Indian DTH pay TV operator DishTV has tapped technology outfit MediaKind – formerly Ericsson Media Solutions – to provide its AVP 4000 video processing platform to deliver content to DishTV’s over 23.5 million subscribers.The AVP 4000 video processing platform exists within MediaKind’s Aquila family of solutions, which forms part of the wider MediaKind Universe portfolio.According to MediaKind, DishTV has selected its to replace its entire headend infrastructure, which includes existing legacy technology from its D2H brand.Anil DuaDishTV will operate MediaKind’s compression headend technology to deliver both traditional broadcast and multiscreen video from a single platform. That platform, which includes MediaKind’s AVP 4000 System Encoder, allows the operator to serve satellite operations for both of its brands, unifying the control and management of its two headends.Anil Dua, Group CEO, DishTV India Limited, said: “As a leading DTH provider in India, we are always looking for new ways to deliver a high quality viewing experience to our millions of customers. We are delighted to strengthen our longstanding partnership with MediaKind and leverage its compression technology heritage which extends more than 25 years. Through the deployment of MediaKind’s AVP technology, we can enable the highest video quality for our consumers alongside far greater bandwidth efficiencies, thus enabling us to cost-effectively deliver the next generation services to our subscribers.”Angel Ruiz, CEO, MediaKind, said: “The media landscape is constantly shifting and service providers need to continually adapt to deliver the highest quality media experiences for consumers. At the same time, the increased competition from pure-play online providers means it’s necessary to do this as cost-effectively as possible. We are delighted to extend our relationship with DishTV and to continue evolving its service offering in one of the world’s largest video markets. Through the deployment of our state-of-the-art AVP 4000 system, DishTV can potentially benefit from significant cost efficiencies and have the opportunity to launch new and highly compelling viewing experiences.”
US local broadcast giant Sinclair Broadcast Group is to create a joint venture with Korea’s SK Telecom to develop broadcast solutions based on the ATSC 3.0 standard for the US and international markets.SK Telecom and Sinclair sign their JV agreementThe two companies will jointly fund and manage a joint venture company within the first quarter of this year, with the aim of developing products that can be marketed in the US later this year.The joint venture agreement follows last year’s memorandum of understanding signed between SK Telecom and Sinclair at CES 2018 to jointly develop leading technology for ATSC 3.0 broadcasting.The two companies plan to actively provide ATSC 3.0 standards-based solutions to all US broadcasting companies and seek other opportunities globally. ATSC 3.0, which enables data communications in broadcasting bands, supports services such as mobile viewing and 4K UHD TV as well as enabling personalised advertising and in-vehicle terrestrial TV broadcasting and map updates“SK Telecom will work closely with Sinclair Broadcast Group to gain leadership in the next-generation broadcasting solutions market in the US,” said Park Jung-ho, President and CEO of SK Telecom.“Sinclair is excited to partner with SK Telecom, a wireless technology leader, to explore and commercialize solutions that optimize the economic value of our spectrum, our broadcast infrastructure, our programming ventures and our emerging OTT platforms. Bringing these assets together in a converged broadcast/broadband platform environment will be a significant value multiplier,” said Chris Ripley, president and CEO of Sinclair.
US broadcast group Sinclair has confirmed the acquisition of 21 Regional Sports Networks (RSNs) and Fox College Sports from Disney in a deal worth US$10.6 billion (€9.6 billion).This portfolio represents the largest collection of RSNs in the US marketplace, and has an extensive footprint which consists of exclusive local rights to 42 professional teams consisting of 14 Major League Baseball (MLB) teams, 16 National Basketball Association (NBA) teams, and 12 National Hockey League (NHL) teams. This is added to Sinclair’s existing sports business which includes Marquee Sports Network (a recently announced joint venture with the Chicago Cubs), Tennis Channel and Tennis Media Company (dedicated to live tennis events and tennis lifestyle), and Ring of Honor Wrestling.“This is a very exciting transaction for Sinclair to be able to acquire highly complementary assets,” commented Chris Ripley, president and CEO of Sinclair. “While consumer viewing habits have shifted, the tradition of watching live sports and news remains ingrained in our culture. As one of the largest local news producers in the country and an experienced producer of sports content, we are ideally positioned to transfer our skills to deliver and expand our focus on greater premium sports programming.”Christine McCarthy, senior executive vice president and chief financial officer at the Walt Disney Company added: “We are pleased to have reached this agreement with Sinclair for the sale of these 21 RSNs, subject to the conditions of the consent decree with the US Department of Justice.”The other Fox-owned RSN, the YES Network, was sold back to the New York Yankees by Disney in March for US$3.5 billion (€3.13 billion). Disney had previously announced its intention to divest 22 Fox-owned RSNs in order to end the US Department of Justice Antitrust Division’s investigation into its acquisition of 21st Century Fox.
IPTV operators are waking up to the fact that the quality of video being displayed in the homes of TV viewers is becoming an increasingly important factor.While competition remains fierce in the pay-TV market place, quality control is key and service providers are starting to address the issue.For IneoQuest’s (IBC 4.A99) vice-president of strategic solutions Gino Dion, Quality of Experience is becoming an important area of concern for the industry. “Service providers realise this is the key to winning new subscribers and keeping existing ones,” he says. “They have realised that a proactive approach to quality assurance not only saves operating expenses by identifying network trouble spots that could have the potential for impacting video quality but also reduces customer churn by enabling faster repair and response times.”Eric Conley, CEO of digital media monitoring company Mixed Signals (IBC 2.C19) agrees that service providers are likely to invest more into ensuring they provide the best QoE. At IBC, Mixed Signals will demonstrate Sentry, its flagship content monitoring solution that includes new features like the Executive Reporting Package and the Video and Audio QoE Scoring System, which the company claims to be the first solution of its kind that tells service providers precisely how much each video and audio error impacts subscribers. “Simply put, not all errors are created equal, with some causing no significant impact to the subscriber, while others can ruin the viewing experience,” says Conley. “However, first-generation tools that only detect packet loss are unable to provide any distinction, only noting that packet loss has occurred. The result is that headend personnel treat all errors with equal urgency…or lack thereof, which in turn results in subscriber complaints when major issues are not quickly solved.” Mixed Signals addresses this issue with its video and audio QoE scoring system, which enables service providers to gauge how much each video and audio impairment affects subscribers.One concern raised by a Bridge Technologies (IBC 1.A30) spokesperson is that IPTV service providers have sometimes been guilty of having in-depth knowledge of IT but little of broadcasting technology. “The realisation that errors creeping in at one point in the delivery chain can cause problems downstream – and that problems can ‘cross the divide’ between broadcast and IT technologies – has come about only gradually,” says Bridge Technologies. Another issue is that some monitoring systems available on the market only give a view of limited parts of the IPTV delivery chain, and still reflect the divide between broadcast and IT worlds. “Providers have therefore tended to bolt on unrelated monitoring systems in a bits-and-pieces way, without ever getting the overall, end-to-end view of the whole delivery chain,” says the spokesperson.Winfried Schultz, marketing manager of test and measurement company Tektronix (IBC 8.C75) says that service provider requirements will focus more on the video layer going forwards to enable high-quality and high availability services. The company’s technology is script-based, and Schultz says means it can be easily tailored to measure and correlate various kinds of different parameters. “This is an absolute must in the current stage of IPTV rollout, as operators are still encountering technical challenges they did not expect to see,” he says. Tekronix has taken the approach of separating the network into different layers: transport and video. The challenge today, says Schultz is to isolate parameters from different layers, correlate them and then build a trend for each one, which helps to identify issues before they become visible for the viewer.John Williams, director of emerging markets at JDSU’s communications test and measurement business segment says that service providers need to move to a centralised test approach and only dispatch engineers to fix problems, rather than find problems. “To make management of IPTV more accessible to a wider user within the operator, the test systems must have more intelligence built into the system and an intuitive user interface that allows users to quickly isolate and fix IPTV issues,” Williams says. This is an area JDSU has prioritised its IPTV R&D activities.
