By Laure Kellman and Elana Schor, Associated PressWASHINGTON (AP) — Days before the first Democratic presidential debates, Sen. Bernie Sanders and House progressives rolled out legislation to cancel all student debt, going farther than a signature proposal by Sen. Elizabeth Warren as the two jockey for support from the party’s liberal base.By canceling all student loans, Sanders says the proposal would address an economic burden for 45 million Americans. The key difference is that Warren’s plan considers the income of the borrowers, canceling $50,000 in debt for those earning less than $100,000 per year and affecting an estimated 42 million people in the U.S.Democratic presidential candidate U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., speaks during a forum on Friday, June 21, 2019, in Miami. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)Questions face both candidates about how to pay for all of that plus their proposals for free tuition at public colleges and universities. But the battling ideas highlight the rivalry between senators who have made fighting economic inequality the cornerstones of their 2020 presidential campaigns.Sanders vowed at a Monday news conference that his plan “completely eliminates student debt in this country and the absurdity of sentencing an entire generation, the millennial generation, to a lifetime of debt for the crime of doing the right thing. And that is going out and getting a higher education.” He appeared alongside the proposal’s House sponsors, Reps. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash., and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., with American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten also in attendance.His bill and Warren’s plan are part of their broader appeal to liberal voters on issues such as health care, technology and education.That appeal is likely to be fleshed out this week during the first Democratic debates. Twenty candidates are set for the showdown, with Warren part of the lineup on Wednesday and Sanders appearing a day later. The events come as Warren appears to be cutting into Sanders’ support from the left.Sanders’ effort at one-upmanship on student loans, named the College For All Act, would cancel $1.6 trillion of debt and save the average borrower about $3,000 a year, according to materials obtained by The Associated Press. The result would be a stimulus that allows millennials in particular to invest in homes and cars that they wouldn’t otherwise be able to afford. It would cost $2.2 trillion and be paid for — and then some — by a series of taxes on such things as stock trades, bonds and derivatives, according to the proposal.The universal debt relief is designed partly around the idea that it would mostly benefit Americans who can’t afford college tuition without loans, according to a senior Democratic aide who spoke on condition of anonymity because the legislation wasn’t yet public.Warren’s plan, which she plans to introduce as legislation alongside Rep. Jim Clyburn, D-S.C., would be paid for by imposing a 2% fee on fortunes greater than $50 million. Warren projects the levy would raise $2.75 trillion over 10 years, enough to pay for a universal child-care plan, free tuition at public colleges and universities, and student loan debt forgiveness for an estimated 42 million Americans — with revenue left over. Critics say top earners would find ways around such penalties.One key difference between Sanders’ and Warren’s plans is their differing treatment of high earners: Warren wrote that her plan would offer “no debt cancellation to people with household income above $250,000,” or the top 5%. Sanders would extend the benefit even to wealthy borrowers.Asked on Monday about that decision, Sanders told reporters that he believes in “universality” and added: “In other areas we are going to demand that the wealthy and large corporations start paying their fair share in taxes.”
