Court sides with filmmaker who took on Vancouver aquariums captivity practice

first_imgVANCOUVER – British Columbia’s Appeal Court has ruled in favour of a filmmaker whose documentary criticized the Vancouver Aquarium’s practice of keeping beluga whales and dolphins in captivity.It said Wednesday that a lower court judge erred in ordering the filmmaker to remove 15 segments of his documentary that the aquarium claimed could cause the facility irreparable harm.Justice Elizabeth Bennett said a B.C. Supreme Court judge accepted, “without any further analysis,” an affidavit by the aquarium’s chief financial officer and senior vice-president of business who said the derogatory use of copyrighted material could cause harm that would be impossible to calculate or repair.“There was not a shred of evidence in support of that conclusion,” Bennett said in a written ruling, adding the affidavit did not mention any damage pertaining to loss of donations, attendance or other factors.The aquarium filed a lawsuit against filmmaker Gary Charbonneau in March 2016, alleging copyright infringement and breach of contract. A month later, it was granted an injunction to remove disputed content from the one-hour documentary called “Vancouver Aquarium Uncovered,” which YouTube refused to remove at the request of the facility.Bennett said aspects of the documentary that are highly critical come from clips of public hearings where aquarium officials have spoken and of their public positions and budgets, juxtaposed with interviews of experts and former and current park board members, “all critical of the aquarium.”“The film is about a public dialogue and debate on the issue of whether cetaceans should be kept in captivity,” said Bennett, who wrote the first part of the decision on behalf of a three-judge panel.Justice Mary E. Saunders said the aquarium failed to establish why the film would cause irreparable harm as she highlighted freedom of expression.“That freedom of expression affects not just the parties to this litigation but also the larger community whose interests are engaged by the application,” she wrote.Charbonneau called the lawsuit a bullying tactic, saying he aimed to expose the truth about the facility’s captivity practices.“It’s a huge win for artists across Canada. It’s a huge win for the poor animals in captivity and it just shows that the bullying from the Vancouver Aquarium is coming to an end.”Charbonneau said he would insert about five minutes of material that he had to edit out of the online film.The aquarium said it is disappointed in the ruling and has not yet decided whether it will move forward with its copyright lawsuit filed in 2016.The facility provides a safe haven for marine mammals, including rescued whales and dolphins, it said in the statement.However, Charbonneau said in 50 years, the aquarium has only rescued one false killer whale and three porpoises, two of which died there, while one was released.“They’ve never rescued a single orca. They’ve never rescued a single beluga. They’ve never rescued a single dolphin,” he said. “The dolphins that they’re claiming are under their rescue and rehabilitation program they bought from Japan. They’re buying dolphins that do tricks. There’s no rescue or rehabilitation.”An aquarium spokeswoman said no one from the facility was available for an interview about its programs, but that a Pacific white-sided dolphin has been rescued.The aquarium argued Charbonneau used copyrighted material from its website and blog without permission, but the written decision did not mention its use as such, focusing instead on the charter right to freedom of expression.Animal Justice, along with the B.C. Civil Liberties Association, were interveners in the case.Monique Pongracic-Speier, a lawyer representing the civil liberties association, said the decision recognized freedom of expression requires the most stringent protection when a court is considering whether to grant an injunction pending a trial.The Vancouver Park Board voted in May to stop new whales, dolphins and porpoises being brought to city parks. The aquarium’s false killer whale, a harbour porpoise and a Pacific white-sided dolphin will be allowed to stay at the facility in Stanley Park, but they can’t be used in shows.— Follow @CamilleBains1 on Twitter.Note to readers: This is a corrected story. An earlier version attributed comments to Justice Mary E. Saunders in para 6last_img read more

Ontario minister exchanges words with federal minister over asylum seekers

first_imgWINNIPEG – Ontario’s minister responsible for immigration has demanded an apology from federal Immigration Minister Ahmed Hussen for saying the province is promoting fear about asylum seekers.“Maybe the minister should sit down and have a nice cup of tea, calm down a little bit and maybe phone me and apologize for calling me unCanadian,” Lisa MacLeod said Friday.Federal, provincial and territorial ministers were meeting in Winnipeg to discuss immigration issues when Hussen was asked about Ontario Premier Doug Ford demanding that federal government pay millions to provide supports for asylum seekers.Ford has said the federal government is ushering people across the border and asylum seekers, whom he calls “illegal border crossers,” have caused a housing crisis in Ontario.Hussen said the new premier’s messaging is irresponsible.“It’s divisive. It’s fear-mongering and it’s not Canadian. It’s very dangerous,” Hussen said.“Ontario sadly has chosen the language of fear. They’ve chosen to intentionally use language that could potentially criminalize asylum seekers in the minds of Canadians.”He added that housing issues are a shared responsibility and it’s unfortunate “Ontario has chosen to step away from the table.”MacLeod said she thought the minister was acting mean-spirited towards her personally.“His answer was directed at me to try and intimidate me,” she said. “And I will not be intimidated.”Earlier in the day, MacLeod walked out of the meeting after a testy exchange with the minister. She did not sign onto the meeting’s communique.Jeremy Harrison, Saskatchewan’s minister responsible for immigration, also refused to sign. In a statement, Harrison said the government of Saskatchewan expects Ottawa to handle the bill for asylum seekers.Ontario would still like to work in partnership with the federal government, MacLeod said, but she said the province’s concerns aren’t being heard.Toronto is facing $90 million in social assistance costs and $75 million in shelter costs related to asylum seekers, MacLeod said. Ottawa has promised $11 million to help.Conservative immigration critic Michelle Rempel accused Hussen of denigrating rhetoric and name-calling. The federal Conservatives have called for an emergency meeting of the citizenship and immigration committee.last_img read more

Cancelled hunt cancels incomes for fragile Northern towns

first_imgAPTN National NewsPressure from international media and environmentalists has cancelled a planned sport hunt for polar bears in Nunavut.It’s a phenomenon that has become increasingly common, as more and more attention is focused on the hunting practices of Canada’s Inuit and Innu.But, as APTN National News reporter Wayne Rivers asks, what about the Northern communities whose fragile economies depend upon these hunts to survive?last_img

