‘Earned It’ earns The Weeknd his first Grammy
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‘Earned It’ earns The Weeknd his first Grammy

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

On Monday, at the 58th Grammy Awards ceremony, Canadian singer The Weeknd won his first Grammy Award, Best R&B Performance, for his song Earned It, which was also featured on the soundtrack of the 2015 Fifty Shades of Grey movie based on E.L. James’s erotic novel Fifty Shades of Grey.

The Weeknd also won the Grammy Award for Best Urban Contemporary Album for his second studio album Beauty Behind the Madness. Abel Tesfaye — The Weeknd — had seven nominations in total including Record of the Year for his song Can’t Feel My Face and Album of the Year.

The YouTube video of the song received more than 179 million views and more than 1.1 million likes.The Weeknd was also nominated for Grammy Award for Best Pop Solo Performance, but British singer Ed Sheeran won the golden gramophone for his song Thinking Out Loud.

Last year, Beyoncé won the Award for Best R&B Song for Drunk in Love featuring her husband Jay-Z.This awards ceremony marked the first Grammy wins for The Weeknd, Justin Bieber and Ed Sheeran.

Japanese earthquake death toll surpasses ten thousand
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Japanese earthquake death toll surpasses ten thousand

Friday, March 25, 2011

The death toll from the Sendai earthquake has now increased to over ten thousand. In Japan, the National Police Agency has stated that 10,019 are now known to have been killed as a result of the disaster.

The Agency also reported that 2,775 had been injured and the location of 17,541 individuals was unknown. Meanwhile, 1,900 evacuation sites are now thought to be occupied by approximately a quarter of a million people.

When the event happened two weeks ago, 18,000 thousand households were destroyed and 130,000 were damaged by the earthquake and the subsequent tsunami. In spite of this, twelve of the fifteen north-eastern ports of Japan have recommenced operating, while the majority of the oil terminals of the country remained open, according to Inchcape Shipping Services.

Amongst the aftermath of the earthquake, plant number 3 at the Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant is suspected to have been damaged and may be releasing radiation. The Japanese government have reported that an ongoing investigation is occurring to attempt to discover the cause of the radiation leak at the power plant. Chinese authorities have reported two Japanese tourists were found to have levels of radiation “seriously exceeding limits” on their clothing and luggage. In Tokyo, the amount of radiation in the supply of water has decreased, however it remains high in various parts of the north of Japan.

According to BBC News Online, two workers were hospitalised because of the leak. The Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO), who operate the building, reported that three employees placing electrical cables at the location were given treatment for being exposed to radioactive water; they had experienced ten thousand times the regular amount of radioactivity. Of those three men, beta rays caused two of them to receive burns. The two individuals did not stop working despite meters advising of unsafe radiation levels. It was later discovered that they were wearing inadequate protective footwear and failed to draw their attention to a radiation alert. TEPCO has since received government orders to improve worker management.

The radiation emitted from the plant has had a significant effect on the Japanese food industry. In the surrounding areas of the plant, shipments of foodstuffs have been prohibited. In Fukushima prefecture, residents have been advised not to consume eleven leafy green vegetable types produced locally due to radiation concerns. There has also been a significant decrease in customer demand at a fish market in Tsukiji.

Japanese product importers have discovered some foodstuffs to have a small radiation amount, which is not thought to be potentially deadly. Numerous Asian countries, the European Union, Australia, Russia and the United States have prohibited milk items, seafood and vegetables from being imported from various Japanese prefectures.

Closing the power plant down may take at least one month to achieve. Speaking to AFP, an individual talking on behalf of TEPCO stated that the company is “still in the process of assessing the damage at the plant, so that we can’t put a deadline on when the cooling operations will work again”. Residents living within thirty kilometres of the plant have been advised to avoid going outdoors to attempt to prevent radiation exposure as far as possible.

Media speculate over possible presidential bid by Michael Bloomberg
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Media speculate over possible presidential bid by Michael Bloomberg

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is prepared to spend one billion dollars of his own money for a 2008 White House bid, the Washington Times reports, citing his friends and “close associates” .

However, Mayor Bloomberg yesterday made light of Senator Chuck Hagel‘s suggestion that Bloomberg could run as an independent with Hagel as running mate. Bloomberg has so far denied that he is running but has not ruled out the possibility either.

Media reports speculate that Bloomberg is considering a run if the Democratic and Republican nominees cater more to the parties’ bases, leaving room for an independent candidate who can attract moderate voters for both camps.

TIME magazine reports that Bloomberg was at first ready to consider spending US$500 million for a presidential run.