ShareTweet POLICE have evacuated a number of homes in Derry overnight during a security alert linked to a controversial bonfire.It is understood the alert began after a suspect device was thrown at the Lecky Road flyover, close to the site of the nationalist bonfire.The structure reached 20ft (6m) in height. bogsideCOUNCILLOR JOHN BOYLEHOMES EVACUATED IN SECURITY ALERT LINKED TO MASSIVE DERRY BONFIRELECKY ROAD FLYVOVERPSNISDLP It partially blocked the road leading to complains from local residents of disruption to traffic.Union flags and Sinn Féin election posters were burned on the fire.A last-minute attempt to move the structure from the middle of the road failed on Monday night.Bonfires are traditionally set alight on 15 August in some nationalist areas of Derry to mark the Catholic feast day of the Assumption. The date commemorates the Virgin Mary’s death and assumption into heaven.However, nationalist and republican politicians have criticised the practice, saying it causes disruption to local residents.SDLP councillor John Boyl said “We need to find different ways of celebrating culture.”“If the police or any other statutory agency had attempted to remove the bonfire we may well actually have been looking at something a hell of a lot worse than we’re looking at currently.”HOMES EVACUATED IN SECURITY ALERT LINKED TO MASSIVE DERRY BONFIRE was last modified: August 16th, 2016 by John2John2 Tags:
DERRY City and Strabane District Council’s lunchtime lecture series Island Voices returns to the Tower Museum this autumn to explore the ancient genetic, cultural and linguistic links which exist between Ireland and Scandinavia. ‘Northern Confluence: Where Celtic and Nordic Worlds Meet’ reflects on the shared heritage of Ireland, Iceland and Scandinavia and explores our unique relationships, past and present. This year’s series opens on Friday 22nd September with an hour-long lecture by Professor Dan Bradley from Trinity College, Dublin who will deliver ‘A Tale of Two Islands: Ireland, Iceland and Viking genetic legacy’ – a talk which provides an overview of the genetic legacy that binds the island nations of Ireland Iceland and which tells the story of the Gaelic presence in Iceland and the impact of Norse ancestry in Ireland.Two further lectures are scheduled in the series: ‘Commonalities in the Linguistic Traditions of Ireland and Iceland’ with Dr Nioclás Mac Cathmhaoil which takes place on Friday 20th October 2017, and the closing lecture ‘Voices of the North: The Languages of Northern Europe’ by Professor Séamus Mac Mathúna, which takes place on Friday 17th November.All lectures take place at the Tower Museum, are free of charge and include lunch.Lunch will be from 12:30pm-1:00pm and lectures run from 1:00pm-2:00pm. Island Voices is funded by Derry City and Strabane District Council’s Good Relations Programme.For more information or to book your place please contact the Tower Museum on (028) 7137 2411 or email email@example.com.ISLAND VOICES LECTURE SERIES TO EXPLORE THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN IRELAND AND SCANDINAVIA was last modified: September 1st, 2017 by John2John2 Tags: ShareTweet ISLAND VOICES LECTURE SERIES TO EXPLORE THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN IRELAND AND SCANDINAVIA
POLICE WARNING: TAX YOUR VEHICLES OR THEY FACE BEING CLAMPED was last modified: January 24th, 2018 by John2John2 Tags: “That would be the 29 clamps that were placed on vehicles in the Waterside for No Tax by the DVA who also issued six tickets.“These clamps also come with a large fine that has to be paid immediately should you wish to keep your car and not watch it being removed on a lorry. “A number of other motoring offences were detected and unfortunately for some drivers, some were issued with tickets.“Please take time to make sure your vehicle is taxed, insured, mot’d and roadworthy before any journey.” THE PSNI are warning motorists that untaxed vehicles will be clamped and tickets will be issued to those flouting the law.It follows a crack down by the Drive Vehicle Agency (DVA) in the Waterside area of the city on Tuesday.In message on its Facebook page, PSNI Foyle say: “Whats triangular, yellow and cannot be removed? ShareTweet dvaFacebookPOLICE WARNING: TAX YOUR VEHICLES OR THEY FACE BEING CLAMPEDPSNI FOYLEWaterside
ShareTweet The inquest, sitting at the courthouse in Strabane, into the circumstances of his death was told that a decision had been made on June 28, 2015 by doctors treating Orin to switch off the machines keeping him alive and “let nature take its course”.His mother, Majella McBride, who had been told of this decision, said she left the room and told the doctors: “I want to go to Orin. I want to see him before he leaves this earth.”Ms McBride insisted she did not consent to the action.She told the court that when she went into the room the ventilator had been removed and she asked the nurse: “Where is his ventilator? Where is his oxygen?”The mother said no-one replied to her. A short time later, Orin was moved to a side room and passed away in his mother’s arms.Asked by Coroner Patrick Mr McGurgan if she had given her permission, Ms McBride said: “No I did not.”“I don’t think it registered with me,” she added.“I just wanted to be with my son.”Ms McBride was asked about notes taken by one of the doctors at the meeting which suggested she told the doctors Orin had “fought long enough, just make him comfortable”.Ms McBride refuted this strongly saying: “I did not say any of that, that is lies. I know for a fact I did not say that.”“He (Orin) deserved care he didn’t get. He shouldn’t be where he is today.”The court was told Orin had been admitted to Altnagelvin hospital on June 17. 2015 where he continued to deteriorate, before being transferred to the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children.During this journey Orin became unconscious and was admitted into the intensive care unit.One of the doctors caring for Orin while he was in this unit was Dr Mark Terris, a consultant paediatric anaesthetist, who was the clinician in charge of Orin’s care during the 24 hours of the 28 June.Dr Terris outlined to the court how gravely ill Orin was and that, as well as pancreatitis, the boy was also experiencing multiple organ failure.Dr Terris told the court the team caring for Orin had contacted hospitals in Glasgow and Leicester about the possibility of transferring Orin there because they had specialist treatment centres, but that those hospitals did not think Orin was suitable for transfer.The doctor said it was agreed to remove support from Orin and that this agreement included Ms McBride.Asked if he recalled Ms McBride saying her son had fought long and hard and that he should be made comfortable, Dr Terris said: “I don’t recall her (Ms McBride) exact words but I don’t doubt it if that is what Dr Christie wrote.“There was an agreement that Orin was going to die, with or without us.“I do recall her being very upset, but I understood it was because of what was going to happen.”Asked by Mr McGurgan if he was satisfied Ms McBride took on board what was said and what was going to happen, Dr Terris said there was agreement.Speaking directly to Ms McBride in court, Dr Terris said: “I apologise if that was not clear to you.“Sadly Orin was dying and nothing we could have done was going to save him.”The inquest continues.Mother of Derry boy ‘opposed turning off his life support’, inquest hears was last modified: September 11th, 2018 by John2John2 Tags: Orin McBrides inquest is being held at the courthouse in StrabaneTHE mother of a Derry school boy has told an inquest that she did not give doctors at the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children permission to switch off his life support. inquestINQUEST HEARSMajella McBrideMother of Derry boy ‘opposed turning off life support’OLD STRABANE ROADOrin McBridePatrick McGurganWaterside Orin McBride had a complex medical history including hydrocephalus, epilepsy and autism.The 14-year-old, from Strabane Old Road in the Waterside area of Derry, was diagnosed with pancreatitis in March 2015 and died on June 28.2015.One of Orin’s doctors said there was nothing staff could do to save him.The teenager had been transferred from Altnagelvin Hospital in Derry to Belfast.
