<a href=”http://www.etbtravelnews.global/click/259df/” target=”_blank”><img src=”http://adsvr.travelads.biz/www/delivery/avw.php?zoneid=10&cb=INSERT_RANDOM_NUMBER_HERE&n=a5c63036″ border=”0″ alt=””></a> In a bid to boost West Australian and Japanese travel markets, Australian-based TMC, Voyager Travel Corporation today announced the acquisition of corporate and luxury leisure company, Lets Go Australia.Lets GO Australia, focussing on West Australian and Japanese speaking markets, will now provide its entire corporate client base to Voyager Travel, which will further enhance services with its in-house online booking engine, Serko and business intelligence reporting tool, Zuno. “The acquisition of Lets Go Australia helps cement Voyager Travel Corporation as one of the top corporate agencies in Western Australia and the resources sector overall,” Voyager Travel, CEO, Richard Savva said.“Acquiring Lets Go Australia allows Voyager to provide specialised Japan travel services such as fluent Japanese speaking consultants and direct booking and ticketing capabilities for the Japan Rail Network to organisations with Japanese senior executives based in Australia and companies who conduct business in Japan.”Lets Go Australia already employs dedicated Japanese speaking staff, which Voyager Travel expect will leverage across its offices to ensure service standards remain high, according to the company. “One thing that will not change is Voyager Travel Corporation’s commitment to personal service to our clients. Voyager provides complete accountability with our 100 percent service guarantee backed up by a team of professional travel consultants, each with an average of over 16 years of travel experience. We look forward to welcoming Lets Go Australia’s customers into the Voyager fold,” Mr Savva said. Source = e-Travel Blackboard: D.M
AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Mesfin Fekadu, The Associated Press Tia Fuller, fierce woman in jazz, takes shot at 1st Grammy by Mesfin Fekadu, The Associated Press Posted Jan 8, 2019 12:40 pm PDT NEW YORK — Saxophonist Tia Fuller is nominated for her first-ever Grammy Award — but it’s not just any nomination: Her inclusion in the best jazz instrumental album category is a historic moment for women because they have rarely been nominated for the coveted award throughout the Grammys’ 61-year history.And if Fuller wins, she becomes just the second women to take home the prize.When she found out about the nomination for “Diamond Gold,” she cried in her bed while praising God.It’s yet another career highlight for skilled performer, who once played with Ray Charles as a college student and toured with Beyonce.___Online:Home
28Feb Rep. Wentworth holds first Military and Veterans Affairs Committee meeting State Rep. Jason Wentworth, of Clare, today held the first meeting of the House Military and Veterans Affairs Committee.The committee heard testimony on a bill to require veteran employment preference at state veteran homes.“Today’s meeting was incredibly valuable in educating committee members about the importance of veterans caring for veterans,” said Rep. Wentworth, a U.S. Army veteran and former regional coordinator for the Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency. “I look forward to taking on many more veteran issues with my colleagues on this committee as the year progresses. “One of my main priorities for this committee is to help improve the way we deliver benefits and services to our states veterans”The House Military and Veterans Affairs Committee meets weekly on Thursdays at noon in room 327 of the House Office Building. The purpose of the committee is to deliberate on various policy issues that relate to the state’s veterans and military members.### Categories: Wentworth News
16Mar Rep. Bellino lauds bipartisan passage of transparency bills Categories: Bellino News State Rep. Joe Bellino voted today in favor of bipartisan legislation to make state government more accountable and accessible to the people of Michigan.Bellino, of Monroe, introduced one of the 11 bills to make the governor and lieutenant governor subject to the Freedom of Information Act and creates a similar disclosure requirement for state representatives and senators called the Legislative Open Records Act.“We are public servants, and the people we represent deserve to have access to information about our actions,” Bellino said. “People are trusting us to make the best use of the money they pay in taxes, and I see no reason why they should not see how we are using those tax dollars.”Bellino’s legislation addresses minimal exemptions to LORA, such as redacting personal identity information communicated between a representative’s office and a constituent.The legislation is similar to a package of bills introduced last session and passed overwhelmingly by the House. The bills never made it to the governor for signature.Bellino said Michigan is one of just a few states that do not subject their legislative and executive branches to open records acts. The House recently put a salary database of all House employees on its website to provide more accountability to taxpayers.#####
State Rep. Jason Sheppard of Temperance was joined by Andy Gill, Owner of Andrew Gill Insurance Associates in Lambertville, at the state Capitol for the annual State of the State address. Rep. Sheppard represents the townships of Milan, Dundee, Summerfield, Whiteford, Bedford, Erie, LaSalle, Ida, Raisinville and a portion of Monroe. Categories: Sheppard News,Sheppard Photos 12Feb Rep. Sheppard joined by small business owner for State of the State address
