The Fight Against Zombie Properties

first_img Servicers Navigate the Post-Pandemic World 2 days ago in Daily Dose, Featured, Foreclosure, Journal, News Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days ago  Print This Post The Week Ahead: Nearing the Forbearance Exit 2 days ago July 28, 2020 1,472 Views Urban Blight zombie homes 2020-07-28 David Wharton A new law aimed at helping municipalities combat the blight associated with zombie properties passed the New York state legislature last week. The straightforward law requires mortgage servicers to “provide their name and contact information at multiple points during foreclosure proceedings” for one- to four-family homes in the state.New York Assemblymember Monica Wallace and State Senator Tim Kennedy announced the passage of their joint legislation in a press release stating, “The purpose of this legislation is to help local governments easily identify who is responsible for maintaining the property.”Their press release stated that many of New York’s so-called zombie properties are the result of the housing crisis of 2008.“This legislation gives local governments an easy and efficient way to contact mortgage servicers to ensure that their maintenance obligations are enforced,” Wallace said. “By doing so, we are protecting neighborhoods from unsightly and potentially dangerous conditions created by zombie foreclosures.”In the New York metro 8.9% of properties in foreclosure are zombie properties, meaning the owner has left the property while the home remains in the foreclosure process, according to the latest zombie foreclosure data from ATTOM Data solutions.In these cases, New York deems it falls to the servicer to maintain the property to ensure safety and compliance with neighborhood codes.Sometimes, cities and municipalities have a hard time tracking down the appropriate servicer to take care of an abandoned property in need of maintenance or repair. Properties can then become sources of blight, causing neighboring property values to decline.“By requiring these institutions to provide their names and contact information prominently during foreclosure proceedings, municipalities will be able to more effectively ensure these problem properties are documented, tracked, and remediated as quickly as possible so that our neighborhoods can be restored to their original character and charm,” Kennedy said. About Author: Krista F. Brock Servicers Navigate the Post-Pandemic World 2 days ago The Fight Against Zombie Properties Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days ago Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days ago The Best Markets For Residential Property Investors 2 days ago Tagged with: Urban Blight zombie homes The Best Markets For Residential Property Investors 2 days ago Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago Subscribe Previous: Gauging the Pandemic’s Financial Impact Next: Mortgage Forbearance Rates Decline Home / Daily Dose / The Fight Against Zombie Properties Related Articles Krista Franks Brock is a professional writer and editor who has covered the mortgage banking and default servicing sectors since 2011. Previously, she served as managing editor of DS News and Southern Distinction, a regional lifestyle publication. Her work has appeared in a variety of print and online publications, including Consumers Digest, Dallas Style and Design, DS News and DSNews.com, MReport and theMReport.com. She holds degrees in journalism and art from the University of Georgia. Share 1Save Sign up for DS News Daily Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days agolast_img read more

