Numerous drug use booths in Germany
By Alex Templar - MSTv w/additional information from BBCNewsbeat
While the United States struggles with the widespread legalization of simple marijuana, other countries are stepping much further by actually opening and regulating drug consumption rooms.
To this point, the majority of these spots have been located a in a few European countries; with Germany being one of the most significant.
But now, the trend seems to be spreading nearer to the U.S. as our closest world ally might be considering adding such facilities on United Kingdom soil.
The Brighton & Hove Council of East Sussux, has become the first in the United Kingdom to officially consider opening a drug consumption room.
A 12-month review of the area's drug problem suggests the facility could help reduce deaths and encourage addicts away from shooting up in public places.
A handful of European cities have drug consumption rooms including Germany.
"We're not the most popular neighbour," admits Andreas Geremia, who runs a drug consumption room in Frankfurt, Germany's red light district, near the cities main train station.
Drug paraphernalia is issued in sterile conditions
In 2012 alone, the centre had in excess of 100,000 visitors. In protecting the safety and privacy of its clients, fresh needles, syringes and other bits and pieces used for injecting heroin and crack cocaine are provided.
When the centre opens in the morning, a group of people are usually already waiting outside. Some of them stagger and Andreas explains: "Many people are shocked at how normal our clients look."
Geremia believes Brighton and the UK should welcome the idea of drug consumption rooms as they helped Frankfurt bring the problem of public drug use under control.
The centre also offers help accessing doctors, rehab and help with social services and parole officers.
Despite managing to get the problem off the streets, Andreas admits: " In Germany drug use is falling but in Frankfurt it has increased."
Users of the rooms appreciate the safety of the locations. But, even the best laid plans come with problems. As most users come in to inject heroin or crack cocaine, on average two a week overdose and need medical help. However as yet, no deaths have occurred in the rooms.
The Brighton & Hove Council say they have changed their approach to dealing with the drug problem in their area. They say they used to have the highest level of drug related deaths in the UK - now they are eighth.
Manchester is now number one according to St George's University of London. The city council there say they are watching with interest any attempt to introduce drug consumption rooms in the UK.
The Swedish duo inspire logic and brilliance
Reproduced from BBC News
Dance duo Daft Punk's first new single in eight years, Get Lucky, has broken Spotify streaming records.
The comeback, which features singer Pharrell Williams, had the biggest streaming day for a single track in the US and UK on the day of its release.
The Swedish online music site did not release the number of streams for the track which features on the DJs' new album, Random Access Memories.
Spotify's Will Hope, said the album would be "the biggest" this year.
"There was never any doubt that the first original single from Daft Punk in years was going to be one of the biggest debut singles of 2013," the director of label relations said.
Get a look at this record breaking track below!!
The duo whose real names are Thomas Bangalter and Gus De Homem-Christo, told Rolling Stone magazine they hired "top-notch session players" to perform on the album.
Random Access Memories is Daft Punk's first studio album since 2005's Human After All, though the band scored the Tron: Legacy soundtrack in 2010.
They won a Grammy in 2009 for their live album, Alive 2007.
The past and future of Music television?
By: Alex Templar -MSTv
Additional info from BBC-Newsbeat
If you were to ask true purists of music television genre, they'd probably say the concept "died" around the mid to late 90's.
Contributing to the demise and around that time, first run videos and general music began appearing online, "reality" TV started its climb to the brainless fare it is now and MTV/VH1 just stopped (kinda) airing their namesakes.
The phrase, "where's the music on MTV?" permeated the youth slang lexicon at the turn of the 21th century. But, good idea don't stay dead forever, they just evolve into new forms. And for 2013, that form might be called Vevo TV; which is making its debut in Great Briton.
The online music video service Vevo says one of the reasons it is launching a UK TV channel is because there aren't enough opportunities for artists to appear on television.
But broadcasters like the BBC say viewing habits have changed, with audiences consuming music programming on an on-demand basis. Plus, some artists say there are now fewer opportunities to appear on TV.
TV opportunities Nic Jones, Vevo's international senior vice-president, said: "We think Vevo is the answer to that and we totally believe there is a place for it."
The BBC produces 250 hours of original aired music programming every year and they saw the massive decline in audiences because the way we consume music has changed so dramatically.
And the preferred way of consumerism is online.
However, television remains a viable and desired platform because music production companies retain strong relations with digital and terrestrial TV stations.
Vevo's Nic Jones says there is a "catch" between existing terrestrial digital TV channels and production companies. "If you talk to record labels they'll say, 'Why won't the TV channels programme music? Everyone loves music?'
