Meet Truth Teller, An Automated Political Fact-Checking App

first_imgMove over PolitiFact, there’s a new fact checker in town.This week, The Washington Post debuted a news app that can fact check speeches, virtually in real time. It’s called Truth Teller, and for countless journalists and citizens looking to determine the accuracy and legitimacy of political statements, it’s a step towards toward a brighter, more truthful future. Cory Haik, The Post‘s executive producer for digital news describes the app as a “speech-to-text technology to search a database of facts and fact checks. We are effectively taking in video, converting the audio to text (the rough transcript below the video), matching that text to our database, and then displaying, in real time, what’s true and what’s false.”  Released in partnership with the Knight Foundation Prototype Fund, and still in prototype stage, the app is currently focusing on the looming debate over tax reform. But Haik thinks it can one day be applied to streaming video, or even someone “holding up a phone to record a politician in the middle of a field in Iowa.”Yuri Victor, The Post‘s UX (user experience) Director, and the project lead in design, says the goal is to “hold politicians accountable and squash mistruths from spreading… to push the discussion forward on what’s possible with real-time fact checking.”Here’s a video of how the app works:  Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Related Posts adam popescu Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Washington Post Truth Teller from The Washington Post on Vimeo.The app works by transcribing videos with Microsoft Audio Video Indexing Service (MAVIS), which uses speech recognition technology that converts audio signals into words. Extracts of audio and video are then saved as a transcript, and the facts in that document are scrutinized for errors. To make it easy to search, the program focuses on patterns instead of specific phrases. This program is called a fuzzy string search algorithm. Not Replacing HumansIn today’s cash strapped journalism environment, fact checkers have largely gone the way of the dinosaur. While there’s still a few dedicated fact checkers here and there, the role has largely merged into the job of the reporter and the editor. Some publications, like The Tampa Bay Times‘ Pulitzer winning PolitiFact, still do it the old-fashioned way, with human being dedciated to the task.Does this prototype of an automated fact checker threaten their livelihoods? Probably not, says Mark Glaser, the executive editor of PBS Media Shift. “I don’t think that machines will be able to do all the work on fact-checking yet, but they can be a help and aid to human fact-checkers who might not be able to fact-check everything they hear instantly,” Glaser said. “My guess is that this tool will take some time before it can threaten PolitiFact. More likely it will just be another weapon in the arsenal of fact-checkers.”The Post’s national political editor Steven Ginsberg agrees. “I dont think it’s going to cost anyone a job. I don’t think it replaces anything. I think it expands and broadens what you can do and who you can fact check – and correct a conversation before it gets too far on the wrong path.”Speed MattersGinsberg characterizes fact checking as a surprisingly difficult task that only a limited number of people are able to accomplish efficiently. And even for them, the process can take anywhere from an hour to an entire day or more.And when an error is found, it’s difficult to quantify how many people see the corrected fact compared to the number who saw the original mis-statement. When the two are so separated, it can complicate the perception of of what’s true and what’s not.The beauty of this innovation, he says, is that it dramatically shortens the time between the falsehood and the truth: “People would get the truth a lot quicker,” Ginsberg says. But the real value of the app won’t be seen until it’s in peoples’ hands in town and city halls across the country, where they can use it for themselves to vet the thing that they are told.“If you’re a regular citizen and you want to hear a politician talk and see if he’s telling the truth or not, you need something in your hand to go on,” Ginsberg said. That’s the ultimate goal for the Truth Teller app.Photo courtesy of A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Tags:#media#news#politics last_img read more

Beermen rally to beat Fuel Masters, go up 2-0

first_imgDon’t miss out on the latest news and information. “We were lucky we were able to escape this game. We know from the start it’s going to be a hard game for us because we know they (Phoenix) are going to play very hard,” said SMB head coach Leo Austria.San Miguel, who trailed by as much as 12, played catchup for three quarters before finding its groove in the final frame behind Lassiter and Terrence Romeo.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSPalace wants Cayetano’s PHISGOC Foundation probed over corruption chargesSPORTSSingapore latest to raise issue on SEA Games food, logisticsLassiter scored nine points in the final two minutes while Romeo provided the much-needed offensive spark early in the fourth period where he unleashed eight of his 14 points.“We all know that Terrence can explode anytime,” Austria said. The Beermen came back despite missing the services of Christian Standhardinger, who got ejected with still six minutes left in the second quarter after getting called for a flagrant foul penalty 2.The series resumes for Game 3 on Sunday after the Holy Week break.Calvin Abueva paced Phoenix with 16 points and 10 rebounds before fouling out with 1:10 remaining.ADVERTISEMENT Ethel Booba twits Mocha over 2 toilets in one cubicle at SEA Games venue View comments Cayetano: Senate, Drilon to be blamed for SEA Games mess LATEST STORIES DA eyes importing ‘galunggong’ anew Philippine Arena Interchange inaugurated Hontiveros presses for security audit of national power gridcenter_img Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netMANILA, Philippines—Defending champion San Miguel Beer overcame a double-digit deficit to beat top seed Phoenix, 92-82, for a 2-0 lead in their Philippine Cup semifinals series Monday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.Reigning five-time MVP June Mar Fajardo posted a double-double with 19 points and 18 rebounds despite facing multiple defenders while Marcio Lassiter topscored with 24 points for the Beermen.ADVERTISEMENT Panelo: Duterte ‘angry’ with SEA Games hosting hassles Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games PLAY LIST 02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss SEA Games hosting troubles anger Duterte Franky Johnson, Josh Munzon lift Titans to double OT win MOST READ Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Nextlast_img read more

