Redemption for St Jago in 4x800m

first_imgOne of the most talked about events going into last Saturday’s 41st Gibson McCook Relays was the 4×800 metres open for high school boys. Defending champions St Elizabeth Technical were out but a close battle was expected among Kingston College who were in terrific form, Calabar High, Jamaica College and St. Jago High. St Jago’s Leon Clarke lost a commanding lead and his school was beaten by STETHS last year. This year he wanted to make amends. Joel Jean Pierre, Keenan Lawrence and Clarke along with newcomer to the team, Anthony Cox, were determined to go one place better. It was close going on the first leg as Cox gave them a slight lead ahead of KC but it was Lawrence on the second leg that put the team in a commanding position. Pierre maintained that lead to give Clarke another big lead. This time, however, he would not be beaten. He pulled away from his rivals for a convincing win in 7:32.76 to beat the two-year-old record, 7:33.87 which was held by KC. Lawrence said they wanted to win to give Pierre, now in his last year, a grand send off. “When I got the baton in first place I was determined to extend the lead as I wanted to ensure we won the race for John Pierre,” said Lawrence. Clarke said he went into the event very confident. “I got the baton in a similar position like last year. I knew that the coaching staff had confidence in me as I was allowed me to run in the same position and I am happy I was able to redeem myself,” he said. John Leiba who ran the distance programme at St Jago for many years before he gave it up some time ago was really happy with the performance of the team. “Three years ago some old students asked me to come back in the programme and get involved and the results over the period is a culmination of the hard work. We have had the three fastest times at the Penn Relays despite other teams winning the event over the years and I am happy that Michael Williams is also back to help with the programme. He has been motivating Clarke and he is very confident that the young athlete can break Neville Myton’s national 800m junior record”, said Leiba. Williams who flew down from New York for the Gibson McCook Relays was happy with the team’s win. “Last year I spoke to Clarke and gave him instruction how to run the race but he did not go through with that and I was determined to come back this year and motivate him once again , as before the race I told the boys that they are already winners and all they had to do was just stick to the plan and keep out of trouble,” said Williams.last_img read more

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Dr. Russell’s Recipe for a More Peaceful, More Prosperous Liberia

first_imgTubman University President Elizabeth Davies Russell, in her enlightening, inspiring, instructive Independence Day Oration last Saturday, exhorted her fellow Liberians to meet all of the nation’s foes “with valor unpretending.”And what are these foes?  Dr. Davies did not forthrightly   enumerate them; she only implied them.  And she closed her stirring Oration by stating emphatically that we as a people must change our ways by practicing personal responsibility, instead of passing the blame for not doing what we were supposed to do.She then gave this parting  warning: “If we do not change, Liberia will become obsolete as the dinosaurs while others speed by.”How many Liberians want to see Liberia become obsolete?  Surely, none of us.  But in order for that NOT to happen, we must combat, “with valor unpretending” all the foes that haunt and threaten our nation.Speaking not as a politician, but as a psychologist which she has been for over 40 years, Dr. Russell declared that Liberia needs, more than anything else, the transformation of our minds, attitudes and behaviors. She listed 10 characteristics by which this may be accomplished.  They are the attributes which a “servant leader” possesses.  A servant leader is one who performs not as a master, but a SERVANT, serving in the highest interest of his/her people.The first of the 10 characteristics is listening: the ability to listen to the views, opinions and cries of the people.  What is the leader that does not listen?The second is empathy, having sympathy, concern, compassion on one’s people, neighbors, citizens.  What is the leader that is not actively, responsively concerned about the people’s plight, suffering, despair, distress?Healing is the third—healing oneself and one’s relationships—in the case of the leader, the people—healing them of their ills, including poverty and deprivation.  What is the leader that does not do that?The fourth characteristic is general and self-awareness, which means taking care of oneself, others and the environment.  What is a leader who fails to do that? Fifth, persuasion, moving the people along in positive directions, not through coercion or dictatorship, but through urging, convincing. What is a leader that acts  dictatorially?Sixth, conceptualization, going beyond the day-to-day engagements, but looking beyond, thinking big, viewing the future.  The Bible says “Where there is no vision, the people perish.”Foresight is the seventh.  This, according to Orator Russell, means “understanding the lessons of the past, the realities of the present and the consequences of a decision for the future.  What is a leader who fails this all important test of foresight?Stewardship is the eighth  characteristic of the servant leader.  This means pursuing the greater good for the greater society.  What is the leader that neglects the people in favor of the already rich and powerful?The ninth characteristic of the servant leader is commitment to the growth and development of the people—deeply committed to their development and advancement.  What is the leader that does not seek this for the people?Finally, building community—giving rise to urbanization, or improving the people’s living conditions—housing, health, sanitation and endowing them with the blessings of modernity and modern technology and all the good that it brings.  What is the leader that denies the people that?To each of these characteristics we have asked what is the leader who denies the people this?  The answer is  obvious.  Remember all the leaders of the world and of our own country who have performed, not as servants, but as masters of the people, neglecting, or failing to adhere to any of these 10 characteristics which Dr. Russell outlined in her Oration?The Orator implicitly (unspokenly) replied that such leaders are, wittingly or unwittingly, foes to their own   peoples and nations.She called on Liberians to transform our minds, attitudes and behaviors if we truly want to see Liberia move forward. We pray that all of us—not just our leaders—will work so conscientiously, so farsightedly and so patriotically that we will meet our country’s every foe “with valor unpretending” and move Liberia forward into a brighter, more peaceful, more prosperous future.     Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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Alleged Sindicato gang member killed during standoff at mining camp