05Mar Rep. Cole issues statement on governor’s road plan proposal. Categories: Cole News,News State Rep. Triston Cole, former chair of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee and current House Majority Floor Leader, today issued the following statement regarding the governor’s proposal to fix Michigan roads:“After two years of nonstop talk about fixing the roads, it’s ludicrous but not entirely unexpected that the governor would essentially punt and propose a completely unrealistic gas tax increase. Tax increases are the typical Pavlovian response by Democrats when faced with any issue. Her misguided proposal is not a conversation starter; it’s a wrench thrown into talks that are immensely important to everyone.“The governor failed to see there are many aspects to fixing roads. For example, we should look at ensuring supply lines of material for road building are unimpeded particularly at the local level. I’d also strongly encourage the governor to look at streamlining government, not expanding or adding departments. This could free up revenue to fix our roads and bridges.“And all this talk of increasing costs for drivers at the pump and no mention of addressing the top issue, which is Auto No Fault insurance.”(Rep. Cole was chair of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee during the 2017-18 legislative session. He currently serves as Majority Floor Leader for the 2019-20 session.)###
ShareTweetShareEmail0 SharesFebruary 18, 2014; New York Times At first blush, the reports of the wanton destruction of a vase created by dissident Chinese artist Ai WeiWei sound relatively senseless, but then it becomes clear that some pretty clear suggestive provocation occurred in the placement of the vases in front of this set of photos: Dropping a Han Dynasty Urn (1995), also by Ai.Maximo Caminero, a local artist, claims to have been inspired by the three photographs in which Ai drops and destroys a priceless ancient Chinese vase “to make a point about valuation of art and everyday objects as well as the fragility of cultural objects.”Mr. Caminero, originally from the Dominican Republic but a longtime resident of Miami, told the Miami New Times that he had broken the vase to protest what he said was the Pérez Art Museum’s exclusion of local artists in its exhibits. Caminero claims to be an admirer of Ai but says that he destroyed the vase “for all the local artists in Miami that have never been shown in museums here.” “It’s the same political situation over and over again,” he told the newspaper. “I’ve been here for 30 years and it’s always the same.”Ai is quoted by the New York Times as saying that he said he was not in despair over the incident. “I’m O.K. with it, if a work is destroyed,” Mr. Ai said. “A work is a work. It’s a physical thing. What can you do? It’s already over.”Again, the Pérez museum describes the three photographs in front of which the vases were placed as Ai dropping an urn dating from 206 BCE to 220 CE to the floor “to express the notion that new ideas and values can be produced through iconoclasm.”“I saw it as a provocation by Weiwei to join him in an act of performance protest,” Mr. Caminero told the New Times.—Ruth McCambridge ShareTweetShareEmail0 Shares
ShareTweetShareEmail0 Shares August 19, 2014; GlobalPostNPQ has often written about the interconnections between a free press and healthy civil society, so it is the business of all of us when journalists are targeted by police or governments, or indeed by any organized group.Visit the website of GlobalPost and you’ll think you’ve come across an excellent nonprofit news outlet. The purpose of GlobalPost is to “redefine international news for the digital age.” The founder, Philip Balboni, and the executive editor, Charles Sennott, write on the GlobalPost site, “Our mission is to provide Americans, and all English-language readers around the world, with a depth, breadth and quality of original international reporting that has been steadily diminished in too many American newspapers and television networks.”In a horrific and barbaric act, the group known as the Islamic State (ISIS, or ISIL) claimed recently to have beheaded a GlobalPost reporter whom they had captured after he went missing in Syria, around November 2012. Although the State Department is trying to verify the authenticity of the video showing the beheading, Foley’s family seems to have accepted the young man’s death as a reality.Foley’s family issued a heart-breaking public statement. “We have never been prouder of our son and brother Jim. He gave his life trying to expose the world to the suffering of the Syrian people,” the family’s statement read. “We implore the kidnappers to spare the lives of the remaining hostages. Like Jim, they are innocents. They have no control over American government policy in Iraq, Syria or anywhere in the world.”This display of violence from ISIL is an act of wanton cruelty that defies imagination. Nonprofit news sources should be standing with GlobalPost and Foley’s family just as they have supported the efforts of Al Jazeera to free some of its staff from Egyptian jails where they have been held for several months. When it comes to protecting the press, a crucial element of freedom of speech concerns standing up against actions like those of ISIL or of the Sisi government in Egypt.Hopefully, we will all remember Foley’s passing and stand shoulder-to-shoulder with GlobalPost in pursuing its mission regardless of the intimidation that ISIL is clearly ready to dish out. Our sympathies are with our colleague James Foley, and here’s to making sure that government officials in Egypt and non-state actors like ISIL do not succeed in shutting off the role of civil society. –Rick CohenShareTweetShareEmail0 Shares
