Article for BBC News: Viewpoint: Why is IS featuring deaf people in a video?

Read my latest article here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/blogs-ouch-31813387 Extract:

There are many headlines expressing concern about young British people leaving this country to join the so-called Islamic State. But now Islamic State (IS) militants are targeting a new group of potential recruits in the west – deaf people. In a video, which is reported to have been released last Sunday, two deaf IS fighters who communicate in sign language were shown appealing for other deaf people to join them. The video features what may be an Arabic form of sign language – it is not British or American Sign Language but may be a form of International Sign. It includes subtitles in both English and Arabic. It looks professionally made, and shows the two men directing traffic while heavily armed with guns. It is from the Nineveh Province, which is under IS control. It also includes footage from the city of Mosul.

Article for the Guardian: Why soaps can’t compete with Facebook for continuing drama

Extract:

Recently I’ve watched three compelling narratives, each involving some of my favourite characters, play themselves out. Amanda realised her boyfriend was cheating on her and threw him out. Emma and Steve were joyous at the safe arrival of their baby son after Emma was rushed to hospital with pre-eclampsia. Barry was gutted when he lost the chance of a job interview because he asked the company to pay his travel expenses.

It’s a blend of stories that sounds like it could come from a TV soap opera, but you won’t recognise them from last week’s TV schedules. These storylines and people are real – although the names have been changed – and I followed the ever-evolving twists and turns of their lives on my Facebook timeline.

Read the whole article here: http://www.theguardian.com/tv-and-radio/tvandradioblog/2015/feb/17/why-soaps-cant-compete-with-facebook-for-continuing-drama

My article for the Guardian: Disabled people aren’t here to inspire you

Here’s my latest article, for the Guardian:

Advertising agencies don’t miss a trick. In the run-up to the 2014 Super Bowl, an advert from Duracell that featured a deaf NFL footballer called Derrick Coleman went viral. Coleman narrated it himself, saying: “They gave up on me, told me I should quit. But I’ve been deaf since I was three, so I didn’t listen.”

That trend’s been followed up this year, with two adverts being aired during the Super Bowl featuring disabilities. One, featuring a six-year old boy called Braylon O’Neill, shows how, with the help of Microsoft technology, he can use prostheses to walk. The other shows Paralympic snowboarder Amy Purdy, who also uses prosthetics, gliding across the snow to promote a car company. Both adverts have prompted a debate on “inspiration porn”.

To read the full article, click here: http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/feb/05/disabled-people-super-bowl-advert-deaf-nfl-footballer-derrick-coleman

Check out The Limping Chicken – offering news, features and opinion on deaf news, issues and culture!

Hi all, I’ve set up a new website called The Limping Chicken, offering news, features and opinion on deaf news, issues and culture in the UK.

This means that a fair bit of my writing will migrate to the new site, so if you’re subscribed here, subscribe to The Limping Chicken to keep getting my regular posts!

You’ll get more too. The aim of the new site is to feature more deaf writers, with varied perspectives and opinions we can all agree or disagree with. So keep an eye on it!

To read the first few posts, just click here. To read about the aims of the site, go to this page.
Enjoy! And do get involved if you can, we welcome new contributors! If you have a story, a point of view or just an idea, email thelimpingchicken@gmail.com