Filmmaker Ashutosh Gowariker has said the single window scheme to get permissions for shooting in Maharashtra will help the film industry immensely.Jayakumar Rawal, Tourism Minister of Maharashtra handed over to Gowariker a copy of the government resolution regarding the single window scheme, which makes it easier to get all required permissions for shooting for cinema, TV serials and advertisement.The meeting between the two saw the discussion on how Bollywood can help improve tourism and also aid in the promotion of the state. Gowariker praised that the decision to have a single window for all necessary permissions is great.“Maharashtra has a lot of potentials and has been drawing filmmakers to shoot here. But often, due to lack of getting permission, they have to change locations. Bollywood will benefit greatly from this single window scheme,” Gowariker said.
Bank of Cyprus (BoC) on Thursday published the names of the candidates who will compete for a place on its board during a vote scheduled to take place on Tuesday.The list of 49 names includes 12 from the interim board and seven foreign nationals.BoC said the election of members to the Board of Directors is subject to approval by the Central Bank of Cyprus.Read BoC announcement here.You May LikeLivestlyChip And Joanna’s $18M Mansion Is Perfect, But It’s The Backyard Everyone Is Talking AboutLivestlyUndoPopularEverythingColorado Mom Adopted Two Children, Months Later She Learned Who They Really ArePopularEverythingUndoFreedom Debt ReliefPeople In Heavy Debt Are In For A SurpriseFreedom Debt ReliefUndo Pensioner dies after crash on Paphos-Polis roadUndoCruise passenger airlifted to Paphos hospitalUndoRemand for pair in alleged property fraud (Updated)Undoby Taboolaby Taboola
26Oct Representative García bill to protect students, officers in school gains committee approval Legislation sponsored by state Representative Daniela R. García, which maintain the safety of students in Michigan schools, was unanimously approved today by the House Education Reform Committee.García’s legislation ensures school resource officers (SROs) can quickly respond and resolve violent incidents in schools, without the restrictions implemented in the state’s restraint and seclusion legislation signed into law in 2016.“Without this bill, school resource officers would have to wait for a second officer to respond to an incident on school grounds,” said García, of Holland. “We had testimony from Officer Joe Soto, who works with Holland Public Schools. He explained to the committee that SROs are a key part of a school campus. They help provide safety to the students, teachers and administrators while having the ability to quickly defuse an incident, and we cannot surrender that responsibility because of an unforeseen circumstance of a year-old law.”School resource officers are contracted to a school district from a law enforcement agency in the region, as Officer Soto is to the local school district from the city of Holland Police Department. In addition to Officer Soto, Holland High School Assistant Principal Kevin Griffin also testified in support of García’s bill on Oct. 19.“The testimony that the committee heard from two key individuals in Holland Public Schools will benefit the safety of everyone in Michigan’s school districts,” said García, who is a member of the Education Reform Committee.House Bill 5126, after today’s unanimous vote in the House Education Reform Committee, advances to House for its consideration.### Categories: Garcia News,News
Categories: Albert News,News The Michigan House today gave final legislative approval to Rep. Thomas Albert’s plan further improving the finances of the state’s school employee retirement system.Albert’s legislation provides a more stable and predictable method of paying into the system, with the dual benefit of erasing debt while protecting retirement benefits for teachers and other school employees. The bill is headed to Gov. Rick Snyder for his consideration.“This is another important and necessary step to improve the finances of our school employee retirement system,” said Albert, of Lowell. “Together with reforms enacted last year, these changes will brighten the financial future of our schools and the dedicated teachers who work in them.”Albert said the change eliminates a flawed and unpredictable method the state now uses to pay off school employee retirement system debt.Current payment projections are based on an assumption that school payroll will grow by 3.5 percent annually. But payroll has been declining for more than a decade, which means payments to offset unfunded liabilities have fallen short and debt has continued to rise.Albert’s plan calls for gradually reducing the payroll growth assumption over time until it reaches zero. Debt then would be paid off along the lines of a fixed-rate home mortgage or car loan, with “level dollar” payments that remain the same year to year.Albert said the switch will greatly improve the chances of truly eliminating the school retirement system’s $30 billion debt by 2038, which is the current goal.“Without this change, we risk creating a mountain of debt that we may never overcome,” Albert said. “The goal is to truly eliminate debt so it is not left to our children and grandchildren.”The new legislation affecting the Michigan Public School Employees Retirement System is House Bill 5355.Albert also played a key role in related reforms signed into law last year. Those changes protect the retirement benefits of school employees and begin to address the system’s debt in part by changing retirement plan options for new school employees.### 30May Michigan Legislature approves Rep. Albert’s plan continuing school employee retirement fund improvements
