Art for episode 1255

1255: Mask = Love

Adam Curry & John C. Dvorak

3h 5m
June 28th, 2020
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Executive Producers: Ross Easterling, Sir Real Estate of the North Coast, Jeffrey Lutz, Korey Getty

Associate Executive Producers: Sir Locybin, Kat Emery, Matthew Zielinski

Cover Artist: Cesium 137

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Performing Rights
Tom Petty's Widow, Daughters Settle Dispute Over Singer's Estate - Rolling Stone
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 00:04
A settlement has been reached in the Tom Petty estate battle between the rock legend's widow and his two daughters from a previous marriage.
This past spring '-- Petty's daughters Adria Petty and Annakim Violette '-- sued Dana York Petty for $5 million after claiming that the widow superseded the daughters' rights to ''equal participation'' over decisions involving the singer's estate and catalog.
However, legal documents obtained by Rolling Stone show that both parties, as well as Petty's long-time manager Anthony Dimitriades, reached a ''settlement agreement'' on December 10th in regard to the estate battle. Details of the settlement were not revealed. A representative for Dana Petty would not comment on the settlement, while reps for Petty's daughters did not immediately respond to Rolling Stone.
The estate disagreement reportedly impacted the release of the posthumous collection An American Treasure and scuttled a planned 25th anniversary edition of Petty's acclaimed 1994 album Wildflowers; the status of that box set reissue remains unknown.
Alex Weingarten, an attorney for Petty's daughters, said in a statement to Rolling Stone at the time, ''Tom Petty wanted his music and his legacy to be controlled equally by his daughters, Adria and Annakim, and his wife, Dana. Dana has refused Tom's express wishes and insisted instead upon misappropriating Tom's life's work for her own selfish interests. After countless efforts to resolve this matter amicably and out of court, we could no longer stand idly by and watch Dana disrespect Tom's wishes, his music and his legacy.''
Dana Petty's attorney Adam Streisand countered in a statement: ''This misguided and meritless lawsuit sadly demonstrates exactly why Tom Petty designated his wife to be the sole trustee with authority to manage his estate. Dana will not allow destructive nonsense like this to distract her from protecting her husband's legacy.''
Rolling Stones Threaten Trump With Lawsuit Over Rally Music - Rolling Stone
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 00:17
The Rolling Stones are taking ''further steps'' to prevent Donald Trump from using their music at his rallies after the president's campaign ignored the previous cease-and-desist letters. ''This could be the last time Trump uses any Jagger/ Richards songs on his campaigns,'' the band's rep said in a statement.
In a statement Saturday, the band announced that their legal team and performing rights organization BMI sent another warning to Trump's campaign that, if the president continued to use the band's music, he could face a lawsuit.
''The BMI have notified the Trump campaign on behalf of the Stones that the unauthorized use of their songs will constitute a breach of its licensing agreement,'' the Rolling Stones rep added. ''If Donald Trump disregards the exclusion and persists then he would face a lawsuit for breaking the embargo and playing music that has not been licensed.''
Despite previous warnings during the 2016 presidential campaign '-- '' The Rolling Stones do not endorse Donald Trump. You Can't Always Get What You Want was used without the band's permission,'' the Stones tweeted in July 2016 '-- the Trump team still played the Rolling Stones' ''You Can't Always Get What You Want'' at the president's lightly attended rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma on June 20th.
As BMI told Deadline, ''The Trump campaign has a Political Entities License which authorizes the public performance of more than 15 million musical works in BMI's repertoire wherever campaign events occur. There is a provision, however, that allows BMI to exclude musical works from the license if a songwriter or publisher objects to its use by a campaign. BMI has received such an objection and sent a letter notifying the Trump campaign that the Rolling Stones' works have been removed from the campaign license, and advising the campaign that any future use of these musical compositions will be in breach of its license agreement with BMI.''
The Tulsa rally similarly drew the ire of Tom Petty's family, who similarly stated after the Trump rally featured ''I Won't Back Down,'' ''Trump was in no way authorized to use this song to further a campaign that leaves too many Americans and common sense behind. Both the late Tom Petty and his family firmly stand against racism and discrimination of any kind. Tom Petty would never want a song of his used for a campaign of hate. He liked to bring people together.''
BMI Warns Trump Campaign To Stop Playing Rolling Stones Song At Campaign Rallies '' Deadline
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 00:23
UPDATE: On Saturday, the Rolling Stones released a statement, threatening to sue. ''This could be the last time President Donald Trump uses Stones songs. Despite cease & desist directives to Donald Trump in the past, the Rolling Stones are taking further steps to exclude him using their songs at any of his future political campaigning. The Stones' legal team is working with BMI. BMI has notified the Trump campaign on behalf of the Stones that the unauthorized use of their songs will constitute a breach of its licensing agreement. If Donald Trump disregards the exclusion and persists, then he would face a lawsuit for breaking the embargo and playing music that has not been licensed.''
EXCLUSIVE: We finally might have heard the last of the Rolling Stones' ''You Can't Always Get What You Want'' at President Donald Trump's campaign rallies, which was played as his walk-off theme at Saturday's sparsely attended rally in Tulsa, OK.
Related StoryBrendon Urie Objects To Donald Trump Campaign's Use Of 'High Hopes' At Phoenix Event: 'Stop Playing My Song'
The Stones first objected to Trump's use of the song during the 2016 presidential campaign, but he has continued to use it without their permission. Now he's been put on notice by BMI '' the giant performing rights organization '' that there might be legal consequences if he persists.
Tom Petty's Family Objects To Donald Trump Campaign's Use Of 'I Won't Back Down' At Tulsa Rally
BMI informed the Trump campaign this week that the unauthorized use of the song will constitute a breach of its licensing agreement. ''The Trump campaign has a Political Entities License which authorizes the public performance of more than 15 million musical works in BMI's repertoire wherever campaign events occur,'' a BMI spokesperson told Deadline. ''There is a provision, however, that allows BMI to exclude musical works from the license if a songwriter or publisher objects to its use by a campaign. BMI has received such an objection and sent a letter notifying the Trump campaign that the Rolling Stones' works have been removed from the campaign license, and advising the campaign that any future use of these musical compositions will be in breach of its license agreement with BMI.''
BMIAsked if the Trump campaign has responded to its letter, the BMI spokesperson said, ''Not as of this date.''
A spokesperson for ABKCO, the song's publisher, told Deadline that it had ''teamed up'' with Mick Jagger and Keith Richards to ask BMI to tell the Trump campaign to stop using their classic 1969 song at the president's rallies.
BMI's Music License for Political Entities or Organizations (read it here) states: ''One or more works or catalogs of works by one or more BMI songwriters may be excluded from this license if notice is received by BMI that such songwriters object to the use of their copyrighted works for the intended uses by licensee. BMI shall provide written notice to licensee of any such exclusion'' '' which is whatBMI did this week.
The license also notes that ''Any performance by licensee of an excluded work or catalog of works at any event or function following receipt of such notice shall be covered by the grant and shall be deemed a material breach of this agreement, even if the venue or establishment at which the event or function takes place is separately licensed to publicly perform the works or catalog of works. Licensee shall not rely on, or use as a defense, any such separate license or claim arising out of any performance of such excluded works.''
Rihanna Shuts Down Use Of Her Music At Donald Trump's ''Tragic Rallies''
Some politicians think they can circumvent the objections of artists by claiming that the use of their songs is licensed not by their campaigns but rather through the licensing agreements of the venues at which they speak.
The BOK Center in Tulsa has such a venue licensing agreement with BMI, but the BMI spokesperson told Deadline that it ''licenses political campaigns and events through its Political Entities or Organizations License, which clearly states that a campaign cannot rely on a venue license to authorize its performance of an excluded work. Therefore, a political campaign cannot and should not try to circumvent BMI's withdrawal of musical works under its Political Entities License by attempting to rely on another license.''
Neil Young To Donald Trump: Comes A Time To Quit Using My Song '' Now!
Numerous other acts have publicly objected to the use of their songs at Trump's campaign rallies over the last four years, including Neil Young, whose ''Rockin' in the Free World'' was played when Trump announced his candidacy after descending an escalator at the Trump Tower in New York in June 2015; Queen for his use of ''We Are the Champions'' at the 2016 Republican National Convention in Cleveland; Rihanna, for the use of her hit song ''Don't Stop the Music'' at a 2018 Trump rally in Tallahassee, FL; Pharrell Williams, whose Oscar-nominated ''Happy'' was played at a Trump rally hours after 11 people were killed at a Pittsburgh synagogue in October 2018; Panic! at the Disco's Brendon Urie, whose ''High Hopes'' played at Trump's Phoenix event this week; and the estate of the Tom Petty, whose ''I Won't Back Down'' also was played at Trump's rally last week in Tulsa.
The Trump campaign claimed that it had the right to play ''Rockin' in the Free World'' at his campaign events through a licensing agreement with ASCAP. Like BMI, ASCAP has a Political Campaign License agreement that provides ''a blanket license to perform any or all of the millions of compositions in the ASCAP repertory. However, ASCAP members may ask ASCAP to exclude specific songs from a particular political campaign's license. In that event, ASCAP will notify the campaign of the excluded works.''
Brendon Urie Objects To Donald Trump Campaign's Use Of 'High Hopes' At Phoenix Event: ''Stop Playing My Song''
When Young's manager informed the Trump campaign that its use of ''Rockin' in the Free World'' was ''not authorized,'' Trump's then-campaign manager Corey Lewandowski said that the campaign ''will respect his wish'' to not use the song ''because it's the right thing to do.''
Earlier this week, Petty's family posted a statement on the late-singer's Twitter account saying that the Trump campaign's use of his song is ''in no way authorized,'' adding that he ''would never want a song of his used for a campaign of hate.''
Also this week, actress-singer Betty Buckley, a star of the original Broadway production of Cats, urged composer Andrew Lloyd Webber to help stop the playing of the song ''Memory'' at Trump rallies. She reiterated the sentiment today:
Wish they'd order them to stop playing ''Memory''!
'-- Betty Buckley (@BettyBuckley) June 26, 2020
After Rihanna demanded that her songs no longer be played at Trump's ''tragic rallies,'' BMI removed her music from its blanket Political Entities License agreement and sent the Trump campaign a letter saying that ''any performance of Rihanna's musical works by the Trump campaign from this date forward is not authorized by BMI.''
When Queen's famous anthem was played when Trump was nominated in 2016 at the Republican National Convention, the band said it was ''an unauthorized use '... against our wishes.''
Donald Trump Played 'Happy' At Rally After Synagogue Rampage & Pharrell Williams Is Not Happy
ASCAP campaign licenses
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 22:56
USING MUSIC IN POLITICAL CAMPAIGNS: What you should knowGUIDELINES PREPARED BY ASCAPMusic use requires planning and securing the appropriate permissions. ASCAP has put together this list of Q & As to help you navigate your way to campaign success through the proper use of music.WHAT IS THE VALUE OF MUSIC IN A POLITICAL CAMPAIGN?Music possesses a unique power to inspire, motivate and energize a campaign. And music has been used in campaigns since the founding of our country. George Washington effectively used ''God Save Great Washington'' (a parody of ''God Save the King''), Franklin Roosevelt used ''Happy Days Are Here Again'' (written by ASCAP members Milton Ager and Jack Yellen), Dwight Eisenhower used ''They Like Ike'' (written by ASCAP founding member Irving Berlin) and President Barack Obama used ''Signed, Sealed, Delivered I'm Yours'' (written by ASCAP member Stevie Wonder) just to name a few of the Presidential campaign success stories.WHAT IS THE ISSUE AND WHY ARE MUSIC USE GUIDELINES IMPORTANT?It has become increasingly significant for political candidates in the public spotlight to conduct their campaigns in compliance with copyright law. Recent controversy over unauthorized music use has created unwanted negative publicity for candidates that want to do the right thing but many times require clarification on their legal obligations relating to music use. Knowing these guidelines is good for all involved.IF A CAMPAIGN WANTS TO USE A SONG IN A CAMPAIGN COMMERCIAL, WHAT PERMISSIONS DOES IT NEED?This kind of use may involve rights such as synchronization of music with video and the possible use of the master sound recording. The campaign will need to contact the song's publisher and possibly the artist's record label to negotiate the appropriate licenses with them. And remember, campaign videos containing music that are posted on the internet also require these licenses. Once the commercial has been produced, the TV and radio stations, and any websites that transmit the commercial, must have a public performance license.WHAT IS ASCAP AND WHAT IS ITS ROLE?ASCAP is the country's first and largest performing rights organization, representing more than 11.5 million musical works from over 725,000 songwriters and composers and their music publishers. ASCAP represents the non-exclu-sive public performance right for these works, and is responsible for licensing their public performance on radio, television, cable, satellite, the internet, on mobile devices and in venues and establishments. ASCAP tracks the use of music, identifies the copyright owners and distributes the appropriate royalties. ASCAP is a membership organization operating on a not-for-profit basis that is dedicated to protecting its members' rights and obtaining fair compensation for the public performance of their copyrighted musical works.ASCAP provides an important income stream for its members and allows music users an efficient and effective way to obtain the necessary permission to perform music for their business or their other public communication needs.
WHAT LICENSES DOES A CAMPAIGN NEED TO PLAY MUSIC AT CAMPAIGN EVENTS?First, while many venues have proper ''public performance'' licenses, as a general rule the ASCAP licenses for convention centers, arenas and hotels exclude music use during conventions, expositions and campaign events. If a campaign is holding many events at dozens of different venues, it may be easier for the campaign itself to obtain a public performance license from ASCAP (and possibly the other US performing rights organizations if the music is licensed through one of them). This license is issued to an individual candidate's specific campaign and extends only until the candidate is sworn into office '-- not for the candidate's full term in office. Having such licenses in place would guarantee that, no matter where you have a campaign stop, the performances of music at the events would be in compliance with copyright law.CAN POLITICAL CAMPAIGNS RELY ON VENUE LICENSES?Because licenses for venues such as convention centers and hotels generally exclude rights to perform music at events organized by a third party, political campaigns need their own ASCAP license to use the works in its repertory. This makes sense because the third party organizer is the main beneficiary of the performances, not the venue, and is in the best position to control the performances. For this reason, event organizers (in this case political campaigns) have traditionally assumed responsibility for obtaining the permission from the rights holders.WHAT MUSIC IS COVERED BY THE ASCAP LICENSE FOR POLITICAL CAMPAIGNS?The ASCAP Political Campaign License agreement provides a blanket license to perform any or all of the millions of compositions in the ASCAP repertory. However, ASCAP members may ask ASCAP to exclude specific songs from a particular political campaign's license. In that event, ASCAP will notify the campaign of the excluded works. HOW CAN THE CAMPAIGN PROTECT ITSELF AGAINST THESE OTHER CLAIMS?If a campaign wants to eliminate any of these claims, particularly if the campaign wants to use a song as its theme, they should contact the management for the artists and/or songwriters of the songs in question and obtain their permission. In addition to permission from management, a separate negotiated license may be required by the publisher of the composition, and if the master recording is used, the record label that controls that recording.IF THE CAMPAIGN EVENTS ARE PROPERLY LICENSED, CAN THE CAMPAIGN STILL BE CRITICIZED OR EVEN SUED BY AN ARTIST FOR PLAYING HIS OR HER SONG AT AN EVENT?Yes. If an artist is concerned that their music has been associated with a political campaign, he or she may be able to take legal action even if the campaign has the appropriate performance licenses. The campaign could potentially be in violation of other laws. Specifically, the campaign could be subject to claims based on:1. The artist's Right of Publicity, which in many states provides image protection for famous people or artists2. The Lanham Act, which covers confusion or dilution of a trademark (such as a band or artist name) through its unauthorized use3. False Endorsement, where use of the artist's identifying work implies that the artist supports a product or candidateAs a general rule, a campaign should be aware that, in most cases, the more closely a song is tied to the ''image'' or message of the campaign, the more likely it is that the recording artist or songwriter of the song could object to the song's usage by the campaign.
BMI Warns Trump Campaign To Stop Playing Rolling Stones Song At Campaign Rallies '' Deadline
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 00:23
UPDATE: On Saturday, the Rolling Stones released a statement, threatening to sue. ''This could be the last time President Donald Trump uses Stones songs. Despite cease & desist directives to Donald Trump in the past, the Rolling Stones are taking further steps to exclude him using their songs at any of his future political campaigning. The Stones' legal team is working with BMI. BMI has notified the Trump campaign on behalf of the Stones that the unauthorized use of their songs will constitute a breach of its licensing agreement. If Donald Trump disregards the exclusion and persists, then he would face a lawsuit for breaking the embargo and playing music that has not been licensed.''
EXCLUSIVE: We finally might have heard the last of the Rolling Stones' ''You Can't Always Get What You Want'' at President Donald Trump's campaign rallies, which was played as his walk-off theme at Saturday's sparsely attended rally in Tulsa, OK.
Related StoryBrendon Urie Objects To Donald Trump Campaign's Use Of 'High Hopes' At Phoenix Event: 'Stop Playing My Song'
The Stones first objected to Trump's use of the song during the 2016 presidential campaign, but he has continued to use it without their permission. Now he's been put on notice by BMI '' the giant performing rights organization '' that there might be legal consequences if he persists.
Tom Petty's Family Objects To Donald Trump Campaign's Use Of 'I Won't Back Down' At Tulsa Rally
BMI informed the Trump campaign this week that the unauthorized use of the song will constitute a breach of its licensing agreement. ''The Trump campaign has a Political Entities License which authorizes the public performance of more than 15 million musical works in BMI's repertoire wherever campaign events occur,'' a BMI spokesperson told Deadline. ''There is a provision, however, that allows BMI to exclude musical works from the license if a songwriter or publisher objects to its use by a campaign. BMI has received such an objection and sent a letter notifying the Trump campaign that the Rolling Stones' works have been removed from the campaign license, and advising the campaign that any future use of these musical compositions will be in breach of its license agreement with BMI.''
BMIAsked if the Trump campaign has responded to its letter, the BMI spokesperson said, ''Not as of this date.''
A spokesperson for ABKCO, the song's publisher, told Deadline that it had ''teamed up'' with Mick Jagger and Keith Richards to ask BMI to tell the Trump campaign to stop using their classic 1969 song at the president's rallies.
BMI's Music License for Political Entities or Organizations (read it here) states: ''One or more works or catalogs of works by one or more BMI songwriters may be excluded from this license if notice is received by BMI that such songwriters object to the use of their copyrighted works for the intended uses by licensee. BMI shall provide written notice to licensee of any such exclusion'' '' which is whatBMI did this week.
The license also notes that ''Any performance by licensee of an excluded work or catalog of works at any event or function following receipt of such notice shall be covered by the grant and shall be deemed a material breach of this agreement, even if the venue or establishment at which the event or function takes place is separately licensed to publicly perform the works or catalog of works. Licensee shall not rely on, or use as a defense, any such separate license or claim arising out of any performance of such excluded works.''
Rihanna Shuts Down Use Of Her Music At Donald Trump's ''Tragic Rallies''
Some politicians think they can circumvent the objections of artists by claiming that the use of their songs is licensed not by their campaigns but rather through the licensing agreements of the venues at which they speak.
The BOK Center in Tulsa has such a venue licensing agreement with BMI, but the BMI spokesperson told Deadline that it ''licenses political campaigns and events through its Political Entities or Organizations License, which clearly states that a campaign cannot rely on a venue license to authorize its performance of an excluded work. Therefore, a political campaign cannot and should not try to circumvent BMI's withdrawal of musical works under its Political Entities License by attempting to rely on another license.''
Neil Young To Donald Trump: Comes A Time To Quit Using My Song '' Now!
Numerous other acts have publicly objected to the use of their songs at Trump's campaign rallies over the last four years, including Neil Young, whose ''Rockin' in the Free World'' was played when Trump announced his candidacy after descending an escalator at the Trump Tower in New York in June 2015; Queen for his use of ''We Are the Champions'' at the 2016 Republican National Convention in Cleveland; Rihanna, for the use of her hit song ''Don't Stop the Music'' at a 2018 Trump rally in Tallahassee, FL; Pharrell Williams, whose Oscar-nominated ''Happy'' was played at a Trump rally hours after 11 people were killed at a Pittsburgh synagogue in October 2018; Panic! at the Disco's Brendon Urie, whose ''High Hopes'' played at Trump's Phoenix event this week; and the estate of the Tom Petty, whose ''I Won't Back Down'' also was played at Trump's rally last week in Tulsa.
The Trump campaign claimed that it had the right to play ''Rockin' in the Free World'' at his campaign events through a licensing agreement with ASCAP. Like BMI, ASCAP has a Political Campaign License agreement that provides ''a blanket license to perform any or all of the millions of compositions in the ASCAP repertory. However, ASCAP members may ask ASCAP to exclude specific songs from a particular political campaign's license. In that event, ASCAP will notify the campaign of the excluded works.''
Brendon Urie Objects To Donald Trump Campaign's Use Of 'High Hopes' At Phoenix Event: ''Stop Playing My Song''
When Young's manager informed the Trump campaign that its use of ''Rockin' in the Free World'' was ''not authorized,'' Trump's then-campaign manager Corey Lewandowski said that the campaign ''will respect his wish'' to not use the song ''because it's the right thing to do.''
Earlier this week, Petty's family posted a statement on the late-singer's Twitter account saying that the Trump campaign's use of his song is ''in no way authorized,'' adding that he ''would never want a song of his used for a campaign of hate.''
Also this week, actress-singer Betty Buckley, a star of the original Broadway production of Cats, urged composer Andrew Lloyd Webber to help stop the playing of the song ''Memory'' at Trump rallies. She reiterated the sentiment today:
Wish they'd order them to stop playing ''Memory''!
'-- Betty Buckley (@BettyBuckley) June 26, 2020
After Rihanna demanded that her songs no longer be played at Trump's ''tragic rallies,'' BMI removed her music from its blanket Political Entities License agreement and sent the Trump campaign a letter saying that ''any performance of Rihanna's musical works by the Trump campaign from this date forward is not authorized by BMI.''
When Queen's famous anthem was played when Trump was nominated in 2016 at the Republican National Convention, the band said it was ''an unauthorized use '... against our wishes.''
Donald Trump Played 'Happy' At Rally After Synagogue Rampage & Pharrell Williams Is Not Happy
Rolling Stones Threaten Trump With Lawsuit Over Rally Music - Rolling Stone
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 00:17
The Rolling Stones are taking ''further steps'' to prevent Donald Trump from using their music at his rallies after the president's campaign ignored the previous cease-and-desist letters. ''This could be the last time Trump uses any Jagger/ Richards songs on his campaigns,'' the band's rep said in a statement.
In a statement Saturday, the band announced that their legal team and performing rights organization BMI sent another warning to Trump's campaign that, if the president continued to use the band's music, he could face a lawsuit.
''The BMI have notified the Trump campaign on behalf of the Stones that the unauthorized use of their songs will constitute a breach of its licensing agreement,'' the Rolling Stones rep added. ''If Donald Trump disregards the exclusion and persists then he would face a lawsuit for breaking the embargo and playing music that has not been licensed.''
Despite previous warnings during the 2016 presidential campaign '-- '' The Rolling Stones do not endorse Donald Trump. You Can't Always Get What You Want was used without the band's permission,'' the Stones tweeted in July 2016 '-- the Trump team still played the Rolling Stones' ''You Can't Always Get What You Want'' at the president's lightly attended rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma on June 20th.
As BMI told Deadline, ''The Trump campaign has a Political Entities License which authorizes the public performance of more than 15 million musical works in BMI's repertoire wherever campaign events occur. There is a provision, however, that allows BMI to exclude musical works from the license if a songwriter or publisher objects to its use by a campaign. BMI has received such an objection and sent a letter notifying the Trump campaign that the Rolling Stones' works have been removed from the campaign license, and advising the campaign that any future use of these musical compositions will be in breach of its license agreement with BMI.''
The Tulsa rally similarly drew the ire of Tom Petty's family, who similarly stated after the Trump rally featured ''I Won't Back Down,'' ''Trump was in no way authorized to use this song to further a campaign that leaves too many Americans and common sense behind. Both the late Tom Petty and his family firmly stand against racism and discrimination of any kind. Tom Petty would never want a song of his used for a campaign of hate. He liked to bring people together.''
Section 112 and 114 - Notice of Use of Sound Recordings | U.S. Copyright Office
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 00:13
Sections 112 and 114 of the Copyright Act provide that a transmitting organization is entitled to transmit to the public a performance of a sound recording under the limitation on exclusive rights specified by Section 114(d)(1)(C)(iv) or under a statutory license in accordance with Section 114(f), or for a transmitting organization that is a broadcast radio or television station licensed as such by the Federal Communications Commission and that makes a broadcast transmission of a performance of a sound recording in a digital format on a nonsubscription basis, to make no more than one copy or phonorecord of a particular transmission program embodying the performance or display. (See 37 CFR 370.2)
Visit the Copyright Royalty Board website for information on determination of rates and terms for the copyright statutory licenses and for determinations on distribution of statutory license royalties collected by the Copyright Office.
Tom Petty's Widow, Daughters Settle Dispute Over Singer's Estate - Rolling Stone
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 00:04
A settlement has been reached in the Tom Petty estate battle between the rock legend's widow and his two daughters from a previous marriage.
This past spring '-- Petty's daughters Adria Petty and Annakim Violette '-- sued Dana York Petty for $5 million after claiming that the widow superseded the daughters' rights to ''equal participation'' over decisions involving the singer's estate and catalog.
However, legal documents obtained by Rolling Stone show that both parties, as well as Petty's long-time manager Anthony Dimitriades, reached a ''settlement agreement'' on December 10th in regard to the estate battle. Details of the settlement were not revealed. A representative for Dana Petty would not comment on the settlement, while reps for Petty's daughters did not immediately respond to Rolling Stone.
The estate disagreement reportedly impacted the release of the posthumous collection An American Treasure and scuttled a planned 25th anniversary edition of Petty's acclaimed 1994 album Wildflowers; the status of that box set reissue remains unknown.
Alex Weingarten, an attorney for Petty's daughters, said in a statement to Rolling Stone at the time, ''Tom Petty wanted his music and his legacy to be controlled equally by his daughters, Adria and Annakim, and his wife, Dana. Dana has refused Tom's express wishes and insisted instead upon misappropriating Tom's life's work for her own selfish interests. After countless efforts to resolve this matter amicably and out of court, we could no longer stand idly by and watch Dana disrespect Tom's wishes, his music and his legacy.''
Dana Petty's attorney Adam Streisand countered in a statement: ''This misguided and meritless lawsuit sadly demonstrates exactly why Tom Petty designated his wife to be the sole trustee with authority to manage his estate. Dana will not allow destructive nonsense like this to distract her from protecting her husband's legacy.''
17 U.S. Code § 110 - Limitations on exclusive rights: Exemption of certain performances and displays | U.S. Code | US Law | LII / Legal Information Institute
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 23:59
house report no. 94''1476Clauses (1) through (4) of section 110 deal with performances and exhibitions that are now generally exempt under the ''for profit'' limitation or other provisions of the copyright law, and that are specifically exempted from copyright liability under this legislation. Clauses (1) and (2) between them are intended to cover all of the various methods by which perform­ances or displays in the course of systematic instruction take place.
Face-to-Face Teaching Activities. Clause (1) of section 110 is generally intended to set out the conditions under which performances or displays, in the course of instructional activities other than educational broadcasting, are to be exempted from copyright control. The clause covers all types of copyrighted works, and exempts their performance or display ''by instructors or pupils in the course of face-to-face teaching activities of a nonprofit educational institution,'' where the activities take place ''in a classroom or similar place devoted to instruction.''
There appears to be no need for a statutory definition of ''face-to-face'' teaching activities to clarify the scope of the provision. ''Face-to-face teaching activities'' under clause (1) embrace instructional perform­ances and displays that are not ''transmitted.'' The concept does not require that the teacher and students be able to see each other, although it does require their simultaneous presence in the same general place. Use of the phrase ''in the course of face-to-face teaching activities'' is intended to exclude broadcasting or other transmissions from an outside location into classrooms, whether radio or television and whether open or closed circuit. However, as long as the instructor and pupils are in the same building or general area, the exemption would extend to the use of devices for amplifying or reproducing sound and for projecting visual images. The ''teaching activities'' exempted by the clause encompass systematic instruction of a very wide variety of subjects, but they do not include performances or displays, whatever their cultural value or intellectual appeal, that are given for the recreation or entertainment of any part of their audience.
Works Affected.'--Since there is no limitation on the types of works covered by the exemption, teachers or students would be free to perform or display anything in class as long as the other conditions of the clause are met. They could read aloud from copyrighted text material, act out a drama, play or sing a musical work, perform a motion picture or filmstrip, or display text or pictorial material to the class by means of a projector. However, nothing in this provision is intended to sanction the unauthorized reproduction of copies or phonorecords for the purpose of classroom performance or display, and the clause contains a special exception dealing with performances from unlawfully made copies of motion pictures and other audiovisual works, to be discussed below.
Instructors or Pupils.'--To come within clause (1), the performance or display must be ''by instructors or pupils,'' thus ruling out performances by actors, singers, or instrumentalists brought in from outside the school to put on a program. However, the term ''instructors'' would be broad enough to include guest lecturers if their instructional activities remain confined to classroom situations. In general, the term ''pupils'' refers to the enrolled members of a class.
Nonprofit Educational Institution.'--Clause (1) makes clear that it applies only to the teaching activities ''of a nonprofit educational institution,'' thus excluding from the exemption performances or displays in profit-making institutions such as dance studios and language schools.
Classroom or Similar Place.'--The teaching activities exempted by the clause must take place ''in a classroom or similar place devoted to instruction.'' For example, performances in an auditorium or stadium during a school assembly, graduation ceremony, class play, or sporting event, where the audience is not confined to the members of a particular class, would fall outside the scope of clause (1), although in some cases they might be exempted by clause (4) of section 110. The ''similar place'' referred to in clause (1) is a place which is ''devoted to instruction'' in the same way a classroom is; common examples would include a studio, a workshop, a gymnasium, a training field, a library, the stage of an auditorium, or the auditorium itself, if it is actually used as a classroom for systematic instructional activities.
Motion Pictures and Other Audiovisual Works.'--The final provision of clause (1) deals with the special problem of performances from unlawfully-made copies of motion pictures and other audiovisual works. The exemption is lost where the copy being used for a classroom performance was ''not lawfully made under this title'' and the person responsible for the performance knew or had reason to suspect as much. This special exception to the exemption would not apply to performances from lawfully-made copies, even if the copies were acquired from someone who had stolen or converted them, or if the performances were in violation of an agreement. However, though the performance would be exempt under section 110(1) in such cases, the copyright owner might have a cause of action against the unauthorized distributor under section 106(3), or against the person responsible for the performance, for breach of contract.
Projection Devices.'--As long as there is no transmission beyond the place where the copy is located, both section 109(b) and section 110(1) would permit the classroom display of a work by means of any sort of projection device or process.
Instructional Broadcasting. Works Affected.'--The exemption for instructional broadcasting provided by section 110(2) would apply only to ''performance of a nondramatic literary or musical work or display of a work.'' Thus, the copyright owner's permission would be required for the performance on educational television or radio of a dramatic work, of a dramatico-musical work such as an opera or musical comedy, or of a motion picture. Since, as already explained, audiovisual works such as filmstrips are equated with motion pictures, their sequential showing would be regarded as a performance rather than a display and would not be exempt under section 110(2). The clause is not intended to limit in any way the copyright owner's exclusive right to make dramatizations, adaptations, or other derivative works under section 106(2). Thus, for example, a performer could read a nondramatic literary work aloud under section 110(2), but the copyright owner's permission would be required for him to act it out in dramatic form.
Systematic Instructional Activities.'--Under section 110(2) a transmission must meet three specified conditions in order to be exempted from copyright liability. The first of these, as provided by subclause (A), is that the performance or display must be ''a regular part of the systematic instructional activities of a governmental body or a nonprofit educational institution.'' The concept of ''systematic instructional activities'' is intended as the general equivalent of ''curriculums,'' but it could be broader in a case such as that of an institution using systematic teaching methods not related to specific course work. A transmission would be a regular part of these activities if it is in accordance with the pattern of teaching established by the governmental body or institution. The use of commercial facilities, such as those of a cable service, to transmit the performance or display, would not affect the exemption as long as the actual performance or display was for nonprofit purposes.
Content of Transmission.'--Subclause (B) requires that the performance or display be directly related and of material assistance to the teaching content of the transmission.
Intended Recipients.'--Subclause (C) requires that the transmission is made primarily for:
(i) Reception in classrooms or similar places normally devoted to instruction, or
(ii) Reception by persons to whom the transmission is directed because their disabilities or other special circumstances prevent their attendance in classrooms or similar places normally devoted to instruction, or
(iii) Reception by officers or employees of governmental bodies as a part of their official duties or employment.
In all three cases, the instructional transmission need only be made ''primarily'' rather than ''solely'' to the specified recipients to be exempt. Thus, the transmission could still be exempt even though it is capable of reception by the public at large. Conversely, it would not be regarded as made ''primarily'' for one of the required groups of recipients if the principal purpose behind the transmission is reception by the public at large, even if it is cast in the form of instruction and is also received in classrooms. Factors to consider in determining the ''primary'' purpose of a program would include its subject matter, content, and the time of its transmission.
Paragraph (i) of subclause (C) generally covers what are known as ''in-school'' broadcasts, whether open- or closed-circuit. The reference to ''classrooms or similar places'' here is intended to have the same meaning as that of the phrase as used in section 110(1). The exemption in paragraph (ii) is intended to exempt transmissions providing systematic instruction to individuals who cannot be reached in classrooms because of ''their disabilities or other special circumstances.'' Accordingly, the exemption is confined to instructional broadcasting that is an adjunct to the actual classwork of nonprofit schools or is primarily for people who cannot be brought together in classrooms such as preschool children, displaced workers, illiterates, and shut-ins.
There has been some question as to whether or not the language in this section of the bill is intended to include instructional television college credit courses. These telecourses are aimed at undergraduate and graduate students in earnest pursuit of higher educational degrees who are unable to attend daytime classes because of daytime employment, distance from campus, or some other intervening reason. So long as these broadcasts are aimed at regularly enrolled students and conducted by recognized higher educational institutions, the committee believes that they are clearly within the language of section 110(2)(C)(ii). Like night school and correspondence courses before them, these telecourses are fast becoming a valuable adjunct of the normal college curriculum.
The third exemption in subclause (C) is intended to permit the use of copyrighted material, in accordance with the other conditions of section 110(2), in the course of instructional transmissions for Government personnel who are receiving training ''as a part of their official duties or employment.''
Religious Services. The exemption in clause (3) of section 110 covers performances of a nondramatic literary or musical work, and also performances ''of dramatico-musical works of a religious nature''; in addition, it extends to displays of works of all kinds. The exemption applies where the performance or display is ''in the course of services at a place of worship or other religious assembly.'' The scope of the clause does not cover the sequential showing of motion pictures and other audiovisual works.
The exemption, which to some extent has its counterpart in sections 1 and 104 of the present law [sections 1 and 104 of former title 17], applies to dramatico-musical works ''of a religious nature.'' The purpose here is to exempt certain performances of sacred music that might be regarded as ''dramatic'' in nature, such as oratorios, cantatas, musical settings of the mass, choral services, and the like. The exemption is not intended to cover performances of secular operas, musical plays, motion pictures, and the like, even if they have an underlying religious or philosophical theme and take place ''in the course of [religious] services.''
To be exempted under section 110(3) a performance or display must be ''in the course of services,'' thus excluding activities at a place of worship that are for social, educational, fund raising, or entertainment purposes. Some performances of these kinds could be covered by the exemption in section 110(4), discussed next. Since the performance or display must also occur ''at a place of worship or other religious assembly,'' the exemption would not extend to religious broadcasts or other transmissions to the public at large, even where the transmissions were sent from the place of worship. On the other hand, as long as services are being conducted before a religious gathering, the exemption would apply if they were conducted in places such as auditoriums, outdoor theaters, and the like.
Certain Other Nonprofit Performances. In addition to the educational and religious exemptions provided by clauses (1) through (3) of section 110, clause (4) contains a general exception to the exclusive right of public performance that would cover some, though not all, of the same ground as the present ''for profit'' limitation.
Scope of Exemption.'--The exemption in clause (4) applies to the same general activities and subject matter as those covered by the ''for profit'' limitation today: public performances of nondramatic literary and musical works. However, the exemption would be limited to public performances given directly in the presence of an audience whether by means of living performers, the playing of phonorecords, or the operation of a receiving apparatus, and would not include a ''transmission to the public.'' Unlike the clauses (1) through (3) and (5) of section 110, but like clauses (6) through (8), clause (4) applies only to performing rights in certain works, and does not affect the exclusive right to display a work in public.
No Profit Motive.'--In addition to the other conditions specified by the clause, the performance must be ''without any purpose of direct or indirect commercial advantage.'' This provision expressly adopts the principle established by the court decisions construing the ''for profit'' limitation: that public performances given or sponsored in connection with any commercial or profit-making enterprises are subject to the exclusive rights of the copyright owner even though the public is not charged for seeing or hearing the performance.
No Payment for Performance.'--An important condition for this exemption is that the performance be given ''without payment of any fee or other compensation for the performance to any of its performers, promoters, or organizers.'' The basic purpose of this requirement is to prevent the free use of copyrighted material under the guise of charity where fees or percentages are paid to performers, promoters, producers, and the like. However, the exemption would not be lost if the performers, directors, or producers of the performance, instead of being paid directly ''for the performance,'' are paid a salary for duties encompassing the performance. Examples are performances by a school orchestra conducted by a music teacher who receives an annual salary, or by a service band whose members and conductors perform as part of their assigned duties and who receive military pay. The committee believes that performances of this type should be exempt, assuming the other conditions in clause (4) are met, and has not adopted the suggestion that the word ''salary'' be added to the phrase referring to the ''payment of any fee or other compensation.''
Admission Charge.'--Assuming that the performance involves no profit motive and no one responsible for it gets paid a fee, it must still meet one of two alternative conditions to be exempt. As specified in subclauses (A) and (B) of section 110(4), these conditions are: (1) that no direct or indirect admission charge is made, or (2) that the net proceeds are ''used exclusively for educational, religious, or charitable purposes and not for private financial gain.''
Under the second of these conditions, a performance meeting the other conditions of clause (4) would be exempt even if an admission fee is charged, provided any amounts left ''after deducting the reasonable costs of producing the performance'' are used solely for bona fide educational, religious, or charitable purposes. In cases arising under this second condition and as provided in subclause (B), where there is an admission charge, the copyright owner is given an opportunity to decide whether and under what conditions the copyrighted work should be performed; otherwise, owners could be compelled to make involuntary donations to the fund-raising activities of causes to which they are opposed. The subclause would thus permit copyright owners to prevent public performances of their works under section 110(4)(B) by serving notice of objection, with the reasons therefor, at least seven days in advance.
Mere Reception in Public. Unlike the first four clauses of section 110, clause (5) is not to any extent a counterpart of the ''for profit'' limitation of the present statute. It applies to performances and displays of all types of works, and its purpose is to exempt from copyright liability anyone who merely turns on, in a public place, an ordinary radio or television receiving apparatus of a kind commonly sold to members of the public for private use.
The basic rationale of this clause is that the secondary use of the transmission by turning on an ordinary receiver in public is so remote and minimal that no further liability should be imposed. In the vast majority of these cases no royalties are collected today, and the exemption should be made explicit in the statute. This clause has nothing to do with cable television systems and the exemptions would be denied in any case where the audience is charged directly to see or hear the transmission.
With respect to section 110(5), the conference substitute conforms to the language in the Senate bill. It is the intent of the conferees that a small commercial establishment of the type involved in Twentieth Century Music Corp. v. Aiken, 422 U.S. 151 (1975), [95 S.Ct. 2040, 45 L.Ed.2d 84], which merely augmented a home-type receiver and which was not of sufficient size to justify, as a practical matter, a subscription to a commercial background music service, would be exempt. However, where the public communication was by means of something other than a home-type receiving apparatus, or where the establishment actually makes a further transmission to the public, the exemption would not apply.
On June 17, 1975 , the Supreme Court handed down a decision in Twentieth Century Music Corp. v. Aiken, 95 S.Ct. 2040 [422 U.S. 151, 45 L.Ed.2d 84], that raised fundamental questions about the proper interpretation of section 110(5). The defendant, owner and operator of a fast-service food shop in downtown Pittsburgh, had ''a radio with outlets to four speakers in the ceiling,'' which he apparently turned on and left on throughout the business day. Lacking any performing license, he was sued for copyright infringement by two ASCAP members. He lost in the District Court, won a reversal in the Third Circuit Court of Appeals, and finally prevailed, by a margin of 7''2, in the Supreme Court.
The Aiken decision is based squarely on the two Supreme Court decisions dealing with cable television. In Fortnightly Corp. v. United Artists, 392 U.S. 390 [88 S.Ct. 2084, 20 L.Ed.2d 1176, rehearing denied 89 S.Ct. 65, 393 U.S. 902, 21 L.Ed.2d 190], and again in Teleprompter Corp. v. CBS, 415 U.S. 394 [94 S.Ct. 1129, 39 L.Ed.2d 415], the Supreme Court has held that a CATV operator was not ''performing'' within the meaning of the 1909 statute, when it picked up broadcast signals off the air and retransmitted them to subscribers by cable. The Aiken decision extends this interpretation of the scope of the 1909 statute's right of ''public performance for profit'' to a situation outside the CATV context and, without expressly overruling the decision in Buck v. Jewell-LaSalle Realty Co., 283 U.S. 191 (1931) [51 S.Ct. 410, 75 L.Ed. 971], effectively deprives it of much meaning under the present law. For more than forty years the Jewell-LaSalle rule was thought to require a business establishment to obtain copyright licenses before it could legally pick up any broadcasts off the air and retransmit them to its guests and patrons. As reinterpreted by the Aiken decision, the rule of Jewell-LaSalle applies only if the broadcast being retransmitted was itself unlicensed.
The majority of the Supreme Court in the Aiken case based its decision on a narrow construction of the word ''perform'' in the 1909 statute. This basis for the decision is completely overturned by the present bill and its broad definition of ''perform'' in section 101. The Committee has adopted the language of section 110(5) with an amendment expressly denying the exemption in situations where ''the performance or display is further transmitted beyond the place where the receiving apparatus is located''; in doing so, it accepts the traditional, pre-Aiken, interpretation of the Jewell-LaSalle decision, under which public communication by means other than a home receiving set, or further transmission of a broadcast to the public, is considered an infringing act.
Under the particular fact situation in the Aiken case, assuming a small commercial establishment and the use of a home receiver with four ordinary loudspeakers grouped within a relatively narrow circumference from the set, it is intended that the performances would be exempt under clause (5). However, the Committee considers this fact situation to represent the outer limit of the exemption, and believes that the line should be drawn at that point. Thus, the clause would exempt small commercial establishments whose proprietors merely bring onto their premises standard radio or television equipment and turn it on for their customers' enjoyment, but it would impose liability where the proprietor has a commercial ''sound system'' installed or converts a standard home receiving apparatus (by augmenting it with sophisticated or extensive amplification equipment) into the equivalent of a commercial sound system. Factors to consider in particular cases would include the size, physical arrangement, and noise level of the areas within the establishment where the transmissions are made audible or visible, and the extent to which the receiving apparatus is altered or augmented for the purpose of improving the aural or visual quality of the performance for individual members of the public using those areas.
Agricultural Fairs. The Committee also amended clause (6) of section 110 of S. 22 as adopted by the Senate . As amended, the provision would exempt ''performance of a nondramatic musical work by a governmental body or a nonprofit agricultural or horticultural organization, in the course of an annual agricultural or horticultural fair or exhibition conducted by such body or organization.'' The exemption extends only to the governmental body or nonprofit organization sponsoring the fair; the amendment makes clear that, while such a body or organization cannot itself be held vicariously liable for infringements by concessionaires at the fair, the concessionaires themselves enjoy no exemption under the clause.
Retail Sale of Phonorecords. Clause (7) provides that the performance of a nondramatic musical work or of a sound recording by a vending establishment open to the public at large without any direct or indirect admission charge, where the sole purpose of the performance is to promote the retail sale of copies or phonorecords of the work, is not an infringement of copyright. This exemption applies only if the performance is not transmitted beyond the place where the establishment is located and is within the immediate area where the sale is occurring.
Transmission to Handicapped Audiences. The new clause (8) of subsection 110, which had been added to S. 22 by the Senate Judiciary Committee when it reported the bill on November 20, 1975 , and had been adopted by the Senate on February 19, 1976 , was substantially amended by the Committee. Under the amendment, the exemption would apply only to performances of ''nondramatic literary works'' by means of ''a transmission specifically designed for and primarily directed to'' one or the other of two defined classes of handicapped persons: (1) ''blind or other handicapped persons who are unable to read normal printed material as a result of their handicap'' or (2) ''deaf or other handicapped persons who are unable to hear the aural signals accompanying a transmission.'' Moreover, the exemption would be applicable only if the performance is ''without any purpose of direct or indirect commercial advantage,'' and if the transmission takes place through government facilities or through the facilities of a noncommercial educational broadcast station, a radio subcarrier authorization (SCA), or a cable system.
Amendments2005'--Pub. L. 109''9, §'¯202(a)(4), inserted two pars. relating to par. (11) at end of concluding provisions.
Par. (11). Pub. L. 109''9, §'¯202(a)(1)''(3), added par. (11).
2002'--Pub. L. 107''273, §'¯13301(b)(2), inserted concluding provisions relating to par. (2).
Par. (2). Pub. L. 107''273, §'¯13301(b)(1), added par. (2) and struck out former par. (2) which read as follows: ''performance of a nondramatic literary or musical work or display of a work, by or in the course of a transmission, if'--
''(A) the performance or display is a regular part of the systematic instructional activities of a governmental body or a nonprofit educational institution; and
''(B) the performance or display is directly related and of material assistance to the teaching content of the transmission; and
''(C) the transmission is made primarily for'--
''(i) reception in classrooms or similar places normally devoted to instruction, or
''(ii) reception by persons to whom the transmission is directed because their disabilities or other special circumstances prevent their attendance in classrooms or similar places normally devoted to instruction, or
''(iii) reception by officers or employees of governmental bodies as a part of their official duties or employment;''.
Par. (4)(B). Pub. L. 107''273, §'¯13210(6), substituted colon for semicolon at end of introductory provisions.
1999'--Par. (5)(A). Pub. L. 106''44 redesignated cls. (A) and (B) as (i) and (ii), respectively.
1998'--Pub. L. 105''298, §'¯202(a)(2), inserted concluding provisions relating to par. (5).
Par. (5). Pub. L. 105''298, §'¯202(a)(1), designated existing provisions as subpar. (A), inserted ''except as provided in subparagraph (B),'' after ''(A)'', and added subpar. (B).
Par. (7). Pub. L. 105''298, §'¯202(b), inserted ''or of the audiovisual or other devices utilized in such performance,'' after ''phonorecords of the work,''.
1997'--Par. (8). Pub. L. 105''80, §'¯12(a)(6)(A), substituted semicolon for period at end.
Par. (9). Pub. L. 105''80, §'¯12(a)(6)(B), substituted '';'and'' for period at end.
Par. (10). Pub. L. 105''80, §'¯12(a)(6)(C), substituted ''paragraph (4)'' for ''paragraph 4 above''.
1982'--Par. (10). Pub. L. 97''366 added par. (10).
Blanket Licenses in the Music Industry
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 23:47
In the music industry, a blanket license is used to give blanket permission to use any music from a specific catalog. A blanket license usually is used in a situation where issuing individual music licenses for each piece or each use would be cumbersome.
Blanket Music Licenses and Performance Rights Organizations Although the term "blanket license" can have a few different applications, one common blanket license occurrence that people are likely to encounter in the music industry is a blanket license issued by a performance rights organization, such as Broadcast Music, Inc. (BMI) and the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP), for the music they represent. These licenses are issued to radio stations, venues and other places that host public performances of music.
Understanding the Process of Licensing Before you can understand how these music licenses work, you have to understand a little bit about how performance rights organizations work.
Songwriters and publishers each join a performance rights group independently to register the works they represent '-- 50% of a song is credited to the songwriter by the performance rights group and 50% to the publisher. Songwriters are only allowed to join one performance rights organization, so they must register all of their works with that one group. For instance, if a songwriter joins BMI, then BMI exclusively represents that songwriter's entire catalog.
Publishers, meanwhile, need to have memberships with every performance rights organization in the territory in which they represent songwriters. That way, they can claim their 50% share of the compositions their songwriters write from each performance rights organization, regardless of which one the songwriter joined. For instance, if a publisher has one songwriter with a membership at ASCAP and another at BMI, the publisher has to have a membership at each of those groups to manage each songwriter's catalog.
When the publisher joins a performance rights group, that group represents the publisher's entire catalog of work composed by songwriters with memberships in the same group. In other words, if a publisher joins BMI, then that one membership puts BMI in charge of representing for the publisher all of the works of all of the songwriters that have publishing deals with that publisher, plus BMI memberships.
Issuing Blanket Licenses Performance rights societies then use these exclusive rights to allow them to issue blanket licenses. A group (perhaps a radio station) will go a performance rights collection group and apply for a blanket license to be able to use the music represented by that group.
The performance rights group will charge a fee to issue the blanket license. The license allows that applicant to then use all of the music represented by the group. For example, if a radio station is issued a blanket license by ASCAP, then that license gives them the right to use all of the music represented by ASCAP on their station.
For this reason, most venues that host public performances of music need blanket licenses from each performance rights society. Continuing with the example of radio stations, it would be difficult for a station to survive by only playing the music of one society's members '-- only playing music written by writers who are ASCAP members would exclude the station from playing a major hit that happens to have been written by a writer with a BMI membership.
When a blanket license is issued, the recipient must comply with certain tracking and reporting guidelines set out by the royalty collection group. The purchaser may be required to turn in playlists for a certain period of time, or to report the setlists of shows played in their venue. These reporting criteria vary depending on who is using the music and how, as well as between performance rights agency.
The fees for blanket licenses also vary wildly, depending on how heavily the license recipient uses music and how large of a listener base they reach. Large radio stations can pay millions in blanket licensing fees, while very small venues and businesses may only need to come up with a couple hundred dollars per year to get a license.
The licensing fees collected from blanket licenses go to pay songwriters and publishers.
Performance rights organisation - Wikipedia
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 23:06
A performance rights organisation (PRO), also known as a performing rights society, provides intermediary functions, particularly collection of royalties, between copyright holders and parties who wish to use copyrighted works publicly in locations such as shopping and dining venues. Legal consumer purchase of works, such as buying CDs from a music store, confer private performance rights. PROs usually only collect royalties when use of a work is incidental to an organisation's purpose. Royalties for works essential to an organisation's purpose, such as theaters and radio, are usually negotiated directly with the rights holder.
In some countries PROs are called copyright collectives or copyright collecting agencies. A copyright collective is more general than a PRO as it is not limited to performances and includesreproduction rights organisations (RROs). RROs represent works distributed via mediums such as CD, audiocassette, or computer file rather than use of works in public settings.
History The first performing rights society was established in France in 1851. In the United Kingdom, the Copyright Act 1842 was the first to protect musical compositions with the Performing Right Society, founded in 1914 encompassing live performances. The rights for recorded or broadcast performance are administered by the Mechanical Copyright Protection Society, founded in 1924. Italy introduced a performing rights society in 1882 and Germany in 1915. In the United States, The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) was founded in 1914; Society of European Stage Authors & Composers (SESAC) in 1930 and Broadcast Music, Inc. (BMI) in 1939.Sociedad Puertorrique±a de Autores y Compositores de Musica (SPACEM) was founded in San Juan, Puerto Rico in 1953. SPACEM's name was changed to ACEMLA, or Asociacion de Compositoes y Editores de Musica and remains today PRO No. 76 in the CISAC's[1] roster of performing rights societies.
Activities Other than their primary purpose as an intermediary between rights holders and customers, PROs are highly active in legal arenas. PROs take alleged rights violators to court, or in the U.S., to the Copyright Royalty Board, of the Library of Congress. PROs lobby on behalf of rights holders, especially in discussions of legal royalty rates.
As a side benefit of tracking public performance of works for royalty collection, PROs publish statistics of publicly performed works.
The licensing services provided by a PRO arguably provide advantage to customers, who can simultaneously license all works the PRO represents.
Criticisms PROs have been criticised for charging non-profit organisations for their use of copyrighted music in situations where the non-profit organisation was not earning money from the use. ASCAP, for example, was eventually forced in the face of public opinion to abandon its attempts to charge the Girl Scouts of the USA for singing campfire songs. ASCAP's and SESAC's policy of charging non-commercial educational (NCE) radio stations for playing copyrighted music has also been criticised, especially by college radio stations across the U.S., which rely entirely on student and listener support for funding and have difficulty affording the extra fees. Community Orchestras, which mostly play classical works in the public domain, may occasionally play a work within copyright, but are forced to pay licenses to rights societies on all concert revenues including concerts where all music is in the public domain, which is then distributed to songwriters of pop songs.
PROs are often criticised for stretching the definition of "public performance." Until relatively recently[when? ] in the U.S., playing copyrighted music in restaurants did not involve legal issues if the media was legally purchased.[citation needed ] PROs now demand royalties for such use.
"One exception to the rule allows businesses of a certain size (stores under 2,000 square feet, restaurants or bars under 3,750 square feet) to play music from a radio, television, or similar household device without a license, provided there are fewer than six speakers (with limits on the placement of speakers), and customers aren't charged to listen. Other exceptions include educational and charitable functions... If your business falls into one of the categories listed above (size of business, number and placement of speakers, etc.) radio/TV] you may want to check out section 110(5) of the Copyright Act. As you likely won't need a license. But, before making a decision, check with a lawyer." [2]
By discouraging performances in limited public arenas, again using the restaurant example, critics[who? ] say PROs eliminate the free publicity such performances provide for a work thereby depressing media sales. Incidentally, lower media sales conflict with PROs, but disputes between the two parties are not known to occur since each type of organisation represents the interests of the same parties - rights owners - and are forced to work in common interest.
Rights owners '' especially independents and newcomers not represented by large publishing companies '' criticise the PROs for what they deem to be "mystical" formulas for deciding who gets what share of the total licensing revenue received. They also criticise PROs for slow or non-existent payments and excessive membership dues or service fees.[citation needed ]
Organisations International North America United States AllTrack (U.S.)[3]ASCAP (U.S.)BMI (U.S.)Global Music Rights (U.S.)[4]SESAC (U.S.)SoundExchange (U.S.)Canada SOCAN (Canada)Re:Sound Music Licensing CompanyCMRRA (Canada)Others Most countries (that observe copyright) have the equivalent:
CountryAgenciesArgentinaSADAICAustraliaAustralasian Performing Right Association (APRA)AustraliaPhonographic Performance Company of Australia (PPCA)AustriaAutoren, Komponisten und Musikverleger (AKM)BelgiumSABAMBoliviaServicio Nacional de Propiedad Intelectual (SENAPI)BrazilECAD (Escrit"rio Central de Arrecada§£o e Distribui§£o)BulgariaMUSICAUTHORCanadaSociety of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada (SOCAN), Re:Sound Music Licensing CompanyChileSociedad Chilena del Derecho de Autor (SCD)ColombiaSAYCO/ACINPROCroatiaHDSCzech RepublicOSADenmarkKODAEstoniaEAUFinlandTeostoFranceSoci(C)t(C) des auteurs, compositeurs et (C)diteurs de musique (SACEM)GeorgiaSASGermanyGesellschaft f¼r musikalische Auff¼hrungs- und mechanische Vervielf¤ltigungsrechte (GEMA)GreeceAEPIGreeceGEA-GRAMMO, ERATO-APOLLONHong KongCASHHungaryARTISJUSIndiaThe Indian Performing Right Society LtdIrelandIrish Music Rights Organisation, Phonographic Performance Ireland (PPI)IsraelACUMItalySIAEJapanJASRACLithuaniaLATGA-AMalaysiaMACPMexicoSACMNepalMusic Royalty Collection Society Nepal (MRCSN)NetherlandsBUMANew ZealandAPRANorwayTONOPanamaSPACPeruAPDAYCPhilippinesFILSCAPPolandZAIKSPuerto RicoACEMLARomaniaUCMRRussiaRAOSerbiaSOKOJSingaporeCOMPASSSlovakiaSOZASouth AfricaSouthern African Music Rights Organisation (SAMRO)South KoreaKOMCA, KOSCAP[5]SpainSGAESwedenSTIMSwitzerlandSUISATaiwanMUSTThailandMCTTrinidadCOTTUkraineUACRRUnited KingdomPRS, PPLUnited States of AmericaASCAP, BMI, SESAC, ACEMLA (SPACEM), AllTrack, Global Music Rights (GMR)UruguayAGADUVenezuelaSACVENState regulation and income taxes Although the Copyright Clause of the United States Constitution delegates the power to establish Copyright law in the United States, in recent years, a number of States have enacted transparency laws in respect to Performing Rights Societies. These generally force Performing Rights Societies to discloses the musical works they license. Because many establishments pay blanket license fees to Performing Rights Societies but have little or no idea if the fees they pay actually secure the rights to perform musical works. This can result in unfair business practices called tolling. Many performing rights societies send representatives into businesses who attempt to disrupt or shut down a concert, claiming an insufficient or performing right license, and some states have banned this practice.
Moreover, states with income taxes hope to withhold royalty income for "performances" inside those states rather than in the state where a composer/songwriter lives or the Performing Rights Society is located. In practice, state income tax accounting is very difficult to regulate. Notable is Colorado's law, which requires each Performing Rights Society to disclose its entire catalog.
References Choquette, Frederic, "The Returned Value of PROs", Music Business Journal, Berklee College of Music, May 2011Schulenberg, Richard, Legal aspects of the music industry: an insider's view, Random House Digital, Inc., 1999. Cf. Chapter 13, "Performance, Performing, and Neighboring Rights".
ASCAP campaign licenses
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 22:56
USING MUSIC IN POLITICAL CAMPAIGNS: What you should knowGUIDELINES PREPARED BY ASCAPMusic use requires planning and securing the appropriate permissions. ASCAP has put together this list of Q & As to help you navigate your way to campaign success through the proper use of music.WHAT IS THE VALUE OF MUSIC IN A POLITICAL CAMPAIGN?Music possesses a unique power to inspire, motivate and energize a campaign. And music has been used in campaigns since the founding of our country. George Washington effectively used ''God Save Great Washington'' (a parody of ''God Save the King''), Franklin Roosevelt used ''Happy Days Are Here Again'' (written by ASCAP members Milton Ager and Jack Yellen), Dwight Eisenhower used ''They Like Ike'' (written by ASCAP founding member Irving Berlin) and President Barack Obama used ''Signed, Sealed, Delivered I'm Yours'' (written by ASCAP member Stevie Wonder) just to name a few of the Presidential campaign success stories.WHAT IS THE ISSUE AND WHY ARE MUSIC USE GUIDELINES IMPORTANT?It has become increasingly significant for political candidates in the public spotlight to conduct their campaigns in compliance with copyright law. Recent controversy over unauthorized music use has created unwanted negative publicity for candidates that want to do the right thing but many times require clarification on their legal obligations relating to music use. Knowing these guidelines is good for all involved.IF A CAMPAIGN WANTS TO USE A SONG IN A CAMPAIGN COMMERCIAL, WHAT PERMISSIONS DOES IT NEED?This kind of use may involve rights such as synchronization of music with video and the possible use of the master sound recording. The campaign will need to contact the song's publisher and possibly the artist's record label to negotiate the appropriate licenses with them. And remember, campaign videos containing music that are posted on the internet also require these licenses. Once the commercial has been produced, the TV and radio stations, and any websites that transmit the commercial, must have a public performance license.WHAT IS ASCAP AND WHAT IS ITS ROLE?ASCAP is the country's first and largest performing rights organization, representing more than 11.5 million musical works from over 725,000 songwriters and composers and their music publishers. ASCAP represents the non-exclu-sive public performance right for these works, and is responsible for licensing their public performance on radio, television, cable, satellite, the internet, on mobile devices and in venues and establishments. ASCAP tracks the use of music, identifies the copyright owners and distributes the appropriate royalties. ASCAP is a membership organization operating on a not-for-profit basis that is dedicated to protecting its members' rights and obtaining fair compensation for the public performance of their copyrighted musical works.ASCAP provides an important income stream for its members and allows music users an efficient and effective way to obtain the necessary permission to perform music for their business or their other public communication needs.
WHAT LICENSES DOES A CAMPAIGN NEED TO PLAY MUSIC AT CAMPAIGN EVENTS?First, while many venues have proper ''public performance'' licenses, as a general rule the ASCAP licenses for convention centers, arenas and hotels exclude music use during conventions, expositions and campaign events. If a campaign is holding many events at dozens of different venues, it may be easier for the campaign itself to obtain a public performance license from ASCAP (and possibly the other US performing rights organizations if the music is licensed through one of them). This license is issued to an individual candidate's specific campaign and extends only until the candidate is sworn into office '-- not for the candidate's full term in office. Having such licenses in place would guarantee that, no matter where you have a campaign stop, the performances of music at the events would be in compliance with copyright law.CAN POLITICAL CAMPAIGNS RELY ON VENUE LICENSES?Because licenses for venues such as convention centers and hotels generally exclude rights to perform music at events organized by a third party, political campaigns need their own ASCAP license to use the works in its repertory. This makes sense because the third party organizer is the main beneficiary of the performances, not the venue, and is in the best position to control the performances. For this reason, event organizers (in this case political campaigns) have traditionally assumed responsibility for obtaining the permission from the rights holders.WHAT MUSIC IS COVERED BY THE ASCAP LICENSE FOR POLITICAL CAMPAIGNS?The ASCAP Political Campaign License agreement provides a blanket license to perform any or all of the millions of compositions in the ASCAP repertory. However, ASCAP members may ask ASCAP to exclude specific songs from a particular political campaign's license. In that event, ASCAP will notify the campaign of the excluded works. HOW CAN THE CAMPAIGN PROTECT ITSELF AGAINST THESE OTHER CLAIMS?If a campaign wants to eliminate any of these claims, particularly if the campaign wants to use a song as its theme, they should contact the management for the artists and/or songwriters of the songs in question and obtain their permission. In addition to permission from management, a separate negotiated license may be required by the publisher of the composition, and if the master recording is used, the record label that controls that recording.IF THE CAMPAIGN EVENTS ARE PROPERLY LICENSED, CAN THE CAMPAIGN STILL BE CRITICIZED OR EVEN SUED BY AN ARTIST FOR PLAYING HIS OR HER SONG AT AN EVENT?Yes. If an artist is concerned that their music has been associated with a political campaign, he or she may be able to take legal action even if the campaign has the appropriate performance licenses. The campaign could potentially be in violation of other laws. Specifically, the campaign could be subject to claims based on:1. The artist's Right of Publicity, which in many states provides image protection for famous people or artists2. The Lanham Act, which covers confusion or dilution of a trademark (such as a band or artist name) through its unauthorized use3. False Endorsement, where use of the artist's identifying work implies that the artist supports a product or candidateAs a general rule, a campaign should be aware that, in most cases, the more closely a song is tied to the ''image'' or message of the campaign, the more likely it is that the recording artist or songwriter of the song could object to the song's usage by the campaign.
