Workplace should promote mental wellbeing

first_imgMore than four-fifths (85%) of respondents believe they have a significant responsibility to provide staff with a working environment that promotes mental wellbeing, according to research by Buck Consultants at Xerox.Its survey of more than 400 employers across 31 countries also revealed that 28% of UK employers rate stress levels in their organisation as being either high or very high.The research also found that:12% of UK respondents say the stress levels in their workplace are low or very low.More than half (51%) of respondents rate their organisation as very or extremely supportive of employees’ mental wellbeing.67% believe that this support for the mental wellbeing of staff stems from the culture of the organisation.Anne-Marie Ayre (pictured), head of health and productivity at Buck Consultants at Xerox, said: “Employee wellness can be a challenging proposition for employers to think about, but it’s encouraging to see so many acknowledging and addressing the importance of mental wellbeing in the workplace.“A good employee programme will not only address the more obvious physical wellbeing, but tackle a wide range of issues, including the perhaps less obvious areas, such as mental health and financial wellbeing.“The benefits of having a successful wellness programme are felt throughout any business, because once the wellbeing of employees is being cared for, they can effectively fulfil their duties and drive the [organisation] forward.”last_img read more

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Australian pastry shop invents doughnut that glows in the dark

first_img(WSVN) – A doughnut makes for a great late-night treat, but imagine if they were glow-in-the-dark.Well, imagine no longer because a pastry shop in Australia has developed the “Glownut,” a doughnut that has glow-in-the-dark icing.Although they may look radioactive, the icing gets its glow from a form of vitamin B, which is commonly used in glow-in-the-dark foods.The doughnut reportedly has no unnatural dyes or additives, making the doughnut completely natural.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.last_img read more

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Holey Artisan Bakery thrives a year on

first_imgAs the chatter of customers and the smell of warm bread fill the Holey Artisan Bakery it is easy to forget the scenes of horror that unfolded at the upscale Dhaka cafe. But a year on the impact of the deadly siege is still being felt.Five young men armed with guns and knives stormed the cafe on 1 July, taking dozens hostage and killing 22 people. Most of the victims were foreigners, and many were brutally hacked to death.A year later the bakery, which has reopened in a new location, throngs with customers hungry for its famous breads, cookies and pastries.”It’s great to have this place back. Reopening the cafe was a great act of courage,” said Laura Jenkins, a US citizen who has lived in Bangladesh for five years, as she picked at a freshly baked croissant.Cafe owner Sadat Mehdi said his decision to reopen had paid off, with loyal clients — a mix of expatriates and well-heeled Bangladeshis living mostly in the diplomatic zone — returning in droves.”Their responses are the biggest encouragement for us,” he told AFP on a recent visit.Many of those caught up in the siege — one of the worst militant attacks in Bangladesh’s history — were foreigners working in the country’s $30 billion garment industry, a mainstay of the country’s economy.Government crackdownThe Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the attack, but Bangladesh insists it was the work of a local extremist group blamed for a series of earlier killings.It followed a series of gruesome murders targeting foreigners and religious minorities in Bangladesh and caused many to flee to Bangkok.As fears grew over the impact on the lucrative sector, government forces launched an unprecedented crackdown on Islamist extremists.Over the past year they have killed nearly 70 suspected extremists, including a Bangladeshi-origin Canadian alleged to have been the mastermind of the attack, and arrested many more.Home minister Asaduzzaman Khan told AFP the Bangladeshi people had taken a “firm stance against militancy”.”They (militants) don’t have much strength left. Gradually we have managed to finish all of it,” he said.But not everyone agrees.Critics accuse prime minister Sheikh Hasina’s secular government of using the attacks to demonise her domestic opponents.”Any sustainable counter-terrorism effort requires democratic responses, which is essentially a cross-party participation in the process,” said Shahab Enam Khan, an expert on security and terrorism at Bangladesh’s Jahangirnagar University.”Otherwise the extremists’ narrative will always cash in on the long-running political feuds existing in the country.”Armed guardsMost of the foreigners who left in the wake of the attack have now returned, reassured by an improvement in the security situation and a marked increase in the presence of government forces on the streets.Many upscale restaurants and expat clubs have armed guards and sandbag barriers at their entrances to deter attacks.Expatriates told AFP the measures had brought a degree of comfort — at a cost.”Not the best scene to watch a man with automatic rifle behind a bunker while sipping on your morning tea,” said Briton Andy Froud.”But at least I know he’s just trying to ensure my safety.”The heavily armed police patrolling outside the Holey cafe provide a constant reminder of the night of 1 July.Survivor Shahriar Ahmed, the cafe’s sales manager, says he is still haunted by the memories of that night.”It comes back as nightmares very often. But I want to forget it,” he said.”We help each other to overcome those traumatic memories. We are trying our best to live normal lives.”last_img read more

