Environmental reporting in Vietnam often a comedy of errors

first_imgEnvironmental Journalism, Forests, Freedom of Information, Illegal Timber Trade, Rainforests, Rosewood, Tropical Forests Article published by Genevieve Belmaker Vietnam’s global press freedom ranking is one of the lowest in the world.Reporters Without Borders ranks Vietnam 175 0f 180 in its 2017 annual press freedom index.Environmental journalists in Vietnam, including citizen journalists and bloggers, routinely face roadblocks and sometimes jail time. HO CHI MINH CITY, Vietnam – This shouldn’t come as a surprise, but reporting on the environment in Vietnam is not an easy task. The one-party state was recently ranked 175 out of 180 in Reporters Without Borders’ 2017 World Press Freedom Index, between Sudan and China.Vietnam’s major newspapers are state-owned, and nearly everything published on paper within the country must go through a censor before it hits the streets. The internet is not restricted in the same way that it is in China, but it is common knowledge that social media networks like Facebook are monitored by government ministries.On the ground, this translates to heavily restricted access for journalists, cagey responses to questions, and absolutely zero interest from anyone involved in the government in talking to the press. Over the last year in particular, numerous citizen journalists have received lengthy prison sentences for writing about corruption and environmental abuses.Since starting as a Vietnam-based correspondent for Mongabay in 2016, I’ve come to rely on NGOs such as the WWF, Forest Trends and Fauna and Flora International (FFI) for access to information and guides when in the field reporting. I quickly learned that emails to government ministries go unread.I’ve gone on four reporting trips in Vietnam for Mongabay; three in the country’s north and one in a national park that is home to several of the world’s largest, most spectacular caves in the central region on the border with Laos. Somewhat surprisingly, given the often suffocating reporting atmosphere here, three out of those four went well, minus a couple of hitches.The main chamber of Hang En, the third-largest cave in the world, located in Phong Nha-Ka Bang National Park. Photo by Michael Tatarski/Mongabay.Power tripsOne trip took me to Cao Bang Province, a poor region in Vietnam’s far north on the border with China. Border regions are particularly sensitive, so I had to send a copy of my passport and visa to the local authorities ahead of time through FFI, as I was reporting on a program they run there.My first day in Cao Bang went off without a hitch, and the local forestry department officers couldn’t have been more helpful or kind. The second day, I was interviewing an older couple in their ramshackle home about a more efficient stove they had received with assistance from FFI.Suddenly, two border police officers barged in without warning.They demanded to know what we were discussing and why I had a camera. An extended conversation ensued between the border officers and my guides, who kept telling me not to worry, but as the discussion went on I became more nervous.If these border guards decided that they didn’t want me there, I would’ve been at their mercy, even though I had received prior approval to be in the area. In the end they simply left. In hindsight the whole encounter was almost comical: two officials on a power trip demanding to know why we were talking about a stove.As if it were some sort of state secret.The most frustrating reporting trip I’ve taken for Mongabay was the most recent, when I went to a small town south of Hanoi called Van Diem. I went there to look into a very reliable tip about an uptick in the import of illegal African timber, much of which is processed for the domestic furniture industry in Van Diem.Huge logs of imported African timber sit on the side of a road in Van Diem, Vietnam. Photo by Michael Tatarski/MongabayIt’s a sensitive issue, so I wasn’t expecting the trip to be a breeze, but I hadn’t foreseen just how ridiculous things would get in the end. Last year, the reporting for a story I did about another wood processing town near Hanoi called Dong Ky went so well that I felt confident this time around.Eyes everywhereI drove down to the town with a Hanoi-based analyst from Forest Trends. That morning, the analyst had called the head of Van Diem, who had promised to show us around and introduce us to timber traders and workshop owners.I was stressed by this, as I prefer to minimize interactions with official oversight, especially when in the field. People on the ground are already often hesitant to talk to a foreign reporter, and with a local leader around there was little chance anyone would be forthcoming. However, I didn’t have a choice.We arrived in Van Diem and repeatedly tried to call the town head, but he didn’t answer. We walked around and talked to some people, but even without a government presence they still weren’t very helpful.An entrance to Hang En the third-largest cave in the world, located in Phong Nha-Ka Bang National Park. Photo by Michael Tatarski/Mongabay.Most professed ignorance regarding where the wood was coming from, or where it was going once they finished working on it. Vietnam does import timber from a number of East African nations – mainly rosewood.Rosewood use and export/import is highly restricted under CITES protections. Yet, the EIA recently released a report on African timber moving into China, some of which also makes its way to Vietnam. It’s described by the EIA as “the world’s most valuable form of wildlife crime.”My tipster told me that Van Diem is one of two towns in the north that work exclusively with African timber.So there I was in Van Diem. Lunchtime arrived, which is when government offices shut down for a full 90 minutes, so we whiled away the time at a simple café on the side of the road. Then we tried the local leader again and this time he answered.However, he was drunk, and had no memory of who we were or why we would be calling him. It was a Saturday, and we learned there were numerous weddings taking place around town. But we were still dumbfounded.A wood workshop in Dong Ky, a town east of Hanoi which processes timber for the domestic and Chinese furniture markets.Photo by Michael Tatarski/Mongabay.We had run out of options for communication, so we simply drove back to Hanoi. As with my experience with the border police in Cao Bang, this interaction would have been quite funny, except for the fact that I had gone all that way for almost nothing. I had spent money and wasted valuable time, which could have been dedicated to other freelance jobs or my work in Ho Chi Minh City.The road aheadGiven some of my experiences, it would be relatively easy for me to decide to stop covering the environment in Vietnam. Every week there is another depressing story in the national news about a beautiful area being trashed in the name of development.So, what is the point?I’m still determined to do my small part by bringing stories, both positive and worrying, to readers. If I can get the attention of someone who can make an important change, then I’ll consider my job done well.Given the prison sentences handed down to Vietnamese journalists and bloggers striving to raise awareness of what is happening to the country’s environment, it is the least I can do.Banner image: A farmer feeds elephant grass to his horses in Cao Bang Province, planted so farmers don’t send their livestock to graze inside a nearby protected forest. Photo by Michael Tatarski/Mongabay.Michael Tatarski is a freelance journalist based in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. He has covered travel, society, culture, tech and the environment for a variety of publications. Find him on Twitter @miketatarski.FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page.center_img Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsoredlast_img read more

