Category: hiezs

Go back to the enewsletter Seabourn has launched

first_imgGo back to the e-newsletterSeabourn has launched a new era in culinary excellence by sharing the first recipes developed by American Chef Thomas Keller on board its ultra-luxury, award-winning fleet.Seabourn now features an array of dishes, ranging from first courses to main courses and desserts, in multiple dining venues aboard Seabourn Odyssey, Seabourn Sojourn, and Seabourn Quest. Seabourn President Richard Meadows said the cruise line was pleased to share Chef Keller’s first menus aboard the fleet.“His menus confirm that the partnership is going to elevate our already award-winning cuisine, and we are thrilled that Seabourn guests are now able to experience the masterful culinary styles of Chef Keller,” Mr Meadows said.To introduce an unparalleled dining experience unlike any other at sea, Chef Keller, his veteran staff and Seabourn’s executive culinary team have collaborated in menu development and training. In an effort to ensure a consistent presentation, Seabourn even acquired Homage by Thomas Keller in Checks pattern, the white porcelain dinnerware by Raynaud used in Chef Keller’s fine dining restaurants.Among the many culinary highlights are special theme nights in the Colonnade that pay homage to Chef Keller’s childhood, featuring classic comfort dishes such as BBQ Ribs served family-style on platters to complement a convivial shared dining experience. At the poolside Patio Grill, there are classic favourites including his signature Napa Burger and artisanal ‘Yountwurst’. Chef Keller’s formal French-American style of cuisine is featured on select evenings in The Restaurant, spanning a variety of menu items that could include:First Course:Terrine of moularde duck foie grasTruffle pain de genes, compressed asian pear and Sicilian pistachioMain Course:Buckwheat gnocchiTamari glazed shiitake mushrooms, golden beets, savoy cabbage and yuzuSonoma duck breast poêleCrispy rillettes, glazed harukei turnips, pickled blueberries and red cabbage pureeDesserts:Ginger and yoghurt semifreddoWhipped green tea and lemon meringueChampagne and granny smith apple trifleCrème chantilly, vanilla custard, and champagne jellyIn addition, as part of the collaborative process, Chef Keller introduced Seabourn to his long time purveyors from the United States. Seabourn is pleased to be featuring the finest ingredients from Elysian Fields Farms, Rancho Gordo, Hobbs Applewood smoked Meats, Marshall Farms Honey, Snake River Farms, Newport Meats, True Foods, Sonoma Poultry, Gourmet Attitude, Le Sanctuaire; and Cowgirl Creamery/Tomales Bay Foods.Expanding upon the vision of Seabourn and Chef Keller, a new signature restaurant will be introduced this May on Seabourn Quest. The restaurant will eventually be launched across the entire fleet, including the line’s two new ships, Seabourn Encore, which will visit Australia in January 2017 following its launch, and Seabourn Ovation launching in 2018.Chef Keller is globally renowned for his culinary achievements and exceptionally high standards, and is the only American-born chef to hold multiple three-star ratings from the prestigious Michelin Guide, as well as the first American male chef to be designated a Chevalier of The French Legion of Honour, the highest decoration in France. He has received countless accolades, including The Culinary Institute of America’s ‘Chef of the Year’ award and the James Beard Foundation’s ‘Outstanding Chef’ and ‘Outstanding Restaurateur’ awards.Go back to the e-newsletterlast_img read more

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Cabinet approves new insurance system for farmers