Why Glenn Spencer is Winning In the Big 12, and What it Means for OSU

first_imgI’ve been watching a few college football preview shows for the past week, and I’ve seen pretty much the same narrative from most of the national media outlets – Oklahoma State is a trendy pick to win the Big 12 and CFP candidate because of Mason Rudolph, those WRs and an explosive offense.Then you wait for the “but” from each analyst: “ … but everything hinges on if Oklahoma State can stop anyone.” This is paraphrased, but it’s basically what everyone ends up saying.Given the nature of these shows and how many teams they have to talk about, I don’t think most of these analysts they know the first thing about how good or bad the OSU defense will be. These are just talking points, and this is still the offseason.That being said, we should also probably give them a break. OSU has a history of scoring a lot of points and with the exception of a few years, fielding a pretty below average defense. There are no major NFL draft prospects that will anchor this year’s defense, so really it makes sense that these analyst would pin OSU with a defense that has resembled previous units that have been a disappointment.My intention isn’t necessarily to change that narrative so that these experts believe OSU has a top 10 defense, but to redefine what success looks like at OSU and in the Big 12 on the defensive side of the ball. The Big 12 is a different type of football, and subsequently you have to adjust what it means to have a good defense in my opinion.Here are two profiles, one being Oklahoma State and the other being another major Power 5 team known for having a strong defense. If you take out the normal variable that is measured to determine a strong defense, yards allowed/game, you find some interesting similarities.Team A32 sacks, 2.46/game25 turnovers forced76% of red zone trips ending in TD or FG58% of red zone trips ending in TD2.09 points allowed/drive5.93 yards allowed/play26.5 points/game allowedTeam B32 sacks, 2.29/game25 turnovers forced82% of red zone trips ending in TD or FG60% of red zone trips ending in TD1.75 points allowed/drive5.0 yards allowed/play22.8 points/game allowedTeam A is Oklahoma State, Team B is Virginia Tech. Team B is better in a few areas by a small margin, but for the most part these profiles are comparable. Now if you haven’t been hiding under the Clemson rock for the last two decades, you know that Virginia Tech is known for hard-nosed stifling defense under defensive coordinator Bud Foster. Foster is one of the best in the business, and Virginia Tech has been lucky to keep him this long as DC in Blacksburg.VT was 18th in total defense in 2016, averaging 340.7 yards/game. Oklahoma State was 92nd in total defense at 446.3 yards/game. Obviously those numbers tell a different story than the blind team resume exercise above, and in general are the numbers that defenses are judged by.Glenn Spencer is just fine with this. I think his strategy is pretty simple. Force the offense to take what you give them, and wait for them to make a mistake.Now as fans, this is a frustrating strategy. Even knowing this, I have found myself pulling my hair out as teams walk up and down the field on the OSU defense at times. Especially given the fact that the expectation for a successful defense from the masses is forcing every drive to be a three and out. Spencer simply wants every drive to end in 0 or 3 points and to give the ball back to his offense.That may consist of a 65-yard drive and several third-down conversions and end with a missed field goal or turnover, further inflating traditional stats for opposing offenses.It’s certainly a different way of thinking, but the Big 12 style will make you think outside the box. This conference truly brings a style of play that no other league does, and traditional football has never really seen before. Teams in the Big 12 have churned out QBs completing 68-69+ percent of their passes left and right, some even QBs that are marginally talented who are labeled “system QBs.” That is an outrageous completion percentage, and it’s mainly due to the style of play and really innovative offensive concepts.I think Spencer’s rationale is you can try to align yourself to cover the whole field, but ultimately leave yourself exposed to explosive plays. Or control the situation by handing the offense certain areas of the field where they can have success and completely shutting down the others.The areas that are given up are generally ones that are predetermined on film, and designed to put the offense in a position where they aren’t as comfortable. You simply wait to see if the offense can be patient enough to take what you give them consistently. Also some teams are good enough to take what you give them and what you take away (i.e. Oklahoma, Ole Miss 2015 etc.). I think you will find that most of the time all teams get greedy at some point and try to take what is not there, thus leading to a high number of turnovers or positive plays for the defense.One statistic to support this theory is that in 2016 OSU gave up more points in the in the first half than the second half. OSU gave up 194 points in the 1st half (about 56%), out of 345 points given up total. Compare that to 274 points scored by the OSU offense in the 1st half. As time goes on, OSU’s offense will continue to score and put more pressure on opposing offenses to try and keep up, playing into Spencer’s strategy of forcing the issue.Now this is all on paper, obviously it doesn’t play out like this all the time. We’ve seen plenty of times where OSU plays poorly on offense in the 1st half and has to come back from deficits in the 2nd half. But the underlying reasoning is let your offense do its thing and force opposing offenses to play the way Spencer wants them to.Some may hate this strategy, but it’s incredibly hard to field top 15 caliber offensive and defensive teams, especially in a league like the Big 12. Three to four teams come to mind who consistently do this across the country, and they’re able to consistently recruit at a top 5-10 level. The type of talent you have to recruit on both sides of the ball are only done by few, and isn’t really feasible in the case of Oklahoma State at this point. If you know of several 5-star DL recruits who want to come to Oklahoma State, I’m sure Spencer would be thrilled to change his strategy.Some stats to keep in mind for this upcoming season to gauge Oklahoma State defensive success:Defensive points per driveTurnovers forcedRed zone scoring %Average opponent starting field position (this isn’t something to indicate defensive success, but will ultimately lead to better success on Nos. 1-2 so it’s worth paying attention to)Sometimes this strategy leads to a lot of yards in the box score and ugly defensive yardage rankings, but I think Glenn Spencer is sleeping just fine each night with just one statistic in his favor, and that is another notch in the win column.If you’re looking for the comments section, it has moved to our forum, The Chamber. You can go there to comment and holler about these articles, specifically in these threads. You can register for a free account right here and will need one to comment.If you’re wondering why we decided to do this, we wrote about that here. Thank you and cheers!last_img read more

JDF to Receive US$30-Million Coastal Surveillance System

first_imgThe Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) is to receive a new US$30-million coastal surveillance system to boost its operational capabilities.This follows Cabinet’s approval of the award of a contract to the France-based Thales Group to supply the ‘Coast Watcher 100’ as one component of the Maritime Domain Awareness Capability initiative of the Government.Minister of Education, Youth and Information, Senator the Hon. Ruel Reid, made the disclosure during a post-Cabinet press briefing at Jamaica House on Wednesday (February 13).He informed that payment will begin before the end of 2018/19 and continue over the next two financial years.In the meantime, Mr. Reid informed that Cabinet has approved the award of a US$1.22-million contract to IMCA Jamaica Limited for the supply and installation of a new standby generator and accessories for the Norman Manley International Airport (NMIA).last_img read more

Term Extended for Chief Judge of Family Court

first_imgThe term of John D. Comeau, chief judge of the family court, has been extended for two years, Justice Minister Michael Baker announced today, May 13. Chief Judge Comeau has served as chief judge of the family court since May of 2000. He has served on the bench of the family court since November of 1981. Chief Judge Comeau was called to the bar in 1973 after graduating from St. Francis Xavier University and Dalhousie Law School. He practised in Digby at the firm of Albert and Comeau until his appointment to the bench in 1981. “Over the years, Chief Judge Comeau has demonstrated his dedication both to the law and to the people of Nova Scotia,” said Mr. Baker. “We are very fortunate that we will continue to benefit from his compassion and his leadership.” The chief judge of the family court is appointed by the Governor in Council on the recommendation of a recruitment committee. The recruitment committee includes the chief justice of Nova Scotia, the chief judge of the provincial court, a representative of the Provincial Court Judges’ Association and a lay person without a law degree designated by the Minister of Justice.last_img read more

