On the campaign trail in the USA, August 2020

Wednesday, September 30, 2020

The following is the fourth edition of a monthly series chronicling the 2020 United States presidential election. It features original material compiled throughout the previous month after an overview of the month’s biggest stories.

This month’s spotlight on the campaign trail: a bat attacks the Libertarian Party’s presidential nominee, the American Independent Party picks a ticket amid controversy, and Birthers resurface to question the eligibility of the Democratic Party’s vice presidential nominee.

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Heavy earthquake hits Sumatra, Indonesia

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

A heavy earthquake has struck near Northern Sumatra, Indonesia, the US Geological Survey reports. It had a magnitude of 7.7, although its original intensity was measured at 7.6.

According to the USGS, the tremor, which began at 05.15 local time (UTC 22.15 UTC) had a depth of 46 kilometres (28.6 miles) and was 230 kilometres (145 miles) southwest of Medan, Sumatra, Indonesia. The quake was originally reported as having a magnitude of 7.6, but was later determined to be 7.8.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre said that local tsunami watch was in place for Indonesia.

“A destructive widespread tsunami threat does not exist based on historical earthquake and tsunami data,” although “there is the possibility of a local tsunami that could affect coasts”, the centre said. According to the centre, any such tsunami would affect an area no further than 100 kilometers away from the location of the quake.

Geophysicist Gerard Fryer from the Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre commented that scientists are looking at data from buoys in the ocean to find out whether or not a wave was already generated; however, he said that if there was a tsunami in generated, it wouldn’t move a lot of water due to the shallow waters.

There haven’t been any reports of casualties or damage as of yet; however, witnesses on the Simeulue island reported that there were power outages, according to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. The BBC also reported power outages in parts of Aceh province, on the northern end of the island of Sumatra.

This temblor is the heaviest to strike the region since March 2008.

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International bodies express concern over Israel-Hezbollah conflict

Thursday, July 20, 2006

International humanitarian organisations and human rights watchdogs have expressed concerns over the rising civilian casualties and the humanitarian crisis caused by the ongoing conflict in Lebanon and northern Israel. They have also warned the warring groups that their conduct may not comply with international laws governing the safety of civilians in combat areas.

Retrieved from “https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=International_bodies_express_concern_over_Israel-Hezbollah_conflict&oldid=1392350”
 

Microsoft and Yahoo! link their instant messaging services

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Nine months after announcing the interoperability between their instant messaging (IM) services, Internet rivals Microsoft and Yahoo! began limited public beta (pre-release) testing of the program. This enables users of the two services to communicate with each other using their existing IM client, Microsoft’s Windows Live Messenger (formerly MSN Messenger) and Yahoo! Messenger with Voice.

Users wishing to use the new feature can go to a special page on the service’s website, where they have to review and accept an agreement. After signing out and signing in again, the interoperability is enabled without downloading any new software.

The service is designed to allow users to see each others’ online presence, view personal status messages, share select emoticons, view offline messages and add new contacts from either service. However, more advanced features, like voice calls and shared folders are not interoperable between the two services.

The program is available internationally in more than 15 markets.

Retrieved from “https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=Microsoft_and_Yahoo!_link_their_instant_messaging_services&oldid=4374710”
 

Colleges offering admission to displaced New Orleans students/AL-KY

See the discussion page for instructions on adding schools to this list and for an alphabetically arranged listing of schools.

Due to the damage by Hurricane Katrina and subsequent flooding, a number of colleges and universities in the New Orleans metropolitan area will not be able to hold classes for the fall 2005 semester. It is estimated that 75,000 to 100,000 students have been displaced. [1]. In response, institutions across the United States and Canada are offering late registration for displaced students so that their academic progress is not unduly delayed. Some are offering free or reduced admission to displaced students. At some universities, especially state universities, this offer is limited to residents of the area.

Retrieved from “https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=Colleges_offering_admission_to_displaced_New_Orleans_students/AL-KY&oldid=527583”
 

Painters In Albany – Ready To Get Your Job Done!

byadmin

Painting is certainly not the most favorite job of many people, so thankfully there are professionals available who are ready to take on your job. painters in Albany understand that you have to paint or to repaint and they are not concerned if the job is small or large. They know that you have a picture in your mind that is the end result of the painting and it is an absolute necessity that the work be done in a professional manner.