PM to meet party leaders on Delimitation report

However it was postponed owing to some administrative issues.The Ministry of Local Government appointed the five-member committee on 1st December 2015 to look into discrepancies regarding demarcation of boundaries and shortcomings of the report submitted by the National Delimitation Commission (NDC). Mustapha said Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe will look to reach a consensus on the report during talks expected to be held next Monday. The release of the report by the Delimitation Committee reviewing the demarcation of electoral boundaries in local government wards, was to be released last month. It was entrusted to carryout demarcation activities after reviewing the appeals made with regards to the demarcation of 206 out of 336 local government areas.Elections Commission Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya had said earlier the Local Government elections can be held within two months after the receipt of the Delimitation Committee report. (Colombo Gazette) Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe is to meet party leaders next week to discuss the Delimitation Committee report.Local Government and Provincial Councils Minister Faizer Mustapha today refused to accept the Delimitation Committee report as it was not signed by some committee members. read more

TSX moves lower traders await US Federal Reserve moves on stimulus

TSX moves lower, traders await U.S. Federal Reserve moves on stimulus TORONTO – The Toronto stock market closed lower Monday with buyers inclined to do little as they eye whether the U.S. Federal Reserve will come up with another jolt of stimulus later this week that could revive a flagging economy.The S&P/TSX composite index fell 52.58 points to 12,215.43 as investors nibbled on profits from last week’s 2.66 per cent gain, while the TSX Venture Exchange was off six points to 1,270.71.The Canadian dollar was up 0.07 of a cent to a one-year high of 102.3 cents US as copper prices added to Friday’s sharp run up on stimulus hopes.The loonie was also supported by the hawkish stance of the Bank of Canada. The central bank left its key rate unchanged at one per cent last week and repeated language indicating rates will likely rise at some point in the future.U.S. markets were also lower after jobs data last week missed modest expectations, raising expectations the Fed will announce on Thursday another round of bond buying, known as quantitative easing, to help lower interest rates and thus boost loan growth.“Fed fumes is how I’ve referred to it,” said Craig Fehr, Canadian markets specialist at Edward Jones in St. Louis.“It’s abundantly clear right now that the markets are being powered by expectations of what central banks are going to do.”The Dow Jones industrial average closed down 52.35 points to 13,254.29 while the Nasdaq composite index fell 32.4 points to 3,104.02. The S&P 500 index slipped 8.84 points to 1,429.08.Losses picked up after the late afternoon announcement that Americans cut back on their credit card use in July for the second straight month, suggesting many remain cautious in the face of high unemployment and slow growth.The Federal Reserve says total borrowing dipped US$3.3 billion in July from June to a seasonally adjusted $2.705 trillion.Traders were also cautious as data released Monday showed that China’s economic slump is worsening.Imports declined 2.6 per cent from a year earlier, below analysts’ expectations of growth in low single digits. That came on top of August’s decline in factory output to a three-year low and other signs growth is still decelerating despite repeated stimulus efforts.A slowing Chinese economy is particularly bad news for commodity prices and stocks on the resource-intensive Toronto stock market.Analysts expect Chinese growth fell to a three-year low of 7.6 per cent in the latest quarter.In a speech to the Asia Pacific Economic Co-operation meeting in Vladivostok, Russia, Chinese President Hu Jintao gave no growth forecast or details of possible new stimulus but promised to continue a “proactive fiscal policy,” or government spending to pump up the economy.Gold stocks led TSX decliners as bullion pulled back $8.70 to US$1,731.80 an ounce. Iamgold Inc. (TSX:IMG) faded 32 cents to C$13.46 while Goldcorp Inc. (TSX:G) gave back 85 cents to $41.21.The base metals segment lost early gains to slip 0.46 per cent even as hopes for further stimulus measures from central banks pushed copper prices to a 17-week high. The December contract in New York was ahead five cents to US$3.69 a pound, adding to a 13-cent jump on Friday.“Copper is a China story,” added Fehr, noting China is the world’s biggest consumer of the metal watched as an economic barometer as it is used in so many industries.“(China) will post a pretty good number in 2012 and if indeed we’re going to get more easing out of the Chinese central bank, that will only provide additional support for internal demand.”Sherritt International (TSX:S) rose 24 cents to C$4.68 while Thompson Creek Metals Co. (TSX:TCM) fell 16 cents to $3.07.The energy sector was 0.1 per cent lower with oil prices higher for a fourth session. The October crude contract on the New York Mercantile Exchange was up 12 cents to US$96.54 a barrel. Cenovus Energy (TSX:CVE) dropped 27 cents to C$33.95.Talisman Energy Inc., (TSX:TLM) shares ran up 22 cents to $14.09 as the company said that John Manzoni has agreed to step down as president and chief executive. He’s being replaced by Hal Kvisle, a former CEO of TransCanada Corp. (TSX:TRP) who is already a Talisman director.The telecom sector was the best advancer, up 0.49 per cent with Telus Corp. (TSX:T) ahead 56 cents to $62.32.BCE (TSX:BCE) was up 12 cents to $44.26 as it said it will launch a made-in-Canada competitor to Netflix, available in English and French. CEO George Cope made the announcement at a CRTC hearing in Montreal into Bell’s $3.4-billion acquisition of Astral Media.BCE also said Monday it will divest 10 radio stations in five markets as part of the deal to acquire Astal.A major TSX loser was Ottawa-based nuclear medicine company Nordion Inc. (TSX:NDN) which lost a arbitration ruling to Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd. Nordion shares plunged $3.82 or 36.52 per cent to $6.64 after falling as low as $5.38 as the company also said it would suspend its quarterly dividend and stop buying back shares on its stock buyback plan. by Malcolm Morrison, The Canadian Press Posted Sep 10, 2012 4:51 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email read more

Hotmail turns 15 years old

first_imgHotmail has turned 15 years old this week. It may have fallen out of style, but the web mail service is still chugging along, and Microsoft is continuing to make improvements to the platform. Still, there was a time long ago when Microsoft didn’t own Hotmail, and the service was one of the few – if not the leading – provider of free Web-based email.Many people laugh and scoff at Hotmail, but it’s still one of the largest email providers on the Web and many people still love and cling to their Hotmail accounts. The service has over 360 million unique users each month, and according to Microsoft, they filter out 98% of all spam messages that come in to the service.AdChoices广告Microsoft is playing up their recent improvements to Hotmail, like making it 10x faster than last year, integrating Facebook chat, and the ability to import and manage accounts from Gmail, Yahoo, and AOL all in the same interface. They’re also touting Hotmail’s integration with Windows Live SkyDrive – a kind of Dropbox competitor – as a quick and easy way to manage attachments like photos and video without having to worry about them clogging up your inbox.However, even with all of those features, many will assure you that those 360 million uniques are either spammers with hundreds of accounts, or people who are simply keep their old email accounts live, but have long ago moved on.Regardless of how you use Hotmail, or if you use it at all, it’s a pretty big achievement that the service is still here and going strong after 15 years. When Microsoft initially acquired the service, most people were frightened that they would shutter it, and they almost did when they tried to roll it into MSN Mail, and then again into Windows Live Mail. The Hotmail brand has managed to survive and persevere, and eventually Microsoft embraced it.Microsoft says they have big plans in store for Hotmail, which is good news when competing services like Gmail continue to evolve and draw new users.Read more at Neowin and TechNetlast_img read more