Also:-Colin responds to Baker Mayfield calling him a ‘liar’-Anthony Davis’ break-up lunch-Top 10 ‘Kawhi-test’ people in sports history <span data-mce-type=”bookmark” style=”display: inline-block; width: 0px; overflow: hidden; line-height: 0;” class=”mce_SELRES_start”></span>Don’t crush Magic for firing peoplein a recent article looking into the dysfunction of the Lakers, Magic Johnson was hit particularly hard for general incompetence and was portrayed as a tyrant around the office.Colin thinks a lot of the criticism in the article is fair game, but Magic shouldn’t get crushed for firing employees after taking over an organization that had been in a tailspin for 5+ years. The reality is that when a culture needs to be changed, people are going to be fired, and those people are not going to be thrilled about it. There’s plenty to slam Magic for, but this is one instance where he was right. It’s just business. Guests:Nick Wright, Metta World Peace, Ric Bucher, and Damon Stoudamire
The team behind Xubuntu, have released a new update for the lightweight, GTK-based desktop environment built around Ubuntu. Xubuntu 19.04 is available since yesterday as a part of the Ubuntu 19.04 “Disco Dingo” launch. New features include latest Xfce package releases, new wallpapers/artwork, re-addition of GIMP to ISO, and various other changes. Xubuntu 19.04 also halts the production of x86 32-bit install images. New additions in Xubuntu 19.04 AptURL is now included in the latest release. It provides an easy way to link to and install packages from the repositories. It supports most browsers and works without any additional configuration when installed. GIMP (GNU Image Manipulating Program), a feature-packed image editor also ships with this release. It was notably absent from Xubuntu since 15.04 “Vivid Vervet”. The addition of LibreOffice Impress completes the Xubuntu office suite. Impress makes it possible for users to quickly and easily produce and present high-quality presentations. It comes with a number of great templates already installed, and hundreds more at the LibreOffice Extensions website. Updates to existing Xfce settings Xfce Application Finder The application Finder is ported to GTK 3 and searches are now fuzzy Menu items without a name are no longer displayed Applications can now be launched by pressing Enter once The Application Finder will no longer crash when toggling bookmarks A new preference was added to hide the category panel and it has improved application sorting and keyboard navigation Xfce Desktop Orientation option is added for icon arrangement Support for the RandR primary monitor is added Integration for the AccountsService wallpaper is added The crash with monitor changes is fixed. Also the icon size in the “Open With” submenu is fixed. Xfce Dictionary Crashes related to invalid URLs were resolved Web search links are only displayed when URLs are valid The link tooltip is now escaped, fixing display issues Xfce Panel Maximum icon size can be specified for improved control. Per-panel icon size preferences are added Numerous improvements are made to plugin display and sizing issues Support for alternative menu editors, with MenuLibre as default is added Fixed issues with clicking panel items at the top or left of the screen Fixed space reservation on the bottom and right of the screen Fixed crashes in the Directory Menu plugin and when removing certain plugins Fixed alignment of various plugin menus and the display of the binary clock Xfce Screenshooter Added width and height to the region select overlay Fixed delay functionality in the panel plugin and saving screenshots from the panel plugin Improved Imgur upload results dialog Improved support when XInput is not available and for HiDPI displays Xfce Session Replaced packaging recommendation on Xscreensaver with Light Locker Added support for MATE Screensaver and Xfce Screensaver Xfce System Load Plugin Reworked preferences dialog The default update interval was updated to 0.5 seconds Xfce Task Manager Builds now default to GTK 3, with GTK 2 being removed in the next release Improved UTF-8 normalization Fixed crash when closing processes Xubuntu Artwork New desktop wallpaper for 19.04 New release-agnostic wallpaper for Plymouth These are just a select few updates. For a more exhaustive version, head over to the blog post by Bluesabre. If you want to contribute, check out the Xubuntu contributor documentation to learn how to get started. Read Next Ubuntu 19.04 Disco Dingo Beta releases with support for Linux 5.0 and GNOME 3.32 Chromium blacklists nouveau graphics device driver for Linux and Ubuntu users Ubuntu 18.10 ‘Cosmic Cuttlefish’ releases with focus on AI development, multi-cloud and edge deployments, and much more