17 U.S. Code § 110 - Limitations on exclusive rights: Exemption of certain performances and displays | U.S. Code | US Law | LII / Legal Information Institute
(4)performance of a nondramatic literary or musical work otherwise than in a transmission to the public, without any purpose of direct or indirect commercial advantage and without payment of any fee or other compensation for the performance to any of its performers, promoters, or organizers, if—
(A)
there is no direct or indirect admission charge; or
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 23:59
house report no. 94''1476Clauses (1) through (4) of section 110 deal with performances and exhibitions that are now generally exempt under the ''for profit'' limitation or other provisions of the copyright law, and that are specifically exempted from copyright liability under this legislation. Clauses (1) and (2) between them are intended to cover all of the various methods by which perform­ances or displays in the course of systematic instruction take place.
Face-to-Face Teaching Activities. Clause (1) of section 110 is generally intended to set out the conditions under which performances or displays, in the course of instructional activities other than educational broadcasting, are to be exempted from copyright control. The clause covers all types of copyrighted works, and exempts their performance or display ''by instructors or pupils in the course of face-to-face teaching activities of a nonprofit educational institution,'' where the activities take place ''in a classroom or similar place devoted to instruction.''
There appears to be no need for a statutory definition of ''face-to-face'' teaching activities to clarify the scope of the provision. ''Face-to-face teaching activities'' under clause (1) embrace instructional perform­ances and displays that are not ''transmitted.'' The concept does not require that the teacher and students be able to see each other, although it does require their simultaneous presence in the same general place. Use of the phrase ''in the course of face-to-face teaching activities'' is intended to exclude broadcasting or other transmissions from an outside location into classrooms, whether radio or television and whether open or closed circuit. However, as long as the instructor and pupils are in the same building or general area, the exemption would extend to the use of devices for amplifying or reproducing sound and for projecting visual images. The ''teaching activities'' exempted by the clause encompass systematic instruction of a very wide variety of subjects, but they do not include performances or displays, whatever their cultural value or intellectual appeal, that are given for the recreation or entertainment of any part of their audience.
Works Affected.'--Since there is no limitation on the types of works covered by the exemption, teachers or students would be free to perform or display anything in class as long as the other conditions of the clause are met. They could read aloud from copyrighted text material, act out a drama, play or sing a musical work, perform a motion picture or filmstrip, or display text or pictorial material to the class by means of a projector. However, nothing in this provision is intended to sanction the unauthorized reproduction of copies or phonorecords for the purpose of classroom performance or display, and the clause contains a special exception dealing with performances from unlawfully made copies of motion pictures and other audiovisual works, to be discussed below.
Instructors or Pupils.'--To come within clause (1), the performance or display must be ''by instructors or pupils,'' thus ruling out performances by actors, singers, or instrumentalists brought in from outside the school to put on a program. However, the term ''instructors'' would be broad enough to include guest lecturers if their instructional activities remain confined to classroom situations. In general, the term ''pupils'' refers to the enrolled members of a class.
Nonprofit Educational Institution.'--Clause (1) makes clear that it applies only to the teaching activities ''of a nonprofit educational institution,'' thus excluding from the exemption performances or displays in profit-making institutions such as dance studios and language schools.
Classroom or Similar Place.'--The teaching activities exempted by the clause must take place ''in a classroom or similar place devoted to instruction.'' For example, performances in an auditorium or stadium during a school assembly, graduation ceremony, class play, or sporting event, where the audience is not confined to the members of a particular class, would fall outside the scope of clause (1), although in some cases they might be exempted by clause (4) of section 110. The ''similar place'' referred to in clause (1) is a place which is ''devoted to instruction'' in the same way a classroom is; common examples would include a studio, a workshop, a gymnasium, a training field, a library, the stage of an auditorium, or the auditorium itself, if it is actually used as a classroom for systematic instructional activities.
Motion Pictures and Other Audiovisual Works.'--The final provision of clause (1) deals with the special problem of performances from unlawfully-made copies of motion pictures and other audiovisual works. The exemption is lost where the copy being used for a classroom performance was ''not lawfully made under this title'' and the person responsible for the performance knew or had reason to suspect as much. This special exception to the exemption would not apply to performances from lawfully-made copies, even if the copies were acquired from someone who had stolen or converted them, or if the performances were in violation of an agreement. However, though the performance would be exempt under section 110(1) in such cases, the copyright owner might have a cause of action against the unauthorized distributor under section 106(3), or against the person responsible for the performance, for breach of contract.
Projection Devices.'--As long as there is no transmission beyond the place where the copy is located, both section 109(b) and section 110(1) would permit the classroom display of a work by means of any sort of projection device or process.
Instructional Broadcasting. Works Affected.'--The exemption for instructional broadcasting provided by section 110(2) would apply only to ''performance of a nondramatic literary or musical work or display of a work.'' Thus, the copyright owner's permission would be required for the performance on educational television or radio of a dramatic work, of a dramatico-musical work such as an opera or musical comedy, or of a motion picture. Since, as already explained, audiovisual works such as filmstrips are equated with motion pictures, their sequential showing would be regarded as a performance rather than a display and would not be exempt under section 110(2). The clause is not intended to limit in any way the copyright owner's exclusive right to make dramatizations, adaptations, or other derivative works under section 106(2). Thus, for example, a performer could read a nondramatic literary work aloud under section 110(2), but the copyright owner's permission would be required for him to act it out in dramatic form.
Systematic Instructional Activities.'--Under section 110(2) a transmission must meet three specified conditions in order to be exempted from copyright liability. The first of these, as provided by subclause (A), is that the performance or display must be ''a regular part of the systematic instructional activities of a governmental body or a nonprofit educational institution.'' The concept of ''systematic instructional activities'' is intended as the general equivalent of ''curriculums,'' but it could be broader in a case such as that of an institution using systematic teaching methods not related to specific course work. A transmission would be a regular part of these activities if it is in accordance with the pattern of teaching established by the governmental body or institution. The use of commercial facilities, such as those of a cable service, to transmit the performance or display, would not affect the exemption as long as the actual performance or display was for nonprofit purposes.
Content of Transmission.'--Subclause (B) requires that the performance or display be directly related and of material assistance to the teaching content of the transmission.
Intended Recipients.'--Subclause (C) requires that the transmission is made primarily for:
(i) Reception in classrooms or similar places normally devoted to instruction, or
(ii) Reception by persons to whom the transmission is directed because their disabilities or other special circumstances prevent their attendance in classrooms or similar places normally devoted to instruction, or
(iii) Reception by officers or employees of governmental bodies as a part of their official duties or employment.
In all three cases, the instructional transmission need only be made ''primarily'' rather than ''solely'' to the specified recipients to be exempt. Thus, the transmission could still be exempt even though it is capable of reception by the public at large. Conversely, it would not be regarded as made ''primarily'' for one of the required groups of recipients if the principal purpose behind the transmission is reception by the public at large, even if it is cast in the form of instruction and is also received in classrooms. Factors to consider in determining the ''primary'' purpose of a program would include its subject matter, content, and the time of its transmission.
Paragraph (i) of subclause (C) generally covers what are known as ''in-school'' broadcasts, whether open- or closed-circuit. The reference to ''classrooms or similar places'' here is intended to have the same meaning as that of the phrase as used in section 110(1). The exemption in paragraph (ii) is intended to exempt transmissions providing systematic instruction to individuals who cannot be reached in classrooms because of ''their disabilities or other special circumstances.'' Accordingly, the exemption is confined to instructional broadcasting that is an adjunct to the actual classwork of nonprofit schools or is primarily for people who cannot be brought together in classrooms such as preschool children, displaced workers, illiterates, and shut-ins.
There has been some question as to whether or not the language in this section of the bill is intended to include instructional television college credit courses. These telecourses are aimed at undergraduate and graduate students in earnest pursuit of higher educational degrees who are unable to attend daytime classes because of daytime employment, distance from campus, or some other intervening reason. So long as these broadcasts are aimed at regularly enrolled students and conducted by recognized higher educational institutions, the committee believes that they are clearly within the language of section 110(2)(C)(ii). Like night school and correspondence courses before them, these telecourses are fast becoming a valuable adjunct of the normal college curriculum.
The third exemption in subclause (C) is intended to permit the use of copyrighted material, in accordance with the other conditions of section 110(2), in the course of instructional transmissions for Government personnel who are receiving training ''as a part of their official duties or employment.''
Religious Services. The exemption in clause (3) of section 110 covers performances of a nondramatic literary or musical work, and also performances ''of dramatico-musical works of a religious nature''; in addition, it extends to displays of works of all kinds. The exemption applies where the performance or display is ''in the course of services at a place of worship or other religious assembly.'' The scope of the clause does not cover the sequential showing of motion pictures and other audiovisual works.
The exemption, which to some extent has its counterpart in sections 1 and 104 of the present law [sections 1 and 104 of former title 17], applies to dramatico-musical works ''of a religious nature.'' The purpose here is to exempt certain performances of sacred music that might be regarded as ''dramatic'' in nature, such as oratorios, cantatas, musical settings of the mass, choral services, and the like. The exemption is not intended to cover performances of secular operas, musical plays, motion pictures, and the like, even if they have an underlying religious or philosophical theme and take place ''in the course of [religious] services.''
To be exempted under section 110(3) a performance or display must be ''in the course of services,'' thus excluding activities at a place of worship that are for social, educational, fund raising, or entertainment purposes. Some performances of these kinds could be covered by the exemption in section 110(4), discussed next. Since the performance or display must also occur ''at a place of worship or other religious assembly,'' the exemption would not extend to religious broadcasts or other transmissions to the public at large, even where the transmissions were sent from the place of worship. On the other hand, as long as services are being conducted before a religious gathering, the exemption would apply if they were conducted in places such as auditoriums, outdoor theaters, and the like.
Certain Other Nonprofit Performances. In addition to the educational and religious exemptions provided by clauses (1) through (3) of section 110, clause (4) contains a general exception to the exclusive right of public performance that would cover some, though not all, of the same ground as the present ''for profit'' limitation.
Scope of Exemption.'--The exemption in clause (4) applies to the same general activities and subject matter as those covered by the ''for profit'' limitation today: public performances of nondramatic literary and musical works. However, the exemption would be limited to public performances given directly in the presence of an audience whether by means of living performers, the playing of phonorecords, or the operation of a receiving apparatus, and would not include a ''transmission to the public.'' Unlike the clauses (1) through (3) and (5) of section 110, but like clauses (6) through (8), clause (4) applies only to performing rights in certain works, and does not affect the exclusive right to display a work in public.
No Profit Motive.'--In addition to the other conditions specified by the clause, the performance must be ''without any purpose of direct or indirect commercial advantage.'' This provision expressly adopts the principle established by the court decisions construing the ''for profit'' limitation: that public performances given or sponsored in connection with any commercial or profit-making enterprises are subject to the exclusive rights of the copyright owner even though the public is not charged for seeing or hearing the performance.
No Payment for Performance.'--An important condition for this exemption is that the performance be given ''without payment of any fee or other compensation for the performance to any of its performers, promoters, or organizers.'' The basic purpose of this requirement is to prevent the free use of copyrighted material under the guise of charity where fees or percentages are paid to performers, promoters, producers, and the like. However, the exemption would not be lost if the performers, directors, or producers of the performance, instead of being paid directly ''for the performance,'' are paid a salary for duties encompassing the performance. Examples are performances by a school orchestra conducted by a music teacher who receives an annual salary, or by a service band whose members and conductors perform as part of their assigned duties and who receive military pay. The committee believes that performances of this type should be exempt, assuming the other conditions in clause (4) are met, and has not adopted the suggestion that the word ''salary'' be added to the phrase referring to the ''payment of any fee or other compensation.''
Admission Charge.'--Assuming that the performance involves no profit motive and no one responsible for it gets paid a fee, it must still meet one of two alternative conditions to be exempt. As specified in subclauses (A) and (B) of section 110(4), these conditions are: (1) that no direct or indirect admission charge is made, or (2) that the net proceeds are ''used exclusively for educational, religious, or charitable purposes and not for private financial gain.''
Under the second of these conditions, a performance meeting the other conditions of clause (4) would be exempt even if an admission fee is charged, provided any amounts left ''after deducting the reasonable costs of producing the performance'' are used solely for bona fide educational, religious, or charitable purposes. In cases arising under this second condition and as provided in subclause (B), where there is an admission charge, the copyright owner is given an opportunity to decide whether and under what conditions the copyrighted work should be performed; otherwise, owners could be compelled to make involuntary donations to the fund-raising activities of causes to which they are opposed. The subclause would thus permit copyright owners to prevent public performances of their works under section 110(4)(B) by serving notice of objection, with the reasons therefor, at least seven days in advance.
Mere Reception in Public. Unlike the first four clauses of section 110, clause (5) is not to any extent a counterpart of the ''for profit'' limitation of the present statute. It applies to performances and displays of all types of works, and its purpose is to exempt from copyright liability anyone who merely turns on, in a public place, an ordinary radio or television receiving apparatus of a kind commonly sold to members of the public for private use.
The basic rationale of this clause is that the secondary use of the transmission by turning on an ordinary receiver in public is so remote and minimal that no further liability should be imposed. In the vast majority of these cases no royalties are collected today, and the exemption should be made explicit in the statute. This clause has nothing to do with cable television systems and the exemptions would be denied in any case where the audience is charged directly to see or hear the transmission.
With respect to section 110(5), the conference substitute conforms to the language in the Senate bill. It is the intent of the conferees that a small commercial establishment of the type involved in Twentieth Century Music Corp. v. Aiken, 422 U.S. 151 (1975), [95 S.Ct. 2040, 45 L.Ed.2d 84], which merely augmented a home-type receiver and which was not of sufficient size to justify, as a practical matter, a subscription to a commercial background music service, would be exempt. However, where the public communication was by means of something other than a home-type receiving apparatus, or where the establishment actually makes a further transmission to the public, the exemption would not apply.
On June 17, 1975 , the Supreme Court handed down a decision in Twentieth Century Music Corp. v. Aiken, 95 S.Ct. 2040 [422 U.S. 151, 45 L.Ed.2d 84], that raised fundamental questions about the proper interpretation of section 110(5). The defendant, owner and operator of a fast-service food shop in downtown Pittsburgh, had ''a radio with outlets to four speakers in the ceiling,'' which he apparently turned on and left on throughout the business day. Lacking any performing license, he was sued for copyright infringement by two ASCAP members. He lost in the District Court, won a reversal in the Third Circuit Court of Appeals, and finally prevailed, by a margin of 7''2, in the Supreme Court.
The Aiken decision is based squarely on the two Supreme Court decisions dealing with cable television. In Fortnightly Corp. v. United Artists, 392 U.S. 390 [88 S.Ct. 2084, 20 L.Ed.2d 1176, rehearing denied 89 S.Ct. 65, 393 U.S. 902, 21 L.Ed.2d 190], and again in Teleprompter Corp. v. CBS, 415 U.S. 394 [94 S.Ct. 1129, 39 L.Ed.2d 415], the Supreme Court has held that a CATV operator was not ''performing'' within the meaning of the 1909 statute, when it picked up broadcast signals off the air and retransmitted them to subscribers by cable. The Aiken decision extends this interpretation of the scope of the 1909 statute's right of ''public performance for profit'' to a situation outside the CATV context and, without expressly overruling the decision in Buck v. Jewell-LaSalle Realty Co., 283 U.S. 191 (1931) [51 S.Ct. 410, 75 L.Ed. 971], effectively deprives it of much meaning under the present law. For more than forty years the Jewell-LaSalle rule was thought to require a business establishment to obtain copyright licenses before it could legally pick up any broadcasts off the air and retransmit them to its guests and patrons. As reinterpreted by the Aiken decision, the rule of Jewell-LaSalle applies only if the broadcast being retransmitted was itself unlicensed.
The majority of the Supreme Court in the Aiken case based its decision on a narrow construction of the word ''perform'' in the 1909 statute. This basis for the decision is completely overturned by the present bill and its broad definition of ''perform'' in section 101. The Committee has adopted the language of section 110(5) with an amendment expressly denying the exemption in situations where ''the performance or display is further transmitted beyond the place where the receiving apparatus is located''; in doing so, it accepts the traditional, pre-Aiken, interpretation of the Jewell-LaSalle decision, under which public communication by means other than a home receiving set, or further transmission of a broadcast to the public, is considered an infringing act.
Under the particular fact situation in the Aiken case, assuming a small commercial establishment and the use of a home receiver with four ordinary loudspeakers grouped within a relatively narrow circumference from the set, it is intended that the performances would be exempt under clause (5). However, the Committee considers this fact situation to represent the outer limit of the exemption, and believes that the line should be drawn at that point. Thus, the clause would exempt small commercial establishments whose proprietors merely bring onto their premises standard radio or television equipment and turn it on for their customers' enjoyment, but it would impose liability where the proprietor has a commercial ''sound system'' installed or converts a standard home receiving apparatus (by augmenting it with sophisticated or extensive amplification equipment) into the equivalent of a commercial sound system. Factors to consider in particular cases would include the size, physical arrangement, and noise level of the areas within the establishment where the transmissions are made audible or visible, and the extent to which the receiving apparatus is altered or augmented for the purpose of improving the aural or visual quality of the performance for individual members of the public using those areas.
Agricultural Fairs. The Committee also amended clause (6) of section 110 of S. 22 as adopted by the Senate . As amended, the provision would exempt ''performance of a nondramatic musical work by a governmental body or a nonprofit agricultural or horticultural organization, in the course of an annual agricultural or horticultural fair or exhibition conducted by such body or organization.'' The exemption extends only to the governmental body or nonprofit organization sponsoring the fair; the amendment makes clear that, while such a body or organization cannot itself be held vicariously liable for infringements by concessionaires at the fair, the concessionaires themselves enjoy no exemption under the clause.
Retail Sale of Phonorecords. Clause (7) provides that the performance of a nondramatic musical work or of a sound recording by a vending establishment open to the public at large without any direct or indirect admission charge, where the sole purpose of the performance is to promote the retail sale of copies or phonorecords of the work, is not an infringement of copyright. This exemption applies only if the performance is not transmitted beyond the place where the establishment is located and is within the immediate area where the sale is occurring.
Transmission to Handicapped Audiences. The new clause (8) of subsection 110, which had been added to S. 22 by the Senate Judiciary Committee when it reported the bill on November 20, 1975 , and had been adopted by the Senate on February 19, 1976 , was substantially amended by the Committee. Under the amendment, the exemption would apply only to performances of ''nondramatic literary works'' by means of ''a transmission specifically designed for and primarily directed to'' one or the other of two defined classes of handicapped persons: (1) ''blind or other handicapped persons who are unable to read normal printed material as a result of their handicap'' or (2) ''deaf or other handicapped persons who are unable to hear the aural signals accompanying a transmission.'' Moreover, the exemption would be applicable only if the performance is ''without any purpose of direct or indirect commercial advantage,'' and if the transmission takes place through government facilities or through the facilities of a noncommercial educational broadcast station, a radio subcarrier authorization (SCA), or a cable system.
Amendments2005'--Pub. L. 109''9, §'¯202(a)(4), inserted two pars. relating to par. (11) at end of concluding provisions.
Par. (11). Pub. L. 109''9, §'¯202(a)(1)''(3), added par. (11).
2002'--Pub. L. 107''273, §'¯13301(b)(2), inserted concluding provisions relating to par. (2).
Par. (2). Pub. L. 107''273, §'¯13301(b)(1), added par. (2) and struck out former par. (2) which read as follows: ''performance of a nondramatic literary or musical work or display of a work, by or in the course of a transmission, if'--
''(A) the performance or display is a regular part of the systematic instructional activities of a governmental body or a nonprofit educational institution; and
''(B) the performance or display is directly related and of material assistance to the teaching content of the transmission; and
''(C) the transmission is made primarily for'--
''(i) reception in classrooms or similar places normally devoted to instruction, or
''(ii) reception by persons to whom the transmission is directed because their disabilities or other special circumstances prevent their attendance in classrooms or similar places normally devoted to instruction, or
''(iii) reception by officers or employees of governmental bodies as a part of their official duties or employment;''.
Par. (4)(B). Pub. L. 107''273, §'¯13210(6), substituted colon for semicolon at end of introductory provisions.
1999'--Par. (5)(A). Pub. L. 106''44 redesignated cls. (A) and (B) as (i) and (ii), respectively.
1998'--Pub. L. 105''298, §'¯202(a)(2), inserted concluding provisions relating to par. (5).
Par. (5). Pub. L. 105''298, §'¯202(a)(1), designated existing provisions as subpar. (A), inserted ''except as provided in subparagraph (B),'' after ''(A)'', and added subpar. (B).
Par. (7). Pub. L. 105''298, §'¯202(b), inserted ''or of the audiovisual or other devices utilized in such performance,'' after ''phonorecords of the work,''.
1997'--Par. (8). Pub. L. 105''80, §'¯12(a)(6)(A), substituted semicolon for period at end.
Par. (9). Pub. L. 105''80, §'¯12(a)(6)(B), substituted '';'and'' for period at end.
Par. (10). Pub. L. 105''80, §'¯12(a)(6)(C), substituted ''paragraph (4)'' for ''paragraph 4 above''.
1982'--Par. (10). Pub. L. 97''366 added par. (10).
Blanket Licenses in the Music Industry
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 23:47
In the music industry, a blanket license is used to give blanket permission to use any music from a specific catalog. A blanket license usually is used in a situation where issuing individual music licenses for each piece or each use would be cumbersome.
Blanket Music Licenses and Performance Rights Organizations Although the term "blanket license" can have a few different applications, one common blanket license occurrence that people are likely to encounter in the music industry is a blanket license issued by a performance rights organization, such as Broadcast Music, Inc. (BMI) and the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP), for the music they represent. These licenses are issued to radio stations, venues and other places that host public performances of music.
Understanding the Process of Licensing Before you can understand how these music licenses work, you have to understand a little bit about how performance rights organizations work.
Songwriters and publishers each join a performance rights group independently to register the works they represent '-- 50% of a song is credited to the songwriter by the performance rights group and 50% to the publisher. Songwriters are only allowed to join one performance rights organization, so they must register all of their works with that one group. For instance, if a songwriter joins BMI, then BMI exclusively represents that songwriter's entire catalog.
Publishers, meanwhile, need to have memberships with every performance rights organization in the territory in which they represent songwriters. That way, they can claim their 50% share of the compositions their songwriters write from each performance rights organization, regardless of which one the songwriter joined. For instance, if a publisher has one songwriter with a membership at ASCAP and another at BMI, the publisher has to have a membership at each of those groups to manage each songwriter's catalog.
When the publisher joins a performance rights group, that group represents the publisher's entire catalog of work composed by songwriters with memberships in the same group. In other words, if a publisher joins BMI, then that one membership puts BMI in charge of representing for the publisher all of the works of all of the songwriters that have publishing deals with that publisher, plus BMI memberships.
Issuing Blanket Licenses Performance rights societies then use these exclusive rights to allow them to issue blanket licenses. A group (perhaps a radio station) will go a performance rights collection group and apply for a blanket license to be able to use the music represented by that group.
The performance rights group will charge a fee to issue the blanket license. The license allows that applicant to then use all of the music represented by the group. For example, if a radio station is issued a blanket license by ASCAP, then that license gives them the right to use all of the music represented by ASCAP on their station.
For this reason, most venues that host public performances of music need blanket licenses from each performance rights society. Continuing with the example of radio stations, it would be difficult for a station to survive by only playing the music of one society's members '-- only playing music written by writers who are ASCAP members would exclude the station from playing a major hit that happens to have been written by a writer with a BMI membership.
When a blanket license is issued, the recipient must comply with certain tracking and reporting guidelines set out by the royalty collection group. The purchaser may be required to turn in playlists for a certain period of time, or to report the setlists of shows played in their venue. These reporting criteria vary depending on who is using the music and how, as well as between performance rights agency.
The fees for blanket licenses also vary wildly, depending on how heavily the license recipient uses music and how large of a listener base they reach. Large radio stations can pay millions in blanket licensing fees, while very small venues and businesses may only need to come up with a couple hundred dollars per year to get a license.
The licensing fees collected from blanket licenses go to pay songwriters and publishers.
Performance rights organisation - Wikipedia
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 23:06
A performance rights organisation (PRO), also known as a performing rights society, provides intermediary functions, particularly collection of royalties, between copyright holders and parties who wish to use copyrighted works publicly in locations such as shopping and dining venues. Legal consumer purchase of works, such as buying CDs from a music store, confer private performance rights. PROs usually only collect royalties when use of a work is incidental to an organisation's purpose. Royalties for works essential to an organisation's purpose, such as theaters and radio, are usually negotiated directly with the rights holder.
In some countries PROs are called copyright collectives or copyright collecting agencies. A copyright collective is more general than a PRO as it is not limited to performances and includesreproduction rights organisations (RROs). RROs represent works distributed via mediums such as CD, audiocassette, or computer file rather than use of works in public settings.
History The first performing rights society was established in France in 1851. In the United Kingdom, the Copyright Act 1842 was the first to protect musical compositions with the Performing Right Society, founded in 1914 encompassing live performances. The rights for recorded or broadcast performance are administered by the Mechanical Copyright Protection Society, founded in 1924. Italy introduced a performing rights society in 1882 and Germany in 1915. In the United States, The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) was founded in 1914; Society of European Stage Authors & Composers (SESAC) in 1930 and Broadcast Music, Inc. (BMI) in 1939.Sociedad Puertorrique±a de Autores y Compositores de Musica (SPACEM) was founded in San Juan, Puerto Rico in 1953. SPACEM's name was changed to ACEMLA, or Asociacion de Compositoes y Editores de Musica and remains today PRO No. 76 in the CISAC's[1] roster of performing rights societies.
Activities Other than their primary purpose as an intermediary between rights holders and customers, PROs are highly active in legal arenas. PROs take alleged rights violators to court, or in the U.S., to the Copyright Royalty Board, of the Library of Congress. PROs lobby on behalf of rights holders, especially in discussions of legal royalty rates.
As a side benefit of tracking public performance of works for royalty collection, PROs publish statistics of publicly performed works.
The licensing services provided by a PRO arguably provide advantage to customers, who can simultaneously license all works the PRO represents.
Criticisms PROs have been criticised for charging non-profit organisations for their use of copyrighted music in situations where the non-profit organisation was not earning money from the use. ASCAP, for example, was eventually forced in the face of public opinion to abandon its attempts to charge the Girl Scouts of the USA for singing campfire songs. ASCAP's and SESAC's policy of charging non-commercial educational (NCE) radio stations for playing copyrighted music has also been criticised, especially by college radio stations across the U.S., which rely entirely on student and listener support for funding and have difficulty affording the extra fees. Community Orchestras, which mostly play classical works in the public domain, may occasionally play a work within copyright, but are forced to pay licenses to rights societies on all concert revenues including concerts where all music is in the public domain, which is then distributed to songwriters of pop songs.
PROs are often criticised for stretching the definition of "public performance." Until relatively recently[when? ] in the U.S., playing copyrighted music in restaurants did not involve legal issues if the media was legally purchased.[citation needed ] PROs now demand royalties for such use.
"One exception to the rule allows businesses of a certain size (stores under 2,000 square feet, restaurants or bars under 3,750 square feet) to play music from a radio, television, or similar household device without a license, provided there are fewer than six speakers (with limits on the placement of speakers), and customers aren't charged to listen. Other exceptions include educational and charitable functions... If your business falls into one of the categories listed above (size of business, number and placement of speakers, etc.) radio/TV] you may want to check out section 110(5) of the Copyright Act. As you likely won't need a license. But, before making a decision, check with a lawyer." [2]
By discouraging performances in limited public arenas, again using the restaurant example, critics[who? ] say PROs eliminate the free publicity such performances provide for a work thereby depressing media sales. Incidentally, lower media sales conflict with PROs, but disputes between the two parties are not known to occur since each type of organisation represents the interests of the same parties - rights owners - and are forced to work in common interest.
Rights owners '' especially independents and newcomers not represented by large publishing companies '' criticise the PROs for what they deem to be "mystical" formulas for deciding who gets what share of the total licensing revenue received. They also criticise PROs for slow or non-existent payments and excessive membership dues or service fees.[citation needed ]
Organisations International North America United States AllTrack (U.S.)[3]ASCAP (U.S.)BMI (U.S.)Global Music Rights (U.S.)[4]SESAC (U.S.)SoundExchange (U.S.)Canada SOCAN (Canada)Re:Sound Music Licensing CompanyCMRRA (Canada)Others Most countries (that observe copyright) have the equivalent:
CountryAgenciesArgentinaSADAICAustraliaAustralasian Performing Right Association (APRA)AustraliaPhonographic Performance Company of Australia (PPCA)AustriaAutoren, Komponisten und Musikverleger (AKM)BelgiumSABAMBoliviaServicio Nacional de Propiedad Intelectual (SENAPI)BrazilECAD (Escrit"rio Central de Arrecada§£o e Distribui§£o)BulgariaMUSICAUTHORCanadaSociety of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada (SOCAN), Re:Sound Music Licensing CompanyChileSociedad Chilena del Derecho de Autor (SCD)ColombiaSAYCO/ACINPROCroatiaHDSCzech RepublicOSADenmarkKODAEstoniaEAUFinlandTeostoFranceSoci(C)t(C) des auteurs, compositeurs et (C)diteurs de musique (SACEM)GeorgiaSASGermanyGesellschaft f¼r musikalische Auff¼hrungs- und mechanische Vervielf¤ltigungsrechte (GEMA)GreeceAEPIGreeceGEA-GRAMMO, ERATO-APOLLONHong KongCASHHungaryARTISJUSIndiaThe Indian Performing Right Society LtdIrelandIrish Music Rights Organisation, Phonographic Performance Ireland (PPI)IsraelACUMItalySIAEJapanJASRACLithuaniaLATGA-AMalaysiaMACPMexicoSACMNepalMusic Royalty Collection Society Nepal (MRCSN)NetherlandsBUMANew ZealandAPRANorwayTONOPanamaSPACPeruAPDAYCPhilippinesFILSCAPPolandZAIKSPuerto RicoACEMLARomaniaUCMRRussiaRAOSerbiaSOKOJSingaporeCOMPASSSlovakiaSOZASouth AfricaSouthern African Music Rights Organisation (SAMRO)South KoreaKOMCA, KOSCAP[5]SpainSGAESwedenSTIMSwitzerlandSUISATaiwanMUSTThailandMCTTrinidadCOTTUkraineUACRRUnited KingdomPRS, PPLUnited States of AmericaASCAP, BMI, SESAC, ACEMLA (SPACEM), AllTrack, Global Music Rights (GMR)UruguayAGADUVenezuelaSACVENState regulation and income taxes Although the Copyright Clause of the United States Constitution delegates the power to establish Copyright law in the United States, in recent years, a number of States have enacted transparency laws in respect to Performing Rights Societies. These generally force Performing Rights Societies to discloses the musical works they license. Because many establishments pay blanket license fees to Performing Rights Societies but have little or no idea if the fees they pay actually secure the rights to perform musical works. This can result in unfair business practices called tolling. Many performing rights societies send representatives into businesses who attempt to disrupt or shut down a concert, claiming an insufficient or performing right license, and some states have banned this practice.
Moreover, states with income taxes hope to withhold royalty income for "performances" inside those states rather than in the state where a composer/songwriter lives or the Performing Rights Society is located. In practice, state income tax accounting is very difficult to regulate. Notable is Colorado's law, which requires each Performing Rights Society to disclose its entire catalog.
References Choquette, Frederic, "The Returned Value of PROs", Music Business Journal, Berklee College of Music, May 2011Schulenberg, Richard, Legal aspects of the music industry: an insider's view, Random House Digital, Inc., 1999. Cf. Chapter 13, "Performance, Performing, and Neighboring Rights".
50/50 composer - publisher
BOTH must remove from catalog
Rarely does the composer own the Publishing rights
Masks and Muzzles
Texas hospital CEO: COVID inpatient count 'misinterpreted,' level of alarm 'unwarranted' | Just The News
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 12:13
In Texas, focal point of national anxiety about a coronavirus 'second wave,' the state counts every COVID-positive hospital patient as a hospitalization for COVID itself, which may be exaggerating numbers.
Health officials in Texas are logging every single COVID-19-positive hospital patient in the state as a COVID-19 hospitalization, even if the patients themselves are admitted seeking treatment for something other than the coronavirus.
That policy may be serving to artificially inflate what ostensibly seems like a significant COVID-19 surge in the state. Texas has lately been the focal point of national anxiety over concerns that a "second wave" of the coronavirus has begun there after the state began reopening nearly two months ago.
COVID-19 hospitalizations there have been on a steady upward track for about the last two weeks, per the state's coronavirus dashboard, which on Thursday recorded about 4,400 coronavirus hospitalizations in the state. But at least part of that trend may be due to liberal coding policies by state officials.
Lindsey Rosales, a spokeswoman for the Texas Department of State Health Services, confirmed to Just the News this week that the state is categorizing every inpatient in the state with a positive COVID-19 test as a COVID-19 hospitalization.
"The number of hospitalized patients includes patients with a lab-confirmed case of COVID-19 even if the person is admitted to the hospital for a different reason," Rosales said.
Asked if inpatients in the state are tested for COVID-19 whenever they arrive for treatment, Rosales said, "Hospitals set their own protocols for determining when and if to test patients for COVID-19."
She said the state does not keep track of the patients hospitalized with the coronavirus versus those hospitalized specifically because of it.
Texas Health Resources, one of the state's largest hospital systems, says on its website that its "patients [are] tested before most procedures." Elective surgeries and other medical procedures in Texas have gone up in recent weeks as the state has gradually re-opened following its lockdown.
Amid worry, major hospital leaders stress calm
Queries to multiple Texas hospital officials this week went unanswered. But leaders of several major hospitals in Houston this week urged the public to remain calm, suggesting that the extent of the outbreak has been overstated.
At a virtual press conference on Thursday, the chief executives of Houston Methodist, Memorial Hermann Health System, St. Luke's Health, and Texas Children's hospitals stated that their hospitals are well-prepared to handle an even greater increase in patients than that which has emerged over the past few weeks.
The number of hospitalizations are "being misinterpreted," said Houston Methodist CEO Marc Boom, "and, quite frankly, we're concerned that there is a level of alarm in the community that is unwarranted right now."
"We do have the capacity to care for many more patients, and have lots of fluidity and ability to manage," Boom said.
He pointed out that his hospital one year ago was at 95% ICU capacity, similar to the numbers the hospital is seeing today. "It is completely normal for us to have ICU capacities that run in the 80s and 90s," he said. "That's how all hospitals operate."
He noted that around 25% of ICU patients are COVID-19-positive. But the hospital "[has] many levers in our ability to adjust our ICU," he said, claiming that the hospital capacity regularly reported by the media is "base" capacity rather than surge capacity.
Texas Children's Hospital CEO Mark Wallace added that his facility has "a lot of capacity."
"We have the ability to take care of all of the Houstonians that need a critical care environment, that need to be operated on, or acute care," Wallace said.
"There is not a scenario, in my opinion, where the demand for our beds ... would eclipse our capability," he continued. "I cannot imagine that. I just cannot."
As of Thursday afternoon, Texas had around 13,000 open hospital beds statewide.
Margot Sanger-Katz on Twitter: "Covid tests in Austin are backlogged for days because results are being sent via fax, then typed into a computer, before people can be told about their results. https://t.co/BbdAiwTqaW @BettieCrossTV h/t @ddiamond attn: @sa
Thu, 25 Jun 2020 22:49
Margot Sanger-Katz @ sangerkatz
Jun 24 Replying to
@BettieCrossTV @ddiamond @sarahkliff If you're trying to provide (or receive) coronavirus care, and a fax machine is getting in the way, do let me know. sangerkatz@nytimes.com
View conversation · (((Roger Moore))) @ VATVSLPR
Jun 24 Replying to
@sangerkatz @hilzoy and
3 others Fax is often used because of HIPAA regulations; it's considered secure while email isn't. If the test lab can't enter the data directly, they're forced to transmit it to the people who can, and they'll use fax to do so.
View conversation · hilzoy @ hilzoy
Jun 24 Replying to
@VATVSLPR @sangerkatz and
3 others ðŸ"If the good Lord had wanted us to use fax machines, She wouldn't have given us encryption.
View conversation · Anthony Leon @ anthonynotleon
Jun 24 Replying to
@sangerkatz @BettieCrossTV and
2 others If you want to see how further messed up this is, look deeper at how everything is reported. With daily numbers being reported, find out how far back the tests were completed. Connectivity in healthcare has long been a challenge, now add in the public sector lack of interop.
View conversation · Jenna @ jennafin
Jun 24 Replying to
@anthonynotleon @sangerkatz and
3 others Obamacare tried to make all healthcare digital. GOP fought hard to roll that as well as other things back.
View conversation · John Deau @ jdeau9
Jun 24 Replying to
@sangerkatz @BettieCrossTV and
2 others Medicine continues to use fax machines because they are not vulnerable to hacking, and government penalties for data breaches can be enormous. Also, they don't have data format interface issues when communicating between different systems.
View conversation · Nick Genes, MD, PhD @ nickgenes
Jun 24 Replying to
@jdeau9 @sangerkatz and
3 others Please don't try to spin faxes as a conscious choice based on a risk/benefit calculation.
View conversation · (S) '–'–'– 🍾 '–'–'–'–'–'–'–'–'– (b)(5) @ haroldsmith3rd
Jun 24 Replying to
@sangerkatz @chrissyfarr and
3 others Saw this story last night. We wrote an API to receive faxes (via fax #), parse them with AWS Textract, and forward results somewhere. All HIPAA compliant. Who can get us in touch with WHOEVER to use it to fix this problem? We will open source it isn't about money.
View conversation · TechXan Financial Inc. @ TechXan_Finance
17h Replying to
@haroldsmith3rd @sangerkatz and
4 others Back off bruv.
View conversation · Janma @ Janma52
Jun 24 Replying to
@sangerkatz @BettieCrossTV and
2 others State agencies in Texas are barely funded. Remember, no state income tax.
View conversation · Laura Grothe @ lagrothe52
Jun 24 Replying to
@Janma52 @sangerkatz and
3 others But we pay a heck of a lot of property and sales tax. It sure isn't free to live here.
View conversation ·
Trump hits 'corrupt and dishonest' press for ignoring flat mortality rate as coronavirus cases rise | Just The News
Thu, 25 Jun 2020 23:03
The Facts Inside Our Reporter's NotebookPresident Trump on Thursday expressed frustration that many mainstream media reports ignore or downplay the fact that even though new coronavirus infections are rising in America and around the world, new coronavirus deaths are largely flat.
Data from Oxford University show that even though the confirmed daily reported COVID-19 cases have been ticking up in the United States in recent days, daily confirmed deaths have not risen.
Similar trends are seen worldwide, according to Oxford: Daily confirmed cases have been rising, but daily confirmed deaths have not.
"But if I don't do a show like this, we're not going to get the word out, because the press is really corrupt and dishonest," Trump said during a Fox News townhall with host Sean Hannity. "I can't believe it. I used to say you know, 'fake news, fake news.' It's much worse than fake news. And it's not only what they say, it's what they don't say."
Experts say the fact that new coronavirus deaths appear to remain flat is driven by more younger patients getting infected and recovering amid re-openings as the worst of the pandemic passes.
"Germany's going to show fewer cases because they're testing far fewer people, different size countries and all, but they're testing far fewer people," Trump said. "But many countries don't do testing like that. By doing that, in all fairness, it shows a very very low mortality rate, just about the lowest. So we're right at the bottom, in a positive way. And I think that people are starting to see it."
Trump expressed frustration with the national media, saying it was biased against Republicans, who he urged to also push back against the national media.
"If I didn't take on the media, I guarantee I wouldn't be here tonight," he said. "You couldn't win. The New York Times is so dishonest. The Washington Post is so dishonest ... I think they're the most dishonest people I've ever dealt with."
Texas Gov. Abbott orders all bars to close due to coronavirus surge - Axios
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 09:50
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) issued an executive order Friday for all bars to close by 12 p.m. today and that restaurants must decrease their capacity from 75% to 50% due to a surge in coronavirus cases.
Why it matters: Abbott's orders could signal a beginning of second wave re-closures by states.
Young people in Texas account for the majority of new Texas cases, linked to certain types of activities such as gathering in bars, the governor said.Local approval of outdoor gatherings over 100 people is also required.What Abbott is saying:
"At this time, it is clear that the rise in cases is largely driven by certain types of activities, including Texans congregating in bars. The actions in this executive order are essential to our mission to swiftly contain this virus and enhance public health. We want this to be as limited in duration as possible.""However, we can only slow the spread if everyone in Texas does their part. Every Texan has a responsibility to themselves and their loved ones to wear a mask, wash their hands, stay six feet apart from others in public, and stay home if they can."Go deeper: The coronavirus surge is real, and it's everywhere
Microsoft Says It Will Permanently Close All Retail Stores - Sputnik International
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 11:23
Tech15:02 GMT 26.06.2020(updated 15:53 GMT 26.06.2020) Get short URL
The company opened its first store in 2009, hoping to attract customers the same way that its rival Apple did. Since then, more than a hundred stores have been opened in the United States and 10 around the world. However, they did not enjoy the same popularity as Steve Jobs' company.
Microsoft said it would permanently close all its retail stores around the world, leaving only four locations in New York, London, Sydney, and Redmond, which the company said will be "reimagined". "Our sales have grown online as our product portfolio has evolved to largely digital offerings, and our talented team has proven success serving customers beyond any physical location. We are grateful to our Microsoft Store customers and we look forward to continuing to serve them online and with our retail sales team at Microsoft corporate locations", Microsoft Corporate Vice President David Porter said in a statement.
The company said that the staff currently working in retail stores will be offered new jobs and ''serve consumers, small-business, education, and enterprise customers, while building a pipeline of talent with transferable skills''.
Microsoft initially planned this move for next year, but the process was accelerated by the coronavirus pandemic, The Verge reported, citing an anonymous source with knowledge of Microsoft's retail operations.
In a blog post in April, the company spoke about how retail stores had transformed their work following the introduction of safety measures to curb the spread of the coronavirus, which resulted in the closure of all non-essential shops. Announcing its decision to close its stores, the company spoke about how it managed to provide necessary services amid the pandemic.
"Since the Microsoft Store locations closed in late March due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the retail team has helped small businesses and education customers digitally transform; virtually trained hundreds of thousands of enterprise and education customers on remote work and learning software; and helped customers with support calls", the company said in a statement.
DETAILS TO FOLLOW
Swedish Disease Expert Calls WHO's COVID-19 Warning 'A Total Mistake' : Coronavirus Live Updates : NPR
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 16:16
Sweden's top disease expert says a surge in new coronavirus cases is a result of more testing. Here, people enjoy the sun and water at a bathing jetty in Malmo, Sweden, on Thursday alongside a sign instructing the public to maintain social distancing. Johan Nilsson/TT News Agency/AFP via Getty Images hide caption
toggle caption Johan Nilsson/TT News Agency/AFP via Getty Images Sweden's top disease expert says a surge in new coronavirus cases is a result of more testing. Here, people enjoy the sun and water at a bathing jetty in Malmo, Sweden, on Thursday alongside a sign instructing the public to maintain social distancing.
Johan Nilsson/TT News Agency/AFP via Getty Images Updated at 3 p.m. ET
Swedish state epidemiologist Anders Tegnell says the World Health Organization made "a total mistake" when it included Sweden in a list of countries seeing a resurgence of the coronavirus. The WHO misinterpreted the Swedish data, Tegnell said.
"It is a total mistake," Tegnell said, according to Swedish public broadcaster Sveriges Radio.
Sweden has been closely watched because of its controversial approach to the COVID-19 pandemic. While the country has urged people to practice physical distancing and follow other safety precautions, it has not ordered a strict shutdown. While many of its European neighbors endured three months of austere conditions, Sweden allowed most of its bars, restaurants, schools and retail stores to remain open.
Tegnell's remarks were a retort to a warning from Dr. Hans Henri P. Kluge, the WHO's regional director for Europe, who said on Thursday that in Sweden and 10 other countries, "accelerated transmission has led to very significant resurgence that if left unchecked will push health systems to the brink once again in Europe."
Along with Sweden, the warning included countries such as Armenia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and Ukraine.
Days before the WHO issued its warning, Sweden reported 1,699 new coronavirus cases '-- its biggest spike yet, according to data from the Swedish Ministry of Health and Social Affairs. So far this month, Sweden has set a new record for daily case numbers every week.
But Tegnell objected to Kluge's warning, saying that WHO officials were misinterpreting Sweden's epidemiological data. In Tegnell's view, the rise in new cases is due to a recent bump in testing. He added that Sweden is seeing a relatively low number of admissions to intensive care units, along with a decline in COVID-19 deaths.
Swedish officials had said earlier this year that the city of Stockholm was on course to reach "herd immunity". A target date was set for the end of May, though last month officials acknowledged that the goal would not be met.
"Herd immunity occurs when enough people of a population are immune to an infectious disease, either because they've been infected and recovered or they've been vaccinated against it," as NPR's H.J. Mai has reported. "Some researchers have put the threshold for coronavirus herd immunity at 60%."
Overall, Sweden has reported more than 65,000 coronavirus cases, including more than 5,200 deaths, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.
Joshua Fechter ðŸ'' on Twitter: "BREAKING: San Antonio Metro Health Director Dawn Emerick has resigned as the city sees a huge spike in #COVID19 cases and hospitalizations Emerick came on in February https://t.co/FgFd5ehxIY" / Twitter
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 17:09
Log in Sign up Joshua Fechter ðŸ'' @ JFreports BREAKING: San Antonio Metro Health Director Dawn Emerick has resigned as the city sees a huge spike in
#COVID19 cases and hospitalizationsEmerick came on in February
pic.twitter.com/FgFd5ehxIY 7:49 AM - 26 Jun 2020 Twitter by: Joshua Fechter ðŸ'' @JFreports Michael Monta±o @ montanotx
6h Replying to
@JFreports Wait, but why?
View conversation · Luke Rosenberger @ lukelibrarian
6h Replying to
@montanotx @JFreports This tweet appeared Wednesday morning on what I believe is her Twitter feed:
twitter.com/DawnEmerickEdD'... View conversation · scmom2jrjr '›¸ @ scmom2jrjr
7h Replying to
@JFreports @TheStalwart Overwhelmed...panicked. I totally get her
View conversation · Spandexgivesmethecreeps @ unruh_jean
3h Replying to
@JFreports @jonathanjewel When you have city officials who won't listen to you; what do you do? Epidemiologists know that you have to go for isolation.
View conversation · Valerie Romo @ Valerie_Romo
7h Replying to
@JFreports Wow ðŸ"
View conversation · Gene Exotic @ GGenebarris
6h Replying to
@JFreports Didn't her boss formerly have the position? That probably didn't help.
View conversation · Socially Distant Tal @ VirtualTal
3h Replying to
@JFreports Context:
twitter.com/DawnEmerickEdD'... View conversation · Flatten the fascism, not the webrant🕺------🕺 @ web_rant
4h Replying to
@JFreports Soon there will be left only Republican operatives concealing health data and lying to you.
twitter.com/JFreports/stat'... pic.twitter.com/21HhjLa6By View conversation · Mice M @ MiceM11
4h Replying to
@JFreports Politics over science means its no longer possible to work there
View conversation · dredre @ lastslicepizza
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@JFreports stop testing ............. problem solved right?
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Starbucks barista gets $65K in tips after mask encounter with San Diego "Karen" - CBS News
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 16:21
Biden says he'd "insist" people wear masks
When Amber Lynn Gilles expressed her indignation over a Starbucks worker's suggestion that she follow the company and county's public health mandate by wearing a face mask, she likely had no idea how profitable it would prove '-- for the barista she blasted.
Gilles is the latest social media participant to be dubbed a "Karen," a name now used to reference white women acting entitled in public . The San Diego resident on Monday posted a photo of Starbucks employee Lenin Gutierrez on Facebook, saying the young barista "refused to serve me cause I'm not wearing a mask. Next time I will wait for cops and bring a medical exemption."
The self-described activist and yoga instructor did not respond to a request for comment, but made clear in multiple posts that she rejects medical data and science showing masks curb the spread of the coronavirus.
As of Friday, 5,806 Californians had died of COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus , according to John Hopkins University, and San Diego has required residents to wear masks in public since May 1.
The widely shared and commented-upon post promoted many expressions of support for Gutierrez, including from those who wrote they'd like to give him a tip, prompting a sympathetic stranger, Matt Cowan, to start a virtual tip jar for the worker on GoFundMe. The donation page entitled "Tips for Lenin Standing Up To A San Diego Karen" had raised more than $65,000 for Gutierrez as of Saturday afternoon.
"Everybody is rallying around somebody for doing what they're supposed to do and trying to protect everyone else. It just goes to show you there are a lot of good people out there and that outweighs the bad," Cowan told a San Diego news outlet.
Gutierrez, an aspiring dancer, posted a Facebook video expressing gratitude for the donations, and relaying his surprise that an unpleasant incident that lasted just a few minutes could result in something "so big."
He described being assigned the front register and asking Gilles if she had a face mask, leading her to curse and storm out, only to return moments later to snap a photo of Gutierrez, ask his name and threaten to phone Starbucks corporate headquarters before leaving again.
I've received numerous messages asking for my side of the story. Since this seems to be the most popular thread I decided to post my personal experience here. Thank you all for the love and support.
Posted by Lenin Gutierrez on Wednesday, June 24, 2020"We respectfully request customers follow social distancing and safety protocols recommended by public health officials, including wearing a facial covering when visiting our stores," a Starbucks spokesperson stated in an email.
Graphs and maps '-- EUROMOMO
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 17:08
Last updated on week 26, 2020 Print
These graphs were generated in week 2020-26 with data from all 24 participating countries: Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany (Berlin), Germany (Hesse), Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UK (England), UK (Northern Ireland), UK (Scotland), UK (Wales).
Pooled number of deaths by age groupGraphs showing the pooled weekly total number of deaths in the data-providing EuroMOMO partner countries from 2016 onwards, all ages and by age groups.
Excess mortalityGraphs showing the weekly excess deaths (deviation in mortality from the expected level) in the data-providing EuroMOMO partner countries for the past years, all ages and by age groups.
Map of z-scores by countryMap showing the weekly z-score for the total population in the data-providing EuroMOMO partner countries from week 1, 2015 until today.
What is a z-score?Week 24, 2020Excess in z-scores Extremely high excess (z > 15)
Very high excess (10 < z '‰¤ 15)
High excess (7 < z '‰¤ 10)
Moderate excess (4 < z '‰¤ 7)
Low excess (2 < z '‰¤ 4)
No excess (z '‰¤ 2)
No data
Week of study: 26, 2020. Must be interpreted with caution as adjustments for delayed registrations may be imprecise.
Z-scores by countryGraphs of the weekly z-score at the national level in the EuroMOMO participating countries from week 1, 2015 until today.
What is a z-score?Week range 2016 2017 2018 2019
Week range: 2016-26 to 2020-25
COVID Down Under
Australia caps toilet roll sales after panic-buying - BBC News
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 17:04
Image copyright AFP Image caption Customers have been flocking to supermarkets for toilet roll amid a spike in Covid-19 cases in Victoria Supermarkets in Australia have reintroduced limits on purchasing toilet roll amid a rise in panic-buying.
On Friday, Coles imposed a one-pack limit on toilet roll and paper towels nationwide, while Woolworths has a two-pack limit on toilet roll.
The rush was triggered by a spike in Covid-19 cases in the state of Victoria.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison said there was no reason to panic-buy.
Limits were previously imposed in March, when Australian shoppers anticipating a lockdown emptied supermarket shelves. Police were called to one store in Sydney after customers fought over toilet roll.
Victoria's tally of new Covid-19 cases has been in double digits for over a week. On Thursday, 33 new cases were confirmed.
Images and video posted to social media in recent days show people picking up multiple packs of toilet roll, leaving shelves nearly empty.
The latest curbs began in Victoria on Wednesday when supermarkets announced a return to limited toilet roll sales.
Coles has also imposed limits on hand sanitiser and food staples like pasta and eggs in the state.
Woolworths reported a big rise in toilet roll demand in Victoria, but said other states are also panic-buying again. Customers at supermarkets in New South Wales and South Australia have reported empty shelves.
"We've regrettably started to see elevated demand for toilet roll move outside Victoria in the past 24 hours," said Woolworths' managing director of supermarkets Claire Peters.
"While the demand is not at the same level as Victoria, we're taking preventative action now to get ahead of any excessive buying this weekend."
The supermarket chain has ordered an extra 650,000 packs of toilet roll - a third more than normal.
Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media caption Watch shoppers fight while panic buying toilet roll in AustraliaAustralia has reported 7,500 coronavirus cases in total and 104 deaths since the pandemic began.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Friday there was no need for customers to start panic-buying again.
"I'm sure [panic-buying] will pass, as it did last time. There's no need for it, and I think today it's important to reassure people the outbreak doesn't mean there's a problem. The response to that outbreak is strong, which means that Australians can have confidence," he said.
Mr Morrison and the country's chief medical officer said the virus remains under control, and plans to reopen Australia's economy will go ahead.
COVID-19 - current cases | Ministry of Health NZ
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 06:52
Information about confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19 in New Zealand.
Last updated 1:00 pm, 28 June 2020.
We'll be updating this page as new information is available.
On this page:
SummaryManaged isolationTotal cases by DHBTotal cases in hospital by DHBEpidemic curveTotal cases by ageTotal cases by genderTotal cases by ethnicityTransmissionLab testingSummaryAs at 9.00 am, 28 June 2020 Total Change in last 24 hoursNumber of confirmed cases in New Zealand1,1764Number of probable cases3500Number of confirmed and probable cases1,5264Number of recovered cases1,4840Number of deaths220Number of active cases204Number of cases currently in hospital11About the data:
Source: This is provisional information taken daily at 9 am from a live database, EpiSurv (ESR) and is likely to change as more details are provided about individual cases.Confirmed cases are people that have had a positive laboratory test. For more details please refer to Case definition of COVID-19 infection.A probable case is one without a positive laboratory result, but which is treated like a confirmed case based on its exposure history and clinical symptoms. Active cases are people that have not recovered or died. 'Active' does not mean that these cases are infectious.Recovered cases are people who had the virus, are at least 10 days since onset and have not exhibited symptoms for 48 hours, and have been cleared by the health professional responsible for their monitoring.View details of confirmed and probable cases.
View details of significant COVID-19 clusters.
View data for testing rates by ethnicity and DHB.
View ESR's interactive map and dashboard.
Managed isolationCases in managed isolation and quarantineConfirmed cases identified at the border (total)Active cases in MI & Q facilities 5320Source: EpiSurv extract as at 9.00 am 28 June 2020
Total cases by DHBAs at 9.00 am, 28 June 2020
The Managed Isolation and Quarantine data group shows the number of cases in managed isolation or quarantine facilities. They are not included in the DHB totals. Before 17 June, people in managed isolation or quarantine facilities were included in the total of the relevant DHB.
Total cases by DHB, as at 9.00 am, 28 June 2020DHBActiveRecoveredDeceasedTotalChange in last 24 hoursAuckland0178 1780Bay of Plenty047 470Canterbury0152121640Capital and Coast0932950Counties Manukau0131 1310Hawke's Bay044 440Hutt Valley022 220Lakes016 160Mid Central032 320Nelson Marlborough049 490Northland028 280South Canterbury017 170Southern021422160Tairāwhiti04 40Taranaki016 160Waikato018711880Wairarapa08 80Waitematā023342370West Coast04150Whanganui09 90Managed Isolation & Quarantine2000204Total2014842215264Total cases by DHB in hospitalSource: DHB survey as at 9.00 am, 28 June 2020DHBTotal casesAuckland1Total1Epidemic curveTotal confirmed and probable cases over time, as at 9.00 am, 28 June 2020New confirmed and probable cases over time, as at 9.00 am, 28 June 2020Total cases by ageTotal cases by age as at 9.00 am, 28 June 2020Total cases by age as at 9.00 am, 28 June 2020Age GroupActiveRecoveredDeceasedTotal0 to 9136 3710 to 191121 12220 to 296358 36430 to 398230 23840 to 490221 22150 to 591246 24760 to 692175318070 to 7917077880 to 8902373090+0459Total201484221526Total cases by genderTotal cases by gender as at 9.00 am, 28 June 2020Total cases by ethnicityTotal cases by ethnicity as at 9.00 am, 28 June 2020Note: Prioritised ethnicity classification is used for reporting purposes. Each case is allocated to a single ethnic group based on the ethnic groups they have identified with, which are, in order of priority: Māori, Pacific Peoples, Asian, MELAA (Middle Eastern / Latin American / African) and European/Other. This means that if a person identifies as being Māori and New Zealand European, the person is counted as Māori.
View a detailed break down of testing rates by ethnicity and DHB region.
TransmissionTransmission type of total confirmed and probable casesTransmission type% of casesImported cases39%Imported related cases30%Locally acquired cases, epidemiologically linked25%Locally acquired cases, unknown source6%Source under investigation0%Source: ESR EpiSurv extract as at 09:00 28 June 2020
Please note that ESR has changed the source definitions, cases have been classified by source of infection as follows:
Imported cases: Cases with a reported history of international travel within 14 days of onset.Imported related cases: Cases that have a reported link (close contact or epidemiological link) to an imported/overseas acquired case.Locally acquired cases, epidemiologically linked: Cases that have a reported link (close contact or other epidemiological link) to a locally acquired case with unknown source.Locally acquired cases, unknown source: Cases that have no reported history of international travel within 14 days of onset and no recorded epidemiological link to a source case.Source of infection remains under investigation whereby source of infection could not be classified due to incomplete EpiSurv case report forms. These cases are removed from further analyses in the sections below.Lab testing and capacityLab testing for COVID-19 as at 9.00 am 28 June TestsDateTotal tested yesterday5,32127 June 20207-day rolling average7,33721 June to 27 June 2020Total tested to date392,75622 January to 27 June 2020Supplies in stock*263,82126 June 2020Note: The total number of tests conducted is greater than the number of people tested, because some people are tested more than once.
* Data is not received for supplies in stock on the weekend.
View a detailed break down of testing by region.
Total tests for COVID-19, to 27 June 2020Tests per day for COVID-19, to 27 June 2020.COVID-19 - tests by day and cumulativeDateTests per dayTotal tests (cumulative)22 Jan '' 8 Mar 3009-Mar1231210-Mar8940111-Mar8348412-Mar3151513-Mar3555014-Mar3458415-Mar14272616-Mar325105117-Mar659171018-Mar1209291919-Mar1291421020-Mar1554576421-Mar1176694022-Mar1256819623-Mar1050924624-Mar15441079025-Mar25921338226-Mar21171549927-Mar20671756628-Mar18091937529-Mar9182029330-Mar13912168431-Mar2093237771-Apr2562263392-Apr3446297853-Apr3631334164-Apr3093365095-Apr3709402186-Apr2908431267-Apr4049471758-Apr3990511659-Apr45205568510-Apr30615874611-Apr24216116712-Apr16606282713-Apr15726439914-Apr21006649915-Apr36617016016-Apr42417440117-Apr46777907818-Apr41468322419-Apr30818630520-Apr32038950821-Apr52899479722-Apr648010127723-Apr696110823824-Apr677711501525-Apr596612098126-Apr293912392027-Apr214612606628-Apr263712870329-Apr586713457030-Apr53281398981-May56911455892-May46341502233-May24731526964-May32321559285-May47721607006-May73231680237-May78121758358-May72041830399-May728719032610-May386519419111-May289319708412-May596120304513-May701921006414-May672321678715-May715022393716-May421122814817-May257023071818-May312523384319-May488223872520-May611324483821-May540825024622-May560425585023-May330225915224-May216326131525-May184126315626-May427926743527-May425527169028-May416227585229-May302027887230-May211128098331-May6262816091-June6542822632-June12622835253-June26492861744-June28132889875-June30072919946-June20542940487-June8002948488-June10532959019-June263129853210-June335030188211-June295030483212-June297830781013-June248731029714-June82431112115-June152731264816-June360331625117-June493632118718-June627332746019-June770733516720-June595034111721-June340234451922-June430334882223-June917435799624-June1043636843225-June982537825726-June917838743527-June5321392756Note: Two sets of cumulative test data have been reconciled to give cumulative total from 22 January 2020 when testing began.
In this section Full details of the confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19 in New Zealand. Read more A significant COVID-19 cluster is when there are ten or more cases connected through transmission and who are not all part of the same household. The cluster includes both confirmed and probable cases. Read more To help inform our assessment of spread of COVID-19 within New Zealand the Ministry of Health is tracking cases by region and now also assessing the proportion of our communities that have been tested. Read more
Coronavirus (COVID-19) current situation and case numbers | Australian Government Department of Health
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 06:51
On this page
At a glanceOur data is collated and updated every day by 9pm AEST and reflects the previous 24 hours.
COVID-19 was first confirmed in Australia in late January 2020. This page provides a number of visual representations of information about COVID-19 in Australia since that time.
This 'at a glance' infographic includes all of the COVID-19 numbers, charts and tables on this page.
Total cases, recoveries, deaths, and new cases in the last 24 hoursThe total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases, recovered cases, deaths, and new cases in the last 24 hours, recorded in Australia since 22 January 2020.
Note: States and territories provide these figures daily. Due to the dynamic nature of case data, state and territory health departments may revise their daily numbers. Where previously reported cases are excluded after further investigation this may result in a reduction of total case numbers.
Total cases and deaths by state and territory Total COVID-19 cases and deaths by states and territoriesThis table shows the total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases and deaths reported in each state and territory since 22 January 2020. State and territory totals reflect where a person has been tested and undergoing public health management, this may differ from their normal place of residence.
