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    As many people are starting to realize, animal testing is extremely cruel and completely unnecessary. These poor animals live out their lives in small, empty cages – only to be let out for a variety of horrific experiments. While many people purchase cruelty-free products to avoid supporting such atrocious treatment of animals, we inevitably have to support them whether we like it or not. Every year, more than $16 billion US taxpayer dollars are used to fund animal experiments. This includes $140 million that is sent to labs overseas, where there is “virtually no oversight from U.S. authorities.” In the US, these experiments have included drilling holes in monkeys’ skulls to inject PCP into their brains, asphyxiating and killing kittens, and forcing dogs to have heart attacks before removing parts of their brains. Abroad, US taxpayer-funded labs have force-feeding mice human feces, getting monkeys addicted alcohol, and electrically inducing urination in mice. These cruel tests are completely unnecessary, as has been proven time and time again. There are so many alternatives that are not only more ethical, but...
    A recent story of one dog’s heroics hit the news after a Chicago building’s basement caught fire, trapping a 7-year-old boy, his mother, and their grandparents inside with no way of getting out. Renaldo Vera, a neighbor, was unaware of what was happening until his pit bull began to bark, not stopping for any reason. Vera soon realized that there was screaming coming from outside as he tried to get his dog to calm down. Vera was able to run to the burning building and pull two people out of the flames before professional help arrived. The boy, his mother, and his grandfather were rescued, the grandmother sadly did not pull through. Hats off to a neighbor near the fire this morning. His dog heard the screams and woke him. He went to the fire building and helped rescue a child and adult before CFD got on scene. Thank you so much Mr. Renaldo Vera! And thanks to his pit bull named Chicago — Chicago Fire Media (@CFDMedia) November 29, 2021 The Chicago fire department accredited the rescues...
    Honolulu’s Board of Water Supply (BWS) had to recently shut down the largest water source on Oahu after the Navy revealed that they had found contamination. Leaks into Oahu’s water supply have been widely recorded over the years, with the news contamination being discovered in the Red hill well. The Navy made the announcement at a virtual town hall meeting, which led to the BWS shutting down the water source. The contamination was later confirmed to be a petroleum leak, resulting in more than 700 people having to relocate temporarily as their homes had contaminated water. An official statement went out saying, “The results of the Red Hill sample showed petroleum hydrocarbons roughly four to ten times below the Hawaii Department of Health Environmental Action Level (EAL). The Navy had a separate test that confirmed vapors, which is another indication of petroleum hydrocarbons,” it said in a statement. The Navy is developing a plan to restore the potable water system to EPA standards, identify how this contaminant got in the well, and fix the well.” By the time...
    Animal lovers have had somewhat of a win as Melbourne is set to ban horse-drawn carriages in Melbourne’s inner city as the CBD is too hot. The state’s roads minister, Ben Carroll, said, “We’ve heard the community’s concerns about horse-drawn carriages, and this proposal will improve safety for everyone on some of our busiest streets. We will continue to work with our road safety partners, RSPCA, and the community to ensure animal welfare and safety across the industry.” The proposal would create precautions and rules to protect the horses from having to work in these hot areas of the city. Unfortunately, this is not a full ban, as horse-drawn carriages would still be able to drive in approved areas. This proposal will help to protect horses from overheating in the hottest parts of the city. While this is a good first step, it is still not resolving the main issue. Horse-drawn carriages are inhumane and far out of date to still be in use. These horses are often seriously overworked and are sometimes abused by their operators. They...
    There is cause for celebration as Spain has officially approved a new law that recognizes animals as sentient beings! This new legislation will help to protect Spain’s animals from being handled and treated as though they were merely objects. It protects them from being abandoned, mistreated, seized, or anything else that could cause them mental or physical harm. The law applies to all animals, both domestic and wildlife.  European law had already widely recognized animals as sentient beings, but did not do so in a legal way that related to the criminal code. This made it impossible to protect animals during certain hearings, such as divorce cases. Now animals and their wellbeing can be taken into account, even in more serious legal cases. María González Lacabex, from INTERcids, a legal organization specializing in animal protection, said, “It’s a step forward and it says that in separations and divorces, the arrangement that will be applied to the animals will take into account not only the interests of the humans but also of the animal.” This law was first proposed...
    A woman is facing jail time after her pet marmoset monkey was found in an abusive and negligent living situation. The marmoset monkey was discovered hiding in a toilet bowl, terrified and poorly taken care of. It is not illegal for people to own primates in the UK, but the woman had obviously not been taking proper care of the monkey as they were terrified of her. Martin Fidler Jones, RSPCA Cymru campaigns manager, said, ”Primates are highly intelligent animals with complex needs that can’t be met in a home environment. However well-intentioned an owner may be, they are not suitable as pets. We are concerned, as to whether there is a growing problem in Wales of primates, like marmosets, being kept as pets. ‘We believe the time has come for the Welsh Government to act and want to see an outright ban on the keeping and trade of primates as pets in Wales.” Marmoset monkeys are highly intelligent creatures that can live up to 18 years of age. Like any primate, they are complex and require special living needs...
    On Sunday, South African activists joined forces to protest Royal Dutch Shell’s plans to explore for oil along one of South Africa’s coastlines.  On Friday, environmentalists lost a legal battle to prevent oil exploration, creating a need for activism from the public. Many did so for fear that the seismic blasting would severely affect the ecosystem and marine life. Seismic blasting involves blasting the seafloor with high-powered air guns and measuring the echoes to figure out where oil may lie. It is a highly disruptive process that could go on for weeks or even months. Seismic blasting is a huge concern for locals as it would likely disturb marine life and potentially have a negative effect on how the locals are able to live. The coastline that Shell plans to explore is also considered to be a tourist attraction and a place for delicate ecosystems to thrive. Thus, this process is devastating to all who call the area home. If allowed to continue these plans would also prevent South Africa from being able to reach net-zero carbon...