ShareTweetShareEmail0 Shares August 12, 2014;The TelegraphA poll of almost 2,000 British adults by YouGov found that 64 percent of respondents trusted the truthfulness of Wikipedia entries to tell the truth “a great deal” or “a fair amount”; compared to 61 percent that trust the BBC for instance or 45 percent that trust the Guardian. That is pretty phenomenal and maybe puts Wikipedia, according to Carl Miller of Demos, as the first real wonder of the digital world.Jamie Bartlett, writing for The Telegraph which was rated right up there with The Guardian, writes that “The reason this is important is because it marks a moment: when the new model of trust finally dislodged the old. We live in the age of the crowd…crowd wisdom has become the only way to manage the deluge of digital material coming at us all the time. The internet is a mass of conflicting, confusing, overwhelming information.But, he writes, “even on Wikipedia, which has developed the best way of dealing with this sort of thing, there are still problems. As I reported here, there is a worrying amount of wikiwashing – where paid editors write and edit entries. One of the preoccupations of the Wikimania conference was that only 10 per cent of editors are women – and that has an effect on what is written.”In any case, when you stack Wikipedia up against the Encyclopedia Britannica it is still found wantingBut according to YouGov only a relatively “small group of people trust Wikipedia enough to plagiarise its content. 5% of British adult say they have “directly copied” text from Wikipedia to use in professional or academic work – without citing Wikipedia as a source.” But this disturbing stat may be changing since “Among under-40s, nearly one in ten (9%) have copied from Wikipedia without citation.”One of those who apparently are among that still small percentage is, as we reported recently, a New York Times reporter. No wonder there is a trust issue.—Ruth McCambridge ShareTweetShareEmail0 Shares
ShareTweet9ShareEmail9 SharesAndrea_44 from Leamington, Ontario , Canada [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia CommonsApril 29, 2019; New York TimesWhen it comes to issues of campaign finance reform, most will expect liberal-leaning groups to favor reform. But that premise ran into a brick wall this week in the state of New York—a wall called “organized unions”—and it might do so elsewhere.A New York legislative proposal includes in its text some modifications to the public financing of campaigns, and it looked to have the kind of widespread Democratic support that ensure passage. However, the bill was stopped before it was introduced by a short statement from Mario Cilento, the president of New York’s AFL-CIO, saying, “Now is not the time.” As Vivian Wang and J. David Goodman write for the New York Times,The last-minute opposition helped derail a push to introduce a small-donor matching system to state candidates; lawmakers ultimately agreed to allow a nine-member commission to decide later on a framework for public financing.It also shocked some progressive activists and Democratic elected officials, many of whom have deeply forged alliances with big labor. But while unions are typically among the staunchest of Democratic allies, they also happen to be some of the biggest money players in New York politics.The political power of unions in New York is clear. The money and contributions they bring to political campaigns at every level—local, state and national—should not be underestimated, even as their membership shrinks. In 2014, 14 of the 25 largest campaign donors were unions. But the times are changing:The labor sector has experienced decreasing political power in recent years. The past generation has been marked by a changing economy, a pattern of deregulation and decreasing union membership. In 2017, only 10.7 percent of workers belonged to unions compared to 20.1 percent in 1983.Total labor sector campaign contributions…peaked during the 2016 election cycle, when groups and individuals poured more than $217 million into races nationwide. Almost 90 percent of those contributions went to Democrats, which is consistent with at least two decades of labor contribution trends.So, what does this mean for New York, a stronghold for both labor unions and Democrats? Clearly, the unions hold enough clout to delay action on a bill that might lessen their influence. However, there’s no unanimity among the state’s various unions around public funding for campaigns. Both the United Federation of Teachers in New York City and the New York City District Council of Carpenters indicated in statements they didn’t support public financing for political campaigns. But the union representing janitors, doormen, and airport workers, as well as the New York arm of the Communication Workers of America, backs the effort fully.What’s at stake? For one thing, there is a cost in losing the political clout for unions that comes with campaign contributions. On the other hand, there is the cost, and it is not small, of financing public support for political campaigns, estimated at $100 million for the state of New York. Then, there’s the question of just who these union donors represent. Are they corporations and representatives of big business? Or do they stand in for individual dues-paying union members and act more like constituents? For the politician who receives the campaign donation, will this make a difference in their vote on campaign finance reform?The can has been kicked down the road for now, but it is sure to come back. And that might be a risky thing for both politicians and unions. As the words of the Woody Guthrie song say, “Oh, you can’t scare me, I’m sticking with the union.” We will see if this still holds true.—Carole LevineShareTweet9ShareEmail9 Shares
Discovery Networks International has launched female skewed network TLC in Belarus on Cosmos TV’s pay TV platform.The lifestyle channel replaces Discovery’s Travel & Living network and is available in the Basic package on Cosmos’s digital and analogue networks.