Friday, July 29, 2016 Share MONTREAL — Air Canada is reporting a lower profit for this year’s second quarter as it dramatically increased the number of routes offered by its main fleet and discount brand.“In the quarter, Air Canada and Air Canada Rouge launched 10 new international routes and 11 new transborder routes (to the U.S.) marking the most intensive period of expansion in Air Canada’s history,” chief executive Calin Rovinescu said.“Moreover, on June 30 we served more than 160,000 customers, setting an all-time record which we expect to surpass during the upcoming August long weekend.”Higher costs helped push the Montreal-based airline’s net income lower to $186 million – down from $296 million in the second quarter of 2015.The main reasons for the decline were an unfavourable swing in foreign exchange rates and two unusual items last year that didn’t recur.The quarter’s operating expenses were up $90 million, including $51 million from non-fuel expenses denominated in foreign currencies, as well as the cost of growing fleet capacity by 11%.More news: ‘Turn around year’ for TPI brings double-digit growthThe increase in operating expenses would have been higher without a $141-million decline in fuel expenses amid lower global prices for crude oil.Adjusted net income – which Air Canada says is a better measure of its overall financial performance – fell to $203 million or 72 cents per share from $250 million.Air Canada’s revenue was up by $44 million to nearly $3.46 billion, a one per cent increase from $3.41 billion.“Traffic growth in all five of our geographic markets exceeded last year’s strong growth,” Rovinescu said.“We continued to increase our revenue base in the face of a challenging revenue environment principally in the domestic and Atlantic markets and despite a generally weak global economy.” Air Canada’s revenue is up, so why are profits down? Tags: Air Canada, Profit Report The Canadian Press Posted by << Previous PostNext Post >>
Virgin Australia says Darwin International Airport upgrades will complement the airline’s expanding presence in the Northern Territory.Darwin International Airport will invest AU$60 million in new and upgraded facilities.The expansion project will include new Virgin Australia and Qantas Airways lounges, improved baggage systems and security screening areas; an expanded check-in area; vastly upgraded facilities for international travellers; and more space for new food and beverage and retail outlets.“The expansion will increase capacity dramatically, enabling us to improve efficiencies for airlines and improve the travelling experience for our passengers,” Darwin International Airport chief executive Ian Kew said.The airport’s construction process is expected to begin on 14 May 2013 and be completed by mid-2014.Virgin Australia welcomed the new development plans.“Over the past two years, Virgin Australia has been expanding its presence in the Northern Territory and making enhancements to improve the travel experience for our customers,” Virgin Australia’s chief operating officer Sean Donohue said.“To date we have launched Sydney-Darwin flights, commenced codeshare on SilkAir international flights from Darwin and announced a new 150-seat airport lounge to be launched in 2014.”Virgin Australia will also fly direct from Darwin to Broome and Kununurra, utilising Skywest Airlines.Source = e-Travel Blackboard: P.T. Airport invests AU$60 million to upgrade facilities.
Authorities on Monday said they had launched an investigation into allegations that a Russian woman was detained and mistreated when she arrived at Larnaca airport after saying she was intending to holiday in the north.Her treatment has prompted a slap on the wrist for Cypriot authorities by the Russian foreign ministry over the violation of its nationals’ rights upon entering Cyprus.A source within the foreign ministry told the Cyprus News Agency that the incident is being investigated with the “due seriousness”.The woman, Irina Shirobokova, said on her social media account on October 28, that she had experienced “hell” upon her arrival at Larnaca airport, where she was “unreasonably detained at the border, imprisoned, blackmailed and mocked” after informing authorities of her intention to cross to the north.Irina ShirobokovaShe said that after being told she could not cross to the north, she told authorities she was quite willing to stay in the Republic and rent a place to stay.Instead, she said, she was detained, intimidated by male officers, yelled at and threatened.Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said last Friday that the embassy in Cyprus will request Cypriot authorities to provide official information on the non-admission and the detention of Russian citizens at airports.She said the Russian embassy in Cyprus has registered a growing number of complaints by Russians in the past few months over the tighter requirements for documents that have to be submitted at Cypriot check points.According to Russian News Agency, Tass, Zakharova was replying to a question from journalists about the violation of Shirobokova’s rights.