Vote For Stars In The 2015 WebMD Health Hero Peoples Choice Award

first_imgWebMD Health Corp., the leading source of health information, today announced that Christina Applegate, Glenn Close, Carrie Fisher and Jeff Gordon have been selected WebMD Health Hero People’s Choice Award finalists for their passionate work to change the healthcare landscape by meeting a health challenge and giving back to others.WebMD Health Hero People’s Choice NomineesWebMD is encouraging the public to vote to determine which one of these four inspiring individuals will be chosen as this year’s WebMD Health Hero Award People’s Choice winner. People can visit here to vote for their choice once a day, every day through August 31.“The 2015 People’s Choice nominees encourage health and wellness by empowering, motivating and inspiring others in truly meaningful ways,” said Kristy Hammam, Editor in Chief, WebMD. “We look forward to celebrating their efforts and passionate commitment to raising awareness for their health causes and for those facing their own health challenges.”Last year’s People’s Choice winner, Martha Stewart, was honored for encouraging better health care for older adults through the Martha Stewart Center for Living at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York. This year’s nominees are being considered for their work in support of the following areas:• Christina ApplegateEmmy Award-winning actress Christina Applegate’s foundation, Right Action for Women, promotes the early detection of breast cancer and offers help to women who cannot afford screening tests. Applegate was diagnosed with the disease in 2008. She opened up about her double mastectomy in April 2014. Later that year she co-hosted and took part in the 21st annual EIF Revlon Run/Walk for Women, which raised money for breast cancer research, treatment, and counseling. Right Action for Women partnered with ASICS America in 2013 to produce a line of products in “breast cancer pink,” with proceeds going toward the group’s efforts to help women get screened.• Glenn CloseWhen Glenn Close talks about mental illness, it’s a family matter. Her family’s history inspired the Emmy Award-winning actress and Oscar nominee to launch Bring Change 2 Mind in 2010. The national campaign works to dispel myths around mental illness and to provide support to those who live with it. The campaign is also educating a new generation to talk openly about bipolar disorder, depression, and other conditions. In 2014, Close and her foundation partnered with Indiana University to start the College Toolbox Project, which encourages students with mental health issues to get help and aims to reduce stigma on college campuses. The foundation also started a similar program for high schools, LETSBringChange2Mind.• Carrie FisherCarrie Fisher has turned her personal struggles with bipolar disorder and drug abuse into a chance to raise awareness and combat the stigma of mental illness. Fisher, who was diagnosed in her 20s, speaks openly about her condition and her treatment. She wrote about it in her 2008 memoir, Wishful Drinking, which was based on a stage performance and later became a television special. In 2001, she received the Purdy Award from the National Alliance on Mental Illness, which honors a person who has made strides to end discrimination against those with mental health problems.• Jeff GordonFour-time NASCAR Cup Series champ Jeff Gordon doesn’t leave his winning ways on the racetrack. He puts them in play with the Jeff Gordon Children’s Foundation, which funds medical research and programs that offer cancer treatments for kids. In 2012, the group helped launch the Butaro Cancer Center of Excellence, a cancer care program in rural Rwanda. In 2011, Gordon became the spokesman — and driver — for the AARP’s Drive to End Hunger campaign, raising money to feed seniors who don’t have enough to eat.WebMD has celebrated its Health Heroes, people who have made meaningful contributions to improve health and wellness in America, for the last nine years. In addition to honoring a People’s Choice Award winner, WebMD will also honor winners in the following categories: Advocate, Prodigy, Scientist, and Hall of Fame. This year’s winners will be announced in October and will be featured online and within the November/December issue (print and tablet) of WebMD Magazine. To learn more about the WebMD Health Hero Awards, click here.last_img read more

TNA may consider action on Sidharthan

The main committee in the ‘Tamil People’s Council’ includes Tamil National Alliance members Dharmalingham Sidharthan and Suresh Premachandran and Tamil National People’s Front leader Gajendrakumar Ponnambalam. (Colombo Gazette) ITAK is the main political party in the TNA and Sidharthan, leader of the People’s Liberation Front (PLOTE), entered Parliament after winning a seat through the TNA at the August election. The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) may consider taking action against Parliamentarian Dharmalingham Sidharthan for joining the Tamil People’s Council.Illangai Thamil Arasu Katchi (ITAK) General Secretary Mavai Senathirajah has called for an inquiry to be conducted on Sidharthan who contested the last Parliamentary election under the ITAK ticket. Senathirajah has said that Sidharthan should be asked to explain as to why he joined the Tamil People’s Council without the approval of the TNA. There have been concerns among members of the TNA that the Tamil People’s Council is looking at being an alternative Tamil political party.Northern Province Chief Minister C V Wigneswaran was recently appointed as the head of the new organisation comprising Tamil politicians and civil society members. read more

Defence Ministry insists no travel restrictions on foreigners

According to the Defence Ministry the official website of the Defence Ministry was subjected to a technical upgrade recently and all old news publications have been reappearing under a new modified date 03-03-2016. as the technical change was carried out on that date. Certain web sites have taken advantage of this technical glitch and have published news posts stating that the registration for Foreign Passport holders traveling to the North was back in force and thereby have attempted to mislead the public. “The decision to lift the travel restrictions imposed on foreign passport holders to the Northdue to the security situations then (2014) was taken after considering the prevailing security situationat the first Security Council Meeting of the New Government held under the patronage of HisExcellency the President Maithripala Sirisena on 16th January 2015,” the Defence Ministry said. It said that the present Government has assured that any foreign passport holder travelling to Sri Lanka will have unhindered access to the North or any part of the country without any restrictions or priorregistrations. (Colombo Gazette) The Defence Ministry today insisted that there is no travel restriction on foreigners visiting the North and East.The Defence Ministry statement said that certain websites have attempted to mislead the public and the international fora by misinterpreting a news article published in the official website of the Ministry of Defence of Sri Lanka ( on 30th October 2014 under the headline “Foreign Passport holders traveling to the North”. read more