Opening Ceremony Details Unveiled

first_imgHalifax, the host of the first summer event in 1969, will again make its mark on Canada Games in less than one month. The opening ceremony, a must-see national broadcast event, will display the rich culture, talent and diversity of Nova Scotia. The host society announced today, Jan. 12, a star-studded line up of musical talent including Winnipeg native Chantal Kreviazuk, The Trews, Grand Dérangement, Jimmy Rankin, JRDN, Rich Aucoin, The Stanfields, and Tanya Davis. The opening ceremony, which takes place Friday, Feb. 11, at 7 p.m. at the Halifax Metro Centre, will prominently showcase Nova Scotian artists. Tickets for this uniquely Nova Scotian event are available online, by phone or at the Ticket Atlantic box office. For more information, visit . Patrick Roberge Productions, which has produced shows for the 2010 Paralympic Winter Games, previous Canada Games, the 2010 Grey Cup Halftime Show and many other events on the international stage, has partnered with Halifax-based Pilot Light Productions to assemble the ceremonies’ diverse musical acts. Dance auditions held last week at the Canada Games Centre selected about 50 local dancers to play a role in the two-hour spectacle. The Stadacona Band and members of Atlantic Cirque will also perform. “The Canada Games is an opportunity for Nova Scotia to showcase all the great experiences the province has to offer, including its rich culture and heritage,” said Premier Darrell Dexter. “I can’t think of a better way to kick off what promises to be a fantastic two weeks in Halifax than with this talented lineup of Nova Scotia artists. What a proud and exciting time to be a Nova Scotian.” “The talent and scope of the performers that will be on stage during the opening ceremony is both impressive and exciting,” said Gary Lunn, Minister of State (Sport). “Like our athletes, Canadian artists are a source of pride and the lineup of musical talent announced will add excitement to the Games. The government of Canada is proud to support the 2011 Canada Games and we look forward to the start of an exciting sporting event.” “Just as the opening ceremony will see an outstanding array of home-grown talent centre stage, hosting the Canada Games will put Halifax in the national spotlight,” said HRM Mayor Peter Kelly. “Everyone here is looking forward to experiencing what is sure to be an unforgettable event.” A parade of athletes from every province and territory and several surprises, including the unveiling of a new Canada Games theme song, will also highlight the ceremony. The audience will also star in the show. Doors open at 6 p.m. and all ticket holders should be in their seats early so they can fully experience the spectacle of the opening ceremony. The event kicks off the Games, welcoming and celebrating young athletes who will compete in 20 sports over the following two weeks. Other key cultural components of the Games include the National Artist Program and the free entertainment scheduled for Celebration Square in Grand Parade. The 2011 Canada Winter Games will be the largest multi-sport event held in Nova Scotia and Halifax’s first Canada Winter Games. Held every two years, alternating between summer and winter, the Canada Games are a key event in the development of Canada’s young athletes, producing the next generation of national, international and Olympic champions.last_img read more

PMO calls comments about Jody WilsonRaybould unacceptable

first_imgObservers say comments from Liberal Party insiders about former Justice Minister and Attorney General Jody Wilson-Raybould are sexist. Facebook/Jody Wilson-Raybould.Justin BrakeAPTN NewsThe Prime Minister’s Office is condemning the comments reported in the press and attributed to unnamed Liberal Party insiders about Jody Wilson-Raybould’s character.“The comments made about Jody Wilson-Raybould are simply unacceptable, and have no place in our political discourse,” Matt Pascuzzo, Justin Trudeau’s press secretary, said in an email to APTN News.It’s the first public response from Trudeau’s office to statements published in a Feb. 9 Canadian Press story that many have called sexist.On Tuesday the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs (UBCIC) published an open letter to Trudeau, demanding he “immediately and categorically publicly condemn the racist and sexist innuendo about Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould that is being spread by unnamed elected officials and staff of your government in media reports.”The CP story paraphrased unnamed Liberal Party “insiders” saying Wilson-Raybould “had become a thorn in the side of the cabinet,” that she was “difficult to get along with, known to berate fellow cabinet ministers openly at the table, and who others felt they had trouble trusting.”One source was quoted saying the former justice minister and attorney general has “always sort of been in it for herself.“It’s never been about the government or the cabinet. Everything is very Jody-centric.”In their letter the UBCIC executive called the statements “cowardly, low blows aimed at discrediting the staunch work ethic Minister Wilson-Raybould has maintained.“They perpetuate colonial-era, sexist stereotypes that Indigenous women cannot be powerful, forthright, and steadfast in positions of power, but rather confrontational, meddling and egotistic. These comments from your staff must be recognized for what they are – blatant sexism.”The letter contains similar concerns to another one UBCIC published in December, after Trudeau addressed Neskonlith Indian Band Kukpi7 Judy Wilson by her first name at an Assembly of First Nations special chiefs assembly in Ottawa.Wilson, who also serves as UBCIC’s secretary treasurer, told Trudeau he did not have the consent of Secwepemc rights and title holders to run the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project through their unceded territory.Responding, Trudeau told Wilson she should “be careful about minimizing or ascribing reasons for people who take positions that disagree with you,” referring to elected Secwepemc band chiefs and councils that do support the pipeline.“I don’t think we should be criticizing them, just because they disagree with you, Judy,” he added.Trudeau’s treatment of Wilson drew outrage from First Nation leaders.Former Manitoba Keewatinowi Okimakanak Grand Chief Sheila North said she was “taken aback” by Trudeau’s comments.North, one of the candidates for AFN National Chief last year, said the prime minister “wasn’t respecting [Wilson’s] position as a representative of her people, and she deserves a lot more respect than that.”UBCIC immediately demanded Trudeau apologize for the comments, saying they “[run] the risk of sending a message to Canadians that it’s ok to belittle, berate and lecture female Indigenous leaders.“It sends a message that it’s ok to continue these attacks towards our Indigenous women whether it is in the boardroom, meetings or dealing with issues on the land, and it runs the grave risk of discouraging Indigenous women to stand up to defend themselves.”Kukpi7 Judy Wilson of Neskonlith Indian Band confronted Justin Trudeau in Dec. 2018 on Secwepemc rights and title. APTN.Following the PMO’s respond to our request for comment on the Liberal insiders’ statements about Wilson-Raybould, APTN asked if the prime minister could respond directly to the UBCIC’s concerns about Trudeau’s comments to Chief Wilson.“As the Prime Minister has said before, no relationship is more important to our government than the one with Indigenous peoples,” Pascuzzo said in an email response.“The PM has the utmost respect for Indigenous leaders, including Chief Judy Wilson.”Trudeau came under fire this week after also referring to Wilson-Raybould by her first name.Following a funding announcement in Winnipeg Tuesday, Trudeau repeatedly referred Wilson-Raybould as “Jody” while addressing reporters.APTN asked Pascuzzo again if the prime minister would respond directly to the UBCIC’s concerns over the potential impacts of his behaviour to Wilson, and also to the criticism over his calling Wilson-Raybould by her first name.“The PM has the utmost respect for all Indigenous leaders,” Pascuzzo read more