Satellite operator Eutelsat has chosen technology provider Harmonic’s ProStream 1000 stream processing and transcoding platform to help deliver DTH services in Africa.Eutelsat is using the Harmonic equipment to support its dual illumination of DVB-S/MPEG-2 and DVB-S2/MPEG-4 video.According to Harmonic, the ProStream 1000 with ACE platform provides up to 20 HD or 60 SD channels of video and audio transcoding from a single rack unit. The solution incorporates ASI-to-IP multiplexing and integrates with Eutelsat’s existing headend, which includes Harmonic ProVie 7000 integrated receiver-decoders. Harmonic’s DiviTrac statistical multiplexing technology delivers up to 16 pools of transcoded channels with 64 channels per pool, according to the company.“The main objective of this project was to capitalise on the bandwidth efficiencies offered by MPEG-4 while ensuring there was no discernible difference in service quality for our customers,” said Jerome Gressier, head of platforms engineering and operations team, at Eutelsat. “ProStream 1000 with ACE transcoding achieves excellent video quality at exceptionally low bit rates, enabling us to deliver additional channels at a more competitive price.”
UK connected TV platform YouView has released the first in a series of updates to deliver better accessibility for blind and partially sighted customers as well as those with motor skill and cognitive impairment.The initial software update includes the option of changing the iconic blue and black YouView programme guide to high contrast black and white, enabling visually impaired users to read the text more easily.The mini TV screen available in the top right hand corner of the programme guide also now has the option to be switched off, offering easier navigation for customers with cognitive disorders.The update will initially only be available on YouView set-top boxes purchased at retail. Customers with YouView from BT or TalkTalk will receive accessibility updates in due course, according to YouView.Susie Buckridge, director of product at YouView said, “We want everyone across the UK to be able to enjoy their favourite TV via YouView and to do this we understand how important it is to for YouView to be accessible. We have worked closely with the RNIB and Scope to ensure everything we add will allow the YouView journey to be seamless and easy as possible for all of our customers.”Further updates for this audience will be added to the service in the next few months.
Amazon is making Hysteria, a new one-hour drama starring Mena Suvari (American Beauty).The pilot will be made by Amazon Studios, Universal Television and Alcon Television, the TV arm of movie producer Alcon Entertainment.Suvari will play Dr Logan Harlen, a medic investigating an epidemic that is spreading through her home town of Austin, Texas. Shaun Cassidy (Blue Bloods, Invasion) will write and exec produce the series.“I can think of no better platform than Amazon to tell a story that explores the price of fear and the very real threat of viral connection becoming contagion,” said Cassidy.Hysteria joins the previously-announced dramas The Cosmopolitans, Really and Hand of God in Amazon’s upcoming third round of pilots. They will debut later this year on Amazon Instant Video with subscribers allowed to comment and rate them ahead of Amazon deciding which shows it will take to series.Amazon has already greenlit several comedy and kids shows. On the drama front, it has ordered The After, a mystery thriller from Chris Carter (The X-Files) and Bosch, the crime procedural based on the Michael Connelly book series.
Eric DenoyerThe CEO of France’s newly created Numericable-SFR has thrown down the gauntlet to its principal rival Orange by saying that his ambition is to become the country’s leader in high-speed internet and mobile.Interviewed by French daily Le Figaro, Eric Denoyer also said that Numericable-SFR had no need to acquire smaller rival Bouygues Telecom. This followed speculation that the Altice-backed group could acquire Bouygues’ telecom unit after Numericable beat the latter to take control of SFR.Denoyer said that Numericable-SFR intended to double its fibre coverage to 15 million homes by 2020 and to deliver 4G coverage of 70% of the country’s population by the end of next year.Denoyer also confirmed that SFR would become the sole brand of the group, replacing six consumer brands and seven enterprise brands.Denoyer said that SFR’s existing fixed-line clients would not be forced to sign up for Numericable’s services. He also said that the new group would not join the race to the bottom by entering into a new price war with its competitors.
