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THE UNITARY MODEL- WHAT DOES IT MEAN FOR YOUR AFFILIATE?

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first_imgOn 25 June, arguably the most important meeting in the history of the sport will be held. The Special General Meeting will vote on a new constitution that will fundamentally change – for the better – the way the sport is managed and delivered across the country. Let’s assume that the vote is `yes’. What does this mean for the affiliates; for those people actually out there delivering the sport, running competitions? If you’ve been wondering what the answer to this question is, it’s well worth your time to check out the following document… THE UNITARY MODEL- WHAT DOES IT MEAN FOR YOUR AFFILIATE?last_img
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10 months agoBayern Munich chiefs Kovac, Salihamidzic concerned after Liverpool draw

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first_imgAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Bayern Munich chiefs Kovac, Salihamidzic concerned after Liverpool drawby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveBayern Munich coach Niko Kovac believes getting Liverpool in the Champions League round of 16 is the toughest draw they could land.The Bundesliga champions will travel to Anfield for the first leg on February 19 with the second leg at the Allianz Arena on March 13.Kovac said, “Liverpool got to the final last year, they’re top of the Premier League and one of the favourites for the Champions League.“We’re FC Bayern München, though, and I’m sure Liverpool know they’ve got to come here to Munich for the second leg. The chances are 50-50. We’ll see what happens. I’m very confident we’ll get through.”Bayern sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic added: “They’re the team of the hour, they’re the league leaders in England.“They play good football, they’re very physical and they’re full of energy.“You need two good days. They were in the final last year, they’re a top side, it’s a tough one but these are the challenges that you look forward to as a player and that you have to overcome in your career.”Winger Arjen Robben was also gushing in his praise of Jurgen Klopp’s side.“It’s an epic match. Liverpool are a super team who have gone through a great development,” Robben told Bayern’s website.“They have big players, a lot of pace and creativity in attack and they’re a real unit. The atmosphere will be phenomenal. It’s just a great draw. It’s a dream for every player to be involved in a game like this.”However, Bayern keeper Manuel Neuer claimed that the Reds can still be “vulnerable” defensively having shipped seven goals in the group stage.“They’re having a very good season and we know they were in the Champions League final last year,” Neuer said.“They certainly won’t be delighted with the draw, either. They can counter quickly and they’re dangerous in front of goal, but they’re also vulnerable, as we’ve seen, and they’ll be up against a good Bayern attack.” last_img read more

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a month agoOxford destroy West Ham with four-goal thrashing

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first_imgOxford destroy West Ham with four-goal thrashingby Freddie Taylora month agoSend to a friendShare the loveWest Ham United have been knocked out of the Carabao Cup after suffering a shock 4-0 defeat to League One side Oxford United.The Hammers were dire as Oxford run riot at Kassam Stadium.Manuel Pellegrini made eight changes to the team that beat Manchester United last Sunday and was punished accordingly.Second-half goals from Elliott Moore, Matty Taylor, Tariqe Fosu and Shandon Baptiste gave the U’s a deserved victory.Speaking after the game, Pellegrini said: “We played against a team who played very well.”It’s easy to say that we played very badly, but I think Oxford did everything they needed to win this game here at home for them.”They played with a lot of motivation, with desire and we didn’t play well.”If you give them time and space all of them are good players. They scored four goals, they had other chances and I think we only created one in the first ten minutes of the game and one in the last minute.”In the second half we lost all the moments [which decided the match].”If you want to continue playing in all competitions you have to use your whole squad, and we played with [experienced] players. I repeat, Oxford made it tough and after that [we perhaps showed a] lack of belief that these games are always very difficult for the teams who are in the better league.”Of course for the fans who came to Wimbledon, and to Oxford today, it’s not the best way to answer them. Football is like this, unfortunately it was a very bad night for some players and we’ll try to recover in our next game in the Premier League.” About the authorFreddie TaylorShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

