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Netta wins Eurovision Song Contest for Israel

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

On Saturday, Israel won its fourth victory, first since 1998, at the Eurovision Song Contest, held at Lisbon’s Altice Arena in Portugal. Netta Barzilai’s song Toy won 529 points from public and professional judges. Cyprus and Austria finished second and third respectively with 436 and 342 points.

Out of 43 countries participating this time, 26 countries including hosts Portugal and the Big Five — France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom — competed in the finals. The competition began on May 8. Spain and United Kingdom finished in the bottom five while the hosts and last year’s winners, Portugal, ended up at the bottom of the vote ranking; collecting respectively 61, 48, and 39 points.

Israel won the first semi-final round with 283 points. The 25-year-old Netta won the HaKokhav HaBa competition earlier this year to represent the country in this contest. Netta performed Toy, written by Doron Medalie and Stav Beger, with a Chicken Dance and chicken noises. With a lot of scat singing involved, the song lyrics included, “I’m not your toy; you stupid boy”. Her performance included 112 Maneki-nekos, Japanese beckoning cats used as lucky charms, which were placed in two shelves.

Apart from the Japanese Maneki-neko dolls, Netta wore a kimono; a Japanese dress, styled her hair in two buns as well as referenced Pokémon, a Japanese anime and video game, in her song, which led to some people including Portuguese writer Joana Ramiro to point out cultural appropriations in her performance. “Can I, however, ask if anyone here has already commented on the quite shocking Japanese cultural bastardisation-appropriation going on in Netta’s song?”, Ramiro tweeted.

Shortly after the contest began, last year’s winner Salvador Sobral called Toy “a horrible song”. In an interview with Wiwibloggs, Sobral said, “YouTube thought I would like the Israeli song. I opened it and a horrible song came out of it.” After winning the contest in Ukraine last year, Sobral had said, “We live in a world of disposable music; fast food music without any content. I think this could be a victory for music with people who make music that actually means something […] Music is not fireworks; music is feeling. So let’s try to change this and bring music back.” Toy’s performance used strobe lighting and quirky noises.

After Netta was declared the winner, she said, “Thank you so much for choosing different. Thank you so much for accepting differences between us. Thank you for celebrating diversity. Thank you. I love my country. Next year in Jerusalem.” Previously, Israel won the contest in 1978 and 1979, and 1998.

UK’s artist SuRie, who performed Storm, was interrupted in her performance when a stage invader snatched her microphone. UK was given another chance to perform, but SuRie declined after discussing with her team. SuRie said, “We had that conversation, but I was really proud of that performance.” “You don’t get to do the 100m sprint at the Olympics again because your shoelace is untied or something. You had that one shot and that was my moment, and we didn’t need to repeat that […] We had those conversations backstage, I saw the reaction and faces of my team, who were very proud of the recovery and the power of that, and we didn’t need to go again”, the British singer added.

As the winner of this edition of the competition, Israel is to host next year’s competition. Last year, then 27-year-old Salvador Sobral won the competition, receiving 758 points for the song Amar Pelos Dois, a ballad written by his sister.

For the preparations of next year’s contest, Israeli Deputy Health Minister Ya’akov Litzman wrote a letter to Culture and Sport Minister Miri Regev asking shabbat, the Jewish holy day to rest, not to be violated. In the letter, he wrote, “In the name of hundreds of thousands of Jewish citizens from all the populations and communities for whom Shabbat observance is close to their hearts, I appeal to you, already at this early stage, before production and all the other details of the event has begun, to be strict [in ensuring] that this matter does not harm the holiness of Shabbat and to work in every way to prevent the desecration of Shabbat, God forbid, as the law and the status quo requires”. Last year, he submitted resignation after Jewish workers were made to undertake railway work on shabbat. That time, both Israeli welfare minister Haim Katz and Israeli transportation minister Yisrael Katz expressed potential threat to passengers if the railway work was postponed.

