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OMahony and OBrien among 7 left at home as trimmed Ireland squad

first_img Short URL Monday 31 Oct 2016, 3:30 PM Oct 31st 2016, 3:30 PM O’Mahony and O’Brien among 7 left at home as trimmed Ireland squad goes to Chicago Paddy Jackson was unable to travel for personal reasons, so Joey Carbery is in line to play some role in Soldier Field. 41,986 Views From red heads to blue heads: Gazing into the All Blacks’ mental skillsWhat do Ireland need to do to beat the All Blacks? https://the42.ie/3055780 Image: Dan Sheridan/INPHO Add us: the42.ie IRELAND HEAD COACH Joe Schmidt has trimmed his Ireland squad to 27 names for the trip to Chicago to meet New Zealand in Soldier Field on Saturday.Having named a 34-man squad last week, Schmidt has opted to leave Sean O’Brien, Peter O’Mahony, Keith Earls, Iain Henderson, James Tracy, Luke Marshall and Paddy Jackson in Ireland this week.Jackson’s omission is for personal reasons, while Keith Earls is suspended and Iain Henderson injured.The game seems to have come a little too soon for formidable back rows O’Brien and O’Mahony who are both only recently returned from long-term injury lay-offs.Updated Ireland squad to face New Zealand in ChicagoFinlay Bealham (Buccaneers/Connacht)Rory Best (Banbridge/Ulster) captainJoey Carbery (Clontarf/Leinster)*Sean Cronin (St Marys/Leinster)Ultan Dillane (Corinthians/Connacht)Tadgh Furlong (Clontarf/Leinster)Craig Gilroy (Ulster)Cian Healy (Clontarf/Leinster)Jamie Heaslip (Dublin University/Leinster) vice captainRobbie Henshaw (Buccaneers/Leinster)Billy Holland (Cork Constitution/Munster)*Rob Kearney (UCD/Leinster)Kieran Marmion (Buccaneers/Connacht)Jack McGrath (St Marys/Leinster)Luke McGrath (UCD/Leinster)*Jordi Murphy (Lansdowne/Leinster)Conor Murray (Garryowen/Munster)Jared Payne (Ulster)Garry Ringrose (UCD/Leinster)*Donnacha Ryan (Shannon/Munster)John Ryan (Cork Constitution/Munster)*Jonathan Sexton (St Marys/Leinster)CJ Stander (Munster)Devin Toner (Lansdowne/Leinster)Andrew Trimble (Ballymena/Ulster)Josh van der Flier (UCD/Leinster)Simon Zebo (Cork Constitution/Munster)The42 is on Snapchat! Tap the button below on your phone to add! Share29 Tweet Email2 By Sean Farrell 78 Comments Image: Dan Sheridan/INPHO Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this articlelast_img read more

Double burials and dead parrots Strange and unusual stories from Glasnevin Cemetery