first_imgOfficers attached to a private security firm on Wednesday night shot and killed a suspected member of the notorious Sindicato gang during an almost two-hour standoff.The incident occurred sometime around 22:00h when a group of the alleged gang members attacked SSS Mining Camp at Blackwater, Region Eight (Potaro-Siparuni).The security firm, Sheriff Security Services, in a post on its Facebook page disclosed that the guards stationed at the mining camp came under heavy fire but were able to defend themselves, returning shots at their attackers, who they claim are members of the notorious Venezuela-based gang.The guns and ammunition that were found in the bandit’s possessionDuring the shootout, one of the suspected gang members was fatally shot. The security firm also revealed that two illegal handguns along with matching ammunition and a loaded AK 47 magazine were recovered close to the body.Divisional Commander Kevin Adonis told reporters that the alleged robbery was reported via Whatsapp messenger sometime around 05:00h on Thursday morning and that a team was dispatched to the area.“From my information, the water is very low in the Cuyuni River. To go into that creek, it takes about four hours and basically, we’re looking at seven hours for the ranks to reach in there. They had left about 05:30h after receiving the report, they gathered and went in,” Adonis related.While he could not say definitively whether the attackers were from the Sindicato gang, the Commander did note, however, that from initial reports the perpetrators spoke Spanish.Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Director of the security firm, Amir Ahmad confirmed that the dead man appeared to be of Spanish descent. He added too that only the Sindicato gang has access to such high-profile weapons.Ahmad told Guyana Times on Thursday that the ordeal lasted for about one hour and 45 minutes. He said six armed guards were at the camp when they came under fire and without hesitation, they returned fire.According to the CEO, the workers at the camp had wash down over 300 pounds of raw gold two days prior and as such, they believe the attack might have been an attempted robbery. However, he said that the perpetrators, who were approximately 100 to 150 feet away from the camp, were taken off guard as they did not expect the security guards to return fire.He explained that there is a tower at the camp and this helped the guards to locate where the shots were being fired from and focused their attack in that area. The counter-attack by the guards prevented the perpetrators from closing in on the camp and as such nothing was stolen and fortunately, no one in the camp was hurt.Ahmad noted that these guards are ex-military and Policemen as such they are well-trained for such situations. He added that about three hours after the shooting, the guards went to investigate and found the body of the dead gang member with the weapons nearby.With the worsening economic conditions in neighbouring Venezuela, communities and mining camps along the border have been under constant threat from members of the Sindicato Gang. Local authorities have since beefed up security at these areas.last_img read more

