A laugh and a half and the Hot 100
We thought we’d start off the column with a fistful of wacky humour from the crazies at Hits Daily Double. Kick back, be entertained and think about how we really do do things differently here.
Reality check with Bruce Allen: Did you catch the 2020 Junos?
The Queen of nasty and praise, Elaine “Lainey” Lui, the Lainey Gossip blogger and eTalk anchor sat down with her “The Social” co-hosts to apologize for racist and homophobic blog posts she wrote in the 2000s.
“Those posts were racist, they were misogynistic, they were homophobic, they were transphobic, they were ugly, they were shameful,” Lui said, referring to said posts. “I am so sorry.”
Wendy Mesley’s teeth must be chattering, but that’ showbiz for you.
After 45 years at the Corp., the former Globe and Mail journalist has resigned from his slot hosting the Sunday morning radio show and is expected to return with a new show of his own design. As a farewell to his listeners, the wordsmith penned an essay that can be read on the CBC website. Ever the peacock, always meticulously turned out, the picture of Enright at home that accompanies his essay (link to the embed in the headline above) is pure gold.
St. Joseph Communications (SJC), has named Hunt President and Publisher of SJC Media, a division that oversees the company’s fleet of magazines that include Maclean’s, Chatelaine, HELLO! Canada and Quill & Quire. He was named EVP of the Media Group in 2019 and at one time held the post of Publisher at SJC-owned Toronto Life. – Newswire
The 26-song collection, complied from three September 2018 shows at the LA arena with Deacon Frey and Vince Gill will debut this Sunday, July 5.
“Music and sports fans have been shut out from live events for more than three months. The premiere of Live from the Forum MMXVIII, this July 4th weekend on ESPN, is the Eagles’ gift to their fans,” said Eagles manager Irving Azoff. “We are honored to be part of ESPN’s Sunday night programming, the home of such acclaimed shows as 30 for 30 and The Last Dance.”
In initiating coverage of Amazon with a “buy” rating on Tuesday, Laura Martin, an analyst at Needham. Martin, notes that several of the company’s media products have “hidden asset values.” Streaming game service Twitch, for example, opens the company up to a younger generation of consumers, while Amazon Music strengthens its position in the home, wrote Martin. She added that 20% of Prime members say the reason they pay for the subscription is for media offerings. – Ari Levy, CNBC
Dominating distribution allows it to promote its own labels and increase prices, and therefore to increase the valuation of its own labels. The ubiquity of WeChat in China means that one of TME’s platforms is only ever a couple of clicks away for a billion consumers, whether they are on a messaging, news or an online book site. – Variety
India’s wealthiest man turned Jio into a wireless powerhouse by offering cheap high-speed data and free phones. Now Facebook and other investors are pouring money into Jio to get a piece of one of the last big untapped markets. – Wayne Ma & Juro Osawa, The Information
India’s government on Monday said it would block 59 mostly Chinese apps, including popular social platforms such as TikTok and Tencent’s WeChat, in the latest economic repercussion to a deadly border clash this month.
Alibaba’s UC Browser, fashion vendor Shein and Baidu maps are also on the list of banned apps, which are used both mobile devices and personal computers.
The declaration comes in front of an upcoming IPO of TikTok, 30% [of whose] user base comes from India. – Kiran Sharar, Nikkei Asian Review
During a private fundraiser this week, President Obama lashed out at Trump for his use of racist phrases to describe the coronavirus, saying “I don’t want a country in which the president of the United States is actively trying to promote anti-Asian sentiment and thinks it’s funny. I don’t want that. That still shocks and pisses me off.” – Bill Palmer, Palmer Report
Under the president’s control, U.S.-funded broadcasters could turn into a presidential propaganda machine. – Anne Appelbaum, The Atlantic
That’s the headline in a recent edition of RadioFacts.com. The feature starts off with Martha Jean “The Queen” Steinberg who was “one of the first female disc Radio DJs in the United States, with a program that included the latest R&B hits along with the typical “household hints” programming that was de rigueur at the time for female radio personalities.” Her first radio job was on Memphis’ WDIA in 1954.
The biggest and most expensive obstacle to setting up a speech station is the construction of a global news operation, but Times Radio can cannily recycle correspondents from Murdoch print titles. The excellent Newton Dunn has transferred full-time from the Sun, but Times and Sunday Times reporters were called on to animate other news stories, although the word is that they will not be paid extra for this moonlighting. – Mark Lawson, The Guardian
Rupert Murdoch is an enigma. He owns The Sun, The Times, The Sunday Times, Fox News and numerous other media outlets across the world and yet his story is rarely told. To some he’s an extraordinary businessman. To others, he’s a darker force. For decades, Murdoch has wielded his influence in politics at the highest level. It’s a story of family, money and power. Now the Beeb has launched a three-part series tells the story of Rupert Murdoch’s Empire, interweaving his behind-the-scenes influence on world events with the personal battle for power at the heart of his own family.