We must stand together as patriots Theresa May tells MPs that voting

first_img Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May leaves from Downing Street earlier this week Image: AP/PA Images Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May leaves from Downing Street earlier this week Mar 17th 2019, 2:32 PM 14.03.19 MPs have voted to delay Brexit by three months – here’s what that means Share64 Tweet Email By Stephen McDermott Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article 14.03.19 Here’s why Theresa May is set to risk another vote on her battered Brexit deal Sunday 17 Mar 2019, 2:32 PM 12.03.19 Explainer: What is May’s new Brexit deal and what on earth will happen next? THERESA MAY HAS warned MPs that a failure to pass her EU withdrawal deal in a third ‘meaningful vote’ this week could see Brexit postponed indefinitely.The British Prime Minister said that if her deal was not backed before a European Council summit on Thursday, the UK would “not leave the EU for many months, if ever”.Writing in today’s Sunday Telegraph, May claimed that a “short technical extension” of Article 50 would be required beyond March 29 Brexit to avoid a no-deal Brexit, a scenario that MPs voted against in the House of Commons this week.That extension is expected to be voted upon by the remaining 27 EU members at this week’s council meeting in Brussels.“That is not an ideal outcome – we could and should have been leaving the EU on March 29,” she said.“But it is something the British people would accept if it led swiftly to delivering Brexit. The alternative if Parliament cannot agree the deal by that time is much worse.”May warned that if MPs did not pass her deal before that EU summit, it would mean having to negotiate another withdrawal deal, requiring a much longer extension of Article 50.This would force the UK would to partake in European Parliament elections in May, three years after voting to leave the EU, something May said would be a symbol of the failure of British politics.“The idea of the British people going to the polls to elect MEPs three years after voting to leave the EU hardly bears thinking about,” she said.“There could be no more potent symbol of Parliament’s collective political failure.”Appealing to MPs to back her deal, May acknowledged that she would have to do more to convince them if she was to secure a majority for it, which she said was “the only way through the current impasse”.“All this makes the choice now facing MPs clearer than it has ever been,” she said.“If Parliament can find a way to back the Brexit deal before European Council, the UK will leave the EU this spring, without having to take part in the European elections, and we can get on with building our future relationship with the EU.“If it cannot, we will not leave the EU for many months, if ever.” Related Reads 14,759 Views ‘We must stand together as patriots’: Theresa May tells MPs that voting against her deal again could stop Brexit An extension of Article 50 is expected to be voted upon by EU members this week. Image: AP/PA Images Short URL As the clock ticks down, get all the best Brexit news and analysis in your inbox: 51 Comments Speaking today, two of May’s top ministers warned that the Prime Minister might not even hold a third vote on her deal unless she secures support from within the Conservative Party.“It would be difficult to justify having a vote if you knew you were going to lose it,” international trade secretary Liam Fox told Sky News.“We will only bring the deal back if we are confident that enough of our colleagues… are prepared to support it so that we can get it through parliament,” finance minister Philip Hammond said on the BBC.However, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn rubbished suggestions that his party would support the deal, calling it a “blindfold Brexit that… [would] do enormous damage” to the British economy.Instead, Corbyn told Sky News that he might support a proposal from within his own party to have a second referendum on Brexit if it is postponed this week.“It would obviously have to be a credible choice that’s real for those that wanted to vote leave, or did vote leave in 2016, as well as those that voted remain,” he said.With additional reporting from – © AFP 2019last_img read more

Convicted murderer claims police paid informer to nail convictions

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Convicted double murderer and a key player in Melbourne’s gangland crime ring, Evangelos Goussis, claims he suffered a “gross miscarriage of justice” during trials for the murders of Lewis Caine and Lewis Moran. Goussis, serving a maximum life sentence for the double murder, has written from jail claiming police heaped rewards on an informer for agreeing to give evidence to prove Goussis shot dead the two gangland criminals. The informer, who cannot be named, had been convicted of the murder of Caine, had pleaded guilty to Moran’s murder and of killing male prostitute Shane Chartres-Abbott. Goussis claimed four properties belonging to the informer had not been confiscated and a $400,000 tax bill was reduced to $40,000. The informer is currently serving 19 years for the murders, which included no extra time for the Chartres-Abbott’s murder. Meanwhile, Goussis is serving a minimum of 35 years, having lost both appeals to the murders. The new information has prompted Goussis to demand a retrial.last_img read more

Media fuelling Greek turmoil

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Famous Bollywood actor Shahid Kapoor is getting married to Mira Rajput in Delhi but due to his hectic schedule, the actor has cancelled his bachelor trip to Greece. Since then several websites have attributed his change of plans to the capital controls and turmoil in the area. Kristy Louvros, a 31-year-old sales and marketing executive and her fiancé Jamie Agaliotis, 35, also a sales manager, have been planning their wedding in Greece for almost two years. Both Australian-born to Greek-born parents, and proud of their national heritage and culture, they chose to get married in Santorini for its majestic views.“A journalist from The Age contacted me to interview me as they found out I was getting married in Greece,” Kristy Louvros tells Neos Kosmos. “She was very disappointed with me for not having cancelled my trip.”The journalist apologised, saying that she couldn’t use her interview as they were looking for a bride panicking over the Greek crisis.“I asked her to print my story and promote Greece’s tourism positively to which she simply replied ‘no, we need a bride that is cancelling’ and went on to ask if I knew anyone cancelling their trip or wedding.“I said that none of my 65 excited guests from Melbourne going to Greece is cancelling. She still refused to write anything I was saying and called me twice,” Louvros adds.She feels that mainstream media is trying to put a negative impact on Greece and its tourism, as her story could easily put a nervous traveller’s mind at ease.“I have Melbourne friends already there and they are telling me that cafés, restaurants and beaches are packed,” the bride-to-be says.“Business owners do not anticipate any disruptions in visitors’ everyday holiday experience, neither in the islands nor in mainland Greece, as there are adequate fuel supplies, products and services.”According to the American Express Travel destination experts’ announcement, the country’s cash flow problems have not deterred tourists who are there or decreased interest in the country. There are many weddings and baptisms taking place in Greece in this period and there haven’t been any cancellations. “We were not discouraged as there were press releases that tourists were fine to withdraw funds,” Louvros adds.“Our wedding planner informs us that Santorini in particular has broken records of most weddings booked on the island. If anything our hearts break for the citizens of Greece.”Having worked in the wedding industry before, Kristy and Jamie were very aware of the costs involved to have a decent ceremony. Instead of investing that much money for just one day, it made sense to have a destination wedding in a country they love, combining it with a beautiful holiday for friends and family.“Melbourne’s wedding industry is extremely overpriced,” says Louvros.“We also wanted to feel closer to our country of origin and support Greece.”last_img read more