ShareTweet African greykilfennanPat BreslinReward offered to help find family’s pet lost in Derry A FAMILY is offering reward for anyone who can help locate a pet bird which has gone missing in Derry.Owner Pat Breslin has posted: “URGENT LOST IN THE KILFENNAN AREA.“Five year old Aftrican grey. “Anyone in this area please share.“Children are distraught and a reward offered in his return.“So families in this area can you please check your back gardens.”Reward offered to help find family’s pet lost in Derry was last modified: July 4th, 2019 by John2John2 Tags:
Facebook CrimeWatch NewsFeaturedLocal NewsNewsWatch UPDATE: Second Man Arrested For Burglary Incident In Oak Hill By Tyler BarkerJun 22, 2018, 10:02 am 1071 0 Pinterest Linkedin Previous PostSupreme Court adopts new rules for cellphone tracking UPDATE: Regarding the burglary incident on Ponderosa Lane in Oak Hill, the second suspect has been identified and arrested. David Wayne Dunlap, 57 of Oak Hill, was taken into custody on the felony charge of Conspiracy to Commit a Felony. He was transported to the Southern Regional Jail to await arraignment.If you have any information regarding this incident, contact the Fayette County Sheriff’s Department at 304-574-3590, or through our Facebook page “Fayette County Sheriff’s Department,” or you can contact Crime Stoppers of West Virginia at 304-255-STOP. This incident remains under investigation by Deputy B.K. Fernandez of the Fayette County Sheriff’s Department.__________________OAK HILL, WV (WOAY) – A Fayette County man is in jail for burglarizing a home in Oak Hill.Just before midnight Thursday, Fayette County Sheriff’s Deputies were dispatched to a Burglary in Progress on Ponderosa Lane in Oak Hill. The homeowner, who was out of town, was able to view his home camera system on his cell phone. He could see that a male was attempting to make entry into his home.Deputies arrived on scene and were able to apprehend the suspect inside the home. Brandon L. Morris, 28 of Oak Hill, was charged with the felony offenses of Nighttime Burglary and Conspiracy to Commit a Felony. He was unable to post the $50,000 bond set by the Fayette County Magistrate’s Office.The homeowner advised Deputies that he witnessed a second male with Morris on his camera system, but he was not with him at the time of the deputy’s arrival. Investigators are now working to identify this second suspect.If you have any information regarding this incident, contact the Fayette County Sheriff’s Department at 304-574-3590, or through our Facebook page “Fayette County Sheriff’s Department,” or you can contact Crime Stoppers of West Virginia at 304-255-STOP. This incident remains under investigation by Deputy B.K. Fernandez of the Fayette County Sheriff’s Department. Next PostBluefield Fire Department To Receive Defibrillator From AEP Tumblr Tyler Barker Tyler Barker is currently the Interim News Director and Digital Content Manager for WOAY-TV. I was promoted to this job in Mid-November. I still will fill in on weather from time to time. Follow me on Facebook and Twitter @wxtylerb. Have any news tips or weather questions? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org Mail Twitter Home NewsWatch CrimeWatch News UPDATE: Second Man Arrested For Burglary Incident In Oak Hill Google+
Coal City, WV (WOAY) – Independence senior Liam Lusher signed a letter of intent Wednesday afternoon to join West Virginia University wrestling as a preferred walk-on.Lusher, who is considering computer engineering for his major, was part of a Patriot grappling team that won Class AA team state championships from 2016-2018, and finished as runner-up this year. Individually, he has one state championship and two runner-up finishes.Lusher will once again be teammates with 2017 Independence graduate Noah Adams, who recently competed at the NCAA Wrestling championships in Pittsburgh as a redshirt freshman.He says deciding where to continue his wrestling career in college was a unique experience, but believes the Mountaineers were a great fit. Lusher is confident that his time with Independence, who regularly competed against out-of-state schools in addition to West Virginia teams, will help him succeed at the college level. Mail Google+ Next PostGovernor Stocks Local Stream with Golden Trout Previous PostHS Baseball/Softball Highlights – April 3 Tumblr Twitter Linkedin Pinterest SportsSports News Liam Lusher Signs With WVU By Matt DigbyApr 03, 2019, 21:30 pm 566 0 Home Sports News Sports Liam Lusher Signs With WVU Facebook Matt Digby Matt Digby is the Sports Director at WOAY-TV. He joined the station in January 2015 – right in the middle of Big Atlantic Classic Week. Read More
By Doug Hornig, Senior Editor“Flow.”Although it can be annoyingly difficult to define with any precision and virtually impossible to measure objectively, everyone intuitively knows what it is, and most people have experienced some form of it at one time or another. It’s that state of effortless concentration that leads to superior performance, either mental or physical. Everything superfluous to the task at hand is shut out of the mind. At the highest level, Michael Jordan sees a basketball hoop that’s four feet wide and cannot be missed; Einstein is able to conjure the complete structure of the universe inside his head.Attempts to find the flow are not new. For most of human existence, it has had crucial survival value. The hunter who could envision what the prey would do next was a successful hunter. And when the tables were turned, the ability to avoid, outwit, or win a battle with larger predators meant living for another day and keeping the evolutionary line intact.Finding the flow through repetition is not easy. It takes time, energy, and commitment. Researchers at Florida State University say that it normally requires 10,000 hours of practice to become expert at anything. In our early hunter-gatherer days, that kind of rigorous training was mandatory. Today, for the most part, it’s optional. Some are willing to put in the time, depending on the goal. Others are not.So, for probably as long as humans have been thinking beings, they’ve not only trained themselves to naturally be in the flow, they’ve also been on the lookout for shortcuts.Traditionally, this quest has included the ingestion of stimulants. We can’t be sure of exactly what prehistoric people did, although if they stumbled upon something that gave them higher clarity of mind, they undoubtedly used it. (At least one theorist has postulated that the modern brain is the result of human interaction with psychoactive mushrooms native to Africa.)Historically, we know that marijuana has been consumed for at least three thousand years and coca leaf chewed for the past two millennia or so, but caffeinated stimulants are of course the most widespread today. The history of coffee extends back to at least the twelfth century, and tea was discovered in 2737 B.C., at least according to legend. More recently, Coca Cola hit the street in the late 19th century and it has endured, even though the original formula was altered to replace the cocaine with caffeine in 1903.The ferocity with which people crave stimulants is obvious every time one enters a convenience store and is confronted with a mind-boggling variety of products from which to choose… not to mention that those hoping to grab a piece of the flow can also dial up an array of prescription drugs like Adderall, or go to the black market in search of cocaine powder, rocks of crack, or crystal methamphetamine.All cater to the same desire, and anyone who bothers to think it through has to realize that the War on Drugs can never be won. It’s a war on human nature.But what if there were another way to access the flow – one that didn’t involve swallowing, smoking, or injecting anything… one that had no dangerous (or even merely unpleasant) side effects. What if you could hone a skill in a fraction of the time it would normally take? What if, for example, whenever I sat down to write the Technology Investor, the words just spilled out onto the screen, the way they sometimes (but not