A disabled artistactivist is about to begin sculp

first_imgA disabled artist-activist is about to begin sculpting 650 figures out of river mud, in a bid to “make visible the human cost of austerity” in the run-up to the general election.Liz Crow’s We Are Figures project will see her create one figure for every UK constituency, each one representing “an individual at the sharp end of austerity”.She will create these figures next month on the foreshore – the part of the river that lies between its low and high-water marks – of the Thames, and in significant locations across London, while engaging with the public about the human cost of austerity.Crow will be using mud already taken from the foreshore of the River Avon at Shirehampton, near Bristol, to sculpt the 650 human figures.The sculpting will start on Monday (30 March) and will take place on 10 consecutive days and nights on the foreshore of the Thames and across the city.During those 10 days, Crow will create some of the figures on the streets of London, in locations linked to the media, finance, government departments that have implemented austerity, and politicians.Day by day, the steadily-increasing collection of figures will be displayed in a small exhibition space at Oxo Tower Wharf.Each one will represent someone who has experienced austerity, for example through benefits reform, local authority spending, homelessness, malnutrition or NHS rationing.Crow told Disability News Service: “What I want to do is use it to raise different questions and draw people in to having quite profound conversations.“We have an election coming up and I do want people to think about how they vote. The impact of austerity is not going to go away overnight.“It is what we do with an immensely difficult set of circumstances – whoever gets in – what do we most care about, what kind of society do we want to be, and what collectively do we do to get there? What really matters to us?”Crow says that “a significant proportion” of the individual stories of austerity will “inevitably” concern disabled people.She said: “It is really clear that it is a community that has been disproportionately affected both in numbers and in impact.”She says the project has been a “mammoth undertaking”, which has included reading thousands of accounts of people’s austerity experiences, “ranging from the just difficult to just absolutely as bleak as it gets”, during which she has experienced “a whole range of emotions, from fury to feeling bereft”.The inspiration for the project came during a previous work, Bedding Out, in which she engaged with members of the public about welfare reform after setting up her bed in an art gallery.She said: “The conversations that came out of that had quite a profound effect. I felt quite traumatised by some of the things I had heard.”She said she had originally wanted to create a piece of work to mark austerity-related deaths, but it had been “very difficult if not impossible” to establish how many people had died.A short tour of the We Are Figures project will take place in London, Reading, Swindon, and Bristol, and one other location along the M4 corridor, from 1 to 5 May, in the lead-up to the general election.On the day after the general election, the figures will be returned to the riverbank of the Avon and formed into a cairn. They will then be fired on a bonfire, while each of the individual stories of austerity are read aloud, until the tide puts out the flames.The figures will then be reclaimed, gathered and ground into dust, and – on the first day of the next parliament, in September – their remains will be scattered back on the river, creating a “poignant reminder of the human cost of austerity”.Funding for the project, which is tweeting at @WeAreFigures, has come from Arts Council England and the Big Lottery Fund, as well as individual crowd-funding donations.It is the latest in a trio of projects in which Crow has highlighted the issues of austerity and welfare reform.As well as Bedding Out, she launched #InActualFact in 2013, which created a series of simple, hard-hitting but carefully-sourced facts that could be used in conversation and on social media to “counter the rhetoric” on welfare reform and benefit cuts from both government and the media.Volunteers are still needed, for four-hour blocks from 30 March to 9 April in London, and for the roadshow between 1 and 5 May, to act as stewards, supporting members of the public in conversations about the work. Some grounding in or experience of austerity would be useful. To find out more, contact jessie@roaring-girl.comlast_img read more

