Ontario Votes 2007: Interview with Family Coalition Party candidate Suzanne Fortin, Nepean-Carleton

Posted on June 14th, 2018

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Suzanne Fortin is running for the Family Coalition Party in the Ontario provincial election, in the Nepean-Carleton riding. Wikinews’ Nick Moreau interviewed her regarding her values, her experience, and her campaign.

Stay tuned for further interviews; every candidate from every party is eligible, and will be contacted. Expect interviews from Liberals, Progressive Conservatives, New Democratic Party members, Ontario Greens, as well as members from the Family Coalition, Freedom, Communist, Libertarian, and Confederation of Regions parties, as well as independents.

Yahoo closes user-created chat rooms over sexual conduct

Posted on June 14th, 2018

Friday, June 24, 2005

Yahoo! (NASDAQ: YHOO) closed all of its user-created chat rooms due to controversy over sexually explicit channels aimed at minors. After a Houston, Texas television station KPRC reported on chat room names such as “Girls 13 And Under For Older Guys” and “Girls 13 And Up For Much Older Men” that were aimed at sex with children, the publicly held business Yahoo! was compelled to act by shutting down all chat rooms created by users and stopped the ability to create new user chat rooms. Online chat rooms created by the company itself are still in service and use.

Major brand name advertisers such as PepsiCo Inc., Georgia-Pacific Corp., State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co., Countrywide Mortgage and T-Mobile withdrew ads placed on Yahoo! web pages that may have come under association with the offensive chat rooms. The company is also faced with a lawsuit seeking $10 million in damages that was filed by watchdog groups of internet portals on behalf of the parents and a 12-year-old victim of molestation. A man, who once operated a Yahoo Groups site where members traded child pornography, is also involved in the suit.

Other internet portals, such as AOL and MSN, also allow users to create their own chat rooms. These internet portals are different from Yahoo! in that they are subscription based, and only allow access to the rooms if the user is a subscriber to the service. MSN in its earliest versions of chat had monitors watch activity on its servers, but it was abandoned. Efforts to monitor chat for any effect appear to be futile. Geoff Sutton, the European general manager of Microsoft MSN, told Wired News at the time it cut free chat service in 28 countries that, “The straightforward truth of the matter is free, unmediated chat isn’t safe.”

According to a Reuters news story by Duncan Martell, an investigation by the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation that was targeted at Yahoo Groups users resulted in the arrest of more than 100 people in the United States. The lawsuit now brought against Yahoo! was filed on May 9 in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas. It charges that Yahoo! breached its duties in internet providership by allowing co-defendant Mark Bates and others to share child pornography on a chat room site called ‘Candyman’.

Yahoo!’s terms of use requires persons who create chat rooms to agree not to make available content that is “unlawful, harmful, threatening, abusive, harassing, defamatory, vulgar, obscene, libelous or otherwise objectionable.” Legal rulings to date imply that if internet service provider’s do monitor the activity in chat rooms, they incur some responsibility for its content, similarly to a publisher’s responsibility for the content found in one of its books.

The result is software providers who take a “hands-off” approach grant internet users the ability to add and create content to the World Wide Web that opens the door to contributions that range from great to sometimes objectionable, to out-right illegal, and often enlightening.

Scottish university to introduce comic studies degree

Posted on June 14th, 2018

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

In the Central Lowlands of Scotland, the University of Dundee is to become the first university in the United Kingdom to provide degrees in comic studies. The university has said that courses for its comic studies subject within the English section will commence in September 2011.

The city of Dundee is known to be the headquarters for D. C. Thomson & Co., a publishing company whose works include various comic books, such as The Beano, The Broons, The Dandy and Oor Wullie. Dr. Chris Murray, a leading British authority on comic books, will be leading the comic studies programme. “This is a very exciting time for comics scholarship, and I am delighted to be able to offer this postgraduate course on comics,” he explained. “This is a unique opportunity to give this important medium the attention it deserves, and to allow those with an interest in comics to study it in detail.”

Those organising courses for the degree believe that comic books now appeal to adults as well as children due to their impact in the areas of politics, art and literature, as well as aspects of popular culture. Amongst the program will be the examinations of comics of an autobiographical nature and similarities with the culture of comic books on an international scale. Students who complete the Master of Letters learning program — running either full-time for a year and two-years if done part-time — will be eligible for a Doctor of Philosophy in comic studies.

Dr. Murray has also noted: “Employability is an important consideration for any postgraduate programme, and it lies at the heart of what we aim to do with this course. There will be practical advice on publishing and developing a career as a comics scholar, writer or artist, and we hope to arrange work placements for students. Comics and graphic novels are becoming an increasingly important form of literature, art and field of study, and it is our intention that our graduates are at the forefront either as researchers, writers, artists or filling other roles within the industry.”

