Phoenix weather: Cold air funnel cloud appears east of Scottsdale –

PHOENIX A funnel cloud developed in the East Valley on Sunday afternoon as scattered showers moved from west to east across the Phoenix area.

Several social media users captured the formation of the funnel cloud while driving along Loop 101 in Scottsdale just before 3 p.m. Many captured the funnel growing east of Talking Stick Resort. A trained spotter reported the funnel cloud at 2:52 p.m. and called it a cold air funnel cloud, according to the National Weather Service.

Theres still some cold air in the atmosphere and a little instability, and the atmosphere kind of twists cyclonically with the winds, and so there was just a little bit of wind shear that could have developed that little funnel, National Weather Service meteorologist Hector Vasquez told KTAR. This time of year, its not very serious, but theyre just kind of unique twisting features, cloud features that are very shallow in the atmosphere.

These are really shallow clouds, and the twisting motions combined with instability, its kind of like a dust devil, Vasquez added. Sometimes they kind of rotate cyclonically up in the desert. Theyre real shallow, and they dont have a lot of momentum or a lot of impact. They might not even reach the ground.

Nathan Kohls on Twitter took a snapshot of the funnel cloud east of Top Golf near Talking Stick Resort.

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Phoenix weather: Cold air funnel cloud appears east of Scottsdale –

Senate media to Andanar: Prove claim or apologize for fake news – Rappler

The journalists ‘strongly protest the unsubstantiated and irresponsible’ accusation of Communications Secretary Martin Andanar, who said they may have been bribed to cover a press conference

Published 3:09 PM, February 20, 2017

Updated 3:09 PM, February 20, 2017

ANDANAR VS MEDIA. Communications Secretary Martin Andanar holds a press briefing at Malacaang Palace on January 5, 2017. File photo by Albert Alcain/Presidential Photo

MANILA, Philippines Senate media on Monday, February 20, dared Communications Secretary Martin Andanar to prove that they were offered $1,000 as bribe. If Andanar can’t prove his accusation, then he should issue a public apology, the journalists said.

Andanar, in an interview with CNN Philippines on Monday, had claimed he received reports that as much as $1,000 was given to members of the media for them to cover the press conference of retired SPO3 Arturo “Arthur” Lascaas.

In that press conference, called for by Senator Antonio Trillanes IV, Lascaas accused President Rodrigo Duterte of ordering killings when he was mayor through the Davao Death Squad.

“We, broadcast, online, and print journalists covering the Senate strongly protest the unsubstantiated and irresponsible claims made by Press Secretary Martin Andanar that reporters were given as much as $1,000 each to cover the press conference of alleged former Davao Death Squad leader Arthur Lascaas this morning,” the Senate media said in a statement.

“To our knowledge, no such incident occurred. Such practice is not tolerated among Senate reporters.”

The journalists added that it is “unbecoming” of Andanar, who was once a news reader, to spread an unsubstantiated claim that could hurt the credibility of his former colleagues.

“We would like to ask the Secretary to prove his allegations as such statements placed our credibility and our respective media entities under a cloud of doubt,” they said.

“Otherwise, we demand a public apology from Secretary Andanar for spreading ‘fake news,’ truly unbecoming of someone who, just a few months ago, came from the media industry.”

Before joining the Duterte Cabinet, Andanar was commentator of Aksyon TV and anchor of TV5’s Aksyon sa Umaga. (READ: Inside Martin Andanar’s man cave)

This is not the first time that Andanar has angered members of the media.

Last January, he claimed journalists “misreported” the President’s remarks about martial law and called their actions “the height of journalistic irresponsibility.”

The Malacaang Press Corps fired back at Andanar, pointing out that their stories were supported by transcripts and videos of Duterte’s remarks.

They also urged Andanar and his staff “to read the entire news stories, not just the heads or titles, to get a better picture of the media’s coverage of the President.”

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Senate media to Andanar: Prove claim or apologize for fake news – Rappler

Abacus e-Media’s Webvision Cloud makes the British Media Award 2017 shortlist – London Loves Business

The Webvision Cloud customer experience by Abacus e-media had been nominated for Technology Provider of the Year.

The awards will highlight the best in business across the entire media industry.

