Archives for Press

    The NFL New Anthem Policy: Stand, Or Stay In The Locker Room

    NFL owners have finally decided on an anthem policy: one that is sure to continue to be polarizing as the league gears up for another season. Without consulting any players or the player’s union, the decision was that players can stay in the locker room while the anthem is being played but should they go onto the field, they must stand.

    Predictably, the reason was mixed.

    The decision was announced Wednesday by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell during the league’s spring meeting in Atlanta.

    In a sign that players were not part of the discussions, any violations of the policy would result in fines against the team — not the players. The NFL Players Association said it will challenge any part of the new policy that violates the collective bargaining agreement.

    The owners spent several hours addressing the contentious issue — which has reached all the way to the White House.

    Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick began kneeling during the national anthem in 2016, a quiet but powerful protest against police brutality and racial inequities in the justice system.

    Other players took up the cause.

    Arizona Cardinals safety Antoine Bethea says the NFL’s new national anthem policy is “not really a compromise,” as touted by the league.

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    Smartphone-controlled, color-changing fabric is coming to your clothes and furniture

    Researchers at the University of Central Florida have developed the first color-changing fabric that can be controlled with a smartphone.

    Professor Ayman Abouraddy and his team at CREOL, The College of Optics and Photonics, have developed a series of prototypes that includes purses and backpacks. The products change color and pattern through the use of an app or with the click of a built-in button.

    The technology relies on metal micro-wires embedded in each individual thread and a rechargeable battery pack. When activated, an electric current flows through the wires, slightly raising their temperature and causing special pigments in the thread to change color.

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    ASAP Ferg is the first male rapper to act as a spokesman for Tiffany & Co

    When ASAP Ferg was still a teenager in the Hamilton Heights neighborhood of Harlem, he started making crystal-studded pendants. He would sketch designs of characters like Bart Simpson and Mega Man, then hand the drawings over to Earl Harley (also known as “Harley, the buckle man“). Mr. Harley would create the bases for Ferg, who would then add Swarovski crystals and sell the pendants. They cost him about $200 to make; he sold them for about $700 a piece.

    A decade later, Ferg, born Darold Ferguson Jr., is hawking pricier gems. This month, he became the first male rapper to appear as a spokesman for Tiffany & Co., the luxury jeweler. Ferg, 29, is not yet a megastar nor the most famous artist in the ASAP crew (that would be Rocky). But in collaborating with him, Tiffany has aligned itself with a princeling of Harlem fashion who aims to honor the legacy of his father, the designer Darold Ferguson Sr., by out-accomplishing him.

    During a recent interview at The Blue Box Cafe at the Tiffany flagship store on Fifth Avenue, Ferg was frank about the mutual interest driving the partnership.

    “I feel like we open up doors for each other,” he said of Tiffany. “I show them my world, they show me their world.”

    In working with him, the jewelry brand follows other luxury brands that have sought to reupholster their stuffy brand images by collaborating with luminaries of the hip-hop world.

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    United is offering high-paying customers their own airport terminal

    “I think this is a very smart move on United’s part to compete,” said Henry Harteveldt, founder of travel-industry consulting firm Atmosphere Research Group. Because it’s in Los Angeles, the airline may be going after VIP travelers in the entertainment industry, who value privacy, Harteveldt added.

    The Private Suite includes dedicated security and customs screening away from the hoards in the main terminals, as well as individual suites.

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    The audio-visual platform is actually relaunch of the YouTube Music brand, as an app and desktop player which offer “streaming service made for music with the magic of YouTube”.

    There is both an ad-supported free tier and a $9.99-per-month package called YouTube Music Premium.

    Current Google Play Music subscribers will get a YouTube Music Premium membership thrown into their current deal, and have been reassured that “nothing will change”.

    “[If] you use Google Play Music,  — you’ll still be able to access all of your purchased music, uploads and playlists in Google Play Music just like always,” said Elias Roman, Product Manager – YouTube Music, in a blog post.

    In addition, YouTube has announced that will soon re-brand its premium subscription YouTube Red service as YouTube Premium, which will include access to all YouTube Originals as well as YouTube Music for $11.99 a month. (The price paid by current YouTube Red subscribers won’t change.)

    YouTube Music will launch in the U.S., Australia, New Zealand, Mexico and South Korea next week (although, in South Korea, the service will only offer the YouTube Premium membership, not YouTube Music Premium).

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    The two parties have inked a legally binding memorandum of understanding (“MOU”) for the sale of a Mubadala-led consortium’s 60% equity interest in EMI Music Publishing to Sony Corporation of America.
    The deal values EMI Music Publishing at $4.75 billion.

    The closing of the transaction is subject to certain closing conditions, including regulatory approvals.
    If the sale goes through, Sony will assume EMI Music Publishing’s existing gross indebtedness, which was approximately $1.359bn as of March 31, 2018.