first_img Source: Conor Dodd/Glasnevin CemeteryFROM THIS MONDAY, 27 February, a new tour will be coming to Glasnevin Cemetery and Museum that will tell visitors some of the most unusual and quirky stories about some of the million and a half people interred there.A Jesuit who fought in the American Civil War, a priest who returned home scarred after witnessing the horrors of the WW2 concentration camps, an Irish Wimbledon champion, and a woman who was buried in the graveyard twice are just some of the fascinating stories that are told on the Dead Interesting tour.Running for the past few weekends, but launching for its first weekday this Monday 27 February, TheJournal.ie was given a sneak peak of the tour earlier this week.Despite the strong winds and heavy rain of Storm Doris on the day we visited, historians Conor Dodd and Paddy Gleeson filled us in on some of the strangest, inspiring and tragic stories from people buried at the cemetery, and about the site itself.1. The Rock of Cashel chapelThe area with the round tower and the chapel was the brainchild of a man who Dodd called the “father of Irish archaeology” George Petrie in the 1850s following the death of Daniel O’Connell.The chapel that was built was based on Cormac’s Chapel at the Rock of Cashel in Tipperary, which is itself cross-shaped. Architect JJ McCarthy was tasked with the design of the new chapel – with one bricklayer dying while tearing down the previous one.“People look at this, and they often just walk by it,” Dodd explained. “They don’t really realise what’s involved in it. The equivalent cost of it today would be €9 million. The granite is from Wicklow, stone from Cannes in France and Bath in England, they brought in metal workers, tile workers, stained glass workers etc.”Running along the sides at the top of the church are carvings of faces done individually, by hand, that would usually go unnoticed unless you had a good look at the chapel.Those carvings were actually done by James Pearse, the father of Willie and Patrick Pearse. Share96 Tweet Email5 6 Comments Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article Short URL By Sean Murray Source: Conor Dodd/Glasnevin CemeteryAbove one of the windows, a colour variation can be seen in the stone, which was actually caused by the UVF bombing of the round tower in 1971.“You can actually still see the crack that the bomb caused going all the way up the inside of the tower,” Dodd added.2. Sick as a parrot Source: Brian Lawless PA Archive/PA ImagesArmed guards were stationed at the round towers around Glasnevin in the late-1800s and early 1900s, with grave robbers one of the key reasons for this being brought in.The tedious guard duty meant that some security staff got “trigger-happy” and would occasionally take pot shots of things they saw to pass the time.One of the issues they had with this practice occurred in October 1911. One of the gatekeepers, a man called James Horton, was walking down the cemetery and saw something colourful among the trees. He decided the safest thing to do was to shoot it.What fell down was an extremely rare macaw parrot.The guards thought it was strange to find a parrot there, but didn’t think anything more of it until a man called William Fogarty came to the gate and said: “Has anyone seen my parrot? I’ve lost it.”Horton pulled out the parrot and apologised for shooting it.A legal letter was sent to Glasnevin the following week saying that, unless they replaced the parrot, they would be sued for compensation.Acquiring a parrot was no simple task back then, but Horton managed to keep his job and Fogarty was apparently well compensated for the loss of the parrot.3. Buried twice in the same graveyardMaria Higgins has the ignominious title of being the only person to be buried in Glasnevin Cemetery twice.Gleeson called her story the “strangest one of all”.Higgins died in 1858, and was buried at the cemetery following a wake and a large funeral.“That’s the end of the story,” Gleeson said, “until, three years later, Maria Higgins walked into a solicitor’s office on Nassau Street.It was certainly her, alright. She had been left £500 in a will, but was set for it to be left to her children, if she had any, or to the beneficiary of her will. Her husband decided that “we can’t be waiting around that long”, because she was 54 at this stage, so he came up with this plan.They managed this elaborate fake-death scam with the unwitting help of a doctor, who went in to examine the “body” at Bishop’s Street, where there was a closed coffin.He asked to examine the body, and Charles Higgins, the “grieving” husband, said: “You can of course. But, alternatively, over here is a £10 note and a bottle of Powers whiskey”.It is believed the doctor opted for the latter choice, even appearing at the wake to continue drinking his fill of whiskey.The husband went even further then, borrowing £275 on the strength of the money that was coming, but the pair had unwittingly changed the money to a relative at the last minute.When he pleaded that he couldn’t pay the money back, the couple made off with £775.When Maria Higgins died 13 years later, she was buried, for the second time, at Glasnevin Cemetery.“It was probably the biggest scam ever carried out here, as far we know,” Gleeson added.4. The Irishman at the centre of 19th century world historyJJ O’Kelly was born in 1842.During his early life, he was a member of the Irish Republican Brotherhood, and fought in the French Foreign Legion in north Africa and South America.He deserted from the foreign legion and moved to New York, and became a reporter with the New York Herald.While working there, he was sent to Cuba to cover their war of independence from Spain. He went behind enemy lines to talk to the Cubans. He was captured by the Spanish and sentenced to death, before a diplomatic intervention was made on his behalf. O’Kelly was present for the aftermath of Custer’s last stand at the Battle of Little Bighorn Source: Shutterstock/Everett HistoricalO’Kelly then joined up with the US cavalry for the Sioux wars in the 1870s. He was with General Custer and witnessed the aftermath of the Battle of Little Bighorn.The journalist reported back what he saw and called for a public inquiry into the battle, which saw hundreds of US soldiers killed.After that all finished, he returned to Europe and met Charles Stewart Parnell. O’Kelly then became a supporter of Home Rule and also became a member of parliament. O’Kelly became close to Charles Stewart Parnell in the late 1800s Source: AP/Press Association ImagesJJ O’Kelly died in December 1916, and Irish Parliamentary Party leader John Redmond paid for his plot in Glasnevin.