    According to the New York Times, 5.2 million people have already died from Covid worldwide. Countries like the United States are struggling to get every person vaccinated against this pandemic.  But in the United States, we take access to vaccines almost for granted.  Meanwhile, in other nations, vaccine access is severely limited.  In the Central African Republic, for example, only 6.7% of the population is vaccinated.  In Burundi, less than 0.1% of the population is vaccinated. CEPI, Gavi, and the World Health Organization (WHO), alongside a key delivery partner in UNICEF, are leading the COVAX initiative to guarantee fair and equitable vaccine access worldwide.  As the World Health Organization explains, this distribution is not only necessary to prevent the tragic loss of life, it is also necessary to stop the spread of the pandemic globally.  With many people unvaccinated, the virus has more opportunities to mutate and spread.  Meanwhile, the devastating health effects are ravaging global economies.  Therefore, the introduction of a vaccine will not only save lives, but will also “prevent the loss of US$ 375 billion to the...
    LONDON (AP) — Instagram on Tuesday launched a feature that urges teenagers to take breaks from the photo-sharing platform and announced other tools aimed at protecting young users from harmful content on the Facebook-owned service. The previously announced “Take A Break” feature encourages teens to stop scrolling if they have been on the social media platform for a while, Instagram head Adam Mosseri said in a blog post. It rolled out to the U.S., United Kingdom, Ireland, Canada, New Zealand and Australia on Tuesday and would reach the rest of the world early next year, he said. Young users will see notifications about the feature and be urged to set reminders to take more breaks going forward, the post said. It’s one of the efforts that Facebook, renamed Meta Platforms, has touted on its platforms as it weathers backlash about not doing enough to rein in harmful content and faces new legislation looking to impose restrictions on tech giants. Former Facebook product manager turned whistleblower Frances Haugen has testified to U.S. and European lawmakers working on those measures, citing internal...
    Congress appears no closer to holding tech platforms accountable for undesirable behavior and content on their platforms following a hearing considering several bills seeking to reform Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act. “A lot of what you hear from Democrats is concerns about misinformation regarding health and elections, and a lot of concerns that you hear from Republicans is they feel conservatives are unfairly censored by tech forums,” Jeff Kosseff, cybersecurity law professor at the United States Naval Academy, told the Daily Caller News Foundation. “It’s hard to reconcile those two perspectives.” “Our hope is Democrats choose to defend that foundational principle and abandon their censorship desires,” Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, who serves as ranking member on the House Energy and Commerce Committee, told the DCNF. “Only then can we come together to hold Big Tech accountable.” The Senate has fared better than the House in finding common ground on Section 230 reform, albeit related to less politically-charged issues. While there is agreement between large factions of both Republicans and Democrats that social media companies should be...
    Six of the nine African penguins at Columbian Park Zoo in Lafayette, Indiana, have recently died of avian malaria. The Columbian Park Zoo issued the announcement after the sick penguins finally succumbed to the illness.  Neil Dale, the zoo director, said, “Avian malaria is one of the most significant causes of mortality in penguins, with rates as high as 50-90 percent. Despite the best efforts of our veterinarian and staff, who provided around the clock care administering anti-malarial medications and other intensive care measures, we were unable to stop the progression of the infections.” Avian Malaria is a parasitic disease transmitted by infected mosquito bites that only infects birds and cannot be spread to humans or other animals. The zoo first noticed one penguin showing symptoms and quickly made a diagnosis. However, it was too late as all of the eight other penguins also became sick. The remaining three are still in critical condition. This is just highlighting the reality of how dangerous zoos can be for wildlife as these animals are exposed to diseases that they would...
    Jane Goodall and a long list of globally known celebrities, including Joaquin Phoenix and Mayim Bialik, have teamed up with Animals Asia to save Asiatic black bears from the brink of extinction. They have come together to bring awareness to the plight of the Asiatic black bear in Vietnam by signing the Moon Bear Pledge. The Moon Bear Pledge is part of Animals Asia’s campaign to end the cruel bear bile industry, which is killing off this precious species. The campaign is designed to end the bear bile industry and save the bears in bile farms, helping to establish the population and bring it back from extinction. In an email sent to One Green Planet, Jane Goodall said, “The moon bear is one of only eight species of bear left in the world, and it is vulnerable to extinction. Join me. Sign the moon bear pledge. Raise your paw for the moon bear.” Though bear bile farming is illegal in Vietnam, some bear bile businesses have still managed to find loopholes to continue the cruel practice. Surveys show...
    A new map shows that there are 400 toxic sites in California at risk of being flooded by rising sea levels. These floods would put the communities that live there at grave risk of toxic pollution. These locations include military bases, power plants, and toxic dumps that could easily experience flooding with the sea’s rising levels. This would put the predominantly Black and Latino communities that live nearby at a huge health and safety risk. Lucas Zucker said, “The coast of California is marked by massive inequality. People don’t realize that because they go to Malibu, they go to Santa Barbara. Those are the beaches that people see and are familiar with. They don’t think of places like Wilmington, West Long Beach, Barrio Logan, West Oakland, Richmond, Bayview-Hunters Point. You can name all these communities, and it’s the same story.” The 3-year project revealed the consequences of the seas rising tide and how it could prove to be incredibly serious in the near future.  Advocates like Zucker and other researchers created the project to determine the most hazardous...