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College Football Playoff Rankings Unveiled By Selection Committee For Week 11

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first_imgCollege Football Playoff bracket.Twitter/@Adam_Longname None of last week’s top four teams lost, but that doesn’t mean the week was without its College Football Playoff drama. Baylor, ranked sixth last week, fell to No. 12 Oklahoma at home, giving the Sooners a big boost this week. Stanford, which was ranked seventh last week, fell to Oregon, all but knocking the Pac-12 out of the running for one of the four spots, barring some extreme craziness. LSU’s loss to Arkansas also makes the SEC a two horse race, as far as playoff berths are concerned.The selection committee just unveiled its third rankings of the year on ESPN. Here is the full Top 25:1. Clemson 2. Alabama 3. Ohio State 4. Notre Dame pic.twitter.com/ayBIEp6c4E— CFBPlayoff (@CFBPlayoff) November 18, 20155. Iowa 6. Oklahoma State— CFBPlayoff (@CFBPlayoff) November 18, 20157. Oklahoma 8. Florida 9. Michigan State 10. Baylor— CFBPlayoff (@CFBPlayoff) November 18, 201511. Stanford 12. Michigan 13. Utah 14. Florida State 15. LSU— CFBPlayoff (@CFBPlayoff) November 18, 201516. Navy 17. North Carolina 18. TCU 19. Houston 20. Northwestern— CFBPlayoff (@CFBPlayoff) November 18, 201521. Memphis 22. Mississippi 23. Oregon 24. Southern California 25. Wisconsin— CFBPlayoff (@CFBPlayoff) November 18, 2015How’d they do this week, football fans?last_img read more

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Government faces balancing act on marketing packaging of legal marijuana

