Hisham Fageeh: Comedy by coincidence

Updated 12 August 2013
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Hisham Fageeh: Comedy by coincidence

It all began when 25-year-old student Hisham Fageeh uploaded YouTube videos to communicate with his sister and update her about his daily life in a comical way. His videos received much acclaim from viewers who watched and shared his videos on social media networks. The ideas behind the videos are not cohesive because they represent Fageeh’s daily encounters and different inspiring moments.
His viewership expanded to span the entire Saudi community when he turned his initiative into a comedy and entertainment channel.
Fageeh and his sister often talk to each other impersonating characters and this is how the videos are taped. According to him, it was all a coincidence; he was supposed to post a video on his Facebook account but encountered some difficulties uploading the video, and opted instead to post it on YouTube. He enjoyed it and found himself uploading more videos.
At first, he received 20 views, then 60 and soon the numbers began to increase by the day, until one day he shared a video at night and woke up to 30,000 views and messages in his inbox.
As Fageeh rose to fame, many other Saudi comedians began approaching him, asking him to contribute to their online shows. He later participated in another YouTube comedy show called “Zizo and Fiss”. The show is a short series about twin brothers oppressed by their overprotective mother and driven to lose all sense of reality.
Fageeh is now participating and hosting different comedy shows both within the Kingdom and abroad. Fageeh has almost 134,110 followers on Twitter, and his YouTube channel, entitled “Hisham Comedy” has more than 54,603 subscriptions and more than 7,775,754 views.


Chinese scientist who gene-edited babies fired by university

Updated 21 January 2019
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Chinese scientist who gene-edited babies fired by university

  • Hundreds of Chinese and international scientists condemned He Jiankui
  • Chinese authorities also denounced He and issued a temporary halt to research activities involving the editing of human genes

SHENZHEN, China: A Chinese scientist responsible for what he said were the world’s first “gene-edited” babies evaded oversight and broke guidelines in a quest for fame and fortune, state media said on Monday, as the university where he worked announced his dismissal.
He Jiankui said in November that he used a gene-editing technology known as CRISPR-Cas9 to alter the embryonic genes of twin girls born that month, sparking an international outcry about the ethics and safety of such research.
Hundreds of Chinese and international scientists condemned He and said any application of gene editing on human embryos for reproductive purposes was unethical.
Chinese authorities also denounced He and issued a temporary halt to research activities involving the editing of human genes.
He had “deliberately evaded oversight” with the intent of creating a gene-edited baby “for the purpose of reproduction,” according to the initial findings of an investigating team set up by the Health Commission of China in southern Guangdong province, Xinhua news agency reported.
He had raised funds himself and privately organized a team of people to carry out the procedure in order to “seek personal fame and profit,” Xinhua said, adding that he had forged ethical review papers in order to enlist volunteers for the procedure.
The safety and efficacy of the technologies He used are unreliable and creating gene-edited babies for reproduction is banned by national decree, the report said.
The Southern University of Science and Technology (SUSTech) in the city of Shenzhen, said in a statement on its website that He had been fired.
“Effective immediately, SUSTech will rescind the work contract with Dr. Jiankui He and terminate any of his teaching and research activities at SUSTech,” the statement said.
The university added the decision came after a preliminary investigation by the Guangdong Province Investigation Task Force.
Neither He nor a representative could be reached for comment on Monday.
He defended his actions at a conference in Hong Kong in November, saying that he was “proud” of what he had done and that gene editing would help protect the girls from being infected with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS.
He’s announcement sparked a debate among Chinese legal scholars over which laws He had technically broken by carrying out the procedure, as well as whether he could be held criminally responsible or not.
Many scholars pointed to a 2003 guideline that bans altered human embryos from being implanted for the purpose of reproduction, and says altered embryos cannot be developed for more than 14 days.
The case files of those involved who are suspected of committing crimes had been sent to the ministry of public security, an unnamed spokesperson for the investigation team was quoted by Xinhua as saying.