TV stations, on the other hand, are mostly lackluster about the idea
"Talk to the TV channels and it's like, 'Music in prime-time? Nobody wants to watch it.' quotes Jones.
Yet Jones and Vevo disagree with broadcast television's hesitations. For a concept first brought to the public attention over 30 years ago, music television retains its appeal and hopefully draw.
Vevo, in response, is planning their music video move back into TV because "there are times when people just want to sit back at home and be entertained".
The new Vevo TV will see a mix of music videos and original programming, such as Vevo's LIFT, which offers new artist spotlights.
These new efforts by Sony (Vevo's parent company) has drawn accolades by many executives in the music industry who admit to the challenges bands face while looking for their breakthrough venue. For the most part, it's up to the production company to come up with new, engaging ways to present their material.
"There isn't really any music television now," says Jeremy Pritchard from Manchester band Everything Everything.
"There are very few opportunities for bands to play live on TV." he added.
But, it seems that's about to change. Hopefully, America will be in Vevo's future plans to bring "music" back to television. But, they better move fast. The "other guy" might vie for their crown back.
By: The Associated Press
NEW YORK (AP) — The puppeteer who was the voice of Elmo on "Sesame Street" is being sued for the fifth time — accused of sexually abusing an underage youth.
According to a federal lawsuit filed in New York Tuesday, Kevin Kiadii (keeh-EH'-deeh), now 25, says he was 16 when he met Kevin Clash during an online chat,
Kiadii's attorney, Jeff Herman, says Clash sent a limousine to pick up the teen in Brooklyn and bring him to his Manhattan apartment for sex.
Herman represents four other youths who filed similar suits.
The attorney acknowledges his clients were compliant, but says the 52-year-old entertainer took advantage of young men by playing father to them.
Clash resigned from "Sesame Street" in November.
His lawyer, Michael Berger, did not immediately respond to a call for comment.
Read more about this case here: http://www.myscenetv.com/13/post/2012/11/seseme-street-elmo-puppeteer-quits.html
By: MSTv Censor-buster staff
Robin Thicke would have no problem saying, "he's bringing sexy back!" And really in a big way, too..
The 36 year old crooner has just released the video for his new song, "Blurred lines." As always, Thicke brings a laid-back and sultry R&B quality to his songs and videos, but this newest sampling has a quality that would make his father's "Jason Seaver" alter-ego wince.
The youthful Thicke's new video is unique because its actually been banned by Youtube for partial nudity and being too hot. But once you see it, you'll have to wonder what the hell were the censors of the web video service thinking..
Now, if you haven't seen it, please be aware that there is quite a bit of nudity in the video. However, its depiction is showcased in a very tongue and cheek behaviour. Viewer discretion is strongly advised.
It seems even Robin and video co-star Pharrell had something to say about the issue. The duo took to Twitter to complain about the idiotic ban.
Robin Thicke ✔ @robinthicke
YouTube took down the Unrated version of #BLURREDLINES because it was too hot! You can still view it here on @VEVO http://www.vevo.com/watch/robin-thicke/blurred-lines-unrated-version/USUV71300526?source=instantsearch …
Pharrell Williams ✔ @Pharrell
.@robinthicke Why they trying to ban good shit?
They've had their say. Now, we want to know what you think.. Should this video have been banned?
The hacker's website home page
By: Conner James - MSTv
We all should have a sense of worry every time we drop down to work and play on our new windows to the world. Desk computers, laptops and tablets, though convenient and beyond value in today's global workings, can make us as vulnerable as a baby to the flu, every time we use them.
And much like a virus, it seems that the affluent and powerful can be just as susceptible to attack as you or I.
To that effect, multiple US celebrities, dignitaries and people in holding public offices have had their lives hacked into with private details of their finances posted online.
Among those displayed were the records of Beyonce and Jay-Z, Paris Hilton, Kim Kardashian, Mel Gibson, Britney Spears and Ashton Kutcher.
Private and often secure information about governmental figures have also been released online. The hackers posted information, but not credit reports, about US Vice-President Joe Biden, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
Just a few whose lives were laid open
Some of the private financial information posted includes social security numbers, which could allow fraudsters to commit identity theft.
Information about FBI Director Robert Mueller is thought to have been uploaded. The bureau says it is aware of the site but has not revealed whether they will be investigating.
The website, which has been now blocked, used an internet suffix assigned to the Soviet Union and included malicious photos of all those whose information was posted.