“We deem it absolutely inadmissible the rude and unceremonious treatment of law-abiding Russian citizens arriving for the purposes of tourism or for any other legal reason in the territory of Cyprus with all the duly executed documents,” Zakharova said.The diplomat said that the actions “by the personnel of the Cypriot border guard service towards I. Shirobokova may be qualified in a judicial manner and may be appealed against by the affected person in a court of law of the Republic of Cyprus upon the presence of the corresponding evidential base.”She said they urged the Republic to officially publish migration requirements on the websites of its consular missions in Russia.Tass reported that on November 1, Russia’s foreign ministry raised the issue with the Cyprus ambassador to Moscow, Leonidas Markides.The foreign ministry source expressed concerns over the impact of the incident on tourism from Russia.“It would be unfortunate for the positive image on the treatment and hospitality Russian citizens enjoy in Cyprus to be tarnished,” the foreign ministry source told CNA.By the end of October, more than 750,000 Russians had visited the island so far this year.Shirobokova said that she had made the same trip about a month ago with her parents and crossed to the north without a problem.This time however, she said, she was put initially in a cell where she was harassed by officials, and was then transferred to the prison cell at the airport, where there were many people “who had (faced) the same or even more stupid pretexts for detention”.Some of them, she said, had been detained for three to five days, including women with children, many girls and an elderly woman who went to visit her children and grandchildren.She said she was only released after being blackmailed into signing a paper saying that she would return the amount spent on her deportation, but it was not specified how much. She signed the document, she said, because she did not want to stay there for an unspecified period of time.She was deported to Moscow, along with another young woman who had been detained at the airport for four days. She said they were escorted to the plane like convicts, and that on their arrival in Moscow Russian services confirmed that everything that they went through in Cyprus was illegal.“Even if there are any legal reasons for keeping people, where is the explanation of cruelty and bullying?” she asked.The incident adds to the list of complaints over detentions at the airport of persons wishing to cross to the north and of bad treatment by officers.After some 35 Israeli visitors were denied entry in September 2017 after they said they were going to cross to the north, it emerged that this was on the instructions of the foreign ministry. Non-EU nationals arriving in Cyprus are asked to state their place of residence in the government-controlled areas during their visit. If they state they intend on staying in property belonging to Greek Cypriots in the north, they are denied entry. Officers at the airport have lists with this property, prepared by the foreign ministry, with the name of each hotel, and the area they are located in, in the north.On the same day, around 15 Lebanese tourists were turned away for the same reason. Around a month later, some 40 Israelis who had arrived in Larnaca on their way to the north were also expelled.Earlier in the same year, in April, 13 children from Serbia who were to perform at a festival in the north, were also denied entry at Larnaca.The foreign ministry’s instructions seem to remain in place, even though attorney-general, Costas Clerides, opined last year that the policy is deeply flawed legally. He has argued that no legal basis exists for barring entry into the Republic on the grounds that a foreign national plans to stay in a Greek Cypriot property in the north.You May LikePlarium I Vikings: Free Online GamePlay this for 1 minute and see why everyone is addictedPlarium I Vikings: Free Online GameUndoPopularEverythingColorado Mom Adopted Two Children, Months Later She Learned Who They Really ArePopularEverythingUndoGundry MD Total Restore SupplementU.S. Cardiologist: It’s Like a Pressure Wash for Your InsidesGundry MD Total Restore SupplementUndo Three arrested in connection with hotel theftsUndoPensioner dies after crash on Paphos-Polis roadUndoRemand for pair in alleged property fraud (Updated)Undoby Taboolaby Taboola
Categories: News State Rep. Nancy Jenkins is working with the state Attorney General Bill Schuette to combat human trafficking in Michigan.Jenkins and several other state lawmakers will serve on the Michigan Advisory Commission on Human Trafficking to develop a comprehensive set of laws and policies that will help combat the growing crime threat. Law enforcement officials and activists also will participate in the commission.Rep. Jenkins with Attorney General Bill Schuette while announcing efforts to end human trafficking in MichiganThe goals of this commission are to raise awareness and deter human trafficking with tougher laws that protect victims’ rights.