CHICAGO: #Christmas Mass Night Shootings: Seven people were #shot, two of them fatally, in a mass #shooting during a #Christmas party nobody yet in custody – @AceNewsServices

#AceNewsReport – Dec.26: According to #police, the #shooting happened around 9:30 p.m. near 86th Street and Maryland in the city’s East Chatham neighbourhood WMAQ reported and published 48 minutes ago and updated 31 minutes ago by NBC Chicago …

According to authorities the victims were on a porch in the area when a man wearing a grey hoodie walked out of an alley and opened fire.

An 18-year-old man was pronounced dead at the scene and a 21-year-old man #shot in the back was taken to Advocate Christ Medical Center where he later died, #police said.

A 35-year-old man who suffered multiple gunshot wounds to the body was transported to Advocate Christ Medical Center in critical condition.

A fourth person, whose age was not immediately known, was taken to John. H. Stroger Jr. Hospital of Cook County in critical condition along with a 27-year-old man and a 21-year-old woman who were both shot in their legs and listed in stable condition.

A 39-year-old man also took himself to Roseland Hospital with a gunshot wound to the foot. He was last listed in good condition, according to officials.

No one was in custody for the #shooting as of Monday morning. Area South Detectives are investigating.

“This is a business area, hopefully the cameras that are east of here can give police an image of the perpetrator that came through that alley,” said community activist Andrew Holmes.

The #shooting was one of several in the city in what has been a violent holiday weekend. As of early Monday morning, 41 people were shot, 11 fatally, making the Christmas weekend more violent than last year – http://bitly.com/2hmTEuD

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#brittius, #christmas, #s

CANADA: As people languished in the warmth of their homes over #Christmas a Homeless man who sang to survive on Vancouver streets dies blocks from new homeless shelter as there was ‘ No Room at the Inn ‘ as temperatures plummeted now authorities are trying to cover up the cause – @AceNewsServices

#AceNewsReport – Dec.26: Mike Illing died in an East Vancouver alley on a cold December night less than two blocks from a new #homeless shelter CBC reported ..
vancouver-downtown-eastside-20161219.jpg

Nubia Ayala, who had known Illing for about three years, discovered her friend lying under a sleeping bag behind the Commercial Drive food store where she works.​

Ayala rushed to Illing’s side, but he didn’t respond. Paramedics who arrived within minutes worked on Illing for about an hour trying to revive him, but he died.

His death shook her and other store employees who were friends with him.

“He was really nice, thoughtful, just a really nice person you know?” said Ayala. More than two weeks after his death, she still finds it hard to believe Illing is gone.

She had spoken to him a couple of hours before his death Dec. 7 and he seemed fine.

“He was just talking to me like I’m talk to you,” Ayala said. “I said ‘Hey Mike, how is it going?’ and he said, ‘I’m OK.’ ”

Three hours later, he was dead.

Coroner investigating

Illing’s death prompted soul searching among homeless advocates who have pressed for more shelters during a prolonged cold snap in Vancouver.

According to the B.C. Coroners Service, a man in his 50s with no fixed address died in an alley in the 1900 block of Commercial Drive on Dec. 7. No cause of death has yet been established, said spokeswoman Barbara McClintock, but it’s under investigation.

The temperature hovered around 1 C that day.

One media outlet has reported that a homeless man who was turned away from a packed shelter earlier this month died later in the evening.

Sean Spear, associate director of RainCity Housing, which operates the new shelter on First Avenue, would not confirm that Illing sought shelter there the night he died.

But Spear did say the First Avenue shelter was filled to capacity that night; its 40 beds occupied

When that happens, those seeking shelter are offered a mat or a couch to sleep on in an overflow area — as well as food.

Although he couldn’t confirm if Illing sought a bed at the First Avenue shelter, Spear said the homeless man’s death was a tragedy which underscores the need for more emergency shelter and permanent housing.

Since the shelter opened in late November, the building has been filled to capacity nearly every night.

Staff, who are working hard to ensure people get warm accommodations, are also grappling with overdoses, which are commonplace, Spear said.

Slept behind the store

“We’re doing all we can right now,” he said. “But there are just so many things going on right now.”