Microplastic pollution in world’s oceans poses major threat to filter-feeding megafauna

first_imgA study published in the journal Trends in Ecology & Evolution last month looks at how filter-feeding marine animals like baleen whales, manta rays, and whale sharks are impacted by microplastic pollution in the world’s oceans.Filter-feeding megafauna must swallow hundreds to thousands of cubic meters of water every day in order to catch enough plankton to keep themselves nourished. That means that these species are probably ingesting microplastics both directly from polluted water and indirectly through the consumption of contaminated plankton prey.Microplastic particles can block nutrient absorption and damage the digestive tracts of the filter-feeding marine life that ingest them, while toxins and persistent organic pollutants (POPs) found in plastic can accumulate in the bodies of marine wildlife over time, changing biological processes such as growth and reproduction and even leading to decreased fertility. Even as the world is waking up to the problems created by the massive amounts of plastic pollution in Earth’s oceans — and taking steps to address the issue — new research is shedding light on how detrimental that pollution is to marine wildlife.A study published in the journal Trends in Ecology & Evolution last month, for instance, looks at how filter-feeding marine animals like baleen whales, manta rays, and whale sharks are impacted by microplastics. Filter feeders face exceptionally high risks of exposure to plastic pollution in the oceans because many of them are found in some of the most polluted waters in the world, such as the Bay of Bengal, the Gulf of Mexico, the Mediterranean Sea, and the Coral Triangle, a geographical region that lies in the waters between Indonesia, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, and the Philippines.A 2016 report by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation found that more than 8 million metric tons of plastic waste makes its way into the oceans every year, which works out to be roughly a garbage truck-full of plastic being dumped into the oceans every minute. What’s more, the report also determined that if we allow business-as-usual to continue, plastic pollution could find its way into our oceans at four times the current rate by 2050 — at which point the plastic in our oceans would weigh more than all of the fish combined.In response to this issue, more than 40 countries have joined the UN Environment Programme’s CleanSeas campaign, which was launched last year to combat the use of microplastics in cosmetics and single-use plastic products like shopping bags, two of the biggest sources of marine plastic litter.A whale shark in the waters of Isla Mujeres, Mexico. Photo Credit: Dr Simon Pierce/Marine Megafauna Foundation.But, according to Elitza Germanov, a researcher with the Marine Megafauna Foundation and a PhD student at Australia’s Murdoch University, while there is a growing body of research on how microplastics are impacting marine environments, few studies have specifically looked at how large filter feeders are effected.“We are still trying to understand the magnitude of the issue,” Germanov, the lead author of the Trends in Ecology & Evolution study, said in a statement. “It has become clear though that microplastic contamination has the potential to further reduce the population numbers of these species, many of which are long-lived and have few offspring throughout their lives.”Filter-feeding megafauna like whale sharks and manta rays must swallow hundreds to thousands of cubic meters of water every day in order to catch enough plankton to keep themselves nourished. That means that these species are probably ingesting microplastics both directly from polluted water and indirectly through the consumption of contaminated plankton prey.“The estimated daily plastic ingestion rates for filter-feeding megafauna vary greatly, depending on location and feeding behavior, and range from as low as 100 pieces for whale sharks in the Gulf of California to as high as thousands of pieces for fin whales in the Pelagos Sanctuary,” Germanov and co-authors note in the study. “Currently, the plastic ingestion rates by filter-feeding megafauna in the Gulf of Mexico, Bay of Bengal, and the Coral Triangle are unknown, as are the ingestion rates for mobulids anywhere in the world.”Microplastics under a microscope. Photo Credit: Elitza Germanov/Marine Megafauna Foundation.Microplastic particles can block nutrient absorption and damage the digestive tracts of the filter-feeding marine life that ingest them, while toxins and persistent organic pollutants (POPs) found in plastic can accumulate in the bodies of marine wildlife over time, changing biological processes such as growth and reproduction and even leading to decreased fertility. Toxins that have bioaccumulated in long-lived filter feeders can also be passed down from mother to offspring. These effects can pose serious risks to animals that are already facing heightened threats to their existence.