Editor’s Note: Welcome To The New ReadWrite

first_imgWelcome to the new ReadWrite. Today we are relaunching this legendary tech site with a new name, a new design and a new approach. I’m thrilled to be joining ReadWrite as the site’s new editor-in-chief, and to be teaming up with Fredric Paul, a veteran tech journalist who is our new managing editor. And I’m very excited to tell you about our plans.Change, For The BetterFirst: I know change is scary. But if you’re one of ReadWriteWeb’s devoted long-time readers, please know that we remain committed to delivering the kind of smart, thoughtful analysis that you’ve come to expect from the site since its inception in 2003. We hope to build on that legacy and add to it.As for our new name, the rationale for the change is pretty simple. Technology has evolved beyond the Web, and we’re adapting to keep up with the changing digital media landscape.The new design is fresh, clean and modern, and easy to navigate. The top box lets us highlight a story that we think is really important, and enables us to run big, beautiful photos and illustrations. Tags:#Op-Ed#ReadWrite dan lyons Related Posts Tablet FirstWhat you might not notice at first is that the site has been rebuilt with a tablet-first approach, meaning that instead of starting with a PC and browser as our reference and then scaling that design down to mobile devices, our designers and engineers used mobile as a starting point and worked out from there. We’ve built a proprietary publishing system called Orion that has been developed under the direction of the experienced and talented John Vars and Eric Dahl.You’ll find that as you move across your various devices – laptop/desktop, tablet, smartphone – the site seamlessly adapts itself to where you are, rearranging itself as if by magic. It’s incredibly responsive and smooth, and boasts slick new features like variable scrolling, contextually aware smart feeds, deeper social integration and improved navigation. This new design was dreamed up and brought to life by our creative director, Alex Schleifer, and the world-class designers and engineers on his team.ReadWrite’s Expanded CoverageBut all that stuff has to do with how you read. Let’s talk about what you read. We have a great core staff of writers, and over time you’ll start to see some evolution in the tone and scope of our coverage.We’re doubling down on mobile, because that’s where the action is. The mobile computing wave is the biggest thing that’s happened in the 25 years that I’ve been writing about technology. But it’s more than that. Mobile devices combined with social networks are evolving into a new mass medium that will displace television and define our age.As for the tone: We want to turn our writers loose and let them write from the heart, in ways that are more personal, passionate, provocative and fun than ever before. We want ReadWrite to be a lively place filled with wit and energy, a place where you find great stories told in a convincing, engaging way, with brains and a point of view.We also plan to bring in a wider mix of voices, inviting interesting people from across our industry to share their ideas and opinions. These will include entrepreneurs, investors, authors, academics, industry executives and, most of all, readers.The best thing about digital publishing is that the audience can be part of the show. We really want to find ways to turn readers into contributors, so that ultimately the site belongs to them as much as to us. In our vision of success, ReadWrite becomes not so much a publication as a conversation. A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai…center_img 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting The Say Media ConnectionReadWriteWeb was launched in 2003 by Richard MacManus, a visionary writer and pioneer of online publishing who built a devoted global following. Richard remains a hero to us, and every day we remain mindful of the need to live up to the standards he set.Last year ReadWriteWeb was acquired by Say Media, a forward-looking media company from San Francisco that operates a stable of properties including XOJane, Dogster, Catster, Remodelista and Gardenista. Say Media started out as an advertising network, so it understands the business side of the equation as well as the importance of powerful content that keeps readers coming back for more. Also part of the Say Media family (we call ourselves “Sayers”) is an incredibly talented engineering team behind our award-winning Orion publishing platform. As the media business increasingly becomes a technology business, teaming up with this kind of visionary talent gives us a huge advantage. We’re able to optimize the way you view the site to ensure an amazing experience online and on mobile devices.SAY’s management roster reads like an all-star team of digital publishing. These folks really get the Internet. Our CEO and co-founder, Matt Sanchez, is a techie who studied engineering and computer science at Yale. Our president, Kim Kelleher, was previously the publisher of Time magazine. (Yes, that Time magazine.) See why we’re excited?The History Of Dan LyonsAs for me, I’m joining from Newsweek, where I was technology editor. Before going to Newsweek I spent a decade at Forbes. I also created The Secret Diary of Steve Jobs, in the persona known as Fake Steve Jobs. Fake Steve will not be making any appearances on ReadWrite. But his spirit of candor and irreverence remains part of everything I write.So: we are blessed to have the best of both worlds. We have a great brand built on the legacy created by Richard MacManus; and we have the support of a smart, growing, tech-savvy parent company. Now it’s up to us – and to you – to figure out what ReadWrite will become next. The only way to find out is to leap into the digital stream and start experimenting. Some stuff will work, some stuff won’t. We’re pretty sure you’ll tell us which is which.We promise you that we will do our best to find great stories, to be entertaining, witty and passionate, to write from the heart, to tell you what we really think, to admit mistakes when we make them and to deliver the best coverage of the digital revolution that we can. We hope you will come along with us and become part of creating the future.last_img read more