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Nintendo is Doomed in There Will Be Brawl

first_img Review: ‘Fantasy Strike’ Is A Fighting Game That Understands…Game of the Year: Jordan Minor’s Best Video Games of 2018 Stay on target For too long the definition of “Game of the Year” has been unfairly narrow. How boring is it to see every website shower the same stale AAA games with praise at the end of each holiday season? So at Geek.com, we’re doing what we can to put a stop to this in Game of the Year, a new column celebrating worthy alternative picks for the year’s greatest game regardless of genre, platform, year of release, or even quality. Here, any game can be Game of the Year!I’m no big fan of fan films. Maybe it’s because I saw too many friends at film school waste their talent on them but too many fan films come across as either #brand-worshipping fan fiction with a budget or just technical demo reels for desperate folks in L.A. But a big exception for me is the 2009-2010 Nintendo-themed web series There Will Be Brawl. And although the series is shockingly cinematic, being based on a game qualifies it for Game of the Year.At first, There Will Be Brawl’s premise sounds about as insufferable as any other fan film. A dark, gritty, sexual reworking of Nintendo’s cuddly mascots? Remove the live-action element and every other video on Newgrounds is an edgy parody like this, especially during the height of Super Smash Bros. Brawl hype the show was operating in. Why not throw in Batman and Predator while you’re at it?Fortunately, across its ten episodes ranging from 12 to 35 minutes, There Will Be Brawl avoids the lazy, hacky pitfalls it could have easily stumbled into by fully committing to itself. There are gags, but its smart writing treats its characters and storylines completely seriously, which is maybe the funniest joke of all. I personally find it very inspiring for my own creative endeavors.The urban Mushroom Kingdom, which has since annexed other Nintendo locales like Zelda’s Hyrule and Kirby’s Dream Land, is in decline. Princess Peach, here acting more like a politician, has gone missing. With the perpetually angry, violent, and impotent Mario no use to anyone, it’s up to the world-weary Luigi to unravel the mystery and atone for his old sins. Meanwhile, monster cannibal Kirby lurks in the shadows. Despite the Paul Thomas Anderson joke in the title, the overall storyline is more of a riff on Silence of the Lambs, especially by the crazy finale.While the drama itself is decently tense, the real joy is in seeing dozens of depressing reimaginings of Nintendo characters and concepts. There are the old Mafia dons like Bowser and Ganondorf. Sword-wielders like Link and Marth make up the corrupt police force. Solid Snake is a homeless man living in a box next to spacey drug-dealer Captain Olimar, and a hooker with a heart of gold Samus does her best to shield innocent Pokemon Trainer/musician Red from the dangers of the real world. The performances and character depth go a long way towards getting you to see past the cosplay-level production value, but honestly seeing Diddy Kong as a cheap gorilla suit with a realistic gun has its own bootleg charm as well.There Will Be Brawl was created by Zach Grafton and Matt Mercer. Mercer also acts in the series, and you may recognize him as the voice Overwatch’s McCree, Leon S. Kennedy in recent Resident Evil games, Chrom in Fire Emblem Awakening, and a bunch of anime roles. After the show, the two collaborated on a Game of Thrones parody called School of Thrones as well as violent fairy tale princess farce Muzzled the Musical.It’s tough to describe just how excited I was for Super Smash Bros. Brawl. It’s still the only game I’ve ever camped out for. My all-consuming hype for the series, along with my Wii love, is what first got me into There Will Be Brawl. But I’m glad I stuck around because the dark and ambitious little web series, the Game of the Year, is totally a rewarding watch in its own right. I would love to see a follow-up. Imagine what the team could do with new Smash Bros. characters like Duck Hunt Dog, Bayonetta, and Ice-T.Check back next week to read about the next Game of the Year!View as: One Page Slides1/51. There Will Be Brawl is a dark fan film reimagining of Nintendo’s cuddly mascots.2. The show mostly follows a world-weary Luigi.3. Mario is angry, violent, impotent, and of no use to anyone.4. Princess Peach is more like a politician in this urban Mushroom Kingdom.5. Wario isn’t all that different in the grand scheme of things.Let us know what you like about Geek by taking our survey.last_img read more