Parents arrested after putting baby on Craigslist

Posted on June 13th, 2018

Sunday, June 1, 2008

A couple from Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada has been arrested on charges of public mischief after listing their seven day old baby girl on the popular Internet classified ads website Craigslist.

The listing claimed that the baby was unexpected, “healthy and very cute”. It asked CAN 10 000 for the baby. It also listed a phone number belonging to a stolen cellphone, which was used to find the couple.

It was first noticed by a 62-year old grandmother browsing the website for furniture, who said “I was shaking, and I thought, ‘Come on, how did this even get through?'” The couple claimed that the listing, which has since been removed, was a hoax.

The father, Jeremy Pete, had a history of car thefts and evasion of police, while the mother, 23-year-old Bethany Granholm, had convictions of property theft, fraud and impersonation. The parents have now been released, but charges are still being considered. The baby has been placed in provincial care.

A suspected copycat incident occurred just four days later, also offering a seven-day-old baby girl for CAN 10 000 on Craigslist. This incident turned out to be a hoax, and no child was in danger.

Last week saw a similar incident in Germany, where a couple listed a seven month old baby on eBay. In this case the police have launched a child trafficking investigation, despite the parents’ assertion that the listing was a joke.

Commonwealth Bank of Australia CEO apologies for financial planning scandal

Posted on June 12th, 2018

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Ian Narev, the CEO of the Commonwealth Bank of Australia, this morning “unreservedly” apologised to clients who lost money in a scandal involving the bank’s financial planning services arm.

Last week, a Senate enquiry found financial advisers from the Commonwealth Bank had made high-risk investments of clients’ money without the clients’ permission, resulting in hundreds of millions of dollars lost. The Senate enquiry called for a Royal Commission into the bank, and the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC).

Mr Narev stated the bank’s performance in providing financial advice was “unacceptable”, and the bank was launching a scheme to compensate clients who lost money due to the planners’ actions.

In a statement Mr Narev said, “Poor advice provided by some of our advisers between 2003 and 2012 caused financial loss and distress and I am truly sorry for that. […] There have been changes in management, structure and culture. We have also invested in new systems, implemented new processes, enhanced adviser supervision and improved training.”

An investigation by Fairfax Media instigated the Senate inquiry into the Commonwealth Bank’s financial planning division and ASIC.

Whistleblower Jeff Morris, who reported the misconduct of the bank to ASIC six years ago, said in an article for The Sydney Morning Herald that neither the bank nor ASIC should be in control of the compensation program.

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Conductor Jeffrey Tate dies aged 74

Posted on June 11th, 2018

Monday, June 5, 2017

Conductor Sir Jeffrey Tate died on Friday. He was born on April 28, 1943 in Salisbury, England with spina bfida and kyphosis.

Tate moved with his family to Farnham, Surrey and attended school there. Despite his disabilities, he achieved a four-decade career conducting operatic and symphonic music, following a medical degree from Cambridge and medical residency at St Thomas’ Hospital, London. He began in London Opera Centre with a scholarship and was a Royal Opera House répétiteur in 1971.

He recorded ten complete operas with director Georg Solti. He also assisted Pierre Boulez with Der Ring des Nibelungen at Bayreuth in 1976, and later conducted the complete Ring himself more than twenty times, and the complete Lulu on its premier at the Paris Opera in 1979.

He was knighted six weeks before his death, for his services to music, as part of the 2017 New Year Honours.

He was in Lombardy, Italy when he died, reportedly in rehearsal due to a heart attack, at the age of 74.

First Active offer 100% mortgages in Ireland

Posted on June 11th, 2018

Thursday, July 14, 2005

First Active has become the first financial institution to offer 100% mortgages in the Republic of Ireland. The bank previously offered 100% financing to professionals in finance and medicine, but is now to offer this product to anyone who can afford to meet the repayments.

The development is a huge boost for first time home buyers who have been struggling to get on the Irish property market in recent years due to the rapid increase in house prices. A typical first time buyer in Dublin with 92% financing would normally have to put down a deposit of €20,000-€30,000 in cash, but now have the option to produce no deposit.

First Active has said that 100% mortgages will be available across its entire range of mortgage products.

Note however that this is not necessarily an entirely positive development.

The United States and most of Europe have experienced a housing price bubble in recent years. A bubble occurs when buyers purchase a property not because its price is appropriate for its actual value but because they expect the price to significantly rise in the short term permitting resale with a profit.

In other words, the prices people pay for properties becomes divorced from the real value of the property; the purchase is speculative and depends purely upon the expectation that people will continue to buy properties in this way (e.g. without proper consideration of their real value).

The terrible weakness in this is that when the market corrects itself and prices fall to a level where properties are being priced at their actual realistic value, anyone holding a property loses a great deal of money, since the price they paid does not reflect the actual realistic value of the property.