Ben Stein to Deliver UVM Commencement Address

first_imgUniversity of Vermont,The multi-talented Ben Stein, actor/comedian/lawyer/economist/presidential speechwriter/filmmaker, will address the graduates and receive an honorary degree at the University of Vermont’s 205th commencement ceremony on Sunday, May 17.Popularly known as the host of Comedy Central’s seven-time Emmy award winning game show, “Win Ben Stein’s Money,” and for an iconic classroom scene in the film Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, Stein is also an accomplished writer who has published 30 books and written for publications ranging from the Wall Street Journal and The New York Times to E! Online and New York Magazine. Stein earned his undergraduate degree with honors in economics from Columbia University and went on to graduate as valedictorian of his class from Yale Law School. He has taught at American University, the University of California at Santa Cruz and Pepperdine University in subjects ranging from political and social content of mass culture to securities law. Along with his academic and entertainment achievements, Stein has as served as a trial lawyer for the Federal Trade Commission and as White House speechwriter for presidents Nixon and Ford.In addition to Ben Stein, UVM will award honorary degrees at Commencement 2009 to the following individuals:Dr. Ben R. Forsyth has served the University of Vermont as professor of medicine, senior vice president, trustee and advisor. He completed his medical training at New York University in 1957 and joined UVM College of Medicine in 1966. In addition to a distinguished career of teaching and research on infectious diseases, Forsyth has proved an invaluable administrator and mentor, including service from 1985-1990 as second-in-command to UVM president Lattie Coor. In 1990, he followed Coor to Arizona State University where Forsyth would serve as senior executive assistant and then provost. Forsyth’s service to UVM continued when he joined the university’s board of trustees from 1996 to 2002.Anthony Marro, UVM Class of 1965, was an award-winning reporter and longtime editor of Newsday, one of the nation’s largest newspapers. His long career in journalism began at Marro’s hometown Rutland Herald, where he worked on the sports desk during his high school years. As a reporter for The New York Times and Newsweek during the Watergate years, Marro covered some of the era’s biggest stories from his Justice Department beat. Across decades at Newsday, Marro was a dogged reporter on investigative teams that won Pulitzers for Public Service Reporting in 1970 and 1974. He moved into the managing editor’s role in 1981 and six years later rose to editor, a post he held until his retirement in 2003. Newsday earned a dozen Pulitzer Prizes under Anthony Marro’s leadership.Gretchen B. Morse, UVM Class of 1975, has spent 30 years in public service working to improve the health and wellbeing of Vermonters. As director of the United Way of Chittenden County for the past 18 years and as a Vermont State legislator from 1985-1997, Morse worked to help countless numbers of residents in need and organizations dedicated to helping Vermonters improve their quality of life. In addition to serving as commissioner of the Vermont Commission on Women, Morse has served as a board member on a number of organizations including the Lake Champlain regional Chamber of Commerce; Vermont Health Foundation; Wake Robin; and Fletcher Allen Health Care.William Pickens III is the founder and president of Bill Pickens Associates, Inc., an international consulting and executive search firm, and also the founding president and chief executive officer of the Paul Robeson Foundation. A 1958 graduate of the University of Vermont, he went on to build a successful career in business while simultaneously dedicating his efforts to public service. He was vice president for the National Committee on American Foreign Policy, where he led peacekeeping missions to South Africa and Northern Ireland, and was a founding trustee and secretary of the United States Japan Foundation. Mr. Pickens is a member and former director of the Executive Committee of the NAACP, which was co-founded by his grandfather in 1909.For more information on UVM’s 2009 commencement ceremony go to: www.uvm.edu/commencement(link is external)last_img read more

Is worrying ever wise?

first_img 36SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Wendy Moody Wendy Moody is a Senior Editor with CUInsight.com. Wendy works with the editorial team to help edit the content including current news, press releases, jobs and events. She keeps … Web: www.cuinsight.com Details We are told everyday not to worry. Whether it pertains to a personal issue with friends and family or a work misstep, others easily advise us not to sweat it. But it’s time to stop and think: can unexpected stress be good for us? As the saying goes, “Too much of anything is never a good thing,” but here are three times when it is okay to let yourself stress.When you need motivation: There are many instances in our careers where no matter how hard we try, we feel varying degrees of stress. Are you applying for a new position, pursuing a completely new career path, or struggling to prove yourself in your current role? Many aspects of our work life can be stressful but when the worrying starts, embrace it and use it to your advantage. Let it serve as a motivator and as a force driving you toward your end goal. It’s important not to let it completely take over but do your very best to turn the stress into success and you will reap the rewards.When faced with a negative outcome: Sometimes even when we do our best in our personal lives or in the workplace, we just know that things aren’t going to turn out how we hoped. When we feel a less than ideal result looming around the corner, this can be very stressful. But, use your worry as an emotional buffer. If you can anticipate the negative outcome it will come as less of a surprise, and hopefully it will sting just a little bit less.When others depend on you: When others are looking to you as a safety net or for support, it can sometimes feel incredibly stressful. As a leader (whether a parent, caregiver, boss, etc.) it’s important to remember that the stress you feel over others’ wellbeing is a sign of your competence. When you stress about those you are responsible for, you are putting thought and care into your decisions, instead of throwing caution to the wind. When others see that you are paying attention to detail and have your priorities in line, they will trust your judgment.last_img read more