“It is vital to understand the effects of microplastic pollution on ocean giants since nearly half of the mobulid rays, two thirds of filter-feeding sharks and over one quarter of baleen whales are listed by the IUCN as globally threatened species and are prioritized for conservation,” Germanov said.Germanov and co-authors note in the study that research has yet to directly confirm that filter-feeding megafauna are exposed to POPs and other toxins associated with plastics through the ingestion of microplastics. Because conventional methods used to study the diets of wildlife, like cutting open stomachs to examine their contents, are not suitable for species whose continued existence is already in peril, a more indirect approach must be taken. “Most studies have now moved onto biopsies as strandings are rare and fisheries illegal or unethical for threatened species,” Germanov told Mongabay. She and her co-authors elaborate on the alternative methods available to researchers: “as the analytical approaches available to detect toxins continue to increase, it is possible to analyze small amounts of tissue obtained nonlethally (i.e., via biopsies) and to test for plastic chemical tracers, such as phthalates, organobromines, or specific congeners of POPs, allowing us to investigate correlations between microplastics in the feeding grounds of filter feeders and the exposure of these organisms to toxins.”Sabrina Weiss, a public relations officer for the Marine Megafauna Foundation, noted in an email to Mongabay that while the definite causal link between plastic ingestion and resulting toxin exposure in marine megafauna has yet to be confirmed, “previous reports and laboratory studies in seabirds (Teuten et al. 2009), and small fish (Rochman et al 2014) have already shown these connections.”Study co-author Maria Cristina Fossi, of Italy’s University of Siena, was one of the first scientists to study megafauna filter-feeders and their exposure to microplastic pollution. She and her colleagues found an average of 0.7 plastic items per cubic meter of water around Mexico’s Baja California peninsula, an important feeding ground for endangered whale sharks, and estimated that whale sharks in the Sea of Cortez (also known as the Gulf of California, the body of water that separates mainland Mexico from Baja California) may be ingesting more than 170 plastic items every day. They’ve also estimated that fin whales in the Mediterranean Sea could be consuming thousands of microplastic particles on a daily basis.“Our studies on whale sharks in the Sea of Cortez and on fin whales in the Mediterranean Sea confirmed exposure to toxic chemicals, indicating that these filter feeders are taking up microplastics in their feeding grounds,” Fossi said in a statement. “Exposure to these plastic-associated toxins pose a major threat to the health of these animals since it can alter the hormones, which regulate the body’s growth and development, metabolism, and reproductive functions, among other things.”While Fossi and colleagues’ previous research found that large filter-feeders like fin whales, whale sharks, and basking sharks are exposed to plastic-associated toxins and that there is evidence for plastic ingestion, Germanov told Mongabay that they did not show plastic in the stomach or guts of the species with POPs contamination.What is clear at this point, according to Germanov, is that, with plastic production projected to increase globally, much more research is needed on the impacts of plastic pollution in the world’s oceans. She suggests that future research should focus on coastal regions where microplastic pollution overlaps with the feeding and breeding grounds of threatened species. “Many areas are biodiversity hotspots and of economic importance due to fisheries and marine tourism,” she said. “Targeting these with the backing of local government and industry will help ensure efforts to mitigate the plastic threat are employed to their fullest.”A manta ray swims amidst plastic pollution in Indonesian waters. Photo Credit: Elitza Germanov.CITATIONS• Germanov, E. S., Marshall, A. D., Bejder, L., Fossi, M. C., & Loneragan, N. R. (2018). Microplastics: No small problem for filter-feeding megafauna. Trends in Ecology & Evolution. doi:10.1016/j.tree.2018.01.005• Rochman, C. M., Kurobe, T., Flores, I., & Teh, S. J. (2014). Early warning signs of endocrine disruption in adult fish from the ingestion of polyethylene with and without sorbed chemical pollutants from the marine environment. Science of the Total Environment, 493, 656-661. doi:10.1016/j.scitotenv.2014.06.051• Teuten, E. L., Saquing, J. M., Knappe, D. R., Barlaz, M. A., Jonsson, S., Björn, A., … & Ochi, D. (2009). Transport and release of chemicals from plastics to the environment and to wildlife. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London B: Biological Sciences, 364(1526), 2027-2045. doi:10.1098/rstb.2008.0284Follow Mike Gaworecki on Twitter: @mikeg2001FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page. Article published by Mike Gaworecki Animals, Environment, Marine Animals, Marine Conservation, Marine Mammals, Microplastics, Oceans, Plastic, Pollution, Sharks, Sharks And Rays, Whale Sharks, Whales, Wildlife, Wildlife Conservation center_img Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsoredlast_img read more