Order Country Artist(s) Song Music & lyrics Total points Ranking
01 ?? Ukraine Mélovin Under the Ladder Mélovin & Mike Ryals 130 17
02 ?? Spain Amaia & Alfred Tu canción Raul Gomez Garcia, Sylvia Ruth Santoro Lopez 61 23
03 ?? Slovenia Lea Sirk Hvala, ne! Lea Sirk, Tomy DeClerque & Lea Sirk 64 22
04 ?? Lithuania Ieva Zasimauskait? When We’re Old Vytautas Bikus 181 12
05 ?? Austria Cesár Sampson Nobody but You Sebastian Arman, Cesár Sampson, Joacim Persson, Johan Alkenäs, Borislav Milanov 342 3
06 ?? Estonia Elina Nechayeva La forza Mihkel Mattinsen, Timo Vendt & Elina Nechayeva, Ksenia Kuchukova 245 8
07 ?? Norway Alexander Rybak That’s How You Write a Song Alexander Rybak 144 15
08 ?? Portugal Cláudia Pascoal O Jardim Isaura 39 26
09 ?? United Kingdom SuRie Storm Nicole Blair, Gill Lewis, Sean Hergreaves 48 24
10 ?? Serbia Sanja Ili? & Balkanika Nova deca Aleksandar Sanja Ili?, Tatjana Karajanov Ili? & Danica Krstaji? 113 19
11 ?? Germany Michael Schulte You Let Me Walk Alone Michael Schulte, Thomas Stengaard, Katharina Müller, Nisse Ingwersen 340 4
12 ?? Albania Eugent Bushpepa Mall Eugent Bushpepa 184 11
13 ?? France Madame Monsieur Mercy Emilie Satt, Jean-Karl Lucas 173 13
14 ?? Czech Republic Mikoláš Josef Lie to Me Mikoláš Josef 281 6
15 ?? Denmark Rasmussen Higher Ground Niclas Arn, Karl Eurén 226 9
16 ?? Australia Jessica Mauboy We Got Love Anthony Egizii, David Musumeci & Anthony Egizii, David Musumeci, Jessica Mauboy 99 20
17 ?? Finland Saara Aalto Monsters Saara Alto, Joy Deb, Linnea Deb, Ki Fitzgerald 46 25
18 ?? Bulgaria Equinox Bones Borislav Milanov, Joacim Persson, Brandon Treyshun Campbell, Dag Lundberg 166 14
19 ?? Moldova DoReDoS My Lucky Day Philipp Kirkorov & John Ballard 209 10
20 ?? Sweden Benjamin Ingrosso Dance You Off MAG, Louis Schoorl & K Nita, Benjamin Ingrosso 274 7
21 ?? Hungary AWS Viszlát nyár Dániel Kökényes, Bence Brucker, Áron Veress, Soma Schiszler & Örs Siklósi 93 21
22 ?? Israel Netta Barzilai Toy Doron Medalie, Stav Beger 529 1
23 ?? Netherlands, The Waylon Outlaw in ‘Em Waylon, Ilya Toshinskiy, Jim Beavers 121 18
24 ?? Ireland Ryan O’Shaughnessy Together Ryan O’Shaughnessy, Mark Caplice, Laura Elizabeth Hughes 136 16
25 ?? Cyprus Eleni Foureira Fuego Alex Papaconstantinou, Geraldo Sandell, Anderz Wrethov, Viktor Svensson, Didrick 436 2
26 ?? Italy Ermal Meta and Fabrizio Moro Non mi avete fatto niente Ermal Meta, Fabrizio Moro, Andrea Febo 308 5

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Ex-UN official says Pakistan disrupted talks with Taliban

Sunday, March 21, 2010

The United Nations’ former top official in Afghanistan has accused Pakistan of impeding negotiations between the Taliban and Western nations.

The official, Kai Eide, said that the arrests of high-ranking Taliban officials by Pakistan had led to the disruption of talks between the Taliban and the United Nations in Dubai. According to Eide, the two parties had conducted “talks about talks,” but they had broken down completely after Pakistan’s arrests. In an interview with the BBC, he said that “the Pakistanis did not play the role that they should have played.” Pakistan’s actions have prompted some speculation that the country was opposed to a peace deal between Western nations and the Taliban, or wanted to take a greater part in the talks. Pakistan, however, has denied the arrests were intended to disrupt talks between the UN and the Taliban.

Eide said that the talks between both sides had begun around a year ago, and had continued until several weeks ago, with a pause for the Afghan elections. While other avenues for communication exist, including via the Afghan government, Eide said that it would take at least several weeks for such talks to resume after the disruption.

Peace talks between the two sides are widely seen as necessary to gain peace with the Taliban, although the approaches taken by European countries and the United States are almost opposite. The US announced a significant military buildup in Afghanistan last fall, and is trying to weaken the Taliban military before engaging in talks. Western European countries are pushing for more immediate negotiations, and officials such as David Miliband, British foreign secretary, are focusing on engaging all but the most militant members of the Taliban.