ShareTweetShareEmail0 Shares November 5, 2014; Bay State BannerLast month, Boston’s longest serving mayor, Thomas Menino, died at the age of 71. Last month was also the thirtieth anniversary of the Dudley Street Neighborhood Initiative, known nationwide as the first community-based nonprofit granted the power of eminent domain over vacant properties in its neighborhood. That unique power granted to a neighborhood-based group was the key; rather than having eminent domain be a tool for urban removal, as so often happened in neighborhoods, DSNI was empowered to use that power to develop and redevelop the neighborhood for the residents of the Dudley area of Roxbury and North Dorchester, not to displace them to make way for high end commercial and residential development.Why link DSNI to Mayor Menino, given that Menino was in the mayor’s office for only two decades while DSNI has been in operation for three? It isn’t that Menino midwifed DSNI’s birth; it was under his predecessor, Ray Flynn, that DSNI took root and got the power of eminent domain for the purposes of neighborhood development, and the Riley Foundation was the notable first philanthropic partner. Rather, it was because Menino was a neighborhood guy and supportive in many different ways of the DSNI effort and the redevelopment of the Dudley area more generally.After less than a decade in office, Menino received from Governing magazine the nickname “Main Street Maestro” for his belief that all neighborhoods should be strengthened, that the city should organize many of its municipal functions by neighborhood, and that neighborhoods need not be second fiddles to downtown priorities. For example, Boston’s Office of Neighborhood Services has official liaisons for every neighborhood in the city as well as for all racial and ethnic groups. More than redevelopment, since the election of Menino, Boston has been programmatically and structurally devoted to civic engagement and neighborhood development. Menino’s commitment to putting the machinery of city government into action in support of neighborhood development has been a major part of the success of DSNI.Early on, Dudley Street generated a comprehensive neighborhood plan, but in 1996, during Menino’s early days in City Hall, it updated the plan with a visioning process involving residents from throughout the neighborhood. It was that plan that led to some of DSNI’s acquisitions and eventually to Dudley Neighbors, Inc., the community land trust that has helped bring permanent affordability to some of the housing in the Dudley Triangle area. The community land trust owns or manages 155 units of housing, though the DSNI website indicates that the land trust had led to the development of 225 units with plans for another 250 over the next decade.The inclusion of Menino in this story isn’t meant in any way to minimize the role of citizen leadership and community organizing in the DSNI story. At its core, DSNI is an important example of where community organizing and mobilizing can lead. But there is no doubt that the presence of a mayor as committed to neighborhood development as Menino had to have been a huge boon to Dudley Street. Eminent domain or no, the partnership between DSNI and Nuestra Comunidad to build the Howard Dacia Homes required the commitment in 2002 of over $800,000 in subsidies (CDBG, HOME, and lead abatement funding) from Boston’s Department of Neighborhood Development. DSNI’s and Dorchester Bay Economic Development Corporation’s Dudley Village Homes Project half a decade later necessitated $2 million in DND subsidies. But it wasn’t just the city’s provision of subsidies to make these projects work. It was Menino’s structuring of a city process that worked for neighborhoods and community-based development.The ultimate key to the progress of Dudley Street was resident leadership. Everyone who has had even passing interaction with DSNI comes away with an appreciation of the importance of grassroots organizing and community self-direction. But DSNI’s 30th anniversary might not have been able to count as many successes as it has without more than 20 years of partnership with a mayor who saw neighborhoods as his primary strategic focal point. Many mayors from around the nation over the years visited Boston to learn about “Meninoism” and left to establish municipal offices devoted to neighborhoods or to announce neighborhood development strategies. But Menino’s commitment was more than simply offices and plans. He put neighborhood development advocates, often recruited from local CDCs, into the Mayor’s Office, DND, and the Boston Redevelopment Authority, who put neighborhood-level commitment and knowledge behind the mayor’s belief in neighborhoods.The partnership of Mayor Thomas Menino and the Dudley Street Neighborhood Initiative has been emulated, but never really matched anywhere else in the nation.For more on DSNI, you can also read, “Why Are We Replacing Furniture When Half the Neighborhood Is Missing?” —Rick Cohen ShareTweetShareEmail0 Shares