Ayala said she didn’t know if Illing sought shelter at the First Avenue shelter the night he died. During the summer, he slept behind the food store.

She said Illing became homeless last April. Previously, he lived on East Hastings Street. She didn’t know why he lost his housing.

“Mike was really private about so many things.”

Ayala said Illing had a sister and brother, an ex-wife and grown son. A lawyer with the Pivot Legal Society said efforts are still underway to contact Illings’ family.

He sold calendars and newspapers on the street for a homeless organization.

In a YouTube video, Illing is seen performing a rap song for Megaphone magazine, which he sold on the streets.

She thought he suffered from a disability but didn’t know its exact nature.

“He was in the army and got hurt back in the day.”

Although he “liked to drink,” he did not do drugs, she said. A couple of weeks before he died, Illing fell and needed stitches on his chin.

Ayala wondered if the fall had an impact on his death.

The day he died, Ayala said Illing left the alley after their afternoon conversation. Her boss came to the store at about 6 p.m. He told her that he had seen Mike ‘”still sleeping outside.” Ayala went to check on him.

By then, he was unconscious beneath a sleeping bag – http://bitly.com/2hiSK29

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#christmas

‘ ACE NEWS SERVICES WISHES ALL ITS READERS A VERY HAPPY CHRISTMAS ‘

' Peace On Earth Goodwill to All Men '

‘ Peace On Earth Goodwill to All Men ‘

#christmas, #happy, #news, #readers, #services

K.C NEWS: ‘ CHRISTMAS AWARD TIME AT KEV’S PLACE IN YORKSHIRE ‘

#AceNewsServices – Featured Post: YORKSHIRE:Dec.10 – Kev says it is that time again and he says: 

I’ve just be looking through all the wonderful awards I received in 2014 and thought it was time I gave some back… so here you go folks!

I’ve also included the Community Heart Award I made earlier this year for anyone who is part of my wonderful blogging community. 🙂

I’m not nominating any one person for just any one of these awards folks… it’s the Christmas Season! I’m nominating my whole community of which there are too many to list individually. 😀  So, Pick an award or two… Jeez, pick three if you like!

What do you have to do? 

It’s simple folks:

  • Pick your award (s)

  • Share it/them and this post with you blogging community

  • Promote one blogger by sharing a link to their website and at least one way in which they have been an inspiration to you this year.

The Person I’m promoting for this year

The blogger who has been the most inspirational to me this year has been my editor and friend, Kate. With her hard work, dedication and aspiration for perfection, I have been able to bring my books up to a very high standard for publishing that I am truly proud of. Let me add that I have had no negative reviews or nasty comments on those works since she edited them and their very successful, second editions were published. Kate’s editing skills are second to none. The books she has edited for me are:

  • Miedo: Living Beyond Childhood Fear

  • The Wizard, The Girl and The Unicorn’s Horn

  • The Devil’s Apology

The focus of Kate’s main blog is about her life in Gibraltar. (She’s still very much a Yorkshire lass, though.) 😉 She’s not afraid to tackle tough subjects that arise there, such as human rights, animal rights and other such causes. She has two beautiful doggies: Pippa and Snowy. (The real reasons I visit her blog at all, but, shush, don’t tell her I told you that.) She has a couple of other blogs as well, each have a specific focus. Anyway, I won’t say anymore because I’m always afraid that she’ll be spotting my errors! ( Sh.s’ Don’t tell her I said that!) Jeez you folks deserve these awards just for keeping my secrets! 😀

Kate’s main blog is: http://roughseasinthemed.wordpress.com/

The Awards!

#kev, #awards, #blogger, #blogging, #christmas, #httpkevs-domain-net20141209award-time-for-christmas, #inspirational-bloggers, #recognition

“Merry Christmas To All Our Readers”

jesus_and_merry_wallpaper-450903

“Every Picture Tells a Story And This One Speaks Volumes For Those Willing To Listen”   

“HAPPY CHRISTMAS AND SEASONS GREETINGS TO EVERYONE AND MAY GOD BLESS YOU AND YOUR FAMILY”

Editor

#AceNewsGroup  

#acenewsgroup, #calendar, #christianity, #christmas, #holidays, #literature, #merry-christmas, #opinions, #readers, #religion-and-spirituality, #religious

“Facebook Screws Its Own On-Line Retailers Just For Christmas”

#AceNewsServices says according Nicholas Carson of Business Insider It has been a less profitable holiday season for many on-line retailers thanks to a small change Facebook made to how the site works.