Survey suggests more Canadians plan to do holiday shopping online this year

first_imgA new survey suggests more Canadians are planning to do some or all of their holiday shopping online this year.A survey commissioned by FedEx Canada and released today found that 65 per cent of Canadians polled planned to shop online this year, while 55 per cent said they did so last year.Six per cent of those polled said they planned to shop online this holiday season for the first time.Participants in Ontario, Atlantic Canada and British Columbia were the most likely to shop online for the holidays, with 68 per cent of Ontario respondents and 67 per cent of the others saying they planned to avoid brick-and-mortar stores.Saskatchewan, Quebec and Alberta had the lowest percentage of respondents who said they intend to shop online, ranging from 58 to 62 per cent.The survey was conducted online from Oct. 5 to 7 and involved roughly 1,490 adult Canadians. The polling industry’s professional body, the Marketing Research and Intelligence Association, says online surveys cannot be assigned a margin of error because they do not randomly sample the populationlast_img read more

Police Narcotics Bureau inspector arrested over Welikada deaths

An Inspector of the Police Narcotics Bureau (PNB) has been arrested over the deaths of several inmates during the 2012 Welikada prison riots. Inspector Neomal Rangajeewa was arrested by the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) over the incident. The Government had appointed a committee to investigate the riot and a report was compiled on the incident.In January last year the Human Rights Commission in Sri Lanka (HRCSL) recorded a statement from a journalist over the riot. The riot in 2012 left 27 inmates dead and several injured. The riot broke out during a search for illegal arms. The statement was recorded from journalist Kasun Pussewela after he had filed a petition at the HRCSL.Pussewela had sought an investigation into the incident saying there was ample evidence to prosecute some people who were responsible for killing prisoners who took part in the riot.The HRCSL obtained written evidence from Pussewela as well as video and photographic evidence. (Colombo Gazette) read more

Air Vice Marshall Sumangala Dias appointed new Air Force Commander

Air Vice Marshall Sumangala Dias has been appointed as the new Air Force Commander.He received his appointment letter from President Maithripala Sirisena today. Meanwhile, former Air Force Commander, Air Marshal Kapila Jayampathy was promoted to the four star rank of Air Chief Marshal.

Technology beating romanticism at Tour de France

ALBI, France — With all the technology stacked against them, the six breakaway riders at the Tour de France had no hope of making it to the finish without being caught.Race directors were watching their every move on TV screens set up in their cars, and rival competitors riding behind were informed in instant time of the gap through earpieces. It was a day for a bunch sprint, and it could not be any different.At the Tour, long gone are the days when bold riders would launch long-range attacks and foil the sprinters at the finish line. The sport has changed so much in the space of 20 years that, on the many long and flat stages peppering the thee-week racing program, breakaways have nearly no chance of succeeding.“A stage victory in the style of Jacky Durand or Thierry Marie? It’s nearly impossible on Grands Tours, and even more at the Tour de France,” Arkea Samsic team manager Emmanuel Hubert told The Associated Press.Hubert, a former pro rider, mentioned Durand and Marie, two riders who epitomized the idea of panache. In the 1980s and ’90s, both were capable of launching long-range victorious rides that made them fan favourites.Such long-haul trips still take place nowadays, but they are almost never rewarded.Take the six who spent Monday at the front of the pack in the southwestern Aveyron region. If they had any hopes of reaching Albi ahead of the pack, they quickly found out their grand day out would not feature a happy ending.There were four climbs on the day’s program, but the flat finale gave sprinters a golden opportunity to get a stage win. Tony Gallopin, Michael Schär, Natnael Berhane, Anthony Turgis, Mads Würtz Schmidt and Odd Christian Eiking moved away from the pack soon after the start. With none of them a threat in the general classification, the peloton was happy to let them go.But once their lead reached three minutes, the fugitives were kept on a tight leash, with sprinters’ teams speeding up the pace at the front of the pack to make sure they would not open a gap too difficult to bridge later in the stage.A classic scenario then developed. Using all the data available to determine the right time to move, sprinters’ teams organized the chase about 50 kilometres from the finish to rein in the audacious group.“There is so much at stake for the sprinters’ team,” Cofidis manager Alain Deloeil told the AP. “For them it’s nearly a professional mistake if, on a flat stage, they don’t bring back the breakaway. They need to set up a sprint for their fast man.”These scenarios, which also affect racing in the mountains, are a real problem for organizers who need to maintain the excitement over a three-week period. At a closed-door meeting before the race started, Tour director Christian Prudhomme urged riders to be more audacious in their strategies after a somewhat boring start to the race last year.Deloeil and Prudhomme are nostalgic for an era when ear pieces and power meters were words still to be invented. They believe riders don’t use their instinct anymore, with their eyes glued to screens determining whether they should attack or chase down fugitives.Team Ineos, the former Team Sky, often relies on data from power meters — the small devices fitted to riders’ bikes measuring their power output — when tackling climbs. It’s a strategy that produced five Tour victories with three different riders since 2012.Prudhomme would like to see restrictions on power meters.“Riders should not have permanent access to their data,” Prudhomme told the AP. “In days gone by, Fausto Coppi used to attack Gino Bartali when he noticed the little blue vein coming out on his rival’s leg. It was a sign that Bartali was getting tired. And Bernard Hinault waited until Joop Zoetemelk’s leg moved aside, because it meant he was tired. And that was the moment Bernard chose to attack.”According to Prudhomme, banning power meters would add a refreshing dose of romanticism to a sport heavily relying on data.“If riders could not read their power meters, there would be more emotions,” he said. “But obviously the biggest teams don’t want that.”Stephane Rossetto, a Tour rookie who twice tried his luck over the past 10 days in long unsuccessful breakaways, said many competitors are too conservative in their approach.“That’s modern cycling, and we need to adapt,” the 32-year-old said. “Many riders are just looking at their power meter and don’t go beyond a certain limit. And with ear pieces, we get the gaps in real time. There is not much room for surprise. Me, I never look at my power meter.”Luke Rowe, a teammate of defending champion Geraint Thomas at Ineos, hit back at Prudhomme’s remarks.“He is living in the Stone Age with comments like that,” Rowe said. “I can tell you, from a guy who spends a lot of time riding on the front, you don’t ride on power. You ride on feel, you ride on who is in the break, how far ahead they are, on wind direction, terrain. You take all these factors into consideration to see how you are going to ride. You don’t stare at power meters.”Boosting Rowe’s case, it was the good positioning of Ineos riders at the front of the pack — and not technology — that allowed them to gain around 100 seconds on three dangerous rivals when crosswinds played havoc in the finale of Monday stage.___John Leicester contributed to this report.___More Tour de France coverage: Petrequin, The Associated Press read more