ShareTweetShareEmail0 SharesJanuary 8, 2015;NPR, “Goats and Soda”As we’ve seen in the past, art as a medium is a powerful vehicle for change, protest, and editorializing. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is now harnessing that influence to bring attention to the epidemic lack of vaccinations for children around the world. And with almost six million children dying from preventable diseases due to that lack, the need to provide funding for and access to vaccines is vital.The Gates Foundation has recruited more than 30 international artists for The Art of Saving a Life, a project that will use art to relay the truth and tragedy of communities living without access to vaccines in an effort to raise awareness and funding. Annie Leibovitz, cartoonist Darryl Cunningham, and Vik Muniz are among the artists participating in the project.While the art will not be available for sale, it will be showcased at a conference in Berlin on January 27th by Gavi: The Vaccine Alliance, an organization dedicated to providing vaccinations to children globally.“In science and medicine, we’re convinced that what we work on is really cool, really important, and should interest everyone,” says Orin Levine, director of the Vaccine Delivery Team at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. “But we haven’t always provoked that interest. Art really speaks to everybody as a way to provoke a conversation, or convey a message.”More art will be released over the coming weeks before the conference showing, but that which is currently available shows us the kind of impact we may expect as a viewing audience. The images are poignant and introspective as they present different aspects of the vaccination crisis.Alexa Sinclair’s piece depicts Dr. Edward Jenner, often referred to as the father of immunology, as he inoculates James Phipps, the first person to ever receive the vaccination for smallpox in the late 18th century, which led eventually to the eradication of the disease by 1980. Each element of the piece represents some part of the story of development of the vaccination.Vik Muniz created a pink floral design composed of a “microscopic pattern of liver cells infected with a smallpox vaccine virus. After infection, the virus turns the cells a reddish color which allows scientists to visualize infection.” Without a higher resolution picture, we’re going to have to take Muniz at his word that there truly are microscopic cells in the image.Mary Ellen Mark’s work educates and provokes discussion with her photographic piece documenting the realities of living with congenital rubella syndrome, or CRS, a disease that can be completely prevented if a child is vaccinated. CRS is passed from mothers to their fetuses in utero and often results in heart problems, developmental issues, and eye problems, among other issues. Mark’s subjects, Jimmie Carey and Damali Ashman, are shown in their everyday lives and illustrate the stark and needless reality of people living with preventable diseases.Mauro Perucchetti’s work draws on the controversy that has recently surrounded vaccinations. Through depicting smiling parents and children, the glass resin set (which combines two of his previous works, Jelly Belly Familyand Love Serum) seeks to reduce the fear children have of syringes as well as address parents’ skepticism toward vaccines.The project serves both to educate and stir dialogue about the vaccination issue in a way that’s novel, yet perhaps still controversial. With millions of lives still at risk and without proper access to vaccinations, The Art of Saving a Life may in fact be in the line of work of saving lives.—Shafaq Hasan ShareTweetShareEmail0 Shares
ShareTweet6ShareEmail6 SharesApril 27, 2016; Citizen-Times (Asheville, NC)The economic fallout from the passage of House Bill 2 in North Carolina continues to roll on. Despite having made a significant deposit, in response to HB2, the W.K. Kellogg Foundation has opted out of a contract with Asheville’s Omni Grove Park Inn to stage a conference there in August. The event would have would have brought more than 500 people to the city and $1.5 million to the local economy.This is to date the biggest economic hit to Asheville as a result of the legislation. According to Stephanie Pace Brown of the Ashville Convention and Visitors Bureau, there have been eight other cancellations, but the total impact of those adds to $500,000. Six other groups have withdrawn their requests for proposals.The bureau has also received 55 emails informing them of plans changed due to the new law. One man from Ohio said, “I’m sad. A group of eight craft beer enthusiasts had a trip planned to Asheville the mecca of craft beer. However, one of us is gay. Our group decided last night to scrap the trip. We are going to San Diego instead.” Another letter-writer offered, “We were going to make a weeklong trip to the Asheville area after a pleasant visit early last year, but the recent legislation that shows the state to be unwelcoming and close-minded have caused us to reevaluate our plans. We will travel elsewhere. We are not one of the bill’s targeted groups—we are just good Americans that believe equal rights and protection of those rights should be extended to all.”Kit Cramer of the Asheville Chamber