first_imgThe creation of a new insurance system for farmers that seeks to offer financial  support to producers of all crops, as well as for sheep and goat farmers was approved by the cabinet on Wednesday.The new insurance system “will cover all crops in view of all threats, and so we are departing from the current state of affairs where only some crops are insured and after only some threats,” Agriculture Minister, Costas Kadis, said after the meeting.The fund for the protection and insurance of agricultural production, which still requires approval by parliament, is a fund that both farmers and the state will contribute to, Kadis said, adding that farmers’ representatives will participate in the management of the fund.He explained that the amount that will be contributed by each farmer will depend on the level of danger their products face in view of extreme weather conditions and natural disasters.Specifically, farmers’ contributions will range from €1.90 to €32 per 1,000 square metres, depending on the crop being produced, while sheep and goat farmers will contribute €0.80 per animal.Kadis highlighted that wide consultation preceded the drawing up of the new system, which he said is backed by the vast majority of farmers and agricultural organisations, as it offers a flexible scheme aiming to provide immediate compensation.In terms of government spending, Kadis said that the amount that is expected to be spent on the fund is similar to what is being spent today, though depending on future weather conditions, the state will be able to cover the farmers’ contributions in situations when they themselves are not able to.The new system, which Kadis expects will become operational within 2019, will replace the current Agriculture Insurance Organisation (OGA), whose duties will be transferred to the ministry of agriculture and current employees of the organisation will be appointed in the civil service.The issue of severe damage to potato crops from the extreme colds of this winter season was also brought before the cabinet, which guaranteed that part of the owed compensation sum will be paid in the coming months.Full evaluation of the damage will be carried out in March and April, when on the basis of preliminary assessments, 40 per cent of the total compensation amount will be granted to affected farmers.For all other crops affected by the winter cold, 40 per cent of owed compensation will be received by farmers in June, as preliminary assessments of the extent of the damage will take place until May.Kadis referred to previous cabinet decisions that show that “the government is by the side of the Cypriot farmer”, such as the decision to compensate farmers after the extreme weather conditions of the summer and autumn of 2018, which cost €5.5m. You May LikeLivestlyChip And Joanna’s $18M Mansion Is Perfect, But It’s The Backyard Everyone Is Talking AboutLivestlyUndoPopularEverythingColorado Mom Adopted Two Children, Months Later She Learned Who They Really ArePopularEverythingUndoYahoo SearchYou’ve Never Seen Luxury Like This On A Cruise Ship. Search Luxury Mediterranean CruisesYahoo SearchUndo Pensioner dies after crash on Paphos-Polis roadUndoCruise passenger airlifted to Paphos hospitalUndoRemand for pair in alleged property fraud (Updated)Undoby Taboolaby Taboolalast_img read more

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Lack of competition leads to high fuel prices says minister

first_imgFuel prices on the island are controlled by the lack of healthy competition both in wholesale and retail markets, Energy Minister Yiorgos Lakkotrypis said on Tuesday after a House Commerce committee meeting.The minister, who was called by the committee to discuss the price of fuel, said the market in Cyprus is not regulated and the only tool the minister has at his disposal to intervene is setting a price ceiling, which is a very serious decision to make.On Monday a consumer group prompted parties to question why prices were so high when international prices had fallen dramatically and had even threatened to sue the state saying it deliberately allowed prices to remain high to collect more taxes.Lakkotrypis suggested the increase of storage space for wholesale to attract new importers and to achieve independence of fuel stations from fuel companies.“We have also suggested the improvement of transparency toward consumers,” Lakkotrypis said.He added his ministry will meet the Auditor general within the week to discuss this.“We also expect the companies and the fuel station owners to contribute so that transparency toward the consumer is improved,” Lakkotrypis said.Committee chairman Lefteris Christophorou said the Cypriot consumer must be protected in cases where principles and rules of competition are violated.“The market is free but it has to move in fair prices, so that a price ceiling is not necessary,” DIKO committee member Angelos Votsis said.The head of the petrol station owners Stefanos Stefanou said it is not them that map policies but the companies that import 85 to 90 per cent of all fuel and added that the margin for profit at petrol stations is 4.5 to 5 cents per litre.You May LikeLivestlyChip And Joanna’s $18M Mansion Is Perfect, But It’s The Backyard Everyone Is Talking AboutLivestlyUndoPopularEverythingColorado Mom Adopted Two Children, Months Later She Learned Who They Really ArePopularEverythingUndoKelley Blue BookYou Won’t Believe How Affordable These Ford Car Models AreKelley Blue BookUndo Pensioner dies after crash on Paphos-Polis roadUndoCruise passenger airlifted to Paphos hospitalUndoRemand for pair in alleged property fraud (Updated)Undoby Taboolaby Taboolalast_img read more