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first_imgVANCOUVER – David Brown’s marijuana marketing students are often shocked to learn how difficult it is to — well — market marijuana.Advertising medical cannabis is essentially banned in Canada, with some exceptions. Restrictions on recreational weed are set to be a bit looser, but Brown still advises students to think of the constraints as opportunities.“These limitations can really aid in creativity. Marketing weed isn’t difficult, but marketing a highly regulated cannabis product is a lot more of a challenge,” said Brown, an instructor in Kwantlen Polytechnic University’s cannabis professional series.As legalization looms, observers say Ottawa faces a tricky balancing act on marketing. Large growers say branding is necessary to convince consumers to switch to the legal market, while health advocates call for plain packaging and strict advertising limits.The Cannabis Act, which would legalize recreational marijuana next July, would restrict marketing similarly to tobacco. It would ban promotion that appeals to youth, contains false or misleading statements or depicts people, celebrities, characters or animals.It would allow ads that present facts or promote brand preference. But they could only be shown in places where youth are not legally allowed, or broadcast if “reasonable steps” have been taken to ensure they “cannot be accessed by a young person.”The rules have been criticized as hazy. It’s unclear, for example, whether a commercial could air before a TV show or movie that is intended for adult audiences or how Internet ads would be policed.Health Canada spokeswoman Tammy Jarbeau said the “reasonable steps” to ensure an ad cannot be seen by a young person would depend on the circumstances. For example, websites could use age verification mechanisms, she said.“This would provide an opportunity to communicate factual information about cannabis, as well as information about a product’s brand characteristics, to allow adult consumers to make informed decisions,” she said.She said the government was not considering changes to the advertising provisions of the legislation, but if it’s passed by Parliament, Health Canada will develop guidance documents to help industry comply with the rules.Seventeen licensed producers have formed a Coalition for Responsible Cannabis Branding and put forward proposed guidelines, including that ads be allowed on TV, radio and websites where at least 70 per cent of the audience is expected to be over 18.Provinces can introduce additional marketing rules. Quebec’s framework allows some ads in newspapers and magazines where 85 per cent of readers are of the legal age, as well as in displays inside cannabis stores.“Offloading it to the provinces is not the answer,” said Lindsay Meredith, a Simon Fraser University marketing professor, who added it can lead to “spillover advertising,” where ads that comply with rules in one province are shown in another where they don’t.Mark Zekulin, president of Canada’s largest licensed producer, Canopy Growth, said branding breeds accountability. If consumers are going to be more likely to remember their experience, companies will put more effort into ensuring it’s a good one.“If everybody’s in the same white packaging, maybe they’ll remember what they bought, maybe they won’t,” he said.Health Canada recently proposed regulations that would limit the use of colours and graphics on packages and require labels to have specific product information, mandatory health warnings and a standardized THC symbol.They would also restrict brand elements, including requiring a standard font, size and colour relative to other information on the package. Public consultation on the rules ends Jan. 20.Restrictions on fonts, graphics and colours open the door to brand prohibition, limiting the ability of companies to differentiate from each other and the black market, said Brendan Kennedy, president of Tilray, a leading licensed producer.“What you’ll see is a race to the bottom, where all these products are essentially competing on price,” he said. “You’ll see less investment in high-quality products.”Rebecca Jesseman of the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse and Addiction said the regulations were positive overall but restrictions on brand elements should be clearer.“It’s a tricky balance, because we don’t want to promote increased use and we don’t want (packaging) to be flashy, but we do certainly want to use it as a way to convey information effectively,” she said.“I think we’re looking at something that’s informative, truthful and perhaps a little bit bland.”Canada can learn from U.S. states that have legalized pot. Colorado allows print, radio, TV and Internet ads if there’s reliable evidence that 70 per cent of the audience is over 21, while Washington state requires ads to contain a number of warnings.Colorado banned promotions that appeal to kids when it legalized cannabis, but over time the rules became more specific, including prohibiting edibles shaped like animals, said Lewis Koski, the state’s former marijuana enforcement director.The federal government has given itself extra time to allow edibles, such as candies and cookies, in the marketplace, with regulations expected by July 2019. Koski, co-founder of consulting firm Freedman & Koski, praised the strategy.“Health Canada has done a really, really good job,” he said. “They’ve been very thoughtful in their approach and they recognize that this is going to take some time and it’s going to evolve.”The department said companies that violate the advertising or packaging rules, if passed, could face licence suspensions or revocations, fines of up to $1 million and potentially be referred to police.Brown, the Kwantlen instructor, said he expects Health Canada to make examples of those who don’t comply early on. The department already sends a stern letter about once a year to all the licensed medical producers, he said.“Inevitably, it’s a cycle where they all agree and they all comply, and then six or seven months later, they tend to drift away from that compliance,” he said. “We’ve yet to see any enforcement of that.”— Follow @ellekane on Twitter.last_img read more

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Lawsuit filed against gas company after Massachusetts blasts