of Commerce has also reported that a company that was investigating a move to Buncombe County, which would have brought 500 new jobs, said it would not invest another dime in North Carolina while the legislation stood.Hours after House Bill 2 passed, the W.K. Kellogg Foundation issued a statement, saying:It is very disappointing that North Carolina, among other states, has thought to enact legislation that overturns protections for all people including LGBT people, sanctioning open discrimination against them.We are heartened by the broad coalition of public sector, nonprofit, business and civic leaders who are speaking out against this injustice.The proposed event was to be on “Truth, Racial Healing & Transformation” and would have provided a forum to discuss race, ethnicity and issues of discrimination in reference to health care, housing, education, criminal justice and employment.—Ruth McCambridgeShareTweet6ShareEmail6 Shares
Share26Tweet1Share3Email30 SharesBy National Archives Atlanta, GA (U.S. government) – , originally from National Archives, Public Domain, LinkMay 10, 2017; AP via Washington PostThe Tuskegee Experiment, where government doctors enrolled black men in the South unwittingly for a medical trial that left their syphilis untreated “so doctors could track the ravages of the horrid illness and dissect their bodies afterward,” may seem like a story of bygone time, but its legacy is still with us today as federal courts consider what to do with the “unclaimed settlement money that still sits in court-controlled accounts.”Syphilis is a highly contagious infection spread through sexual contact that can cause “blindness, deafness, deterioration of bones, teeth and the central nervous system, insanity, heart disease and death.” The Tuskegee Experiment, officially called “The Tuskegee Study of Untreated Syphilis in the Negro Male,” was led by the U.S. Public Health Service in Tuskegee, Alabama, “an area which had the highest syphilis rate in the nation at that time,” with 35 percent of residents of reproductive age affected.“For decades, the study has been widely blamed for distrust among U.S. blacks toward the medical community, particularly clinical trials and other tests. In medical and public health circles, it’s known as the ‘Tuskegee effect.’” In observance of the 45th anniversary of Associated Press reporter Jean Heller’s groundbreaking story, the AP republished her original report, where she writes,When the study began, the discovery of penicillin as a cure for syphilis was still 10 years away and the general availability of the drug was 15 years away. Treatment in the 1930s consisted primarily of doses of arsenic and mercury.When the study began, the discovery of penicillin as a cure for syphilis was still 10 years away and the general availability of the drug was 15 years away. Treatment in the 1930s consisted primarily of doses of arsenic and mercury.Of the 600 original participants in the study, one third showed no signs having syphilis; the others had the disease. According to PHS data, half the men with syphilis were given the arsenic-mercury treatment, but the other half, about 200 men, received no treatment for syphilis at all… even after penicillin was discovered as a cure for syphilis.[…]Men were persuaded to participate by promises of free transportation to and from hospitals, free hot lunches, free medical treatment for ailments other than syphilis and free burial.None of the men consented to the study, as doctors hid the study’s true purpose from them. The true motive of the study was finally revealed in July 1972, 40 years after the study began in 1932, when the Associated Press story “caused a public outcry that led the Assistant Secretary for Health and Scientific Affairs to appoint an Ad Hoc Advisory Panel to review the study.”The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website, which outlines the story in a matter-of-fact tone, as if federal public health officials had nothing to do with it, writesThe advisory panel concluded that the Tuskegee Study was “ethically unjustified”–the knowledge gained was sparse when compared with the risks the study posed for its subjects. In October 1972, the panel advised stopping the study at once.The lawsuit was initiated by Fred David Gray, a “a nationally recognized civil rights attorney, celebrated lecturer, successful author, and former legislator,” after Charlie Pollard, a farmer and community leader who “was among the men in the study.”The case was settled out of court in 1974 when the U.S. government provided $10 million and established the Tuskegee Health Benefit Program “to give lifetime medical benefits and burial services to all living participants.”Settlement funds were used for decades to compensate study participants and more than 9,000 of their relatives. Court workers were unable to locate other descendants, and some never responded to letters from the clerk’s office, which disbursed millions before the last payment was recorded in 2008.