    As a result of the transaction, Sony will indirectly own approximately 90% of the equity in EMI Music Publishing – with the remaining 10% owned by the Jackson Estate – and it will become a consolidated subsidiary of Sony.
    Kenichiro Yoshida, President and CEO, Sony Corporation said: “We are thrilled to bring EMI Music Publishing into the Sony family and maintain our number one position in the music publishing industry. I would also like to convey my gratitude to Mubadala, our equity partner in EMI Music Publishing, for sharing our long-term perspective on the potential success of music publishing and their support as we grew the business.

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    Fathering While Black? Yes, It’s Now Suspicious

    I didn’t know ‘Strolling While Black’ was an issue – until now.

    Donald Sherman, a lawyer and father, is confused and frustrated.

    Sherman, who is African-American, was pushing a stroller carrying his baby, Caleb, at Kingman and Heritage Islands Park near the Anacostia River in Washington, D.C. last week when racism took hold.

    A white woman who was jogging past Sherman – for reasons that are still mind-boggling – called the police to report “a suspicious man walking the bike path with a baby.”

    So weeks after two black men were arrested in Starbucks for planning a business meeting and three black women were harassed unnecessarily for checking into an AirBnb, Sherman is questioned by a law enforcement officer just because he wanted his baby to get some fresh air.

    Sherman posted his account on social media last week:

    “30 minutes into our stroll I got flagged by a security officer in one of those cars marked “Special Police” on the side. I was a bit confused as to whether she was looking for me to stop but she honked twice and pulled over so I got the picture. She told me that she received a complaint from someone who said there was a “suspicious man” walking on the bike path with a baby. She said that when the complainant was asked to describe my race, she declined.”

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    Samsung ad pokes fun at throttled iPhone to get customers to move on to Galaxy

    Apple and Samsung spent last week in a California courtroom, apparently the final stages of a patent litigation saga that has gone on for years, where a jury will decide the financial damages Samsung owes Apple for infringing on iPhone design patents.

    But quite separately, Samsung is coming at Apple and the iPhone in the court of public opinion, through a new commercial that pokes fun at Apple’s revelation that it may throttle or slow down iPhones with older near-depleted batteries.

    The timing of Samsung’s spot is a tad curious in that Apple apologized for the battery issue back in December and said it would offer out-of-warranty replacement batteries for as little as $29. Moreover, as recently as March, Apple came out with an iOS software update that includes a performance management tool that lets you disable the throttling that Apple says it put in place to protect devices with weak batteries from sudden, unexpected crashes.

    No matter. The one-minute ad follows the travails of an increasingly frustrated woman with a seriously poky iPhone 6, who after encountering TSA, riding on an airplane and getting into what appears to be an Uber, finally takes the phone to an Apple Store.

    She is told there by a fake Apple employee that she could, “turn off the performance management feature but it may lead to unexpected shutdowns.” Or, he adds, “you could just upgrade it.”

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    Offset Posts Car Crash Injury Photos, Cardi B Reveals Accident Details Before Deleting Tweet

    On Saturday (May 19), Offset confirmed he was in a car accident earlier in the week. The Migos rapper posted a series of photos from the crash on Instagram, including proof of his seriously damaged car and his injuries.

    “This is why I thank God Every day I could have been dead from this accident thank you all for you prayers all I can say is (G O D I S R E A L G E T W I T H H I M ) H E S A V E S L I V E S,” the rapper wrote.

    Fiancée​ Cardi B, who is expecting a baby with him, also commented on social media Saturday evening. In a since deleted tweet, she shed some light on what allegedly happened and also credited God for saving Offset.


    “Crazy how Set had to swerve and hit a tree cause a crackhead was in the middle of the road trying to get hit or kill himself,” she said, “but God do unexplainable things! Luckily a man was walking by, walked him home and just vanished. The Lord is real.”

    Offset was hospitalized for his injuries. In the photos he shared, he appears to be lying in a bed and a hospital bracelet can be seen.

    Source: BillBoard

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    Small stocks are proving to be big gainers as Russell 2000 hits new highs

    Move over tiny houses, Wall Street investors are now tuning into tiny stocks.

    Indeed, the small-is-better trend has made its way to Wall Street. Small stocks are putting up bigger gains than their large-company counterparts.

    In the clearest sign of the shift in investors’ affections, the small-company Russell 2000 is the first major U.S. stock index to break out to a record high following the stock market’s first 10% correction in two years in February. On Thursday, the small-fry index gained 0.55%, while the Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq all finished with losses.

    The average market value of stocks in the Russell 2000 is $2.5 billion, according to index provider FTSE Russell. Compare that to Apple, the most valuable stock in the large-company S&P 500 index that is closing in on a market value of $1 trillion.

    Top holdings in the small-cap index include biotech drug maker Nektar Therapeutics and online food delivery service GrubHub.

    Alec Young, managing director of global markets research at FTSE Russell, cites a few factors driving the better performance of small stocks. One benefit is small companies get the bulk of their revenue from within the U.S.

    That shields them from headwinds faced by big companies in the S&P 500, which get nearly half of sales from overseas.

    Small stocks are less impacted by a stronger dollar, which makes U.S. goods sold abroad more expensive. They also suffer less turbulence due to geopolitical and trade fears.

    Source: USA TODAY

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