New Member Benefits: SportsPass release

first_imgTouch Football Australia (TFA) is delighted to announce a new initiative and exciting partnership with SportsPass. The relationship with SportsPass extends the benefits of affiliation for TFA and associated states, regions and affiliates and delivers on various TFA Strategic Plan 2011-15 objectives. This relationship provides an improved value proposition for you, and your members – who will now be able to access special deals, cheaper rates and bonuses. SportsPass is a dedicated member benefits program for Australian sporting associations and clubs that adds value to club memberships, whilst also providing a new funding source for Australian sport through the sale of the Supporter Cards. Firstly, members and supporters of participating associations and clubs benefit by having access to instant rewards from hundreds of participating SportsPass partners, through the ‘I am a member’ and ‘I am a supporter’ cards. For more information, please click on the attached media release and SportsPass information booklet.Related Filessportspass_media_release_april_2015-pdfsportspass_information_booklet_april_2015-pdfRelated LinksSportsPass Releaselast_img read more

Chief Engineer Medevaced from Euronav Tanker

first_imgzoom The chief engineer aboard the very large crude carrier (VLCC) Ingrid was medevaced from the ship as he suffered a leg fracture after getting hit with the anchor chain. The incident occurred in the morning hours on March 2 while the tanker was in the lightering zone off San Luis Pass, Texas, according to the United States Coast Guard (USCG).Coast Guard Sector Houston-Galveston watchstanders were informed of the incident and an Air Station Houston MH-65 Dolphin helicopter aircrew was sent to medevac the man.The 35-year-old man was taken to University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston and transferred in stable condition, USCG said.Belgium-flagged Ingrid, featuring 314,000 dwt, is operated by shipping firm Euronav, according to data provided by VesselsValue.last_img read more

18 months an option for mat leave but be prepared for lower

first_imgOTTAWA – When Ottawa announced changes to EI parental leave benefits last year that will allow new mothers to receive benefits for 18 months, Heather Wilson was excited about the possibility of spending more time with her baby.But after digging into the changes, Wilson and her husband are probably going to stick with the 12-month option.That’s in large part due to the fact that when Ottawa announced the change, it didn’t increase the amount of money for the program. So, while you may receive paternity benefits for a longer period, the weekly amount will be less.The reduction means that new parents looking to make up the difference over the extended period with savings may want to have $10,000 or more put aside, on top of their other savings in preparation for the new baby.Calgary-based Wilson says her EI maternity and paternity leave benefits, which max out at $547 per week before taxes, are already going to be a drop from her regular paycheque, so the further reduction to take 18 months may not work for her family’s budget.“The time and concept is really nice, that 18 months, but for us, we’re not sure financially it makes a lot of sense,” said Wilson, who is due with her first child in May.She noted that she and her husband may already face challenges in coming up with their regular contributions to their tax-free savings accounts and RRSP savings with the reduction in her income.Amy Dietz-Graham, a portfolio manager for BMO Nesbitt Burns, said having a baby can be a huge expense and choosing the longer option means being able to budget for the longer time away from work.“If you can plan ahead and start saving ahead of time if you do want to take that extra time, the better off you’ll be,” said Dietz-Graham, who is also due with her first child at the beginning of March.Federal EI maternity and parental benefits provide money for new parents through employment insurance benefits, while Quebec runs its own Quebec Parental Insurance Program, which has not changed.Federal EI maternity benefits for biological mothers, including surrogate mothers, run for 15 weeks and pay a weekly benefit of 55 per cent of the claimant’s average weekly insurable earnings up to a maximum amount of $547 per week.After that, EI parental benefits, which may be shared between parents, kick in with two options: a standard choice of up to 35 weeks or an extended version that spreads the same payment out over a maximum of 61 weeks. The extended option reduces the payment to 33 per cent of the claimant’s average weekly insurable earnings up to a maximum of $328, though that amount may be increased if you are eligible to receive the family supplement for low-income families.EI benefits are also taxable, so federal and provincial or territorial taxes will be deducted from your benefits too, reducing the amount that ultimately ends up in your pocket.Some new parents also receive parental leave top-up payments from their employers, but they will likely not cover the entire period.Dietz-Graham said you may also want to budget for additional expenses such as making a will if you don’t have one, or a life insurance policy to take care of your child if something should happen to you.She adds that reducing RRSP contributions in a year that you are on leave may also be something to consider, as you may get bigger tax savings by making them in a year when your income is higher.Those who do opt to take the extra time could save on the spending side of the equation, Dietz-Graham noted.You won’t have the costs of going to work like your daily coffee, lunches out and transit or parking. And, by taking the extra six months it means you won’t have daycare costs for that time, which could add up to thousands of dollars.last_img read more

Taxi drivers petition city for level playing field with ride sharing companies

first_imgAround 300 Calgary cab drivers have signed a letter to the city, asking for ride sharing companies to be subject to the same rules and regulations as taxis.The petition says more and more cab drivers are being forced to give up on mortgage payments and file for bankruptcy as they struggle to make ends meet.Taxi driver Syed Hussain said one example is vehicle inspections: taxis must go in every six months, but for Uber drivers, it’s once every year.“When we renew our taxi badge, we pay $175, the Uber guys they pay $15,” he said.Hussain said added costs mean taxi drivers often work 12 hours a day, seven days a week.“We have over 2,000 drivers and they are suffering unbelievably,” he said.“There are double standards. Two laws: one for the tax industry and one for the sharing companies like Uber or Lyft or whatever, and that is not fair.”Meanwhile Clement Gulston, who drives for both ride-sharing companies Uber and Cowboy Taxi, argues he pays just as much as a taxi driver, maybe even more, as 25 per cent of fares go to the company to cover costs.“Their (taxi) system is outdated. Checker has apps, do you know that? Associated has (an) app, do you know that? Calgary City Cab has app? Have you ever tried to use their app, have you ever talked to anybody who tried to use their app? If you use any one of these apps, you’re not connected instantly with the driver,” he said.Gulston says he works for two companies driving four cars, not because he needs the money, but because he’s taking advantage of good opportunities. Should rideshare drivers (Uber, Lyft) face the same regulations as cab drivers?YesNoVoteView Results Take Our Polllast_img read more

Sunny Deol escapes unhurt in Gurdaspur mishap

first_imgGurdaspur: Actor-turned politician Sunny Deol escaped unhurt after his vehicle was involved in a collision with three cars here on Monday, police said. The mishap occurred after one of the tyres in Deol’s sports utility vehicle burst near a ‘Gurdwara’ in Sohal village here, Gurdaspur Deputy Superintendent of Police (rural) Manjit Singh told PTI. A total of four vehicles collided with each other in the accident. Deol’s cavalcade was going towards Fatehgarh Churian where the BJP candidate had to campaign, the DSP said. “Out of four, one vehicle belonged to a villager, rest other vehicles were part of Deol’s cavalcade,” he said. Nobody was hurt in the accident, he said. After the accident, Deol resumed his journey to Fatehgarh Churian for poll campaigning, the DSP said. Deol is pitted against Congress candidate and sitting MP Sunil Jakhar from Gurdaspur Lok Sabha seat.last_img read more

