National / International News

Malaysia, Cuba Taken Off U.S. Human Trafficking Blacklist

NPR News - Mon, 2015-07-27 11:41

Many human rights advocates and U.S. lawmakers say the upgrade has more to do with politics than with the facts on the ground in those countries.

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US sex worker shoots 'serial killer'

BBC - Mon, 2015-07-27 10:45
A woman working as a prostitute may have put an end to a nationwide killing spree after she killed a man in self-defence, police say.

Major League Soccer Gambles On Star Power Of Aging Foreign Players

NPR News - Mon, 2015-07-27 10:41

Italian midfielder Andrea Pirlo is one of a number of older European stars to sign with an MLS team. While their presence may boost the league, it's led to criticism of MLS as a "retirement home."

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Drogba joins MLS side Montreal

BBC - Mon, 2015-07-27 10:30
Striker Didier Drogba signs for Major League Soccer side Montreal Impact after leaving Chelsea this summer.

Ashes still wide open - Edwards

BBC - Mon, 2015-07-27 10:19
England captain Charlotte Edwards says there is "a long way to go" in the Women's Ashes after Australia win the ODI series.

'German bomber' struck Somali hotel

BBC - Mon, 2015-07-27 10:15
A German of Somali origin is suspected to have been the suicide bomber who struck a hotel in Somalia, an intelligence officer says.

Fifa wants 'independent' reform head

BBC - Mon, 2015-07-27 10:11
Fifa says its reform taskforce will be chaired by an independent person from outside of football.

Australia's Jehovah's Witnesses Failed To Report 1,006 Alleged Child Sex Abuses

NPR News - Mon, 2015-07-27 10:07

That was the finding presented by a national inquiry on the sexual abuse of children that was launched in 2013. According to the inquiry, church elders also destroyed records about the allegations.

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Remains found at mill blast site

BBC - Mon, 2015-07-27 10:05
Remains are found at the site of an explosion at a wood flour mill by search teams looking for a fourth missing person.

VIDEO: WSL best goals: Duggan's hot streak

BBC - Mon, 2015-07-27 09:48
Watch a round-up of the best of the action from the weekend's Women's Super League fixtures.

VIDEO: Panic grips China's stock market

BBC - Mon, 2015-07-27 09:47
Shares in mainland China have recorded their biggest one-day fall for more than eight years following a sell-off towards the end of the trading day.

Journalist tries to take the polish off an NYT series

Marketplace - American Public Media - Mon, 2015-07-27 09:40

A New York Times series that unveiled harsh working conditions in New York City nail salons is eliciting criticism from a former Times writer about the report’s methodology.

Times reporter Sarah Maslin Nir spoke to more than 150 nail salon workers and owners for a two-part investigation called "Unvarnished," and described the grim conditions to Marketplace back in May when the stories were published. Richard Bernstein, in an article for the New York Review of Books, says that Nir drew a “Dickensian portrait” of the industry, one that doesn’t jibe with his experience as part owner of two Manhattan day spas. In the critique, Bernstein asks, “Is it true?” You’ve figured out his answer to that. Here is a summary of some of Bernstein’s criticisms:
  • According to Bernstein, the New York Times failed to provide sufficient proof about an ad from Chinese-language papers Sing Tao Daily and World Journal that advertised jobs at a rate of $10 a day.
  • In an independent investigation by Bernstein and his wife, the two combed through World Journal issues dating back to March and failed to find the ad the series described. The lowest salary Bernstein says they saw in an ad was $70 a day — prior to the series’ publication. Others salaries ranged from $110 to $130.
  • Bernstein draws from personal anecdotes to refute the low-salary claims found in The Times, saying that they would be unable to find employees willing to work for the wages cited in Nir’s series.  
  • Nir was selective in her presentation of nail salon ads, failing to account for the numerous ads that he and his wife came across that listed higher prices than presented in the article, according to Bernstein. Bernstein also questions why potential nail salon workers would neglect the ads for higher-paying jobs in favor of ones that offer lower wages.
  • Though Nir mentions the infrequency of nail salon inspections by the government, Bernstein says he finds fault with this claim, citing the regular, annual inspections at his own salons. He adds that according to the New York Department of State, between May of last year and this year, there were more than 5,000 “appearance enhancement” business inspections, which included nail salons.   
  • Bernstein says he thinks Nir inaccurately characterizes the working conditions of nail salons by making manicurist Jing Ren, a 20-year-old from China whom she interviews for the story, representative of employees in the industry. He says that there are many nail salon workers who are not “undocumented, untrained, or unlicensed like [Ren].”
  • Though the New York Times provides a searing critique of the industry, Nir says Ren has found a nail salon job that pays a higher wage— a trajectory which Bernstein suggests undermines the article’s claim about the industry’s “rampant exploitation.”
The New York Times’ public editor, Margaret Sullivan, has not released an official statement on the methods used in the series. However, Nir and several other New York Times reporters and editors have directly and indirectly addressed his claims on social media.