This kind of shock to the housing market is extremely undesirable. Significant write downs in the value of property often significantly depress the economy as a whole.

Less than 100% mortgages force buyers to invest a significant amount of money in the act of purchasing their house, which tends to discourage purely speculative purchasing, thus helping to mediate house price bubbles.

With 100% financing, anyone who can meet repayments can speculatively purchase a property. This naturally encourages pricing bubbles.

Quanzhou Yu Garden Tea For Two Consecutive Years Failed Quality Check

Posted on June 11th, 2018

By Himfr Tian

March 25, Fujian Provincial Bureau of Quality Supervision formal exposure to the community in 2008, 2009, two consecutive years of unqualified product quality supervision and spot checks of 28 companies and their products “black list”, Yu Garden, Quanzhou, Fujian tea industry Limited-ups. This report caused public concern, we all know, Yu Garden tea industry is in Quanzhou, a certain well-known tea brands, repeated exposure quality, brand image for its negative effects can be imagined. And another less than a month is listed in the peak spring and such a time node, the emergence of such an event seems extremely sensitive.

“3.15” Consumer Protection, the State General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quality Supervision Bureau of Fujian Province, product quality supervision and spot checks carried out. Recently, the Provincial Bureau of Quality Supervision formal exposure to all sectors of society in 2008, for two consecutive years 2009, failed quality supervision and spot checks of 28 companies and their products “blacklist”, and guide consumers to purchase, which, Quanzhou, Fujian Province Yue Yuen Tea Co., Ltd. has entered a “blacklist.”

In order to restore the truth as far as possible, a few days ago, reporters connect the phone, general manager Yu Jui tea garden management, he said, occurred in 08,09 years of unqualified products after checking the company to respond quickly and immediately organized Products to supplement inspection and review carried out by product quality have been completed qualified. The products have all failed before the next frame processing. The reason for this phenomenon, Jui tube that is mainly because there are more than a month away from spring and the time listed on the market than the shortage of tea in the tea growers during the company will carry out a number of replenishment, the middle guard is not there serious phenomenon, which led to a number of cases of excessive pesticide residues in tea. Company said the acquisition in the future production process will be strict checks to ensure product quality, the consumer is responsible.

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Twice tested positive for the quality, Yu Garden Tea Company is clearly aware of the business development process in a more profound contradictions are prominent psychological palpable urgency to solve the problem. However, this problem has been detected pesticide residues are low in the industry seems wrong, a brand the company should not be repeat offenders repeatedly wrong.

General Manager of Hua Hong Tea Anxi high water governance that currently a lot of tea, check prices on the tea quality is controlled from the terminal, which is testing the acquisition Maocha later. And if the real source for checking in, you can save a lot of unnecessary testing out the middle part.

In fact, in order to solve the problem pesticide residues in tea, Anxi county government in recent years a number of supporting policies to encourage enterprises to establish tea ecological tea production base, to promote tea production traceability system to help merchants prevent pesticide problems, due to policy guidance and tea enterprise wide attention, the problem pesticide residues in tea have been extensively checked, and a few operational issues due to their own brands, so far still can not eradicate.

“Moral sense of business and the continued survival of consciousness should be further strengthened, in particular the history of this Tieguanyin facing development opportunities, the major tea brands are mustering the strength waiting for an opportunity to enhance industry image, in this critical time, must not be lost because of small large. “Huaxiang Court Industries Limited and Chairman Xiao Wenhua said so.

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Thai prime minister dismisses offer by anti-government protesters

Posted on June 11th, 2018

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Thailand’s prime minister, Abhisit Vejjajiva, has ruled out a compromise offer by anti-government protest leaders for parliament to be dissolved in thirty days, with elections to be held in 90 days.

In a televised address on Sunday, with army chief General Anupong Paochinda at his side, the prime minister dismissed the offer made by the National United Front of Democracy Against Dictatorship (UDD), saying such issues could not be resolved in such a short period of time, and “because they use violence and intimidation. I cannot accept this.”

Abhisit said the government stood by an offer made during earlier talks with the UDD for the house to be dissolved within the next nine months.

In reaction, the UDD, also called the Red Shirts, maintained an earlier call for parliament to be dissolved immediately. The UDD also withdrew from any further negotiations with the government. UDD leaders have repeatedly warned supporters rallying in central Bangkok’s retail and business areas of the threat of a new government crackdown.

There have been two large incidents of street violence in the past month or so, resulting in 26 deaths and injuries to hundreds of people. The Red Shirts primarily consist of supporters of former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra, ousted in a 2006 coup. He was later given a two-year prison term on charges of corruption, although Shinawatra left the country in self-exile to avoid being jailed.