Upsets Shake Up College Football Landscape Irish To Be

Notre Dame will be the new No. 1 team in the nation.Kansas State and Oregon — the top two teams in the country going into Saturday’s action — both came tumbling down, while Notre Dame moved to 11-0 and certainly will elevate to the No. 1 program in the nation for the first time since 1993 when the new BCS poll is released on Monday.KSU and the Ducks had a clear path to the national championship game. All they had to do was win their remaining games. Didn’t happen.The Wildcats got blizted at Baylor, losing 52-24 in a straight up beat down. Glasco Martin had three touchdown runs and Lache Seastruck rushed for 185 yards, including a back-breaking 80-yard score, in the Bears’ thumping that all but ended Kansas State’s chance for the national title.“I don’t know if I would call it getting smacked in the mouth, but they took it to us,” coach Bill Snyder said. “I really thought we prepared well, but as we found out, we didn’t. I don’t think we handled the situation as well as we should have been able to.”So, No. 1 was there for Oregon to assume. And yet, the Ducks didn’t do quack. Playing at home against No. 17 Stanford, the Oregon high-powered offense was contained. The Ducks managed just two touchdowns in losing, 17-14, in overtime.It was Jordan Williamson’s a 37-yard field goal in overtime that won the game and denied the Ducks a chance to clinch the Pac-12 North — and, in the bigger picture, a shot at the BCS title.If both Stanford and Oregon win in their final games next weekend, both will finish with one conference loss, which means Stanford will win the head-to-head matchup and go to the Pac-12 championship for a chance to play in the Rose Bowl.Meanwhile, Notre Dame advanced to 11-0 by thrashing Wake Forest, 38-0. The Fighting Irish came into the weekend at No. 3 in the BCS poll. With Nos. 1 and 2 losing, it stands to reason they will jump to No. 1. It is like that the SEC will dominate the next three spots with Alabama at No. 2, Georgia No. 3 and Florida No. 4. read more

Five questions to ask about Ohio State – Minnesota

1. What is the state of the Minnesota football program? It’s rare for college football coaches to be fired mid-season. But Minnesota bucked that trend earlier this month. On Oct. 17, Minnesota fired coach Tim Brewster after the Golden Gophers’ 1-6 start. In a little more than three-and-a-half seasons as coach, Brewster went 15-30, including 6-21 in the Big Ten. Offensive coordinator Jeff Horton is now interim head coach. 2. Does Adam Weber pose problems for a banged-up Buckeye secondary? Last week, Weber joined the company of former Big Ten greats in the 10,000 career-passing-yards club. In recent weeks, the Golden Gophers have been throwing the ball extensively. Weber has averaged 47 passing attempts in the last two games. In three career games against Ohio State, Weber has averaged 177 passing yards a game while throwing two touchdowns and four interceptions. Despite those average numbers, OSU coach Jim Tressel holds Weber in high regard. “We had him in youth camp. I thought he was outstanding then, and 10,000 yards later I think he’s still outstanding,” Tressel said. “He’s a competitor.” 3. Has Ross Homan’s injury opened the door for the next star Buckeye linebacker? Remember back in 2005 when senior standout linebacker Bobby Carpenter broke his leg against Michigan and true freshman James Laurinaitis stepped in for him and didn’t miss a beat? Andrew Sweat is delivering a repeat performance in 2010 while Ross Homan is mending a foot injury. In the last two games, Sweat had 16 tackles, two tackles for loss, an interception, a forced fumble and a pass break-up. 4. Is Terrelle Pryor out of the Heisman race? The smart money says that with Auburn’s Cam Newton and Oregon’s LaMichael James putting up impressive numbers week after week, along with Boise State’s Kellen Moore’s sustained excellence throughout the season, Pryor’s Heisman campaign might be postponed until 2011. Although he’s not completely out of the race yet (Pryor ranks in the top 12 in the nation in touchdown passes and quarterback rating), he will need monster efforts in each of the final four regular season games to put himself back into the discussion. 5. After struggling at Illinois and losing at Wisconsin, will OSU’s road struggles continue against Minnesota? The Golden Gophers are hardly intimidating at 1-7 overall and 0-4 in the Big Ten. They are 7-42 in program history against OSU, their worst record against any Big Ten opponent. But consider this: No current Buckeye has played at TCF Bank Stadium, which opened Sept. 12, 2009. OSU always gets every Big Ten opponent’s best shot and the Golden Gophers will be amped to play under the lights Saturday night. Tressel said he hasn’t been disappointed by his team’s play on the road so far, but agreed that his squad’s two previous performances away from Ohio Stadium have left room for improvement. “I haven’t looked at our two trips and said, ‘I don’t think they were focused’ or ‘I don’t think they understood’ or ‘they let the crowd get to them,’” Tressel said. “But do we need to play better on the road? Absolutely.” read more