    After tireless work from PETA protesters, RUDSAK has finally confirmed that it is going fur-free. This change will officially go into effect in 2022, banning fur from all of its products and stores. In appreciation of this decision, PETA is sending the company a box of vegan bunny-shaped chocolates.  PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman said, “No kind shopper today would dream of buying a coat trimmed with bits of animals’ stolen fur. Grassroots activists and PETA are celebrating RUDSAK’s compassionate and savvy decision to join the vast majority of the fashion world in saying goodbye to the cruel fur industry.” RUDSAK is just one of the many fashion brands to go fur-free as more consumers become aware of the cruelty behind the fur industry. Fur farms are often home to dangerous and transferable diseases as the fur-bearing animals live in horrifying conditions. The animals are cruelly tortured throughout their lives, eventually being killed in cruel and painful ways when it is finally time to harvest their fur coat. Because of this cruelty, many fur farms have already been...
    Local Nevada tribal members are guarding a proposed lithium mine on sacred land in hopes of stopping the looming threat of mining. The proposed lithium mine is set in the middle of Peehee Mu’huh, or Thacker Pass. The land is considered to be sacred ground, as in 1865, 31 Paiute tribe members were massacred there. Today, the site still holds importance as it is a place where local Indigenous communities collect traditional foods, medicine, and perform sacred ceremonies. Lithium is a substance used to fuel electric cars and batteries. While we do move away from fossil fuels to more sustainable alternatives, many activists point out that it cannot be at the expense of indigenous communities and their sacred connection to the land.  Daranda Hinkey, a direct descendant of the Paiute tribe, explained, “It’s like putting a lithium mine on Arlington cemetery. It’s just not fair.” Indigenous community members have staked out around the proposed mine, guarding it day and night when they can. But they are unsure of whether their efforts will be rewarded. They are also looking into...
    Subway has recently stunned consumers by releasing their own veganized version of pigs in a blanket just in time for the festive holiday season! The fully plant-based P.I.B Sub is the latest addition to their vegan option, joining the Meatless Meatball Marinara, T.L.C., Plant Patty, and Vegan CheeZe Toasted Bite. It’s formulated with smoky notes meant to mimic the flavor of bacon without the animal suffering. The downside is that this new addition is a part of their holiday menu, meaning that it is a limited-time offer. It will only be available in select UK stores as long as supplies last until December 28. This means that you should hurry and get your hands on one of these P.I.B. Subs if you want to have a taste. Vegan products sell out fast, so if you’re in the UK, run over to your local Subway for a bite before it’s too late. Many other fast food stores are quickly catching on to the growing demand for plant-based options and broadening their menus to cater to the vegan, vegetarian, and flexitarian...
    In 2020, Anthony Van Dyke became the seventh horse to die from the Melbourne Cup since 2013.  According to Fox Sports, this led to strong opposition to the event, with the hashtag #NupToTheCup trending on social media.  But the Cup just took place again in November 2021, and there is no sign of it stopping in the near future.  It’s simply too profitable to go down without a fight, with prize money alone summing to $8 million. Horse racing is an inherently cruel sport.  It is cruel, first, on the mothers, or “brood mares,” who are pregnant for over 90% of their lives. Breeders separate them from their foals just six months after they give birth.  Then, when the horses are past their breeding prime, the breeders send them off to slaughterhouses—to make certain that others cannot use them to breed competition.  And it is cruel, of course, on the racehorses themselves, from the moment they are born and separated from their mothers. Just as humans breed chickens and turkeys to grow unnaturally fat, unnaturally quickly, depriving them of...
    Photo by Roy Rochlin/Getty Images for NRDC Spotify took down the work of hundreds of comedians amid a clash on royalty payments. Comedians whose work was removed include John Mulaney, Jim Gaffigan, Kevin Hart, Tiffany Haddish and the late Robin Williams. Spoken Giants, a rights agency for spoken word royalties, told CNN that the take down happened on Nov. 24 amid ongoing negotiations between the two companies. “Unfortunately, Spotify removed the work of individual comedians rather than continue to negotiate,” CEO Jim King told CNN. “With this take-down, individual comedians are now being penalized for collectively requesting the same compensation songwriters receive,” King said. “After Spotify removed our members’ work, we reached out but have not received a response. We have now requested an immediate meeting to resolve this situation.” Not all the comedians affected by the take down are represented by Spoken Giants and it was unclear why comedians such as Hart, Mulaney, and Williams had been targeted, the magazine Consequence reported. According to the Wall Street Journal, Spoken Giants seeks a royalty structure that would compensate comedians and spoken word...
    (CNN)Spotify is not joking around amid a dispute over royalties for comedy content. The streaming giant has removed the work of hundreds of comedians from its platform -- including Tiffany Haddish, Kevin Hart and the late Robin Williams -- according to rights agency Spoken Giants.Spoken Giants, which represents some of the affected comedians, describes itself as "the first global rights administration company for the owners and creators of spoken word copyrights," and aims to get streaming platforms to pay comedians for writing jokes in the same way songwriters are paid.The group told CNN that the take-down happened on November 24, and said that it never requested the content's removal. "Unfortunately, Spotify removed the work of individual comedians rather than continue to negotiate," CEO Jim King told CNN."With this take-down, individual comedians are now being penalized for collectively requesting the same compensation songwriters receive," he added. "After Spotify removed our members' work, we reached out but have not received a response. We have now requested an immediate meeting to resolve this situation."Read MoreTiffany Haddish offers up advice for those looking to...