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Out of Adamson, Robbie Manalang tries to make waves with new team

first_imgPBA IMAGESFor the longest time, everyone expected Robbie Manalang to have one last run with his fellow Falcons with Akari-Adamson in the 2018 PBA D-League Aspirants’ Cup.The Fil-Am guard, however, found himself on the outside looking in.ADVERTISEMENT Globe Business launches leading cloud-enabled and hardware-agnostic conferencing platform in PH Though his debut was spoiled by Che’Lu Bar and Grill-San Sebastian’s come-from-behind 83-79 win on Thursday, the 5-foot-7 playmaker shared that he couldn’t feel more at home with the Titans.“It’s a good group of guys here. They’re playing really hard, so it was easy for me to come in here and play my game. Coach Mark (Herrera) puts a lot of trust in me, so I just have to go there and play as hard as I can,” he said.Manalang knows that it would take time for him to fully jell with the team and for the AMA to collectively mesh as a unit given its inexperience. But he said that it shouldn’t be used an excuse with the Titans yet to crack in the winning column after three games.“We’re still a new team. I’m new to the team, too, and I just started practicing with them week ago. We’re still trying to learn how to gel with each other. But we still want to get the W. Hopefully by next game, we’ll be a lot better,” he said.As for that imminent clash between AMA and Akari-Adamson on March 1, Manalang said that he’s looking forward to it and would love to gain that victory over his former team.ADVERTISEMENT 2 ‘newbie’ drug pushers fall in Lucena sting John Lloyd Cruz a dashing guest at Vhong Navarro’s wedding PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games PLAY LIST 02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. MOST READ NEXT BLOCK ASIA 2.0 introduces GURUS AWARDS to recognize and reward industry influencers LATEST STORIES Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH Slow and steady hope for near-extinct Bangladesh tortoises Read Next “I wouldn’t say extra motivation but of course, I’m a competitor. Every time I step onto the court, I wanna play. And I’d love to play against those guys. I did it for two years, every day in practice, so I’m excited,” he said. Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC D-League: Gamboa-St. Clare burns Mila’s Lechon for back-to-back wins AFP official booed out of forum “I think Akari made a decision that they wanted to play with their rookies,” he shared.It would be understandable if Manalang harbored some kind of anger towards his former team, but the 24-year-old isn’t wired that way as he remained gracious to the Falcons.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSLillard, Anthony lead Blazers over ThunderSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout“That’s ok and I totally understand that. I wouldn’t be the same player I am today without them,” he said. “I know coach Franz (Pumaren) wants his team to be ready for the UAAP. I wish them the best.”Manalang did well in his first game outside of the confines of Adamson, lighting up for 28 points, three rebounds, three steals, and two assists in his 38 minutes of action for new squad AMA Online Education. View commentslast_img read more

