Fur fans flock to Toronto’s Furnal Equinox 2019

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Fur fans flock to Toronto’s Furnal Equinox 2019

Monday, March 25, 2019

From March 15 to 17, the Canadian city of Toronto played host to the tenth Furnal Equinox, an annual event dedicated to the “furry fandom.” Wikinews attended. Programming ranged from music to gender, science to art, covering dozens of aspects of the varied subculture. The event’s featured guests were visual artists Moth Monarch and Cat-Monk Shiro, as well as the co-owners of US fursuit costume builders Don’t Hug Cacti.

The event raised nearly CDN$11,000 for Pet Patrol, a non-profit rescue organization in Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario, run by volunteers. This exceeded their goal of $10,000, the funds needed to finish a rural sanctuary. The furry community is well-known for their charitable efforts. Along with direct donations, the funds were raised through a charity auction offering original artwork, and a fursuit design by guests of honour “Don’t Hug Cacti.” Last year, Furnal Equinox raised funds for a farm animal sanctuary.

While only 10–15% of people within the fandom own a fursuit according to a 2011 study, event organizers reported this year 908 of the 2240 attendees at Furnal Equinox brought at least one elaborate outfit to the event. The outfits are usually based on original characters, known as “fursonas”.

Guests of Honour Cherie and Sean O’Donnell, known within the community as “Lucky and Skuff Coyote”, held a session on fursuit construction on Saturday afternoon. The married couple are among the most prominent builders in the fandom, under the name Don’t Hug Cacti. The scale of their business was evident, as Sean had made over a thousand pairs of “handpaws”, costume gloves.

The couple encouraged attendees to continue developing their technique, sharing that all professional fursuit makers had developed different techniques. They felt that they learned more from failed projects than successful ones, citing the Chuck Jones quote that “every artist has thousands of bad drawings,” and that you have to work through them to achieve. Cherie, known as Lucky, recalled receiving a Sylvester the Cat plush toy from a Six Flags theme park at age 10. She promptly hollowed the toy out, turning it into a costume. Creating a costume isn’t without its hazards: the company uses 450°F (232°C) glue guns. They’re “like sticking your hand in an oven.”

Other programming included improv comedy, dances, life drawing of fursuiters, a review of scientific research by a research group at four universities called FurScience, a pin collector’s social, and workshops in writing.

The “Dealer’s Den” hall was expanded this year, with even more retailers and artists. While many offered “furry” versions of traditional products, at least one business focused on “pushing the boundaries of fursuit technology.” Along with 3D printing a bone-shaped name tag when Wikinews visited, Grivik was demonstrating miniature computer screens that could be used as “eyes” for a fursuit. The electronic displays projected an animation of eyes looking around, blinking occasionally. The maker has also developed “a way to install a camera inside suit heads, to improve fursuiter visibility.” He hopes the tech would reduce suiting risks and accidents. Without the need for eyeholes, fursuit makers would have “more options for building different eyestyles.”

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Atlanta Thrashers sold to True North Sports and Entertainment, moving to Winnipeg

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Atlanta Thrashers sold to True North Sports and Entertainment, moving to Winnipeg

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Fifteen years after the Winnipeg Jets left the province of Manitoba, Canada, an announcement on Tuesday made official what ice hockey fans have been anticipating: The National Hockey League’s (NHL) Atlanta Thrashers are moving to Winnipeg. The Thrashers, who have been a target for relocation rumors amid the ownership struggles and financial losses, will leave Atlanta after eleven seasons there in the highest-level professional ice hockey league in North America. The deal, which was finalized early in the morning Tuesday, has just one step to climb: a vote by the NHL’s Board of Governors, which will take up the matter at their June 21 meeting.