Aside from that, many people are not ready to get into painting because it is time consuming. First of all, the surface needs to be completely prepared, and that usually involves some scraping (exterior) or some wall washing (interior). Afterwards, holes must be patched and the color either needs to be matched or a new color should be selected. Even if you have a sample of some paint that was previously used, it can be difficult to match the color exactly.

Painting requires a steady hand and a good eye as well as a great deal of patience. Paint does not dry instantly, and if more than one coat is required (for darker colors especially) then it can take up to a week to get the job done, depending on how large the surface is. Most people are just not prepared to take on this kind of a job and dedicate so much time to it. That’s perfectly fine, because professional painters are ready, willing and able to take on your job and to complete it for you.

There are a wide range of companies with excellent painters Albany that have plenty of experience with both commercial and residential painting jobs. You simply need to call a few of these companies and get some quotes to have the work done for you. Most painters will want to come to your home and have a look at the work that needs to be done so that they can give you an accurate quote. You should have an idea about the colors that you would like, but most painting companies will have paint chips available so that you can decide.

 

Open source game developer Perttu Ahola talks about Minetest with Wikinews

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

Recently, Finnish open-source video game developer Perttu Ahola discussed Minetest, his “longest ever project”, with Wikinews.

Started in October 2010, Minetest was an attempt by Ahola to create a sandbox game similar to Minecraft. Minecraft is a multi-platform commercial game, which was in alpha version when Ahola challenged himself to create something similar to it from scratch, he told Wikinews.

Minetest is an open-source game, which is free for anyone to download and play. It is written in the C++ programming language, and the source code is available on code-hosting site GitHub. According to Ahola, Minetest attempts to run on older hardware, with limited graphics, but to be accessible to more people: those who have outdated technology, and making it available for no cost. Minecraft, on the other hand, is a paid game, currently costing USD 26.95 for its computer version. Minecraft is currently owned by Microsoft, and performs poorly on older hardware.

A correspondent from French Wikinews contacted Perttu Ahola via Internet Relay Chat a few weeks ago, discussing Minecraft. This interview is built on top of the previous interview, as we take a deeper dive into knowing more about this free game which is about to turn ten years old in a few months.

Retrieved from “https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=Open_source_game_developer_Perttu_Ahola_talks_about_Minetest_with_Wikinews&oldid=4583915”
 

New York City Mass Transit facing service cuts

Friday, December 11, 2009

New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority is proposing to make service cuts to close its expected US$343 million (€234m, GBP £211m) budget deficit. The plan includes the elimination of multiple bus lines in The Bronx, Manhattan, Queens and Brooklyn, the elimination of the W (Astoria, Queens to Lower Manhattan) and the Z (Jamaica, Queens to Lower Manhattan via Brooklyn) train services. Also included in the plan are cuts of nighttime bus and train service.

“We’re not going to rely on anyone else to do anything for us. We’re going to rely on ourselves.” MTA board member Mitchell Pally said, commenting on the New York state’s budget plan cutting $143 million of tax revenue from the agency. MTA Chairman Jay Walder has said in the past that he would not raise fares ahead of schedule.

Gene Russianoff of the Straphangers Campaign, a commuter advocacy group, said that the agency should take money from its current construction and maintenance fund, and put it into maintaining these services.

Retrieved from “https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=New_York_City_Mass_Transit_facing_service_cuts&oldid=3062976”
 

Wikinews investigates: Advertisements disguised as news articles trick unknowing users out of money, credit card information

 Notice — May 19, 2010 This article has been judged, by consensus of the Wikinews community, not to meet Wikinews standards of style and neutrality. Please see the relevant discussion for details. 

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

The Internet has already brought great things to the world, but has also brought spam, phishing, scamming, etc. We all have seen them across the Internet. They promise money, weight loss, or other things a person may strive for, but they usually amount to only a lighter pocket. Online advertising has become something that the increasingly Internet-reliant society has become used to, as well as more aware of. As this is true, online ads have become more intricate and deceptive in recent years.