“He’s an incredible fellow, altogether. I really can’t believe they haven’t made a film about this guy yet,” Dodd said.5. The Confederate JesuitThe Jesuit plot in Glasnevin is just one of many plots dedicated to different groups, with other plots set aside for the Royal Irish Constabulary, Dublin Metropolitan Police, plots for homeless people with nowhere else to buried and plots for people who donate their bodies to science.“People may not always be aware of exactly what is in front of them when they’re here, and that’s what we’re trying to fill people in on this tour,” Dodd said.John Bannon is buried in the Jesuit plot and, during the American Civil War, was known as the Confederate Fighting Priest. Source: Glasnevin Cemetery via FacebookBorn in Roscommon, he became a Jesuit and moved to St Louis in Missouri. During the civil war he became a chaplain with a Missouri artillery regiment.“Away from the issue of slavery, [Bannon] saw the war as a much more non-Christian, commercial capitalist type of north imposing their views on a much simpler, agrarian south,” Dodd explained.He was present at a number of battles, including the battle of Elkhorn Tavern, where he started fighting despite it being something “he wasn’t supposed to do”.Captured, and later released, he was sent to Ireland to try and stop Irish people from emigrating to the US.They were coming off the boat in New York and being enlisted to fight for the union straight away.He stayed in his home country following the war and died in Ireland.6. The Irish priest at Bergen-BelsenFather Michael Morrison was born in Listowel, Co Kerry, in 1908. He became a Jesuit and chaplain and served with the British Army in north Africa before joining the ranks in Europe.Dodd explained: “He was present at the liberation of Bergen-Belsen concentration camp. He witnesses the worst of the worst.It was built for 10,000 people. When Father Morrison arrived, there were 60,000 people there and 13,000 unburied dead bodies. He writes home and he talks about it.“It affected him for the rest of his life. He never quite got over it.” Official British photo of the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp after liberation Source: AP/Press Association ImagesHere’s what Morrison wrote in his letters home:What we saw within the first few days is utterly beyond description…people crawling on their hands and knees because they have not got the strength to walk, or see them drag themselves along until they fell in the gutters to remain there, was ‘harrowing’.The majority of these people were too weak to leave their beds, so perhaps you get just a faint idea of the atmosphere… The work has been physically the most revolting that I have been called on to do, but it has also been the most consoling.This selection is just over a handful of the stories being told on the Dead Interesting tour, which kicks off tomorrow at Glasnevin Cemetery.Read: ‘It’s more about life than death’ – Behind the scenes at Glasnevin CemeteryRead: ‘What I’ve learned from working in a crematorium for 33 years’center_img 17,829 Views Sunday 26 Feb 2017, 10:00 PM http://jrnl.ie/3254730 Double burials and dead parrots: Strange and unusual stories from Glasnevin Cemetery A range of untold, fascinating tales are told on the new Dead Interesting tour at Glasnevin Cemetery. Feb 26th 2017, 10:00 PM last_img read more

Maurice McCabe says he probably wouldnt do it again

first_img GARDA WHISTLEBLOWER MAURICE McCabe says he would be unlikely to highlight Garda malpractice again if given the chance.In an exclusive interview with the Anglo-Celt’s Sean McMahon, McCabe spoke about his treatment since he highlighted problems in the Cavan region.He told the paper that what he claims is a Garda campaign to smear him, now subject to a tribunal of inquiry, would make him hesitant to do the same again. Feb 16th 2017, 12:01 PM Anglo Celt: Can you make any comment about how it impacted on your lives?Maurice McCabe: Eight years of abuse – eight years of constant abuse.Anglo Celt: It’s been rough on you and all the family – not easy to live with Maurice?Maurice McCabe: No, Sean. We just want it to finish and let us go back to live our lives, the way we did eight years ago.Lorraine McCabe: We want the truth. Short URL 19,666 Views 66 Comments http://jrnl.ie/3242713 McCabe added that he was confident that the tribunal will get to the bottom of his allegations, saying the last fortnight’s revelations regarding a Tusla file on him were “vile”. Thursday 16 Feb 2017, 12:01 PM Maurice McCabe says he ‘probably wouldn’t do it again’ “Eight years of abuse – eight years of constant abuse.” Image: Niall Carson/PA By Paul Hosford Anglo Celt: It’s been a long road Maurice and as you outlined in your statement, it’s been a traumatic one. If you were to do it all over again, would you do it?Maurice McCabe: Oh, probably not, probably not, because of what they did to me. I did not do anything to them, they did it to me. Image: Niall Carson/PA Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article Share Tweet Email2 The government today published the terms of reference for what it called a “comprehensive and clear” tribunal into the scandal.Read: Terms for ‘comprehensive and clear’ tribunal into McCabe scandal finalisedRead: Kenny on the ropes as Fine Gael hopefuls line up to challenge himlast_img read more