Successful switch Former tight end Reid Fragel settles in at right tackle

Reid Fragel was a tight end in his first three seasons with the Ohio State football team, so it should come as no surprise that his transition to right tackle in his senior season has been a challenge.Fragel said he finally felt comfortable, however, in the Buckeyes’ fourth game of the season, a 29-15 victory against the University of Alabama-Birmingham Saturday.“I think so far that’s the best I’ve played at tackle,” Fragel said.This week, however, Fragel prepares for what could be a much greater challenge, as the Buckeyes travel to East Lansing, Mich., to play the No. 20 Michigan State Spartans in their Big Ten opener at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday. Against the Spartans, Fragel will be lining up primarily against Spartans defensive end William Gholston, who was an All-Big Ten second-team selection in 2011.“He’s got length,” Fragel said of Gholston. “I think that’s his main weapon, he likes to use his hands a lot and uses his reach. He’s quick off the ball, he’s got size, too, so it’ll be a good challenge for us.”The MSU game will be a homecoming for Fragel as well. For the first time in his OSU career, Fragel will have the opportunity to play in East Lansing, Mich., which is located less than 100 miles from Fragel’s home town of Grosse Pointe Farms, Mich.“That’s a game I’ve been looking forward to for a while,” Fragel said. “Obviously that’s my home state, so (I’ve) got some friends and family up there that will be at the game.”Fragel caught 14 passes over the course of three years playing tight end, but he became a starter for the first time after converting to right tackle and winning a position battle over freshman Taylor Decker in fall camp.Coach Urban Meyer listed Fragel as one of the offensive players who graded out as “champions” for his performance against UAB, and gave him praise during Monday’s press conference.“(Fragel) played his best game as a Buckeye,” Meyer said. “Best game of the year, really best game of his career.”Two of Fragel’s fellow starters on the OSU offense echoed Meyer’s sentiments.“We’ve seen a lot of guys step up,” said senior fullback Zach Boren. “Reid Fragel played the best game I’ve ever seen him play since he’s been here this past year.”Redshirt junior Corey Linsley said he felt similarly.“It was an awesome showing for Reid,” Linsley said. “It was great because everybody knows on the team Reid has so much talent. He’s huge, and he’s got athleticism, more athleticism than anybody, and it was great to see him finally use all of his potential.”Linsley said it was clear before Saturday’s game even started that Fragel came into the game with more energy than usual.“Even before the game, I knew it was going to be his best game,” Linsley said.Fragel said he “tried to be a little bit more energetic” on Saturday.“I knew we had to come out a lot harder and play with a little more tempo,” Fragel said. “I kind of just tried to help out I guess, and provide some energy.”Linsley said Fragel’s performance stood out during the highlight film that Meyer showed the entire team on Sunday.“They showed that film yesterday of the offense cutting through the defense and it was basically just a Reid Fragel highlight show,” Linsley said. “He was smiling all day yesterday, and high-fiving everybody, it was great to see him finally do that.”Fragel said it was a “good feeling” to be acknowledged for his positive plays in the UAB game, but also recognized that he has to continue to improve for the team’s upcoming game against the Spartans.“I know there was some things that I watched aside from that film that I need to correct, get better and improve for Michigan State,” Fragel said. “Not to downplay UAB at all, but the athletes that Michigan State have, we’re going to need to execute a lot better.”Linsley said playing against Gholston will be a great opportunity for Fragel to shine.“I think that’s even a better opportunity to take what he learned from this game, and to just put it in action against a really good player,” Linsley said. read more

Past experience helping Driss Guessous produce on court for Ohio State mens

Redshirt-freshman Driss Guessous (4) prepares to hit the ball during a match against Saint Francis Feb. 9 at St. John Arena. OSU won, 3-1.Credit: Shelby Lum / Photo editorDriss Guessous went from redshirting his first year at Ohio State to starting every match and becoming one of the most influential players on the men’s volleyball team the next and is far from your average freshman athlete.That’s because when it comes to experience, redshirt-freshman middle blocker Guessous’ coach Pete Hanson said his rivals anyone.“Driss is a great athlete, but all of his experience is one of the reasons why he is having such a successful freshman year. He has played some great volleyball and is drawing from those experiences,” Hanson said.Guessous started playing volleyball during his freshman year of high school at Loyola in Pasadena, Calif., where he was named a 2012 first-team All-American and led the team to a state title. The past two summers, he has played with the USA Volleyball and the Junior National Team, competed at the Federation Internationale De Volleyball and played in the Men’s U-21 World Championship in Turkey with Buckeye teammate and junior outside hitter Michael Henchy.As an OSU Scholar-Athlete, Guessous said it has been a difficult adjustment from last season to find the time to stay on track with his schoolwork while traveling with the team.“The hardest transition for me is trying to balance school and volleyball. Being a physics major and having to travel to matches all over the Midwest can be quite the challenge, but it keeps me focused on what my goals are and what I want to take away from college — a great education and, hopefully, a national championship,” Guessous said.The Buckeyes have the 15th-best hitting percentage in the nation at .287, led by Guessous, who is ranked No. 1 in the Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association and fourth in the country for his hitting percentage of .446.“Driss is our most consistent attacker. If we ever get into an offensive slump, we know that he has the ability to get us out of it,” redshirt-junior setter Peter Heinen said.“Driss is one of our best offense weapons. He’s consistently killing balls for us,” Henchy said.Hanson said for one player to be successful on the court, the whole team must work together. But when it comes to Guessous, he works hand-in-hand with freshman setter Christy Blough, to get set up for a kill.“We have a setter who really understands that finding a way to get Driss the ball can really help the offense. Christy has really embraced that and does a good job of assisting Driss in a lot of opportunities,” Hanson said.Beyond his contributions to the Buckeye offense, Guessous is a main contributor to the defense as well. He is ranked sixth in the conference in blocks per set with a .94 average. His position as middle blocker entails a lot, Hanson said.“There is a lot of responsibility on a middle blocker from a blocking perspective, and as an attacker, to make some pretty instantaneous judgments, and being aware of everyone’s positioning on the court and the position of the ball,” Hanson said.As Guessous’ familiarity with the team increases, he also will grow as a player, Hanson said.“The more and more Driss and the passers and setters play together, the quicker and smarter his decisions will become,” Hanson said. “That will help him to continue to be more and more effective.”After falling to No. 15 IPFW Wednesday 3-2, the Buckeyes are set to take on No. 12 Penn State Friday at 7 p.m. in Columbus.Guessous said he is always looking to improve and understand that he has a lot to learn during these next few years as a Buckeye.“I want to get better at all facets of the sport. That’s the best part about playing volleyball — no matter how good I am, I can always can be better. That is why I love the sport. I crave the challenge and that is what keeps me going,” Guessous said. read more

Brazil vs Mexico Lineups announced

first_imgFilipe Luis will start in Marcelo’s place for Brazil today as they look to continue their pursuit of a sixth world title by defeating Mexico in today last-16 encounterTite’s side have won 19 of their last 24 games since he took charge two years ago along with an impressive 18 clean sheets.While Marcelo had trained normally yesterday, he will start from the bench and may be used as a substitute later on in the match.Right-back Danilo has recovered from the thigh problem, but has been overlooked in favour of Fagner.Mexico’s 39-year-old captain Rafael Marquez will start for El Tri in this decisive encounter as the side look to avoid a seventh consecutive last-16 exit at the World Cup.Neymar, BrazilNeymar can win the Ballon d’Or, says Ander Herrera Andrew Smyth – September 13, 2019 An “excited” Ander Herrera believes new Paris Saint-Germain team-mate Neymar is a contender for the Ballon d’Or alongside Kylian Mbappe.However, centre-back Hector Moreno is suspended with Hugo Ayala being called up in his place.The teams are in for #BRAMEX! #WorldCup?????? pic.twitter.com/cayJmgV2fJ— FIFA World Cup ?? (@FIFAWorldCup) July 2, 2018last_img read more

