Recent Viral Violence Sparks Call for Ban on “Facebook Live”

1 Comment

 

 

 

An act of violence gone viral out of Cleveland, Ohio captured the nation’s attention on Easter Sunday and many are now questioning if Facebook’s “Live” feature has done more harm than good.

Steph Stephens used the streaming feature Facebook Live to share a manifesto with the rest of the world as he described his reasoning for starting a potential killing spree.

Stephens blamed a woman for his depressed mindset and promised to kill as many people as he could because of her. Soon after, he recorded himself opening fire on a 74 year old man, Robert Godwin Sr., at random, and uploaded the video to his personal Facebook page.

After a two day manhunt, authorities caught up with Stephens in Erie, PA where he took his own life.

Stephens was one of many people who have been using social media sites to show off their crimes to the rest of the world, and now there is a call for these sites to take action.

The incident in Cleveland comes only a few months after teens in Chicago streamed the kidnapping and torture of a classmate to their followers on Facebook live back in January.

Temple University Emergent Media Professor Larisa Mann says social media sites that are used as a catalyst for violent content should share some accountability.

“I’m kind of hoping we can get to a point where media platforms as well can say everyone has to take some responsibility,” Mann said. “A lot of those images are really painful. They’re really horrible. You’re watching people in real time do terrible things.”

Temple University student Karmelina Branca says she is also concerned about how criminals are using the streaming feature.

“It’s not the first time that we’ve heard of someone using Facebook live for violence or something like that so I do think it’s dangerous.”

Twitter users are calling for Facebook to ban the feature with the hashtag #BanFacebookLive

https://twitter.com/vote4bernie2020/status/853778418374017024

Mann says social media executives may not want to regulate user content to keep their companies out of legal trouble.

But legal issues aside, she still thinks there’s a conversation to be had.

“The question of responsibility, definitely… Facebook has the power to do something.”

Facebook hasn’t announced any plans to remove the live feature.

But CEO Mark Zukerberg has since acknowledged the incident in Cleveland and promised to “keep doing all we can to prevent tragedies like this from happening.”

Temple Dedicates Klein College, Unveils Future Expansion Project

No Comments

Temple Update was there as the School of Media and Communication became the Klein College of Media and Communication.

The dedication ceremony was full of positive energy from beginning to end, and the room was packed with so many people that we eager to show their appreciation for the Philadelphia television legend, Lew Klein. Hosted by alum Bob Saget, speakers such as Bernie Prazenica (President, 6ABC), Merrill Reese (the voice of the Eagles), and even Janet Klein spoke about their relationships with Lew and what he meant to each of them.

An mock up of what the future Klein College will look like after construction. No word as to when the project will start.

The historic name change to Lew Klein College came after Klein’s 60 plus year dedication to the television business and Temple University. This past year, the Klein’s made a multimillion dollar gift to Temple, which was supplemented by Trustees Lenfest and Charles to make it the largest gift in the school’s history. These factors, made it an easy decision as to who the school should be named for, according to Dean Boardman.

“Early on it was clear to me there was only one person for whom this school should be named {in honor of],” said Dean Boardman.

Klein was the creative force behind show’s such as Captain Noah, Sally Starr, and the classic American dance phenomenon, American Bandstand.

The reception was held in Mitten Hall following the ceremony, where Dean Boardman introduced a slide show featuring video and photos of what was SMC and is now Klein College. But he also revealed some photos of the plans for the new building that will be a reconstruction of the current Annenberg Hall. No word yet as to when construction will begin, but the new school will feature state of the art studio spaces, and additional floors to create more classroom space.

Alyssa Jerome was also at the renaming event, where she spoke with faculty, former students, and even Lew Klein himself. Take a look at all the love those in attendance had to share with their professor, mentor, and friend, the incomparable Lew Klein.