Polish pay TV operator nc+ is to change its line-up of Canal+ channels in May, adding Canal+ Discovery and Canal+ Sport 2 and replacing other services.Existing channel line-up Canal+, Canal+ Sport, Canal+ Film, Canal+ Film 2, Canal+ Family and Canal+ Family 2 will be replaced by a line-up comprising Canal+, Canal+ Sport, Canal+ Film, Canal+ Seriale, Canal+ Family and Canal+ 1. The two new channels will be added at the same time.
Vivendi has taken an additional 10% stake in online video site Dailymotion, according to local reports. The move means that Vivendi now holds over 90% of the video sharing site’s capital.Vivendi initially acquired 80% control of Dailymotion from Orange earlier this year. According to the latest reports, which first appeared in financial daily Les Echos, Vivendi has paid an additional €27 million for the latest increase in its holding, valuing Dailymotion at over €271 million.
ADB is set to launch a new range of application-specific software solutions at IBC, in a bid to address the “growing convergence” between TV and the Internet of Things (IoT).ADB Connected Solutions is a set of software solutions designed for personal and business TV and IoT and are based on ADB’s “clear vision for the future needs of the connected age.”The new portfolio is focused around personal TV and IoT and business TV and IoT. The personal TV part promises to deliver seamless TV experiences across any screen, while the IoT is designed to manage and unifies smart home applications.The business solutions are designed to deliver video and digital signage across different screens and locations, and improve the efficiency of critical business processes.“This is a new chapter for ADB – we are building on our past experience and securing our future. We have a strong vision in the new connected age and we are focused and committed to make this a reality for our customers and their consumers,” said Peter Balchin, CEO of ADB.“We believe that in an age of internet connectivity, there is a need for fast and reliable and cost-effective solutions that ensure consumers and businesses are always connected.”ADB has also launched ConnectedOS, a hybrid cloud- and device-centric platform for developing, deploying and managing connected devices for video and IoT.ADB describes ConnectedOS as the “backbone” of all of the ADB Connected Solutions that acts as a “transition layer” between a range of connected technologies, industry platforms and protocols – simplifying integration, speed to market and reducing the cost in delivering connected services to clients.ADB will exhibit at IBC on stand stand 4.B52
The UK’s Digital Television Group (DTG) has called for the BBC to champion innovation and open standards in digital and wireless communication technology.In its response to the UK government’s consultation on the BBC’s Charter Review, the DTG said that it believes the BBC should play a leading role in the UK and in global forums related to technology standards, best practice and the optimal use of spectrum.The UK digital TV standards group called for the BBC to “retain a critical mass of technical knowledge and excellence” to support the deployment of infrastructure and systems in the UK, supported by an external technical advisory board.It also said that the BBC should continue to support open technology standards, technical interoperability management and promote innovation through open collaboration with the industry.“The BBC is a globally-respected organisation which has played a leading role in innovation and defining technology standards and best practice through open collaboration,” said DTG CEO, Richard Lindsay-Davies.“The DTG believes that the BBC should continue to be able to do that, with the support of advice from the digital and wireless communication technology industry.”
YouTube executive have met with Hollywood studios in a bid to secure streaming rights to TV series and movies and compete head on with Netflix, according to a report in the Wall St Journal.According to the paper, citing unnamed sources, YouTube executives Susanne Daniels, who previously served as head of programming at MTV, and former Netflix executive Kelly Merryman are among those involved in the talks. Daniels, who joined YouTube earlier this year, and Merryman, who joined in 2014, both report to chief business officer Robert Kyncl, who also formerly worked at Netflix as vice-president of content acquisitions.According to the sources cited by the Journal, YouTube is focusing its efforts on new content rather than older catalogue titles that form the backbone of rival paid-for services.YouTube could stream the content exclusively on its recently launched YouTube Red premium service or it could seek additionally to distribute the content via traditional channels.YouTube recently launched Red, a premium offering that sells in the US for US$9.99 a month offering ad-free videos and streaming music. The service, which went live at the end of October, is offered automatically to Google Play Music subscribers. The service has promised a line-up of original shows and movies from YouTube content creators, including Scare PewDiePie, a reality-adventure series staring the popular videogame vlogger, and Sing It!, a scripted comedy from YouTube creators Fine Brothers Entertainment and Mandeville Films.