Michael Bloomberg could have more money than either party candidates, former FEC chairman Michael E. Toner told the Times. Those funds would come in handy to mobilize the thousands of petitions needed to qualify for a run in some states.

The Washington Times also has reports of a Bloomberg adviser saying some people involved with John McCain‘s Presidential Campaign are prepared to leave and join Bloomberg’s campaign if he does indeed run.

Bloomberg’s advisers have also said that they have been studying and learning from Ross Perot‘s Presidential campaign in 1992. They have called and talked with Perot’s former advisers and campaign workers to learn from their mistakes and experience.

Bloomberg made his fortune with his company Bloomberg L.P., a financial news and data company. Forbes magazine ranked him 44th on a list of wealthiest Americans and 142nd on a list of billionaires worldwide. His net worth is estimated at US$5.5 billion.

Co-creator of Berenstain Bears dies at 82
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Co-creator of Berenstain Bears dies at 82

Thursday, December 1, 2005

Stan Berenstain, co-creator of the popular Berenstain Bears children’s books, has died due to complications from cancer at age 82. Along with his wife, Jan Berenstain, Stan and Jan Berenstain published over 200 books aimed at teaching children to read and helping them with lessons such as sharing, new siblings.

The first Berenstain Bears book was published in 1962 and titled “The Big Honey Hunt”. With the help of head of children’s publishing at Random House, author Theodor Geisel, better known as Dr. Seuss, the Berenstains created a franchise that drew millions of young readers.

Until 1997, when they hired an employee to run the company’s computer, Mr. Berenstain and his family managed the entire ursine enterprise, which has branched out into two television series, videos, stage musicals, toys, cereal and other products.

According to an interview of the Berenstain Bears official website, Papa Bear is based on Stan, Mama on Jan; Stan clarifies that he’s “not as stupid” as Papa.

Stan fed his interest in drawing as a child, by drawing on paper bags and cardboard.

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Ontario Votes 2007: Interview with Family Coalition Party candidate Suzanne Fortin, Nepean-Carleton
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Ontario Votes 2007: Interview with Family Coalition Party candidate Suzanne Fortin, Nepean-Carleton

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Suzanne Fortin is running for the Family Coalition Party in the Ontario provincial election, in the Nepean-Carleton riding. Wikinews’ Nick Moreau interviewed her regarding her values, her experience, and her campaign.

Stay tuned for further interviews; every candidate from every party is eligible, and will be contacted. Expect interviews from Liberals, Progressive Conservatives, New Democratic Party members, Ontario Greens, as well as members from the Family Coalition, Freedom, Communist, Libertarian, and Confederation of Regions parties, as well as independents.

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China and Russia continue joint army exercise
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China and Russia continue joint army exercise

Friday, August 19, 2005

Russian and Chinese armed forces began their first ever joint military exercises since the Korean War, when Russia was still part of the Soviet Union, on Thursday. The exercises are expected to last for eight days.

10,000 troops — about 1800 Russians, the rest Chinese — are participating in the war games. The exercises simulate United Nations-mandated police action to restore order in a fictitious country torn by ethnic unrest. They began in the eastern Russian port-city of Vladivostok and are supposed to culminate in a mock invasion involving beach landings and paratrooper drops off the coast of the Jiaodong peninsula in eastern China.

Russian and Chinese officials have framed the exercises as promoting international cooperation, but some in the US and elsewhere see the exercises as preparation for a possible future invasion of Taiwan, and as a challenge to US dominance in Asia — particularly in Afghanistan. The exercises come amid increasing speculation in the US that China may come to replace the US as the world’s greatest superpower.

Russia and China are working together to help form of a world order that will be based on multipolarity, respect for international law, and a leading role for the UN, Deputy Foreign Minister Alexander Alexeyev said on Monday, August 15, 2005.[1]

“The exercise will be carried out in the framework of the fight against international terrorism and extremism, to respond to new threats and challenges,” said Liang Guanglie, chief of staff of China’s armed forces.[2]

But others citing the use in the operation of advanced aircraft atypical of a peacekeeping operation, say the countries have ulterior motives. “The main target is the US. Both sides want to improve their position for bargaining in terms of security, politics and economics,” said Jin Canrong, professor of international relations at the People’s University of China.[3]

A Taiwanese official quoted by Mosnews.com said, China’s involvement in the operations represents “the biggest security threat in the Asiatic-Pacific region.” [4]

However other analysts speculate that Russia’s motivations for using the aircraft, including Tu-95 strategic bombers and Tu-22M long-range bombers, in the exercises may be to promote their sale to the Chinese.