Child remains in care after parents refuse to answer phone or turn

first_img By Sean Murray AT THE END of September last year, there were 6,329 children in care in Ireland. In each case before the court, a judge had to issue a care order, ruling that the State was taking the appropriate course of action.  Later, the same judges are asked to rule on whether the children should return home to their parents, or remain in care.Previously, all such court hearings were in camera (private) and the media could not attend. That rule was changed so a light could be shone on proceedings, and society could be made aware of the issues that the court deals with in relation to family breakdowns, children in care, and domestic violence.Having done so on a number of occasions last year, TheJournal.ie spent another two days in the family courts recently to report on the nature of the cases that come before it. In the third of this four part series, parents have failed to turn up to a hearing that will decide if their children will remain in care.WITH THE PARENTS absent from proceedings, a judge ruled last week that an infant would remain in foster care.Over the course of the short hearing, counsel for the parents, Tusla and the guardian ad litem – representing the interests of the child – all acquiesced to the order being extended.Missed access appointments, unsuitable living arrangements and the uncontactable parents were all cited as contributing to the decision that the child should remain in care for the time being.“Long standing concerns”The Tusla social worker told the court that both parents had missed at least half of the access appointments to see their child in recent months.On one of the occasions where both attended, there appeared to be an issue between the mother and father co-parenting, the court heard, with the father shouting at the access worker and leaving after only 15 minutes.Access was offered regularly to the parents at first, the court heard, but this was scaled down from three times a week to two due to the parents non-appearance at these appointments.There was one appointment, however, that the parents turned up a half hour early for and, due to an error by staff at the front desk, the social worker wasn’t told they had arrived.They grew frustrated and left before the social worker knew they were there.There were also a range of concerns around the parents’ living conditions, which the court heard would be completely unsuitable for a young child.The social worker offered to arrange alternative accommodation for the parents on several occasions, but this was repeatedly turned down.The court-appointed guardian agreed that the parents were extremely hard to reach, saying that they never answered phone calls and would only ever respond to a message through texting.Although there were concerns of domestic violence and alcohol abuse among the parents, it was difficult to substantiate because it was so hard to reach them, the guardian said.The guardian added that the child was now thriving in an “excellent foster home”.The judge extended the interim care order for the child, and said that the case would be heard again next month.Comments have been closed for legal reasons.Read: A day in the Family Court: Child not told when father might visit to ‘avoid disappointment’Read: Child in foster care has “serious anxiety” and worries about his mother’s welfare Short URL Share Tweet Email1 Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article Thursday 20 Apr 2017, 6:15 AM No Comments Apr 20th 2017, 6:15 AM Child remains in care after parents refuse to answer phone or turn up to court hearing The family court heard that the family had living arrangements “unsuitable for a young child”. https://jrnl.ie/3336284 Image: Shutterstock/Tammada 22,238 Views Image: Shutterstock/Tammadalast_img read more

It wont happen overnight Launch of new body to improve culture in

first_imgHe said the composition of the board was based on feedback from the public consultation. He said it was important the banking sector should be represented on the board by people in senior positions as they can influence companywide decisions. However he said the body was also mindful that the board “needed to represent independent voices, including the voice of the public”. Acting CEO Marion Kelly said the public feedback in the consultation “makes sobering reading” but it was necessary for the sector to listen to these views.“Through the consultation we have identified a role for the IBCB to help banks be more transparent, and to benchmark their progress in changing the way they conduct themselves for the good of their staff and the people and communities they serve,” she said.“Each of the five founding member banks has its own internal culture change programme underway and progress is being made. However, the bank employee culture survey shows that more work is required to create an open environment where staff feel comfortable to raise concerns, where concerns are listened to and where staff’s sense of well-being is a key focus.” Marion Kelly, acting CEO of the IBCBAngela Black, chief executive, Citizens Information BoardProfessor Blanaid Clarke, McCann FitzGerald Chair in Corporate Law at Trinity College DublinDara Deering, executive director and head of retail banking, KBC Bank IrelandJane Howard, CEO, Ulster BankPadraic Kissane, financial adviser Ger Mitchell, group HR director, Permanent TSBRobert Mulhall, managing director, AIB Consumer BankingVincent Mulvey, group chief risk officer, Bank of Ireland GroupGareth Murphy, acting general secretary, Financial Services UnionPhilip O’Leary, managing partner, head of commercial department, FitzGerald Legal & AdvisorySue O’Neill, chair of the Small Firms Association (SFA) and managing director of Shellcove (AMC)Martin Stapleton, chair of the Farm Business Committee, Irish Farmer’s Association (IFA)The Central Bank of Ireland’s director general financial conduct, Derville Rowland, today said the establishment of the IBCB was a welcome step on the roads towards building a consumer focused culture in retain banking.However she said it was “not a substitute for effective regulation, assertive supervision and robust enforcement”.The decision to establish this new body came after the full scale of the tracker mortgage overcharging scandal emerged. The Central Bank assessed the behaviour and culture of the pillar banks after the scandal and found that while all five had taken steps to reinforce the consideration of the consumer interest, some had “a distance to travel”.The Central Bank has said this remains the case today. “I would like to be able to tell you that all the banks addressed the questions we raised and that they passed that test with flying colours. But in reality, it was a mixed picture,” Rowland said.While some plans were better than others, only one bank submitted a truly considered, comprehensive plan. We have given the banks our feedback. Now they must take it on board and address those shortcomings.Today the Irish Banking Culture Board (IBCB) said it aims to rebuild trust in the sector and promote fair customer outcomes. “Following a loss of trust in the banking sector, rebuilding wider society’s confidence in the industry will not happen overnight; it will take time, courage and commitment,” said IBCB chair Mr Justice Hedigan. “That journey begins in earnest today, informed by the voices of bank staff, customers and stakeholders from across Irish society.” Related Read Monday 15 Apr 2019, 10:06 AM Image: Shutterstock/Syda Productions By Michelle Hennessy 04.10.18 Number affected by tracker mortgage scandal rises – it’s now over 38,000 A NEW BODY which will work to improve the culture of the Irish banking sector has launched today.The board is funded by five Irish retail banks – AIB, Bank of Ireland, KBC Bank Ireland, Permanent TSB and Ulster Bank.The Irish Banking Culture Board (IBCB) will be required to publish regular summary reports to measure progress.It will be chaired by retired Court of Appeal judge Mr Justice John Hedigan. Other members of the board are: Apr 15th 2019, 10:06 AM Image: Shutterstock/Syda Productionscenter_img Share154 Tweet Email1 ‘It won’t happen overnight’: Launch of new body to improve culture in Irish banks The board is funded by the five pillar banks and chaired by a retired Court of Appeal judge. 47 Comments Short URL https://jrnl.ie/4592105 17,020 Views Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this articlelast_img read more