    BERLIN (AP) — German international broadcaster Deutsche Welle said Sunday it is suspending cooperation with a Jordanian partner, Roya TV, because of concerns about anti-Israeli and antisemitic content and caricatures on its social media. Deutsche Welle said it had entered a partnership with Roya TV because the broadcaster addressed issues such as gender equality, the rights of minorities in Jordan and promoting young people’s media literacy. But Guido Baumhauer, a senior executive with the German company, said it will have to re-evaluate the cooperation because “several pieces of content disseminated via the broadcaster’s social media channels are definitely not consistent with the values of DW.” He added in a statement: “We are truly sorry that we did not notice these disgusting images.” The company said it “vehemently” distances itself from such content and “regrets its initial assessment that Roya TV is not anti-Israel.” The German public broadcaster’s partnership arrangements involve Deutsche Welle supplying journalistic content. Israel and Jordan made peace in 1994 and have close security ties. However, diplomatic relations have been strained in recent years over tensions at...
    A new report conducted by environmental organizations has revealed some of the biggest polluters and those responsible for port congestion. Unsurprisingly, the main contributors are some of the world’s biggest retailers, including Amazon, Walmart, and IKEA. The report revealed that between 2018 to 2020, these retailers, among others, were responsible for 20 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions for goods imported to the US. These big retailers are also responsible for creating major port congestion in certain areas, as their cargo ships block local ports and spew pollution into the surrounding community. This has long been a public health concern, but it has only continued to grow worse. The report said, “Until recently, the massive climate-disrupting and human health-harming emissions from international container shipping and the companies that are buying their services — have sailed under the radar of public scrutiny.” As of 2021, the shipping industry accounts for almost 3% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions. Reports show that this percentage is only going to continue to climb as the demand for goods grows. The...
    Black Friday, in November 2020, set a record for the second-highest online spending day in U.S. history.  In a single day, consumers purchased $9 billion worth of goods.  Billion with a “B.” Increasing amounts of consumer purchases are “fast fashion“—fashion trends that leave as quickly as they come.  The Ethical Consumer describes “fast fashion” as being fast in every way: “the changes in fashion are fast; the rate of production is fast; the customer’s decision to purchase is fast; delivery is fast; and garments are worn fast.”  But why is this such a problem? First, with the exception of the agriculture industry—the most destructive industry the planet has ever seen—the fashion industry consumes more water than any other industry in the world.  Second, the United Nations reports that it is responsible for 8-10 percent of global carbon emissions.  The third reason may surprise you.   Discarded clothing is as toxic as discarded tires or plastics.  This is because clothing is made with synthetic materials and treated with chemicals, so it can take 200 years to biodegrade.  As a...
    On Wednesday, Bloomington city council adopted Ordinance 21-45 prohibiting the sale of cats and dogs in pet shops. Starting in January of 2023, it will be illegal for pet shops to sell dogs and cats and can be given a fine of up to $500 if they continue to do so. The decision was made in the hopes of putting a supply and demand limit on the puppy mill industry to make it harder for these inhumane businesses to continue to thrive.The city council does not want this to limit customer options but rather steer them towards more ethical options. Though this is great news and definitely puts a strain on the cruel puppy mill industry, it still does not entirely fix the issue of people buying pets from breeders. With shelters overrun with abandoned animals, there is no reason for shoppers to continue buying pets like they would a pair of shoes. Not only do many animals suffer extreme abuse and neglect at the hands of breeders, but there are also plenty of animals who are still...
    The Bell Bowl Prairie is a five-acre plot of land outside of Chicago that still retains imprints of the continent’s last glaciers.  But the area is now at risk of demolition as the Chicago Rockford International Airport seeks to expand. The Bell Bowl Prairie exists because of “a highly unusual combination of topographic and soil conditions.”  As a gravel prairie, it is “among the rarest of the rare, comprising about 3% of the remaining acreage of high quality prairie in the state.”  And because of its rare qualities, the Bell Bowl houses endangered species of migratory birds and a myriad of other wildlife.  You can follow this link to see a full list of the endangered and threatened species on the prairie, including the rusty patched bumble bee, prairie false dandelion, and upland sandpiper.  For those interested in reading about the Prairie in detail, you should check out this comprehensive report. The good news is that many groups are fighting to preserve this land, including the Natural Land Institute, and there are many ways that you can get...
    On Wednesday, High School Musical star, Ashley Tisdale, created a series of Instagram posts in memory of her family dog, Blondie.   View this post on Instagram   A post shared by Ashley Tisdale (@ashleytisdale) The 17-year-old dog had a quiet passing and was given a loving tribute by the grieving star. As Ashley Tisdale posted, “I love you Blondie girl, thanks for bringing such joy to our family,” Tisdale wrote alongside an image of herself cuddling with her late pet. “I will miss you my little rocking horse, but I know Maui is with you, and that’s comforting. I love you.” The celebrity also posted photos of her as a young girl holding the then puppy, and looked back at their many years together. Tisdale went on to open up about the pain of losing a family pet, saying, “Today’s been a rough day, for sure. It’s always hard losing a pet, and we had so much time with Blondie. Can’t believe she was 17 years old. We’re so grateful for that.” Tisdale commented on...