10bet announce Drogba as brand ambassador

first_imgShare SBTech confident of resuming full client operations following cyberattack March 31, 2020 SBC’s Year In Review: March 2019’s big betting news December 23, 2019 Share StumbleUpon Submit Related Articles Assessing the football and betting sponsorship dynamic March 18, 2019 10bet has announced former UEFA Champions League winner Didier Drogba as the betting firms global brand ambassador for the next two years. The Ivorian, who made his name with Chelsea FC where he won four Premier League titles, announced the deal himself via a video posted to his personal social media page.A spokesperson for 10bet commented: “Didier is one of the most successful and popular sports stars in the world. His career record of scoring 10 goals in 10 finals and winning 10 trophies at club level earned him the name ‘the ultimate big game player,’ making him a natural fit for our partnership. His passion for the game will be invaluable as he joins us at 10bet in a new challenge off the pitch.”As part of the partnership, Drogba will make special live event appearances as well as taking centre stage in 10bet’s global marketing campaigns which aim to promote the betting brand in the UK.Regarding his appointment, Drogba stated: “I am excited to be partnering with 10bet on this campaign, and like that they promote responsible gaming. We had a lot of fun filming the ads which you will see very soon.”10bet’s launched across all its social platforms earlier this week, with the firm stressing that users will see Drogba as you never have before – as the ultimate big game fan.Drogba, who retired in 2018, enjoyed an illustrious playing career which saw him claim 18 honours at club level as well as a host of individual awards which included being named as African Player of the Year twice.last_img read more

Ibrahimovic, Los Angeles Galaxy confirm MLS move

first_imgLos Angeles, United States | AFP | Zlatan Ibrahimovic completed his move to Los Angeles Galaxy on Friday, aiming to conquer Major League Soccer in the final stop of his glittering career.The iconic 36-year-old striker announced his move in a typically enigmatic full-page advert in the Los Angeles Times, which read simply: “Dear Los Angeles – you’re welcome.”“Coming to play in the United States, it is only fitting for me to join the most successful team in Major League Soccer, the LA Galaxy,” Ibrahimovic said in a statement released later by the Galaxy.“I am excited to join a club with a winning legacy that has embodied soccer in Los Angeles for over 20 years.”Asked by the Los Angeles Times if he believed Los Angeles was big enough to accommodate his larger-than-life personality, he added: “If not, I’ll make it bigger.”The Swedish star’s move to MLS had been widely reported on Thursday after Premier League giants Manchester United confirmed the player had been given permission to leave the club with immediate effect.The Galaxy have not released details of Ibrahimovic’s contract but Sports Illustrated have reported that the forward has inked a two-year deal worth $3 million, a fraction of the reported $13.1 million annual salary he was earning in his final year at United.Dan Beckerman, chief executive of AEG, the Galaxy’s parent company, said Ibrahimovic was not motivated by dollar signs.#zLAtan pic.twitter.com/S73CpaNMaP— LA Galaxy (@LAGalaxy) March 23, 2018“He’s made it clear he’s coming here to win championships,” Beckerman told the Times. “It’s not about the money. LA is a place for stars, and he’s going to be one of the brightest stars that’s ever played in this market.”It is not known when Ibrahimovic will play his first game for the Galaxy although reports suggested he could make his debut in next Saturday’s derby against Los Angeles FC.Ibrahimovic’s arrival in California comes after a serious knee injury last year disrupted the end of his stint with Manchester United, which he joined in 2016 from Paris Saint-Germain. The charismatic goalscorer had not played for United this season since featuring in a 2-2 draw against Burnley on December 26.Ibrahimovic scored 28 goals in 46 appearances during a remarkable first campaign in the Premier League before tearing knee ligaments in a Europa League game last April.The deal makes Ibrahimovic the latest in a long line of ageing stars who have been lured to America by the Galaxy following David Beckham, Steven Gerrard, Robbie Keane and former England international Ashley Cole.Ibrahimovic’s transfer is almost certainly the final chapter of a career which has seen the 6ft 4in (1.95m) forward collect winners’ medals during spells with Ajax, Inter Milan, Barcelona, AC Milan, Paris Saint-Germain and United.– ‘Washed up?’ –But whether or not Ibrahimovic is likely to enjoy a similarly successful spell in America remains an open question, however.While the technical level of the league is below that of leading leagues in Europe, MLS remains a physically demanding arena that is likely to ask questions of a player still working his way back from injury.“Is he the physical force who dominated the top levels of the game for well over a decade?” ESPN soccer writer Jeff Carlisle asked on Thursday.“Or is LA getting a washed-up 36-year-old forward who isn’t even a year removed from a devastating knee injury, and can no longer rely on his once-prodigious physical gifts?”Ibrahimovic, however, told the Times he is fit and ready to start.“I am ready to go now,” Ibrahimovic said. “First of all, I’m there to play football. I’m not there for something else. My first objective is to play football and do what I’m good at.”The Swede’s arrival in MLS comes at a time when clubs are increasingly turning away from the recent practice of signing veteran European stars already into their 30s.Several clubs have instead found success by looking to sign younger players from South America who view the league as a potential springboard for a move to Europe.Although the Galaxy are the most successful club in MLS history with a record five championships, their fortunes have dipped sharply in recent seasons.Last year, the club finished bottom of the Western Conference with only eight wins from 34 games. It was only the fourth time the club had failed to reach the playoffs, and the first time it finished with the league’s wooden spoon.Share on: WhatsApplast_img read more