Top 5 Spotify Apps For Music Discovery

first_img9 Books That Make Perfect Gifts for Industry Ex… 4 Keys to a Kid-Safe App john paul titlow Tags:#discovery#lastfm#music#Recommendation Engines#spotify Spotify wasn’t built for discovery. The Swedish music streaming company realizes this and instead of trying to natively bake a zillion features into its service, it launched a platform for third party developers about a year ago. Spotify’s app directory now features almost 60 HTML5-based add-ons for the service’s desktop client. These apps perform a lot of different functions – some are social, while others sonically augment album reviews from big name publishers. The thing for which they’re probably most useful is discovering music you might like but may never have heard otherwise.1. MoodagentSince launching on Spotify last year, Moodagent has been one of the most interesting apps on the platform. That’s because it takes standard algorithmic music recommendations and beefs them up with emotional intelligence. There are at least a dozen apps that let you build a playlist based on related artists, but Moodagent factors in the mood of each song to build out something that feels more consistent. The options look broad, but are surprisingly powerful. A playlist can be sensual, angry, happy, tender or some combination of all four. You can even base them on tempo, playing back a series of similarly paced songs. Tie these characteristics to the same kind of artist-to-artist matching algorithm that fuels so many other music-discovery apps, and you have a uniquely intelligent system for finding new music. 2. Last.fmLast.fm has been around for a decade now, but the Internet radio and music recommendation service is still a reliable tool for discovering new artists. It works by keeping track of everything you listen to and using a Pandora-style algorithm to recommend related artists and albums. It’s a simple concept, but one that apparently holds up quite well over time. Existing users of Last.fm will feel right at home in its Spotify app, which more or less frames a slightly modified version of the service’s usual interface into Spotify’s desktop client. The results occasionally need to be tweaked, but on the whole the recommendations are pretty solid. A few albums in my own physical record collection landed there thanks to Last.fm’s ability to turn up hidden gems.  3. Swarm.fmOh great, another social music-discovery app. Ho-hum.Actually, Swarm.fm is pretty useful. It uses data from Facebook to show you what music your friends are listening to, even if they’re not signed up for Swarm.fm. If they are, that data becomes much more detailed and easily explored. Swarm.fm will also let you know if any artists in your own collection have new releases, which is far more relevant than the new releases coughed up by Spotify itself. That tag cloud on the home tab might look like just another collection of metadata, but it’s actually informed by your social music data. I listen to a number of artists who don the tag “space rock” – and when I click that tag, it shows me dozens of similar bands. I can then sort those artists by popularity and what’s trending on Swarm.fm, which is a good way to pinpoint worthwhile listens.4. ShareMyPlaylistsWhen I first opened ShareMyPlaylists, I thought “Oh, this is looks fairly generic.” Alternative, Classical, Blues, Dance. One-size-fits-all playlists.I was wrong. When you scroll down, you see a wide variety of very specific playlists: Beatles covers, the songs sampled by Nas and music from Quentin Tarantino films, songs featuring Moog synthesizers. It’s a random conglomeration of curated listening experiences, but one that is well worth browsing. ShareMyPlaylists has something for absolutely everyone. Devotees of popular music from the charts can browse the “Top 50” tab while those with more under-the-radar tastes will find plenty of new stuff under the “Recommended” tab, which finds playlists based on the artists you listen to the most. If nothing in either section suits your mood, you can always run a search or use the app’s built-in playlist generator. 