National / International News

Government buys £12.3m business park

BBC - Wed, 2014-04-16 03:36
The Welsh government has bought a major business park near Bridgend in its bid to "attract new business and new jobs".

Paul Weller family win Mail damages

BBC - Wed, 2014-04-16 03:36
Rock star Paul Weller wins £10,000 for his children after their pictures were "plastered" on the Mail Online.

Wage rises catch up with inflation

BBC - Wed, 2014-04-16 03:35
After nearly six years of falling real wages, rises in weekly earnings have finally caught up with inflation, according to the Office for National Statistics.

VIDEO: South Korea ferry rescue footage

BBC - Wed, 2014-04-16 03:32
A major rescue operation is under way after a ferry carrying 459 people capsized off South Korea, coastguard officials say.

Woman arrested in Disappeared case

BBC - Wed, 2014-04-16 03:23
A 57-year-old woman is arrested by detectives investigating the 1972 abduction and murder of Belfast woman Jean McConville.

.buzz and .pics: Your site here

Marketplace - American Public Media - Wed, 2014-04-16 03:20

"After hearing all the .buzz and .reviews surrounding .london, we’ve finally settled on the .uk as our destination for our 2014 .vacations": these dot-words are possible future top-level domain names expected to be released in the upcoming months since the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) began its rollout of new top-level domain names on January 24 of this year.

Since its inception, over 175 domain names have been created, and on Wednesday, you can start to register domain names ending in .holiday and .marketing. 

  • Marketplace reported on the new domain frontier earlier this year when things got underway, and here's an update on how to create your own .holiday: 
  • You can visit hockey.today, jamesforbes.photography, or vintageelectric.bike to see these new domain names in action. 
  • The most popular names thus far include .guru, .berlin, .photography, .email and .today.
  • Some companies are pushing for industries to cluster around specific names.

For example, luxury brands such as Chanel, Balenciaga, Ferragamo and Harry Winston, Isabel Mirant, and a few others have already registered with the domain name .luxury, according to Zoe Coady of Brandstyle Communications.

".Luxury is providing an innovative platform and competitive advantage for companies to position themselves within the luxury space. For the first time, luxury goods and services will now be found in one place online," said Monica Kirchner, CEO, .Luxury.

Here's a screenshot from the TSOHOST.com website displays domain names expected to launch April 2014: 

Former Co-op boss faces drug charges

BBC - Wed, 2014-04-16 03:20
Paul Flowers, the former chairman of the Co-operative Bank and ex-Methodist Church minister, is charged with three counts of drug possession.

Fresh approach to NI past 'vital'

BBC - Wed, 2014-04-16 03:18
Any new process which examines NI's past must have a more "proportionate focus on the wrongdoing of paramilitaries" and less on the activities of the state, says the secretary of state.

AUDIO: 'Walter White got me a prom date'

BBC - Wed, 2014-04-16 03:17
Breaking Bad fan Stefan Montana explains how he got the show's star, Bryan Cranston, to help him secure a prom date.

Remittance fees 'hurt Africans'

BBC - Wed, 2014-04-16 03:02
Communities in sub-Saharan Africa are being "hurt" by high fees charged by money transfer operators, charity Comic Relief says.

Hundreds Missing After Ferry Sinks Off South Korea's Coast

NPR News - Wed, 2014-04-16 02:55

Most of the passengers, according to news reports, were high school students and teachers on a school trip. Of the nearly 500 people who were on board, nearly 300 were initially unaccounted for.

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Paedophile ring 'protected MP Smith'

BBC - Wed, 2014-04-16 02:47
Sir Cyril Smith's membership of a Westminster paedophile ring protected him from prosecution, a Labour MP claims.

Hard-disk firm warns of data breach

BBC - Wed, 2014-04-16 02:43
French hard-disk maker LaCie warns that shoppers' credit cards details and logins may have been stolen from its store over a one-year period.

Happy 50th birthday, Ford Mustang

Marketplace - American Public Media - Wed, 2014-04-16 02:36

If you're in midtown Manhattan on Wednesday and look way, way up, you might see a Mustang perched on the observation deck of the Empire State Building -- a triple yellow, 2015 model. It's Ford's way of celebrating the 50th anniversary of the iconic car. The Mustang's design was so innovative it had a huge impact on auto makers and car culture, and Ford is still making the cars today.

Mark Takahashi, an editor with automotive website Edmunds.com, says the first Mustangs sold for around $2,300. When the first Mustang came out, in 1964, it was a hit.

"People driving around the first Mustangs were being hunted down on boulevards, being asked to pull over, so they could take a look at the car," he says. "You pull into a parking lot and you're just swamped with people – it was just such a big deal back then."