Bahamas Deputy Prime Minister Underscores Need for GB Economy to be Strong

first_img— Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp#Bahamas, October 26, 2017 – Nassau – Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, the Hon. K. Peter Turnquest says the government is convinced that the health and strength of Grand Bahama’s economy is vital to the nation’s overall growth and development.“I can’t stress that enough because people don’t necessarily understand how important Grand Bahama is to the entire health of this country, because it is still the second largest economy in the country, never mind that Abaco is gaining on our heels every day and other islands like Exuma are holding their own,” added Minister Turnquest, who was the guest speaker at the 12th Annual Northern Conference of The Bahamas Association of Compliance Officers, which was held at Pelican Bay Resort, October 25, 2017.“If (Grand Bahama’s economy) fails, it will cause enormous pressure on the rest of the country,” added Minister Turnquest.   “So, I can’t understate how important it is for us to get Grand Bahama right.”In his address to Compliance Officers, Minister Turnquest said his government feels it has an obligation to do what it can to ensure that Grand Bahama succeeds.   He said that is just the first step in delivering on the commitments the government has made to the people of Grand Bahama and for the people of The Bahamas.“The economic transformation of Grand Bahama requires growth,” said Minister Thompson.   “According to the IMF World outlook, The Bahamas is forecasted to grow by 1.8 percent in 2017 and by 2.5 percent in 2018.   However, that growth will not happen and be sustained if the government does not do its part to facilitate economic transformation.“And again, getting Grand Bahama’s economy going is a key, critical component to achieving those goals. In fact, the country cannot progress without undertaking reforms that lead to better business conditions.   These reforms are critical to achieve better living standards, moderate inflation, low inflationary concerns and high growth rates.”The Finance Minister noted that The Bahamas fell in its rankings on the “ease of doing business” ladder since last year and to a large extent that fall was not because of something the Bahamian government did, but rather what they did not do.“In other words, if we continue to stand still, thinking that we are doing okay, we are going to fall further and further behind because the rest of the world is moving forward,” Minister Thompson pointed out.   “For example, Jamaica has made tremendous strides in its utilization of technology in order to facilitate and make the ease of doing business much better. And they have leap-frogged ahead of us.“We have an obligation and we have a commitment to make the improvements, to make the changes that we need to make in order to ensure that we keep pace, at a minimum. But I challenge my people every day to make a quantum leap to ensure that we get ahead.”By: Andrew Coakley (BIS)OPENS BACO CONFERENCE – Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Hon. K. Peter Turnquest was the guest speaker to open the 12th Annual Northern Conference of The Bahamas Association of Compliance Officers (BACO) one-day conference, which was held on October 25, 2017 at Pelican Bay Resort.(BIS Photo/Lisa Davis) Related Items:center_img Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApplast_img read more

3day Sur Jahan festival to be inaugurated on February 1

first_imgKolkata: Sur Jahan, a three-day world peace music festival will be inaugurated at Mohar Kunj on February 1.The festival has been organised by Banglanatak dot com. Music for all and music for peace is the motto of the festival. The festival is non ticketed and open to all. Artistes from Hungary, Spain, Cyprus, Egypt, Cape Verde and Germany will take part in the festival. There will be workshop on the concept of international music and peace in the morning and folk performances will be held in the evening. Also Read – 3 injured, flight, train services hit as rains lash BengalMawlawiyah, a group of Egyptian folk artistes will perform on February 2. The group was set up by singer Amer Eltony to safeguard Egypt’s Mevlevi heritage. The group has enthralled the audience across the world and had performed in Sur Jahan then known as Sufi Sutra in 2011. Folk artistes from Bengal will take part in the festival. A band led by Debaleena Bhowmick will present different genres of folk music that is going to take the audience through the traditional music stream of Bengal. Bauls of Bengal will also take part in the three-day festival. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedThere will be Chhau dance and Raibenshe dance along with Jhumur and Baul songs. Bhawaiya song and Dhimat dance will be presented at the festival. Bhatiyali songs and Newar dance will be performed by the artistes. The artistes will come from both the South and North Bengal. There will be stalls on handicrafts to showcase various products. It should be mentioned that there are around 2 lakh folk artistes in the state who have received monthly stipend. Moreover, to assist them financially, the artistes are invited to perform at fairs and other functions organised by the state government.last_img read more

Beyond Web Analytics 5 Types of Online Data You Should Be Tracking

first_img When business owners talk about analytics, they often are referring to web analytics. They talk about setting up tools such as Google Analytics or Adobe’s SiteCatalyst to track page views, test variables and gauge their website’s performance.But they’re missing the bigger picture. While web analytics are certainly important, they are only one type of metric that entrepreneurs need to know about — especially when starting up.Here are five other types of analytics you should be monitoring to discover critical information about your business, customers and marketing efforts:1. Funnel analytics. Your funnel analytics provide data about customer flow through lead generation, checkout pages, registration and other means.While you can get basic funnel data from web analytics tools, specialized software can help you better understand your customer funnel. One is KISSmetrics, starting at $150 a month, and MixPanel, with a freemium option where you can track up to 25,000 events for free. These tools can help you understand how leads obtained through your acquisition and onboarding funnels are working out.From studying your funnel, you can conduct tests and make changes to forms, buttons, language and more. Improving your funnel is one of the chief ways to enhance your bottom line.Related: Easy Ways to Keep Visitors on Your Website Longer2. On-site engagement analytics. Beyond knowing how people get to your site, you should understand what they’re doing on your pages. Where are they clicking? Where are they hovering? Where are they looking and perhaps getting confused?This is where mouse-move heat map and click heat map tracking tools come in. Mouse-move heat maps show you were people hover and move across your pages. This information can help you learn whether users find your site intuitive. Click heat mapping tools show you visually the exact locations where visitors’ cursors clicked on your website. This information can be useful in identifying usability or navigation issues.Startups should use these early on so they can make any necessary website adjustments. Some handy tools include ClickTale, which offers both mouse-move and click heat maps and starts with a freemium plan where you can study up to 400 page views a month, and CrazyEgg, which focuses mainly on heat mapping and starts at $99 a month.3. Customer analytics.Startups often wait too long to survey customers and set up consumer feedback channels. But with customer analytics, you can learn about unfulfilled consumer needs and identify problems in your marketing, such as confusion over your messaging.Try tools like ZenDesk, a customer-service platform that lets you respond to customer concerns across channels, track those concerns and improve communication. It starts at $24 a month. There’s also SurveyMonkey, an online research tool that offers a generous free plan that’s worth trying. Another is Qualaroo, a customer insight tool that starts at $79 a month and enables you to easily survey your customers for quick feedback on their experience with your website and other consumer issues.Related: Want to Sell More Online? How ‘Split Testing’ Your Site Can Help4. Lifecycle analytics.To understand the best ways to communicate with customers, you need to collect data on emails, newsletters, in-app messaging and more.Consider using tools such as Customer.io, an email communication platform, that helps you first understand if your emails and newsletters are working and then enables you to easily edit them for improved performance. It starts at $75 a month. There’s also Intercom, which starts at about $50 a month and can improve both communications and customer development by helping you identify and survey specific customer segments.5. Marketing analytics. When a startup begins marketing, it often pushes forward with the channels it has the most experience with. But that’s a risky way to create a marketing roadmap.Marketing analytics tools, which monitor, track and compare your marketing channels in one dashboard, can help you understand which approaches work best, as well as measure the success of specific campaigns. From there, you can decide how best to allocate your marketing budget and make better hiring decisions when ramping up your team.To track and understand this type of data, you can try such tools as HubSpot, a marketing automation platform that helps you see all of your marketing channels in one dashboard view. It starts at $200 a month. Moz (previously SEOmoz) also just opened up a beta for their marketing analytics solution, which allows you to manage all of your inbound marketing efforts in one place. It starts at $99 a month.In the age of analytics platforms, marketers are often overwhelmed by data. Reactively, we tend to rely on the tools and types of data we have loved for years, but that’s a dangerous approach. Instead, we should take advantage of the many new types of data that can help us learn ever more about our customers and better meet their needs.Related: A Company That Makes User Analytics Simple Attend this free webinar and learn how you can maximize efficiency while getting the most critical things done right. 5 min read Free Webinar | Sept 5: Tips and Tools for Making Progress Toward Important Goals Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. July 29, 2013 Register Now »last_img read more

