PETA Announces FirstEver TV Awards


first_imgJust ahead of the Emmys on September 17, PETA’s Animals in Film and Television Division is announcing its first-ever Elly Awards, honoring some of television’s most compassionate stars and shows for promoting animal-friendly storylines and for entertaining viewers without exploiting wild animals.Winners include Lily Tomlin, who scored the award for Best Lead in a Comedy Series for her portrayal of vegetarian Frankie in Netflix’s Grace and Frankie and whose real-life work in behalf of animals includes using her sense of humor to protest against SeaWorld and her sense of justice to object to Texas A&M University’s cruel muscular dystrophy experiments on dogs. Best Lead in a Drama Series is a tie between Chrissy Metz of This Is Us — for her character Kate’s promotion of homeless-animal adoption — and actor and real-life vegetarian Gaten Matarazzo, whose character in the sci-fi hit Stranger Things shows compassion in caring for “Dart” the demogorgon. The Sinner’s Bill Pullman nabbed the title of Best Lead in a Limited Series for his character Harry’s gentle rescue of a distressed bird.The Handmaid’s Tale took home the Best Accidentally Vegan Message award for its chilling parallels to the suffering of cows on dairy farms who are forcibly impregnated and whose beloved calves are taken away from them soon after birth. A Series of Unfortunate Events and The Walking Dead tied for Best CGI — both shows used digital imagery to create big cats rather than forcing real wild animals to perform. The Orville snagged the title of Best “Captivity Sucks” Moment for its message against imprisoning animals for entertainment, while vegan Atlanta actor Zazie Beetz nabbed the Who We Can’t Get Enough Of award. Riverdale — whose sympathetic cast includes Madelaine Petsch, who starred in a gorgeous vegan campaign; Charles Melton, who just shot a top-secret campaign for PETA; and KJ Apa, Lili Reinhart, and Mark Consuelos, who frequently post pro-animal messages on social media — won the award for Most Animal-Friendly Ensemble.“From CGI wizardry that kept real wild animals off television sets to storylines that send positive messages about animals to caring actors who help them in their real lives, these winners show that kindness is trending in Hollywood,” says PETA Senior Vice President Lisa Lange. “PETA’s inaugural Elly Awards recognize the people and projects that have helped audiences see animals as individuals who deserve our respect.”PETA — whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment” — also awarded Ellys to Ricky Gervais, who won Best Comedy Special for using his platform to speak out against cruelty to animals, and Saturday Night Live, whose “Diner Lobster” skit (starring Pete Davidson, John Mulaney, and Chris Redd) nabbed Best Variety Sketch for highlighting the excruciating pain that crustaceans feel when boiled alive. PETA’s Pick was deadlocked between vegan funnyman Craig Robinson, who starred in Ghosted, and Edie Falco of Law & Order True Crime: The Menendez Murders, who’s spoken out against SeaWorld and animal circuses in multiple campaigns for the group.The full list of winners — who will each receive an intricate gold statue of a wild elephant — is available here.last_img read more