On December 2, Facebook published a post on its official blog announcing that it had made a small change to the algorithm that determines what users see on the News Feed — that center column of status updates, news stories, and photos you see when you go to Facebook.com or open a Facebook app.

In the blog post, Facebook said it was tweaking the algorithm to favor more "high quality" news stories — articles that surveyed Facebook users say they prefer over funny photos and the like.

At first, Facebook-watchers took the company at its word, and assumed the tweak would only harm meme-oriented publications like Viral Nova and Upworthy get from the News Feed.

And maybe Viral Nova and Upworthy have been hosed by the change.

But, if so, they aren’t the only big losers.

So are a whole class of retailers.

Over the past five years, retail companies big and small spent a lot of time and money over building up their visibility on Facebook. They built up "Brand Pages" on Facebook, and attracted attention to them with a constant stream of posts. They put on contests. They hired "social media marketing" firms. Some companies began selling products directly through these Facebook posts.

These on-line retailers did all this with the full support and encouragement of Facebook, which was eager to show the world Facebook.com and Facebook apps are a place where consumers want to shop.

Facebook allowed these brands to set up their pages and reach out to the Facebook users who "liked" them for free. And, by November 2013, many of them had the Facebook News Feed into a source of actual, high-margin revenues.

Then came December 2, 2013, the day Facebook made its change to the News Feed. Suddenly, all that work went for naught.

It turns out the News Feed tweak did more than just highlight "high quality" news stories. It also totally buried posts from retailers on Facebook.

A source from one retailer told us that her company’s "reach" on Facebook declined 40% to 50% after the change. Another source from a different online retailer said that since Facebook’s change, her company’s posts are getting seen by an 80% smaller audience.

We asked several sources close to e-commerce companies about this trend, and almost all said they’d seen the same pattern.

(These companies asked us not to reveal their names because they have working relationships with Facebook, and don’t want to reveal internal metrics.)

All the retailers we spoke to emphasized that their actual sales have not declined since Facebook made the change. But each said they’ve only been able to maintain sales by increasing the amount of money they spend on Facebook ads.

One source at a retailer said: "Our overall traffic from FB is up due to our paid activity, while our "organic" traffic from Facebook has been consistently going down."

Retailers aren’t the only ones getting hosed by Facebook’s change. Pretty much all corporate Facebook Fan Pages are getting less play in the News Feed since the change. That means lots of social media marketing agencies that manage how big brands present themselves on social media now have to explain to their clients why their bills are going up.

On some level, you have to admire what Facebook has done here. It spent years making itself a free and easy place for business to market themselves or sell actual products. Then, as soon as these businesses grew addicted to Facebook’s users, Facebook began charging for access to them.

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#brand-pages, #christmas, #facebook, #on-line, #retailers

“White Christmas in UK a Maybe According to Met Office”

#AceWeatherNews says as at 20 December 2013 – Met Office forecasters are expecting the current unsettled weather to continue in the run up to Christmas, with spells of heavy rain and strong winds affecting the UK at times.

Weather UnsettledMuch of this weekend will be cool and showery before an area of low pressure develops over the Atlantic on Sunday, deepening rapidly to pass just to the north-west of the UK on Monday and into Tuesday. This is bringing very strong winds and heavy rain to much of the UK from Monday morning through to late Tuesday morning and Met Office National Severe Weather Warningshave been issued for wind and rain across the southwest and northern areas of the UK over the next few days.

The public should be aware of the potential for significant disruption to travel due to the very strong winds and also the risk of some flooding issues due to the heavy rain.

Weather High WindsDuring this period of unsettled weather, people are advised to stay up to date with the latest Met Office forecasts and National Severe Weather Warnings and find out what to do in severe weatherso they can plan ahead for the weather in store and make the most of the festive season.