Football Elflein and oline preparing for Badgers best

OSU center Pat Elflein (65) looks across the line of scrimmage during the second half against Indiana on Oct. 8. The Buckeyes won 38-17. Credit: Mason Swires | Assistant Photo EditorA formidable defense can lead a team to the promised land in the world of college football, and the Wisconsin Badgers have the kind of defense that keeps opposing offensive lines awake at night. The ability of Wisconsin to wreak havoc in both the pass and run games will test the Ohio State “Slobs,” namely redshirt senior center Pat Elflein.So far this season, Elflein has been graded out as a “champion” multiple times by OSU coach Urban Meyer. A vocal and symbolic leader in the trenches for the Buckeyes, Elflein has been the unquestioned leader of a team that leads the Big Ten in rushing yards per game.Wisconsin will be lining up a rare sight on Saturday against the Buckeyes: A true nose tackle. Sophomore defensive tackle Olive Sagapolu is listed at 6-foot-2 and 340 pounds. A native of Huntington Beach, California, Sagapolu recorded a season high five tackles against Michigan last week. On top of the presence of a run-stuffing force in the middle, Wisconsin has a group of defensive ends and linebackers that can dictate a game. A veteran of more than 30 games, redshirt junior Chikwe Obasih was a key member of the 2015 Badgers that were one of the top defenses in the country.In the eyes of Meyer, Wisconsin is similar to OSU in the rich history of the program.“We like to use the word culture around here, and I’m sure Coach Chryst and Coach Alvarez are very proud of the culture at Wisconsin,” Meyer said. “They should be.”The numbers by both units on the defensive side of the ball are extremely similar. OSU allows just 10.8 points per game, while Wisconsin surrenders just 12.2 points per game. While the Buckeyes are averaging 53.2 points in each contest, Wisconsin has been leaning on the play of its defense to win games. Two weeks ago, the Badgers forced a top-tier Michigan offense into a defensive struggle. Even after three turnovers and an offensive attack that failed to produce more than 200 yards, a late score and interception by the Wolverines were needed to take Wisconsin down.A team that is built to stifle the run game like Wisconsin might present a challenge, but Elflein is far from worried about the test ahead of his team. In fact, he’s looking forward to it.“Those games are always fun. Just kinda like it was last week — it’s a Big Ten football game, where there’s big, physical guys inside, good linebackers,” Elflein said. “It’s going to come down to if we can run the ball, if we can protect, if we can stop the run. So yeah, those are fun games to play in.”At linebacker, redshirt junior linebacker and former walk-on Jack Cichy leads the team in total tackles, but the true force at the position comes from the edge. Redshirt junior linebacker T.J. Watt certainly has the prestige behind him to bring an intimidation factor, but his play has provided most of the hype.Watt, the brother of NFL defensive end J.J. Watt, has recorded 5.5 sacks this year. The Wisconsin native has disrupted opposing passing attacks throughout the season, along with wrapping up the ball carriers quickly. Even with a name like Watt on the back of his jersey, redshirt junior quarterback J.T. Barrett is not concerned about the linebacker’s presence on the field, and remained his normal calm, collected self when asked if he was worried about Watt’s ability.“No, not really,” Barrett said quietly.Although OSU surrenders few sacks, the ability for Barrett to remain in the pocket and scan the field will be crucial to the success of the team. The combination of junior H-back Curtis Samuel and redshirt freshman running back Mike Weber has been potent all year, but will be going against an entirely different challenge against Wisconsin, which allows just 90.4 rushing yards per game.The ability of the Scarlet and Gray to continually hammer the ball might tire the Badger defense, but Wisconsin has a deep defensive playbook with more than a few looks. Elflein is aware of the challenges, and said OSU will be preparing for everything that might be thrown at them.“They run a few different defensive fronts,” Elflein said. “Just knowing when they are going to run those fronts and be ready to execute when they give us different looks (will be key).”Some OSU fans might be quick to note the last time the Buckeyes played Wisconsin, when OSU put a 59-0 thumping on the Badgers in the Big Ten championship. However, there has been some change made since then, most notably at the position of head coach. Paul Chryst, the new leader for the Badgers, has brought a new attitude to Madison, Wisconsin. But, most importantly, he brings a new approach to the team on defense.“I’m sure stuff is different, things are changed up,” Elflein said. “When they bring in a new head coach, it’s hard to go back and watch the old film.”Across the offensive front, OSU will be put to the test by multiple weapons on Wisconsin’s defense. Whether it be on the edge by a blitzing linebacker or with a strong push in the middle, Wisconsin is shaping up to be the biggest test against the offensive line OSU has faced all year.But for now, Elflein and the rest of the Buckeyes appear to be confident in their ability to come out on top in big games — especially Elflein, who has an interesting favorite part of playing away from home.“Everyone hates you,” Elflein said with a smile. “Everyone’s yelling at you, and saying stuff at you. And it’s pretty much everybody against us.” read more

