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Alex Necochea and Bryn Bennett: the ‘Guitar Heroes’ of Bang Camaro

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Alex Necochea and Bryn Bennett: the ‘Guitar Heroes’ of Bang Camaro

Monday, October 8, 2007

When a fan connects with a band, it’s often during moments like a drive down a highway at night reflecting on some aspect of his or her life; sitting at home after a fight with a girlfriend; singing in the shower; or celebrating at a party with her friends. Music becomes a soundtrack to an individual’s life, and a connection with the musician forms when the listener is able to peg a perfect moment or feeling to a song. Boston-based mega-member rock group Bang Camaro‘s fan base claims a different level of interaction: they often have learned to play their music before they ever had a moment associated with it. Bang Camaro found fame on the video game Guitar Hero II, where an aspiring rock god uses a guitar-shaped peripheral to play rock music as notes scroll towards him on the screen.

Wikinews reporter David Shankbone journeyed to the Bowery Ballroom to talk to the two founding members of Bang Camaro, Alex Necochea and Bryn Bennett. But when MTV.com shows up at the same time as Wikinews to do an interview, the band must split up. Below is our conversation with Necochea about touring, influence, politics, throwing his corpse out of a plane and flatulent women.


David Shankbone: How’s the tour going?

Alex Necochea: The tours is going great! We just played in Poughkeepsie last night with the OCC house band.

DS: Poughkeepsie, huh?

AN: Yeah! [Laughs] Poughkeepsie, it’s kind of a dark town. Not much of a built-in crowd there.

DS: What kind of crowd is there?

AN: From what I could tell, we played for a lot of Guitar Hero fans and people who heard about us through friends of friends, or came across us on MySpace. That sort of thing. But for the most part a lot of the kids we meet are anywhere between…well, I guess at a club like that they have to be over 18, but usually they are just much younger kids who are video game fans, who have heard about us through Guitar Hero II.

DS: What’s that like to have a fan base that comes from primarily video games? Have you noticed a difference between being known as a local band playing in your city and being known through video games? How would you compare the audience?

AN: It’s different. In our hometown it started off as just a big word of mouth thing. We had twenty guys in the band, so everybody had friends-of-friends. We started a groundswell that way. But when we get out of town, not in New York so much, but when we go to Chicago and Milwaukee and places like that they generally tend to be much younger people. It’s a really big thrill for Bryn and I in that we are meeting kids who are just like us: young video game fans, aspiring musicians, usually males who picked up guitars. They come to us and say, ‘Nobody plays guitar anymore like you guys do!’ or ‘My parents used to listen to music like that!’ It’s just a big thrill for us to meet young kids like that who remind us of ourselves when we were kids.

DS: How does it feel to be looked-up to by the kids, by America’s future?

AN: [Laughs] It’s terrifying! [Laughs]

DS: Do you see parents at the show?

AN: Oh, yeah, oh yeah. Parents with their kids—

DS: That must reduce the crotch grabbing.

AN: [Laughs] Yeah, a little bit of macho posturing. I tell you man, it’s a really big thrill, just to go out and play in towns we’ve never been to. Kids come out and they know all the songs. We’ve had situations where we’ve played New York and girls are in the front row singing along to our guitar solos. Like, wow…we’re on stage playing and we can hear them singing back at us. Something else Bryn and I have noticed is at larger festival shows when we get to the end of our shows we play Push Push Lady Lightning, the kids would just light up and start air guitaring! But not actually playing air guitar, but playing air guitar hero–like, they knew where all the notes were!

DS: Which is a lot different for audiences of many bands.

AN: Absolutely! I can’t imagine other bands having the same experience, because we come from such a unique perspective that a large part of our music is driven by the instrumentals, and that sort of thing.

DS: Your fans are so engaged with your music, far more than most bands have. Most bands they have fans who feel their music speaks to them, but your fans can say, ‘I learned to play guitar on your shit and not on Eleanor Rigby!’

AN: It’s an honor. It’s still unbelievable to me. I had a message from a friend of mine who was at Guitar Center and he heard one of the kids cranking out one of our songs when he was trying out the guitar. To me, it’s like we made it.

DS: At this point of your career, you’re not playing stadiums, but you’re also not playing Otto’s Tiki Lounge on a Tuesday night. When you reflect upon it, what do you think about?