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first_imgBOSTON – Lawyers filed a class action lawsuit Tuesday on behalf of people who were forced out of their homes for days when dozens of natural gas explosions and fires ripped through three Massachusetts towns.The lawsuit is the first of what’s likely to be several filed against Columbia Gas and its parent company over Thursday’s explosions , which killed one person and injured more than two dozen in Lawrence, Andover and North Andover.It accuses the utility companies of negligence and seeks compensation for residents of who had to evacuate but didn’t suffer injuries or damage to their homes.Frank Petosa, one of the attorneys who brought the case, said although families were allowed to return to their homes on Sunday, they still don’t have gas or hot water and must live in fear that the explosions could happen again.“These individuals have had their lives turned upside down,” said Petosa, of Morgan & Morgan.Columbia Gas officials didn’t immediately respond to an email on Tuesday.About 8,600 customers were affected by the explosions. Many had to evacuate their homes for days and may have to go without gas service for weeks.A letter sent by the state’s U.S. senators to executives at Columbia Gas and its parent company, NiSource, on Monday said the pressure in natural gas pipelines was 12 times higher than it should have been.“The federal Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration has reported that the pressure in the Columbia Gas system should have been around 0.5 pounds per square inch (PSI), but readings in the area reached at least 6 PSI — twelve times higher than the system was intended to hold,” the letter said.The pressure spike registered in a Columbia Gas control room in Ohio, the senators said in the letter, which requests a reply by Wednesday.“We write to request that you provide us with information in order to help the American people understand why this terrible disaster occurred, whether the company was sufficiently prepared to respond to an incident of this magnitude, and how we can prevent any similar tragedy in the future,” the senators wrote.The explosions are under investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board. Chairman Robert Sumwalt has said the investigation is partially focused on pressure sensors that were connected to a gas line that was being taken out of service shortly before the blasts.On Tuesday, Columbia Gas President Stephen Bryant announced that the utility is donating $10 million to an emergency relief fund for people affected by the emergency.The Greater Lawrence Disaster Relief Fund will help residents of the three communities with food, housing and other short-term needs as they recover, Republican Gov. Charlie Baker said.Lawrence Mayor Dan Rivera, who has been highly critical of Columbia Gas, said the utility is “living up to their corporate responsibility” with the donation.Also Tuesday, Moody’s Investor’s Service said the explosions and fires are likely to damage the finances of Columbia Gas and its parent company.The Wall Street credit rating firm said the disaster was “credit negative” for Columbia and NiSource Inc., and may cause “the deterioration of each company’s financial position.”U.S. Sens. Edward Markey and Elizabeth Warren on Tuesday sent letters to Columbia Gas and Eversource Energy – another utility in charge of recovery efforts – asking for more details about how residents have been notified that it’s safe for them to be receiving gas and whether the companies are maintaining a database and map of homes and buildings that have been inspected.The Massachusetts Democrats said there has been widespread confusion about whose homes were affected by the incident.U.S. Rep. Stephen Lynch, a member of the House Subcommittee on National Security, is calling for a congressional hearing into gas pipeline safety nationwide, pointing to the natural gas explosions in Massachusetts and in western Pennsylvania.An estimated 650 pipeline incidents last year caused 20 fatalities and 35 injuries, according to the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, the Massachusetts Democrat said. This year pipeline incidents have caused at least three deaths and 33 injuries.Lynch said the vulnerability of residents living near pipelines is even more worrisome given the aging state of pipeline infrastructure.last_img read more

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Israelis among wounded in US synagogue attack

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first_imgJerusalem: Two Israelis were among the Jews wounded in the weekend attack on a synagogue in California that killed one person and injured three others, an official said Sunday. An Israeli foreign ministry spokesman said an eight-year-old girl and her 31-year-old uncle wounded in the shooting attack in Poway, north of San Diego, on Saturday were from a southern town bordering the Gaza Strip. “The two moved from Sderot to San Diego a few years ago,” spokesman Emmanuel Nahshon said in a statement, noting their condition was “good.” San Diego County Sheriff Bill Gore said both were wounded by shrapnel in the attack on the final day of the week-long Jewish holiday of Passover. A 60-year-old woman was killed in the attack, with the community’s rabbi wounded as well. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince Salman ‘snubbed’ Pak PM Imran, recalled his private jet from US: ReportIsraeli Diaspora Minister Naftali Bennett called the slain woman, Lori Gilbert Kaye, “a Jewish hero” who threw herself “in the path of the murderer’s bullets to save the life of the rabbi.” Gore identified the suspect, who was arrested after fleeing the scene, as 19-year-old John Earnest and said he had no prior arrest record. US President Donald Trump denounced the shooting as a “hate crime”. Israeli President Reuven Rivlin called the attack “yet another painful reminder that anti-Semitism and hatred of Jews is still with us, everywhere.” “No country and no society are immune,” he said in a Sunday statement. “Only through education for Holocaust remembrance and tolerance can we deal with this plague.” The shooting in Poway’s Chabad synagogue came exactly six months after a white supremacist killed 11 people at Pittsburgh’s Tree of Life synagogue — the deadliest attack on the Jewish community in US history.last_img read more