Man in 40s robs Orchards bank

first_imgA man in his 40s carrying a black bag robbed the Orchards branch of U.S. Bank shortly before 4 p.m. Tuesday.The robber entered the bank at 6407 N.E. 117th Ave. and demanded cash and received some. He did not show a weapon, according to police radio traffic monitored at The Columbian.He was described as wearing a blue button-up shirt, black pants and a baseball cap. He may have had acne scars on his face. He was variously reported as a white man and possibly of mixed race. He might have been driving an older white Honda.Sheriff’s deputies searched the area with a police dog.No arrests had been made as of Tuesday night, Clark County sheriff’s Sgt. Tony Barnes said.last_img

Nissans Versa Note is gone after 2019 report says

first_imgEnlarge ImageNissan’s Versa Note has been a slow seller lately, and now it’s said to be getting the axe from Nissan’s lineup. Nissan Nissan’s Versa Note is on death row, with the 2019 model year confirmed by Nissan to be its last, according to a report published Friday by Cars Direct. Nissan didn’t immediately return Roadshow’s request for comment.The report is not especially surprising, because the Versa Note has always been just on the acceptable side of average. It was never the worst vehicle in its class (we’re looking at you, Mitsubishi Mirage), but it’s always been overshadowed by models that felt better built, better to drive or like better value for money.An interesting note is that it’s only the hatchback that is being discontinued. The Versa sedan will reportedly continue to soldier on. Why is that? Well, it’s likely that buyers are ignoring the Note for other vehicles in the Nissan lineup like the surprisingly good Kicks. Though it’s been a while since we tested the Versa Note here at Roadshow, since our last full review in 2014, not a ton has changed. The Note got some relatively minor exterior tweaks for 2017, some USB ports got moved around and an update was made to the feel of the CVT transmission.Would we be sad to see the Versa Note go? Not at all. Cars are getting better all the time and being merely cheap and efficient is no longer enough to convince people to buy them. It’s an excellent example of why car brands shouldn’t be content to rest on their laurels. Nissan The 2017 Nissan Versa Note was designed with customer feedback in mind 1 2020 Nissan Versa first drive: 15% more price, 100% more car 2020 BMW M340i review: A dash of M makes everything better Comment Nissancenter_img 2020 Hyundai Palisade review: Posh enough to make Genesis jealous Share your voice More From Roadshow Hatchbacks Car Industry Tags 11 Photoslast_img read more

ACC now says investigating Jahalams undue detention

first_imgIqbal MahmudThe Anti-Corruption Commission constituted a committee to investigate three years’ stay in jail of Jahalam who was not the real accused in graft case.The ACC chairman, Iqbal Mahmud, ‘disclosed’ this on Monday hours after the release of wrongly detained young man from Kashimpur central jail.Action will be taken if any negligence on the part of the ACC investigation officers, is found, the ACC chief said.Jahalam was implicated in 33 graft cases which were actually filed against one Salek, and the former had been in jail for three years until the matter was brought to public attention and the High Court intervened.An ACC director with the rank of district judge will lead the committee to investigate Jahalam case, Iqbal Mahmud added.Jahalam was released from jail early Monday following a High Court order. He walked out from Kashimpur prison-2 at 1:00am.The High Court on Sunday issued the order to release Jahalam and reprimanded the ACC authorities for the unfortunate jailing of an innocent person.Jail superintendent Subrata Kumar Bala said his release papers reached the jail on Sunday night. After scrutinising the papers and completing formalities, Jahalam was freed.Upon his release, Jahalam expressed his griavances against the ACC and demanded compensation for his undue suffering in jail.last_img read more

Texas US Justice Department Clash In Appeals Court Over Voter ID Law

first_img To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code: X The Fifth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals heard arguments Tuesday on whether Texas’ voter ID law discriminates against low-income, black, and Hispanic voters.This was the second time the New Orleans-based appeals court reviewed the voter ID law. A three-judge panel of the Fifth Circuit voted to overturn the law last year. Texas then asked for a hearing before the full slate of fifteen judges.Houston Public Media’s Coverage of Election 2016“The Fifth Circuit’s considered, at this point, to be the most conservative circuit in the country,” says Peter Linzer, a professor of constitutional law at the University of Houston Law Center.The law remains in effect pending the appeals court’s ruling. Linzer says civil rights groups challenging the law were concerned the court would hold off issuing a decision until it was too close to Election Day. So the petitioners asked the U.S. Supreme Court to take the case immediately, bypassing the Fifth Circuit.“The Supreme Court said no, we’re not taking it away from them,” Linzer says. “But they issued an order saying, ‘If the Fifth Circuit doesn’t render a decision by July 20, come back to us, and then we’ll do it,’ and it looks as if they will if the Fifth Circuit sits on the case. So the Fifth Circuit is obviously going to make a decision in the next month.”Texas’ law requires residents to show one of seven forms of approved photo identification. Supporters of the law say it prevents fraud. Opponents, including the U.S. Justice Department, say it discriminates by requiring forms of ID that are more difficult to obtain for poor and minority voters. 00:00 /01:25 Listen Sharelast_img read more

Never2Early HIV Social Media Campaign

first_imgThe Sasha Bruce Youthwork (P.O.W.E.R.) Program will hold the launch of #Never2Early, its social media campaign, to advocate for HIV/AIDS awareness and prevention to local teens through a day party on June 20. The free day party is 2 to 6 p.m. at LIV Nightclub, 2001 11th NW. The party is only for teens from 14 to 16-years of age. Staff will also be on site to administer HIV/AIDS testing. Free food and drinks will be provided.  For more information, call 202-675-9370 or visit