AN: In the past two years, since Bryn and I started this project, we’ve both been playing in bands locally in Boston for years. We had some mixed success, we played large venues in and around Boston. We got to the point where we said fuck it, we just want to have some fun and we’d laugh a lot going over old Ozzy Osbourne stuff we listened to as kids, just giggle about it. Bang Camaro started that way, something for us to do and invite our friends to come sing on it. Now, just two years later, it’s amazing what happens when you stop trying. It’s something not contrived or born of any desire to reach an audience. We just did it for fun, and that spoke to people more than anything else we worked on.

DS: Do you have other areas of your life where you’ve been able to apply that?

AN: [Laughs] You mean as an ethos? Don’t try? [Laughs] You know, not really. I have found the greatest success in the things I have put most of my effort into. This band has been a complete unique experience in that respect, at least in terms of trying to forge a ‘career in music.’ Bryn and I had gotten to the point where we thought maybe this wasn’t the way to go. Bryn was going to go back to his career as a video game programmer and I was just going to find something else to do. So not really, I don’t really apply that in any other portion of my life.

DS: What are some dream projects you’d like to work on?

AN: As a musician, obviously for me it would be to meet and work with some heroes of mine since I was a kid. Like Mutt Lang; he always made my favorite records. At the same time, it has also been a dream of mine to meet people like Mark Linkous of Sparklehorse. Those guys made honest sort of rock n’ roll, for lack of a better comparison, the way people like John Lennon or Bob Dylan would. To me those are the artists of my generation. It would be my dream one just to meet those guys and two just to work with them on some level. I’d also be lying to say that it would just be my dream to take this project with twenty of my best friends and take it as far as we can take it. So far in my life it’s been the most rewarding thing.

DS: In the creative process it’s so difficult to be original today. Everything has been done. Do you ever let that trip you up, the Simpsons Did It problem?

AN: No, not really. I found I would end up falling into that cycle playing in indie rock bands, just trying to come up with the next thing, like Radiohead they stopped using guitars and things like that. Trying to kick the ball forward a little bit instead of kicking it side to side. With this band we don’t get hung up on that. We originally just started it as a celebration of the things we loved when we were kids. We’re not out here trying to reinvent the wheel. We’re fortunate in that when we were putting the project together we wanted that big vocal sound. What set us apart was how we went about doing that. We just invited all of our friends because we didn’t want to multi track everything ourselves. Soon after we had to figure out how to pull it off live, and people would approach and say ‘we heard you have this crazy project with all these people.’ The project grew into the live monster it is out of necessity. We’re not rich people, we don’t have refrigerators and the big tour bus. Speaking of dreams, maybe one day we’ll have a tour bus. For now, we travel in two very smelly vans.

DS: If you could choose your own death, how would you die?

AN: [Laughs] I would want to steal what I heard a mutual friend of ours said. He said when he died–it’s not how he died, but this is what I heard–he said when he’s dead, he wants his corpse to be dressed up like Superman and thrown out of an airplane. I thought that would be fitting. But I’m not ready to think about death, not just yet.

DS: You guys have been described as Metal and Glam rock. What would you describe your sound as?

AN: I would call us anthem rock. We’re really not heavy metal. I think our focus is more on writing great singles, as best as we can make them. Pop music. That’s just something Bryn and I grew up on. We’re big fans of melody and big driving hooks, that sort of thing.

DS: Would you say anthem rock more in the Mötley Crüe vane or more in the T. Rex vane?

AN: I would say half and half. Our influences don’t just stop with hair metal and things like that. We draw on things like Thin Lizzy, Boston, bands like that. Not necessarily virtuosic sort of musicianship, but things that are put together. We like to spend the time when we are writing our songs that we are taking all the extraneous crap out of it. We just want to make good, hook-drive pop music.

DS: Does the war in Iraq affect you artistically at all?

AN: [Laughs] No, not at all. No, you could say I’m just like everybody else. I read the paper and blogs, and I’m just as horrified as everybody else. I’m definitely not a fan of this war.

DS: If you had to fight in Iraq or Afghanistan, where would you fight?

AN: Oh, the fight was definitely in Afghanistan. Iraq was a much different animal.