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Arnold calls special session on health care reform

first_img“So we are working on this right now. We’re going to have an extended session, a special session that we are calling today.” Schwarzenegger hopes a special session will result in a framework for financing health-care reform that could then be followed up with a ballot initiative next year, when voters would be asked to impose fees on hospitals, force most employers to provide insurance for their workers and possibly raise the sales tax. But a ballot initiative would carry huge risks as well, exposing the governor’s plan to well-heeled opponents who could spend tens of millions of dollars to defeat it. Schwarzenegger, in turn, would look to team up with Democrats, large businesses, senior-citizen groups and other reform proponents to try to persuade voters to back a complex set of reforms. “There’s a lot of money floating around the health care system, and you can bet every interest group will be trying to have their say in that campaign,” said Larry Levitt, a vice president at the Kaiser Family Foundation, a nonprofit research organization based in Menlo Park. SACRAMENTO – With his universal health care proposal stalled in the Legislature, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said Monday he will call a special session of lawmakers to craft a framework for statewide reform. With the special session, the governor hopes to break the stalemate over his plan to extend medical coverage to the 6.6 million uninsured Californians. The governor’s top priority has bogged down in partisan bickering, with the Senate passing a Democratic plan that Schwarzenegger has vowed to veto, Republicans refusing to back the governor’s plan, and lawmakers facing a Friday deadline to end their session. “What everyone wants – and what we all want – is access to health care so it is affordable and so that everyone can have health care,” Schwarzenegger said at a press conference announcing a stem-cell grant to the University of California, Los Angeles. “So it becomes a very expensive, very polarizing debate.” Both sides are proposing what would be the nation’s most ambitious health-care reform proposal since the failure of the Clinton plan nearly 15 years ago. But before the governor can proceed with a ballot push, he must come to terms with Democrats on some thorny issues. One is his idea to require all residents to carry insurance, which Democrats and consumer advocates say would punish working-class people who would not qualify for subsidies. Democrats want to limit workers’ health-care premiums to 5 percent of their wages. Democrats are also at odds with the governor over how to treat businesses in providing insurance for employees. Democrats would require them to spend 7.5 percent of payroll on health-care plans for employees or pay an equivalent amount into a state health insurance pool; Schwarzenegger’s plan sets a 4 percent fee. “This 7.5 percent tax is going to make sure that many hundreds of businesses across this state are going to close their doors, because they can’t afford it,” said state Sen. Sam Aanestad, R-Nevada City. “This plan does absolutely nothing to contain costs.” The Democrats’ bill would raise fees on employers and expand public programs to cover about 3.4 million of the 4.9 million people who have no insurance throughout the year. The governor’s plan has a broader funding base and would cover more people, about 4.1 million. Funding would come from hospitals, doctors, employers and the federal government. Mark DiCamillo, director of the California Field Poll, said the mix of taxes could be key to deciding the measure’s fate. Voters are much more likely to endorse narrowly targeted taxes for specific purposes, DiCamillo said, than they are to back broad tax increases that affect everyone, such as a sales tax hike. “The more people that are included, the higher levels of opposition,” DiCamillo said, “because it affects their own pocketbook.” Still, according to a Field poll in August, the conditions may be ripe for a health reform initiative. Nearly seven out of 10 voters said they are somewhat or very dissatisfied with the state’s health-care system, while just 28 percent said they are satisfied. Proponents of a ballot initiative would also have to educate voters about complicated issues that can be easily distorted. In 2004, voters narrowly rejected a much less expansive health care proposal after business interests spent more than $18 million to defeat it. Schwarzenegger, who opposed that plan, was seen as a factor in its defeat. “The truth is sometimes a victim” of ballot battles, said Peter Harbage, an independent health-care consultant who advised the governor on his plan. “At the same time, health care isn’t free. There has to be new revenue, and if there’s no way to get it out of the Legislature, you have to go to the ballot.” The Associated Press contributed to this report. mzapler@mercurynews.com (916) 441-4603160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. 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Holocaust payments at $8 billion