often) do?What if the mind-state attained by world-class athletes and brilliant physicists – the flow – were available to everyone, at minimal cost and without breaking any law? Would people go for it?We’re about to find out. The hottest new topic in brain research these days involves a technique called “transcranial direct current stimulation,” or tDCS for short.The setup couldn’t be simpler: Clamp a set of electrodes to the head, pass a miniscule direct electric current (2 milliamperes or less) through the brain for 20-30 minutes, and presto, instant immersion in the flow state. The whole thing can be run off of a common nine-volt battery.So far, much of the lab work on tDCS has been done by or for the military, which has an obvious interest in reducing the time it takes for soldiers to acquire certain skillsets. Researchers have found that they can more than double the rate at which subjects learn a wide range of tasks, such as object recognition, math skills, and marksmanship. Thus, unsurprisingly, one DARPA program has been using the technique to cut the time it takes to train snipers in half.What’s it like to quite literally put on a “thinking cap?” A handful of journalists have submitted themselves to the electrodes and written up their experiences. What stands out are a couple of things. First, time compression. The twenty minutes goes by without the awareness of that amount of time passing. More important, there is a suppression of the crosstalk with which our brains are normally occupied. The subject is able to focus totally on the task at hand.Journalist Sally Adee submitted to the procedure as part of a course in advanced marksmanship, at which she was admittedly terrible. But then they turned on the current and, as she wrote in Better Living Through Electrochemistry:The 20 minutes I spent hitting targets while electricity coursed through my brain were far from transcendent. I only remember feeling like I had just had an excellent cup of coffee, but without the caffeine jitters. I felt clear-headed and like myself, just sharper. Calmer. Without fear and without doubt. From there on, I just spent the time waiting for a problem to appear so that I could solve it. ….Relieved of the minefield of self-doubt that constitutes my basic personality, I was a hell of a shot.The flow state lasted beyond the session, “gradually diminishing over a period of about three days,” and causing her to confess that “the thing I wanted most acutely for the weeks following my experience was to go back and strap on those electrodes.”How does tDCS work? No one’s really sure, and any technical discussion is beyond the scope of this article. But if you’re interested in exploring the science, Zap Your Brain into the Zone is a good starting point.Why isn’t everyone running out and buying one of these things? Probably only because they’re too new, few have even heard of them yet, and they’re hard to find. There’s also cost. Typically, they run between $500-600, and at the moment suppliers are generally selling only to research institutions. Professional supervision is highly recommended, and private parties at least need a doctor’s prescription.All that could be about to change, as entrepreneurs see a mass market that awaits only ease of ordering and a better price point. Already, some tech geeks have published plans on the Internet for a DIY model – an unacceptably risky way to go in our opinion, and one we do not endorse. For one thing, long-term effects are as yet unknown. For another, if you screw up and accidentally send more current through your brain than it can handle, you could fry some important circuits. Additionally, care must be taken not to detach electrodes before the current is switched off, or else temporary blindness is one possible result. (You can’t jump up to answer the phone in the middle of a session.)Still, home units are on the way. A small startup company is planning to offer tDCS kits soon for about $99. One of the big medical supply houses cannot be far behind.Does this mean that one day Kindles will come with electrodes attached, so that users can read in a heightened state of neuronal awareness? Might we be riding the subway with tDCS caps on our heads and nine-volt batteries in our pockets, so that we can practice our Mandarin during rush hour? Well, could be. But how this all plays out depends on a number of interacting factors.First of all, of course, it must be determined that tDCS is actually safe, which means that the FDA is likely to become involved pretty soon. That means at least some government regulation, and perhaps a lot. A number of predictable objections will be raised, too. Some people will probably claim that this is unwarranted tinkering with the human psyche. Some will warn that tDCS will only serve to further divide society between the haves and have nots. Some will maintain that students taking tests with thinking caps will have an unfair advantage over those who don’t have them – which may well be true. And so on. (For a more in-depth discussion of ethical considerations, see The Neuroethics of Non-Invasive Brain Stimulation in Current Biology.)Look for government to be divided on private citizens’ access to this technology. There will be those who want to lump tDCS units in with illegal stimulants and simply ban them; there will be those who prefer to let the market decide; and there will surely be those who see the devices as very important for national productivity and want to subsidize them, in very much the way they now subsidize education. We’re already at the point where schools strive for computer access for every pupil. Why not universal access to tDCS, too?Whatever the case, if these early, positive results for tDCS are confirmed, we’re on the verge of a truly extraordinary advance in the field of cognitive enhancement. It’s going to be a lot of fun to watch where it all goes from here. And personally, I can’t wait to find some flow for myself. Bits & BytesAmazonian Robots (TIME)This past Monday, Amazon announced that it was acquiring Kiva Systems for $775 million. Kiva makes robotic systems designed for warehouses, so for one of the country’s biggest warehousers, the deal must have been a no-brainer. This article on the subject has a link to a pretty cool video showing the Kiva robots at work. Also of interest is this question: does the acquisition give Amazon power over other companies that currently use Kiva systems? Staples is one, for example. Will Amazon now have the right to deny tech support to Staples, if it so wishes? Hmmm…Tweets Turn Six (Twitter)Twitter celebrated its sixth birthday yesterday, and it celebrated by releasing a few stats. The service, which many deemed silly at its launch, now sees close to 500,000 accounts created every day. And Twitter users now send more than 140 million Tweets a day, which adds up to a billion Tweets every eight days.Never Be Out of Touch (The Kansas City Star)Somewhere, there must exist a repository called “Things We Don’t Need But Are Invented Anyway.” Wherever it is, we suggest that a new patent application by Nokia immediately be dropped into it. The company, it seems, has filed a patent for a tattoo that would send “a perceivable impulse” to your skin whenever someone tries to contact you on the phone. ‘Nuff said.The Universal Translator (Technology Review)Star Trek‘s universal translator is on the way. Microsoft has unveiled new software that translates a speaker’s words into another language and then makes it audible in the speaker’s own voice. Before long, a must-have travel accessory will be a portable unit that incorporates this software, allowing the traveler at last to carry on conversations with people whose language he or she doesn’t speak.Jungle Trippin’ (Los Angeles Times)Finally, there’s news about that watery thing with the same name as the giant online retailer. If you’ve always yearned to take an Amazon River trip but without the heat and mosquitoes, now you can. Google has taken Street View down the river, or at least a small part of it. Explore from the comfort of your favorite chair.