5. The Hype MachineIt’s been a wildly popular MP3 aggregator on the Web for years, so it only makes sense that The Hype Machine would find its way into Spotify’s app store. It’s right at home on top of the streaming service’s massive library of music. The Hype Machine eschews the complex algorithm in favor of human-curated playlists. Specifically, it aggregates tracks from popular music blogs across a wide range of genres, each of them very heavily populated. Dream Pop, for example, isn’t exactly a top 40 genre of music, but the Hype Machine pulls together no fewer than 100 different blogs classified as such. It’s loaded with music, all hand-selected by Internet tastemakers and guaranteed to introduce you to something you haven’t heard before. A Growing Universe Of Music Discovery AppsNarrowing this list to just five selections wasn’t easy. There are plenty of discovery apps on Spotify worth checking out – top charts from We Are Hunted and Billboard and social music from TweetVine, Soundrop and Sifter. Depending on your tastes, the critic-curated recommendations from Pitchfork, Rolling Stone, NME or KCRW can be invaluable. It’s also worth mentioning that the new, supposedly Pandora-killing Spotify Radio feature is worth playing with. Its Echo Nest-powered recommendations are not quite as granular and effective as Pandora’s, but they’re quite good. Not only can you create a station based on any album or artist, but you can build one off of an entire playlist. This is pretty powerful. For instance, if you’ve starred a lot of music on Spotify, you can build a radio station based solely on those favorites. Here’s another Spotify Radio trick: The Last.fm app will let you generate a Spotify a playlist based on your dozen or so most-played  albums of all time. You can then start a Spotify radio station based on that playlist, which is sure to contain a few tracks you’ll love, but have never heard before. And isn’t that the point of music discovery?center_img 5 Outdoor Activities for Beating Office Burnout 12 Unique Gifts for the Hard-to-Shop-for People… Related Posts last_img read more

Five arrested, several injured in Jharkhand over cow slaughter

first_imgFive persons have been arrested and several, including five policemen, were injured at Pakur in Jharkhand when a clash broke out between villagers and policemen on Wednesday over cow slaughter during the Id-ul-Zuha festival. The situation is said to be tense but under control.Police officers said villagers at Dangrapahra under the Maheshpur police station limits in Pakur district bordering West Bengal attacked the policemen when they reached there on a tip- off that cow slaughter was being done on the Id-ul-Zuha festival. Since 2015, cow slaughter is banned in Jharkhand and on August 18, the Jharkhand government had also issued a directive for deputy commissioners of all districts to make sure that cattle were not slaughtered on Id-ul-Zuha.Situation under control“The villagers attacked the policemen…and five policemen, including the Maheshpur police station officer in-charge Umesh Prasad, were injured while some villagers too were injuried in the clash…the situation is under control now,” Pakur Superintendent of Police Shailendra Prasad Barnwal said. Both the SP and Deputy Commissioner of Pakur, Dilip Kumar Jha, are camping at Maheshpur, said R.K. Mallick, Jharkhand police spokesperson. “Deputy Inspector General, Raj Kumar Lakra has also been sent along with additional forces to bring the situation under control,” he added.The police had resorted to baton-charge and used tear gas against protesters. However, local people said the police also opened fire on them in which at least seven persons were injured. Later, the police also imposed Section 144 of the India Penal Code in the area which prohibites the assembly of four or more people at a place. Medical treatmentMeanwhile, many injured villagers crossed the Bengal border for medical treatment at Rampurhat government hospital in Birbhum district, 45 km away from Pakur.last_img read more