Expand description of Total COVID-19 cases and deaths by states and territories The number of confirmed cases and deaths reported in each state and territory since 22 January 2020. State and territory totals reflect where a person has been tested and undergoing public health management, which may differ from their normal place of residence.The majority of confirmed cases and deaths are from NSW.
Daily reported cases Daily and cumulative number of reported COVID-19 cases in AustraliaThis graph shows the total number of newly confirmed COVID-19 cases reported each day by states and territories and the cumulative number of confirmed COVID-19 cases reported over time. These figures are collated and updated by 9pm AEST and reflect the previous 24 hours.
Expand description of Daily and cumulative number of reported COVID-19 cases in Australia This bar chart shows the newly confirmed COVID-19 cases by notification received date.
The line graph shows the cumulative number of newly confirmed COVID-19 cases by notification received date.
The bottom axis shows the notification date.
The vertical axis on the left shows the number of new COVID-19 cases, represented by the bars.
The vertical axis on the right shows the cumulative number of COVID-19 cases.
The first cases of COVID-19 in Australia were identified in January. The number of new cases rapidly increased and peaked in March. Since mid-April there has been a sustained and relatively low number of new cases reported daily.
Cases by source of infection Australian COVID-19 cases by source of infectionThis table shows the sources of infection as a percentage of total confirmed COVID-19 cases in Australia since 22 January 2020.
Expand description of Australian COVID-19 cases by source of infection For the total number of confirmed cases in Australia, this table shows the source of infection as a percentage.The source of infection for confirmed cases of COVID-19 can be described as:
overseas acquired '-- the person was infected while overseas (including at sea)locally acquired '-- contact with a confirmed case '-- the person was infected in Australia through contact with someone confirmed to have COVID-19locally acquired '-- contact not identified '-- the person was infected in Australia, but the source of infection is not knownunder investigation '-- the source of infection has not yet been determined, but is currently being investigated through public health actionsThe majority of all confirmed cases were acquired overseas. Of cases with a reported place of acquisition, more than half have recent international travel history.The number of cases currently under investigation should ideally be as low as possible. Knowing the source of infection assists in stopping the spread of COVID-19.
COVID-19 cases by source of infection by state and territoryThe total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in each state and territory since 22 January 2020 by source of infection.
Expand description of COVID-19 cases by source of infection by state and territory This horizontal bar chart shows the source of COVID-19 infection and the total number of cases by state and territory.The top axis shows the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases. The vertical axis shows each state and territory: ACT, NSW, NT, QLD, SA, TAS, VIC and WA.Each bar represents the number of cases by state that were acquired overseas, acquired through contact with a confirmed case in Australia, acquired in Australia with no link to another case indicating possible community transmission, and cases still being investigated.The source of infection for confirmed cases of COVID-19 can be described as:
overseas acquired '-- the person was infected while overseas (including at sea)locally acquired '-- known contact '-- the person was infected in Australia through contact with someone confirmed to have COVID-19locally acquired '-- unknown contact '-- the person was infected in Australia, but the source of infection is not knownunder investigation '-- the source of infection has not yet been determined, but is currently being investigated through public health actionsThe majority of all confirmed cases were acquired overseas. Of cases with a reported place of acquisition, more than half have recent international travel history. The number of cases currently under investigation should ideally be as low as possible. Knowing the source of infection assists in stopping the spread of COVID-19.
Cases and deaths by age and sex COVID-19 cases by age group and sexThis graph shows the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases for males and females by age group since 22 January 2020.
Expand description of COVID-19 cases by age group and sex This bar chart shows the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases for males and females by age group since 22 January 2020.The bottom axis shows the age breakdown in 10-year intervals from zero years old to greater than 90 years old.The vertical axis shows the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases.The proportion of COVID-19 cases in males and females is roughly equal.The majority of all cases are reported in those aged 20 to 79 years. The number of cases is highest in the 20''29 years age group. The highest rate of disease is among those in the 60''69 years age group, followed closely by the 70''79 years age group.Children make up a very small proportion of cases nationally.
COVID-19 deaths by age group and sexThis graph shows the number of COVID-19 deaths for males and females by age group since 22 January 2020.
Expand description of COVID-19 deaths by age group and sex This bar chart shows the total number of confirmed deaths from COVID-19 in Australia for each age group and sex since 22 January 2020.Deaths have been reported in those aged between 42 and 96 years. The majority of deaths have been reported in males aged between 70 to 89 years.The bottom axis shows the age breakdown in 10-year intervals from zero years old to greater than 90 years old.The vertical axis shows the number of confirmed COVID-19 deaths.
Tests conducted and results Total COVID-19 tests conducted and resultsThis table shows the total number of COVID-19 tests conducted and the percentage that returned a positive result, in Australia and in each state and territory, since 22 January 2020.
Expand description of Total COVID-19 tests conducted and results This table shows the total number of tests conducted in Australia and in each state and territory, since 22 January 2020. This number is not reflective of the number of people that have been tested, but the total number of tests completed, as individuals can be tested multiple times.The testing positivity rate is also displayed. This figure represents the percent of all tests that have returned a positive result for COVID-19.To date, over 2 million tests have been conducted nationally. Of those tests conducted, less than 1% have been positive.
Cases admitted to hospitals Current COVID-19 cases in hospitals and Intensive Care Units (ICUs)This graph shows the number of COVID-19 cases currently admitted to hospital, including cases in ICUs, in Australia and each state and territory.
Expand description of Current COVID-19 cases in hospitals and Intensive Care Units (ICUs) This chart shows the number of patients currently receiving care for COVID-19 in hospital, including cases in ICU, in Australia and each state and territory.Each bar represents those in ICU and those not in ICU.The bottom axis shows the number of COVID-19 cases.The vertical axis shows the Australian total and each state and territory: ACT, NSW, NT, QLD, SA, TAS, VIC and WA.
Cases in aged care services COVID-19 cases in aged care services '' residential careThis graph shows the number of confirmed active COVID-19 cases, deaths and recovered cases, in Australia and each state and territory, for people living in Australian Government''subsidised residential aged care facilities.
Expand description of COVID-19 cases in aged care services '' residential care This graph shows the number of confirmed cases, deaths and cases recovered since 22 January in those who receive Australian Government''subsidised residential care in each state and territory.Residential care means people who live in an Australian Government''subsidised aged care facility.Each bar represents the number of active cases, recovered cases and deaths.The bottom axis shows the number of COVID-19 cases.The vertical axis shows the Australian total and each state and territory: ACT, NSW, NT, QLD, SA, TAS, VIC and WA.The majority of cases and deaths reported in residential care in Australia are in NSW.
COVID-19 cases in aged care services '' in-home careThis graph shows the number of confirmed active COVID-19 cases, deaths and recovered cases, in Australia and each state and territory, for people receiving Australian Government''subsidised care in their own home.
Expand description of COVID-19 cases in aged care services '' in-home care The number of confirmed cases, deaths and cases recovered since 22 January in those who receive Australian Government''subsidised in-home care in Australia and in each state and territory.In-home care means people who receive Australian Government subsidised care in their own home.Each bar represents the number of active cases, recovered cases and deaths.The bottom axis shows the number of COVID-19 cases.The vertical axis shows the Australian total and each state and territory: ACT, NSW, NT, QLD, SA, TAS, VIC and WA.The majority of cases reported in In-home care in Australia are in NSW.
How Australia compares with the worldLearn more about the international situation from the World Health Organisation (WHO). Read their daily situation reports and check the WHO COVID-19 dashboard.
Last updated:
28 June 2020
Vaccines and such
Colorado Adopts Mandatory Vaccinations for Children '' OffGuardian
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 06:54
Ren(C)e ParsonsSince the arrival of the coronavirus, the use of and familiarity with vaccines has dramatically increased prompting a more aware and questioning public. With little more than a 48-hour public notice, many Coloradans were enjoying a brilliant Sunday afternoon as the State Senate Health and Insurance Committee was squirreled away in the confines of the State Capitol to approve the School Entry Immunization Act, also known as SB 20-163.
While a Sunday afternoon may not seem an appropriate time for a legislative body to accept witness testimony or to conduct its legislative business unless there is a clear intent to limit public participation. That kind of strategy has a way of boomeranging with a loss of public trust and confidence; yet the Democrats had an intense legislative urge to codify SB 163 with as little public input as possible. The Dems control both Houses of the General Assembly as well as the Governor's mansion; thereby controlling the State's entire legislative agenda.
What the Democrats were not counting on was Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., on his way to becoming a national icon, who arrived to testify against SB 136. He was allotted two minutes to address the committee. What else the Dems were not counting on was a last-minute rally attended by 3,000 outside the Capitol that Sunday afternoon. Kennedy quoted one of the Democratic members of the Committee who told the media:
If we can't get a vaccination bill passed during a pandemic, then we'll never get it passed.''
Speaking to the throng, Kennedy went on to call out the Democrats:
I am a lifelong Democrat '...what they are doing here today is antithetical to every value that the Democratic party has expressed in its 200 year history.''
Adoption of SB 163 was accomplished on a party-line vote; beginning with Committee approval and through the Senate and House votes to adoption. During House consideration, a bipartisan amendment was added to allow for a voter referendum in the 2022 election but the majority on the Conference Committee removed that language.
In addition, much of the state's MSM provided minimal reporting on the Dems slipping SB 163 through on a Sunday afternoon, Kennedy's appearance before the Committee or the size of the last-minute rally.
As its name implies, SB 163 mandates ''immunizations'' for all children entering Colorado public schools; thereby taking the decision out of the parent's hands and requiring a doctor to certify approval. The fact that the bill contains elements akin to Orwell's 1984 Big Brother regime is disturbing.
SB 163 requires the State's educational system to aid and abet in the monitoring of its students as it requires each public school to collect each proof of immunization and each exemption request that is filed.
Each school must also establish a tracking system and provide an annual report on that school's rate of immunizations and the number of exemptions issued.
Such bureaucratese indicates, rather than a parental responsibility, each child's vaccination will be tracked by the school district throughout that child's history as a student.
Of special interest, SB 163 indicates there is an onerous ''submission process'' for those wishing to claim a non-medical exemption such as a ''religious belief whose teachings are opposed to immunizations or a personal belief opposed to immunizations.''
Those individuals must submit a ''certificate'' that their chosen religion has adopted a policy regarding vaccinations and a certificate that they have completed an online ''educational module'', which you can expect to be little more than a one-sided harangue on the virtues of vaccinations.
As adopted, SB 163 is compatible with another totalitarian oriented legislation introduced by Congressional Democrats as HR 6666, the Trace Act (Testing, Reaching and Contacting Everyone). The TRACE Act will establish a nationwide vaccine monitoring system with a force of vaccine tracking agents.
Much of the American public remains unaware that frequently used synthetic materials such as mercury, aluminum, msg, formaldehyde, polysorbate 80. and glyphosate are routinely inserted (among other ingredients), which RFK Jr identifies as neurotoxins, carcinogens or related to autoimmune disease.
The US was the first country in the world to be founded on the concept that each person has an inherent individual right to live their own life without government intrusion. Those rights were enshrined in the Bill of Rights, the Fourteenth Amendment and remain a bedrock of the American system. Just as the landmark 1973 Roe v Wade decision was based on an individual right to choose, the same inherent right exists for those who deserve the choice to vaccinate.
Colorado Governor Jared Polis has promised to sign SB 163 into law.
Renee Parsons is a former member of the ACLU's Florida State Board of Directors and President of the ACLU Treasure Coast Chapter. She has been an elected public official in Colorado, an environmental lobbyist with Friends of the Earth and staff member in the US House of Representatives in Washington DC. She may be reached at [email protected] .
Storing medical information below the skin's surface | MIT News
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 06:56
Every year, a lack of vaccination leads to about 1.5 million preventable deaths, primarily in developing nations. One factor that makes vaccination campaigns in those nations more difficult is that there is little infrastructure for storing medical records, so there's often no easy way to determine who needs a particular vaccine.
MIT researchers have now developed a novel way to record a patient's vaccination history: storing the data in a pattern of dye, invisible to the naked eye, that is delivered under the skin at the same time as the vaccine.
''In areas where paper vaccination cards are often lost or do not exist at all, and electronic databases are unheard of, this technology could enable the rapid and anonymous detection of patient vaccination history to ensure that every child is vaccinated,'' says Kevin McHugh, a former MIT postdoc who is now an assistant professor of bioengineering at Rice University.
The researchers showed that their new dye, which consists of nanocrystals called quantum dots, can remain for at least five years under the skin, where it emits near-infrared light that can be detected by a specially equipped smartphone.
McHugh and former visiting scientist Lihong Jing are the lead authors of the study, which appears today in Science Translational Medicine. Ana Jaklenec, a research scientist at MIT's Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research, and Robert Langer, the David H. Koch Institute Professor at MIT, are the senior authors of the paper.
An invisible record
Several years ago, the MIT team set out to devise a method for recording vaccination information in a way that doesn't require a centralized database or other infrastructure. Many vaccines, such as the vaccine for measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR), require multiple doses spaced out at certain intervals; without accurate records, children may not receive all of the necessary doses.
''In order to be protected against most pathogens, one needs multiple vaccinations,'' Jaklenec says. ''In some areas in the developing world, it can be very challenging to do this, as there is a lack of data about who has been vaccinated and whether they need additional shots or not.''
To create an ''on-patient,'' decentralized medical record, the researchers developed a new type of copper-based quantum dots, which emit light in the near-infrared spectrum. The dots are only about 4 nanometers in diameter, but they are encapsulated in biocompatible microparticles that form spheres about 20 microns in diameter. This encapsulation allows the dye to remain in place, under the skin, after being injected.
The researchers designed their dye to be delivered by a microneedle patch rather than a traditional syringe and needle. Such patches are now being developed to deliver vaccines for measles, rubella, and other diseases, and the researchers showed that their dye could be easily incorporated into these patches.
The microneedles used in this study are made from a mixture of dissolvable sugar and a polymer called PVA, as well as the quantum-dot dye and the vaccine. When the patch is applied to the skin, the microneedles, which are 1.5 millimeters long, partially dissolve, releasing their payload within about two minutes.
By selectively loading microparticles into microneedles, the patches deliver a pattern in the skin that is invisible to the naked eye but can be scanned with a smartphone that has the infrared filter removed. The patch can be customized to imprint different patterns that correspond to the type of vaccine delivered.
''It's possible someday that this 'invisible' approach could create new possibilities for data storage, biosensing, and vaccine applications that could improve how medical care is provided, particularly in the developing world,'' Langer says.
Effective immunization
Tests using human cadaver skin showed that the quantum-dot patterns could be detected by smartphone cameras after up to five years of simulated sun exposure.
The researchers also tested this vaccination strategy in rats, using microneedle patches that delivered the quantum dots along with a polio vaccine. They found that those rats generated an immune response similar to the response of rats that received a traditional injected polio vaccine.
''This study confirmed that incorporating the vaccine with the dye in the microneedle patches did not affect the efficacy of the vaccine or our ability to detect the dye,'' Jaklenec says.
The researchers now plan to survey health care workers in developing nations in Africa to get input on the best way to implement this type of vaccination record keeping. They are also working on expanding the amount of data that can be encoded in a single pattern, allowing them to include information such as the date of vaccine administration and the lot number of the vaccine batch.
The researchers believe the quantum dots are safe to use in this way because they are encapsulated in a biocompatible polymer, but they plan to do further safety studies before testing them in patients.
''Storage, access, and control of medical records is an important topic with many possible approaches,'' says Mark Prausnitz, chair of chemical and biomolecular engineering at Georgia Tech, who was not involved in the research. ''This study presents a novel approach where the medical record is stored and controlled by the patient within the patient's skin in a minimally invasive and elegant way.''
The research was funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Koch Institute Support (core) Grant from the National Cancer Institute. Other authors of the paper include Sean Severt, Mache Cruz, Morteza Sarmadi, Hapuarachchige Surangi Jayawardena, Collin Perkinson, Fridrik Larusson, Sviatlana Rose, Stephanie Tomasic, Tyler Graf, Stephany Tzeng, James Sugarman, Daniel Vlasic, Matthew Peters, Nels Peterson, Lowell Wood, Wen Tang, Jihyeon Yeom, Joe Collins, Philip Welkhoff, Ari Karchin, Megan Tse, Mingyuan Gao, and Moungi Bawendi.
Noodle Gun
CONFIRMED LIST OF #STOPHATEFORPROFIT ADVERTISERS - Google Drive
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 00:14
CONFIRMED LIST OF #STOPHATEFORPROFIT ADVERTISERS : Sheet1
Do Advertisers Care About Inner Turmoil With Publishers? '' Adweek
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 00:21
This inner turmoil could lead to a shift in brands' willingness to advertiseIllustration: ChefBoyRG; Getty Images
Several news organizations have had a change in leadership after internal unrest that has ranged from staff inequality to unequal pay to story selection.
The New York Times, Variety, Bon App(C)tit and Refinery29 are among the publications that experienced backlash from staffers on social media. But this moment, led by employees who have turned to social media feeds to advocate for better working conditions, feels different than previous missteps. And that could lead advertisers to rethink where they spend in an already hyperconscious environment of brand safety, media analysts and media buyers told Adweek.
''Everything has a spotlight on it. The company you keep matters today. It's not only what you do as a company but the people you associate with and where you spend your money,'' said Allen Adamson, co-founder and managing partner of Metaforce and adjunct professor at New York University's Stern School of Business. ''The company you keep defines your brand as much as the brand itself.''
The New York Times declined to comment. Refinery29 and Variety didn't immediately respond to a request for comment. Bon App(C)tit, meanwhile, acknowledges the need to address its D&I efforts. ''While we haven't seen significant impact on our [Bon App(C)tit] business, we do have work to do to be more inclusive. It's something we take seriously, and as an industry, something we need to work together on,'' said Pamela Drucker Mann, global chief revenue officer and president of U.S. revenue at Cond(C) Nast.
While each of those media companies' internal debates come amid a broader conversation around the roots of the latest social unrest, each scenario is different and should be treated as such by advertisers, said Barry Lowenthal, CEO of The Media Kitchen.
''Advertisers are going to be more cautious and more particular and a lot more deliberate,'' Lowenthal continued, adding that he was hopeful it would create more ''accountability through the entire supply chain.''
The global pandemic is expected to shave $11 billion in U.S. ad revenue from linear and digital properties this year, from $224 billion in 2019 to an expected $213 billion in 2020, according to the most recent forecast from Magna Global, the media strategy arm of IPG Mediabrands. Meanwhile, advertising on social media is expected to grow by 7% this year, according to the forecast.
To win over media buyers, publishers must assure advertisers that brand messaging, likely crafted with special attention to appear genuine to the times, will be in a brand-safe environment.
Consumers are paying close attention, said Scott Harkey, co-founder and managing partner at independent agency OH Partners. ''If you want your brand to be loved by people, you have to stand for something more than making money or making a product,'' he added.
Despite the brand-safety challenges associated with social media'--specifically Facebook'--brands still turn to those channels to communicate their messages due to their ability to target specific audiences. Facebook alone brought in $70.7 billion in ad revenue last year.
''When in doubt, most clients are going to spend their money in safer, less controversial places because there are so many choices today,'' Adamson said. Advertisers typically look to attract and use the brand equity of tested properties that audiences have already chosen. ''If you think that audience levels will erode, then your value is diminished,'' said Brian Wieser, global president, business intelligence at GroupM.
The more attention these issues get, in what Wieser called ''brand shaming,'' the more likely an advertiser is to stay away. ''The conversation has to be loud enough and it has to be meaningful enough to the advertisers,'' he continued.
Behavior that could have otherwise been overlooked is louder than ever, experts said. It's up to advertisers to acknowledge it with their media dollars. In the short term, brands like Bon App(C)tit and Refinery29 could lose ad dollars, said Tim Smith, director of communications and media planning at agency IPNY.
''At the end of the day, it is the client's decision. No brand manager wants to get a call from the C-suite or the PR department about the company getting called out because of a media placement,'' Smith said. ''At this point in time, when emotions are running so hot, any brand that senses any kind of turmoil is going to act first and ask questions later.''
Why This Facebook Boycott Is Different '' Adweek
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 00:24
The North Face and Ben & Jerrys are among companies pulling ads from the social media giantCivil rights activists are calling for an advertiser boycott of Facebook in July.
Photo Illustration: Amira Lin; Sources: Facebook, REI, Patagonia, Eddie Bauer, Arc'teryx, Magnolia Pictures, Ben & Jerry's, Pixabay
As a major advertising publication covering Facebook, we often ask whether brands will leave the platform over the latest scandal: the Cambridge Analytica data leak , inflated video metrics or its do-nothing approach on President Donald Trump's incendiary posts.
More often than not, the answer we hear from brands and media buyers is ''no.''
Facebook holds a commanding presence in the digital marketing space. It not only owns the second-largest slice of the digital ad pie, according to eMarketer , but marketers frequently say it's the most affordable and effective way to target people online. Simply put, it's hard to quit.
But the gravity of a decision by CEO Mark Zuckerberg to leave up Trump's ''when the looting starts, the shooting starts'' post is resonating differently in media buying circles. The platform is facing calls for a new advertising boycott in July that has quickly grown larger than any before.
Major brands have been joining the boycott every day for about a week, putting pressure on Facebook to root out hate speech and misinformation by average users and world leaders alike.
After a number of smaller brands said they would stop giving ad dollars to Facebook over the past few weeks, The North Face became the first major brand to do so Friday, pledging to stop posting organically or running ads on Facebook and Instagram at least until the end of July.
''We're all living in a cultural moment of pain. We believe that normal is not good enough, and we all need to drive positive change immediately,'' Steve Lesnard, global vp of marketing for The North Face, said in an interview with Adweek.
In doing so, the outdoor retailer became the first big-name brand to sign onto Stop Hate for Profit, a new campaign led by civil rights groups including the Anti-Defamation League and the NAACP as well as liberal advocacy groups Free Press and Sleeping Giants.
Other brands that have signed on include:
REI Patagonia Eddie Bauer Canadian outdoor clothing brand Arc'teryx Recruiting company Upwork Hollywood studio Magnolia Pictures Ice cream maker Ben & Jerry's Clothing designer Eileen Fisher wireless provider Verizon CPG giant Unilever The pressure has led even the largest international advertisers to (at least claim) to reexamine their media spends. Procter & Gamble chief brand officer Marc Pritchard said the company would review every channel it advertises on, but did not commit to the boycott.
Other companies took the boycott a step further. Messaging software company Rakuten Viber told Adweek it will not only join the effort, but indefinitely cut all ad spending with Facebook properties, including Giphy, the GIF library it recently acquired .
The North Face, which halted all Facebook and Instagram activity on Friday, will consider a longer boycott beyond July. The company didn't say how much money these summer ad dollars represented, especially as a brand known for winter coats, but Lesnard called Facebook its ''second-biggest media partner.''
In a phone interview with Adweek earlier this month, Carolyn Everson, vp of global business at Facebook, said only a ''few'' of its 8 million advertisers had raised concerns about the platform's policies.
This week, in a statement through a spokesperson, Everson said the organization respected brands' decisions and remains ''focused on the important work of removing hate speech and providing critical voting information.''
''Our conversations with marketers and civil rights organizations are about how, together, we can be a force for good,'' Everson continued in the statement.
Calls for boycotting Facebook are nothing new'-- Tesla , Sonos and Mozilla , among others, briefly left or ceased advertising on Facebook after the Cambridge Analytica scandal in 2018.
And even with Stop Hate for Profit, media buyers and consultants seemed mostly unconvinced it would be any different.
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Coca-Cola Pauses Social Media Advertising for 30 Days '' Adweek
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 00:18
Company joins growing list of brands stepping away from the platformsThe Coca-Cola Company said it would stop paid social media advertising today.
Coca-Cola
The Coca-Cola Company will stop running paid ads on all social media platforms amid an industrywide call for brands to reevaluate where they spend their ad dollars.
''There is no place for racism in the world, and there is no place for racism on social media,'' CEO and chairman James Quincey said in a statement to Adweek.
The beverage company will pause all international paid social media advertising for the next 30 days to ''reassess our advertising policies to determine whether revisions are needed,'' Quincey said.
Coca-Cola's decision comes at the end of a long week in which companies announced they would stop advertising on Facebook because of the platform's policies on rooting out misinformation and hateful content.
A formal ad boycott started online in mid-June after anonymous industry insiders began calling for brands to realign their spending and stop advertising on Facebook. In the days that followed, groups including the Anti-Defamation League , Color of Change , Common Sense Media , Free Press, the NAACP and Sleeping Giants signed on to another organized boycott called the ''Stop Hate for Profit'' campaign.
Coca-Cola told Adweek its decision to pause its social media advertising is not part of the ''Stop Hate for Profit'' campaign. It wasn't immediately clear whether its decision would include organic posts on those websites or if it would still use the platforms' insights from previous campaigns or ad tech.
The company also didn't name any social media platforms by name in its statement, but Quincey said Coca-Cola expects ''greater accountability and transparency from our social media partners.''
The ''Stop Hate for Profit'' campaign began to gain momentum after The North Face pulled out of advertising on Facebook last week and companies including Patagonia, Verizon and Ben & Jerry's followed suit.
Other companies, such as Unilever, took it a step further and said they would cease advertising on Facebook and Twitter through the rest of this year.
Advertising on Facebook is a big marketing opportunity to give up. Marketers have frequently touted the feeds as the most affordable way to reach a highly targeted audience online. Further, Facebook boasts the second-largest slice of digital ad spend, according to eMarketer.
Unlike previous boycott campaigns, media buyers have said this moment, triggered by Facebook's decision not to flag President Trump's messages, as well as what they perceive as the platform's weak efforts to rid it of racist and hateful rhetoric, are the reasons brand marketers are more willing to walk away.
As pressure continued to mount, Facebook announced today it would begin labeling politicians' posts that violate its rules (as Twitter has done).
A spokesperson for Snap did not immediately respond to Adweek's request for comment. Twitter re-sent a statement from Sarah Personette, VP, global client solutions, at the company, who said it would continue to work and communicate with its partners.
Facebook re-sent a company statement that reaffirmed its commitment to working with outside groups to remove hate speech from its platform.
Honda stops Facebook spending in July, joining fast-growing boycott | Ad Age
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 00:17
Digital The automaker says it is 'choosing to stand with people united against hate and racism'
E.J. Schultz is the Assistant Managing Editor, Marketing at Ad Age and covers beverage, automotive and sports marketing. He is a former reporter for McClatchy newspapers, including the Fresno Bee, where he covered business and state government and politics, and the Island Packet in South Carolina. He has won awards from the Society of American Business Editors and Writers, the Jesse H. Neal Awards, the Association of Capitol Reporters and Editors, the California Newspaper Publishers Association, the South Carolina Press Association and Investigative Reporters and Editors. A native of Cincinnati, Schultz has an economics degree from Xavier University and a masters in journalism from Northwestern University.
Joe Biden Also against Facebook
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 05:54
#MOVEFASTFIXIT After foreign operatives and rightwing trolls used Facebook to hack the 2016 election, Facebook vowed ''never again'' and promised to take action. But with fewer than 5 months until the 2020 election, Facebook seems to be on a crash course to let the same mistakes happen again. Tens of millions of Americans rely on Facebook as a news source. But the company continues to amplify misinformation and lets candidates pay to target and confuse voters with lies.
We have asked Facebook to take action''responsible action, action that is critical to the health of our democracy. And we will continue to do so. We will not stop.
Our asks are pretty simple:
They need to promote authoritative and trustworthy sources of election information, rather than the rants of bad actors and conspiracy theorists. They need to promptly remove false, viral information They need to prevent political candidates and PACs from using paid advertising to spread lies and misinformation '-- especially within two weeks of election day They need clear rules '-- applied universally, with no exceptions for the President '-- that prohibit threats and lies about how to participate in the election. We're now less than 150 days to the election. The time for setting, testing, and implementing meaningful policy to protect our elections is running out. We need to move fast and fix Facebook now. Help us make it happen by signing and sharing our petition below.
Take ActionSign our open letter to Facebook >>
Share with friends and family >>
Direct Message Facebook >>
Signed the petition? Tweeted? You can also slide into Facebook's DMs and ask what they are doing, by clicking here on your desktop. You can also use the copy below: Facebook, In 2016, we saw what happens when social media platforms allow disinformation to run rampant. It places the integrity of our elections at risk. As a voter, protecting our elections and democracy is top priority for me, so I'm asking: what are you doing to face-check political advertisements before they are permitted to run? What policies have you enacted since 2016 that stop the spread of misinformation?
I am calling on you to make clear rules '-- applied to everyone, including Donald Trump '-- that prohibit threatening behavior and the spread of misinformation. Please let the public know what your plan to enact these policies is.
Read Our Open Letter To Facebook Dear Mark Zuckerberg,
Over the past year, the Biden for President campaign has called on Facebook to meet the commitment the company made after 2016 '-- to use its platform to improve American democracy rather than as a tool to spread disinformation that undermines our elections. The campaign has proposed meaningful ways to check disinformation on your platform and to limit the effect of false ads.
But Facebook has taken no meaningful action. It continues to allow Donald Trump to say anything '-- and to pay to ensure that his wild claims reach millions of voters. SuperPACs and other dark money groups are following his example. Trump and his allies have used Facebook to spread fear and misleading information about voting, attempting to compromise the means of holding power to account: our voices and our ballot boxes. Read the full letter >>
Angela Stanton King 🇺🇸 on Twitter: "This is what #BlackAmerica should be protesting!!! Famed Actor Charlize Theron raising this black male child she adopted as a female. I need my black men. I need my black children. #ChildAbuse https://t.co/I1yAH0V
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 07:33
Brittany @ BrittElise727
19h It's one thing for an older child to feel confused (and you and I stand on the same ground, to promote the truth), but it's another for Charlize to say that at 3 years old, basically a toddler, that she knew her son was really a girl. That's next level something.
View conversation ·
The Dixie Chicks officially change their name to The Chicks '' The Seattle Times
Thu, 25 Jun 2020 15:21
June 25, 2020 at 9:04 am | Updated June 25, 2020 at 1:17 pm
This image is currently not available
1 of 3 The Grammy-winning country group the Dixie Chicks have dropped the word Dixie from their name and are now going by The Chicks. Above, Emily Robison, left, Natalie Maines, center, and Martie Maguire at the Grammy Awards in Los Angeles in 2007. The Chicks' move follows a decision by country group Lady Antebellum to change to Lady A after acknowledging the word's association to slavery. (AP Photo/Matt Sayles, File)This image is currently not available
2 of 3 FILE '' In this Oct. 18, 2007 file photo, Emily Robison, left, and Martie Maguire, right, adjust Natalie Maines' hair as the Dixie Chicks perform at the new Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles. The Grammy-winning country group have dropped the word dixie from their name and are now going by The Chicks. The move follows a decision by country group Lady Antebellum to change to Lady A after acknowledging the word's association to slavery. (AP Photo/Gus Ruelas, File)This image is currently not available
3 of 3 FILE '' In this Feb. 11, 2007 file photo, musicians Emily Robison, left, Natalie Maines, center, and Martie Maguire of the group The Dixie Chicks pose with their awards for song of the year, for record of the year, for album of the year, for best country album, and for best country performance at the 49th Annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles. The group have dropped the word dixie from their name and are now going by The Chicks. The move follows a decision by country group Lady Antebellum to change to Lady A after acknowledging the word's association to slavery. (AP Photo/Kevork Djansezian, File)NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) '-- Grammy-winning country group The Dixie Chicks have dropped the word Dixie from their name, now going by The Chicks.
The band's social media accounts and website were changed on Thursday to the refer to the new name for the band, which is made up of Martie Maguire, Natalie Maines and Emily Strayer. The band also recognized that the name was already in use by a band in New Zealand.
''A sincere and heartfelt thank you goes out to 'The Chicks' of NZ for their gracious gesture in allowing us to share their name. We are honored to co-exist together in the world with these exceptionally talented sisters,'' the band said in a statement.
The move follows a decision by country group Lady Antebellum to change to Lady A after acknowledging the word's association to slavery. A statement on The Chicks' website said ''We want to meet this moment.'' The term Dixie refers to Southern U.S. states, especially those that belonged to the Confederacy.
The Chicks, who are releasing their first new album in 14 years next month, also released a new video for their new song, ''March March'' that features videos and images from the recent Black Lives Matter rallies.
Lady A received criticism with their name switch after a Black singer revealed she'd been performing as Lady A for years.
The Chicks are the best selling female group in America with more than 33 million albums sold in the United States, according to the Recording Industry Association of America. Formed originally in Texas as a bluegrass group, the band hit commercial fame with their breakthrough album ''Wide Open Spaces.'' The band has won 13 Grammys.
The band was shunned by country radio over an incident in 2003 when lead singer Maines criticized then-President George W. Bush because of the Iraq War. They responded to the backlash with their song ''Not Ready to Make Nice,'' and swept the Grammys in 2007 winning three of the top all-genre categories.
Mount Rushmore: Oglala Sioux leader calls for removal amid Trump visit
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 07:12
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. '' As President Donald Trump prepares to visit Mount Rushmore next week, a South Dakota tribal president is preparing a memo of disapproval.
Oglala Sioux President Julian Bear Runner says the president failed to consult with tribal leaders about the visit to the Black Hills, which the Sioux consider part of their Great Sioux Reservation, land that was never ceded to the United States. Bear Runner said Trump's visit requited government-to-government consultation between the tribes and the federal government.
And one other thing: Bear Runner thinks Mount Rushmore should come down.
"I don't believe it should be blown up, because it would cause more damage to the land," he said, noting that Indian artifacts could be damaged. But there are other methods to take down the monument that would have less environmental impact.
"I agree," he said. "Removed but not blown up."
His comments come amid a wave of statues of historical figures that have been torn down following protests of racial injustice. Some have criticized the destruction, which they say has largely come at the hands of unchecked mobs as opposed to deliberative decisions by elected leaders. However, in some cities and states, government officials have led the statues' removals.
Protesters initially targeted statues of Confederate leaders but have expanded to leaders of the Union as well as pre-Civil War figures.
When some suggested that Mount Rushmore might be next, South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem, a Republican, tweeted, ''Not on my watch.''
'Not on my watch':South Dakota governor on taking down Mount Rushmore
Mount Rushmore carries special significance for Great Plains Indians: It depicts the faces of four white American leaders who presided over the founding and expansion of European descended ancestors throughout the United States. It was built on land that the tribes still claim ownership to via treaty with the United States.
Bear Runner said the monument was built without any consultation or approval from Sioux leaders of that era.
''To me, it's a great sign of disrespect,'' he said.
Into this comes the July 3 fireworks display and Trump, who has been criticized for disparaging minorities. Several groups led by Native American activists are planning protests for the visit.
"I'm not really happy that he's coming to pollute our Black Hills," said state Rep. Shawn Bordeaux, a Democrat and the chair of the State-Tribal Relations Committee and a member of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe.
Why the tribes are upset about Mount RushmoreMount Rushmore was created to draw tourism to South Dakota and its carving took place between 1927 and 1941. Sculptor Gutzon Borglum intended for Mount Rushmore to stand for America's greatness, and it's referred to as the Shrine of Democracy. However, stories in recent years have highlighted Borglum's ties to white supremacy, possibly joining the Ku Klux Klan, his Confederate sculpture funded by the KKK and that the tribes have argued for generations that the land was stolen from them.
''Mount Rushmore is a symbol of white supremacy, of structural racism that's still alive and well in society today,'' said Nick Tilsen, a member of the Oglala Lakota tribe and the president of a local activist organization called NDN Collective. ''It's an injustice to actively steal Indigenous people's land then carve the white faces of the conquerors who committed genocide.''
The Lakota know the mountain into which Mount Rushmore is carved as the Six Grandfathers.
More on Confederate statues:Is this the end for other Confederate memorials?
The Lakota consider the Black Hills, or Paha Sapa in Lakota, to be the spiritual center of the Great Sioux Reservation where their culture began, and it was home to seven Lakota tribes.
The tribes were given the Black Hills in perpetuity in the Fort Laramie Treaty of 1868. But miners seeking gold came into the area in an expedition led by Gen. George Custer in 1874. More miners encroached in the Hills once gold was found and demanded the U.S. Army's protection.
Although the Lakota and Northern Cheynne were victorious in the Battle of Little Bighorn in 1876, by the following year, thousands of cavalrymen were deployed to the area and began what the Lakota called the "sell or starve" campaign: The Indian Appropriations Act of 1876 cut off all rations until the Lakota ended hostilities and ceded the Black Hills to the federal government. By the fall of 1877, the Lakota were under the control of federal agents on reservations, their land confiscated by the federal government under the Agreement of 1877.
Tribes have attempted to reclaim the Black Hills several times in recent decades.
The U.S. Court of Claims found in 1979 that the Sioux Nation was entitled to $17.1 million in compensation due to the federal government's seizure of the Black Hills. The following year, U.S. Supreme Court decided 8-1 that the federal government had violated the Fifth Amendment and the tribes were entitled to compensation in United State v. Sioux Nation of Indians. The tribes declined the compensation because it would legally end their demand for the Black Hills to be returned to them.
Several requests were denied in the early 1980s to return millions of acres of the Black Hills to the tribes, as well as bills in Congress that would have returned some of the land.
The effort to settle the land dispute was revived in 2009, and a United Nations report in 2012 said that Indigenous land, including the Black Hills, should be returned.
Mount Rushmore as a 'a ''Rorschach test,"Tim Giago, a journalist who is a member of the Oglala Lakota tribe, said he doesn't see four great American leaders when he looks at the monument, but instead four white men who either made racist remarks or initiated actions that removed Native Americans from their land.
Washington and Jefferson both held slaves. Lincoln, though he led the abolition of slavery, also approved the hanging of 38 Dakota men in Minnesota after a violent conflict with white settlers there. Roosevelt is reported to have said, ''I don't go so far as to think that the only good Indians are dead Indians, but I believe nine out of every ten are.''
The monument has long been a ''Rorschach test," said John Taliaferro, author of ''Great White Fathers,'' a history of the monument. "All sorts of people can go there and see it in different ways.''
The monument often starts conversations on the paradox of American democracy '-- that a republic that promoted the ideals of freedom, determination and innovation also enslaved people and drove others from their land, he said.
''If we're having this discussion today about what American democracy is, Mount Rushmore is really serving its purpose because that conversation goes on there,'' he said. ''Is it fragile? Is it permanent? Is it cracking somewhat?''
The monument was conceived in the 1920s as a tourist draw for the new fad in vacationing called the road trip. South Dakota historian Doane Robinson recruited Borglum, one of the preeminent sculptors at the time, to abandon his work creating the Stone Mountain Confederate Memorial in Georgia, which was to feature Robert E. Lee, Jefferson Davis and Stonewall Jackson.
Borglum was a member of the Ku Klux Klan, according to Mount Rushmore historian and writer Tom Griffith. Borglum joined the Klan to raise money for the Confederate memorial, and Griffith argues his allegiance was more practical than ideological. He left that project and instead spent years in South Dakota completing Mount Rushmore.
Native American activists have long staged protests at the site to raise awareness among the history of the Black Hills, which were taken from them despite treaties with the United States protecting the land. Fifty years ago this summer a group of activists associated with an organization called United Native Americans climbed to the top of the monument and occupied it.
Quanah Brightman, who now runs United Native Americans, said the activism in the 1970s grew out of the civil rights movement of the 1960s. He hopes a similar movement for Native Americans comes from the Black Lives Matter movement.
''What people find here is the story of America '-- it's multidimensional, it's complex,'' Griffith said. ''It's important to understand it was people just trying to do right as best they knew it then.''
Contributing: The Associated Press
Employees at Condado Tacos Walk Off Job After Refusing to Fill Order for Ohio Police
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 03:52
Several employees at a Columbus, Ohio, Condado Tacos restaurant walked off the job on Tuesday after refusing to fill a catering order for police, prompting the woke chain to close all of its 20 stores ''out of an abundance of caution.''
Condado claims no employees were fired, and, moreover, the employees were not forced to prepare the order.
A tweet by an employee at the Polaris location of Condado Tacos went viral earlier this week when he claimed he was fired for walking out on the job:
today on my day off my job forced us to do a massive catering order for the columbus police department. the staff walked out and was fired. when i go in tm, myself and other are gonna demand an apology and if we don't get it we also will walk out.
'-- black lives matter. (@gsheamercer) June 1, 2020
The employee retweeted this on June 1, apparently in solidarity with the violent mobs that have ravaged cities from coast to coast and here in Ohio:
Isn't it great?! This is what the road to justice looks like 🥰 https://t.co/77BBIi9L0c
'-- $oph (@artnerdsoph) June 1, 2020
His claim that he was fired has been retweeted more than 13,000 times and ignited a fiery debate about whether or not employees should be forced to feed cops in the wake of protests and riots over the brutal, unconscionable death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis Police.
Jake Widdowson also says he was fired:
today me and my AKM were fired from Condado by the district manager for refusing to make 500 tacos for the highway patrol. I regret nothing. #KeepFighting #ACAB
'-- sid precious (@WiddowsonJake) June 2, 2020
''Immediately, I just didn't feel comfortable making that order,'' Jake told Eater. ''I've been joining in the protests the last couple of days and seeing the extreme brutality on protesters and making that food was not something I felt comfortable with doing.''
Jake is the blonde Milo Yiannopoulos lookalike here:
Jake wrote on Twitter that ''This is the one interview I could swear in, so this is my truest voice.'' You've been warned if you decide to listen.
The taco chain told Eater that the Polaris location received a catering order on Monday night from the Ohio Highway Patrol for 250 ''Bud Boxes.'' At 12 bucks a pop, that comes to $3000.
(Screenshot of Condados taco order)
Considering that restaurants are struggling to remain solvent in the wake of the COVID-19 shutdowns, Jake should be grateful to have a job at all at a time when more than a million Ohioans are out of work. Oh, and by the way:
Not even a month ago, hundreds of businesses were donating to the police all around the country, and we were proud of it. It's sad how quickly we can turn on each other. https://t.co/FbiasrfPek
'-- Kyle (@kaalbullyard) June 2, 2020
''No employees were fired last night,'' Condado insisted. ''A few employees working did express they were uncomfortable with fulfilling the order and after a discussion with their regional manager about their concerns, were given the option to not work on the order. The employees who expressed their concerns chose to not complete their shift last night however, their jobs remain intact at Condado if they choose to return.''
''Because we understand that emotions and tensions are raw right now, we offered those employees the option to sit out making that order, without repercussion, while other team members handled it,'' Condado said in a statement. ''We want to make it clear that they are welcome to return to work, if that is their choice, but they must understand that Condado Tacos is an inclusive business and that we will continue to serve everyone, including law enforcement.''
PJ Media reached out to Jake to ask if he's still employed by Condado but received no response.
Apparently, he's making some demands of his employer.
''I said the only way that I could stick around is if you make a public apology for taking this order and you make 500 tacos to give away to the protesters,'' he said in the podcast linked above. ''It's just tit for tat then, but obviously they're not going to want to do that.''
''Until they give real hands-on-the-ground help to protesters in their own city, they can talk about how they care about their own city all they want, but I want to see real action,'' added.
I'm not going to mince words here: Jake and his virtue-signaling buddies should have been fired.
Serving food to customers is literally the job description when you work at a restaurant. If it violates your delicate sensibilities to serve people you don't like, you need to find another line of work that insulates you from opinions and people you can't abide. If you feel you must very publicly trash your employer on social media, you shouldn't expect to keep your job.
Moreover'--and proving once again that you can never be woke enough to please these entitled crybabies'--Eater reports:
All [the Condado employees they spoke with] agreed that the culture at their individual restaurants was supportive of actions being taken by demonstrators, with one employee stating that managers had offered time-off to protest and committed to bail employees out of jail if they were arrested. However, the incident has left many employees and customers uncomfortable with upper management.
Until I read that, I had some sympathy for the restaurant chain, but they deserve what they're getting in bad publicity after taking the side of violent protesters. In an effort to prostrate themselves before the mob, they posted a black screen on their Instagram account to prove their wokeness.
The Ohio State Highway Patrol issued a statement:
Yesterday, the Patrol was made aware of a situation that occurred at the Polaris Condado Tacos. A large order was placed for personnel working the protests and while placing the order, which was fulfilled, the Patrol was treated with nothing but kindness and respect. At the time of the placing and receiving the order, we were unaware of any issues. The Patrol would welcome the opportunity to establish an open dialogue with the Condado's employees in an effort to build inroads to open lines of communication that will help all of us. We are an agency who fosters understanding, communication and respect among all people.
Why bother? These entitled kids won't stop until the police are abolished, our cities lie in ruins, and no one has a job.
Follow me on Twitter @pbolyard
The Mainstream Media Is Ignoring the Murders of Innocents During the George Floyd Riots
Amazon Secures Naming Rights to Future Home of Seattle's New NHL Franchise, and Calls It Climate Pledge Arena | Amazon.com, Inc. - Press Room
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 04:23
Climate Pledge Arena will serve as a long-lasting and regular reminder of the urgent need for climate action to achieve net zero carbon by 2040
Site expected to be the first net zero carbon certified arena in the world, developed in partnership with Amazon, Oak View Group, and NHL Seattle
SEATTLE--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jun. 25, 2020--Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) today announced that it has secured the naming rights to the new home of Seattle's NHL team and WNBA's Seattle Storm, and is calling it Climate Pledge Arena rather than the name of the company. In 2019, Amazon and Global Optimism announced The Climate Pledge, which calls on signatories to be net zero carbon across their businesses by 2040'--a decade ahead of the Paris Agreement. With significant investment from Amazon and Oak View Group, the venue is expected to be the first net zero carbon certified arena in the world and set a new sustainability bar for the sports and events industry.
''We've secured naming rights to the historic arena previously known as KeyArena. Instead of naming it after Amazon, we're calling it Climate Pledge Arena as a regular reminder of the importance of fighting climate change,'' said Jeff Bezos, Amazon founder and CEO. ''We look forward to working together with Oak View Group, a new Climate Pledge signatory, and NHL Seattle to inspire global climate action.''
''There is no question that the state of our planet is a critical issue for all of us,'' said Tim Leiweke, CEO, Oak View Group. ''We have a responsibility to future generations to try to leave them with a better world. We love that Amazon is using its naming rights for a cause we care deeply about'--this partnership is a visionary step for the facilities business and sport and music industries. Our goal is to be the most progressive, responsible, and sustainable venue in the world. It is not just about one arena'--it's a platform for us to step up and heal our planet.''
Highlights of the arena partnership include:
First arena in the world targeting net Zero Carbon certification by the International Living Future Institute (ILFI), a leading non-profit organization dedicated to advancing sustainable building practices.Arena will have all-electric operations and be powered with 100% renewable electricity, both from on-site solar panels and off-site renewable energy. Events at the arena will be made fully net zero carbon through investments in forestry projects with organizations such as The Nature Conservancy that will sequester any remaining carbon emissions from arena operations.Carbon emissions and sustainability performance of the arena and all events will be measured and publicly disclosed.All operations and events at the arena will be 'zero waste' with durable and compostable containers. A minimum of 95% of all arena waste will be diverted from landfills on a weight basis.Arena will use reclaimed rainwater in the ice system to create the greenest ice in the NHL.Original 44-million-pound roof from the arena will be reused in construction to significantly reduce the embodied carbon of the building.At least 75% of the arena's food program will be sourced locally on a seasonal basis to support regional farmers and producers, and all viable unused food from events will be donated to local community food programs.NHL Seattle and WNBA Storm tickets will double as free public transit passes to promote use of public transportation for attendees, including on the refurbished Seattle Monorail.Amazon and OVG will form the Climate Pledge Arena Sustainability Advisory Council in partnership with community groups to support local environmental initiatives.''Climate Pledge Arena will set a new sustainability standard for sports and event spaces around the world. I commend the commitments from Amazon and Oak View Group to develop this one-of-a-kind venue and inspire climate action,'' said Jason F. McLennan, Founder of the International Living Future Institute and CEO of McLennan Design. ''The group's innovative approach and sustainability mindset '' embodied by naming the arena after The Climate Pledge '' will provide a green, world-class event space at Seattle's City Center for the region to enjoy for years to come.''
''We have always set out to create the best home ice advantage; now we are innovating to create ice from reclaimed rainwater and the greenest ice in the country,'' said Tod Leiweke, CEO, NHL Seattle. ''This is going to be the best arena in the NHL and we're proud that there will be many opportunities for our fans to make a difference nightly. This is truly remarkable and a testament to David Bonderman and our leadership.''
The 18,100-seat multi-purpose venue located at Seattle Center is expected to host 200 events each year, including NHL Seattle, three-time WNBA world champion Seattle Storm, live music and entertainment from the world's biggest stars, and City of Seattle community events. It is currently undergoing a transformation to construct a brand new arena under the landmark Paul Thiry-designed roof. To learn more about The Climate Pledge and Climate Pledge Arena, visit www.TheClimatePledge.com and www.ClimatePledgeArena.com. For downloadable, high-resolution renderings of the new arena, visit the Climate Pledge Arena section of the Images and Videos page on Amazon's Press Center.
About Amazon
Amazon is guided by four principles: customer obsession rather than competitor focus, passion for invention, commitment to operational excellence, and long-term thinking. Customer reviews, 1-Click shopping, personalized recommendations, Prime, Fulfillment by Amazon, AWS, Kindle Direct Publishing, Kindle, Fire tablets, Fire TV, Amazon Echo, and Alexa are some of the products and services pioneered by Amazon. For more information, visit www.amazon.com/about.
About Oak View Group (OVG)
Oak View Group (OVG) is a global sports and entertainment company founded by Tim Leiweke and Irving Azoff in 2015. OVG is focused on being a positive disruption to business as usual in the sports and live entertainment industry and currently has 8 divisions across 4 global offices (Los Angeles, New York, London, and Philadelphia). OVG is leading the redevelopment and operations of Climate Pledge Arena at Seattle Center as well as leading arena development projects in Belmont, NY, Austin, TX, and Milan, Italy. OVG Global Partnerships, a division of OVG, is the sales and marketing arm responsible for selling across all OVG Arena Development projects.
About Seattle Hockey Partners
Seattle Hockey Partners (NHL Seattle) is responsible for leading the development activities of the newly awarded Seattle National Hockey League franchise, which is set to play its inaugural season in 2021-22. Visit nhlseattle.com/news for the latest news and information from the team including press releases, multimedia content and the latest hires. Follow NHL Seattle on social media to find out the latest news via Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Or search using the hashtag #NHLSeattle.
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Why it might be time to retire 'The Star-Spangled Banner'
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 10:48
In an increasingly anti-racist era when problematic iconography '-- ranging from Aunt Jemima and Uncle Ben to even the Dukes of Hazzard General Lee car and country band Lady Antebellum's name '-- is being reassessed, revised or retired, America's national anthem, ''The Star-Spangled Banner,'' seems to be striking a wrong note.
Last week, protesters in San Francisco toppled a statue of the song's composer, Francis Scott Key, a known slaveholder who once said that African Americans were ''a distinct and inferior race of people, which all experience proves to be the greatest evil that afflicts a community.'' This week, Liana Morales, an Afro-Latinx student at New York's Urban Assembly School for the Performing Arts, refused to sing ''The Star-Spangled Banner'' at her virtual graduation ceremony, explaining to the Wall Street Journal, ''With everything that's happening, if I stand there and sing it, I'm being complicit to a system that has oppressed people of color.'' Instead, Morales performed ''Lift Every Voice and Sing,'' a hymn widely considered to be the ''Black national anthem.''
So, is it time for this country to dispense with ''The Star-Spangled Banner'' and adopt a new anthem with a less troubling history and a more inclusive message? Historian and scholar Daniel E. Walker, the author of No More, No More: Slavery and Cultural Resistance in Havana and New Orleans and producer of the documentary How Sweet the Sound: Gospel in Los Angeles, says yes.
''The 53-year-old in me says, we can't change things that have existed forever. But then there are these young people who say that America needs to live up to its real creed,'' Walker tells Yahoo Entertainment. ''And so, I do side with the people who say that we should rethink this as the national anthem, because this is about the deep-seated legacy of slavery and white supremacy in America, where we do things over and over and over again that are a slap in the face of people of color and women. We do it first because we knew what we were doing and we wanted to be sexist and racist. And now we do it under the guise of 'legacy.'''
Activist and journalist Kevin Powell, author of the new book When We Free the World, says it's important to understand the song's racist legacy, starting with Key's bigoted background.
'''The Star-Spangled Banner was written by Francis Scott Key, who was literally born into a wealthy, slave-holding family in Maryland,'' explains Powell. ''He was a very well-to-do lawyer in Washington, D.C., and eventually became very close to President Andrew Jackson, who was the Donald Trump of his time, which means that there was a lot of hate and violence and division. At that time, there were attacks on Native Americans and Black folks '-- both free Black folks and folks who were slaves '-- and Francis Scott Key was very much a part of that. He was also the brother-in-law of someone who became a Supreme Court justice, Roger Taney, who also had a very hardcore policy around slavery. And so, all of that is problematic. And the fact that Key, when he was a lawyer, also prosecuted abolitionists, both white and Black folks who wanted slavery to end, says that this is someone who really did not believe in freedom for all people. And yet, we celebrate him with this national anthem, every time we sing it.''
''Francis Scott Key, he was a big-time guy in terms of the American colonization of society,'' adds Walker. ''This was not just a person who just lived in the time period. This is a person who helped define the time period.''
This painting depicts Francis Scott Key seeing the American flag flying over Fort McHenry in Baltimore Harbor the day after he witnessed the British bombardment of the fort in the War of 1812. This sighting inspired the poet to write "The Star-Spangled Banner," which became the official United States national anthem in 1931. (AP Photo)
In fact ''The Star-Spangled Banner,'' based on a poem Key wrote about his eyewitness account of the War of 1812, originally featured a little-heard third stanza that was blatantly racist: ''No refuge could save the hireling and slave/From the terror of flight or the gloom of the grave/And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave/O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave.'' While that version of the song is rarely performed today, Powell has been aware of it for years, and, like Morales, has therefore refused to sing the anthem since he was in high school in the 1980s, when he first learned of its history.
''I grew up in hip-hop,'' says Powell, who used to write for Vibe magazine, ''and I remember how people would criticize hip-hop for being violent. Yet 'The Star-Spangled Banner' is riddled with violence. How are you criticizing a rap song for being violent, but when we get to kindergarten, we are literally teaching children violence through song? I said, 'I can't participate anymore.' So I stopped a long time ago.'''
While Powell may have known about the national anthem's problematic background at quite a young age, Walker understands that many people have only recently become aware of Key's abolitionism or his song's horrific third stanza.
''People just don't know history, and everybody's guilty of this. I mean, if I wasn't a historian, I wouldn't know these things. And it took getting a PhD to learn certain things! And I am still learning things every day,'' says Walker. ''There are students of mine, who are white, who say to me, 'I'm so upset that I got sugarcoated history my whole life. I feel cheated. And once I found this out, then I don't want to have a part in it.' Those are the people you see in these rallies. They're saying that they want to live in a world where those vestiges are gone because they have no reason to be here. And that we need to be about redemption in a society '-- that if we have wronged someone, we can go back and do our best to fix that. And this one is pretty easy to fix.''
All this being said, Powell doesn't pass judgement on the many Black artists who've performed ''The Star-Spangled Banner'' at high-profile events in the past '-- though he predicts that many artists will start refusing to sing it in the near future, in a movement similar to Colin Kaepernick and his supporters taking a knee during the anthem in recent years.
''The issue is not Black people's patriotism. I mean, there's very few folk that are as patriotic as African-Americans,'' says Powell. ''The way I look at it is, I think what Jimi Hendrix did with 'The Star-Spangled Banner' at Woodstock, or the way that Marvin Gaye reinterpreted it and made it a soul song, or Whitney Houston singing it at the Super Bowl in 1991, it became something that belonged to all people, not just folks that thought we should just blindly sing this song. And that's what we do: take these opportunities to perform it because it's a way to showcase one of the greatest gifts to the world, which is music.''
So, if ''The Star-Spangled Banner'' goes the way of the Confederate flag and Gone With the Wind, what should America's new national anthem be? Whatever it is, Walker says there should be a formal ''vetting process'' to make sure the next anthem doesn't have a terrible past; Powell, for his part, suggests John Lennon's ''Imagine,'' which he says is ''the most beautiful, unifying, all-people, all-backgrounds-together kind of song you could have.''
But what about ''Lift Every Voice and Sing''? That song, written as a poem by James Weldon Johnson in 1900, set to music by his brother J. Rosamond Johnson in 1905, and first publicly performed as part of a celebration of Abraham Lincoln's birthday by Johnson's brother John, was dubbed "the Negro national hymn" by the NAACP in 1919. In more recent years, it has been referenced in Maya Angelou's 1969 autobiography I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings and Spike Lee's 1989 film Do the Right Thing; it was also performed in 1972 by Kim Weston as the opening number for the Wattstax festival and by Beyonc(C) during her celebrated 2018 Coachella set.
''[''Lift Every Voice and Sing''] took on a life of its own, because I think when you think about 1900, it's same kind of ruthless, tragic, white supremacy, white nationalism, and terrorism '-- the lynchings of black people openly, almost like as if it was a Super Bowl of white folks posing with pictures of dead black bodies hanging from trees, quite literally. And so this song comes out of the tradition of slave plantations, of what became known as spirituals. It was a way for us to make ourselves feel good and empowered in spite of everything that was going on around us. And over time absolutely became the official national anthem for Black America.''
Regardless of whether or not ''Lift Every Voice and Sing'' could ever officially become the anthem for all of America, Walker thinks its lines like ''Sing a song full of the faith that the dark past has taught us'' are fitting, and he's glad that it's at least being considered as an alternative. ''I do like that there's more attention to the fact that there is a thing called 'Lift Every Voice and Sing,' that people are rediscovering it kind of like with Juneteenth,'' Walker says. ''I guarantee you, we had way more people celebrating Juneteenth this past week, knowing what it was, than we'd ever had in American history.
''The difference between then and now, is I '-- probably like most people '-- thought that there was no power to be able to change anything, because so many times when women and people of color say something, somebody either pats you on the back and says, 'It's not that bad,' or tells you really be quiet, because if you want to move forward, you shouldn't be a troublemaker,'' Walker continues, speaking of the current climate and the national anthem debate. ''And so I think you've got generations of that because patriarchy and racism and income inequality put people of color and women in those positions. So we just go ahead and sing [''The Star-Spangled Banner''] because we don't want to be the person who's sitting down when everybody else is standing up, don't want to be the person who doesn't have our hand over our heart. We don't want somebody ask, 'What's wrong with you?' where you are in a compromised position already, and they're questioning, 'Are you an American or not? Go back to Africa if you don't like it here!' But I think right now, the great thing is that people who have advocated for this in the past and have not been heard are able to double-back now.''
''If you really love your country, if you really are patriotic, then you criticize and challenge your country to be better and do better, not just reinforce things that actually may not be true for all people in the country. '... That is what democracy is,'' Powell sums up. ''If there's a tradition that hurts any part of the society '-- sexist, patriarchal, misogynistic '-- then it's time to just throw it away.''
Read more from Yahoo Entertainment:
' Jordin Sparks opens up about Black Lives Matter, Kaepernick and fears for her family: 'I can't be silent about this'
' Queen Latifah on affecting social change: 'I feel we're in a pivotal place'
' Flashback: Marvin Gaye grooves up national anthem at 1983 NBA All-Star game
' GWAR drummer on petition to replace Robert E. Lee statue with the late Oderus Urungus: 'He would probably be right there on the frontlines'
' Master P on Aunt Jemima, Uncle Ben's: 'Those are not real people'
' Chuck D talks Public Enemy's incendiary new anti-Trump song: 'This dude has got to go now'
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A Debate Over Identity and Race Asks, Are African-Americans 'Black' or 'black'? - The New York Times
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 16:15
The push to capitalize black to refer to African-Americans is far more than a typographical change.
The prominence of the Black Lives Matter movement has helped reignite the debate over the capitalization of the word black. Above, protests continued last week following the killing by the police of Rayshard Brooks in Atlanta. Credit... Joshua Rashaad McFadden for The New York Times June 26, 2020Updated 9:31 a.m. ET
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It's the difference between black and Black. A longtime push by African-American scholars and writers to capitalize the word black in the context of race has gained widespread acceptance in recent weeks and unleashed a deep debate over identity, race and power.
Hundreds of news organizations over the past month have changed their style to Black in reference to the race of people, including The Associated Press, long considered an influential arbiter of journalism style. Far more than a typographical change, the move is part of a generations-old struggle over how best to refer to those who trace their ancestry to Africa.
The capitalization of black, which has been pushed for years, strikes at deeper questions over the treatment of people of African descent, who were stripped of their identities and enslaved in centuries past, and whose struggles to become fully accepted as part of the American experience continue to this day.
''Blackness fundamentally shapes any core part of any black person's life in the U.S. context, and really around the world,'' said Brittney Cooper, an associate professor at Rutgers University whose latest book, ''Eloquent Rage,'' explores black feminism. ''In the choice to capitalize, we are paying homage to a history with a very particular kind of political engagement.''
The move toward Black is not embraced by all African-Americans, and two of the country's major news outlets, The New York Times and The Washington Post, are still wrestling over whether to make the change.
''Black is a color,'' said the Rev. Jesse L. Jackson, the longtime civil rights leader who popularized the term ''African-American'' in an effort to highlight the cultural heritage of those with ancestral ties to Africa. ''We built the country through the African slave trade. African-American acknowledges that. Any term that emphasizes the color and not the heritage separates us from our heritage.''
There are also concerns that turning black into a proper noun lumps people of the African diaspora into a monolithic group and erases the diversity of their experiences. Some have said it bestows credibility upon a social construct created to oppress black people. Perhaps the most notable concern is what to do about white and brown as racial identifiers.
So far, most news organizations have declined to capitalize white, generally arguing that it is an identifier of skin color, not shared experience, and that white supremacist groups have adopted that convention.
But some scholars say that to write ''Black'' but not ''White'' is to give white people a pass on seeing themselves as a race and recognizing all the privileges they get from it.
''Whiteness is not incidental,'' the sociologist Eve Ewing wrote on Twitter in arguing to capitalize white as well. She added: ''Whiteness is a thing. Whiteness is endowed with social meaning that allows people to move through the world in a way that people who are not white are not able to do.''
At a recent online meeting of Race/Related, a cross-desk team devoted to race coverage at The Times, a discussion of whether to capitalize black or not made clear that there is not universal agreement, even among African-Americans on the staff.