Overtime

first_img:10 Don’t look now boys and girls, but your L.A. Lakers are now tied for the 8th playoff spot in the Western Conference and the party is just getting started.:09 Speaking of the Lakers, and I was, I guess you haters know that Kobe “Black Mamba” Bryant is averaging 36 points a game in their last seven. What…huh…say what…I can’t hear ya Zik. Can’t hear ya Fred Crawford.  Can’t hear ya dad…Can     somebody please turn up the volume.  I can’t hear nobody!:08 Here’s your Steelers’ death march . . . James Harrison—GONE…Mike Wallace—GONE, Rashard Mendenhall – GONE…Willie Colon—SOON TO BE GONE…Chris Rainey—LONG GONE…Super Bowl Hopes—GONE—GONE—GONE !:07 I know I joke about the Penguins, but for real—for real, they’re playing off the charts and “Sid the Kid” is simply the greatest player in the world.  And let’s face it, you win five in a row in the National Hockey League that’s serious.:06 Had the pleasure of sharing the stage with a living legend the other night.  The great Bruno Sammartino.  Now for you real back in the day wrestling fans, you know this man was the real deal.  All you need to know is at 6 feet and 275 pounds, he lifted a 610 pound man “over his head” and threw him out of the ring…“over the ropes.”  And the icing on the cake…sold out Madison Square Garden 45 times!  C’mon man!!! (Yeah we’re talking about Haystack Calhoun):05 Here We Go Steelers, Here We Go… No, no, no, not gonna happen!:04 Hey, when do the Pirates start playing???:03 If you’re reading this, you still have time to get yourself down to the Allegheny County Courthouse, Thursday, March 14th at 6 p.m.  It’s the 12th Annual Pittsburgh and Allegheny County Public Service Awards honoring our local heroes…those who protect and serve. County Executive Richard Fitzgerald will speak, along with Mayoral candidates Michael Lamb and Bill Peduto. If you’re not there, you’ll be the only one! $20 donation at the door benefits Champions “Safe Summer Programs”:02 Tiger…“I am Back”:01 At the Buzzer.  Hhheeer•The 38th Annual Champions Western Pa. High School All-Star Basketball Classic is set for Sunday, April 7th at the new and magnificent Penn Hills Senior High School.Middle School Girls—9:00 a.m.-12:00 noon;  Middle School Boys—12:00 noon-3:00 p.m.; Senior Girls City vs. WPIAL—3:00 p.m.; Senior Boys City vs. WPIAL—5:00 p.m.Free parking in lower level—Refreshments—Vendors—Celebrities—Slam Dunk—3 Point and foul shooting contest and an amazing half-time show by Karate Master Jacquet Bazemore.  For more information, call the Champions at (412) 628-4856.•Harlem Nights coming at ya again every last Friday . . . Set for Friday, March 29th at 3 Lakes Golf Club, 6700 Saltzburg Road in Penn Hills. You must be dressed up, no exceptions—“Go deep in the closet”—free parking—cash bar—cash kitchen until 10:00 p.m.—50/50—cash prize for best dressed.  This is the best old school over 30 par-tay in town. Special guest the United Rays Corvette Club—sponsored by Rayco “War” Productions and Five Star Corporation.~ GAME OVER ~last_img read more