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Rep Runestad welcomes local employer to the Capitol for the 2015 State

first_img State Rep. Jim Runestad, R-White Lake Township, today welcomed Highland Township Supervisor Rick Hamill Berkley Appliance and Computer owner Jim Thienel and Waterford Memories Historian Greg Fogelman to the Capitol for Gov. Snyder’s 2015 State of the State address, where he discussed his key goals for his second term. 21Jan Rep. Runestad welcomes local employer to the Capitol for the 2015 State of the State address Categories: Runestad News,Runestad Photoslast_img

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Sheppard brings Monroe art to Lansing

first_img Categories: Sheppard News,Sheppard Photos 12Feb Sheppard brings Monroe art to Lansing Lawmaker impressed with local art on display in officeState Rep. Jason Sheppard has Monroe-area art on display in his Lansing office, and the pieces—all created by artists from the local community—feature renditions of various locales around Michigan, as well as some abstract impressions of the state.“I’m ecstatic that I can share a part of our Monroe community with my colleagues in Lansing,” said Sheppard, R-Temperance. “I’m lucky to have some talented and generous residents who are willing to lend their creations to beautify our office space.”The showcase is organized by artists Betzi Pipis and Christy LaRoy, directors of the Art Insight Emporium in Monroe. Pipis curated eight different pieces of local art in the representative’s office, and said she plans to swap in new creations by different artists regularly over Sheppard’s two-year term.Many of the participating artists have expressed gratitude for the opportunity to share their work in Lansing. Emily Jo Short is among those who sent their thanks.“I’m a fairly new artist, as I’ve only been sharing my work publicly for the past year,” Short said. “I consider sharing my art work with Rep. Sheppard another highlight to add to my growing list of achievements.”Featured in the representative’s office, Short’s piece is titled “Love Michigan,” and was inspired by summer vacations that her family takes to the Sleeping Bear Dunes.The southeast Michigan representative said he would be pained to pick a current favorite.“They all have striking, unique qualities that bring life to the office,” Sheppard said. “I like them all very much, but the oil by James Tidwell featuring downtown Monroe is often recognized by local guests.”last_img read more

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Rep Jacobsen pleased with progress of speed limits legislation following second committee

first_img Tags: #SB 07Oct Rep. Jacobsen pleased with progress of speed limits legislation following second committee hearing Categories: Featured news,Newscenter_img State Representative Brad Jacobsen, R-Oxford, and his House colleagues introduced a bipartisan bill package earlier this year that would improve safety for motorists on Michigan roads.House Bills 4423-27 are currently being debated in the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, which Rep. Jacobsen also serves on. He recently provided testimony in support of his sponsored legislation in the package, HBs 4423-4424, to increase speed limits in Michigan.“I know there are questions and concerns out there, but I feel questions are being adequately addressed as this legislation moves its way through the committee process,” Rep. Jacobsen said. “I am very pleased with the attention that Chair Rep. Peter Petallia has given to this bill package. I am very confident that when we are done deliberating on this legislation that it will be the very best policy necessary to improve our state’s infrastructure and keep all motorists safe.”The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee is expected meet next week to further discuss this legislation amongst committee members, local interest groups and concerned residents.#####last_img read more

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State Rep Beau LaFave defends UP families against AGs latest Line 5

first_img Categories: LaFave News State Rep. Beau LaFave today spoke out in defense of the thousands of Michigan famlies living in the Upper Peninsula who would suffer higher energy rates if Line 5 were shut down.LaFave’s statement comes in response to a recent announcement by Attorney General Dana Nessel threatening to shut down Line 5 by the end of June.“With a renewed threat to shut down Line 5 in the next month– a move that would do irreparable harm to U.P families and businesses – Attorney General Dana Nessel has once again forgotten that she does not, in fact, make laws. Her job as the attorney general is to enforce the laws as written,” LaFave said. “The power to write the laws is reserved exclusively to 148 people called ‘lawmakers.’ If the attorney general wants to start writing laws, I welcome and encourage her to run for state representative next year.”Ultimately, 65 percent of the propane that heats homes and businesses in the Upper Peninsula is delivered through Line 5.In late March, Nessel declared unconstitutional the law passed by the Legislature in December creating an authority to oversee construction of a tunnel to house Line 5 and other utilities. Nessel’s opinion hinged on a legal technicality, claiming the title of the legislation did not adequately reflect the content of the plan.“It’s clear from the attorney general’s actions on this critical issue that she is too blinded by partisan politics and urban-bias to make the right call for rural Michigan families,” LaFave said. 07Jun State Rep. Beau LaFave defends U.P. families against AG’s latest Line 5 planlast_img read more