''It has been the subject of a lively and surprising debate,'' said Dean Baquet, the Times's executive editor, who has indicated that he will announce a decision on the issue soon.
The debate over racial vocabulary is unfolding amid growing recognition across society of the need to tackle racism after several high-profile police killings of black people incited mass protests nationwide.
The acceptable terms in America for identifying black people have evolved over generations, from colored to Negro to black and African-American. Also commonly used is ''people of color,'' an umbrella term used to include many ethnic minorities.
In the aftermath of the George Floyd killing, which has unleashed a national conversation on questions of race and racism, many say the country is long overdue to standardize the use of the uppercase B in black, which has been commonly used at black media outlets for a long time.
The New York Amsterdam News, for instance, describes itself as ''the oldest Black newspaper in the country that offers the 'New Black View' within local, national and international news for the Black community.''
The debate among black people in America over how they should be described has often centered on identity as a political statement.
In her 1904 essay ''Do We Need Another Name?'' Fannie Barrier Williams, an educator and activist, described a lively discussion unfolding at the time among African-American scholars over whether to shed the label Negro in favor of terms like colored or Afro-American. Colored, she wrote, was a ''name that is suggestive of progress toward respectful recognition.''
At the heart of the discussion, she wrote, was whether African-Americans needed a new label divorced from Negro and its connections to slavery, something of a fresh start that indicated their new place in society as free people.
Some, like W.E.B. Du Bois, favored keeping the term Negro and transforming it into something positive '-- an affirmation of their perseverance as a people and their freedom.
''There are so many Negroes who are not Negroes, so many colored people who are not colored, and so many Afro-Americans who are not Africans that it is simply impossible even to coin a term that will precisely designate and connote all the people who are now included under any one of the terms mentioned,'' Barrier Williams wrote.
Negro became the predominant identifier of people of African descent for much of the first half of the 20th century, and even then descendants of enslaved people from Africa waged a yearslong campaign before getting most of society, including The Times, to capitalize it.
With the rise of the Black Power movement in the mid-1960s, the word black, once seen as an insult for many African-Americans, started winning embrace. In just a few years, it became the predominant descriptor of black people as Negro became obsolete. Mr. Jackson's campaign brought African-American into popular use in the late 1980s, and it is now often used interchangeably with black.
For proponents of capitalizing black, there are grammatical reasons '-- it is a proper noun, referring to a specific group of people with a shared political identity, shaped by colonialism and slavery. But some see it as a moral issue as well.
It confers a sense of power and respect to black people, who have often been relegated to the lowest rungs of society through racist systems, black scholars say.
''Race as a concept is not real in the biological sense, but it's very real for our own identities,'' said Whitney Pirtle, an assistant professor of sociology specializing in critical race theory at the University of California, Merced. ''I think that capitalizing B both sort of puts respect to those identities, but also alludes to the humanities.''
Vilna Bashi Treitler, a professor of black studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara, said that racial categories were fabricated, created to denigrate people considered to be nonwhite. Black and white are adjectives, not proper nouns to be capitalized, she said, calling a term like ''African descendant'' a more appropriate way to characterize black people.
''It's a placeholder for describing the group of people who are perpetually reinserted into the bottom of the racial hierarchy,'' Dr. Bashi Treitler, the author of the book ''The Ethnic Project,'' said of the term black. ''I think we can be more revolutionary than to embrace the oppressor's term for us.''
In her first two books, Crystal M. Fleming, a sociologist and author, lowercased black in part because of academic differences between race and ethnicity. But the more she researched, the more those distinctions became blurred in her mind. She came to see race as a concept that could signify a politically and culturally meaningful identity.
Now Dr. Fleming, a professor at the State University of New York at Stony Brook and the author of ''How to be Less Stupid About Race,'' is writing a book for young people about fighting racism. She has decided to use Black.
Part of the reason, she said, was her desire to honor black experiences and speak with moral clarity about antiracism. Another reason was more basic, born in the urgency of the current moment.
''Frankly,'' she said, ''because I want to. That's also something that I think we need to see more of in every field '-- black people doing what we want to do.''
Marc Lacey contributed reporting.
Mike Henry on Twitter: "It's been an honor to play Cleveland on Family Guy for 20 years. I love this character, but persons of color should play characters of color. Therefore, I will be stepping down from the role. https://t.co/FmKasWITKT" / Twitter
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 20:23
Log in Sign up Mike Henry @ mikehenrybro It's been an honor to play Cleveland on Family Guy for 20 years. I love this character, but persons of color should play characters of color. Therefore, I will be stepping down from the role.
pic.twitter.com/FmKasWITKT 2:41 PM - 26 Jun 2020 Twitter by: Mike Henry @mikehenrybro Joseph Wilson @ VoicemanWilson
3h Replying to
@mikehenrybro @SethMacFarlane Look I'm black and a voice actor and I don't think this is necessary. I appreciate the sentiment behind it but I don't think you should do this. This is your most iconic role! That's the beauty of voice acting, the actor's appearance (including skin color) DOES NOT MATTER.
View conversation · Joseph Wilson @ VoicemanWilson
3h Replying to
@mikehenrybro @SethMacFarlane Now look if you feel like it's the right thing to do then by all means. I just don't want VAs to feel guilty for playing a character that doesn't resonate with their own race/beliefs/sexual orientation/etc. As long as you portray those characters respectfully, then it's ok.
View conversation · GT:TurboXS🧠@ RallyTurbo
4h Replying to
@mikehenrybro @SethMacFarlane I expect Joe to be voiced by a paraplegic as well
pic.twitter.com/ITQctMIdDS View conversation · 👑King Carl 🇧ðŸ‡>> @ calle79
3h Replying to
@RallyTurbo @mikehenrybro @SethMacFarlane Good luck finding this guy... ðŸ¤
pic.twitter.com/stk2c6wD6E View conversation · Mark Dice @ MarkDice
2h Replying to
@mikehenrybro How many millions of dollars did you make by committing verbal blackface, Mike? Shouldn't you give all that money plus interest to the black community that you systematically robbed all these years?
View conversation · Woke&Tired @ jnholm
2h Replying to
@MarkDice @mikehenrybro Pretty excited about them finding the talking dog though!!
View conversation · Harry Partridge 'š¸ @ HappyHarryToons
3h Replying to
@mikehenrybro And only a real paedophile should voice Herbert.
pic.twitter.com/aRFAbhVXUf View conversation · we did it @ worldgunk
3h Replying to
@HappyHarryToons @mikehenrybro Shouldn't be hard to find one in Hollywood
View conversation · ð''›ð''²ð''¼ð''ª @ Rockprincess818
2h Replying to
@mikehenrybro That's not good enough. Gift all the proceeds you earned to the black community. You must atone for the sin of Playing the voice of a cartoon character that wasn't the same color as you. Do it now
View conversation · MissionIncredible @ akumampus
2h Replying to
@Rockprincess818 @mikehenrybro Exactly. Does he really need both those kidneys?
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White actors will no longer voice characters of color on "The Simpsons" - CBS News
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 16:38
Following other white actors who said they would no longer voice characters of color, "The Simpsons" producers said Friday they will recast all of their characters of color, while a longtime "Family Guy" actor said he will step down from his role as Cleveland Brown.
In a statement on Friday, "The Simpsons" creators said, "Moving forward, 'The Simpsons' will no longer have white actors voice non-white characters."
"The Simpsons" has been on the air since 1989, and features several non-white characters voiced by white actors, including Harry Shearer, who plays Dr. Julius Hibbert, and Carlton Carlson Jr., played by Hank Azaria and Harry Shearer.
The show has been met with heavy criticism over the years for its character of Apu Nahasapeemapetilon, an Indian immigrant convenience store owner, who was also played by Azaria. Azaria announced in January that he will no longer play the character.
Mike Henry, who is white, has played Cleveland Brown on "Family Guy," since the show was created in 1999. He announced on Twitter that he is stepping down from his long-time role.
"I love this character," Henry wrote, "but persons of color should play persons of color."
It's been an honor to play Cleveland on Family Guy for 20 years. I love this character, but persons of color should play characters of color. Therefore, I will be stepping down from the role. pic.twitter.com/FmKasWITKT
'-- Mike Henry (@mikehenrybro) June 26, 2020Henry also voiced Latina maid Consuela on the show, and was the voice of Cleveland Brown and Rallo Tubbs on "Family Guy" spinoff, "The Cleveland Show."
On Wednesday, Netflix series " Big Mouth " announced that voice actress Jenny Slate will no longer voice Missy, a biracial character. Actress Kristen Bell also announced on Wednesday that she will no longer play biracial character Molly on Apple animated series "Central Park."
"This is a time to acknowledge our acts of complicity. Here is one of mine. Playing the character of Molly on Central Park shows a lack of awareness of my pervasive privilege," Bell wrote on Instagram. "Casting a mixed race character with a white actress undermines the specificity of the mixed race and Black American experience."
Historic housing policies segregated DC and hurt black residents. How do we do better now? '' Greater Greater Washington
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 15:43
Willow Lung-Amam, Don Edwards, and Neil Flanagan discuss inequitable land use and housing policies at Woodrow Wilson High School on Saturday, December 7. Image by the author.
The District has a history of inequitable land use and housing policies that have resulted in patterns of segregation that persist to this day. As the District seeks to update its Comprehensive Plan, a planning document which lays out how the city will develop in the years to come, it seeks to address these wrongs.
Racist federal and local housing policies in the 20th century laid the foundation for the racial and economic segregation in American cities today. These policies include segregated public housing, racial housing covenants, government-backed mortgages that were off-limits to African Americans, and redlining, or designating black neighborhoods as off-limits to lending. In one notable example, District and federal officials forced a thriving African American community out of Fort Reno Park.
While many racist policies ended with the 1968 Fair Housing Act, the damage was already done. By the time many of these same benefits were allowed for African Americans, price appreciation ensured that the nicest neighborhoods were too expensive for them. The result has not only been segregated cities, but also a significant wealth gap between white and black America that is largely attributable to historical differences in homeownership.
As the Office of Planning works to update DC's Comprehensive Plan, it's soliciting feedback on how to do it right. The agency capped a month-long feedback tour with a discussion at Woodrow Wilson High School on December 7. Panelists explained ongoing barriers, as well as possible solutions to inequitable policies in DC. You can watch the entire event below:
Panelists Willow Lung-Amam, Associate Professor of Urban Planning at the University of Maryland, sat down with Don Edwards, CEO of Justice & Sustainability Associates, and Neil Flanagan, a local writer and architect with Maginniss + del Ninno Architects, to unpack the District's history of inequitable policies, and how we can craft new ones to promote a more equitable future.
Zoning codes have been used as a tool of segregation
DC's original zoning codes were often applied ''to reinforce the covenants and restrictions of real estate, of single-family developments built by'...segregationist developers'' and to protect DC's wealthiest areas, notably west of Rock Creek Park, said Flanagan.
Although many racist policies, like restrictive covenants or race-based mortgage insurance, were deemed unlawful by the late 1960s, restrictive zoning has since kept the wealthiest parts of DC economically out of reach for low-income residents. Approximately 23% of DC's land area, and 80% in Rock Creek West, is restricted to detached single-family homes. That pushes the pressures of growth into only a few areas of the city, which can lead to displacement.
Detached single-family housing remains an extremely expensive form of housing in a city where land is so expensive. Therefore, it's very difficult for black and other households that did not benefit from 20th century housing wealth to buy into these communities. This has preserved an intentionally segregated pattern of development we experience to the present day.
This history continues to impact current residents. At Saturday's event, David Williams, Policy Director at Opportunity Insights, presented research that shows how low-income children that grow up in the wealthiest parts of DC'--west of Rock Creek Park'--have, on average, much higher incomes in adulthood than those who grew up in poorer neighborhoods.
How do we fix the problem?
Policies that can help reverse segregation in DC include rent control, inclusionary zoning, accessory apartments (also known as Accessory Dwelling Units or ADUs), and eliminating zoning that only allows single-family homes and not denser housing types like duplexes or apartment buildings, said Lung-Amam.
Lung-Amam advocated for ''banning single-family zoning, something that has been commonplace in zoning since it was enacted in the 1920 but'...is by its very nature exclusionary, and is not helping communities achieve the goals of integration.''
Besides being the right thing to do, fostering diverse neighborhoods can lead to economic benefits. Segregated neighborhoods, on the other hand, harm economic mobility, David Williams, Policy Director for Opportunity Insights said.
Mayor Muriel Bowser's target to add 36,000 new housing units'--including 12,000 dedicated affordable units'--by 2025 across the city will help, said Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) Director Polly Donaldson and Office of Planning Director Andrew Trueblood, who also spoke at the event. If wealthy neighborhoods build affordable housing, this will allow people of various incomes to live there and help break down these ongoing patterns of exclusion.
The Bowser administration has established goals to equitably distribute this new housing throughout the city. In order to accomplish these goals, the Office of Planning has announced updates to DC's Comprehensive Plan, which include changes to allow for more housing along key transit corridors like Connecticut Avenue and Wisconsin Avenue.
The public has until December 20 to weigh in on the Comprehensive Plan updates, while ANCs have until January 31 to give comments. You can learn more about these and other initiatives at housing.dc.gov.
Woodrow Wilson was extremely racist '-- even by the standards of his time - Vox
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 15:40
This Wednesday, a group of Princeton students stormed the offices of president Christopher Eisgruber to demand that Woodrow Wilson's name be removed from all programs and buildings at the university. That's a big ask. Princeton has an entire school '-- the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs '-- named after Wilson, who served as university president from 1902 to 1910, before his time in the White House. It also has Wilson College, a residential college for undergrads.
So far, the university is standing firm, insisting that, in the Associated Press's words, "it is important to weigh Wilson's racism, and how bad it was, with the contributions he made to the nation." And outside of Princeton, the incident is being seized upon as yet another example of campus PC run amok:
Leaving aside the broader question of whether Wilson's name should be removed, let's be clear on one thing: Woodrow Wilson was, in fact, a racist pig. He was a racist by current standards, and he was a racist by the standards of the 1910s, a period widely acknowledged by historians as the "nadir" of post''Civil War race relations in the United States.
Woodrow Wilson resegregated the federal government Wilson and his Treasury secretary, William McAdoo, who led the charge by resegregating his department. Apic/Getty Images Easily the worst part of Wilson's record as president was his overseeing of the resegregation of multiple agencies of the federal government, which had been surprisingly integrated as a result of Reconstruction decades earlier. At an April 11, 1913, Cabinet meeting, Postmaster General Albert Burleson argued for segregating the Railway Mail Service. He took exception to the fact that workers shared glasses, towels, and washrooms. Wilson offered no objection to Burleson's plan for segregation, saying that he "wished the matter adjusted in a way to make the least friction."
Both Burleson and Treasury Secretary William McAdoo took Wilson's comments as authorization to segregate. The Department of Treasury and Post Office Department both introduced screened-off workspaces, separate lunchrooms, and separate bathrooms. In a 1913 open letter to Wilson, W.E.B. DuBois '-- who had supported Wilson in the 1912 election before being disenchanted by his segregation policies '-- wrote of "one colored clerk who could not actually be segregated on account of the nature of his work [and who] consequently had a cage built around him to separate him from his white companions of many years." That's right: Black people who couldn't, logistically, be segregated were put in literal cages.
Outright dismissals were also common. Upon taking office, Wilson himself fired 15 out of 17 black supervisors in the federal service and replaced them with white people. After the Treasury and Post Office began segregating, many black workers were let go. The head of the Internal Revenue division in Georgia fired all his black employees, saying, "There are no government positions for Negroes in the South. A Negro's place in the corn field." To enable hiring discrimination going forward, in 1914 the federal government began requiring photographs on job applications.
In 1914, a group of black professionals led by newspaper editor and Harvard alumnus Monroe Trotter met with Wilson to protest the segregation. Wilson informed Trotter, "Segregation is not humiliating, but a benefit, and ought to be so regarded by you gentlemen." When Trotter insisted that "it is untenable, in view of the established facts, to maintain that the segregation is simply to avoid race friction, for the simple reason that for fifty years white and colored clerks have been working together in peace and harmony and friendliness," Wilson admonished him for his tone: "If this organization is ever to have another hearing before me it must have another spokesman. Your manner offends me '... Your tone, with its background of passion."
W.E.B. DuBois, a vocal critic of Wilson's segregationist policies, pictured in 1950. Keystone/Getty Images It's worth stressing that Wilson's policies here were racist even for his time. Presidents Teddy Roosevelt and William Howard Taft had been much better about appointing black statesmen to public office, and other political figures, including whites, attacked Wilson's moves toward segregation. The influential pro''civil rights journalist Oswald Garrison Villard wrote that the Wilson administration "has allied itself with the forces of reaction, and put itself on the side of every torturer, of every oppressor, of every perpetrator of racial injustice in the South or the North." He further attacked it for its "political stupidity": The administration "has put into the hands of the Republican party an issue which, if they have the sense to use it, may be just the touchstone they are seeking."
Villard was taken seriously by the White House, which tried to court him on the issue and offered hints that it might be changing its tone. He met with Wilson and corresponded with him on racial issues numerous times. But the segregation policies were never reversed.
Some Republicans seized upon the issue, though it wasn't the political game changer that Villard hoped it would be. "Congressman John J. Rogers of Massachusetts introduced resolutions urging investigation of treatment of Negro employees in the Treasury and Post Office Departments," historian Nancy Weiss writes, "but both measures died on committee calendars without gaining so much as a hearing."
Wilson's racism even extended to foreign affairs. While it had been customary to appoint black ambassadors to Haiti and Santa Domingo (now the Dominican Republic), Wilson didn't do that either. At the Versailles Convention in 1919, Wilson helped kill a proposal from Japan calling for the treaty to recognize the principle of racial equality. While 11 out of 17 members at the meeting considering the amendment favored it, Wilson, who was presiding, arbitrarily decided that the amendment had been defeated because the vote wasn't unanimous. This wasn't an actual rule that the proceedings were operating under; a simple majority vote was enough to decide that the League of Nations would be headquartered in Geneva. Wilson just really didn't want the treaty to recognize racial equality and wanted to appease the British Empire, which was premised on subjugating African and South Asian people.
Woodrow Wilson was a vocal defender of the Ku Klux KlanWilson was governor of New Jersey when he became president in 1913, but he had been born in Virginia and raised in Georgia and South Carolina. He was, historian William Keylor notes, the first Southerner elected to the presidency since Zachary Taylor in 1848. Southern racists, accordingly, rejoiced his election. "Washington was flooded with revelers from the Old Confederacy, whose people had long dreamed of a return to the glory days of Washington, Jefferson, Madison, and Monroe, when southern gentlemen ran the country," Keylor writes. "Rebel yells and the strains of 'Dixie' reverberated throughout the city."
Wilson himself was the descendant of Confederate soldiers, and identified deeply with the "Lost Cause" narrative, according to which the Confederacy was a government of noble men trying to preserve a decent agrarian way of life against crude Northern industrialists, rather than a separatist movement premised on white supremacy. Historian Wesley Moody describes Wilson's most famous book as an academic, A History of the American People, as "steeped in Lost Cause mythology." The book was generally sympathetic to the Ku Klux Klan, describing them as "men half outlawed, denied the suffrage, without hope of justice in the courts, who meant to take this means to make their will felt." ("This means" being violence and intimidation against black people.) The following quote from the book even made its way into The Birth of a Nation, D.W. Griffith's infamous feature valorizing the Ku Klux Klan as saviors of the South:
"A great Ku Klux Klan." DW Griffith Lest one think this is a misrepresentation of Wilson's views, The Birth of a Nation actually cut off the most racist part of the first half of the quote:
The white men of the South were aroused by the mere instinct of self-preservation to rid themselves, by fair means or foul, of the intolerable burden of governments sustained by the votes of ignorant negroes and conducted in the interest of adventurers.
And that was only the last of three Wilson quote title cards in the film. This one came first:
[A]dventurers swarmed out of the North, as much the enemies of one race as of the other, to cozen, beguile, and use the Negroes.'...In the villages the Negroes were the office holders, men who knew none of the uses of authority, except its insolences.
And then this one:
The Policy of the congressional leaders wrought'...a veritable overthrow of civilization in the South.'...in their determination to "put the white South under the heel of the black South."
For his part, Wilson lent The Birth of a Nation his approval by screening it at the White House and reportedly telling Griffith that it could "teach history with lightning."
Elsewhere in the book, Wilson attacked Reconstruction on the grounds that "the dominance of an ignorant and inferior race was justly dreaded." He was strongly against black suffrage: "It was a menace to society itself that the negroes should thus of a sudden be set free and left without tutelage or restraint." He praised those freed slaves who "stayed very quietly by their old masters and gave no trouble" but bemoaned that they were the exception, the being "vagrants, looking for pleasure and gratuitous fortune" who inevitably "turned thieves or importunate beggars. The tasks of ordinary labor stood untouched; the idlers grew insolent; dangerous nights went anxiously by, for fear of riot and incendiary fire."
At the end of Reconstruction, "Negro rule under unscrupulous adventurers had been finally put an end to in the South, and the natural, inevitable ascendancy of the whites, the responsible class, established." In a 1881 article that went unpublished, Wilson defended the South's suppression of black voters, saying that they were being denied the vote not because their skin was dark but because their minds were dark (yes, really).
Wilson's racism wasn't the matter of a few unfortunate remarks here or there. It was a core part of his political identity, as indicated both by his anti-black policies as president and by his writings before taking office. It is completely accurate to describe him as a racist and white supremacist and condemn him accordingly.
Correction: This post originally referred to the Woodrow Wilson School of Public Policy and International Affairs; it's actually the school of Public and International Affairs. Wesley Moody was also mislabeled as Wesley Morris.
VIDEO: Race isn't biologically real
President Woodrow Wilson And His Racist Legacy - The Atlantic
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 15:35
Students at Princeton University are protesting the ways it honors the former president, who once threw a civil-rights leader out of the White House.
Dick Lehr November 27, 2015 APThe Black Justice League, in protests on Princeton University's campus, has drawn wider attention to an inconvenient truth about the university's ultimate star: Woodrow Wilson. The Virginia native was racist, a trait largely overshadowed by his works as Princeton's president, as New Jersey's governor, and, most notably, as the 28th president of the United States.
As president, Wilson oversaw unprecedented segregation in federal offices. It's a shameful side to his legacy that came to a head one fall afternoon in 1914 when he threw the civil-rights leader William Monroe Trotter out of the Oval Office.
Trotter led a delegation of blacks to meet with the president on November 12, 1914 to discuss the surge of segregation in the country. Trotter, today largely forgotten, was a nationally prominent civil-rights leader and newspaper editor. In the early 1900s, he was often mentioned in the same breath as W.E.B. Du Bois and Booker T. Washington. But unlike Washington, Trotter, an 1895 graduate of Harvard, believed in direct protest actions. In fact, Trotter founded his Boston newspaper, The Guardian, as a vehicle to challenge Washington's more conciliatory approach to civil rights.
Before Trotter's confrontation with Wilson in the Oval Office, he was a political supporter of Wilson's. He had pledged black support for Wilson's presidential run when the two met face-to-face in July 1912 at the State House in Trenton, New Jersey. Even though then-Governor Wilson offered only vague promises about seeking fairness for all Americans, Trotter apparently came away smitten. ''The governor had us draw our chairs right up around him, and shook hands with great cordiality,'' he wrote a friend later. ''When we left he gave me a long handclasp, and used such a pleased tone that I was walking on air.'' Trotter viewed Wilson as the lesser of other political evils.
The civil-rights leader was soon having second thoughts. In the fall of 1913, he and other civil-rights leaders, including Ida B. Wells, met with Wilson to express dismay over Jim Crow. Trotter's wife, Deenie, had even drawn a chart showing which federal offices had begun separating workers by race. Wilson sent them off with vague assurances.
In the next year, segregation did not improve; it worsened. By this time, numerous instances of workplace separation became well publicized. Among them, separate toilets in the U.S. Treasury and the Interior Department, a practice that Wilson's Treasury secretary, William G. McAdoo, defended: ''I am not going to argue the justification of the separate toilets orders, beyond saying that it is difficult to disregard certain feelings and sentiments of white people in a matter of this sort.''
For blacks'--who ever since Lincoln's War had expected some measure of equity from the federal government'--the sense of a betrayal ran deep.
Trotter sought a follow-up meeting with the president. ''Last year he told the delegation he would seek a solution,'' he wrote a supporter in the fall of 1914. ''Having waited 11 months, we are entitled to an audience to learn what it is. Not only for the sake of his administration but as a matter of common justice.'' Of course, the president's plate was full.
Wilson might have bumbled, and worse, on civil rights, but he was overseeing implementation of a ''New Freedom'' in the nation's economy'--his campaign promise to restore competition and fair labor practices, and to enable small businesses crushed by industrial titans to thrive once again. In September 1914, for example, he had created the Federal Trade Commission to protect consumers against price-fixing and other anticompetitive business practices, and shortly after signed into law the Clayton Antitrust Act. He continued monitoring the so-called European War, resisting pressure to enter but moving to strengthen the nation's armed forces. In addition to attending to the state's affairs, Wilson was in mourning: His wife, Ellen, had died on August 6 from liver disease. On November 6, one of his advisers noted in his diary that the president had told him ''he was broken in spirit by Mrs. Wilson's death.''
Eventually, Wilson agreed to meet a second time with Trotter, and on November 12 the persistent editor and a contingent of Trotterites entered the Oval Office for their long-sought, long-awaited follow-up meeting. Trotter came prepared with a statement and launched the meeting by reading it.
Trotter began with a reference to their 1913 meeting and to the petition he had presented, containing 20,000 signatures ''from thirty-eight states protesting against the segregation of employees of the national government.'' He listed the on-the-job race separation that had gone unchecked since'--at eating tables, dressing rooms, restrooms, lockers, and ''especially public toilets in government buildings.'' He then charged that the color line was drawn in the Treasury Department, in the Bureau of Engraving and Printing, the Navy Department, the Interior Department, the Marine Hospital, the War Department, and in the Sewing and Printing Divisions of the Government Printing Office. Trotter also noted the political support he and other civil-rights activists had provided to Wilson. ''Only two years ago you were heralded as perhaps the second Lincoln, and now the Afro-American leaders who supported you are hounded as false leaders and traitors to their race,'' he said. And then he reminded the president of his pledge to assist ''colored fellow citizens'' in ''advancing the interest of their race in the United States,'' and ended by posing a question that contained a jab at Wilson's much-ballyhooed economic reform program. ''Have you a 'New Freedom' for white Americans and a new slavery for your Afro-American fellow citizens? God forbid!''
The meeting quickly turned sour. The president told Trotter what he previously admitted in private'--that he viewed segregation in his federal agencies as a benefit to blacks. Wilson said that his cabinet officers ''were seeking, not to put the Negro employees at a disadvantage but ... to make arrangements which would prevent any kind of friction between the white employees and the Negro employees.'' Trotter found the claim astonishing, and immediately disagreed, calling Jim Crow in federal offices humiliating and degrading to black workers. But Wilson dug in. ''My question would be this: If you think that you gentlemen, as an organization, and all other Negro citizens of this country, that you are being humiliated, you will believe it. If you take it as a humiliation, which it is not intended as, and sow the seed of that impression all over the country, why the consequence will be very serious,'' he said.
Trotter was incredulous that the president didn't seem to understand that separating workers based on race ''must be a humiliation. It creates in the minds of others that there is something the matter with us'--that we are not their equals, that we are not their brothers, that we are so different that we cannot work at a desk beside them, that we cannot eat at a table beside them, that we cannot go into the dressing room where they go, that we cannot use a locker beside them.'' There was no letup. In his comments, Trotter had accused the president of lying by saying that race prejudice was the sole motivation for Jim Crow and that to assert otherwise, to claim his administration sought to protect blacks from ''friction,'' was ridiculous. ''We are sorely disappointed that you take the position that the separation itself is not wrong, is not injurious, is not rightly offensive to you,'' Trotter said.
Wilson interrupted Trotter: ''Your tone, sir, offends me.'' To the entire delegation, he said, ''I want to say that if this association comes again, it must have another spokesman,'' declaring no one had ever come into his office and insulted him as Trotter had. ''You have spoiled the whole cause for which you came,'' he told The Guardian editor dismissively.
But Trotter would not be dismissed; he was not one to find being surrounded by white people, and the trappings of power either alien or intimidating. He had been the only black in his class at Hyde Park High School outside Boston (where, regardless, he had been elected class president) and, at Harvard, outperformed most white classmates, some of whom had since become governors, congressmen, rich, and famous. Instead, he tried to steer the meeting back on track. ''I am pleading for simple justice,'' he said. ''If my tone has seemed so contentious, why my tone has been misunderstood.'' He said they needed to work this out, given that he and other African American leaders had supported Wilson's presidential run at the polls.
But Wilson was angry, stating that bringing up politics and citing black voting power was a form of blackmail. The meeting, which had lasted nearly an hour, was abruptly over. The delegation was shown the door'--essentially thrown out. When the incensed Trotter ran into reporters milling around Tumulty's office, he began letting off steam. ''What the President told us was entirely disappointing.''
The story about the dustup between the president and the Guardian editor went viral. The New York Times's front-page story was headlined, ''President Resents Negro's Criticism'' while the front-page headline in the New York Press read: ''Wilson Rebukes Negro Who 'Talks Up' to Him.'' But the larger point was that his tough-talking landed Trotter back on front pages everywhere.
Wilson realized almost instantly his error'--unfortunately, not the error of his racism, but the error in public relations. He had ''played the fool,'' he told a cabinet member afterwards, by becoming unnerved in the face of what he considered Trotter's impertinence. ''When the Negro delegate (Trotter) threatened me, I was a damn fool enough to lose my temper and point him to the door. What I ought to have done would have been to listened, restrained my resentment, and, when they had finished, to have said to them that, of course, their petition receive consideration. They would then have withdrawn quietly and no more would have been heard about the matter.''
But Trotter's direct action made sure something more would be heard.
We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.
Dick Lehr is a writer based in Boston, Massachusetts. He is the author of The Birth of a Nation: How a Legendary Filmmaker and a Crusading Editor Reignited America's Civil War.
Princeton Removes Woodrow Wilson's Name from Public Policy School Due to 'Racist Thinking'
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 15:11
Princeton University is removing President Woodrow Wilson's name from its public policy school and a residential college due to the former president's ''racist thinking.''
''The trustees conclude that Woodrow Wilson's racist thinking and policies make him an inappropriate namesake for a school or college whose scholars, students, and alumni must firmly stand against racism in all its forms,'' announced Princeton University President Christopher Eisgruber on Saturday.
''Wilson's racism was significant and consequential even by the standards of his own time,'' added Eisgruber. ''He segregated the federal civil service after it had been racially integrated for decades, thereby taking America backward in its pursuit of justice.''
The board voted on Friday to change the names of both the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs and Wilson College.
The Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs will now be named ''The Princeton School of Public and International Affairs.''
As for Wilson College, Eisgruber claimed that the university was already planning on closing the college, but now the school will instead ''accelerate retirement of the name'' so that students won't have to ''identify with the name of a racist president for the next two years.''
Now, Wilson College will instead be called ''First College.''
''Wilson's segregationist policies make him an especially inappropriate namesake for a public policy school,'' Eisgruber pointed out in his statement.
''When a university names a school of public policy for a political leader, it inevitably suggests that the honoree is a model for students who study at the school,'' continued the university president.
''This searing moment in American history has made clear that Wilson's racism disqualifies him from that role,'' added Eisgruber of the former Democrat president.
The university president went on to say that Princeton honoring Wilson makes the university ''ultimately the problem'' with America today, and even suggested that in retaining Wilson's name, the school is facilitating an environment in America that makes people believe they can behave like former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin without facing any consequences.
''Princeton is part of an America that has too often disregarded, ignored, or excused racism, allowing the persistence of systems that discriminate against Black people,'' said Eisgruber.
''When Derek Chauvin knelt for nearly nine minutes on George Floyd's neck while bystanders recorded his cruelty, he might have assumed that the system would disregard, ignore, or excuse his conduct, as it had done in response to past complaints against him,'' he added.
The university president concluded by stating that these are not the only steps Princeton is taking to ''combat the realities and legacy of racism, but they are important ones.''
''The steps taken yesterday by the Board of Trustees are extraordinary measures,'' said Eisgruber.
You can follow Alana Mastrangelo on Twitter at @ARmastrangelo, on Parler at @alana, and on Instagram.
Statement on the School of Public and International Affairs and Wilson College | Office of the President
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 15:01
by Christopher L. Eisgruber
Dear Members of the Princeton Community,
When I wrote to you on Monday morning, I noted that the Princeton University Board of Trustees was discussing how the University could oppose racism and would soon convene a special meeting on that topic. The meeting took place yesterday. On my recommendation, the board voted to change the names of both the School of Public and International Affairs and Wilson College. As you will see from the board's statement, the trustees concluded that Woodrow Wilson's racist thinking and policies make him an inappropriate namesake for a school or college whose scholars, students, and alumni must stand firmly against racism in all its forms.
As most of you know, the board previously considered whether to remove Wilson's name after a group of student activists occupied my office in November 2015. The Wilson Legacy Review Committee conducted a thorough, deliberative process. In April 2016, it recommended a number of reforms to make this University more inclusive and more honest about its history. The committee and the board, however, left Wilson's name on the School and the College.
The board reconsidered these conclusions this month as the tragic killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and Rayshard Brooks drew renewed attention to the long and damaging history of racism in America. Board Chair Weezie Sams '79 and I spoke individually to members of the board, and it then met on June 26.
The board continues to respect, as do I, the Wilson Legacy Review Committee's process and report, including its description of Wilson's historical record and its ''presumption that names adopted by the trustees after full and thoughtful deliberation '... will remain in place, especially when the original reasons for adopting the names remain valid.'' The board nevertheless concluded that the presumption should yield in this case because of considerations specific to Wilson's racist policies and to how his name shapes the identities of the School and the College.
Wilson's racism was significant and consequential even by the standards of his own time. He segregated the federal civil service after it had been racially integrated for decades, thereby taking America backward in its pursuit of justice. He not only acquiesced in but added to the persistent practice of racism in this country, a practice that continues to do harm today.
Wilson's segregationist policies make him an especially inappropriate namesake for a public policy school. When a university names a school of public policy for a political leader, it inevitably suggests that the honoree is a model for students who study at the school. This searing moment in American history has made clear that Wilson's racism disqualifies him from that role. In a nation that continues to struggle with racism, this University and its school of public and international affairs must stand clearly and firmly for equality and justice. The School will now be known as ''The Princeton School of Public and International Affairs.''
The University had already planned to close Wilson College and retire its name after opening two new residential colleges currently under construction. Rather than ask students in the College to identify with the name of a racist president for the next two years, the University will accelerate retirement of the name. The College will instead be known as ''First College'' in recognition of its status as the first of the residential colleges that now play an essential role in the residential life of all Princeton undergraduates.
These conclusions may seem harsh to some. Wilson remade Princeton, converting it from a sleepy college into a great research university. Many of the virtues that distinguish Princeton today'--including its research excellence and its preceptorial system'--were in significant part the result of Wilson's leadership. He went on to the American presidency and received a Nobel Prize. People will differ about how to weigh Wilson's achievements and failures. Part of our responsibility as a University is to preserve Wilson's record in all of its considerable complexity.
Wilson is a different figure from, say, John C. Calhoun or Robert E. Lee, whose fame derives from their defenses of the Confederacy and slavery (Lee was often honored for the very purpose of expressing sympathy for segregation and opposition to racial equality). Princeton honored Wilson not because of, but without regard to or perhaps even in ignorance of, his racism.
That, however, is ultimately the problem. Princeton is part of an America that has too often disregarded, ignored, or excused racism, allowing the persistence of systems that discriminate against Black people. When Derek Chauvin knelt for nearly nine minutes on George Floyd's neck while bystanders recorded his cruelty, he might have assumed that the system would disregard, ignore, or excuse his conduct, as it had done in response to past complaints against him.
The steps taken yesterday by the Board of Trustees are extraordinary measures. These are not the only steps our University is taking to combat the realities and legacy of racism, but they are important ones. I join the trustees in hoping that they will provide the University, the School of Public and International Affairs, and our entire community with a firm foundation to pursue the mission of teaching, research, and service that has defined our highest aspirations and generated our greatest achievements throughout our history and today.
With best wishes,
Christopher L. Eisgruber
June 26, 2020
The Princeton University Board of Trustees has today voted to remove Woodrow Wilson's name from the University's School of Public and International Affairs, which will now be known as the Princeton School of Public and International Affairs. We have taken this extraordinary step because we believe that Wilson's racist thinking and policies make him an inappropriate namesake for a school whose scholars, students, and alumni must be firmly committed to combatting the scourge of racism in all its forms.
Student protests at Princeton in November 2015 called attention to Wilson's racism, and we responded by forming an ad hoc committee, chaired by Brent Henry '69, to study Wilson's legacy at Princeton. The committee recommended valuable reforms to increase Princeton's inclusivity and recount the University's history more completely, but it left the names of the School and College intact. Student and alumni interest in those names has persisted, and we revisited them this month as the American nation struggled profoundly with the terrible injustice of racism.
If the question before us were how to weigh Wilson's achievements against his failures, members of the Princeton community might reach varying judgments. We believe, however, that these times present the University with a different question. Identifying a political leader as the namesake for a public policy school inevitably suggests that the honoree is a role model for those who study in the school. We must therefore ask whether it is acceptable for this University's school of public affairs to bear the name of a racist who segregated the nation's civil service after it had been integrated for decades. This question has been made more urgent by the recent killings of Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd, and Rayshard Brooks, which have served as tragic reminders of the ongoing need for all of us to stand against racism and for equality and justice. Our commitment to those values must be clear and unequivocal. We believe that the continued use of Wilson's name on a school of public affairs does not reflect those values and thereby impedes the School's and the University's capacity to pursue their missions.
We take this action while continuing to recognize and respect Woodrow Wilson's exceptional achievements. The board today reaffirms its belief that the April 2016 Report of the Trustee Committee on Woodrow Wilson's Legacy at Princeton accurately and persuasively summarizes the strengths and deficiencies of Wilson's record at Princeton and in the broader world. As that report documents, during his time on the faculty and as a transformative president, Wilson improved Princeton as much as or more than any other individual in the University's long history. Though scholars disagree about how to assess Wilson's tenure as president of the United States, many rank him among the nation's greatest leaders and credit him with visionary ideas that shaped the world for the better.
As our nation wrestles with its history in this moment, it is important, especially at institutions committed to seeking the truth, that we recognize the complexity of historical figures and that we examine the entirety of their impact on the world. Though we conclude today that Wilson's racism makes him an inappropriate namesake for the University's School of Public and International Affairs, we recognize that Princeton has a continuing responsibility to remember his achievements even as we honestly and publicly contend with his failures.
One of Princeton's residential colleges also currently bears Wilson's name. That naming, like the naming of the School of Public and International Affairs, is honorific, not the result of any donor's gift. The University has previously indicated that it plans to close Wilson College and retire its name after opening the two new residential colleges now under construction south of Poe Field. Rather than ask students in the College to identify with the name of a racist president for the next two years, the University will accelerate retirement of the honorific naming. The College will instead be known as ''First College'' in recognition of its status as the first of the residential colleges that now play an essential role in the residential life of all Princeton undergraduates.
The University's highest honor for an undergraduate alumnus or alumna is conferred annually on Alumni Day and also bears Wilson's name. The Woodrow Wilson Award, unlike either the College or the School, is the result of a gift. When the University accepted the gift, it took on a legal obligation to name the prize for Wilson and honor his ''conviction that education is for 'use' and '... the high aims expressed in his memorable phrase, 'Princeton in the Nation's Service.''' The University will continue to recognize extraordinary public service by conferring the award as currently named. The award explicitly honors specific and positive aspects of Wilson's career, and it, unlike the School or the College, does not require students to identify with the Wilson name in connection with their academic or residential programs.
Princeton University Board of Trustees
Welfare's unintended consequences - Baltimore Sun
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 15:48
Glenn McNatt THE BALTIMORE SUN
ONE OF the crueler ironies in the aftermath of the Los Angeles riots has been the suggestion, particularly on the part of conservatives, that the real cause of the violence was not racism or poverty but crumbling inner-city families.
The inner-city family has fallen apart, the argument goes, and thus an entire generation of young people has come of age without proper "values." It's all the fault of the liberal social welfare policies of the 1960s, President Bush said recently.
That's a neat formula for evading the responsibility three successive GOP administrations bear for the neglect of America's cities.
The irony, of course, is that conservatives were the ones who insisted on making family breakups a condition for welfare. Remember the "man in the house" rule? That was the one that said families couldn't get assistance if there was an able-bodied man in the house. It was enacted because opponents of welfare, particularly Southern conservatives, simply couldn't abide the idea of government "handouts" to male heads-of-household.
So if a man lost his job, he literally had to leave home if he wanted his children to be eligible for government surplus cheese, beans and peanut butter. Somehow conservatives persuaded themselves that this encouraged "family values."
With the advantage of 20-20 hindsight it's easy to see how the policy had exactly the opposite effect. It accelerated the fragmentation of poor families at just the time low-skilled factory jobs were disappearing. The expansion of the welfare state in the 1960s coincided with the decline of the factory economy in the worst possible way because the no-man-in-the-house rule actually encouraged the breakup of stable, two-parent families.
Conservatives like to talk about the "law of unintended consequences" -- by which they mean the difficulty of predicting the long-term effects of government social policies. Welfare hasn't worked, they argue, because it only produces more dependency.
Yet dependency clearly is a function of the great increase in single-parent, female-headed households over the last 20 years. And that, in turn, was at least in part an unintended consequence of punitive welfare rules that forced poor men to chose between abandoning their children or watching them starve. We are still paying for that mean-spirited policy in Los Angeles and other cities across America.
Doubtless other factors played a role in the break-up of two-parent families over the last generation -- higher divorce rates, teen pregnancy, the corrosive commercial values purveyed by popular music, movies and television. But the no "man in the house" rule was a classic example of how a government social policy aimed at assisting poor families actually undermined them.
If you doubt that, consider this: What would the result have been if the rule had required just the opposite of what it in fact demanded of poor families -- that is, in order to receive assistance, both parents had to live at home with their children?
Glenn McNatt is an editorial writer for The Sun and Evening Sun.
Man-in-the-House Rule legal definition of Man-in-the-House Rule
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 15:44
Man-in-the-House RuleA regulation that was formerly applied in certain jurisdictions that denied poor families Welfare payments in the event that a man resided under the same roof with them.
Under the man-in-the-house rule, a child who otherwise qualified for welfare benefits was denied those benefits if the child's mother was living with, or having relations with, any single or married able-bodied male. The man was considered a substitute father, even if the man was not supporting the child.
Before 1968 administrative agencies in many states created and enforced the man-in-the-house rule. In 1968 the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the regulation as being contrary to the legislative goals of the Aid to Families of Dependent Children (AFDC) program. The AFDC program, established by the Social Security Act of 1935 (49 Stat. 620, as amended [42 U.S.C.A. § 301 et seq.]), provides benefits to the children of impoverished parents.
In King v. Smith, 392 U.S. 309, 88 S. Ct. 2128, 20 L. Ed. 2d 1118 (1968), the U.S. Supreme Court entertained a challenge to the man-in-the-house rule brought by the four children of Mrs. Sylvester Smith, a widow. These children were denied benefits by Dallas County, Alabama, welfare authorities, based on their knowledge that a man named Williams was visiting Smith on weekends and had sexual relations with her.
The children of Smith filed a Class Action suit in federal court on behalf of other children in Alabama who were denied benefits under Alabama's "substitute father" regulation. This regulation considered a man a substitute father if (1) he lived in the home with the mother; (2) he visited the home frequently for the purpose of living with the mother; or (3) he cohabited with the mother elsewhere (King, citing Alabama Manual for Administration of Public Assistance, pt. I, ch. II, § VI). Testimony in the case revealed that there was some confusion among the authorities over how to interpret the regulation. One official testified that the regulation applied only if the parties had sex at least once a week, another official testified that sex every three months was sufficient, and still another placed the frequency at once every six months.
According to the High Court, Congress did not intend that the AFDC program require children "to look for their food to a man who is not in the least obliged to support them." The Court maintained that when Congress used the term parent in the social security act , it was referring to "an individual who owed to the child a state-imposed legal duty of support." Ultimately, the Court struck down the man-in-the-house rule by holding that under the AFDC provisions in the Social Security Act, "destitute children who are legally fatherless cannot be flatly denied federally funded assistance on the transparent fiction that they have a substitute father."
Tina Fey 'cancelled herself,' black leadership group says as they urge Kennedy Center to strip star of award | Fox News
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 16:13
Project 21 Black Leadership Network asked the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts to rescind Tina Fey's Mark Twain Prize for American Humor because the comedian recently asked NBCUniversal to have episodes of ''30 Rock'' featuring characters using blackface removed from streaming platforms.
''We are not trying to cancel Tina Fey. Tina Fey cancelled herself when she asked Hulu to purge offensive episodes of '30 Rock,' calling the fruits of her creativity 'ugliness,''' Project 21 member Horace Cooper wrote. ''We are simply alerting the Kennedy Center -- which has acted in the past to protect itself and the integrity of the Twain Prize -- to do so again in light of Tina Fey's admission.''
Per Deadline, Fey -- who was the "30 Rock" creator/executive producer/showrunner -- and co-showrunner, Robert Carlock, made the request for NBC to remove the episodes featuring blackface.
TINA FEY BLASTS WHITE WOMEN FOR SUPPORTING DONALD TRUMP
Project 21 asked the John F. Kennedy Center to rescind the Mark Twain Prize awarded to Tina Fey. (NBC)
''As we strive to do the work and do better in regards to race in America, we believe that these episodes featuring actors in race-changing makeup are best taken out of circulation,'' Fey said in a statement obtained by Deadline on Monday. ''I understand now that 'intent; is not a free pass for white people to use these images... I apologize for [the] pain they have caused."
But Fey's apology has not been enough for critics, including Project 21.
The co-chairmen of Project 21 made their request to the Kennedy Center in a letter that was delivered on Friday. The letter claimed the group does not seek to ''cancel'' Fey for the sake of political correctness or even ''end her entertainment career,'' but urged the Kennedy Center to ''preserve the integrity'' of the Twain Prize.
The Kennedy Center did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
BEN STILLER SUGGESTS THEODORE ROOSEVELT STATUE BE REPLACED BY ROBIN WILLIAMS'
The letter echoed a recent piece published Tuesday by The Daily Beast headlined,'' Tina Fey's Problems With Race Extend Far Beyond '30 Rock's' Blackface,'' that detailed multiple claims of the comedian walking a ''tightrope between satirizing racial stereotypes and simply replicating them.''
Project 21 even cited The Daily Beast article when listing other examples from Fey's work that are under fire.
''30 Rock's two primary black characters are dueling racial tropes -- the lazy, over-the-top Black man, as represented by the eccentric Tracy Jordan, and the educated and 'well-spoken' James Spurlock, known to his NBC family as 'Toofer' because he is both Black and went to Harvard. At times, the show uses this false dichotomy to comment on the way Black men are seen by white people and portrayed in white media. But often, these stereotypes are simply used for laughs,'' Daily Beast entertainment reporter Laura Bradley wrote.
The Daily Beast reporter also touched on Fey's more recent show, ''The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt,'' which, she wrote, is equally flawed.
TRUMP RALLY GIVES FOX NEWS LARGEST SATURDAY NIGHT AUDIENCE IN ITS HISTORY
''Quite frankly, Ms. Fey's receipt of the prize in 2010 put her in a class of comedians to which she was, and often still is, inferior,'' the Project 21 letter stated. ''It is our conclusion that the Kennedy Center has not received a proper return on its ill-advised investment in Ms. Fey over the past decade. Given this current controversy, it would be best for the Kennedy Center to rescind her award.''
Project 21 then asked the Kennedy Center to ''make an immediate public statement'' announcing Fey will be stripped of the coveted prize.
A rep for Fey did not immediately respond to Fox News' request for comment.
"30 Rock" starred Tracy Morgan, Alec Baldwin, Tina Fey, Jane Krakowski, Jack McBrayer. (Mary Ellen Mathew/NBCU Photo Bank
CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP
Project 21 is described as ''an initiative of The National Center for Public Policy Research to promote the views of African-Americans whose entrepreneurial spirit, dedication to family and commitment to individual responsibility have not traditionally been echoed by the nation's civil rights establishment.''
''30 Rock'' aired on NBC from October 2006 to January 2013, scoring 16 Emmys, including three consecutive wins for comedy series. The show also landed seven Golden Globes, 22 guild awards among SAG, WGA, DGA and PGA; as well as Image, Peabody and AFI Awards. The series is also the record-holder for most Emmy nominations in one season for any comedy series, and received a total of 103 Emmy nominations over seven seasons on NBC.
Fox News' Julius Young contributed to this report.
Orange County Democrats condemn 'racist' comments by John Wayne, call for airport to drop his name - Los Angeles Times
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 17:22
Orange County's Democratic Party is hoping sundown is on the horizon for the Duke.
This week, officials passed an emergency resolution condemning film legend John Wayne's ''racist and bigoted statements'' made decades ago and are calling on the Orange County Board of Supervisors to drop his name, statue and other likenesses from the international airport.
The resolution also asked the board ''to restore its original name: Orange County Airport.''
''There have been past efforts to get this done and now we're putting our name and our backing into this to make sure there is a name change,'' said Ada Brice±o, chair of the Democratic Party of Orange County.
According to the crafters of the resolution, who include Brice±o, the effort to oust Wayne is part of ''a national movement to remove white supremacist symbols and names [that are] reshaping American institutions, monuments, businesses, nonprofits, sports leagues and teams.''
The resolution adds: ''It is widely recognized that racist symbols produce lasting physical and psychological stress and trauma particularly to Black communities, people of color and other oppressed groups.''
The resolution notes that the county is much more diverse than it was in 1979, when Orange County Airport was christened John Wayne Airport.
Democrats point to a Chapman University survey released earlier this year that said 79% of county residents polled believe ''that O.C.'s increasing ethnic diversity is a source of great strength for the region.''
At the heart of the latest drive is a widely discussed 1971 Playboy Interview in which Wayne makes bigoted statements against Black people, Native Americans and the LGBTQ community.
He infamously said, ''I believe in white supremacy until the blacks are educated to a point of responsibility. I don't believe in giving authority and positions of leadership and judgment to irresponsible people.''
He later said that although he didn't condone slavery, ''I don't feel guilty about the fact that five or 10 generations ago these people were slaves.''
He also felt no remorse in the subjugation of Native Americans.
''I don't feel we did wrong in taking this great country away from them. '... [O]ur so-called stealing of this country from them was just a matter of survival,'' he said. ''There were great numbers of people who needed new land, and the Indians were selfishly trying to keep it for themselves.''
He also considered movies such as ''Easy Rider'' and ''Midnight Cowboy'' perverted, and used a gay slur to refer to the two main characters of the latter film.
Brice±o believes the renaming is possible because of two factors: changing demographics and the wave of protests following the police killing of George Floyd.
Last year, registered Democrats outnumbered registered Republicans in the county that embraced Wayne and GOP Presidents Reagan and Nixon.
''The numbers have grown since last year to where I believe we have something like 40,000 more Democrats than Republicans,'' Brice±o said.
She added the protests after the death of Floyd, killed by a Minneapolis police officer who kneeled on of his neck for almost nine minutes, has put police brutality and white supremacy in the face of Americans who had not witnessed such aggression.
''Who wants to be tied to white supremacy?'' Brice±o asked.
The resolution was signed by Brice±o; Fred Smoller, Chapman University associate professor of political science; and Michael Moodian, Chapman lecturer of leadership studies.
Smoller and Moodian wrote an op-ed for the Voice of OC on June 23 in which they stated, ''as Confederate statues and odes to Christopher Columbus are taken down across the country, Orange County must come to grips with its own tribute to a racially polarizing figure: John Wayne. The time has come to rename our airport and remove Wayne's statue.''
There is also a separate petition calling for the removal of Wayne's name that has gathered over 600 signatures.
The airport is situated between the cities of Newport Beach, Costa Mesa and Santa Ana.
A call to Newport Beach City Councilman Kevin Muldoon, who in 2017, as that city's mayor, led a push to name a city park after Wayne, did return a phone call looking for comment.
Wayne lived a good portion of his life in Newport Beach, was a county political power broker, a member of the John Birch Society and was buried in the city after his death in 1979.
Calls and an email to Orange County Supervisor Michelle Steel, whose district includes the airport, were not immediately returned, nor was a call to Orange County Republican Party Chairman Fred Whitaker.
Orange County Supervisor Don Wagner said he had just heard about the Democratic resolution and was unaware of its wording or merit.
He mentioned previous renaming efforts had ''popped up periodically'' and usually ''don't have legs'' with Orange County residents.
When asked about the Playboy article, Wagner said he was aware of the negativity surrounding the interview but had not read it personally.
The Origin of the Master Bedroom | Trelora Real Estate Blog
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 07:50
We all dream of an amazing master bedroom, but the masters we see today, with large walk-in closets and double-sink vanities haven't always been that way. They have only risen to popularity within the last fifty years . But when did master bedrooms start being a thing that we all want?
Let's take a look at how the master bedroom has evolved over the years and why is it called a master bedroom.
Bedrooms in 1700's In the colonial era, the average American home contained only one multi-use room, where the family would cook, eat, socialize, and drink . Having luxuries, like the privacy of a master bedroom, would have been impossible. Working consumed most of the day, taking away the opportunity for leisure time. If a family was lucky enough to have a multi-room house, they rooms determined out of function. (The kids might sleep in one room, while the parents slept in the main room).
This large multi-purpose room is a wonderful example of a middle-class colonial home. // Image Source
The 1800'sAs wealth increased, rooms in houses began to serve specific designated functions. Suddenly there were parlors for company. A room just for eating. Servants' quarters. A bedroom for the children. And (finally) parents had their own bedroom. Individual rooms meant wealth and status. As a result, most houses had many small rooms '-- no master bedrooms, yet.
This bedroom models an upper-middle class bedroom from the 1800's in Lakeland, Florida. // Image Source
The 1900's By the turn of the century, most bedrooms were built on the second floor of the home, making them much more private. The 1926 Sears catalog marks the first recorded use of the phrase ''master bedroom.'' At $4,398 the Dutch colonial house was the most expensive in the catalog, featuring: a sunporch, built-in kitchen cupboards, and a ''master's'' bedroom with a ''private'' bathroom.
The 1926 Sears catalog, featuring the Glen Falls home. // Image Source
The master bedroom existed, but it still wasn't popular in the modern American home; however, the American home was evolving.
After WWII, marriages happened out of romance instead of practicality and the rise of the baby boom meant homes structure began to change . New homes featured ''togetherness.'' Instead of the small, closed off rooms of the 1800's, houses were built with a more open floor plan. Critics of this new design called for more privacy, specifically for the hard-working parents . They deserved their own space. The widespread implementation of master bedrooms marked the need for a ''sanctuary'' within the home .
As centralized heating and air-conditioning became more popular, master bedrooms began to increase in size, quickly morphing into the master bedrooms we think of today .
The 2000's So what are the current master bedroom trends? Dual master bedrooms are slowly but surely becoming more popular in luxury homes, simply for the sake of practicality . If your partner snores loudly or kicks in their sleep , you'd still have a comfortable place to go and sleep for the rest of the night (sure beats the couch). And vice versa. Even if you aren't married to someone who snores or kicks, two master bedrooms can allow a couple to comfortably grow old in a home or can be great for kids or guests. An extra first-floor master bedroom can allow a couple to stay in their home when climbing up the stairs becomes difficult . Plus, for now having two master bedrooms is great for guests. You can find some amazing dual master bedroom homes on TRELORA by simply searching the keyword ''dual master .''
A dual-master home currently for sell on TRELORA. Located in Denver, CO, the home is listed for $1,185,000. // Image Source
Is the term going away? Recent reports show that home builders are attempting to phase-out the phrase ''master bedroom'' in favor of ''owner's bedroom .'' The phrase ''master bedroom'' isn't derived from plantation farming and slavery. Still, a 2013 survey of major D.C. home builders found that 60% of them have ceased using the phrase. The word master is also inherently male, making the term ''master bedroom'' gendered as well. Add those to things you never thought you'd learn on a real estate blog. While the phrase hasn't gone away just yet, the term could easily change within the next ten years. Regardless of what it's called, a large bedroom with a private bath is a staple of the American home.
Ready to start searching for a home with an amazing master bedroom?
Christopher is a top-producing agent and Managing Broker at Trelora. He is personally responsible for closing over 1,000 successful real estate transactions, and has guided the Trelora team through thousands more in his role as Market Director - Denver. Christopher is a Colorado native and graduate of the University of Denver.
Noose Media
Parents To Sue Trump, Meme Creator Carpe Donktum Over Manipulated Video Of Toddlers
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 10:00
TOPLINEThe parents of two toddlers featured in a manipulated video posted on social media by President Donald Trump plan to file a lawsuit against the president, his campaign and the creator of the video, pro-Trump meme creator Carpe Donktum, escalating the fallout from the doctored video, which was taken down by Facebook and Twitter.
U.S. President Donald Trump looks on during a meeting Polish President Andrzej Duda in the Oval ... [+] Office of the White House on June 24, 2020 in Washington, DC. Duda, who faces a tight re-election contest in four days, is Trump's first world leader visit from overseas since the coronavirus pandemic began.
Photo by Erin Schaff-Pool/Getty Images KEY FACTSLawyers representing the parents of the children featured in the video are drafting a lawsuit alleging the video was altered and shared as an ''advertisement and political propaganda'' without permission or parental consent.
Logan Cook, who goes by the username Carpe Donktum, altered footage of the two children in which one, who is Black, is running away from the other, who is white, and added a fake CNN chyron reading ''Terrified toddler runs away from racist baby.''
The original clip, which went viral last year, actually shows the two toddlers running up to each other and hugging. (The edited video appears to be a satirical attempt criticize how the media takes statements out of context and reports on race.)
Both Facebook and Twitter took the video down after the parents of the children filed a copyright complaint, and before that Twitter labeled the video ''manipulated media.''
Twitter late Tuesday permanently banned Cook for repeated copyright violations.
Neither Cook nor the Trump campaign immediately responded to requests for comment from Forbes.
Crucial quote''The fact that Twitter and Facebook disabled this fake video within 24 hours of President Trump and his campaign tweeting it, coupled with Twitter permanently banning Cook, is very strong evidence that a jury will likely find that all of these people broke the law by using this video as advertisement and political propaganda,'' said Ven Johnson, one of the attorneys representing the parents.
Key backgroundCook's work is frequently shared by Trump, and the president reportedly called him a ''genius'' when he visited the White House last year. Twitter previously suspended Cook for eight days after he posted an edited video showing Trump as a cowboy attacking CNN reporter Jim Acosta.
News pegFacebook and Twitter usually leave controversial posts from world leaders online, though Twitter has taken to labeling tweets with misinformation or those that ''glorify violence'' in recent weeks. But there's one rule even world leaders can't break: copyright. In October last year, another video posted by Trump featuring a Nickelback song was taken down after a copyright notice was filed. And earlier that year Twitter took down another video that included music from the Batman movie The Dark Knight Rises without permission.
BuzzFeed News Fires Senior Reporter for Plagiarism
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 16:41
Drew Angerer/Getty Images
BuzzFeed News has fired a senior reporter it says plagiarized or misattributed information in at least 11 of his articles, an individual with knowledge of the matter confirmed to TheWrap.
The reporter, Ryan Broderick, was the author of 11 articles linked in a Friday evening note to readers from BuzzFeed News' editor in chief, Mark Schoofs, who said the articles in question contained information and phrases that were not properly attributed to their original sources. (Schoofs' note did not explicitly name Broderick or address whether he had been fired.)
''It is BuzzFeed News' policy that nothing may be copied, pasted, and passed off as one's own work, and that all quotes should be attributed. We regret that in these instances those standards were not met,'' Schoofs wrote. ''We are continuing to look into the matter and will maintain this list with any other relevant articles that we find.''
Also Read: BuzzFeed News Union Staff to Take 20% Reduction in Pay, Hours
The articles, which include pieces about Bill Gates, WeChat and TikTok, have since been updated to ''more clearly attribute phrases and sentence construction to material previously published by other news organizations,'' Schoofs said. The pieces also contain editor's notes that indicate the original publications that were not properly credited in the piece.
Broderick did not immediately respond to a request for comment. A BuzzFeed News spokesperson declined to comment.
BLM
BLM Co-Founder Appears To Violate IRS Laws On CNN
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 17:07
A co-founder of the Black Lives Matter Global Network weighed in on the 2020 election, in an apparent violation of Internal Revenue Service laws prohibiting 501(c)(3) organizations from engaging in campaign activity.
Patrisse Cullors, in her official capacity as a co-founder of the BLM Global Network, told CNN on June 19 that ''our goal is to get Trump out.''
''Trump not only needs to not be in office in November but he should resign now,'' she insisted. ''Trump needs to be out of office. He is not fit for office.''
President "Trump not only needs to not be in office in November but he should resign now," says co-founder of the Black Lives Matter Global Network Patrisse Cullors. "Trump needs to be out of office. He is not fit for office." pic.twitter.com/T6mLZ11cEv
'-- The Lead CNN (@TheLeadCNN) June 19, 2020
According to the IRS, a 501(c)(3) organization ''may not participate in any campaign activity for or against political candidates.''
The prohibition includes ''public statements of position (verbal or written) made on behalf of the organization in favor of or in opposition to any candidate for public office.'' Organizations that violate this policy may lose their tax-exempt status.
The donation page for BLM is linked with ActBlue Charities, the 501(c)(3) wing of the Democratic political action committee ActBlue.
The BLM Global Network is not individually registered as a 501(c)(3), but instead operates through a fiscal sponsorship agreement with the nonprofit organization Thousand Currents. Fiscal sponsorships allow the sponsoring organization to accept and direct donations on behalf of the sponsored group. But an organization sponsored by a 501(c)(3) is still required to comply with the regulations governing nonprofits, and is still prohibited from making partisan political statements.
Cleta Mitchell, an expert on campaign finance regulation and tax laws governing charitable organizations such as BLM, told The Federalist that partisan political activity by tax-exempt 501(c)(3) groups is ''completely prohibited'' by federal tax law.
BLM ''must comply with all the rules that govern 501(c)(3) organizations,'' Mitchell said.
Thousand Currents, the nonprofit that fiscally sponsors Black Lives Matter, was also recently exposed for having a convicted terrorist on its board of directors.