Chief Forecaster Eddy Carroll said: “We can expect stormy weather in many areas to start the Christmas week, but looking forward to Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, we are expecting it to turn colder, with a mix of wintry showers and sunny spells but for wind speeds to drop. So there is a chance that some places may see a White Christmas“.

Throughout this unsettled spell Met Office forecasters and advisors are working round the clock with our partners to keep everyone up to date with the latest forecast information so they can plan and prepare for the expected weather.

An Environment Agency spokesperson said: “People who are set to be away from home for the festive period are urged to check the flood situation and take precautionary steps to prepare, for example by moving valuable items to safety, before travelling. People are also urged to check the flood risk situation for their journey and at their destination.

“People are also being urged not to drive through dangerous flood water. The Environment Agency has teams on the ground checking flood defences and monitoring river levels and will have teams ready to respond throughout the Christmas period.”

John McTaggart Head of On-Road Services at the Highways Agency said: “We are working closely with the Met Office to monitor conditions ahead of the weather being forecast for next week.

“Road users are urged to check traffic and weather conditions before setting out on journeys and to heed any advice such as speed restrictions once they are on motorways and major trunk roads.

“Be aware of sudden gusts of wind, and give high-sided vehicles, caravans, motorbikes and bicycles plenty of space. In the event of persistent high winds we may need to close certain bridges to traffic for a period, so please be alert for warnings of closures and follow signposted diversion routes.”

Don’t forget you can “Tell a Forecaster” the impacts the weather is having in your area, uploading photos and information via your mobile phone.

In this video Met Office Chief Forecaster, Eddy Carroll, explains how we expect the weather to develop over the next  few days, the potential for a stormy day on Monday and whether we’ll see a White Christmas.

Last updated: 20 December 2013

 

#aceweathernews, #christmas, #christmas-and-holiday-season, #environment-agency, #flood, #highways-agency, #low-pressure-area, #met-office, #monday, #rain, #weather

“Tracking Santa The Norad Way For Sixty Three Years”

English: NORAD Tracks Santa logo.

English: NORAD Tracks Santa logo. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

#AceChristmasNews says it is 63 years ago since, the North American Aerospace Defense Command has tracked Santa Claus on Christmas Eve, as he makes his way around the world delivering gifts to all the good boys and girls.

In 2012 the tradition continued, and showed even more ways that you and your little ones can follow Father Christmas‘ progress. A stunning 25 million people from around the globe are predicted to follow Santa in real-time on-line, on mobile phones and tablets, by email and phone.

What makes the program so special is that more than 1,250 Canadian and American uniformed personnel and Defense-Department civilians volunteer their time on Christmas Eve to answer thousands of phone calls and emails. What’s more, organizations such as Microsoft, Analytical Graphics Inc., Verizon, Vision-box and over 50 others support NORAD.

Interestingly, the popular tradition actually began by mistake, as Capt. Jeff Davis, director of NORAD and the U.S. Northern Command Public Affairs, recently revealed in a guest post on Microsoft’s official blog:

t’s hard to believe it all started with a typo. A program renowned the world over — one that brings in thousands of volunteers, prominent figures such as the First Lady of the United States, and one that has gone on for more than five decades — all started as a misprint.

That error ran in a local Colorado Springs newspaper back in 1955 after a local department store printed an advertisement with an incorrect phone number that children could use to ‘call Santa.’ Except that someone goofed. Or someone mistook a three for an eight. Maybe elves broke into the newspaper and changed the number. We’ll never know.

Official seal of the North American Aerospace ...

Official seal of the North American Aerospace Defense Command. Note that the oceans’ colour is supposed to be “turquoise” http://www.norad.mil/about_us/heraldry.htm but has consistently been rendered, in recent years, as frankly greenish. Older memorabilia uses a bluer colour, ranging up to light blue. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

But somehow, the number in the advertisement changed, and instead of reaching the ‘Santa’ on call for the local department store, it rang at the desk of the Crew Commander on duty at the Continental Air Defense Command Operations Center, the organization that would one day become the North American Aerospace Defense Command, or ‘NORAD.’