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Strong winds wreak havoc in Ladysmith

first_imgWebsiteWebsiteWebsite WebsiteWebsiteWebsite WebsiteWebsiteWebsite Last night’s (September 16) strong winds wreaked havoc in certain parts of Ladysmith.A small tree was blown over in Shepstone Road and was lying on the roadway.A boundary wall was blown over onto a Wendy House in Calendula Avenue, damaging the wooden structure.Certain areas in town were left without power due to electrical cables being damaged by the wind.The house in Willow Drive that has not been fixed since the freak hailstorm of 2012 was damaged yet again last night. The marquee that was covering the house was blown off, with the residents having to find another place to stay for the night.Also read: Update: Burnt “Prostitute Tree” comes crashing down in strong windAlso read: Homes destroyed and roofs blown away in wind storm One motorist commented that it was like a sandstorm with all the dust whirling around in the air, not to mention all the litter being blown all over the roads.However, Ladysmith was hit relatively lightly by the wind, with many areas in Durban experiencing gale force winds.The house in Willow Drive that was damaged yet againTrees were blown over and roofs ripped off, with cars damaged by falling trees in Durban.Tents and even trailers were seen being blown around by the winds that hit Durban last night.Click to receive news links via WhatsApp. Or  for the latest news, visit our webpage or follow us on Facebook and Twitter. Join us there!last_img read more

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Rep Pettalia ready for action on 201516 legislative policy blueprint

first_img06Feb Rep. Pettalia ready for action on 2015-16 legislative policy blueprint Categories: News The Michigan House Republican policy blueprint for the 98th Legislature unveiled this week at a Capitol news conference includes six pillars of action lawmakers agreed will continue improving Michigan and create more opportunities for residents.State Rep. Peter Pettalia participated in the Action Plan announcement and applauded the caucus’ third-consecutive effort to outline its policy priorities for the public.“So much of today’s news is full of here-today, gone-tomorrow sound bites that are only about attracting a few minutes attention,” said Pettalia, R-Presque Isle. “Michigan’s continued economic resurgence has to be built on meaningful initiatives and sound policy, so we’ve put our plan in writing and delivered it to the public, where we can and must be held accountable.”The plan is organized in six sections: Fostering Job Growth and Strengthening our Economy; Creating A Brighter Future for All; Preparing Students for Tomorrow; Making Government More Accountable; Getting Michigan Moving and Powering its Future; and Eliminating Obstacles Created by Government.Pettalia said he is ready to get to work on the legislative items in the plan as chair of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, vice chair of the Financial Services Committee, and a member of the Energy Policy and Tourism and Outdoor Recreation committees.“The two previous plans we developed kept us on track, helping reach 80 percent of our goals signed into law during my first term, and another 80 percent approved by the House for my second term,” Pettalia said. “Coming out of the horrible economic mess Michigan was in, it may have been simpler to go from good to better – now the work plan is focused on getting our state to best.”Learn more about the plan at gophouse.org.last_img read more