Labours general secretary Jennie Formby has revea

first_imgLabour’s general secretary Jennie Formby has revealed a new sexual harassment policy to Labour members today.While much of the recent focus on Labour’s disciplinary processes has centred around antisemitism, there has also been criticism of the way the party has handled sexual harassment complaints.According to the email sent to members, the new procedure – approved by Labour’s national executive committee – will, “for the first time”, involve “independent persons” and see an independent investigator appointed to gather evidence and offer advice.Below is the text of Jennie Formby’s email to Labour members this afternoon (excluding contact details for the party).I am pleased to inform you of the launch of our new procedure for dealing with complaints of sexual harassment.The Labour Party strives to provide a safe space for people to engage in campaigning and other political activity and maintains a zero tolerance approach to sexual harassment.As part of this commitment we are constantly seeking to improve our procedures and practices to ensure they are credible and robust.Following a thorough review, involving a range of internal and external stakeholders, the NEC has agreed a new Sexual Harassment Policy.The new procedure introduces, for the first time, the involvement of independent persons throughout the investigation process. For every formal complaint received under the procedure, an independent investigator will be appointed to gather evidence from the complainant and give advice on how the investigation should proceed.We are also making the commitment to continue to provide the external support line operated by an independent charity, the Rape and Sexual Abuse Support Centre, to provide advice and support for those affected by all forms of sexual harassment. This service is freely available before making a complaint and throughout the process. To contact the service call 020 8683 3311 or find more information on the website.We have also produced Guidance specifically for complainants. Where we investigate an incident, the person against whom the complaint is made will also receive guidance on the process and information about available advice and support.To ensure that complaints of sexual harassment are dealt with sensitively and consistently, CLPs do not have the power to investigate them. All complaints will be handled by the independent investigator with trained staff at Party HQ.Kind regards,Jennie FormbyGeneral Secretary of the Labour PartyTags:Labour /Jennie Formby /Sexual harassment policy /last_img read more

Missions 12th ice cream shop offers gelato on wheels

first_img 0% Antonio Massimini and Henri Waltenspuhl, owners of Colleta Gelato. Photo by Lola M. ChavezThey opened their first shop in January in SoMa. They had done their homework, and their market research told them San Francisco was the place to go. The Harrington pop-up is their second location.Ice cream seems to do really well in the neighborhood. Businesses keep opening up and often have lines out the door. Coletta Gelato’s first afternoon drew a small crowd as well.Massimini had a few theories about why ice cream is so popular in the Mission.First, he thinks, San Francisco is a food-centric city. He said people care about eating well. On the producer’s end, it’s easy to get the fresh cream, fruit, and milk they need.The Mission specifically is a good spot because there are a lot of restaurants, Massimini said. He thinks people like eating a meal and then getting ice cream afterward. It’s also a very walkable neighborhood, and ice cream goes well with walking.Plus, there’s the weather. In terms of sunshine, the Mission beats most other San Francisco neighborhoods.“Microclimates, right?” Massimini said.Colleta Gelato will be open from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday through Saturday and from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Sundays at 599 Valencia Street, San Francisco.  Tags: Business • food • ice cream Share this: FacebookTwitterRedditemail,0%center_img Coletta Gelato’s Antonio Massimini and Henri Waltenspuhl have parked their custom-made gelato bike cart in the entrance to Harrington Galleries at Valencia and 17th, bringing the total count of ice cream stores in the Mission to a whopping 12.It’s one of several pop-up shops that will make appearances at the furniture store this summer, except, Massimini said, Coletta Gelato will stay permanently. They plan to get some seating and a sign above the entrance to the gallery that will read “Let’s Spoon.”Coletta began serving ice cream this afternoon from the Coletta Cruiser, an Italian-made, bright white bike cart with an orange awning, a little sink and a freezer that can hold up to eight gelato flavors. Massimini said they plan to switch those flavors up regularly and are open to suggestions. Particularly tasty this afternoon were the rosemary-infused and guava flavors.)Waltenspuhl and Massimini fell in love with Italian gelato while they were in business school in Milan. In 2015, after a visit to a gelato producer as part of their program, they decided they wanted to enter the trade and enrolled in the Carpigiani Gelato University in Bologna.last_img read more

Community members gather to remember the 1898 Wilmington Massacre

first_imgWILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — One church in Wilmington held an observance for the 1898 massacre today.The program was hosted at Mt. Olive AME Church.- Advertisement – It started on November 10, 1898 when white insurgents overthrew the elected government and forced black leaders out of the city.North Carolina House Representative Rodney Moore spoke at the observance about continuing to move forward.“Well there’s a saying if you forget your history, you’re doomed to repeat it and so with some of the things that’s going on nationally and state wide we really need to come and use this as a day of remembrance, so we can understand where we’ve come. But also we need to look at some critical solutions to where we’re going forward in 2017 and beyond,” Moore said.Related Article: Firefighters try to save relics as fire engulfs Rio museumMoore said this was a meaningful event for him to speak at and wanted to offer solutions for moving forward.last_img read more