Atlanta Spirit Group, LLC. (ASG), who owned the Thrashers—and continues to own both the Atlanta Hawks of the National Basketball Association, as well as Philips Arena, the arena both teams occupied—completed the sale to Winnipeg investor group True North Sports & Entertainment Ltd. The Thrashers will move into their new home arena, MTS Centre in Winnipeg. ASG has also been trying to find buyers for the Atlanta Hawks as well as Philips Arena. NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman, who also presided over the league when the Jets left Winnipeg in 1996, has stated the Thrashers will remain in the Southeast Division for at least the 2011-12 season, after which time the NHL is expected to shuffle teams between the Western and Eastern conferences to move the Thrashers to the West, to play with other teams in western North America. The two teams situated in the Western Conference which reside in the Eastern Time Zone, the Detroit Red Wings and Columbus Blue Jackets, as well as the Nashville Predators are considered favorites to be moved into the Eastern Conference when this happens.

The city of Winnipeg, which has been ready and waiting for an NHL franchise since the Jets relocated to Glendale, Arizona and became the Phoenix Coyotes in 1996, is already host to a team in the second-tier American Hockey League, the Manitoba Moose. During the announcement Tuesday, True North stated that they were starting a season ticket drive. They also announced that they have yet to choose a name for the new team.

The Thrashers are not the first franchise that True North has set its sights on in regards to acquiring an NHL team. The Coyotes, which have been owned by the league since the previous owners filed for bankruptcy in 2009, was highly sought-after by True North in the past few years in an attempt to literally “return the Jets to Winnipeg”. In early May, the Glendale City Council approved a measure to pay $25 million to the league, to cover their operating expenses for the next year in order to keep the team in the city.

This is not the first time an NHL franchise has been relocated north of the border from the #8-ranked media market in the United States; in 1980, the Atlanta Flames moved to Calgary, Alberta, becoming the Calgary Flames. Atlanta was later granted an expansion franchise in 1997, and the Thrashers took the ice to start the 1999-00 NHL season. In the 11 seasons the Thrashers spent in Atlanta, they made the playoffs only once; in the 2006-07 season, they reached the Eastern Conference quarterfinals, where they were swept in the best-of-seven series by the New York Rangers in four straight games.

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Chantelle wins Celebrity Big Brother

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Chantelle wins Celebrity Big Brother

Friday, January 27, 2006

Chantelle Houghton has won the British reality TV show Celebrity Big Brother. Michael Barrymore came in second place.

Houghton, 22, was the only non-celebrity on the show and was given a secret mission for four days by Big Brother to convince the other housemates she was a member of the fictional band “Kandy Floss”.

The television show, aired on Channel 4 in the United Kingdom is a spin off of the popular series shown around the world. This series of the show started on 5 January 2006 and lasted for 23 days. There were 11 housemates, six of whom were evicted on the 27 January 2006.

Unknown to either the audience nor the winner until her exit interview, Houghton won £25,000 for winning the show and not being a Celebrity.

Also evicted on the 27th were:

Posted on June 10th, 2019 by oY55iZ

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US Justice Department to withdraw Stevens charges

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US Justice Department to withdraw Stevens charges

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

The United Stated Department of Justice has asked for corruption charges against former Alaska Senator Ted Stevens to be dropped because evidence was withheld from the defense team by the original prosecutors. The Justice Department has stated that they will not retry Stevens.

In a statement, US Attorney General Eric Holder said, “After careful review, I have concluded that certain information should have been provided to the defense for use at trial. In light of this conclusion, and in consideration of the totality of the circumstances of this particular case, I have determined that it is in the interest of justice to dismiss the indictment and not proceed with a new trial.”

Stevens was convicted in October on seven felony counts of lying on senate disclosure forms about gifts, largely in the form of free renovations to his home, received from an oil service company; his conviction is thought to have been a large factor in his November electoral defeat to former Anchorage mayor Mark Begich, the current junior Senator from Alaska. Stevens immediately appealed his conviction and has maintained his innocence.