DS: Are you more inspired by things in nature or things that are man made?

AN: I would probably have to go with nature. I’m a student of science. I have a degree in environmental geology. When I was 19/20 years old I went through all the regular existential questions people that age go through: why am I here and my place in the universe, that sort of thing.

DS: Did you answer any of them?

AN: Oh, God! I play rock guitar in a twenty man band!

DS: That’s important for a lot of people – you see your audience. You’re giving a lot of inspiration to a lot of people. You don’t know who you might be inspiring to pursue music.

AN: [Laughs] Oh, kids, don’t be like me! I would definitely go with nature over man made.

DS: What’s your favorite curse word?

AN: Fuck.

DS: What’s your favorite euphemism for breasts?

AN: Big guns.

DS: Have you used that recently?

AN: Actually, I think I did use that in the last week, and no comment.

DS: I read that you named the band after fast women and fast cars.

AN: [Laughs] Who told you that? No, Bang Camaro were two words out of the English language that were the two sexiest words we could think of. We put them together and they roll off the tongue. Bang Camaro. It says a lot more than it means.

DS: What sort of qualities do you look for in a woman?

AN: I need a girl who is going to make me laugh. I need a woman who is smarter than I am. A woman who will always keep me guessing. Absolutely. Calling me out for my own jerky bullshit. I like a girl who is fiercely independent, knows what she wants, and doesn’t need me.

DS: Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama?

AN: Oh, man, I’m going to get in a lot of trouble for saying Obama. I would probably go with Obama. There’s just something in his rhetoric and his oratory that is a lot more inspiring than Hillary. Hillary, to me, represents not much of a changing of the guard.

DS: What would be the greatest of misfortunes to befall you?

AN: [Chuckles] Oh, if I were to die alone. No, probably one of my greatest fears is injuring or maiming any of my appendages, to be honest.

DS: Do you have any special things you do to make sure you don’t injure or lose an appendage?

AN: [Chuckles] I don’t keep my hands in my pockets when I am running down stairs.

DS: That’s a conscious choice?

AN: Yes, that’s a conscious choice.

DS: What if you are just walking down stairs?

AN: [Chuckles] You can’t realign the stars, man. Shit will happen, shit will happen.

DS: What possession do you treasure most?

AN: That’s a good question. Probably my cat. I love my cat more than anything.

DS: What’s your cat’s name?

AN: Sadie.

DS: Like Sexy Sadie?

AN: Yeah, like Sexy Sadie. That’s exactly what I named her after. Big John Lennon fan, so I couldn’t resist.

DS: What trait do you deplore most in other people?

AN: I’m a lover, not a fighter. Jealousy, greed. But I try to look for the best in everybody. Who knows.

DS: What do you think are the greatest threats to humanity?

AN: Humanity itself. You can typically read anywhere that humanity is a virus, a plague, on Mother Earth. I really think the greatest threat to humanity is not a meteor or comet hurtling toward the planet, it’s us. We’ll be our own undoing. Bad politics, the spread of…oh, man, I could get in trouble…

DS: Who would you get in trouble with?

AN: No, I don’t know who I could get in trouble with. But I definitely think that capitalism is something that having gone unchecked for so long isn’t doing right in delivering civil freedom. It’s not delivering on its promises. Then again, I play in a rock band and people come pay to see me. I understand it works on both levels.

DS: What would be a bigger turn-off in bed: a woman who spoke in a baby voice, or someone who was overly flatulent?

AN: Oh God! I’d go with the baby talk, man.

DS: You’d prefer the baby talk?

AN: No, I would go with the flatulent woman. At least she’s real.

DS: Have you ever been faced with either scenario?

AN: No, I don’t think women should be flatulent.

DS: At all? Not even if she lets out a little giggle afterwards?

AN: Yeah, well, so be it.

DS: What if she was really flatulent?

AN: Like, extremely flatulent? I’d go more for the flatulence. Baby talk…that’s a real boner killer. Sorry, man.

DS: And you’ve never had a baby talker?

AN: No, not since high school.

DS: In high school?

AN: Oh, yeah. She had to go.

DS: What if she was Dutch oven flatulent?

AN: Is it really one or the other? Can I just go gay?

DS: You can always go gay. It’s the new millennium.