European privacy search engines aim to challenge Google


first_imgLONDON — In the battle for online privacy, U.S. search giant Google is a Goliath facing a handful of European Davids.The backlash over Big Tech’s collection of personal data offers new hope to a number of little-known search engines that promise to protect user privacy.Sites like Britain’s Mojeek , France’s Qwant , Unbubble in Germany and Swisscows say they don’t track user data, filter results or show “behavioural” ads.These sites are growing amid the rollout of new European privacy regulations, numerous corporate data scandals and even comments by high-profile tech executives such as Apple CEO Tim Cook, which have combined to raise public awareness about the mountains of personal information that companies stealthily collect and sell to advertisers.Widespread suspicion in Europe about Google’s stranglehold on internet searches has also helped make the continent a spawning ground for secure search sites. Europe is particularly sensitive to privacy issues because spying by the Nazi-era Gestapo and the secret services in the Soviet Union is still within living memory.“For us, it’s all about citizens and citizens have the right to privacy,” said Eric Leandri, chairman of Paris-based Qwant. He said that view contrasts with the mindset across the Atlantic, where internet users are seen as consumers whose rights are dictated by the terms of their agreements with tech companies.Traffic numbers show interest is rising. Qwant handled nearly 10 billion queries in 2017, more than triple the previous year. On a monthly basis, it’s getting 80 million visits while requests are growing 20 per cent. Leandri says the site now accounts for 6 per cent of search engine market share in France, its biggest market.Qwant is even getting official support. Last month the French army and parliament both said they would drop Google and use Qwant as their default search engine, as part of efforts to reclaim European “digital sovereignty.”The site doesn’t use tracking cookies or profile users, allowing it to give two different users the exact same result. It has built its own index of 20 billion pages covering French, German and Italian. It plans to expand the index to about two dozen other languages, for which it currently relies on results from Microsoft’s Bing.Mojeek, based in Brighton, England, operates on similar principles and has so far cataloged 2 billion webpages. The company says it gets 200,000 unique visitors a month and search queries have quintupled over the past year.Germany’s Unbubble is a “meta-search” engine, sending encrypted queries to more than 30 other search engines and hiding its users’ locations. It promises neutral search results rather than ones filtered by an algorithm catering to personal biases.To be sure, Google’s in no danger of toppling. The company based in Mountain View, California, accounts for three-quarters or more of global market share, depending on whom you ask, and rules the mobile market with its Android operating system.Some privacy search operators say an equally big motivation behind these startups is to avoid “filter bubbles,” in which internet content is pre-selected for users by the likes of Google and Facebook based on previous searches and other data.“The main idea is to provide neutral information and allow people to depend less on machine learning-based filters,” said Unbubble founder Tobias Sasse. “If you are using Google today, perhaps you’ll notice that there is always the same mainstream information,” preventing people from seeing the “great diversity” online, he said.Netherlands-based Startpage anonymizes Google search results, stripping out ads and tracking. Another British startup, Oscobo , does anonymous searches for U.K. users, with results licensed from Yahoo/Bing. Outside Europe, there’s also U.S. site DuckDuckGo .Some of these sites rely financially on donations, others from “affiliate advertising” — links from Amazon, eBay or other shopping sites that pay a commission but don’t target or track users. That’s different from Google’s behavioural, or targeted, ads that come up based on your search history, which many find creepy and invasive.Mojeek has private investors. Founder Marc Smith, who began in 2004 with two servers in his bedroom, is “very much anti-advertising,” said Finn Brownbill, Mojeek’s head of marketing. “It’s a necessary evil and we’ll look for whatever route we can to avoid it.”In Switzerland, a country whose banking sector became a byword for secrecy, Swisscows has grown rapidly, handling 20 million search queries a month, up from 14 million a year ago, said founder Andreas Wiebe.Even so, Wiebe said there was plenty of skepticism when he started the site. “In 2014, I had people talking to me (saying) ‘you’re crazy’,” and that the project would be dead within a year. Instead, National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden’s revelations of U.S. government surveillance the following year gave it a kickstart.Swisscows has built its own German-language web index. For other languages, it uses Bing but queries and results are run through a firewall that strips out personal identifiers such as IP addresses.Along with a conventional list of results, Swisscows also has a nifty grid of keyword tiles to narrow down search results by context.The site’s servers are buried in former military bunkers deep inside the Swiss Alps. Funding comes from donations and Wiebe’s software company Hulbee. He plans next year to launch a secure messaging app, Teleguard, with a paid business version he hopes will help fund the site.___Follow Kelvin Chan at twitter.com/chanmanKelvin Chan, The Associated Presslast_img read more

Countries call on Facebook CEO to appear at hearing in London


first_img“I am growing increasingly troubled by the lack of respect Mr. Zuckerberg, and Facebook continues to show our nations and the citizens we represent by once again declining our calls to give testimony,” said Zimmer. “There are still many unanswered questions and new concerning revelations that I believe only Mr. Zuckerberg, as CEO of Facebook, can respond to. Just this week came news that Facebook had pulled down 115 accounts from its platforms that ‘may be engaged in coordinated inauthentic behaviour’.”“By rejecting our calls to appear, it calls into question how seriously Mr. Zuckerberg and Facebook take protecting our citizens’ privacy and ‘fake news’ vulnerabilities,” Zimmer continued.“That is why I am once again adding my name to the growing list of Parliamentarians from around the world who are calling on Mr. Zuckerberg to answer our questions in person.” OTTAWA – Parliamentarians worldwide are renewing the call for Mark Zuckerberg to appear before an international joint committee in London.Bob Zimmer, Member of Parliament for Prince George-Peace River-Northern Rockies and Chair of the Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics, as well as Damian Collins, Member of Parliament and Chair of the UK Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee, have been joined by Committee Chairs from Australia, Argentina and Ireland in calling on Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, to appear before a special international joint committee on disinformation and ‘fake news’.Last week Zimmer and Collins called on Zuckerberg to give testimony at a hearing in London on November 27. Facebook has declined this invitation.last_img read more

