Today's buzz: London's guerrilla gardeners, Lineker's spanking and Uzbek cotton workers

Image copyright Neil Cornelius
Image caption Over a hundred messages, all positive, about a father and daughter's attempt at guerrilla gardening

This Friday watch out for the guerrilla gardeners of Oxford Street, find out why people are using the hashtag #DontBuyTheSun and did you know actors and sports stars in Uzbekistan are picking cotton? No? Neither did we...

But first: Why is #DontBuyTheSun trending?

Image copyright Twitter/@DrAlakbarov
Image caption One of the most popular tweets on the topic today

The Sun's stance toward migrant children being accepted in the UK and its call for the BBC to sack football commentator Gary Lineker, over comments he made in response, has sparked a backlash against the paper on social media.

The hashtag #DontBuyTheSun has been trending for several hours in the UK with almost 70,000 tweets sent in the last day.

Earlier this week, Mr Lineker tweeted: "The treatment by some towards these young refugees is hideously racist and utterly heartless. What's happening to our country?"

The same day several newspapers, The Sun included, carried reports questioning the ages of 14 children allowed into the UK from the Calais migrant camp in France.

The Sun today has said he should be sacked over his views and lack of impartiality.

Mr Lineker responded: "Getting a bit of a spanking today, but things could be worse: Imagine, just for a second, being a refugee having to flee from your home."

A heart-warming little mystery

Tree in the pavement on Oxford Street Image copyright Neil Cornelius
Image caption This little tree appeared in the pavement on Oxford Street this week, with a note attached

An empty hole in the pavement on London's busy Oxford Street was given a bit of love this week: a young tree with a message attached:

"My name is Arrabella Cornelius. I am 7. I have planted this tree here for everyone to watch it grow and enjoy. Please respect it as I bought it with my own money. Plus my Daddy risked getting arrested planting it!"

Savvily, it also added two social media hashtags: #mytreelondon and #w1sunflowers and many people have used them to respond to the gesture.

"What a gorgeous thing for a father/daughter to do!" said one comment on Twitter. "Thank you Arrabella, what a great idea!" said another.

When we tracked down Ms Cornelius's father, Neil, he told us Arrabella had egged him into doing it, after hearing him complain about the council not replacing a tree in the pavement that vandals had torn out of the ground.

And it turns out this wasn't the first bit of community planting the pair have done.

"We'd planted these sunflowers in a window box but the neighbours complained so we planted them in the street, along with some tomato plants - and told the homeless people on the street they could eat the tomatoes," he said.

"I was trying to teach her it's good to give without expecting anything back," he said.

Arrabella Cornelius making a face at a garden centre as she selects a tree Image copyright Neil Cornelius
Image caption "Both of us have a bit of a mischievous side," Mr Cornelius added. "She kept telling me 'just do it, daddy, just do it'."

No labour of love

Image copyright El Tuz
Image caption "We will be back after the cotton harvest," say the surgeons

You know those t-shirts and jeans you have? Chances are some of them are made from cotton grown in Uzbekistan, which produces something like one-tenth of the world's crop.

Cotton is such an important export for the country that every year the government effectively forces its own people - state employees, students and soldiers - into harvesting the crop.

This year actors and even footballers have been pressed into the cotton-picking and one regional governor offered electrical appliances as a prize for people who picked the most.

Uzbek social media at the moment is swamped with pictures of people in the fields.

Unsurprisingly forced cotton-picking is very unpopular, especially among city dwellers, who often complain about the poor conditions they put up with in the countryside.

But, as the state maintains strict control over what can and cannot be said in the media, there is little comment and it is only on sites run from abroad that people express their opposition to helping with the harvest.

Additional research by BBC Monitoring


Miss us yesterday? Read up on the #TrumpBookReport, how a service dog moves a mother, and zombies in China here

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