“To effectively combat this horrific crime, which has sadly grown in prevalence in Michigan, we must work to develop policies at all levels of government to fight the problem in a coordinated way,” said Jenkins, R-Clayton. “The complexity of sex trafficking crimes makes it a difficult challenge to tackle, but I am committed to finding solutions that will help successfully combat this atrocity and deliver real results.”Reports show that nearly 40 percent of trafficking cases involve the sexual exploitation of children.“The simple truth is that the perpetrators in these cases often get away, while victims are charged with prostitution, exploitation, or illegal immigration,” Jenkins said. “We must put an end to the enslavement of Michigan residents.”Residents can educate themselves by visiting the human trafficking section of the Attorney General’s website, www.michigan.gov/humantrafficking, to be able to recognize the signs of traffickers and provide tips to law enforcement.##### 14Mar Rep. Jenkins working to end human trafficking
Gov. Rick Snyder ordinarily does not participate in “selfie” pictures, but Evan Dean managed to get one with the state’s leader following a bill signing ceremony this morning at the Romney Building in Lansing. Dean, a seventh grade student in Grand Ledge Public Schools, joined his sister and father Eric, a legislative director for Rep. Holly Hughes, in watching Gov. Snyder sign House Bill 4059, which allows retired teachers to return to the classroom as substitutes and instructors in critical shortage subjects without affecting their retirement benefits. After several pictures for Capitol photographers including Rep. Hughes, Gov. Snyder and several school district superintendents, Evan approached the governor and asked him for a “selfie” and Snyder agreed. Categories: Hughes News,News 16Dec Grand Ledge student gets a ‘selfie’ with Gov. Snyder after bill signing ceremony
23Jan Farrington: Salary database puts public information in people’s hands Categories: Diana Farrington News,News State Rep. Diana Farrington today praised the decision to make the salaries of state representatives and their staff members public on the House of Representatives website, saying it is another step toward making government accountable to people.Farrington, of Utica, said posting the salary information is just one example of how the Legislature has made transparency a priority.“The simple truth is that you deserve information on how your tax dollars are spent, and this is yet one more example of how state government is working hard to make this information easily available,” Farrington said. “You should know how we are using the money you entrust to us.”The salary database information is available at http://house.mi.gov/PDFs/salaries.pdf .##### Government transparency should be a priority
Roads, bridges, underground water pipes are a priority Categories: Cole News,News 19Jul Rep. Cole: Gaylord project shows commitment to transportation system State Rep. Triston Cole today said a Michigan Department of Transportation project to resurface parts of M-32 and I-75 business loop in Gaylord began this week.Cole, of Mancelona, who serves as chair of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, said the $826,000 project will resurface M-32 (Main Street) from east of Hayes Road to Wisconsin Avenue. The I-75 business loop (South Otsego Avenue) resurfacing runs from Second Street to Wisconsin Avenue/Grandview Boulevard. Included in the project is reconstruction of sidewalk ramps to comply with Americans with Disability requirements, improving safety for pedestrians.Cole said the repairs are necessary to help people safely travel to other locations in Northern Michigan.“Gaylord is essentially the gateway to Northern Michigan, and people traveling to Boyne Falls and Petoskey and Walloon Lake and Lake Charlevoix pass through Gaylord to link with U.S. 131,” Cole said. “By making these improvements, families can more safely get to their vacation spots and commerce can travel to the Northern Lower Peninsula on smoother roads.”Cole said the road project is one of many taking place across the state thanks to the priority placed on infrastructure repairs by the Legislature.“This is just one of dozens of road and bridge projects that are taking place across the state this summer,” Cole said. “The Legislature allocated more money to the transportation system than ever before, and will add to that amount in coming years. These projects make roads safer for families and easier for trucks to travel on, growing our economy.”Cole said the work will require daytime single-lane closures with traffic shifts for the sidewalk reconstruction, and nighttime closures with traffic shifts for resurfacing. One lane will remain open in each direction at all times.“We are also strengthening the warranties for roadwork because we expect these projects to last longer than in the past,” Cole said. “It is very discouraging when a road is rebuilt or resurfaced only to see it fall apart two or three years after the work. By ensuring warranties are more than sufficient, we are making the very best use of the taxpayer money entrusted to us.”#####