Government announces new Nursing Degree Program for Northeast BC


first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills and Training was at the Fort St. John Hospital on Friday to announce that a Nursing Degree Program will be coming to Northeast B.C.According to the Government, this program will ensure more patients in the region can access care that will improve their quality of life, while students can pursue health-care education and training closer to home.Education Minister, Melanie Mark, says students have been advocating for a nursing program for years and that this new program is a result of the efforts made by local stakeholders. “For years, students in the northeast of the province have been advocating for the education and training to pursue a career in registered nursing closer to home. We know that people are more likely to stay and work in the communities where they get their education and training. The new nursing degree program is the result of strong partnerships and engagement with local stakeholders. Our government is proud to invest in the next generation of healers and health-care professionals.”The first class of 16 student spaces, to be operated out of Northern Lights College in Fort St. John, is expected to be in operation by September 2020.Total Provincial funding for this new program is $1.1 million.The full announcement can be seen here:last_img read more

‘Working with Bryan Singer was unpleasant’


first_imgLos Angeles: X-Men: Apocalypse star Sophie Turner is the latest actor to open up about her “unpleasant” working experience with director Bryan Singer, who is facing fresh allegations of sexual abuse by multiple men. Bohemian Rhapsody star Rami Malek has previously spoken about his differences with Singer while shooting for the Queen biopic. The director was fired for alleged unprofessional behaviour. Alluding to Malek’s brief comment on the subject, Turner told Rolling Stone magazine, “Our time together was, like Rami said, unpleasant.” Also Read – I have personal ambitions now: PriyankaTurner is all set to reprise her role as Jean Grey in Simon Kinberg’s Dark Phoenix. Malek, who won the best actor Oscar for his portrayal of Freddie Mercury in the movie, addressed the trouble on the movie’s set in February. “In my situation with Bryan, it was not pleasant, not at all,” he had said about the reports of their fight.” “And that’s about what I can say about it at this point. For anyone who is seeking any solace in all of this, Bryan Singer was fired. Bryan Singer was fired, I don’t think that was something anyone saw coming but I think that had to happen and it did,” he had said. Allegations of sexual misconduct have followed Singer for a while now, the latest being an investigative article by The Atlantic in January this year. The magazine spoke to over 50 sources, including four men for a detailed piece on the director.last_img read more

‘Nearly 1,200 IPS officers under scanner for non-performance’


first_imgNew Delhi: Nearly 1,200 officers of Indian Police Service (IPS) have come under the scanner of the Home Ministry for non-performance, an official said Thursday.The ministry has reviewed service records of a total of 1,181 IPS officers in the past three years to check deadwood from the government, he said, adding the numbers of officers under the lens could go up as such a review is a continuous process. The review of service records was carried out under Rule 16 (3) of All India Services (Death-cum-Retirement Benefits ) Rules, 1958 during 2016 and 2018 to check non-performers, the official said. The rule says that the central government in consultation with the state government concerned may ask an IAS officer to retire in public interest by giving at least three months previous notice in writing or three months’ pay and allowances in lieu of such notice. Of the total of 1,181 IPS officers, ten of them were recommended for premature retirement from the service in public interest, he said, without disclosing the names of the officers concerned. As many as 3,972 IPS officers are working across the country against their total sanctioned strength of 4,940, according to a Home Ministry data. The Modi government has started the policy of reviewing the service record of the IPS officers to check deadwood from the service, the official said. However, no review of the officers’ service record was undertaken during 2014 and 2015, he said. “The periodical review help the government in assessing performers and checking non-performers. Based on this review, performers are encouraged and non-performers are asked either to improve or face expulsion from the service in public interest,” the official said. The Centre has also reviewed service records of 1,143 IAS officers from 2015 to 2018 and recommended premature retirement to four officers found lacking, the official said.last_img read more