Sony wants to know what PS2 games you want on PS4

first_imgSony plans to have a wide variety of classic PlayStation 2 games on the PlayStation 4, but needs your help in making that happen.On Twitter, PlayStation Worldwide Studio’s Dave Thach asked people for feedback on what PS2 games they wanted to play on the PS4. He urged everyone to use the hashtag “#ps2ps4.”Loving all the PS2 on PS4 feedback! Use #ps2ps4 for your wish list suggestions so we can easily aggregate them all. We are listening…— Dave Thach (@davethach) December 9, 2015The folks naturally jumped in with their suggestions. These included games like: God Hand, Silent Hill 2, Bully, Gladius, Final Fantasy XII, and SOCOM 2. You can see many of the other suggestions by clicking on the tweet and checking out the replies.Rumors of PS2 emulation began back with the announcement of a PS4 bundle for Star Wars Battlefront which featured four classic Star Wars games, three of which were from the PS2-era. What got folk’s attention is that these games weren’t remasters, but appeared to be emulated. This was surprising given that Sony had made no formal announcement of PS2 emulation for the PS4.Sometime later, Sony officially announced that it was indeed bringing PS2 emulation to the PS4. Eight “fan favorite” titles were revealed at this time. These included games such as: Dark Cloud, Grand Theft Auto III, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, and Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. All of these titles would retail for $10 to $15, have up-rendered 1080p visuals, and feature trophy support.If you want to see any specific PS2 games on the PS4, then make sure to let Sony know by using the #ps2ps4 hashtag. Maybe your choice will be among those games chosen to be brought over.last_img read more

Google looking to make driverless cars legal in Nevada

first_img This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. In any case, it’s clear that Google is very serious about continuing its research with autonomous vehicles and as a part of that is pushing for legislation to create for themselves a hassle free environment for doing so. As a result, there are now two bills currently being introduced to the Nevada legislature related to autonomous vehicles; one would be an amendment to another bill regarding electric vehicles that would create a means of licensing and testing autonomous vehicles on public roads; the other would provide an exemption for such “drivers” from the current law that disallows texting while behind the wheel.Google claims that computer controlled vehicles are and will be much safer than conventional human driven vehicles because they are able to respond to road conditions more quickly and don’t fall prey to other human foibles, such as drinking and driving, falling asleep, or simply forgetting to pay attention. If Google’s push to legalize such vehicles succeeds, we might just find out over the next few years, if they’re right. Citation: Google looking to make driverless cars legal in Nevada (2011, May 13) retrieved 18 August 2019 from Explore further Google’s self-driving car now races on rooftops (w/ Video)center_img © 2010 It was just last March that Google announced to the world that it had been racing autonomous cars around on rooftop parking lots and then just seven months later that it had been testing those cars on California roads; news that both made headlines and bolstered Google’s image as one of the more innovative companies operating today. Now comes news that Google is ready to tackle the sticky problem of allowing such cars to drive legally on roads, an issue no doubt that cropped up in the wake of its earlier announcements.It’s not exactly clear why Google chose Nevada for its first push at legalizing what it’s been doing already; though there are theories, such as the fact that the giant Consumer Electronics Show (CES) just happens to be held in Las Vegas each year, or maybe it’s because Nevada has a history of allowing things that other states don’t; prostitution being the most infamous example, of course. Or it might be the fact that Nevada has a lot of roads that have very little traffic in very out-of-the-way places and thus could test its vehicles on public roads without much oversight. ( — In an unexpected move, Google, the wily search giant with loads of ambition and enough spare cash to enable it to dabble in technologies that appear to have nothing to do with its core business, has hired lobbyist David Goldwater to represent the company in its push to legalize the running of autonomous vehicles on Nevada roads; this comes less than a year after announcing that it had been running live tests of its self-driving vehicles on California roads.last_img read more

Adblock Plus filter exploit to run arbitrary code discovered

first_imgAdblock Plus filter exploit to run arbitrary code discovered by Martin Brinkmann on April 16, 2019 in Internet – Last Update: April 16, 2019 – 29 commentsMost content blockers use and load filter lists that include instructions to block or change certain content on visited sites in the web browser by default; this is done to ensure that default configurations do block a good chunk of unwanted content right away.Most extensions support custom lists and individual filters. Users may load custom lists in most extensions and add their own filters to the list as well.Update: Eyeo GMHB announced today that it will remove the $rewrite function going forward. Expect a new release soon that removes if from the extension. EndSecurity researcher Armin Sebastian discovered an exploit in certain adblockers such as Adblock Plus that could be used to run malicious code on sites visited in the browser.The exploit uses a filter option called $rewrite that Adblock Plus supports to inject arbitrary code in web pages. The $rewrite filter is used to replace code on sites by rewriting it. The filter option restricts the operation; it is designed to load content only from the first-party source and not third-party sites or servers, and some requests, e.g. script or object, are not permitted either.Sebastian discovered a vulnerability in $rewrite that attackers may exploit to load content from remote locations. The conditions that need to be met are:A JavaScript string needs to be loaded using XMLHttpRequest or Fetch, and the return code must be executed.Origins cannot be restricted on the page, e.g. by using Content Security Policy directives, and the final request URL cannot be validated before execution.The origin of the code must have a server-side open redirect, or must host arbitrary user content.Properties that match all three requirements include Google Maps, Gmail, or Google Images among others. A proof of concept was published on the author’s website and you may try it on Google Maps to verify that it works.I tried the exploit in Chrome and Firefox, and could not get it to work. Lawrence Abrams over on Bleeping Computer managed to get it to work though.Closing WordsThe attack has another requirement, as it relies on filters. A manipulated filter needs to be added to the list of filters used by the content blocker. The two most common options include users adding filters manually to their content blockers, or that a manipulated filter is on a filter list that gets loaded.The second option seems more likely, especially in cases were users load other lists in the extensions. It is not the first time that lists get manipulated but it does not happen very often.The extension uBlock Origin is not affected by the issue as it does not support $rewrite.SummaryArticle NameAdblock Plus filter exploit to run arbitrary code discoveredDescriptionSecurity researcher Armin Sebastian discovered an exploit in certain adblockers such as Adblock Plus that could be used to run malicious code on sites visited in the browser.Author Martin BrinkmannPublisher Ghacks Technology NewsLogo Advertisementlast_img read more