First off, do you know what LNG stands for? If you answered “lots of natural gas,” you probably should spend the next three minutes of your life reading this missive. Then you can decide which side of the trade you want to be on. LNG stands for liquefied natural gas. Basically, a really smart nerd figured out how to compress natural gas by about 600 times by turning the gas into liquid. A lot of science went into this process, but we’re not going to cover all that in this article. So, let’s get in to what you really need to know about LNG. The first commercial LNG plant was built in the US in the 1940s, but LNG did not become important until the 1960s, when someone figured out how to ship the stuff across the world in specialized tankers. It was a big game changer, similar to how shale gas development has changed the natural gas paradigm. Now take LNG technology, partner it up with the shale revolution, and you get American LNG (ALNG). Made in the US, it’s better than the LNG in the rest of the world, right? That’s what Obamarama wants you to think. But we’ve dug up the truth, and you won’t want to miss it. Don’t believe everything (or anything) a politician tells you. The US is in big trouble, and there is not a chance that it will become energy self-sufficient by 2030. The next issue of the Casey Energy Report will cover the most important aspects of LNG – how it works, its dirty secrets, and the best part… how to make money from American LNG. We have at least three recommendations that subscribers can buy now to best position themselves to profit from the LNG boom. If you want to learn more about LNG than 99.999% of other investors, I highly recommend you take me up on my free trial offer to read the LNG report, and gain the knowledge that will help you profit in the energy sector today. Additional Links and Reads Earth May Have More Oil Than Anyone Thought (MSN Money) It is no surprise that as technology advances, so does the world’s oil and gas reserves. The discovery of shale gas is probably the essence of this fact, rewarding the United States with hundreds of trillions of cubic square feet of more natural gas. However, all the “easy” reserves have been exploited, and the world must now look toward unconventional and offshore resources. This means a lot higher costs, which in turn will mean higher energy prices. New South Wales Government Approval for Uranium Exploration a Step Closer (The Australian) Australia leads the world in uranium reserves, and it appears the country will utilize it, allowing exploration in the state of New South Wales (NSW). Australia is home to the Olympic Dam project, which is currently the second-largest producing mine in the world, and also hosts a staggering approximately 5.5 billion pounds of uranium resources. However, the expansion has been mired in delays and has run over budget. Could the exploration in NSW be an indication that Olympic Dam’s expansion will take much longer than expected? Greenpeace Finds Oil Muck in Russia (UPI) Russia has no incentive to adhere to strict environmental controls, as none of its consumers really care how the oil is extracted, as long as they have access to the oil. Meanwhile, the Canadian government recently axed Enbridge’s latest bid to construct a pipeline to the west coast, namely because of environmental concerns. This brings up an important question: Are environmentalists really looking out for what is best for the world, or just looking out for what is in their back yard? Canadian “maple leaf” oil adheres to the most stringent environmental policies in the world. More oil from Canada delivered around the world means that the planet is better off environmentally, especially when compared to Russian oil.
In This Issue. * Currencies have a day in the sun. * It’s a mixed bag for the currencies today. * Chuck bashes the so-called debt reduction. * Singapore loses its step for step with renminbi . And, Now, Today’s Pfennig For Your Thoughts! A Bonus Pfennig! Good Day! And a Tom Terrific Tuesday to you! Guess what occurred to me this morning when my alarm went off? OK, I know, you’ll never guess, so I’ll just tell you. It occurred to me at that time, that in past years I did not write on New Year’s Eve morning, choosing to sleep in so I could partake in New Year’s Eve celebrations. Yes, in past years, yesterday’s letter was the last one of the year. So, for your loyalty in reading the Pfennig, I present you with the BONUS Edition of the Pfennig! Yes, the poor blokes like me, that work on New Year’s Eve day. HAHAHAHAHAHA! I had a boss years ago, that would have said, “Quit your complaining, you’re lucky to have a job!” A real charmer he wasn’t! But in the old days, when I ran the operations of a bond division, I HAD to be at work on the last day of the year, so I guess that just carries over.. And no, I’m not going to carry on about this silly stuff throughout the letter! But, there’s really not much going on to talk about, so maybe I’ll just make this a question and answer Pfennig. No, wait Chuck, you need to have people asking questions for that to happen! Doh! Alrighty then, let’s get you back to your regularly scheduled programming. The currencies enjoyed a day in the sun yesterday with just about all registering gains of some measure against the dollar. The Big Winner on the day was the euro. (more on that in a minute) and the Big loser was Gold. As I turn on the screens this morning I can see that one day in the sun is all that was allowed for the currencies, as they have given back some of those gains. That’s a broad statement, because when you drill down you see that the Aussie dollar (A$), kiwi, British pound sterling, Singapore dollar (S$) and a couple of others are booking gains VS the dollar this morning. It will be a range trading day for the currencies, folks, as there just aren’t enough “players” in the game today. Yesterday, I sat at my desk watching the euro go higher and higher, first flirting with 1.38, then going through 1.38 and continuing to push the currency gain envelope. I stood up so that everyone could hear me, and said, “Ah, look at the euro back to 1.38, you can kick it, but you can’t keep it down”. Remember, that at the beginning of November, the euro was trading over 1.38 and looking as if it was on a one-way trip to currency nirvana, but Mario Draghi had different ideas, and announced a rate cut when your Pfennig scribe didn’t think it to be possible, or even reasonable that you cut rates when they’re already so low you could step over them without a hitch in your giddyup. And before you could say, “That darn Draghi” the euro dropped 3-cents, and now looked as though it would continue to lose ground VS the dollar. But here we are 2 months later, and the euro is back to 1.38! And once again it appears to be ready to move higher. Remember, a few weeks ago, I gave you my thoughts on why I believed the euro would reach 1.50 in 2014. The boys and girls over at Barclays, don’t agree with me on that. They believe that 2014 will be the year of the U.S. dollar. They truly believe that even though the Fed has stated that mid-2015 is their target date to hike rates here in the U.S., that rate hike expectations will be enough to help the dollar to move higher in 2014. They figure that when the Fed follows through on their tapering month after month, that the markets will begin to put pressure on the Fed to hike rates, and even IF there is no rate hike from the Fed, the expectations should be enough to attract investors to the dollar. Well, you know me, and you know that I won’t go along with that scenario. Yes, IF that were the case, you could certainly see dollar strength, but that’s a BIG IF! And instead of saying “when the Fed Follows through.” They should say, “IF the Fed follows through.” Then their recommendation wouldn’t have any foundation to speak of. And of course that’s just my opinion, and I could be wrong! So, let me state once again where I stand on this stuff, right here, right now on the last day of 2013. The Fed has announced that a tapering of $10 Billion to their now $85 Billion in bond purchases every month. It is my contention that while the Fed may carry through with one, two or maybe even three more cuts in their bond