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Indiana Department of Homeland Security violates Wikipedia copyright

This article mentions the Wikimedia Foundation, one of its projects, or people related to it. Wikinews is a project of the Wikimedia Foundation.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The Indiana Department of Homeland Security was revealed on Saturday to have violated the copyright of a number of contributors to online encyclopedia Wikipedia in a document on racial profiling by quoting Wikipedia articles without any attribution.

The PDF file, which was created as a guide for students in grades 9–12 “[t]o research positions related to the topic of racial profiling post September 11, 2001 with a primary focus on citizens of Middle Eastern descent, and to give an informative speech”, quotes from seven Wikipedia articles without mentioning Wikipedia at any point. These are: Racial Profiling, USA PATRIOT Act, Bigotry, Internment, Terrorism, Counter-terrorism, and The War on Terrorism, all in the “Vocabulary” section. This is against Wikipedia’s Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike (CC-BY-SA) License, which requires that the original author(s) be attributed.

page[s] 3/4 are copied from [W]ikipedia, yet there is no attribution to Wikipedia or even a mention of it

The offending document was posted on the Indiana Department of Homeland Security’s website on October 30, 2009, and came to the attention of the Wikipedia community on Saturday, after a user editing under the pseudonym of Smallman12q mentioned it on the website’s community noticeboard, the Village Pump. His post began, “I came across this pdf produced by the Indiana Department of Homeland Security for racial profiling and found that in it […] the vocabulary section on page[s] 3/4 [is] copied from [W]ikipedia, yet there is no attribution to Wikipedia or even a mention of it…” The document also contains typographical and grammatical errors, “[citation needed]” tags, and meaningless in-line references, due to the content being a direct copy-and-paste of Wikipedia content.

In a statement to Wikinews, Smallman12q explained that he “came across the pdf after doing a google search for ad hominem with the ‘site’ parameter set to .gov.” He also commented on “the irony” of finding this when his whole reason for searching government sources was so that he “would[n]’t have to worry about copyright infringement” due to government works being in the public domain (he was mistaken on this point, as this only applies to works of the US federal government, while this document was created by the government of the state of Indiana). He used the document as a reference in the Internment article on Wikipedia, before realizing that “the content of the article and the pdf virtually matched”. He noticed the “[1]” tag in the document, which was undefined in the PDF and corresponded to a Wikipedia in-line reference. “Looking at the other vocabulary terms within the pdf and their Wikipedia counterparts, they too were identical,” he says, “I then realized that they must have been copied from Wikipedia…”

The CC-BY-SA licence states that “You must attribute the work in the manner specified by the author or licensor”, while the Wikimedia Foundation’s terms of use specify either “a) a hyperlink (where possible) or URL to the page or pages you are re-using, b) a hyperlink (where possible) or URL to an alternative, stable online copy which is freely accessible, which conforms with the license, and which provides credit to the authors in a manner equivalent to the credit given on this website, or c) a list of all authors”, none of which were given in the IDHS’s document, despite it having a bibliography section.

Wikipedia is widely famous for being something that you can freely copy, and we love it when people do it

Wikinews contacted Jimmy Wales, the founder and chair emeritus of the foundation, for a statement regarding the issue. He expressed no concern about the issue, saying that “Wikipedia is widely famous for being something that you can freely copy, and we love it when people do it. Yes, there are rules about how to do it, but not everyone understands those rules at first. I’m sure it won’t happen again, and I certainly am not particularly agitated about it.”

The offending document has since been removed from the Indiana Department of Homeland Security’s website, Wikinews found on February 2.

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Stolen minibus recovered 35 years after theft

Friday, November 6, 2009

A 1965 Volkswagen minibus that was stolen in 1974 has been recovered by customs agents in Los Angeles. The vintage minibus was in pristine condition, valued at $25,000, and was found during a routine inspection of a shipping container scheduled for departure to The Netherlands. A routine computer database search on its vehicle identification number flagged it as having been stolen from a vehicle upholstery shop in Spokane, Washington on July 12, 1974. A custom restoration business in Arizona was attempting to deliver it to overseas clients last month when authorities intercepted the vehicle.

“Pretty amazing, isn’t it?”

The theft appeared on the National Insurance Crime Bureau database, which is used by border authorities and contains all stolen vehicle records. Most police databases remove unsolved vehicle thefts after five years.