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Father county commissioner joins Rep García for Capitol speech

first_img Categories: Garcia News,Garcia Photos,News,Photos 18Jan Father, county commissioner joins Rep. García for Capitol speech PHOTO INFORMATION: Ottawa County Commissioner Frank Garcia was the guest of his daughter, state Rep. Daniela R. García, R-Holland, at the State of the State speech in the Capitol on Tuesday. Before being sworn in as Commissioner in December 2016, his professional career included serving as Holland Public School Superintendent from 2004-08, principal of Holland High School and West Middle School and as a teacher in West Ottawa Public Schools. Rep. García is in her second term, representing the 90th District in Ottawa County.last_img read more

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Rep Farrington named to four House committees

first_img Categories: Diana Farrington News,News 26Jan Rep. Farrington named to four House committees State Rep. Diana Farrington today was named to serve on four House committees and will have a role in defining policy that affects Michigan families.Farrington, of Utica, said she is eager to begin work on important legislation to be considered during the legislative session. She was named by by Speaker Tom Leonard to serve as vice chair of the House Financial Services Committee, and as a member on the Energy Policy; Health Policy; and Families, Children, and Seniors committees.“I have prioritized the need to keep families in Michigan, and each of these committee assignments play a role in improving the quality of life and making it possible for parents to have good jobs and raise their children,” Farrington said. “I understand the challenges families face today in paying their electric and hospital bills and just making ends meet. The work we do in these committees will help address those issues.”Farrington, who was sworn in to office earlier this month, represents people in Utica and parts of Sterling Heights and Shelby Township.#####last_img read more

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Rep Calley invites residents to local office hours in May

first_img State Rep. Julie Calley invites residents to office hours in two communities in May.Calley, of Portland, will present a legislative update and then meet with residents one on one regarding their concerns on the following dates:Monday, May 14 from 10 to 11 a.m. at The Barry County Courthouse, Commissioners’ Chambers, 220 W. State St. in Hastings; andFriday, May 18 from 10 to 11 a.m. at Revival Café and Market, 75 N. Bridge St. in Saranac.“I truly appreciate the opportunity to gather feedback from community members,” Calley said. “Local office hours generate great dialogue with attendees on issues important to them.”No appointment is necessary. Residents unable to attend scheduled office hours may send their questions and ideas to Calley via email at JulieCalley@house.mi.gov or by calling her at 517-373-0842. 01May Rep. Calley invites residents to local office hours in May Categories: Calley Newslast_img read more

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Rep Bellino Stop balancing the state budget on the backs of Michigans

first_img Categories: Bellino News,News 27Feb Rep. Bellino: Stop balancing the state budget on the backs of Michigan’s senior citizens State Rep. Joe Bellino today testified on his plan to repeal Michigan’s pension tax and eliminate an unfair financial burden on seniors of the present and the future.“I’m fired up to see this issue making some progress and getting some consideration,” said Bellino, of Monroe, after testifying on his proposal in the House Tax Policy Committee. “I’m hoping we can work together in a bipartisan way to bring relief to the seniors who worked their entire lives to retire peacefully in financial security – only to have that security threatened by an unexpected twist in state policy back in 2011. I’ve said it before, and I’ll keep saying it until we get this pension tax repealed: It’s time we stop balancing the state budget on the backs of seniors and bring them the relief they have earned.”Bellino’s plan – introduced on the first day of the new legislative session – would eliminate the pension tax approved in 2011, re-establishing Michigan’s previous retirement tax structure. Public pensions would be exempt from taxation and other retirement income would have higher deductibles for state income taxes. Social Security income would continue to be exempt.Bellino’s proposal also would eliminate Michigan’s current, clumsy three-tiered retirement tax structure – which now has different rules for taxpayers depending on what year they were born.Bellino said Michigan’s economy and state budget both have improved dramatically since the pension tax was adopted.“Ditching the pension tax has been a topic of discussion for both Republicans and Democrats for a long time,” Bellino said. “It’s time to move past the talk and take action. It’s just not right to have some of our most vulnerable residents – many of whom live on fixed incomes – struggling to make ends meet because of a tax they never planned for and never expected.”The legislation – House Bill 4006 – remains under consideration in the Tax Policy Committee.last_img read more