Ohio State football coach Mickey Marottis breakfast club from hell


The Ohio State football team is buying into what new strength coach Mickey Marotti is feeding them — literally and figuratively. And with a new “no loafing” rule in effect the players are quickly buying into Marotti’s plan. While working in an ultra-competitive weight room environment, OSU players have responded to their new program instituted by Marotti, the assistant athletic director of football sports performance. Players and coaches have already seen positive results, Marotti told reporters Wednesday at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center. OSU is in week five of its five-days-a-week program, which Marotti described as a hybrid program that attempts to maximize the genetic potential of each player. “We do Olympic lifting. We do power lifting. We do strength training. We do speed training,” Marotti said. “We want (players) faster. We want them quicker. We want them leaner. We want them meaner. We want them stronger, more explosive.” Marotti said each player’s flexibility, body fat and strength were assessed, and players are getting a better understanding of what it takes to succeed in the program. “Everything is done in a very disciplined, accountable fashion,” Marotti said. “So if someone doesn’t do something right, the whole group suffers or — I hate to say ‘suffers’ — the whole group has a consequence of doing it again.” “Disciplined” might be an understatement. Marotti has created a breakfast club for “high-needs players” that need to cut or gain significant amounts of weight, and for all freshmen. A dietitian is present at on-campus eateries to guide the players in their dining selections during set hours. Marotti also helped overhaul the student-athlete meal menu at The Fawcett Center. “We re-did the whole menu,” Marotti said, “and it’s all stuff you’re supposed to eat as an athlete.” Additionally, the players are adjusting to new statistics that team managers keep track of during drills called loafs. A loaf is credited to a player during a moment of deceleration during a drill, Marotti said. When a second loaf is credited to a player, they’re given a lavender shirt that must be worn around the training facility. Redshirt junior linebacker Etienne Sabino, who said he has lost weight and feels faster after five weeks in the new program, has yet to wear a lavender shirt. “You don’t want to wear those shirts at all,” Sabino said. “Just loafing in general, you don’t want to get those. The lavender (shirt) is definitely motivation not to get any loafs.” Sabino, who said he has dropped to 235 pounds from 245 pounds, said the challenges of Marotti’s comprehensive plan have produced results. “We’ve all seen great changes in our bodies,” Sabino said. “We’re really pushing ourselves. It’s definitely been challenging. It’s harder than I thought.” Junior defensive lineman John Simon agreed and said each player has been tested. “I think the workouts have been tough for everyone. The whole workout, there’s no let up,” Simon said. “Everyone’s getting great workouts in. A lot of people are getting in shape, myself included. Everyone’s improving.” Marotti has also instituted some combative events into the program, such as offense versus defense tug-of-war. Marotti said the new workouts, while foreign to some players, are designed to back the players into a corner and force them to fight their way out of it. “The response has been great,” Marotti said. “Competition — it’s everything. It’s not just push-ups or beating a guy around a cone … All the players know who beat who, … who came in last, who came in first. It’s all about competing on a daily basis.” OSU begins spring football drills on March 28 with the 2012 Spring Game set to take place on April 21. read more