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Doctors Petition Congress to Allow Government Gun Violence Research

first_imgShare23TweetShareEmail23 SharesDecember 3, 2015; Al Jazeera AmericaWith a reported 353 mass shootings in 2015 (defined as four or more victims), the topic is front and center for news services. In June, NPQ reported on The Trace, a new media outlet financed by the Bloomberg organization focused solely on the topic of guns. (Unfortunately, the site has had a lot to recount.) In October, NPQ also covered the escalated gun violence in Chicago.In a pointed coincidence in timing, several hours before the shooting in San Bernardino, significant physicians groups delivered a petition to Congress pressing lawmakers to end what it called an “effective ban” on gun violence studies by government agencies—specifically, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and National Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The petition contained over 2,000 signatures from groups including Doctors for America, the American Medical Women’s Association, and the National Physicians.Jay Dickey, the former representative from Arkansas who led the effort to cut public funding from the CDC budget in 1996, seems to have buyer’s remorse. The day before the doctors’ petition arrived, he sent a letter to Rep. Mike Thompson, who chairs the House Gun Violence Prevention Task Force, calling for an increase in gun violence research.“Research could have been continued on gun violence without infringing on the rights of gun owners, in the same fashion that the highway industry continued its research without eliminating the automobile,” Mr. Dickey wrote.Alice Chen, executive director of Doctors for America and a physician at UCLA Medical Center, said that gun deaths are a critical problem for those in the health services. Even with President Obama’s executive order in 2013 calling for gun violence research at the CDC, she states that the agency still does not receive enough funding from Congress.Former Speaker of the House John Boehner has stated, “I’m sorry, but a gun is not a disease. And guns don’t kill people, people do.” In answer to Mr. Boehner and others who have made similar statements, we bring the topic back to our sector for a closer look at the ability of NIH and CDC to do the research and gather funding. Both the NIH and the CDC have 501(c)(3) support foundations to accept funding and collaborative partners.The NIH has many departments, and the Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences could house research on gun violence.The OBSSR’s mission is: (1) to integrate a behavioral and social sciences perspective across the NIH; (2) to disseminate behavioral and social sciences research findings; and (3) to provide advice to and communicate with the NIH Director, Congress, other government agencies, the research community and the general public on matters regarding behavioral and social sciences research.Those of us in the nonprofit sector know the mission statement is the rock an organization is built on. Despite the unfortunate name of the National Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the mission of the agency states:CDC works 24/7 to protect America from health, safety and security threats, both foreign and in the U.S. Whether diseases start at home or abroad, are chronic or acute, curable or preventable, human error or deliberate attack, CDC fights disease and supports communities and citizens to do the same.CDC increases the health security of our nation. As the nation’s health protection agency, CDC saves lives and protects people from health threats. To accomplish our mission, CDC conducts critical science and provides health information that protects our nation against expensive and dangerous health threats, and responds when these arise.The mission statement for CDC’s supporting foundation states:Established by Congress, the CDC Foundation helps the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention do more, faster by forging effective partnerships between CDC and corporations, foundations, organizations and individuals to fight threats to health and safety.Studies in gun violence would be perfectly in line with mission: “health, safety and security threats.”—Marian ConwayShare23TweetShareEmail23 Shareslast_img read more