[…]Payments to men and their heirs differed based on whether men were infected or were in the control group, whether they were dead or alive. Living participants who had syphilis got $37,500; heirs of deceased members of the control group received $5,000.Though “the last man involved in the syphilis study died in 2004,” some of that settlement money still sits in court-controlled accounts. “Court officials will not say how much money is left, but documents indicate the balance is mostly interest earnings from money first paid by the government decades ago. Gray said he’s heard it’s less than $100,000.”The government thinks it should keep the money. Some family members said the money should go towards medical screenings for the remaining family members because there is still “a small chance that syphilis dating back to the years of the study could still be in the bloodlines of families who are unaware of their connection to the study. Other family members “want a long-discussed memorial at the old hospital where the study was run at Tuskegee University.” Gray also has a request in to U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson “to use the remaining money to fund operation of the Tuskegee Human and Civil Rights Multicultural Center, a combination museum and town welcome center that includes a display about the syphilis study.”Though “relatives of the men still struggle with the stigma of being linked to the experiment,” Gray told descendants that “the men of the study…wanted a lasting memorial to their legacy.”—Cyndi SuarezShare26Tweet1Share3Email30 Shares
Swedish cable operator Com Hem is trialling its new TiVo service ahead of its full launch. In a blog post, the firm said that it has selected 20 people who will test the service over four weeks, who will blog about their experience.Com Hem opened registrations for its forthcoming TiVo advanced TV offering back in May ahead of the planned summer trials.The service, which was first announced last year, is scheduled to launch fully in the autumn.
Revenues from ‘smart home’ services will reach US$71 billion (€52 billion) in 2018, up from US$33 billion last year, according to Juniper Research.According to Juniper’s Smart Home Ecosystems and the Internet of Things report, almost 80% of total smart home service revenues will come from entertainment services by the end of the forecast period.Juniper said growth to date has been driven by over-the-top TV services including Netflix, Lovefilm and Amazon Instant Video.Juniper cautioned that the emergence of 4K video services and Internet of Things smart home devices would likely place networks under additional strain, meaning that operator will need to ensure networks are modernised and transitioned to new technologies.The report also found that security and control elements of the smart home will provide an opportunity for service providers. Juniper estimate that this market will approach US$12 billion by 2018.
Canal+ has launched Social Player, a new social TV platform that delivers a personalised experience tailored to the tastes of individual viewers and their friends, built around the broadcaster’s free-to-air programming.According to Canal+, Social Player allows users to create their own personal TV channels and add programmes recommended in friends’ news feeds to their personal playlists.The platform also includes a ‘time comment’ feature that allows users to directly access the most commented about sequences in videos. Users can also create their own feeds based on their own interactions with programmes and also the activities in real time of their friends.Social Player is accessible via the canalplus.fr website and is available free of charge on computers and tablets.Canal+ said it also plans to develop a dedicated mobile app that integrates all the functions of the Social Player as a second screen experience.The broadcaster said it would open the platform out to third-party application developers through a system of open APIs.
Graph taken from Strategy Analytics’ Global TV Replacement and Ownership 2008-2018 reportReplacement flat panel TV sales will help to inject “renewed growth into global TV sales” over the coming five years, according to new research by Strategy Analytics.The Global TV Replacement and Ownership 2008 – 2018 report claims that roughly 23% of global flat panel TV sales in 2013 were bought as a replacement for an existing flat panel display and that this share will grow to 67% by 2018.Strategy Analytics predicted that this would help drive a 3.8% growth in the compound annual growth rate of TV shipments over the same period.“We are now witnessing the first major wave of Flat Panel TV replacement particularly in developed markets such as Western Europe and North America,” said David Watkins, Strategy Analytics’ service director of connected home devices.The research claims that the number of global TV households will grow from 1.49 billion to 1.60 billion or 85% of total global homes by 2018. However, it added that the global average number of active TVs per TV household peaked in 2013 at 1.72 and will fall to 1.66 by 2018.Eric Smith, Strategy Analytics analyst for connected home devices said: “Moving forwards the TV industry will become less reliant on consumers purchasing additional sets for their homes as alternative TV viewing devices such as tablets will increasingly impact on demand for small screen TVs that would be destined for use in a bedroom or kitchen. Replacement demand for the main living room TV set will become the major driver of TV sales over the next 5 years”.Separately, Strategy Analytics said that Samsung TV shipments grew by 16% in the first half of 2014 driven by demand generated by the World Cup in Brazil. Average selling prices for Samsung TVs also fell 13% in the first half of 2014 compared to the previous year.