The prosecution case has met with a number of procedural difficulties, with US District Court judge Emmet G. Sullivan holding the prosecution in contempt in March for failing to turn over documents concerning an FBI whistleblower’s reports of mishandling of the case. The Justice Department has since replaced the case’s prosecutors, and the allegations of misconduct have held up sentencing from the original convictions.

The filed papers indicate that notes were never turned over from an interview that has the oil contractor estimated the house renovation for far less then he specified at trial.

The original trial team was removed, but in the end Attorney General Eric Holder thought it would be best if the case was dropped. NPR’s source indicate that Holder wish to forcefully transmit that prosecutorial misconduct will not be tolerated. The trying prosecutors are under investigation by the Justice Department for their conduct in the matter.

Stevens, now 85, served as Alaska’s Senator from 1968 to 2009.

Posted on June 7th, 2019 by oY55iZ

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British Airways and Iberia sign merger deal

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British Airways and Iberia sign merger deal

Friday, April 9, 2010

British Airways (BA) and the Spanish airline Iberia have signed a merger deal, which will create one of the largest air carrier groups in the world.

The two announced the merger yesterday, and said that the deal, which has been expected for a long time, is to be implemented by the end of 2010. The move will make a group with a market value of US$8 billion. The deal has been negotiated since July 2008.

Under the plan, both companies keep their own brands and operations, but will be owned by International Airlines Group, a new holding company. It will be listed in London, but taxed in Spain.

The airlines believe the merger will save $530 million annually. In February, BA reported a loss of $102.4 million for the final three quarters of 2009, whilst Iberia posted an operating loss of $629 million.

Meanwhile, investors in BA will receive an IAG share for every BA share they own, and stockholders in Iberia 1.0205 shares for each share in the Spanish airline; thus, BA shareholders will take 55% of IAG.

“The merged company will provide customers with a larger combined network,” commented BA chief executive Willie Walsh. “It will also have greater potential for further growth by optimising the dual hubs of London and Madrid and providing continued investment in new products and services.”

Meanwhile, Iberia chief executive Antonio Vázquez remarked: “This is an important step in creating one of the world’s leading global airlines that will be better equipped to compete with other major airlines and participate in future industry consolidation.”

Independent aviation specialist James Halstead said he believed the merger was necessary for BA to remain competitive amongst other European air carriers. “BA’s unique position at Heathrow could help it survive for a short while, but in the long run it needs more than just Heathrow. The main point of the Iberia deal is to be able to cut costs and put the combined company in the position that Air France-KLM and Lufthansa are already in,” he said, quoted by The Independent.

Posted on June 5th, 2019 by oY55iZ

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Spain to vote on EU constitution

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Spain to vote on EU constitution

Sunday, February 20, 2005

Madrid – Spain today will be the first of the European Union nations over the next few years to vote on the treaty establishing a EU constitution. The referendum being held, one of 9 confirmed by member countries, is expected to draw 40 to 50% of Spain’s 35 million voters.

Polling stations have been opening since 0800 UTC, with a small stream of people casting their ballot. The question on the ballot paper is:

“¿Aprueba usted el Tratado por el que se establece una Constitución para Europa?” (“Do you approve the treaty establishing a constitution for Europe?”)

It is expected that a yes vote will come from the referendum, though the referendum is non-binding, with parliament having the final say.

However, despite constant media bombardment, as many as 90% of Spaniards are unsure of the content of the constitution, according to a government poll.

Spain has been a member of the European Union since 1986 and has received large amounts of development grants and subsidies. Since joining, it has grown into one of biggest economies in Europe and the world.

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Posted on May 29th, 2019 by oY55iZ

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US Nazi leader talks about Barack Obama, the economy and more

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US Nazi leader talks about Barack Obama, the economy and more

Saturday, November 22, 2008

The National Socialist Movement is, according to its website, the largest and most active Nazi party in the United States. Accordingly, it refers to itself as ‘America’s Nazi Party’ and aims to instigate major change in the US.