The nomination shows the strength of the platform, its also become a game changer for businesses of all sizes. This includes SMEs, it helps build a successful digital publishing operation using state of the art cloud technology.

The Webvision Cloud went live in September 2016 with Cabinet Maker and Gasworld, the platform has helped customers increase the value of their content and sponsorship revenue, this includes native advertising and microsites.

A queue of ten further websites are set to launch in H1 2017.

Daniel Murphy, Commercial Director at Abacus e-Media, said: We are delighted with the results we are seeing from the platform in such a short space of time, from increased subscription sales and renewals, to new revenue generated from innovative sponsorship opportunities that business users can create. Webvision Cloud is all about connecting your content with your community, and building audience loyalty that you can monetise.

The results are set to be announced on the 3 May 2017 at the London Hilton Park Lane.

For more information on Abacus e-Medias Customer Experience Management Webvision Cloud click here

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Abacus e-Media’s Webvision Cloud makes the British Media Award 2017 shortlist – London Loves Business

Trump calls Russia controversy a ‘scam’ in new attack on media – FRANCE 24

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Trump calls Russia controversy a ‘scam’ in new attack on media – FRANCE 24

The royal twitterati: how the monarchy learned to love social media – The Guardian

The Queen has official Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube platforms. Her YouTube channel has existed for a decade. Photograph: WPA Pool/Getty Images

The Queen almost never takes to Twitter personally just twice, it seems but for her aides, social media has become as important as the walkabout, the garden party and her Christmas broadcast in promoting the monarchy brand.

Buckingham Palace and Prince Charles at Clarence House have recently advertised for digital communications officers to sustain their online presence and keep the royal palaces at the forefront of new technology.

Forget the court circular tucked away in establishment newspapers. Todays announcements, and reports of audiences and ambassadorial hand-kissing, land in the Twitter feeds and Instagram timelines of followers almost before bowing guests have departed Her Majestys white drawing room. Images are swiftly pinged out into cyberspace and without the sometimes unflattering filter applied by mainstream media.

For the royals, social media platforms are becoming a huge success. Prince Harry and his mic drop antics with granny and the Obamas, promoting the Invictus Games, went viral on Twitter. The prince was broadcast live on Facebook being tested for HIV, garnering enormous publicity and audience reach.

The Queens household is seeking to fill a maternity-cover position on its fast-paced and dynamic team. The job involves posting on the monarchs Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube platforms; it offers a salary of 30,000 and the reward of knowing your content will be viewed by millions across the world.

The candidate must be innovative, with creative flair and good photography skills. The advert says: The reaction to our work is always high profile, and so reputation and impact will be at the forefront of all you do. And having your work shared around the world will be the biggest reward.

Currently, the @RoyalFamily Twitter account has 2.78 million followers and 24,500 tweets under its belt. The activities of Her Majesty and the Duke of Edinburgh feature alongside those of minor royals. To see the Duke of Kent learning about DNA sequencing or the Princess Royal opening imaging facilities at Edinburgh University, this is the place to be.

The Buckingham Palace team also coordinates @KensingtonRoyal, which has 826,000 followers keeping abreast of the engagements of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry.

Prince Charles, who recently advertised for someone to replace one of his two-strong digital team, is the social media royal pioneer. His @ClarenceHouse Twitter account, which has 605,000 followers, and his Instagram page, which has 191,000 followers, were royal firsts and are both enjoying 20% year-on-year growth in terms of followers.

For all three palaces, the aim is to build engagement, particularly with a younger audience and overseas. A lucky coincidence this week, for example, led to Prince Charles appearing on the official Instagram account of rock band Kasabian, when he inadvertently photobombed guitarist Serge Pizzorno eating lunch at a Somerset pub. Its fair to say it is not Charless usual fan base.

The prince was also one of the first senior royals to try Google Hangouts: in 2014 he took part in a live webchat with young volunteers. His sons William and Harry had already tried out the technology, speaking from Buckingham Palace to young people from five Commonwealth countries.

Matt Navarra, a social media expert and head of content at The Next Web, gave his verdict on the royal platforms: Very high quality imagery. Lots of video clips. Detailed descriptions in plain, interesting language for the widest possible audience appeal.

He added: In the last couple of years they have ramped up their social presence. I actually think they do a really good job.