RTÉ and TG4 join forces to show every game of this years

first_img 46 Comments Image: DARRYL DYCK https://the42.ie/4594030 Short URL By Ben Blake Tuesday 16 Apr 2019, 12:40 PM The US team lift the World Cup trophy in 2015. THIS SUMMER’S FIFA Women’s World Cup will be shown in its entirety on free-to-air Irish television. RTÉ and TG4 have struck up an agreement to share broadcast rights of the tournament, which takes place in France from Friday, 7 June.TG4 have 29 games including the opening fixture (France v South Korea), one quarter-final, one semi-final and the third-place play-off, while RTÉ2 and RTÉ Player will show 23 matches — among them are three quarter-finals, one semi-final and the final on Sunday, 7 July.“RTÉ are delighted that alongside TG4 we can, for the first time ever, bring the Fifa Women’s World Cup in its entirety free-to-air to Irish viewers,” Declan McBennett, RTÉ Group Head of Sport said.“It is particularly fitting to be making this announcement exactly six months on from the launch of the 20 x 20 initiative to create a cultural shift in our perception of girls and women in sport.” Apr 16th 2019, 11:40 AM center_img Share95 Tweet Email2 RTÉ and TG4 join forces to show every game of this year’s Fifa Women’s World Cup The two networks have reached an agreement to broadcast the tournament to Irish viewers. Rónán Ó Coisdealbha, Head of Sport TG4 added: “TG4 has been a proactive supporter of Women’s Sport for many years. This new collaboration is another step in the right direction and ties in well with the very important 20×20 campaign.“It is also a great example of how Public Service Media outlets can collaborate to bring the best of television content, free to air, to loyal audiences.”The US are current holders, having lifted the trophy for the third time in 2015, while the Republic of Ireland have never qualified for the finals. Subscribe to our new podcast, The42 Rugby Weekly, here: The US team lift the World Cup trophy in 2015. Image: DARRYL DYCK Subscribe 13,640 Views Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this articlelast_img read more

Greece in Big Australia

first_imgThe report published by the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) hints at potentially far-reaching changes to Australia’s immigration planning, and has implications for future migration from Greece. The publication of DIAC’s Outlook for Net Overseas Migration which forecasts trends in migration to Australia, coincides with a meeting next week between Victoria’s Greek community led by the Greek Orthodox Community of Melbourne and Victoria (GOCMV), and Immigration Minister Chirs Bowen MP, to discuss how migration from Greece to Australia might be further encouraged. Registered migration agent Penny Dimopoulos, part of the delegation says that they will be talking to the minister about the perceived obstacles Greek citizens face in obtaining visas. The debate on the pros and cons of ‘Big Australia’ continues, with big business advocating faster population growth, and detractors of the plan warning of its unsustainability, on the grounds that the country will be unable to afford the new infrstructure to support such fast population growth. The report in fact shows that annual Net Overseas Migration has slowed in recent years, and will bottom out at 158,000 for 2010-2011, but projections forecast that the annual rate will jump to 180,000 and beyond by mid-2014 – well on-track to increase the population by 14m over the next 40 years, and deliver ‘Big Australia’.Though it is reported that the number of enquiries by Greek citizens about migration to Australia has increased over the past three years, figures supplied by DIAC show that between July 2008 and June 2010, just 251 Greek citizens applied for and were offered Permanent Residency visas to Australia, the vast majority of which (189) related to family migration. These figures however only tell a part of the story. Between the same period, over 12,600 Offshore Visitor visas were offered to Greek citizens, which include Tourist and other temporary visas, often a path to longer term residence. Dr Robert Birrell, Reader in Sociology at Monash University,says the reason for the recent slowdown in NOM reflects the tightening of points-tested eligibility rules. “The report shows a decline largely because of the number of visas offered to overseas students has dropped sharply. The most obvious way they’ve toughened this up, is that cooks and hairdressers are no longer eligible occupations to apply for, under the points-tested skill categories. That’s crucial.” With the report warning that the large number of people wanting to emigrate from poor countries, particularly from Asia, was challenging the “integrity” of the migrant intake to Australia, it’s clear that the Long-Term Planning Framework DIAC is putting in place, will seek to further target immigration to suit the needs of Australia’s main economy drivers. With continuing growth in the Australian economy, the good news, says Penny Dimopoulos, is that employers across the board will look to immigration to address skills shortages, and this may offer further opportunities. “It’s likely to push up the demand for temporary work visa holders – subclass 457.“Skilled individuals may be eligible for a work visa, provided that they have an employer who is willing to sponsor them.” Dr Birrell says the projected growth forecast in the report is expected to be in the 457 visa category and extra permanent resident numbers, particularly persons sponsored by regional employers.For those seeking a visa in the Skilled Migration Program without employer sponsorship, the process is changing.A DIAC spokesman told Neos Kosmos, that to ensure Australia selects the best and brightest people from a large pool of potential migrants, “the government will introduce a new points test to better address this country’s skills needs. The new points test emphasises the importance of English, work experience and high-level qualifications.” The changes take effect from 1 July 2011, but employer-sponsored visa categories will not be affected by these changes. It may be tempting to look to history when considering the issue of migration from Greece to Australia, but parallels between the situation at the beginning of the 21st Century, as opposed to the 20th Century, are few and far between. In the 1950s and 1960s Australian government policy was to build a population for a diverse range of industry, particularly manufacturing, which needed labour, and along with it, growth in the domestic market for those industries’ products. “The present situation is completely different,” says Dr Birrell. “We’re about to enter an era of very strong structural change which will diminish what’s left of those manufacturing industries.” Birrell foresees a temporary strong demand also for construction workers, though “the most likely scenario is that will be supplied from Asia and the Middle East.” With Greece at the end of the chain-migration process that was the hallmark of the thousands who migrated in the 20th Century, the 21st Century offers new challenges for the new diaspora. Outlook for Net Overseas Migration which forecasts trends in migration to Australia, coincides with a meeting next week between Victoria’s Greek community led by the Greek Orthodox Community of Melbourne and Victoria (GOCMV), and Immigration Minister Chirs Bowen MP, to discuss how migration from Greece to Australia might be further encouraged. Registered migration agent Penny Dimopoulos, part of the delegation says that they will be talking to the minister about the perceived obstacles Greek citizens face in obtaining visas. The debate on the pros and cons of ‘Big Australia’ continues, with big business advocating faster population growth, and detractors of the plan warning of its unsustainability, on the grounds that the country will be unable to afford the new infrstructure to support such fast population growth. The report in fact shows that annual Net Overseas Migration has slowed in recent years, and will bottom out at 158,000 for 2010-2011, but projections forecast that the annual rate will jump to 180,000 and beyond by mid-2014 – well on-track to increase the population by 14m over the next 40 years, and deliver ‘Big Australia’. Though it is reported that the number of enquiries by Greek citizens about migration to Australia has increased over the past three years, figures supplied by DIAC show that between July 2008 and June 2010, just 251 Greek citizens applied for and were offered Permanent Residency visas to Australia, the vast majority of which (189) related to family migration. These figures however only tell a part of the story. Between the same period, over 12,600 Offshore Visitor visas were offered to Greek citizens, which include Tourist and other temporary visas, often a path to longer term residence. Dr Robert Birrell, Reader in Sociology at Monash University,says the reason for the recent slowdown in NOM reflects the tightening of points-tested eligibility rules. “The report shows a decline largely because of the number of visas offered to overseas students has dropped sharply. The most obvious way they’ve toughened this up, is that cooks and hairdressers are no longer eligible occupations to apply for, under the points-tested skill categories. That’s crucial.” With the report warning that the large number of people wanting to emigrate from poor countries, particularly from Asia, was challenging the “integrity” of the migrant intake to Australia, it’s clear that the Long-Term Planning Framework DIAC is putting in place, will seek to further target immigration to suit the needs of Australia’s main economy drivers. With continuing growth in the Australian economy, the good news, says Penny Dimopoulos, is that employers across the board will look to immigration to address skills shortages, and this may offer further opportunities. “It’s likely to push up the demand for temporary work visa holders – subclass 457.”Skilled individuals may be eligible for a work visa, provided that they have an employer who is willing to sponsor them.” Dr Birrell says the projected growth forecast in the report is expected to be in the 457 visa category and extra permanent resident numbers, particularly persons sponsored by regional employers.For those seeking a visa in the Skilled Migration Program without employer sponsorship, the process is changing. A DIAC spokesman told Neos Kosmos, that to ensure Australia selects the best and brightest people from a large pool of potential migrants, “the government will introduce a new points test to better address this country’s skills needs. The new points test emphasises the importance of English, work experience and high-level qualifications.” The changes take effect from 1 July 2011, but employer-sponsored visa categories will not be affected by these changes. It may be tempting to look to history when considering the issue of migration from Greece to Australia, but parallels between the situation at the beginning of the 21st Century, as opposed to the 20th Century, are few and far between. In the 1950s and 1960s Australian government policy was to build a population for a diverse range of industry, particularly manufacturing, which needed labour, and along with it, growth in the domestic market for those industries’ products. “The present situation is completely different,” says Dr Birrell. “We’re about to enter an era of very strong structural change which will diminish what’s left of those manufacturing industries.” Birrell foresees a temporary strong demand also for construction workers, though “the most likely scenario is that will be supplied from Asia and the Middle East.” With Greece at the end of the chain-migration process that was the hallmark of the thousands who migrated in the 20th Century, the 21st Century offers new challenges for the new diaspora. Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img read more