And when the commander on duty, Col. Harry Shoup, first picked up the phone and heard kids asking for Santa, he could have told them they had a wrong number.

But he didn’t, instead, the kind-hearted colonel asked his crew to play along and find Santa’s location. Just like that, NORAD was in the Santa-tracking business.

2012 Improvements Are Made:

Santa is already on his way across the globe delivering presents to the boys and girls on his Nice List. The 2012 NORAD Santa Tracker is currently tracking good ol’ Saint Nick as he makes  his way across the world to deliver presents on Christmas.

You can watch a live video of Santa’s journey below thanks to Norad’s hightech Santa Tracker, but you can also interact with the Santa tracking team via Facebook and Twitter. NORAD will be posting a constant stream of updates via social media sites today.

If you want to talk to the team first hand, you can even give NORAD a call.

Santa’s navigation team can be reached at 877-HI-NORAD (877-446-6723). They’ll be able to give you Santa’s current location and may even be able to tell you when to expect your  presents.

2013 Technology Steps Up:

For the second straight year, Microsoft has partnered with the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) to monitor Santa’s progress around the globe. Microsoft redid the site this year, however, to allow excited children armed with Surface tablets to spin an interactive Claymation-styled globe around (beginning Dec. 24) and pinpoint when the jolly old elf will arrive in their neighborhood.

The site, now live, offers several holiday-themed games (unlocked using an Advent calendar motif), holiday videos, and music. There’s also “secret Santa” files that talk about the tracker’s history, which began when an advertisement offering to help kids track Santas accidentally published the phone number of CONAD, NORAD’s predecessor. The Director of Operations when, Colonel Harry Shoup, had his staff check the radar for indications of Santa making his way south from the North Pole, according to NORAD.

Years later, Google provided the first “data” that established the Santa Tracker Web site.(For the record, NORAD says its joint radar and satellite tracking system, together with a network of “Santa-Cams” and U.S. and Canadian jet fighters, provide up-to-the-minute alerts on Santa’s progress.) But two years ago, Google and NORAD parted ways, for unexplained reasons, and went with Microsoft instead.. Last year, Google’s revamped Santa tracker offered an opportunity to chat with Santa, download an Android app, and track him via Google+.

NORAD Santa Tracker’s Santa VillageNORADSANTA.ORG
The Santa Village hides videos and games.

For Microsoft, it’s another opportunity to show off how sites designed for Internet Explorer and touch can mimic the apps that its platforms have unfortunately lacked. Microsoft has archived other, similar sites at its ”Reimagine the Web” site. Bing Maps will track Santa this year.

It looks like Google will be directly competing with NORAD this year, however.

“On Christmas Eve we’ll be proudly showcasing a preview of Santa’s dashboard—the technology that powers his sleigh during his around-the-world journey,” Google says. “We have received this special preview from one of Santa’s many developer elves, who are hard at work in the North Pole helping Santa prepare for his big day. Santa’s dashboard—featuring the latest and greatest in Google Maps technology and sleigh engineering—will allow you to follow his progress around the world, and also learn a little about some of his stops along the way.”

Don’t worry, though. As Stefan Weitz, Bing’s general manager, tweeted last month (as noted by Search Engine Land) Microsoft and Google have teamed up to avoid placing Santa in different locations throughout Christmas Eve night.

NORAD OFFICIAL SITE:

#christmas, #google, #microsoft, #norad, #norad-tracks-santa, #north-american-aerospace-defense-command, #santa, #santa-claus

#AceNewsServices – Huffpost Hill – The Metaphor on Christmas

At a press conference Wednesday Democrats kicked off the annual holiday tradition of demanding Congress save unemployment benefits or else ruin Christmas for more than a million people. As has been the case for several years in a row, if Congress does nothing, federal unemployment insurance for the long-term jobless will expire around the holidays. As in previous years, Democrats are doing battle using holiday metaphors. “For this country, the richest in the world, to say to people at Christmastime, when you look in your Christmas sock you’re going to find a lump of coal from Congress — that’s wrong,” Rep. Jim McDermott (D-Wash.) said. “With just a few weeks left to act, [House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio)] is really setting himself up to be the Speaker Who Stole Christmas,” Rep. Linda Sanchez (D-Calif.) said. “Please don’t be the Speaker Who Stole Christmas.” [HuffPost]

#acenewsservices, #christmas, #democrats, #huffpost-hill, #john-boehner, #linda-sanchez, #republicans

UK: Urged by Government to Not Forget our Armed Forces Abroad at Christmas

With just 50 days to go, kind-hearted members of the public are reminded to show their support through service charities this Christmas.