Prince Harrys mic drop video was one highlight for Navarra. Really innovative, fun stuff designed to hook people in, he said. They wouldnt do themselves any harm to do a bit more like that. But innovation, he added, could be high-risk for a very, very high-profile account.

The 30,000 salary, Navarra said, did not reflect the responsibility involved. There is no room, absolutely no room, for error in that job. I used to work briefly at No 10 and you just cannot let things slip, or make a single error. If its the wrong image up, or a typo, or saying something that could be misinterpreted. And you have got to be pretty reactive.

The Queens first personal foray into social media came in 2014, when she tweeted from the opening of the Information Age exhibition at the Science Museum in London, signing it Elizabeth R. She returned to Twitter last year to thank well-wishers on her 9oth birthday.

The monarch launched her own YouTube channel in 2007, after the concept of the video-sharing website was explained to her by, among others, her granddaughters princesses Beatrice and Eugenie. The channel launched with rarely-seen silent newsreel footage of the 1923 wedding of her parents, the future King George VI and Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon.

In 2005, the Queen confessed, while conferring an honorary knighthood on Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft, that she had not yet used a computer. Since then she has gained a mobile phone and an iPod, given to her by William, on which she reportedly listens to the Last Night of the Proms.

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The royal twitterati: how the monarchy learned to love social media – The Guardian

Bizarre but beautiful cloud formation over Welsh hills sets social media ablaze – Daily Post North Wales

This spectacular cloud formation was captured by a hill farmer as the sun rose over the Carneddau mountains in North Wales.

Gareth Wyn Jones, whose TV series Milk Man is currently airing on BBC Wales, snapped the strange phenomenon while on his early-morning farm rounds at Llanfairfechan.

His Facebook post was shared widely and the bizarre shape and patterns quickly gave rise to a few tongue-in-cheek quips from Facebook users.

This is Trumps wig on fire! said one wag.

Others imagined ghostly images in the other-worldly formation.

One saw a dog wagging its tail, another a rearing horse.

Gareth himself believes he can see a woman holding a baby.

He said: I saw the cloud at about 7.30am in the morning. Id never seen anything like it before, it was just so surreal.

But it was also very beautiful. Thats one of the perks of this job seeing the full majesty of nature and the weather.

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Bizarre but beautiful cloud formation over Welsh hills sets social media ablaze – Daily Post North Wales

Facebook further blurs the line between social media and TV – euronews

Facebook is making itself more television friendly as it moves to take advertising revenue from the likes of YouTube, Netflix, Hula and traditional TV channels.

The social media website is about to launch an app for smart TVs which means users will be able to play videos on the bigger screen in their homes. It did not give a date for when the app will be released saying only that it would be soon.

The new app will enable people to to watch videos shared by friends or those published by Facebook.

Earlier this month founder and Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg said that the company expected a major ramp-up in hiring and other spending during 2017 as it invests in video and other priorities.

The release of the Smart TV app for Apple TV, Samsung Smart TV and Amazon Fire TV follows the expansion of its live video service which is a potential threat to broadcast television.

Facebook Live has been streaming music videos, political rallies during the US election, and even some sporting events.

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Facebook further blurs the line between social media and TV – euronews

Oracle Brings Oracle Cloud Platform to Australia – CSO Australia

Only Vendor in Australia to Offer Full Suite of Enterprise SaaS, PaaS and IaaS Cloud Services for Customers Digital Transformation

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA, February 14, 2017 Oracle today announced the expansion of its cloud coverage in Australia, bringing its most popular enterprise-class, Oracle Cloud Platform services to the Australian market. Coupled with recently announced infrastructure investments in the US and EMEA, this sees a doubling of regional presence for Oracles cloud platform in the last 24 months.

Oracle has offered its successful SaaS offerings across Finance, HR and Marketing out of Australia since 2012. The expansion now adds Oracles PaaS and IaaS services. Focused initially around data management, application development and integration, as well as compute and storage, they will help users to reduce cost and complexity, utilise digital solutions and innovate to modernise and transform their businesses.