purchases each month, that they will eventually realize what they should have known from the beginning, that the U.S. economy has become addicted to stimulus, and it cannot stand on its own two legs for long. When the Fed Heads finally come to the realization of what I’m telling them now, and have told them for months on end, they will stop the reductions, and if things are as bad as I think they will be, then the Fed Heads will have to step back to the bond purchase table. And that won’t be pretty for the economy, the dollar, or the Fed. So, getting back to the euro. The single unit has seen some profit taking overnight, and slipped back below 1.38, so it’s right back to where it was yesterday morning. UGH! But like I said, range trading is the call to order today, and maybe the rest of the week, after we come back from the New Year’s Day holiday, for many of the top traders won’t be back until next Monday, Jan. 6. Well, a quick look around the world, and I see that Singapore announced that their economy stepped up the pace in 2013, finishing the year with a 3.7% growth rate. The Singapore Gov’t had placed a target of 3.5% to 4% for economic growth this year, so looky there! The 3.7% came right smack dab in the middle of the target range. Funny how that happened, eh? Oh, I’m not saying that Singapore cooks their books. I’m actually saying” Funny how that happened!” The Singapore dollar (S$) finally saw some love overnight, from this report, after spending the last 3 trading days on the red side of the ledger. The S$ is one of my fave currencies because of the way the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) uses currency strength to fight inflation instead of arbitrarily hiking and cutting interest rates. But the S$ has lost about 3.4% to the dollar this year, which is strange in the fact that the Chinese renminbi / yuan has gained about 3% this year. These two currencies have been “linked” together currency trading-wise since the Chinese dropped the peg to the dollar in July of 2005. So, while I expect the renminbi / yuan to continue to gain VS the dollar, as the Chinese continue their march toward convertibility, and a wide distribution of their currency, I would think the S$ would begin to “catch up” and not ketchup. “catch up”! HA! Speaking of China. I came across some data yesterday that you don’t see every day. In fact, this was the first time, ever, that the Chinese printed their Gov’t Debt totals. So, here’s the skinny on the Chinese Debt announcement.. China’s National Audit Office (NAO) announced this afternoon that China’s total government debt (including both central and local governments) amounted to RMB20.7trn as of this June, equivalent to 40% of China’s GDP. However, including contingent liabilities, China’s total government debt would exceed RMB30trn, or equivalent to 50-55% of China’s GDP. Two things to think about with this first time announcement. China’s debt is not a problem. On the Pfennig blog site: www.dailypfennig.com I have a chart of the total Gov’t obligations as a percentage of GDP at the top, and the Gov’t debt is there as a component, so you can refer back to that now. But for the tried and true text readers only of the Pfennig, you’ll have to take my word on this, that China’s Debt would be so far to the left as you look at the chart that they wouldn’t even register. And second. remember,,, China holds a Treasure Chest of reserves, that’s greater than $2 Trillion worth. enough said! At this time I think it would be apropos to mention that according to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) The Bipartisan Budget Act of 2013, you know the one I made fun of a couple weeks ago, said that they estimated that the debt reduction that they had achieved was $23 Billion over the next decade.. OK. Let’s put this in perspective. The CBO estimates that our national debt will increase by $6.34 Trillion over the next decade. So, the $23 Billion in reduction, which was ballyhooed by the Gov’t and media, is are you ready for this? Drum roll please! .. The $23 Billion will reduce our estimated growth in debt by 0.00363, or 1/3 of 1%… So, why the parades and confetti for this deal? As I said in my Sunday Pfennig last week, it doesn’t amount to a small hill of beans! I shake my head in disgust over how the media drank the Kool-Aid and tried to pass it around to us! I have to thank my friend Dennis Miller for sending along this ditty to me in a report that a CPA does called “by the numbers”. Well, as I said above, Gold couldn’t find a bid yesterday, and lost ground once again, falling below $1,200 overnight, but has gained the figure back in early morning trading. 2013 wasn’t a good year for Gold, as it suffered through its worse year in the past 30 years. I saw a quote by a trader at Saxo Bank, who correctly predicted, last year, that Gold would finish 2013 at $1,200.. Well, he is now saying that Gold prices may have already bottomed out. So, maybe he got lucky with the onetime forecast for Gold. Let’s hope his forecast for the price of Gold is as good as Gold! Yesterday I told you that we would see some Existing Home Sales data from the data cupboard, and thought that the markets would fail to notice the data, which is exactly what happened, as Existing Home Sales, for the fifth consecutive month, missed expectations. Year to year Home sales dropped 4%, its worst drop since 2011. Of course the spin doctors took this data and spun it to tell you a different story. “Although the final months of 2013 are finishing on a soft note, the year as a whole will end with the best sales total in seven years”. said, the chief economist for the NAR. Apparently, the chief economist is having a problem seeing a new trend! For What It’s Worth. I found this story on Google+, and it’s by Koos Jansen, who had a website called: In Gold We Trust. This guy is very well respected folks, and does a lot of work for the folks at GATA. the title says it all. “China Accumulates Gold For The World Dream”. At the 2013 World Gold Markets Trend Conference, China’s director of the Chinese Gold Market Research Center, Zu He Liang, spoke about what he sees for Gold in 2014. Let’s listen in to what Mr. Zu had to say. “Due to the fact that entire world is paying close attention to the price of gold shows that we are all pursuing a “World Dream”. The “World Dream” is nothing but a pursuit for world peace, the healthy and stable development of the world’s economy, and a world which is fair to every country and its citizens. The pursuit for gold reflects mankind’s pursuit for the “World Dream”. Gold represents mankind’s yearning and aspirations for stability, and healthy economic development; it is a wonderful wish.” Chuck again. OK. Two things. 1. I love Google+! And 2. What a great speech, and one in which I’m sure if you read between the lines says, we won’t achieve this without a Gold standard for money. For I’m sure he could point to the 100 years in which there was a Gold standard, and the world economy was quite stable, there was no inflation, and every country that participated in it benefitted from the Gold standard. To recap. The currencies had a day in the sun yesterday, but it’s a mixed bag of performances this morning. The euro traded over 1.38 yesterday, but profit taking has it back below that figure this morning. Chuck carries on and on about working on New Year’s Eve, what a Doug Whiner! HA! We talk about the so-called debt reduction in the budget deal, and how Singapore has lost its step for step move with renminbi in 2013, and in Chuck’s eye has some catching up to do! Currencies today 12/31/13. American Style: A$ .8935, kiwi .8220, C$ .9405, euro 1.3775, sterling 1.6540, Swiss $1.1225, . European Style: rand 10.5360, krone 6.0760, SEK 6.4145, forint 215.60, zloty 3.0145, koruna 19.89, RUB 32.85, yen 105.00, sing 1.2635, HKD 7.7540, INR 61.79, China 6.0969, pesos 13.08, BRL 2.3605, Dollar Index 80.06, Oil $98.86, 10-year 2.99%, Silver $19.44, Platinum $1,357.50, Palladium $711.90, and Gold. $1,201.50 That’s it for today. and this year! I guess we need to sing now. Ahem. as I clear my voice. Should auld acquaintance be forgot, And never brought to mind? Should auld acquaintance be forgot, And days o’ lang syne! Chorus: For auld lang syne, my dear For auld lang syne, We’ll take a cup o’ kindness yet For auld lang syne! OK. for those wondering just what the heck that song is all about. According to Scotland.org, “Auld Lang Syne is one of Scotland’s gifts to the world, recalling the love and kindness of days gone by, but in the communion of taking our neighbors’ hands, it also gives us a sense of belonging and fellowship to take into the future.” OK, why didn’t they just say that! HA! Well, the Winter Olympics are coming up in February, I think those winter sports guys are pretty crazy. Hockey, I get. jumping off a ski ramp that’s 100’s of feet in the air, I don’t get. and so on. But I’ll be watching it! Those athletes amaze me! So. whatever you do tonight, be careful! Don’t drink and drive. And make sure you find your honey and give them a big hug and kiss at midnight! See you next year! Chuck Butler President EverBank World Markets 1-800-926-4922 1-314-647-3837