In previous years, the British Forces Post Office (BFPO) has received a high volume of gifts and parcels intended for personnel on operations in Afghanistan and around the world, including Royal Navy ships.

As this mail can cause delays to personnel getting post from loved ones, members of the public are being urged to donate to existing service charities instead.

Soldiers sort mail bags
Soldiers from the Royal Logistic Corps working through the early hours of Christmas Day to sort mail bags (library image) [Picture: Corporal Jamie Peters, Crown copyright]

Head of the BFPO, Colonel Stephen Heron, said:

As we get closer to Christmas it’s important to remind people who, though their generosity is appreciated, the most important thing for our men and women on operations is to receive mail from their loved ones.

With this in mind we are urging the public to donate to recognised service charities, which can use their experience to focus their efforts directly on what will be of most benefit to deployed service personnel.

The public is also reminded that, due to the ongoing redeployment of UK personnel and equipment as responsibility for security is handed over to the Afghans, there will be significantly fewer UK troops in Afghanistan this Christmas compared to previous years.

How to show your support

British soldiers with their uk4u Thanks! Christmas boxes
British soldiers serving at a forward operating base in Helmand, southern Afghanistan, with their uk4u Thanks! Christmas boxes (library image) [Picture: Corporal Dek Traylor, Crown copyright]

The best way to support personnel on operations abroad is to make donations to approved charities such as uk4u Thanks! which works withBFPO to make use of any spare space in the existing supply chain.

The uk4u Thanks! Christmas Box appeal, which has sent festive boxes to personnel for 7 years, ensures a present ‘on behalf of the nation’ is sent at Christmas to every serviceman and women working overseas.

People can donate to this and other charities now to show their support and appreciation, and are encouraged to do so rather than sending their own gifts by post.

Sally Little, uk4u Thanks! director and trustee, said:

Christmas is a difficult time for servicemen and  women who are serving away from their families on operations. uk4u sends them all a Christmas box filled with useful and fun items.

This year over 18,000 boxes will be sent all over the world using spare space in military transport; therefore we do not put additional strain onBFPO at Christmas. We know from feedback received that this helps to raise the morale of our troops at Christmas.

uk4u would like to thank all our sponsors and members of the public who donate, without whose support we would not be able to send the boxes.

Service personnel unload aircraft
Military personnel work through the night to ensure service personnel get their presents on Christmas morning (library image) [Picture: Corporal Jamie Peters, Crown copyright]

#afghanistan, #bfpo, #british-forces-post-office, #camp-bastion, #christmas, #christmas-day, #crown, #crown-copyright, #royal-logistic-corps, #sally-little

Just thought people might like this Poster providing…

Just thought people might like this – Poster providing guidance on Christmas parcels and donations for the armed forces.https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/239894/Christmas-Parcel_smallLOGO_UPDATED.pdf

#acenewsservices, #armed-forces, #christmas, #donations, #parcels

Speculative Out-Of-Town Developments Destroy Our Towns

In an open letter to Eric Pickles, landlords of 42 town centre shopping schemes

BRITAIN ST.

BRITAIN ST. (Photo credit: marc falardeau)

have accused the Government of sacrificing Britain’s high street in its haste to promote the “growth agenda”. The landlords argue that “out-of-control, totally inappropriate and highly speculative” out-of-town developments were being promoted at the cost of town centres. The Times remarks that out-of-town developers say their schemes attract spending, encourage growth in local economies and enjoy support from retailers, shoppers and councils.

 

#britain, #christmas, #community-based-economics, #eric-pickles, #high-street, #landlord, #times, #town-centre