On Twitter, Nir denounced Bernstein's criticism of the series, calling him "biased."     

In #unvarnished I interviewed over 150 workers&owners whose careers encompassed minimum 700 salons. One biased man renders them voiceless?

— Sarah Nir (@SarahMaslinNir) July 27, 2015

His power:1) the demographic he comes from 2)his professional background 3)his access to a platform, drowns out the voices of the many&weak?

— Sarah Nir (@SarahMaslinNir) July 27, 2015
New York Times Deputy Metro Editor Michael Luo — the editor of Nir’s series — has published a Storify post of his tweets responding to criticism against the nail salon series and says the Times has plans to publish a more formal response.

A tweet showing the ad for the $10-a-day nail salon salary mentioned in Nir’s first article in the series:

Re:@R_Bernstein in @nybooks challenging NYT's Unvarnished. Here's ad: $10/day 4 apprentice. http://t.co/XeOfgZRDLE pic.twitter.com/uSiRXxiC2g

— Michael Luo (@michaelluo) July 25, 2015 Some have echoed Bernstein's concerns. Adam Ragusea, the host for Current.org's "The Pub" podcast, criticized the New York Times's presentation of the nail salon industry, using Bernstein’s argument that the $10-a-day ad may be unrepresentative of actual wages offered by nail salon owners.

Michael Powell — a New York Times "Sports of the Times" columnist — responded to Ragusea by suggesting that his criticism was rooted in “self-righteousness,” while Patrick LaForge, the New York Times' editor for news presentation, said his criticism was “off base.”

Ex-writer tries to take the polish off an NYT series

Marketplace - American Public Media - Mon, 2015-07-27 09:40

A New York Times series that unveiled harsh working conditions in New York City nail salons is eliciting criticism from a former Times writer about the report’s methodology.

Times reporter Sarah Maslin Nir spoke to more than 150 nail salon workers and owners, and described the grim conditions to Marketplace back in May when the piece was published. Richard Bernstein, in an article for the New York Review of Books, says that Nir drew a “Dickensian portrait” of the industry, one that doesn’t jibe with his experience as part owner of two Manhattan day spas.

In the critique, Bernstein asks, “Is it true?” You’ve figured out his answer to that. Here is a summary of some of Bernstein’s criticisms:

According to Bernstein, the New York Times failed to provide sufficient proof about an ad from Chinese-language papers Sing Tao Daily and World Journal that advertised jobs at a rate of $10 a day.