The California Highway Patrol does not suspect the restorer of wrongdoing, according to investigating officer Mike Maleta. Possession of the vehicle apparently changed several times. Police in Spokane have not yet located the rightful owner, whose identity has not been released to the press. Maleta hopes that a trail of registration documents and interviews will uncover the thief.

“[The restoration firm owner is] a victim himself. He was an innocent purchaser…”

The Allstate insurance company paid $2500 shortly after the theft occurred and wants to take possession of the vintage minibus. Allstate spokeswoman Megan Brunet expects that after the necessary paperwork is processed the firm will sell it at auction.

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Cisco sues Apple for iPhone trademark

Friday, January 12, 2007

The iPhone only made its appearance as a prototype and there have been controversies aroused.

The dispute has come up between the manufacturer of the iPhone (which was resented on Wednesday for the first time) – Apple Inc. – and a leader in network and communication systems, based in San JoseCisco. The company claims to possess the trademark for iPhone, and moreover, that it sells devices under the same brand through one of its divisions.

This became the reason for Cisco to file a lawsuit against Apple Inc. so that the latter would stop selling the device.

Cisco states that it has received the trademark in 2000, when the company overtook Infogear Technology Corp., which took place in 1996.

The Vice President and general counsel of the company, Mark Chandler, explained that there was no doubt about the excitement of the new device from Apple, but they should not use a trademark, which belongs to Cisco.

The iPhone developed by Cisco is a device which allows users to make phone calls over the voice over Internet protocol (VoIP).

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Buffalo, N.Y. hotel proposal threatened by possible lawsuit

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Buffalo, New York — The property at 605 Forest in Buffalo was the center of attention at last night’s public meeting held at the offices of Forever Elmwood on Elmwood Avenue in Buffalo. Eva Hassett, Vice President of Savarino Construction Services Corporation, confirmed last night that the company will be seeking a variance for the 605 Forest property. Originally, both the 605 and 607 Forest Avenue properties were going to have variances placed on them. As it stands, 607 Forest will not be directly affected by the proposal, should it go forward. Both 605 and 607 are currently occupied by residents.

During Monday night’s meeting, Pano Georgiadis, owner of 605 Forest and owner of Pano’s Resuraunt at 1081 Elmwood Avenue in Buffalo, threatened to “sue” Savarino Construction if they tried to obtain a variance on his property to build the Elmwood Village Hotel.

The Elmwood Village Hotel is a proposal by Savarino Construction that would be placed on the corner of Forest and Elmwood in Buffalo. In order for the project to move forward, at least five buildings (1119-1121 Elmwood) which include both residences and businesses will have to be demolished. The hotel was designed by architect Karl Frizlen of the Frizlen Group. Although the properties are “under contract,” according to Hassett, it is unclear whether Savarino Construction owns the properties. Hans Mobius, a resident of Clarence, New York and former Buffalo Mayoral candidate, is still believed to own them.

Currently, none of the properties is zoned for a hotel.

A freelance journalist writing for Wikinews asked Hassett what kind of zoning permit they [Savarino] would be applying for and, if 605 Forest is included, what zone that would be.

Buffalo, N.Y. Hotel Proposal Controversy
Recent Developments
  • “120 year-old documents threaten development on site of Buffalo, N.Y. hotel proposal” — Wikinews, November 21, 2006
  • “Proposal for Buffalo, N.Y. hotel reportedly dead: parcels for sale “by owner”” — Wikinews, November 16, 2006
  • “Contract to buy properties on site of Buffalo, N.Y. hotel proposal extended” — Wikinews, October 2, 2006
  • “Court date “as needed” for lawsuit against Buffalo, N.Y. hotel proposal” — Wikinews, August 14, 2006
  • “Preliminary hearing for lawsuit against Buffalo, N.Y. hotel proposal rescheduled” — Wikinews, July 26, 2006
  • “Elmwood Village Hotel proposal in Buffalo, N.Y. withdrawn” — Wikinews, July 13, 2006
  • “Preliminary hearing against Buffalo, N.Y. hotel proposal delayed” — Wikinews, June 2, 2006
Original Story
  • “Hotel development proposal could displace Buffalo, NY business owners” — Wikinews, February 17, 2006

“There is a ‘special development plan’ in front of the council, which changes only one thing about the zoning. It allows one permitted use for just a hotel. The rest of the zoning remains as it is under the current Elmwood Business District zoning. 605 and 607 Forest are not required for the project. They are not part of the footprint for the project. Let me answer this question again. This is on the record, in council: 605 needs to be rezoned in order to facilitate the project because of the sideyard requirement. Anything in C-2 is excluded besides the hotel. So we’ve taken the C-2 and included the hotel as a permitted use, and excluded everything else and everything else remains the same.”