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35th annual Firefighters and Friends Celebrity Waiters Luncheon

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first_img35th annual Firefighters and Friends Celebrity Waiters Luncheon Mark Mathis, Lauren Phinney Mark Mathis, Lauren Phinney, September 21, 2018 00:00 00:00 spaceplay / pause qunload | stop ffullscreenshift + ←→slower / faster ↑↓volume mmute ←→seek  . seek to previous 12… 6 seek to 10%, 20% … 60% XColor SettingsAaAaAaAaTextBackgroundOpacity SettingsTextOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundSemi-TransparentOpaqueTransparentFont SettingsSize||TypeSerif MonospaceSerifSans Serif MonospaceSans SerifCasualCursiveSmallCapsResetSave SettingsSAN DIEGO (KUSI) – KUSI’s Mark Mathis and Lauren Phinney were celebrity waiters in this year’s Firefighters and Friends Celebrity Waiters luncheon.On behalf of United Cerebral Palsy of San Diego County, we would like to invite you to be a part of our special 35th Annual “Firefighters and Friends-Celebrity Waiters Luncheon” sponsored by The San Diego City Fire Fighters on Friday, September 21st, bayside at The Coronado Island Marriott Resort. The event is truly Southern California sun, ocean breezes, good food, and stars … both national and local.Last year’s luncheon was a smashing success with close to $56,000 raised and we’re out to make the 35th annual event even bigger and better. We realize that some of you have schedule conflicts prohibiting you from participation, but we want to make sure to invite you should your schedule change.As a celebrity waiter, you’ll be joined by your counterparts in the motion picture, television and radio industries and the sports world, plus the San Diego City Fire Fighters as they entertain, cajole, extort, and yes … even serve our hungry attendees.center_img Posted: September 21, 2018 Updated: 5:10 PM Categories: Local San Diego News FacebookTwitterlast_img read more

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WILMINGTON AROUND THE WEB The Best Stories From Wilmingtons Newspapers

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first_imgWILMINGTON, MA — Below are recent articles about Wilmington — published online between May 28, 2018 to June 3, 2018 — that residents should consider reading:Wilmington Town CrierHistoric house at 136 Middlesex Ave. for sale by Lizzy HillWilmington Town Crier sports stories can be read HERE.Wilmington AdvocateWilmington maintains solid bond rating by Barbara ForsterWilmington High School grads look ahead to next chapter by Margaret SmithWilmington PatchNoneLowell SunNo injuries in 3 alarm blaze by Kori TuittCrowded field vying for Miceli’s 19th district seat by Kori TuittWoman injured in 4-car crash on I-93 in Wilmington by Kori TuittLike Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email wilmingtonapple@gmail.com. Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedWILMINGTON AROUND THE WEB: The Best Stories From Wilmington’s NewspapersIn “Community”WILMINGTON AROUND THE WEB: The Best Stories From Wilmington’s NewspapersIn “Community”WILMINGTON AROUND THE WEB: The Best Stories From Wilmington’s NewspapersIn “Community”last_img read more

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PIC Can you guess why is Priyanka Chopra being trolled over this