first_imgHe said the $8 billion came from funds established in Germany, Austria, France and Switzerland in settlement of class-action lawsuits. WASHINGTON – The U.S. diplomat seeking compensation and restitution for Holocaust survivors and descendants of victims said Wednesday that cash payments have reached $8 billion, and negotiations are under way for more. It is “imperfect justice,” Ambassador Christian Kennedy told a House Foreign Affairs subcommittee, but far better than might have been available had the United States not intervened in class-action lawsuits against foreign banks and insurance companies in the 1990s. Holocaust survivors who testified after Kennedy complained about life insurance and other policies held by Holocaust victims that have been ignored by European insurance companies and the lack of compensation for property seized by the Nazis or the communist governments that followed them in Eastern and Central Europe. “With so much loss of life and the horrors of the Holocaust, there can never be adequate compensation to the victims, particularly at this late date,” Kennedy said. “Our work surely embodies an effort to obtain `imperfect justice.’ But I am confident the results we achieved could not have been approached, let alone achieved, had the victims and heirs been left to contend with the uncertainties and costs of litigation.” 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img
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Local money wasting away

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREBasketball roundup: Sierra Canyon, Birmingham set to face off in tournament quarterfinals“You see these very large bank balances of up to $100,000 and more and you’re asking, `What are they doing?”‘ said Councilman Greig Smith, who represents communities in parts of the West San Fernando Valley. Seventeen of the councils enrolled in the funding program – including four in the Valley – had account balances of more than $100,000 at the end of last month, according to Department of Neighborhood Empowerment records. “We look at some neighborhood councils and it’s `Wow, it’s neat what they’re doing.’ But others are doing nothing, or just spending on office administration. And I’m saying, `What are they accomplishing?’ They have a tremendous opportunity to have an impact and yet (some) are squandering it or not using it at all,” Smith said. He said council members have raised concerns in recent budget deliberations over neighborhood councils’ accounts at a time when the city faces myriad budget pressures. “That’s what’s bothersome … it’s just sitting there,” Smith said. And another city appropriation of $4 million will be given to the councils this summer, swelling their combined coffers to $10 million. “That’s a lot of money,” said City Administrative Officer Bill Fujioka. “I’d like to see them use it for some of the public works programs, like the sidewalks program (where the city provides a 50-50 match).” But Lisa Sarno, acting general manager of the Department of Neighborhood Empowerment, said some councils have not spent their funds yet because they are relatively new, while others are just learning what they can spend it on. “We’ll be working with various neighborhood councils on projects (to spend money on),” Sarno said. Former DONE general manager Greg Nelson defended councils’ stockpiling their funds, saying it allows them to do bigger projects and removes any pressure to “spend money foolishly” if they risked forfeiting it every year. “We didn’t want them spending like drunken sailors at the end of each year,” Nelson said. “We wanted to train them to spend (the money) wisely, or to bank it for big projects.” Annual total spending by the councils has increased from $930,889 in fiscal 2004 to a projected $2.1 million this fiscal year. The average annual spending per council has risen from $14,321 to $25,181. Councils each have a bank card with a $1,000-per-purchase limit that also allows them to draw down $500 in petty cash each month. They also have a city account from which checks are cut by the City Controller’s Office to vendors. But infighting on some boards has stalled projects, or made it difficult to come up with a unified plan that reflects community priorities. Other boards have adopted a conservative philosophy to spending. And others say city regulations make it difficult to determine which projects they can fund. Tuesday night, for example, nine members of the Northridge West Neighborhood Council spent about 15 minutes debating whether to spend $600 on buses for a graduation trip for 100 Topeka Drive Elementary School students, and another $290 to sponsor 10 low-income students on the outing. The council – which has spent or committed to spend about $13,000 of its $50,000 appropriated since September – decided the buses should be Los Angeles Unified