AN: Yeah, well, I’d probably end up with a baby-talking overly flatulent man, I’m sure.

Wikimedia, IWF respond to block of Wikipedia over child pornography allegations

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Wikimedia, IWF respond to block of Wikipedia over child pornography allegations
This article mentions the Wikimedia Foundation, one of its projects, or people related to it. Wikinews is a project of the Wikimedia Foundation.

Monday, December 8, 2008

On December 7, Wikinews first reported that some Internet Service Providers (ISPs) in the United Kingdom, were filtering access to an image and an article on the popular, free online encyclopedia Wikipedia, amid allegations that they contain child pornography. The filter was brought into play by the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF), which issued a statement regarding the filtering shortly after Wikinews published the article. Wikimedia, the host of Wikinews and Wikipedia oppose the IWF’s actions, also issuing a statement.

“A Wikipedia web page, was reported through the IWF’s online reporting mechanism in December 2008. As with all child sexual abuse reports received by our Hotline analysts, the image was assessed according to the UK Sentencing Guidelines Council (page 109). The content was considered to be a potentially illegal indecent image of a child under the age of 18, but hosted outside the UK,” said the IWF in a statement posted on their website.

The image and article in question is that of the 1976 album Virgin Killer, a studio album by the Scorpions, a German rock band. The controversy began after the image of the album’s original cover, which depicted a naked prepubescent girl, was reported to the IWF in early December. Wikinews first discovered the controversial image in May 2008 after there were several attempts to delete it on Wikipedia. The image had been blocked because the IWF considered it to be “potentially illegal”. As a result, the IWF have contacted authorities in the United States and in the UK.

The measures applied redirect Wikipedia-bound traffic from a significant portion of the UK’s Internet population through a small number of servers which can log and filter the content that is available to the end user. A serious side-effect of this is the inability of administrators on Wikimedia sites to block vandals and other troublemakers without potentially impacting hundreds of thousands of innocent contributors who are working on the sites in good faith.

Contributors or individuals attempting to view an affected image or file, depending on their ISP, may get a warning saying, “we have blocked this page because, according to the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF), it contains indecent images of children or pointers to them; you could be breaking UK law if you viewed the page.” Other ISPs provide blank pages, 404 errors, or other means of blocking the content.

Wikimedia was not informed that the image would be blacklisted because the IWF “does not issue takedown notices to ISPs or hosting companies outside the UK”. The servers for Wikimedia projects are located in Florida in the U.S., and according to Jay Walsh, the head of communications for Wikimedia, the Foundation “opposes” the action taken by the IWF.

“The IWF has confirmed to the Wikimedia Foundation that it has added Wikipedia to its blacklist, which also had the unintended consequence of rendering UK-based internet users unable to edit the encyclopedia,” said Walsh.

“We did advise one of our partner Hotlines abroad and our law enforcement partner agency of our assessment. The specific URL (individual webpage) was then added to the list provided to ISPs and other companies in the online sector to protect their customers from inadvertent exposure to a potentially illegal indecent image of a child,” added the statement by the IWF.

“We have no reason to believe the article, or the image contained in the article, has been held to be illegal in any jurisdiction anywhere in the world. We believe it’s worth noting that the image is currently visible on Amazon, where the album can be freely purchased by UK residents. It is available on thousands of websites that are accessible to the UK public,” said Mike Godwin, legal counsel for Wikimedia. The cover has since been removed from Amazon.com.

Wikimedia projects such as Wikinews state in their policies that they are “not censored”. Wikimedia will continue discussions with the IWF in hopes of resolving the issue.

Australian Van Nguyen executed in Singapore

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Australian Van Nguyen executed in Singapore

Friday, December 2, 2005

Convicted Australian drug trafficker Van Tuong Nguyen was executed at Changi Prison in Singapore today. Prison officials have confirmed the execution took place at 0900 AEDT (2200 UTC Thursday).

The 25-year-old Nguyen was arrested at Changi Airport in December, 2002, while in transit from Cambodia to Australia. He was found to be in possession of 396.2 grams of heroin. He was convicted in the Singapore High Court and sentenced to death under the Misuse of Drugs Act which mandates a death sentence for trafficking more than 15 grams of heroin.