Innovation and agility are pre-requisites for business in Australia, said Rob Willis, regional managing director at Oracle Australia and New Zealand. This expansion in the local cloud market reflects our commitment to meet growing customer demand for new solutions as they seek to transform and boost their competitive advantage. We are the only vendor to offer Australian customers a full-stack Platform cloud service, giving customers unprecedented choice and flexibility in how they work. With the availability of the Sydney Region, we expect to see an even faster adoption of services locally, as well as throughout the rest of APAC, given its proximity to Sydney as a hub.

Added Choice

The expansion of Oracles IaaS and PaaS services gives customers in Australia additional choice and flexibility. Oracles IaaS enables customers to deploy both Oracle and non-Oracle workloads on the cloud. As well as delivering the advantages of lower latency and local data residency, customers will also benefit from the full integration Oracle Cloud enables. For example, spinning up new application development on IaaS; integrating that with database management PaaS services; or extending existing SaaS offerings to enable them better address business needs.

In addition, users already had the choice to use Oracle Cloud at Customer to deploy Oracle Cloud Machine for IaaS and PaaS services within their own data centers. Complementing these services with the public expansion makes Oracle the only vendor to provide a true hybrid offering in this market.

Pent up demand

When you look at cloud maturity in Asia Pacific, Australia is definitely the most mature, despite the fact that we are really only at the start of most companies cloud journey. Having a local presence will make a lot of difference there is still a strong preference for local delivery from both customers and partners. We see it as a great addition to Oracles portfolio, said Adrian Ho, Principal Analyst, Ovum.

Already a number of organisations have expressed interest in the availability of the new services, including Australian Finance Group (AFG), National Pharmacies and Suitebox.

As Jaime Vogel, Chief Information Officer, AFG explained, It goes without saying that as a modern finance company, technology is a critical component of our business. So given all the benefits of cloud, and our continued focus on innovation to aid our continued growth and the growth of the 2,650 brokers who operate under our umbrella, cloud was a natural option for us. We have gone from being a company with legacy, on-premises computing, to the adoption of a full public cloud in around two years. Having Oracles Platform and Infrastructure services available to us on-shore, to complement what we are already doing with Oracles locally delivered cloud applications, will offer us further opportunities to leverage all that the cloud offers around innovation, speed to market and staying ahead of the curve.

Additionally, there has been strong interest from the channel community including from the likes of ASG Group, Avnet, Deloitte, Insight, NeoData Australia, NextGen and UXC Red Rock.

This surge of interest is backed up by the Telsyte Australian Infrastructure & Cloud Computing Market Study 2017, which found the Australian IaaS market is set to grow from $621M in 2016 to reach $1.049 billion by 2020. Drivers for this growing demand include big data analytics and storage, IoT, artificial intelligence and process digitisation as enterprises work towards modernising legacy systems and deploy new workloads. More than half of CIOs surveyed by Telsyte are planning to invest more in IaaS in the next 12 months.

The local market is quickly adopting cloud services from other geographies; however, CIOs are willing to consider in-country options as a priority. Telsyte research shows security and off-shore data location are two of the top concerns IT leaders have when it comes to public IaaS clouds, Gedda says. Add to this the many organisations not able to use cloud because the data is not hosted in Australia, says Rodney Gedda, Telsyte Senior Analyst.

Oracle Cloud

Oracle Cloud is the industrys broadest and most integrated public cloud, offering a complete range of services across SaaS, PaaS, and IaaS. It supports new cloud environments, existing ones, and hybrid, and all types of workloads, developers, and data. The Oracle Cloud delivers nearly 1,000 SaaS applications and 50 enterprise-class PaaS and IaaS services to customers in more than 195 countries around the world, supporting 55 billion transactions each day.

For more information, please visit us at:

About Oracle

Oracle offers a comprehensive and fully integrated stack of cloud applications and platform services. For more information about Oracle (NYSE:ORCL), visit:

Oracle and Java are registered trademarks of Oracle and/or its affiliates. Other names may be trademarks of their respective owners.

Safe Harbor

The following is intended to outline our general product direction. It is intended for information purposes only, and may not be incorporated into any contract. It is not a commitment to deliver any material, code, or functionality, and should not be relied upon in making purchasing decisions. The development, release, and timing of any features or functionality described for Oracles products remains at the sole discretion of Oracle Corporation.

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Oracle Brings Oracle Cloud Platform to Australia – CSO Australia