    New laws have been proposed to directly target animal activists for farm trespassing in Victoria, Australia. The laws include a fine of $1272 for an individual or $8178 for an organization. This is just a starting number, however, as fines could climb up to $54,522. Prominent animal activist Chris Delforce said, “These new laws impose heavy on-the-spot fines for people who covertly enter animal agriculture facilities to capture evidence of cruelty. If these new anti-activist laws are anything to go by, this government has no real interest in the welfare of farm animals, and the new Animal Welfare Act will be as much of a sham as (the current) Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act. Their real interest is in stemming the tide of footage and photographs which have been, for many years, a source of great embarrassment and reputation damage for industries that engage in commercialized animal cruelty.” These fines could pose a huge financial risk to any activists looking to rescue sick and dying animals or collect undercover footage of animal cruelty. They will make it even harder to...
    The appointment of Parag Agrawal as the CEO of Twitter has alarmed conservatives because of his statements that he does not prioritize free speech and that his platform is not neutral when it comes to content. At the same time, though, technology industry insiders expect that based on Agrawal's engineering background, he will also likely push the platform to provide users with greater choice in content moderation. Agrawal, 37, who took over the social media giant from former CEO Jack Dorsey earlier this week, joined Twitter in 2011 as a software engineer before rising through the ranks to become the company’s chief technology officer in 2017 and one of Dorsey’s closest advisers. Agrawal is taking control as social media giants face increasing scrutiny from the Left and the Right and a heightened threat of significant regulation. In outlining his thoughts on content moderation in an interview with the MIT Technology Review in November, Agrawal said Twitter is trying to balance mitigating harm caused by false content and misinformation without becoming an arbiter of truth. “Our role is not to...
    The punchlines and standup routines of hundreds of comedians have been removed from Spotify after an impasse between the audio streaming company and the performers over royalty payments.  Tiffany Haddish, John Mulaney, Kevin Hart, Mike Birbiglia, and Jim Gaffigan are among the household-name performers who now have fewer comedy tracks available for streaming on the platform. The comedians signed with Spoken Giants, a global rights administration company founded in 2019, seeking to be paid royalties not just for their performances, but for the intellectual property in their comedy routines, The Wall Street Journal reported.  Spoken Giants said that negotiations with Spotify to tackle the issue started during the spring, but that without warning, Spotify removed several albums from famous comedians just before Thanksgiving. '@Spotify unilaterally decided to take the content down on the night before Thanksgiving when everyone was about to begin a four-day holiday. Just as we were all about to slip into a food coma.. #StandUpOnSpotify,' the organization tweeted on December 1. John Mulaney (left) and Jim Gaffigan (right) are among the household name performers who now have...
    In this article SPOTJim Gaffigan performs onstage during the 15th Annual Stand Up For Heroes benefit at Alice Tully Hall presented by Bob Woodruff Foundation and NY Comedy Festival on Nov. 8, 2021, in New York City.Jamie McCarthy | Getty Images Entertainment | Getty ImagesSpotify removed hundreds of comedians' albums and work from the streaming platform amid a dispute over royalties and copyright, the Wall Street Journal reported. A global rights administration company, Spoken Giants, is working with a group of high-profile comedians — including Tiffany Haddish, Jim Gaffigan, Kevin Hart and John Mulaney — to negotiate terms that would allow the comics to be paid when their work is paid on platforms like Spotify, SiriusXM, Pandora and YouTube, the Journal reported Saturday. The comedians aim to collect royalties for "underlying composition copyrights of spoken-word media," according to the Journal, similar to the way a songwriter would be paid for their music and lyrics. Spotify took the comedians' work off the streaming platform when the two groups met an impasse. "Spotify has paid significant amounts of money for the...
    APPS like Instagram and TikTok have been accused of failing everyone with an eating disorder despite new 'safe-guarding' tools being introduced. Both TikTok and Instagram have released mental health resources in recent months but experts don't think this is anywhere enough to tackle the problem. 1Algorithms are designed to show you more of the content they think you want to see, even if that content is triggering for youCredit: Getty According to CNET, eating disorder specialist and assistant professor of pediatrics at the University of California said: "People with eating disorders can get trapped in a vicious cycle of content related to disordered eating and weight loss." He told the outlet that sometimes hospital staff have to take social media access away from patients so they can recover. The leaking of internal documents from Facebook revealed that the company had noted 33% of Instagram users and 11% of Facebook users think the apps make their body image issues worse. Over 50% of Instagram users were said to report dissatisfaction with their bodies. Meta, formerly Facebook, concluded in the documents: "Overall,...
    Christmas is right around the corner, and what’s Christmas without some carols? Sure, we hear them all the time now that it’s December, and sometimes it feels like radios keep the same tracks on repeat day in and day out, but would the holiday season really be the same without them? We think not. However, we do understand that certain tracks can get old pretty fast so creative renditions of classics are always much appreciated, like Walk Off the Earth’s recent undertaking of “Little Drummer Boy” that they pulled off beautifully with the help of some four-legged friends. (Haven’t seen it yet? Click here to check it out!) Yet, what we love most of all is when animals steal the whole show, belting out their versions of popular songs with the help of some silly, yet totally spot-on human voiceovers. It’s hard to beat acts like the following five videos, which feature a whole variety of animals bringing in the Christmas season with some timeless caroling classics. Enjoy and carol on! 1. “Jingle Bells” Source: Talking Animals/Youtube 2. “12...