Teacher of the Week Kelsey Gage

first_imgCASTLE HAYNE, NC (WWAY) —  Kelsey Gage is both a teacher and a coach at Holly Shelter Middle School and says she loves them both equally.  She teaches math to seventh graders and is also the school cheerleading coach.“Being involved with the squad is fun,” she says, “but math is where I feel I can make the most difference.”- Advertisement – Several people nominated Gage for the WWAY Michael and Son Teacher of the Week and it is an honor which surprised her, but also excited her.“It makes me feel really good and proud to do what I do and know that I can make a difference. I can really help these kids who have never understood math or not been very good in school to make them feel like they can actually be successful and get it.”To help them understand, she brings her lessons to their world.  “I try to engage them with real world situations to make them feel like it actually relates to their life,” she says.  “I try to make it fun so they feel like they can do it and I feel like it works pretty well.”Related Article: New Hanover school board member proposes new redistricting planClasses are about more than just math.  “I try to make my kids realize that it’s not just what you know,” Gage says. “It’s what you do with it and how you interact with people and things you do besides the work like being nice and helping other people,”She says she is planning to use her $200 prize money for school supplies and to go further in having fun while learning math.last_img read more

Humpday Health Getting involved with clinical research

first_img “We do a number of different studies with a number of different disease processes, including COPD, diabetes, hypertension, rheumatoid arthritis,” Dr. Cannon said. “It’s not something that takes the place of your medical care, it’s something in addition to your medical care.”Patients are compensated a small sum of money for their time and travel.Site operations director Brittany Hayes says it’s easy to get involved with clinical research.Related Article: NC officials warn of possible measles case at coffee shop“There are people coming directly to us,” Hayes said. “There are patients involved in the healthcare institutions that we work with, where those doctors are talking to them at their visits and saying, ‘We have a diabetes study that I think you may qualify for, would you be interested in that?’”Senior clinical research coordinator Meghan Purdy says she enjoys being a part of her patients’ journey towards better health.“It’s nice to be able to see their improvements and be able to work with them and be able to work with them in any way that I can,” Purdy said. “Furthering their healthcare and making sure they’re doing what they need to do.” WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Healthcare professionals determine the safety and effectiveness of new treatments through clinical research studies.Dr. Kevin Cannon of PMG Research in Wilmington says his office has a few studies to choose from.- Advertisement – last_img read more

Hundreds tie their laces for the Special Olympics Track and Field Day

first_imgWILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — It’s that time of year again where hundreds of Special Olympic athletes put on their running shoes to compete in various track and field events.For the very first time, this year’s spring games took place at Ashley High School.- Advertisement – Special Olympic athletes from all area schools and group homes of all ages were invited to come out for a free day of fun in the sun.They had everything from races, long jump, softball toss, abilities courses, and much more.While some athletes said today was all about spending time with friends, others were all about the competition.Related Article: DeVos defends plan to eliminate Special Olympics funding“I came in first place. And anyone who wants to challenge me I’m ready for it. Come on,” athlete, Orlando Boykin said.“I just come here to see and have fun like other people. And see what I can accomplish and what I’m good at. And it’s about having a fun time, hanging out with your friends,” athlete, Ian Lerch said.Organizers said Track and Field Day has been up and running for more than ten years, adding that this year was by far the largest event with close to 200 athletes competing for medals.last_img read more

Cape Fear River Watch to sue Chemours for Clean Water Act Toxic

first_imgSOUTHEASTERN NC (WWAY) — The Cape Fear River Watch is being represented by the Southern Environmental Law Center to take action against Chemours and the discharge of GenX and other pollutants in the environment.“Times up. We’re not going to tolerate your ongoing pollution and your ongoing contamination of drinking water,” said Kemp Burdette, Cape Fear Riverkeeper.- Advertisement – On behalf of the Cape Fear River Watch, SELC has petitioned the NC Department of Environmental Quality to require Chemours to immediately stop all emissions and discharges of GenX and chemically related compounds.“This addresses both the water pollution that’s occurring from contaminated groundwater running off the site, contaminated creeks, leaching into the site surrounding the facility, but also the air emissions which are emerging as the largest source of GenX and other contamination in the area,” Senior Attorney Derb Carter said.The firm also notified Chemours of its intent to sue for violations of the Clean Water Act and Toxic Substances Control Act for its GenX pollution from its Fayetteville Works Facility.Related Article: Cape Fear River Watch presenting film, discussion about water and GenX“After months of study and testing by DEQ, EPA, and other researchers, we now know that Chemours has defiled the air, water, and land at a historic level,” said Geoff Gisler, senior attorney, Southern Environmental Law Center. “The first step in healing those wounds is to stop the pollution at the source; DEQ must act now to protect the families and communities burdened by Chemours’ ongoing pollution.”In its filing with the state, SELC argues that DEQ has the authority and obligation to order Chemours to discontinue immediately its discharges of toxic PFAS compounds, including GenX, because the company’s ongoing contamination of air and water is causing imminent danger to people’s health and public safety. DEQ is required by law to act in times of emergency to protect the health and safety of the public.“The DEQ has a clear opportunity now to step up and take the appropriate action and that’s what we are asking them to do,” Carter said.“The hundreds of thousands of people that drink water contaminated by Chemours’ toxic discharge are outraged,” said Kemp Burdette, Cape Fear Riverkeeper. “The State needs to step in and stop this irresponsible company from continuing to harm our health, our water and our air.”SELC also notified Chemours that its continued pollution of these toxins into North Carolina’s water, air and soil through its stack emissions, unlined pits and wastewater ditches, contaminated equipment and leaks and spills violates both the Clean Water Act and Toxic Substances Control Act. If its violations are not stopped within 60 days, the conservation groups will file suit against Chemours in federal court to stop the pollution.For nearly four decades, DuPont and Chemours discharged GenX and other per- and poly-fluoroalkyl (PFAS) compounds.Over the past year, GenX has been found in at least 690 private drinking water wells up to 5.5 miles away from the Chemours’ facility.WWAY reached out to both Chemours and DEQ.The DEQ said in part, “DEQ will review SELC’s petition thoroughly and make an appropriate decision on their request. It appears SELC’s petition is primarily based on the multiple enforcement actions DEQ has already taken against Chemours to fight the company’s emissions of GenX and protect North Carolinians’ water and air.”WWAY has not heard back from Chemours yet.last_img read more