Philadelphia New Pre-K Program Dependent on Beverage Tax Funds

No Comments

The City of Philadelphia’s Revenue Department has announced that they’ve collected about $6.4 million in the month of February from the sugary beverage tax. That amount is up $5 million from the first month that the tax was implemented in January of 2017.

While the beverage tax continues to cause controversy among both distributors and consumers, many may not know that the city’s new pre-K program is dependent on the revenue from that tax alone.

There are currently close to 2,000 kids enrolled in the free program within 88 locations around the city.

Deputy Director of Pre-K Mary Strasser says the program has had a major impact on families whose average income is around $34,000 a year, but don’t always qualify for subsidy childcare.

“Mothers and dads are going back to work because they have this great opportunity to have their kids in a safe, educational environment while they’re at work,” Strasser said.

Out of the nearly 2,000 children enrolled, there are about 20 kids in the classroom at the RW Brown Community Center in North Philadelphia.

Director Tiffany Thorpe says the program has given those children opportunities they’ve never had before.

“The kids are going on trips. The kids are learning things. They’re seeing things that they normally wouldn’t see,” Thorpe said. “(The taxes) are paying for books and materials for these kids, educational toys that they wouldn’t have. Technologies…our classes have iPads. You know, it’s things like that that these kids wouldn’t have access to.”

Thorpe made sure to stress the impact the program has not only had on children, but the community as well.

She says parents now have access to resources within the community center such as GED classes and volunteer work. The center has also been able to hire parents of children that attend the class.

Those are just some of the benefits that Strasser wants to shed light on. The city has hired nearly 250 employees at the pre-k sites, and was also able to raise wages for staff.

“The fact that this is an economic engine in some of our poorest communities and neighborhoods is really a wonderful thing,” Strasser said.

Both Strasser and Thorpe believe the negative perception of the beverage tax has the potential to change.

“I don’t think that people would really be upset if they knew that this money is helping us,” Thorpe said.

The city plans to add 1,000 more seats by September of this year, but that amount hangs in the balance due to the lawsuit from the American Beverage Association. However the city plans to stand firm behind their goal of having 6500 kids enrolled over the next five years.

Richie’s Says So Long to Soda

No Comments

The city of Philadelphia is now two months into the beverage tax, a 1.5-cents-per-ounce tax on the distribution of sweetened beverages as well as syrups and concentrates used to make sweetened beverages.

The tax influenced a popular Temple business, Richie’s Deli and Pizza, to take sugary beverages off the menu all together.

Richie’s has been in the area for three generations. Richie Juniors acquired the business from his father 17 years ago. Juniors is also a Temple alum, and he says his understanding of student financial struggles played a part in his decision to stop selling soda and other taxed beverages.

“It makes it too hard for everybody. For me to implement it, why should I charge someone $5, $6 for a soda?” Juniors said.

Juniors says the tax on sugary drinks forces him to charge too much for soda in order for him to make a profit. His mother Lilly runs a nearby food truck, Richie’s Lunch Box, and she agreed that complying with the tax was too much of a hassle.

“I support Richie,” Lilly said. She admitted she doesn’t mind selling just water and juice.

“It’s healthier,” she said.

The health risks of sugary beverages were a part of the city’s campaign in support of the tax. Although business owners and beverage distributers oppose the tax, it is making money.

Last week the city announced that it collected $5.7 million in the first month of January. That amount is double what they anticipated.

“That means people are complying with the law. And the world didn’t come to an end. It’s amazing,” Mayor Kenny said.

The revenue collected was still shy of their $7 million monthly goal. The money is supposed to go to city pre-k programs as well as parks and recreation.

Stay connected with Temple Update for more on where the money collected from the beverage tax is going.

The 89th Academy Awards Ends With Historic Mistake

No Comments

The 89th Academy Awards was filled with many memorable moments which is to be expected when you pack a room with Hollywood’s most prestige artists. However, Sunday night featured one moment that was particularly unforgettable. Perhaps the most talked about moment came at the very end when the Oscar for Best Picture was given to the wrong movie.