UN Commission on Status of Women opens with calls to seize the

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon addresses the opening meeting of the sixtieth session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW). UN Photo/Loey Felipe Executive Director of UN Women Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka addresses the opening meeting of the sixtieth session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW). UN Photo/Loey Felipe “When I see all of you – from so many different countries, with so much experience and such strong commitment – I know we can achieve full equality for all women, everywhere,” UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told hundreds of participants attending the opening of the two-week annual session at UN Headquarters in New York.“As long as one woman’s human rights are violated, our struggle is not over,” he insisted, stating that the world is still full of inequalities and injustices for women and girls.The UN chief further underlined that there are still four countries where not a single woman is in the parliament and eight countries without any women in the cabinet.“I am not going to disclose the names but I am urging them to change this. I will be checking every day to see if there is any progress, and I will keep pushing until the world has no parliaments and no cabinets with no women,” he said, in what he described as a “personal appeal” to these nations. The Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) is the principal global intergovernmental body exclusively dedicated to the promotion of gender equality and the empowerment of women. Since 1946, it has been instrumental in promoting women’s rights, documenting the reality of women’s lives throughout the world, and shaping global standards on gender equality and the empowerment of women. The priority theme for the 60th session is women’s empowerment and its link to sustainable development. Discussions by governments will focus on creating a conducive environment for gender-responsive implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which was adopted unanimously last September by all UN Member States. Women and the 2030 Agenda on Sustainable DevelopmentIn her opening remarks, UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka hailed the Commission as the largest and most critical intergovernmental forum, with diverse women’s voices that can influence the road to the 2030 Agenda, telling delegates: “In your hands is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to end poverty and transform gender relations irreversibly for the next generation, making the world a better place for all. Let us seize the day!”“What was agreed in the 2030 Agenda calls on us to change the way we live, do business, grow food, value motherhood, engage and protect girls and boys, communicate, and respect and recognize the rights of those different from the mainstream in their sexual orientation or in any other way,” she continued. Ms. Mlambo-Ngcuka added that this is the moment “to capitalize on all the positive commitments,” and the moment to Step It Up for Gender Equality, referring to UN Women’s call to action, to which 98 countries have pledged.Also speaking at the event, the President of the UN General Assembly recalled that this time last year, the global community had not yet adopted the Agenda, which can direct the world “towards a future where men and women, boys and girls, enjoy equal opportunities and full equality in a sustainable world.”Despite noting that little has changed since September when the Agenda was adopted along with 17 newSustainable Development Goals (SDGs), Mogens Lykketoft said what has been achieved is a change in the narrative around both the importance of gender equality and what it is that gives rise to inequality. “The 2030 Agenda embraces the fact that gender equality is an absolute precondition for the other changes we want to bring about by 2030 – tackling poverty and inequality; building peaceful and inclusive societies, fostering shared prosperity and shifting to low-carbon climate resilient economies,” he stated. “And compared with the MDGs, the SDGs go to the heart of the prejudices and structural causes of gender inequality.”He added that during this session, the Commission has a unique opportunity to provide guidance to governments and others who are aligning their plans, core strategies and funding with the 2030 Agenda.“It can remind governments that gender equality requires action not just on Goal 5 but right across the Agenda. And it can highlight the pitfalls, opportunities and concrete steps towards a gender-equal world by 2030,” Mr. Lykketoft explained.Women and the Paris Agreement on climate changeMeanwhile, speaking on behalf of the President of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), Vice-President Jürg Lauber, who is also the Permanent Representative of Switzerland to the UN, said the Paris Agreement adopted by Parties to the Un Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) was another recent achievement in the promotion of gender equality and women’s empowerment.“In Paris, Parties committed to respect, promote and consider their respective obligations on gender equality and the empowerment of women while addressing climate change,” he highlighted, adding that ECOSOC will continue to do its part to contribute to progress for women and girls and that it has a mandated responsibility to eliminate and prevent all forms of discrimination against them.“The Council welcomes the leadership role of the CSW and its efforts to act as a catalyst for gender mainstreaming within and beyond the ECOSOC system,” Mr. Lauber said. “Your session over the next two weeks will be a valuable step towards addressing the medium to long-term challenges of realizing gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls by 2030.” read more

New members – May 2017

Find out who has joined the premier automotive trade association and what they get from membership. New members – May 2017.Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)

Toronto Raptors officially sign Jeremy Lin

The Toronto Raptors officially signed veteran guard Jeremy Lin. The 30-year-old arrived just hours before tip-off Wednesday and took part in a Raptors walkthrough.“Just landed. This Canada weather not playing around,” he wrote in a social media posting showing a photo of wintry Toronto.Lin’s move to the Raptors had been widely reported but was not announced officially until two hours before Wednesday’s game against the Washington Wizards.“He’s a good player,” Raptors coach Nick Nurse said of Lin. “We want to get good players on the floor … I’m excited to see him.”With Fred VanVleet out with a partial ligament injury to his left thumb, Lin immediately moved into the backup point guard spot behind Kyle Lowry.Lin averaged 10.7 points, 3.5 assists and 2.3 rebounds in 51 games with the Atlanta Hawks this season before being bought out by the club.The California native became the first American of Taiwanese descent to play in the NBA after he joined the Golden State Warriors in 2010.The six-foot-three 200-pounder appeared in 457 career NBA games over nine seasons with Golden State (2010-11), New York (2011-12), Houston (2012-14), the Lakers (2014-15), Charlotte (2015-16), Brooklyn (2016-18) and Atlanta (2018-19).“Let’s see what he looks like in a Raptors jersey,” Nurse said.After Wednesday, the Raptors are off until Feb. 22 when DeMar DeRozan and the San Antonio Spurs come to town.Pen to paper. #WeTheNorth— Toronto Raptors (@Raptors) February 13, 2019 read more