The Mustang's sales, he said, blew away expectations. "They expected to sell 100,000 the first year, and they ended up selling 100,000 the first three months."

David Whiston, an equity analyst with Morningstar, says the Mustang was built on the platform of another car, the Falcon, which saved a lot on development, engineering and design costs.

"It was sporty, it was cool. It was something you wanted to drive, or take to the beach, but it was also -- and the key thing for why it was still around -- it was affordable."

A lot of automakers today, notes Whitson, are interested in building multiple models on the same platform. Luckily he says, they won't have to reinvent the wheel.

'Shocking' rise in use of food banks

BBC - Wed, 2014-04-16 02:35
Hundreds of thousands more people are turning to food banks to stop themselves from going hungry, says charity the Trussell Trust.

Attack of the shrimp (prices)

Marketplace - American Public Media - Wed, 2014-04-16 02:34

If you're a shrimp lover, you may be wondering why you're paying more for your favorite shrimp cocktail or Pad Thai. It's a bacterial infection ravaging shrimp farms in Southeast Asia called "early mortality syndrome" or EMS. The disease doesn't affect people, but it kills baby shrimp.

Shrimp farms in China, Vietnam, Thailand and Mexico have all been affected, but production in Vietnam and Thailand has dropped by more than half. Now the U.S. is getting most of its shrimp from India, not Thailand, and the shortage has caused price spikes.

"I would say the import prices went up anywhere from 50 to 100 percent, depending on what the item was," says Marc Nussbaum, president and COO for shrimp and seafood importer International Marketing Specialists. "Due to this, retailers have moved their prices up."

And that, dear consumer, is why you may opt for the fettucine alfredo instead of shrimp scampi next time you eat Italian.

Teachers urged to watch for FGM

BBC - Wed, 2014-04-16 02:22
A teachers' union hears that school staff should check families' holiday plans for clues to female genital mutilation.

Venezuela rejects protest amnesty

BBC - Wed, 2014-04-16 02:17
The Venezuelan government says it will not grant jailed opposition leaders an amnesty at talks aimed at ending anti-government protests.

UK unemployment rate falls to 6.9%

BBC - Wed, 2014-04-16 02:16
The number of people out of work in the UK has fallen by 77,000 to a five year low of 2.24 million in the three months to February, official figures indicate.

On a bus to nowhere

Marketplace - American Public Media - Wed, 2014-04-16 02:10

Santa Clara County in the south Bay Area has the fifth biggest homeless population in the United States. Over 7,600 people are without a home on any given night, in Silicon Valley's backyard.

People like Elizabeth Garber. At 2:30 in the morning, she sits on on a crowded Valley Transportation Authority bus somewhere in San Jose.

"I've been homeless for about eight months so far, riding the Bus 22 every night, as many times at night as we have money for," she says.

Bus 22. It's a regular city bus line during the day - traveling between East San Jose and Palo Alto. But at night, for $2 a ride, it unofficially becomes Hotel 22 to dozens of people like Elizabeth Garber.

She stays on the bus every night with her husband Michael, who explains they ride the bus for the full two hours of its route. Then they stand out in the cold, waiting for the next bus to head back the other way.

"Back and forth, back and forth. I try to get sleep when I can, and then it's just figuring out where to go in the morning from there," he says.

Michael says they get about three to five hours of sleep a night, which takes its toll.

"I've missed interviews because I've fallen asleep on the bus in the morning and missed my stop," he says. "I've missed court dates, all kinds of stuff. It's like, okay, I have to get off at this stop, and then you don't even feel yourself going, next thing you know, you wake up, oh you're at the end of the line. I don't know how many opportunities I've lost because of it."

The Garbers say they've tried to sign up for affordable housing, but nothing has panned out.

"There's a one percent vacancy rate in the county," says Bob Dulci, homeless concerns coordinator for Santa Clara County, "which makes it extremely difficult to provide housing for folks, even though we have a lot of rent subsidy dollars."

With the market so competitive, Dulci says, landlords are much more likely to go for someone with a stable job history, instead a person coming off the streets.

Michael Garber said sleeping on the bus is the lowest point of his life, but it could be worse.

"At least out here I'm still free, I'm not incarcerated or somthing like that. It could be a lot worse," he says. "Although sometimes it does feel like jail, you're crowded and shuffled along, no sense of privacy, no sense of decency or anything like that."

I ask Michael what he thinks about the nickname "Hotel 22."

"I call it home," he says.

And next winter, one of Santa Clara County's biggest shelters is closing -- possibly forcing more people onto Hotel 22.

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