Some of the world’s smartest investors are cutting back on U.S. stocks…On Monday, Bloomberg Business reported that hedge fund managers cut their holdings in U.S. stocks by $200 billion last quarter. These funds now hold $1.5 trillion in U.S. stocks, down from $1.7 trillion at the end of June.The list of fund managers who trimmed their U.S. stock holdings reads like a “who’s who” of the investing world. It includes David Einhorn, John Burbank, David Tepper, and Stan Druckenmiller.Druckenmiller is one of the world’s most successful hedge fund managers. He generated an incredible 30% average annual return from 1986 to 2010. Today, he runs Duquesne Capital.At a conference earlier this month, Druckenmiller said he’s investing with caution right now.I’m working under the assumption that we may have started a primary bear market in July…I can see myself getting really bearish. I can’t see myself getting really bullish.Duquesne Capital cut its holdings of U.S. stocks by 41% last quarter, according to recent company filings.• David Tepper cut his fund’s position in U.S. stocks by 30% last quarter…Tepper is the founder of Appaloosa Management, a $24 billion hedge fund that’s averaged 30% annual returns since 1993. That’s almost triple the S&P 500’s 11% return over the same period. Tepper has outperformed the market by nailing several “big picture” calls over his career.Tepper had been bullish on U.S. stocks since the global financial crisis. But he recently changed his stance. In September, Tepper told CNBC, “I can’t really call myself a bull.”According to Bloomberg, Appaloosa trimmed its holdings in U.S. stocks by 30% last quarter. The fund now holds $2.86 billion in U.S. stocks, its smallest stake since 2011…when the fund was 25% smaller.• Tepper sees “all kinds of problems” in the market…Like us, Tepper believes U.S. stocks are too expensive. According to the popular CAPE valuation ratio, U.S. stocks are now 58% more expensive than their historic average.Tepper is also concerned about weak earnings growth. Earnings growth for companies in the S&P 500 has slowed six quarters in a row…As of last Friday, 90% of the companies in the S&P 500 had reported third-quarter results. Based on that data, research firm FactSet reports that S&P 500 companies’ earnings are set to drop 1.8% from last year.The S&P 500 is headed for its second straight quarter of falling earnings…which hasn’t happened since 2009. It means the U.S. stock market is on the verge of an “earnings recession.”Meanwhile, quarterly sales for S&P 500 companies are on track to fall for the third straight quarter. FactSet reports that third-quarter sales for companies in the S&P 500 have fallen 4% from last year. Recommended Links Can you legally remove yourself from U.S. tax code?70-year-old multimillionaire says “YES!” Click here to learn how to get the full story. – The Best Place to Hide Your MoneyIt’s tax-free. Pays up to 37 times more than bank accounts. And you DON’T NEED TO REPORT IT TO THE IRS. No wonder government doesn’t want you to know about this secret account. Click here to discover more… — • The U.S. stock market is long overdue for a major pullback…The current bull market in U.S. stocks started in March 2009. It’s run for 80 months and counting. That’s 30 months longer than the average bull market since World War II.Bull markets don’t die of old age, but they all die eventually…The rally in U.S. stocks has already lost most of its momentum this year. The S&P climbed 204% from March 2009 through December 2014. But U.S. stocks have gone nowhere since. The S&P 500 is flat on the year.It takes a 20% decline to officially end a bull market. By that definition, this one isn’t technically over yet…though it took a big hit when the S&P 500 fell 11% in just six days in late August. Since then, U.S. stocks have recovered most of their losses, but have not made new highs.E.B. Tucker, editor of The Casey Report, thinks the bull market died during the mini-crash in August. E.B. shared that bold call with his readers in September.Last month’s major stock market decline is the start of a very tough time for stocks and the economy…The market has recovered in the past two weeks. But we think it’s only temporary. In other words, we’re in the middle of a “dead cat bounce.” It’s looking a lot like 2007.• Meanwhile, demand for gold coins is skyrocketing…Sales of U.S. American Eagle gold coins hit a five-year high last quarter.The U.S. Mint produces various sizes of American Eagle coins. They’re the most popular gold coin in the United States.The chart below shows quarterly sales of American Eagles since 2009. The U.S. Mint sold over 12 tons of American Eagles last quarter. That’s the most it’s sold since the second quarter of 2010. It’s also 251% more than the U.S. Mint sold during the same quarter last year.The price of gold has declined 10% this year. The huge spike in American Eagle sales last quarter suggests investors are taking advantage of low prices to load up on physical gold.Casey readers know we think this is a smart approach. Gold is the ultimate form of financial wealth insurance. It’s preserved wealth through every kind of financial catastrophe imaginable. It will do the same thing when the next catastrophe hits…The U.S. stock market looks ripe for a major downturn. Valuations are stretched. Earnings and sales are dropping. And some of the smartest investors on the planet are scaling out of U.S. stocks.A stock market collapse in the coming months is a real possibility. If you don’t already hold a significant amount of gold, consider buying physical gold while it’s still cheap.Chart of the DayHere’s another reason to carefully assess your stock holdings…Today’s chart shows the level of margin debt for the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). Margin debt is the value of stocks bought with borrowed money.As you can see, margin debt growth accelerated and peaked right before the last two major stock market crashes…Margin debt growth accelerated in the late 1990s. It peaked in March 2000, the same month the S&P 500 topped out. U.S. stocks went on to lose 37% during the dot-com bubble burst.Margin debt growth accelerated again in the mid-2000s. It peaked in July 2007, just three months before the S&P 500 topped out before the global financial crisis. Stocks went on to decline 57%.Margin debt also had a small run-up in 2011 before turning over that May. The S&P 500 peaked right around the same time. Then it declined 19.4%…stopping just short of the 20% threshold necessary to qualify as a bear market.In April, the level of margin debt for the NYSE hit an all-time high of $507 billion. In September, it fell for the third month in a row. The level of margin debt is now 11% below its April record high.At this point, it’s impossible to know for sure if the decline in margin debt is signaling an imminent downturn in stocks. However, we can tell you that the U.S. and global financial markets are far more fragile today than they were in 2011.Regards,Justin SpittlerDelray Beach, FloridaNovember 19, 2015We want to hear from you.If you have a question or comment, please send it to email@example.com. We read every email that comes in, and we’ll publish comments, questions, and answers that we think other readers will find useful.