NC State’s TJ Warren to enter NBA draft

first_imgN.C. State’s Desmond Lee (5) celebrates after T.J. Warren made a basket during the first half of N.C. State’s game against Boston College at PNC Arena in Raleigh, N.C., Sunday, March 9, 2014. (AP Photo/The News & Observer, Ethan Hyman)RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – North Carolina State sophomore T.J. Warren is taking his high-scoring game to the NBA.In a statement released by the school Tuesday, the Atlantic Coast Conference’s player of the year said he had “a fun ride” but was ready to enter the NBA draft.“Playing in the NBA has been a lifelong dream of mine, and playing at N.C. State has prepared me well to achieve my dream,” Warren said.Behind Warren, the Wolfpack went from being picked to finish 10th in the ACC to reaching the NCAA tournament for the third straight year and beating Xavier in the First Four.The 6-foot-8 forward led the league at 24.9 points per game – good for third nationally – while shooting a league-best 52.5 percent. He also led the team in rebounding at 7.1 per game.Warren closed the regular season with 41 points at Pittsburgh and a career-high 42 points against Boston College, making him the first ACC player to go for 40 in consecutive games since December 1990 and only the seventh overall. He was the first N.C. State player to do it since program great David Thompson in December 1974 and the first ACC player to do it in consecutive league games since 1957.Warren set school single-season records with 871 points and 31 20-point games.“I truly believe he was the best offensive player in the nation this year, and although he is a great scorer, his rebounding and defensive improvement are often underappreciated,” Wolfpack coach Mark Gottfried said in a statement. “I am excited for T.J. and want the very best for him. I believe in him and will miss having him in our program.”A year earlier, Warren averaged about 12 points and shot an ACC-best 62 percent in a supporting role behind C.J. Leslie, Lorenzo Brown, Richard Howell and Scott Wood. He mulled an NBA jump last season but returned to a leading role after the departures of those upperclassmen as well as the transfer of freshman Rodney Purvis to Connecticut.Warren dropped about 20 pounds to around 215 this year to better handle the load for an inexperienced team.“I told him last year … work on your game, get your mind right and come on back and show what you can do,” his father Tony Warren said last week. “And he did that.”The elder Warren, a former Wolfpack player, had said he wanted his son to take his time and “be 100 percent sure” on his decision even as he expected him to be a top-20 pick.N.C. State will also lose fifth-year senior Jordan Vandenberg and sophomore point guard Tyler Lewis, who said last week he would transfer to Butler. But N.C. State (22-14) returns second-leading scorer Ralston Turner (10.5 points) and adds a top-20 recruiting class featuring power forward Abdul-Malik Abu, and twin wings Caleb and Cody Martin.last_img read more

GRADE I, $1 MILLION SANTA ANITA DERBY TO BE RUN SATURDAY, APRIL 4, 78TH RUNNING OF ICONIC EVENT FOR 3-YEAR-OLDS TO OFFER RACEGOERS MULTITUDE OF DINING, ENTERTAINMENT, FASHION & WAGERING OPTIONS