    Undercover footage has revealed horrific cruelty on a French farm that keeps over 20,000 pigs for slaughter and distributes the pork to some of Britain’s biggest suppliers, such as Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury’s, and Morrisons. The pork brand, Herta, which promises higher animal welfare standards, has been exposed for the horrific cruelty inflicted on its livestock. The footage was captured by L214, which is a french animal welfare group that is now filing a complaint against the farm. Photo Courtesy of L214 Pigs were beaten and mutilated in sow stalls, which are illegal on British pig farms. They were put through tail docking, teeth clipping, and castrations, all without anesthesia and done in ways that are illegal in the UK. Photo Courtesy of L214 The footage also showed the pigs living in deplorable conditions and in very poor health. As a result, they were pumped full of antibiotics, and many had hernias the size of footballs. Weaker piglets and runts were forcibly thrown against the concrete floors, where they were left to slowly die in agonizing pain.  Photo Courtesy of...
    Fashion magazine, Elle, pledges to ban all fur from its future titles and pages both online and in its physical magazines. This includes all Elle advertisements as well. After much consideration, the top-selling fashion magazine made the announcement at the Business of Fashion’s 2021 VOICES event in London. The magazine created a charter to prohibit the depiction of fur in any of its magazines, in alignment with the Fur Free Alliance’s definition of fur. The charter is already in place for thirteen editions, and it will go into effect next year for twenty other editions. For the remaining editions, the charter will go into effect in 2023. Constance Benqué, CEO Lagardère News and CEO ELLE International, said, “Societal engagement has always been one of the key pillars of the ELLE brand. The world has changed, and the end of the use of fur is aligned with the course of History. We hope that, with this commitment, ELLE will open the path for other media to disallow fur promotion, all around the globe, and promote a fur-free future.” While,...
    Former Baywatch star Donna D’Errico recently revealed how she has managed to keep her youthful appearance at 53 years old. The star has accredited her looks to her vegan diet! As someone from Georgia and Alabama, D’Errico grew up eating all kinds of meat and not realizing the cruelty of it. It took just one glimpse into the real world of the meat industry to change her mind forever. Donna D’Errico explained how she went vegan after being invited to director and producer Sam Simon’s podcast for an interview. The interview led to him asking her if she was vegan and showing her undercover footage of a factory farm. The footage was so horrifying that D’Errico swore to never eat meat again after that and decided to go vegan.    View this post on Instagram   A post shared by Donna D’Errico (@donnaderrico) Though she believes her vegan diet is behind her youthful appearance and overall health, she does not do it for those reasons. She has always been and continues to be vegan for the animals. D’Errico has...
    Cardi B and Starco Brands officially launched their highly anticipated product, Whipshots! The dairy-free vodka-infused whipped cream comes just in time for holiday gatherings and celebrations. It is designed to add a touch of sophistication to any drink with an energizing shot of alcohol.   View this post on Instagram   A post shared by Whipshots ® (@whip_shots) The whipped cream is available in three different flavors, vanilla, caramel, and mocha, perfect for topping a variety of party drinks. Whipshots contain 10% alcohol and do not require any refrigeration. Cardi B will be releasing 500 cans of Whipshots every day of December. Eager fans can try to grab the exclusive product on the Whipshots website. Cardi B said, “Whipshots is over the top, sexy and unique – kind of like me. It’s going to be a party in every can. No matter where you are, you can party like Cardi, and I’m so excited to finally be able to share this one-of-a-kind product with all of you.” Whipshots will be available nationwide after hitting US shelves...
    A meeting held by the Fairfax County School Board Thursday turned into a debate and a protest over sexual content in books that were recently placed back into school libraries. “I’m here to offer voice to the parents who are fighting to protect their children from exposure to pornographic material,” said one speaker, Lin-Dai Kendall. It was the first meeting since the board announced last week that it would return two controversial books to high school libraries. The board’s decision to return the books — “Lawn Boy” and “Gender Queer: A Memoir” — followed an extensive review into complaints that the books contained sexually explicit content and were inappropriate for high school students. “Pornography in our schools is illicit,” Kendall said. “Protecting the innocence of our children is our duty.” “A small minority of parents should not decide what books are in the library,” said Christina McCormick, another speaker at Thursday’s meeting. Addressing school board members directly, McCormick told them to “please remember that your important work is done for our students and not the politics of any parent, including...
    The UK’s red list of endangered birds seems to be ever-growing as four new birds have just been added. The UK’s birds are added to the endangered list when they are believed to be under threat of global extinction. ????New UK Red List for birds: more than one in four species in serious trouble The Red List now stands at 70 species – almost doubling in the last 25 years #BOCC5 #Ornithology 1/10 pic.twitter.com/Qtsf38XG3V — RSPB Science (@RSPBScience) December 1, 2021 The swift, house martin, greenfinch, and Bewick’s swan are the four newly-added endangered bird species. Swifts and house martins populations have dramatically fallen since 1995, going down by 58%.  (1/4) ???? NEWS: More UK bird species than ever before have been placed on the Red list of conservation concern???? We must act now to protect species and prevent further declines: https://t.co/KTSZs2vTRn ⬇️#BOCC5 pic.twitter.com/blHijqXtaG — RSPB (@Natures_Voice) December 1, 2021 These additions increase the number of birds on the red list to 70 species out of the UK’s total 245 bird species. More than...
    Billie Eilish has been awarded PETA’s Person of the Year for 2021 as she has been working tirelessly to spread awareness and make changes for animal welfare.   View this post on Instagram   A post shared by PETA (@peta) Eilish is the youngest person to be awarded this honor by PETA and has joined the list of other notable celebrities, to have won, such as Joaquin Phoenix and Oprah Winfrey. Throughout the year, the celebrity has been working with designer brands to offer vegan options and ditch animal products. Eilish pushed Oscar de la Renta to go fur-free this year and worked along with Nike to create vegan Air Jordans. She also created her own vegan products, like a vegan perfume. Becoming a vegan at the age of 12, Eilish is very motivated to spark change and encourage less meat consumption. Eilish served as the Met Gala co-chair this year, which was the first time there was a 100% vegan menu. On Instagram, she also encouraged her entourage of fans to skip the turkey this holiday season for...