Tuesday Take Big Ten tournament wide open Buckeyes one of several teams


Ohio State sophomore guard C.J. Jackson (3) and junior forward Jae’Sean Tate (1) walk off the court at halftime of OSU’s 96-92 loss to Indiana on March 4. Credit: Mason Swires | Assistant Sports EditorAs the Ohio State men’s basketball team walked off the court on Saturday following its 96-92 home loss to Indiana, the Buckeyes knew they would play on the first day of the Big Ten Men’s Basketball Tournament in Washington D.C.It’s a distinction reserved for the four worst teams in the conference. But it’s not a death sentence.The 11th-seeded Buckeyes (17-14, 7-11 Big Ten) will play 14th-seeded Rutgers on Wednesday at the Verizon Center at 7 p.m. OSU beat the Scarlet Knights 70-64 on Feb. 8 in Columbus.With a win, OSU will move on to a Thursday game against sixth-seeded Northwestern, who beat the Buckeyes by two in the team’s only matchup this season. If OSU is lucky enough to move past the Wildcats, No. 3 Maryland awaits in the quarterfinals — a team that battled with the Buckeyes until the final horn.There’s no way to sugarcoat OSU’s performance this season. For a team that entered the season after missing the 2016 NCAA Tournament, the Buckeyes continued to deliver uninspiring performances with inconsistent effort en route to a bottom-four finish in the conference.That the Buckeyes have a chance to make a run in the tournament is more about the quality of the league than it is their talent.The Big Ten boasts just three teams in the Associated Press Top 25 — No. 13 Purdue, No. 24 Wisconsin and No. 25 Maryland — heading into the conference tournament. And for the first time since the 2002-2003 season, the Big Ten doesn’t have a single team in the top 10. In that span, the Big Ten had at least two teams in the top 10 on seven occasions.No. 1 seed Purdue nearly lost to OSU in early January, before winning 76-75. The bottom-four teams in the conference tournament have a combined six wins against the top four seeds; OSU owns two of those against Minnesota and Wisconsin.Another reason not to count out OSU from making a tournament run is coach Thad Matta. Winner of four Big Ten tournament championships and five regular-season Big Ten titles, Matta has been difficult to beat in March. Granted, OSU has not been to the tournament semifinals since the 2014 season — and it’s unlikely the Buckeyes make it there this year — but there are no clear-cut favorites as compared with those in previous years.Iowa, Michigan or Indiana as the No. 7, 8 and 10 seeds, respectively, have just as much of a shot at the tournament crown as the top seeds in Purdue, Wisconsin and Maryland.Iowa is entering the tournament having won four straight games, two of which were against Wisconsin and Maryland. Fourth seed Minnesota has won eight of its last nine, and sixth seed Northwestern has lost six of its last nine.The Buckeyes have said all season that their focus is one game at a time, but from an outsider’s perspective, it’s difficult not to envision chaos at the 2017 Big Ten tournament. read more

Suso wants to finish fourth


first_imgAC Milan is about to enter the most crucial part of the season as they are fighting for the fourth place in the Serie A and will play in the Coppa Italia final against Juventus.Suso admitted that he would prefer finishing fourth and coming back to the Champions League and not winning against Juventus in the domestic cup final match – but of course, he wants to achieve both.The Spaniard spoke about his goals for the remaining part of the season as he said, according to Football Italia:Maurizio Sarri, JuventusMaurizio Sarri satisfied despite Juventus’ draw at Fiorentina Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Maurizio Sarri was satisfied with Juventus’ performance on Saturday afternoon after finishing a tough game at Fiorentina 0-0.“Getting to the Champions League is our ambition this season. We also have a Coppa Italia Final coming up against Juventus and that too is very important, because winning a trophy is very special.”“I think we are on the right track and have a good chance of making it into fourth place.”“I’d prefer for us to get fourth place. We need the perfect game against Juve, so we’ll give it our all and want to win.”last_img read more

OFFICIAL Aston Villa fired Steve Bruce


first_imgAston Villa have communicated via their official website that they have parted company with the head coach Steve Bruce as well as with his assistants Colin Calderwood, Steve Agnew, Stephen Clemence, and Gary Walsh.Only a few months ago, the Lions came close to the Premier League promotion, but Tom Cairney’s goal fired Fulham back to the top flight, leaving the Villans empty-handed.BREAKING: Sky sources: Steve Bruce has been sacked by @AVFCOfficial #SSN pic.twitter.com/dbZYq1YnTF— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) October 3, 2018Steve BruceAllardyce praises Newcastle’s Steve Bruce Manuel R. Medina – September 11, 2019 Sam Allardyce believes Steve Bruce is a better fit at English Premier League side Newcastle United than he would ever have been.However, this season the things are not going as planned for Aston Villa as they currently occupy the 14th place with a 7-point deficit to Leeds United. The four failures in the last five Championship fixtures eventually cost Steve Bruce his job, with Kevin MacDonald expected to take charge of the team against Millwall next weekend.Considering the former Hull City manager left his post vacant, the Claret & Blue Army will have to find a reliable solution swiftly if looking to return to the promotion race until it’s too late.last_img read more