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first_imgInstagramThe controversies and trolling over Priyanka Chopra’s birthday doesn’t seem to be dying out anytime soon. The diva, who celebrated her birthday in style, got mired in a series of controversies owing to her Miami vacation.First, a picture of Priyanka Chopra trying to blow out sparkling candles on her birthday cake paved way for fans to troll the actress. While many called Priyanka ‘dumb’ many showed sympathy towards Nick Jonas.Then, a picture of Priyanka Chopra having a smoke along with mother and husband made its way to the social media and what followed was constant backlash and criticism over Priyanka’s smoking. Priyanka drew ire of the netizens as they reminded her about her ‘asthma’ which she had said was suffering from since childhood and had urged everyone not to burst crackers on Diwali.Third, with Assam drowning in floodwaters, Priyanka Chopra, who is the brand ambassador of Assam Tourism, having fun in the waters at Miami also drew flak. And now, the actress is being trolled for her fashion choices. A picture shared by Priyanka, shows the actress wearing sheer gloves with a pink bikini. While we absolutely love Priyanka’s style, Netizens are finding it difficult to digest.When cousin Parineeti Chopra was asked to comment on it, she said in an interaction with India Today, “I respond by saying that I have no right to answer this question, so I won’t.”Priyanka however, gave a royal snub to the haters by acknowledging the good wishes that came her way. She wrote on Instagram, “Hi everyone! Thank you so much for all the wonderful birthday messages and wishes… You have made my day extremely special. Sorry I haven’t responded earlier, was taking a bit of a break from technology… But now I’m back and I just want to say THANK YOU ALL SOOOOO MUCH| I hope everyone feels as loved as I do.”last_img read more

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16th amendment verdict unnerves AL govt Fakhrul

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first_img-Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir on Saturday alleged that the government has got unnerved as the Supreme Court’s 16th amendment annulment verdict has exposed the ‘country’s real scenario’.”The government has started feeling the heartburn as the observations of the 16th amendment verdict have depicted the country’s real situation. Awami League general secretary yesterday (Friday) said they’re now passing through a bad time. What has put you in trouble?” he said.Speaking at a doa mahfil (prayers session), the BNP leader also alleged that the ruling party leaders are now talking about conspiracy in fear of losing power.Jatiyatabadi Juba Dal arranged the programme at BNP’s Naya Paltan central office seeking early recovery of its chairperson Khaleda Zia who underwent a surgery in her right eye in London on Tuesday.Describing the apex court’s 16th amendment verdict as historical document, Fakhrul said the Supreme Court has given some important observations in the verdict out of its sense of responsibility as the country is heading towards destruction.He claimed that the observations of the verdict have demonstrated that the government has no longer right to cling to power. “It has been now in office only by force with the power of guns and pistols. The fact is that the government won’t be able to stay in office, even for a second without guns and pistols.”The BNP leader said the country’s people have been going through immense sufferings due to the government’s failure to deliver on all fronts.He alleged that ruling party student body Chhatra League attacked Chhatra Dal leaders and forced them out of Dhaka University campus as they went there to join a discussion. “This is the type of Awami League’s democracy.”Fakhrul said the government is obstructing BNP’s political programmes and squeezing its all political spaces only to suppress the party and hang onto power by force.last_img read more