The sources of the information was not listed, but the page did include an anti-police and establishment message written in Russian.
So far representatives for each person targeted either declined to comment on the accuracy of the information that was posted, or they did not return messages seeking comment.
A visual metaphor yes, but one to ring true.
By: Alex Templar - MSTv Correspondent
Louisiana, in particular, New Orleans and Baton Rouge, leads the way nationwide with the most, and growing numbers of HIV and AIDS cases. The problem at this time, is of a grievous concern as the levels grow to epidemic levels.
But, though these extreme STD's garner cause for concern, the "more common" varieties like Gonorrhea, Chlamydia and Syphilis are on the rise as well.
However these specific STDs, like most, can be mostly avoided depending on your lifestyle and by exercising an extra bit of caution.
In response, the government is looking to launch campaigns to educate the public on new ways to treat the more common sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).
STDs can be caught when people have unprotected oral, anal and vaginal sex.
As with any disease, knowledge is the best defense to help avoid a potential future problem. So, before you become a victim, learn the warning signs and symptoms for some of the most common STDs below.
The Dark Knight's squire falls in battle
By: Kent B. - MSTv Correspondent
The character of Robin has been considered the conscious and a humanizing presence to the character, Batman, since his debut in 1940.
In his 70 year history, the laughing, carefree, yet brilliant character Robin, has been a partner, best friend, rival, sibling and ofttimes, son (literal and actual) to the dark and tortured man known as Bruce Wayne/Batman.
But, for a man who became legend based on the most grievous of losses - witnessing the first hand murder of his parents as a child, what can possibly be more traumatic than experiencing probably the second greatest human loss? What can seeing the death of your child, not once, but twice, do to any man? Or "Bat-"man?
Well, its something the public will find out on February 27th as Damian Wayne, the fourth Robin, dies in the pages of DC Comics' Batman Incorporated #8.
The death of a character has become an old stand-by in the comic book world. And in the world of the Batman, death and the breaking points of characters are a very common occurrence; incidents occurring to both Batman and Robin during their long careers.
But, this is a first: this is the second death of Robin. But, it's just not the same Robin.
Confused? Well, unless you're a comic fan, you probably should be. So, let's review a very brief history of the young men who would all be called, "Robin."
The four men known as "Robin"
Most are only familiar with the first and best-known character to hold the Robin title; a character known as Dick Grayson. Debuting in 1940, Grayson wore the tunic for over 40 years and was re-christened as the hero, Nightwing in 1985.
Since the powers at DC figured Batman needs a Robin, the second one was created in the character Jason Todd.
Todd, a extremely troubled kid and a juvenile delinquent from the start, was introduced in 1987. But, the character, being rude and abrasive, never made the kind of impact Grayson did and was killed off, by the Joker and comic fandom itself in 1988. However, Todd was revived in 2005 as the Red Hood.
A new Robin was needed and designed to have the likability and brilliance of Dick Grayson, but with more of an edge like Jason Todd. So, in 1989, Tim Drake became the third Robin.
Written and created to be likable, intelligent and a detective on par with the Batman himself, the Drake-Robin became so popular he earned his own long-running comic.
But, like Grayson before him, he eventually evolved into his own persona and became "Red Robin" in 2009.
But as always, Batman seems to need a Robin. So, one was created with a bit of a twist. Where the previous three were unrelated teens taken in to give them guidance and some type kindred companionship for the Batman, the fourth was actually a Wayne himself.
The father comes to terms with the son
Introduced in 2006, Damian Wayne served as the fourth youth to wear the red and green tunic of Robin. But, unlike the other three previous, Damian was the actual son of Bruce Wayne and Talia Al Ghul; daughter of Batman arch foe, Ra Al Ghul.
Beginning a life as damaged as his father, his mother weaved a life for Damian to spite Wayne and garner the approval of her ruthless father.
But, Damian would prove popular with the fans as an interesting pastiche of all the Robins that came before him. And now in the wake of the "Death of the Family" Joker storyline, it seems Damian Wayne will be the next Robin to meet his demise.
But how it happens remains a mystery.. That is, until Feb 27th.
What is known is that Damian faces off with a cloned assassin, a cloned version of himself sent by his mother.. And like the the first Robin death, Batman arrives too late to save his son.
It seems tragedy and loss are destined to walk side-by-side with Wayne/Batman forever.
So, how will the death of his son (at the hands of the mother) affect the Batman? Will he need another Robin to tether in his rage? Should there even be another Robin?
What do you think?
