5 New Year’s Resolutions for Your Vehicle

first_imgShare on Facebook Tweet on Twitter The Anatomy of Fear Please enter your name here TAGSAutomobileNew Year’s ResolutionsNew Years 2019 Previous articleBiggest Story of 2018: Nelson elected Mayor of ApopkaNext articleA dream for more in South Apopka Denise Connell RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Support conservation and fish with NEW Florida specialty license plate Please enter your comment! You have entered an incorrect email address! Please enter your email address here Free webinar for job seekers on best interview answers, hosted by Goodwill June 11 New Years 2019At the beginning of the year, people tend to make new year’s resolutions, the tradition is one that has been around for about 4,000 years, since the Babylonians. While often times our resolutions are health or even finance-related, there are other things that we can improve in our lives as well, like taking care of our house or even our car. Cars are a big investment and we rely heavily on the ability to drive places, so here are 5 new year’s resolutions for your vehicle you should try in 2019.1. Check-upsLike us humans visit our doctors for regular check-ups and physicals, our vehicles need regular maintenance too. This includes replacing filters, getting oil changes, adding performance and fuel enhancements and cleaners, rotating and balancing the tires, checking fluid levels and more. Doing maintenance like this extends the life of your vehicle, keeps your gas mileage high, and reduces emissions, which protects our environment. In the long run, regular check-ups save you money. as it reduces the amount of unexpected repairs you might experience.2. CleaningsOur cars need regular cleaning. Washing the outside of the car and applying the proper protectants keeps the paint looking shiny and new and cleaning the interior windows, dashes, and upholstery keeps our vehicle in good condition.3. Drive SafelyOne of the most important things for our personal health is being safe. It’s obvious, but our car’s personal health is dependent upon us being a safe driver. Whether it means following the speed limit, being observant of others around us, paying attention to the road, not using devices while driving, or even not driving in hazardous conditions when possible, being a safe driver means that our cars maintain their beautiful physique and everyone inside remains safe and intact.4. Know Your VehicleAgain, your car is a big investment, so get to know it. This plays into the previous three resolutions – knowing your vehicle makes maintaining the car easier for the owner. Know your car’s history, abide by the instructions in the manual, keep records of work done on your car. Paying attention to the way your car functions and knowing when something seems off can help you deal with any repairs needed and possibly even save you money if a problem is recognized early on.5. Let it Go (if necessary)While we may be get attached to our vehicle, know when its time to say goodbye. If the cost of maintenance and repairs are more than the actual value of the car, then it’s time to find a new vehicle and stop wasting money. Buying a new vehicle will not only often save you money in gas, but also in maintenance and repair costs. In some cases, it may even lower the cost of your insurance. LEAVE A REPLY Cancel reply Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.last_img read more

Accountants urged to give good tax-effective giving advice

first_imgThe Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (‘ICAEW’) has joined forces with The Giving Campaign to urge chartered accountants to advise their clients on tax-effective ways of giving to charity.A free report has been produced by The Giving Campaign to help raise awareness amongst professional advisers of the tax-effective giving methods and to enable them to provide appropriate information to clients. ‘Making Gifts Go Further’ is a comprehensive guide to tax-effective giving,providing explanations of Gift Aid, Payroll Giving, Share Giving, Charitable Trusts and Legacies. Simon Williams, Campaign Manager, The Giving Campaign, said: “The Giving Campaign is working to encourage all professional advisers to give advice to clients about the tax implications of their charitable donations. We see no reason why advice on tax-effective giving should not become a regular component of the financial planning process. With so many people supporting charity on a regular basis, it makes sense for advisers to recognise giving as a mainstream activity and prompt clients about their charitable intentions.” Advertisement Accountants urged to give good tax-effective giving advice Howard Lake | 30 October 2003 | News AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to EmailEmailShare to WhatsAppWhatsAppShare to MessengerMessengerShare to MoreAddThis  31 total views,  1 views today AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to EmailEmailShare to WhatsAppWhatsAppShare to MessengerMessengerShare to MoreAddThiscenter_img David Illingworth, President of the ICAEW, commented: “The accountancy profession is in a position to make a real difference – by promoting tax-effective giving to clients we can help to increase the income to charities, while educating clients about the tax relief they are entitled to. I would urge all our members to discuss with clients the tax implications of their charitable gifts.”The Giving Campaign recommends that regular client ‘fact-find’ sheets include a simple question on charitable giving, encouraging a more holistic approach to the financial planning needs of clients. By prompting clients to consider charity, accountants can extend discussions to build a deeper understanding and strengthen relationships with those clients.‘Making Gifts Go Further’ is available at no charge from The Giving Campaign. About Howard Lake Howard Lake is a digital fundraising entrepreneur. Publisher of UK Fundraising, the world’s first web resource for professional fundraisers, since 1994. Trainer and consultant in digital fundraising. Founder of Fundraising Camp and co-founder of GoodJobs.org.uk. Researching massive growth in giving. Tagged with: Finance Giving/Philanthropylast_img read more

