Exclusive report on New Zealand’s digital TV service

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Friday, August 17, 2007

Wikinews has compiled the views from various politicians on New Zealand’s latest digital television service, Freeview. Those interviewed were Sue Kedgley, Jonathan Coleman, and Steve Maharey, the broadcasting spokespeople for their respective parties; the Green Party of Aotearoa New Zealand, the New Zealand National Party, and the New Zealand Labour Party.

Freeview, modelled after the United Kingdom‘s Freeview, is competing directly with New Zealand’s only other digital pay TV provider, Sky Network Television. Sky reaches around 44.5% of New Zealand households. However, unlike Sky, Freeview has no on-going subscription fees, and only has a one-off fee for a set-top box and, if needed, a satellite dish.

The Labour-led Government has provided Freeview with around NZ$25 million over a five-year period to help New Zealand change from the old analogue technology and align itself “as the rest of the world moves to digital television broadcasting,” Mr Maharey said. The funding use is monitored by the Ministry for Culture and Heritage. Dr Coleman also described the same reasons why Freeview was necessary for New Zealand and is supported by the National Party.

However, Ms Kedgley takes a different approach and describes the Freeview service as “a belated and inadequate response to the digital challenge”, but does state that digital TV is the “growth area.” She also said that the Government is now trying to catch up after they scrapped TVNZ’s (Television New Zealand) digital plan, which she describes as far more ambitious.

National, despite being supportive of Freeview, think that the Government has not done a good job with Freeview, describing it as a “white elephant“. Firstly because Dr Coleman says there isn’t enough good programming currently available to get people interested in switching, and, secondly, there hasn’t been a definite date when analogue transmission will be cut off.

Mr Maharey said that the Government is engaging various broadcasters and interested parties to get a definite analogue switch off date, and talk about other various regulatory factors. He expects the date to be within the next six to ten years.

While the Greens do welcome the new government-funded TVNZ channels, a news and current affairs channel and a family-related channel (TVNZ 7 and TVNZ 6 respectively), “The whole exercise however, smacks of too little, too late.” They also say that the amount of funding allocated to new programming cannot pose a threat to Sky. But do support “packaging and marketing […] existing TVNZ content on the emerging digital platforms.” MediaWorks, which runs TV3 and C4, will announce their two new channels in around 18-months. And Triangle TV will add their own channel, Stratos TV, in October, 2007.

National are questioning Mr Maharey why he hadn’t released the viewer number figures. Dr Coleman said that Mr Maharey was trying to distance himself away from the “reality” of what was going on. So Wikinews requested, under the Official Information Act, the amount of set-top boxes sold. The request was denied as Freeview was to release the information themselves in a months time. On August 13 the figures were released, with a total over 21,000. General Manager Steve Browning said that “we’re tracking well ahead of forecast”. Mr Maharey concurred with what Mr Browning said, saying it exceeds their first year expectations.

Ms Kedgley, Dr Coleman, and Mr Maharey all say that they don’t have Freeview, nor know anyone who has the service. Though, Mr Maharey will consider getting it when more channels and the 2008 terrestrial service is launched in eight major New Zealand cities.

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Sir Edward Heath, former British PM, dies at 89

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Sunday, July 17, 2005

Sir Edward Heath, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1970-1974 and leader of the Conservative Party from 1965-1975, has died at his home in Salisbury just a week after his 89th birthday.

Heath implemented the decimalization of the British coinage, led the United Kingdom into the European Economic Community, attempted to end industrial unrest with the Industrial Relations Act, initiated a failed power-sharing government in Northern Ireland, and, in order to cope with a coal strike on top of the 1973 fuel crisis, instituted a three-day work week in the UK.

Today he was eulogised by fellow politicians, including Baroness Margaret Thatcher, who succeeded Heath after he was ousted from the Conservative Party leadership in 1975. She said that with Heath’s death Britain had lost a ‘political giant’. There was also praise, from Heath’s former political secretary Sir Douglas Hurd, for his contribution to the EEC.