“Military cooperation is linked with political and economic cooperation as part of a bigger package,” said Robert Karniol, Asia-Pacific editor for Jane’s Defence Weekly. “It’s not an adversarial posture.”[5]

Many have noted that the joint exercises are an emblem of increasingly warm relations between China and Russia since the dissolution of the Soviet Union. But writing In an editorial for the International Herald Tribune, Phillip Bowring disagrees, saying that the primary purpose of the operations is as a warning to the US. “The current Russia-China joint military exercises are not so much a symbol of trust and friendship between the two as a symptom of American overstretch. The two are reminding the United States of the limits of its unilateral global power.”[6]

Despite speculation into the motives of Russia and China, the US has given at least token support to the idea that the exercises could promote international interests. “We are following the exercises,” U.S. State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said this week. “We expect that they will be conducted in a manner that supports some mutual goal of regional stability shared by the United States, China and Russia.”[7]

Others say the operations are mainly a response to separatism and Islamic extremism in Russian Chechnya and the Chinese Xinjiang.

“The exercises are the logical continuation of the first signs of cooperation between Russia and China in the struggle against ‘orange revolutions,’ separatism and the dominant influence of the U.S. in the Euroasiatic sphere,” the Gazeta.ru news website wrote Thursday. Orange was the color adopted by supporters of last year’s revolution in Ukraine, which along with mass demonstrations in Georgia and Kyrgyzstan, brough pro-Western administrations to power. [8]

The war games have been called “Peace Mission 2005“.

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Fur fans flock to Toronto’s Furnal Equinox 2019
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Fur fans flock to Toronto’s Furnal Equinox 2019

Monday, March 25, 2019

From March 15 to 17, the Canadian city of Toronto played host to the tenth Furnal Equinox, an annual event dedicated to the “furry fandom.” Wikinews attended. Programming ranged from music to gender, science to art, covering dozens of aspects of the varied subculture. The event’s featured guests were visual artists Moth Monarch and Cat-Monk Shiro, as well as the co-owners of US fursuit costume builders Don’t Hug Cacti.

The event raised nearly CDN$11,000 for Pet Patrol, a non-profit rescue organization in Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario, run by volunteers. This exceeded their goal of $10,000, the funds needed to finish a rural sanctuary. The furry community is well-known for their charitable efforts. Along with direct donations, the funds were raised through a charity auction offering original artwork, and a fursuit design by guests of honour “Don’t Hug Cacti.” Last year, Furnal Equinox raised funds for a farm animal sanctuary.

While only 10–15% of people within the fandom own a fursuit according to a 2011 study, event organizers reported this year 908 of the 2240 attendees at Furnal Equinox brought at least one elaborate outfit to the event. The outfits are usually based on original characters, known as “fursonas”.

Guests of Honour Cherie and Sean O’Donnell, known within the community as “Lucky and Skuff Coyote”, held a session on fursuit construction on Saturday afternoon. The married couple are among the most prominent builders in the fandom, under the name Don’t Hug Cacti. The scale of their business was evident, as Sean had made over a thousand pairs of “handpaws”, costume gloves.

The couple encouraged attendees to continue developing their technique, sharing that all professional fursuit makers had developed different techniques. They felt that they learned more from failed projects than successful ones, citing the Chuck Jones quote that “every artist has thousands of bad drawings,” and that you have to work through them to achieve. Cherie, known as Lucky, recalled receiving a Sylvester the Cat plush toy from a Six Flags theme park at age 10. She promptly hollowed the toy out, turning it into a costume. Creating a costume isn’t without its hazards: the company uses 450°F (232°C) glue guns. They’re “like sticking your hand in an oven.”

Other programming included improv comedy, dances, life drawing of fursuiters, a review of scientific research by a research group at four universities called FurScience, a pin collector’s social, and workshops in writing.

The “Dealer’s Den” hall was expanded this year, with even more retailers and artists. While many offered “furry” versions of traditional products, at least one business focused on “pushing the boundaries of fursuit technology.” Along with 3D printing a bone-shaped name tag when Wikinews visited, Grivik was demonstrating miniature computer screens that could be used as “eyes” for a fursuit. The electronic displays projected an animation of eyes looking around, blinking occasionally. The maker has also developed “a way to install a camera inside suit heads, to improve fursuiter visibility.” He hopes the tech would reduce suiting risks and accidents. Without the need for eyeholes, fursuit makers would have “more options for building different eyestyles.”