The Black Lives Matter Global Network and the IRS did not return requests for comment.
Elle Reynolds is an intern at the Federalist, and a senior at Patrick Henry College studying government and journalism. You can follow her work on Twitter at @_etreynolds.
A convicted terrorist sits on board of charity handling Black Lives Matter fundraising - American Wire
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 17:36
Andrew Kerr on June 27, 2020
Thousand Currents, the California-based charity that manages fundraising operations for the national arm of Black Lives Matter, includes on its board a convicted terrorist whose sentence was commuted by former President Bill Clinton on his last day in office.
Susan Rosenberg was identified as the vice chair of the Thousand Currents board of directors on the charity's website until Wednesday when the page was taken down after the conservative think tank Capital Research Center detailed her involvement with a communist terrorist group that had carried out bombings in New York and Washington, D.C., in the early 1980s.
Rosenberg's involvement with the May 19 Communist Organization, which carried out its bombing campaign to create a contrast to former President Ronald Reagan's ''Morning in America'' campaign promise, earned her a spot on the FBI's Most Wanted List, according to The Washington Examiner. She was arrested in New Jersey in 1984 while unloading 740 pounds of stolen explosives and a sub-machine gun from a truck.
Rosenberg was released from prison in 2001 after having her sentence commuted by Clinton, serving 16 years of her 58-year prison sentence.
U.S. Attorney Mary Jo White lobbied aggressively against Rosenberg's commutation at the time, noting that she had allegedly been one of the getaway drivers in the 1981 Brink's robbery, which resulted in the deaths of two police officers and one security guard. Rosenberg was charged with crimes in the robbery, but those charges were dropped because she was already in prison, The New York Times reported.
Rosenberg was also identified as a member of the Thousand Currents board of directors in the charity's Form 990s submitted to the IRS for its 2016, 2017 and 2018 fiscal years, indicating that the former terrorist has been involved with the group for the entirety of its fiscal sponsorship arrangement with Black Lives Matter Global Foundation, which began in 2016.
Financial statements prepared by Thousand Currents reveal that 83.3% of BLM Global Foundation's total spending during its 2017, 2018 and 2019 fiscal years was spent on travel, consulting and payroll, while only about 6% was put toward grants to outside organizations such as the local BLM chapters, the Daily Caller News Foundation previously reported.
BLM Global Network Managing Director Kailee Scales told the DCNF the figures ''do not reflect, for example, the in kind support for chapters and fundraising directed to chapters and programmatic assistance to chapters, that would not show up as direct grants on the audited financials.''
In addition to removing the page on its website disclosing Rosenberg as a member of its board of directors, Thousand Currents also took down a page that had disclosed financial information for the charity such as audits and Form 990s dating back to 2005.
Thousand Currents did not return the DCNF's request for comment.
BLM Global Network has raised a substantial sum of money since the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man who died on May 25 in Minneapolis police custody.
In recent weeks the group has announced grant funds totaling $12.5 million after raising more than $1.1 million in donations since Floyd's death. The average donation to BLM Global Network clocked in at $33, The Associated Press reported.
Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.
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Congress pays 125 cities to defund their police -brassballs.blog
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 16:25
https://strongcitiesnetwork.org/en/strong-cities/steering-committee/
Only 46 are in the U.S.
The rest are overseas.
The world police force of ''Strong Cities'' is run by the 25 persons pictured at the top of this story.
That is the fake news story.
Who is really running the World Military Police?
A ''Strong City'' is one like Seattle.
A city that has defunded the police.
Closed it down.
Stopped paying their police.
Replaced by a mob.
Then soldiers from the United Nations come in to run the city.
Paid for by the U.S.
NATO is the UN's police force.
Known as the North American Treaty Organization.
Only three of the 25 Directors of the World Police Force are from the U.S.
They are from:
Denver
Minneapolis
New York
Who are the rest?
Unidentified.
Why?
National defense.
A counterterrorism operation.
Source is the State Department.
Also getting paid is Pakistan.
https://twitter.com/ISDGlobal
Other cities, countries, and non-profit organizations throughout the world support ''Strong Cities''.
They include:
Singapore
Seattle.
Red Cross
white fragility is a disability
Admitting white fragility is a high victim badge of honour. Which in turn pits whites iver others as victims
White fragility is very racist because it means your white race is above all this and has the sole capabity and tools to "fix" it.
Robin DiAngelo makes $12k for a half day seminar of bias training
Noodbevel voor verboden protest op Malieveld, meerdere betogers opgepakt | Binnenland | AD.nl
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 07:22
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Shams Charania on Twitter: "The NBA and NBPA are planning to allow players to replace the last name on their jerseys with statement on social justice, sources tell @TheAthleticNBA @Stadium." / Twitter
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 07:46
Log in Sign up Shams Charania @ ShamsCharania The NBA and NBPA are planning to allow players to replace the last name on their jerseys with statement on social justice, sources tell
@TheAthleticNBA @Stadium.
8:36 PM - 27 Jun 2020 Kenny Beecham @ KOT4Q
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Minneapolis council members calling to defund police spend $63G on private security details after receiving death threats | Fox News
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 06:25
Several Minneapolis City Council members who have received death threats following their calls to defund the police after the death of George Floyd have been assigned private security details -- reportedly costing the city $4,500 a day in taxpayer dollars.
According to information obtained by Fox News, the city has spent $63,000 on private security over the last three weeks.
''The names of the people getting security details are not public,'' a city spokesperson told Fox News Saturday.
The names of three council members who are receiving private security detail have already been made public, two of whom interviewed with local affiliate Fox 9 on Friday. The spokesperson did not respond to Fox News' questions about whether or not there were additional council members receiving security detail.
MINNEAPOLIS CITY COUNCIL UNANIMOUSLY VOTES ON PLAN TO DISMANTLE POLICE DEPARTMENT IN WAKE OF ANTI-BRUTALITY PROTESTS
The threats reportedly came after the council members were vocal in their calls to defund the Minneapolis Police Department (MPD).
The Minneapolis City Council unanimously approved a proposal to eliminate the city's police department Friday, initiating steps toward establishing a new "holistic" approach to public safety.
The largely white police force has struggled to regain the city's trust after the death of George Floyd. The new proposal would eliminate the existing police department and instead create "a department of community safety and violence prevention, which will have responsibility for public safety services prioritizing a holistic, public health-oriented approach."
One council member told Fox 9: ''I don't feel comfortable publicly discussing the death threats against me or the level of security I currently have protecting me from those threats.''
They noted that the security detail was temporary.
But another council member told the outlet they had been worried about security since they were sworn in.
''My concern is the large number of white nationalist[s] in our city and other threatening communications I've been receiving,'' they said.
None of the council members responded to Fox News' request for comment.
LAW ENFORCEMENT EXPERTS ON DEFUNDING, DISMANTLING POLICE: 'WHEN YOU CALL 911 WHO IS GOING TO COME OUT?'
The Minneapolis Police Department, which would traditionally provide security in this scenario, could not be reached by Fox News but told Fox 9 that the MPD does not have any records of recent threats against the three council members -- adding that it was possible the record could have been filed confidentially.
''Council members have reported to staff numerous threats to themselves personally,'' the city told Fox News Saturday.
One of the council members who spoke with Fox 9 said they did not alert the threats to the MPD because they were consumed with dealing with the ''global pandemic and global uprising'' after Floyd's death. But they noted that the threats had been wide-ranging, attacking their ethnicity, gender identity and sexuality.
The Minneapolis mayor's office could not be reached by Fox News to address the security threats against the council members. But a city spokesperson told Fox 9 that the MPD resources were needed elsewhere in the community. They also said that the cost of the private security detail was roughly the same as the cost for the taxpayer as would be MPD security services.
Private security has been provided by two firms, Aegis and BelCom, as an interim fix until other security solutions can be established.
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''This security service was intended to be temporary and [a] bridge to other security measures implemented by council members themselves,'' a city spokesperson told Fox News.
The security expenses do not need city council approval unless the amount surpasses $175,000. A spokesperson for the city told Fox 9 that the temporary security costs are not anticipated to come near that threshold.
This is the noose that was found in Bubba Wallace's garage stall at the Talladega Superspeedway - CNN
Thu, 25 Jun 2020 16:42
(CNN) NASCAR has released a photo of the noose that was found hanging in Bubba Wallace's team garage at the Talladega Superspeedway last week.
It also said that a thorough sweep of the 29 tracks and 1,684 garage stalls at the speedway, authorities found 11 pull-down ropes tied in a knot -- but only one noose:
"The one discovered on Sunday in Bubba Wallace's garage," NASCAR president Steve Phelps said at a news conference Thursday.
Wallace is the only Black driver in NASCAR's top circuit.
"As you can see from the photo, the noose was real, as was our concern for Bubba," Phelps said.
He added that a just-concluded NASCAR investigation could not determine who tied the noose.
"How did the noose get there? Was anyone an intended target?"
The noose had been fashioned back in 2019. Phelps could not say why no one had reported it until this past weekend.
"We further determined that the noose was not in place when the October 2019 race weekend began but was created at some point during that weekend," Phelps said. "Given that timing and the garage access policies and procedures at the time, we were unfortunately unable to determine with any certainty who tied this rope in this manner or why it was done."
Moving forward, NASCAR will install additional cameras in garage areas.
The discovery of the noose last week in Wallace's garage stall at Talladega came as the United States, and NASCAR in particular, more squarely address America's systemic racism in the wake of the police killing of George Floyd.
Wallace has been an outspoken advocate of the Black Lives Matter movement and the corresponding protests against racism and police brutality. The feds were called in to investigate.
On Tuesday, the FBI said the noose has been there since last year and Wallace, therefore, is not a victim of a hate crime.
"The investigation also revealed evidence, including authentic video confirmed by NASCAR, that the noose found in garage number 4 was in that garage as early as October 2019," the FBI said in a statement. "Although the noose is now known to have been in garage number 4 in 2019, nobody could have known Mr. Wallace would be assigned to garage number 4 last week."
On Sunday -- the day the noose was spotted -- NASCAR said it was outraged "by this heinous act" and that the sport has no place for racism. "We have launched an immediate investigation, and will do everything we can to identify the person(s) responsible and eliminate them from the sport," it said in a statement.
In his conference Thursday, Phelps said that in hindsight NASCAR should have used the word "alleged" when describing the finding of the noose and its reaction.
"What we saw was a symbol of hate and was only present in one area of the garage, that of the 43 car of Bubba Wallace," he said.
Phelps said that the heightened emotions surrounding the recent Confederate flag ban played a role in NASCAR's response. The original statement perhaps should have been toned down, he said.
Phelps specifically thanked Wallace for his leadership. Phelps asked that everyone needs to stand with him.
READ: Why the noose is such a potent symbol of hate
Cultural Facilities Fund - Arts | seattle.gov
Thu, 25 Jun 2020 20:35
2019 Cultural Facilities Fund Recipients
206 Zulu $31,741.60 Through this project, 206 Zulu will be able to maximize sound quality in its 735-capacity Ballroom within the historic Washington Hall when providing accessible spaces and serving youth, low-income and people of color communities through the upliftment, preservation, and celebration of Hip Hop culture.Black Power Unlimited/Cypher Caf(C) $10,000
Cypher Cafe celebrates a Black Central District. Powered by a collective of black and brown artists and organizers, they have dedicated the last decade to building a home at Washington Hall for community grounded liberation work to take place through music, art, food and culture. They stand against the displacement impacts of gentrification and offer an accessible venue for events and gatherings held by marginalized communities.
Black Umbrella$83,250The construction of a recording studio on the 2nd Floor of the building housing Black Umbrella will expand their programming capacity to include vocal, instrumental, and sound engineering opportunities, increasing Black Umbrella's ability to fulfill its mission of fostering the growth and development of artists, providing a resourced community and driving force in the creation of a supportive, inclusive, and nationally vindicated hip-hop scene in Seattle. Additionally, Black Umbrella plans to host weekly drop-in studio hours free for educational use, and discounted rates for people within the community.
Blue Cone Studios$19,875This project will increase Blue Cone Studios' capacity to fulfill its mission of providing affordable, accessible space and creative programming to artists, especially emerging artists from marginalized communities. Blue Cone Studios will be able to seek out, collaborate with, support, and promote local bipoc, queer, and neurodivergent artists.
Chief Seattle Club$100,000This project increases Chief Seattle Club's capacity to provide culturally appropriate, sacred space to nurture, affirm, and renue the spirit of Urban Native Peoples. This includes housing, holistic health services, legal aid, a caf(C)/art gallery social enterprise, and other social services. The public can view artwork throughout the exterior of the building including a Welcome Pole, Coast Salish Brickwork, and etched glass on the exterior of the Caf(C)/Art Gallery.
Coyote Central$90,000 Coyote Central will create a youth arts center in Lake City to provide year-round arts programs for youth ages 10-16, with a goal of engaging 1,500 young people in hands-on arts learning each year by 2020. Coyote North will also be an open resource for neighborhood families, bringing them together for youth-curated art exhibits, events, and performances. All Coyote North programs will prioritize equity of access, experience, and leadership for youth impacted by oppression.
Duwamish Longhouse and Cultural Center$100,000The funded improvements will allow the Duwamish Longhouse & Cultural Center to enhance its programming and services to better protect its facilities, artworks, staff, and community members. This will increased capacity for Duwamish Tribal Services to meet its mission of promoting the social, cultural, political and economic survival of the Duwamish Tribe, to revitalize Duwamish culture, and to share their history and culture with all peoples.
Eritrean Association in Greater Seattle$87,182This project will enhance the safety, usability and accessibility of the Eritrean Association Community Center, and increase their capacity to promote cultural pride, leadership, and professional and social support for Eritrean community members and other African refugees and immigrants in need.
James Washington Cultural Center$10,000 The mission of the James and Janie Washington Jr Foundation is to promote and preserve the art and legacy of James and Janie Washington Jr. to inspire creativity and build community.
Mini Mart City Park$55,000This project will transform a former gas station into a pocket park and arts-oriented community center in Georgetown. Mini Mart City Park aims to help prevent residential, commercial, and cultural displacement in the region by serving as a hub for local art and community programs, gatherings, and public conversations.
MLK F.A.M.E. Community Center$10,000 The Martin Luther King Jr. Family Arts Mentoring & Enrichment Community Center (commonly known as MLK F.A.M.E. Community Center) is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting social, cultural, economic and community service for Seattle area residents of all ages, races, cultures and ethnicities.
Nepantla Cultural Arts Gallery$13,963.50This project increases the usability of the Nepantla Cultural Arts Gallery, accompanying an increased capacity to host accessible arts and cultural programming and exhibitions, workshops and special events, as well as an art supply lending library program. The project space fulfills a gap in art programming focused on the Latinx and POC community in Seattle, specifically in South King County.
Nile's Edge$10,000 Nile's Edge is a healing arts center that serves as an incubator to support practitioners who use creative, preventative, and sustainable methods.
Northwest Film Forum$31,500 Northwest Film Forum (NWFF) and Photographic Center Northwest (PCNW) intend to pursue a joint pre-capital feasibility study on the potential collaborative redevelopment of PCNW's site, where it has been housed since 1997. Parallels in history, location, financial growth, and communities of each organization underscore many reasons that this project is a logical, urgent, and fiscally-aware opportunity that could create a future-forward visual media center for the region.
On the Boards$12,991Funding will support the creation of evaluations and work estimates for needed improvements to On the Boards' venue. These necessary analyses will enable them to repair their building as part of a much larger project to make it more accessible, safer, visible, and functional. At the completion of this remodel, their building will have more space to support more art, artists, and audiences.
Seattle JazzED$55,000Seattle JazzED is partnering with Capitol Hill Housing to co-develop a youth performing arts center and affordable housing in the north Rainier Valley.
That Brown Girl Cooks LLC$90,000Creation of a Black-owned restaurant in the Central District of Seattle provides the public benefit of cultivating a space that honors the cultural history of the neighborhood, creating opportunity for the Black community to repopulate the area, and establishing a cultural hub where Seattleites can experience Black culture within a historically significant location. The project will serve as an inaugural landmark for the Central District.
The AMP: AIDS Memorial Pathway$21,000The design and fabrication of public artworks to be situated within a new space for reflection, remembrance, and storytelling of the AIDS pandemic in Washington and its impact on the LGBTQ community, especially among people of color and transgender men and women. The project will augment the AMP's goals of 1) providing a place for remembrance and reflection; 2) using technology to share stories of the AIDS pandemic in Washington; and 3) making a call to action to end HIV/AIDS, discrimination and stigma.
Theatre Puget Sound$31,500They plan to replace the floors in all of the rehearsal studios and Theatre 4 and install new black-out curtains in all of them to better serve the broader performing arts community that rents their spaces.
Velocity Dance Center$15,750Velocity Dance Center will do a feasibility study to identify critical facility and operations improvements for functionality, comfort, and access, particularly in the most public spaces - the theatre and studios. The study will include a community input component; when completed, the study will be made public on Velocity's website. The study will support Velocity's mission to provide equitable access to dance education and performance and artist services, particularly to members of the community who identify as people of color, LGBTQ+ and disabled.
Vermillion Arts, LLC$31,095Venue improvements will be made to create a welcoming and comfortable environment for staff, clientele and artists including upgraded bathrooms. Vermillion is committed to ongoing social, cultural and artistic support of artists and patrons of all disciplines. Beyond making the space accessible for occupancy, Vermillion also offers, at no charge, space and resources for groups and individuals to use for events that benefit the communities most in need of available space and access for income building opportunities.
Volunteer Park Trust$30,000They are replacing the crumbling, concrete performance stage in Volunteer Park with a modern Amphitheater. The new structure will meet the broadest level of community needs for a versatile outdoor performance and rally space, expand performance diversity and racial equity, and provide full ADA compliance, as well as improve acoustics, noise control, safety, and access.
Wa Na Wari $10,000 Wa Na Wari creates space for Black ownership, possibility, and belonging through art, historic preservation, and connection.
2018 Cultural Facilities Fund Recipients
Amplifier Foundation $28,000.00 Amplifier Art Lab Relocation and Build Out The Amplifier Art Lab is a physical space dedicated to amplifying the voices of grassroots movements by providing a platform for art and community engagement in Seattle. We are seeking funding to support construction needs in the new facility to better suit the operations and public programming of our non-profit.
Avole Coffee $30,000.00 Liberty Bank Building - Return to the Roots of Coffee
Cafe Avole is attempting to expand into the Central District, in partnership with Africatown and the Liberty Bank Building. We want to use the new location as a platform to celebrate the diverse cultures of Ethiopia and venerate the country's vast coffee knowledge. We sought out local Ethiopian artists to design the space, as we plan to create an authentic and modern African coffee experience.
Black & Tan Hall $80,000.00 Black & Tan Hall
Funding will support the next phase of the construction and renovation of 5608 Rainier Avenue to allow occupancy.
Byrd Barr Place $55,000.00 Renovation Planning for Historic Firehouse Building
Since 1968, BBP has operated out of City of Seattle Fire Station 23, built in 1909. The site is a beautiful focal point in the neighborhood, and listed on the historic register. This grant project will support the renovation of this building to capitalize on the creativity, knowledge and vibrancy of the Black community and ensure that the property will continue to serve a public benefit.
Chong Wa Benevolent Association $70,000.00 Seismic Retrofit
Chong Wa Hall is a historic building within the National Register Seattle Chinatown Historic District. The proposed structural upgrade will meet current City of Seattle URM seismic requirements. Improvements include "bolts plus" seismic upgrades, tuck point repair and sealing of exterior masonry surfaces.
Coyote Central $29,450.00 Coyote North: Lake City
Coyote Central is seeking to establish a 'Coyote North' facility in Lake City that can provide middle-school age youth from families of color, immigrant and refugee families, and low income families with equitable access to high quality, socially aware arts programming. In this pre-capital phase of the project, Coyote will work with Lake City community partners and families to determine the feasibility of establishing a dedicated Coyote youth arts facility and to develop a plan of action.
Delridge Neighborhoods Development Association $70,000.00 Elevate Youngstown
DNDA's Youngstown Cultural Arts Center is a jewel of the diverse Delridge neighborhood, a model for engaged community collaboration, hosting and producing arts and cultural activities. "Elevate Youngstown" is our concerted effort to revive and restore the historic Youngstown Cultural Arts Center, visited by over 45,000 people annually.
Densho $60,000.00 Create New Community Space on Historic Jackson Street
The renovation and ADA compliant upgrade will allow Densho to host public programs, convene community meetings and receptions, conduct teacher workshops, and create workspaces for visiting artists, scholars, and interns.
Earl's Cuts and Styles $70,000.00 Earl's Cuts and Styles Relocation to Liberty Bank Building
At the end of 2018, Earl's Cuts and Styles is losing its original home at the corner of 23rd and Union as the Midtown Center block has been purchased for redevelopment. Earl's has the opportunity to relocate across the street into the Liberty Bank Building, a new construction mixed-use affordable housing project affirming to the Black community, opening in early 2019. Earl's is securing funding for the significant capital expenses of tenant improvements to the retail space's cold shell.
Eritrean Community in Seattle & Vicinity $23,396.00 Eritrean Community Hall Renovation
Our main gathering hall needs significant renovations in order to safely and adequately serve our community and other groups who would like to use our facilities for cultural events.
Ethiopian Community in Seattle $55,000.00 Ethiopian Community Senior Affordable Housing Project (The Ethiopian Village)
The Ethiopian Village, as a neighborhood presence, will address historical disparities with programs/services; strengthen intergenerational connections and cultural pride with exterior colors evoking the Ethiopian flag and Ethiopian designs (e.g. the Axum) throughout its heart - a multicultural community center, its dual-language early childhood center, meeting spaces, public plaza, coffee shop, commercial kitchen, and fa§ade. ECS will seek additional funds for affordable senior rental housing.
Filipino Community of Seattle $50,000.00 The Filipino Community Village Innovation Learning Center and Gathering Space
The FCS Innovation Learning Center and Community Gathering Space includes 4,800 square feet for services for seniors, youth, families, victims of domestic violence and human trafficking, as well as other community members in need. The proposed project will meet community needs by providing a safe, welcoming and inspiring place for youth, expanded space for frontline community programs, and a cultural home for the Filipino community.
Freehold Theatre Lab Studio $10,500.00 Final Build-Out for Black Box Theatre Space at Freehold
Freehold would like to establish a 99-seat, fully flexible performance space with the technical capability to support diverse, artistically ambitious, independent productions, dance and multi-media events.
Friends of Detective Cookie Chess Park $31,088.00 Detective Cookie Chess Park The Detective Cookie Chess Park will serve as a tribute to Det. Cookie, while activating an underutilized, open-air space for her club to meet, as well as providing a safe, free, public space for youth and adults from across cultures to meet and play chess at any time. With this grant proposal we are seeking pre-capital funds to re-hire the Landscape Architect and Civil Engineer to continue design and permitting with SDOT.
Friends of Little Saigon $65,000.00 Little Saigon Cultural Gathering Space
Funding from ARTS will support capital and post-capital funding to jump start a community vision for a Little Saigon Cultural Gathering Space. A safe space to share and practice Vietnamese arts and culture, provide resources, and gather for special holidays and events.
Indie Genius Media $16,000.00 Indie Genius Media SPACE Office Buildout for Sound Our request for the Cultural Facilities Grant is centered around soundproofing and noise reduction so that we may be better-positioned for future live events, film screenings, music performances, cultural preservation, and collecting local oral histories.
Jack Straw Foundation $31,500.00 Creating Accessible Gender Neutral Bathrooms
Complete critical accessibility upgrades to our building by converting our six currently non-compliant restrooms to ADA compliant gender neutral restrooms that will increase social equity as well as meeting code.
La Sala $33,217.00 Latinx Northwest Latinx Northwest (LTX) is a collaborative effort by three Seattle-based organizations: La Sala, Seattle Amistad School, and the Latino Community Fund. Our mission is to create a contemporary Latinx arts and culture hub in Seattle. In 2019, a new summer pop-up will (1) demonstrate what Latinx Northwest has to offer, (2) widely distribute the results of our 2018 community engagement process, and (3) broaden our network as we complete a feasibility study.
Martin Luther King Jr. Family Arts Mentoring & Enrichment Community Center $31,499.00 MLK Community Center Gym Renovation
Renovation of the gym includes replacing the floor and basketball backboards. The floor dates back to the 1950's and it and the subfloors need repair/replacing. Replacement of the existing basketball backboards with retractable backboards will allow the gym to function as a multiuse room, a definite asset to the community.
Multicultural Community Center $50,000.00 The Multicultural Innovation Center
Project Cultural Facility Funds would provide pre-capital expenses: architectural and interior design services, engineering services and project management for the 5,400 square foot Cultural Innovation Center to reflect the vision and aspirations expressed by the hundreds of our community stakeholders--immigrants, refugees and communities of color--who have participated in listening sessions and community meetings over the past two years.
Nakw Dancers $24,500.00 Tlingit Cedar Strip Canoe
Our cultural facilities proposal is to build a full-size 28'x4.5'x3.5' cedar strip canoe. This will be a fully functional cultural treasure that will be used in the Salish Sea to provide healing to underrepresented and often forgotten nations of indigenous people with a focus on the youth, their empowerment, their education, and their knowledge acquisition. This cultural facility will create intergenerational healing.
Reel Grrls $27,278.00 Sound Proofing Pound Studios
Reel Grrls seeks support for sound proofing Pound Studios. In 2017, Reel Grrls secured a partnership with Pound Gallery to be the home of RG Productions and other programs.
Royal Esquire Club $23,800.00 The Royal Esquire Club Cultural Preservation Project
This project is part of the Royal Esquire Club's vision of modernizing its facility to preserve the type of facility required for contemporary performances.
The Rainier Arts Center $50,000.00 Rainier Arts Center Renovations
Rainier Arts Center, SE Seattle's multicultural performing arts center, is planning to improve the community's access to the Center and expand its capacity. This project will improve the performing artists experience in the Center and add new affordable, flexible-use spaces.
The Hillman City Collaboratory $24,500.00 Hillman City Salon and Caf(C)
Cultural Facility Funds will be used to design and re-envision three dimensions of the Collaboratory. The Mixing Chamber into a space with professional quality stage, sound and lighting equipment. A cafe that serves as a creative salon-a safe, all ages space for people of color to socialize, converse, and enjoy art together. A commercial kitchen that can be rented out to up and coming chefs, used for cooking classes programmed by Taste International, and a place to produce food for salon events.
Daybreak Star Indian Cultural Center $70,000.00 Daybreak Star Lift System
Daybreak Star Indian Cultural Center has been the premier venue for the exhibition and performance of Native arts and culture in Seattle since 1977. Though both floors of Daybreak Star contain arts spaces, there is currently no elevator between them. As part of a program of major renovations planned over the next three years, we seek to install a lift system to increase accessibility for Elders, young children, and people with mobility impairments.
Vietnamese Cultural Center $35,000.00 Walkways and parking lot for the visiting handicapped.
Create walkways and parking spaces for those visitors with mobility issues. Grade, smooth, and pave an existing dirt parking lot to create greater access to the Center.
Wing Luke Memorial Foundation $32,500.00 Wing Luke Museum "Homestead House"Feasibility Study in the Chinatown-International District
Completing a feasibility study for The Wing's "Homestead House" project in the Chinatown-International District, preserving an historic home as community/cultural space while developing the underutilized portion of the lot with housing and artist spaces to retain community ownership, preserve our Asian Pacific American community vitality, and meet community demand for expanded cultural/artistic spaces and healthy neighborhood activity.
2016 Cultural Facilities Partners
A Contemporary Theatre$13,300ACT will be installing a captioning system into both the Falls Theater and the Allen Theater. This system, which will serve a limited number of seats, will allow patrons to read along with the performance. This is part of the theater's larger accessibility plan and will benefit hearing impaired audiences.
Charles and Emma Frye Free Public Art Museum$2,400The Frye Art Museum will be installing an ADA-compliant automatic opening device on the front door.
Delridge Neighborhoods Development Association Youngstown Arts Center$35,000The Delridge Neighborhoods Development Association will renovate and repair the historic Youngstown Cultural Arts Center theater at the south end of the building. This will include a large-scale project to repair the building's foundation.
Densho$2,160This project improves Densho's process of digitizing historical materials by replacing and upgrading failing and aging digital network wiring with high throughput (Gigabit) capacity wiring and network switches.
Freehold Theatre Lab Studio$30,000Freehold Theatre Lab Studio will create a new home in the Freedman Building in Seattle's Chinatown/International District. Funding will assist in the transformation of a 7,000 square-foot basement space in a mixed-use residential building into a Black Box Theater, two studios, offices, and a library.
Historical Society of Seattle & King County (MOHAI)$12,400MOHAI will be installing automatic door operators to correct restroom accessibility obstacles that create an unwelcoming environment for members of the community.
Nikkei Heritage Association of Washington$16,480This ''Phase II project addresses the need for a new roof, rebuilds a breezeway between two buildings, and works towards a solar power solution for the future of the structures. Phase I of the project renovated and protected the first floor and foundation of the building.
Northwest Choirs$30,000Northwest Choirs (Northwest Boychoir and Vocalpoint! Seattle) will undertake a major renovation of their permanent home, located in the University Heights Center. The scope of this nearly 5,000 square foot project includes two large rehearsal rooms, two smaller breakout practice rooms, offices, a reception area, and acoustic and lighting upgrades throughout the space.
Pottery Northwest$5,600Pottery Northwest will be undertaking a series of building updates to increase the safety, comfort, and community awareness of their ceramic studio. This includes updating restrooms, ventilation, and exterior signage.
Ripple Productions (Caf(C) Nordo)$3,101A two-part improvement to Caf(C) Nordo's performance space in an historic, brick building in Pioneer Square will include: 1) The purchase and strategic installation of sound baffling panels to improve acoustic quality, and 2) the purchase and installation of a fan system to improve air circulation and temperature control.
Seattle Repertory Theatre$20,000The Seattle Repertory Theater will undertake a major upgrade of their PONCHO Forum, a small black-box performance and workshop space that last saw major improvements in 1983, the year the building was constructed. Their Cultural Facilities Fund award will support the replacement of the HVAC system serving the space, bolstering the comfort and usefulness of the PONCHO venue.
SouthEast Effective Development (SEEDArts)$35,000Funds will help to build and equip a professional low-power FM radio studio, which will include a broadcast studio, community production space, classroom for training, offices for volunteers and staff, and an engineering room.
University Heights Center$18,448University Heights Center's building, a 1902 former schoolhouse, is home to 11 arts, educational, and cultural organizations. Funding will be used to repair water damage to the main entrance, and a section of the historic cedar rain gutters.
Washington Trust for Historic Preservation$16,816Funding will be used to renovate two public bathrooms on the second floor of the historic Stimson-Green Mansion, preventing water damage to landmarked historic interiors in the entry hall, and restoring full use of the facilities.
2015 Cultural Facilities Partners
Chong Wa Education SocietyIncrease accessibility to the historic 1929 Chong Wa Hall with an ADA-compliant restroom and upgrade to the two staircases in the auditorium to meet code requirements.
$21,375
El Centro de la RazaConstruction of a multi-cultural community center to provide space for cultural opportunities on Beacon Hill. The center will feature a commercial kitchen and professional stage.
$32,500
Northwest Film ForumUpgrades to the lobby and replacement of their marquee as the final phase of a 3-year capital improvement project.
$27,500
SIFFHVAC system upgrade and roof repairs to the historic SIFF Cinema Uptown.
$25,000
Theatre Puget SoundNew seats, carpeting, theatre lighting and patron assisted listening systems for the Center Theater.
$16,500
Velocity Dance CenterRenovating the main entryway to be ADA compliant, and installing a sprung dance floor.
$16,500
2014 Cultural Facilities Partners
ArtsWestRepairing and restoring the space to its original condition after a recent flood.
$12,611
Historic SeattleProviding full fire protection for the Seattle Landmark Washington Hall building.
$24,743
Ripple ProductionsFinishing the installation of a theater in 109 Main St, creating the permanent home of Ripple Productions and the Cafe Nordo shows.
$10,800
Three Dollar Bill Cinema Building out an office space, film library, and screening room in their new location at 12th Avenue Arts
$5,000
2013 Cultural Facilities Partners
826 Seattle Upgrades to bathrooms and kitchen for students, installation of new drinking fountain
$5,100
Coyote Central Improvements to wood and metal shops (ventilation, heat, and safety)
$9,000
Friends of KEXP Creation of new storefront access for new facility at Seattle Center, and new "in-studio" performance space
$35,000
Theater Schmeater Installation of new stage in new theater space
$6,000
2012 Cultural Facilities Partners
James and Janie Washington Foundation Roof & Furnace Replacement
$7,500
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If You're White, You're Racist. Period. - American Renaissance
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 11:24
At a time when violent radicals are attacking America and its institutions as fundamentally and irredeemably racist, Robin DiAngelo may well be the woman of the hour. A 63-year-old professor at the University of Washington in Seattle, she's a big name in multicultural education and in the burgeoning field of Whiteness Studies, which, unlike other identity-group ''studies,'' exists not to exalt the group in question but to demonize it. In the words of National Post columnist Barbara Kay, Whiteness Studies teaches that to be white is to be ''branded, literally in the flesh, with evidence of a kind of original sin. You can try to mitigate your evilness, but you can't eradicate it. The goal'...is to entrench permanent race consciousness in everyone '' eternal victimhood for non-whites, eternal guilt for whites.''
DiAngelo, just so you know, is white.
In addition to being a professor, DiAngelo is a ''workplace diversity trainer.'' And she's not just any ''workplace diversity trainer.'' As Kelefa Sanneh put it last year in the New Yorker, she's ''perhaps the country's most visible expert in anti-bias training, a practice that is also an industry, and from all appearances a prospering one.'' In these days when everything is suddenly about race and when pusillanimous corporate leaders are falling all over themselves pandering to Black Lives Matter, DiAngelo's services as a ''workplace diversity trainer'' are surely more in demand than ever.
But DiAngelo isn't just an academic and an anti-bias trainer. She's also an author. Two years ago she published a book, White Fragility: Why It's So Hard For White People To Talk About Racism, that has been on the bestseller list ever since, making her an eagerly sought-after speaker. Just a few days ago, in the thick of the current race war, she was interviewed by an inanely fawning Jimmy Fallon on The Tonight Show. Her message: all whites are indeed eternally guilty, for they're all racists, and all ''people of color'' are their eternal victims. Don't think you can escape the racist label by saying ''I judge people by what they do, not who they are'' or ''I don't see color; I see people.'' DiAngelo doesn't buy into the idea of colorblindness. Nor does she have any patience for Martin Luther King's sentiments about the content of one's character. ''Individual whites,'' DiAngelo explains, ''may be 'against' racism, but they still benefit from a system that privileges whites as a group,'' and are consequently racists.
The flip side of this tenet is that blacks can't ever be racists. ''While a white person may have been picked on '' even mercilessly '' by being in the numerical minority in a specific context,'' DiAngelo contends, ''the individual was experiencing race prejudice and discrimination, not racism.'' Hence, even though Barack Obama was president of the United States for two terms, he's still structurally subordinate to some white guy in a shack in the Appalachians.
Don't dare tell DiAngelo that ''focusing on race is what divides us.'' According to her, race in America is a constant existential crisis that we can only fairly address by focusing on it constantly. DiAngelo admits that race is continuously on her mind and that it's ever been thus. ''In virtually every situation or context deemed normal, neutral or prestigious in society, I belong racially,'' she writes. ''This belonging is a deep and ever-present feeling that has always been with me. Belonging has settled deep into my consciousness; it shapes my daily thoughts and concerns, what I reach for in life, and what I expect to find.'' As far as DiAngelo is concerned, her obsession with racial identity isn't weird but admirable, and her goal is to make her white readers, students, and diversity trainees as obsessed as she is with their place in ''a system of racial inequality that benefits whites at the expense of people of color.''
But what, you ask, if you can't think of circumstances under which you've actually benefited from your whiteness? When I was in high school in Queens, N.Y., the student body of about 5000 was roughly 20% white gentile, 20% black, 20% Asian, 20% Hispanic, and 20% Jewish. I don't remember those labels mattering in the slightest; kids weren't picked on because of their ethnic identities but because they were fat or short, nerds or sissies. Later, being black would've been a boon to me; as somebody who attended a state university for financial reasons, I know that if I'd been black, my SAT scores would've given me a free ride through the Ivy League college and grad school of my choice and swept me into any one of a number of lucrative career paths. No, I'm not saying I've been seriously stung by affirmative action; on the contrary, I'm glad to know I never got special treatment, and I wouldn't have wanted to go to Harvard or Yale anyway. But there are plenty of whites '' and Asians too '' who've been royally screwed over by racial preferences.
Some would argue that currently recognized ''victim groups'' aren't even those most affected by bigotry. The elderly can be made to feel invisible; ditto people with psychiatric disorders, chronic illnesses, or physical deformities. ''You can never truly understand discrimination unless you've been ugly,'' says stand-up comic Doug Stanhope in one brilliant routine. ''Ugly people face discrimination more than any other minority group.'' Then there's comedian Adam Carolla, who in House testimony three years ago spoke sarcastically of his own ''white privilege.'' Decades earlier, fresh out of high school and living with his welfare-recipient mother, he'd applied for a job as a firefighter only to be told that because he wasn't black, Latino, or female he'd be put on a waiting list. After seven years of ''digging ditches and picking up garbage'' for a living, he was summoned to take the fire department exam, and when he asked the woman of color in line behind him when she'd applied, she said, ''Wednesday.''
DiAngelo knows that such things happen. Indeed, at the beginning of her book, she recalls her own encounter with a man who, like Carolla, refused to acknowledge his racial privilege:
I am a white woman. I am standing beside a black woman. We are facing a group of white people seated in front of us. We are in their workplace and have been hired by their employer to lead them in a dialogue about race. The room is filled with tension and charged with hostility. I have just presented a definition of racism that includes the acknowledgment that whites hold social and institutional power over people of color. A white man is pounding his fist on the table. As he pounds, he yells, ''A white person can't get a job anymore!'' I look around the room and see forty employees, thirty-eight of whom are white. Why is this white man so angry? Why is he being so careless about the impact of his anger? Why doesn't he notice the effect this outburst is having on the few people of color in the room? Why are all the other white people either sitting in silent agreement with him or tuning out? I have, after all, only articulated a definition of racism.
I've quoted this passage at length because I think it sheds a remarkable light into DiAngelo's mind. Presumably she encounters people like that white man all the time. She knows '' she has to know '' that there's truth in what he says. Affirmative action does put a lot of white people at an unfair disadvantage. That's the experience of tens of millions of Americans. But when facts come up against ideology, a radical leftist will grasp onto ideology all the more fiercely.
Why, DiAngelo asks, is this man angry? My answer: he's angry because, even though she knows nothing at all about him other than his sex and skin color, she's presumed to tell him that he's a racist. He's angry because she's insulted his intelligence by acting as if he doesn't live in the real world and never noticed anything about it until she came along to instruct him. He's angry because she's shown no interest in learning from his or anyone else's experiences: whatever she may claim, her goal isn't to engage in a genuine dialogue but to indoctrinate. He's angry because even though she's accusing him and the other white people in her audience of possessing white power, she's doing so in a context '' a workplace seminar '' in which she's actually the one with the power.
Needless to say, DiAngelo doesn't see things this way. In her view, that white man's anger is a manifestation of an attribute that, she maintains, all white people exhibit when confronted with their racism. DiAngelo has called this attribute ''white fragility,'' a term that's caught on widely in academia and elsewhere. In his foreword to DiAngelo's book, Michael Eric Dyson has this to say about the concept: ''White fragility is an idea whose time has come. It is an idea that registers the hurt feelings, shattered egos, fraught spirits, vexed bodies, and taxed emotions of white folk. In truth, their suffering comes from recognizing that they are white '' that their whiteness has given them a big leg up in life while crushing others' dreams'....''
Let's put aside the hysterical rhetoric (shattered, fraught, vexed, taxed, suffering, crushing), which is common in efforts to sell ludicrous leftist claptrap, and ask: do whites really experience psychological torture because they know they've crushed black dreams? Does this claim ring true for anybody? Is life this simple '' this black and white '' for anyone? For heaven's sake, we're all individuals with different histories and different sets of problems. Yes, many of us, not just blacks, have suffered because we belong to some group. I've experienced personal and professional reversals because I'm gay. But that was along ago, in what now feels like another world. I have no interest in nursing ancient grudges, let alone in constructing a grotesquely simplistic ideology that, ignoring the complexities of real life, divides humanity into gay victims and straight oppressors.
''Race,'' Dyson avers, ''is a condition. A disease. A card. A plague. Original sin.'' One thing's for sure: for Dyson, race is a meal ticket, a racket, a hustle, and a big, ugly, cynical lie. And for DiAngelo? I'm not sure. If her own testimony is to be believed, she's a woman who's monetized her own pathological obsession with race. Instead of seeking help for this sickness, she plays healer to the healthy. She might celebrate the fact that America is the world's least racist country, that e pluribus unum is a remarkable, unprecedented reality; instead, the effect of her mischief is to help preserve and deepen whatever racial divisions do exist. Her grim ideology of race is crude, dehumanizing, insulting to black and white; it places us all, without regard to individual qualities or actions or accomplishments, into fixed categories of oppressor and oppressed; it condemns every last one of us to life sentences, alongside DiAngelo herself, in an exceedingly dreary prison of the mind. By all means, let DiAngelo keep to her cell, since, like some masochistic religious martyr, she seems to enjoy it so much; but for our colleges, corporations, and publishers to inflict her disorder upon the rest of us and to seek to make us fellow sufferers is sheer cruelty, damaging to our society and to our souls.
President Donald J. Trump's Letter to the Governor of Illinois and Mayor of Chicago | The White House
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 00:08
Governor J.B. PritzkerGovernor of IllinoisChicago, Illinois 60601
Mayor Lori E. LightfootMayor of ChicagoChicago, Illinois 60602
Dear Governor Pritzker and Mayor Lightfoot:
I write to you today to call your attention to and urge action on the devastating violence in Chicago. While I have been heartened to see crime reductions nationally the last few years, I have been horrified by the continued violence in this great American city.
I recently read an article from the Chicago Sun-Times on June 8, 2020, ''18 murders in 24 hours: Inside the most violent day in 60 years in Chicago,'' which discussed the severe crime and lack of law and order in our Nation's third largest city. The article details how ''85 people were shot and 24 killed the previous weekend, the most in modern history in Chicago.'' Your lack of leadership on this important issue continues to fail the people you have sworn to protect. I am concerned it is another example of your lack of commitment to the vulnerable citizens who are victims of this violence and a lack of respect for the men and women in law enforcement. The article recounts the following horrors:
A hardworking father killed.
A West Side high school student murdered.
A college freshman who hoped to become a correctional officer, gunned down.
18 people killed Sunday, May 31, the single most violent day in Chicago in six decades.
The weekend of May 29, 25 people were killed and another 85 wounded by gunfire.
The most violent weekend in Chicago's modern history, stretching police resources that were already thin because of protests and looting.
Violence and death, which are disproportionately harming young African Americans, are tragic and unacceptable, particularly on such a shocking scale. According to the Chicago Sun Times, ''shootings across the City increased by 71 percent last month,'' and just this past weekend 102 people were shot in the city's most violent weekend of the year. A 3-year old toddler was killed. More Americans have been killed in Chicago than in combat zones of Afghanistan and Iraq combined since September 11, 2001, a deadly trend that has continued under your tenure.
The American people (hardworking taxpayers) send you millions of dollars in Federal funding each year to support public safety in Chicago. In 2018 and 2019, the City of Chicago benefited from $136 million in funding from the Urban Area Security Initiative Grant Program, and another $68 million was recently announced for Chicago from this important program. The Department of Justice awarded and is in the process of awarding nearly $20 million to support law enforcement and law-enforcement related entities in the City of Chicago and Cook County across 2019 and 2020, including resources for combating opioid abuse and recidivism reduction. The Department of Labor has also awarded funding to programs targeting prisoner re-entry and recidivism reduction in the Chicago area. My Administration allocated $898.6 million to the City of Chicago and Cook County from the Coronavirus Relief Fund, which helps support your first responders on the front lines. In the absence of any modicum of leadership, however, these substantial sums of taxpayer money are not being turned into results, and the safety of your most vulnerable communities continues to deteriorate. These funds are in addition to those collected through your combined insatiable appetite to tax the people of Illinois and Chicago.
I will continue to lead the way to support historically disadvantaged communities and would welcome your help in these endeavors. In December 2018, I signed into law the First Step Act, marking the first major reforms to our criminal justice system in over a decade. This brings historic reforms to make our justice system fairer and to help inmates successfully transition back into society by providing prisoners with a second chance through rehabilitative programs and fair sentencing. Additionally, when I signed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, we created Opportunity Zones. Nationwide, nearly 9,000 communities have designated Opportunity Zones, including over 130 in Chicago, which are incentivizing investments in areas that have been forgotten for far too long. My Administration has also provided robust, unprecedented support to Historically Black Colleges and Universities.
Recently, on June 16, I signed an Executive Order advancing important reforms to elevate a noble profession and strengthen the essential bond of trust between police officers and the communities in which they serve. My Administration continues to work closely with Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina and others across the political spectrum to advance further policy improvements and meaningful reforms.
Unlike previous Administrations of both parties, I am willing to tackle unsolved challenges. If you are willing to put partisanship aside, we can revitalize distressed neighborhoods in Chicago, together. But to succeed, you must establish law and order. The combination of crime, high State and local taxes, and onerous State and local government regulations have caused thousands of Illinoisans to flee to other States. Between 2010 and 2019, Illinois lost more of its population than any other state in the Nation. If you are interested, I am willing to ask members of my Cabinet to meet with you and help devise a plan to make Chicago safe, since a successful formula has escaped both you and your predecessors. My Administration would also welcome the opportunity to engage with you and your colleagues as you develop bipartisan policy recommendations to improve policing and make our great cities safer for all.
Unfortunately, you continue to put your own political interests ahead of the lives, safety, and fortunes of your own citizens. The people of Chicago deserve better.
Sincerely,
Donald J. Trump
Download President Trump's Letter to the Governor of Illinois and the Mayor of Chicago.
Texas A&M associate professor arrested during Saturday's protest
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 16:18
The only person arrested during the Sully statue protest and counter-protest on Saturday was a Texas A&M associate professor who crossed barrier tape put up by the university, KBTX has confirmed.
Michael Alvard, 61, of College Station was taken into custody and charged with one count of criminal trespassing. He was released the same day on a bond of $2,000.
Online records show Alvard is an Associate Professor for the school's Department of Anthropology.
An arrest report from the Texas A&M Police Department says Alvard crossed the barrier tape and entered into an 'exclusion zone' that separated the two opposing groups that gathered Saturday afternoon near the Lawrence Sullivan Ross statue in the Academic Plaza.
Alvard was holding a bullhorn and clipboard when he was taken into custody by two officers as the crowd chanted "let him speak."
The arrest report says Alvard was repeatedly asked to return to the area behind the tape but refused to do so. The report states Alvard told police he had a right to be in that area because Texas A&M is public property. An officer responded and said the exclusion zone was not open to the public at that time.
According to the probable cause statement, Alvard, refusing to comply with officers, attempted several times to speak on his bullhorn before being placed in handcuffs. As that happened, he asked the police "Are you sure you want to do this?"
After Alvard was detained, a majority of the anti-Sully crowd crossed the barrier into the exclusion zone to be physically closer to the counter-protesters on the other side. No other arrests were made.
Alvard was then taken to a temporary booking area at another location on campus and then transported to the Brazos County Detention Center.
KBTX has reached out to Alvard for a statement about his arrest.
On Sunday, he posted on his personal Facebook page:
"I want to remind everyone that Texas A&M University allowed the white supremacist Richard Spencer to spew his hate on campus in 2017 while it prevented me from standing in the center of Academic Plaza to peacefully voice my opinion about Sullivan Ross and the statue. Whose side are they on?"
According to a Facebook page belonging to Young Democratic Socialist of America at Texas A&M University, $3,000 was raised to help cover the costs of bail for Alvard. Any extra raised will be donated to the Bail Project, which works to fight mass incarceration, according to the post.
UPDATE: On Sunday night, Alvard sent the following statement to KBTX via email:
"I'm a white male of privilege. Yesterday, I knew that the police would not kill me or throw me to the ground or stomp on my neck. I can afford to post bail. I'm not the story. The story is the lives of black people and other people of color in our community who must suffer day-in and day-out with the institutional racism that the Ross statue represents. The real heroes are the young people who organized the rally and marched to demand change. They are the future, and the A&M administration is going to have to confront that reality very soon.Those young people invited me to speak yesterday. My plan was to direct my comments to the Administration of Texas A&M University, and the Texas A&M University System: Chancellor John Sharp, President Michael Young, and the Texas A&M University System Board of Regents.I had planned to ask those men, and the one woman, to think about the Aggie values that we are reminded of so frequently, and to try to understand that the values of excellence, integrity, leadership, loyalty and especially respect are NOT consistent with a life of ethnic cleansing, violence, slavery, segregation, or the Jim Crow racism that featured so conspicuously in the life of Sullivan Ross.I had planned on closing by quoting the words from a recent message that President Young sent to the Aggie Community in the wake of the murder of George Floyd.He wrote, ''As a university, as a community and as a nation, we must remember that our history and our future are informed by the values that guide us and the ideals that shape us''.I had planned on asking President Young to heed his own words and to decide for himself which values are to guide us here in Aggieland. The values of hate and division or the values of love and inclusion.
We have reached $3000 dollars to help with the bail costs for our professor. All excess will be donated to the Bail Project which works to fight mass incarceration. Donations venmo @MutualAidBCS
Posted by Young Democratic Socialists of America at Texas A&M University on Saturday, June 13, 2020
Black Lives Matter Group Storms Beverley Hills Residential Area: 'Eat The Rich!' 'Abolish Capitalism Now!' | The Daily Wire
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 16:57
Law enforcement officials had to respond to a large group of Black Lives Matters activists late on Friday night that stormed a Beverly Hills residential neighborhood chanting ''Eat the rich!'' and ''Abolish capitalism now!''
The Beverly Hills Police Department tweeted: ''The unlawful assembly in the area of Rexford Dr & Carmelita Ave has ended with arrests being made. Protesters have now left the City.''
The unlawful assembly in the area of Rexford Dr & Carmelita Ave has ended with arrests being made. Protesters have now left the City.
'-- Beverly Hills Police (@BeverlyHillsPD) June 27, 2020
Videos and photographs of the mob flooded social media as they shouted various messages throughout the residential neighborhood and tore down American flags.
Human Events Managing Editor Ian Miles Cheong compiled video highlights from the demonstrators on his Twitter account, noting that the group marched through residential neighborhoods in Beverly Hills shouting ''Eat the rich1'' and ''Abolish capitalism now!'' (posts below).
''The Black Lives Matter mob shut down Santa Monica Boulevard, Rodeo Drive, and intersections around the city center,'' wrote Cheong. At one point the group ''seized a privately owned American flag in a residential suburb, shredding it and pulling it down.'' In the residential areas, video shows, the group played ''loud music and blocked the streets.''
''The police showed up in full force to arrest members of the Black Lives Matter mob making a nuisance of themselves across residential Los Angeles streets,'' Cheong captions one post with video of police arresting members of the group. ''One pretended to be injured by the police and forced them to drag him.''
Black Lives Matter mob shouts ''eat the rich'' as they march down a residential area in Beverly Hills. They're coming for your homes.pic.twitter.com/gs5Hszjb7m
'-- Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) June 27, 2020
The Black Lives Matter mob shut down Santa Monica Boulevard, Rodeo Drive, and intersections around the city center. They don't want you to do business. pic.twitter.com/3C2kt7cSZI
'-- Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) June 27, 2020
The Black Lives Matter mob in Los Angeles seized a privately owned American flag in a residential suburb, shredding it and pulling it down. pic.twitter.com/gCffXqZuwZ
'-- Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) June 27, 2020
The mob of Black Lives Matter activists took to residential neighborhoods in Los Angeles, blasting loud music and blocked the streets. pic.twitter.com/GOJpa9Xxq7
'-- Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) June 27, 2020
The police showed up in full force to arrest members of the Black Lives Matter mob making a nuisance of themselves across residential Los Angeles streets. One pretended to be injured by the police and forced them to drag him. pic.twitter.com/9hBjv4og8M
'-- Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) June 27, 2020
The City of Beverly Hills issued an order a couple of weeks ago that outlined new rules that it was implementing to keep things peaceful as violent riots have burned down buildings, attacked law enforcement, and looted businesses across the country in the weeks following the death of George Floyd.
''To preserve the peace and tranquility of residential neighborhoods, effective tonight and until further notice, no more than 10 people shall gather in an assembly in a public right of way in a residential area between the hours of 9 p.m. and 8 a.m.,'' the City of Beverly Hills said in a statement. ''An assembly is defined as any gathering or group of 10 or more people on a public street, sidewalk or other public place if those 10 people have a common purpose or goal.''
''Any assembly that is silent, such as a candlelight vigil, and gatherings on private property are exempt from this emergency order,'' the city added.
The New York Times reported earlier this month that angry demonstrators have shown up in wealthy areas across the country in recent weeks, primarily in blue states.
Related: Black Lives Matter-Led Drive To 'Defund The Police' Also Targets Capitalism
The Daily Wire, headed by bestselling author and popular podcast host Ben Shapiro, is a leading provider of conservative news, cutting through the mainstream media's rhetoric to provide readers the most important, relevant, and engaging stories of the day. Get inside access to The Daily Wire by becoming a member .
Schiff Introduces Bill to Prevent Misuse of Military in Domestic Law Enforcement
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 07:21
06.23.20WASHINGTON, D.C. '' Today, Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) introduced legislation to amend and strengthen the Posse Comitatus Act to prevent the U.S. military from being used inappropriately in domestic law enforcement functions. This legislation, known as the Strengthening the Posse Comitatus Act of 2020, comes after the Trump Administration pre-positioned active duty military units from the U.S. Army to respond to national protests against police brutality in the United States and considered deploying them in major U.S. cities. Active duty military or federalized National Guard troops were ultimately never deployed.
''Just three weeks ago, the Administration made preparations to deploy active duty U.S. military forces across a number of U.S. cities, including the nation's capital, an unnecessary step that would have heightened an already tense situation and risked catastrophe. As we have seen time and again with this President, we cannot rely on past norms to prevent the misuse of authorities. That's why it is important to make it more difficult for this or any other president to misuse the military in a domestic law enforcement capacity,'' said Rep. Schiff. ''Americans exercising their First Amendment rights are not enemies, and should never be considered that way. This legislation would help ensure that civil liberties are always protected, including during mass protests.''
The Posse Comitatus Act, passed in 1878, provides a criminal penalty for the use of the Army or Air Force to enforce U.S. laws. Any exceptions to this general prohibition must be authorized by the Constitution or an Act of Congress. Schiff's legislation would clarify in statute that the Posse Comitatus Act applies to all branches of the federal armed forces and excludes any information or other evidence collected by or with the assistance of military forces in violation of the Act during legal proceedings.
The Strengthening the Posse Comitatus Act would:
Extend the Posse Comitatus Act to all branches of the Armed Forces, as its outdated language names only the Army and Air Force. Although the Marines and the Navy have adhered to these standards according to internal policy and administrative action, this legislation would ensure their inclusion by law, as well as the federalized National Guard and Reserve components.Prohibit the use of evidence unlawfully obtained by or with the assistance of the military in a court of law or other legal proceeding.Schiff's proposal is intended to complement other bills that have been introduced to place additional restrictions on the invocation of the Insurrection Act or place new limits on the President's authority over state National Guard units.
The full text of the legislation can be found here .
###
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BLMSTEM
Letter to AMS Notices: Boycott collaboration with police
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 09:20
To the Mathematics Community,
In light of the extrajudicial murders by police of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade and numerous others before them, and the subsequent brutality of the police response to protests, we call on the mathematics community to boycott working with police departments.
This is not an abstract call. Many of our colleagues can and do work with police departments to provide modeling and data work. For example, ICERM sponsored a workshop on Predictive Policing (https://icerm.brown.edu/topical_workshops/tw16-7-pp/) which included ride-alongs with the Providence Police Department.
One of the organizers of this workshop is the founder of PredPol (https://www.theverge.com/2018/4/26/17285058/predictive-policing-predpol-pentagon-ai-racial-bias), a for-profit company which has lucrative contracts with police departments across the country, providing software that claims, among other things, to predict where crimes occur, and when they are gang related. Another organizer is an investor in PredPol (https://dailybruin.com/2019/05/20/letter-to-the-editor-public-perception-of-predictive-policing-is-wrong-it-can-help-reduce-crime).
An excellent summary of the feedback loops created by PredPol, and the racist consequences, can be found here: https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/xwbag4/academics-confirm-major-predictive-policing-algorithm-is-fundamentally-flawed
There are also deep concerns about the use of machine learning, AI, and facial recognition technologies to justify and perpetuate oppression. See, for example:
https://www.technologyreview.com/2019/12/20/79/ai-face-recognition-racist-us-government-nist-study/and
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/07/10/opinion/facial-recognition-race.htmlGiven the structural racism and brutality in US policing, we do not believe that mathematicians should be collaborating with police departments in this manner. It is simply too easy to create a "scientific" veneer for racism. Please join us in committing to not collaborating with police. It is, at this moment, the very least we can do as a community.
We demand that any algorithm with potential high impact face a public audit. For those who'd like to do more, participating in this audit process is potentially a proactive way to use mathematical expertise to prevent abuses of power. We also encourage mathematicians to work with community groups, oversight boards, and other organizations dedicated to developing alternatives to oppressive and racist practices. Examples of data science organizations to work with include Data 4 Black Lives (http://d4bl.org/) and Black in AI (https://blackinai.github.io/).
Finally, we call on departments with data science courses to implement learning outcomes that address the ethical, legal, and social implications of these tools.
You can sign this letter by filling out the form below.
This letter has been submitted to the Notices of the AMS as of June 15, but we welcome additional signatures, which will be listed at a website linked to in the Notices letter.
Tarik Aougab (Haverford College)
Federico Ardila (San Francisco State University)
Jayadev Athreya (University of Washington)
Edray Goins (Pomona College)
Christopher Hoffman (University of Washington)
Autumn Kent (University of Wisconsin)
Lily Khadjavi (Loyola Marymount University)
Cathy O'Neil (CEO, ORCAA)
Priyam Patel (University of Utah)
Katrin Wehrheim (University of California, Berkeley)
Jordan Peterson: The activists are now stalking the hard scientists | National Post
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 10:19
Author of the article:
National Post
Publishing date:
Jun 24, 2020
'
'
12 minute read
Brock University professor Tomas Hudlicky. Brock University Article contentBy Jordan Peterson
So many messages of appalling idiocy, detestable envy, and envy embarrassing to behold, crossed my desk in the last fortnight that I found myself in the rare position of having too much to record '-- a writer's dream. But that content also indicated that the bell is tolling, and that I am one of those for whom the death knell sounds.
I have watched the universities of the Western world devour themselves in a myriad of fatal errors over the last two decades, and take little pleasure in observing the inevitable unfold. It is a failing of human reason, with all its limitations, ego, and pretensions, to serve as Cassandra; to derive a certain satisfaction in watching the ship whose demise was foretold breach its hull on rocks hidden from all other observers. The self-righteous pleasure of ''I told you so,'' is, however, of little comfort when the icy water wends its way around ankle, knee and thigh, threatening to swamp everything still retaining its incalculable and unlikely value, even if it simultaneously makes short shrift of the ignorance and willful blindness that is frequently part and parcel of the death of something once great.
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Article content continuedIt is also necessary to note that the catastrophic failures of process and aim which I am about to relate were by no means hidden from the public view by the persons and institutions in question. They were instead positively trumpeted to all by multiple attempts to harness the powers of social media and announced, more traditionally, in press releases designed to indicate the success of some great and laudable moral striving. It is nothing less than a dire day when the proud revelation of vices of deadly and multifarious seriousness serve to substitute for announcements of genuine and valuable achievement, but that is where we are at '-- make no mistake about it.
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Article content continuedThe first story emerges at Brock University, in cahoots with the scientific journal Angewandte Chemie '-- the former an educational institution of moderate reputability; the latter a prestigious place of scientific publication among chemists. It is no easy matter to find a permanent tenured faculty position at such a university, or to publish research findings or literature reviews/summaries in a peer-reviewed scientific journal. The latter process generally requires several years and multiple resubmissions and rounds of editing by a minimum of three colleagues with expertise in the field per submission, as well as approval by the editor. Angewandte has a rejection rate of 80% '-- and it should be noted that that rejection rate only accounts for papers that the submitting researcher(s) felt were of sufficient quality to be considered.
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Article content continuedDr. Tomas Hudlicky of Brock submitted an essay memorializing and updating a piece written thirty years ago, which has been widely recognized as powerfully influencing the direction of the chemistry subfield in question (organic synthesis).
The good doctor holds a prestigious Canada Research Chair, a position funded by a large federal initiative devoting about $300 million per year in the attempt to attract to Canada (or encourage to stay) researchers who are of particular promise, as evidenced primarily by their research productivity. That, in turn, can be measured with reasonable objectivity with metrics such as number of peer-reviewed articles in relevant scientific journals (more than 400 in Hudlicky's case), by noting how many times such articles are cited by other authors over the years subsequent to publication (Hudlicky: 13,300) and, finally, by a measure known as the h-index, which provides a single numerical indication of how many publications have received a variable minimum number of citations. A researcher with an h-index of 10 has published 10 papers with 10 or more citations; a researcher with an h-index of 57 (Hudlicky's score) has published 57 papers with 57 or more citations.
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Article content continuedHudlicky's research productivity is admirable and rare. The mere fact that he obtained a position as a Canada Research Chair meant that his department, as well as the relevant federal governmental agency, both determined he was a fish well worth landing. Plus, the universities that hire researchers competent enough to be considered for a Canada Research Chair competition are not doing those they are attempting to recruit any favour by offering them a position; rather, it is an honour for the university to be chosen by the researcher in question.
Hudlicky's paper in Angewandte Chemie was peer-reviewed positively, judged as desirable by the relevant editorial staff, and published. This meant that it managed the difficult job of passing through the eye of a needle, and entering the kingdom of heaven, at least as far as research chemists might be concerned. But some of Hudlicky's surmises with regard to the state of organic synthesis raised the ire of a Twitter mob howling about ''academic feudalism'' and calling it an ''antidiversity screed.''
It's still there, I just downloaded it. In any case I put it up here: https://t.co/tt6TQzsnCu as I believe it should be available for discussion
'-- FX Coudert (@fxcoudert) June 5, 2020This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.