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Civil Society Rises but Will Political Change Follow

first_imgShare12TweetShareEmail12 SharesJuly 12, 2018; EconomistAt NPQ, we have often covered the rise of social movement activism in the US, whether that involves Black Lives Matter, the post-inauguration women’s march on Washington (and related protests around the world), the national gun control protests that arose after the Parkland massacre, the #MeToo movement, or immigrant rights protests, to name a few examples.When you add it up, it turns out that “one in five adults has attended a protest or political rally in the past two years,” notes John Prideaux, US editor of the Economist. By contrast, “less than five percent of voters went to a Trump or Clinton rally in 2016.”This rising activism has had a political impact already. Prideaux observes that, “Two years ago, 28 Congressional seats were so safe that Republican candidates ran unopposed; in November’s midterms Democrats will contest all but four House districts.”Prideaux adds that:The incredulity and anger…that followed Mr. Trump’s election resulted in nearly 150 percent more women putting themselves forward for congressional primaries this year than in the equivalent races two years ago. In the two years before the presidential election in 2016, Emily’s List, which exists to help elect female Democrats to office, was contacted by 900 women who wanted to run. Since Mr. Trump became president, 36,000 have put themselves forward.“All this civic-mindedness is uplifting,” writes Prideaux. But unless a major political realignment upends the US two-party system, the task of building a majority political coalition will fall to the Democratic Party, which, Prideaux observes, “is not making the most of the moment.”One reason, Prideaux suggests, may be greater diversity, both in viewpoints and demography, in the Democratic Party. One effect of this heterogeneity, according to University of Maryland political scientist David Karol, is to encourage Democrats in Congress to observe strict seniority, which avoids conflict but holds back fresh leadership. As Prideaux puts it, “Replacing a party grandee means a fight between interest groups. Choosing by seniority avoids that. This helps explain why a party that thinks of itself as more appealing to younger voters has a leader in the Senate (Chuck Schumer) who is 67 and a leader in the House (Nancy Pelosi) who is 78.”A second shift that Prideaux points out is that, according to Pew Research Center data, today more Democrats self-identify as liberal than moderate, but historically the party has been more moderate than liberal. Party leadership (held in place by the seniority norm) has yet to catch up.A third observation made in another Economist article in the series is that the traditional idea that you win elections by moving to the center no longer holds water:The “median-voter theorem” once held that the party that hews closest to the views of the median voter usually wins. It was taught to this generation of academics as akin to the law of gravity, but has since become the political science equivalent of believing Earth to be flat. When politics is so polarized, people no longer cluster in the ideological middle. And besides, the belief that voters are calculating machines who carefully weigh policies before opting for whoever offers them the best deal, is hard to sustain.Again, at one time, seeking the median voter was a successful strategy—and it played into the hands of the Democratic Party’s formerly moderate base. But holding on to this shibboleth today is hard to justify. Clearly, promoting turnout is far more important.But how do you get voters to turn out? As the Economist makes clear, while US liberals poll higher on policy, conservatives poll higher on narrative and framing. As political scientists David Hopkins and Matt Grossmann put it in Asymmetric Politics, “The public mostly agrees with the Republicans in philosophical terms and with the Democrats in policy terms.” These results are also, of course, as the Economist acknowledges, abetted by an electoral system that favors Republican voters since the Senate over-represents rural states and current House district lines were mostly drawn by Republican state legislatures.In the Economist, Hopkins and Grossman’s findings are summarized as follows: “Voters are ideological conservatives but operational liberals. Small government is more popular than big government in theory, but voters do not like spending cuts.” The Economist adds that these results hold even though voters recognize that higher spending means higher taxes.In the series, The Economist asks whether the Democratic Party should move to the left or center. But that’s hardly the right question. The question, rather, is how to articulate a compelling political philosophy and turnout strategy that converts policy majorities into electoral ones.—Steve DubbShare12TweetShareEmail12 Shareslast_img read more

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Scandinavian online movie service Voddler has rece

first_imgScandinavian online movie service Voddler has received investment from Cipio Partners, an investment and advisory firm.Voddler said the private placement would help it to continue to expand its online platform that delivers movies to PCs, smartphones, tablets and connected TV-screens. Voddler currently has over has over one million registered customers in Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Finland.Roland Dennert, managing partner at Cipio Partners, will join Voddler’s board, while Patrick Ståhle, one of Voddler’s first investors, is resigning his position on the board on January 1, 2012.“We are happy to welcome Roland Dennert, whose experience in building global media and technology companies will be invaluable as we continue our international growth. At the same time, we are indebted to Patrick for his hard work as a board member during several years and for his now continued support as a shareholder,” said Marcus Bäcklund, CEO of Voddler.last_img read more