    When Makayla Swift adopted her rescue dog, Milo, she had no idea that he would become a rescuer himself.  Swift was getting ready to go out when Milo took off out the door, dashing from one neighboring house to another before deciding on one. This is where he began to furiously scratch at the door. Swift was trying to drag him away when she heard a call for help coming from inside. Sherry Starr, who is 85, had slipped and fallen in her bathroom. She was stuck between the toilet and the tub and had been there all morning long. Starr had been yelling all morning hoping that someone would hear her. Thankfully, dogs’ hearing is much more sensitive than our human hearing, which is why Milo could instantly hear the distressed call for help. Swift quickly called 911, and the elderly woman was taken to the hospital for a checkup. She was bruised, but otherwise unharmed. In honor of this brave little dog’s efforts, PETA is giving him the Heroic Dog Award on Tuesday to celebrate his...
    Armani announced on Wednesday that they will no longer be using angora wool starting in the autumn and winter seasons of 2022-2023. The Armani Group announces its commitment to no longer use angora wool across all lines from the Fall Winter 2022/2023 season onwards, adding it to the list of excluded materials within its fur-free policy. — Armani (@armani) December 1, 2021 The Italian luxury company decided to ban the fur after experiencing pressure from animal rights activists against the cruel practice. Armani has been known for making positive changes to their company as they went fur-free in 2016. In 2019, they also signed the Fashion Pact to address climate change. Armani is just one of many high-end fashion brands that have started to ban animal products from their lines. It has become much clearer to fashion brands that if they want to stay on top, they must end their support of animal cruelty and remove animal-derived products from their lines. Angora wool is another extremely cruel animal product that is used in the fashion industry. The...
    If you need a pick-me-up, watch some of the heartwarming videos of people hearing for the first time: like this video of one-year-old Mia, or this story of Emersyn.  Hearing aids changed these children’s lives. But hearing problems are highly prevalent throughout the United States.  According to the FDA, over 37 million adults age 18 and over report some trouble hearing.  That’s approximately 15% of American adults.  And only around 20% of these people use any kind of device to assist their hearing. Recently, the FDA announced a “landmark proposal” that could change these statistics by improving access to hearing aid technology for millions of Americans.  As the FDA explains, the proposal follows the Biden Administration’s Executive Order on increasing economic growth through competition while increasing access to lower-cost health care. “The proposed rule aims to address barriers to use, including cost, access, social stigma related to hearing loss, perceived value of the devices or certain state and federal regulations.”  Currently, exams can cost up to $250, even with insurance, and hearing aids can run upwards of $5,000. Sign this...
    Gray bats have been an endangered species for more than four decades. Their habitat is restricted to a limited range of caves, mainly in Alabama, northern Arkansas, Kentucky, Missouri, and Tennessee.  In the summer they roost in scattered caves along rivers, and in the winter they hibernate in deep, vertical caves. Because of this limited habitat range, Gray bats are especially susceptible to human disturbance, climate change and habitat degradation.  According to the Fish and Wildlife Service, arousing bats during hibernation causes them to panic, burn through energy reserves, and even drop their flightless young.  Reservoirs have flooded many caves; and human construction has altered the airflow, temperature, humidity, and light in others. The extent of destruction has turned old box bridges into a surprisingly important resource.  Since at least as far back as 2005, studies have shown how bats make use of a variety of highway structures.  As bridges, and especially box bridges age, they develop cracks that serve as shelter for the bats from wind, rain, and predators. In some heartwarming news, wildlife groups, scientists and...
    Canada’s first animal cruelty investigation unit has been created with the job of investigating and punishing forms of animal cruelty. The unit has been 2 years in the making and has been assisted by several animal specialists. Its aim is to prioritize and crack down on all cases of animal cruelty. This type of unit is new to Canada, despite the fact that many other parts of the world use a similar system, including the US.  Staff Sgt. Anna Sinclair said, “Research has shown there in an unequivocal link between animal cruelty, domestic violence, child and elder abuse investigations. Offenders who abuse animals are likely to commit other violent crimes causing harm to persons and society in general.” More than 400 cases of animal cruelty were investigated last year, showing just how urgent the need is to create a specific unit for dealing with animal cruelty.  Canadian law enforcement was more eager to assist in creating the special unit when animal cruelty was clearly linked to other forms of abuse and violence. Const. Ilka Cunningham said, “It started...
    A recent study has suggested that climate change is having an unusual impact on albatross relationships, some of the most loyal creatures in the world. The study revealed that more breeding pairs were “divorcing,” which involves one albatross cheating on the other. This is unusual since albatross relationships are usually very loyal and firm, sticking to one partner for life. Only 1% of albatross couples end up splitting, which just shows, how loyal these creatures really are.  This divorce rate has recently moved up to 8%, leading specialists to look at climate change and how it may be impacting albatross pairs. One suspicion is that the heated temperatures are causing albatrosses to hunt for longer periods of time, leading to one albatross moving on to a different mate in the meantime. It could also be linked to higher stress hormones that go up when they have to live in a harsher environment. Many albatross populations are struggling to breed properly, as their higher divorce rates are causing a disruption in the breeding season. This is not a dire...