PimEyes, a Polish facial recognition website, is a free tool that allows anyone to upload a photo of a person’s face and find more images of that person from publicly accessible websites like Tumblr, YouTube, WordPress blogs, and news outlets. – Dave Gershgorn, Medium
The saucy comic’s latest parody has Rainbow telling POTUS it’s time to wear a face mask and as per usual, set to a throwback tune from Broadway’s past; in this case to Bye Bye Birdie classic Put On A Happy Face–performed in the Broadway show by Dick Van Dyke and Janet Leigh.
Headlines that can turn heads
Judge wants players to connect with fans on social media – theScore
But it’s not just on-field success that he’s hoping to be noticed for. Judge is looking to connect with fans over social media as a way to reach out, particularly while fans are not permitted in ballparks.
“Those little moments, those little memories you can make, I know fans never forget,” Judge told Marly Rivera of ESPN. “But even us as players, that’s something I always look forward to and I never forget.”
Judge added that Major League Baseball could benefit from top players engaging with fans more often via social media and cited one of the world’s most visible and well-known professional athletes as an inspiration.
“In baseball, a lot of our superstars aren’t out there. But I think social media is going to start slowly helping us out. A lot more guys are getting on social media. A lot more are reaching out to fans, interacting.
“That’s one thing I see LeBron James do a lot all the time, he’s talking with fans, he’s always getting the message out there, putting his opinion out there and talking with people. That’s where it starts with us, just being more vocal and letting the fans see the personal side of us.”
Judge is one of the most recognizable talents in baseball, and his jersey has been the top seller over the last three seasons, Rivera notes.
A two-time All-Star, Judge won the AL Rookie of the Year in 2017 after recording the rookie record for home runs at 52 (New York Mets first baseman Pete Alonso then hit 53 in 2019) and finished second in MVP voting to Houston Astros second baseman Jose Altuve that same year.
He hit 27 homers in both 2018 and 2019 but played in only 112 and 102 games, respectively, due to injuries. He has looked like a world-beater so far in 2020, crushing an MLB-leading nine home runs with 20 RBIs and a 1.101 OPS through 17 contests.
'We are all choking': Hong Kong media mogul Jimmy Lai speaks out after arrest – theglobeandmail.com
The tightening legal regime in Hong Kong is suffocating a city that has long enjoyed liberties unavailable in other parts of China, says Jimmy Lai, the publishing tycoon arrested this week under a national security law imposed by Beijing.
“The oxygen is getting thin and we are all choking,” Mr. Lai said Thursday in an online discussion a day after he was released on bail. “But when we are choking, we are still taking care of each other – and keep resisting and keep fighting for our rule of law and freedom.”
Mr. Lai was arrested Monday and accused of colluding with foreign powers and conspiracy to defraud. He was released from police custody just after midnight Wednesday.
His arrest has raised concerns at Next Digital, the publishing firm he founded, that he could be sent to mainland China for prosecution – and almost certain imprisonment – under the terms of the new national security law.
On Monday police also raided tabloid Apple Daily, one of Next Digital’s most important holdings.
On Thursday, Lau Siu-kai, a vice-president of the Chinese Association of Hong Kong and Macau Studies who has been described in the city’s press as a spokesman for Beijing, argued that Next Digital “should not be considered a normal media organization” and should instead be seen as a political operation.
“The police operation at Next Media headquarters and their management-level offices involved documents and evidence of violations of the national security law,” he told the Beijing-owned Ta Kung Pao newspaper. “It is a case of the government enforcing the law at a political group, but it is not targeting a news organization.” The People’s Daily, one of Beijing’s central state media organs, said Mr. Lai’s release “did not mean that he can escape from precise punishment under the city’s law.”
But Mr. Lai, who has been a vocal scourge of the Chinese Communist Party, has remained defiant. Accused of foreign collusion, he nonetheless appeared in the online broadcast Thursday alongside Mike Gonzalez, a senior fellow at the Washington, D.C.-based Heritage Foundation. “There’s an enormous amount of men and women in Congress following your fate. You have America’s support,” Mr. Gonzalez said.