Grenfell Tower inferno a disaster waiting to happen as concerns are raised

first_imgA firefighter investigates one of the floors in Grenfell TowerCredit:PA “It could be that this is the quest for sustainability trumping other concerns,” Dr Glockling warned. Matthew Needham-Laing, an architect who is head of construction at Katten Law UK, said that the first known cladding fire in the UK was in 1991 and there had been concerns over in the industry about its fire safety for a number of years. Matt Wrack,  General Secretary of the Fire Brigades Union, said: “I have never seen a fire that has engulfed an entire building like this in a career of more than 30 years.” Mr Kerr-Bell said: “This is a scandal. This is one of the biggest scandals in the country – and it could have been avoided… “We felt there was a disaster waiting to happen and we were going to have a meeting with the MP so that we could put these concerns to them.”Mike Penning, a former fire minister, called for an urgent review into the use of the insulation material.He said:  “There has to be an urgent review into the use of cladding. We need to expedite this as far as possible – this cladding is used extensively in the UK and abroad.”Nick Hurd, the fire minister, said that checks are now being carried out on tower blocks that are going through a similar refurbishment process. Gavin Barwell, former housing minister and Theresa May's new chief of staff  Many of those that survived only did so by ignoring official advice to stay in their rooms and close their front doors until the fire was over.  Reg Kerr-Bell, the former chairman of the Kensington and Chelsea Tenant Management Organisation (KCTMO) – the body which manages the building –  said he stood down several years ago over safety concerns.Just two days before the blaze, he had spoken to a former colleague about their fears. fire which has engulfed Grenfell Tower on the Lancaster Estate in north Kensington A firefighter investigates one of the floors in Grenfell Tower Gavin Barwell, former housing minister and Theresa May’s new chief of staff Credit:Leon Neal  “About 12 floors up I saw three children waving from a window and then  there was just an explosion and they disappeared. “They were three kids, they were banging on the windows, you could see their silhouettes and then bang, it just went up.”But as emergency services continued to search the 24-storey building for victims, there were claims that warnings about safety had been ignored.Government ministers were warned about the fire risk of cladding as far back as 1999, the Daily Telegraph can reveal.  He said that some estimates were that 30,000 buildings had been fitted with cladding, which is a cheap way of making a building more sustainable without rebuilding it. Senior Conservatives last night called for an urgent review. It comes amid allegations of a litany of failings by Kensington and Chelsea council, who own the flats, and the Kensington and Chelsea Tenant Management Organisation (KCTMO) who are paid £11 million to manage property for them. Nick-Hurd- A total of 74 people were being treated in hospitals, with 20 of them in a critical condition after the fire, thought to have been sparked by a faulty refrigerator, started just after 1am on Wednesday and quickly spreading up the building. There were fears children were among the dead as survivors told how they saw babies being thrown from windows in the hope that they could survive.Residents knotted sheets together to make ropes in attempts to escape. Some tried to manufacture makeshift parachutes from bin bags and bedding and leap out of windows.  Mickey Paramasivan, 37, said: “There were explosions everywhere you looked, lots of bangs, blue gas coming out everywhere you looked.  Residents have been complaining for the past four years about fires safety in the flats, warning that there would be a “catastrophe” and demanding that action was taken and the management by the company was reviewed. KCTMO was deseribed by residents groups as a “mini-mafia” as they lambasted the management of art school graduate Robert Black. Further questions were raised yesterday Rydon Construction, the company contracted to carry out £10million refurbishment which was completed in March last year, appeared to change their statement about the tragedy.Rydon released a statement saying it met all “fire regulation and health and safety standards” during the refurbishment in 2016. Smoke rises from the 24 story Grenfell Tower in West LondonCredit: Getty Images Europe A police helicopter flies above the 24-storey Grenfell Tower in west London after a fire engulfed itCredit:Jonathan Brady  He said: “This is not a shock, the problems with cladding have been known about and talked about for a number of years and hopefully this will at least make people listen.”  Locals comfort each other following the fire which has engulfed Grenfell Tower on the Lancaster Estate in north KensingtonCredit:Heathcliff O’Malley Residents had warned that the tower block was a “catastrophe” waiting to happen but their complaints “fell on deaf ears”, they said yesterday.   Theresa May’s new chief of staff is facing questions over his role in a delayed fire safety review in the wake of the Grenfell Tower blaze.  A police helicopter flies above the 24-storey Grenfell Tower in west London after a fire engulfed it It was installed on the council-owned Grenfell block in 2015 as part of a £10 million refurbishment by a company which was later liquidated after a firm they were working with refused to pay out in a dispute over their work.Tens of thousands of buildings in the UK have been fitted with cladding, it is estimated, leading to calls for an immediate review of safety. Experts said that the cladding – which is used to insulate the building – had acted like a “chimney” for the flames by allowing the fire to spread upwards through the gaps between the cladding and the building walls. An inferno which engulfed a tower block, killing at least 12 in what could become one of the biggest fire tragedies in British history, was a “disaster waiting to happen”, experts have said.Fears were raised that green energy concerns were prioritised ahead of safety as it emerged that cladding used to make the building more sustainable could have accelerated the fire.  All fire safety regulations are focused on containing a fire within a building, but this cannot happen if it is spreading along the outside.”There has been an emerging body of evidence surrounding some of the materials being used and now we have an appalling demonstration of what can happen,” he said.Alongside the cosmetic appeal of cladding, it is used as an insulation to make buildings more sustainable to meet green energy requirements.  On Wednesday night, police confirmed 12 people had died following the blaze at Grenfell House in Kensington, west London, but they expected the death toll to rise.Hundreds of the roughly 500 residents in the block were unaccounted for. Some estimated that the death toll could rise above 100. Smoke rises from the 24 story Grenfell Tower in West London However a later statement omitted this line ans simply said the company had “met all required building regulations”. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Gavin Barwell, a former housing minister, has been accused of “sitting on” a review into building regulations at tower blocks after a deadly fire in South London in 2009.Dr Jim Glockling, Technical Director of the Fire Protection Association, said that they had been lobbying the Government to review the safety of combustible materials used on the outside of buildings since 2014. Donations Pour In For Tower Block Fire VictimsCredit:Paul Davey / Barcroft Images Nick HurdCredit:Mark Weeks / Rex Features  The company paid £3million to install the cladding, Harley Curtain Wall Ltd, has since gone bust after one of their customers refused to pay them almost £500,000 for disputed work. The director of the company, Ray Bailey, who has since started a new firm Harley Facades Limited, said that they had used a common Aluminium Composite Material (ACM) panels which are a commonly used product in the refurbishment industry. The London Fire Brigade warned ministers that  building regulations were not taking into account the vertical fire issues that cladding could cause in 1999, warning that because of cladding regulations were “inadequate”. Glyn Evans from the Fire Brigades Union told a Select Committee on Environment, Transport and Regional Affairs that after the Great Fire of London only horizontal fires were considered and “we do not really recognise the problem of vertical envelopment. If you get multistorey buildings you will get fire spread up the outside if the cladding will permit it.”The Health and Safety Executive, the police and the fire service are now expected to launch a large-scale investigation into the safety of the building and whether regulations were complied with.  Donations Pour In For Tower Block Fire Victimslast_img read more

WVU in ChinaUS coal to liquids project

first_imgThe US Department of Energy (DOE) has released $500,000 in federal funding that will allow a team from West Virginia University (WVU) to participate in a $1.3 million US-China coal-to-liquids project. The funding will allow WVU scientiststo study the economic and environmental effects of coal liquefaction technology and develop expertise regarding the commercial deployment of advanced coal technology through their participation in the three-year project between DOE and China’s National Development and Reform Commission.Commenting on this: “For too long, the US has let itself grow dependent on oil from the Middle East. We must break that addiction,” US Senator Byrd said in an April 19 press release. “Coal offers us a great opportunity to break the chain of foreign energy dependence. The technology is ready today to convert coal to transportation fuels. It is common sense that we rely on our domestic resources to handle our domestic fuel demands.” He said the funding will allow WVU experts to share knowledge with their Chinese counterparts and gain insights that will help further develop coal liquefaction in the USA. “The Chinese recognize that foreign oil won’t be able to handle that nation’s kingsize energy needs, and, like the US, China is looking to coal as an alternative,” he said.last_img read more

Managing and monitoring gearless mill drives

first_imgABB has re-packaged its proven and tested service offering for gearless mill drives (GMD) remote diagnostic services with the launch of a newly created product package of two modules, GMDbeatTM and GMDfitTM. The basic module, GMDbeat, covers ABB’s SupportLine and online troubleshooting while the enhanced module, GMDfit, offers online condition monitoring, predictive analytics and periodic health checks from ABB system experts. The product will initially be launched in Peru and Chile, with other countries to follow in 2015.“By combining separate service offerings into one package we can support our customers with a holistic approach,” said Remy Lanoue, Global Head of Service Mining, “This integrated service concept combines the past, the present and the future by utilizing system health checks, on-demand remote support and condition monitoring. It leverages the main advantages of each service to add more value to our customers.”Earlier these services were all offered separately. Now they are packaged into one comprehensive offering including GMDbeat and GMDfit to combine remote connectivity, advanced monitoring and analysis tools with global technical expert support via a secure remote connection for faster response. In the case of a critical machine condition a notification is still sent to ABB and the customer’s maintenance team however now the incident is handled as a prioritized SupportLine case, even if no actual system failure occurs. Therefore, the two modules – GMDbeat and GMDfit – perfectly complement each other to ensure system availability and to increase the overall equipment effectiveness (OEE) of the GMD system.The new package also brings additional features such as full control over the data and analysis tools for customers. They can now generate reports by themselves and easily access the data from any location in the world using ABB’s user-friendly, web-based application.ABB’s expertise in the mining industry includes engineering GMDs for the largest autogenous (AG), semiautogenous (SAG) and ball mills in the world that also fulfil highest power requirements and are ready to operate under extreme environmental conditions. Since designing its first gearless mill drive in the late 1960s, ABB has accumulated over forty years of experience in optimizing gearless solutions for grinding applications. ABB says its GMD “is the most powerful mill drive system on the market.”last_img read more