Live News traffic and weather updates for North Staffordshire South Cheshire on

first_img Video will play in  How to download The Sentinel’s new FREE app Watch again Video Loading Video Unavailable Watch Next Stoke Sentinel app launch Launch video for the Stoke Sentinel app.Video Player is loading.Play VideoPauseUnmute0:00/1:15Loaded: 0%0:01Progress: 0%Stream TypeLIVE-1:15 SharePlayback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedSubtitlessubtitles settings, opens subtitles settings dialogsubtitles off, selectedAudio Trackdefault, selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button. UP NEXT:UP NEXT: Click for Soundcenter_img Click to playTap to play Share this video The video will start in 1Cancel Play now We pay for stories! Send your videos to video@trinitymirror.comWelcome to The Sentinel’s breaking news service bringing you all the latest updates from Stoke-on-Trent and North Staffordshire on Wednesday, March 21. Our team of reporters will be updating this live service with all the latest on the weather, traffic and travel as well as news, sport and entertainment through the day. We’ll be bringing you the very latest updates in our live news feed below. For the latest news and breaking news visit . Get all the big headlines, pictures, analysis, opinion and video on the stories that matter to you. Follow us on Twitter @ SentinelStaffs – the official Sentinel account – real news in real time. We’re also on – your must-see news, features, videos and pictures throughout Stoke-on-Trent, North Staffordshire & South Cheshire. 18:56Can you help reunite a young mother cat shot by airgun with her kittens?The young cat (Image: RSPCA)The RSPCA is appealing for help in reuniting a young female cat with its kittens after it was shot with an airgun.The black and white moggy was found collapsed by a member of the public in Ford Avenue, Chell, at around 10pm on March 16.She had been shot by an airgun pellet, which had left a fresh, deep and painful wound in her abdomen.Read more here.18:23Queueing traffic in Nantwich Queueing traffic on A51 Nantwich Bypass Eastbound between A530 Middlewich Road / B5344 Middlewich Road (Alvaston Roundabout) and A534 Crewe Road / B5338 Crewe Road / Park Road, congestion on A530 Middlewich Road to A532 Coppenhall Lane / Marshfield Bank (Marshfield Bank Roundabout). In the roadworks area. 15:54Accident at Smallthorne roundaboutSlow traffic due to earlier accident on A5272 High Lane in both directions near A5272 Hanley Road / B5051 Moorland Road / B5051 Ford Green Road / Bank Hall Road / Sneyd Hill (Smallthorne Roundabouts).Affecting traffic between Sneyd Green and Stanfield. 15:53Debris on M6One lane closed due to debris on road on M6 Southbound between J13 A449 (Stafford South) and J12 A5 (Gailey). Traffic is coping well.Lane one (of four) is closed. 15:06Broken down vehicle on M6One lane closed and heavy traffic due to broken down vehicle on M6 Northbound between J18 A54 (Middlewich / Holmes Chapel) and J19 A556 (Knutsford), congestion to J17 A534 (Sandbach / Crewe).Lane one (of three) is closed. 14:18Firefighters urge people to get smoke alarms installed after house fireThe elderly couple, who live in Church Eaton, had taken the batteries out of their smoke alarms. More here.13:28Increase in break-ins at Indian restaurants in StaffordshireThe offenders are forcing entry to steal cash and alcohol. More here.13:05Motorist taken to hospital after crash on A520The accident took place on the A520 in Leek on Tuesday evening. More here.Emergency services at the scene of the accident on Cheddleton Road12:04Suspect evades police by jumping off bridge over River TrentPolice called in a helicopter to search for the man following the incident on Victoria Road in the early hours of the morning – but have so far failed to trace him. More here.Police deployed a helicopter and dogs to help find the man after he jumped off the bridge (Image: (Inset pic by West Midlands Ambulance Service))10:54Delays up to 90 minutes There are now 90 minute delays against traffic on the M6 Southbound near Warrington. More here. 10:16Multi-vehicle accident on M6 causing delays in CheshireThe accident has taken place on the southbound carriageway between junction 21a and junction 21. More here.09:31Roadworks in NantwichA534 CREWE ROAD – NANTWICH- EASTBOUND – CHESHIRETraffic heavier than normal on A534 Crewe Road Eastbound at A51 Nantwich Bypass / B5338 Crewe Road / Park Road.Due to traffic diverting around the part closure of London Road heading outbound due to ongoing roadworks. LONDON ROAD – NANTWICH- EASTBOUND – CHESHIRELondon Road Eastbound closed due to telecoms work between Hastings Road and Jackson Ave.Affecting traffic heading out of town. Until 21st March.09:26Man in hospital after electric blanket starts house fireThe blaze, on Broughton Lane, Wistaston, was caused by an electric blanket in the early hours of the morning. More here.Firefighters were called to Broughton Lane early this morning09:03Long delays in NantwichThere are long delays in Nantwich this morning.A spokesman said: “Due to the ongoing road closures and subsequent diversions we are aware long delays throughout the town. “Traffic heading towards Crewe along Crewe Road is currently backed up from the Peacock Roundabout too Mount Drive. Please avoid the area if possible.”08:26Full traffic summary as of publicationA50 – STOKE-ON-TRENT – EASTBOUND – STAFFORDSHIRE Very slow traffic and traffic heavier than normal on A50 Eastbound between A500 D Road (Sideway Roundabout) and A50 / Upper Normacot Road. A53 KING STREET – STOKE-ON-TRENT – BOTH DIRECTIONS – STAFFORDSHIRE Queueing traffic on A53 King Street in both directions at Sandy Lane / Albert Street. In the roadworks area. A534 CREWE GREEN ROAD – CREWE – EASTBOUND – CHESHIRE A534 Crewe Green Road Eastbound clear before the roadworks at A5020 University Way (Crewe Green roundabout). CHELL HEATH ROAD – NORTON-IN-THE-MOORS – BOTH DIRECTIONS – STAFFORDSHIRE Very slow traffic due to traffic light failure on Chell Heath Road in both directions at Sprink Bank Road / Cornhill Road. The temporary traffic lights are stuck on red. A50 – STOKE-ON-TRENT – WESTBOUND – STAFFORDSHIRE Heavy traffic on A50 Westbound from Meir Tunnel towards the A500 D Road (Sideway Roundabout). A500 D ROAD – STOKE-ON-TRENT – SOUTHBOUND – STAFFORDSHIRE Usual slow traffic on A500 D Road Southbound before M6 J15. A500 QUEENSWAY – NEWCASTLE-UNDER-LYME – SOUTHBOUND – STAFFORDSHIRE Usual very slow traffic on A500 Queensway Southbound before A53 Etruria Road (Basford Roundabout). Travel time is four minutes. A52 KINGSLEY ROAD – CELLARHEAD – BOTH DIRECTIONS – STAFFORDSHIRE Queueing traffic on A52 Kingsley Road in both directions at A520 Leek Road (Cellarhead Cross Roads). A527 BROWNHILLS ROAD – TUNSTALL, STOKE-ON-TRENT – WESTBOUND – STAFFORDSHIRE Queueing traffic on A527 Brownhills Road Westbound between Pinnox Street and A500 Queensway / Longbridge Hayes Road (Porthill Bank). Travel time is six minutes. A534 CREWE GREEN ROAD – HASLINGTON – SOUTHBOUND – CHESHIRE Queueing traffic on A534 Crewe Green Road Southbound at A5020 University Way / B5077 Crewe Road / Hungerford Road. BUCKNALL ROAD – STOKE-ON-TRENT – INBOUND – STAFFORDSHIRE Usual slow traffic on Bucknall Road inbound from A52 Leek Road (Lime Kiln Traffic Lights) to Hanley Town centre.08:25Carpetright announces plans to close poorly performing storesCarpetright has a number of stores in North Staffordshire and South Cheshire. More here.Carpetright in Newcastle08:13Queuing traffic at Cellarhead CrossroadsQueueing traffic on A52 Kingsley Road in both directions at A520 Leek Road (Cellarhead Cross Roads). 07:55Reports of accident on A53We’re getting reports of an accident on the A53 in Stockton Brook07:53Traffic light failure on Chell Heath roadVery slow traffic due to traffic light failure on Chell Heath Road in both directions at Sprink Bank Road / Cornhill Road.The temporary traffic lights are stuck on red.07:49Warning over over ice on Hilderstone RoadSlow traffic due to ice on B5066 at B5027 Uttoxeter Road. Approach with care.07:49Queuing traffic on the A500Queueing traffic on A500 Queensway Southbound before A53 Etruria Road (Basford Roundabout). Travel time is four minutes. 07:41Power cut in Dresden170 homes are without electricity in Dresden. The power went out at 4.13am – with supplies expected to be restored by 11am.07:40Slow traffic on A527Heavy traffic on A527 Brownhills Road Westbound between Pinnox Street and A500 Queensway / Longbridge Hayes Road (Porthill Bank). 07:38Today’s weather forecast from the Met OfficeA Met Office spokesman said: After a chilly and frosty start it will be a dry and mostly sunny day across the region. The wind will begin to pick up later in the afternoon as cloud and rain approach from the northwest. Tonight it will become increasingly cloudy through the evening with the chance for the odd spot of rain in the north, however, it will be a dry night for many.”07:04Second accident on Hilderstone Road within hoursThe road is now reported to be shut between Hilderstone and Sandon for the second time this morning. More here.06:58A500 busy but movingA500 D Road Southbound busy but moving before M6 J15. 06:47Reports of second accident on Hilderstone Road near SandonReports of accident on B5066 between B5027 Uttoxeter Road and Butterhill Lane. Traffic is coping well.This is a separate incident to the earlier accident on this stretch which saw a vehicle overturn. 06:42Road reopens following ‘police incident’Victoria Road in Fenton was shut while police, paramedics and firefighters dealt with the ‘incident’. More here.Emergency services at the scene of the police incident in Fenton earlier this morning (Image: West Midlands Ambulance Service/Katie Tudor)06:37Slow traffic at Crewe Green roundaboutThere is slow traffic around Crewe Green roundabout06:29Victoria Road clearVictoria Road is now clear in Fentonlast_img read more