Kansas Station the First to Offer E15

first_img SHARE By Andy Eubank – Jul 11, 2012 Previous articleFarm Service Agency Reporting Deadline Quickly ApproachingNext articlePossible Uses for that Drought Damaged Corn Andy Eubank The nation’s first E15 gallons are now being sold at a Zarco 66 gas station in Lawrence, Kansas. Plans are nearly complete to offer E15 at a second retail station, the Zarco 66 in Ottawa, Kansas. According to the Renewable Fuels Association the blend of 15-percent ethanol and 85-percent gasoline will sell for less than E10 and gasoline not containing ethanol given present market conditions. Scott Zaremba – owner of Zarco 66 stations – says alternatives to gasoline are critically important to the nation’s energy future. He adds that Americans deserve to have a choice of cost-competitive fuel at the pump. With the help of the Kansas Corn Commission, East Kansas Agri-Energy and RFA – Zaremba says they are pleased to be the first to offer consumers real choice at the pump in the form of E15.Zaremba blends Zarco 66 fuel options right at each of his stations. Using blender pumps – he allows consumers to choose the fuel option that is best for them and their vehicle. Pumps that offer E15 will also offer E10 and other ethanol blends. RFA President and CEO Bob Dinneen says Americans – by a margin of three to one – are clamoring for real choices at the pump. He says the roll out and adoption of E15 is the first step in delivering Americans the choice they want and deserve.The Environmental Protection Agency gave final approval for the sale of E15 on June 8th. East Kansas Agri-Energy General Manager Steve Gardner says the expansion of the ethanol market will mean more jobs in rural America, stronger markets for domestically-produced renewable fuels and greater opportunity for new ethanol technologies in development today.Source: NAFB News Service Facebook Twitter Kansas Station the First to Offer E15 Home Energy Kansas Station the First to Offer E15 SHARE Facebook Twitterlast_img read more

REVEALED: CROOKED BISHOP CONDUCTED SHAM MARRIAGES IN DONEGAL

first_imgGuilty: Pat BuckleyA CROOKED bishop convicted of carrying out illegal marriages conducted three of the sham ceremonies here in Donegal, we can reveal.Pat Buckley, who is 61, was excommunicated by the Catholic Church more than a decade ago and now operates an independent church. He was given a suspended jail term after he admitted his involvement in sham marriages when he appeared in court in Belfast.Buckley, of Princes Gardens, Larne, was given a three and a half year jail sentence, suspended for three years after admitting 14 charges of conspiracy to defraud.He performed marriage ceremonies between illegal immigrants from Asia and Portugese women. He charged €400 plus expenses and conducted three of the marriages here in County Donegal.Sentencing him, the judge told him: “What you did was wrong. You committed a series of serious crimes which you did for a financial reward.”“Nothing can disguise the fact that you, as someone who professed to be a man of God and who should have been setting an example to others of how to behave, let yourself down, let your ministry down and betrayed the trust of all those to whom you should have been providing leadership and guidance.“The loss of your reputation is bound to have hit you hard.”An organised crime detective said the sentencing marked the culmination of an investigation that “spanned three continents and has lasted over four years”.“This investigation uncovered the systematic abuse of the EU immigration system in which criminals, some from a professional background, provided false documentation for work permits,” said PSNI detective Andrea McMullan.Speaking after his sentencing, Buckley said he felt a “strong sense of compassion for those who must live outside the EU in profound poverty and appalling circumstances”.“I am glad that the judge and the prosecution accept that I have provided solace to the outcasts and that my door is always open to the downtrodden.“I am sorry for allowing my compassion to bring me to the point of breaking the law – the laws that our society agree upon.“I did not intend to offend my fellow citizens, but I accept that I have, and again for that I want to say that I am sorry.”REVEALED: CROOKED BISHOP CONDUCTED SHAM MARRIAGES IN DONEGAL was last modified: December 22nd, 2013 by John2Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:BishopconvictedcrookPat Buckleylast_img read more