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Plug In or Tune Out

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first_img Register Now » Free Webinar | Sept 5: Tips and Tools for Making Progress Toward Important Goals Attend this free webinar and learn how you can maximize efficiency while getting the most critical things done right. From versatile smartphones such as the Motorola Droid and BlackBerry Bold 9700 to cutting-edge e-readers such as Amazon’s bestselling Kindle 2 and Barnes & Noble’s nook units, 2009 was awash in technological innovations. But talk about New Year’s revolutions: Even at this early stage, from USB 3.0 devices to 3-D televisions, it’s apparent that 2010 will be just as slammed–if not more so–with new advances in small business tech and gadgets. But despite hogging the lion’s share of the headlines, the newest, shiniest gadgets aren’t always the most realistic or affordable solutions for today’s entrepreneur. In the interest of practicality, here are five essential technologies and types of consumer electronics no small business owner in 2010 should be without, as well as five more you’d do just as well (at least temporarily) to press the pause button on.Plug InSmartphones: A must-have accessory for modern business owners, these high-powered cell phones essentially serve as a portable office in your pocket, giving you one-stop access to contacts, calendars, calls, e-mails, and the Web wherever you travel. Thanks to increasing broadband connection speeds; more comprehensive e-mail and text and multimedia messaging capability; better multitasking abilities; and growing support for third-party apps that add an endless array of functionality, today’s top models all make a sound investment. While you can expect to spend roughly $200 (with contract) for leading units like the iPhone 3G S, the outlay quickly pays itself back, especially if you also leverage built-in audio and video recording and social networking capabilities to create content, connect with consumers and promote your brand. Among the hottest recent innovations here is Qik, a mobile app that lets you stream live video right from your handset. New models for 2010 will offer advancements like sharper and brighter OLED screens, brawnier processors, more intuitive interfaces, Wi-Fi connectivity and next-gen operating systems such as Android and webOS. Google’s new Nexus One (a speedy, intuitive phone with lots of potential for expansion) is expected to be among the year’s hottest new models.Netbooks : While we’ve touched on the benefits of netbooks before, it bears reiterating. Units such as HP’s Mini 311 and Toshiba’s NB205 can make great value-minded solutions for your mobile workforce, especially with the advent of Microsoft’s Windows 7, which provides greater performance and stability. While these systems tend to go light on muscle, making them unsuitable for advanced computing functions such as editing high-definition video or premium desktop publishing, most business owners won’t mind. That’s because the systems’ low- to mid-range capabilities serve just fine for everyday e-mail, word processing and Web surfing activities, as well as 80 to 90 percent of most other routine professional tasks. This year’s hottest units will introduce touchscreen capability, dedicated graphics cards, additional computing power and even sleeker and lighter frames at lower cost. Look for tablet PCs like Apple’s upcoming model to give these devices a run for their money, however.Bluetooth headsets: Prized for their convenience, given that the gadgets enable effortless hands-free calling, these wireless earpieces can save you from accidentally starting a 20-car pileup when attempting to phone the home office while barreling down the freeway. Just one word of advice: Tech etiquette demands you take them out of your ear when not in use, as leaving one in while wandering the streets is a major fashion faux pas in the geek chic canon. Among other options offered by new models in 2010 will be better-fitting and more comfortable designs, longer battery life/talk time and enhanced noise filtering, so you can chat away without busy background environments providing an unwanted soundtrack.GPS navigation systems: While critics debate the value of standalone models such as those offered by TomTom and Garmin, there’s no getting around it: These gizmos, which provide on-screen and spoken turn-by-turn directions, remain among the tech industry’s most useful accessories. Thankfully, increasing inclusion of GPS units as a built-in feature on leading smartphones is helping to buoy the category as a whole, and save countless professionals the embarrassment of missing crucial meetings with clients or investors. The free Google Maps Navigation app is a must-have for any Android phone owner, while other smartphones may require the purchase of third-party software apps to access premium functions. Either way, though, these devices can help you get where you’re going in more ways than one, with 2010 bringing greater ubiquity for the category as a whole across mobile gadgets from portable media players to tablet computers.Budget digital camcorders: Looking for an affordable marketing platform? It’s hard to beat the reach and impact of video aggregators such as YouTube and Metacafe, or the power of social networks such as Facebook and Twitter. With video quickly becoming the leading coin of the social media realm, now’s the time to consider picking up a mini HD camcorder like Kodak’s Zi8 , Creative’s Vado HD or Flip’s second-generation Mino HD. Not only do the sub-$200 devices shoot high-def video that’s good enough for your company’s blog or website. They also provide a ready means to build