All appeals for clemency were rejected. Singapore’s High Commissioner in Australia, Joseph Koh, said Singapore carefully considered appeals from Australia but decided the law must be applied consistently. “It had to treat Nguyen consistently with similar past cases, and apply the law equally to Singaporeans and foreigners,” Mr Koh said.

After saying goodbye to his client, Nguyen’s Australian lawyer, Julian McMahon, said Nguyen’s execution was a waste. “He is completely rehabilitated, completely reformed, completely focused on doing what is good and now they’re going to kill him,” he said.

It was previously reported that Nguyen’s mother would not be permitted to embrace her son before the execution, however, Mr McMahon has confirmed that they were allowed some physical contact. “Well I actually wasn’t in the room when that happened but there was a grill and they were able to hold each other’s hands and Kim was able to, at least for some time, I’m not sure how long, was able to touch Van on the face,” he said. “She told me she was able to talk to him and touch his hair. That was a great comfort to her.”

Prayer vigils were held outside Changi Prison and around Australia to mark the first execution of an Australian since Michael McAuliffe in Malaysia in 1993. Nguyen’s body is expected to be returned to Australia on Saturday for a funeral next week.

NYSE to merge with Archipelago; NASDAQ to buy Instinet

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NYSE to merge with Archipelago; NASDAQ to buy Instinet

Sunday, April 24, 2005

New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) announced last Wednesday that it has agreed definitively to merge with Chicago-based Archipelago Exchange (ArcaEx) and form a new publicly traded, for-profit company known as NYSE Group. This announcement was followed two days later by NASDAQ®, which independently announced a definitive agreement to purchase Instinet Group.

Archipelago and Instinet are innovative e-trading (electronic trading) companies, and formerly were the two largest American rivals to NYSE and NASDAQ, in recent years taking increasingly large portions of their market share. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and other regulatory agencies still have to review and approve the transactions, particularly with respect to US securities law and antitrust law, in order to ensure that the marketplace remains lawful and competitive.

Other pending issues for NASDAQ include obtaining the approval of Instinet shareholders, as well as customary closing conditions. NYSE must obtain the approval of its members and Archipelago shareholders.

These changes, a reaction to increased e-trading competition and a changed regulatory environment, will result in NASDAQ and NYSE trading each other’s shares and attempting to grab market share, which many hope will drive down transaction costs and ultimately benefit consumers. However, at least one commentator, Dan Ackman writing in Forbes, has noted that the trading commission at the NYSE currently averages less than a nickel (US$0.05) per share, and was less enthusiastic about potential efficiency gains from electronic trading at the exchange.

The transactions are also intended to make the two leading American stock exchanges more globally competitive with such exchanges as the London Stock Exchange, the Frankfurt Stock Exchange, the Toronto Stock Exchange, and the Australian Stock Exchange located in Sydney.

Fires burn across eastern Australia amid summer heatwave

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Fires burn across eastern Australia amid summer heatwave

Sunday, January 13, 2013

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Despite earlier cooler weather, heatwave conditions are expected to resume in New South Wales, Australia. Local weather service forecasts expect temperatures to rise above 40°C (104°F), as-experienced earlier in the week. The percentage of uncontained fires jumped as high as 20%. On Friday, local fire authorities have declared total fire bans across Victoria, New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory. Fire crews at the east coast of Australia are readying to battle an increased rate of bushfires during the weekend.

Uncontrolled fires have also been burning across the states of Tasmania, Victoria, and Queensland.

Extremely hot weather and strong winds played havoc with the fires early in the week. A minor change in the weather assisted crews on Thursday but the high temperatures are set to return on Friday and through the weekend.

Thirty devastating fires in Tasmania are now being controlled after burning 130 properties and 110,000 hectares of land throughout the past week.

In Victoria there are two significant fires being fought with several others now under control but concerns remain for the weekend with the temperature forecast to rise to 42°C in the north of the state.

Queensland firefighters continued to battle fires north of of the capital Brisbane on Bribie Island, with at least 22 fires still burning throughout the state.

New South Wales has 120 fires burning as of Friday with 370,000 hectares of land, 10,000 livestock and one property already destroyed.