Article content continuedTwitter seems to exist primarily for the purpose of generating mobs '-- composed primarily of individuals who are hungry for blood and desiring to bask in the joys of reasonably risk-free reputation destruction, revenge and self-righteousness. Furthermore, as far as Twitter mobs go, those who complained about the Angewandte Chemie publication were by no means numerous, constituting perhaps less than a dozen.
No matter: once the complaints emerged, the editor of the journal in charge of Hudlicky's work '-- Dr. Neville Compton '-- removed the paper from the journal's website, and offered an abject apology for daring to have published it. Furthermore, he reported the ''suspension'' of two of the journal's editors and cast aspersions on Hudlicky's ethics, stating that his essay did not properly reflect fairness, trustworthiness and social awareness, while implying that the now-pilloried author and his peer reviewers and editors were discriminatory, unjust and inequitable in practice.
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Article content continuedWhat were Hudlicky's sins? His 12-page document (about 4,000 words) dealt with issues affecting organic synthesis research and communication, covering topics such as the range of research options available, integrity and trustworthiness of the relevant literature, transference of skills from mentor to trainee, impact of information technology, the corporatization of the university environment, the effect of new technology, the diversity of the available work force, and the competition for resources among researchers. However, Hudlicky voiced a smattering of opinions deemed unacceptable by that small number of people who both read his submission and were somewhat active on Twitter. Here are the sentences constituting his wrong-think, which I have paraphrased slightly for length.
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Article content continuedUnder Diversity of Workforce: ''In the last two decades many groups have been designated with 'preferential status' (despite substantive increases in the recruitment of women and minorities). Preferential treatment of one group leads inexorably to disadvantages for another. Each candidate should have an equal opportunity to secure a position, regardless of personal identification/categorization. Hiring practices that aim at equality of outcome is counter-productive if it results in discrimination against the most meritorious candidates. Such practice has also led to the emergence of mandatory 'training workshops' on gender equity, inclusion, diversity, and discrimination.''
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Article content continuedHudlicky voiced a smattering of opinions deemed unacceptable by that small number of people who both read his submission and were somewhat active on Twitter
So those apparently objectional words constitute 90 of 4,000 '-- a small proportion of the essay, and the proffering of an opinion that insists ''if'': not that diversity, inclusivity and equality provisions necessarily produce prejudicial hiring practices, but that they may under some conditions and with sufficient lack of caution have exactly that effect. It is also important to note that these opinions paraphrase very closely a decision reached and publicized by a German court in 2007, at least according to a supporter of Hudlicky who dared express an opinion supporting his colleague.
The Twitter trolls who objected to this opinion nonetheless reacted as if Hudlicky had said that efforts to ''diversify'' hiring and student selection were definitively harmful, and this is simply untrue.
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Article content continuedUnder Transference of Skills: ''The training and mentoring of new generations of professionals must be attended to by proper relationships of 'masters and apprentices' without dilution of standards. Hudlicky described two conditions which must be met if the successful transfer of skills is to occur: first, the knowledge in question must be transferred within three generations, or risk being lost forever; second, there must be 'an unconditional submission of the apprentice to his/her master.' This applies not only in the sciences but also in art, music, and martial arts'.... Submission to one's mentor is rarely attainable today. Many students are unwilling to submit to any level of hard work demanded by professors. The university does not support professors in this endeavour as it views students as financial assets and hence protects them from any undue hardships that may be demanded by the 'masters.' This situation, coupled with the fact that professors have less and less time to mentor students in the laboratory, cannot provide for a productive transfer of skills, especially the maintenance of standards and integrity of research.''
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Article content continuedThis is an additional 170 words, and offers an opinion most famously put forward by Michael Polanyi, a polymath of genius level, who made contributions to chemistry, philosophy and economics, and who delineated the importance of ''tacit knowledge'' (knowledge that was acted out but not necessarily articulated) in the transmission of specialized technical ability across the generations. Hudlicky was therefore criticized and pilloried by individuals on Twitter who appeared to know nothing of Polanyi's work (and for whom such ignorance was arguably justifiable) but also by the editor of Angewandte, for whom such ignorance was most certainly not.
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Article content continuedResearch prowess is no longer as important as willingness to mouth the appalling commonplaces of political correctness
Acquisition of this knowledge, according to Polanyi, required precisely the unfreedom recommended by Hudlicky '-- followed (with the acquisition of the aptly named Master's degree) by autonomy in thought and action increased beyond what would have been capable in the absence of the devoted apprenticeship in question. Such a process can only be undertaken by a pupil capable of regarding his or her teacher as a true mentor, and by a mentor bent on the eventual production of a pupil more capable than him or herself.
None of that, according to Hudlicky (and this is a not unreasonable hypothesis in this day and age) is possible in the university as currently constituted, even in the hard sciences. Not only is it not possible, he implies, but it is no longer posited even as an acceptable aim. In a properly functioning institute of training, however, it might be argued that disciplined and contractually-mediated temporary subjugation to higher authority is eminently desirable, despite the limited sacrifice of casual autonomy that might require, if the person or persons to whom the subjugation is made are true experts. It is the willingness to undertake this apprenticeship, as well as the capability of superseding it, that makes up the master in ''Master's degree'''--a designation that Brock still grants, despite potentially colonial overtones at least as damning as those that characterized Hudlicky's writing.
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Article content continuedThat is the sum total of Hudlicky's academic crimes. He has faced severe retaliation on no less than six separate fronts for his hypothetically unforgivable thoughts '-- the two we have already discussed, and four more, including, third, the cancellation of an entire issue of the journal Synthesis (published by Thieme), which was to be dedicated to his 70th birthday and for which invitations had already been sent to more than forty prominent scientists; fourth, the elimination of any mention of his work in yet another journal, Highlights in Chemistry; fifth, a statement by a European chemical society (not as yet made public) hypothetically critiquing his ongoing collaborations with researchers from that continent; and sixth, his transformation into whipping boy by his own faithless professional colleagues at the administrative level at Brock University.
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Article content continuedDr. Greg Finn, Provost and VP Academic at that institution, saw nothing wrong with stabbing one of his university's most esteemed scientists in the back at the first sign of trouble. The provost wrote a painfully cringing apologetic ''open letter to the public,'' claiming, of course, that Hudlicky's opinions, if in the least controversial, were in no possible manner representative of Brock University as a whole, and essentially hanging that institution's hypothetically valued top chemist out to dry. Finn states that Hudlicky's article '''...contains descriptions of the graduate supervisor-graduate student relationship that connote disrespect and subservience. These statements could be alarming to students and others who have the reasonable expectation of respectful and supportive mentorship'.... [The statements in this paper] do not reflect the principles of inclusivity, diversity and equity included in the University's mission, vision and values as approved by our Senate and Board of Trustees.'' Only an individual accustomed to dining on very thin gruel or simply spoiled meat would find any nourishment in statements with such content and of that quality.
Further to Friday's statement, Brock's Provost is sharing an open letter with the community regarding statements in a published paper that are highly objectionable and do not reflect the University's values. You can read the letter here: https://t.co/l8kZVlg8qJ
'-- Brock University (@BrockUniversity) June 8, 2020This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.
Article content continuedAn admirable university, secure in its worth, would have determined very quickly that one Hudlicky was, conservatively, worth ten Finns, and acted accordingly. But research prowess is no longer as important as willingness to mouth the appalling commonplaces of political correctness in the hallowed corridors of academe.
Two other recent events drive these points home. A highly cited professor of physics, who I cannot name, at a university I cannot name either (suffice it to say that the former has garnered 100+ publications and 7000+ citations in a highly technical field) had his standard Canadian Federal grant application rejected because he had failed to sufficiently detail his plans to ensure diversity, inclusivity and equity (DIE) practices while conducting his scientific inquiry. It is now standard practice for university hiring boards to insist that their faculty job applicants submit a DIE plan with their curriculum vitae '-- a terribly dangerous occurrence of its own.
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Article content continuedI believe that the fundamental reason such plans are required, particularly of those who practice in the so-called ''hard'' STEM fields (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) is so that those who could not hope to assess the quality of research endeavours in those specialties as a consequence of their own inability or ignorance, can be made into judges by enforcing the adoption of standards of attitude and behaviour that have nothing to do with the fields in question.
Consider this, in addition: a group of three professors at Concordia were awarded a New Frontiers in Research Grant (announced in late 2019) aimed at ''engaging Indigenous understanding and involving Indigenous communities in the co-creation of knowledge, the project aims to decolonize contemporary physics research and attract Indigenous students.'' The head researcher, Dr. Tanja Tajmel, ''questioned the colonial assumptions made in the way Western science evaluates light and what it considers knowledge.'' Dr. Louellyn White, associate professor in First Peoples Studies, added that ''Indigenous ways of knowing have been suppressed and marginalized throughout academic history and we are finally gaining momentum in elevating Indigenous knowledges as equally valid to Western science'... If we, as an institution, do not embody the Territorial Acknowledgement by recognizing and affirming the expertise of our Elders as Knowledge Keepers, the acknowledgement becomes nothing but empty platitudes.'' Dr. Ingo Salzmann, the last of the three principal investigators to whom the funds were awarded, says, ''The culture of physics certainly changes with diverse people involved.'' He argues, ''Therefore, decolonizing science involves challenging the underlying hierarchies.''
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Article content continuedThe refusal of the research grant application specifically requesting funding for what must now apparently be regarded as ''colonialized '-- or colonized (?) '-- physics'' and the success of the application that had the magical mention of ''indigenous knowledge'' should alert us to the fact that with the increasingly successful politicization of the university the STEM fields comprise the next frontier for occupation by the politically correct.
Qualified and expert researchers in such fields are already in great danger of being pushed aside by activists of the proper opinion. The rest of us will pay in the longer run, when we no longer have the will or the capacity to make use of the rare talents that make people highly competent and productive as scientists, technological innovators, engineers or mathematicians. Wake up, STEM denizens: your famous immunity to political concerns will not protect you against what is headed your way fast over the next five or so years.
Jordan Peterson is a professor of psychology at the University of Toronto, a clinical psychologist and the author of the multi-million copy bestseller 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos. His blog and podcasts can be found at jordanbpeterson.com.
A convicted terrorist sits on board of charity handling Black Lives Matter fundraising - American Wire
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 17:36
Andrew Kerr on June 27, 2020
Thousand Currents, the California-based charity that manages fundraising operations for the national arm of Black Lives Matter, includes on its board a convicted terrorist whose sentence was commuted by former President Bill Clinton on his last day in office.
Susan Rosenberg was identified as the vice chair of the Thousand Currents board of directors on the charity's website until Wednesday when the page was taken down after the conservative think tank Capital Research Center detailed her involvement with a communist terrorist group that had carried out bombings in New York and Washington, D.C., in the early 1980s.
Rosenberg's involvement with the May 19 Communist Organization, which carried out its bombing campaign to create a contrast to former President Ronald Reagan's ''Morning in America'' campaign promise, earned her a spot on the FBI's Most Wanted List, according to The Washington Examiner. She was arrested in New Jersey in 1984 while unloading 740 pounds of stolen explosives and a sub-machine gun from a truck.
Rosenberg was released from prison in 2001 after having her sentence commuted by Clinton, serving 16 years of her 58-year prison sentence.
U.S. Attorney Mary Jo White lobbied aggressively against Rosenberg's commutation at the time, noting that she had allegedly been one of the getaway drivers in the 1981 Brink's robbery, which resulted in the deaths of two police officers and one security guard. Rosenberg was charged with crimes in the robbery, but those charges were dropped because she was already in prison, The New York Times reported.
Rosenberg was also identified as a member of the Thousand Currents board of directors in the charity's Form 990s submitted to the IRS for its 2016, 2017 and 2018 fiscal years, indicating that the former terrorist has been involved with the group for the entirety of its fiscal sponsorship arrangement with Black Lives Matter Global Foundation, which began in 2016.
Financial statements prepared by Thousand Currents reveal that 83.3% of BLM Global Foundation's total spending during its 2017, 2018 and 2019 fiscal years was spent on travel, consulting and payroll, while only about 6% was put toward grants to outside organizations such as the local BLM chapters, the Daily Caller News Foundation previously reported.
BLM Global Network Managing Director Kailee Scales told the DCNF the figures ''do not reflect, for example, the in kind support for chapters and fundraising directed to chapters and programmatic assistance to chapters, that would not show up as direct grants on the audited financials.''
In addition to removing the page on its website disclosing Rosenberg as a member of its board of directors, Thousand Currents also took down a page that had disclosed financial information for the charity such as audits and Form 990s dating back to 2005.
Thousand Currents did not return the DCNF's request for comment.
BLM Global Network has raised a substantial sum of money since the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man who died on May 25 in Minneapolis police custody.
In recent weeks the group has announced grant funds totaling $12.5 million after raising more than $1.1 million in donations since Floyd's death. The average donation to BLM Global Network clocked in at $33, The Associated Press reported.
Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.
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Think police are racist killers? The newest data shows that's entirely wrong.
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 18:40
Stop the Lying
Anti-police rhetoric is spreading across the country faster than the coronavirus, because disinformation about racist police shootings fuels its transmission.
Last month, the horrific murder of George Floyd ignited protests across the country, and despite the involved officers being charged and most Americans agreeing racism and police brutality are wrong, public outrage soon expanded to condemn all police.
The shootings of Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, and Rayshard Brooks have become symbols of racist police killings, regardless of the facts. The false narrative surrounding police shootings has caused law enforcement officers to be demonized, assaulted, and murdered.
The data is clear: There is no epidemic of racist police officers shooting and killing black Americans.
While every life is valuable, the number of blacks unjustifiably shot and killed by police is microscopic. Numerous scientific studies have proven that when behavioral, demographic, and other contextual factors are controlled, the racial disparity in police shootings disappears.
Despite these facts, politicians, activists, and the media continue to misrepresent the facts.
It's time to stop the lying and set the record straight.
The Numbers
It's rare for police to kill anyone. A black man is more likely to be killed by lightning than by a police officer. In 2019, police shot and killed 1,003 people in the US, according to the Washington Post's Fatal Force database. Of those, 250 were black and 405 white. Police shot and killed 55 unarmed suspects, including 25 whites and 14 blacks.
Shooting an unarmed suspect can be justified if a suspect makes a furtive movement, attacks an officer, or tries to take the officer's firearm.
Of the 14 incidents of unarmed black men shot and killed by police in 2019, several involved high-speed car chases, fights with officers, or had weapons recovered at the scene.
Every shooting needs to be evaluated on its own merits, and only one of the involved officers has been charged with murder, but for this analysis, assume all involved excessive use of force.
According to the FBI's Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR), there were 686,665 sworn police officers in the United States in 2018. That's one unarmed black male shot and killed for every 49,047 sworn police officers.
In 2018, police made 10,310,960 arrests, according to the FBI, and the race was known for 5.6 million offenders.
Of them, 1,548,690 (27.4%) were black. There were 229 black males shot and killed by police that year, according to the Washington Post, for a ratio of one out of every 6,762 black offenders. The ratio of unarmed black men shot and killed (23) in 2018 was one out of 67,334 black men arrested.
BREAKING: U.S. House passes sweeping policing reform bill, largely along party lines, that aims to address systemic racism and police brutality in wake of the police killing of George Floyd; Minnesota Rep. Omar presided over the vote. https://t.co/tm7QFgfvB3
'-- NBC News (@NBCNews) June 26, 2020
In 2015, about 53.5 million people had at least one contact with police, and 95% of those contacts involved traffic stops, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS).
According to a BJS special report, 91% of whites and 85% of blacks contacted by police during traffic stops said police behaved properly. Of citizens contacted during street stops, 81% said police acted properly. Only 2% of all citizens contacted by police experienced force, or the threat of force.
After the Ahmoud Arbery murder in Georgia, LeBron James tweeted:
''We're literally hunted EVERYDAY/EVERYTIME we step foot outside the comfort of our homes!''
We're literally hunted EVERYDAY/EVERYTIME we step foot outside the comfort of our homes! Can't even go for a damn jog man! Like WTF man are you kidding me?!?!?!?!?!? No man fr ARE YOU KIDDING ME!!!!! I'm sorry Ahmaud(Rest In Paradise) and my prayers and blessings sent to the'..... pic.twitter.com/r1PNxs8Vgn
'-- LeBron James (@KingJames) May 6, 2020
That sentiment has been repeated during the recent protests, but does it reflect reality?
According to the US census, in July 2019, an estimated 328,239,523 people resided in the US. Blacks comprise 13.4%, or 43,984,096 people. That means police shot and killed one unarmed black male out of every 3,141,721 black Americans. Does that sound like an epidemic of police murders?
The numbers of unarmed blacks shot and killed by police are so low, most Americans recognize their names. Comparatively, every year police kill a larger number of unarmed whites, but almost no one knows their names.
Why does the media ignore these shootings?
It's true the relative percentage of blacks killed is higher than with whites, but the press does not cover the shooting of whites to the same extent, probably because it contradicts the narrative of racist police. Shootings later determined to be justified are still trumpeted as proof of racism'--as with the 2014 death of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri.
Here's a look at ''copaganda'': how cop shows make police seem infallible and undermine real-life claims of systemic racism and abuse. pic.twitter.com/l88dSM6NYH
'-- The Daily Show (@TheDailyShow) June 26, 2020
Even in bad shootings, there is often scant evidence of racism, because it's difficult to determine internal motivations. It's bad science to assume racism based solely on the disparate numbers between racial populations.
For example, a study of police shootings in 2015 showed suicidal whites were more likely to be killed by police. Are police racists against whites? Of course not.
Of the 250 blacks shot and killed by police in 2019, only six were female.
Can one assume misandry is to blame for the gender disparity? Other variables need to be considered when determining causation, such as the fact men commit most violent crime.
The media correctly report descriptive statistics showing the disparity between the percentages of blacks and whites shot and killed by police, but journalists err in their statistical analysis by ignoring confounding variables and assuming causation.
Confounding Variables
A 2019 National Academy of Sciences study found that ''people of color face a higher likelihood of being killed by police than do white men and women, that risk peaks in young adulthood, and that men of color face a nontrivial lifetime risk of being killed by police.''
The study concluded that blacks are 2.5 times more likely to be killed by police than whites, but the study's findings do not tell the whole story, because it fails to account for confounding variables.
If any group engages in more violent crime, they will have more contact with police and a higher chance of being shot, and the black population in the US has a higher crime rate than the white population.
It's important to note than metadata for populations does not apply to individuals within that group and can only analyze populations as a whole.
According to the FBI UCR, there were 1,186,742 incidents of violent crime in 2018, and of them, 14,123 were homicide victims.
Blacks comprised 54.9% of all homicide offenders, compared to 42.4% for whites. Blacks are 13.4% of the US population, yet they accounted for more than half of all homicides.
According to the FBI's National Incident-Based Reporting System, 61.5% of all offenders were male, and according to the FBI UCR for 2018, 87.7% of murder offenders were male. That means approximately 6% (black males) of the population committed approximately half of the murders.
Homicide is not the only crime where the black population offends at higher rates.
According to the FBI UCR, of 7,710,00 arrests reported in 2018, blacks comprised 27.4%. Approximately 28.6% of people arrested for rape were black, 54.2% of robbery arrests, 33.7% of aggravated assault arrests, 29.4% of burglary arrests, and 30% of arrests for larceny-theft.
Black arrest rates for violent crimes are also correlated with victim descriptions of offender race. Higher crime rates within the black population increases contact with police and therefore the chance of police shootings within that community.
Median age is another confounding variable. Young men commit the vast majority of crimes.
According to the FBI UR, in 2018, people under the age of 25 accounted for large percentages of those arrested for murder (42.8%), rape (38.6%), robbery (53%), and aggravated assault (27.8). The black population in the US is younger than the white population.
According to Pew Research, in 2018, the median age for whites was 44 and the median age for blacks was 34. The most common age (mode) for whites was 58 and 27 for blacks.
Toronto Mayor John Tory calling for police reform in bid to 'stamp out systemic racism' https://t.co/PTZlNrzUZj pic.twitter.com/LlB1AZC15R
'-- CBC Canadian News (@CBCCanada) June 25, 2020
Poverty is also correlated with crime. In 2018, 11.8% of US was in poverty, according to the US Census. The real median household income in 2018 was $63,179, but $70,642 for whites and $41,361 for blacks.
Another variable to consider when assessing racial disparities is single-parent homes. In 2017, 65% of black households had a single parent, compared to 24% of white households.
The more interaction a child has with a father, the less likely they are to commit a crime, according to the Minnesota Psychological Association. Children from single-parent homes are four times more likely to be in poverty and three times more likely to end up in jail by age 30.
One must also consider urban versus rural populations. Cities have significantly more crime than rural areas, with urban crime rates as much as 74% higher. According to Black Demographics, relying on 2013-2017 US Census data, most cities have black populations higher than 13.4%. Considering police concentrate in high-crime areas, the higher percentage of blacks living there may affect the rate of blacks shot by police.
Interracial crime
While blacks commit the majority of homicides, they are also the group with the highest percentage of homicide victims. According to the 2018 FBI UCR, there were 6,460 known-race homicide victims, of which 3,315 were white and 2,925 were black.
Whites were 51% of known race homicide victims and 76.5% of the total US population, while blacks were 45% of known race homicide victims, but only 13.4% of the US. That means the homicide rate for blacks was 3.35 times their percentage of the US population, making them over five times as likely to be homicide victims.
And who is mostly responsible for murdering these high percentages of blacks? It's not police'--it's other blacks. Most crime is intraracial, where both victims and offenders share the same race, but when violent crime is interracial, blacks commit a far higher percentage than whites.
According to a Bureau of Justice Statistics 2018 study, 15.3% of crimes against whites were committed by blacks for a total of 547,948 crimes. In contrast, whites committed 10.6% of crimes against blacks for a total of 59,777 crimes.
Despite being 13.4% of the population, blacks committed nine times more interracial crimes against whites than whites committed against blacks. If racism is the cause of interracial violence, white cops are not the problem.
Scientific Studies
A 2019 research article, published by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, detailed the findings of a study by David J. Johnson. The study analyzed fatal police shootings in 2015 and confirmed blacks, which were 12% of the population, accounted for 26% of those shot and killed by police.
But when violent crime was used as a benchmark, the anti-black disparity disappeared. The study found officers were more likely to shoot suspects of the same race, and more importantly, the number of police shootings could be predicted by race-specific violent crime rates.
3 Harvard Law students call for big changes at law schools, incl. the engagement of "prison abolition and police abolition" as "legitimate and practicable positions." "We cannot allow these legal institutions to continue producing race-illiterate lawyers." https://t.co/ZtXzTGmRH9
'-- Ethan Brown (@ethanbrown72) June 24, 2020
The Collaborative Reform Initiative studied deadly force used by the Philadelphia Police Department from 2007 through 2013. The study determined 59% of officers involved in shootings were white and 34% were black.
In these shootings, 80% of suspects were black, and the majority were young males. Unarmed suspects were 15.4% of all people shot by police, but 25% of white suspects and 15.8% of black suspects were unarmed.
The study found the shooting of unarmed suspects was most often caused by threat perception failures or physical altercations. With black suspects, white officers had a 6.8% threat perception failure and the rate for black officers was 11.6%. The study found no significant threat perception failures among different suspect racial groups.
A 2016 National Bureau of Economic Research study by Harvard Economics Professor Roland Fryer, analyzed racial differences in police use of force. It concluded that blacks and Hispanics were 50% more likely to experience non-lethal police use of force, but when controlling for contextual factors, the study found no racial disparity in the use of deadly force in police shootings.
The study also debunked prior claims that implicit bias affected shooting decisions.
A 2014 study in the Journal of Experimental Criminology, by Dr. Lois James, used laboratory simulations to test racial and ethnic bias in police shootings. Previous research had suggested blacks were more likely to be perceived as having weapons.
This study flashed images of people and objects, and test subjects were required to decide whether to shoot. Out of 827 scenarios, 588 of which required deadly force, unarmed subjects were shot 47 times.
Unarmed white suspects were shot 46 times and unarmed blacks were shot only once. Subjects also waited longer to shoot black suspects. The study found that ''subconscious associations between race and threat exhibited by participants are not linked to shooting behavior.''
LET has a private home for those who support emergency responders and veterans called LET Unity. We reinvest the proceeds into sharing their untold stories. Click to check it out.
Unintended Outcomes
The myth of racist police shootings has many unintended outcomes. Hundreds of police officers have been injured or and killed, and many more have expressed their desire to quit.
This negative environment will likely lower the number of applicants to police academies and degrade the quality of applicants, which could result in higher levels of police criminality. Police may become less proactive, creating the ''Ferguson effect.'' A 2020 study questioned this theory, but that was before the recent protests and riots.
If the Ferguson effect is sustained, it will disproportionately affect minority neighborhoods.
The portrayal of police as racist thugs has increased racial tensions and distrust. The breakdown of the rule of law may lead to vigilantism, and if civil unrest continues, businesses and residents may leave cities.
Rioting in the 1960s is largely believed to have caused the phenomenon known as ''white flight'' from urban areas. The Kerner Commission Report, which analyzed urban riots from 1965 to 1968, warned of racial polarization. If businesses abandon urban areas, the resulting economic hardship will disproportionally damage minority communities.
The widely believed lies about racist police have also fueled an effort to defund or abolish police departments, despite only 16% of Americans agreeing with cutting financial support for police.
Many politicians define the ''defund movement'' as reallocating police funding to other social services, but US Representative Ilhan Omar tweeted about disbanding the Minneapolis Police Department, and Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez suggested ''decarceration & prison abolishment.'' The Minneapolis City Council has vowed to dismantle and abolish the city police.
Conclusion
Everyone agrees excessive use of force should be eliminated On June 6, 2020, Congress introduced H.R. 7120'' Justice in Policing Act of 2020 to deal with police misconduct.
The bill lowers the standard to convict police officers for misconduct, limits qualified immunity against civil action, provides addition tools to investigate patterns of discrimination, creates a national misconduct registry, and creates a framework to prohibit racial profiling at all levels.
Other constructive solutions include: Improving officer training and standards, increasing transparency and the timely release of information, enhancing shooting investigations, reevaluating carotid restraint standards, and studying the effects of both public sector unions and civilian review boards. Since each shooting must be evaluated on its own merits, the mandatory use of body cameras could provide valuable evidence.
The media and protesters claim the violent actions of a few rioters do not represent most of the peaceful group, yet they argue the actions of one bad officer represents the whole. This faulty reasoning needs to stop. People need to forgo emotional arguments for rational analysis, stop confusing correlation with causation, and understand the impact of confounding variables.
For too long, the demonstrably false narrative about racially motivated police shootings has been propagated by politicians, activist groups, the media, and Hollywood. The data proves when contextual variables are considered, the racial disparity in police shootings disappears. It's time for the public to overcome their cognitive dissonance and discover the truth.
###
Jeffrey James Higgins is a retired DEA supervisory special agent and former Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office deputy, with 25 years of law enforcement experience. He has a Master of Science in Criminal Justice with a focus on research. Read his articles at http://JeffreyJamesHiggins.com.
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DACA
Supreme Court OKs fast-track deportations
Thu, 25 Jun 2020 16:40
The U.S. Supreme Court building. | Michael A. McCoy/Getty Images
Just a week after granting a reprieve to the so-called Dreamers, the Supreme Court dealt a major defeat to immigrant rights advocates by upholding a fast-track deportation process that the Trump administration is seeking to expand.
The procedure, called "expedited removal," forces allegedly undocumented immigrants out of the country with little or no review by the judicial branch.
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In a 7-2 decision Thursday, the justices held that the Constitution's clause barring suspension of habeas corpus rights in peacetime does not preclude Congress from sharply limiting the rights of some foreigners to challenge their deportation in the federal courts.
While the ruling is a victory for the President Donald Trump and his high-profile effort to crack down on illegal immigration, the legislation the justices upheld Thursday, which limits federal court involvement in expedited removal cases, was actually signed into law by President Bill Clinton in 1996.
The case the justices decided Thursday involved a Sri Lankan man, Vijayakumar Thuraissigiam, picked up by the Border Patrol about 25 yards from the Mexican border in 2017. Thuraissigiam maintains that he could be persecuted in Sri Lanka because of his Tamil heritage and political views, but it's unclear whether he relayed those concerns clearly during the initial immigration proceedings. His lawyers say the translation was poor and he did not understand the questions being asked.
Justice Samuel Alito's majority opinion, which was joined by all the court's Republican appointees, said Congress has the right to create an expedited immigration process in cases involving individuals like Thuraissigiam who have weak ties to the U.S. at the time of their detention. Alito also held the ancient writ of habeas corpus has no application to an immigrant who is not really seeking release, but legal status in the U.S.
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''Simply releasing him would not provide the right to stay in the country that his petition ultimately seeks. Without a change in status, he would remain subject to arrest, detention, and removal,'' Alito wrote. ''The Government is happy to release him '-- provided the release occurs in the cabin of a plane bound for Sri Lanka '...The relief requested falls outside the scope of the writ as it was understood when the Constitution was adopted.''
Alito also said allowing further judicial challenge threatened to bog down an asylum system that is already overwhelmed with a huge surge of cases
''The past decade has seen a 1,883% increase in credible-fear claims,'' wrote Alito, an appointee of President George W. Bush. ''If courts must review credible-fear claims that in the eyes of immigration officials and an immigration judge do not meet the low bar for such claims, expedited removal would augment the burdens on that system.''
The two dissenters were Democratic appointees: Justices Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan. They said the majority decision abdicated the court's responsibility to interpret the law and to protect individuals from arbitrary power.
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''Today's decision handcuffs the Judiciary's ability to perform its constitutional duty to safeguard individual liberty and dismantles a critical component of the separation of powers,'' Sotomayor wrote, joined by Kagan. ''It will leave significant exercises of executive discretion unchecked in the very circumstance where the writ's protections 'have been strongest,' And it increases the risk of erroneous immigration decisions that contravene governing statutes and treaties.''
Sotomayor also faulted Alito for suggesting constitutional principles should be interpreted with an eye to governmental efficiency.
''The Court appears to justify its decision by adverting to the burdens of affording robust judicial review of asylum decisions. But our constitutional protections should not hinge on the vicissitudes of the political climate or bend to accommodate burdens on the Judiciary,'' she wrote.
The high court's two other Democratic appointees, Justices Stephen Breyer and Ruth Bader Ginsburg, sided with the majority but took a more fact-specific approach, limited to circumstances closely resembling the case before the court. They agreed Thuraissigiam could be thrown out of the country without further legal process.
However, Breyer and Ginsburg stressed that their views could well be different if the immigrant facing deportation had been in the U.S. longer or was captured far from the border. ''Addressing more broadly whether the Suspension Clause protects people challenging removal decisions may raise a host of difficult questions,'' Breyer wrote, joined by Ginsburg.
Breyer wrote that he would not use the current case to make sweeping conclusions about the availability of habeas corpus to immigrants or the rights of foreign citizens under specific circumstances.
The high court ruling blessing expedited removal proceedings comes as the Trump administration is moving to broaden the use of that fast-track process. In recent years, it was used within 100 miles of the southern border and for individuals who allegedly entered illegally within the past two weeks. The Trump administration moved last year to allow authorities to invoke the sped-up process for deportation proceedings against immigrants anywhere in the country alleged to have entered the country anytime in the previous two years. A judge in Washington blocked that expansion last September, but on Tuesday a federal appeals court panel unanimously voted to lift that injunction, effectively greenlighting more widespread use of the fast-track deportation procedure.
OTG / CCP
TikTok App to Stop Accessing User Clipboards After Being Caught in the Act by iOS 14 - MacRumors
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 04:09
A new feature in
iOS 14 alerts users when apps read the clipboard, and it turns out some apps have been reading clipboard data excessively.
TikTok users who upgraded to 'ŒiOS 14'Œ, for example, quickly noticed constant alerts warning them that TikTok was accessing the clipboard every few seconds. After being caught, TikTok now says that it's removing the feature.
In a statement to
The Telegraph, TikTok said that it accessed the clipboard to identify spammy behavior.
"Following the beta release of 'ŒiOS 14'Œ on June 22, users saw notifications while using a number of popular apps."For TikTok, this was triggered by a feature designed to identify repetitive, spammy behavior. We have already submitted an updated version of the app to the App Store removing the anti-spam feature to eliminate any potential confusion.
"TikTok is committed to protecting users' privacy and being transparent about how our app works."
An update to remove the feature has already been submitted to the 'ŒApp Store'Œ, and a download of the new update confirms that TikTok no longer appears to be accessing the clipboard.
TikTok did not say whether the feature would be removed from Android devices, nor whether clipboard data was ever stored or moved from user devices. Other apps have also been called out for reading the clipboard, including Starbucks, Overstock, AccuWeather, several news apps, and more.
Prior to when 'ŒiOS 14'Œ was released, a pair of developers
sounded an alarm letting users and Apple know that
iPhone and
iPad apps were quietly accessing the clipboard. Apple's new 'ŒiOS 14'Œ feature appears to have been added in response, and apps are no longer able to read the clipboard without users knowing exactly what's going on.
'ŒiOS 14'Œ is limited to developers at the current time, but Apple plans to release a public beta version next month ahead of the software's fall launch. Clipboard reporting is just one of the many new privacy features in 'ŒiOS 14'Œ, with a full list available in our iOS 14 roundup.
Guy Who Reverse-Engineered TikTok Reveals The Scary Things He Learned, Advises People To Stay Away From It | Bored Panda
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 07:04
Facebook got itself into a sensitive data scandal when it did shady business with Cambridge Analytica, Instagram confirmed a security issue exposing user accounts and phone numbers, but these apps are basically online security havens compared to TikTok, according to one senior software engineer with about 15 years of professional experience.
2 months ago, Reddit user bangorlol made a comment in a discussion about TikTok. Bangorlol claimed to have successfully reverse-engineered it and shared what he learned about the Chinese video-sharing social networking service. Basically, he strongly recommended that people never use the app again, warning about its intrusive user tracking and other issues. Considering that TikTok was the 4th most popular free iPhone app download in 2019, this is quite alarming.
Image credits: Marco Verch
Bangorlol is no script kiddie. ''The last several years of my career has been based around reversing mobile applications, analyzing how they work, and building additional third-party functionality around them,'' he told Bored Panda. ''A rough example would be me noticing that Twitter doesn't show you a sequential timeline (no idea if they do or not) on the website but does on the app. I'd go into the Android or iOS version, find the requests that get the correct data, and build a third-party tool (app, website, browser extension) to give users this functionality.''
''Lately, it mostly involves reversing my company's partner APIs so we don't have to wait for them to create something custom for us. I hunt bug bounties when I've got the time, or help my friends out with theirs (or their CTF challenges). I like security in general and typically find at least a few major flaws whenever I change employers. I'm kind of a 'jack of all trades' kind of guy in the sense that I'm comfortable in most areas of software engineering and mostly pretty okay with many security topics.''
Reportedly, it took 200 days for the Chinese development team to create the original version of TikTok, but when Bangorlol got his cursor on its code, it had no chance. Although, it did try to put up a fight. ''TikTok put a lot of effort into preventing people like me from figuring out how their app works. There's a ton of obfuscation involved at all levels of the application, from your standard Android variable renaming grossness to them (bytedance) forking and customizing ollvm for their native stuff. They hide functions, prevent debuggers from attaching, and employ quite a few sneaky tricks to make things difficult. Honestly, it's more complicated and annoying than most games I've targeted,'' Bangorlol explained.
Such secrecy is understandable. TikTok's earnings have risen proportionately with its increase in popularity and its owner ByteDance made a net profit of $3 billion last year, according to a report from Bloomberg.
Bangorlol thinks that we as a society have normalized giving away our personal information and have no expectations of privacy and security anymore, so giving TikTok our data together with our money is nothing surprising. ''The general consensus among most 'normal' people is that they can't/won't be targeted, so it's fine. Or that they have nothing to hide, so 'why should I even care?' I think the apathy is sourced from people just not understanding the security implications (at all levels) of handing over our data to a foreign government that doesn't discriminate against who they target, and also doesn't really have the best track record when it comes to human rights,'' he said.
Keep in mind that Bangorlol released his initial commentary a while ago and hasn't touched the app in months, and when he posted his findings, they were also a few months behind. ''The app could've changed fingerprinting techniques or added/removed some of the nasty things they do. I strongly encourage security researchers who are much smarter than me and have more free time to take a look at the app and scrutinize every little detail they can. There's a lot of stuff going on in the native libraries for at least the Android version that I wasn't able to figure out and didn't have the time to investigate further,'' he added.
''TikTok might not meet the exact criteria to be called ''Malware'', but it's definitely nefarious and (in my humble opinion) outright evil,'' Bangorlol said. ''There's a reason governments are banning it. Don't use the app. Don't let your children use it. Tell your friends to stop using it. It offers you nothing but a quick source of entertainment that you can get elsewhere without handing your data over to the Chinese government. You are directly putting yourself and those on your network (work and home) at risk.''
Here's what people said after going through TikTok's issues Bored Panda works best if you switch to our Android app
nilay patel on Twitter: "Parler has basically a reverse 230 clause in its terms of service, allowing the company to bill users for legal fees relating to their posts. @jkosseff https://t.co/sR5TKwQDWv" / Twitter
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 07:57
Parler, the Twitter alternative that bills itself as a bastion of the First Amendment, explicitly tells users not to post rumors and advises against posting content that is ''sexual in nature'' because porn is banned.
pic.twitter.com/RmVbvryScA
TikTok Users Target Trump's Online Store '' Adweek
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 00:18
The hope is it will waste his campaign team's advertising dollarsTikTok users are trolling Trump again.
Tiktok, Pixabay
Days after TikTok users said they fueled lower-than-expected turnout at President Donald Trump's rally in Tulsa, Okla., they have a new target: Trump's online store.
A new series of videos are circulating on the platform asking consumers to fill their carts with Trump merchandise'--like the $75 Keep America Great ugly Christmas sweater or the $30 Trump gift wrap featuring Trump in a Keep America Great Santa hat'--and then abandon those carts.
In one such video, which garnered 2.4 million views in a single day, TikTok user Preveroni laid out a hypothetical plan and the damaging effects of abandoning a cart in an online shop. The video has nearly 9,000 comments, including other users saying they did the same thing.
The goal is twofold: cost the Trump campaign money and screw with inventory. But the question is whether this tactic actually works.
The short answer: It does'--to an extentAccording to Mark Irvine, director of strategic partnerships at search marketing agency WordStream, when marketers begin to target users online, their first assumption is past behavior is the best indicator of future behavior.
What's more, marketers know that 70% of shoppers don't finish the checkout process immediately, so Irvine said ecommerce platforms put extra budget into remarketing or reengaging those particular visitors with the goal of getting them back to complete the purchase.
''If you've ever abandoned a cart online, you might recall having seen more ads or emails from that brand, oftentimes with discounts,'' he added.
Ergo, by acting like interested potential buyers and then abandoning their carts, these users cost related ad campaigns more money as the brand continues to reach out.
Clayton McLaughlin, senior vice president of media investments at digital marketing agency iCrossing, agreed the concept ''could potentially wreak havoc with a digital campaign.''
''Whether it's an intended retargeting campaign or a positive signal to an optimization algorithm, those users will likely be targeted again,'' McLaughlin said. ''Plus, other users that share similar traits will start to see the ads as well based on lookalike modeling. Overall, it creates a potentially expensive situation for an advertiser.''
It's also not great for audience dataCart abandonment on a large scale could also mess with a brand's data collection and measurement.
''Someone who comes to your site, browses products and adds to a cart is relatively rare and is usually a good signal to marketers,'' Irvine said. But he noted that the audience becomes effectively useless if over 95% of carts are abandoned.
Alex Burton, senior director of content at digital marketing agency iCrossing, agreed.
''Suddenly all of your shopper data is being purposely manipulated and there's no real way to tell who's a shopper that abandoned as part of this stunt and who's a shopper that abandoned the cart because of some actual issue like user experience,'' Burton said.
That, in turn, can trickle down to future demand and site traffic analytics. But the impact on inventory, however, is less clear.
''[Ecommerce platforms] hope that more people will add these items to their cart because they assume that most of those items won't actually be purchased immediately,'' Irvine said. ''Things only become interesting if there are a lot more items in people's carts than you have inventory because then they assume they're going to sell some of those.''
Irvine said while faux shoppers may be able to make some of Trump's lower inventory items look like they're sold out, they're unlikely to deplete his inventory of popular red hats.
One mistake may be in building ''ludicrously large carts''So far, TikTok users have been loading up on thousands, if not millions, of dollars' worth of inventory. But that could ultimately backfire.
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A Tech Company Spied On Police Brutality Protesters
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 04:13
tech 2020 Protests Data company Mobilewalla used cellphone information to estimate the demographics of protesters. Sen. Elizabeth Warren says it's ''shady'' and concerning.
By Caroline Haskins
Posted on June 25, 2020, at 2:40 p.m. ET
Kerem Yucel / Getty ImagesDemonstrators march outside of the state capital building on May 31, 2020 in Saint Paul, Minnesota as they protest the death of George Floyd. (Photo by KEREM YUCEL/AFP via Getty Images)
On the weekend of May 29, thousands of people marched, sang, grieved, and chanted, demanding an end to police brutality and the defunding of police departments in the aftermath of the police killings of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor. They marched en masse in cities like Minneapolis, New York, Los Angeles, and Atlanta, empowered by their number and the assumed anonymity of the crowd. And they did so completely unaware that a tech company was using location data harvested from their cellphones to predict their race, age, and gender and where they lived.
Just over two weeks later, that company, Mobilewalla, released a report titled "George Floyd Protester Demographics: Insights Across 4 Major US Cities." In 60 pie charts, the document details what percentage of protesters the company believes were male or female, young adult (18''34); middle-aged 35º54, or older (55+); and "African-American," "Caucasian/Others," "Hispanic," or ''Asian-American.''
"These companies can even sell this data to the government, which can use it for law and immigration enforcement."
"African American males made up the majority of protesters in the four observed cities vs. females,'' Mobilewalla claimed. ''Men vs. women in Atlanta (61% vs. 39%), in Los Angeles (65% vs. 35%), in Minneapolis (54% vs. 46%) and in New York (59% vs. 41%)." The company analyzed data from 16,902 devices at protests '-- including exactly 8,152 devices in New York, 4,527 in Los Angeles, 2,357 in Minneapolis, and 1,866 in Atlanta.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren told BuzzFeed News that Mobilewalla's report was alarming, and an example of the consequences of the lack of regulation on data brokers in the US.
''This report shows that an enormous number of Americans '' probably without even knowing it '' are handing over their full location history to shady location data brokers with zero restrictions on what companies can do with it,'' Warren said. ''In an end-run around the Constitution's limits on government surveillance, these companies can even sell this data to the government, which can use it for law and immigration enforcement. That's why I've opened an investigation into the government contracts held by location data brokers, and I'll keep pushing for answers.''
MobilewallaScreenshot from "George Floyd Protester Demographics: Insights Across 4 Major US Cities."
It's unclear how accurate Mobilewalla's analysis actually is. But Mobilewalla's report is another revelation from a wild west of obscure companies with untold amounts of sensitive information about individuals '-- including where they go and what their political allegiances may be. There are no federal laws in place to prevent this information from being abused.
Mobilewalla CEO Anindya Datta told BuzzFeed News that the data analysis that made the George Floyd Protester Demographics possible wasn't a new kind of project. ''The underlying data, the underlying observations that came into the report, is something that we collect and produce on a regular basis,'' he said
"It is really just fundamentally terrifying"
Datta said Mobilewalla didn't prepare the report for law enforcement or a public agency, but rather to satisfy its own employees' curiosity about what its vast trove of unregulated data could reveal about the demonstrators. Datta told BuzzFeed News that the company doesn't plan to include information about whether a person attended a protest to its clients, or to law enforcement agencies.
''It's hard to tell you a specific reason as to why we did this,'' Datta said. ''But over time, a bunch of us in the company were watching with curiosity and some degree of alarm as to what's going on.'' He defined those sources of alarm as what he called "antisocial behavior," including vandalism, looting, and actions like "breaking the glass of an Apple store.'' He added that they were attempting to test if protests were being driven by outside agitators.
Datta said that he and a few Mobilewalla employees chose locations where they expected protests would occur '-- including the George Floyd memorial site in Minneapolis, and Gracie Mansion in New York '-- and analyzed data from mobile devices in those areas collected between May 29 and May 31.
MobilewallaScreenshot from "George Floyd Protester Demographics: Insights Across 4 Major US Cities."
Jacinta Gonzlez, a senior campaign organizer at Latinx advocacy group Mijente, told BuzzFeed News that by monitoring protesters, Mobilewalla could undermine freedom of assembly.
''It is really just fundamentally terrifying to understand the way that companies can access such vast amounts of data to process for their own gain '-- without folks understanding even that they have consented to their information being taken, much less used in this way,'' Gonzlez said.
''It's important to understand that once technology hits the market, it's actually very hard to limit who has access to it '-- whether it is police, or whether it is other actors that want to harm communities,'' Gonzlez added. ''Once this stuff is out there, we just have no way of understanding how it's being used. Often we don't even know that it's out there to begin with.''
Mobilewalla does not collect the data itself, but rather buys it from a variety of sources, including advertisers, data brokers, and internet service providers. Once it has it, the company uses artificial intelligence to turn a stew of location data, device IDs, and browser histories to predict a person's demographics '-- including race, age, gender, zip code, or personal interests. Mobilewalla sells aggregated versions of that stuff back to advertisers. On its website, Mobilewalla says that it works with companies across a variety of industries '-- like retail, dining, telecom, banking, consulting, health, and on-demand services (like ride-hailing).
"Who would know that they'd be using it to track demographics of people at protests?"
It's unclear how accurate this report actually is. Datta told BuzzFeed News that his company, on average, has access to location data for 30% to 60% of people in any given location in the United States. Mobilewalla said in a YouTube video that it collects an average of 25 billion ''signals'' (or pieces of information, like GPS coordinates) every day. Every week, these signals pour in from an average of 1.6 billion devices. Datta said that about 300 million of these devices are in the US. (This doesn't mean that Mobilewalla collected data on 300 million people, because one person might have more than one device that Mobilewalla is tracking.)
Saira Hussain, a staff attorney for the Electronic Frontier Foundation, told BuzzFeed News that Mobilewalla's report was not surprising, but very troubling.
''If [this data] ends up in hands of the government, or if protesters are concerned that it could end up in the hands of the government, that may suppress speech, it may deter people from going to protests,'' Hussain said.
Mobilewalla's privacy policy says that people have the right to opt out of certain uses of their personal information. But it also says, "Even if you opt out, we, our Clients and third parties may still collect and use information regarding your activities on the Services, Properties, websites and/or applications and/or information from advertisements for other legal purposes as described herein."
There is currently no federal law that regulates how companies like Mobilewalla '-- which buy and sell people's data on the internet '-- can use people's information. Hussain noted that information about data-sharing can be buried in the Terms of Service, there isn't meaningful consent built into most privacy policies.
''Given how many different industries that this company works within for targeted advertising, it seems that you probably wouldn't know, once the information in the company's hands, exactly what they're gonna be using it for,'' Hussain said. ''And who would know that they'd be using it to track demographics of people at protests?''
Trump
The Trump 2020 app is a voter surveillance tool of extraordinary power | MIT Technology Review
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 09:26
Ahead of President Trump's rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma, his 2020 re-election campaign manager Brad Parscale tweeted about the event. ''Just passed 800,000 tickets,'' he wrote. ''Biggest data haul and rally signup of all time by 10x. Saturday is going to be amazing!''
Parscale's numbers for the rally'--originally scheduled for Juneteenth and still set to occur just miles from the site of one of American history's deadliest acts of racial violence'--have come in for criticism after only 6,200 people actually turned up, with sign-up numbers supposedly inflated by pranking teens and K-pop fans. But even on the surface, his claim was confusing: the venue holds only 19,000 people. So what was the campaign doing signing up so many people for tickets?
The clue lies in Parscale's use of the phrase ''data haul.''
Data collection and targeted online messaging were integral to the 2016 US presidential election, and they will be again in 2020. But there has been a shift. In the same way that candidates in the last cycle used Facebook to reach and persuade voters, ongoing research from our team at the propaganda research lab at UT Austin's Center for Media Engagement suggests that 2020 will be defined by the use of bespoke campaign apps. Purpose-built applications distributed through the App Store and Google Play Store allow the Trump and Biden teams to speak directly to likely voters. They also allow them to collect massive amounts of user data without needing to rely on major social-media platforms or expose themselves to fact-checker oversight of particularly divisive or deceptive messaging.
Trump 2020: A data-hungry channel for disproven claimsThe Official Trump 2020 app, which has been downloaded approximately 780,000 times according to the measurement service Apptopia, launched in mid-April.
The app has ''News'' and ''Social'' tabs offering carefully selected feeds of tweets and articles that reinforce the campaign's talking points, often actively deceiving readers with highly questionable or entirely disproven information under headlines such as ''Media Continue to Spread Debunked Theory About Tear Gas,'' ''Media Mask-Shamers Keep Getting Caught Breaking Their Own Rules,'' or ''Top 8 Moments from Joe Biden's Embarrassingly Disastrous, Epically Boring Livestream.'' Most messages, articles, and announcements inside the Trump app have no named author; they rarely cite sources beyond government press releases and tweets from Trump's own supporters and White House staff. The app also has campaign releases that attack social-media companies like Twitter and Snapchat, berating them for perceived bias and lack of transparency on one hand while adopting opaque and attention-driven strategies themselves.
Users are required to provide their phone number full name, email address, and zip code. The campaign intends to collect the cell-phone numbers of 40 to 50 million voters.
Data collection'--as Parscale's comment suggested'--is perhaps the most powerful thing the Trump 2020 app does. On signing up, users are required to provide a phone number for a verification code, as well as their full name, email address, and zip code. They are also highly encouraged to share the app with their existing contacts. This is part of a campaign strategy for reaching the 40 to 50 million citizens expected to vote for Trump's reelection: to put it bluntly, the campaign says it intends to collect every single one of these voters' cell-phone numbers. This strategy means the app also makes extensive permission requests, asking for access to location data, phone identity, and control over the handset's Bluetooth function.
The app has already received some criticism, not least from security researchers who found it had left information exposed that could allow hackers to access the user data. The response to this made the campaign's priorities clear: they rapidly fixed the bug once it had been disclosed, but still maximized the data they themselves could collect. They want as much voter data as possible, even if they don't want it left vulnerable to outsiders'--and will use it in any way they see fit.
A member of our research team discovered that the app was compiled with an older version of Android, which does not include some of the latest privacy improvements, and uses software provided by a company called Phunware, well known for collecting people's location information and relations with the Trump campaign, a role highlighted by a Wall Street Journal investigation last year. Phunware has come under major scrutiny recently for accepting millions of dollars in federal loans intended to help small businesses cope with the coronavirus, and in May Nasdaq filed paperwork with the Securities and Exchange Commission to delist the company over its finances. Phunware's invasive tactics for gathering data and reaching voters have drawn comparisons to Cambridge Analytica.
Team Joe: Your contacts are criticalTeam Joe, the app put together by Joe Biden's campaign, has some surface similarities to the Trump app, but it is a very different proposition. It does some things that the Trump app does, including sending users notifications of upcoming campaign events or training sessions for digital activists. But where the Trump app has range of uses, from spreading tailored campaign messages to airing live streams of rallies, Team Joe is largely built for a single purpose: relational organizing. This concept is spelled out in the Team Joe Digital Tool Kit:
''Relational organizing is when volunteers leverage their existing networks and relationships in support of our candidate, Joe Biden. Friend-to-friend contact is one of the most effective methods for having meaningful conversations about our campaign, and it is an efficient way to persuade and identify supporters '... We are calling voters and caucusgoers to identify supporters and persuade friends and family to support Joe. These conversations with targeted voters and caucusgoers to increase support will make a big difference in electing Vice President Biden.''
Practically, this means that when you download the app you are prompted to share your contact list, which is then cross-referenced with the party's voter files. The system identifies people you may have a personal connection with who might be persuaded to vote for Biden. From there, it prompts you to send these potentially undecided folks personalized messages.
One organizer explains how this works during a Joe Biden Action Center app orientation:
''Conversations that you have with friends or family are always a little more meaningful. And sometimes, if I'm calling a voter, they might have gone through something very traumatic, like a really bad hospitalization that they might not want to talk about with a random volunteer ... but they might talk to you about 'Oh, yeah. I had cancer and it was terrible but the Affordable Care Act, Obamacare, really helped me in that process.' So if you do want to help us do that you can text App to 30330, or if you don't wanna do that you can just go to joe.link/app.''
Relational organizing is a nuanced version of data targeting. Its principles are not new'--both Obama presidential campaigns heavily relied on it'--but like many political communication strategies, it has consequences that change with scale, advanced data analytics, and automation. The Biden app uses advanced data parsing practices but is not exactly automated. It blurs the line between the personal and the political.
With relational organizing, the Team Joe app blurs the line between the personal and the political.
Our ongoing research'--which is mostly qualitative and involves interviews with tech makers, political marketers, and campaign members'--has revealed that data-driven relational organizing is becoming the go-to outreach strategy for US political campaigns. Interviewees extol the virtues of highly personalized text messages sent by volunteers, a practice fine-tuned by the Bernie Sanders campaign. This and similar forms of relational organizing are already the norm in Mexico and Latin America, where they are used not to increase civic engagement but instead by mass manipulators seeking to adapt to the increased scrutiny of bots and sock-puppet accounts. In our study'--where the participants were interviewed on condition of anonymity, as is typical in our work'--one prominent Mexican journalist elaborated on this:
''Well, in Latin America and in Mexico we don't use bots or software. It was left behind a few years ago because it was really easy to detect on Twitter or Facebook and by researchers like me '... we are entering an era of war propaganda, and I think that's where the trend is headed.''
What they want from youIf you want to understand what the Trump and Biden apps are really for, compare the permissions requested in the Google Play Store. Besides some basic network and notification permissions, the Team Joe Campaign App may ask for access to your contacts. The Official Trump 2020 App has a much longer list of access requests. It wants to read your contacts and know your precise and approximate location (GPS and network based). It requests the ability to read your phone status and identity (a vague permission that sometimes gives access to unique device numbers), pair with Bluetooth devices (such as geolocation beacons), and perhaps read, write, or delete from SD cards in the device.
The use of Bluetooth is especially notable because it can capture data and target people with political messages as they travel through a physical space. This practice has jumped to politics from the advertising industry. In one recent example, Bluetooth beacons (the radio transmitters used to track cell-phone users via Bluetooth signals) were found in campaign yard signs. In another, people were surveilled using these practices when they went to church. Our team has been exploring how this phenomenon'--which we term geo-propaganda'--has increased.
As you walk past a beacon embedded in a campaign sign or some other part of the physical environment, you are recorded and identified through Bluetooth or similar means. This data is then used to build a profile that can be used to advertise to you or people like you. One political consultant we interviewed for our study explained how this practice developed long before political apps were created:
''They [the apps] are plugged into different marketplaces, so if you open up Facebook or Google Maps or Candy Crush, even though you didn't explicitly do anything'--if you have location access enabled on those apps, that app will record your location at the instance you opened that app, and then that information can be sold to a third party.''
These third parties include data brokers like Acxiom or Resonate, which are part of a billion-dollar shadow industry dedicated to buying and selling data collected from disparate sources. To understand how granular the data can be, take a moment to look through the categories in Acxiom's consumer data products catalogue. Political campaigns purchase that information and combine it with other data and tools'--from other social-media companies, say'--to build ''lookalike audiences'' that include people similar to those who had their data scooped. This means that even if you have your own location permissions disabled, you may be caught in politicians' nets because you behave similarly to other people who have shared their location.
This makes campaign apps part of a larger system of surveillance capitalism. Yes, they provide firsthand data about a campaign's strongest supporters. But they are also designed to use that data to build lists of similar citizens. Meanwhile, they provide the infrastructure to help users in these closed media environments bring in like-minded people through relational organizing by way of the addictive engagement strategies that social media and apps have perfected in the past 20 years.
What next? Look at IndiaTo understand the future of political campaign apps, it is useful to look to India. Indian prime minister Narendra Modi, a controversial right-wing populist, launched his Namo app in 2015. It has since become one of the most widely used politician's apps in the world, with over 10 million downloads in the Google Play Store. The app was pushed through official government channels and collected large amounts of data for years through opaque phone access requests. In late 2019 it received a makeover that included live events, Instagram-like ''Stories'' about Modi, gamified engagement strategies, means of accepting micro-donations, and promises of a direct line to the prime minister. President Trump's app is clearly following in those footsteps.
Other tactics of Modi's might tell us where Trump's and Biden's digital campaigns will go. His team's abuse of WhatsApp and Twitter is essentially an open secret, with cells of supporters in local districts given the task of spreading information (and disinformation) on these and other channels, often through shared Google Docs of approved tweets and images created by the party heads. His app itself is a fertile propagator of misinformation. and his party, the BJP, also engages in extensive data targeting campaigns, bolstered by data broker equivalents and the social stratification imposed by the caste system. Another signal we are seeing lies in the rise of centralized messaging repositories similar to those banks of content used by Modi and his cells. The Biden campaign, albeit with more transparency and without the inclination toward disinformation, is utilizing these scripts much as the Clinton and Obama teams did.
The parallels between Trump and Modi run deeper than their apps, of course. Both politicians have publicly honored Twitter trolls. Both actively cultivate reciprocal relationships with content creators on the radical and far right, ultimately seeking to build a direct line to these groups over the heads of media watchdogs and fact-checkers. Similarities appear in their day-to-day rhetoric too, with Trump referring to his digital activists as the ''Army for Trump'' and Modi calling his local actors ''IT warriors.''
For political movements revolving around a charismatic, illiberal leader, the shift to individualized apps that blur the line between government and private communication is the next step toward independence from both the ''mainstream media'' and the social-media platforms that allowed them to create a fact-agnostic communication channel in the first place. The line between government and campaign is not always clear either. Local governments often hand out free phones that have the Modi app pre-installed. Swati Chaturvedi, an Indian journalist and the author of I Am a Troll: Inside the Secret World of the BJP's Digital Army, said of the app:
''This is where it gets interesting, because [the app is] partially funded by the BJP, it is a BJP tool, but it is now officially used by the government of India. So there is a huge gray line there. There's an overlap because it is also putting out government material '... it's an epidemic of fake news now '...
The government is pushing it. Everywhere Mr. Modi goes on a foreign visit, there's a stall '... and you just kind of walk in there and you get a sign-up for the Namo app and it's just like a one-way tool of propaganda. So it is funded by the BJP, Mr. Modi's personal idea, intellectual property, but now it's also pushed by the government of India.''
Trump's casino-like campaign app seems to be his own attempt to create a ''one-way tool of propaganda.'' Its deployment is part of a global trend, piggybacking on years of unresolved privacy and security issues within the app ecosystem. As researchers studying the intersection of technology and propaganda, we understand that political groups tend to lag behind the commercial ad industry. But when they catch up, the consequences to truth and civil discourse can be devastating.
The array of data-gathering tools the Trump and Modi apps use are a legacy of a ''freemium'' social-media and app landscape that is manipulative, non-transparent, and purposefully addictive, with a mentality of ''collect data first and ask question later.'' For the last five to 10 years, the pervasiveness of these tools and their use in data scooping has been well documented. Sporadic, state-by-state data regulations have been the only response. In Europe, the GDPR was a big step toward meaningful consent and transparency, but the Official Trump 2020 App does not fall under its jurisdiction. A global perspective is now critical to understanding the implications of data-fueled political manipulation and preparing for the next wave of disinformation. Countries must work together to create effective regulation, and citizens must demand this of them.
It took about five years for Modi's strategies to jump from India to the US, and in the next few years we are on track to see the arrival of strategies used in the dark-money disinformation campaigns of Mexico and Latin America. The Mexican journalist we'd interviewed for our study put it this way: ''I think what's coming all around the world is going to be very chaotic, at least in [the US], I think you're on the brink of a sort of civil war in one or two years ... You're going to have a lot of work to do.''
'--Jacob Gursky and Samuel Woolley are members of the Propaganda Research Team at the Center for Media Engagement, University of Texas at Austin.
Donald Trump reelection app gets boost with Phunware partnership
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 14:26
Are Twitter notifications from @realDonaldTrump not enough? Want to check your phone and immediately know what President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence are up to in the campaign trail?
The Official Trump 2020 App is getting a boost in functionality '' and no pesky fact-checking from Twitter.
Phunware, a Texas-based software development company, announced Wednesday its partnership with American Made Media Consultants on the development, launch and ongoing management of the Trump-Pence 2020 Reelection Campaign's mobile application portfolio for Apple iOS and Google Android smartphones.
Tech meets politics:Twitter and Trump on a collision course with the truth
Regulation:Trump threatens to 'strongly regulate' or 'close down' social media platforms
The mobile application, launched last month, will continue to "let people engage with the campaign from their couch, or wherever they are," as Brad Parscale, Trump's presidential campaign manager said, through:
Dedicated news feed to read articles, watch videos and stay up-to-date with Trump's social feedSign-up tool to volunteer, fundraise and help Trump's reelection campaignScheduling tool to discover and register for local, state and national eventsGamified loyalty system to accumulate reward points, including redemption capabilities for exclusive merchandise and upgraded experiencesLivestream events for virtual engagementMobile ticketing for in-person events"Our software provides the Trump-Pence team with powerful mobile tools for their high profile reelection campaign, allowing seamless one-to-one user engagement and interactions on a reliable and proven global platform," Alan S. Knitowski, president, CEO and co-founder of Phunware, said in a statement.
Earlier Wednesday, Trump threatened to "strongly regulate" or "close down" social media platforms a day after Twitter added a "fact check" label to two of his tweets about mail-in ballots.
"Republicans feel that Social Media Platforms totally silence conservatives voices," Trump tweeted, "We will strongly regulate, or close them down, before we can ever allow this to happen."
The Official Trump 2020 App that's currently available for download has a 3.9 rating in Apple's App Store and a 3.8 rating in the Google Play Store.
Follow Josh Rivera on Twitter: @Josh1Rivera.
Stellar Acquisition III, Inc. '' Stellar Acquisition III, Inc.
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 14:18
Stellar Acquisition III Inc. (Stellar>>) is a blank check company formed for the purpose of acquiring, through a merger, capital stock exchange, asset acquisition, stock purchase, reorganization, recapitalization, exchangeable share transaction or other similar business transaction with one or more operating businesses or assets. Stellar's units, shares of common stock and warrants are currently listed on the Nasdaq Capital Market under the symbols ''STLRU,'' ''STLR'' and ''STLRW, respectively.