European movies, series and music network, Eurochannel, has launched in Swtizerland via TV operator net+.The station is available in high definition on channel number 86 of the net+ electronic programme guide (EPG).Eurichannel claims that 95% of the movies, documentaries and series that it will air have never been broadcasted in Switzerland before.“We are thrilled to start offering Eurochannel to Swiss viewers. We did notice they were eager to watch European programs; especially movies from countries you rarely see on television,” said Eurochannel chairman and CEO, Gustavo Vainstein.
Amazon has given the green light to a new original series about the life of Playboy founder Hugh Hefner for its Prime Instant Video SVOD service.American Playboy: The Hugh Hefner Story will draw from access to over 17,000 hours of footage and 2,600 scrapbooks from Hefner’s personal archives.The 13-episode docu-series, which will combine archival footage, interviews and cinematic reenactments to tell the story ofPlayboy magazine’s founder and his impact on global culture will premier exclusively on Amazon Prime Video in the US, UK,Germany, Austria and Japan in 2017, and be available via the Amazon Video app for TVs, connected devices including Fire TV, mobile devices and online.The series is produced by Stephen David Entertainment and Alta Loma Entertainment. It will be executive-produced by Stephen Ward (The Men Who Built America, The Making of the Mob), Peter Jaysen (You Me Her) and Dick Rosenzweig (The House Bunny, The Playboy Club), and co-executive produced by Shirley Escott and Tim Kelly.“Although Hugh Hefner is an iconic figure known worldwide, most people may not be aware of the impact he has had on some of this country’s most important social revolutions. We are excited to bring Prime members the untold story of Mr Hefner’s remarkable life and his contributions to modern American history,” said Conrad Riggs, Head of Unscripted, Amazon Studios.“It has been a long road in finding the right partners to tell the full story of Playboy as it has unfolded over these past 63 years, and I believe we have found them in the collaborative team of Stephen David Entertainment and Amazon,” said Hugh Hefner.“I’m pleased that this docu-series will shed light on what has been an incredible journey and the voice Playboy has had in the discussion of our ever-changing culture. Just as importantly, my hope is that it will inspire others to pursue their dreams.”
This week’s US presidential candidate debate between Hilary Clinton and Donald Trump marked one of the biggest live streams in YouTube history, according to the service.The debate notched up nearly 2 million live concurrent viewers and 3 million live watch hours across the six news organisations that streamed the debate on YouTube, according to stats published by the video site.“To put these numbers into context, we took a look at 2012 debate viewership on YouTube. Compared to 2012, last night’s debate had 14 times larger live viewership, five times higher watch time, and four times more peak concurrent viewers. And views on all debate-related videos exceeded 88 million,” said Kurt Wilms, product lead, live streaming at YouTube, in a blog post published yesterday.Outside of the US, YouTube said that the top five countries where people tuned into the debate were Canada, Mexico, Argentina, Australia and New Zealand.
Channel operator SPI International has launched seven of its channels in Russia.The digital nets will roll out on the Telekarta platform, which is owned by pay TV operator Orion. The channels carried include the FilmBox and the FilmBox Art House channels, meaning drama series including The Young Pope and Modus will be available.The bouquet of channels also includes martial arts net FightBox, extreme sports offering Fast&FunBox and FashionBox.Docs service DocuBox and adult channel Erox complete the line-up.The deal marks SPI’s entry into Russia, a market that has proved challenging for international channel groups.“We are honored to be the first operator in Russia to introduce them to our subscribers, and offer the channels for transmission to our partners,” said Kirill Makhnovskiy, CEO, Orion Group. “Our long-term experience of cooperation with international majors allows to suggest that the primary launch of the seven TV channels in the Russian market will be a pledge of a long and productive partnership with SPI International.”Murat Muratoglu covers channel distribution for SPI in Russia and the CIS region. “Orion is one of the leading and most dynamic DTH platforms in Russia,” he said. “We are glad to start collaboration with such an experienced partner and we are excited to deliver top quality entertainment to Russian viewers thanks to our cooperation with Orion.”