The Big Five in North American Pro Sports

Yesterday, Ritchie King and I ran the numbers on the most popular teams in the NFL, NBA, NHL, Major League Baseball and the English Premier League, according to the number of Google searches they generate.The rankings compared teams within each league. But we can also make cross-sport comparisons. What’s the most popular North American professional team in any sport, as judged by Google search frequency globally?It’s either the New York Yankees or the Boston Red Sox. Each generates about 30 percent more Google searches worldwide than the most popular NFL team, the Dallas Cowboys, and almost 40 percent more than the most popular NBA team, the Los Angeles Lakers. You can skip down to the giant chart at the end of this blog post to see how all teams in the NBA, NFL, NHL and MLB compare to one another.The Montreal Canadiens, the most popular NHL team, aren’t particularly close to the most-searched teams in other leagues. Does that mean there’s really a “Big Three” rather than a “Big Four”? (Disclosure: ESPN doesn’t broadcast NHL games, and the league isn’t the subject of all that much focus at the network.)I’d say that the NHL’s status as a major league isn’t in question. The average NHL team generates about two-thirds as much Google search traffic as the average NBA team. There’s a gap there, but it’s no larger than the one separating the NBA and MLB. Furthermore, there’s a lot of overlap in the rankings. The 60th-percentile NHL team (roughly speaking, the Washington Capitals) is about as popular as the 40th percentile NBA team (the Philadelphia 76ers).Keep in mind that these figures are based on global search traffic, so that includes traffic in Canada. Canada — despite its much smaller population — generates almost as much revenue and fan interest for the NHL as the United States.But if we’ve included the NHL, what about Major League Soccer, the Canadian Football League and the WNBA?We have bad news for fans of women’s basketball. The most popular WNBA team, the Seattle Storm, generates only about one-quarter as much search traffic as the least popular Big Four team, the Columbus Blue Jackets.MLS has a better argument. Its most popular teams, the LA Galaxy and the Seattle Sounders, generate more search traffic than the Blue Jackets. The Galaxy and Sounders also earn about as much search traffic as the least popular NBA team, the Milwaukee Bucks.If MLS has a case, the CFL probably does, too. Two of its teams, the Saskatchewan Roughriders and the Edmonton Eskimos, also surpass the Blue Jackets in search popularity.But we’ve neglected the league that has the strongest case for inclusion alongside the Big Four. You may have heard of Mexico. It has the 11th-largest population and the 14th-largest economy in the world. It’s a part of North America. And soccer is awfully popular there.In fact, Mexico’s top professional soccer league, Liga MX, is comparable to the NHL in terms of global popularity. Liga MX’s most popular team on Google, C.D. Guadalajara, produces about as much search traffic as the Canadiens, the Seattle Seahawks, the San Francisco Giants and the Chicago Bulls.So, if we’re talking North America — not just the U.S. — there’s really a “Big Five”: the NFL, the MLB, the NBA, the NHL and Liga MX. The most popular teams in MLS and the CFL are more popular than the least popular teams in the Big Five, but their inclusion is debatable, especially because they are surpassed by other leagues playing the same sport on the same continent.In the spirit of inclusivity, we’ve ranked the teams in all seven North American leagues in the humongous chart below. (Rankings are taken relative to the average team across all seven leagues, which works out to be roughly the Buffalo Bills or the Cincinnati Reds.) We haven’t included the English Premier League. The top teams in the EPL swamp everybody else in global search traffic; even the Yankees are no match for Man U. read more