Greek airports enjoy upturn in arrivals

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Arrivals from abroad at the country’s two main airports posted an impressive 28.8 percent increase in the first two months of the year on an annual basis, according to data published on Monday by the Association of Hellenic Tourism Enterprises (SETE).Arrivals from abroad at the airports of Athens and Thessaloniki amounted to 395,307 in the year to end-February, compared to 306,887 in the same period in 2013.This data came on the same day as positive comments by the secretary-general of the World Tourism Organization, Taleb D. Rifai, who told a maritime tourism conference at the Acropolis Museum in Athens that the mood toward Greece as a destination has been fully reversed in the 18 months.He added that the 15 percent rise in tourism arrivals posted by Greece in 2013 is three times the global average.last_img read more

Uni fee wars

first_imgIn a week that saw Labor harden its opposition to the ­Abbott government’s university funding cuts and deregulation of course fees, the political division is widening over higher education reform. Speaking last Tuesday, Opposition Leader Bill Shorten appealed to students direct to oppose the planned 20 per cent cuts to course funding, fee deregulation (that will see universities decide their own course fees in 2016) and an increase in student loan interest rates.“30 to 40 years ago there was an argument that it should not be about how much money your parents have, it shouldn’t be your credit card limit that determines your education,” said Mr Shorten, who has signed a pledge – joining forces with the National Union of Students – to ­oppose the changes.Victorian Federal Labor MP Maria Vamvakinou has backed her leader’s position, telling Neos Kosmos that fee deregulation will mean greater debt for students and introduce a serious disincentive.“Government should be about encouraging young people to get an education, it should not be about financial barriers,” she said.“I can’t believe that the Minister for Education Chris Pyne could be so shortsighted, and I question his understanding of the values of higher education.”Meanwhile Mr Pyne describes the reforms as “essential for the future prosperity of the nation”, impervious to criticisms that the Coalition’s policies will damage the prospects of a generation of young Australians.To get a sense of the views held by some of those at the sharp end of the debate, Neos Kosmos spoke to two students at the University of Melbourne. 23-year-old Yiannis Kallianis, a commerce graduate half way through his Juris Doctor postgraduate course at the Melbourne Law School, says his reaction is mixed to the competing ideologies.“There is some merit as to the goals of the reforms – including making universities and their degrees more valuable for our future careers,” says Kallianis, who believes increased competitiveness will force universities to innovate.As a student who will graduate with significant HECS debt, Kallianis says he’s “slightly sceptical and concerned about what the implications [of the reforms] could be.”Kallianis – who says the HECs system “strikes a reasonable balance between encouraging tertiary education and budgetary concerns,” welcomes the plan to assist disadvantaged students, but feels that fee deregulation will discourage enrolments.“The Government should be doing all it can to encourage more Australians to complete tertiary education,” says the former president of the the Melbourne University Greek Association,Fellow student Jiannis Tsaousis (20) has begun a Bachelor of Commerce and Diploma in French at Melbourne uni, and sitting on the fence isn’t one of his extra-curricula activities.Tsaousis tells Neos Kosmos that he’s supportive of the Government’s reforms “as they pave the path for our universities to become truly world class. “Given university students earn around $1 million over their lifetime more than non-university graduates, it is only fair they contribute more,” he says.“With a shrinking tax base and an ageing population, universities cannot rely on government funding – students will need to pay more for their courses to sustain and improve the quality of our universities.”But the youthful and strident Tsaousis does have some concerns – specifically the changes to the HECS interest rate, which will be tied to the long-term government bond rate.“As the rich pay off their HECS debt faster, the poor will have to pay even more over their lifetime in interest on their HECS debt. “This is something the government should reconsider,” he says.As an existing student, the reforms won’t increase Tsaousis’ fees, but if he undertakes a post graduate course, the new system would kick in. Isn’t that a disincentive? “Individually, I will be disadvantaged,” he says, “but from a social viewpoint, this is healthy, because the reforms will correct the imbalance in several courses where there is an excess of graduates such as Law, relative to the jobs available in that industry. “Students will be ‘incentivised’ to study courses where they are likely to find a job and this can only be a good thing.”The fate of the Government’s reform package, which includes extending support to students at TAFEs, private colleges and sub-bachelor degree programs, will be decided by the Senate later this month.While Clive Palmer has said the PUP will not support the deregulation of university fees, the government need the support of at least two senators from the PUP/Australian Motoring Enthusiast Party alliance to pass the higher education package.Last week, Chris Pyne said that the fact that Mr Palmer had not said he would stand in the way of the reforms generally, was heartening ”If you haven’t said no, then we’re a long way from ending the siren, as they say,” he told reporters, before adding that he believed the Coalition and the PUP would work out a deal.Meanwhile university vice-chancellors’ worst fear is that fee deregulation will be blocked, while a 20 per cent cut in course funding remains. Another ‘national day of action’ organised by the NUS in state capitals will protest the Government’s plans on August 20. Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img read more

Greek Australian dies in tragic car accident

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Just three months ago, Johnny Naxakis lost his mother Dionysia. Struggling to accept a life without her, he would visit her grave at the Werribee Cemetery each day and light a candle for her. But last Saturday would be the last time for the 41-year-old, after he was killed in a tragic car accident on Cemetery Road.Mr Naxakis leaves behind his grieving partner Despina Theodoridis, father Michael, siblings Anthony, Paras and Michael, along with extended family and friends who were left in shock.Well-known and loved within the entertainment industry, he worked as an event manager responsible for some of the biggest musical events within the Greek community. “Everyone adored him,” his loving partner told Neos Kosmos.It has been a particularly tough time for Ms Theodoridis, who a week prior lost her first cousin, who had just recently turned 42. Coincidentally, the accident resulting in the death of her partner of eight years occurred while a memorial service was simultaneously taking place at the Werribee Cemetery for Ms Theodoridis’ cousin.“I’ll always love you to the moon and back,” she said, a quote the couple would often recite to one another. “That’s how much I’m going to miss him. I’m always going to remember him; he’ll always be with me.”The cause of the collision still remains unknown.last_img read more

Alleged people smuggler arrested transporting 50 refugees into Greece

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram A man has been arrested for allegedly trying to smuggle 50 people into Greece. According to Greek police, they spotted the van on a highway near the border of Greece and Turkey on Saturday, but when they tried to signal the driver to stop, he sped off leading police to chase him down.Inside the van police found men, women and children, all standing and packed in tightly, 30 of whom were from Syrian, 19 from Iraq and one from Afghanistan.On Sunday it was revealed the refugees had each paid €1,500 (AUD $2276) to be transported from Turkey into Greece.The 30-year-old man driving the van has since been charged with endangering the passengers’ lives.Meanwhile another man was caught smuggling 10 refugees from Afghanistan into Greece on Saturday.last_img read more

Coburg Greek Festival a success

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram One of the most popular smaller scale festivals that bring together the members of Melbourne’s Greek Orthodox Community is the annual Greek Festival in Coburg, held by The Presentation of Our Lord Greek Orthodox Church.On Sunday 4 February members of the local parish and Hellenic tradition afficionados gathered on the grounds of the Victoria Street church and celebrated their Greekness at a feast from 11.00 am till 6.00 pm. Now in its 34th year, the festival was made possible with the help of volunteers and sponsors who made sure attendees could enjoy delicious treats such as souvlaki and classic Greek sweets, with cold frappe and soft drinks. There were also several dancing performances from traditional dance groups and daring guests to the sound of Greek music and cooking demonstrations.The family-friendly event catered for the younger members of the community with children’s entertainment, interactive play, and activities including a carousel and a mini-fun park.Melbournians could also walk through an array of stalls and pop-up stores sporting souvenirs from Greece and products from local manufacturers.last_img read more

Father Antonios receives European Citizen for 2018 Prize

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram A Greek Orthodox priest from Athens has been announced European citizen of the year, in a ceremony that took place at the European Parliament in Brussels on Tuesday.Having served as vicar at the Saint George Church at Akadimia Platonos in Kolonos since 1998, Father Antonios Papanikolaou witnessed children not attend school or hang out on the streets as their parents were destitute or addicted to substances.Father Antonios took initiative and started a basketball team in order to keep an eye on the children and establish a relationship with them.With the support of his wife Stamatia Georgandi and members of the wider community who empathised the priest launched Ark of the World (Kivotos tou Kosmou) a charity that helps orphan and neglected children.What started as a small organisation has evolved into one of the most important facilities in Greece, housing hundreds of children.“Out of my window, I could see young children, abandoned, involved with drugs and misery. I started wondering how I could help them. At first, it was a group of teenagers. I approached them and asked them to play basketball. Now, 500 children of all ages come to the Ark”. “Our door will always be open for them,” Father Antonios said in a previous interview.“I sat down to listen to the children; I accepted them just as they are. I shared their home, the square, the playing field. Through sports and championships, their positive elements came out. When someone is as desperate as they are, what can you say? That Christ saves? They could not care less”.Residents from Kolonos and neighbouring areas began to volunteer and donate to the Ark making housing and support programs possible for many kids regardless of religion and ethnicity, ensuring they stay off the streets and attend school.Even though most children are Greek, Father Antonios has struggled to convince his parish to accept migrants.“How will refugees survive if you do not train them and help them find their way? They will be forced to steal! I approached the children of immigrants and refugees because I explained to them the history of our grandfathers and fathers… We know what being a refugee means, what is racism and death. If each one did something in their neighbourhood, we would not have this huge problem with foreigners who cannot leave the country and are marginalized! So, we either lock ourselves in our homes or help them stand on their feet”.“For me, the Ark is God’s plan which pre-existed… God has blessed this task and we go on with His help,” he added, “Love devises ways and knows no borders or terms”.Another two Greek NGOs received awards, “HOPEgenesis” and “Wind of Renewal” after they were nominated by SYRIZA EP and Vice-President Dimitris Papadimoulis, Elisa Wozenberg MEP and Miltiadis Kyrkos.A total of 50 prizes were awarded to agencies and citizens from 26 EU Member States this year.last_img read more