Donlin continues slow but steady progress

first_imgThe US Army Corps of Engineers (the Corps) and the BLM issued a single Record of Decision (ROD) for the Donlin Gold project in Alaska, four months after the publication of the Final Environmental Impact Statement.Located in Western Alaska, in the Yukon Kuskokwim region, Donlin Gold is one of the largest known, undeveloped gold deposits in the world, with probable reserves estimated at 33.8 Moz of gold.Based on exploration results, the Donlin Gold project will be an environmentally sound, open-pit gold mine. Located about 16 km from Crooked Creek Village, the project would process some 59,000 t/d (short) of ore.The Donlin Gold project would provide thousands of jobs during construction, which is estimated to take three to four years. The operational phase  is estimated to be in excess of 27 years. Infrastructure plans call for a power-generation plant, water-treatment plant, access roads, housing, two ports, a natural-gas pipeline and an airstrip.Donlin Gold estimates that the proposed mine could produce an average of 1.3 Moz/y of gold annually during operation. This production level would make it one of the world’s largest gold mines.Donlin Gold LLC is an Alaska company that is owned by NOVAGOLD Resources Alaska Inc, a subsidiary of NOVAGOLD RESOURCES Inc, and Barrick Gold US Inc, a subsidiary of Barrick Gold Corp.The picture shows Donlin Gold General Manager Andy Cole, a former Executive Director of Barrick.last_img read more

Watch the first ever video of a live giant squid as it

first_imgOn January 27 at 8PM EST, the Discovery Channel will be airing a documentary about the giant squid, entitled Monster Squid: The Giant is Real. This documentary will include actual, live footage of the mythical creature shown in its own habitat. The team that captured the footage spent over 400 hours beneath the Pacific Ocean — sometimes deeper than 3,000 feet — and making more than 100 submersible dives to film the creature.We’ve always known the creature exists — either by way of finding baby giant squids, pieces of the adults inside whale stomachs, or corpses washed ashore — but we’ve never filmed one live in its own habitat until now. The giant squid can grow to lengths of up to 43 feet, second only to the colossal squid (which we’ve also never filmed live in its own habitat), estimated to grow up to 46 feet.There isn’t really a word for describing what the arc of the giant squid’s discovery was like. In the under-thirty generation, we grew up reading about or watching movies that featured the mythical giant squid, regardless of our personal interests. Just about everyone knows the story of Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, and when you think “giant squid,” chances are an image of monstrous tentacles wrapping themselves around a wooden boat, breaking its sails, comes to mind. Sure, we only recently verified the existence of exoplanets, and we haven’t proven without a shadow of a doubt that the Higgs boson exists yet, but our collective society didn’t grow up reading mythical stories about smashing particles.It’s kind of amazing to think that when we were younger, the giant squid was a thing we only read about, and now twenty or so years later we’re watching a video of it in its natural habitat on the internet.via ABC Newslast_img read more

We Are Family singer Joni Sledge dies aged 60

first_img 19,207 Views Mar 12th 2017, 9:19 AM We Are Family singer Joni Sledge dies aged 60 The singer died at her home in Arizona on Friday with the cause of death yet to be determined. JONI SLEDGE, ONE of four sisters who together sang one of disco’s most enduring songs with “We Are Family,” has died, a representative said Saturday. She was 60.The singer died at her home in Arizona on Friday with the cause of death yet to be determined, publicist Biff Warren said.“We miss her and hurt for her presence, her radiance and the sincerity with which she loved and embraced life,” a family statement said.Daughters of two performers, Joni and her three sisters – Debbie, Kathy and Kim – grew up in Philadelphia and enjoyed moderate success touring in the 1970s with R&B songs.But the sisters found a major hit in 1979 with We Are Family, which was written by Nile Rodgers and Bernard Edwards, who had emerged as key figures in the disco craze with their band Chic.Joni Sledge, in an interview last year with The Guardian, said the sisters had become professionally frustrated by the time they made We Are Family and had considered other careers, such as studying law.“Recording the track ‘We Are Family’ was like a one-take party — we were just dancing and playing around and hanging out in the studio when we did it,” she said.Rodgers offered condolences on Twitter, saying, “We did something pretty amazing together.”Despite the message of family unity, Kathy Sledge left the group to pursue a solo career and tensions ensued, with Joni and Debbie remaining the core members.Sister Sledge came together in various forms for performances that included the massive Festival of Families by Pope Francis in Philadelphia in 2015 and last year’s presidential campaign of Hillary Clinton.Joni Sledge, speaking in 2015 to Women’s Wear Daily, said that the group’s main hit – with its chorus, “We are family / I got all my sisters with me” – carried a time-tested message of unity.“It’s just as powerful today. That’s one of the good things about it. It teaches respect,” she said.© – AFP 2017Read: Titanic, Twister and Aliens actor Bill Paxton has died at the age of 61Read: Tara Palmer-Tomkinson ‘did not have a brain tumour’ and died from a perforated ulcer Joni Sledge (second from left) passed away at her home on Friday. Sunday 12 Mar 2017, 9:19 AM Short URL 13 Comments Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article By Cormac Fitzgerald Share Tweet Email Joni Sledge (second from left) passed away at her home on Friday. last_img read more

Vancouver buys old Tower Mall property

first_imgThe city of Vancouver is in the midst of a deal to buy nearly 12 acres of the Town Plaza property in the central part of the city with hopes of injecting new life into the area.The Town Plaza, formerly known as Tower Mall, was put up for sale through a private auction and listed as distressed property. The city plans to spend $5 million to purchase the site. The transaction is set to close June 28. “The city has a history of successful redevelopment activities,” Vancouver City Manager Eric Holmes said, pointing to the downtown Esther Short Park redevelopment area as an example. Twenty years ago, downtown Vancouver looked quite different. Esther Short Park had a reputation as a crime-ridden jungle that, after dusk, was surrounded by empty streets. The city made some strategic investments in the downtown area, including coming up with a master plan in 1996 that leveraged millions of dollars in private investment. Today, new buildings surround the park on all sides, and Main Street is home to a thriving restaurant and nightclub district.“We didn’t buy all of downtown. We developed the vision, did the planning necessary and invested in the public infrastructure to support that vision,” Holmes said.last_img read more