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Petron, Foton seal semifinal showdown

first_imgLATEST STORIES Pagasa: Kammuri now a typhoon, may enter PAR by weekend Petron toyed with Sta. Lucia Realty before scoring a 25-7, 26-24, 25-16 triumph Saturday at Malolos Sports and Convention Center in Bulacan to assure itself of a place in the Philippine Superliga All-Filipino Conference semifinals.Falling in complacency in the second set after an opening frame blowout, the Blaze Spikers found themselves down by three set points as the Lady Realtors’ Mar-Jana Phillips waxed hot.ADVERTISEMENT Another vape smoker nabbed in Lucena LOOK: Jane De Leon meets fellow ‘Darna’ Marian Rivera What ‘missteps’? But Petron fought point after point to yank the set out of Sta. Lucia’s hands. That was enough to tear the Lady Realtors’ morale to shreds.Later in the day, Foton made quick work of lowly Cherrylume, 25-22, 25-20, 25-11, to complete the semifinal cast.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSWin or don’t eat: the Philippines’ poverty-driven, world-beating pool starsThe Tornadoes and the Blaze Spikers will collide in the semifinals on Thursday.Petron team captain Ces Molina topscored with 11 points as the Blaze Spikers got contributions from just about everybody. MOST READ China furious as Trump signs bills in support of Hong Kong Creamline survives shaky second set, trips Adamson-Akaricenter_img The Blaze Spikers, however, made up with 18 digs against the 11 of the Lady Realtors. —MARC ANTHONY REYESSports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next “It was a big win for us; maybe we relaxed a bit but we knew that we could [get the win]. Thankfully we pulled it off,” said Molina in Filipino.Aiza Pontillas helped with seven points while Mika Reyes chipped in six points including the match-clinching point. Only liberos Bang Pineda and Ria Duremdes failed to score.The Lady Realtors were relegated to the classification round, where they will join in the battle for fifth to eighth places.Petron dominated the offense with 39 attacks compared to 25 by Sta. Lucia. And the Lady Realtors committed 26 errors, twice as much as the Blaze Spikers had.But Sta. Lucia led in reception with Ria Sante making 9 of her team’s 28 receives, compared to just 10 by Petron.ADVERTISEMENT Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ Cayetano to unmask people behind ‘smear campaign’ vs him, SEA Games Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. View commentslast_img read more

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‘Indian athletes inject themselves all the time’

first_imgA former national champion who competed at the Asian level, gave this account of the underbelly of Indian athletics. To protect his identity, he is not being named.The situation in Indian athletics today is what it was like in East Germany in the 1970s and ’80s. Taking performance – enhancing,A former national champion who competed at the Asian level, gave thisaccount of the underbelly of Indian athletics. To protect his identity,he is not being named.The situation in Indian athletics today is what it was like in East Germany in the 1970s and ’80s. Taking performance – enhancing drugs is routine. You take food, you take steroids. In Sunita Rani’s case, she got caught and the others got away. Everybody, somewhere or the other, is on it.Ideally, as an athlete you should explore your capacity, test the limit of what you can do in timings or distance on your own ability. Only when you find yourself stagnating should you think of taking steroids. But here athletes rely on steroids from the very beginning.Knowledge about dope is passed on through word of mouth, between athletes, even from chemists outside stadiums. Abroad you can’t buy drugs over the counter. Here you get steroids and you get free advice. Doping is a science, it | needs to be planned. Here it’s not.If anyone cared enough to go to an athletics meet in India, they would be horrified. Athletes inject themselves all the time: a doctor may insist a 10 ml injection must only be given through a glucose drip. The athlete says damn it, tells a friend to hold his arm down and jabs himself.Once you are in athletics it’s difficult to snap out of this cycle. If you get to the top and begin to plateau out, you will get desperate. It’s almost a nasha – you keep pushing yourself to take more and more and more.advertisementDoping used to happen on the quiet but now that coaches from the old Soviet states have come to India, it is all in the open. The 1998 Asian Track and Field Meet is like a landmark date. But the “Russians” will never tell you what they are giving you.If they told you, then unka patta kat jaayega. Who will want their services? When I was running with an injury once and a doctor gave me an injection, I asked him what it was and he said, “Don’t worry, no problem.” Language is a big problem with them.Coaches also know what the athletes take, in fact sometimes they tell you to take the stuff. But what the Russians do, what they give you, even the coaches don’t know. People ask me if these coaches help. I say only one thing: if Bangladesh asks India for a coach, will we send our best people? No, why should we? Certainly the foreign coaches we have are not the best there are.People think we are badly off but athletes in India get comforts. I have friends who train in the US and it’s a tough life. Here in camp, everything is free: we train in the morning, come back to our rooms, sleep, rest, get up, eat lunch, play cards and do some training.We don’t have to think about anything else. have their levels and targets like everyone else: some take steroids to be at the national level, others just to be in the national camp, others to make it at the Asian level and so on. But doping is more common than people outside sports believe, so they should not be surprised if Indian athletes get caught.-with Labonita Ghosh and Arun Ramlast_img read more

