I’ve got about 15 drafts of posts I’ve been meaning to publish here. Then another 20 or so floating around in my head (and soon to be evaporating) that I’d also like to write. And, of course, there are the 6,315 unread items in my RSS reader that I both want and need to be reading.

But, instead, every time I flip open my laptop, I put on my email boxing gloves and spar with the interminable inbox. Last night a colleague signed off, “from atop email mountain.” That was cute. And right on. So, here I am, once again, complaining about my least favorite number, 24.

As in hours is a day. And also that supposedly lucky 7. As in days in a week. Why not 30 and 10? To think that there are people who call it “intelligent design”.

Speaking of time and space, it’s time for me to put on the headphones, enjoy some Digable Planets, and transport myself to Foggy Bottom (who would name a neighborhood foggy bottom? A foggy bottom sounds like a digestive problem.) to finally meet up with Mialy from the Rising Voices project FOKO Madagascar.

If you live in some sort of freaky parallel universe and actually have time on your hands, have a listen to this podcast interview I did over the weekend with DK from MediaSnackers. Also, lots of interesting stuff going on in the world today. What follows is the digest from Global Voices, providing a peek into what people around the world are talking about. You can subscribe to the email edition here.

Armenia: Eight Dead, State of Emergency Declared

The political comeback of former Armenian president Levon Ter-Petrossian in last month’s presidential election led to violent clashes between police, soldiers and opposition supporters. Local and national media outlets have been banned on political reporting by a declared state of emergency, but bloggers continue to get the news out.

Russia: Notes on the Post-Election Protest Rallies

On Monday, riot police in Moscow arrested dozens of people who attempted to take part in an unauthorized post-election protest rally. Veronica Khokhlova translates a post from one of the arrested protesters written immediately after her release, as well as more general reflections from other Russian bloggers.

Lebanon: USS Cole in the Neighborhood

USS Cole, a US Navy destroyer that was famously attacked off the coast of Yemen in 2000, is now anchored just 60 miles off the Lebanese coast, causing anxiety in the local blogosphere.

Russia: Anglophone Bloggers Discuss the Presidential Election

International observers are varied in their assessments of Sunday’s presidential election in Russia. Local boggers, meanwhile, are getting used to the idea of 42-year-old president-to-be Dmitry Medvedev.

The Blog for a Cause! guide is now available in Spanish

Blog for a Cause!, the Global Voices Guide of Blog Advocacy, is now available in Spanish. The guide outlines easy-to-follow tips on how to use blogs as part of campaigns against injustice and features successful examples of advocacy blogs from around the world.

Guatemala: Addressing the Energy Crisis

Guatemala is the midst of an energy crisis. Some non-governmental organizations are experimenting with alternative fuels, and the national authorities are relying on dam projects, which have caused resistance from local populations. The government has even adjusted daylight savings time to save energy, but the crisis continues, inspiring bloggers to chime in with their own analysis and suggestions.

Kuwait’s Two National Day Celebrations

Two national day celebrations were marked in Kuwait last week – one on February 25 and the second on February 26. Kuwait’s bloggers were quick to dig into the history of the celebrations.

Japan: The decline of pachinko

A staple of the modern Japanese cityscape, pachinko parlors employ a third of a million people in Japan, draw in an estimated 30 trillion yen per year, and entice roughly one quarter of the country’s entire population to play at least occasionally, 17 million of them on a regular basis. With plans underway to legalize and regulate casinos in Japan, the status of such pachinko parlors has been put into question, sparking a re-assessment, in comments and blog posts, of the place of gambling in modern Japanese society, writes Chris Salzberg.

Ecuador: Breaking Diplomatic Ties With Colombia

After Colombian troops crossed into Ecuador to attack a group of FARC guerillas, including Raul Reyes, a top leader of the leftist guerilla group, Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa publicly broke diplomatic ties with his country’s northern neighbor. Milton Ramirez summarizes and translates reactions of Ecuadorean bloggers to Colombia’s incursion and Correa’s decision.


The politics of BBC’s service in Sri Lanka, everyday problems facing young Turkmen, Twitter use in Serbia and Kosovo … and lots more in today’s Global Roundups.