‘He got us into the European Union,’ Sir Hurd said. ‘I mean that is a huge step, a very difficult one, which I doubt would have happened without his particular kind of thoroughness and determination. That was an amazing achievement.’[1]

Prime Minister Tony Blair issued a statement describing Sir Heath as ‘a man of great integrity and beliefs’.

Heath was offered the post of Ambassador to the United States in 1979, but declined. He continued to represent the constituency of Old Bexley and Sidcup as a backbench MP until his retirement in 2001. He was created a Knight of the Garter in 1992.

Retrieved from “https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=Sir_Edward_Heath,_former_British_PM,_dies_at_89&oldid=1877005”

Residents of Leeds, England neighbourhood plagued with crime ask council for help

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Sunday, October 10, 2010

Residents of a Leeds, England neighbourhood have requested help from a council because their neighbourhood is plagued by crime, overcrowding, and community tensions.

Leeds City Council received a request for help from residents of Hyde Park, who said they were worried about the increasing level of anti-social behavior and worsening community relations. A report will be unveiled on Wednesday by a council delegation, highlighting the problems in the area. “The people living in Hyde Park come from widely different population groups… these groups have very different customs, needs and living styles and this can provoke high levels of tension in the area,” the delegation said.

The council claims that because of the 28 per cent ethnic minority population and the 40,000 students living in the neighbourhood, there are tensions between residents. They added, however, that they are actively encouraging people to work together, citing a multi-faith forum, a cricket competition and activities which bring old and young together.

The report says that the council are trying to build relationships between Muslims and police, something which they said is “particularly important after the area’s connection to the London bombings on 7th July 2005.” A local newspaper reported that “the Shebab project introduces young Muslims to role models from sport and culture and also runs scholars’ talks to counter extremist ideologies.”

Crime has increased by 7% in the past year in Hyde Park, and residents noted that anti-social behaviour was getting worse. The council said that an anti-burglary task force had helped to reduce the number of thefts from homes. Residents complained that there was a lack of pride in the area, and at the end of the academic year in the summer, large piles of rubbish were left in streets, yards and alleyways. The report adds that the council operates a recycling scheme aimed towards teenagers, and that rubbish collections have increased.

[We are] slightly frustrated with certain communication issues that we’ve had with the council

The Guardian reported on Wednesday that campaigners are attempting to “take control of a derelict school building and transform it into a community hub are appealing for sponsors and partners in a bid to turn their dreams into reality.” They say that the unused building, owned by the council, could be used for meetings and events. A volunteer group of residents have been working on a business plan, and have gained support from local businesses to create “a vision of an open, accessible and valuable resource for all.”

A member of the commitee, however, said he was “frustrated” with the council’s attitude towards the plans. “The RPCC is slightly frustrated with certain communication issues that we’ve had with the council, but we’re working with them and hoping to gain further assistance going forward,” he said. “It’s a shame that certain setbacks could have been avoided.”

The deputation added that “a major factor in Hyde Park’s suffering is its high level of population density”, which they conceded is something they are unable to change. The council responded to complaints that streets are “cheap and unhealthy takeaways, letting agents and boarded-up shop fronts,” by saying that Hyde Park Corner and Headingley are, according to the Yorkshire Post, “thriving shopping areas and work had taken place to ensure a good mix of outlets.”

The report concludes: “The council acknowledges that because of the very particular circumstances which exist in the neighbourhood, Hyde Park faces difficult challenges which affect the quality of life of residents and that ‘normal’ service levels may not be sufficient to tackle some of these. The council will do more to enable local people to influence how services work and how local problems are tackled. Local community and voluntary groups will be invited to play an active role.”

