Reviews and recommendations are unbiased and products are independently selected. Postmedia may earn an affiliate commission from purchases made through links on this page.
Charlie has a habit of speaking highly about the people she loves.
It’s a line that comes up almost halfway through Tell Us What Happened by playwright Michelle Robb, and the comment has a double edge to it. While Charlie (Bonnie Ings) is indeed very supportive of her circle of friends, that unfortunately also includes her best friend Josh (Matt Dejanovic), who has just been accused of sexual assault. What makes it hardest is that the assault on her friend Leah (Jameela McNeil) has been reported and remarked on many times via a private Facebook group the committed feminist has set up called Tell Us What Happened.
It turns out that Josh has not only assaulted Leah, but also a number of other friends and acquaintances of hers through the years. Since Josh was a major pillar of support for Charlie during and after her own assault as a teenager, it’s almost impossible for her to digest. This infuriates one of her roommates, Leah’s cousin Zoey (Michelle Diaz), who accuses Charlie of hypocrisy. The other roommate, Piper (Gabby Bernard), is mostly out of the loop on the matter, abjuring social media and focusing instead on her art and the aftermath of a messy breakup.
The assault is at the heart of Tell Us What Happened but the play is really about how it affects relationships and how social media explodes drama. Initially Leah becomes distant and self-accusatory, while Zoey pushes back at Charlie and Piper’s hesitancy. Charlie vacillates, understanding what she needs to do yet unable to do it, while Piper withdraws and then comes around. Emotions run high with lots of yelling, attempts to de-escalate as they note each other’s boundaries, sudden reversals. They shift perspectives as the gravity of the situation sinks in, or as the charming and seemingly harmless Josh makes appearances to plead for understanding.
Robb doesn’t attempt to make any of the roommates perfect as a counterpart to Josh’s actions. Living in a house stocked with Red Bulls and bags of chips they comport themselves in the way that young adults invariably do as they investigate the world. Lots of partying, volatile relationships and bad habits, which lead to a few welcome moments of levity, Zoey and Piper in particular humorously puncturing scenarios that anyone who lived the life will recognize.
Social media is everywhere in this play. The characters are always on their computers or phones, and the house the trio of friends rent becomes the backdrop for visual images of emojis, text, keyboard buttons. The sound of an incoming message or answer to a post pings through the soundtrack. Rather than talk, they force each other to read from the screen. It prods them forward before anyone is able to digest whatever information they’ve just been given.
In fact it’s social media that finally dictates what happens at the end, a very unexpected and wrenching finale that asks more questions than it answers. It actually feels both a little rushed and simultaneously draggy given opening night’s nearly two-hour running time, which we assume will likely be trimmed back to the stated 90 minutes as the play goes forward. Still, despite a few lagging points, Tell Us What Happened artfully fits in enough to keep us talking for the next t10 years.
Tell Us What Happened
When: May 11-22
Where: The Gateway Theatre, 8925 Gateway Blvd.
Tickets: Starting at $20 at Workshop West
Can’t comment on NewsClick’s China link, respect media freedom: US
The US government has seen reports of NewsClick’s alleged links to China and is aware of concerns around it though it can’t independently comment on the veracity of those claims. But, as a general principle, the US continues to urge Indian government as well other governments across the world to respect the human rights of journalists, including freedom of expression online and offline.
At a regular State Department briefing on Tuesday, when asked about the raids on the proprietors, staffers and contributors of NewsClick and a New York Times report that the news website was a part of a Chinese influence operation funded through an American businessman, State department‘s principal deputy spokesperson Vedant Patel said, “So we are aware of those concerns and have seen that reporting about this outlet’s ties to the PRC (People’s Republic of China), but we can’t comment yet on the veracity of those claims.”
Patel added that, separately, the US strongly supported “the robust role of the media globally, including social media, in a vibrant and free democracy”.
“We raise concerns on these matters with the Indian Government, with countries around the world, through our diplomatic engagements that are, of course, at the core of our bilateral relationship. And we have urged the Indian Government, and have done so not just with India but other countries as well, about the importance of respecting the human rights of journalists, including freedom of expression both online and offline.”
Patel, however, said that he did not have any additional information about “this particular circumstance or any of the underlying issues that may or may not be related to this outlet”.
India’s Latest Media Arrests Put Washington in an Awkward Spot
(Bloomberg) — India’s latest media crackdown puts the US in an awkward position as it seeks to balance promotion of human rights with courting New Delhi to counter the influence of China.