Media platform provider for IPTV and OTT services, Nangu.TV, has appointed former T-Mobile, Vodafone and UnicreditBank executive Ivo Korčák as its new CEO.Korčák, who has more than 16 years of experience in the IT, telco, banking and finance sectors, will take over from Michal Kožíšek, who will remain on Nangu.TV’s board of directors.Korčák will focus on leading Nangu.TV’s existing O2 TV project, expanding the service and growing user numbers year-on-year. He will also look to continue the development of the IPTV / OTT platform with the addition of new features and expansion of the business abroad.“I’m delighted to join nangu.TV as CEO and lead the company through its next stage of evolution,” said Korčák.“As the OTT and IPTV markets continue to gather pace, driven on by consumers’ demand for content, however and wherever they want it, Nangu.TV is perfectly placed to address the needs of ISPs, telcos and cable operators.”
Russian channel provider Tsifrovoye televideniye (TSTV), a joint venture between Rostelecom and state-owned broadcaster RTR, has rebranded and refreshed the five channels it offers as part of the NKS-Media package.TSTV deputy CEO Sergey Koshliakov outlined the changes at the CSTB trade show in Moscow yesterday. Science channel 24 Tekhno is being rebranded as T24, devoted to men’s hobbies and interests.Mat’ i ditya (Mother and Child), a channel aimed at young children and their parents, has been renamed Mama, with a roster of new programming. Alternative documentary channel 24Dok will become a mainstream factual channel. Horror channel Novoye Strashnoye Kino (NSK) will see its programming refreshed, while Park Razvlecheniy (Amusement Park) will be given a new look and a focus on music shows and homegrown productions.
Piksel has launched Piksel Digital Enterprise 6.0, a redesigned version of its cloud-based asset management system. The video software and solutions firm said the new system streamlines the process for organising and sharing on-demand and live video content with a new interface, design and set of features.“By rebuilding Digital Enterprise 6.0 within the Piksel Palette framework, we can leverage the inherent flexibility of its architecture to provide a solution which is highly adaptable and easy to use. By doing this, we are breaking down the barriers that currently exist for companies that wish to incorporate video into their business’ roadmaps,” said Piksel’s chief strategy officer, Ralf Tillmann.
OTT technology specialist Xstream and struck a strategic partnership agreement with content discovery and recommendation specialist XroadMedia to deliver OTT personalisation services to operators around the world.Ncanto, XroadMedia’s cloud-based content discovery solution offers content discovery and personalisation capabilities to users and service providers. Consumers receive recommended content based on their viewing behavior, interest, location and social profiles.With Xstream’s OTT platform, Xstream MediaMaker and Ncanto’s advanced content discovery services, content owners and service providers will be better placed to understand their customer’s habits, deliver personalised OTt and align their service offerings and monetisation strategies, according to the pair.”Particularly in OTT consumers are struggling with the flood of content made available to them on multiple devices. The partnership with our friends at Xstream will not only see Ncanto pre-integration into Xstream MediaMaker, but will also revolutionise the way content and service providers deliver their content to consumers. Personalisation has just become bigger and better,” said Adolf Proidl, chief executive officer of XroadMedia.”We’re delighted to team up with XroadMedia. The combination of Xstream MediaMaker and XroadMedia’s product suite allows us to offer an attractive discovery and recommendation solution to operators worldwide, allowing them to deliver personalized content to consumers and maximize revenue streams by customizing state-of-the-art product offerings according to the preferences of individual end-users,” said Morten Soeger, Director of Global Alliances at Xstream.Xstream will exhibit at IBC on stand 14.F15