9 months agoFulham eyeing Leicester fullback Danny Simpson

first_imgTagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Fulham eyeing Leicester fullback Danny Simpsonby Paul Vegas9 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveFulham are eyeing Leicester City fullback Danny Simpson.The Mirror says Cottagers boss Claudio Ranieri wants a Leicester reunion with Simpson to help Fulham ‘s battle against relegation.Ranieri led Leicester to the title in 2016 and is desperately looking to strengthen his squad in the January window.Leicester full back Simpson, 32, could be available to loan this month. last_img

11 days agoKuyt says Liverpool too strong for Man Utd

first_imgKuyt says Liverpool too strong for Man Utdby Paul Vegas11 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveLiverpool hero Dirk Kuyt says they’ll be too strong for Manchester United.Liverpool travel to United on Sunday to rekindle what is one of the fiercest rivalries in football. “If you look into the Liverpool side now, I think they have a lot of confidence, and they should have because they are a great team,” Feyenoord youth coach Kuyt said.“I think they can win there.“It’s a belief, and you always give everything for the shirt. Play as a team and never give up. That’s what we did at the time.“If you watch the Liverpool team now, they never give up, even in difficult times they’re winning games, they keep winning and hopefully they will do at Old Trafford as well.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

5-Star Wide Receivers Could Be Following No. 1 QB Tate Martell To Ohio State

first_imgThe No. 1 dual-threat quarterback in the country committed to Ohio State this evening and with his pledge, a five-star wide receiver (or two or three) could be following him to Columbus. Tate Martell, a four-star quarterback in the 2017 class out of Las Vegas, announced his commitment to Ohio State on Twitter. The 5-foot-10, 203-pound prospect out of Bishop Gorman (Nevada) is very close with Tyjon Lindsey, a five-star wide receiver in the same class. They played together at Bishop Gorman before Lindsey moved back to California this winter. Lindsey congratulated Martell on Twitter regarding his commitment. Martell responded, “You are next!” OMM I HAD NO IDEA THIS WAS COMING..CONGRATS TATE MAN NO MATTER WHAT WE’RE ALWAYS BROTHERS, TOGETHER OR NOT. Love u https://t.co/fs6kw8Z08x— Tyjon A. Lindsey ® (@tyjonlindsey) June 13, 2016Thanks bro! You are next! https://t.co/GtChALHEPf— Tate Martell (@TheTateMartell) June 13, 2016There has long been speculation that Martell and Lindsey will end up playing for the same school. Ohio State has now obviously added half of the potential package deal and the Buckeyes are believed to be the favorite to land the other half. Lindsey, a speedy 5-foot-8 wideout out of California, is currently crystal-balled to Ohio State. 247Sports.247Sports.He recently did this at Rivals’ 5-Star Challenge. HOUSE CALL . #RivalsChallenge WR MVP @RivalsCamp pic.twitter.com/g3cStTWmMg— Tyjon A. Lindsey ® (@tyjonlindsey) June 12, 2016Martell will surely be recruiting Lindsey to Columbus, but the Corona, Calif. product won’t be the only five-star wide receiver the quarterback tries to push to the Buckeyes.  Jeremy Birmingham of Eleven Warriors says five-star wide receivers Trevon Grimes and Donovan Peoples-Jones will also be a “priority” for Martell.  Martell (@TheTateMartell) will three five-star WRs his priority: Trevon Grimes, Donovan Peoples-Jones and Tyjon Lindsey.— Jeremy Birmingham (@Birm) June 13, 2016Peoples-Jones (No. 6), Grimes (No. 28) and Lindsey (No. 30) are all ranked in the top 30 of 247Sports’ Composite Rankings for 2017.Ohio State’s 2017 class is the No. 1 class in the country. MORE FROM COLLEGE SPUN:The 10 Most Aggressive Fan Bases In CFBIn Photos: Golfer Paige SpiranacESPN Makes Decision On Dick Vitalelast_img read more

