Article 13 EU countries approve copyright directive

first_img Share your voice Internet Services Tech Industry Tags The EU has adopted Article 13, among other reforms. Jaap Arriens/NurPhoto via Getty Images European countries approved sweeping reforms to copyright law on Monday after the European Parliament voted to adopt the new legislation last month.The EU Copyright Directive will protect and govern how copyrighted content posted online, bringing outdated rules up to scratch for the internet age. The law has been hotly debated both by politicians and the wider tech community, with some of the world’s biggest companies taking a strong stance against the legislation — in particular a section known as Article 13.Article 13 dictates that anyone sharing copyrighted content must get permission from rights owners — or at least have made the best possible effort to get permission — before doing so. In order to do this, it’s thought that internet services and social networks will have no choice but to build and enforce upload filters and generally apply a more heavy-handed approach to moderating what users post online.For proponents of digital rights, the approval of the directive comes as a huge blow after over a year of campaigning to uphold what they see as the integrity of the internet. Following the European Parliament vote in March, there was hope that enough key countries might try to block the directive that it wouldn’t pass, but ultimately it didn’t face enough opposition on a national level (all EU legislation faces a final vote by member states before it can pass into law).Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, Finland and Sweden voted against adopting the directive, whereas Belgium, Estonia and Slovenia abstained. In total 19 countries voted to approve the legislation.”This is a deeply disappointing result which will have a far-reaching and negative impact on freedom of speech and expression online,” said Catherine Stihler, chief executive of rights group the Open Knowledge Foundation in a statement. “The controversial crackdown was not universally supported, and I applaud those national governments which took a stand and voted against it.”But not every was disappointed by Monday’s result. A coalition of organizations representing news publishers in Europe celebrated the adoption of the directive. “This important reform will help make the EU copyright regime fit for the digital age without stifling digital innovation,” said Christian Van Thillo, chairman of the European Publishers Council in a statement.center_img 2 Commentslast_img read more

Huge wildfire burns homes in Chile

first_imgA wildfire ravaged woods and burned 100 homes in the hilly Chilean port city of Valparaiso on Monday, forcing authorities to evacuate hundreds of people.At least 19 people were reported hurt after the fire broke out on the outskirts of the historic city, the government said.Television pictures showed thick grey smoke filling the streets in the Laguna Verde district, where the blaze struck, and flames devouring green hillsides.Hundreds of firefighters along with water-dumping airplanes and helicopters were battling the blaze, officials said.“Emergency protocols have been activated,” President Michelle Bachelet said on Twitter.The flames had “damaged 100 homes in an area where there are 500,” deputy interior minister Mahmud Aleuy told a news conference late Monday.He said 19 people were hurt, mostly by breathing in smoke, but there were no fatalities.The flames destroyed 50 hectares (123 acres) of woodland, the National Emergencies Office said in a statement.Fanned by strong winds in hot summer weather, the fire broke out in the hilly region that makes Valparaiso a picturesque tourist destination.Some 200 people were evacuated from their homes as a precaution, the agency added.“The fire was coming from the other side of the hill, down below. We never thought it would spread so far,” said Rosa Gallardo, a woman who lost her home in the fire.“It was hopeless. The smoke was suffocating. It stung my eyes. So we had to evacuate,” said Pablo Luna Flores, another resident who lost his home.Electricity providers said they had cut power to nearly 48,000 customers also as a precaution.The authorities issued a maximum red alert.Located 120 kilometers (75 miles) northwest of the capital Santiago, Valparaiso is home to Chile’s national Congress.Laguna Verde lies on the southern outskirts of Valparaiso, a sprawling city built on 40 hills with stunning sea views.Dubbed the “jewel of the Pacific,” the picturesque colonial city is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.Thousands of tourists come every year to stroll its narrow cobbled streets and ride cable cars up the steep hills.Wildfires killed 15 people in 2014 and destroyed thousands of homes in the area, particularly in the city’s poorer neighborhoods.The wooden structures with their tin roofs, perched on tinder-dry hillsides, were quickly engulfed in that fire.More blazes in March 2015 killed one woman and forced thousands of people from their homes.The city is home to 270,000 people overall, many living in brightly colored houses on the hillsides.In its heyday from the mid-19th century to the early 20th, Valparaiso became famous as a stopover point for ships steaming down to the continent’s southern tip and on to the Atlantic.The opening of the Panama Canal in 1914 prompted a spectacular drop in traffic to Valparaiso and an end to the port’s glory days.It now relies heavily on tourism, and living standards are lower than the average in Chile.last_img read more