Parrot 40 is out

first_imgParrot, a Debian-based platform, announced the release of its latest version, Parrot 4.0. This release puts an end to all the development and testing processes of many new features, which were experimented in the previous releases since the release of Parrot 3.9. It also consists of all the updated packages and bug fixes announced since its previous version, Parrot 3.11. So, What’s new in Parrot 4.0? Netinstall Images Introduced Netinstall images are a powerful tool, which enables one to install just the necessary software components. One can even use them to install other desktop environments and to build a system of choice. With the provision of netinstall images in Parrot 4.0,  one can use Parrot as a pentest distribution, and also as a framework to build their very own working environment with ease. Docker images This version includes a release of Parrot’s own Docker templates. Docker is a powerful container technology that allows Parrot users to quickly download a Parrot template and immediately spawn unlimited and completely isolated Parrot instances on top of any host OS. Linux Kernel 4.16 The introduction of the new Linux 4.16 kernel is a very important step forward for Linux distributions. The Linux Kernel 4.16 version includes important updates, such as AMDGPU multi-display fixes, optimized in-kernel filesystem operations and so on. Sandbox Parrot system is secure and sandboxed. This is because of its custom firejail profiles with the underlying AppArmor support. This 4.0 version includes sandboxed applications that are stable and reliable. MATE 1.20 The MATE Desktop Environment is updated to its 1.20 release. This includes many graphic bug fixes and new features, such as HiDPI support, and the ability to auto-resize windows by simply dragging them to the screen corner and can also divide them into new layouts. Nginx This version introduces Nginx as Parrot’s new default web server daemon replacing Apache 2. Apache2 is the most famous web server out there, but it is heavy and complex to configure and maintain. On the other hand, Nginx is very lightweight and easy to use. It is not only a fast and secure web server but also a powerful proxy, cache, load-balancer and general purpose forwarder. And its configuration syntax is very easy to use. Apache2 will be available in the repository or pre-installed as a dependency of some security tools that rely on it. LibreOffice 6 LibreOffice 6 is now included as default in Parrot 4.0, with better documents support, memory efficiency and stability. MD Raid Support The Parrot 4.0 now includes a default MD raid support, which was absent in the previous versions. This is because parrot is also used for forensic analysis, and to open software, raids can be crucial while reading disks in a server environment. Mdadm is also introduced, which can be used as a pre-installed tool. This means that parrot can be installed in a software raid for better reliability. To know more about the new changes in detail, read the release notes. Read Next Pentest tool in focus: Metasploit 5 pen testing rules of engagement: What to consider while performing Penetration testing Top 5 penetration testing tools for ethical hackerslast_img read more

Air France KLM orders 60 A220s the aircraft formerly known as Bombardier

first_img MONTREAL — Airbus SE has secured a firm order from Air France- KLM for 60 A220 aircraft – the former Bombardier C Series – to be built at the European giant’s Mirabel facility north of Montreal.The contract for the narrow-body A220-300 includes an option for another 30 aircraft and acquisition rights. The Airbus board confirmed the news Tuesday after weeks of rumours about the passenger jet.Based on 2018 list prices, the firm portion of the contract sits at nearly US$5.5 billion, though airlines generally negotiate big discounts.The first plane is slated for delivery to Air France-KLM in September 2021. Operated by Air France, the A220s will replace some of the fleet’s aging A318s and A319s.As of late June, the Airbus A220 order book counted 551 aircraft, including Delta Air Lines’ firm order for 75 A220-100s last October.In July 2018 Bombardier sold a majority stake in the C Series aircraft program to Airbus, which renamed it the A220. The Canadian Press Tags: A220, Air France, KLM << Previous PostNext Post >> Posted by Wednesday, July 31, 2019 Air France KLM orders 60 A220s, the aircraft formerly known as Bombardier C Serieslast_img read more

ICC Sydney increases Asian involvement

first_imgAfter the success from its Asia Pacific launch in February, the International Convention Centre Sydney (ICC Sydney) will visit cities across Asia to meet with business event decision makers ahead of its December 2016 opening.ICC Sydney chief executive officer Geoff Donaghy, said Asia was an extremely important market for ICC Sydney.“ICC Sydney is stepping up its engagement across Asian markets. Our involvement in Business Events Australia’s high profile annual marketing mission in the region allows us to further showcase the range of innovative marketing tools that have already been incredibly well received by the industry,” Mr Donaghy said.ICC Sydney’s marketing activations allow clients and stakeholders to engage with the space and experience what it is like to host an event at ICC Sydney, without stepping inside the building.A selection of digital and physical solutions, including a virtual tour, bring the features of ICC Sydney to life during its construction phase, highlighting the venue’s diverse functionality as well as its integration with a dynamic waterfront business and leisure precinct.“At ICC Sydney, we have the privilege of marketing one of the most exciting projects underway across the business events industry, in a dynamic, global city that is the economic powerhouse of our nation.”Many Asian buyers and clients will have already experienced successful events at ICC Sydney’s sister venue Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre.As a result, they will be familiar with the high quality of facilities and service provided by ICC Sydney’s manager AEG Ogden.Of the 23 large international conventions already secured for ICC Sydney, many have previously been held at Kuala Lumpur including, the World Congress of Accountants and the International Chamber of Commerce World Chambers Federation World Chambers Congress.Source = ETB Travel News: Lewis Wisemanlast_img read more