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Continuing to Work from Pakistan

first_img ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read: Posted on December 22, 2010June 20, 2017By: Faisal Siraj, Young Champion of Maternal HealthClick to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)This blog post was contributed by Faisal Siraj, one of the fifteen Young Champions of Maternal Health chosen by Ashoka and the Maternal Health Task Force at EngenderHealth. He will be blogging about her experience every month, and you can learn more about him, the other Young Champions, and the program here.The 3rd month of my project has been very busy. I am near to completing the training guidelines for traditional birth attendants, health workers and health activists that my mentor, Ashoka Fellow Lucy Attah Auwalu, has encouraged me to write. The guidelines I am working on are based on safe motherhood practices. There are two sections of the guidelines: the first section is on maternal care and the second section deals with child care during pregnancy and after birth. I have completed three more chapters of section one during this month. These chapters are as follows.Chapter four: Antepartum HemorrhageAims & ObjectivesTo understand why an antepartum hemorrhage should always be regarded as serious.To provide the initial management of a patient presenting with an antepartum hemorrhage.To understand that it is sometimes necessary to deliver the fetus as soon as possible, in order to save the life of the mother or infant.To diagnose the cause of the bleeding from the history and examination of the patient.To correctly manage each of the causes of antepartum hemorrhage.To diagnose the cause of a blood stained vaginal discharge and administer appropriate treatment.Chapter Five: Preterm Labour & Preterm Rupture of MembraneAims & ObjectivesTo define preterm labour and preterm rupture of the membranes.To understand why these conditions are very important.To understand the role of infection in causing preterm labour and preterm rupture of the membranes.To list which patients are at increased risk of these conditions.To understand what preventive measures should be taken.To diagnose preterm labour and preterm rupture of the membranes.To manage these conditions.Chapter Six: First Stage of Labour: The Condition of MotherAims & ObjectivesTo monitor the condition of the mother during the first stage of labour.To record the clinical observations on the partogram.To explain the clinical significance of the observations.To manage any abnormalities which are detected.There are about four other chapters to complete in this section. Soon after completion of safe motherhood guidelines for mothers I will be starting work on safe child care practices guidelines for traditional birth attendants, health workers and health activists.During this month we also started our first training session for health workers and community health activists. The first training session was on Antenatal Care. At the start of the sessions I had a conference call discussion with the project coordinator (Eunan), health workers and community health activists. I was really surprised to hear their enthusiasm and commitment toward the project. At the same time I felt very bad because I wanted to be with them during all these activities. I hope I will join them soon (when my physical health permits)!Share this:last_img read more