All Good Friday Roads Lead to Calvary

first_imgBy Rev. Dorothy S. Boulware, Special to the AFROGood Friday is the day Christians gather to corporately commemorate the suffering of Jesus Christ on the cross to seal humankind’s redemption in God’s eternal plan. And gather they do in all corners of the world, noon to three o’clock, with worship, word and prayer. “Despite our earnest efforts, we couldn’t climb all the way up to God. So what did God do? In an amazing act of condescension, on Good Friday, God climbed down to us, became one with us,” theologian William H. Willimon wrote in his book, Thank God It’s Friday. “The story of divine condescension begins on Christmas and ends on Good Friday.”(Stock Photo)So in most denominations there is some gathering on Good Friday, following the Maundy Thursday or Holy Thursday service marking the giving of the commandment to love one another. At the end of the service that can involve foot washing, the altars are cleared of all decorative array and all is bared to prepare the sanctuary to represent the stark reality of Good Friday.“The  corporate observance allows us to share in a real way the meaning of Good Friday, i.e. the love of God that transcends all reason and took him to self-sacrifice on an old rugged cross.  The community observance gives us shared time to reflect on, react to, and re-embrace the awe-inspiring grace of God that reaches out from Calvary in a way that we can scarcely apprehend,” said the Rev. Dr. Bertha Borum, pastor emeritus, St. John’s Transformation Baptist Church. “The world offers no observance that causes us to pause and take this all in.  Only our corporate celebrations give us an experiential reminder of the depths of Jesus’ love and sacrifice for us.  It quickens our faith and helps us to soldier on with renewed determination individually and as a community of faith.”And the Rev. Clarinda Burston, pastor of Miracle Church of Baltimore, said we need it now more than ever before. “The observance of Good Friday helps us to never forget the series of events that led up to the resurrection,” Rev. Burston said. “Within the spectrum of present day societal differences we must remain true and committed to what we believe and express that belief openly without apologizing. Good Friday observance helps us to do just that.”Aside from the preaching of the seven last sayings of Jesus, not much has escaped iteration and cultural update, including the length of the service. As women have gained more liberty in ministry, they have emerged from signature preachers to filling the entire pulpit roster of the day. Young people who are still ministers in training are being scheduled by their pastors to engage the word at a time more suitable for them, midnight, and most of these services are totally filled.When our grandparents went to church on Good Friday morning, there was no expectation of returning before the dinner hour, and everyone in the household was mandated to attend.But the all-day service has morphed into a one-hour express Calvary experience, some early in the morning, others in the evening. And yes, in most cities, services can be found throughout the day.The day traditionally ends with a fish dinner supplied by the host church with all the accoutrements sure to crash the Lenten fast.Some of the Baltimore services:*First Apostolic Faith Church of Jesus Christ. 27 S. Caroline Street. 21231. 7 pm. – 7 Women 7 Words*Gillis Memorial Christian Community Church. 3016 Park Heights Ave. 12 noon*Greater Harvest Baptist Church. 1617 W. Saratoga Street. 21223. 8:30 a.m.*New Shiloh Baptist Church. 2100 W. Monroe Street. 21217. 12 noon*St. John AME Church. 810 N. Carrollton Avenue. 21217 – 7 Women 7 Words*Shiloh Christian Community Church. 825 Yale Avenue. 21229. 7 p.m.last_img read more

Another way for stellarmass black holes to grow larger

first_img , Astrophysical Journal , arXiv A trio of researchers with The University of Hong Kong, Academia Sinica Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics in Taiwan and Northwestern University in the U.S., has come up with an alternative theory to explain how some stellar-mass black holes can grow bigger than others. In their paper published in The Astrophysical Journal Letters, Shu-Xu Yi, K.S. Cheng and Ronald Taam describe their theory and how it might work. Citation: Another way for stellar-mass black holes to grow larger (2018, August 17) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-08-stellar-mass-black-holes-larger.html Since the initial detection of gravitational waves three years ago, five more detections have been observed—and five of the total have been traced back to emissions created by two stellar-mass black holes merging. The sixth was attributed to neutron stars merging. As part of their studies of such detections, space researchers have been surprised by the size of the stellar-mass black holes producing the gravity waves—they were bigger than other stellar-mass black holes. Their larger size has thus far been explained by the theory that they grew larger because they began their lives as stars that contained very small amounts of metal—stars with traces of metals would retain most of their mass because they produce weaker solar winds. In this new effort, the researchers suggest another possible way for stellar-mass black holes to grow larger than normal.The new theory starts out by noting that some supermassive black holes at the hearts of galaxies are surrounded by a disk of gas and dust. In such galaxies, there are often stars lying just outside the disk—stars that could evolve to become stellar-mass black holes. The researchers suggest that it is possible that sometimes, pairs of these stars wind up in the disk as they evolve into black holes. Such stellar-mass black holes would pull in material from the disk, causing them to grow larger. The researchers note that if such a scenario were to play out, it is also possible that the two merging stars could wind up with a synchronized spin resulting in a stellar-mass black hole that produces more gravity waves than if the spins had not been synchronized, making them easier for researchers to spot. More information: Shu-Xu Yi et al. The Growth of Stellar Mass Black Hole Binaries Trapped in the Accretion Disks of Active Galactic Nuclei, The Astrophysical Journal (2018). DOI: 10.3847/2041-8213/aac649 , On Arxiv: https://arxiv.org/abs/1805.07026AbstractAmong the four black hole (BH) binary merger events detected by the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO), six progenitor BHs have masses greater than 20 M ⊙. The existence of such massive BHs suggests that extreme metal-poor stars are the progenitors. An alternative possibility, that a pair of stellar mass BHs each with mass ~7 M ⊙ increases to >20 M ⊙ via accretion from a disk surrounding a supermassive BH (SMBH) in an active galactic nucleus (AGN), is considered. The growth of mass of the binary and the transfer of orbital angular momentum to the disk accelerates the merger. Based on the recent numerical work of Tang et al., it is found that, in the disk of a low-mass AGN with mass ~106 M ⊙ and Eddington ratio >0.01, the mass of an individual BH in the binary can grow to >20 M ⊙ before coalescence, provided that accretion takes place at a rate more than 10 times the Eddington value. This mechanism predicts a new class of gravitational wave (GW) sources involving the merger of two extreme Kerr black holes associated with AGNs and a possible electromagnetic wave counterpart. Journal information: Astrophysical Journal Letterscenter_img Explore further Image: Black hole bounty captured in the center of the Milky Way © 2018 Phys.org This artist’s impression shows a binary system containing a stellar-mass black hole called IGR J17091-3624, or IGR J17091 for short. The strong gravity of the black hole, on the left, is pulling gas away from a companion star on the right. This gas forms a disk of hot gas around the black hole, and the wind is driven off this disk. Credit: NASA/CXC/M.Weiss This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more