…an awful lot of fireline for firefighters to monitor…

Deputy Commissioner of the New South Wales Rural Fire Service, Rob Rogers briefed reporters on the bushfires at the Rural Fire Service Headquarters on Friday.

“They are very large, all either in excess or very close to 10,000 hectares (and) in some cases 100 kilometres of fireline. That’s an awful lot of fireline for firefighters to monitor and obviously that’s going to be troubling over today and particularly tomorrow when it will be even hotter.”

One fire at Dean’s Gap in New South Wales had authorities concerned due to its proximity to an old military range that contains unexploded ordinances at Tianjara plateau. Firefighters have used earth moving equipment to create containment lines and specialised gel to protect the range.

Blender Bottle Prostak System For Kids With 22 Ounce Bottle}

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Animal rights activists demand British coffee chain withdraw advertising campaign

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Animal rights activists demand British coffee chain withdraw advertising campaign

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Animal rights activists have demanded that the largest coffee chain in the United Kingdom pull a new advertising campaign because they fear that it will encourage viewers to buy monkeys as pets. The demands are likely to irritate Costa Coffee, who are determined to turn over a larger profit that their arch-rival, Starbucks. Five animal welfare groups have demanded that the advert, which features a futuristic room full of monkeys attempting to use coffee machines, be withdrawn.

In a letter to the Rainforest Alliance, the charities say that “the use of wild animals in this way is contrary to your stance on conservation and, in particular, on rainforest species”. They urged the Alliance to revoke their endorsement of Costa products unless the adverts were withdrawn. The groups also wrote to the coffee chain, saying that they hoped that Costa — which has over 1,000 outlets in the UK — would “think it appropriate to cease using primates in future productions, and make the decision to withdraw the current advert”.

The pressure on the coffee giant has led to fears that the company’s relationship with the Rainforest Alliance—which “works to conserve biodiversity and ensure sustainable livelihoods by transforming land-use practices, business practices and consumer behavior”—may be under threat, since animal welfare groups have complained the new advert is in breach of the Alliance’s code of conduct. The television advertisement depicts a number of monkeys being unable to use coffee machines, before a Costa barista hand-makes a cup of coffee. The advert, which features a voiceover by actor Bill Nighy, aired for the first time on Friday. Within hours, animal rights campaigners had demanded it be withdrawn. Manufacturers of products endorsed by the Rainforest Alliance must prove they “are demonstrating [their demand for] goods grown and harvested with respect for people, wildlife and the environment”.

A spokeswoman for Wild Futures, which runs a sanctuary for victims of the primate pet trade, said that she felt that, because they had been forced to appear in the advert, the welfare of the monkeys had been “severely compromised.” She said: “With the release of this new advert, we feel the need to reiterate our long-held concerns on the use of wild animals in entertainment. While they are used in this way their welfare is severely compromised, and it has a knock-on effect in the trade in primates as pets.”

According to The Observer, “the relationship between the appearance of exotic animals in the media and a corresponding increase in demand for them as pets is well documented.” The demand to own clownfish as pets reportedly rocketed following the release of Disney Pixar’s Finding Nemo, which featured one of the orange and white vertebrates as its main character.

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The Alliance refused to comment specifically on the Costa advertising campaign, but said in a statement that it “objects to the use of captive wild animals in commercial advertising where a company is seeking to highlight or promote its relationship with the Rainforest Alliance or its use of Rainforest Alliance certified commodities”. Wild Futures and other charities have, in the past, forced companies to withdraw campaigns they believe compromise animal’s rights. The European Union was forced to pull a stop smoking advert last year after objections for animal welfare groups, and car manufaturer Dodge also withdrew an advert which featured a chimpanzee after animal rights groups lodged complaints.

The Code of Practice on the Welfare of Privately Kept Non-Human Primates states that “primates used for entertainment and in the media are often removed from their social group and hand-reared, causing distress to the infant, mother and other members of the group.” The five charities have said they feel that, because the animals have been removed from their social group for the purposes of filming, Costa could be in contravention of three of the five needs as stated in the Animal Welfare Act.