buzz, generate a following and possibly make headlines around the Web. In the next 12 months, you can plan on seeing even less expensive units with more storage space, better low-light performance and longer recording times. Coupled with the fact that some TV reporters are even using the devices to shoot footage for broadcast distribution, what can we say? It’s high time you gave the category a close-up.Tune OutE-readers: Despite the popularity of devices like Amazon’s Kindle family or Sony’s Reader series, these gadgets remain in their infancy, have several interface quirks to work out yet and still represent a small share of the overall publishing market. Costs are presently prohibitively high as well, making such units best suited to road warriors with a voracious appetite for information–not everyday business users. Granted, 2010 will bring numerous new models from Heart/Sprint’s Skiff to Asus’ dual color touchscreen-equipped unit. But with software solutions such as Blio already promising to offer access to e-books regardless of platform, it exposes the category’s Achilles heel: Why buy a single dedicated device to enjoy digital literature when a multifunction one you already own (e.g. a smartphone) offers immediate cost savings and more benefits?Solid state drives: Solid state hard drives offer several upsides over traditional storage solutions, generally being speedier, more reliable and less prone to hardware failure. But costs are still strikingly high (you’ll literally pay thousands for a 1TB drive vs. around $100 for a similarly sized standard model), making it more reasonable to create routine backups using traditional hard drives for a fraction of the price. While asking prices are sure to drop as the year goes on, realize. It’s still going to be a ways before the cost/benefit tradeoff weighs out reasonably on anything except smaller models, e.g. those that come in sizes of 128GB or less.Blu-Ray Players: Don’t go replacing your collection of corporate training videos with high-definition Blu-Ray discs just yet. Not only does sharper-looking video seldom offer much practical benefit to the typical business owner, but it also comes with a higher price tag attached. Moreover, these devices still haven’t reached critical mass in terms of consumer uptake, meaning the amount of content providers producing material in the format remains smaller than in the DVD market. Also worth keeping in mind too: As we’ll see in 2010 and beyond, streaming video will continue to rise in popularity, which may largely negate physical media-based content’s relevance in the very near future.Tablet PCs: Certainly, there’s been renewed interest in tablet computers (touchscreen notebook PCs) courtesy of Apple’s recent rumored efforts in the space. But don’t forget: We’ve seen these types of systems before, and while they may appeal to certain niche markets (graphic designers, architects, artists, etc.), the average small-business owner may not enjoy any upside here. That goes double given that the units–typically mid-range systems in terms of tech specs–are caught between smartphones on the low end of the spectrum, which are rapidly increasing in power, and full-size high-end laptops, which are rapidly coming down in price as well.Cloud Computing Solutions: The benefits of cloud computing are numerous, among them options to store and access data remotely, take your workspace nearly anywhere and collaborate virtually in real-time with clients and colleagues across multiple continents and time zones. However, while a fan of services such as Google Docs, Zoho Suite and Microsoft Office 2010 myself, there’s no getting around it: Killer apps remain in shortly supply and there are still major potential security issues to be addressed here. On the bright side, with the impending launch of Google’s Chrome OS, which puts Web-based applications first, we could see major advancements in the field before 2010 is through. No arguments on this end: Cloud computing is important, and almost certainly the way of the future. It’s just that today’s small-business market remains a considerable ways yet from completely untethering from the traditional desktop. January 6, 2010 Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. 8 min readlast_img read more

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Latin American telco America Movil has upped its s

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first_imgLatin American telco America Movil has upped its stake in Telekom Austria to a majority 50.8% after agreeing to buy some €743.4 million-worth of shares in the European operator.Announcing the deal this morning, Telekom Austria said that America Movil had agreed to buy 103.98 million shares representing approximately 23.47% of the share capital of Telekom Austria at a price of €7.15 per share.The deal, which comes after America Movil had initially offered to buy all shares of Telekom Austria, will see it own a total of 225.09 million shares in the business, representing roughly 50.80% of the share capital of Telekom Austria.According to terms of the offer, which expired last Thursday, payment is due to be made on or before July 24.America Movil acquired a 21% stake in Telekom Austria back in 2012 and last year announced plans to make a €7.2 billion bid for all issued and outstanding shares in KPN in the Netherlands.Telekom Austria claims roughly 23 million customers in central and eastern Europe. It offers services including IPTV, voice telephony and broadband internet and has a presence in eight countries – Austria, Bulgaria, Belarus, Croatia, Slovenia, Serbia, Macedonia and Liechtenstein.last_img read more

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