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One photographer's global travels recently captured a glimmer of hope within an otherwise bleak landscape in Iraq.  Brandon Stanton, known for his successful blog and best-selling book, "Humans of New York," partnered with the United Nations to venture on a 50-day tour of 10 countries and expand his storytelling series worldwide.

Militants have unleashed a hi-tech social media jihad to radicalise and recruit educated youth for terror activities in the strife torn Jammu and Kashmir.  A highly confidential letter of Jammu and Kashmir police accessed by dna reveals that militant and fundamentalist elements are recruiting and radicalizing the youth thorough different means including the social media.

In the case of the Nigerian girls, they may eventually be rescued. But if they are, it won't be the result of hashtag diplomacy; rather, it will be due to strong and serious diplomacy conducted by brave men and women willing to confront evil head-on.

Social media has transformed the way people receive and share information in both personal and business settings.  Most importantly, businesses in the Middle East should always ensure that their use of social media is tailored to the specific cultural and demographic characteristics of the region.

Maysoon Khatib's Facebook page is usually devoted to fun-filled images and anecdotes detailing her sometimes harried life as a mother of four children.  But lately, the Kentucky woman's social media posts have taken a somber turn. Instead of snapshots of her kids at summer camp, Khatib is sharing urgent messages about the destruction thousands of miles away in Gaza.

Columbia University Senior Fellow Alec Ross discusses how social media has helped drive the public conversation and engage people in foreign affairs. He speaks on ‘Market Makers.”

We no longer have to rely solely on reports from a handful of mainstream media outlets when news breaks in places like Ukraine or Gaza, and while that has made the news environment more chaotic it has also led to some significant benefits for journalism.

Indian’s are displaying signs of a refreshed love affair with social networks, with data suggesting that Twitter and Facebook traffic has hit an all-time high. According to the latest roundup of figures from eMarketer in the US, 2013 brought an extraordinary 37% growth to the Indian market’s combined social networking tally.