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AARP Bars RighttoDie Group from Annual Exposition in San Diego

first_imgShareTweetShareEmail0 SharesSeptember 2, 2014; San Diego Union-TribuneAARP announced yesterday that it would not allow the right-to-die group Final Exit Network to have a booth at its Ideas@50+ exposition in San Diego. Geared toward Americans aged 50 and over, the self proclaimed upbeat and “fun-filled” exposition will begin today and will include celebrity heavyweights such as Kevin Spacey and Julia Louis-Dreyfus. The annual exposition allows organizations to apply for booth space at the convention as long as they conform to the guidelines designated by AARP.The Final Exit Network is part of a controversial movement, a national organization with various state chapters that “provides information and support to its members who are considering a peaceful, hastened death,” according to California right-to-die activist Faye Girsh. The organization had applied to participate in a similar spring exposition in Boston earlier this March; at that time, AARP reported that it had not delineated clear guidelines for right-to-die groups, but was expecting to later in the year.In response to the Final Exit Network’s most recent request for a booth, AARP released a statement saying, “After further consideration, we are unable to approve right-to-die societies and other like organizations as exhibitors.” Final Exit Network is instead planning on reaching out to people as they stand outside the convention center.This is not the first time AARP has outright declined Final Exit Network a place at one of their conventions. According to Final Exit Network’s newsletter from 2010, AARP also kept them out of their Orlando@50+ expo in Fall 2010. While AARP did not provide a reason for their refusal for this most recent San Diego convention, in 2010, AARP said it was against their policy to “accept right-to-die organizations as advertisers or exhibitors.”Due to the 2010 barring, Donna Klamm, president of the Hemlock Society of Florida, a similar organization which aids individuals in making end-of-life decisions, wrote to AARP president W. Lee Hammond:“The main purposed [sic] of these groups is to inform people of the importance of Advance Directives, patients’ rights, end-of-life care and options. It seems AARP could provide a great service to elders by supporting these groups. How can people make informed decisions on end-of-life issues if not informed?”Regardless of what reason AARP officially gives, its refusal to allow the right-to-die organization from participating in their conventions focused on enjoying life and promoting wellness at an older age is unsurprising. Hastening and welcoming death appears to run counter to the mission of AARP and the convention in empowering people to take control of their health for the sake of longevity. However, for many participating in AARP, the prospect of an encroaching death directly through a progressive disease or in the aftermath of a prior illness is a very real and relevant issue.As physician suicide remains almost universally illegal across the United States, many are journeying out of the country for the freedom to die on their own terms. Known as suicide tourism, individuals are finding legal flexibility in Switzerland where the law on assisted suicide is unclear. Within the past few years, the number of suicide tourists has nearly doubled since 2009.According to Dr. Saskia Gauthier of the Institute of Legal Medicine at the University of Zurich, “While assisted suicide is strictly restricted in many countries, it is not clearly regulated by law in Switzerland. This imbalance leads to an influx of people —‘suicide tourists’—coming to Switzerland.” Currently, physician assisted suicide is only legal in four states in the U.S.—Oregon, New Mexico, Vermont and Washington.In recent years, AARP itself has been struggling to clarify its own image and appeal to the growing number of Americans unwilling to fit squarely in the “50 and older” box. Seeking to shed the stigma of its former name, the American Association of Retired Persons, the organization has instead expanded its scope to a degree that has some critics calling it the “Association of Persons.” This need for redefinition as an organization for all types of people in this older bracket comes as a result of a changing perspective wherein many Americans no longer consider themselves to be “old” at 50.—Shafaq HasanShareTweetShareEmail0 Shareslast_img read more