29Nov LaFave: New plan would repeal Michigan’s bottle deposit law Categories: LaFave News Ending deposit would boost community recycling programs State Rep. Beau LaFave has introduced legislation as part of a new plan to provide a much-needed boost to community recycling programs by ending Michigan’s 40-year-old bottle deposit law.LaFave, of Iron Mountain, said although the “bottle bill” helped reduce litter in the 1980s and 90s, it’s now hurting recycling. At just 15 percent, Michigan’s residential recycling rate is one of the lowest in the nation.“Aluminum and PET plastic are being pulled out of the recycling stream by our bottle deposit system,” LaFave said. “Without these valuable materials, it is difficult for recyclers to sustain programs in communities throughout the Upper Peninsula.”Under the plan, the state’s bottle deposit law would end on Dec. 31, 2022. People who purchase a product with a deposit before that date would have three years to return the container for a refund through the old bottle return system.Prior to the repeal, additional money from unclaimed deposits would be directed into local recycling programs, including support for recycling carts, education and material sorting facilities.In addition to hindering community recycling programs, LaFave said the outdated bottle deposit system puts an unnecessary burden on local businesses, which face labor costs as well as problems recouping money when people return cans purchased across the border in Wisconsin.“It really adds up. Some locally owned grocery stores shell out tens of thousands of dollars from fraudulent bottle returns every year,” LaFave said. “This is money they could be reinvesting in our community, but instead it gets tied up in a months-long bureaucratic reimbursement process.“Phasing the bottle bill out would remove this pressure from local stores and allow us to focus on more inclusive recycling programs that are better for Michigan families, the economy and our environment.”The legislation, House Bills 6532-36, has been referred to the House Michigan Competitiveness Committee for consideration.###
Share19TweetShare12Email31 SharesNovember 29, 2016; American ProspectOnce, the New York Times praised the way President Obama championed workers rights as his term waned. Now, the American Prospect laments that the next U.S. Labor Secretary will most likely roll back Obama’s pro-worker executive orders and regulations. Some names shortlisted as possible Trump picks are Victoria Lipnic, Lou Beretta, and Scott Walker. Another name yet lingering in the media is Andy Puzder, the millionaire CEO of CKR, the company that owns fast-food burger chains Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s.Puzder has championed every aspect of right-wing trickle-down economics. Rolling back taxation and regulation for the rich and corporations will lift the economy, he’s argued, as well as getting rid of all those minimum wage hikes. […] As the Fight for 15 has called on policymakers and CEOs to increase pay for low-wage workers, Puzder has become the tribune of low-wage employers.”One aspect seems clear: As Labor Secretary, Puzder could be the Fight for 15’s worst nightmare, even as SEIU-backed strikes to advance a $15 minimum wage proliferate. Not only is Puzder described as “a sworn foe of raising the minimum wage,” he is also a “harsh conservative critic of Obama.” Referring to last Tuesday’s largest Fight for 15 protest, he told Fox Business that, “If your concern is creating entry-level jobs for young Americans, then a $15 minimum wage is something you should be protesting against…if your objective is to bolster and support the unions, then you should be protesting in favor of a $15 minimum wage. […]I think most people are concerned about young people.”However, the American Prospect cites the Economic Policy Institute, which says the “vast-majority of minimum wage workers are not teenagers; in fact, the average worker is 35. More than one-quarter have children and the average minimum-wage worker earns half their family’s total income.”Puzder is also said to strongly oppose the NLRB’s recent joint employer standard that would hold corporations responsible for any franchisees’ wage and hour violations. A former chairman of the GOP economic policy subcommittee, he blames government assistance programs for keeping workers in poverty while arguing that “expanding access to overtime pay would diminish the prestige of entry-level management jobs.” As member of a prominent group promoting business conservatism (Job Creators Network) that espouses the belief that any minimum wage increase “would kill jobs,” Puzder is said to have ties with “anti-union Astroturf operative Richard Berman.” In addition, the foreword of a book he co-authored (Job Creation: How it Really Works and Government Doesn’t Understand It) was written by “supply-side economics guru Arthur Laffer.”Talk Poverty reported that last year, the