NBA legend Michael Jordan returns home to give back to storm victims

first_img“We know he’s a celebrity we know he has a status but to come down here and be with regular people is refreshing,” said Winter Butcher who was able to get a turkey and handshake from the NBA legend.The six-time NBA champion then gave away Jordan Brand shoes to children at Community Boys & Girls Club Tuesday where he once played.Related Article: NC Black film festival set for this weekend in Wilmington“All the games in a competition nature that we had in these buildings, in this building helped me determine my determination and helped me excel as a basketball player,” Jordan said. “So I mean I would that the kids would have the same opportunities and that’s all we can provide. That’s what I am going to try to do.”Lowe’s Home Improvement also donated $100,000 to fix damages at the facility caused by the storm.Back in September, Jordan donated $2 million to assist residents of the Carolinas — $1 million each to the American Red Cross and the Foundation For The Carolinas’ Hurricane Florence Response Fund.“At the end of the day, it makes you think about the path that you have taken, and where your life has taken you,” Jordan said in September. “And I just feel like, well, maybe if I can help in some sort of way all of the people, and all of the places, that have helped me along the road.” 00:00 00:00 spaceplay / pause qunload | stop ffullscreenshift + ←→slower / faster ↑↓volume mmute ←→seek  . seek to previous 12… 6 seek to 10%, 20% … 60% XColor SettingsAaAaAaAaTextBackgroundOpacity SettingsTextOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundSemi-TransparentOpaqueTransparentFont SettingsSize||TypeSerif MonospaceSerifSans Serif MonospaceSans SerifCasualCursiveSmallCapsResetSave Settings WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Charlotte Hornets owner and basketball legend Michael Jordan was in the Port City Tuesday giving back to Hurricane Florence victims.Jordan, who grew up in Wilmington, visited the Lowe’s Home Improvement on South College Road to distribute hundreds meals to families impacted by the storm.The GOAT has arrived in Wilmington at @Lowes . Michael Jordan is here to hand out food to hundreds of people in the Cape Fear. pic.twitter.com/BlBwgJwCOL— Tanner Barth (@tanner_barth) November 20, 2018- Advertisement – last_img read more

Ports exploring purchase of Wilmingtons Optimist Park

first_img Blair had, Moton wrote, offered $350,000 for the parcel and indicated the Ports Authority views the park as a potential buffer between its property and nearby residential neighborhoods.“If we decide to purchase the property, N.C. Ports does not have any plans for the area nor do we anticipate any development,” Bethany Welch, a ports spokeswoman, wrote in an email.Read more here. WILMINGTON, NC (StarNews) — The N.C. Ports Authority is eyeing Optimist Park, a little-used City of Wilmington-owned tract along South Front Street, according to officials from both government agencies.In an April 10 memo to city council, Deputy City Manager Thom Moton wrote that he and City Manager Sterling Cheatham had recently met with the Ports Authority’s Laura Blair, who “reaffirmed” the state agency is interested in buying the 11.3-acre site.- Advertisement – last_img read more