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Call A Local Service Provider For Home Ac Repair Services

Author:  |  Category: Audio Visual System

byAlma Abell

There’s something very reassuring about calling a local service provider. Because the service provider is located nearby the wait time is usually minimal, which is good during extreme heat. If there is a problem, it’s always nice to talk to someone familiar instead of a secretary in a different city. In some cases, the price of installation is lower when a local service provider is chosen. These reasons and more make it a great idea to schedule regular service visits. Regular service visits may seem like a waste of money to some homeowners. The truth is that regular service can actually save quite a bit of money, which will offset the cost of the service. In addition to fewer repairs, the cost of operating a well-maintained unit is often much lower.

With any major appliance, regular service is a must and air conditioning units are no exceptions. If an AC unit is left exposed the elements without being cleaned or serviced, it isn’t going to last very long without AC Repair Services. Some homeowners have the same unit for more than a decade without having any major problems. This is only possible with scheduled service visits every six months. These visits should include a thorough inspection of the unit itself and the ducts leading into the home. The ducts should also be cleaned in order to maintain air quality in the home. Family members experiencing asthmatic symptoms may benefit from regularly cleaned ducts and a high-quality air filtering system. Many questions about these services can be answered at Bluestar-ac.com.

The ducts that move air in and out of the home are vital to keeping a home cool and comfortable. AC Repair Services often focus on the ducts rather than the unit itself. Even if the unit is running perfectly, it won’t be able to cool a home without the passages to pump in the cool air. Older can become unfastened and simply corrode, leading to leaks and loss of pressure. The cool air will simply pump out the hole in the duct, wasting energy and money. With semi-annual service visits, this kind of thing can be avoided, and money can be saved on monthly energy costs.

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Interview with gay marriage movement founder Evan Wolfson

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Sunday, September 30, 2007

Evan Wolfson, the founder of the modern gay marriage movement, tells the waiter he would like an iced decaf and “the usual.” Wolfson, one of Time Magazine’s Most Influential People in the World, is a man who unflinchingly knows what he wants and stays his course, whether it be in his choice of restaurant or in his choice of battle. And others always know when they see Evan coming what it is that he wants.

Since his time at Harvard Law School when he wrote a paper on the topic, what Wolfson wants is the right for gay people to marry. The issue gained national prominence in 1993 when the Hawaii Supreme Court held in Baehr v. Lewin that the government had to show a reason for the denial of the freedom to marry, not just deny marriage licenses to the plaintiff gay couples. Wolfson was co-counsel in the historic 1996 Hawaii trial in which he argued that the government does not have a sufficient reason for excluding same-sex couples from marriage. In 1999, Wolfson contributed to Baker v. Vermont, the case that led to the creation of civil unions; advised the lead attorneys in Goodridge v. Department of Public Health, the case that led to same-sex marriage in Massachusetts; and since 2003, when he founded the primary umbrella organization coordinating the efforts to win marriage for gay people, Freedom to Marry, Wolfson has played a role in every marriage equality case in the United States. He is the movement’s founder and leader, and his focus remains square on winning that right. “For years,” said Matt Foreman, executive director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, “many of us were saying to him, ‘We’re not ready. The country’s not ready. And, by the way, you’re crazy.'”

When I make a statement to him about his devoting his life to gay marriage, he corrects me: “I’ve played a part in cases that span the entire spectrum of eliminating gay people’s exclusions and limitations on who gay people are, and I’ve also written on immigration and economic justice, and I have worked on cases involving race discrimination in jury selection and women’s inequality. I don’t think one has to pick one of these things; they work together.”

Indeed, he has. Wolfson was lead counsel before the Supreme Court in Boy Scouts of America v. Dale, the case arguing against the expulsion of gay scoutmasters. As an intrepid young assistant district attorney in Brooklyn, Wolfson worked on People v. Liberta to end the exemption that allowed women to be raped by their husbands legally, a right in New York State as early as 1984. And he helped end the practice of choosing jurors based upon their race.

Wolfson’s entire career has been at the center of the most explosive legal and cultural issues of the last 30 years in the United States, and his influence has been profound. David Shankbone sat down with him to discuss some of the recent decisions affecting gay marriage, gender in marriage and reactions in the gay community to his fight for their rights.