Facebooks and social medias fight against fake news may get tougher

first_img 7 Tags Facebook users are shifting toward ephemeral “Stories” and messaging. Getty Images Facebook isn’t the same social network it used to be. A decade ago, status updates had to include the word “is.” Catching up with friends meant writing on their Facebook digital walls. Today’s social media couldn’t be more different. Users are sharing moments of their lives in vertical videos and photos that vanish in 24 hours through a feature called “Stories.” We’ve become aware of the network’s dark side, with data privacy violations and the spread of misinformation and hate speech. Messaging apps are all the rage. And Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg says he thinks people will share more information on Stories — a feature it copied from its rival Snapchat — than on news feeds. “The concept [of social media] is part of the fabric of human life at this point,” said Debra Aho Williamson, an analyst for eMarketer who’s researched social media for nearly 15 years. “But how we share and what we share will definitely morph and change.”The shift toward ephemeral content and messaging could fundamentally alter how we use Facebook and other social media, while also making it harder to combat misinformation, election interference and hate speech, some experts say. After all, it’s hard for companies to crack down when they can’t see what’s being shared in encrypted messages, or when photos and videos disappear after 24 hours. And while Facebook and others are investing in AI to spot and remove messages that violate their online rules, they still face a tough road ahead.”The companies are getting smarter at using artificial intelligence to identify egregious hate speech or extreme content, but the technology is far from perfect, meaning users getting frustrated when there are false positives,” said Claire Wardle, the executive director of First Draft, a nonprofit aimed at tackling misinformation. “All in all, these shifts present a number of challenges for a number of different technology companies.”The rise of Stories and messagingFacebook-owned Instagram introduced Stories two years ago before Facebook added the Snapchat-like feature to WhatsApp, Messenger and its main social network.Facebook now expects ephemeral content and messaging to play much bigger roles in its future, Zuckerberg said in October during the company’s third-quarter earnings call.Instagram applicationFacebook-owned Instagram introduced ephemeral Stories in 2016 and the feature continues to grow in popularity. Getty Images Instagram Stories hit 400 million daily active users in June, up 60 percent from the same month last year. WhatsApp’s version of Stories, called Status, hit 450 million daily active users in May, up 80 percent from July 2017. Facebook and Messenger Stories have 300 million daily active users. Facebook has shared user numbers for Stories at different times throughout the year. Zuckerberg also said in October that he thought other social media sites, including Twitter, Pinterest and LinkedIn, would introduce their own versions of Stories.There are various reasons why Stories and messaging are becoming more popular. “People feel more comfortable being themselves when they know their content will only be seen by a smaller group and when their content won’t stick around forever,” Zuckerberg told analysts in October. A November report by eMarketer called out two other reasons: People are sharing more videos and photos instead of text. And they want to broadcast more intimate moments to a smaller audience.Social media’s dark side may also be fueling the shift, said Wardle, citing “a chilling effect caused by increased levels of harassment online.” Facebook and Instagram didn’t respond to a request for comment.Misinformation on messaging appsThe spread of false news on messaging apps, including WhatsApp, is already posing challenges for fact-checkers. WhatsApp was “flooded by falsehoods and conspiracy theories” during Brazil’s runoff presidential election in October between Jair Bolsonaro and Fernando Haddad, Reuters reported. INDIA-INTERNET-FACEBOOK-WHATSAPPAn Indian newspaper runs a full-page ad from WhatsApp intended to counter fake information. Getty Images Some of the misinformation was spread in WhatsApp chat groups that allow up to 256 people to join.”Such chat groups are much harder to monitor than the Facebook news feed or Google’s search results,” Cristina Tardáguila, director of the fact-checking platform Agência Lupa, co-wrote in an op-ed published in The New York Times. Agência Lupa, the Federal University of Minas Gerais, and the University of São Paulo studied more than 100,000 political images that circulated in 347 WhatsApp groups that were open to the public. They found that more than half of the most-shared images contained misleading information.The consequences of failing to stop misinformation can be literally fatal.In India, false rumors of child abductions went viral on WhatsApp, causing mobs to murder at least two dozen innocent people, The New York Times reported in July. When asked how WhatsApp is combating misinformation, a spokesperson pointed to a blog post outlining WhatsApp’s efforts. These included labeling and limiting the reach of forwarded messages; running full-page newspaper ads in English, Hindi and other languages with tips for spotting fake news; removing spam accounts; and working with governments.Tracking ephemeral contentTik Tok Application: IllustrationWhat will the future of social media hold? Getty Images Some researchers fear they’ll have a harder time studying the spread of misinformation as ephemeral content becomes more prevalent, since it won’t be “online long enough to be flagged, deranked or removed,” Wardle said. Filippo Menczer, a professor of informatics and computer science at Indiana University who’s studied how automated Twitter accounts spread misinformation, said that because of the lack of available data, it’s hard to tell if fake news is being spread through ephemeral content. “Even the platforms themselves don’t want to look inside that data because they’re making promises to their customers that it’s private,” Menczer said. “By the time someone realizes that there’s some terrible misinformation that’s causing a genocide, it may be too late.”Snapchat, which started the whole ephemeral content craze, appears to have kept itself mostly free of fake news and election meddling. The company separates news in a public section called Discover. Snapchat’s editors vet and curate what shows up in that section, making it difficult for misinformation to go viral on the platform. Instagram, on the other hand, is being considered a “key battleground” for fighting Russian troll propaganda. Russia’s Internet Research Agency used Instagram to sow discord among Americans during the 2016 election and garnered more engagement there than it did on Facebook, researchers at the cybersecurity firm New Knowledge found. As Facebook pushes more people to post ephemeral content in Stories, the uphill battle against false news could get even harder. Taking It to Extremes: Mix insane situations — erupting volcanoes, nuclear meltdowns, 30-foot waves — with everyday tech. Here’s what happens.Fight the Power: Take a look at who’s transforming the way we think about energy.  Share your voice Comments Mark Zuckerberg Facebook Snapchat Twitter Internet Services Tech Industrylast_img read more

TRP Report Kapil Sharmas show at the verge of dropping out of

first_imgThe Kapil Sharma Show: Akshay Kumar, Bharti Singh, Kiku ShardaSony TVAnd this week’s wait to know which show has made its way much ahead of the others and which show has had a surprising descent is finally here. The latest TRP report of this week has some astounding figures and show names at unexpected positions.From the premiere episode till the grand finale, every episode of Khatron Ke Khiladi 9 has garnered immense love and viewership from the audience. Ever since this season of the show made its way onto our screens, there has been no looking back for the adventure reality show. And this week too, the show has managed to maintain its crackling record and stayed at the first position.Giving the show a tough competition right from the beginning has been Ekta Kapoor’s Naagin 3 starring Anita Hassandani and Surbhi. And this week too, the show has maintained its second spot without any change from the last week. However, what’s surprising is the tie between two shows this week – Kulfi Kumar Bajewala and Kundali Bhagya. Both the shows stand at the same third position. Kasautii Zindagi Kay 2 has bagged the fourth spot in this week’s chart followed by a tie between Yeh Rishta Kya Kehlata Hai and Kumkum Bhagya.Surprisingly, even the sixth spot stands at a tie this week. Tujhse Hai Raabta and reality show Super Dance Chapter 3 starring Shilpa Shetty, Geeta Kapoor and Anurag Basu have received the same amount of TRPs this week.From fifth to sixth and now to the seventh spot, Kapil Sharma’s show has just been slipping down with each passing week. Whether it’s the lack of good content or Sidhu’s absence, we can’t say for sure, but, with this rate, it would be just a few weeks before the show goes out of the top 10 list.Taarak Mehta Ka Ooltah Chashma is at the eighth spot followed by a tie between three shows at the ninth spot. Nazar, Guddan Tumse Na Ho Payega and Gathbandhan are the three shows positioned at the ninth spot.Divya Drishti, Shakti and Krishna Chali London are the three shows at the tenth spot.last_img read more