CEO earned in a day more than one of his full-time fast food employees would make in a year ($17,192 versus $15,130). That said, he endorses his preference for automating fast-food jobs due to what the American Prospect describes as his feelings about the “cumbersome costs entailed in paying human beings.” He also accuses his employees of turning down promotions and additional hours because they do not want to lose their government benefits; meanwhile, the American Prospect argues “the main reason why his workers must rely on government assistance is that companies like his pay poverty wages and limit access to full-time hours.”Puzder prefers an Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) policy that puts the responsibility more on the government to “bolster income for the working poor with federal dollars.” Judi Conti, coordinator at the National Employment Law Project, argues against what she calls a form of corporate welfare that no full-time worker should need, calling it hypocritical for corporate conservatives to expect taxpayers to cover such costs.Puzder further criticized Obama’s overtime rule to Forbes. He argued against changing the overtime rule to allow managers who make between $23,660 and $47,476 (the upgraded threshold) to earn extra money for more hours; to him, the rule would not only end up reducing hours, salaries, and bonuses but diminish a manager’s “sense of ownership” and “prestige” of not being a “glorified crew member.” Ross Eisenbrey of the Economic Policy Institute debunks this argument; rather, he counter-argues that companies have successfully absorbed overtime pay in the past. Fast-food executives could easily raise the prices of their restaurants’ sandwiches, as their competitors would be obliged to do the same. (Or, of course, they could also redirect a portion of top executive pay towards covering the costs.)The mindset of Puzder appears a 180-degree shift from current Labor Secretary, Tom Perez, who has ardently argued on behalf of low-wage workers. As Conti put it, “Perez gets up every day to make lives better for those who are struggling,” while she believes, Puzder would “ make life better for millionaires and billionaires…at the expense of those who are struggling.”Puzder has not only been one of Trump’s major campaign funders, but is also his so-called “trickle-down agenda economic advisor” who responded to Entrepreneur about his own company’s advertisements of “scantily clad models eating 1,000-calorie-plus burgers” as being “very American.” Noting Puzder’s taste for political incorrectness, the American Prospect states that he told a Fox news reporter that working on Trump’s administration would be “the most fun you could have with your clothes on.” Perhaps not for everyone.—Noreen OhlrichShare19TweetShare12Email31 Shares
French pay TV operator Orange is expanding its 3D content after striking a deal with broadcaster myZen.tv.The France Telecom-backed operator will launch a raft of lifestyle content from myZen.tv on Orange channel 30. The programmes will be available for free for HD subscribers that have 3D television and glasses. The two companies had previously worked together on a series of well being content distributed in 2D, but this is the first move into 3D programming.“With new projects including sport, cinema, royal weddings, nature, and now well-being, Orange is showing its capacity for innovation in terms of the development and broadcast of 3D content,” Orange noted in a statement.
The emergence of over-the-top TV platforms is unlikely to significantly disrupt the traditional dual revenue stream model of pay TV content providers, according to Niall Curran, chief operating officer of Liberty Global’s content arm, Chellomedia.Speaking at Informa’s Digital TV Summit yesterday, Curran said that Chellomedia “still sees strong growth in pay TV overall”.“OTT and non-linear TV viewing is not disruptive – it’s still going to be very small relative to traditional pay TV,” he said. Pointing out that data caps could have a huge impact on how affordable video was for consumption on mobile devices, he said that the whole OTT space was likely to remain in a state of flux for some time to come. However, he said, connected TVs were more likely to present a significant new distribution mechanism. This did not mean, he said that the traditional pay TV business model would be threatened.“I’m willing to bet on the emergence of players that I can do business with in a similar style to the one I already have,” he said. “We see our role as supporting innovation by [existing pay TV distributors]. We do not see it has an opportunity to bypass those distributors. No good will come from making more stuff free.”Curran said he did not expect any massive change in Chellomedia’s existing distribution split, which currently comprises 45% cable operators, 25% DTH, 10% IPTV and 20% mixed platforms. He said it was possible to imagine that new OTT platforms could account for 10% of the overall pie in the future.