As Cong opposes Bill on JK partys MP Kalita resigns

first_imgNew Delhi: In a major setback to Congress on the day BJP decided to revoke Article 370 in Jammu & Kashmir, the party’s whip in Rajya Sabha Bhubaneswar Kalita resigned from the party over his party’s stand on the government’s move to revoke Article 370 and bifurcate Jammu and Kashmir into two Union Territories.The MP claimed that the Congress party was committing suicide by opposing the abrogation of Article 370. In a letter circulating online, Bhubaneswar Kalita said that the party leadership had asked him to issue a whip but he felt that the “whip was against the nation’s sentiments”. Thus, he said, he decided to resign from the party. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM'”The Congress leadership is trying to completely destroy the party. No one can stop the Congress party from destruction,” Kalita said in the letter. Home Minister Amit Shah has proposed in the Rajya Sabha to revoke Article 370 and bifurcate the state of Jammu and Kashmir into Jammu-Kashmir UT and Ladakh UT. Congress has strongly opposed the move. Congress MP and Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad had condemned the government’s proposal and accused the government of murdering the Constitution of India. “The resignation has been accepted. I will not analyse the reasons now, maybe tomorrow or day after, I will explain them to you,” Bhubaneswar Kalita told reporters. Kalita was a member of Rajya Sabha from Assam.last_img read more

Shania Twain Reveals The Title Cover Art Track List For Upcoming Album

first_imgAdvertisement SOURCE:  THE IDOLATOR Twitter Advertisement It’s happening! After years of rumors and (broken) promises, Shania Twain’s comeback begins this week. The Canadian country legend is a new single called “Life’s About To Get Good” will be released on Friday (June 16). She is already booked to perform the uplifting anthem on The Today Show on the same day and has a major sync with the Winter Olympics. In fact, you can hear a snippet of the song in a commercial. “Life’s about joy, life’s about pain, it’s all about the giving and the will to walk away,” the enduring diva sings. “I’m ready to be loved and loved the way I should. Life’s about to get, life’s about to get good.”If that’s not exciting enough, the 51-year-old also revealed the cover and release date of her comeback LP. Let’s start with the black-and-white artwork. Shania Now pays tribute — in my mind, at least — to her iconic “That Don’t Impress Me Much” video with leopard-skin print gloves and a supermodel-worthy smize. The opus drops on September 29, 15 years after 2002’s mega-selling Up!. The music industry is a completely different beast these days (for starters, albums don’t sell), so it will be interesting to see if she can carve out a new niche.UK ??Tune into @achrisevans on @BBCRadio2 tomorrow morning for the first play of my new single #LifesAboutToGetGood pic.twitter.com/sH5IJTVC4t— Shania Twain (@ShaniaTwain) June 14, 2017 Shania NOW September 29th 2017 #ShaniaNOW pic.twitter.com/VsVgUiQbkS— Shania Twain (@ShaniaTwain) June 14, 2017center_img Login/Register With: LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Advertisement Facebooklast_img read more

Scholes predicts City to win again

first_imgThe former footballer says Pep Guardiola’s team has everything to be crowned champions once again of the English Premier LeagueSpeaking to the Premier League’s official website, and reported by The Sport Bible, legendary footballer Paul Scholes believes Manchester City will win again.According to the former player, Pep Guardiola’s club will be crowned kings of the 2018-2019 season.“I think Manchester City will win the Premier League again,” he told the EPL.Harry Maguire, Manchester UnitedSolskjaer praises Harry Maguire after Man United’s 1-0 win Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Ole Gunnar Solskjaer singled out Harry Maguire for praise after helping Manchester United keep a clean sheet in their 1-0 win over Leicester City.“They won the league by a distance last year and they look just as good as ever when I saw them the other day. So I expect City to win the league.”“We don’t know what Chelsea are going to be like, we don’t know what Arsenal are going to be like with their new coaches,” he added.“But I’d go for City to win the league, Liverpool second, Manchester United third and I’ll go for Tottenham fourth.”last_img read more