Rich Data Poor Data

This story appears in ESPN The Magazine’s March 2 Analytics Issue. Subscribe today!In the 2000 edition of Baseball Prospectus, Keith Woolner identified 23 problems — avenues of analysis that had been dead ends for turn-of-the-millennium statheads. (For instance, No. 10: “Projecting minor league pitchers accurately.”) Woolner named these Hilbert Problems, after mathematician David Hilbert, who in 1900 outlined his own set of 23 vexing mathematical problems that he hoped would be solved in the 20th century.Of Hilbert’s 23 math problems, just 10 have been answered — not a great track record for more than a century’s worth of work. While Woolner’s baseball problems don’t lend themselves to mathematics’ hard-and-fast proofs, we have become a lot better at, say, “measuring the catcher’s role in run prevention” (No. 3). There’s still a margin of error in calculating how valuable Yadier Molina is to the Cardinals; nevertheless, the progress in baseball is remarkable.Analysts have made huge strides in “separating defense into pitching and fielding” (problem No. 1): The discovery that pitchers have relatively little control over balls in play has increased the value put on fielding and pitchers’ strikeout ability. And research into “determining optimal pitcher usage strategies” 
(No. 20) has led teams to transform struggling starters into top-shelf middle relievers with ERAs that would make Bob Gibson blush. Indeed, the shift toward pitching and defense reflects the rise of sabermetrics as much as the decline of juiced balls or juiced players.And all of this has taken 15 years, rather than since William McKinley was president. Sure, teams could still glean more about “assessing the ‘coachability’ of players” (No. 13) or “quantifying the manager’s impact on winning” (No. 22). But baseball analysts can’t complain, unlike their counterparts in other fields.As I describe in my book “The Signal and the Noise: Why So Many Predictions Fail but Some Don’t,” the rapid and tangible progress in sports analytics is more the exception than the rule. It’s important to remind sports nerds — who, as they look at streams of PER or wRC+ numbers, have become a bit spoiled — of this fair and maybe even obvious point. Because out there in the wider world, questions far more basic than Woolner’s remain unresolved. We still have tremendous trouble predicting how the economy will perform more than a few months in advance, or understanding why a catastrophic earthquake occurs at a particular place and time, or knowing whether a flu outbreak will turn into a bad one.It’s not for any lack of interest in data and analytics. For a while, I gave a lot of talks to promote my book and met a lot of people I might not encounter otherwise: from Hollywood producers and CEOs of major companies to the dude from India who hoped to be the Billy Beane of cricket.But there’s a perfect storm of circumstances in sports that makes rapid analytical progress possible decades before other fields have their Moneyball moments. Here are three reasons sports nerds have it easy:1. Sports has awesome data.Give me a sec. Really, I’ll only need a second. I just went to and looked up how many at-bats have been taken in major league history. It’s 14,260,129.The volume is impressive. But what’s more impressive is that I can go to and, for many of those 14 million at-bats, look up the hitter, the pitcher, who was on base, how many people attended the game and whether the second baseman wore boxers or briefs. It’s not just “big data.” It’s something much better: rich data.By rich data, I mean data that’s accurate, precise and subjected to rigorous quality control. A few years ago, a debate raged about how many RBIs Cubs slugger Hack Wilson had in 1930. Researchers went to the microfiche, looked up box scores and found that it was 191, not 190. Absolutely nothing changed about our understanding of baseball, but it shows the level of scrutiny to which stats are subjected.Compare that to something like evaluating the American economy. The problems aren’t in the third decimal place: We sometimes don’t even know whether the sign is positive or negative. When the recession hit in December 2007 — the worst economic collapse since the Great Depression — most economists didn’t believe we were in one at all. The recession wasn’t officially identified until December 2008. Imagine what this would be like in sports! We’re not sure how many points Damian Lillard scored last night, but we’re reasonably confident it was between 27 and negative 2. Check back in a few months.As if statheads weren’t spoiled enough, we’re getting more data all the time. From PITCHf/x to SportVU, we have nearly a three-dimensional record of every object on the field in real time. Questions once directed at scouts — Does Carmelo really get back on defense? What’s the break on Kershaw’s curve? — are now measurable.2. In sports, we know the rules.And they don’t change much. As I noted, there has been little progress in predicting earthquakes. We know a few basic things — you’re more likely to experience an earthquake in California than in New Jersey — but not a lot more.What’s the problem? “We’re looking at rock,” one seismologist lamented to me for my book. Unlike a thunderstorm, we can’t see an earthquake coming, nor can we directly observe what triggers it. Scientists have identified lots of correlations in earthquake data, but they have relatively little understanding of what causes one at any particular time. If there are a billion possible relationships in geology’s historical data, you’ll come up with a thousand million-to-one coincidences on the basis of chance alone. In seismology, for instance, there have been failed predictions about earthquake behavior in locations from Peru to Sumatra — all based on patterns that looked foolproof in the historical data but were random after all.False positives are less of an issue in sports, where rules are explicit and where we know a lot about causality. Take how we evaluate pitcher performance. It turns out that if you want to forecast a pitcher’s future win-loss record, just about the last thing to look at is his previous record. Instead, focus on his ERA, or better yet his strikeout-to-walk ratio, or maybe even the PITCHf/x data on pitch velocity and location.Why? Winning is the name of the game, and you win by allowing fewer runs than your opponent. So ERA says more about winning than a pitcher’s record. But you can do even better: Runs are prevented by striking out batters (and not walking them), and strikeouts are generated by throwing good pitches, which is why WHIP and strikeouts per nine innings also serve predictive purposes. Understanding the structure of the system gives statistical analysis a much higher batting average.3. Sports offers fast feedback and clear marks of success.One hallmark of analytically progressive fields is the daily collection of new data that allows researchers to rapidly test ideas and chuck the silly ones. One example: dramatically improved weather forecasts. The accuracy of hurricane landfall predictions, for instance, has almost tripled over the past 30 years.Sports, especially baseball, fits in this category too. In Billy Beane’s first few years running the A’s, the team had awful defenses — bad enough that Matt Stairs briefly played center. Beane theorized that because defense was so hard to quantify, he shouldn’t focus on it. His assumption turned out to be completely wrong. As statheads came to learn about defense, it proved to be more important than everyone thought, not less. Because the A’s were playing every day and Beane could study the defensive metrics like dWAR that emerged, he learned quickly and adjusted his approach. His more recent teams have had much-improved defenses.Contrast this with something like presidential elections, in which lessons come once every four years, if at all. Mitt Romney’s belief that the 2012 election was his for the taking (it wasn’t, according to both public polls and political science research) may have led him to underinvest in his get-out-the-vote operations. He underestimated Barack Obama’s popularity and his own ability to sway voters with his message. Republicans will have to wait until 2016 to improve their approach.It also helps that sports has a clear objective: winning. Obvious? Sure. But that’s not the case in other subjects. What counts as “winning” for the U.S. economy, for instance? Is it low inflation or high growth? If it’s growth, does it matter how the income is distributed? You have opinions about that, and I do too, and we might not agree even given all the data in the world.But the zero-sum nature of sports competition (there are a finite number of wins and championships to go around) also yields the greatest risk to continued innovation. When I was working for Baseball Prospectus a decade ago, most of the innovation was occurring among outsiders like us. It was competitive, but the point of getting a data “scoop” was to publish it for the rest of the world to see.Now almost all MLB teams employ a statistical analyst, if not a small gaggle of them. But those analysts are working on behalf of just one team — and have less incentive to share. At the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference every year, the panels featuring current employees of major league teams are deathly dull because if the panelists said anything useful to a roomful of their competitors, they would be fired. Sports analytics runs the risk of losing the momentum of the past 15 years.Woolner, for his part, is now the director of baseball analytics for the Indians. No doubt he has 23 new problems to solve. But now it will take the rest of us longer to know when he has cracked them. read more

