Why Obama and Putin won’t be using Snapchat to discuss Ukraine anytime soon


U.S. President Barack Obama talks on the phone in the Oval Office with Russian President Vladimir Putin about the situation in Ukraine. (Pete Souza/The White House via Getty Images)

While spies get fancy electronics, world leaders get old-fashioned phones. Today’s Blog Log explains why diplomacy is still so dependent on 19th-century technology. Plus, catch up on other online items you may have missed today, including a very dramatic new “House of Cards” super-cut and a Tumblr that will have you ROFLing, unless you’re the one getting ROFLed at. Be careful who you connect with on Tinder, kids.

“When it comes to communicating with world leaders, it is a technology developed in the 19th century that still rules.” — Olivier Knox at news.yahoo.com reminds the world that despite the existence of email, texting and video services, the telephone remains the most important tool of communication in international diplomacy. “The sound of the human voice — full of nuance and meaning, even without translation — communicates something essential to delicate negotiations, helping forge bonds across oceans and cultural chasms,” Knox writes.

“If you’ve ever been addicted to a real drug, articles like this make you laugh.” — commenter ericstrauss at salon.com scoffs at an interview with Murray Carpenter, author of the book “Caffeinated.” Carpenter lobbies for more regulation and research of caffeine by the Food and Drug Administration. “One of the really interesting things in terms of regulation that did surprise me … is how many of these same questions [about the effects of caffeine] that the FDA is asking right now came up 100 years ago,” Carpenter says.

“Some of these responses might, to the wrong/right person, be a bit much. Others, though, might actually result in dates if the dude’s not careful.” — Luke Plunkett at kotaku.com judges the work of the prankster behind “Hello Let’s Date,” a Tumblr that features hilarious text exchanges initiated by the dating app Tinder. In one instance, the jokester begins, “Could you date a deaf person?” to which “Kara,” his Tinder target, responds, “Of course.” The prankster quickly follows that up with, “Sorry I meant dead person.” It doesn’t end well.

“Don’t target members of the media (too hard), and please try not to damage anyone’s camera!” — An organizer of the SnowPatricksDay Snowball Fight at facebook.com reminds participants of one of the rules for Monday’s event. The snowball fight took place in D.C.’s Meridian Hill Park. Media in attendance emerged cold and wet, but unharmed.

“I think a few ‘undramatic’ turnarounds snuck in.” — redditor eviltwin25 at reddit.com comments on a video that shows every time someone dramatically — or undramatically, in eviltwin25’s opinion — turned around in the popular Netflix series “House of Cards.” To make things even more intense, the fan who made the video enhanced the drama by adding some ominous-sounding music at each turnaround.

Marissa Payne writes for The Early Lead, a fast-breaking sports blog, where she focuses on what she calls the “cultural anthropological” side of sports, aka “mostly the fun stuff.” She is also an avid WWE fan.
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