Port Citys main attraction fully equipped with history education Saturday

first_img00:00 00:00 spaceplay / pause qunload | stop ffullscreenshift + ←→slower / faster ↑↓volume mmute ←→seek  . seek to previous 12… 6 seek to 10%, 20% … 60% XColor SettingsAaAaAaAaTextBackgroundOpacity SettingsTextOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundSemi-TransparentOpaqueTransparentFont SettingsSize||TypeSerif MonospaceSerifSans Serif MonospaceSans SerifCasualCursiveSmallCapsResetSave Settings WILMINGTON,NC (WWAY) — History overwhelmed the Battleship North Carolina Saturday from preserved artifacts to the veteran fighters.One airplane built in the 1940s drew a crows at the “Battleship 101” event.- Advertisement – Former Navy pilot Dick Butler was stationed at the King Fisher. He says this 45 horsepower engine plane is one of five still in existence, today. Butler says it has two machine guns on it, but it only few at 115 miles per hour, which made it very susceptible to fire by enemy crews during World War II.He says the plane crashed in the early 1940s in Canada, but was discovered many years later by hikers, restored and then donated to the Battleship North Carolina.“They sat on top of catapults which we don’t have, but they would launch these planes off,” Butler said. “Their original mission was spotting and observation, but, with the advent of radar, the spotting of the guns was done by radar so they became primarily observation as well as rescue for downed pilots.”Related Article: D-Day 75: Nations honor veterans, memory of fallen troopsOther volunteers posted about the vessel explained topics including gunnery, radar, sick bay, engineering and daily shipboard life.last_img read more

Diablo says farewell to Wilmington Police Department

first_imgWILMINGTON,NC (WWAY) — One of the Wilmington Police Department K9 unit’s most helpful canines is retiring from the force.Cool. Kendall Murphy, Diablo’s handler, says it is now her turn to return the favor and protect Diablo the way he has protected her over the last 6 and 1/2 years. She will be adopting him.- Advertisement – The canine has served as a dual purpose patrol dog in narcotics detection, tracking and patrol work, but health issues have forced him into retirement.“A few years ago, we helped Vice do a narcotics sniff on a vehicle that they had stopped and got 16,000 little bags of heroin,” Murphy said. “That was his biggest heroin bust and he has just done wonders being that presence for us.”Murphy says many people have said they didn’t run or fight back because Diablo was there.last_img read more

Updated Drainage problems at Ras ilĦobż

first_img <a href=’http://revive.newsbook.com.mt/www/delivery/ck.php?n=ab2c8853&amp;cb={random}’ target=’_blank’><img src=’https://revive.newsbook.com.mt/www/delivery/avw.php?zoneid=97&amp;cb={random}&amp;n=ab2c8853&amp;ct0={clickurl_enc}’ border=’0′ alt=” /></a> SharePrint Deputy Mayor of Għajnsielem Kevin Cauchi said earlier this week that he received footage and pictures taken of Ras il-Ħobż by a diver.He said that the footage is contrary evidence to what the Corporation of the Water Services said a week before, namely that a leak at Ras il-Ħobż was under control.He appealed to the authorities to wake up and address this situation seriously before it gets much worse.This is not the first time that such a leakage has taken place. A number of divers towards the end of last year reported similar leaks, including at Ras il-Ħobż. The divers reported ear infections resulting from encountering the brown dirt leaks.There have been other occasions where there were bursts of sewage going straight into the sea, with divers reporting swimming among brown water.No drainage; tender for repairs given out – WSCA spokesperson for the Water Services Corporation said that a tender had been issued for repairs to the sewage inlet, which would include the refitting of a diffuser. This is the same statement that Newsbook.com.mt received in recent weeks.The spokesperson explained that the video was now under investigation while the plant is also currently working on a solution that will be more durable than last summer.  He said the Corporation is committed to continue working to improve the technology used to purify the water exiting the pipe.WhatsApplast_img read more

East Africa hailed as world leader in contactless payments

first_imgAdvertisement Global electronics payments leader MasterCard Worldwide has rated East Africa among the world’s leading regions in the uptake of contactless payments technology.MasterCard, which is seeking to distribute five million EMV- and PayPass-enabled debit and prepaid cards in Kenya over the next 18 months, says East Africa, and particularly Kenya, joins the likes of South Africa, Australia, Taiwan, South Korea, Singapore, New Zealand and the United Arab Emirates as the key contributors of growth and innovation hubs.MasterCard’s PayPass contactless payment network currently boasts nearly 700,000 merchant locations in 51 countries. According to the company, there was a 28 percent year-on-year increase across the Asia/Pacific, Middle East and Africa region in 2012. – Advertisement – MasterCard said innovation in contactless payments was the main driver for the growth of PayPass across the region last year, and will continue to be so in the coming months.Among the innovations in contactless payments in 2012 that helped fuel growth included MasterCard’s partnerships, including an agreement with retail store Nakumatt to introduce multi-currency EMV MasterCard’s Prepaid loyalty card to over one million members in the coming months.Credit: HumanIPOlast_img read more