John Downey remanded in custody after extradition

first_imgJohn Downey has been remanded in custody charged with the murders of two UDR soldiers, after being extradited from the Republic of Ireland.The 67 year old Creeslough man appeared before Omagh Magistrates Court on Saturday. Downey was first detained in the Republic of Ireland in October 2018 under a European arrest warrant.He fought extradition but lost his most recent appeal, and handed himself in to Gardaí (Irish police) on Friday.Downey is wanted by prosecutors in connection with the murders of UDR soldiers Alfred Johnston, 32 and a father of four, and James Eames 33, a father of three.Both were killed in a bomb attack in Enniskillen in 1972.Mr Downey is also accused of aiding and abetting an explosion.The BBC reports that a crowd of supporters, including Sinn Fein representatives, gathered outside the court ahead of the hearing.A Detective Chief Inspector told the court police would be objecting to bail as they viewed Mr Downey as a flight risk.He pointed to the defendant’s repeated attempts to appeal the extradition order.“The police view would be the defendant is reluctant to face justice,” he said.In 2013, Mr Downey was charged with murdering four Royal Household Cavalry men in a bombing at London’s Hyde Park in 1982.The case dramatically collapsed after it emerged the defendant had a letter of assurance from the former Prime Minister Tony Blair that he was not actively wanted by the authorities.In court on Saturday, the Detective Chief Inspector said that following the collapse of the Hyde Park bombing trial in 2014, the families of those killed in the incident had launched civil proceedings against Mr Downey.He told the court that Mr Downey subsequently transferred assets including land from his name to his wife’s name.A solicitor acting for the defendant said his client had handed himself in to Gardaí by agreement and had fully complied with previous bail conditions in 2013 and 2014.He described the land transfers as a “red herring”, and said his client was a man of ill health.Judge Michael Ranaghan said he envisaged a “long and protracted” legal process ahead.But said he found the defendant did pose a flight risk and so bail was refused.The judge told Mr Downey he can appeal his decision to the High Court, before ordering him to appear again in court on the 25 October.John Downey remanded in custody after extradition was last modified: October 12th, 2019 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:CreesloughdonegalJohn Downeylast_img read more

North Star Is Rapidly Changing

first_imgThe North Star (Polaris) has brightened by 150% since Ptolemy observed it 2000 years ago, says the American Astronomical Society (see report on Science Now).  If the differences from those in ancient times are real, “these changes are 100 times larger than predicted by current theories of stellar evolution.”  Polaris is also a pulsating Cepheid variable, but its pulses have been erratic lately.  One astronomer surmises, “Polaris may be experiencing a rare and rapidly changing period in its evolution.”Finding the North Star is a required skill for any northern-hemisphere camper.  It is also a conversation starter on how much science can know about processes that supposedly take billions of years.(Visited 7 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Maine Gets Another Passive House Multifamily Project