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Dissing Federal Judges and Other Distractions of an Ineffectual Administration

first_imgShare11TweetShareEmail11 Shares  “Jeff Sessions” by Gage SkidmoreApril 20, 2017; The HillAttorney General Jeff Sessions, whom some consider less than fully enlightened about…well, about a lot of things…let his old-timey colonialist mentality come out to play in public on The Mark Levin Show Tuesday evening.Speaking about U.S. District Judge Derrick Watson, who issued an order blocking the president’s revised travel ban, he said, “I really am amazed that a judge sitting on an island in the Pacific can issue an order that stops the President of the United States from what appears to be clearly his statutory and constitutional power.”Fifty-eight years of statehood, and this is what you get.Judge Watson, at the state of Hawaii’s request, prevented the federal government from suspending new visas for people from six Muslim-majority countries and from suspending the U.S.’ refugee program.Later, Ian Prior, the DOJ’s principal deputy director of public affairs, tried to…well, we don’t exactly know what he was trying to do when he said, by way of explanation, “Hawaii is, in fact, an island in the Pacific—a beautiful one, where the Attorney General’s granddaughter was born. The point, however, is that there is a problem when a flawed opinion by a single judge can block the president’s lawful exercise of authority to keep the entire country safe.”Hawaii Attorney General Doug Chin, among many others, took exception to Sessions’ characterization of Hawaii and his understanding of our separation of powers under the U.S. Constitution, linking it to other scorn laid on the judiciary.“President Trump previously called a federal judge in California a so-called judge. Now U.S. Attorney General Sessions appears to dismiss a federal judge in Hawaii as just a judge sitting on an island in the Pacific,” Chin said, in a news release. “Our Constitution created a separation of powers in the United States for a reason. Our federal courts, established under Article III of the Constitution, are co-equal partners with Congress and the president. It is disappointing AG Sessions does not acknowledge that.”—Ruth McCambridgeShare11TweetShareEmail11 Shareslast_img read more

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NJ Bill Would Discourage Citizen Lawsuits Challenging Nonprofit Exemptions

first_imgShare6Tweet7Share24Email37 Shares“Princeton University.” Credit: Linda UruchutuDecember 9, 2017; Planet PrincetonA new bill in New Jersey is aimed at preventing citizens from suing nonprofits to question their right to tax exemption. As readers may recall, these types of suits challenging property tax exemption have become increasingly common in New Jersey in particular since a judge found that the “nonprofit hospital is a legal fiction.” Apparently, over 40 towns in New Jersey have by now sued their own local nonprofit hospitals over their tax-exempt status.But the suits have not only been aimed at hospitals. As reported by Gianluca D’Elia for the blog Planet Princeton, “The bill would block lawsuits like the one filed in 2011 by Princeton residents, which argued that some activities of Princeton University are essentially commercial and therefore those buildings should be properly assessed and taxes should be paid.” That suit was eventually settled, with most of the $18 million being tagged for affordable housing for the town’s low-income residents, who were paying property taxes either directly or indirectly as renters.In the Princeton case, the attorney for the citizens, Bruce Afran, despite acknowledging the bill is unlikely to pass before a December 31st deadline, used the opportunity to assert that the universities’ business model is less than responsible to public interests.“The present system of unlimited exemption for universities encourages, in many cases, wasteful spending, because by being free of paying taxes, they can pour money into excess executive salaries and unnecessary employment positions like 20 people in the public relations department,” he said. “If they were forced to pay taxes, they’d have more slimmed-down operations, and frankly, they’d be able to charge less tuition. But it’s because they’re free of tax duties that they can create unnecessary administrative layers, and that drives up the cost of tuition.”Clearly, the bill will be facing opposition, because even though the Association of Independent Colleges and Universities in New Jersey reportedly spent over $100,000 to advocate passage of the bill, S2212, many legislators are unconvinced that citizens should not be allowed to challenge large nonprofit tax exemptions.Sen. Shirley Turner (D-Ewing), who voted against the bill previously, says, “I believe third-party tax appeals are an important check and balance procedure that needs to remain in place…New Jersey has the highest property taxes in the country, and we need a mechanism for appealing questionable classifications that shift the property tax burden to taxpayers.”—Jeannie Fox and Ruth McCambridgeShare6Tweet7Share24Email37 Shareslast_img read more