Doctor convicted of gross negligence manslaughter after death of boy six wins

“The same citizen recognises that to err is human and that public confidence places a greater value on remediation and redemption than on retribution.”Arguing that the appeal should be dismissed, Ivan Hare QC, for the GMC, said the High Court plainly had regard to the individual circumstances of the case and its reasoning was straightforward and correct.He said: “The MPT undermined the 2004 Rules and the jury’s verdict by reaching its own conclusion on Dr Bawa-Garba’s individual culpability by reference to systemic failings and the failings of others.” Hadiza Bawa-Garba (front right) and her supporters and legal team stand outside the High Court in London last monthCredit:Nick Ansell/PA After a 2015 trial at Nottingham Crown Court, Dr Bawa-Garba was sentenced to two years in prison suspended for two years.The prosecution said Jack died after a series of failings by medical staff, including Dr Bawa-Garba’s “failure to discharge her duty” as the responsible doctor.Last month, Dr Bawa-Garba’s counsel, James Laddie QC, told the Lord Chief Justice Lord Burnett, Master of the Rolls Sir Terence Etherton and Lady Justice Rafferty – who will give their ruling in London on Monday – that the MPT’s decision was “humane and balanced”. “That conclusion was within its margin of judgment and was rational. Indeed the MPT’s conclusion was correct.”The ordinary intelligent citizen recognises that NHS doctors work under intense pressure in environments where systems are less than perfect and where one-off mistakes may have tragic consequences. Hadiza Bawa-Garba (front right) and her supporters and legal team stand outside the High Court in London last month “The evidence before the tribunal was that she was in the top third of her specialist trainee cohort.”The tribunal was satisfied that her deficient actions in relation to Jack were neither deliberate nor reckless, that she had remedied the deficiencies in her clinical skills and did not present a continuing risk to patients, and that the risk of her clinical practice suddenly and without explanation falling below the standards expected on any given day was no higher than for any other reasonably competent doctor.”The tribunal was an expert body entitled to reach all those conclusions, including the important factor weighing in favour of Dr Bawa-Garba that she is a competent and useful doctor, who presents no material continuing danger to the public, and can provide considerable useful future service to society.” Hadiza Bawa-Garba outside the High Court in London, He said: “The MPT concluded that suspension was an appropriate sanction which was necessary in the public interest. Hadiza Bawa-Garba outside the High Court in LondonCredit:Nick Ansell/PA A doctor who was convicted of gross negligence manslaughter after  the death of six-year-old Jack Adcock has won her Court of Appeal challenge over the decision to strike her off. Three senior judges quashed the High Court’s decision against Dr Hadiza Bawa-Garba and restored the lesser sanction of a one-year suspension.Announcing the ruling, Master of the Rolls Sir Terence Etherton said: “The members of the Court express their deep sympathy with Jack’s parents, who attended the hearing in person, as well as respect for the dignified and resolute way in which they have coped with a terrible loss in traumatic circumstances.”Dr Bawa-Garba went to the Court of Appeal fighting a decision made in January by two High Court judges to substitute erasure for the lesser sanction of a year’s suspension imposed by the Medical Practitioners Tribunal (MPT) in June last year.Their ruling followed a successful appeal by the General Medical Council (GMC), which argued that suspension was “not sufficient” to protect the public or maintain public confidence in the medical profession.Jack, from Glen Parva, Leicestershire – who had Down’s Syndrome and a known heart condition – died at Leicester Royal Infirmary in 2011 after he developed sepsis. Sir Terence added: “The present case is unusual. No concerns have ever been raised about the clinical competence of Dr Bawa-Garba, other than in relation to Jack’s death, even though she continued to be employed at the hospital until her conviction. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. read more

Femaleled businesses outside of London grew faster than those in the capital

Sherry Coutu says “we want every girl to know that there are no barriers to what they might do with their lives.”Credit:Andrew Crowley The report also found that in certain heavily male-dominated industries, women-led businesses outperform industry averages. In construction – an industry experiencing overall decline over the past year – the 51 women-led companies included in the data showed turnover growth of almost 24 per cent. The North has seen a large number of female-led companies turn over between £1m and £250m According to the report, the national median growth in turnover for the transportation and Agriculture sectors was five and six per cent respectively.However, female-led businesses in these areas grew by 8.5 and 8 per cent respectively.Sherry Coutu CBE, Founder and Chairman of Founders4Schools, said: “Every day, but on International Women’s Day in particular, we want every girl to know that there are no barriers to what they might do with their lives. “We worry that over the next decade, when more than one billion young people will enter the global labour market, only 40% will be in jobs that currently exist.”Our services ensure that young people easily get encounters with employers in their classrooms while they are between the ages of 6 and 16 and that they also easily get work experience with employers between the ages of 16 and 24.”   Sherry Coutu The North has seen a large number of female-led companies turn over between £1m and £250mCredit:Founders 4 Schools “We want every mayor and every reporter to know who the women in business are behind their great cities, and we want every teacher to know which women-led businesses are near to their schools.”Coutu said that this year’s analysis of the women-led businesses was particularly pleasing as they saw a median annual growth of 17 per cent, and that turnover has increased, on average, by £1 million in the past year. As a serial entrepreneur, investor and philanthropist, Coutu said that the mission of Founders4Schools is to improve society by preparing girls and boys for the future of work. Female-led businesses outside of London grew faster than those in the capital last year, new figures show.An analysis of companies run by women that turned over between £1m and £250m in 2017 details how businesses in the South West had a median growth of 26%, ahead of London-based enterprises which grew at 25%.In a boost for the Northern powerhouse too, the top performing female-led companies in the North West and Yorkshire grew by 21% and 19% respectively.The figures from Founders 4 Schools show that there are 1,335 women-run businesses that turn over between £1m and £250m in the UK, and they contributed some £27.3bn to the UK economy last year.The South West has enjoyed a boost in turnover thanks, in part, to innovative schemes launched across the region, including the Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership – a business led private and public sector partnership that aims to promote local economic growth and prosperity across the region. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. read more

Goražd Škof is the target of Wisla Plock

Goražd ŠkofWisla Plock The first goalkeeper of Slovenian national team, many years in T-shirts of Celje Pivovarna Laško and last two seasons in C.O Zagreb, Goražd Škof (33) is the main target of Lars Walther, current coach of second team of the Polish Super League, Wisla Plock, for the next season 2011/2012. Walther already worked in Slovenia as a coach of Gorenje Velenje and he knows the qualities of Škof very well. Škof is now in C.O Zagreb, but better start of the season has Marin Šego, his teammate and competitor. ← Previous Story EHF EURO 2010 (Main Round): Montenegro vs Romania for semifinal Next Story → Jana Krause stays in Buxtehuder SV read more

PayPal orders destruction of antique violin by buyer

first_imgThe online payment company PayPal has done some very questionable things in its short history, the most recent we reported on being nearly ruining Christmas for over 200 kids. But this latest episode has left me stunned.Regretsy recently received an email from a woman by the name of Erica. She had attempted to sell an antique pre-World War II violin to a buyer in Canada and used PayPal to handle payment. However, the buyer on receiving the violin disputed its authenticity, or more specifically the label on the violin. That’s despite the violin being authenticated by a luthier–a professional who makes and repairs string instruments–before the sale occurred.The violin was sold for $2,500, and you’d expect any dispute to end with either payment or the object being returned to the seller. Not in this case, however.PayPal takes a very dim view of anything deemed to be a counterfeit item. In this case it decided the violin was counterfeit. For the buyer to get his money back PayPal demanded he destroy the violin and provide evidence of doing so. You can see that evidence in the image above.Here’s the paragraph from PayPal’s terms of service that allows them to do this (click to see full size):In the end the buyer got his money back and the seller was left with nothing. The real issue here though, is the fact that PayPal can order the destruction of property. In this case very valuable property proven to be an antique. At the very least the seller should have been given the option to refund the buyer and pay for the item to be returned. Instead, PayPal has destroyed an item from history using what seems to be nothing more than the comments of a misinformed buyer in order to do so.Read more at Regretsylast_img read more