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a month agoChelsea defender Christensen: We felt on top for most of the game

first_imgChelsea defender Christensen: We felt on top for most of the gameby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveChelsea defender Andreas Christensen admits there’s disappointment after the 1-0 home defeat to Valencia for their Champions League opener.With quarter-of-an-hour to go, Valencia took the lead from a free-kick and subsequently Chelsea failed to convert a penalty that was awarded after VAR had intervened.”We were looking forward to having a great start to the [Champions League] campaign,” Christensen told the club’s website.”We felt we were on top for most of the game. Valencia had some spells but we knew that was going to happen and we were ready for it. We kept working. Our work ethic was good all game and it felt we controlled most of it which is why it is tough to accept the goal against and the result in the end.”We are not happy to let goals in from those situations and we know it can be costly, but now we look forward to the next game.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

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Canadianborn director Arthur Hiller Hollywood Utility Player

first_img Login/Register With: LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Advertisement Facebook Advertisementcenter_img Though he was never a critic’s darling, the director of ‘Love Story’ and ‘The Out of Towners’ was a flexible craftsman, bringing out the best in writers and actors he collaborated with.Arthur Hiller, who died Wednesday at the age of 92, was certainly one of the elder statesmen of Hollywood. A past president of the Directors Guild of America as well as the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, he was perhaps better known for his diplomatic skills than for a distinctive directorial vision. But that diplomacy served him well when working with several strong-willed actors and writers; he was always willing to subordinate his own personality to the talents of his collaborators. Never a critic’s darling, Hiller sustained a very long career with a number of surprising highlights.Canadian born, Hiller did a great deal of work in television in the 1950s and ’60s before making his feature film debut in 1963. He showed promise as the director of 1964’s The Americanization of Emily, a biting anti-war comedy written by Paddy Chayefsky (from a novel by William Bradford Huie) and starring James Garner and Julie Andrews (in her first non-musical movie). The film, which took a sardonic look at the Normandy invasion of 1944, was mainly notable for Chayefsky’s irreverent script, but Hiller interpreted it gracefully.He worked with Chayefsky again on the scathing 1971 medical satire The Hospital, which earned an Academy Award for the screenplay as well as an Oscar nomination for George C. Scott, a year after he turned down his Oscar for Patton. (Scott was punished for his bad Hollywood manners and was never nominated again.) In 1980, Chayefsky took his name off Altered States because he was displeased with director Ken Russell’s rendering of his script. The opinionated screenwriter clearly had no such problem with Hiller. Advertisement Twitterlast_img read more

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Decades of promises but little action as mercury still takes lives in

first_imgInFocusIt’s been half a century since a pulp and paper mill in Dryden, Ont. dumped 10 tonnes of mercury into the English and Wabigoon river systems, poisoning aquatic life downstream along with two communities, including Grassy Narrows, who relied on fish to survive.Since then, mercury victims have had to fight to even be acknowledged, for adequate disability money, to have the river system cleaned  up, and to keep industry from moving into the territory to unleash more mercury, this time through logging.“It’s been very slow, its been 50 years, and we keep protesting, and we keep asking and to try to improve things but it just doesn’t really get anywhere,” Grassy Narrows Chief Rudy Turtle told InFocus Host Melissa Ridgen.Some 900 people live in Grassy Narrows and health official say 90 per cent have signs of mercury poisoning, which include vision and hearing impairment, tremors, and decreased cognitive function.Yet Turtle says only five per cent meet guidelines to be disability compensation.And no one has bothered to cleanup the river system, which still tests high for mercury.Judy Da Silva, environmental health coordinator for Grassy, says the community needs action but keeps getting political lip-service.She points out that two years ago, former Indigenous Services minister Jane Philpott committed to building a mercury treatment centre in the community, much like was built by the Japanese government after residents of the village of Minamata were mercury poisoned, yet not a brick has been laid.Turtle said Indigenous Services Minister Seamus O’Regan called him just before the show, to reaffirm that Ottawa will at some point, build the treatment centre.And Ontario committed $85 million to follow the advice of scientists and cap off contaminated portions of the river system, but that too hasn’t been done.Da Silva is one of those suffering the effects of mercury poisoning.“I know I’m deteriorating, one symptom is being off balance, and that was happening to me, even an hour ago where my daughter had to help me stay balanced,” she said.“The mercury attacks the brain, you can still be really intelligent but your body gives up on you.”One thing that did happen was the Doug ford government last summer, announced those on disability will have their first cost-of-living raise since the 1980s.It saw monthly payments double to between $500 and $1,700 for those who qualify.Prime Minister Justin Trudeau insists his government wants to help but when a protester confronted him about his government’s inaction at $1,500 a plate, Liberal fundraising event in Toronto, his response was to thank the activist for her donation as she was being escorted out of the venue.He later apologized telling reporters it was disrespectful“We’re used to that kind of callous attitude to Indigenous people,” da Silva said. “We’ve been dealing with several different of governments throughout the years.“Its taken this long and we’re still protesting and we’re still out there trying to get mercury justice for our people.”Turtle said he was disappointed by Trudeau’s remarks.“I feel insulted because our people are poisoned, people are suffering, and that’s just not a proper response coming from the prime minister of Canada,” Turtle said.“We acknowledged his apology but until we see further action or get something done — like building the mercury treatment facility,  and he comes to the community to see first hand, and takes serious actions — we would see his apology is sincere.”mridgen@aptn.calast_img read more