However, during the February 28 Common Council meeting, Hassett was quoted as saying that the two properties were “off the agenda.”

“Now Karl said, at the last meeting, that they will build this hotel right on the borderline [property line]. If a wall forty-five to fifty feet high goes next to this house, of course it’s not right. You really have to go with whatever the city code says, so you have to get back as many feet as the city code says,” said Georgiadis.

“If you try to get a variance to change the code, I will sue you. This is my home, number one,” added Georgiadis. “First of all I think we are all wasting our time here, you [Savarino], have already made up your mind, but if you go against city code, and you try to do the most rooms with a minimal amount of parking, again, I will sue you. If you build a hotel, in my idea its going to fail. It’s doomed, ok. [If] it’s going to be a home for the disabled, for the homeless, for recovery people, but that’s another story. Then how is it going to be when we say, well I told you so? You will be over and done with. Its very hard to take a four story building [hotel] down.”

Georgiadis stated last night that he was against the proposal and signed a petition to stop it, jokingly saying, “this isn’t a paper to sign to build the hotel, is it? Don’t make me sign the wrong thing.”

Joseph Golombeck, district councilman, was at Monday’s public meeting and said, “we also did request this and the reason we are doing this as a special business district is so that it has to be this specific plan. They [Savarino] can’t go halfway through it and in six months decide that [the hotel] it’s going to be three floors. They can’t decide it’s going to be five floors. It has to be, per law, exactly what it is that they brought to us [the public] so far, and then ultimately to the City of Buffalo Common Council when it’s approved. So if it gets approved, it has to be this specific, exact project. They couldn’t make it fifty parking spots, they couldn’t make it thirty. It has to be specifically what they have right here.”

A man who lives on Granger Street in Buffalo attended the meeting, speaking in favor of the hotel development. He claimed, “There are a lot of low property values. Hopefully if we embrace development, our property values, for those of us who have property, will go up. There are a lot of people unfortunately, who are working hard, that do not get a chance to come to these meetings. I myself was at work and wasn’t able to go to the last two meetings. I express that we appreciate that you [Savarino] invest in the City of Buffalo and for what you hope, because I do not think Savarino is into losing money. These people are not in business to be losing money here. They are hoping for the success of this [the hotel] more than any one of us. They are hoping that the property values in this area will go up more than any one of us, because it will benefit them [the residents and business owners], more than any one of us. I want this city to develop. I don’t think anybody else is here understanding that we’re looking for development in this city, we are looking for the city to get better. The councilman here is not interested in Buffalo failing.”

Evelyn Bencinich, resident of Granger Street, would have the hotel directly behind her home, if it were to be built.

“What about construction [time]? Is that just for the exterior, the nine months? Or does that include the interior? Is there going to be blasting through bedrock? Is there property protection for damage? Are you [Savarino and the Frizlen Group] responsible?”, asked Bencinich.

According to Frizlen, there is a layer of solid bedrock at least 30 feet from the surface of the land saying, “we anticipate that the bedrock is at least thirty feet down.” He also admitted that “we haven’t done any soil sporrings,” but did say “the bedrock is somewhere in between twenty-five and thirty feet [down], we don’t need to go that deep. So blasting is most likely out of it [the question].”

“Personally, I can only speak from the city side, but a few years ago we rebuilt Vulcan Street, in the northwest corner of Buffalo, and there were a couple of properties that were damaged and they [the owners] were able to file a claim against the company that did the work and they won in each case. It was the same thing with a school that was built on Military Road. There were a couple of problems with foundations on a couple of properties, and they weren’t sure if caused by the school or not, but the insurance company ended up paying them,” answered Golombeck.

“I would assume that Savarino is insured with someone. So if there is a problem with anything that happens to your properties, what I would recommend is that anybody that lives on Granger Place, if this does go through, that you get pictures taken of your basement and of your foundations, because God forbid if there is a problem, you want to have an[sic] before and after [picture]. You don’t want to come afterwards and there’s a crack in there [foundation] and you have no way of proving that it happened,” added Golombeck.

According to Golombeck, the properties that Mobius owns have been “in housing court on several occasions, but has a date of April 11, 2006 that he is going back [to court] for these properties. So it is in housing court and I wouldn’t know Mr. Mobius if he walked in this room right now,” stated Golombeck.

