Global Scan

Five apps that can help you keep an eye on what your kids are doing


A sales assistant holding Samsung Electronics' Galaxy 5 smartphone, left, and Apple Inc's iPhone 5 smartphone at a store in Seoul July 16, 2014.


Kim Hong-Ji/Reuters

An app called Ignore No More is making waves because it allows parents to lock their children's phones, if the kids fail to respond to a parent's calls or text messages. And it's not the only new, or newish, app that gives parents a little more control — or at least insight — into what their children are doing. 

Among them are apps called Footprints, iCam, and Teensafe. Footprints, like it sounds, allows you to see where your child is and where they've been. iCam allows you to monitor activities in your home using up to 16 discrete cameras. allows you to monitor what's going on through motion detectors, video cameras and security alarms, on say a liquor cabinet, if you have the right sensors.

And then there's Teensafe, the ultimate cell phone monitoring service. Without your children even knowing, you can see all of their text messages, web browsing, call logs, Facebook and Instagram feeds — and more. The Telegraph has more details on the apps and how they can help parents snoop — er, keep an eye — on their children's lives.

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Could 2014 be the year of the great Nutella drought

It's been a rough few years for Nutella. First it was threatened because palm oil, a key ingredient, came under fire because of how it is typically harvested, and the damage that the harvests do to forests. Now, it's a hazelnut shortage, another key ingredient, that could send Nutella prices through the roof.

The Ferrero Group, the company that makes Nutella as well as a few other chocolate products, consumes a quarter of the world's hazelnuts. According to Van City Buzz, Turkey's hazelnut crop was badly impacted after bad weather struck earlier this year. The country's Black Sea coast is responsible for producing 70 percent of the world's hazelnuts, with the hazelnut crop dwindling from 800,000 tons to about 540,000 tons.

That sent prices climbing, up as much as 60 percent since March — a 10-year high. More than 50 hazelnuts go into a single, regular-sized bottle of Nutella, so any price increase has a big impact on the price you pay at the groccery store.

An 11-year-old boy was sexually assaulted in a US immigration detention facility

"Carlos" came to the US last year, when he was 11, to join his mother, who was already in the country. The boy's life had been wracked by violence in his native Guatemala, so his mother thought she was bringing him to a better place when she sent for him and paid the fees to have a coyote, or smuggler, bring the boy and his sister to the US. But Carlos was caught and detained by US Border Patrol authorities, and then sent to a New York City detention center with older boys, where one boy sexually assaulted him.

PRI's The World met Carlos in Georgia, where he now lives with his mother and sister, while they try to get justice for what he went through. Immigration advocates believe detention shelters are generally safe, but worry because there's no oversight of the facilities and the children have no access to the outside world. Carlos is seeing a psychologist now, and his mother is, too. He's also being represented by a lawyer who's trying to get him a U-visa, reserved for immigrants who have been raped.

ISIS has all-women brigades — surprised?

Foreign experts were baffled when they learned that women have formed all-female brigades to fight on behalf of ISIS in Iraq and Syria. But they shouldn't have been.  

Writing for Foreign Affairs, Nimmi Gowrinathan suggests any surprise says more about the experts than it does about the women fighting for ISIS. Specifically, she says, the women who have joined are fighting for about the same reasons as men who join the insurgency. Specifically, they face "constant threats to their ethnic, religious, or political identities." 

At its core, the ISIS battle in Iraq is about the country's minority Sunnis, who feel marginalized and unable to control their own destiny, rebelling against the majority Shiite population. The choice to go from home to the battlefield isn't a simple one, though. It's usually spurred by wanting safety and some control over the future in the chaos of a war zone.

Turkey's Kurdish party goes from being a terrorist to being an ally of the US

The US has long labelled the PKK, Turkey's Kurdish political party, as a terrorist group. But now that the US has joined the fight against ISIS on the side of Iraqi Kurds, those Turkish Kurds are part of the package. In some cases, the PKK is fighting on the ground alongside Iraqi Kurds, so US airstrikes are directly helping the PKK just as much as Iraq's Kurds. 

PRI's The Takeaway talked to Aliza Marcus who has studied the PKK. She says the US has few options in its fight against ISIS and the situation with the PKK is not as bad as it may seen. For one, the PKK has reached something of a detente with Turkey's government, a US ally, with both sides co-existing for many months now. It also seems unlikely that the various Kurdish groups would try to unite as one country. So, for the moment, the enemy of its enemy is an advantageous ally for the US.

What we're seeing on social

Weather around the world

It was a hot and humid day in India Thursday, with temperatures in the capital Delhi reaching 100 degrees Fahrenheit, or 38 Celsisus. The humidity rose above 70 percent. India is in the middle of its annual monsoon season, which arrived late this year, but is in high gear. The city is expecting more of the same on Friday, according to India's Big News Network.

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