North Korea explosion points to nuclear test

first_imgNorth Korea flagNorth Korea appeared to carry out a sixth nuclear test Sunday, with seismic monitors measuring an “explosion” of 6.3 magnitude near its main test site, sending tensions over its weapons ambitions to new heights.The apparent test came just hours after it claimed to have developed a hydrogen bomb that could be loaded into the country’s new intercontinental ballistic missile.The south’s joint chiefs of staff said in a statement that the seismic tremor was detected near the North’s Punggye-ri test site.United States Geological Survey recorded the magnitude at 6.3 — larger than any previous test.Jana Pursely, a USGS geophysicist, told AFP: “It’s an explosion rather than an earthquake.”Nuclear-armed Pyongyang has long sought the means to deliver an atomic warhead to the United States, its sworn enemy.Questions remain over whether it has successfully miniaturised its weapons, and whether it has a working H-bomb, but the official Korean Central News Agency said before the quake that leader Kim Jong-Un had inspected such a device at the Nuclear Weapons Institute.It was a “thermonuclear weapon with super explosive power made by our own efforts and technology”, KCNA cited Kim as saying, and “all components of the H-bomb were 100 per cent domestically made”.Pictures showed Kim in black suit examining a metal casing, with a shape akin to a peanut shell.North Korea triggered a new ramping up of tensions in July, when it carried out two successful tests of an ICBM, the Hwasong-14, which apparently brought much of the US mainland within range.It has since threatened to send a salvo of rockets towards the US territory of Guam, and last week fired a missile over Japan and into the Pacific, the first time time it has ever acknowledged doing so.US President Donald Trump has warned Pyongyang that it faces “fire and fury”, and that Washington’s weapons are “locked and loaded”.Trump spoke by telephone to Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to discuss the need to “maximize pressure on North Korea” in the face of the “growing threat” it presented, according to a White House readout of the call, without specifying when it took place.The North has repeatedly claimed that it has a thermonuclear weapon, which can be far more powerful than other nuclear devices.When it carried out its fourth nuclear test, in January 2016, it said it was a miniaturised H-bomb, but scientists said the six-kiloton yield achieved then was far too low.When it carried out its fifth test, in September 2016, it did not say it was a hydrogen bomb.There was no immediate announcement from the North about Sunday’s earthquake.Yang Moo-Jin of the University of North Korean Studies in Seoul, told AFP the latest KCNA report “carries a strategic message” that Pyongyang “will push for a nuclear face-off with the US as an equal”.Actually mounting a warhead onto a missile would amount to a significant escalation on the North’s part, as it would create a risk that it was preparing an attack.- ‘Hundreds of kilotons’ -The North Korean leadership says a credible nuclear deterrent is critical to the nation’s survival, claiming it is under constant threat from an aggressive United States.It has been subjected to seven rounds of United Nations Security Council sanctions over its nuclear and ballistic missile programmes, but always insists it will continue to pursue them.Its first nuclear test was in 2006, and successive blasts are believed to have been aimed at refining designs and reliability as well as increasing yield.Its fifth detonation, in September last year, had a 10-kiloton yield according to Seoul — still less than the 15-kiloton US device which destroyed Hiroshima in 1945.Atomic or “A-bombs” work on the principle of nuclear fission, where energy is released by splitting atoms of enriched uranium or plutonium encased in the warhead.Hydrogen or H-bombs, also known as thermonuclear weapons, work on fusion and are far more powerful, with a nuclear blast taking place first to create the intense temperatures required.In Sunday’s announcement before the earthquake, KCNA said the North’s H-bomb had “explosive power that can be adjusted from tens to hundreds of kilotons depending on the target”, KCNA said Sunday, claiming technological advances “on the basis of precious successes made in the first H-bomb test”.No H-bomb has ever been used in combat, but they make up most of the world’s nuclear arsenals.last_img read more

DNCC to form 3 committees for fire safety

first_imgDhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) is going to form three committees to ensure that all the buildings under its jurisdiction have fire safety measures, reports UNB.The decision was taken at a views-exchange meeting held at the Nagar Bhaban on Thursday with DNCC mayor Atiqul Islam in the chair.The three committees will be named as Central Committee, Technical Committee and Inspection Committee.DNCC chief executive officer Abdul Hai will be convener of the Central Committee while its members will include the director general of Fire Service and Civil Defence Directorate, fire safety specialists and representatives of different business establishments that provide fire safety services.The Technical Committee will be comprised of representatives of different fire-safety service providing entities and it will be led by a professor of Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET).Members of the Inspection Committee, which has already been constituted with DNCC zonal executive officer as its head, will include representatives of different fire-safety service providing companies.The third committee has already visited 33 buildings, including multi-storey educational institutions, markets, hospitals and private offices.Addressing the meeting, the DNCC mayor said, “Fire safety should be ensured gradually in all the buildings under the DNCC. Nobody will be spared in this regard. We have to work together with people, private, commercial and social organisations,” he said.Representatives from different organisations promised to provide all kinds of cooperation to ensure the fire-extinguishing system in at least five buildings each.DNCC CEO Abdul Hai, its chief engineer Muhammad Jubayer Salehin, Emkay Enterprise Ltd advisor SM Nurul Haque, its managing director Muntasir Karim, former director general of Fire Service and Civil Defence Directorate Ali Ahmed Khan, CEO of Iota Consulting BD Md Golam Kibria and ELEVATE Global Ltd MD Mamun Zaman were, among others, present at the meeting.last_img read more

YouTube Test to Sort Subscription Feeds in NonChronological Order Triggers Creator Backlash