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Tennis Has An Income Inequality Problem

Tennis is played and followed in most nations worldwide. But professional players aren’t making much money. Fewer than 1,000 pro players break even at the sport. Far fewer make a decent living.The opportunities to make good money are dwindling. More players are competing for prizes that are growing slowly, especially at the game’s lowest levels. Earlier this month, the ATP World Tour, which runs the most lucrative pro men’s events, announced it was increasing prize money significantly over the next four years. But the most exclusive tournaments will get the biggest boosts. After adjusting for inflation1Which I did using the U.S. Consumer Price Index, since U.S. dollars are the standard currency in tennis, prize money on the ATP’s Challenger Tour — the equivalent of baseball’s AAA minor league — has fallen by 25 percent in the last six years.Soon after the ATP’s announcement, the International Tennis Federation released results of its analysis of the pro game’s financials. Among the sobering findings: Only 336 men and 253 women made more than they spent playing tennis last year.2That doesn’t count sponsorship money and appearance fees, but it also doesn’t count coaching expenses.In every pro sport, many compete for few lucrative slots. Tennis’s economics are particularly brutal. Players are individual contractors who have to cover their own transportation, equipment, coaching and — at some events — accommodation and food. Almost all of them have to supplement their winnings with sponsorships, support from their national federations or their families, odd jobs or all of the above.The best 104 men and 104 women get safe passage to the four Grand Slam tournaments each year.3Each Grand Slam tournament has spots for 128 men and 128 women in its singles draws. Typically 104 men enter singles directly based on their ranking, while the rest of the slots go to players who qualify in a pre-tournament playoff, or who get a wild-card slot from organizers. Women’s draws are constructed similarly, though most majors allot four fewer qualifying slots for women, and four more direct-entry positions. They’re the players who have a chance to make a lot of money playing tennis. Lose your first match at each one last year, and you would still earn roughly $130,000. The rest of the players in the world are fighting for much smaller purses. The ITF estimates that the 4,978 men who won some prize money last year but weren’t in the top 1 percent earned, on average, a little over $13,000. The bottom 99 percent of the 2,650 women who earned prize money averaged about $22,600.If you’re the 350th best man in the world at baseball, basketball, American football, ice hockey or soccer, you’re earning more than $500,000 each year, expenses paid. If you’re the 350th best man in tennis, you’re probably either falling into debt or getting help from a sponsor or parent. Tennis looks better financially for women than for men, relative to other sports, yet it’s likely that fewer than 200 women are earning a living from tennis prize money.Tennis’s problem is that its fan base is wide but not deep. It has fans in countries around the world, but rarely enough to support a major tournament with sellouts and big TV ratings in any single market.The ITF is considering how to divide the revenue among players in a way that’s best for the game. The nonprofit body is studying the sport’s economics to make sure that players who are good enough to break through don’t quit the game before doing so — and to hasten the departure of those who aren’t good enough. The ITF’s data shows it takes about a year longer now than it did in 2000 for a player to go from his or her first ranking to reaching the Top 100, which is another year during which promising players might get discouraged and drop their rackets.“The last thing I’d want is for an exceptionally talented player to have to leave the game after a year or two, before they realize their potential,” Kris Dent, the ITF’s director of pro tennis, said in a telephone interview. “That’s something that drives what we’re doing, first and foremost.”The ITF enlisted outside researchers in Australia and the U.K. for its study. It surveyed 7,605 players worldwide, three-quarters of them active professional players. Just 6 percent of women and 5 percent of men who responded said their prize money in their most recent year of professional play covered their expenses. More than half of men and women said they had to cut costs to a level they deemed unacceptable for hotels and the number and quality of tournaments they played.The life most pro players lead is far from glamorous. They are concerned more with having enough balls and a good