School District’s responsibility, but agreed to fund the sponsorships. “I told you it’s a frugal group,” said Jim Alger, president of the council. “Generally we don’t spend a lot of money because we’re not bureaucrats. We act as though it’s our own money.” Alger defended spending $103 on two vans to take stakeholders to City Hall during the controversial Sunshine Canyon Landfill debate, and another $50 or so each month on food for meetings. “We find by feeding people they tend to come,” he said. The board also has approved $1,500 for an automatic dialing system that alerts stakeholders to meetings and other matters. As of last month, Pacoima Neighborhood Council still had more than $81,000 out of $150,000 appropriated since 2003. But it will lose $37,213 if it’s not spent in the next year, records show. President Edwin Ramirez said Pacoima’s troubles in spending the funds are the same as many other neighborhood councils. “Spending money requires training and knowledge. When you spend public funds, there are rules you have to follow,” he said, including not being able to make donations to nonprofit groups. Ramirez said the council has funded Christmas gifts for low-income families, safe places for kids to go on Halloween, educational programs for high school seniors and street improvements in partnership with the Sun Valley Chamber of Commerce. But another “tricky part,” he said, is finding consensus on a 23-member board. Turmoil for the Arleta Neighborhood Council, which dissolved last year and reformed in January, has contributed to the council’s account balance of more than $110,000 out of $125,000 appropriated. “The money just built up,” said President Al Piantanida, who noted that the council recently rented office space at $6,000 for the year and is embarking on several projects. Piantanida said the council is considering spending about $5,000 on banners celebrating Arleta’s first high school, planting trees along Arleta Avenue and buying sturdier trash cans for an elementary school. Canoga Park Neighborhood Council has taken a different tack, spending more than $100,000 of its $162,500 in city funds so far. The council, he said, has funded projects ranging from the annual Memorial Day Parade and Day of the Dead festival to programs for youth and others. “The biggest obstacle sometimes is the rules within the city – where we can spend the money, and can’t spend the money,” said Michael Cortez, the council’s president. At Granada Hills North Neighborhood Council, which will lose $38,000 if it’s not spent in the next year, new chairwoman Kim Thompson said there are differing schools of thought on how the money should be spent. She said the board agreed to spend $3,200 to send four people to Sacramento for a conference on emerging technologies for dealing with trash because closing Sunshine Canyon Landfill in Granada Hills is the community’s top issue. Others on the board have backed projects such as spending $25,000 for park playground equipment, an investment that was matched by Councilman Smith. While Smith acknowledged there can be merits to stockpiling money for large projects, he also said there needs to be oversight. beth.barrett@dailynews.com (818) 713-3731160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Despite getting $11 million in city funding over the past four years, Los Angeles Neighborhood Councils have spent less than half of it and now risk forfeiting $2 million, according to a Daily News analysis. Since 2002, 85 councils that have emerged in the grass-roots system have received $11 million from the city in $50,000-a-year increments. But more than $6 million remains unspent and the councils, which have three fiscal years to spend each year’s appropriation, now have $2 million that has been unused for so long that it will revert to the city’s general fund if not spent by next summer. And the half-full coffers are raising questions about whether the councils are serving their communities effectively. last_img
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Pepe Reina rejects new Napoli deal amid interest from Newcastle

first_img1 Pepe Reina in action for Napoli Newcastle United target Pepe Reina has rejected a contract extension from Napoli.The former Liverpool goalkeeper’s current deal expires in just over a year and the Italian club want him to agree fresh terms.However, Newcastle are keen on bringing the Spaniard to England this summer as they look to strengthen their squad.Magpies boss Rafa Bentiez knows Reina after working with him at Liverpool and it is said the pair are keen on a reunion.And the possibility of that just got a step closer as, according to Rai, Reina has snubbed Napoli’s latest contract offer.The Serie A side reportedly put forward a deal until June 2020 to the 34-year-old, but wages are said to have scuppered negotiations.last_img read more