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first_imgNews | September 24, 2014 Green Bay Packers Install Carestream Digital X-Ray System to Provide Immediate Access to Medical Images of Injured Players September 24, 2014 — The NFL’s Green Bay Packers franchise is the latest football team to purchase and install a Carestream digital X-ray system at its home stadium, Lambeau Field, to capture and display X-ray images of injured players within seconds. The new system converted the stadium’s existing X-ray room to a fully featured digital imaging solution that can provide excellence image quality at lower exposure levels than previously.“Carestream’s DRX-1 system delivers high-quality X-ray images in seconds that NFL physicians can use to evaluate and diagnose injuries for players on the home and visiting teams. This technology allows us to meet the requirements of our EMR (electronic medical records) system and equips staff members to view X-ray images from the sidelines on game day using their tablets,” said Pepper Burruss, athletic trainer for the Green Bay Packers. “This embraces the mission of our medical staff to deliver the highest quality care in the safest and most expeditious manner available.”This installation spotlights Carestream Health’s focus on providing the latest diagnostic imaging technology for use in sports medicine. The Buffalo Bills and San Diego Chargers football teams and other professional sports teams also have installed Carestream’s digital X-ray systems for use in diagnosing player injuries.“Our digital imaging systems are being widely adopted by sports organizations because they offer immediate access to high-quality images. Having the ability to quickly and accurately assess an athlete’s condition can help prevent further injury,” said Diana L. Nole, president, Digital Medical Solutions, Carestream. “We also are investing in the research and development of new digital imaging systems for use in sports medicine that will offer additional advantages, particularly for diagnosis of traumatic brain injuries.”For more information: FacebookTwitterLinkedInPrint分享 Technology | Digital Radiography (DR) | July 25, 2019 Samsung Announces New iQuia Premium Digital Radiography Platform Samsung has announced iQuia, a new digital radiography (DR) platform of premium products and technologies that improves… read more Shimadzu FluoroSpeed X1 Walkaround AHRA 2019Video Player is loading.Play VideoPlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 1:25Loaded: 11.42%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -1:25 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedAudio Trackdefault, selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button. News | Digital Radiography (DR) | June 28, 2019 Springfield Clinic Deploys 17 Carestream Digital X-ray Systems Springfield Clinic implemented 14 Carestream DRX-Evolu read more Technology | Radiographic Fluoroscopy (RF) | August 09, 2019 Shimadzu Medical Systems Receives FDA 510(k) for FluoroSpeed X1 RF System Shimadzu Medical Systems USA, a subsidiary of Shimadzu Corp., announced they have received U.S. Food and Drug… read more Video Player is loading.Sudhen Desai explains how deep learning might assist pediatric imagingPlay VideoPlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 8:21Loaded: 1.95%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -8:21 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedAudio Trackdefault, selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button. Videos | Artificial Intelligence | July 03, 2019 VIDEO: Artificial Intelligence May Assist in Pediatric Imaging Sudhen Desai, M.D., FSIR, read more News | Radiology Business | June 26, 2019 Konica Minolta Healthcare and the Emory Healthcare Innovation Hub Partner to Drive Innovation in Healthcare Konica Minolta Healthcare Americas, Inc. read morecenter_img Advances in long-length digital radiography are creating opportunities for visualization during spinal surgery, as well as pre- and post-operatively. Image courtesy of Fujifilm Medical Systems Feature | Digital Radiography (DR) | July 19, 2019 | By Greg Freiherr DR Advances Promote Imaging of Whole Spine Recent advances in… read more News | Digital Radiography (DR) | July 23, 2019 Konica Minolta and Shimadzu to Co-market Dynamic Digital Radiography in the U.S. Konica Minolta Healthcare Americas Inc. along with Shimadzu Medical Systems USA announced a collaborative agreement to… read more Videos | Radiographic Fluoroscopy (RF) | August 09, 2019 VIDEO: Demonstration of the Shimadzu FluoroSpeed X1 Radiographic Fluoroscopy System Shimadzu displayed the FluoroSpeed X1 conventional radiographic fluoroscopy (RF) system at the Association for Medica read more News | Radiation Dose Management | July 18, 2019 Low Doses of Radiation Promote Cancer-capable Cells Low doses of radiation equivalent to three computed tomography (CT) scans, which are considered safe, give cancer-… read more Feature | Information Technology | June 27, 2019 | By Greg Freiherr Smart Algorithm Extracts Data from Radiology Reports Radiology reports may contain information essential to figuring out a patient’s condition. read more Related Contentlast_img read more