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A new report from UK media regulator Ofcom shows t

first_imgA new report from UK media regulator Ofcom shows that the country is ahead of other countries including Japan and the USA for catching up with TV online and is at the forefront of using new technology such as smart TVs and digital video recorders.According to Ofcom’s seventh International Communications Market Report, which examines take-up, availability, price and use of broadband, landlines, mobiles, TV, radio and post across 17 major countries, almost a quarter (23%) of UK internet users claimed to access TV services over the internet every week. The USA ranked second with 17%, with Spain third with 16%.The UK also has one of the highest proportions of TV homes with high definition at 41%, higher than France (18%), Germany (28%) and Japan (31%), but behind the US (49%).UK consumers are also embracing smart TVs with 15% saying they own one. This is the same as France and compares to 10% in the USA.The average UK viewer watches 242 minutes of TV every day, with only the USA at 293 minutes and Italy at 253 minutes watching more.last_img read more

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Eutelsat and EshailSats jointly owned Eutelsat 2

first_imgEutelsat and Es’hailSat’s jointly owned Eutelsat 25B/Es’hail 1 satellite has successfully gone into commercial service 25.5° East, two months after it was launched. The satellite is designed to serve broadcasters, businesses and public agencies operating in the Middle East, North Africa and Central Asia.News of the deployment came as Eutelsat reported solid fiscal Q1 results, for the three months ending September 30, with revenue up 2.9% year-on-year to €323.5 million.The firm said that 67.8% of these revenues came from video applications, though at €217.1 million this was virtual stable with last year – reflecting “the lack of incremental capacity and a high fill-rate at key video neighbourhoods.”As of the end of September, Eutelsat said that the total number of channels broadcast by its satellites was 4,713, up 7.0% year-on-year. Some 439 of these channels were in HD, implying an HD penetration rate of 9.3%Eutelsat said that channels broadcast from the 7°/8° West neighbourhood – covering the Middle East and North Africa – rose by 17% during the year to 688.Channels broadcast from the 16° East neighbourhood – covering sub-Saharan Africa, Indian Ocean Islands and Central Europe – rose by 23% during the year to 728 at 30 September2013.“Coverage of Russia will be further enhanced with the entry into service of Express-AT1 (at 56° East) and Express-AT2 (at 140° East) in the second half of the current financial year, on which 16 transponders have already been contracted to TricolorTV,” said Eutelsat.last_img read more

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YouTube has started offering high frame rate video

first_imgYouTube has started offering high frame rate video playback on Android and Apple iOS devices.In a Google+ post, YouTube confirmed that 60 frames per second (60fps) video can now be accessed on mobile devices. YouTube added support for higher frame rate video playback on its site earlier this year.In May, the Google-owned video site also launched 60fps live streaming as an “early preview” on HTML5-compatible browsers.last_img

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Julie Swanston The UKs Channel 5 and BBC Worldwid

first_imgJulie SwanstonThe UK’s Channel 5 and BBC Worldwide have co-commissioned an extreme weather series that will be the first original for new thematic network BBC Earth.Weather Terror is a six-part series that debuts this Friday on Channel 5 at 8pm.Internationally (excluding the UK and Ireland), the BBC’s commercial arm has rights and is rolling it out on the BBC Earth channel around the world as Extreme Weather: The Survivors.BBC Earth has been on the hunt for original programming since launching as one of three core BBCWW international channels brands – the others being premium content-focused BBC First and make-skewed BBC Brit.The channel is currently in Poland, the Nordic region, Hungary, Romania, Slovenia and Turkey and further launches will follow this year.Weather Terror follows travellers’ stories of extreme weather conditions, using the personal footage recorded by the survivors.Endemol Shine Group-owned DSP (Darlow Smithson Productions) is attached to produce, with company managing director Emily Dalton executive producing alongside BBC Earth’s Kirsty Hanson.BBC Earth hired Hanson earlier this year to ‘“adrenalin-fuelled, fast paced and visceral adventure series that have British talent at their centre”.“This series is a great example of the compelling, fast-paced television that we’re looking for in new commissions for BBC Earth – visceral adventure, exceptional characters and importantly a strong global appeal,” said Julie Swanston, VP, original commissioning for BBC Earth.“These vivid stories take us Brits into the heart of the storm, and it’s terrifying,” said Channel commissioning editor, factual Guy Davies. “I’m delighted that Channel 5 and BBC Worldwide combined to make this series so dramatic and exciting.”last_img read more