The Southeastern Conference will now allow alcohol at athletic events, but the ultimate decision lies in schools’ hands.Even if a school decides on selling alcohol, it won’t be a free-for-all as far as the SEC is concerned. Requirements will include designated sales sites, no sales in seating areas, required limits on purchases per transaction and a designated last-call time.The University of Alabama has not yet announced if it will allow alcohol sales at its SEC events.“Our policy governing alcohol sales has been a source of considerable discussion and respectful debate among our member universities in recent years,” said SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey in a statement. “As a Conference, we have been observant of trends in the sale and consumption of alcohol at collegiate sporting events and have drawn upon the experiences and insights of our member schools which have responsibly established limited alcohol sales within controlled spaces and premium seating areas. We remain the only conference to set forth league-wide standards for the responsible management of the sale of alcoholic beverages.”Sales will be limited to beer and wine, and the policy doesn’t impact suites, clubs or private leased areas that already allow alcohol.Read the full policy below:SEC Game Management Policy on Alcohol (adopted May 31, 2019; effective August 1, 2019):Each institution is permitted to determine the permissibility of selling alcoholic beverages in athletics venues and shall establish a policy governing the sale and distribution of alcoholic beverages in its athletics facilities.Institutions that offer alcohol sales in public areas must incorporate Conference-wide alcohol management expectations, which include:Alcoholic beverages are to be sold and dispensed only at designated stationary locations;Alcoholic beverages may not be sold by vendors within the seating areas;Identification check is required at every point of sale to prevent sales to minors;Alcoholic beverage sales are limited to beer and wine only (no hard liquor or mixed drinks may be sold in public seating areas);Limits must be established on the number of drinks purchased at one time by an individual;Alcohol must be dispensed into cups;Safe server training and additional training for staff to handle high risk situations is required; andDesignated stop times for sale and/or distribution of alcohol must be enforced as follows:Football (end of 3rd quarter);Basketball (Men’s—Second half 12-minute TV timeout; Women’s—End of 3rd quarter);Baseball (end of the top of 7th inning);Softball (end of the top of the 5th inning); andOther Sports (At a designated time, no later than when 75% of the event’s regulation length competition is scheduled to be completed).Each year, the Conference membership shall review this policy to determine institutional compliance with established expectations and evaluate fan conduct and alcohol-related incidents for the purpose of determining the need to revise the Conference’s alcohol policy.Implementation of these management expectations does not include suites, clubs or private leased areas.Each institution shall establish a policy for the admission of outside food and beverage into its facilities.As with all areas of the stadium, maintaining the safety of patrons and participants and maintaining an atmosphere suitable for families is of utmost importance.Advertising displays mentioning or promoting alcoholic beverage shall not be permitted in any playing facility with the exception of common point-of-sale signage.
The North End Music & Performing Arts Center (NEMPAC) hosted friends and art lovers on Thursday night at their Autumn Jazz Soirée Welcome Back Party on the Prado. Under a canopy of trees, neighbors joined for an evening of music, food and drinks on the doorstep of the NEMPAC building, the non-profit’s music studio and after-school programming space. Situated between the Old North Church and the Cyrus Dallin statue of Paul Revere, it was perfect place to celebrate arts in the North End.“We are truly grateful to our neighbors, supporters, families and friends for coming out to a fun, musical night to support NEMPAC”, said Sherri Snow, executive director of NEMPAC. Event organizer and board member, Jennifer McGivern added, “We are so fortunate to have NEMPAC in our neighborhood and to have the community support from this annual event to continue enriching lives through quality music programming.”*Advertisement* Live music was provided by Thomas Schiavoni and Stefano Marchese with his band Scanzonatti. Food came from Benevento’s, Modern Pastry, Manda and Me Catering, and an open bar featuring 90+ Cellars, Harpoon, and Southern Tier Brewing Company. Sponsors also included Rafi Properties, Andrea and Arthur Waldstein, Century Bank, Rep. Danny Ryan, Rep. Aaron Michlewitz, Design Loom, Sen. Joe Boncore and Councilor Sal LaMattina.
*Advertisement* David Ortiz and Ray Bourque headlined “A Night With Ray and Big Papi” at Tresca Restaurant in Boston’s North End last week. The celebrities posed above with Tresca Chef Rich Ansara and co-owner Peter Weber. Proceeds from the event will benefit the Bourque Family Foundation and the David Ortiz Children’s Fund. “Neighborhood Photo” is a regular feature on NorthEndWaterfront.com. Submit your interesting photos using our Submit a Post form or tag @northend.waterfront on Instagram. Please include a caption or story telling us about your photo.See past neighborhood photo posts.
Everyone has secrets, right? What really matters is how far you would go to protect them. Please join the N.E.T. (North End Teen) Book Club as we welcome author Karen McManus, to discuss her New York Times bestseller One of Us is Lying.Synopsis:Pay close attention and you might solve this.On Monday afternoon, five students at Bayview High walk into detention.Bronwyn, the brain, is Yale-bound and never breaks a rule.Addy, the beauty, is the picture-perfect homecoming princess.Nate, the criminal, is already on probation for dealing.Cooper, the athlete, is the all-star baseball pitcher.And Simon, the outcast, is the creator of Bayview High’s notorious gossip app.Only, Simon never makes it out of that classroom. Before the end of detention Simon’s dead. And according to investigators, his death wasn’t an accident. On Monday, he died. But on Tuesday, he’d planned to post juicy reveals about all four of his high-profile classmates, which makes all four of them suspects in his murder. Or are they the perfect patsies for a killer who’s still on the loose?*Advertisement*
“We are going to continue working on this to develop ideas and policy,” said Edwards. “It’s happening and it’s a problem. We are going to get to work.”Rents continue to rise in Boston. The average cost to rent an apartment is $2,100, which is a 4 percent increase from last year. Currently, the city is on track to create 69,000 more units in its 2030 housing plan. In a recent column, Mayor Walsh said 15,820 of these new units will be income-restricted.One of the ideas brought up at the hearing was a property flipping tax where fees would be placed on those who flip properties. The money raised from the tax would go to developing affordable housing. Another was to limit home-share units to one unit in owner-occupied buildings.Lisa Owens of City Life said she believed in the idea of a flipping tax. “I am encouraged by the direction the council and the administration is taking,” she said.Boston City Council discussing housing speculation.Chief of Housing and Director of Neighborhood Development Sheila Dillon said adding more affordable housing to Boston is one of her biggest priorities.“It is paramount to this administration,” she said. “We want to keep neighborhoods affordable.”The city recently started a new pilot program in East Boston where they take units out of the speculative market by buying them or helping a non-profit committed to affordable housing buy them. She said she would like to take about 1,000 out of the speculative market by 2030.“This way residents can call these units their homes as long as they would like,” she said.In June, the city council and the mayor passed an ordinance to regulate short-term rentals. The ordinance bans short-term rentals from non-owner occupied buildings, eliminating investor units and absentee Airbnb landlords. This was another way for the council to help with the housing crisis.“People are treating the housing market like the stock market and it needs to stop,” said Edwards.While you’re here …we have a small favor to ask. More people than ever are reading NorthEndWaterfront.com but we need your help making ends meet. Advertising doesn’t bring in enough to pay for reporting or editorial work. Keeping this website going takes a lot of time, money and hard work. But we do it because we believe community news is important – and we think you do too. If everyone who reads this site, who likes it, puts in a bit to pay for it, then our future would be much more secure. Checks can be made out to North End Boston LLC, 343 Commercial St. #508, Boston 02109 or contribute online using the following links:*Make a One-Time Contribution* or *Become a Patron* The Boston City Council held a working session on housing speculation Thursday afternoon.Housing speculation is when investors buy up properties, apartments and condos for a low price to then turn it around at a quick rate to make a bigger profit. This creates unaffordable rents, causing residents to be displaced from their communities.Boston City Council discussing housing speculation.District One City Councilor Lydia Edwards called for the hearing, saying speculation is a big problem in the city.*Advertisement*