court to play on, than with paparazzi and endorsements. Players were asked in the survey where they’d be OK with cuts. Balls and facility maintenance were lowest on their list. In a recent post on Facebook, 22-year-old Tomás Buchhass of Argentina lamented “courts in a pitiful state which are a hazard to the physical well-being of the players” at a Chilean ITF event. And a photo of a shredded net on a practice court at a Tunisian ITF event made the rounds on Twitter last month.4An ITF spokesman confirmed the photo is genuine and added, “It is essential that tournament conditions meet the minimum standards expected by the ITF. Where complaints about an unacceptable site are upheld following investigation, as they were on this particular occasion, we will not approve the site for any future Circuit tournaments unless we are entirely satisfied that steps have been taken to ensure no repetition.”In one of the least surprising findings of modern polling history, nearly all players said prize money should increase. (Just who were the 12 percent of men and 21 percent of women who disagreed, the ITF couldn’t say.)Dent agrees with players, to a point. He’d like to see less hardship for young players. For instance, he wants the lowest-level tournaments to cover players’ food and hotel costs in the form of a per diem; this year fewer than 4 percent of ITF pro events covered all players’ hospitality costs. That would help encourage players to travel to more tournaments. More prize money would help, too, but big increases aren’t realistic for most events. Below the top rungs of the men’s and women’s tours, there is little to no income coming from sponsorships, ticket sales or broadcast rights, Dent said. National federations, sometimes with grants from the ITF or the Grand Slams, generally cover costs, and aren’t likely to pay for big prize-money increases.Many different bodies run the sport. Each of the four Grand Slams is run by the host nation’s tennis federation. The ATP runs the men’s tour, the WTA the women’s tour. For the men, the ATP handles the highest minor-league level, of Challengers, while the ITF runs the lowest-level pro tournaments, called Futures. For women, the ITF runs all events below tour level.The ITF runs the least lucrative tournaments, so it doesn’t have much leeway to increase prize money at those. Dent wants to shrink the player pool so there is more money for each player. “We need to look at how we reward players who are progressing, but start to make it harder for players who aren’t,” he said.Tennis isn’t likely to start forcing players to earn tour cards, as golf does. But Dent repeatedly cited golf as an example of a sport that properly “signposts” steps on aspiring pros’ journeys. Tennis, he said, needs to a better job of that. The point of Futures and Challengers isn’t to award enough money for players to live on, but to identify the best emerging talents and bestow ranking points so they can qualify for bigger, more lucrative tournaments. Toughening playing-down rules, which prevent players from competing at events below their level, are a way for the ITF to ensure that prize money and ranking points at entry-level events get divvied up among emerging stars, not established veterans.Dent also envisions adding yet a lower level of competition — development events that cash-strapped national federations can support so that local players can afford to play without heavy travel costs. The events would have smaller draws and use officials with less experience than is required at current ITF events — while not skimping on costs for courts and balls.“Already a number of developing nations, particularly in Africa, find it difficult to host events at the prize-money level we have,” Dent said. Nearly half of men’s prize money at ITF events, and more than half of ITF women’s prize money, was distributed at European events this year.The pool of money for aspiring players could be growing soon. In March, the ITF Board will consider the idea of the development tour and other potential changes — including increases to prize money and hospitality — in light of the research. The ATP likely will increase prize money and hospitality spending at Challenger tournaments next year, too, according to a spokesman — which would reverse recent stagnation and decline.The big money, though, remains at the top of the game — and the gap likely will widen. The ATP’s recently announced prize-money increases are biggest for the 500- and 1,000-level tournaments, which are the most exclusive ones, with increases of 50 percent and 54 percent, respectively, in 2018 compared to this year, after adjusting for projected inflation. The 250-level events, one notch up from Challengers, will increase prize money by just 6 percent. read more