Wikinews was able to conduct an interview with the head of the party, Commander Jeff Schoep. Fresh back from a march in Missouri, Commander Schoep told Wikinews his views on Barack Obama, the economy and much more.

Read the full exclusive interview below:

Posted on May 29th, 2019 by oY55iZ

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Bush crashes his bike into Scottish police officer

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Bush crashes his bike into Scottish police officer

Thursday, July 7, 2005

U.S. President George W. Bush crashed his mountain bike into an unfortunate police officer in Scotland.

Mr. Bush, who celebrated his 59th birthday last night was cycling on a bike around the Gleneagles Hotel, where he is staying for the 31st G8 summit, when he, perhaps partially due to the bad weather, crashed into one of the police officers responsible for his and the other leaders’ safety.

The officer had to be taken to the hospital having suffered a twisted ankle whilst Mr. Bush, who was wearing a helmet, only suffered minor bruises despite landing on asphalt. The president had to return to the hotel by van because the bike was too badly damaged.

Bush has been involved in two similar accidents during his presidency. In 2003, he fell off a Segway personal transporter, and in 2004, he fell off a mountain bike.

Posted on May 27th, 2019 by oY55iZ

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Software giant Adobe Systems to acquire Magento Commerce for US$1.68 billion

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Software giant Adobe Systems to acquire Magento Commerce for US$1.68 billion

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

On Monday, San Jose, California, US-based software company Adobe Systems announced their plans to acquire California-based e-commerce handling web service Magento Commerce for 1.68 billion US dollars (USD). After Adobe made the announcement via their official website, Adobe’s stocks rose by around one percent, ending Monday extended trading at USD 238.10 per share.

Magento provides services for the creation of digital ads and handling of online transactions. Magento’s services are used by Nestlé, Coca-Cola, Warner Music, and Canon. The acquisition, which is expected to take place in the third fiscal quarter of this year, is to be an all-cash deal. Adobe is to acquire Magento from Permira equity firm. In 2015, Permira bought Magento from eBay, an eCommerce website. Adobe, in their official statement, said, “Magento Commerce Cloud will enable commerce to be seamlessly integrated into the Adobe Experience Cloud”.

Adobe also announced a buyback of shares worth USD eight billion by 2021. Magento’s CEO Mark Lavelle said, “Adobe and Magento share a vision for the future of digital experiences that brings together Adobe’s strength in content and data with Magento’s open commerce innovation […] We’re excited to join Adobe and believe this will be a great opportunity for our customers, partners and developer community”.

After the announcement, stocks of Magento’s competitors Shopify, Inc dropped by about 4.8%. They finished extended trading at USD 137.60 after the announcement.

Posted on May 26th, 2019 by oY55iZ

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European Union rejects software patents; starts new process

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European Union rejects software patents; starts new process

Thursday, February 3, 2005Despite assurances from the European Commissioner for the Internal Market Charles McCreevy that the Council would adopt its controversial Common Position text covering Software Patents, members voted to restart the entire process with a new directive.

MEP Michel Rocard noted several “inelegancies” by the Commission in his speech against the directive, such as not taking into account any of the Parliament’s substantive amendments in its recommendation to the Council. He also took the Dutch and German governments to task for ignoring their respective parliaments. The Irish Presidency’s sponsorship by Microsoft was also criticised, as were the attempted ratifications at fishery Council meetings.

There was also confusion over the actual effects of the proposed directive with industry players confirming that the Council text allowed pure software patents, while the Commission claimed it would not.

“In the debate, broad agreement prevailed over the fact that the current proposal was counter-productive and far from a good basis for a decision,” said Italian MEP Monica Frassoni.

The computer-implemented inventions directive was voted down by members of European Parliament (MEP) in the legal affairs committee. 19 MEPs voted in favour of re-starting negotiations, 2 against with one abstention.

Posted on May 26th, 2019 by oY55iZ

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