Police in the South Asian country’s capital arrested the editor-in-chief and another employee of online newspaper NewsClick Tuesday under sweeping anti-terrorism laws. Authorities also raided the offices of the publication, without giving a reason.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government has been targeting critical independent media since he took office in 2014. NewsClick came to prominence in 2021 for its extensive coverage of farmer protests against government plans to liberalize agriculture. India has previously accused the media organization of having funding ties to China, which it denies.
For Arati Jerath, a New Delhi-based political analyst, the arrests create a challenge for Washington.
“The US does not want to get too involved in India’s domestic affairs,” she said. “They are looking at India through a geopolitical prism and with China in the picture, India is a strategic partner.”
US Department of State spokesman Vedant Patel said he couldn’t comment yet on claims NewsClick has ties to China.
Patel also stressed the importance of press freedom globally. “We raise concerns on these matters with the Indian government, with countries around the world,” he told reporters in Washington.
India has often argued its democracy and vibrant press are a counterpoint to China with its one-party state and heavily controlled media. The US frequently finds itself torn between its efforts to defend human rights around the world and the pragmatic need to partner with governments accused of rights abuses.
India’s government has often used its anti-terrorism law to intimidate and punish journalists. The law, which doesn’t allow for bail, empowers the police to detain suspects for years without leveling official charges.
India has also scrutinized many mobile app and technology companies for alleged links to China after a Himalayan border clash between New Delhi and Beijing in 2020.
In 2021, authorities raided NewsClick’s office and the homes of seven staff members for what they described as improper foreign investments. Several of them were questioned and NewsClick called the allegations “misleading, unfounded and without basis in fact or law.”
In August, the New York Times cited NewsClick as an organization allegedly being used for Chinese propaganda overseas. India’s Information and Broadcasting Minister Anurag Thakur said at the time the media outlet was being funded by Beijing.
Speaking to reporters on Tuesday, Thakur said he didn’t need to justify the raids. “If someone has done something wrong, the investigative agencies will work on it,” he said.
NewClick’s human resources head Amit Chakravarty was also arrested. Several employees’ laptops and mobile phones were seized. Local media reported at least 30 premises were raided, including the homes of six NewsClick reporters.
India fell to 161st of 180 countries and territories in a press freedom ranking by Reporters Without Borders, a press advocacy group, this year. In February, authorities raided the BBC’s offices in New Delhi, weeks after the British broadcaster aired a documentary about Modi’s role in 2002 riots in his home state of Gujarat.
Last year, Mohammad Zubair, a journalist running a fact-checking website, Alt News, was arrested after highlighting anti-Islamic comments made by former BJP officials.
The Press Club of India expressed concern about the arrests and raid, saying it wants the government to explain its actions. The group plans to protest the detentions at a march Wednesday.
Jerath, the analyst, questioned India’s move to arrest the people under the terrorism law without providing details or evidence.
“You have already labeled them as terrorists,” she said.
(Updates with details on the crackdown. An earlier story corrected paragraph 11 to show authorities raided the homes of seven NewsClick staff members in 2021.)
What is NewsClick? A look at India’s media crackdown – Al Jazeera English
- Deliver and maintain Google services
- Track outages and protect against spam, fraud, and abuse
- Measure audience engagement and site statistics to understand how our services are used and enhance the quality of those services
- Develop and improve new services
- Deliver and measure the effectiveness of ads
- Show personalized content, depending on your settings
- Show personalized ads, depending on your settings
Select “More options” to see additional information, including details about managing your privacy settings. You can also visit g.co/privacytools at any time.
Toronto real estate plunges into 'buyers market' as sales slow and listings surge – Financial Post
India tells Canada to remove 41 of its 62 diplomats: official
BofA analyst calls Canadian bank stocks a ‘dicey proposition’
Silver investment demand jumped 12% in 2019
Search for life on Mars accelerates as new bodies of water found below planet’s surface
Iran anticipates renewed protests amid social media shutdown
Business18 hours ago
GO Transit rail service expected to resume Wednesday after network outage
Business20 hours ago
Bank of Canada warns of inflation ‘feedback loop’
Art19 hours ago
Volkswagen faces heat over post involving Indigenous art installation in Hamilton
News16 hours ago
Migrant workers launch campaign and class action lawsuit alleging violations of fundamental human rights at the Montreal airport
Business16 hours ago
Constant price hikes are making inflation worse, Bank of Canada deputy says in speech
News23 hours ago
Canada’s immigration department is undergoing major changes
Art20 hours ago
How to tell if your ART test kit has expired and if you can still use it
Business21 hours ago
Limited GO train service running after signal problem disruption, delays still expected