Text to Change launches WASHtxt sanitation project in Uganda

first_imgAdvertisement Text For Change along with open source internet and mobile software developer Akvo have launched WASHtxt, a project in Uganda to provide communities with clean water, hoping to improve hygiene and sanitation in the country.The initiative is funded by Grand Challenges Canada, an organisation providing support to innovators in middle-income countries and Canada.The programme makes use of already existing mobile infrastructure and technology to improve water management.Over the next year, Akvo’s Flow will be used on smart phones to map water sources and Text to Change’s Vusion platform will be used to create a feedback system between water users, hand pump mechanics and the District Water Office to ensure water source functionality and the constant provision of clean water to our communities, said Neema Iyer, Text to Change programme coordinator in the country. – Advertisement – According to the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) 768 million people do not have access to safe drinking water, and 2.5 billion people live without proper sanitation.With functionality rates of around 70 per cent, we hope to increase this number to over 95 per cent through this integration of technology with community and district participation for improved access to both water and sanitation, said Iyer.last_img read more

Facebook to Make the Social Network a Hostile Place for Terrorists

first_img(Photo Courtesy) Advertisement Facebook Inc has offered additional insight on its efforts to remove terrorism content, a response to political pressure in Europe to militant groups using the social network for propaganda and recruiting.According to Facebook’s director of global policy management, Monika Bickert, and Brian Fishman, counter-terrorism policy manager explained in a blog post that Facebook has ramped up use of artificial intelligence (AI) such as image matching and language understanding to identify and remove content quickly,.The world’s largest social media network, with 1.9 billion users, Facebook has not always been so open about its operations, and its statement was met with scepticism by some who have criticised US technology companies for moving slowly. – Advertisement – This includes the use of technical solutions so that terrorist content can be identified and removed before it is widely disseminated, and ultimately prevented from being uploaded in the first place.Germany, France and Britain, countries where civilians have been killed and wounded in bombings and shootings by Islamist militants in recent years, have pressed Facebook and other providers of social media such as Google and Twitter to do more to remove militant content and hate speech.[related-posts]Government officials have threatened to fine Facebook and strip the broad legal protections it enjoys against liability for the content posted by its users.Facebook uses artificial intelligence for image matching that allows the company to see if a photo or video being uploaded matches a known photo or video from groups it has defined as terrorist, such as Islamic State, Al Qaeda and their affiliates.YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and Microsoft last year created a common database of digital fingerprints automatically assigned to videos or photos of militant content to help each other identify the same content on their platforms.Similarly, Facebook now analyses text that has already been removed for praising or supporting militant organisations to develop text-based signals for such propaganda.Bickert claims, more than half the accounts removed for terrorism are accounts the Facebook staff finds themselves hence want the community know that they are really committed to making Facebook a hostile environment for terrorists.last_img read more

WhatsApp Emerges as a Major News Platform

first_imgAdvertisement Instant messaging service WhatsApp has emerged as a force to reckon with in news media, apparently at the cost of its owner Facebook, according to a new report.“We’ve been tracking the growth of WhatsApp for some time but its use for news has jumped significantly in the last year to 15 percent, with considerable country-based variation,” said the authors of the Digital News Report 2017.Over half of the survey respondents in Malaysia (51 percent) said they used WhatsApp for sharing or discussing news in a given week, as compared with just three percent in the US. – Advertisement – Besides Malaysia, the use of WhatsApp for news is starting to rival Facebook in a number of markets, including Brazil (46 percent), and Spain (32 percent).The researchers found that the use of Facebook for news has dipped in most of the countries they surveyed.This may just be a sign of market saturation, or it may relate to changes in Facebook algorithms in 2016, which prioritized friends and family communication over professional news content, according to the report.The research, carried out by the Reuters Institute For The Study of Journalism, analysed data from 34 countries in Europe, the Americas and Asia, besides Taiwan and Hong Kong. The study involved responses from over 70,000 people.[related-posts]Overall, around a quarter (23 percent) of the respondents said they now find, share, or discuss news using one or more messaging applications.The researchers found that Viber is a popular choice in parts of Southern and Eastern Europe, while a range of chat applications are used for news across Asia, including WeChat in Hong Kong (14 percent) and Malaysia (13 percent), Line in Taiwan (45 percent) and Japan (13 percent), while home-grown Kakao Talk (39 percent) is the top messaging app in South Korea.At a time when the social media platforms are facing criticism for not doing enough to stop the spread of fake news, the report also revealed that only 24 percent of the respondents think social media do a good job in separating fact from fiction, compared to 40 percent for the news media.source: IANSlast_img read more