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“One shot and it could be all over” – UFC star Joseph Duffy

first_imgDonegal UFC star Joseph Duffy has admitted that his next fight with the UFC could be his last, as negotiations over a new contract with the promotion continue to stall. Duffy is worried about his financially situation, and the gap between those at the lower rung of UFC to those at the top is widening by the minute, and Duffy is ready to become a free agent.The Burtonport man has enjoyed a brilliant start to his UFC career with three first-round TKO’s, with the only blip being a points loss to Dustin Poirier. The talented MMA star also defeated UFC kingpin Conor McGregor in 2010, and he feels he deserves a better contract that would provide him with a more secure future with the UFC promotion.Duffy has considered starting his own construction company in Montreal, where he is based, in order to ease the financial worries.Duffy told the MMA Hour, “You look at other pro sports, we’re not making anywhere near that. If you don’t take a stand here, you won’t get what you’re worth. Without a doubt you got to keep an eye on the landscape.“I think most fighters are thinking we should be getting paid more, we’re dealing with injuries, concussions. One shot and it could all be over. I need to be in a position where I am financially stable.” “You’ve got to play the hand that’s dealt. Al Iaquinta was on last week, our situations are very similar. A lot of fighters are starting to talk about it. We do this because we love it. But we put our body on the line. My dad’s involved in construction, it’s something I’ve actually thought about.“I’m never gonna walk away from training. Fighting? I don’t know. It’s a difficult decision. I feel like maybe if I was a bit more secure maybe I wouldn’t have to worry about financials so much, I could just do it for the joy of it.“At the minute, it’s pretty much just waiting for a contract extension. One more fight, then test free agency and go from there.“I’m more than confident what I’m looking for is what I’ll get.”“One shot and it could be all over” – UFC star Joseph Duffy was last modified: September 28th, 2016 by Mark ForkerShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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Gritters ready for return of frost and ice tonight

first_imgCold nights and frosty conditions are returning to the northwest following a recent spell of mild weather.Temperatures are due to drop to lows of -2C in Donegal tonight (Thursday) with forecasters warning of a widespread frost, mist and foggy patches developing during the night.Donegal County Council has ordered gritters to treat all main routes in the county tonight from 6pm. Cold conditions will remain on Friday, with a “very chilly” start to the day and temperatures expected to rise no higher than 5-6C.Met Eireann forecasters say the weekend will be “much drier and colder than average.”Northern counties will see the coldest temperatures on Friday night, with lows of -2C forecast for the region. “Most areas dry on Friday night with temperatures below freezing in places with frost developing with some icy stretches in places,” said the weekend outlook.Similar conditions are forecast for Saturday and Sunday nights, with more cool days and freezing nights in store.   Gritters ready for return of frost and ice tonight was last modified: November 28th, 2019 by Rachel McLaughlinShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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News.me Goes Live With Bold New User Experience & Business Model