first_imgARCADIA, Calif. (March 27, 2015)–The 78th running of the Grade I, $1 million Santa Anita Derby on Saturday, April 4 will not only provide fans with world class racing as some of America’s top 3-year-olds compete in their final prep for the Kentucky Derby, it will also be the focal point of an afternoon replete with dining, entertainment, fashion and wagering opportunities at The Great Race Place.From a Derby Day 5K Walk and Run to a KROQ Craft Beer & Music Festival in the Infield, here’s what fans can expect:6:30 a.m.              Children and adults of all ages are encouraged to register for the Derby Day 5K Walk andRun in the Santa Anita Parking lot adjoining the Westfield Santa Anita Mall.7:30 a.m.              Vehicular traffic on Baldwin Ave., from the 210 Freeway south to Huntington Dr., will beclosed until 9:30 a.m. due to the Derby Day 5K Walk and Run.8:00 a.m.              Start time for Derby Day 5K Walk and Run.10:00 a.m.           Santa Anita Admission gates open. Santa Anita Derby Day Tee Shirts will be available, free, with paid admission to the first 10,000 on-track Thoroughbreds Club members. (Fast, free sign-up available to all non-Thoroughbreds members). Additionally, fans are encouraged enter the second annual Santa Anita Derby Millionaire Contest prior to 2 p.m.Please note: There will also be FREE General Admission and parking to the Infield Area, through Gate 6, off of Colorado Place.The finest in Derby Day fashion, including high-end Derby Hats, will be on display courtesy of Christine A. Moore Millinery’s “Trunk Show” adjacent to Champions! Gifts and Apparel in the East Paddock Gardens.12 noon                Special early first post time for an 11-race card that will also include the Grade I Santa Anita Oaks, the Grade III Providencia Stakes, the $200,000 Echo Eddie Stakes, the $200,000 Evening Jewel Stakes and the $75,000 Thunder Road Stakes.ALL DAY:              FREE KROQ Craft Beer Festival and Concert in the Infield. Food Trucks, Craft Beer and Live Music featuring Metalachi.                                Chandelier Room–Guest Chef Series featuring BBQ by Barrel and Ashes Chef de Cuisine, Michael Kahikina with Chef Josh Drew.                                 The Premium Gallop Out Package–Santa Anita’s newest Club House destination that combines the timeless class of The Great Race Place with the ambiance of a sports bar. Perched above Santa Anita’s first turn, The Gallop Out puts you on top of the action.                                Derby Day Trackside Package–Fans can get an up-close view of the stretch run with a private party space located just off the outer rail.2:30 p.m.             Post time for Race 6, which is the beginning of the $300,000 guaranteed Pick Six.(approx.)3:30 p.m.             Post time for Race 8, which is the beginning of the $750,000 guaranteed Late Pick Four.(approx.)                                For more information on Santa Anita Derby Day racing and special events, please visit santaanita.com/events or call (626) 574-RACE.last_img read more

Evolutionary Morality Backfires on Big Science

first_imgPiracy sparks indignation among advocates of the idea that morality is an evolved trait.Know the major science journals and you will know Big Science. That’s where the attitudes of the vested interests of this major cultural force are reflected. Nature, Science, PNAS and other journals decide what’s trendy, what’s important. Their papers filter down to the popular media, whose reporters translate the jargon into sound bites for the masses. And as the official mouthpieces of powerful scientific organizations, the journals importune governments to further the interests of their constituents.Journal editors, on the other hand, love to promote evolutionary psychology. Mind, religion, altruism – these are mere Darwinian adaptations, outcomes of natural selection. Only simple-minded religious throwbacks pay attention to commandments of punishing gods who say, “Thou shalt not steal” (9/06/15).  Nature, for instance, just printed a letter from correspondents in Poland who are very concerned about an “anti-science wave” there, including a rise in creationism:Creationism, too, seems to be experiencing a resurgence. For example, the book Ewolucja, Dewolucja, Nauka (Evolution, Devolution, Science) Fronda, 2016) by the dendrologist Maciej Giertych, which we read as arguing against evolution, is being promoted in schools. In our view, this poses a threat to the country’s scientific-education programme.Now the journals have an ethical conundrum. People are stealing their stuff.Science Magazine, the voice of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), published three pieces worrying about Sci-Hub, a Russian website making thousands of pirated journal papers available to everyone. Marcia McNutt, Editor-in-Chief of Science journals, tries to spin her frustration in “My love-hate of Sci-Hub.” While she understands the temptation for people to use this resource, and recognizes the trend toward open access, she complains that publishing her organization’s papers incur very real costs. She waxes eloquent about all the good things the AAAS is doing to keep science squeaky-clean. Nothing in her piece about subjective morality; when she feels a threat, she discovers her calling as a preacher of righteousness:Scientific nonprofit societies do indeed understand the need to continue addressing research accessibility by those in challenged regions, but through legitimate means. For those who have such avenues but choose to pirate a paper instead, ask yourself whether it is worth risking the viability of a system that supports the quality and integrity of science.John Bohannon, a perceptive writer for Science, tells the story of Alexandra Elbakyan, a frustrated grad student in Kazakhstan who went for the dark side by applying her hacking skills to develop Sci-Hub. “When she got back to Kazakhstan, frustration with the barriers that scientists face would soon lead her to create Sci-Hub—an awe-inspiring act of altruism or a massive criminal enterprise, depending on whom you ask.” Elbakyan looks at her piracy as a practical side of her research. Why not? Isn’t it survival of the fittest?In another piece, Bohannon asks “Who’s downloading pirated papers?” The answer: “Everyone.” So does that make it right? Supporters of Sci-Hub are armed with plenty of rationalizations; everybody does it, the journals are selfish, scientists have a right to the information. This should be a classic test of evolutionary morality, but Bohannon never mentions morality—just illegality, court decisions and futile attempts to stop it. He discusses statistics and demographics, but leaves it to readers to provide feedback: “Tell us what you think about Sci-Hub.”What are McNutt and Bohannon going to say? “Thou shalt not steal?”We would love to see a journal paper on the evolution of Sci-Hub. When your ox is the one getting gored, it’s hard to argue that morality is a subjective, evolved trait.Exercise: Write a polite letter to the editor of Science, pointing out to Ms. McNutt that since her own journal has advocated evolutionary morality, Elbakyan is just doing what Science told her is OK. Provide documentation (you might search CEH articles on “altruism”). (Visited 48 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