Mr. Lai responded by saying the voices of the American people are the best form of succour for Hong Kong because if “they voice out in support of Hong Kong, the politicians will have to listen and react. And that will be a very good saviour for us.”
More than a dozen of Hong Kong’s new national security police came to Mr. Lai’s home Monday morning, arriving shortly after he had completed his morning exercises. Still sweating, he asked if he could wash before being arrested. “You have to be very fast and you can’t close your door,” he was told. “We have to watch you.”
Initially worried that he would be taken to mainland China, Mr. Lai was relieved to discover that none of the officers spoke Mandarin. “Because I knew that I won’t be sent to China at least.”
Police arrested a total of 10 people in Hong Kong Monday on national security grounds, including two of Mr. Lai’s sons, four of his executives, a freelance journalist for Britain’s ITV news network and Agnes Chow, one of the top young political activists in the city. The arrests took place 40 days after the imposition of the new law.
Mr. Lai did not address the substance of the allegations against him. He had predicted his own arrest under the law. But he expressed surprise that the police would act so quickly, particularly following the outcry from the international community, which has included the cancellation of extradition treaties with Hong Kong by Canada and other countries – out of concerns people sent to the city would be redirected to face trial in mainland China – and the U.S. imposition of sanctions against the city’s chief executive, Carrie Lam.
Mr. Lai believed authorities in Hong Kong and Beijing would initially “keep a low profile” in implementing the new law, he said, to maintain calm among investors and the business community.
Instead, he was led out of his home in handcuffs and held by police for more than a day and a half. He acknowledged that Hong Kong’s democracy movement is much less powerful than China’s Communist Party. “This is a long fight,” he said.
But, he added, the incompatibility between China’s authoritarian system and the liberal democratic order threatens turbulence for years to come unless Beijing alters course. “People want China to realize that without assimilating to international Western values, there won’t be peace in international trade or politics or diplomacy.”
Though his future is uncertain – the accusations against him are punishable with life in prison – he emerged from custody more calm than when he entered.
His time in detention, he said, afforded him time to contemplate whether he would have made the same decisions in life if he knew they would lead to the charges he now faces.
He concluded that character is destiny, a realization that came with a sense of divine blessing. “It’s like God telling me, ‘Don’t fear. Just do what you do. I am with you,’” said Mr. Lai, a practising Catholic.
It was a feeling, he said, substantiated by the reaction to his arrest: the raucous group that gathered outside a police station after midnight to wish him well upon his release Wednesday; the crowds who have bought hundreds of thousands of copies a day this week of Apple Daily; the investors who have massively elevated Next Digital share prices.
“It’s just reaffirmed that whatever I have done wrong in the past, at least what I am doing now is right,” he said. “And it’s almost a message that: ‘Let’s go on.’”
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Vietnam health ministry to buy Russian COVID-19 vaccine -state media – The Journal Pioneer
By Phuong Nguyen
HANOI (Reuters) – Vietnam has registered to buy a Russian COVID-19 vaccine, state television reported on Friday, as it fights a new outbreak after going several months with no local cases.
Russia said on Wednesday that it would roll out the world’s first COVID-19 vaccine within two weeks, rejecting the concerns of experts who said it should not have been approved before completing large-scale trials.
“In the meantime, Vietnam will still continue developing the country’s own COVID-19 vaccine,” state broadcaster Vietnam Television (VTV) said, citing the Ministry of Health.
Vietnam has signed up for 50-150 million doses of the vaccine, Tuoi Tre newspaper reported. Some will be a “donation” from Russia, Tuoi Tre said, with Vietnam paying for the rest.
The ministry did not say when it expected to receive the vaccine, or how much it would cost. Last month, the ministry said Vietnam would have a home-grown vaccine available by the end of 2021.
Vietnam was lauded for suppressing an earlier outbreak contagion through aggressive testing, contact-tracing and quarantining, but it is now racing to control infections in multiple locations linked to the popular tourist city of Danang, where a new outbreak was detected on July 25.
Vietnam has reported a total of 911 infections, with 21 deaths. Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has said the risk of wider contagion is very high, and that the next few days are critical.
The head of Vietnam’s coronavirus taskforce, Vu Duc Dam, said on Friday that Vietnam now had no choice but to “live safely with the virus”.
“We are implementing the anti-virus measures of a poor country, so everyone has to stay alert and know how to protect themselves from the virus,” Dam said, according to state media.
(Reporting by Phuong Nguyen; Editing by James Pearson and Kevin Liffey)
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Report: Ubisoft fired Assassin’s Creed Valhalla director – Polygon
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