    Oklahoma City animal welfare officers are investigating an instance of supposed animal abuse and intent to kill after a horrific video was recorded. The video showed a man running over his neighbor’s dog, Vers, and reversing to run over the dog a second time.  The neighbor’s home security cameras caught the man running over their dog twice. No arrests have been made yet as animal welfare officers are still investigating the incident, trying to conclude whether or not this was indeed animal cruelty or an accident. The 2-year-old golden retriever mix miraculously survived the incident and had no life-threatening injuries. She only needed emergency care for her back leg that had been degloved while being repeatedly run over. Sadly, the owners had to surrender Vers, due to the extensive medical bills required. Vers is responding well to therapy, and she should make a full recovery. She is currently living with her foster parents until she is completely recovered. Hopefully, Verse will have a smooth and complete recovery and find a new forever home where she can be safe and...
    Saweetie recently dropped her latest single, Icy Chain, where she clearly called out PETA in one of her icy lyrics. The lyric says, “Mink on my body like I just went hunting / Tell PETA I’m being 100,” taking a very obvious jab at the animal rights group. In response, PETA is sending Saweetie an Apparis jacket made out of faux-fur in the hopes of converting her to more ethical alternatives that don’t result in animals being tormented and killed. PETA senior vice president Lisa Lange said, “We’ll be 100, too: It’s a shame that the icy girl seems to have an icy heart. PETA hopes that once Saweetie sees how luxurious faux-fur coats are, she’ll ditch the ones made from animals who valued their lives and were tormented and killed for a look that says, ‘I don’t care how others suffer.” Whether Saweetie knows it or not, the fur industry is an unimaginably cruel place where fur-bearing animals are tortured and killed. Animals are kept in tiny cages and surrounded by feces and corpses, which causes extreme physical...
    An animal rights group has made accusations that a tiger attraction that could be built near Las Vegas is misleading the public by using the word “sanctuary.” Executive Director for CompassionWorks International, Carrie LeBlanc said, “It is intentionally misleading to label the tiger tent- proposed tiger tent as a sanctuary. It isn’t, it’s a very small area that isn’t sufficient to give tigers what they need to live natural full lives, which is what you would expect out of a sanctuary situation.” It was confirmed that magician Jay Owenhouse is behind the proposal. This poses some very obvious concerns as it seems that this ‘sanctuary’ will be a place for the tigers to perform, which would never ever happen at a real animal sanctuary. They will also be kept in much smaller and less natural enclosures than a real sanctuary. Animal attractions labelling themselves “sanctuaries” is a huge problem that tricks people into thinking they are supporting something ethical rather than cruel. These kinds of ‘sanctuaries’ or ‘scamtuaries’ are nothing more than glorified zoos and circuses, not designed...
    A fundraiser endorsed by Jane Goodall has helped to relocate eight chimpanzees to their new forever home in Center for Great Apes in Florida, according to an emailed release. The chimpanzees had been living temporarily at a closed wildlife refuge in California after financial difficulties caused it to close. It had been a haven for chimps from all kinds of situations. Many were originally pets or were used for biomedical experiments. https://www.onegreenplanet.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/11/Transport-from-Waystation-Courtesy-of-California-Department-of-Fish-and-Wildlife.mp4 Source: Chimps in Need Project Chimps provided transportation for the eight chimps, allowing them to travel to Florida in comfort and style. 18 more remain at the closed wildlife refuge, waiting for more funding. The eight chimps – Billy, Ewok, Josh, Maude, Sabina, Mystery, Sha Sha, and Jeeter – were specially picked out to go to the Florida sanctuary so that all of the chimps would be happy together and those with strong bonds would not be separated. Jeeter had social issues and joined the group in the hopes of forming friendships. Source: Chimps in Need Everyone who has been involved is ecstatic that the group...
    Planting Hope is the latest company to launch its products into the plant-based milk market, offering even more delicious options. The women-run business stands apart from the rest as the plant-based milk is made with a rather unusual ingredient – sesame seeds! In a market filled with soy, oat, almond, and cashew milk, Planting Hope is creating a variety of its own.   View this post on Instagram   A post shared by Hope & Sesame Sesamemilk (@hopeandsesameco) Co-Founder and CEO Julia Stamberger said, “Nobody else is doing this. We found a way to block the bitter acid taste and make a shelf-stable product, and we’ve found sources for sesame in places like Mexico and South America.” The sesame milk matches regular milk’s protein content at 8 grams per serving. Other plant milks fall far behind on protein content, making this an excellent alternative to cow’s milk from a nutritional perspective. In a market full of plant milk, it is refreshing to see an entirely new kind of plant milk hit shelves. The more options that are available, the...
    Dr. Jane Goodall will be joining a coalition of NGOs as well as several animal welfare institutes and organizations to push a new vision for saving whales, dolphins, and porpoises. She will be one of many urging the 88 member countries of the International Whaling Commission to adopt the 50-year vision to save these species. Whales, dolphins, and porpoises all face great danger of extinction from the increasing ocean threats. These species are specifically in danger of decreasing in population from threats like noise pollution, chemicals, plastic, habitat loss, and marine strikes. Not to mention the direct hunting of dolphins and whales despite their dwindling numbers.  Courtesy of WDC In her keynote speech, Dr. Goodall said, “Some 80% of the world’s oxygen comes from the ocean. Our seas, along with our forests, are literally the lungs of our planet. Tragically, the vast marine habitat is increasingly threatened by our human actions. We are polluting it with toxic substances, large areas become acidified, the water is warming, commercial fishing has endangered many species, and its biggest and most loved...