Sponsor Advertisement

first_imgSponsor Advertisement Bayfield Ventures Corp. (TSX.V: BYV) is exploring for gold and silver in the Rainy River District of NW Ontario. The Company’s 100% owned “Burns” Block property adjoins the immediate east of Rainy River Resources’ (TSX.V: RR) world-class gold deposit which includes an indicated resource of 5.72 million ounces of gold, averaging 1.18 g/t, in addition to an inferred resource of 2.25 million ounces of gold, averaging 0.79 g/t. Drilling to date on Bayfield’s Burns Block demonstrates that the ODM17gold zone extends from Rainy River Resources’ ground onto the Burns Block. Bayfield is currently carrying out 100,000 metres of diamond drilling on its Rainy River properties. Drill results thus far have been very encouraging. Notable drill results include 60.05 grams per tonne gold and 362.96 grams per tonne silver over 11.2 metres within 26.70 grams per tonne gold and 170.69 grams per tonne silver over 25.5 metres, as well as 35.93 grams per tonne gold and 359.65 grams per tonne silver over 10.0 metres. Bayfield also holds a 100% interest in two other properties in the Rainy River District. Claim blocks “B” and “C” are well located to the immediate east and west (respectively) of Rainy River Resources’ #433 and ODM17 gold zones. Please visit our website to learn more about the company and request information. We get the jobs numbers at 8:30 a.m. Eastern time this morning…and it’s always interesting to see how the precious metals react.It was nice to see gold finally break above the $1,780 spot price mark, even if it was only by a bit over ten bucks.  Looking at the Kitco gold chart from yesterday, it’s easy to see that the gold price ran into stiff resistance at every significant rally attempt…the London open, the Comex open…and the Comex close.  Without a willing seller present at these key times, gold would have finished the day substantially higher.As it turned out, gold finished the Thursday trading session at $1,790.30 spot…up $11.30 on the day.  Not surprisingly, volume…172,000 contracts…was significantly higher [by 40,000 contracts] than Wednesday’s volume, as the technical funds and small traders poured in on the long side…and JPMorgan et al went short against all comers.Of course the most egregious…and equally obvious…price management target of the day, was silver.  Every attempt to break through the $35 spot price ceiling was bludgeoned to death once again…especially the break out at the 8:20 a.m. Eastern time Comex open.Silver’s high tick of the day…$35.23 spot…occurred less than ten minutes after the Comex open…and was immediately followed by silver’s low price tick in New York…$34.57 spot less than twenty minutes later.  If you can explain to me why any for-profit seller would sell into a NASA space-launch rally like this…and drive the price down about 50 cents at the same time…I’d LOVE to hear from you, and why you would trade like this yourself.Silver was carefully closed at $34.97 spot, just below the $35 mark…up 33 cents on the day…but would have been up many dollars if left to its own devices.Here’s the New York Spot Silver [Bid] chart on its own.  It highlights all the New York shenanigans more closely.Gold finished up 0.64%…silver finished up 0.95%…platinum was up 1.84%…and palladium was the star, up 2.91%.The dollar index opened at 79.89 on Thursday morning in early Far East trading…just after making what looked like its final two attempts to break above the 80.00 level in late afternoon trading on Wednesday afternoon in New York.It was all down hill from there…and the decline picked up speed shortly after 12 o’clock noon in London…and the bottom came at precisely 2:00 p.m. in New York, where it looked like someone caught a falling knife.From there, the index traded sideways, closing at 79.36…down 53 basis points on the day…and was down over 60 basis points at one point.It should be obvious that gold and silver wanted to really fly on this dollar index price decline, but there were willing not-for-profit sellers in the market ensuring that the obvious didn’t happen.The gold stocks gapped up about a percent at the open…and continued to work their way higher from there…right up until shortly after the 1:30 p.m. Eastern Comex close.  From there they traded sideways…and the HUI finished up a respectable 2.67%.For the most part, the silver stocks did exceptionally well…and Nick Laird’s Silver Sentiment Index closed up 3.49%.(Click on image to enlarge)The CME’s Daily Delivery Report showed that 192 gold and 16 silver contracts were posted for delivery on Monday.  The only two short/issuers were Merrill and ABN Amro, with 150 and 42 contracts respectively.  Two of the ‘usual suspects’ were the long/stoppers…JPMorgan with 145 contracts and the Bank of Nova Scotia with 47.  The link to yesterday’s Issuers and Stoppers Report is here.I was somewhat taken aback by the report from GLD yesterday, as an authorized participant[s] added 290,802 troy ounces of gold.  In the first four business days of October, GLD has added 407,126 ounces of the stuff…even though the gold price has hardly moved.SLV did not have a report yesterday…but since the beginning of October, the amount of silver in SLV has declined by 174,134 troy ounces…and silver’s price has hardly moved, either.After three days with no sales report, the U.S. Mint decided to come clean on its October activity to date.  They reported selling 7,000 ounces of gold eagles…2,500 one-ounce 24K gold buffaloes…and a chunky 1,233,000 silver eagles…almost 38% of all the silver eagles reported sold in the entire month of September.  As I keep pounding away in this space…I hope, dear reader, that you are getting your share!The Comex-approved depositories only took in one good delivery bar on Wednesday.  It tipped the scales at 999.130 troy ounces.  But they shipped 848,266 troy ounces out the door.  The link to that activity is here.I have the usual number of stories today and, as always, the final edit is up to you.The effect of QE3 is nothing more than pushing up the stock market…the market is being pushed up to record levels with limited trading. We have a very low volume and the market goes up, which is manipulation. – Sam Zell, CEO of Equity Group Investments on CNBC on October 3, 2012It was just another day of blatant price management in the precious metals…with gold and silver getting it in the neck once again from JPMorgan et al.One thing is for sure, is that the total open interest and the Commercial net short position are getting larger by the day, as it was obvious that the “usual LBMA suspects” were going short against all and sundry on both sides of the Atlantic again yesterday.Today’s Commitment of Traders Report certainly won’t show what happened on Wednesday and Thursday…and in some ways this COT report is already “yesterday’s news” when you consider the price activity since the cut-off on Tuesday afternoon.  I suspect that “da boyz” will continue to short this market until they break its back.But, there’s still the chance that JPMorgan et al will get over run.  However, there’s certainly no sign of that happening at the moment.  If this happy event does occur, I’m sure that Jamie Dimon et al won’t be advertising that fact in advance.We get the jobs numbers at 8:30 a.m. Eastern time this morning…and it’s always interesting to see how the precious metals react…or are allowed to react.  I await this event with the usual amount of interest.Gold and silver rose and fell during the Far East trading session on their Friday…and were about unchanged as I hit the ‘send’ button at 5:19 a.m. Eastern time.  Volumes were very light, so I wouldn’t read a thing into what little price movements we’ve had in either metal up to that point in time. The dollar index is comatose.With gold and silver shares continuing to move higher with some conviction now, there’s still an opportunity to either readjust your portfolio, or get fully invested in the continuing major up-leg of this bull market in both silver and gold…and I respectfully suggest that you take out a trial subscription to either Casey Research‘s International Speculator [junior gold and silver exploration companies], or BIG GOLD [large producers], with all our best [and current] recommendations…as well as the archives. Don’t forget that our 90-day guarantee of satisfaction is in effect for both publications.I’m done for the day.  See you here tomorrow.last_img read more