first_imgThe Largest Passivhaus Building in the U.S.Multifamily Passivhaus Project Starts in OregonPassivhaus Apartment Complex Would be a GiantPassivhaus Townhouses Are Underway in PhiladelphiaA Passivhaus Multifamily in Maine Nears Completion RELATED ARTICLES Passive House, but no room for frillsPassive House construction necessarily includes more insulation than conventional buildings, high-quality windows, and careful air-sealing, all of which can easily drive up costs. To stay within strict budget guidelines, Bayside developers looked for ways to trim unnecessary building elements — and that started with parking. Arguing that area residents owned fewer vehicles than average, developers successfully petitioned the city to overlook parking-space requirements that normally would have applied. (The building sits on what was a parking lot).The site is over a layer of marine clay, which is inherently weak. Designers worked to keep the building as light as possible, allowing it to rest on a floating concrete slab without the need to sink pilings for extra support.Project architect Jesse Thompson led a tour of the partially complete building in June, the last such tour on this year’s passivhausMAINE schedule.Interior finishes are simple: painted drywall, vinyl flooring, basic kitchen cabinets. Designers shrank interior hallways to bare minimums, and revisited building details repeatedly to look for potential savings.“The building got simpler and simpler as we went along,” Thompson said.While he and others working on Bayside might have preferred a few more upscale finishes inside, it just wasn’t going to happen with a minimal budget that had been set three years earlier. If kitchens got bargain cabinets with drawers that were stapled together, so be it. “Every dollar in there shows up very quickly,” Thompson said. “There’s no tolerance for glamorous here.”Designers did, however, manage to find enough money to keep vinyl siding off the building’s exterior. Instead, it will get fiber-cement cladding over a ventilated rainscreen gap.On the construction side, Wright-Ryan recognized that the longer builders were on site, the higher construction costs would be. Its construction managers, drawing on their experience at the Brewer Passive House project, looked for ways to speed up the process. They divided the building into sections, each with its own set of deadlines, to improve efficiency. Exterior walls are panelized rather than built on site. Even small steps helped: So workers would not have to sort through stacks of drywall to find the right thickness for a particular application, Wright-Ryan simply specified 5/8-inch wallboard throughout the building.If developers hit the November 21 completion date for the 38,500-square-foot building, it will mean a construction schedule of about 10 months. Many single-family homes, Thompson pointed out, take longer than that. Although construction started in January, Bayside Anchor has been in the works since 2013. That year it won a national competition, sponsored by Deutsche Bank, for innovative designs for affordable housing.Finding ways to cut costs has never been far from the minds of its developers, and efforts have paid off. The building will come in at $142 a square foot, project architect Jesse Thompson told a group touring the building recently, “substantially less” than the norm for new Portland housing. At the same time, residents will be getting the benefits of Passive House construction: low energy bills, high indoor air quality, and a superinsulated building envelope that will keep them comfortable.“You’ve got affordability baked into the building forever,” Thompson said. On November 21, three days before Thanksgiving, developers plan to complete Bayside Anchor, a mixed-use apartment building in Portland, Maine, built to meet the Passive House + 2015 standard on what amounts to a shoestring budget.The 45-unit building, about one-third complete, is located in the city’s Bayside neighborhood, a part of the city carved in half by a 1960s urban renewal project. It will contain mostly affordable one-bedroom apartments, plus a few two-bedroom and studio units. The ground floor also will house an office of the Portland Housing Authority, a Head Start program, and a police substation, making it a community hub and giving it its name, Bayside Anchor.Behind the project are the Portland Housing Authority and Avesta Housing, a private non-profit developer of affordable housing. The $7.6 million project is being financed mainly with low-income housing tax credits through MaineHousing, a state housing agency. The project was designed by Kaplan Thompson Architects of Portland. Wright-Ryan, which earlier this year finished a Passive House multifamily in Brewer, Maine, is the general contractor.center_img The PHIUS standard is ideal for multifamily projectsInsulation R-values may seem low for a Passive House project, but Thompson said that’s because a large multifamily building has proportionally less outside wall area for a given volume than does a single-family house.“People are used to seeing PHIUS + and Passivhaus single-family houses with very large R-values,” he said. “Passivhaus was invented as a multifamily program in Europe. It was not a single-family construction program. The numbers work so well in multifamily. In Germany, the first Passivhaus was a townhouse, and the middle unit in a town house has two walls that face neighbors — they don’t touch the outside air.“You think of a middle floor apartment at Bayside Anchor and it’s got one outside wall. It’s 24 feet long and 8 feet tall,” Thompson continued. “So, thermally, it’s just incredibly easy because your ratio of house to walls is tiny.”Heat loss from the building is one-third through the enclosure, one-third from the ventilation equipment, and one-third though the windows, Thompson said. In a single-family house, the numbers are very different, with ventilation losses only 10% to 15% of the total.As a result , the 75% efficiency for Bayside’s ERVs is very important for overall building performance, especially with something like 2,000 to 2,500 cubic feet of air per minute moving through the building around the clock. With an ERV that efficient, when it’s 0°F outside, and 70°F inside, incoming air is in the mid-50s. It doesn’t take much energy to boost that to the set point. On a 30°F day, incoming air is in the low 60s. “Very little heat is needed to bring it up to a good temperature,” he said. Double-stud walls, and nix the OSBExterior walls consist of a structural 2×6 wall and an inner 2×4 wall with a 1-inch gap between the two. Wall cavities will be insulated with dense-packed cellulose, with a layer of CertainTeed’s MemBrain on the interior to control vapor and air movement.Thompson said that plans call for plywood sheathing on the exterior of the building rather than oriented strand board because plywood is more durable and more weather-tolerant during construction. Seams between sheets of plywood are sealed, and the entire outer surface is treated with a liquid-applied air barrier, Defendair 200, a mostly silicone product made by Dow Corning.When it came to windows, designers considered a range of products before settling on triple-glazed units with PVC frames made by Kohltech, a Canadian manufacturer. Passive House buildings often get European tilt-and-turn windows, but in this case designers chose a mix of casements and fixed-glass units, in part to meet requirements of the Department of Housing and Urban Development.As Thompson explained, Bayside Anchor will be required to provide air conditioning to any tenant who can present proof of a medical need. By using outward-opening casements, a tenant could use an air conditioner that sits on the floor and vents through a plexiglass insert in the window opening, thus meeting the HUD requirement, without installing AC for the whole building or investing in ductless minisplit heat pumps.Windows specs are the same throughout the building, with a solar heat gain coefficient of 0.40. The Kohltech units averaged about $30 per square foot.Other building details:Insulation. In addition to the dense-packed cellulose in the walls (about R-32), there are 8 inches of polyiso rigid insulation on top of the roof deck (R-50), and 3 inches of sub-slab expanded polystyrene. There is no spray foam in the building other than what was used to seal the rim joists between floors.Ventilation. Each floor has two RenewAire energy-recovery ventilators to supply each apartment with fresh air. The units, which operate continuously, are 75% efficient. Kitchens have recirculating hoods that are not vented to the outside.Space heat. Each apartment is heated with strips of electric baseboard that cost a total of $30,000. The bill to heat the entire building is projected at about $5,000 a year, Thompson said.Airtightness. Although the standard for the German Passivhaus standard is 0.6 air changes per hour at a pressure difference of 50 pascals (ach50), the PHIUS + 2015 standard uses a different metric: 0.05 cubic feet per minute per square foot of gross envelope area at 50 pascals. When this is translated to ach50, it becomes 0.37. Need for housing is very strongJay Waterman, development director for the Portland Housing Authority, said that Bayside Anchor will be both a catalyst for more development and a hub for the community. The area was completely changed by construction of Franklin Arterial, a main thoroughfare linking Interstate-295 on the west side of town and upscale Old Port, with its shops and restaurants, on the east.“It was small streets, a grid-patterned working-class neighborhood for many, many years, and then through urban renewal, Franklin cut a swath so the tourists could get over to the Old Port and people were displaced,” Waterman said. “It became more of a service center and industrial and lower income neighborhood, and I would say it’s still on its way up.”The demand for housing is strong in the Portland area. Bayside Anchor, while significant for the neighborhood, won’t put much of a dent in it.“Let’s put it this way,” Waterman said. “There is effectively a 0% vacancy rate in Portland right now and the city would like to have 2,000 more housing units built in the next four years. We’re doing 45, so it’s a real drop in the bucket compared to the demand.”last_img read more