Ecobank Launches its 2nd Edition of the Fintech Challenge Competition

first_imgEcobank Fintech Challenge. Advertisement Pan-African banking conglomerate, Ecobank has on Monday launched its 2nd annual fintech challenge competition for African startups. The initiative gives African startups the chance to promote their fintech solutions, and potentially to partner Ecobank in rolling-out their solutions across Ecobank’s 33 markets.“The maiden 2017 edition of the Challenge proved that Africa has an impressive army of highly capable fintech startups. Therefore, Ecobank is looking forward to another successful competition,” Eddy Ogbogu; Ecobank Group Executive for Operations and Technology said in a press statement.The challenge is designed in partnership with the advisory firm Konfidants and is supported by several partners across Africa and globally. This will see 10 finalists (10 less compared to last year’s) selected to participate in an Awards and Innovation Fair at the Ecobank HQ in Togo in July 2018 where on three winners, will emerge winners and shall be rewarded USD$10,000, USD$7,000, and USD$5,000 respectively. – Advertisement – Ade Ayeyemi, Group CEO at Ecobank Transnational Incorporated, reiterated Ecobank’s dedication to support innovations in banking and finance across the continent, saying, “We, at Ecobank, believe that the current winds of change led by technology and innovation will redefine how banks do business, and indeed the relationships people have with their money. We want to be at the forefront of this change, in partnership with Africa’s rising startups, and that is why we created the Ecobank Fintech Challenge.”Ecobank is currently welcoming submissions from all startups and developers in any of Africa’s 54 countries not later than 23rd May, 2018. Interested applicants can send (FOLLOW THE LINK) their submission.[related-posts]last_img read more