first_imgA Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting marshall kirkpatrick Tags:#Product Reviews#web 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketcenter_img Related Posts There was a time in the United States when anything that called into question moral clarity, the black and white of a clear perspective on right and wrong, was deeply distrusted – if not actively shut down. Seeing the world through other peoples’ eyes was considered not an essential act of empathy but a slippery slope into drug use, homosexuality and communism.Fortunately, brave pioneers of intellectual freedom helped us bust out of the 1950’s and begin to appreciate the world in all its rich and painful complexity and subjectivity. As of today, with the launch of News.me on the iPad – there’s now an app for that. (iTunes Link) A collaboration between the New York Times and the data wonks at URL shortener Bitly, News.me shows you the news from other peoples’ perspectives – and other people are very different from ourselves! I have found it quite appealing to use for the last several months – it’s been one of my very favorite ways to learn about the world using my iPad. Even before launch, hundreds of publishing partners are intrigued as well. It’s a strikingly new model for both users and publishers.The Business of Your News, for MeNews.me has been eagerly anticipated by media-watchers for months. Prototyped by engineers at the New York Times, bought and built out by Betaworks (the Times now owns equity in Bitly) with data and interface rock-stars from Bitly and contracted friends, the app is a substantially new type of news consumption experience. The team behind it hopes consumers will appreciate it enough to pay for it at 99 cents a week or $34.99 for the year. The revenue will be split with publishers whose content is displayed in the app, on a per-click basis. Billing is done automatically through iTunes, weekly or yearly. There’s a free one-week trial.“We have no interest in taking ads in any form,” says John Borthwick, CEO of Bitly and Betaworks. Borthwick says that more than 660 publishing partners are already participating. (Including ReadWriteWeb, the editorial department found out yesterday.) Participating publishers range from the Guardian to the Associated Press to Al Jazeera to the Portland, Oregonian to the Bangkok Post in Thailand. A wide range of local, national and international publications are participating.Borthwick believes that advertising-supported content is not suitable for the tablet experience and argues that a new business model is required.But will users pay for it?Above: Read the news over your shoulder, Esther? I’d be honored!An Eye Opening AppWhat News.me offers is a strikingly original app. Open it up and you’ll find a line of faces you can swipe left or right. Those are your friends or recommended people who have opted-in to sharing their subscriptions on the News.me platform. You cannot read the streams of people who have not opted in.View Bit.ly data scientist Hilary Mason’s stream on News.me and you’ll see a flow of super-geeky articles shared by the people she’s following on Twitter: articles about statistics, data mining and social networking from a qualitative perspective.View Microsoft youth social network researcher danah boyd on News.me and you’ll see something very different: anthropological articles about young people online, cyberbullying, teenage self-expression, mobile tech user studies.Click on one of those faces and you’ll see a news feed of articles open. It may not look like the newsfeed of links and articles you’ve subscribed to for yourself on Twitter, though. Instead, what you’ll be shown is a river of news shared by the people on Twitter that your selected person has chosen to follow. Those people know and follow different people than you do. Some people curate who they follow on Twitter very carefully and their News.me feeds are particularly distinct.View Bit.ly data scientist Hilary Mason’s stream on News.me and you’ll see a flow of super-geeky articles shared by the people she’s following on Twitter: articles about statistics, data mining and social networking from a qualitative perspective. View Microsoft youth social network researcher danah boyd on News.me and you’ll see something very different: anthropological articles about young people online, cyberbullying, teenage self-expression, mobile tech user studies.At the end of each article News.me offers a list of other articles you might like. Borthwick believes that the experience also offers a meaningful antidote to the age-old dilema of internet-as-echo-chamber. The app makes it remarkably easy to find yourself reading content published and shared by people with world-views different than your own.Seeing the online world through different peoples’ perspectives is a remarkably unique way to experience news consumption. Is it something that a large number of people will appreciate enough to pay for? I don’t know.The app has a strong, clean visual design (thanks to the work of Justin Ouellette, best known for Muxtape), it’s an ad-free experience, it’s fast loading (there’s P2P style-magic going on in the background) and it’s got a fundamentally new model of user experience. I hope enough other people find it compelling enough to make it a viable business – I certainly enjoy using it a lot myself. I am concerned that too few people may appreciate the empathetic experience of viewing the world through other people’s eyes – otherwise society would likely be quite different.Maybe we were all just waiting for the iPad app for such an experience, though.Disclosure: ReadWriteWeb is a syndication partner of the New York Times.See Betaworks CEO John Borthwick speak about Designing Products and Businesses for the Emerging Web at the ReadWriteWeb 2WAY Summit NYC June 13-14. Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic…last_img read more

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