On February 28, 2018, Stellar announced it had entered into definitive agreements to combine with Phunware, Inc. (''Phunware'') and enter the mobile cloud software and blockchain sectors. Phunware's investor base includes several prominent strategic investors/partners and has a large and diversified customer base including numerous Fortune 5000 companies. Through numerous mobile application portfolios Phunware has a reach of more than 2 billion Phunware IDs for more than 1 billion monthly active unique devices across more than two trillion database events and petabytes of information. Additionally, Phunware plans to consummate an initial block-chain technology token generation event via the launch of PhunCoin with cash gross proceeds of up to $100m.
Following the closing, the common stock and warrants of the combined entity will trade on the NASDAQ Stock Market under the name Phunware, Inc. and trading symbols ''PHUN'' and ''PHUNW'', respectively. The combined company will be led by Mr. Alan S. Knitowski, who will continue as Phunware's Chief Executive Officer, and Mr. Matthew Aune, who will continue as Phunware's Chief Financial Officer. As part of the transaction, the combined company will redomesticate from the Marshall Islands to Delaware.
For further information about the Company's proposed business combination with Phunware, please refer to Stellar's SEC filings.
Trump Campaign Deploying Phone Location-Tracking Technology
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 14:15
President Donald Trump's reelection effort has retained the services of a technology company that specializes in the mass collection of smartphone location data, which can be used to track voters for political targeting purposes.
Phunware, an Austin, Texas-based firm, announced the connection in a little-noticed press release in October, touting ''new and existing customer wins including American Made Media Consultants,'' the consulting firm set up this year by Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale to handle advertising services for a variety of official Trump reelection PACs. The release noted that the deal was signed in conjunction with the Trump-Pence 2020 reelection effort.
A growing subset of advertising firms rely on data brokers that use third-party apps '-- from popular mobile games to apps used for checking the weather, perfecting a selfie, and online banking '-- to harvest vast troves of information about potential voters. Phunware, in a section of its website, discusses the company's ability to obtain GPS location data and the Wi-Fi network used by an individual, as well as user data that can infer an ''individual's gender, age, lifestyle preferences'' '-- potential tools for identifying and influencing voters.
The company claims to offer a wide range of services based on user location data. Individuals who attend a political rally or protest can be identified as potential targets for ads, a technique known as geofencing. Location data can provide insights into how long a shopper spends at a particular clothing store, type of religious venues, or the night clubs they tend to frequent.
''Unfortunately Phunware does not comment on customer-specific data or information,'' wrote Brent Brightwell, a spokesperson for Phunware, when contacted about the company's work with Trump campaign. ''Please contact the Trump reelection campaign directly should you have any questions about their activities or efforts.'' The Trump campaign did not respond to a request for comment.
Earlier this year, deleted scenes from the documentary ''The Brink'' revealed that Steve Bannon, Trump's campaign manager in 2016, had used similar location-tracking technology services to target church-attending Catholics during the midterm elections.
''If your phone's ever been in a Catholic church, it's amazing, they got this data,'' Bannon said in the film clip. ''Literally, they can tell who's been in a Catholic church and how frequently,'' he added. ''And they got it triaged.''
Though the Trump campaign's use of this particular data broker has received little attention, Phunware was featured in a recent investigation by the Wall Street Journal, published in October, into the use of location tracking by political interests. Federal Election Commission records show both Democratic and Republican congressional campaigns in Texas last year retained Phunware. Kimberly Taylor, a Democratic strategist, told the Journal that she used the firm to find attendees who went to the Women's March as potential voters to help unseat Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas. The story noted an independent pro-Trump group had also used location-tracking services.
The payments to Phunware by the Trump campaign do not appear in FEC records because the firm serves as a subcontractor to American Made Media Consultants, the Trump media-buying company. American Made Media Consultants has been paid more than $11.7 million by the Donald J. Trump for President, Trump Make America Great Again, and Republican National Committee this year, according to FEC records.
CCP
Why Chinese whistleblower may be right that Communists paid Vatican to 'shut up' about its war on Catholics | Blogs | LifeSite
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 09:57
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June 25, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) '' Chinese dissident Guo Wengui claims that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) ''allocates up to $2 billion a year'' to buy the Vatican's silence concerning the ongoing persecution of the Catholic Church in China and other human rights abuses.
Mr. Guo made the allegation '-- without offering any supporting evidence '-- in a June 20th interview on Steve Bannon's The War Room. The explosive claim was made in the context of a larger discussion of how the CCP is spending huge sums of money to buy politicians, media, and influence in countries like Australia and Italy.
''2014, the CPC, inside, made the decision: Every year, they want 2 billion dollars to pay to the Vatican, to influence the Vatican policy about China/Vatican '-- and [regarding] the Christian and Catholic [mistreatment], they wanted Vatican to shut up, to follow the CPC about religion, you know the policy '' that's disaster,'' Guo said.
These expenditures, according to previous statements by Guo, are part of a larger strategy to achieve global hegemony that goes by the initials ''BGY.'' The initials "BGY" stand for Blue (control over the Internet), Gold (buying influence with money), and Yellow (seducing key people with sex).
Guo said Saturday that the CCP, in pursuit of hegemony, has been investing a fixed percentage of trade earnings with foreign countries into the BGY program since 2014. The goal is to compromise, co-opt, and control as many nation-states as possible, especially its key competitor the U.S. To this end, he says, the BGY quota for the United States and other countries, which started at 1%, has been increased from 1% to 5% over the years.
So what do I, as a Sinologist, think about Guo's claims, especially where the Vatican is concerned?
Let me begin by offering a couple of cautions. For a successful businessman '-- Mr. Guo was once one of China's wealthiest men '-- he often plays fast and loose with the numbers. Moreover, as someone who is now openly committed to the overthrow of the Chinese Communist regime, he always paints its actions in the darkest possible colors.
For example, Guo claims that ''According to data from the U.S. Trade Office, the total trade volume between China and the U.S. in 2018 was $7.37 trillion.'' If calculated according to 5%, Guo went on, the amount used for BGY in the United States would then be about $36.8 billion.
But according to the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, U.S. goods and services trade with China actually totaled an estimated $737.1 billion in 2018. In other words, Guo's numbers are inflated by a factor of ten. Instead of $7.37 trillion in trade, we are talking about $737 billion. And 5% of this amount would in fact be $36.8 billion.
Given how far off Guo is on the numbers, can he still be believed?
I think so, and here's why: It is all too easy to misplace a decimal point in translating numbers from Chinese into English. The primary unit for expressing large numbers is Wan, which means ten thousand (10,000)--as in the expression Wan Sui, ''May you live Ten Thousand years''--and Yi, which means 100,000,000. A ''million'' is ''a hundred ten thousands,'' while a ''billion'' is ''ten one hundred millions.'' I've been speaking Chinese for a long time, and I still have to check myself when translating numbers.
China is clearly throwing a lot of money around on the world stage in its drive for dominance, and there is little doubt that large numbers of elected and unelected officials around the world have been compromised in this way. Bribes, kickbacks, sweetheart deals, investment ''opportunities'' such as the one Hunter Biden walked away with, are all occurring in real time. They are all part and parcel of the United Front tactics that the CCP uses to infiltrate and control organizations and even entire countries. There is no question that dictatorships have been bought and democracies undermined through these efforts.
I cannot exaggerate the sheer scale of this effort. I am perhaps the most unlikely prospect for recruitment into this giant CCP scheme on the planet. Yet even I, who has been a staunch critic of the CCP for forty years, have been approached by corrupt PRC operatives and offered free trips to China and other inducements.
Guo's description of the BGY program of world domination thus sounds accurate to me. Certainly, Beijing is attempting, largely through Huawei, to control the Internet (Blue) and to buy influence with money (Gold). Not to mention that Chinese officials love to bandy about catchy acronyms like this one.
The dissident billionaire's claim that a certain percentage of foreign trade earnings is dedicated to the advancement the BGY program also has the ring of truth. This would be a simple way of ensuring that, the more important the market, the more money is spent on paving China's drive towards dominance.
In fact, state-planned economies like China's often rely on such simple numerical targets and quotas, not to mention that official policy decisions are necessarily broad brush, given how much power is concentrated in the hands of a tiny number of people. How much time does Xi Jinping, or any of the other six members of the Standing Committee of the Politburo, have to devote to policy minutiae?
China is obviously spending much more on its influence operations than it used to, and the increase from 1 to 5 percent of foreign earnings that Guo claims has taken place dovetails neatly with this picture. To give just one example, many billions of dollars have been spent in the U.S. buying favor with American universities in recent years, money which in turn has facilitated the theft of massive amounts of U.S. intellectual property from those same institutions.
Guo may be off on the numbers, but he is, in my view, right on everything else, including the fact that the Vatican has been on the receiving end of donations from the Chinese Communist Party. Indeed, the Vatican has acknowledged accepting such donations, at least in terms of medical supplies.
Would the CCP offer ''contributions'' to Vatican officials in return for their silence about the ongoing persecution of the Church in China, or even in exchange for the signing of the Sino-Vatican Agreement? It would be surprising if they did not. This is the way that the Party always behaves, both at home and abroad.
Are there Vatican officials who would have accepted such ''contributions''? It would seem so, given some of the other shady transactions that have come to light in recent years.
Of course, the total amount of such contributions would not be $2 billion a year, as Guo mistakenly suggests, or even 10 percent of this amount, although $200 million a year would be a much easier amount of money to hide in the labyrinthine Vatican financial network. Indeed, if there is a ''5 percent rule'', it wouldn't apply to the Vatican donations in any event, since there is zero trade between China and the Vatican.
Many have been surprised at the lengths to which the Vatican has been willing to go in its charm offensive with the CCP. Two years ago, the chancellor of the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences, the Argentinian Bishop Marcelo Sanchez Sorondo, astonished the Catholic world by suggesting that Communist China was the best exemplar of Catholic social teaching in today's world.
And just this May, La Civilt Cattolica, which enjoys semi-official Vatican status, has rolled out of a new Chinese edition. The editors of the Jesuit journal explained that the new edition is meant ''as a gesture of friendship in the spirit of Matteo Ricci, given the increasingly important role that the Chinese language plays in the contemporary world within the global context.''
As for the Pope himself, he continues to wax eloquent about China. ''I would like to go to Beijing,'' Pope Francis said last November in Asia. ''I love China.'' He even insists that China's communist government protects religious freedom and that ''churches are full.'' (Chinese Catholics whose churches have been defaced, closed, or even razed to the ground may be surprised to learn this.)
Above all, there is the secret accord that the Vatican signed with Beijing in September 2018, which supposedly concerns the appointment of Catholic bishops in China and lays out a path for the normalization of relations.
Despite the lack of progress on either front, the Vatican appears set on extending the agreement. Given how badly it has worked out for Catholics in China, both in the Underground and in the official Church, it is hard to understand why this should be so.
Many Vatican-watchers, including John L. Allen, Jr., explain the Vatican's continuing pandering to China as an attempt to woo Beijing into full diplomatic relations. ''The Vatican is moving full-steam ahead in its courtship of Beijing, with the ultimate prize remaining full diplomatic relations, a secure legal standing for the church, and partnerships on the global stage,'' Allen wrote.
But what if Beijing has other plans?
What if the Chinese Communists are merely using the lure of diplomatic relations, along with strategically placed donations, to buy the Vatican's silence about the crushing of freedom in Hong Kong, the success of democracy in Taiwan and, most of all, the persecution of Catholic and other believers in China itself? What if they simply want a free hand to set up a puppet church with a rewritten Bible that promotes ''socialism with Chinese characteristics,'' preached by a cowed clergy who feel abandoned by the Universal Church?
What if the masters of deceit who run China are simply buying time--literally buying, if Guo Wengui is correct '' until their plans to transform the Chinese Catholic church into a de facto arm of the CCP reach fruition?
I wonder if Pope Francis, or anyone for that matter, has any inkling of how much in the way of ''donations'' various Vatican officials and institutions may have received from the Chinese Communist Party?
Where is Cardinal George Pell when you need him? The best way for the Vatican to rebut Guo Wengui's claims would be to bring outside auditors back in to do a respected audit. This look at the books should, of course, include the Secretariat of State, the Vatican office that negotiated the Sino-Vatican agreement in the first place.
Steven W. Mosher is the President of the Population Research Institute and the author of Bully of Asia: Why China's Dream is the New Threat to World Order.
China Warns US That "Crossing Red Lines" Puts Trade Deal At Risk | Zero Hedge
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 11:20
The US bill imposing mandatory sanctions on Chinese individuals and entities who ''materially contribute to the contravention of China's obligations'' to Hong Kong's autonomy - and banks that do ''significant transactions'' with them - was passed unanimously by the Senate on Thursday, with the House of Representatives working on its own version; the final bill gets passed to President Trump, who either signs it or vetoes it - in which case it has a veto-proof majority anyway. This, as Rabobank's Michael Every wrote, is the constitutional dynamic that has been described several times in the last 12 months for China-focused bills with serious consequences for not just international relations, but international business and finance.
"So far the results have not hit markets: but this bill cuts out the middleman and takes us straight to the biting sanctions", Every concluded.
But while we await the sanctions to kick in, moments ago we learned once again that China is hardly impressed by the latest developments, and in "quietly delivering a message" to Washington, Chinese leaders have "accused Washington of meddling in areas such as Hong Kong, where China is imposing a sweeping national-security law, and Taiwan."
According to a report in the journal, during a meeting between Mike Pompeo and China's top diplomat last week in Hawaii, Yang Jiechi listed these actions as well as China's ''strong dissatisfaction'' with a bill President Trump signed last week mandating sanctions against Chinese officials and entities deemed responsible for mass detention of Uighur Muslim in China's northwestern Xinjiang region.
While Yang reiterated Beijing's commitment to carrying out the trade deal, he stressed that both sides had to ''work together,'' said people familiar with the conversations. A Chinese official said that meant "the U.S. side should refrain from going too far with meddling" and that "Red lines shouldn't be crossed."
The report then notes that shortly after the meeting concluded, Vice Premier Liu He said that Beijing's ability to carry out the trade deal required the U.S. to "ease off" pressure on other fronts.
"The two countries should create conditions and atmosphere, and eliminate interference, to jointly implement the Phase One agreement," Liu said in written remarks to a high-profile financial forum held in Shanghai on June 18.
''You can't keep asking us to buy your stuff and at the same time keep beating up on us,'' said Mei Xinyu, an analyst at a think tank affiliated with China's Commerce Ministry. ''That's not how it works.''
In short, while Peter Navarro may have fumbled his message earlier this week when he said that the trade deal was off, only to immediately reverse himself when futures plunged and even Trump scrambled to tweet that the deal is still in place, the ball is now in Beijing's court which - in order to project strength following the just passed sanctions - may decide that it is in Beijing's best interest to kill the Phase 1 trade deal (especially if that helps get the pro-China Biden elected). And after all, it's not like China is actually complying with the terms of the deal -as we noted last week, China is currently lagging its import pledges made as part of the "Phase One" deal by some 87%.
And with China's economy on edge, it is virtually impossible that Beijing will force more companies to uproot existing supply chains and shift to US-sourced production just to appease a US president who is seen by a majority of China's population as taking an increasingly aggressive stance toward China.
While the news helped push US stocks to session lows, the yuan was mostly unchanged, perhaps because China remains on holiday.
TikTok Users Target Trump's Online Store '' Adweek
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 00:18
The hope is it will waste his campaign team's advertising dollarsTikTok users are trolling Trump again.
Tiktok, Pixabay
Days after TikTok users said they fueled lower-than-expected turnout at President Donald Trump's rally in Tulsa, Okla., they have a new target: Trump's online store.
A new series of videos are circulating on the platform asking consumers to fill their carts with Trump merchandise'--like the $75 Keep America Great ugly Christmas sweater or the $30 Trump gift wrap featuring Trump in a Keep America Great Santa hat'--and then abandon those carts.
In one such video, which garnered 2.4 million views in a single day, TikTok user Preveroni laid out a hypothetical plan and the damaging effects of abandoning a cart in an online shop. The video has nearly 9,000 comments, including other users saying they did the same thing.
The goal is twofold: cost the Trump campaign money and screw with inventory. But the question is whether this tactic actually works.
The short answer: It does'--to an extentAccording to Mark Irvine, director of strategic partnerships at search marketing agency WordStream, when marketers begin to target users online, their first assumption is past behavior is the best indicator of future behavior.
What's more, marketers know that 70% of shoppers don't finish the checkout process immediately, so Irvine said ecommerce platforms put extra budget into remarketing or reengaging those particular visitors with the goal of getting them back to complete the purchase.
''If you've ever abandoned a cart online, you might recall having seen more ads or emails from that brand, oftentimes with discounts,'' he added.
Ergo, by acting like interested potential buyers and then abandoning their carts, these users cost related ad campaigns more money as the brand continues to reach out.
Clayton McLaughlin, senior vice president of media investments at digital marketing agency iCrossing, agreed the concept ''could potentially wreak havoc with a digital campaign.''
''Whether it's an intended retargeting campaign or a positive signal to an optimization algorithm, those users will likely be targeted again,'' McLaughlin said. ''Plus, other users that share similar traits will start to see the ads as well based on lookalike modeling. Overall, it creates a potentially expensive situation for an advertiser.''
It's also not great for audience dataCart abandonment on a large scale could also mess with a brand's data collection and measurement.
''Someone who comes to your site, browses products and adds to a cart is relatively rare and is usually a good signal to marketers,'' Irvine said. But he noted that the audience becomes effectively useless if over 95% of carts are abandoned.
Alex Burton, senior director of content at digital marketing agency iCrossing, agreed.
''Suddenly all of your shopper data is being purposely manipulated and there's no real way to tell who's a shopper that abandoned as part of this stunt and who's a shopper that abandoned the cart because of some actual issue like user experience,'' Burton said.
That, in turn, can trickle down to future demand and site traffic analytics. But the impact on inventory, however, is less clear.
''[Ecommerce platforms] hope that more people will add these items to their cart because they assume that most of those items won't actually be purchased immediately,'' Irvine said. ''Things only become interesting if there are a lot more items in people's carts than you have inventory because then they assume they're going to sell some of those.''
Irvine said while faux shoppers may be able to make some of Trump's lower inventory items look like they're sold out, they're unlikely to deplete his inventory of popular red hats.
One mistake may be in building ''ludicrously large carts''So far, TikTok users have been loading up on thousands, if not millions, of dollars' worth of inventory. But that could ultimately backfire.
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DOJ opposes Facebook and Google building 8,000-mile Internet cable to Hong Kong - Bestgamingpro
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 00:34
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June 27, 2020
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Supply: Android Central
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Supply: Android Central
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Let's Go Crazy! The Music of Prince Comes to TikTok - Newsroom | TikTok
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 14:39
Dearly beloved...we are gathered here today to celebrate an icon named Prince. Throughout his groundbreaking career, he turned the world on its head with his irresistible hits, boundary-pushing charisma, and superior musicianship. Following the 36th anniversary of his landmark album Purple Rain , TikTok partners with The Prince Estate to bring Prince's full catalog to TikTok, introducing his music to a new (power) generation of fans.
Today TikTok users can create videos soundtracked to their favorite Prince songs. Tear the dance floor up to the tune of "Controversy" and "1999," break out your air guitar for "Let's Go Crazy," or get in your feelings with ballads like "Purple Rain" and "Adore." Follow the official Prince TikTok account ( @Prince.4.ever ), owned and operated by the late artist's estate, and stay tuned for archival footage of Prince performances, interviews, and video excerpts from his long career as an artist and activist.
''Prince was known for breaking boundaries and TikTok has proven to do so as well. With the addition of Prince's full catalogue on TikTok, it is our hope that a new generation of global fans can find meaning in Prince's music, and be inspired to create'' - Troy Carter, Entertainment Advisor, The Prince Estate
TikTok, the first short-form video app to gain global access to Prince's full discography, and The Prince Estate will offer special programming on the app over the next week. Check out TikTok's Sounds page to delve into a new career-spanning Prince playlist, curated by the Estate and offering highlights from every epoch of the Purple One's formidable discography. The new account will emphasize Prince's lifelong activism and fierce devotion to societal equality.
''We are massive fans of Prince and admirers of his cultural legacy. The addition of the Artist's catalog to our Sounds library will inspire our users to connect with his music in creative and unexpected ways--his catalog is so deep, and many are approaching his songs with fresh ears. I can't wait to see what's in store.'' - Brandon Holman, Label Partnerships Manager at TikTok
On Monday at 12pm PT, tune into a special " Sound-Off " livestream tour of Paisley Park, Prince's famous home and studio, located just outside of Minneapolis. Guided by Paisley Park's legacy preservationist Mitch Maguire, the Sound-Off offers an inside look at Prince's lifestyle and creative process to fans across the globe.
Prince once said, '' Try to create. I want to tell people to create. Just start by creating your day. Then create your life.'' So put on your platform shoes and your finest purple attire and fire up the new Purple Rain creative filter. Use the #Prince4ever hashtag to join the party...and GO CRAZY.
Follow Prince on TikTok: @prince.4.ever
Shams Charania on Twitter: "The NBA and NBPA are planning to allow players to replace the last name on their jerseys with statement on social justice, sources tell @TheAthleticNBA @Stadium." / Twitter
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 07:46
Log in Sign up Shams Charania @ ShamsCharania The NBA and NBPA are planning to allow players to replace the last name on their jerseys with statement on social justice, sources tell
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We are exactly where CCP wants us. Divided and weakened.
If we don't understand China's threat then we are doomed
25 for 45
Trump's Brother Robert Was in ICU Just Before Filing Suit Over Niece Mary's Tell-All
Thu, 25 Jun 2020 16:43
Robert Trump, Donald's younger brother, spent at least 10 days in an intensive care unit before being released this week and launching legal action to try and stop the publication of his niece's explosive tell-all book, Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World's Most Dangerous Man, according to multiple people familiar with the situation.
Robert, 72, had been at Mount Sinai hospital's neurosciences intensive care unit (NSICU) in New York since at least June 11th, being treated for a serious condition. He was discharged on Sunday and, despite his stay in the hospital, he wasted no time in filing and signing complicated legal documents aided by his celebrity attorney Charles Harder and releasing a statement.
''Her attempt to sensationalize and mischaracterize our family relationship after all of these years for her own financial gain is both a travesty and injustice to the memory of my late brother, Fred, and our beloved parents. I and the rest of my entire family are so proud of my wonderful brother, the president, and feel that Mary's actions are truly a disgrace,'' Robert said in his statement to The New York Times roughly 48 hours after he was discharged from hospital.
On its website Mount Sinai boasts that its 16-bed NSICU specializes in ''state of the art, compassionate care of patients who suffer from subarachnoid hemorrhage, acute ischemic stroke, intracerebral hemorrhage, subdural hematomas, coma, tumors of the brain and spine, severe or prolonged seizures, neuro-infections, [and] spinal cord injury among others.''
Robert did not respond to multiple requests for comment Wednesday and his attorney, Harder, declined to comment.
Mary Trump's high-powered legal team, which includes the renowned First Amendment attorney Theodore Boutrous of the law firm Gibson Dunn, are expected to file their response in the coming days.
Part of their argument in Mary's defense will be that the settlement agreement'--signed by all parties in 2001 and included in Harder's Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) filing'--contains confidentiality clauses that are in effect ''double facing,'' meaning that as well as muzzling Mary from speaking publicly it also was meant to have silenced Donald, Robert and their sister Maryanne Trump.
The president, the argument goes, has himself violated the confidentiality agreement by publicly discussing his niece and her book, which is currently slated for a July 28th release, in an interview at the White House last week.
''She's not allowed to write a book. You know, when we settled with her and her brother, who I do have a good relationship with'--she's got a brother, Fred, who I do have a good relationship with, but when we settled, she has a total... signed a nondisclosure,'' Trump told the website Axios on Friday, in regards to Mary's tell-all.
The volley of threats all come during the latest stage of the dynastic drama and brewing legal struggle threatening to consume the Trump family, even as Donald J. Trump continues his fight this year to keep the White House from falling into Democratic hands.
Even before the president's brother'--represented by Harder, one of President Trump's personal attorneys and the Gawker-killing lawyer'--filed the order against Mary in Queens County Surrogate's court this week, Trump had actively weighed his options for legal retribution against his own niece. After he was caught off-guard by the news of the upcoming ''tell-all,'' he vented aloud in the White House that she'd signed an NDA, as The Daily Beast first reported.
White House spokespeople did not respond to a request for comment on this story. A rep for Simon & Schuster declined to comment.
And it's not just Mary who has to deal with Trumpworld's legal threats and court battles. Trump administration attorneys and his outside counsel have been hard at work this election year'--one already plagued by a destroyed American economy, a mass protest movement in the wake of the police killing of George Floyd, and a coronavirus pandemic that's claimed a U.S. death toll upwards of 100,000'--as the president goes to war against new books and manuscripts penned by his foes, including his former National Security Adviser John Bolton and his former longtime fixer and lawyer Michael Cohen.
President Trump's lawyers are also seeking to uphold other longstanding NDAs. For years, Jessica Denson, a former Hispanic outreach coordinator for the 2016 Trump campaign, has been working her way through the courts in her efforts to invalidate not just her own Trump NDA, but all NDAs that the Trump campaign had staff sign. ''All of our employees sign a non-disclosure agreement,'' Michael Glassner, chief operating officer for Trump's 2020 campaign, told The Daily Beast in a statement last year.
In court papers, Denson and her lawyers argue that the agreements that Team Trump forced on them were unlawful and failed to allow staffers to make claims regarding workplace discrimination.
''President Trump is clearly NDA-happy,'' David Bowles, one of Denson's attorneys, said on Wednesday evening. ''He has used NDAs to suppress his supporters and former supporters, and invalidating those NDAs is the point of our current class action. Now he's trying to suppress his own family members using an NDA. All of this is intended to quash the criticism that is at the heart of a vibrant democracy.''
Denson added, ''I am not willing to be one of the many who Trump has abused, or to be used as a tool for him to abuse the American people and presidency, and that is why I am fighting to invalidate his dastardly NDAs.''
Mary Trump once stood up to her uncle Donald. Now her book describes a 'nightmare' of family dysfunction. - The Washington Post
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 10:58
Over time, she deepened her studies of the disorder, contributed to a book on treating schizophrenia, wrote a dissertation on stalkers, and became a clinical psychologist. But not since she became part of the lawsuit in 2000 against her uncle has she spoken in detail about what she sees as the disorders of Donald Trump.
Now her silence could be coming to an end. Her book about her uncle '-- ''Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World's Most Dangerous Man'' '-- is slated to be published next month. The book is so potentially explosive that the Trump family is seeking to block publication, citing a confidentiality agreement that Mary Trump signed as part of a settlement about her inheritance. Mary Trump's lawyer, Theodore Boutrous Jr., said the president is trying to ''suppress a book that will discuss matters of utmost public importance.''
The publisher has not revealed specifics, and Mary Trump, 55, declined an interview request. But clues to her dark view of her uncle can be seen in lawsuits, and interviews with former colleagues and teachers, academic papers and a series of now-deleted tweets, including one that said her uncle's election was the ''worst night of my life.''
A description of the book from publisher Simon & Schuster suggests it will draw heavily on her studies of family dysfunction, with Mary using her clinical background to dissect ''a nightmare of traumas, destructive relationships and a tragic combination of neglect and abuse,'' including ''the strange and harmful relationship between'' her late father and Donald Trump.
The tragedy to which the book description alludes probably is informed by an event that infused both her life and that of her uncle: the death of her father '-- President Trump's older brother Fred Jr. '-- of alcoholism when she was 16 years old.
Friends of her father's told The Washington Post last year that they blame his death in part on the way he was treated by Donald Trump, and the president said in an interview last year with The Post that he regrets how he dealt with his brother.
Trump pressured his alcoholic brother about his career. Now he says he has regrets.
President Trump told Axios that he didn't think his niece was allowed to write the book because she signed the confidentiality agreement. The White House declined further comment.
Donald Trump's brother Robert, who filed the petition to stop the book, said in the filing that Mary had agreed after accepting an unspecified financial settlement from the inheritance fight that she ''would not publish any account'' of her relationship with Donald Trump or his siblings. In a statement, Robert Trump said Mary's decision to ''mischaracterize our family relationship after all these years for her own financial gain is a travesty and injustice'' to her late father, Fred Jr., and grandfather, Fred Sr., saying the family feels that ''Mary's actions are truly a disgrace.''
A Queens County Surrogate's Court on Thursday denied the petition on grounds of lack of jurisdiction, but Robert Trump's attorney said it would be refiled with the New York State Supreme Court.
Gilded life
From birth, Mary Trump was supposed to be set for a gilded life, a grandchild of Fred Sr. and Mary. Her father, Fred Jr., was the eldest of Fred Trump Sr.'s children, and he was expected to follow his father as the leader of the family business.
Mary was featured in society columns as a fashionably dressed young girl, and she spent time at her grandparents' palatial home in Queens, watching her father feud with Donald and Fred Sr., who ran a New York City real estate company.
Trump has referred to his Wharton degree as 'super genius stuff.' An admissions officer recalls it differently
Much to the family's consternation, Fred Jr. was interested in becoming a pilot for TWA, not in renting New York City apartments. After graduating from Lehigh University in 1960, he married a flight attendant named Linda Lee Clapp in 1962. He went to flight school and the couple had two children, including Mary, who was born in 1965.
Fred Jr. was already drinking heavily by the time Mary was born, and his troubles with alcohol may have caused him to give up his dream of becoming a commercial airline pilot, according to three former TWA employees who trained with him. Meanwhile, Donald Trump and Fred Sr. continued to pressure him to join the family business.
By the time Mary was 6 years old, her mother divorced Fred Jr. A family friend, David Miller, said in an interview that while Fred Jr.'s drinking played a role in the divorce, there was also a lot of pressure from Fred Sr., who Miller said disliked Linda. ''She wasn't welcomed into the family,'' Miller said of Linda. Linda could not be reached for comment.
Fred Trump Sr. agreed at the time of the divorce to support Linda and his grandchildren, providing rent and $100 per week for expenses, plus $25 per week for Mary and Fred III, according to court records. Fred Sr. agreed to pay for Mary to attend a private school during her early years as well as her college and medical expenses.
On Sept. 26, 1981, Fred Trump Jr. died at 42 years old of a heart attack, which the family has said stemmed from alcoholism. Mary was 16 years old.
Carried a burden
Mary eventually attended Tufts University, where she studied the Southern novelist William Faulkner. In a seminar with English professor Alan Lebowitz, Mary and her 15 or so fellow students analyzed the Compson family portrayed in novels such as ''The Sound and the Fury.''
The Compsons bore some similarities to her own family: Like the Trumps, the Compsons migrated to the United States from Scotland, and the family was riven by dysfunction. At the time, Donald Trump was running his Atlantic City casinos, which went into bankruptcy, and preparing to divorce his first wife, Ivana, and marry Marla Maples.
Lebowitz said in a telephone interview that he has rarely had a student as exceptional as Mary Trump, who was featured in the Tufts commencement program as having won the award for top English student.
''She was just as smart and accomplished as any I've taught in 40 years,'' Lebowitz said. ''She took a seminar on William Faulkner with me and she wrote two absolutely stunning papers, long, deep and elegant. We studied an enormously complex, interesting writer and she got deeply into it because she is a deep thinker.''
Lebowitz, who is retired, recalled that when she entered his classroom more than 30 years ago, he learned of the weight she carried.
''I knew that her father had been a very sad story and that she was carrying the burden of that story,'' he said.
Trump says he shares his famed uncle's science genius. A friend says the uncle 'would have been horrified'
Mary and her brother Fred III had received some financial support over the years from the Trump family, and they expected to receive a significant inheritance from their grandfather, Fred Sr., who died in 1999. Mary and her brother had hoped they would get an amount close to what would have gone to their father, if he had lived, but they learned they were due to receive a lesser amount, and a probate fight ensued, court records show.
Mary and Fred III alleged that an unnamed person associated with the Trump family improperly engineered a change in the will of their grandfather, who had Alzheimer's disease during his last years. Mary and her brother said the changes in the will were ''procured by fraud and undue influence.''
Donald said at the time that he supported a cutoff of medical coverage that had been provided by a family company for Fred III's son, William, who had cerebral palsy. Donald Trump told the New York Daily News that when he and his siblings were sued by Fred III and Mary, he felt, ''Why should we give [William] medical coverage?''
Donald's brother Robert said in a deposition that the family had given Mary annual gifts of $20,000, in addition to income from family ventures, estimating that Mary and Fred III annually received ''close to $200,000 without either one lifting a finger at any time.''
Mary was livid about the family's decision to cut off medical coverage for her nephew William. She told the Daily News at the time, ''Given this family, it would be utterly naive to say it has nothing to do with money. But for both me and my brother, it has much more to do with that our father be recognized. He existed, he lived, he was their oldest son. And William is my father's grandson. He is as much a part of that family as anybody else. He desperately needs extra care.''
In the 2000 lawsuit, Mary did not directly address her uncle Robert's assertion that she was ''not gainfully employed.'' But it was around this time, after working on a master's degree in English at Columbia University, that she served in a voluntary role in the study of schizophrenia patients, assisting senior social worker Rachel Miller at Zucker Hillside Hospital in Glen Oaks, N.Y.
Miller said Mary Trump showed an intense interest in understanding what drove people into psychological dysfunction. ''She went into a situation that is hard to see. Many doctors and social workers couldn't go there, it was so frightening to see somebody losing their mind,'' Miller said.
Mary Trump accompanied her in visits with patients who were typically 16 to 25 years old and experiencing their first episodes of schizophrenia. ''She had her life set on doing what she wanted to do, which was to be a psychologist,'' Miller said.
Later, when Miller needed help on a book she co-wrote, ''Diagnosis: Schizophrenia,'' about the study, she said Mary worked long hours to help her research and write the manual, which became popular in the field and with families of people with the disease.
'Worst night of my life'
Mary Trump continued her studies at Adelphi University, where she earned a master's degree in psychology in 2001, a master's in clinical psychology in 2003, and a doctoral degree in clinical psychology in 2010, a school official said.
In her 205-page dissertation, ''A Characterological Evaluation of the Victims of Stalking,'' she examined whether there were certain personality characteristics that made some people ''more vulnerable to being victims of stalking by an intimate partner.''
A few years later, Mary founded a company called Trump Coaching Group, which provided wellness and fitness services on Long Island.
An archived version of the now-deleted company website said the company focused on nurturing relationships. It said Mary's interest stemmed ''from her own struggles as an athlete with asthma which have given her a true appreciation for the extent to which physical well-being is vital to psychological and emotional well-being.''
One of the coaches listed as a team member said the company didn't develop much beyond the creation of the website. Paige Crosby, who said she participated in a year-long training program with Mary Trump to become a life coach, recalled her talking about her ''hurt feelings'' from her ''sour relationship'' with Donald.
As Donald Trump announced his candidacy in 2015, Mary Trump does not appear to have said anything publicly about him.
But when it became clear that her uncle had won the presidency, she took to Twitter. ''Worst night of my life,'' she wrote at least 12 times in tweets that have been deleted recently. She wrote that ''We should be judged harshly. .'‰.'‰. I grieve for our country.''
Mary Trump's publicist, asked to verify that Mary wrote the tweets, declined to comment.
Last year, according to corporate filings, Mary created a company that echoed the name of the tragic family in Faulkner's novels: Compson Enterprises. In an initial listing for her book, designed to keep the project a secret, her name was given as Mary Compson.
Now Mary Trump appears to hope that, with an assist from the publication of her book, the next presidential election will turn out differently from the last. She foreshadowed it at 4:07 a.m. on Nov. 9, 2016, shortly after her uncle was declared the president-elect, when she tweeted simply: ''2020.''
Alice Crites contributed to this report.
Austin
Tesla's TX plans opposed by Travis County GOP official: 'Texans need to stand up to Musk'
Thu, 25 Jun 2020 18:54
Tesla's plans for its Cybertruck Gigafactory in Travis County, Texas have received some strong opposition from Matt Mackowiak, the chairman of the Travis County GOP. In a scathing op-ed posted on The Statesman, Mackowiak urged Texas to ''stand up to Musk'' citing the CEO's reputation, SpaceX's ongoing activities in the state, and the challenges faced by Gigafactory New York.
Mackowiak warned that Elon Musk has a ''spotty'' history of seeking subsides, and he voiced his stern opposition to the idea of Texas giving Tesla generous incentive packages. These include $68 million on Tesla's property tax bill over 10 years and Travis County's additional $14.65 million in property tax rebates over 10 years. The GOP official argued that New York, which hosted Tesla's Gigafactory 2 facility, has struggled to bring the economic impact it was intended to bring to the area as well.
''After spending nearly $900 million on the new factory, a recent audit found that the plant's value lays around $75 million. The factory found more controversy as it struggled to prove that it had met the site's hiring criteria. Even worse, the factory is struggling to bring the economic impact it promised to justify the high-priced deal for the state's taxpayers. The Lone Star State could be looking at millions of dollars in public funds directed away from roads and other local needs to help a company that seems content to abandon its pledges and go wherever the incentives take them,'' Mackowiak wrote.
Mackowiak also argued that SpaceX's activities in Texas have not been good for the state, since the company has been ''spending years causing headaches for the people of South Texas.'' The official listed a number of grievances against SpaceX, such as road closures and noise disturbances, which Mackowiak argued disrupted the ''once peaceful village of Boca Chica.'' In conclusion, the GOP official urged Texans to ''stand up to Musk and tell him there will be no corporate subsidies.''
Unfortunately for the vocal Mackowiak, other Texas officials appear to be very welcoming of Tesla. Amidst the company's troubles with Alameda County last month, Tesla and Elon Musk received open letters of support from Hidalgo County Judge Richard F. Cortez, Governor Greg Abbott, Dallas, TX Mayor Eric Johnson, all of whom invited the electric car maker to set up shop in the Lone Star State. Governor Abbott, for one, specifically emphasized Tesla's potential tax savings if it moves its headquarters to Texas.
As for Gigafactory New York, the facility has seen a relatively slow ramp due to the company's focus on its electric vehicle business, particularly during the Model 3 ramp. However, the facility is ramping now, particularly as Tesla is now looking to expand the reach of its Energy business with its flagship Solarglass Roof V3 tiles. Supercharger V3 stalls, which are also built in Gigafactory New York, are being ramped worldwide as well. This suggests that Tesla's Buffalo, New York facility will only get even busier in the near future, and it won't be long before its positive economic impact to the area is felt.
It should also be noted that other states are willing and ready to welcome Tesla and its upcoming Cybertruck Gigafactory. Apart from Texas, Tulsa, Oklahoma is speculated to be shortlisted for the site of the electric pickup's production plant. Other states such as North Carolina have also expressed interest in hosting the electric car maker's next US-based manufacturing facility.
Armageddon
'Gorilla Dust Cloud' formed from the biggest Saharan dust storm in 50 years hits the U.S.
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 04:07
The 'Gorilla Dust Cloud' struck Mississippi's gulf coast ThursdayThe 3,500-mile-long cloud traveled 5,000 miles from North Africa, sweeping across the Caribbean this week before reaching US soilIt will hang over the US Southeast this weekend and into the middle of next week, shrouding the region in a brown haze and deteriorating the air qualityIt is moving across states including Florida, Texas, North Carolina and Arkansas States worst affected include those suffering record-high COVID-19 cases Experts are warning vulnerable people to stay inside as the poor air quality caused by the dust storm poses another respiratory threat as well as the virusStrong winds over the Sahara typically whip up sand this time of year and carry it across the Atlantic to the Americas but the dust is more dense this year The biggest Saharan dust storm in 50 years has hit the US and is headed for Florida, Texas and other states already struggling with COVID-19 surges, sparking fresh fears of respiratory problems among Americans.
The so-called 'Gorilla Dust Cloud' struck Mississippi's gulf coast Thursday after charting its path across the Caribbean this week where air quality plunged to 'hazardous' levels.
The 3,500-mile-long cloud traveled 5,000 miles from North Africa before reaching the region stretching from Florida west into Texas and north into North Carolina through Arkansas, the National Weather Service (NWS) said.
It will hang over the US Southeast this weekend and into the middle of next week, shrouding the region in a brown haze and deteriorating the air quality in states already buckling under the weight of the coronavirus pandemic.
Experts are warning vulnerable people to stay inside in states including Texas and Florida as the poor air quality caused by the dust storm coupled with the skyrocketing cases and hospitalizations of the deadly virus poses a double threat to public health.
The biggest Saharan dust storm in 50 years has hit the US and is headed for Florida, Texas and other states already struggling with COVID-19 surges The so-called 'Gorilla Dust Cloud' struck Mississippi's gulf coast Thursday after charting its path across the Caribbean this week where air quality plunged to 'hazardous' levelsStrong warm winds over the Sahara desert typically whip up sand at this time of year and carry it across the Atlantic to the Americas.
But the dust is more dense this year than it has been in half a century, several meteorologists told Reuters.
'It's a really dry layer of air that contains these very fine dust particulates. It occurs every summer,' said NWS meteorologist Patrick Blood.
Click here to resize this module
'Some of these plumes contain more particles, and right now we expecting a very large plume of dust in the Gulf Coast.'
The dry air mass that carries the dust can suppress tropical storm and hurricane formation and can enhance and illuminate sunrises and sunsets, meteorologists said.
The dust cloud swept across the Atlantic from Africa over the past week, covering swathes of the Caribbean including Jamaica, Barnados and Puerto Rico Sunday.
The dust cloud is seen over the city of Bridgetown, Barbados, Monday Poor visibility in Puerto Rico at the weekend. The dust cloud swept across the Atlantic from Africa over the past week, covering swathes of the Caribbean including Jamaica, Barnados and Puerto Rico Sunday Fishermen carry on working on their boats as a cloud of dust from the Sahara desert covers the buildings of Punta Paitilla, in Panama City, Panama San Salvador in El Salvador is covered in dust from the Sahara desert ThursdayTypically blue skies turned into a milky-brown haze and Jamaica's Blue Mountains, usually seen towering over Kingston, were hidden behind a white cloud.
Air quality fell to 'hazardous' levels and weather forecasters for the French Caribbean islands of Guadeloupe and Martinique warned the area was suffering its worst haze in at least a decade.
By Wednesday, much of the skies over Cuba were darkened by the dust plumes and images showed poor visibility in Havana.
Fishermen were pictured in Panama working on their boats as a cloud of dust from the Sahara desert covered the buildings of Punta Paitilla, in Panama City.
The dust cloud reached south Florida Thursday and is now moving through Texas into North Carolina and Arkansas where residents can expect poor air quality, hazy skies and low visibility until the middle of next week.
Fears are mounting over the health effects of the Gorilla Dust Cloud as it plows through US states where record-high coronavirus infections have been recorded in the last week.
The dry air mass that carries the dust can suppress tropical storm and hurricane formation and can enhance and illuminate sunrises and sunsets, meteorologists said, such as this image sunset captured in Florida on Thursday Skies over Florida Thursday. The dust cloud reached south Florida Thursday and is now moving through Texas into North Carolina and Arkansas where residents can expect poor air quality, hazy skies and low visibility until the middle of next week The visibility out of a plane flying over Tallahassee, Florida, Thursday'There's emerging evidence of potential interactions between air pollution and the risk of COVID, so at this stage we are concerned,' said Gregory Wellenius, an professor of environmental health at Boston University's School of Public Health.
Air pollution can be especially detrimental for people who are at risk of or suffer from cardiovascular and respiratory illnesses, he added.
Heart and lung problems heighten the risk of severe COVID-19.
Infections across the US have been surging for more than a week after trending down for over six weeks.
New cases and hospitalizations have been spiking to record levels in states like Arizona, Texas, California and Florida.
Texas, which was one of the first states to ease lockdown at the end of April, reached record COVID-19 hospitalizations for the 13th day in a row Thursday, with nearly 4,400 patients.
View of the cloud of Saharan dust over a beach in Cancun, Quintana Roo state, Mexico, Thursday Panama City is shrouded in dust as experts warn air pollution can be especially detrimental for people who are at risk of or suffer from cardiovascular and respiratory illnesses In Carolina, Puerto Rico, Tuesday the dust looms over the skyline. Air quality plunged to 'hazardous' levels in the Caribbean Saharan dust is seen on the Bacardi factory in Catano, Puerto Rico, Monday Cancun. Strong warm winds over the Sahara desert typically whip up sand at this time of year and carry it across the Atlantic to the AmericasStatewide, the number of COVID-19 patients has more than doubled in two weeks and more than 11,000 new cases have been recorded in the last two days alone.
With concerns building that the state is headed for a major health crisis, Governor Greg Abbott announced Thursday its reopening has been put on 'pause'.
In Florida, new daily cases surged to 5,508 Wednesday - a 25 percent jump from its previous record of 4,049 on June 20.
Health experts are urging residents in the areas hit by the Saharan dust plume to stay inside, for fear it could weaken the respiratory systems of people already at risk of the virus.
2020
Kamala Harris's Shadow Campaign for Vice President - The Atlantic
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 12:24
A few weeks ago , an adviser to Kamala Harris called me to talk through some polling data. ''We understand that Joe Biden's the nominee, but the party is so much different than a septuagenarian white male,'' the adviser said. ''Kamala Harris is more symbolic of that changing America'--America coming together'--than some of the other potential candidates'' for vice president.
The adviser spoke on the condition of anonymity because, officially, Harris is pretending that she's not campaigning to be Biden's running mate.
In public, Harris has repeatedly insisted that she's not talking about or thinking about her prospects of being picked. But judging from my conversations with people around Harris, she and her team use her prospects to book events and television hits that aim to show she's neither overeager nor overambitious. She and her team are avoiding situations that could create stumbles. They're hoping that her r(C)sum(C), her background, and the force of her personality propel her. They're picking specific moments for her to grab attention on the Senate floor or send a calibrated tweet. They're tuning out political reporters who are stuck on their couches, looking to drum up content during the pandemic. They're trying to ease concerns in Biden's orbit that if she's picked and they win, she'll start running for president the morning after the inauguration. They want her on the ticket, and positioned to be the Democratic nominee in 2024.
''She's literally the antidote,'' says Stockton, California, Mayor Michael Tubbs, who endorsed Michael Bloomberg in the presidential race a few weeks after Harris dropped out. ''She's the opposite of Trump. She's someone who believes in the rule of law; she's not afraid to confront bullies. She's not afraid to speak to where we need to be.''
More StoriesThe careful campaign appears to be working. Biden advisers have said privately that they're impressed. Members of Congress who only a few weeks ago were grumbling that she's been showing up less for legislating and more for TV hits are now worried about getting caught doubting her.
''Not sure anyone who is in Congress would criticize Kamala, given such high odds she could be on the ticket,'' said one Democratic member of Congress who's hoping that Biden picks someone else. Naturally, this member of Congress requested anonymity to discuss how other members of Congress want to stay anonymous.
Harris declined several requests for an in-depth discussion about the state of the country and what specific ideas she has for change going forward, whether or not she's on the ticket. She likes to approach interviews as a prosecutor who's thoroughly reviewed a case file, mastering the topic in front of her and fully focused on it, aides who have seen her in action say. And she favors single-topic interviews on TV, where she feels more comfortable deflecting and knows that commercial breaks can help her run out the clock.
But Harris is leaving questions unanswered about what she'd actually aim to do as vice president or why she wants the job. This is typical. With those who know her, she can be thoughtful, funny, engaging, and pragmatic, with little patience for grand theories of governance. She's focused on what will make a real difference in people's lives. But the version of Harris the public knows often comes off scripted and indirect, appearing mostly in sound bites and viral videos. Her instinct to parry rather than expound helps her avoid awkward questions, such as during a segment on The View earlier this month, when Meghan McCain asked her if she was in favor of defunding the police. Instead of answering directly, Harris asked what McCain meant, and McCain eventually admitted that she didn't know herself. Harris successfully avoided taking a potentially controversial position. But she also reinforced her preexisting reputation for evasiveness: I heard from several high-level Democratic operatives that the exchange reminded them of Harris's habit of dodging critical questions during her presidential campaign.
Read: She wanted to be a republican president. She's voting for Biden.
Among those who'd like to know more about where she stands is Rashad Robinson, the president of the civil-rights group Color of Change. He's had a number of public and private conversations with Harris over the years'--on podcasts, in Facebook chats, alone in her office. He's been impressed that she's talked with him without staff in the room to support her, and with the level of consideration she's brought to conversations about inequities in criminal justice. But when I asked him if he feels like Harris is more substantive than she sometimes appears, he said, ''I don't know. It's hard, because I feel like I don't have enough.''
People close to Harris believe that she's the victim of East Coast bias, unfairly high expectations that always hold her to a front-runner standard, and more subtle bias against her as a black woman. They think she's never gotten the credit she deserves'--like when Twitter announced that it would be fact-checking and curating Donald Trump's tweets. In October, desperate for a Hail Mary pass to save her campaign, she proposed banning Trump from Twitter. She even got into a back-and-forth with Elizabeth Warren about it at the October debate. Liberal tastemakers sneered that her suggestion made no sense. But by last month, banning Trump had worked its way into the consciousness enough to be the subject of a Maureen Dowd column (which didn't mention Harris), and Harris defenders felt vindicated.
Harris has now been able to lean on her past as a prosecutor as a strength. During the primary, supporters of other candidates turned it into a liability in the name of progressivism. But these days she's stepping up as the national debate has turned to police reform, leading the Senate Democrats' fight against Republican legislation and helping write their own bill, delivering a searing speech on the Senate floor responding to Rand Paul's resistance to anti-lynching legislation. She's been firmer on and more expansive about her record than she ever was as a presidential candidate, to the point that the law professor Lara Bazelon told NPR this week, ''Her record has been consistent, and it's been good.'' Bazelon wrote a New York Times op-ed in January 2019 with the headline ''Kamala Harris Was Not a 'Progressive Prosecutor.''' But Harris ''did champion progressive causes,'' Bazelon said on NPR.
Harris was chastened by the failure of her presidential run, which launched like a rocket and ended like a deflated blimp. For the running-mate process, according to several people who've spoken with her and her small circle of advisers, she's determined to seem steadier. She's also still atoning politically for what became her defining moment of the campaign: taking Biden's legs out from under him at the first debate. Biden took it personally'--especially because Harris was friends with his late son, Beau'--and a number of people close to him thought it showed that she wouldn't hold back. That moment has stuck with a lot of Biden supporters.
''I'm one of these Irish guys that forgives but does not forget. And I'm one of these Irish guys that holds a grudge,'' says John Morgan, a major Florida donor who hosted one of the first big fundraising events for Biden. ''What she did to him in that debate was treacherous, and she didn't have to do it. He trusted her. He had helped her before. And she had a relationship with his son. It was, Et tu Kamala?''
''With that said,'' Morgan joked to me, ''she'll probably be the vice president and I'll never be invited to the White House.''
Even among those who are more sympathetic, the turnaround feels dizzying. In an interview with Harris last Wednesday, Stephen Colbert said he believed that she is sincerely behind Biden. She might be a good running mate, he said, but how would she get there after all the ''haymakers'' she landed onstage?
''It was a debate,'' Harris said.
''Not everyone landed punches like you did, though,'' Colbert said.
''It was a debate,'' Harris said, deploying the laugh she often uses to deflect during television interviews.
''So you don't mean it?''
''It was a debate,'' she said again.
Harris's hesitation in endorsing Biden earlier this year only reinforced some of his supporters' suspicions about her. Biden advisers called Harris multiple times, urging her to back him, insisting that she could help him consolidate support ahead of the California primary and others on Super Tuesday, people who were clued in to the conversations told me. She thought about how and when to endorse. Some on her side urged her to make a splash and regain Biden's goodwill. But she decided to wait, in part out of deference to the women who remained in the race, in part because she was hesitant about taking a chance that Biden would win. She finally endorsed Biden six days after California voted, when the primary race was all but over.
Biden has made clear in private conversations that have been relayed to me that he's focused on beating Trump, not payback, and that he'll pick whichever woman he believes will most help him win.
Look at what's happening in this country, Harris supporters say. To them, there's no way that Biden cannot pick a black woman as his running mate. Some of the Democratic intelligentsia have started swooning over the possibility of Warren as his vice president. But it's absurd to imagine that Biden would respond to this moment by putting forward two white people in their 70s, Harris backers argue. And if Biden is going to pick a black woman, these supporters say, he's got to pick Harris. Out of Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, Representative Val Demings of Florida, former Georgia Minority Leader Stacey Abrams, and former National Security Adviser Susan Rice'--all of whom have been floated as potential vice-president nominees'--none has had the experience to understand the scrutiny and pressure of being part of a national campaign.
Read: The VP choice everyone is missing
Tubbs, the mayor of Stockton, isn't concerned that the Biden team is considering black women who aren't Harris. ''It's part of the vetting process,'' he said. ''Everyone should be vetted. But once the vetting plays out, you will see Kamala Harris emerge as the obvious choice.''
Harris fans often compare her with Warren, generally seen as the other leading contender, and the Black Lives Matter protests in front of the White House gave them a direct juxtaposition. Harris arrived the day before Trump took his walk through tear gas to his Bible photo op, clapping and chanting along with the crowd (captured in a video quickly tweeted by her husband). Warren showed up three days later, bringing along her dog and speaking with reporters. The catch: Warren and Harris polled roughly the same among black voters when they were both still running for president. And in a CBS poll released at the beginning of May'--before the police killing of George Floyd'--72 percent of black voters said Biden should consider Warren for vice president. Just 60 percent said he should consider Harris.
''It would be incredible to have a woman of color,'' Mandela Barnes, the Democratic lieutenant governor of Wisconsin, told me. ''That would speak volumes for the direction of this country and where our nominee intends to take us.'' But he said he's still drawn to Warren.
Barnes is black himself. In 2018, he helped Tony Evers, his older white running mate, beat an incumbent Republican, aided by high turnout in Milwaukee and among black voters. He's not convinced that Harris would do the same for Biden. ''I don't know that Kamala's had the time to develop that familiarity,'' he said. ''I don't know that [her being black] automatically translates. In fact, I'm not willing to say that at all. It's going to be important to corral the energy in the activist community in November'--people who've made it clear that they don't have to vote for you.''
I f Harris is the pick , in retrospect this will probably seem like the longest, most drawn-out lead-up to an obvious conclusion in the history of modern presidential politics. But first, she'll have to convince Biden's top advisers that she would be able to deliver younger voters, women, and black voters in numbers that she never did during her own presidential campaign. To some who are talking with Biden, the arguments from people close to Harris that these failures were because Biden had a lock on those voters in the primary are effectively an argument that he doesn't need her to get them.
''Joe Biden is not going to pick a mythical-beam-of-light woman of color. He's going to pick an actual politician,'' says Sean McElwee, a progressive pollster who has put out surveys showing that liberals want Warren.
Read: It really could be Warren
Robinson, of Color of Change, said he's been encouraged by what he's seen from Harris so far. And he understands that she has spent her life pushing against attacks that come when you're the first woman, or woman of color, to do something. Harris was the first woman and the first person of color to be district attorney of San Francisco; the first woman and the first person of color to be attorney general of California; the first woman of color to be a senator from California (and only the second ever in the country); and the first woman of color to be a major presidential contender.
''Attacks can be gendered, and can be racialized. And there's ways we cannot give people the full advantage of their expertise,'' Robinson said. He added that he thought it was important to consider how much circumstances and politics have changed since the beginning of her career. ''There was a time when Kamala Harris was a DA when she was probably considered a progressive DA,'' he said. ''But she was a DA, and she chose to be a prosecutor.''
Robinson added, ''The moment and the time we're in is continuing to push her.''
Representative Jim Clyburn of South Carolina, another important voice in Biden's ear, who's been very public about wanting Biden's choice to be a woman of color, told me that he thinks Harris would be an ''outstanding pick.'' As for Harris and Biden's history, Clyburn compared Harris being put on the ticket to Ronald Reagan picking George H. W. Bush after their bitter primary fight, or Bill Clinton picking Al Gore in 1992. Discounting her as an unexciting, obvious choice doesn't make sense, Clyburn said: ''I don't think anything is inevitable.''
The Trump 2020 app is a voter surveillance tool of extraordinary power | MIT Technology Review
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 09:26
Ahead of President Trump's rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma, his 2020 re-election campaign manager Brad Parscale tweeted about the event. ''Just passed 800,000 tickets,'' he wrote. ''Biggest data haul and rally signup of all time by 10x. Saturday is going to be amazing!''
Parscale's numbers for the rally'--originally scheduled for Juneteenth and still set to occur just miles from the site of one of American history's deadliest acts of racial violence'--have come in for criticism after only 6,200 people actually turned up, with sign-up numbers supposedly inflated by pranking teens and K-pop fans. But even on the surface, his claim was confusing: the venue holds only 19,000 people. So what was the campaign doing signing up so many people for tickets?
The clue lies in Parscale's use of the phrase ''data haul.''
Data collection and targeted online messaging were integral to the 2016 US presidential election, and they will be again in 2020. But there has been a shift. In the same way that candidates in the last cycle used Facebook to reach and persuade voters, ongoing research from our team at the propaganda research lab at UT Austin's Center for Media Engagement suggests that 2020 will be defined by the use of bespoke campaign apps. Purpose-built applications distributed through the App Store and Google Play Store allow the Trump and Biden teams to speak directly to likely voters. They also allow them to collect massive amounts of user data without needing to rely on major social-media platforms or expose themselves to fact-checker oversight of particularly divisive or deceptive messaging.
Trump 2020: A data-hungry channel for disproven claimsThe Official Trump 2020 app, which has been downloaded approximately 780,000 times according to the measurement service Apptopia, launched in mid-April.
The app has ''News'' and ''Social'' tabs offering carefully selected feeds of tweets and articles that reinforce the campaign's talking points, often actively deceiving readers with highly questionable or entirely disproven information under headlines such as ''Media Continue to Spread Debunked Theory About Tear Gas,'' ''Media Mask-Shamers Keep Getting Caught Breaking Their Own Rules,'' or ''Top 8 Moments from Joe Biden's Embarrassingly Disastrous, Epically Boring Livestream.'' Most messages, articles, and announcements inside the Trump app have no named author; they rarely cite sources beyond government press releases and tweets from Trump's own supporters and White House staff. The app also has campaign releases that attack social-media companies like Twitter and Snapchat, berating them for perceived bias and lack of transparency on one hand while adopting opaque and attention-driven strategies themselves.
Users are required to provide their phone number full name, email address, and zip code. The campaign intends to collect the cell-phone numbers of 40 to 50 million voters.
Data collection'--as Parscale's comment suggested'--is perhaps the most powerful thing the Trump 2020 app does. On signing up, users are required to provide a phone number for a verification code, as well as their full name, email address, and zip code. They are also highly encouraged to share the app with their existing contacts. This is part of a campaign strategy for reaching the 40 to 50 million citizens expected to vote for Trump's reelection: to put it bluntly, the campaign says it intends to collect every single one of these voters' cell-phone numbers. This strategy means the app also makes extensive permission requests, asking for access to location data, phone identity, and control over the handset's Bluetooth function.
The app has already received some criticism, not least from security researchers who found it had left information exposed that could allow hackers to access the user data. The response to this made the campaign's priorities clear: they rapidly fixed the bug once it had been disclosed, but still maximized the data they themselves could collect. They want as much voter data as possible, even if they don't want it left vulnerable to outsiders'--and will use it in any way they see fit.
A member of our research team discovered that the app was compiled with an older version of Android, which does not include some of the latest privacy improvements, and uses software provided by a company called Phunware, well known for collecting people's location information and relations with the Trump campaign, a role highlighted by a Wall Street Journal investigation last year. Phunware has come under major scrutiny recently for accepting millions of dollars in federal loans intended to help small businesses cope with the coronavirus, and in May Nasdaq filed paperwork with the Securities and Exchange Commission to delist the company over its finances. Phunware's invasive tactics for gathering data and reaching voters have drawn comparisons to Cambridge Analytica.
Team Joe: Your contacts are criticalTeam Joe, the app put together by Joe Biden's campaign, has some surface similarities to the Trump app, but it is a very different proposition. It does some things that the Trump app does, including sending users notifications of upcoming campaign events or training sessions for digital activists. But where the Trump app has range of uses, from spreading tailored campaign messages to airing live streams of rallies, Team Joe is largely built for a single purpose: relational organizing. This concept is spelled out in the Team Joe Digital Tool Kit:
''Relational organizing is when volunteers leverage their existing networks and relationships in support of our candidate, Joe Biden. Friend-to-friend contact is one of the most effective methods for having meaningful conversations about our campaign, and it is an efficient way to persuade and identify supporters '... We are calling voters and caucusgoers to identify supporters and persuade friends and family to support Joe. These conversations with targeted voters and caucusgoers to increase support will make a big difference in electing Vice President Biden.''
Practically, this means that when you download the app you are prompted to share your contact list, which is then cross-referenced with the party's voter files. The system identifies people you may have a personal connection with who might be persuaded to vote for Biden. From there, it prompts you to send these potentially undecided folks personalized messages.
One organizer explains how this works during a Joe Biden Action Center app orientation:
''Conversations that you have with friends or family are always a little more meaningful. And sometimes, if I'm calling a voter, they might have gone through something very traumatic, like a really bad hospitalization that they might not want to talk about with a random volunteer ... but they might talk to you about 'Oh, yeah. I had cancer and it was terrible but the Affordable Care Act, Obamacare, really helped me in that process.' So if you do want to help us do that you can text App to 30330, or if you don't wanna do that you can just go to joe.link/app.''
Relational organizing is a nuanced version of data targeting. Its principles are not new'--both Obama presidential campaigns heavily relied on it'--but like many political communication strategies, it has consequences that change with scale, advanced data analytics, and automation. The Biden app uses advanced data parsing practices but is not exactly automated. It blurs the line between the personal and the political.
With relational organizing, the Team Joe app blurs the line between the personal and the political.
Our ongoing research'--which is mostly qualitative and involves interviews with tech makers, political marketers, and campaign members'--has revealed that data-driven relational organizing is becoming the go-to outreach strategy for US political campaigns. Interviewees extol the virtues of highly personalized text messages sent by volunteers, a practice fine-tuned by the Bernie Sanders campaign. This and similar forms of relational organizing are already the norm in Mexico and Latin America, where they are used not to increase civic engagement but instead by mass manipulators seeking to adapt to the increased scrutiny of bots and sock-puppet accounts. In our study'--where the participants were interviewed on condition of anonymity, as is typical in our work'--one prominent Mexican journalist elaborated on this:
''Well, in Latin America and in Mexico we don't use bots or software. It was left behind a few years ago because it was really easy to detect on Twitter or Facebook and by researchers like me '... we are entering an era of war propaganda, and I think that's where the trend is headed.''