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Small plane and helicopter collide over Hudson River in New York City
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Small plane and helicopter collide over Hudson River in New York City

Saturday, August 8, 2009

A small plane and a tourist helicopter have collided in mid-air over the Hudson River above Hoboken, New Jersey. At least six people were on the helicopter, and three people were on the plane. The collision occurred near Pier 40 in New York City at 11:53 a.m. (EDT), just before both crafts crashed into the water.

Earlier, authorities had reported that at least one survivor had been rescued from the river. Reports now say that all passengers on the plane and helicopter have been killed.

“This is not going to have a happy ending. This has changed from a rescue to a recovery mission,” said the Mayor of New York City, Michael Bloomberg. He added that the crash was “not survivable.”

The helicopter was a Eurocopter AS 350 and was owned by Liberty Tours. It was carrying five tourists from Italy and one pilot.

LCA Partnerships operated the plane which was carrying three people, including a child. Reports say it took off from New Jersey’s Teterboro Airport after traveling from Pennsylvania. The plane was a Piper PA-32 single engine, fixed wing aircraft with the tail number of N71MC.

The cause of the crash is under investigation, but witnesses on the ground say the plane struck the helicopter from behind. The Associated Press says that a helicopter pilot on the ground, saw the plane on a collision course with the helicopter and tried to radio the two aircraft in an attempt to warn them.

The collision occurs just seven months after a US Airways, Airbus A320 carrying 155 people, crashed into the Hudson following a bird strike. All people on board the plane survived.

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Migrant workers in Dominos Pizza ‘slavery’
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Migrant workers in Dominos Pizza ‘slavery’

Friday, August 10, 2007

Eight Hungarian migrant workers sacked from a Domino’s Pizza franchise in Derby, England are said to have taken home virtually no pay for months because of illegal deductions.

The claim is refuted by the company who said in a statement “We have begun a thorough investigation during which we have scrutinised the franchisee’s employment practices. This took place with his full co-operation. The franchisee concerned is confident that he possesses the evidence required to refute these allegations. To the extent that we have been informed of all allegations and have reviewed all available evidence, we also believe this to be the case.”

The sacked workers are being supported in their claim by the workers union Unite. The union say the “there appeared to be a deliberate strategy of keeping the workers in debt to the company through a series of crippling deductions. The deductions included payments to cover the contract purchase of a car from their employer, insurance for the vehicle provided through their employer, and exorbitant rent for substandard accommodation, again provided through their employer. In addition, some workers had to pay fees of up to £180 for an “introduction” to the company. One worker earned just £5 in four months because of the constant and hefty deductions out of his wage packet. When the workers protested they were sacked.”

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CanadaVOTES: Liberal Andrew Lang running in Toronto—Danforth
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CanadaVOTES: Liberal Andrew Lang running in Toronto—Danforth

Saturday, September 27, 2008

On October 14, 2008, Canadians will be heading to the polls for the federal election. Liberal candidate Andrew Lang is standing for election in the riding of Toronto—Danforth.

Raised with Liberal values, Andrew attended his first Liberal rally at age 6. He has worked 18 elections since that introduction to the political sphere, but this is his first time as a candidate. A University of Toronto graduate (and player for the Varsity Blues), his career highlights include managing Bill Graham’s constituency office. (A now-retired MP, Graham’s career included serving as Minister of National Defence and Minister of Foreign Affairs, as well as interim Leader of the Liberals and Leader of the Opposition.) He is currently with the Ontario Chiropractic Association.

Wikinews contacted Andrew, to talk about the issues facing Canadians, and what they and their party would do to address them. Wikinews is in the process of contacting every candidate, in every riding across the country, no matter their political stripe. All interviews are conducted over e-mail, and interviews are published unedited, allowing candidates to impart their full message to our readers, uninterrupted.

The incumbent in this riding is National Democratic Party (NDP) leader Jack Layton. Other than Lang, trying for the riding are Sharon Howarth (Green), and Christina Perreault (Conservative). Minor party candidates Marie Crawford (Animal Alliance Environment Voters Party of Canada), Marcell Rodden (Marxist-Leninist), and Bahman Yazdanfar (Canadian Action Party) are also running, as is independent John Richardson. The riding has existed federally since 1979, and has the seat has been occupied by Bob Rae (NDP, 1979–1982), Lynn McDonald (NDP, 1982–1988), Dennis Mills (Liberal, 1988–2004), and Layton (NDP, 2004 to present).

For more information, visit the campaign’s official website, listed below.

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