Retrieved from “https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=Interview_with_gay_marriage_movement_founder_Evan_Wolfson&oldid=4635188”

Outbreak of swine flu in Mexico kills at least twenty, infects 1,000

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Friday, April 24, 2009

According to Mexican health officials, an epidemic of swine flu has killed at least 68 people and infected a further one thousand inside the country.

Mexican health minister José Ángel Córdova said that the casualty rate appeared to be slowing down, and that there would be no plans to block off Mexican borders. “We’re dealing with a new flu virus that constitutes a respiratory epidemic that so far is controllable,” Córdova stated. He said that the disease had mutated from pigs and was transferred to humans at some point.

Museums and schools for seven million students near Mexico’s capital were closed down in an effort to curb the epidemic, and the government has encouraged people with symptoms of the disease to take leave from work.

The outbreak has spread north to the United States, and US health authorities have reported that eight people were diagnosed with swine flu in Texas and California. However, these people have recovered.

“We are worried. We don’t know if this will lead to the next pandemic, but we will be monitoring it and taking it seriously,” said Dr. Richard Besser, the acting head of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Dr. Besser suggested “containment is not very likely” in a telephone briefing on Friday.

Tests conducted by the World Health Organisation (WHO) found that the virus from a dozen patients was genetically similar to a new outbreak of swine flu, designated as H1N1.

Retrieved from “https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=Outbreak_of_swine_flu_in_Mexico_kills_at_least_twenty,_infects_1,000&oldid=4508929”

Pocket Bike Racing: A Background &Amp; Introduction}

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Pocket Bike Racing: A Background & Introduction

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Dave Carter

Pocketbike racing, which is also known in some places as Minimoto or Mini GP racing, is a racing that is doine with the use of miniature racing motorcycles, which are known most commonly as pocket bikes. These bikes are raced around kart tracks. It is an extremely popular sport in Japan and Europe, and is gaining in popularity in other parts of the world, particularly in the United States.

A typical pocket bike is roughly one quarter the size of a normal motorcycle, and is powered by an internal combustion engine of between 40-50 cubic centimetres producing somewhere between 3 and 15 horsepower, depending on the particular model. The machines have no suspension, relying on the tires to absorb bumps and handle cornering, and most weigh right about 40 pounds. The entry-level models often produce about 3 to 4 horsepower, but the more expensive racing models run with much more power. The best pocket bikes for racing are ones that provide a favorable power-to-weight ratio. Performance enhancements are sometimes added to increase speed and acceleration. Despite their tiny size, both adults and children race pocket bikes at speeds of up to 60 miles per hour in organized racing leagues.The ease of transportation afforded by their size, and the low cost of the bikes (they are priced anywhere from a mere $200 for the most basic models built in China, to anywhere upwards of around $5,000 for a top notch, best of its kind Italian model) make them an affordable way for children (some as young as six) to learn the basics about motorcycle racing and for adults to live out their hunger for the adrenaline rush of bike racing without the high costs and heavy risks associated with full-sized motorcycle racing.In most countries, a lisence is not required to ride miniature bikes. Even so, pocket bikes are not usually street legal and should only be ridden on private land, such as car parks, gardens or on race tracks. Some areas have very specific laws against riding pocket bikes on the street, and because of their small size, people driving cars and trucks may not see them. For this reason they should never be driven on busy public streets.Dave is the owner of http://super-pocket-bike.info a website that provides information on pocket bikes and mini moto racing.

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Pocket Bike Racing: A Background & Introduction}

British Gas announces a hike in energy bills of 14.2%

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Saturday, September 10, 2005

One of Britain‘s largest domestic energy suppliers, British Gas, has announced that it is to raise the price of its gas and electricity prices by a record 14.2%. It blames the price rise on increasing wholesale gas prices, which have gone up by over 50% in the past year, the rising cost of oil & the increasing difficulty in getting gas from the North Sea, a major gas field for the United Kingdom.

