National / International News

Caption Challenge: Great big kiss

BBC - Thu, 2014-09-25 03:30
It's the Caption Challenge. Oh yes it is.

US firm 'will not make Spurs offer'

BBC - Thu, 2014-09-25 03:26
US investment company Cain Hoy is no longer considering making an offer to buy Tottenham Hotspur.

Poulter brings 'intimidation factor'

BBC - Thu, 2014-09-25 03:24
Ian Poulter is ready to put aside recent poor form and show his emotions to intimidate as Europe's Ryder Cup talisman.

Farage: Plain tobacco packets barmy

BBC - Thu, 2014-09-25 03:16
Moves to introduce plain packaging for cigarettes and tobacco have been labelled as "utterly barmy" by UKIP leader Nigel Farage.

Airstrikes Hit ISIS-Controlled Oil Refineries

NPR News - Thu, 2014-09-25 03:16

The facilities, captured by Islamic State militants earlier this year, are said to produce $2 million worth of refined oil each day to help fund the extremist organization.

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Mexico frees drug lord's nephew

BBC - Thu, 2014-09-25 03:09
Martin Beltran Coronel, who was arrested in Mexico on suspicion of being a top drug lord, has been ordered freed due to violations of due process.

Why do men fear female coaches?

BBC - Thu, 2014-09-25 03:07
After Gala Leon Garcia's appointment as Spain's Davis Cup skipper, Ben Dirs asks what barriers remain for female coaches.

UK centenarian numbers on the rise

BBC - Thu, 2014-09-25 03:06
The number of centenarians in the UK more than quadrupled over the past 30 years, the Office for National Statistics says.

PODCAST: The number of uninsured Latinos drops

Marketplace - American Public Media - Thu, 2014-09-25 03:00

Here's why we have to be careful with headlines: There's news that orders for expensive, long-lasting merchandise fell more than 18 percent in August, the most precipitous drop on record. But all is not as it seems. And in health care news, there's data showing the percentage of Latinos who don't have health insurance in America has fallen by more than a third since the health care reform law kicked in. More on that. And we think we live in the future — Apple's new Dick Tracy watch might be evidence of that — but there is an argument that, in at least one regard, the United States currently is like Europe in the 19th century. 

The Airbnb of classical music

Marketplace - American Public Media - Thu, 2014-09-25 03:00

It’s not uncommon to sell the idea of a new startup based on the model of another (think: "It’s the Uber of pet adoption,” or “It’s like Tinder for baristas").

Sam Bodkin’s business is no different, even if he’s a bit reluctant to be categorized: “We refer to ourselves as the Airbnb of classical music,” he says.

The comparison isn’t unfair, though. Groupmuse — started in 2012 and run by Bodkin, Ezra Weller and Kyle Nichols-Schmolze — matches Groupmuse users looking to host a concert with willing musicians needing a venue to perform. Once a match is set up, other “Groupmusers” are invited to attend, creating an event that’s part house concert, part party, part social platform.

Where the sharing economy and the arts intersect

It’s a melding of some of Bodkin’s experiences: his travels through Europe using online platform to find people willing to host him, and his love of classical music discovered through musicians he befriended in Boston as an undergraduate student.

Combining his interest in classical music and the sharing economy of couch surfing, he came up with Groupmuse.

While the endeavor is inherently artistic, Bodkin isn't aiming to become a not-for-profit organization.

“We are absolutely a startup, and we fancy ourselves as such. It’s a social startup, built around a web platform,” he says.

There’s certainly a social network aspect to the experience: Members interested in attending a Groupmuse connect through Facebook, sending a message to prospective hosts to introduce themselves before the event. Additionally, musicians who regularly perform have access to guest lists of people who come to their performances and are regular Groupmuse attendees.

Have a problem? Found a startup.

If classical music and startup culture seem like odd bedfellows, to Bodkin, it only makes sense. Fading interest in classical music was a problem he wanted to address, and he sees this kind of entrepreneurial thinking as a solution.

“This is how, basically, people of our generation resolve to deal with these challenges that they see," he says. "We found companies.”

Groupmuse is currently up and running in three cities (New York, Boston and San Francisco), but there are still some aspects to be worked out as the company grows — for example, musicians are currently paid by donation, whereas ideally Bodkin envisions payment will eventually be built in to the Groupmuse platform.

While in the process of raising venture capital funding, Bodkin says he's also looking to partner with companies interested in hosting Groupmuse for their employees as part of a new funding structure.

Ultimately, aside from promoting the music itself, Bodkin would like to see it turn into a tool for musicians to manage their careers, building a fan base that is personally invested in their success.

He even has a startup buzzword for it: “Micropatronage.”

Preacher Choudary in terror arrest

BBC - Thu, 2014-09-25 02:56
The radical Islamist preacher Anjem Choudary is one of nine men arrested in London on suspicion of being members of a banned organisation and encouraging terrorism.

VIDEO: 'Unlimited holiday policy works'

BBC - Thu, 2014-09-25 02:48
Media agency boss, Jenny Biggam, welcomes Richard Branson's decision to offer his personal staff as much holiday as they want.

Sharkey fire killers lose appeals

BBC - Thu, 2014-09-25 02:36
Two men serving life terms for murdering three people in a deliberate house fire in Helensburgh lose appeals against their convictions.

African fish nourish Amazon

BBC - Thu, 2014-09-25 02:34
The Amazon rainforest is being fertilised by the remains of ancient fish blown in by great duststorms from Africa.

The greatest sporting show on earth?

BBC - Thu, 2014-09-25 02:32
Gladiatorial, cruel and gut-churningly brilliant, the emotional punch of the Ryder Cup never fails to deliver, argues Ben Dirs.

Four held over £63m cocaine haul

BBC - Thu, 2014-09-25 02:31
Four men are arrested after a tonne of cocaine, thought to be worth £63m, is seized off the south west coast of the Republic of Ireland.

VIDEO: Elite creator on Eurogamer event

BBC - Thu, 2014-09-25 02:22
David Braben, co-creator of 80s classic Elite, talks about the importance of the Eurogamer event held in London.

VIDEO: Fry on missing tea with Al Pacino

BBC - Thu, 2014-09-25 02:20
Stephen Fry talks to BBC Breakfast about missing afternoon tea with Hollywood actor Al Pacino and his struggle with drink and drugs.

Brabham name could return to F1

BBC - Thu, 2014-09-25 02:16
The Brabham name returns to motorsport in 2015 and could race in Formula 1 again in the future, reveals David Brabham.

Apple's banana skins

BBC - Thu, 2014-09-25 02:08
Company has suffered September of slip-ups

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