What they want from youIf you want to understand what the Trump and Biden apps are really for, compare the permissions requested in the Google Play Store. Besides some basic network and notification permissions, the Team Joe Campaign App may ask for access to your contacts. The Official Trump 2020 App has a much longer list of access requests. It wants to read your contacts and know your precise and approximate location (GPS and network based). It requests the ability to read your phone status and identity (a vague permission that sometimes gives access to unique device numbers), pair with Bluetooth devices (such as geolocation beacons), and perhaps read, write, or delete from SD cards in the device.
The use of Bluetooth is especially notable because it can capture data and target people with political messages as they travel through a physical space. This practice has jumped to politics from the advertising industry. In one recent example, Bluetooth beacons (the radio transmitters used to track cell-phone users via Bluetooth signals) were found in campaign yard signs. In another, people were surveilled using these practices when they went to church. Our team has been exploring how this phenomenon'--which we term geo-propaganda'--has increased.
As you walk past a beacon embedded in a campaign sign or some other part of the physical environment, you are recorded and identified through Bluetooth or similar means. This data is then used to build a profile that can be used to advertise to you or people like you. One political consultant we interviewed for our study explained how this practice developed long before political apps were created:
''They [the apps] are plugged into different marketplaces, so if you open up Facebook or Google Maps or Candy Crush, even though you didn't explicitly do anything'--if you have location access enabled on those apps, that app will record your location at the instance you opened that app, and then that information can be sold to a third party.''
These third parties include data brokers like Acxiom or Resonate, which are part of a billion-dollar shadow industry dedicated to buying and selling data collected from disparate sources. To understand how granular the data can be, take a moment to look through the categories in Acxiom's consumer data products catalogue. Political campaigns purchase that information and combine it with other data and tools'--from other social-media companies, say'--to build ''lookalike audiences'' that include people similar to those who had their data scooped. This means that even if you have your own location permissions disabled, you may be caught in politicians' nets because you behave similarly to other people who have shared their location.
This makes campaign apps part of a larger system of surveillance capitalism. Yes, they provide firsthand data about a campaign's strongest supporters. But they are also designed to use that data to build lists of similar citizens. Meanwhile, they provide the infrastructure to help users in these closed media environments bring in like-minded people through relational organizing by way of the addictive engagement strategies that social media and apps have perfected in the past 20 years.
What next? Look at IndiaTo understand the future of political campaign apps, it is useful to look to India. Indian prime minister Narendra Modi, a controversial right-wing populist, launched his Namo app in 2015. It has since become one of the most widely used politician's apps in the world, with over 10 million downloads in the Google Play Store. The app was pushed through official government channels and collected large amounts of data for years through opaque phone access requests. In late 2019 it received a makeover that included live events, Instagram-like ''Stories'' about Modi, gamified engagement strategies, means of accepting micro-donations, and promises of a direct line to the prime minister. President Trump's app is clearly following in those footsteps.
Other tactics of Modi's might tell us where Trump's and Biden's digital campaigns will go. His team's abuse of WhatsApp and Twitter is essentially an open secret, with cells of supporters in local districts given the task of spreading information (and disinformation) on these and other channels, often through shared Google Docs of approved tweets and images created by the party heads. His app itself is a fertile propagator of misinformation. and his party, the BJP, also engages in extensive data targeting campaigns, bolstered by data broker equivalents and the social stratification imposed by the caste system. Another signal we are seeing lies in the rise of centralized messaging repositories similar to those banks of content used by Modi and his cells. The Biden campaign, albeit with more transparency and without the inclination toward disinformation, is utilizing these scripts much as the Clinton and Obama teams did.
The parallels between Trump and Modi run deeper than their apps, of course. Both politicians have publicly honored Twitter trolls. Both actively cultivate reciprocal relationships with content creators on the radical and far right, ultimately seeking to build a direct line to these groups over the heads of media watchdogs and fact-checkers. Similarities appear in their day-to-day rhetoric too, with Trump referring to his digital activists as the ''Army for Trump'' and Modi calling his local actors ''IT warriors.''
For political movements revolving around a charismatic, illiberal leader, the shift to individualized apps that blur the line between government and private communication is the next step toward independence from both the ''mainstream media'' and the social-media platforms that allowed them to create a fact-agnostic communication channel in the first place. The line between government and campaign is not always clear either. Local governments often hand out free phones that have the Modi app pre-installed. Swati Chaturvedi, an Indian journalist and the author of I Am a Troll: Inside the Secret World of the BJP's Digital Army, said of the app:
''This is where it gets interesting, because [the app is] partially funded by the BJP, it is a BJP tool, but it is now officially used by the government of India. So there is a huge gray line there. There's an overlap because it is also putting out government material '... it's an epidemic of fake news now '...
The government is pushing it. Everywhere Mr. Modi goes on a foreign visit, there's a stall '... and you just kind of walk in there and you get a sign-up for the Namo app and it's just like a one-way tool of propaganda. So it is funded by the BJP, Mr. Modi's personal idea, intellectual property, but now it's also pushed by the government of India.''
Trump's casino-like campaign app seems to be his own attempt to create a ''one-way tool of propaganda.'' Its deployment is part of a global trend, piggybacking on years of unresolved privacy and security issues within the app ecosystem. As researchers studying the intersection of technology and propaganda, we understand that political groups tend to lag behind the commercial ad industry. But when they catch up, the consequences to truth and civil discourse can be devastating.
The array of data-gathering tools the Trump and Modi apps use are a legacy of a ''freemium'' social-media and app landscape that is manipulative, non-transparent, and purposefully addictive, with a mentality of ''collect data first and ask question later.'' For the last five to 10 years, the pervasiveness of these tools and their use in data scooping has been well documented. Sporadic, state-by-state data regulations have been the only response. In Europe, the GDPR was a big step toward meaningful consent and transparency, but the Official Trump 2020 App does not fall under its jurisdiction. A global perspective is now critical to understanding the implications of data-fueled political manipulation and preparing for the next wave of disinformation. Countries must work together to create effective regulation, and citizens must demand this of them.
It took about five years for Modi's strategies to jump from India to the US, and in the next few years we are on track to see the arrival of strategies used in the dark-money disinformation campaigns of Mexico and Latin America. The Mexican journalist we'd interviewed for our study put it this way: ''I think what's coming all around the world is going to be very chaotic, at least in [the US], I think you're on the brink of a sort of civil war in one or two years ... You're going to have a lot of work to do.''
'--Jacob Gursky and Samuel Woolley are members of the Propaganda Research Team at the Center for Media Engagement, University of Texas at Austin.
TikTok Users Target Trump's Online Store '' Adweek
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 00:18
The hope is it will waste his campaign team's advertising dollarsTikTok users are trolling Trump again.
Tiktok, Pixabay
Days after TikTok users said they fueled lower-than-expected turnout at President Donald Trump's rally in Tulsa, Okla., they have a new target: Trump's online store.
A new series of videos are circulating on the platform asking consumers to fill their carts with Trump merchandise'--like the $75 Keep America Great ugly Christmas sweater or the $30 Trump gift wrap featuring Trump in a Keep America Great Santa hat'--and then abandon those carts.
In one such video, which garnered 2.4 million views in a single day, TikTok user Preveroni laid out a hypothetical plan and the damaging effects of abandoning a cart in an online shop. The video has nearly 9,000 comments, including other users saying they did the same thing.
The goal is twofold: cost the Trump campaign money and screw with inventory. But the question is whether this tactic actually works.
The short answer: It does'--to an extentAccording to Mark Irvine, director of strategic partnerships at search marketing agency WordStream, when marketers begin to target users online, their first assumption is past behavior is the best indicator of future behavior.
What's more, marketers know that 70% of shoppers don't finish the checkout process immediately, so Irvine said ecommerce platforms put extra budget into remarketing or reengaging those particular visitors with the goal of getting them back to complete the purchase.
''If you've ever abandoned a cart online, you might recall having seen more ads or emails from that brand, oftentimes with discounts,'' he added.
Ergo, by acting like interested potential buyers and then abandoning their carts, these users cost related ad campaigns more money as the brand continues to reach out.
Clayton McLaughlin, senior vice president of media investments at digital marketing agency iCrossing, agreed the concept ''could potentially wreak havoc with a digital campaign.''
''Whether it's an intended retargeting campaign or a positive signal to an optimization algorithm, those users will likely be targeted again,'' McLaughlin said. ''Plus, other users that share similar traits will start to see the ads as well based on lookalike modeling. Overall, it creates a potentially expensive situation for an advertiser.''
It's also not great for audience dataCart abandonment on a large scale could also mess with a brand's data collection and measurement.
''Someone who comes to your site, browses products and adds to a cart is relatively rare and is usually a good signal to marketers,'' Irvine said. But he noted that the audience becomes effectively useless if over 95% of carts are abandoned.
Alex Burton, senior director of content at digital marketing agency iCrossing, agreed.
''Suddenly all of your shopper data is being purposely manipulated and there's no real way to tell who's a shopper that abandoned as part of this stunt and who's a shopper that abandoned the cart because of some actual issue like user experience,'' Burton said.
That, in turn, can trickle down to future demand and site traffic analytics. But the impact on inventory, however, is less clear.
''[Ecommerce platforms] hope that more people will add these items to their cart because they assume that most of those items won't actually be purchased immediately,'' Irvine said. ''Things only become interesting if there are a lot more items in people's carts than you have inventory because then they assume they're going to sell some of those.''
Irvine said while faux shoppers may be able to make some of Trump's lower inventory items look like they're sold out, they're unlikely to deplete his inventory of popular red hats.
One mistake may be in building ''ludicrously large carts''So far, TikTok users have been loading up on thousands, if not millions, of dollars' worth of inventory. But that could ultimately backfire.
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Donald Trump reelection app gets boost with Phunware partnership
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 14:26
Are Twitter notifications from @realDonaldTrump not enough? Want to check your phone and immediately know what President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence are up to in the campaign trail?
The Official Trump 2020 App is getting a boost in functionality '' and no pesky fact-checking from Twitter.
Phunware, a Texas-based software development company, announced Wednesday its partnership with American Made Media Consultants on the development, launch and ongoing management of the Trump-Pence 2020 Reelection Campaign's mobile application portfolio for Apple iOS and Google Android smartphones.
Tech meets politics:Twitter and Trump on a collision course with the truth
Regulation:Trump threatens to 'strongly regulate' or 'close down' social media platforms
The mobile application, launched last month, will continue to "let people engage with the campaign from their couch, or wherever they are," as Brad Parscale, Trump's presidential campaign manager said, through:
Dedicated news feed to read articles, watch videos and stay up-to-date with Trump's social feedSign-up tool to volunteer, fundraise and help Trump's reelection campaignScheduling tool to discover and register for local, state and national eventsGamified loyalty system to accumulate reward points, including redemption capabilities for exclusive merchandise and upgraded experiencesLivestream events for virtual engagementMobile ticketing for in-person events"Our software provides the Trump-Pence team with powerful mobile tools for their high profile reelection campaign, allowing seamless one-to-one user engagement and interactions on a reliable and proven global platform," Alan S. Knitowski, president, CEO and co-founder of Phunware, said in a statement.
Earlier Wednesday, Trump threatened to "strongly regulate" or "close down" social media platforms a day after Twitter added a "fact check" label to two of his tweets about mail-in ballots.
"Republicans feel that Social Media Platforms totally silence conservatives voices," Trump tweeted, "We will strongly regulate, or close them down, before we can ever allow this to happen."
The Official Trump 2020 App that's currently available for download has a 3.9 rating in Apple's App Store and a 3.8 rating in the Google Play Store.
Follow Josh Rivera on Twitter: @Josh1Rivera.
Stellar Acquisition III, Inc. '' Stellar Acquisition III, Inc.
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 14:18
Stellar Acquisition III Inc. (Stellar>>) is a blank check company formed for the purpose of acquiring, through a merger, capital stock exchange, asset acquisition, stock purchase, reorganization, recapitalization, exchangeable share transaction or other similar business transaction with one or more operating businesses or assets. Stellar's units, shares of common stock and warrants are currently listed on the Nasdaq Capital Market under the symbols ''STLRU,'' ''STLR'' and ''STLRW, respectively.
On February 28, 2018, Stellar announced it had entered into definitive agreements to combine with Phunware, Inc. (''Phunware'') and enter the mobile cloud software and blockchain sectors. Phunware's investor base includes several prominent strategic investors/partners and has a large and diversified customer base including numerous Fortune 5000 companies. Through numerous mobile application portfolios Phunware has a reach of more than 2 billion Phunware IDs for more than 1 billion monthly active unique devices across more than two trillion database events and petabytes of information. Additionally, Phunware plans to consummate an initial block-chain technology token generation event via the launch of PhunCoin with cash gross proceeds of up to $100m.
Following the closing, the common stock and warrants of the combined entity will trade on the NASDAQ Stock Market under the name Phunware, Inc. and trading symbols ''PHUN'' and ''PHUNW'', respectively. The combined company will be led by Mr. Alan S. Knitowski, who will continue as Phunware's Chief Executive Officer, and Mr. Matthew Aune, who will continue as Phunware's Chief Financial Officer. As part of the transaction, the combined company will redomesticate from the Marshall Islands to Delaware.
For further information about the Company's proposed business combination with Phunware, please refer to Stellar's SEC filings.
Trump Campaign Deploying Phone Location-Tracking Technology
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 14:15
President Donald Trump's reelection effort has retained the services of a technology company that specializes in the mass collection of smartphone location data, which can be used to track voters for political targeting purposes.
Phunware, an Austin, Texas-based firm, announced the connection in a little-noticed press release in October, touting ''new and existing customer wins including American Made Media Consultants,'' the consulting firm set up this year by Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale to handle advertising services for a variety of official Trump reelection PACs. The release noted that the deal was signed in conjunction with the Trump-Pence 2020 reelection effort.
A growing subset of advertising firms rely on data brokers that use third-party apps '-- from popular mobile games to apps used for checking the weather, perfecting a selfie, and online banking '-- to harvest vast troves of information about potential voters. Phunware, in a section of its website, discusses the company's ability to obtain GPS location data and the Wi-Fi network used by an individual, as well as user data that can infer an ''individual's gender, age, lifestyle preferences'' '-- potential tools for identifying and influencing voters.
The company claims to offer a wide range of services based on user location data. Individuals who attend a political rally or protest can be identified as potential targets for ads, a technique known as geofencing. Location data can provide insights into how long a shopper spends at a particular clothing store, type of religious venues, or the night clubs they tend to frequent.
''Unfortunately Phunware does not comment on customer-specific data or information,'' wrote Brent Brightwell, a spokesperson for Phunware, when contacted about the company's work with Trump campaign. ''Please contact the Trump reelection campaign directly should you have any questions about their activities or efforts.'' The Trump campaign did not respond to a request for comment.
Earlier this year, deleted scenes from the documentary ''The Brink'' revealed that Steve Bannon, Trump's campaign manager in 2016, had used similar location-tracking technology services to target church-attending Catholics during the midterm elections.
''If your phone's ever been in a Catholic church, it's amazing, they got this data,'' Bannon said in the film clip. ''Literally, they can tell who's been in a Catholic church and how frequently,'' he added. ''And they got it triaged.''
Though the Trump campaign's use of this particular data broker has received little attention, Phunware was featured in a recent investigation by the Wall Street Journal, published in October, into the use of location tracking by political interests. Federal Election Commission records show both Democratic and Republican congressional campaigns in Texas last year retained Phunware. Kimberly Taylor, a Democratic strategist, told the Journal that she used the firm to find attendees who went to the Women's March as potential voters to help unseat Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas. The story noted an independent pro-Trump group had also used location-tracking services.
The payments to Phunware by the Trump campaign do not appear in FEC records because the firm serves as a subcontractor to American Made Media Consultants, the Trump media-buying company. American Made Media Consultants has been paid more than $11.7 million by the Donald J. Trump for President, Trump Make America Great Again, and Republican National Committee this year, according to FEC records.
Comey miniseries gets pre-election airdate, after director pleads for chance to sway voters | Just The News
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 16:31
A Showtime miniseries based on former FBI Director James Comey's memoir has been rescheduled to debut before Election Day, after its creator made an emotional plea for a chance to sway presidential voters.
Billy Ray, who wrote and directed ''The Comey Rule,'' recoiled after learning Showtime originally planned to debut it in late November.
Ray wrote an angry letter to his cast and crew about the post-election date obtained by Deadline.com. The note suggests a collective agenda behind the project:
I know what a disappointment this is to you. It is for me too '-- because while I've made movies about my country before, this was the first time I ever made a movie for my country. We all were hoping to get this story in front of the American people months before the coming election. And that was a reasonable expectation considering that we'd been given a mandate by the network to do whatever was necessary to deliver by May 15.
But at some point in March or April, that mandate changed. Word started drifting back to me that a decision about our airdate had been made at the very highest levels of Viacom: all talk of our airing before the election was suddenly a ''non-starter.'' I and my fellow producers asked for a chance to plead our case on the matter, but we were told that even the discussion itself was a ''non-starter.''
Further down in the letter, Ray envisioned billboards screaming, ''Comey Vs. Trump'' in the heat of the election battle.
''The Comey Rule'' is based on former FBI director James Comey's recent memoir, ''A Higher Loyalty'' and ''more than a year of additional interviews with a number of key principals,'' according to Showtime PR.
The source material suggests the production will be highly critical of President Trump. Through his book and other public platforms, Comey has frequently reviled the president while justifying his own conduct throughout the FBI's Crossfire Hurricane investigation of now-debunked allegations of collusion between Russia and Trump's 2016 campaign.
On June 24, the day after Ray's letter was published by Deadline, Showtime announced "The Comey Rule" would air on consecutive nights Sept. 27-28. Showtime gave no reason for the time shift, but the news came the same day as two breaking news items tied to Comey's tenure.
A federal appeals court ordered charges against Michael Flynn, Trump's former National Security Adviser, to be dropped. Gen. Flynn had previously plead guilty to making false statements in connection with an offshoot of the FBI's Trump-Russia investigation.
In aother development, declassified notes taken by anti-Trump former FBI agent Peter Strzok appeared to reveal that Comey thought Flynn's late-2016 phone calls to then-Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak were "legit'' long before federal agents quizzed Flynn on the matter.
The news further erodes Comey's narrative related to both Gen. Flynn and the Russian investigation. Last year's Mueller Report failed to tie Trump to impeachable acts. More recently, we learned public officials who warned cable news viewers about Trump's alleged Russian ties confessed under oath they lacked evidence to back up their charges.
''The Comey Rule'' went into production before the American public learned of these revelations, so it's unlikely the new developments would be reflected in the two-part saga.
Ray brings an eclectic background to ''The Comey Rule.'' He previously wrote ''Captain Phillips'' and ''Shattered Glass,'' the latter about disgraced New Republic journalist Stephen Glass. Ray most recently wrote ''Richard Jewell,'' the 2019 Clint Eastwood drama cheered by conservatives for its takedown of ''fake news'' reportage.
The two-part, four hour ''Comey Rule,'' according to Showtime, will be ''an immersive, behind-the-headlines account of the historically turbulent events surrounding the 2016 presidential election and its aftermath, which divided a nation.'' Jeff Daniels stars as Comey, while Brendan Gleeson portrays President Trump.
''The Comey Rule'' will air Sept. 27 and 28 at 9 p.m. EST on Showtime.
Russia paid Taliban fighters to attack British troops in Afghanistan | UK News | Sky News
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 07:25
Reports that a Russian intelligence unit paid Taliban fighters to kill coalition troops in Afghanistan are true, British security officials have confirmed to Sky News.
The news, which was first published on Friday evening by The New York Times, is "on the nose" according to a source briefed on the matter.
"This is another example of the moral vacuum the GRU (an arm of Russia's military intelligence agency) operate in," Sky News has been told.
"Offering rewards to attack soldiers who are trying to bring peace to a nation is repugnant."
Trump's 'entire presidency a gift to Putin'There are currently around 1,000 British troops deployed in Afghanistan, mainly in the capital Kabul, and no confirmation any have been hurt as a result of the Russian efforts.
Tom Tugenhadt, chair of the House of Commons Foreign Affairs Committee and a former soldier in Afghanistan, told Sky: "Reports of Russian attempts to incite attacks on British troops are deeply concerning.
"We know the GRU have been caught in the UK and are active around the world and that's a danger to our forces."
The New York Times reported that 20 US soldiers were killed in Afghanistan last year but "it was not clear which killings were under suspicion".
It is thought that Moscow has been trying to destabilise a possible US-negotiated peace deal in Afghanistan.
In a statement, White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany denied that either President Donald Trump or Vice President Mike Pence had been briefed on the "alleged Russian bounty intelligence" which the newspaper reported took place in late March.
"This does not speak to the merit of the alleged intelligence but to the inaccuracy of the New York Times story erroneously suggesting that President Trump was briefed on this matter," the White House added.
Presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden said: "The truly shocking revelation that if the Times report is true, and I emphasise that again, is that President Trump, the commander-in-chief of American troops serving in a dangerous theatre of war, has known about this for months, according to the Times, and done worse than nothing."
Report on Russian interference being held backIt is understood the intelligence was only shared with British officials recently but Boris Johnson has now been briefed. Downing Street will be under pressure to respond to the news and take action against Moscow.
Sky has been told that the group responsible for the plan is the 29155 unit of the GRU, the same Russian intelligence outfit behind the Skripal poisonings, and the failed 2016 coup in Montenegro.
News of this Russian plan, and the direct targeting of British troops, will again raise the question of when the long overdue report into Russian interference by parliament's Intelligence and Security Committee (ISC) will be published.
The report, which examined claims of Russian interference in Britain, was sent to Downing Street on 17 October last year for sign-off.
That process usually takes no more than 10 days, but the report is still yet to be published and the ISC hasn't been reconvened after December's general election.
Out There
Weird: Out Of Nowhere, Something Just Rocked Earth's Magnetic Field - DC Dirty Laundry
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 16:45
Authored by Anthony Watts via WattsUpWithThat.com,
A GLOBAL MAGNETIC ANOMALY: On June 23rd, Earth's quiet magnetic field was unexpectedly disturbed by a wave of magnetism that rippled around much of the globe. There was no solar storm or geomagnetic storm to cause the disturbance. So what was it?
The Sun today, cue ball blank. Image: NASA SDO
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Lately, Earth's magnetic field has been quiet. Very quiet. The sun is in the pits of what may turn out to be the deepest Solar Minimum in a century. Geomagnetic storms just aren't happening.
''That's why I was so surprised on June 23rd when my instruments picked up a magnetic anomaly,'' reports Stuart Green, who operates a research-grade magnetometer in his backyard in Preston UK.
''For more than 30 minutes, the local magnetic field oscillated like a sine wave.''
This chart recording shows a magnetic wave rippling through Preston UK on June 23, 2020. Credit: Stuart Green.
Green quickly checked solar wind data from NOAA's DSCOVR satellite.
''There was nothing '' no uptick in the solar wind speed or other factors that might explain the disturbance,'' he says.
He wasn't the only one who noticed. In the Lofoten islands of Norway, Rob Stammes detected a similar anomaly on his magnetometer. ''It was remarkable,'' he says.
''Our magnetic field swung back and forth by about 1/3rd of a degree. I also detected ground currents with the same 10 minute period.''
What happened? Space physicists call this phenomenon a ''pulsation continuous'' or ''Pc'' for short. Imagine blowing across a piece of paper, making it flutter with your breath. Solar wind can have a similar effect on magnetic fields. Pc waves are essentially flutters propagating down the flanks of Earth's magnetosphere excited by the breath of the sun. During more active phases of the solar cycle, these flutters are easily lost in the noise of rambunctious geomagnetic activity. But during the extreme quiet of Solar Minimum, such waves can make themselves ''heard'' like a pin dropping in an silent room.
Magnetic observatories around the world detected the wave on June 23, 2020. Credit: INTERMAGNET
Earth's magnetic field was so quiet on June 23rd, the ripple was heard all around the world. INTERMAGNET's global network of magnetic observatories picked up wave activity at the same time from Hawaii to China to the Arctic Circle. There's even a hint of it in Antarctica.
Pc waves are classified into 5 types depending on their period. The 10-minute wave on June 23rd falls into category Pc5. Slow Pc5 waves have been linked to a loss of particles from the van Allen radiation belts. Energetic electrons surf these waves down into Earth's atmosphere, where they dissipate harmlessly.
With Solar Minimum in full swing, there's never been a better time to study these waves. Keep quiet '... and stay tuned for more.
Story from SpaceWeather.com it is well worth visiting this site
Courtesy of Zero Hedge
EarthYELLOWSTONE RECORDS 11 EARTHQUAKES IN 24 HOURSCongress Now Funding 'Controversial' Geoengineering 'Plan B' to Spray Particles in the Sky to Cool Earth7 Major Earth Changes That Are Happening Right Now That Everyone Needs To Know About
Sensors detect rise in nuclear particles on Baltic Sea, global body says - Reuters
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 07:01
VIENNA (Reuters) - Radiation sensors in Stockholm have detected higher-than-usual but still harmless levels of isotopes produced by nuclear fission, probably from somewhere on or near the Baltic Sea, a body running a worldwide network of the sensors said on Friday.
The Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) oversees a network of hundreds of monitoring stations that use seismic, hydroacoustic and other technology to check for a nuclear weapon test anywhere in the world. That technology can, however, be put to other uses as well.
One of its stations scanning the air for radionuclides - telltale radioactive particles that can be carried long distances by the wind - detected unusually high levels of three radionuclides earlier this week: caesium-134, caesium-137 and ruthenium-103.
The Stockholm monitoring station "detected 3isotopes; Cs-134, Cs-137 & Ru-103 associated w/Nuclear fission @ higher[ ] than usual levels (but not harmful for human health)", CTBTO chief Lassina Zerbo said on Twitter (here) on Friday evening.
The particles were detected on ''22/23 June'', he added.
Zerbo's post included a borderless map showing where the particles might have come from in the 72 hours before they were detected - a large area (here) covering the tips of Denmark and Norway as well as southern Sweden, much of Finland, Baltic countries and part of western Russia including St Petersburg.
''These are certainly nuclear fission products, most likely from a civil source,'' a spokeswoman for the Vienna-based CTBTO said, referring to the atomic chain reaction that generates heat in a nuclear reactor.
''We are able to indicate the likely region of the source, but it's outside the CTBTO's mandate to identify the exact origin,'' she added.
Reporting by Francois Murphy; Editing by David Gregorio
Clips
VIDEO - Houston Association of Realtors no longer using 'master' to describe bedrooms on property listings | abc13.com
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 07:47
Saturday, June 27, 2020 7:51AM CT
HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- The Houston Association of Realtors, commonly know as HAR, has made changes to its room descriptions on its online property database, replacing the term "master" with "primary."
Master bedroom and master bathroom will now say primary bedroom and primary bath.
"Some of these changes are simply good faith exercises to demonstrate awareness of historic improprieties or inequities," said Associate Prof. of Business at the University of Houston - Downtown Dietrich von Biedenfeld.
"Particularly in the south, we've had master slave culture. So, on a plantation, you would have a master of that domain who would then exercise control and dominance over enslaved or indentured servants, and so historically, to say that the master lives in a certain place, then it's sort of creates a tone that minorities are excluded."
The change comes after weeks of protests for racial equality and years of discussion about changing the terminology.
"The MLS Advisory Group regularly reviews the terms and fields used in the MLS to make sure they are consistent with the current market environment. The updates to primary bedroom and primary bath were among nine requests for review that were submitted by members and considered at the most recent meetings, including an option to show whether the property has an electric vehicle charging station and what direction the balcony faces for high rise listings," HARS wrote in a statement about the changes.
Ladonna Park, who is a member of HAR and President of the Houston Black Real Estate Association says the change is long overdue.
"I think it's more a sign of the times," she said "It's a sign that we are in the midst of change - what structural things can we do to make a difference?"
In a statement about the switch from 'master' to primary,' HAR wrote, "The topic has also been raised and considered for many years, so it was not a new suggestion to review the terminology. Many homebuilders stopped using the term "master bedroom" years ago. The overarching message was that some members were concerned about how the terms might be perceived by some other agents and consumers. The consensus was that primary describes the rooms equally as well as master while avoiding any possible misperceptions."
HAR also noted realtors won't be fined for using the word 'master' in their own marketing and that the change only applies to labels displayed on its online property listing database.
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VIDEO - Toronto Redux - Dan Carlin's Hardcore History: Addendum
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 07:08
Monday 4 May 2020
dchhaddendum.libsyn.com/website Open in Pocket Casts 00:00
00:00
Canadian television personality, radio and podcast host Jeff Marek takes over the show and interviews Dan. Show Notes:
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VIDEO - Facebook group offers fake face mask exemption cards - ABC7 News
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 07:05
News
The cards are linked to a group called the "Freedom to Breathe Agency." The front of the cards read, "I am exempt from any ordinance requiring face mask usage in public."
Friday, June 26th 2020, 11:16 PM EDT by Geoff Harris
Updated: Friday, June 26th 2020, 11:35 PM EDT
Earlier this week, a fake mask exemption card began circulating primarily on Facebook and Twitter.
The cards are linked to a group called the "Freedom to Breathe Agency." The front of the cards read, "I am exempt from any ordinance requiring face mask usage in public." The card also references the Department of Justice and the American with Disabilities Act. The DOJ said the cards are fraudulent and are not endorsed by the Department of Justice or the ADA.
Dr. Alejandro Perez-Trepichio, the Chief medical officer at the Millennium Physician Group said the cards are worrisome to see because some may believe the cards are real.
''A lot of people could be thinking this is official. This is permitted. It certainly creates a lot of confusion,'' Perez-Trepichio said.
Perez-Trepichio said people should rely on trusted sources.
''The CDC, the Department of Health of Florida and the Florida Medical Association '-- many organizations and entities that have your interest at heart,'' he said.
He also said it's important to recognize that there are exceptions to the rules of wearing masks '-- but, we all must understand these exceptions.
''Kids that are younger than two years old and all those that have respiratory issues or those that may not be able to self remove the mask '-- those are the exceptions,'' he said.
He also noted since these individuals cannot wear a mask, it's highly recommended they do not go out in public to decrease their chance of exposure.
As of Friday night, the "Freedom to Breathe Agency" Facebook page and website appear to have been taken down.
(C) Copyright 2020 WBBH/WZVN (Waterman Broadcasting). All rights reserved.
VIDEO - Robert F. Kennedy Jr - Vaccine Info for Rally in Denver - YouTube
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 06:55
VIDEO - 'Dishonest': COVIDSafe app has not detected a case despite 6 million downloads
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 06:43
The $2 million app '-- downloaded more than 6.44 million times and launched amid the height of the pandemic in Australia on April 26 '-- was built to help assist state and territory contact-tracing teams uncover close contacts of infected COVID-19 cases who may have been within 1.5 metres of them for more than 15 minutes in public places such as restaurants, cafes or shops.
But testing data provided to the Senate showed its effectiveness, particularly on Apple iPhones, remains an ongoing issue.
Senator Rex Patrick. Credit: Alex Ellinghausen
The testing data, released to the Senate's select committee on COVID-19, shows when an iPhone is locked there remain issues with the app detecting another nearby iPhone user. Only 25 to 50 per cent of the time did it work on May 26 in locked iPhone-to-iPhone testing.
At launch, it was worse, working only 25 per cent of the time or less for locked iPhone to locked iPhone. When it was running in the background, the app also didn't work well.
Testing data. Credit: Digital Transformation Agency.
Issues were also prevalent on Android smartphones, with problems remaining on May 26, especially when the app's testers tried to get iPhones and Androids to share information.
At the app's launch, Government Services Minister Stuart Robert said: "To be effective, users should have the app running in the background when they are coming into contact with others. Your phone does not need to be unlocked for the app to work."
Labor's government services spokesman Bill Shorten accused the government of being "secretive" about the app's dysfunction.
"The current app is clearly not working well enough and the government is being secretive about how often it has actually made a difference," Mr Shorten said.
"COVIDSafe has had major problems from the start like not working properly on iPhones ... After millions of taxpayers' dollars have been spent, the app would want to start showing some proper results soon for it not to be added to the pile of Stuart Robert's disasters."
Mr Robert rejected the criticisms, saying the app was working effectively.
"The app was working at the time of launch '' to say it wasn't is incorrect," a spokesman for Mr Robert said. "The Australian community can have confidence it is working securely and effectively, despite the lack of community transmission of COVID-19."
Mr Shorten said consideration should now be given to whether Australia should follow Britain's lead and switch to the Apple-Google contact exposure alert system, which most technology experts recommend as it is supported by both technology giants and was built with privacy in mind.
"All options should be on the table for a functioning app and we should certainly reflect on the UK moving to the Google and Apple framework," Mr Shorten said.
Britain delayed its tracing app this week and announced it planned a redesign of it using the Apple-Google model after it was found that it did not estimate distance well enough.
Mr Robert's spokesman said the Digital Transformation Agency, the government department that helped build the app, and the federal Health Department were working with Apple and Google "to understand and test" the exposure notification framework since its release to see how it could be applied in Australia. "That testing is ongoing," The spokesman said.
On the app's launch day, 6696 Australians had coronavirus. Since then, a further 926 cases have been identified, many returned travellers. Of the 926, only 40 of those have had the COVIDSafe app and have allowed health officials to look at their close contact data.
Shadow government services spokesman Bill Shorten. Credit: Alex Ellinghausen
Victoria had previously said it used the app to discover one contact who had not been identified by manual tracers. However, it is understood that person was subsequently ruled not to be a "close contact".
On Wednesday, Victoria's Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton said his contact tracers had downloaded the app's data 30 times but had not identified anyone who wasn't already uncovered through the manual interview process.
"There haven't been new contacts identified through the use of the app," Professor Sutton said.
Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt revealed on Thursday that NSW health officials had downloaded people's contact data from the app 10 times.
Government Services Minister Stuart Robert. Credit: Alex Ellinghausen
But the NSW Health Department confirmed on Saturday no contacts or cases had been identified using the app.
"As new cases in NSW have predominantly been in people in hotel quarantine recently, we have had limited opportunity to use the app during this time," NSW Health said.
Ben Grubb is a Desk Editor/Locum Homepage Editor for The Sydney Morning Herald.
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VIDEO - Nancy Pelosi REFUSES to Apologize for This SICK Comment Against the Republican Party She Made - YouTube
Sun, 28 Jun 2020 06:14
VIDEO-Coronavirus Rhapsody (Bohemian Rhapsody parody) - Lockdown Music Video - YouTube
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 22:46
VIDEO - Vatican China Sellout
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 17:20
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Experts are saying the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has been sending $2 billion annually to the Holy See since 2013, the year Pope Francis took office. The lucre is part of a CCP strategy for world domination to bribe, compromise and control Italy through the Vatican and the European Union through Italy. The deal between China and the Vatican seems traceable to the disgraced Theodore McCarrick.
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VIDEO - Major setback for China's African Safari. - YouTube
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 17:05
VIDEO - BBC Radio 4 - Political Thinking with Nick Robinson, 27/06/2020
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 16:18
Nick Robinson gets beneath the surface in a personal and political interview with the leading epidemiologist, Neil Ferguson.
Show moreNick Robinson gets beneath the surface in a personal and political interview with the leading epidemiologist, Prof Neil Ferguson. His discusses how science and politics can best work together, his feelings on being forced to resign from a government committee for breaking lockdown rules, and why he doesn't like his media nickname of 'Professor Lockdown'.
Producers: Peter Snowdon and Martin Rosenbaum
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VIDEO - Animated No Agenda - God Willing, We'll Have a Vaxeline - YouTube
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 15:20
VIDEO - (22) Sagnik Basu on Twitter: "''Why are you protecting it?!'' BLM activist gets into a verbal exchange with an older black guy who was speaking up against tearing the statue down. #emancipationstatue https://t.co/4crUOJhDFP" / Twitter
Sat, 27 Jun 2020 08:31
Something went wrong, but don't fret '-- let's give it another shot.
VIDEO-Meanwhile, in the Scottish Parliament... - YouTube
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 20:25
VIDEO-FOX 7 Discussion: Austin Mayor responds to pause on reopening Texas | FOX 7 Austin
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 12:25
Austin Mayor Steve Adler joins FOX 7 Austin to discuss Gov. Greg Abbott's latest decision to pause the reopening of Texas as COVID-19 cases continue to spike in the state.
Posted 18 hours ago
Facebook Twitter Print Email Latest Videos video Pflugerville company 3D prints reusable masks for the state video CLEAT threatens to sue if police officers not given protective gear get injured during protests video FOX 7 Discussion: Race and police use of violence video FOX 7 Care Force: Veterans coping during the pandemic Good Day Austin View More video Interview with Nixta Taqueria video Memorabilia from Threadgill's to be auctioned off June 27 video COVID Crusades video Austin Family: Bolstering children's mental health View More
VIDEO-Doctors unleash on politics as coronavirus spikes: 'No other country debates masks'
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 12:21
New coronavirus diagnoses in the United States are skyrocketing '-- along with criticisms about the patchwork of state and local policies that are faltering in the effort to prevent community transmission of the virus.
As Sun Belt states like Arizona, California, Florida and Texas become new epicenters of the COVID-19 pandemic, attention has shifted to the increasingly polarizing debate over protocols designed to contain new infections.
State lockdowns have gradually relaxed, and the public has mostly adjusted to life behind face coverings '-- but not without fits and starts. Pew Research data released this week show that at least 65% of Americans have adopted the near constant use of personal protective equipment (PPE).
However, social distancing and the use of masks in public have become a source of contention among those who feel it violates their personal freedoms.
In a series of interviews, doctors on the front lines in states where COVID-19 infections are exploding lamented the controversy in stark terms. They argue that mixed messages from mayors, governors and President Donald Trump are making it harder for people to appreciate the need for masking '-- especially as infections among younger citizens jump sharply.
''Honestly the politicization of science is one of our incredible societal downfalls. Science should not be politics,'' Dr. Hilary Fairbrother, a Houston emergency medicine physician, told Yahoo Finance on Wednesday. The Lone Star state is in the throes of a record number of cases that threatens to overwhelm health systems in major cities like Dallas and Houston.
Fairbrother said the debate has become a Hobson's choice that lacks nuance, between those who want to ''close down the entire world for at least 3 years until there is no coronavirus left in any corner of the planet,'' and others who are unconcerned about rising casualties.
''There's no middle ground, there's no common sense or application of good science,'' she added. ''I beg people to start listening to scientists, and stop listening to politicians on all things coronavirus.''
There are over 2.3 million coronavirus cases in the U.S. (Graphic: David Foster/Yahoo Finance)
'A very different culture'When the outbreak first led to mass restrictions on public life, some experts cautioned that Americans '-- accustomed as they are to constitutionally protected freedoms '-- were ill-prepared to accept how a raging pandemic would affect their quality of life.
Those warnings have been proven prescient, as quarantine fatigue and protests against social injustice have led many to abandon anti-coronavirus protections designed to bend the curve of new infections.
Many of the states now on the outbreak's front lines are struggling to balance individual rights with the mandates of a public health crisis, and falling short of the mark. Citizens, as well as investors, are banking on the idea that the latest surge of infections won't lead to a renewal of restrictive stay-at-home orders that crushed the global economy.
''I'm not a constitutional scholar but this is what happens when you try and use federalism at the science level,'' said Dr. Murtaza Akhter, an assistant professor in the University of Arizona's Department of Emergency Medicine. The Grand Canyon State has nearly 60,000 cases and around 1500 deaths, and has been the center of a raucous public debate over mask-wearing in public.
''The fact that people are still saying 'this is America, do what you want' that's fine from a legal or constitutional perspective, but from a public health and science perspective that's a terrible idea,'' Akhter said.
''We have a very different culture here. There's no other country I know of in the world that debates masks,'' Akhter added. ''People don't even debate seatbelts anymore... but to debate masks during a pandemic is so utterly ironic that it's hard to comprehend.''
Akhter, who accused Arizona's governor of ''passing the buck'' on using face masks, said the coronavirus ''doesn't know state, city borders or national borders, it transcends all borders and all people. So the problem with having some people wearing masks and others not wearing them, is that the threat [of spreading] is still going to be there.''
In Houston, where hospital capacity is nearing a breaking point, the dire situation has become an empirical study in how a lack of policy coordination can lead to dire consequences. Texas Governor Greg Abbott has come under fire for downplaying the need for masks, and allowing mayors to make their own calls for a mandate.
''The biggest concern is that we're going to lose a handle on the situation,'' Cedric Dark, an assistant professor at Texas' Baylor College of Medicine, told Yahoo Finance. He was critical of Abbott's decision to reopen the economy in May, despite an earlier suggestion that the state could corral a COVID-19 surge.
After the reopening, ''those cases started going up, not only linearly but exponentially,'' Dark said.
''Unless we battle it back now, we're going to be forced to shut everything down [again]...I think people need to realize it. We need to dial it back and go back to where we were in Phase 1,'' the physician added.
Javier David is an editor for Yahoo Finance. Follow him on Twitter: @TeflonGeek
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VIDEO-Moe Factz on Twitter: "@roostercogburn9 @adamcurry Democrats can't let Republicans have this "win". Ohhh nooo." / Twitter
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 12:18
Democrats can't let Republicans have this "win". Ohhh nooo.
VIDEO-Steve Guest on Twitter: "Nancy Pelosi mistakes George Floyd's name, calls him ''George Kirby'' while discussing the name of the Democrats' bill https://t.co/GouW6MNGxK" / Twitter
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 12:11
Eileen @ allinqueen2000
56m Because she didn't care who he was when it happened & doesn't care now. It was all about using a tragedy to garner Black votes. Meanwhile Democrats are allowing minority neighborhoods to be destroyed in their districts.How could any sane minority vote Democrat?
View conversation ·
VIDEO - Dr. Robin DiAngelo Wants White People to Stop Saying They're Not Racist - YouTube
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 11:26
VIDEO - CDC eyes TikTok to revamp coronavirus messaging for younger people as infections surge
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 10:54
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is considering tapping social media platform TikTok to encourage more young Americans to practice public health precautions as coronavirus cases surge among younger people, officials said Thursday.
Data indicates that the new infections seen across the country "are targeting younger individuals," CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield said on a conference call with reporters. Redfield said that while young people face a lower risk of severe disease and death due to Covid-19, a high rate of infection among young Americans increases the chances that they go on to infect older, at-risk people.
Young people might not be taking the pandemic as seriously as older Americans, CDC's deputy director for infectious diseases, Jay Butler, said on the call.
"We may need to get out the message that young people are not somehow naturally immune to this virus, although they may be at lower risk of severe infection," he said. "The tools that can be used include social media. We're exploring TikTok."
Operated by Beijing-based tech giant ByteDance, TikTok, is a social media platform focused on short-form video. The app uses an algorithm to determine what kind of videos a user likes and delivers them on a scrollable page. Organizations can also pay to place short-video advertisements on users' pages. The app has exploded in popularity, especially among young people, in recent years.
Representatives of TikTok were not immediately available to comment on whether the CDC has been in touch about a public health campaign.
"That is something we're looking into and I'm of the age that I have to stop and think what is a TikTok, but I've learned that over the past month," Butler added. Beyond TikTok and other social media strategies, Butler said the CDC might issue public service announcements to urge Americans to practice physical distancing and to wear a mask.
Multiple officials in states with expanding outbreaks have attributed the rise in cases to young people failing to practice social distancing at bars that are overcapacity. In Florida, the average age of an infected person has continued to decline in recent weeks. On Wednesday, the state reported that the average age of patients was 33 years old, down from over 65 years old in March.
Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis has pointed to the decreasing average age of patients as evidence that the state is effectively protecting its most vulnerable residents. However, White House coronavirus advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci warned Tuesday that scientists are seeing "more and more" complications with Covid-19 in young people.
DeSantis as well as Texas Gov. Greg Abbott have both attributed rising cases in their states to young people failing to practice social distancing, especially in bars.
While young people infected with the coronavirus who are otherwise healthy face a lower chance of dying or being hospitalized than older individuals, "there is some risk of severe illness, including among younger people," Butler said. Scientists are also still researching the long-term health effects of getting infected with the coronavirus, which could lead to quality-of-life issues for young patients later in life.
Now, as the virus continues to spread widely among younger people, putting many people throughout the country at risk and setting back the country's response to the pandemic, Redfield acknowledged the public health messaging has to be more effective.
"Whereas the impact and consequences of Covid infection on them may not be highly associated with hospitalization and death, they do act as a transmission connector for individuals that could in fact be at higher risk," Redfield said of young people. "I remain concerned about trying to understand effective public health messaging that we need to get to those individuals that are under the age of 45, under the age of 30."
Some public health officials have expressed frustration that the CDC remained largely quiet through March and April as the virus took hold, mostly in New York and the Northeast. It wasn't until June that the CDC resumed regular news briefings after a hiatus that began in March.
Dr. Ashish Jha, director of the Harvard Global Health Institute, for example wrote in an op-ed in April that "the CDC has been inexplicably absent, and Americans are suffering and dying for it."
VIDEO - Bill And Melinda Gates Have Sharp Words For U.S.' Lack Of Leadership Role In Fighting Pandemic
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 10:03
Speaking at the Forbes 400 Summit on Philanthropy, the couple discussed plans to make sure that Covid-19 treatments and vaccines don't just go to the highest-bidding nations but are distributed equitably. As the coronavirus pandemic continues to ravage the globe, Bill and Melinda Gates have been on the forefront of coordinating the search for effective prevention and treatment of the disease. The couple, who has spent years fighting against infectious diseases like polio, is critical of the U.S. response to Covid-19''its testing and contact-tracing efforts lag behind countries like Germany. ''Usually the United States plays a role in global problem-solving, so rather than withdrawing from WHO, they'd be involved, collaborating with other countries, not just trying to cast blame. It's a tricky situation, where the U.S. sort of turned inward on this one,'' Bill Gates said at the ninth annual and first virtual Forbes 400 Summit on Philanthropy last Thursday.
''We're trying to stitch different country efforts together. The European leaders are trying to fill that vacuum,'' the Microsoft cofounder told the 200-plus philanthropists gathered online for his talk. ''[U.S. inaction] erodes the kind of relationship and admiration and self-confidence that people have had in us as a country,'' added Gates, who brought up the WHO's key role in the fight against smallpox and polio. Gates said that ''rationality will reappear from someone at some point,'' and hoped that the U.S. will work with other countries and step up the way it did with smallpox, malaria, polio and HIV.
Though the virus will remain a threat until the majority of the globe is inoculated, Gates says he is optimistic about the initial results from three coronavirus vaccine candidates (made by Moderna, AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson). But the real test will be in the manufacturing and distribution of the eventual product, because the world needs more than 10 billion doses to vaccinate 80% of the population (the current estimate of percentage needed to achieve herd immunity) with a two-dose vaccine. The tech visionary estimated that it's a doable task over two years if both AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson's candidates are successful, but the prolonged manufacturing process means there needs to be coordination in how the vaccine is distributed.
''One of the reasons we are so involved in this is that you don't want the first vaccines to go to the highest-bidding countries,'' Melinda Gates explained. ''There are 60 million healthcare workers [around the world]. They deserve to get the vaccine first, they're the ones dealing with this on the front lines, trying to keep us all safe. And then you have to start to tier from there, based on the countries and the populations. Here in the United States, it's going to be Black people who really should get it first and many indigenous people, as well as people with underlying symptoms, and then elderly people.''
The couple, whose Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has committed more than $350 million to fight the coronavirus, plans to utilize two nonprofits'--The Global Fund To Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, and Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance'--to help equitably distribute therapeutics and vaccines to developing countries. Their foundation pledged an additional $1.6 billion in early June to assist with Gavi's wider mission for the next five years. The Gateses also reiterated their support for the World Health Organization, with which they've worked for two decades. ''It is not perfect, it's not even close to perfect, but it is what the world set up after World War II to deal with things like this pandemic,'' Melinda said of the WHO. President Trump announced the U.S.' intention to withdraw membership and funding from the international organization in late May.
Melinda Gates revealed that when Ebola broke out in East Africa and made its way to Lagos, Nigeria'--one of the most populous cities in the world'--the WHO converted its polio resources to fight the new threat. Polio clinics became emergency response clinics that did contact tracing and quarantining, which prevented the virus from spreading to the U.S. ''The world got lucky on Ebola,'' said Melinda, who reminded the audience that diseases like measles were more infectious than coronavirus. ''There are other hemorrhagic fevers out there. If we don't have a functioning WHO, we're not going to see an immediate response like that.''
''This is our time. We, as philanthropists, will be remembered by what we did during this epidemic.''
As the weather gets colder, the Gateses see a second wave of coronavirus infections as likely and think masks are a key deterrent. The couple is critical of the general lack of compliance in the U.S. when it comes to wearing masks. ''A mask is not that expensive, it's not that ugly,'' Bill commented. ''The elevator pitch is: test, contact trace, isolate and quarantine, and wear a mask, and role-model wearing a mask. Every single person should be wearing a mask, without an exception,'' Melinda implored.
The couple pointed out the disproportionate effect coronavirus has had on minorities, and the gaps in the healthcare system that the pandemic has exposed. Melinda, who recently partnered with MacKenzie Bezos to launch the Equality Can't Wait Challenge, a competition that will award $30 million to organizations with ideas to help expand women's power in the U.S. by 2030, also highlighted gender inequities exacerbated by the pandemic. More women work at the hospitality and retail jobs devastated by shutdown orders, and a lower percentage of women are rejoining the workforce as the economy reopens.
''The other issue that's going on is we know women are doing 2.5 more times unpaid labor at home,'' such as caring for the elderly or making sure the kids are keeping up with their virtual schooling, said Melinda, who brought up that the U.S. is the only industrialized country that does not have a federal family medical leave policy. ''We cannot reopen this economy the way we want to unless we deal with the unpaid labor. We have to update our thinking. . . . Today, of most married families with a child, 64% of them [have both parents] go out and work. So if we're going to take care of the family and take care of capitalism and the economy, you've got to address that issue.''
The couple, who started the Giving Pledge with Warren Buffett ten years ago, wrapped up their talk by asking the philanthropists from 27 countries in attendance to give now. ''This is our time. We as philanthropists will be remembered by what we do during this time of this epidemic,'' said Melinda. ''There are so many places you can invest. Whether it's in food insecurity in your own city, whether it's helping with race issues, whether it's helping with Covid specifically, we've seen so many philanthropists step up and do creative things in their communities.''
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VIDEO - Pelosi To Those Tearing Down Founders' Statues: "All For" Review, "Subject Everything To Scrutiny" - YouTube
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 10:00
VIDEO - Guo Wengui Claims: China Pays Vatican 2 Billion Dollars / Year (Bribes) '' gloria.tv
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 09:57
Guo Wengui without giving evidence: China "allocates $2 billion a year" to bribe the Vatican to silence and influence the Church. Source: WarRoom.org [Steve Bannon], June 20. More
Guo Wengui without giving evidence: China "allocates $2 billion a year" to bribe the Vatican to silence and influence the Church.Source: WarRoom.org [Steve Bannon], June 20.
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For Pete's sake it doesn't take a genius to realize that Francis sold out the Chinese Catholic Church and allowed China to make it's own "Catholic"Church with their own bishops, etc. The Chinese steal from and bribes everyone. Francis got something for his sell out. And at the end the day China has massive influence in a Vatican that was running out of money.
"Francis got something for his sell out." . For an ideologue like the current Pope,
"something"
could be
nothing
except the satisfaction of knowing he aided and advanced the spread of Marxism.
"The Chinese steal from and bribes(sic) everyone." Generally true. They're also known for blackmail. But there's no evidence they've either bribed or blackmailed anyone here . Mr. Wengui is making an '... More
"Francis got something for his sell out." . For an ideologue like the current Pope,
"something"
could be
nothing
except the satisfaction of knowing he aided and advanced the spread of Marxism.
"The Chinese steal from and bribes(sic) everyone." Generally true. They're also known for blackmail. But there's no evidence they've either bribed or blackmailed anyone here . Mr. Wengui is making an accusation absent any proof.
It doesn't take a genius to realize that renders his accusation meaningless.
The operative phrase being, "without giving evidence" Therein lies the problem. Mr. Wengui could just as easily claim they're blackmailing Pope Francis. Unlike bribery, blackmail automatically compensates for inflation. ;-)
Caligula turned the imperial palace into a brothel to raise money.
VIDEO - Video Jun 25, 1 34 12 PM.mp4
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 09:42
VIDEO-Verizon suspends advertising on Facebook, joins growing boycott - Reuters
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 04:52
(Reuters) - Verizon Communications Inc said on Thursday it was pausing advertising on Facebook Inc in July, in support of a campaign that called out the social media giant for not doing enough to stop hate speech on its platforms.
Verizon is the biggest yet to join the advertising boycott, which has gained the backing of dozens of U.S. companies, and its announcement was a blow to Facebook's efforts to contain the growing revolt.
''We're pausing our advertising until Facebook can create an acceptable solution that makes us comfortable,'' a Verizon representative said.
U.S. civil rights groups are urging brands to support the Stop Hate for Profit campaign, which protests the world's biggest social network's lax approach to hate speech, harassment and misinformation.
The Anti-Defamation League said in a letter to advertisers on Thursday it had found a Verizon ad on Facebook appearing next to a video containing anti-Semitic rhetoric from conspiracy group QAnon.
''Advertisements are running alongside divisive, hateful and conspiratorial content - not something that most companies want,'' the ADL said.
Ice cream brand Ben & Jerry's and outdoor gear companies Patagonia and The North Face earlier said they would suspend Facebook ads.
Facebook said it is working with civil rights organizations.
FILE PHOTO: The Verizon logo is seen on the side of a truck in New York City, U.S., October 13, 2016. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid''We respect any brand's decision and remain focused on the important work of removing hate speech and providing critical voting information,'' said Carolyn Everson, Facebook's vice president of global business.
The company intensified outreach to advertisers this week as it worked to contain the damage, without pledging any specific changes, recipients of those messages said.
One of Facebook's top spenders, consumer goods giant Procter & Gamble Co, on Wednesday pledged to conduct a review of ad platforms and stop spending where it found hateful content. P&G declined to say if it had reached a decision on Facebook.
Reporting by Ayanti Bera, Sheila Dang and Katie Paul; Editing by Lisa Shumaker and Leslie Adler
VIDEO-McCarthy slams Senate Democrats for 'appalling' treatment of Tim Scott over police reform bill | Fox News
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 04:04
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., took Democrats to task Thursday for blocking the Senate Republican police reform bill a day earlier, calling their treatment of Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., "appalling."
"You know what Nancy Pelosi said yesterday, and doubled down [on], that Tim Scott and the Republicans were supporting murder," McCarthy said on "The Daily Briefing with Dana Perino." "She says this to Tim Scott, who didn't start working on this bill a month ago after the death of George Floyd. He's worked it his entire life. Tim Scott's legislative achievements [are] opportunity zones, criminal justice reform, funding of black colleges."
SENATE REPUBLICANS' POLICE REFORM BILL FAILS ON TEST VOTE AMID DEM OPPOSITION
Pelosi asserted in an interview Tuesday that Republicans are "trying to get away with murder, actually -- the murder of George Floyd" using the reform bill introduced by Scott.
Scott himself ripped Democrats Wednesday after his bill failed to receive the 60 votes required to open debate, accusing them of punting on the issue until after the election and abusing what he described as their "monopoly" on black voters.
McCarthy also blasted Senate Minority Whip Dick Durbin, D-Ill., who used the word "token" to describe the bill authored by Scott, the lone African-American GOP senator. Durbin later apologized.
"What's most frustrating to me is watching the speaker of the House call Tim Scott, in essence, his bill as murder," Scott said. "And the number two individual in the Democrat Senate side said it was 'a token.' That's what they said to a man who rose above it all and sits in the U.S. Senate."
McCarthy then recalled Scott telling him a story saying he had been stopped from entering the Senate because security didn't believe he was a senator. According to McCarthy, Scott said he showed a guard his Senate pin, only to be asked who he had taken it from.
"That's the passion that Tim Scott has to do something about this to unite this nation," McCarthy said. "And the only people who are denying this is [Sen. Chuck] Schumer and Pelosi. It's appalling."
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McCarthy also criticized Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., for voting to block debate on Scott's bill.
"Why wouldn't she vote to go forward, knowing what has gone on and knowing you need police reform and knowing you're going to get 20 amendments?" McCarthy said. "No, she's making a decision that she wants ... to try to be a vice president instead of ... represent the people [to whom] she swore that she would uphold the Constitution for. That's appalling to me."
Fox News' Adam Shaw and Gregg Re contributed to this report.
VIDEO-Acyn Torabi on Twitter: "Carville: I think there's a better chance that Trump does not run for re-election than he is re-elected... Somebody's going to have to go tell this guy look you just can't risk the humiliating defeat that's coming yo
Fri, 26 Jun 2020 03:56
Carville: I think there's a better chance that Trump does not run for re-election than he is re-elected... Somebody's going to have to go tell this guy look you just can't risk the humiliating defeat that's coming your way and Jared.. is going to have to sit down have a real talk
pic.twitter.com/veAXvdDU0h
VIDEO-A Message - YouTube
Thu, 25 Jun 2020 23:01
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Make Good For Austin Ramsdale
Donation note for Austin, Assistant [to the new] Human Resource:
Thanks for doing a make good on my 33 [in binary - $1000.01] donation. I
couldn't miss the opportunity to have my boss and friend of 10 years
called a douchebag - David Carlock. I hit him in the mouth several months
back, and after a few listens, his amygdala seems to have returned to
normal size. He may require a second dbag to get through his thick skull.
Also, I'd like to call out Brian Hagenmair as a douchebag.
Two quick q's: I know it's been talked about before, but has anyone put
together a short 5-minute primer/intro for NA onboarding? I feel like the
nuances and inside references creates a lengthy (2-5 episode) onboarding
period that could be dramatically shortened with a concise intro "Start
Here" episode.
Secondly, I've tried to find the NA Jingle repository in the past, and I
think there's an opportunity for a Jingle Generator - There are a ton of
hidden gems, when unearthed and put together, that could spice up the
donation segments. At least once a week there's a jingle request that goes
unanswered due to misnaming/can't find. I've
registered najingles.com and najinglegenerator.com - if there's an
opportunity to tie into your jingles folder, I would love to create a
drag-and-drop jingle generator for donation notes. Mix and match, do your
worst, share with the gitmo nation!
No jingles, but need lots of job karma, which I will redistribute equally
to all in the Gitmo Nation.
Love and Light.
PS - the end of show tune for 1251 with Anderson Pooper giggling may be
the best post-show song I've heard. Kudos to whomever crafted that amazing
piece of work.
Meetups
Florida
Despite having to make last minute changes due to a SURGE! of Space AIDS
in Florida, the Tampa Bay Day Drinking Meetup was a success. I tried
updating everyone as much as I could to the venue change due to Florida
closing all bars the day prior and was grateful for the turnout. I kept
hearing, "If there isn't one in your area, start one." and that is exactly
what lead to me meeting this awesome group of individuals. The comradery
is what you would expect but I was still surprised to see human resources
with amygdalas so, so small. Lessons were learned from Murphy's Law but I
know we will all meet up again with more to join.
- Sir Locybin Knight of the Psychonauts
(If it helps, Sir Locybin - psilocybin)
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James Carville on MSNBC - NO chance Trump will be re-elected PERIOD.mp3
BMI - political-entities_pol1.2019.pdf
Pelosi To Those Tearing Down Founders' Statues - All For Review, Subject Everything To Scrutiny.mp3
New BLM Chant - They can't stop the revolution.mp3
Patrisse Cullors BLM Co-founder -We are here to push Trump out.mp3
Guo Wengui Claims - China Pays Vatican 2 Billion Dollars per Year.mp3
The Pope and CCP - $2 billion deal - Vigano.mp3
Bill And Melinda Gates Defend WHO and espouse lack of US leadership.mp3
Amazons carbon footpriint.mp3
Biden on masks.mp3
Bill Cosby Update WHYY.mp3
China holding Canadians for Mung.mp3
Covic AZ wrap hoprros NBC.mp3
COVID Florida newest NBC.mp3
Cute Middle Schooler rant.mp3
dramatized blurb covid network NBC.mp3
human life ISO.mp3
jenna marbles apologizes.mp3
Leah Michelle apologizes.mp3
Mob rule supercut back to Kavanaugh.mp3
Monuments order PBS twisted.mp3
NBC Surge kids getting scared COVID.mp3
New Migration halt 325 NPR.mp3
Newshour Brooks on newest polls.mp3
Russian bounty NBC.mp3
Taylor swift irked about census.mp3
this is not a mask.mp3
untitled-[1.2].html
Woodrow Wilson Cancelled.mp3
young Pharoh on Veronica BAY One.mp3
young Pharoh on Veronica BAY Two.mp3
100 degrees in Sibeeria.mp3
120 million dead.mp3
Good CNBC reprt of CDC asessment of SURGE - and TIKTOK for Messaging.mp3
masks everyone.wav
masks saviours.wav
33-covid-compilation.mp3
Australian COVID app is not working at all.mp3
Verizon suspends advertising on Facebook, joins growing boycott - Reuters.mp3
'MASTER' BEDROOM NAME TO CHANGE DUE TO OVERARCHING THEME in Houston.mp3
31. Dateline NBC - Implicit Association Test -4- Blacks racist good Whites racist bad.mp3
Rob DiAngelo on White Fragility -1- Explanation of the term.mp3
Rob DiAngelo on White Fragility -2- Specifically FRAGILITY and why.mp3
Rob DiAngelo on White Fragility -3- White people are racist.mp3
Tonight Show - Dr. Robin DiAngelo -1- White man Black woman speaking with each other EXCEPTIONAL.mp3
Tonight Show - Dr. Robin DiAngelo -2- White people cant do it becuase they're assholes.mp3
Tonight Show - Dr. Robin DiAngelo -3- Defining racism.mp3
White Fragility - Dr Paul Maxwell -1- breaks down what DiAngelo just said.mp3
White Fragility - Dr Paul Maxwell -2- Intretsing twist in his analysis HANDICAPPED.mp3
White Fragility - Dr Paul Maxwell -3- The Test and Cure.mp3
28. Dateline NBC - Implicit Association Test -1- An Expert is teted.mp3
29. Dateline NBC - Implicit Association Test -2- BLACK are also Racist.mp3
30. Dateline NBC - Implicit Association Test -3- Black bias is GOOD.mp3