“I’ve gone after him on numerous occasions and everytime he gets out of housing court with a slap on the wrist. If I am a conspiracy theorist and say that there is a lot more going on than meets the eye. I can only get him into housing court. Once he’s in housing court, the judge rules on it. Now I don’t mean to take any shots at previous administrations, but I am hoping with the new administration, being in here, that the inspections department is going to be a much better department than it has been for the previous several years.”

The city’s Planning Board on March 14, 2006, agreed to send the Elmwood Village Hotel proposal back to the Common Council so that it may “be opened back up to discussion from the public.”

On March 2, 2006 the Common Council sent the proposal “to committee” for further discussion and also requesting that the public be “engaged further.”

During that meeting, Justin Azzeralla, Executive Director for Forwever Elmwood, said that the organization “supports the hotel project.”

Also on March 2, the planning board agreed to table, or postpone, any decision on the hotel proposal for at least thirty days, also citing the need for the public to be “more engaged.”

The Common Council is expected to meet on March 21, 2006 at 2:00pm local time where they may approve or deny the proposal.

According to The Buffalo News, at least six Common Council members support the hotel project and are pledging to vote to approve it at the meeting on Tuesday, March 21.

However, the city’s Planning Board will get the final say on the project.

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Annual Perseids meteor shower visible in northern hemisphere

Monday, August 13, 2007

The peak of the Perseids meteor shower occurred last night during the new moon, bringing both amateur and professional astronomers out in full force. Low moonlight on Saturday and none at all on Sunday night made this year a brilliant opportunity for astronomers and stargazers. An added bonus was the presence of Mars, which shone bright red near the constellation Taurus.

The show started between 9:00 and 10:00 Sunday night. Sightings grew more frequent until the peak just before sunrise when as many as 80 meteors per minute could be seen in clear skies.

Perseids, which gets its name due to its appearance close to the constellation Perseus, a major feature of the night sky, occurs every year and is one of the most reliable meteor showers to watch in the northern hemisphere.

A meteor shower occurs when the Earth’s orbit intersects debris in the tail of a comet. Every meteor shower has an associated comet. In the case of the Perseids meteor shower, the associated comet is Swift-Tuttle.

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Wikinews interviews Joe Schriner, Independent U.S. presidential candidate

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Journalist, counselor, painter, and US 2012 Presidential candidate Joe Schriner of Cleveland, Ohio took some time to discuss his campaign with Wikinews in an interview.

Schriner previously ran for president in 2000, 2004, and 2008, but failed to gain much traction in the races. He announced his candidacy for the 2012 race immediately following the 2008 election. Schriner refers to himself as the “Average Joe” candidate, and advocates a pro-life and pro-environmentalist platform. He has been the subject of numerous newspaper articles, and has published public policy papers exploring solutions to American issues.

Wikinews reporter William Saturn? talks with Schriner and discusses his campaign.

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Report: quarterback Michael Vick won’t plead guilty to killing dogs

Friday, August 24, 2007

Atlanta Falcon’s quarterback Michael Vick will enter federal court on Monday, but a newly published report says he will not admit to gambling or killing the dogs. However, Vick is expected to plead guilty to the charge of ‘interstate commerce for the purpose of dogfighting.’

A source told ESPN he did not kill any dogs, but he was present when the dogs were being killed.

Vick faces a maximum of five years in jail. However, a government source told the Associated Press yesterday that prosecutors would most likely recommend a sentence of 12 to 18 months in prison.

Three co-defendants in the case have already pleaded guilty and, if the case goes to trial, will likely testify against Vick.

Vick’s future in the NFL is still uncertain.

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Britney Spears fired by management company

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

The Firm, a company which pop singer Britney Spears hired to manage her career just over one month ago, no longer wishes to manage Spears, and has terminated the services they were providing her to promote her new record.

“We have terminated our professional relationship with Britney Spears. We believe she is enormously talented, but current circumstances have prevented us from properly doing our job,” said the company in a statement to the media. Jeff Kwatinetz was the manager for Spears. It is not yet known what circumstances caused the company to sever their ties with Spears.

Spears is releasing a new album, scheduled to be put on shelves in November, and her record label, Jive Records, has stated that the recent incident will not delay the release of her record.

“The label does not comment on artist/management relations. We’re gearing up for a Nov. 13 album release date,” said the record label in a statement to the media.

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