South Africa improves global competitiveness

first_imgIn terms of the soundness of itsbanking system, South Africa rankssecond in the world. (Image: Janine Erasmus) MEDIA CONTACTS • Brand South Africa  +27 11 483 0122 RELATED ARTICLES • SA best for regulation of exchanges • SA’s competitiveness up • Brand Africa – for Africa by Africa • Brand leadership award for SA • Top marks for SA auditingSource: Southafrica.infoSouth Africa improved its ranking in the World Economic Forum’s (WEF’s) latest Global Competitiveness Index, climbing four places to 50th out of 142 countries surveyed, while claiming top spot for regulation of exchanges and second place for soundness of banks.Published on 7 September 2011, the annual Global Competitiveness Report was first released in 1979 and has since evolved into the prime authority on relative competitiveness among most of the world’s nations.Respondent numbers have grown over the years, with the 2011-12 report covering 142 countries and some 14 000 respondents.Gains in key areasSouth Africa’s overall ranking, after slipping nine places last year – from 45 to 54 – recovered to 50 in 2011-12, thanks mainly to impressive gains in accountability of private institutions, strength of investor protection and technological readiness.The country was ranked:1st for regulation of securities exchange.1st for strength of auditing and reporting standards.2nd for soundness of banks.2nd for efficacy of corporate boards.3rd for protection of minority shareholders’ interests.3rd for availability of financial services.4th for financing through the local equities market.7th for effectiveness of anti-monopoly policy.8th for legal rights.“Since these factors are categorised by the World Economic Forum as sustainability issues, their superior ratings are indicative of a highly positive long-term outlook for the South African economy,” Miller Matola, CEO of Brand South Africa, said in a statement.“These combined attributes make South Africa the most competitive economy in the region.”2nd in Africa; 2nd among BRICSSouth Africa’s 50th overall ranking is sub-Saharan Africa’s highest, and Africa’s second-highest after Tunisia, which dropped from 34th place in 2010-11 to 40th place in 2011-12 owing to the political upheaval in the country.Among its fellow BRICS nations, South Africa is ranked second only to China (in 26th place), ahead of Brazil (53rd), India (56th) and Russia (66th).Matola said the narrative of the WEF report clearly indicated trust in South Africa, at a time when trust was returning only slowly in many parts of the world.“We could have fared considerably better had we not lost further ground in the categories in which we scored poorly last year – labour policies, health and education.“We need to improve our rankings in these criteria if we are to continuously move up the rankings.”60% market data, 40% perceptionsMatola said the results were “an indication that the reality and perception of competitiveness in South Africa is improving at a pace ahead of that of many other countries.“The World Economic Forum derives about 60% of its score values from actual market data and 40% from perception. That South Africa has scored well on both counts is both highly gratifying and encouraging.“Of importance, too, is our third ranking for protection of minority shareholders’ interests,” Matola added. “South Africa’s strong performance in the financial market and corporate governance dimensions is an indication that the country is deemed a safe destination for business and investment.“This is a positioning the country will have to work hard to maintain amidst florid debates about open market policies.”Ewald Müller, a senior executive at the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants, said the standings would further enhance the country’s competitiveness in attracting foreign direct investment.“Given a clear account based on international standards, backed by strong regulation and robust corporate governance allows investors open and easy access to assessing the risks and rewards associated with corporate South Africa,” Müller said in a statement.last_img read more