Prince Charles acknowledges Melbournes large Greek community in meeting with Bill Papastergiadis

first_imgIt was a day to remember for the President of the Greek Community of Melbourne Bill Papastergiadis when he met Prince Charles.The pair came together in London last month at St James’s Palace during a reception for the Prince’s Trust International, established to support vulnerable young people.The event was hosted for Greek students and business people, with a local presence from Mr Papastergiadis who travelled to London from Greece. Mr Papastergiadis told Neos Kosmos he had the chance to speak with the royal one-on-one, during which the Prince revealed that he knew Melbourne, and it’s large Greek community, quite well given he had been a student in Geelong.“It was a purely philanthropic meeting and we talked about how we can help Greek youth to find work,” Mr Papastergiadis said.The Prince’s Trust International was established in Greece in 2015, offering programmes to those aged between 18 and 30 who are struggling with the economic crisis, with a five year goal to help 2,200 young people around Greece.“It is, after all, the land of my grandfather,” Prince Charles said of Greece. Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img read more

Lalcool plus nocif que lhéroïne ou le crack

first_imgL’alcool, plus nocif que l’héroïne ou le crackSelon une étude britannique publiée aujourd’hui par la revue médicale The Lancet, l’alcool serait plus nocif que certaines drogues illégales comme l’héroïne ou le crack. Sont pris en compte ses effets sur les individus mais aussi sur l’ensemble de la société. L’étude, effectuée par la Commission scientifique indépendante sur les drogues (ISCD), estime que “les actuels systèmes de classification des drogues gardent peu de relation avec leur réelle nocivité”. Les experts ont alors utilisé leur propre système pour évaluer les substances et ont étudié la nocivité des drogues sur le corps humain (mortalité, santé détériorée, fonctions mentales affaiblies). Ils ont également pris en compte d’autres facteurs comme le coût de leur usage pour le système de santé ou le système carcéral.Concernant les effets sur la société, le système évalue les crimes, les dégâts causés à l’environnement ou encore les conflits familiaux.L’héroïne, le crack et la méthamphétamine sont les plus mortels. Mais si l’on tient compte des effets pour la société, l’alcool est le plus dangereux, suivi de l’héroïne et du crack.Selon cette nouvelle étude, l’alcool serait aussi huit fois plus nocif que l’ecstasy, qui retient l’attention de tous les médias depuis ces 20 dernières années. Le 1 novembre 2010 à 12:16 • Emmanuel Perrinlast_img read more

Un site internet répertorie en images la grande famille des fourmis

first_imgUn site internet répertorie en images la grande famille des fourmisDes spécialistes d’entomologie de l’Académie des Sciences de Californie ont développé Antweb, un site Internet qui répertorie en images les espèces de fourmis connues actuellement par les scientifiques. Antweb est une véritable mine d’informations pour les scientifiques et les curieux. Sa base de données considérable rassemble des informations et des images de haute qualité pour près de 10.000 espèces connues de fourmis. Actuellement, la classification se concentre sur deux régions particulières : l’Amérique du Nord et Madagascar. De façon générale, Antweb représente un aperçu très fidèle de l’importante diversité qui réside au sein de ce groupe d’insectes. Les fourmis sont partout et sous des formes et tailles extrêmement diverses allant d’une tête d’épingle à une grosse noix. Cet outil permet de faciliter les programmes d’inventaire et de surveillance en fournissant aux taxonomistes un accès aux données de tous les spécimens types.En outre, l’intégration de Google Earth parmi les informations fournies par Antweb rend unique cette base de donnée taxonomique. Le logiciel gratuit, permet aux internautes de naviguer et zoomer en vue satellite en trois dimensions. Grâce à ce programme, les chercheurs peuvent superposer leurs données taxonomiques et géologiques.À lire aussiIl laisse une fourmi coupe-feuille lui découper le doigtAutre particularité de Antweb, son créateur Brian Fisher laisse à qui veut le droit de baptiser l’une des nouvelles 600 espèces découvertes par ses soins à Madagascar. Toutefois, les personnes désireuses de donner leur nom à l’un des membres de la grande famille des fourmis doivent verser un don de près de 73.000 euros.Découvrez les espèces les plus étonnantes en images en cliquant ci-dessous :https://www.maxisciences.com/fourmi/decouvrez-d-039-incroyables-especes-de-fourmis-repertoriees-sur-antweb_art14651.htmlLe 17 mai 2011 à 14:01 • Emmanuel Perrinlast_img read more

Les plateformes Sony bientôt de retour

first_imgLes plate-formes Sony bientôt de retourLe géant japonais a annoncé le retour de ses services en ligne d’ici à la fin de la semaine, après l’attaque informatique dont ils ont été victimes.D’ici au 3 juin, tous les services en ligne de Sony, fermés suite au piratage informatique dont a été victime le géant nippon, seront de nouveau opérationnels. Au Japon, à Hong Kong et en Corée du Sud, le redémarrage s’effectue déjà progressivement depuis samedi, indique Challenges. Ce délai a été expliqué par les nouvelles mesures de sécurité mises en place suite à l’attaque.Déjà partiellement relancés en Europe, aux Etats-Unis et dans diverses autres régions depuis le 15 mai ainsi qu’au Japon et dans plusieurs pays d’Asie depuis le 28 mai, les plate-formes Sony sont désormais plus sûres, notamment au niveau des systèmes de paiement qu’elles intègrent. Le PSN et Qriocity vont donc ainsi récupérer leur accessibilité même si certaines fonctionnalités resteront encore bloquées pendant quelques semaines.Le 31 mai 2011 à 12:22 • Emmanuel Perrinlast_img read more