250 000 people on low incomes will receive a one-off GBP 60 (USD 110.35 , EUR 88.93) rebate to alleviate this price rise.

This follows increases from other suppliers including Powergen and EDF Energy, with both having risen their prices by 7 to 12%. Energywatch, Britain’s consumer energy watchdog has said domestic gas and electric bills have gone up by 17 and 22% on average respectively in the last 18 months to August.

In 2004, British Gas increased its prices by 5.9% in January and 12.4% in September.

Across the water in Ireland, the Irish government approved a 25% increase on gas prices by the state owned monopoly, Bord Gais.

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WSJ: Diller close to $2 billion deal for Ask Jeeves

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Monday, March 21, 2005

Barry Diller’s InterActiveCorp (IAC) is near a US$2 billion deal to buy search engine Ask Jeeves, according to a report in Monday’s Wall Street Journal.

The corporate boards from both companies were in talks all weekend negotiating what appears to be an all-stock deal. If approved, the price tag would be a substantial premium over Ask Jeeves valuation of $1.4 billion as of Friday’s stock market close.

The acquisition of Oakland, California-based Ask Jeeves by IAC would mean they own a known brand name and get a foothold in revenues from search engine advertising. The company also would become a direct competitor with companies such as Google, Yahoo!, Amazon.com and Microsoft who also have launched their own high-profile internet search engines. Ask Jeeves also owns other brands, including Excite.com and iWon.com.

Diller has built InterActiveCorp on the backbone of the cash generated by Home Shopping Network, a company he used to bankroll the purchases of a large portfolio of internet and electronic commerce companies. These include Expedia, Ticketmaster, Match.com, CitySearch and the LendingTree.

He also bought and grew cable networks USA Network and Sci Fi Channel before selling them off to NBC Universal, of which he is the largest individual shareholder.

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Download Tn Separation Certificates Over The Internet For Free

Author:  |  Category: Family Law Attorney

Download TN Separation Certificates Over The internet For Free by GianMaclureThe state of Tennessee is an open state since the Freedom of Information Act has been in place in 1966. Such law has mandated the government to allow the local residents to access their personal files. Tennessee divorce records are just one of the many documents that are open to the public. Divorce records in Tennessee are used in a number of ways. Transactions in the government would call for a certificate of separation when one is updating the beneficiaries. Divorce records are also used during marriage application of a divorcee. Without it, he/ she may have difficulties proceeding with the marriage. Others would use the document to verify the status of their partners. One would know whether the person they are dating is really single as they claim they were. Updating the family tree is another use of such file. However, it may not be as important as other documents, but if it is not updated it may cause problems for the future generations. One can only find the basic details of what happened during the separation on a public document. Only the name, place and date as to when the couple was separated. Important information such as the reason for the separation is not displayed on a public file. This together with the information about the division of assets and the child custody remain private. This is done to respect the divorcee’s privacy.Retrieval of a divorce record in the state of Tennessee would cost only $15 per copy. All the necessary information has to be indicated on the application form. This can help make the search easy. Also the personal information of the requesting individuals has to be indicated on the application form to be used to track who accessed the file. Although it is considered as a public document, only the divorcees and their relatives are given access to the file. One can go to the office of the Vital Records Section at the Department of Health in order to request for a copy of a divorce certificate. Such office keeps the files up to 50 years only. One has to get records beyond 50 years at the county of separation. There are cases where the records has not yet reached 50 years but it cannot be found at the state office, one can get it from the county clerk office. The processing fee is not the same for all of the counties of the state. The development of the Internet has improved the search process.Searching for the Free Divorce Records with the use of the Internet has greatly improved the search process. With this, one can simply get to a website and do the search from there thus going to the office will be just a waste of time. The result of the online search is displayed right away on the computer screen. Many would prefer to do the search online because they can avoid spending too much time and energy in getting the document.Free Tennessee Divorce Records the right answer for you? Possibly, but find out for sure by visiting us at Public Divorce Records with our insights and information.Article Source: eArticlesOnline.com

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