While the market goes gaga for technology companie

first_imgWhile the market goes gaga for technology companies, bidding their prices to levels assuming constant growth to infinity, I wonder just how new apps or viewing devices make my life better versus things created years ago. In a wonderful little book full of big insights, The Great Stagnation, economist Tyler Cowen says our lives in material terms are not much different than in 1953. The cool stuff we saw on The Jetsons in the 1960s hasn’t happened. No jetpacks, or living forever, or visiting Mars. “Life is better and we have more stuff,” writes Cowan, “but the pace of change has slowed down compared to what people saw two or three generations ago.” Market bellwethers like Amazon and Netflix are astronomically valued. But these companies do not change our lives fundamentally—they only allow us to efficiently buy and watch more STUFF. It’s inventions made between 1880 and 1940 that have really made life better. Professor Cowan lists a few important ones: automobiles, electricity, household appliances, telephone, mass production, pharmaceuticals, radio, television, and indoor plumbing. Younger readers can’t imagine a world without these things. I can’t either, except for indoor plumbing. Although I grew up living in Abilene, Kansas, with indoor plumbing, I remember visiting great-grandparents who did not have modern facilities. These days you think the world’s going to end if the Internet is slow. Imagine having to go in the middle of a cold, windy Kansas night. You put on shoes and an overcoat, and tromped out to an uninsulated, rickety outhouse 50 or 100 yards from the residence. In the summer, a different sort of discomfort was associated with the process. So while I’m awed by the latest gadgets like anyone else and a proud Amazon Prime member, I don’t think Jeff Bezos’ company is life-changing enough for the stock to be worth 539 times earnings. As I get older, it is those who designed and created indoor plumbing that I thank each and every night. Which brings me to today’s article by resource investing legend Rick Rule of Sprott Global Resources. Many of you know him as the go-to wise man for junior resource companies in the precious metals and energy areas. Today he has another precious resource he believes you should consider for your portfolio… a resource none of us can do without, no matter what neat technology we hold in our hands. Rick not only lays out an ironclad investment thesis, but provides specific investment ideas. You can read more from Rick and his team at Sprott’s Thoughts. Enjoy, Doug French, Contributing Editorlast_img read more

A note from the editor Please consider making a v

first_imgA note from the editor:Please consider making a voluntary financial contribution to support the work of DNS and allow it to continue producing independent, carefully-researched news stories that focus on the lives and rights of disabled people and their user-led organisations. Please do not contribute if you cannot afford to do so, and please note that DNS is not a charity. It is run and owned by disabled journalist John Pring and has been from its launch in April 2009. Thank you for anything you can do to support the work of DNS… Many of the disabled activists who have played a key role in exposing the harm caused by the government’s social security cuts and reforms have come together for a “breakthrough” campaign meeting attended by five Labour shadow ministers.Labour’s shadow chancellor John McDonnell, who chaired the meeting, said afterwards that he believed that it could herald the start of “a significant movement to expose the brutality of the system” and secure “permanent change”.The meeting was welcomed by disabled activists who attended, but some of them also warned Labour that they now needed to see “concrete action”, with two saying separately that “the proof of the pudding will be in the eating”.The meeting focused on the deaths and other serious harm caused by the much-criticised work capability assessment (WCA), but it also covered many other areas of concern, particularly the damage caused to disabled people by the government’s new universal credit.The meeting is set to be the launchpad for a new series of campaigning efforts linking the party with disabled activists and allies, with Labour hoping eventually to secure support from members of other political parties.A follow-up meeting is set to take place later this autumn.It is believed to be the first time that representatives of so many of the disabled-led grassroots organisations who have campaigned against cuts and reforms – in many cases since 2010 – together with researchers, journalists and union representatives, have gathered together in the same room* to discuss the concerns and plan a campaigning response.The key theme of the meeting was the importance of campaigning around the links between the WCA and the deaths and other serious harm caused to claimants.This included the repeated failure of the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to ensure that the “further medical evidence” needed to demonstrate benefit eligibility is always collected, particularly for claimants with mental health conditions.Another theme was the need to hold Conservative politicians such as Iain Duncan Smith and Chris Grayling to account for the decisions they made within DWP in 2010 that many believe led to the deaths of claimants of out-of-work disability benefits.But those present also said that it was vital to “look at the bigger picture”, and they brought in other crucial issues such as the introduction of universal credit and personal independence payment, the benefit sanctions and conditionality regimes, the impact of the reforms on disabled women, and the cuts to social care support.One contributor said: “People are having their lives utterly destroyed today.”One disabled activist told the meeting that there was a need both for “harm reduction”, to address the immediate problems with the assessment process, and “system change” to secure the eventual abolition of the WCA altogether.He said: “Saying ‘change the WCA right now’ is not saying ‘keep the WCA’, it is saying ‘stop it killing so many people’.”Other contributors said the government had made a deliberate attempt to create a “hostile environment for disabled people”.One activist who had provided unpaid advocacy for other disabled people said they and colleagues had been “inundated with people terrified of the introduction of universal credit”.People were realising that they could not move out of their local authority area in case they were forced to move onto the government’s new working-age benefit ssytem, they said.The meeting heard from one attendee about the importance of putting the government’s reforms into historical perspective and highlighting how they had been strongly influenced by the US insurance industry, which had wanted all disabled people seeking benefits “to be treated as bogus claimants”.She added: “The WCA was brought in to destroy public confidence in the welfare state.”There was also a call for nurses and GPs to be held to account for the way they had “compromised” their own medical ethics in dealing with requests for evidence to support disability benefit claims and in acting as assessors for private contractors.And there was concern at the continuing roll-out of the Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) programme, which was leading mental health professionals to “come out with the sort of language we are hearing from the Department for Work and Pensions”.One contributor told the meeting: “You can’t divorce what’s happening in DWP with what’s happening in psychiatry.”The idea for a meeting of politicians, activists and researchers had originally come from Black Triangle’s John McArdle, who had put the idea to McDonnell. McDonnell told Disability News Service (DNS) after the meeting: “I think this is a breakthrough meeting in terms of getting many of the relevant organisations and individuals together who have their concerns about what is happening to disabled people and their treatment in the welfare system.“I think it is the start of what could be a significant movement to expose the brutality of the system, but more importantly to secure permanent change.”McArdle told DNS afterwards: “I’m really glad the meeting happened. John McDonnell seems to be taking this seriously.“I am encouraged that we are going to be having another meeting in the next six weeks and that a strategy will be formulated to really take the fight for disability rights to the heart of Westminster politics.“But the proof of the pudding is in the eating. We want some concrete action.”Marsha de Cordova, the shadow minister for disabled people, told DNS that it was the first time that the various groups had been brought around the same table to talk about different issues – including crucial concerns about the imminent “migration” from benefits such as employment and support allowance onto universal credit – that all fed into the idea that the government had created a “hostile environment towards disabled people”.She said: “It is good that we are talking about it. It’s great that we are bringing people around the table, and mainly disabled people.”Paula Peters, from Disabled People Against Cuts and the Mental Health Resistance Network, said the meeting had provided “ideas to go forward”.But she echoed McArdle’s words, saying: “Actions speak louder than words. The proof of the pudding is in the eating.“We have heard words for a long time while disabled people continue to die.”She also said there was “a lot more work to do” on Labour’s position on universal credit, which her two groups believe needs to be “stopped and scrapped” rather than paused and fixed, as is the current Labour policy.She said: “We still have to persuade them to stop and scrap. The system is at breaking point.”Researcher and campaigner Catherine Hale, lead researcher and project manager of the Chronic Illness Inclusion Project, and a member of the Spartacus Network, said the meeting was “very exciting”.She said: “In 2015 it felt like the Labour party turned its back on disabled people because the leadership thought that showing us support would work against them in the election. We all know how that ended.“Now John McDonnell has given new momentum and hopefully new unity to our campaigns against the WCA, sanctions, PIP and universal credit.“I hope that with Labour now standing squarely behind disabled people we can overturn the Tories’ cruel policies and vicious rhetoric that have devastated our communities.”Researcher Mo Stewart added: “It was a very welcome meeting, demonstrating Labour’s commitment to changing the plight of claimants of disability benefit for the better.“There is a tendency to overlook the American corporate influence behind the introduction of the fatally flawed WCA. That needs to change.“The disabled lobby petitioned for years to stop being identified by a medical label, and so the social model was adopted.“Along comes big business to play them at their own game, advising the DWP to disregard medical opinion in favour of the flawed biopsychosocial model, and a world of pain and persecution followed with the adoption of the WCA.“Labour plans to stop the WCA when elected to office, which has given a lot of hope to the persecuted sick and disabled community.”Five Labour shadow ministers attended the meeting: McDonnell and de Cordova; Margaret Greenwood, the shadow work and pensions secretary; Mike Amesbury, the shadow employment minister; and Lyn Brown, the shadow Treasury minister with responsibility for social mobility.*The meeting was conducted under the Chatham House rule, so although the contributions made during the meeting can be reported, the names of those who spoke and their organisations cannot, unless they spoke afterwards on-the-record. Labour has allowed DNS to report the names of the five shadow ministers who attendedPicture: Disabled activists, Labour shadow ministers and researchers after the meeting in Westminsterlast_img read more

