The annual tradition of the New Year’s Baby

VICTORIA - The annual tradition of the New Year's Baby is always of 
interest to media and the public. 
It symbolizes the start of the New Year and represents the first of the 
nearly 44,000 babies that are expected to be born in British Columbia 
in 2015.
This is a special time for mother, baby and their loved ones - and we 
ask that media follow the following protocols: 
* Watch the government Twitter account @BCGovNews at 8 a.m. on Jan. 1
for information on the first birth in B.C.
* Once the announcement has been made, media can contact the health 
authority where the first baby of the New Year is born, through the 
contact details below after 8 a.m.
* If you would like more information regarding the first baby born in 
your region, please contact your local health authority's contact 
(listed below).
* Please do not contact local maternity wards for birth information, as 
they need to spend their time caring for mothers and newborns. The 
local health authority will consider organizing a limited media 
availability for the mother and baby, with the family's permission. 
Please respect the wishes of the family, as newly delivered moms and 
babies need their rest.
 Event Date: Thursday, Jan. 1, 2015
 Time: 8 a.m.
 Location: B.C. government Twitter account @BCGovNews

In Donald Sterling scandal and beyond, NBA players stood together for change in 2014

Eric Koreen

It was only five years of NBA irrelevance but it felt like a lot longer for the Toronto Raptors and their fans. They had last made the playoffs in 2008, an unmemorable, uninspiring five-game loss to Dwight Howard’s Orlando Magic, and had since toggled between intentional putridity and unintentional sub-mediocrity. Their surprise run to an Atlantic Division title and a first-round series against Brooklyn should have been the complete focus. Continue reading In Donald Sterling scandal and beyond, NBA players stood together for change in 2014

Pitbull -Rottweiler cross destroyed; girl recovers in hospital


VICTORIA — A 16-day-old baby girl is in hospital recovering from injuries she received when she was mauled by the family dog.

The dog, a pitbull-Rottweiler cross bred and 17-year family pet, has been destroyed.

Saanich police continue to investigate. The dog owners may face a charge of criminal negligence.

Police said in a press release they received a call in the early morning hours Sunday about a baby girl being mauled by the family dog in the Glanford area.

The child was taken to Victoria General Hospital where she remained Sunday evening with non-life-threatening injuries to her face. Police speculated she may later require plastic surgery.

The family agreed to have the animal euthanized after considering the seriousness of the incident.

Barbara Watt, president of the Victoria City Kennel Club, was appalled at the notion of crossing-breeding a Rottweiler with a pitbull.

“Perish the thought,” said Watt. “People who cross breeds like that probably have no idea what they are bringing into the world.”

“If you take a dog with the weight of a pitbull and particularly when you cross it with something like a Rottweiler you have a very powerful animal,” she said in an interview.

She said all dogs, even something tiny like a Chihuahua, can bite. And no dog, whatever the breed, should ever be allowed near a child without supervision.

Also, Watt said dogs get jealous of the attention that gets lavished on a new baby or a child. So a family must be extra careful if it has had a dog since it was a puppy and then bring in a human child.

“They have to be very careful of how they introduce those two,” she said.

Watt said one of the things making pitbulls unpredictable is the lack of established breeding patterns.

Kennel clubs have refused to recognize them as an established breed. Amateur breeders have selected and promoted the animals for their fighting prowess.

So it’s very unlikely anyone breeding a pitbull has a good notion of their animal’s pedigree or its background ancestry. It’s opposite to what happens when someone takes on a purebred, recognized breed from a reputable dog breeder.

Such animals grow physically to an expected size and their temperaments are reasonably predictable, said Watt.

Furthermore, a reputable breeder will often support and stand behind an animal and help a new owner become accustomed to their pet. Good breeders are mindful of the well-being of the dogs to which they have some connection.

“And very often you will have to wait for the puppy of your choice and even that is a good sign because it demonstrates the breeder isn’t breeding too frequently,” she said.

Controversial comedy The Interview makes debut on Apple iTunes

The controversial movie The Interview has finally made its debut on iTunes which is available to rent for six dollars or buy for 15 dollars.

The controversial comedy that was released in independent cinemas in the U.S. on Christmas, has since been available on YouTube Movies, Google Play, Xbox and a dedicated Sony-built website, reported CNET.

Sony Pictures had initially cancelled the release of the movie following a cyberattack and threats to moviegoers.

The U.S. linked the cyber attack to North Korea after sensitive studio information was publicly released.

North Korea has denied involvement in the Sony hack and said that the movie that depicts a fictional plot to assassinate the North Korean leader Kim Jong-un was insensitive.

However, Apple has not yet commented on the iTunes debut of the movie. (ANI)

High exposure to air pollution increases pregnancy complications

Washington: A new study has revealed that new evidence linking high exposure to air pollution to an increased risk of congenital malformations have been discovered.

The nationwide study is the first to assess the association between different modes of conception-assisted reproductive technology (ART) versus spontaneous conception (SC) — and the risks of exposure to air pollution to each.

The research team analyzed data on 216,730 born in Israel between 1997 and 2004. Air pollution data, including levels of sulfur dioxide (SO2), particulate matter (PM10), nitrogen oxides (NOx), and ozone (O3), were obtained from air monitoring stations for the study period. Using a geographic information system, exposure to air pollution during both the first trimester and the entire pregnancy was assessed for each woman according to her place of residence.

The researchers found that exposure to PM10 and NOX pollutants throughout full-term pregnancies were associated with an increased risk of congenital malformations, with specific defects evident in the circulatory system (from PM10 and NOX exposure) and genital organs (from NOX exposure). They also discovered that exposure to SO2 and O3 in ART pregnancies were associated, although not significantly, with a higher risk of congenital defects.

The researchers said that the findings suggest that exposure to higher levels of air pollution during pregnancy is associated with various adverse pregnancy outcomes.
The study was published in Environmental Research. (ANI)

Now, 1D, Beyonce, Adele’s emails targeted by Sony hackers

Washington:Pop stars including One Direction, Adele and Beyonce have allegedly had their emails hacked by the same Sony hackers, it has bee revealed.

Details of the stars’ contracts and demands are believed to be among the information stolen by the hackers, who have been traced to Pyongyang, North Korea by the FBI, Contactmusic reported.

Media analyst Mike Raia said that the potential embarrassment would be as devastating as that which has crippled Sony’s movie-making arm and effectively killed the general release of ‘The Interview.’

There was also a worry about the early release of music from some of the biggest artists at Sony Music, who own major record labels including Columbia, RCA and Epic – including David Bowie and Rita Ora. (ANI)