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Bouygues Telecom Orange and Bouygues Telecom will

first_imgBouygues TelecomOrange and Bouygues Telecom will make a decision by the end of the weekend about whether they will merge, after both firms said that talks had not progressed.Orange and Bouygues both confirmed that their boards had met separately yesterday to discuss the proposed merger, though in separate statements said that negotiations had not “progressed sufficiently” and were not yet at an advanced stage.Bouygues said its board will meet before the end of the weekend to make a “final decision whether to pursue the merger plan or not”, while Orange said its board will also meet by April 3 to “examine the result of these discussions.”French telco Orange and telecoms-to-construction conglomerate Bouygues have been in discussions for months about combining their businesses, and had previously set an end of March deadline to conclude the talks.Last week, business news service BFM TV reported that the French government is ready to approve Orange’s planned acquisition of Bouygues Telecom under a deal that would see parent company Bouygues take a 12% stake in the operator.However, it also said that Bouygues had set its sights on a 15% stake in Orange and the French government was unwilling to allow its current 23% stake in Orange drop below 20%. According to the report, the deal must also involve selling part of Bouygues Telecom’s base and assets to rival players SFR and Free to secure regulatory approval.Orange confirmed back in January that it had renewed preliminary discussions with Bouygues Group to take over the latter’s telecom unit, claiming it was “exploring the opportunities available within the French telecoms market”.Days later a French newspaper report claimed that Orange and Bouygues were open to including the latter’s 44% interest in leading commercial broadcaster TF1 in any deal between the pair.last_img read more

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Vivendi and Mediaset are close to burying the hatc

first_imgVivendi and Mediaset are close to burying the hatchet and striking an agreement that will see the French media giant reduce its stake in the Italian broadcaster and create a space for collaboration based on the recently established JV between Canal+ and Telecom Italia, according to a report in Italian newspaper La Repubblica.According to the newspaper, a deal between the pair could see Vivendi reduce its much-resented stake in Mediaset from 28.8% to about 5%. Mediaset Premium, the Italian broadcaster’s struggling pay TV arm that is at the centre of the dispute between the pair, will form an alliance with the Canal+-Telecom Italia JV to offer a new on-demand offering to Italian consumers.According to La Repubblica, the pair aim to come to an agreement soon, with the next hearing related to Mediaset’s €3 billion lawsuit against the French company scheduled for December 19 and the crucial allocation of TV rights for Italian Serie A football set to be made before the end of the year.Vivendi and Mediaset originally planned a strategic alliance that would have seen the French company take control of Mediaset Premium and Vivendi and Mediaset exchange 3.5% stakes in each other. However, the pair spectacularly fell out when Vivendi unilaterally pulled out of the deal.Vivendi-backed Telecom Italia, in which the French company has a 23.9% stake, is separately trying to find an accommodation with the Italian state, has triggered its ‘Golden Power’ to intervene in cases where it believes its national interests are threatened after Vivendi was characterized as exercising a controlling interest in the telco.Vivendi was earlier forced to commit to ultimately reducing its stake in Mediaset to 10% after Italian regulator AGCOM ruled that holding simultaneous large stakes in Mediaset and Telecom Italia was in breach of the TUSMAR regulation that determines that electronics communications companies with a market share in excess of 40% cannot control more than 10% of a Sistema Integrato delle Comunicazioni (SIC) – meaning a large TV, radio and publishing outfit, such as Mediaset.last_img read more