By: Conner James - MSTv Correspondent
In this world of immediate online satisfaction, nothing is out of the reach of the spending consumer. But, with the immediate usually comes a lack of quality, or safety.
Now that lack of safety comes to a head as there is a growing concern over women, worldwide, purchasing untested abortion pills online.
One of the great, but most regrettable aspects of online purchases is that you can find anything you could want, or conceive, easily and at a price you're willing to pay. But, as there is no true regulating body for this worldwide entity, the term "buyer beware" holds true more so online then anywhere else.
Yet, women are drastically forgoing their health for the promise of a problem being "removed" with ease. But, some are paying harsh consequences.
The US and Great Briton Government's health regulators, the FDA and MHRA, warn it is dangerous as people don't know what they are getting with online abortion pills.
Painful and traumatic side effects were common for most women who chose to use these drugs.
"The ordeal was incredibly painful," describes Suzanne Lee, who took the three pill dosage in 2012.
She said: "As soon as I took the last pill, that was it, I was in the bathroom bleeding and vomiting all over the place. I regret getting the pills, but at the time, I felt it just was cheaper then seeing a doctor."
With the ease of purchase, BBC Newsbeat ordered some abortion pills online to get them tested. The website didn't want any medical information or prescription; just credit card details.
Three bright yellow pills turned up in the mail a week later with no instructions on how to take them. However after being analyzed at a drug testing clinic, the results showed they were mostly made up of paracetamol, a generic pain reliever, fever reducer and the primary ingredient in acetaminophen.
It should be noted that these pills were from just one website of many offering the pills. And it should be noted that online purchases of any drugs, other then from regulated companies, carry no guarantees or guidelines for their usage or your safety.
Such warnings need to be taken to heed when thoughts of purchasing any abortion pill online, and questioning just what is in it.
Its advice for anyone thinking about having an abortion is to speak to a medical professional. Heidi Wright from the Royal Pharmaceutical Society says it is worrying: "We are very concerned, firstly the abortion pill shouldn't be available online anyway.
She said: "We find more and more that actually among the women we come across, they have all used internet abortion pills."
By: Conner James - MSTv Correspondent
For 2013, February has been quite a busy month for Louisiana. Besides Mardi Gras, Valentine's Day and the Superbowl, it also happens to be Black History Month.
Black History month: our annual, national celebration, puts the spotlight on most of the important contributions made by our African Americans brethren throughout the history of the United States.
Having been an official national celebration since 1976, Black History Month is also recognized by our cousins in Canada and the United Kingdom.
On Feb. 5 the Salmen High School of New Orleans, presented a Black History Month program. It included a African dance and drum production, presented by several students and teachers from the Talented Art, Talented Theatre, and Brass Band programs.
The festive event, enjoyed by all, was held in celebration of important African-descent figures of American history. This event was one of many being held, or expected to be held throughout the state.
In other parts of the Crescent city, promising musicians are being encouraged to audition for positions in Dillard University's celebrated Jazz program.
Potential students who make the cut can be expected to take part in Saturday Jazz classes at Dillard and other opportunities. Membership has its privileges, as students gain opportunities to perform in the French Quarter Festival, Jazz and Heritage Festival and many other events.
As the month proceeds, many more pertinent events to celebrate the brilliant and diverse history of our proud African Americans will come to light. The following is just a few. So, go out to attend some and celebrate. But, return to your homes with a greater respect for the people; and for having learned something new.
Jude's Korean adventures
Alcohol in South Korea
All bars and local night establishments are filled to the brim with things you have seen in all other places like Jack Daniels and Jagermeister.
However you may spy a little green bottle with Korean writing on it and you may ask what is that? It's called Soju, my friends or 소주 for the Hangil inclined (Korean Language).
Soju is a spirit primarily made from rice, barley, potatoes or tapioca and has an average alcohol content of 20% ABV however there are some brands of Andong Soju that are upward of 45% ABV.
None the less, they will both get the job done. Soju has a taste very similar to vodka but it is slightly sweeter and easier to consume by itself.
Now we get to the matter of cost and availability; however rest assured the answer will be qiute positive. Soju is available all over South Korea from the local convenience store for 1,000 Won = roughly $1 or in a restaurant for 3,000 Won =$3. So these adult treats certainly won't set you back any considerable amount.
It alco mixes quite well with beer, cider, and energy drinks. Soju has been around since the 13th century and shows no signs of going anywhere anytime soon. So when you get the chance come on down to the Republic of South Korea and have a shot of deliciousness.