com

I'm still trying to figure that one out..

To be honest, there really hasn’t been that much going on in the news lately, no Rebecca Blacks, no exciting footwear or big drama in the series world. Nope, life seems to be pretty mundane at the moment. BUT this will not be a boring post I promise.

By now everyone should be pretty stuffed with chocolates, sweets and yummy Easter food! Speaking of which, we all know that Lindt has come out with those huge (and equally expensive) golden Easter bunnies. Well check this out, to promote the bunny they transformed the SmartCar into one!

Image from designerbase.com

SmartCar Lindt Bunny

This loooong weekend was just what I needed to unwind and relax. As for the Jewish holiday, I kept Pesach this year and by ‘kept’ I mean, I abstained from eating bread…it was hard people!! Carbs are yummmy and not evil like some may assume 🙂 For those of you who don’t know, every year I get to share in the festivities of both the Christian and Jewish faith as my parents are Christian (Dad) and Jewish (Mom). It’s really quite fabulous. I get to eat a lot of yummy food and learn about two religions at the same time. I feel like I live a richer cultural life for that.

In other news, Dean started his new job at Sport 24. He now fills the ‘social media manager’ post at the company and he’s doing really awesome things like building an interactive Facebook page to attract the younger market as well as keeping a blog. If you guys are interested, check out his blog here http://blogs.sport24.co.za/FTsportsguy I’m really glad he is doing a job that he is passionate about (sport). Speaking of Dean, it is our two-year anniversary coming up soon, May 16 to be precise, and I still have yet to think of a great idea to do on the day. We have done some pretty amazing things, so I have quite a lot to live up to. Your suggestions are welcome!

Lastly, half the reason I have been so absent was also due to my latest media project. We had to make a short digital story about an event or society on campus. I chose to do mine on UCT Radio. It took me about 4 weeks to make the final product, but I really had so much fun doing it! As soon as it is up on Youtube I will link it to my blog and you guys can take a look and tell me what you think.

I guess that’s all the catch up I can think of at this moment.

Until next time



Bin it like Beckham…Real or Fake?


Image from www.realbollywood.com

David Beckham

David Beckham has once again stunned the crowds with his excellent ball skills. A recent advert for Diet Pepsi entitled “Unbelievable David Beckham” shows Beckham on the California beach bending three consecutive soccer balls into three bins placed equidistant apart. The video has sparked much debate among the media world, with many journalists and bloggists challenging the authenticity of the video. Beckham however, “insists his amazing feat with a ball on a California beach is the real thing.” He further goes on to say that “hitting all three is even easier than one.” It seems odd then, that even the Diet Pepsi Facebook page should be saying that the video is a fake?


Who knows if it’s real or not, to me it looks very real, but with fantastic editing programs nowadays, who really does know? You be the judge…



Until next time