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Netflix is testing a payment method on iOS devices

first_imgNetflix is testing a payment method on iOS devices aimed at cutting Apple’s iTunes out of the loop in 33 countries, according to press reports.According to TechCrunch, the subscription video-on-demand giant is redirecting new and lapsed subscribers launching the Netflix app on an iOS device away from iTunes to a mobile web version of its service to make payments direct to Netflix.A Netflix customer support operative contacted by the technology news website told it that the test had been running from June, initially in 10 countries, expanding to 33 in August, with the trial set to run until the end of September.In May, Netflix stopped new or rejoining customers signing up to the service via Google Play, signaling a move towards direct billing.Apple currently takes a 30% share of the first year of a Netflix subscription via iTunes, reducing to 15% in subsequent years.Netflix’s experiment with direct billing on Apple devices was initially reported by the NDTV Gadgets 360° website in India, one of the markets in which the SVOD outfit has made the change.Netflix has made a number of changes to its service, including recently starting to test adverts for shows between episodes.last_img read more

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France has completed the transfer of the 700MHz fr

first_imgFrance has completed the transfer of the 700MHz frequency band from broadcasting to mobile applications.Completion of the project, which was designed to provide additional capacity for 4G and 5G mobile applications, comes over four years after the government kicked the process off. The Ile-de-France region was the first to switch, in April 2016 to coincide with the rollout of HD services on the digital-terrestrial platform.The overall process was implemented in 14 separate phases, with a region in south-eastern France bordering Italy the last to go.  The last phase of swithing off DTT signals took place on the week beginning June 24 in an area around Grenoble.Mobile operators have been authorised to use the band in certain areas since April 2016.The 700MHz band is seen as highly suitable for providing mobile coverage in rural areas and providing in-building coverage.last_img read more

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Logue praises Health staff on NHS 70th anniversary

first_imgLogue praises Health staff on NHS 70th anniversary was last modified: July 6th, 2018 by John2John2 Tags: ShareTweet SINN Féin’s Health Spokesperson Councillor Patricia Logue has praised the contribution of health and social care staff on the 70th anniversary of the NHS.She commented: “Seventy years of universal healthcare free at the point of delivery, based on need, is a remarkable milestone.“There have been many improvements and innovations in how care is delivered over the decades but one constant has been the central role of health and social care staff. “All those involved in supporting and delivering these vital services have been, and will continue to be, the services greatest asset.“It is important we reflect on, and appreciate, what has been achieved to date but we must also be cognisant of the challenges that lay ahead in continuing to provide the community with a high standard of health and social care.“Transformation of health and social care is needed but it can only work by putting staff and patients at the centre, working in partnership with them in designing service delivery.“For transformation to be successful it needs to be underpinned by additional investment and not undermined by austerity,” added Cllr Logue. COUNCILLOR PATRICIA LOGUELogue praises Health staff on NHS 70th anniversarynhsSinn Feinlast_img read more

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Comedian Ruairi Woods brings hilarious new show P

first_img Comedian Ruairi Woods brings hilarious new show ‘Panic Groom’ to the AlleyLimelight BelfastNeil DelamarestrabaneTHE ALLEY THEATRETHE BLAME GAME ShareTweet The show will also feature support slots from comedians Dave Elliott and Mark Mc Carney.Tickets are £10 available from the Alley Theatre website on www.alley-theatre.com or call the box office on 028 71 384 444.Comedian Ruairi Woods brings hilarious new show ‘Panic Groom’ to the Alley was last modified: July 1st, 2019 by John2John2 Tags: Ruairi Woods to appear at Alley Theatre with all new ‘Panic Groom’ showSTRABANE born comedian Ruairi Woods is returning to his roots with his highly anticipated new solo show ‘Panic Groom’.After selling out the legendary Limelight Belfast, Ruairi arrives at The Alley Theatre in Strabane on July 19th with his hilarious new show for one night only! Set in the cabaret style auditorium, the performance promises to be a relaxed evening in a comedy club style filled with laughter and plenty of jokes about his home town. After his appearance on ‘The Blame Game’ and various sold out theatre shows Ruairi has gone from strength to strength further establishing himself amongst Northern Ireland’s elite comedians. Having supported many big comedy names such as Colin Geddis, Neil Delamere and Jake O’Kane, Ruairi will be the main attraction in his new ‘Panic Groom’ show.Ruairi’s live stand up shows are not to be missed so grab your ticket from The Alley Theatre website or Box Office now to avoid disappointment. last_img read more

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