Want a More Progressive Portrayal of Women Consider the Lowly Emoticon

first_img Attend this free webinar and learn how you can maximize efficiency while getting the most critical things done right. Next Article The language that will empower women can’t be ignored, whether it uses words or, as with emoticons, no words at all. emoticon Image credit: stockerteam | gettyimages CEO of Mitchell Communications Group Guest Writer 5 min read Want a More Progressive Portrayal of Women? Consider the Lowly Emoticon. Free Webinar | Sept 5: Tips and Tools for Making Progress Toward Important Goals Register Now » Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. –shares Elise Mitchell Ever since emojis made their debut, they’ve changed the way people text and use social media. But what started out as a fun way to use images and symbols to supplement words has become its own form of communication.Related: 5 of the Cleverest Marketing Campaigns in Recent TimesLast year, 92 percent of online consumers in one survey said they used emojis, and some social media platforms are even creating their own. Facebook recently unveiled its “Reactions” system, which allows users to respond with emotions (such as love, excitement or anger) to someone’s status, update or photo. Even brands such as Mentos, Coca-Cola and Comedy Central are caught up in the emoticon craze.But, as emojis gain popularity, some have questioned how women will use these new communication tactics, especially when the emoticons they choose represent themselves. Procter & Gamble made a serious stab at answering this question. It launched its latest #LikeAGirl ad to point out that although girls send about a billion emojis a day, the limited supply of empowered-female emojis only serves to reinforce old stereotypes.For female professionals and entrepreneurs, it’s troubling that a modern communication form presents women in such outdated ways. Male emojis show professionals such as police officers, construction workers and detectives. Female emojis dance, wear pretty dresses and wedding veils and get manicures and haircuts.And this is troublesome, because the language that will empower women can’t be ignored, even when words aren’t used at all.Keep moving forwardWomen don’t see themselves as leaders, visionaries or decision-makers often enough, and we need to change that: Everyone needs to see the rich array of roles women can fill. According to a survey of more than 1,000 young American women, 75 percent of respondents said they wanted a more progressive portrayal of women depicted by the emojis they use every day.As technology and communication progress, we need to make sure that the portrayal of women progresses, too. Here are four ways to make a positive impact on how we communicate to and about other women in the digital age whether we’re using words — or (as with emoticons) no words at all:1. Reinforce leadership actions.People — regardless of gender — want praise for a job well done. However, when any of us publicly praise a woman in the workplace, we should pay attention to what we’re praising her for. Women are generally viewed as honest and ethical, but not as strong-willed leaders driving businesses forward. That needs to change.The first step is to focus on gender-neutral leadership qualities. Courage, strategic thinking, innovation and complex decision-making are characteristics we should highlight in women.Related: How Women Leaders Win and Help Others to Do the Same2. Acknowledge positive ‘feminine’ qualities — but don’t box women into them.We should make conscious efforts to publicly praise women for traits that people might not typically ascribe to them. However, we shouldn’t neglect to acknowledge good qualities just because they are considered stereotypically female, such as being excellent team-builders or encouraging others. Make a conscious effort to reinforce those behaviors without suggesting they’re the totality of women’s capabilities.3. Keep virtual communication positive and professional.Professional and uplifting language isn’t just for the office. Whether we’re using social media, choosing an emoticon or sending an email or Slack message, we need to think about how we portray ourselves.As a company leader, I always try to lead by example. I strive to be mindful of what I’m posting on social media — communicating in a positive, professional manner while still maintaining my authentic self. For better or for worse, what we put on our personal social media accounts affects our reputations, even at work.Related: 7 Essential Tools for Easily Building Your Personal Brand Online4. Remember: Intent and impact are different.Women struggle with confidence in leadership roles, and 67 percent of women in one survey said they would like more support in building their confidence to be leaders. Word choice goes a long way in offering that support. Be intentional about the words you use to describe women in the workplace.Words such as “sassy” and “adorable” might seem harmless, but they can reinforce ideas about women that prevent them from being taken seriously. Also, avoid words such as “abrasive,” which are often used to criticize a woman’s performance.Emoticons and social media might seem like fun, innocuous interactions, but every mode of communication affects how people think. We will inevitably continue to develop new ways to express ourselves. But, as technology advances, we need to make sure that those advancements move in a direction that encourages women rather than hinders them. June 17, 2016 Add to Queuelast_img read more