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Significant Digits For Tuesday Nov 17 2015

You’re reading Significant Digits, a daily digest of the telling numbers tucked inside the news.27 statesTwenty-seven governors announced their opposition to allowing refugees of the civil war in Syria into their states. Those states include Alabama, Michigan, Ohio, Mississippi, Florida, Texas and Louisiana — and they all have something in common. So far 250,000 people have been killed in Syria’s civil war, and more than 11 million of the 22 million people who lived there have fled their homes. [CNN]$35Cherry Hill Mall in southern New Jersey will charge patrons at least $35 to sit with Santa and tell him all the crap they want. Listen, if demanding Philadelphia-area kids want to have a portly man over-promise and under-deliver on what he’s going to do for you in December, my understanding is that Chip Kelly will do it for free. [Philly.com]168 raidsThe French Interior Ministry said it had conducted 168 raids as of Monday morning searching for individuals connected with the attacks in Paris last Friday. So far 23 suspects have been detained. [NPR]1,000A project from The Guardian devoted to tracking the number of people killed by U.S. police has counted 1,000 deaths caused by law enforcement so far this year. [The Guardian]£600,000 a weekStar soccer player Lionel Messi, currently of Barcelona, is kicking the tires on a potential move to the English Premier League. But any team interested in the impossible player will have to pay dearly for him: Messi reckons he wants £18 million per year after taxes, or £600,000 a week. Perhaps one of the petrochemical billionaires behind one of the U.K. clubs can shake out his couch cushions and find the money. [ESPN FC]$10 millionOverstock.com, the e-commerce retailer, has $4.3 million worth of silver and $6 million worth of gold hoarded at an off-site facility in Utah, apparently a rainy-day fund in the event of an economic catastrophe. [BuzzFeed]$75 millionMusic streaming service Rdio is shutting down, with Pandora paying $75 million for some remaining assets. [BusinessWire]$95.5 millionFor-profit education company Education Management Corp., which owns the Art Institutes, South University, Argosy University and Brown-Mackie College, settled with the Justice Department for $95.5 million over allegations it overstated career-placement opportunities to students and paid recruiters with illegal enrollment incentives. The company admitted no wrongdoing as part of the settlement, which it will pay through 2022. [PBS]$1 billionBallast Point Brewing & Spirits, a craft beer brand, was purchased by Constellation Brands, the mainstream beer-producer that makes Corona and Modelo for the U.S. market, for $1 billion. The craft beer business is growing at a massive clip — by 18 percent in barrel volume in 2014 — compared to mainstream suds, which saw tepid 0.5 percent growth by the same measure last year. [Reuters]$12.2 billionMarriott International agreed to buy Starwood Hotels & Resorts — the company behind Sheraton, Westin, and W hotels — for $12.2 billion. The result would be the world’s largest hotel company, with a total 1.1 million rooms. [The Washington Post]If you haven’t already, you really need to sign up for the Significant Digits newsletter — be the first to learn about the numbers behind the news. read more

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