Uber vs taxis round 2 Technology business models and incentives for service

first_imgHere’s a business idea: What if we created an app for taxis just like Uber and sold it to the taxi cooperatives?That was the text I received from a friend a couple of days ago, right in the middle of yet another protest from taxi drivers asking the government to intervene and block Uber. My buddy’s rationale was that by creating a similar app, we’d be saving the cooperatives money currently spent on radio frequencies, and on the salaries of the nice ladies who pick up the phone when you call the cab company. The ones who call you “corazón” after they’ve located a taxi for you.We tend to focus on technology when trying to explain why companies like Uber or Airbnb are so successful, since the app itself is the face of the company. However, I told my buddy that in spite of our entrepreneurial spirit, apps like that already exist; even if they didn’t, they wouldn’t really do much to help the cabbies. The disruption being generated by shared-economy startups (those that connect people willing to provide a service with those demanding it) is not the technology itself, but instead what the technology enables – how it changes the interactions between parties and the rules under which business is conducted.Let’s examine how the taxi industry has operated up to this point. The first thing you have to do is get a permit from the government, which can be a challenge because of the limited number of permits available. This puts the authority awarding the permits in a position to pick winners and losers; when resources become scarce, this creates an incentive for corruption. Even if the awarding process were completely fair and transparent, which is quite a reach, the scarcity could create – indeed, it has created – a black market where permits are sold at outrageous amounts or even rented out as an asset.So drivers must get permit any way they can, get a hold of a red car, pay insurance, affiliate to a cooperative by paying a fee, and start working. After you have overcome the barrier to entry, you are good to go. There’s nothing that can prevent you from providing the service. What if you happen to be rude to customers? You can continue to work as a taxi driver. What if you like to play slalom on the highway and pretend you are Vin Diesel’s co-star? You can continue to work as a taxi driver. What if your thing is to have reggaeton blasting out of the speakers at full volume? This one actually happened to me). You can continue to work as a taxi driver.In short: once you have crossed the bureaucratic hurdle, you can perform the service whichever way you want because there are no deterrents for bad service, nor incentives for good one. Once you’re in, nobody can take you out again. No one can tell you how to do your job.See also: Taxi drivers throw eggs as Uber Costa Rica offers free ridesLet’s now see how Uber or any other sharing economy businesses operates. The company creates the platform (the app) and invites everybody to join, either as a driver or a passenger. As a driver, the rules to participate are transparent: you must meet certain guidelines, such as the maximum age of your car, and then you must complete the training, both in the interest of good service to the passenger. Because the company does not decide how many drivers should be out there, it doesn’t become a gatekeeper. The incentive to favor some in detriment of others is removed. Everybody gets to play. If there are not enough passengers, you can choose not to drive, but it is a supply and demand game now.More importantly, Uber drivers get rated by customers, which builds their reputation on the platform and determines whether can continue to play. No good service, no play. Voilá! An incentive to provide excellent service on a daily basis is created. The only way for drivers to guarantee their continued participation in the game is to put in the effort to make customers happy on every ride. The driver, usually a regular Joe, is happy because he made a few bucks with some idle time. The passenger is happy because she received better service. The company is happy because it took a cut of the transaction.All good, then? Not yet.Some argue, very justifiably, that the service provided through the Uber platform should be regulated in some way. That’s only fair. Insurance, taxes and fees should be comparable so it doesn’t give those under the new model a way to undercut the taxis on price. Governments should move fast to regulate shared-economy businesses, instead of making it hard for them to operate by clinging to old regulations. This is increasingly relevant because every year, more and more companies with the exact same business model will come to market. Today, it is happening with public transportation, accommodation and errands. Tomorrow, it could affect all kinds of services.While the war declared by taxi drivers is being waged on the streets, three things are certain. First, by blocking streets and making everybody late for work, all the cabbies are achieving is eroding the little good will they had among the general public and sending more new customers to Uber. Showing up in the news for throwing eggs at fellow taxi drivers who don’t join the protest is, by any definition, a big PR no-no.Second, governments are slow, but they’re not dumb. Eventually they will realize that this is not something you would want to stop, and even if you wanted to, you really can’t. When that moment comes, all the kicking and screaming isn’t going to change anything. That’s called progress.Finally – and this is relevant for entrepreneurs – if you want to start disruptive businesses, your first step should be to look for old industries with entrenched, outdated habits. Next, figure out how to fix their inefficiencies by creating better incentives. Then, and only then, do you build the app.That’s what I’m going to tell my buddy.Read more “Doing Business columns” here. Randall Trejos works as a business developer, helping startups and medium-sized companies grow. He’s the co-director of the Founder Institute in Costa Rica and a strategy consultant at Grupo Impulso. You can follow his blog La Catapulta or contact him through LinkedIn. Stay tuned for the next edition of “Doing Business,” published twice-monthly. Facebook Comments Related posts:The preemptive strike against Uber and what it means for doing business in Costa Rica Should entrepreneurs work for free? A fixer upper in tax rules for business might not be the best solution yet Uber up and running in Costa Rica despite red light from Transport Ministrylast_img read more