NU, Adamson eye title berths

first_imgFire hits houses in Mandaluyong City Jaja Santiago (No. 3) is expected to be NU’s tower of power as the Lady Bulldogs try to close out Arellano. —SHERWIN VARDELEONAdamson and National University, polar opposites in last year’s UAAP, are in a collision course for the Premier Volleyball League Collegiate Conference crown.Victories today against their respective rivals will pit them against each other in a best-of-five title series.ADVERTISEMENT With the most dominant player in the active scene, Jaja Santiago, NU presents Arellano with more than just an uphill battle for survival.The 21-year-old Santiago said the Lady Bulldogs have set their sights on the title. Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. FEU, Adamson battle for solo third; a win, finally, for either UE or UST Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH BSP sees higher prices in November, but expects stronger peso, low rice costs to put up fight But closing out their semifinal foes is easier said than done. Especially on the part of the Lady Falcons.Adamson, which was never in the title agenda the previous season, is taking on UAAP heavyweight Far Eastern U in Saturday’s Game 2 of their semifinal duel at Filoil Flying V Centre.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutThe powerhouse Tamaraws are expected to pose an intense challenge to the Lady Falcons, who even trailed after three sets before clawing their way to victory in the last two frames, 21-25, 25-22, 20-25, 25-14, 15-8, in Game 1.National U should have an easier path to the finals. LOOK: Loisa Andalio, Ronnie Alonte unwind in Amanpulo for 3rd anniversary LATEST STORIEScenter_img View comments MOST READ Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games Nonong Araneta re-elected as PFF president Fire hits houses in Mandaluyong City Read Next Frontrow holds fun run to raise funds for young cancer patients  Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMClast_img read more