first_imgYouTube has been testing out a new option to let users sort their subscription feeds in an algorithm-fed, non-chronological order — and the move has many creators up in arms.YouTube has actually been running the test with a small number of users since February 2018. The Google-owned video service publicly acknowledged the test in a tweet from the Team YouTube account late Tuesday evening, in response to a user’s complaint that videos weren’t showing up chronologically.“We find that some viewers are able to more easily find the videos they want to watch when we order the subs feed in a personalized order vs always showing most recent video first,” the Team YouTube post said.Reaction from the YouTube community has been overwhelmingly negative. Grace Helbig, a popular YouTube comedy creator, tweeted simply, “Please don’t do this,” in response to the Team YouTube post. ×Actors Reveal Their Favorite Disney PrincessesSeveral actors, like Daisy Ridley, Awkwafina, Jeff Goldblum and Gina Rodriguez, reveal their favorite Disney princesses. Rapunzel, Mulan, Ariel,Tiana, Sleeping Beauty and Jasmine all got some love from the Disney stars.More VideosVolume 0%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard Shortcutsplay/pauseincrease volumedecrease volumeseek forwardsseek backwardstoggle captionstoggle fullscreenmute/unmuteseek to %SPACE↑↓→←cfm0-9Next UpJennifer Lopez Shares How She Became a Mogul04:350.5x1x1.25×1.5x2xLive00:0002:1502:15 Colleen Ballinger, the creator behind YouTube’s Miranda Sings awkward woman-child, also expressed strong concern. “I don’t see a single positive response to this announcement,” she wrote in a tweet. “Please reconsider. This will really hurt your content creators!!!!” Seán McLoughlin, the video-game vlogger known as Jacksepticeye online, noted in response to the news, “People use the subscription tab to mainly avoid this sort of algorithmic behaviour on the platform. Please keep that to the home page and recommendations.”The concern among YouTubers is that their view counts and user engagement could drop, if people see their subscription feeds in a non-chronological layout.Responding to a request for more information, a YouTube rep said, “With more videos coming to YouTube every minute we’re always experimenting with ways to help people more easily find, watch and share the videos that matter most to them.”The rep continued, “This is one of many small experiments we run all the time on YouTube. We use both quantitative data as well as user and creator feedback to make decisions on which features to launch.”YouTube emphasized that in the test, users still can choose which view they want to see. In addition, according to YouTube, all videos from a user’s subscriptions will still appear in feed.The backlash calls to mind a similar change that Facebook’s Instagram made in 2016, when it switched users’ feeds en masse from chronological to algorithmically sorted presentation. That led to a massive outcry from Instagrammers, and 343,000 people signed a petition demanding Instagram keep the chronological ordering. Of course, Instagram didn’t revert to the old design, and it has continued to amass users. Popular on Variety last_img read more

Convicted Lockerbie bomber dies of cancer in Libya

first_img Think Tank analyzes the second round of Democratic debates New high school in Mesa lets students pick career paths Key to convicting al-Megrahi was the testimony of a Malta shopkeeper who identified him as having bought a man’s shirt in his store. Scraps of the garment were found wrapped around the timing device.However, a Scottish judicial body that carried out a major review of the evidence cast doubt on the shopowner’s ID of al-Megrahi and said there was evidence the shirt was purchased on a day when al-Megrahi was not in Malta.Al-Megrahi’s lawyers also claimed that British and U.S. authorities tampered with evidence, disregarded witness statements and steered investigators away from suggestions the bombing was an Iranian-financed plot carried out by Palestinians to avenge the shooting down of a civilian Iranian airliner by a U.S. warship. The airliner went down, killing some 290 people, several months before the Lockerbie bombing. The judicial body, however, discounted theories of intentional misdirection.“I had most to gain and nothing to lose about the whole truth coming out _ until my diagnosis of cancer,” al-Megrahi said in a statement after his release. “To those victims’ relatives who can bear to hear me say this, they continue to have my sincere sympathy for the unimaginable loss that they have suffered.” Associated PressTRIPOLI, Libya (AP) – He was the embodiment of one of modern Libya’s darkest chapters _ a man synonymous with horrifying scenes of wreckage, broken families and a plane that fell out of the sky a generation ago. His name, Abdel Baset al-Megrahi, was little known compared to the single word that his deeds represented: Lockerbie.Seven months after his patron dictator Moammar Gadhafi was slain in a revolution that began a new chapter for his homeland, al-Megrahi died Sunday of cancer, leaving behind countless unanswered questions about the midair attack in 1988 that blew up Pan Am flight 103 over Scotland. All 259 people on board _ mostly Americans _ and 11 on the ground were killed. Gadhafi handed over al-Megrahi and a second suspect to Scottish authorities after years of punishing U.N. sanctions. Four years later, in 2003, Gadhafi acknowledged responsibility _ though not guilt _ for the Lockerbie bombing and paid compensation of about $2.7 billion to the Lockerbie victims’ families. He also pledged to dismantle all weapons of mass destruction and joined the U.S.-led war on terror.The steps won Gadhafi quick rewards, with Western powers resuming diplomatic contacts and signing lucrative business deals.In 2001, the Scottish court convicted al-Megrahi of planting the bomb but acquitted his co-defendant, Lamen Khalifa Fhimah, a Libyan Arab Airlines official, of all charges.The prosecution’s case was built around a tiny fragment of circuit board discovered among the airline wreckage that investigators determined was part of the timer of the bomb, hidden in a suitcase. Investigators said the suitcase was loaded onto a flight from Malta, booked through to Pan Am 103 via Frankfurt.An executive from a Swiss company testified he had sold timers of the same make to Libya. Investigators found that al-Megrahi traveled to Malta on a false passport a day before the suitcase was checked in and left the following day. In the months ahead of his release, Tripoli put pressure on Britain, warning that if the ailing al-Megrahi died in a Scottish prison, all British commercial activity in Libya would be cut off and a wave of demonstrations would erupt outside British embassies, according to leaked U.S. diplomatic memos. The Libyans even implied “that the welfare of U.K. diplomats and citizens in Libya would be at risk,” the memos say.Al-Megrahi kept a strict silence after his return, living in the family villa surrounded by high walls in a posh Tripoli neighborhood, mostly bedridden or taking a few steps with a cane. Libyan authorities sealed him off from public access, and on Sunday scores of fellow clan members surrounded his residence to keep the media away.Al-Megrahi’s son, Khaled al-Megrahi, confirmed that he died in Tripoli in a telephone interview but hung up before giving more details. Saad Nasser al-Megrahi, a relative and a member of the ruling National Transitional Council, said al-Megrahi’s health had deteriorated in recent days and said he died of cancer-related complications.Al-Megrahi was convicted in 2001 of planting the bomb aboard Pan Am Flight 103 by a Scottish court set up in the neutral ground of a military base in the Netherlands and sentenced to life in prison. The bomb blew up the jetliner as it flew over Lockerbie, Scotland, on Dec. 21, 1988. The New York-bound flight originated at London’s Heathrow airport and many of the victims were American college students flying home for Christmas. ___Hendawi reported from Cairo. Associated Press writers Rami al-Shaheibi in Benghazi, Libya, Meera Selva in London and Deepti Hajela and Verena Dobnik in New York contributed to this report.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) The father of one of the Lockerbie victims said al-Megrahi’s death was “to a degree a relief” and said his release had little to do with his health.“If he had been that bad three years ago, he wouldn’t have lived this long. It was a political deal,” said Glenn Johnson of Greensburg, Pa., whose 21-year-old daughter Beth Ann Johnson was killed in the bombing.A spokesman for British families who lost loved ones in the bombing said he always believed al-Megrahi was innocent.“His death is to be deeply regretted,” David Ben-Ayreah said. “As someone who attended the trial I have never taken the view that Megrahi was guilty. Megrahi is the 271st victim of Lockerbie.”The Scottish government said Sunday that it will keep on investigating the bombing despite al-Megrahi’s death. Scotland’s First Minister, Alex Salmond, said prosecutors have always believed that al-Megrahi did not act alone in the bomb plot.Little was known about al-Megrahi before he was charged, but he became a central figure in both Libya’s falling out with the West and then its return to the international fold.Gadhafi’s regime presented his handover to Scotland in 1999 as a necessary sacrifice to restore Libya’s relations with the world. Top Stories Get a lawn your neighbor will be jealous of More Valley freeways to be closed this weekend for improvements Sponsored Stories Meghan McCain to release audiobook on conservatism, family 4 ways to protect your company from cyber breaches Comments   Share   New Year’s resolution: don’t spend another year in a kitchen you don’t like “I am an innocent man,” al-Megrahi insisted, most recently in his final interview in December, in the final stages of prostate cancer. “I am about to die and I ask now to be left in peace with my family.”But his death at age 60 leaves no peace for families who still question his guilt and whether others in one of history’s deadliest terror attacks went unpunished. Scotland’s government said it would continue to investigate the bombing even after al-Megrahi’s death.“He holds the key to what actually took place in Pan Am 103,” said Bert Ammerman, whose brother was killed in the bombing. “He knows what other individuals were involved and, more importantly, what other countries were involved.”His attorneys had argued that the Libyan intelligence officer was scapegoated to protect the real culprits: Palestinians acting on the behest of Iran.Al-Megrahi’s death comes about three years after Scottish authorities released him on humanitarian grounds, to the outrage of victims’ relatives. At the time, doctors predicted he had only three months to live after he was diagnosed with prostate cancer.Anger over his release was further stoked by the hero’s welcome he received on his arrival in Libya _ and by subsequent accusations that London had sought his release to protect business interests in oil-rich Libya. Britain and Scotland denied the allegations.last_img read more