Jim Slater, the marketing director of Costa Coffee vigourusly defended the adverts, insiting that “no compromise is made regarding animal welfare standards” in the adverts. “The monkeys were provided by a specialist organisation and have appeared in movies and on TV many times before.” Speaking to Bakeryinfo.co.uk before the advert was launched, he added: “Costa is enjoying double-digit like-for-like sales growth, and we aim to continue this great momentum. Independent surveys consistently prove that coffee lovers prefer Costa, and this TV commercial will help us to explain the reasons why.”

Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish dies at age 67

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Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish dies at age 67
By BbGFjuyG | Posted in Uncategorized

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish died Saturday in southern American state of Texas three days after heart surgery at Memorial Hermann Hospital in Houston.

Darwish’s poems are considered as an encapsulation of the Palestinian cause.

Palestinians in Ramallah went to the streets, some weeping, gathered around candles in the darkened streets and lit candles expressing their sadness.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas declared three days of mourning.

“The passing of our great poet, Mahmoud Darwish, the lover of Palestine, the pioneer of the modern Palestinian cultural project, and the brilliant national leader, will leave a great gap in our political, cultural and national lives,” Abbas said. “Words cannot describe the depth of sadness in our hearts, Mahmoud, may God help us for your loss.”

A day after his death many intellectuals and politicians in the Middle East gave their tributes in honor of him.

Ahmed Fouad Negm, a famous Egyptian poet, told Reuters “[h]e translated the pain of the Palestinians in a magical way. He made us cry and made us happy and shook our emotions, Apart from being the poet of the Palestinian wound, which is hurting all Arabs and all honest people in the world, he is a master poet.”

“Mahmoud Darwish knew how to express the attachment of an entire people to its land and the absolute desire for peace. His message, which calls for coexistence, will continue to resonate and will eventually be heard”, French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner said in a statement.

Darwish will get the equivalent of a state funeral in the West Bank on Tuesday, the first since Yasser Arafat died in 2004.

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Ten Tips For Finding The Right Pay Per Click Company

By Ben Norman

Qualifications

Companies like Google offer certification in the form of ‘the Google Adwords Certification’. This is a document stating that the bearer is familiar with and competent regarding the way the pay per click system on Google itself works.

Testimonials

Look at the company’s testimonials… and then look them up! Far too many companies rely on completely fabricated testimonials, so don’t be fooled by a testimony written by the company itself.

Personal Reference

As almost everyone in business knows, word of mouth is one of the most efficient ways to get good work done. If you have any friends or acquaintances who have out sourced this type of work in their own firm, ask them how they felt about it, and whether or not they were satisfied. Take their warnings seriously if they give them out.

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Past examples

You’ll find that all professionals have work that they are proud of, so let your consultant show you theirs. Ask them what firms they have done work for and take their work out for a spin; pretend to be a browser surfing for information on that particular topic. How quickly do you arrive at the site that your consultant worked on?

Specializations

While every good consultant in this field will know the ins and outs of the Google pay per click system, only a few will be intimately familiar with your field. Ask them if they have any interest, public or private in your field. What do they know about it? How knowledgeable are they?

Professional Demeanor

How prompt is your consultant in getting back to you? The emergence of the Internet as a legitimate field of advertising has drawn many bright people out of the shadows, but it’s drawn out some truly unfortunate specimens as well. Hold your consultant to a high level of professional behavior and if he fails, then find someone else.

Comparison Shopping

Although it might be tempting, make sure you interview more than one consultant. As you might have noticed, the market for pay per click experts on the Google search engine is quite thick, and you have a wide variety to choose from. Even if you end up going with the first candidate, it’s always good to see what the competition is like. This will also give you a good idea on what fair rates are.

Time Frame

Be wary of the company that offers fast results and then disappears. A pay per click company that offers a great deal of speed as part of its selling points is not taking the time to test them!

Commitment

Do they offer real results? There are plenty of firms that will charge you even if they have not managed to cause in increase in traffic. Take a look at the contract that your chosen pay per click firm offers and find out how certain they seem regarding their work.

Google Them!

If they are experts at using Google and they consider pay per click advertising as part of their realm of expertise, see how well they show up in terms of natural results and side bar advertisements when you search for them.

About the Author: Ben Norman is the MD of UK search engine optimization company Impact Media Ltd, specialists in

pay per click

. Impact Media work with a wide range of businesses helping them to make more money from utilizing the search engines natural & paid search results.

Source:

isnare.com

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