However, a certain type of advertisement has arisen recently, and has become more deceptive than any other Internet ad, and has tricked many users into credit card charges. These sites claim to be news websites that preach a “miracle product”, and they offer a free trial, and then charge the user’s credit card a large amount of money without informing them after the trial ends. These sites appear to be operating under one venture and have caught ad pages of high-traffic websites by storm. In this report, Wikinews’ Tjc6 investigates news advertisement sites.

These Internet ads work in different ways:

Hypothetically speaking, a reader is browsing the web, and then happens to come across something that they believe is too good to be true. A link on one of these high-traffic pages promises white teeth, weight loss, or huge profits from working at home part-time. Out of curiosity, they click on the link.

This is the way that people are attracted to these fake news sites on the internet. The domain owners draw in customers by purchasing advertising on some of the World Wide Web’s most visited pages. Curious users click and are led to what they believe is a news article. From anti-aging to shedding weight, these “articles” from non-existant newspapers and television stations depict a skeptical news reporter trying a product because they were instructed to by a superior.

As the user reads on, they find that the “reporter” miraculously achieves significant weight loss, teeth whitening, or other general health and beauty improvement. The reporter states that the reader can get the same results as they did by using a “free trial” of the product.

Next, the user looks to the bottom of the page, where there seems to be a set of user comments, all of them praising the product or products that are advertised — this is where we first see something suspicious. Across several of these false articles, the comments appear to show the exact same text, sometimes with even the same usernames as other sites.

There is obviously some kind of correlation. Although this appears to be true, most users who purchase these products do not look at multiple versions of these similar pages of what appears to be a fast-growing network of interconnected fake news sites.

Once customers have convinced themselves into buying the product, they are led to a product (or products) website which promises a free trial for a very low price. What they do not know about this, however, is that they are giving their credit card data to a company that will charge it automatically after the trial ends. In about 14 days, the user receives a charge on their credit card for an excessive amount of money, usually from about $80 to $100 (USD). All attempts to contact these companies and cancel their shipments usually prove to be futile.

What these sites have is a large amount of legal copy located at the bottom of each site, stating their right to charge the user. This site, a fake news article claiming to offer teeth-whitening benefits, has several paragraphs of fine print, including this: “…Upon signing up for the 10 day trial membership you will be charged up to $4.97 depending on various shipping and initial offer promotions at that time but not more than $4.97 upon signing. If not cancelled, you will be charged $89.97 upon completion of the 10 day trial period. Monthly thereafter or 30 days from the original order date, the charge will reoccur monthly at a total of $89.97 until cancelled…,” the site says.

Practices like this have alerted the Better Business Bureau, an American organization that studies and reports on the reliability and practices of US businesses. In a press release, a spokesman from the BBB spoke out against sites like this. “Many businesses across the country are using the same selling model for their products: They lure customers in with claimed celebrity endorsements and free trial offers, and then lock them in by making it extremely difficult to cancel the automatic delivery of more products every month…,” said the report that denounced the websites.

When a user looks at several of these sites, they notice that all of them have the same exact structure. Because of this, Wikinews decided to look into where some of the domains were owned, and if they were all in fact part of one company.

However, the results that Wikinews found were ones that were not expected. Out of the three random websites that were found in Internet ads, all using similar designs and methods to attract the customers, came from three different locations in three countries and two separate continents. The first came from Scottsdale, in the United States, while the next two came from Vancouver and Hamburg. There is no location correlation, but surely, there has to be something that connected these sites together. We had to look even further to try to find a connection.

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There is some correlation within the product’s contact information. A large amount of the teeth-whitening products analyzed actually shared the same phone number, which lead to a distribution center located in St. Petersburg, Florida, and several other similar distribution centers located across the Southern United States. But, that explains only one of the categories of products that these websites cover, teeth whitening.

What about the other products? The other products such as weight loss and work-at-home kits all trace back to similar distribution centers in similar places. So, what do we make of all of this?

There is obviously some company that promotes these products through the fake news advertisements, but that company is nowhere to be found on the websites. All contact information is given on the product pages, and websites are copyrighted under the name of the domain, not a company. Whatever company has been the setup for these pages has been very good at hiding themselves from the Internet, as there is no information across the web about that mysterious large advertiser.