  • In an independent investigation by Bernstein and his wife, the two combed through World Journal issues dating back to March and failed to find the ads the article described. The lowest salary Bernstein says they saw in an ad was $70 a day — prior to the series’ publication. Others salaries ranged from $110 to $130.
  • Bernstein draws from personal anecdotes to refute the low-salary claims found in the article, saying that they would be unable to find employees unwilling to work for the wages cited in Nir’s series.  
  • Nir was selective in her presentation of nail salon ads, failing to account for the numerous ads that he and his wife came across that listed higher prices than presented in the article, according to Bernstein. Bernstein also questions why potential nail salon workers would neglect the ads for higher-paying jobs in favor of ones that offer lower wages.
  • Though Nir mentions the infrequency of nail salon inspections by the government, Bernstein says he finds fault with this claim, citing the regular, annual inspections at his own salon. He adds that according to the New York Department of State, between May of last year and this year, there were more than 5,000 “appearance enhancement” business inspections, which included nail salons.   
  • Bernstein says he thinks Nir inaccurately characterizes the working conditions of nail salons by making manicurist Jing Ren, a 20-year-old from China whom she interviews for the story, representative of the entire industry. He says that there are many nail salon workers who are not “undocumented, untrained, or unlicensed like [Ren].”
  • Though the New York Times provides a searing critique of the industry, the end of the article says Ren has found a nail salon job that pays a higher wage— a trajectory which Bernstein suggests undermines the article’s claim about the industry’s “rampant exploitation.”

The New York Times’ public editor, Margaret Sullivan, has not released an official statement on the methods used in the piece. However, Nir and several other New York Times reporters and editors have directly and indirectly addressed his claims on social media.

 

Nir calls out Bernstein on Twitter Monday, labeling him "biased": 

 

    

 

 

 

 

 

    

In #unvarnished I interviewed over 150 workers&owners whose careers encompassed minimum 700 salons. One biased man renders them voiceless?

— Sarah Nir (@SarahMaslinNir) July 27, 2015

 

 

 

 

    

His power:1) the demographic he comes from 2)his professional background 3)his access to a platform, drowns out the voices of the many&weak?

— Sarah Nir (@SarahMaslinNir) July 27, 2015 

New York Times Deputy Metro Editor Michael Luo — the editor of Nir’s series — publishes a Storify post of his tweets responding to criticism against the nail salon series and says that the Times has plans to publish a more formal response.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A tweet showing the ad for the $10-a-day nail salon salary mentioned in Nir’s first article in the series:

 

 

 

   

Re:@R_Bernstein in @nybooks challenging NYT's Unvarnished. Here's ad: $10/day 4 apprentice. http://t.co/XeOfgZRDLE pic.twitter.com/uSiRXxiC2g

— Michael Luo (@michaelluo) July 25, 2015

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Other New York Times reporters have also chimed in on Twitter. Adam Ragusea, the host for Current.org's "The Pub" podcast, criticized the New York Times's presentation of the nail salon industry, using Bernstein’s argument that the $10-a-day ad may be unrepresentative of actual wages offered by nail salon owners.

 

Michael Powell — a New York Times "Sports of the Times" columnist — responded to Ragusea by suggesting that his criticism was “self-righteous,” while Patrick LaForge, the New York Times' editor for news presentation, called his criticism “off base.”

What can Turkey gain from Nato meeting?

BBC - Mon, 2015-07-27 09:33
Turkey has requested a special Nato meeting to discuss military operations against the Islamic State (IS) group and PKK Kurdish separatists - Paul Adams asks what it will achieve?

Turkey 'planning Syria buffer zone'

BBC - Mon, 2015-07-27 09:26
The US and Turkey are working on plans to oust Islamic State (IS) fighters from a strip along the Turkish-Syria border, US officials say.

China says share purchase continues

BBC - Mon, 2015-07-27 09:24
In an effort to prop up its stock market, Chinese regulators said they are continuing their purchase of shares.

Fall in Parliament porn site attempts

BBC - Mon, 2015-07-27 09:20
More than 247,000 attempts to access websites classed as pornography were made from parliamentary computers in 2014, it has been revealed.

Air strikes pierce truce in Yemen

BBC - Mon, 2015-07-27 09:18
A Saudi-led coalition resumes air strikes in Yemen, hours after a humanitarian truce came into effect.

Rapper 'hologram' stopped by police

BBC - Mon, 2015-07-27 09:12
A digital performance by American rapper Chief Keef has been halted by police.

Tweets welcoming #ObamaInEthiopia

NPR News - Mon, 2015-07-27 09:10

One of the many burning questions: "Can we get footage of President Obama eating injera?"

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