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UK pay TV operator BSkyB says that the Competition

first_imgUK pay TV operator BSkyB says that the Competition Commission should include online content providers such as LoveFilm and Netflix.The Commission is investigating the market for pay TV movies in the UK and whether Sky has a dominant position. Sky says it has neglected to include the online services already present in the UK or, as in the case of Netflix, about to launch. Both compete for movie rights, Sky noted in a submission to the Commission.“Both Amazon LoveFilm and Netflix have successfully competed for pay TV movie rights in the UK and elsewhere, including first subscription pay TV window rights, and there is no good reason to believe that their ambitions are confined to acquiring rights from non-major studios, as they have to date in the UK,” Sky noted. It added: “The CC’s failure properly to investigate these issues is a significant procedural flaw in the conduct of its inquiry and is unfair to Sky.”last_img read more

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Channel 4s online VOD platform 4oD attracted 45 m

first_imgChannel 4’s online VOD platform 4oD attracted 45 million views in February, bringing total year-to-date views to 93 million. That figure is 10% higher year-on-year.There were 4.3 million unique 4oD users during the month, each spending an average of two hours watching content.Drama was the most watched genre on 4oD with Skins, Hollyoaks, Desperate Housewives and Shameless all featuring in February’s top ten most viewed programmes. Factual came in second attracting 10.7 million views and was followed closely by comedy drawing 10.1 million views.last_img read more

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The French government has made a budget provision

first_imgThe French government has made a budget provision of €1.3 billion pending a final ruling on the tax imposed on telecom service providers to support public broadcaster France Télévisions following the suppression of TV after 20:00 on its channels.The EC last year censured France and Spain for their refusal to abolish the tax, which levies 0.9% of the revenues of telecom companies above €5 million.According to French financial daily Les Echos, the French government is set to slash France Télévisions’ budget by €85 million, or 3.4%, next year.last_img read more

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Intelsats new Intelsat 27 satellite launch failed

first_imgIntelsat’s new Intelsat 27 satellite launch failed shortly after liftoff on board a Zenit 3SL launcher at the end of last week.The satellite had been scheduled to operate from the 304.5° East orbital slot, serving customers in North America, South America, the North Altantic and Europe.Intelsat said service to customers on its existing Intelsat 805 and Galaxy 11 satellites would not be interrupted as result of the failure.last_img

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Viacom International Media Networks VIMN Africa

first_imgViacom International Media Networks (VIMN) Africa plans to move MTV in South Africa to pay TV operator MultiChoice’s DStv Extra and Compact packages on August 25. The channel is currently available as part of the higher tier DStv Premium package.MTV will join sister channel MTV Base in the Extra and Compact packages, giving the channel a significantly increased reach and broadening its appeal to advertisers, according to Viacom.last_img

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Telefónica could abort its acquisition of pay TV s

first_imgTelefónica could abort its acquisition of pay TV service Canal+ if the country’s competition regulator forces it to sell its content packages to third-party operators at regulated prices, according to Spanish press reports.According to a Europa Press report, citing sources familiar with the process, the telco has set out red lines that could trigger an abandoning of the acquisition if they were to be crossed by the competition regulator, the CNMC.The regulator opened a second phase in its investigation of the deal in November amid concerns that the acquisition of Prisa’s 56% in Canal+ could give Telefónica a dominant position in both the pay TV market and the acquisition of content.According to the sources cited by Europa Press, Telefónica is not willing to submit to selling its packages at regulated prices, although it is willing to discuss sharing some content at profitable rates.Spain’s previous competition regulator, the CNC, in 2010 forced Canal+ to make a proportion of the channels in its offering available to third-party players as a condition for Telefónica and Mediaset Spain’s respective acquisitions of 22% in the operator.Telefónica is currently at loggerheads with the CNMC over proposals to force it to open up its fibre network to rivals in all but nine key cities across the country.last_img read more

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