Danish media company Egmont International has acquired the remaining 50% stake in Norwegian commercial broadcaster TV2.The company already owns half of TV2 and has bought the 50% it does not own from A-pressen for NOK2.1 billion (€275 million). This is part of Egmont’s strategy to move further into the television business; the publishing company already owns production company Nordisk Film.Egmont CEO Steffen Kragh said: “As co-founder and part-owner through more than 20 years, Egmont has always been concerned with the long-term development of TV2. As TV is a key element in our strategy, it was an obvious choice for us to purchase. Today, Egmont makes a significant strategic leap towards more TV and more live pictures in our business.”A-pressen CEO Thor Gjermund Eriksen said: ”As we now sell our part of TV2, we are content to sell to a company that has a comprehensive knowledge of TV2, and that has shown over the years that they are a solid and long-term co-owner, who respects editorial freedom and publicistic principles.”
Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund has become a 2% shareholder in Vivendi after investing over €350 million over in the French media and telecom giant over the past few months, according to local reports.Qatar held 25 million Vivendi shares at the end of February, making it the ninth largest shareholder in the group.Vivendi is the majority owner of Canal Plus, which is currently facing Qatari-owned Al Jazeera as a competitor after the latter’s acquisition of French and international football rights.French conglomerate Bolloré, which currently holds 1.1% of Vivendi’s shares, will increase its stake to 2.9% after the acquisition of channels Direct 8 and Direct Star by Canal Plus, for which it will receive 22.4 million Vivendi shares.
A group of Russian media rights holders comprising producer and channel provider Sistema Mass-Media and production companies Amedia, Bazalevs and Direktsiya Kino are in discussions to establish a single unified monitoring service to find illegal copies of content on the internet.The companies want to team up to avoid duplicating their efforts in tackling the problem of copyright violation in a country notorious for internet piracy.The four groups are in talks to create a single technology company that can monitor the web and track down illegal copies of content or to jointly contract monitoring out to a third party provider. According to local reports, possible candidates include Webkontrol, a company that already searches for pirated content on the internet on a commercial basis.
Opera Mediaworks has partnered with Viggle to create a new mobile ad unit that is designed to communicate with a user’s DVR to set up a programme recording. The Add-to-DVR technology is designed to give TV network advertisers new call-to-action capabilities as part of their mobile campaigns, allowing viewers to click to set a recording.“The technology brings to life the idea of the ‘connected home’ for entertainment advertisers,” according to Opera, and is adapted from Viggle’s Reminder technology.“The Add-to-DVR ad unit enables networks to promote and drive consumers to view their programming easily, right from the ad itself. With a simple click on a banner advertisement, a user can engage Add-to-DVR to effectively initiate a ‘record’ button right then and there,” said Scott Swanson, president of global advertising sales at Opera Mediaworks.The firm is currently running a US pilot campaign using the technology that allows advertisers to target potential viewers based on demographic, contextual content or social-media activity.A fully-owned subsidiary of Opera Software, Opera Mediaworks is a mobile ad platform for brands, is headquartered in California and has offices worldwide.Viggle is an entertainment marketing and rewards platform. Its app rewards its members for watching TV shows and discovering new music.
As its push into original kids content deepens, Amazon Prime Instant Video has unveiled its latest pilot slate for children.On June 26 four animated pilots and two live-action shows from Amazon Studios will debut to Amazon VOD subscribers in the US, UK and Germany. Those that rate well with kids and parents will be taken to series.The animated shows are Lost in Oz, an action adventure series featuring characters from The Wizard of Oz, from Mark Warshaw and Darin Mark; Lily the Unicorn, which comes from The Jim Henson Company; Bear in Underwear, which is based on Todd Goldman’s books about the hijinks of a forest bear with a slightly skewed point of viewer; and The Adventures of Knickerbock Teetertop, a series from Adam Wilson and Melanie Wilson LaBracio.On the live-action front is A History of Radness, which follows “the authentic experience of aspiring musicians forming their band” and comes from Hanna Montana’s Andrew Green; and The Kicks, based on Olympic gold medalist Alex Morgan’s book series and about a female star American Football player who overhauls her new school’s poor team.All the new pilots target 6-11s apart from The Adventures of Knickerbock Teetertop, which is for preschoolers.Previous Amazon pilots seasons have led to the commission of shows such as Tumble Leaf.