Dez Bryant Upset About How His Hands Have Been Characterized

first_imgIf you forced me to rank things I trust most in sports, it would probably go something like this.Steph Curry from the free throw lineJordan Spieth from 10 feet with the tournament on the lineDez Bryant’s handsSo when Bleacher Report recently posted on Dez badly dropping some passes recently, my interest was piqued.Dez dropped it ? (via @fishsports) https://t.co/KDQjedKEJY— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) August 2, 2016Apparently Dez’s was too.“What (Bleacher Report’s) dumbass don’t understand is the speed level was sky-high,” Bryant told Mike Fisher of 105.3 the Fan in Dallas. “About 60 [MPH]. If it was set on the regular level I woulda caught all of ’em. But that’s not the purpose of the drill. But I guess before their dumbass decides — you can write ‘dumbass’ three times — before they decide they want to make a joke, they need to get all the facts before they come after somebody.”Haha, “you can write ‘dumbass’ three times” is one of my new favorite quotes. And he has a point. I’m not sure people properly realize how smoking fast these footballs are flying. Dez catches quite a few of them from a distance most NFL players (much less humans) would likely whiff them all.The most preposterous thing is not that he dropped a couple but that he even got a hand on any of them at [email protected] attacks JUGS machine. Move closer. Miss a few. Adjust. Succeed. Crazy. @1053thefan pic.twitter.com/xNhSQn3haQ— mike fisher ✭ (@fishsports) August 2, 2016[Hat tip to CRFF]If you’re looking for the comments section, it has moved to our forum, The Chamber. You can go there to comment and holler about these articles, specifically in these threads. You can register for a free account right here and will need one to comment.If you’re wondering why we decided to do this, we wrote about that here. Thank you and cheers!last_img read more

Australia political leaders use Chinese app to chase votes

first_imgCanberra: Australia’s prime minister and his political rival said on Wednesday they were not tailoring their political messages to suit Chinese censors as the politicians increasingly use Chinese social media to woo Chinese-speaking voters. Prime Minister Scott Morrison and opposition leader Bill Shorten each have accounts with China’s largest social media platform, WeChat, which they use to target the Chinese diaspora ahead of federal elections on May 18. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince ‘snubbed’ Pak PM, recalled jet from USCritics argue that the Australian political leaders risk being kicked off the platform if they don’t comply with Chinese censorship rules. Morrison said his account has not been subjected to Chinese censorship used on social media. “We haven’t experienced any such censorship,” Morrison told reporters. Bill Shorten, who leads the center-left Labor Party, was similarly unconcerned by the type of censorship that the Chinese Communist Party routinely exercises on Chinese social media. “I’m not fussed at all,” Shorten told reporters. “I do not feel censored by the Chinese government.” WeChat was launched by Chinese giant Tencent in 2011 and the app, known in China as Weixin, has become essential for daily life in China. Also Read – Record number of 35 candidates in fray for SL Presidential pollsMorrison’s account was registered in January under the name of a Chinese citizen in Fujian province, and Shorten’s account was registered to a Chinese citizen in Shandong province, Australian Broadcasting Corp reported. Morrison said his conservative Liberal Party was trying to transfer his account to Australia. “The way you set up a WeChat account, because of where it’s run, is you have to work through these overseas structures and we’ve been in the process now over the last week or so of seeking to repatriate how that’s done,” Morrison said. Shorten said he left his Labor Party to set up his account. The party said it was set up in early 2017 by an Australian resident who is employed by the party. It is jointly operated by Shorten’s office and the party. “Labor has never experienced any censorship of our communications on any social media platforms,” a party statement said. “We do not tolerate any outside interference that seeks to undermine our free and fair society.” Fergus Hanson, head of the International Cyber Policy Center at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, said politicians’ use of Chinese social media in the Australian political debate created the possibility of censorship and self-censorship on subjects sensitive to China. “It’s pretty outrageous that you’re in a situation where an Australian politician in a full-blown democracy is being censored in what they can say by the Chinese government trying to speak to other Australians within Australia,” Hanson said. “It’s absolutely preposterous.” Hanson’s own research estimated that there were 1.5 million active WeChat users in Australia including Chinese-speaking Australians, tourists and international students. Australia has a population of 25 million.last_img read more