LONDON – British theatre critics on Wednesday prai

first_img LONDON – British theatre critics on Wednesday praised a new stage musical about the life of Tina Turner — one that also has the approval of the star herself.Turner was in the audience for the opening night of “Tina” at London’s Aldwych Theatre. After the show Tuesday, she joked that “I’ve found a replacement” in Adrienne Warren, who plays the brassy singer in the musical.The show charts Turner’s roots in small-town Tennessee, her musical apprenticeship alongside abusive husband Ike Turner and her solo breakthrough in the 1980s with hits such as “Private Dancer” and “What’s Love Got to Do With It?”With a script by American playwright Katori Hall, “Tina” is driven by powerhouse tunes and a performance by Warren that the Guardian newspaper called “simply astonishing.”The newspaper’s Michael BiIlington called the show “a heady celebration of triumph over adversity … (that) boasts a whirlwind performance by Adrienne Warren that left the audience, though not the star herself, breathless.”Warren, an American performer who was nominated for a Tony Award for “Shuffle Along” on Broadway, looks set to become a London stage star with a performance judged “stupendous” by The Independent newspaper.In the Daily Mail, Quentin Letts said Warren’s voice was a match for Turner’s, and “could reduce the very citadel of Jericho to rubble.”Critics also praised British actor Kobna Holdbrook-Smith for making Ike Turner a rounded character rather than a two-dimensional villain.The musical is directed by Phyllida Lloyd, one of the team behind the frothy stage and screen hit “Mamma Mia.” This is a much grittier tale that doesn’t flinch from depicting the violence Turner suffered — something some found an odd fit with the musical genre. Time Out critic Andrzej Lukowski wondered: “Is a feel-good jukebox musical the absolute best medium to tell a story about domestic abuse?The 78-year-old Turner, however, has given the show her blessing. Its message, she said as she joined the cast onstage for a curtain call, is that “it’s possible to turn poison into medicine.” by Jill Lawless, The Associated Press Posted Apr 18, 2018 4:44 am PDT Last Updated Apr 18, 2018 at 11:21 am PDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email FILE – In this Tuesday, Oct. 17, 2017 file photo, musician Tina Turner, left, poses for photographers with actress Adrienne Warren, who plays Tina Turner, during a photo call to promote the launch of the musical ‘Tina’, in London. British theater critics are praising a stage musical about the life of Tina Turner, and it also has the approval of the star herself. (Photo by Vianney Le Caer/Invision/AP, File) center_img Simply the best? UK critics praise Tina Turner stage musicallast_img read more

Madonna loses battle to prevent auction of Tupac l

first_imgMadonna loses battle to prevent auction of Tupac letter NEW YORK, N.Y. – Pop star Madonna has lost her battle to prevent an auction of her personal items, including a love letter from her ex-boyfriend, the late rapper Tupac Shakur, a pair of worn panties and a hairbrush containing her hair.Last year, a judge ordered Gotta Have It! Collectibles to pull the items from its impending rock ‘n’ roll-themed auction after the Material Girl sought an emergency court order.In a decision revealed Monday, the judge dismissed the case on grounds the statute of limitations to recover the items had passed.The auction house told The New York Times it had done due diligence on the items and was confident Madonna had no claim.The company says the auction will be in July.Starting bid for the Tupac letter is $100,000.___Information from: The New York Times, by The Associated Press Posted Apr 24, 2018 5:58 pm PDT Last Updated Apr 24, 2018 at 9:40 pm PDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Emailcenter_img FILE – In this Saturday, Jan. 21, 2017, file photo, Madonna performs on stage during the Women’s March rally, in Washington. Madonna has lost her battle to prevent an auction of her personal items, including a love letter from her ex-boyfriend, the late rapper Tupac Shakur, a pair of worn panties and a hairbrush containing her hair. In a decision revealed Monday, April 23, 2018, a judge dismissed the case on grounds the statute of limitations to recover the items had passed. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana, File) last_img read more

Special welcome for cruise seasons first passengers

first_imgPassengers on the first cruise ship of the season will be treated to a special welcome when it docks at Limassol port on Wednesday evening.According to the Limassol tourist development company (Etal), approximately 2,800 travellers and more than 1,000 crew members aboard the Mein Schiff 5 will be welcomed on their arrival at the port’s new terminal at 7pm.The cruise ship will stay at the port for 24 hours and, according to the organisers, “the event’s goal is to create the best possible image for the city and to attract travellers to the historic centre and the reference points of the wider region.”A group of musicians and dancers from the Zidros Pano Polemidia cultural club will present a music and dance programme, while girls in traditional costumes will offer commandaria, zivania and traditional dishes, demonstrating Cypriot hospitality.The events are the initiative of the Limassol municipality and Etal and have the financial support of the Cyprus Tourism Organisation.This is the first of more than ten such events which will be held in the port, Etal’s director Maria Stylianou Michaelidou said, a positive sign that cruise tourism is increasing.Limassol port’s new terminal opened last year and consists of seven pods with an internal area of 7,000 square metres. It has three 400 metre berths that can accommodate cruise vessels.You May LikeHorizontimesThese Are The Smartest Dogs According To Vets, You’ll Be Surprised Which Made The CutHorizontimesUndoHouse CoastThe Aluminum Foil Trick Everyone Should Know AboutHouse CoastUndoHabit TribeThe One Trick New Parents Need To KnowHabit TribeUndo Korkolis brings magic to the stageUndoFamagusta municipality says Varosha entry goes against UN regulationsUndoGreece to overturn law that made universities no-go zone for policeUndoby Taboolaby Taboolalast_img read more