What Huawei Can Do If US Ban Isnt Renegotiated

first_imgA woman looks at her phone as she walks past a Huawei shop in Beijing. Courtesy Photo/Reuters Advertisement All is not looking good at all for Huawei Technologies. The second biggest smartphone manufacturer in the world caught in middle of the on-going trade war between the United States and China.The United States under the Trump Administration has gone to the length of calling off U.S. companies working with Huawei to halt their business. Trump is also influencing and persuade countries not to use Huawei’s 5G. Associated Press reported that U.S. officials are fanning out across Europe to warn about the security risks of allowing Huawei build its 5G mobile networks.The company was also reported to be under scrutiny—expressing concern that its technology could be used by China’s security services to spy the U.S. government — which U.S. says is a threat to their National Security. However, the Chinese-based firm has come to deny all allegations. – Advertisement – On the other hand, Ms. Meng Wanzhou; Huawei’s Chief Financial Officer — was accused of money laundering, bank fraud and stealing trade secrets from U.S. Her arrest was made on Dec. 1st 2018 in Vancouver at the request of the U.S. Huawei’s Founder, Mr. Ren Zhengfei told BBC’s Karishma Vaswani in his first international broadcast interview on Feb. 18th — he denounced as politically motivated at the arrest of his daughter.Mr. Ren told BBC that the ‘world can’t do without Huawei and its “more advanced” technology.’ Hitting back to the U.S. Government.Well with all that put aside, the BIG news — is that the U.S. government signed an executive order into effect that added Huawei to an ‘Entity List’.On May 16th, Huawei was added on U.S. Department of Commerce entity list which restricts them from doing any business with U.S. companies minus the White House approval.So the biggest headline from all this is Google. Following the directive, the Mountain View-based software firm complied with the order. Why? Huawei does business with Google when it comes to smartphones that run on Android software.A man passes by a Google logo. Photo: EPA-EFESo Google complies by pulling down its license to use their Android mobile operating system forcing them to use the open source version. It is worth knowing that Huawei comes second to Samsung as Google’s biggest partner of Android usage. Therefore, it wasn’t a choice for Google stop its business with Huawei, but rather they were complying with the executive order.This now affects Huawei so much, that it was coming on so fast on Samsung to become the world’s top smartphone brand. This considering that they were the fastest growing smartphone manufacturer in the world.To recall, Huawei has always been in the third position after Samsung, and Apple. However, in Aug. 2018 Huawei surpassed Apple to become the second-largest global smartphone vendor for the first time. The results were confirmed by Gartner.So with this ban, where does this leave Huawei Past, Present, and Future devices.First to know, the Department of Commerce granted a temporary exemptions that will see Google working with Huawei for the next 90 days to ensure its customers have access to software, apps and security updates. The 90-day exemption expires on August 19th, 2019.The Past and Present Huawei HandsetsThe Huawei past and present handsets with the latest being the Huawei P30 and P30 Pro that were launched in March this year in Paris, France — will continue getting the updates. This includes the Honor phones, which is a sub-brand of Huawei who announced the launch of their Honor 20 and 20 Pro devices.Huawei’s CEO of Consumer Business, Richard Yu officially unveils the Huawei P30 and Huawei P30 Pro at an unveiling event in Paris, France on March 26th, 2019 | Photo by PC TECH MAGAZINE/Olupot Nathan Ernest.Therefore, after the 90-days exemptions all Huawei phones will stop getting updates for all Huawei handset holders globally. All the google services run on your smartphone will stop and won’t be eligible to get the latest software updates.What about the Future Huawei PhonesBut a question posed, can Huawei make its phones without the help of U.S. companies. Probably, or Not!According to online reports, Huawei spent USD$70 billion buying components in 2018, and an estimated USD$11 billion out of the 70 went into U.S. companies including; Intel, Qualcomm, Micron Technology, among others.Ars Technica breaks down the Hardware components Huawei has been buying from U.S. companies to make their smartphones.So about the future phones, what does Huawei have planned if the whole issue (ban) isn’t resorted.Google Play service won’t be available on any future Huawei devices if the ban is not renegotiated. Courtesy photo/Android PITWell Huawei can have alternative to its hardware components even though they won’t be that good compared to what they’ve come to use in the past. BUT the bigger question is the software. Asides from Apple’s iOS, you can’t make a smartphone without Google’s Android software, play store, among others.Technically, Android is open source project, you don’t need a license to use it. So Huawei ‘could’ opt for it but it is not ideal at all since its far from the version Google uses. Because it does not include; Google Services; Gmail, YouTube, Play Store, Drive among others which are so crucial.To mention, Huawei has its own app store they called; App Gallery as its seen on a limited smartphones.Huawei says it saw it’s reliance on Google as a ‘bad’ thing and resorted to develop its own mobile software, ‘Hongmeng’ that will support Android apps. So that is how we think the future phones will run or survive. But the market will be totally affected. Already its market is affected ….With the new alternative software and app store, it is going to be tiring and tough for Huawei to get people use these alternates that a way different from what they have been used to.And There’s MicrosoftIf you aren’t aware, Huawei makes laptops lined in the series of Matebooks. Their first laptops came out in 2017 launching the first line-up of three laptops; a 15.6-inch screen notebook, a 2-in-1 tablet and notebook hybrid and an ultra slim, metallic 13-inch notebook.The Huawei Matebook X Pro. Courtesy Photo/SlickDealsThe laptops run on Microsoft’s windows operating system. And Microsoft is a U.S. company that is pulling out its plug from the Chinese firm. In short, they can’t make windows laptops without doing business with Microsoft.What it All Means in the Technology IndustryThe news is 100% terrible. There won’t be much competition — with having a company like Huawei limited. It becomes less incentive for company’s to work harder to creating good stuff for its end users. Having Chinese-based multinational company in business is good for competition.In conclusionHuawei is a huge multinational and innovative company. According to some technology critics and reporters claim or think, if the ban isn’t resolved, it will greatly affect them. But because of their talent and innovativeness, they can ‘somehow’ recover from this set back ‘but’ in the long-run.But the best thing would be the U.S. renegotiating on the ban and reserve the executive order and let things go back to normal.U.S companies that have cut ties with Chinese-firm are;GoogleMicrosoftIntelARMQualcommMicron TechnologyBroadcomPanasonicSonyAnd also the U.S made applications won’t be available on their app store.The top Play Store apps, minus most Google apps, with the US apps crossed out. Courtesy Image/Ars TechnicaWhat’s Left for Huawei To Do? Is making their own software, and app store. Popular apps such as; WhatsApp, Facebook, Instagram, Netflix, Uber, among other might not be made available for the store, the company will have to find a solution for this as well.last_img read more

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