As a result of customers buying the products and having unauthorized charges on their credit cards, a large volume of complaints are currently present on awareness sites, complaint sites, and even the Better Business Bureau. Several customers point out that they were not informed of the steep charges and the company made it extremely difficult to cancel their subscription, usually resulting in the loss of several hundred dollars.

  • The trial offer was to pay for $3.95 for the cost of the shipping for one bottle. I noticed shortly after placing the order I had a charge on my credit card for $149.95. Unknown to myself the company charges for a membership if you don’t cancel within 14 days, I cancelled within 18 days…When I called the customer service number they told me the decision has been made and my refund request was denied. When I questioned the person on the other line about what I was getting for my $149.95 she told me I was not getting anything because I cancelled the membership.
?“Tamara”, in a post to the Ripoff Report
  • This is a “free sample” scam: Pay only postage and handling and get a free sample of a tooth whitening system, they say. I looked for the “catch,” something that would indicate that there’d be hidden or recurring charges, but didn’t see anything, and ordered. Sure enough, a couple of weeks later, I see a charge for $88.97 on my bank statement…When I called, the guy answering the phone had obviously answered the same angry question many, many times: “Why has your company charged $88.97 to my card?” “Because you didn’t cancel your subscription in time,” he said tiredly.
?“Elenor”, in a post to the Ripoff Report

One notable lawsuit has occurred as a result of these articles. Some of the articles about work at home kits specifically advertise things like “work for Google”, or “job openings at Google”. However, Google asserts these claims as false and has taken the case to court, as it is a copyright violation. “Thousands of people have been tricked into sending payment information and being charged hidden fees by questionable operations,” said Google in a statement.

The BBB has received over 3,000 complaints about products such as the ones that Google took offense to. The lawsuit has yet to begin in court, and no date has been set.

Retrieved from “https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=Wikinews_investigates:_Advertisements_disguised_as_news_articles_trick_unknowing_users_out_of_money,_credit_card_information&oldid=4510983”
 

Add These Foods To Your Diet For Acne For Best Results}

Add These Foods to Your Diet for Acne for Best Results

by

Harley Molina

Have you been looking for a way to get rid of your acne without spending a lot of money, time, and frustration on products that don’t really work? Something you might want to look into is a diet for acne. Most dermatologists and doctors ordinarily recommend you go on oral contraceptives or Retinol-type medicines, but these have adverse effects on your body in other regards. But with an acne diet, you don’t have to get a prescription for an expensive medication, and you’re doing the rest of your body a favor, especially your stomach, which is often the first to be affected by harsh chemical prescriptions.

So how should you go about going on a diet for acne? First, there’s certain foods and supplements you need to add to the diet. Here’s some of the best supplements I’ve used for a couple years and have been successful at fending off chronic acne. 1. Dietary vitamin supplements: Two absolute essential supplements I’ve added to my diet are zinc and vitamin c. On a daily basis, I take 50 mg of zinc and 1000 mg of vitamin c. Not only do these keep away my acne, they also help keep me from catching colds and the flu, which is yet another benefit of going on an acne diet.2. Dietary fiber and vitamin-rich foods: If you’re going to successfully diet for acne, you need to add several foods that are rich in fiber to your diet. These include apples and oranges, chiefly, but also blueberries, raspberries, prunes, plums, bananas, and even brown rice. If you can’t get fresh fruit due to the time of year, buying frozen is always a second option, even though it’s not as good as fresh.3. Dietary acne plan: An absolute necessity for a good acne diet is a strong diet plan to help you determine which foods your unique body type needs, and in how high of quantities. There are a couple good acne diet plans I recommend, and none of them cost over $40 apiece. You usually only need one, so don’t worry about buying all the latest fads.

Going on a

diet for acne

will not only boost your self-esteem, it will help you clear up your skin without ever needing to make a doctor’s appointment just to get an expensive prescription. I highly encourage you to check out

easyskintreatment.com/acnefree

, where you can sign up for a free e-letter and free ebook to give you weekly tips on how to get rid of acne.

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Add These Foods to Your Diet for Acne for Best Results}