Arachnophobie traitement symptômes questce que cest

first_imgArachnophobie : traitement, symptômes, qu’est-ce que c’est ?L’arachnophobie se définit comme une peur excessive et irraisonnée des araignées. Si elle fait partie des zoophobies (phobies liées à un animal) les plus courantes en Occident, elle est en revanche plus rare dans d’autres régions du monde…Qu’est-ce que l’arachnophobie ?Membre de la grande famille des phobies, l’arachnophobie est un trouble psychologique caractérisé par une peur irrépressible des araignées. Cette peur peut être plus ou moins intense selon les individus. Elle peut se déclencher seulement à proximité d’une araignée, mais de nombreux arachnophobes sont également très angoissés par les images d’araignée, au point parfois de devoir quitter brusquement une salle de cinéma si une araignée s’affiche à l’écran par exemple. Ils peuvent aussi avoir peur par anticipation et passer de longues minutes à vérifier sous chaque meuble qu’aucune araignée ne s’est introduite chez eux, avant de pouvoir se détendre…Les symptômes de l’arachnophobie Le symptôme principal de l’arachnophobie est l’apparition d’une vive angoisse en présence d’une araignée et/ou à son évocation, pouvant se manifester de différentes façons : cris, pleurs incontrôlables, impression d’être paralysé (ou au contraire fuite impulsive le plus loin possible de l’araignée), tachycardie,malaises ou même des évanouissements dans certains cas… Autre signe classique de l’arachnophobie : les manœuvres d’évitement pour minimiser les risques de croiser une araignée. Un arachnophobe peut notamment décliner de nombreuses invitations (barbecue, séjour à la campagne), hormis en hiver, cette saison étant peu propice aux araignées.Les causes de l’arachnophobie À lire aussiTrypophobie, l’étrange peur des petits trousParfois, l’arachnophobie est liée à un traumatisme durant l’enfance, comme une morsure d’araignée douloureuse, mais c’est loin d’être systématique. De nos jours, les causes exactes de l’arachnophobie sont encore assez mystérieuses et font l’objet de diverses théories. L’une des plus répandues relie la peur des araignées à un phénomène culturel. Au Moyen Âge, les araignées étaient considérées (à tort) comme des vecteurs de la peste noire en Occident. Cette peur a pu rester ancrée dans la société et se serait encore renforcée par l’image souvent négative des araignées véhiculée par les livres et de nombreux films (Arachnophobia ou encore l’araignée géante dans Le Seigneur des anneaux). Cela expliquerait aussi pourquoi l’arachnophobie est si rare en Afrique et en Asie, où l’araignée est perçue de manière plus positive.Quels sont les traitements de l’arachnophobie ? L’arachnophobie peut être difficile à vivre au quotidien, mais il existe des solutions comme les thérapies cognitivo-comportementales, habituellement efficaces pour apprivoiser progressivement sa peur. L’hypnoseest aussi une option envisageable pour calmer la phobie des araignées.Le 12 avril 2017 à 12:22 • Maxime Lambertlast_img read more

Dark Souls III beaten in 44 hours using 2 dance mats

first_imgFinishing a Dark Souls game in an unconventional manner seems to be a popular thing among some hardcore gamers out there. Players have beaten the notoriously difficult games using peripherals like Donkey Kong bongos and Guitar Hero guitars. These feats were for previous games in the franchise, so it was only a matter of time before someone attempted to beat the latest game, Dark Souls III, in an equally unorthodox fashion.A Twitch streamer who goes by the awesome handle of ATwerkingYoshi used two dance mats in order to beat the game. He isn’t the first to play a Dark Souls game using this peripheral, but he is the first to have finished Dark Souls III with it. While his final time of 44 hours and 26 minutes isn’t exactly noteworthy (others have beaten it much faster), it is impressive considering that it was his first time playing through the game. Though he died 364 times, he still managed to do what most would deem impossible. Below is footage of ATwerkingYoshi defeating the game’s final boss: Soul of Cinder.Over on Reddit, the streamer offered additional information about this playthrough. His weapons included a Heavy Dark Sword and a Yhorm Greatshield. The easiest boss he faced was Yhorm the Giant, while the most difficult was Dancer of the Boreal Valley. His build was: 40 STR, 24 VIG, 36 END, and 25 VIT.  Everything else about his character was default.As if completing Dark Souls III with dance pads wasn’t enough, the streamer eventually wants to beat the game using Donkey Kong bongos. Before that, however, he does plan on finishing a game with a conventional controller. How novel.last_img read more

Xbox Exclusive Scalebound Officially Cancelled by Microsoft

first_img 2017 is barely two weeks old, but we have our first tragic celebrity death of the year… sort of.Microsoft has announced that it has canceled Scalebound. Rumors about Scalebound’s cancellation began making the rounds early last week among some independent gaming sites and YouTube channels. Earlier today, reputable sources such as Kotaku, Eurogamer, and IGN began to report on this rumors, thus giving it an air of legitimacy. It wasn’t long before Microsoft made the news official.“After careful deliberation, Microsoft Studios has come to the decision to end production for Scalebound,” read a press statement from the Redmond-based tech giant.Announced during E3 2014, Scalebound was being developed by Hideki Kamiya and Platinum Games as an Xbox One and Windows 10 exclusive title. It was set to be an ambitious action RPG where players could control both a human protagonist and his giant, fire-breathing dragon companion. Given its pedigree, Scalebound made it to the top of many site’s “most anticipated” games lists (including ours… twice!).According to Eurogamer, relations between Platinum Games and Microsoft “dramatically soured” since Scalebound was last seen during Gamescom 2016. Last Fall, senior members of the development staff were forced to take a month off from working on the title to get them “away from the pressure of the project’s heavy workload.” After the devs had returned, Scalebound was behind schedule, and there were problems with the game’s engine. Because of these factors as well as overdue deadlines, the decision was made to pull the plug on the whole thing.Though Scalebound has been canceled, fans of Xbox still have a number of exclusive games to look forward to in 2017. In today’s press release, Microsoft stated that it is “working hard to deliver an amazing lineup of games to our fans this year, including Halo Wars 2, Crackdown 3, State of Decay 2, Sea of Thieves” and other great experiences.”It is unclear whether or not Platinum Games can or will resume work on Scalebound on another platform in the future. But for now, the game is, for all intents and purposes, dead. As dead as that Halo Mega Bloks game. Hands-On: ‘Stranded Sails’ Is a Relaxing Farm Sim AdventureHands-On: ‘Sparklite’ Is a Fun Zelda-Inspired Roguelike Stay on targetlast_img read more