What’s Up World? #11

Published on MTV’s international pro-social website MTV Voices on 05.12.12

What’s Up World?
Between the cracks of the world’s news headlines


Should online porn be included in sex ed?

Remember sex education class at school? I do. I distinctly remember being told, at the age of 10, that one boob always grows faster than the other. Fascinating, huh? Well, the world is certainly a different place than it was back then and, thanks to the world wide web, the way kids learn about sex has certainly changed too.

A study by Plymouth University in the UK has highlighted the growing problem of kids getting hooked on internet porn, some as young as 11, pointing to the unrealistic expectations being set for them in their early years.

Now a debate has kicked off in the British parliament as to whether or not topics like online porn should be covered in age appropriate sex ed classes. What do you think?  Necessary or inappropriate?

Hats off, Australia – this really is gross

In a bid to deter young Australians from taking up smoking, the Australian government has introduced a new law – the first of its kind anywhere in the world.

As of last Saturday, all cigarettes across the country must be sold in ugly brown, plain packaging covered with health warnings and some pretty nasty pictures, including close ups of mouth cancer, a gangrenous foot and a skeletal man dying of cancer.

Smokers around the country are already complaining that their cigarettes taste “pathetic”, “sickening” and lack flavor due to their new packaging. Ahh, the power of marketing…

It’s tough being so popular

Having more Facebook friends can lead to more stress and greater potential to cause offence, according to a new study.

The juggling of various friendship circles – and their various expectations – all in one place can be a cause for stress, says the report by Edinburgh University, describing social networks as places for self-presentation, with the inevitable possibility for social anxiety.

Anxiety was found to increase when a facet of the personality hadn’t been revealed to all social circles. Think night out + employer, naughty dress ups + relatives… What do you think? Do you find Facebook stressful?

Lighting up the morning commute

If you are reading this from anywhere in Europe, you will undoubtedly be aware that winter has indeed arrived. Spare a thought, though, for those way up in the Nordic regions who, year in, year out, face a few very cold months with very little daylight.

This year, in order to ward off the winter blues and the threat of seasonal affective disorder (SAD), an energy company in Umea, northern Sweden has installed light boxes at bus stops, which will give commuters a kick of light therapy on their way to or from work. Lovely. Please can someone follow me round with one all day?

Something brewing in your part of the world? We want to know about it. Tweet @its_alicia or @mtvvoices using the hashtag #WhatsUpWorld