Faye Dunway and Warren Beatty were handed the wrong envelope before presenting the award to “La La Land” instead of the actual winner of the best picture Oscar, “Moonlight.” The mistake was corrected on stage as host of the night Jimmy Kimmel made light of the situation to ease the awkwardness.

“Personally, I blame Steve Harvey for  this,” Kimmel said, referring to the comedian crowning the wrong winner of Ms. Universe 2015.

 

Although “La La Land” did not get the biggest award of the night, there were still may highlights for the film that collected 12 statues including Best Actress awarded to Emma Stone.

The award for Best Actor was given to Casey Affleck for “Manchester by the Sea” which many considered an upset, beating out Denzel Washington for his performance in “Fences.”

But Washington’s co-star Viola Davis won Best Supporting Actress and became the first African-American actor to win an Oscar, Emmy and a Tony.

The rest of the night was filled with digs against President Trump by both Kimmel as well as foreign stars including Iranian director Asghar Farhadi who did not attend the ceremony in protest of Trump’s travel ban to seven predominantly Muslim nations. Farhadi won best foreign film for “The Salesman”  and Anousheh Ansari, an Iranian astronaut, read a statement from Farhadi.

“I’m sorry I’m not with you tonight,” it read. “My absence is out of respect for the people of my country and those of other six nations who have been disrespected by the inhumane law that bans entry of immigrants to the U.S.”

With the historical Best Picture mishap coming at the end of the night, Kimmel attempted to end the show on a positive note.

“Let’s remember this is just an award show,” Kimmel said.

Here is a full list of the 89th Academy Award winners:

Best Picture: “Moonlight”

Actor: Casey Affleck, “Manchester by the Sea”

Actress: Emma Stone, “La La Land”

Supporting Actor: Mahershala Ali, “Moonlight”

Supporting Actress: Viola Davis, “Fences”

Animated Feature: “Zootopia”

Cinematography: “La La Land”

Costume Design: “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them”

Direction: Damien Chazelle, “La La Land”

Documentary Feature: “O.J.: Made in America”

Documentary Short: “The White Helmets”

Film Editing: “Hacksaw Ridge”

Foreign Language Film: “The Salesman”

Makeup and Hairstyling: “Suicide Squad”

Score: “La La Land”

Song: “City of Stars” from “La La Land”

Music by Justin Hurwitz; Lyrics by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul

Production Design: “La La Land”

Animated Short: “Piper”

Live Action Short: “Sing”

Sound Editing: “Arrival”

Sound Mixing: “Hacksaw Ridge”

Visual Effects: “The Jungle Book”

Adapted Screenplay: “Moonlight”

Original Screenplay: “Manchester by the Sea”

SEPTA Returns More Trains to Market-Frankford Line

No Comments

This week’s commute should be a little smoother for riders on SEPTA’s Market-Frankford line as the transit agency continues to return more cars back into service.

Last week SEPTA pulled over 100 cars from the line when mechanics found cracks on the support beams of two subway cars which prompted the inspections of many others for the same problem.

SEPTA offered extra shuttle buses along the Market-Frankford line to help with possible over-crowding and delays, however riders say they often expect these problems from public transportation.

University of the Arts student, Gigi Kaloustian depends on the Market-Frankford line to commute to school and work, and she says adding extra time to her mornings for continuous SEPTA problems can be frustrating.

“I’m already waking up early in the morning to get ready as it is. But, it is kind of… it’s stressful,” Kaloustian said.

Kaloustian’s brother, Temple Student Garen Kaloustian shares the same commute.

“I’m always questioning SEPTA’s reliability,” he said.

These concerns stem from SEPTA making headlines in the past few months when they experienced similar defects on the Regional Rail Line last summer followed by a strike just four months later.

SEPTA General Manager Jeff Knueppel says he acknowledges riders’ frustrations.

“I am aware that the M4 car issue coupled with the discovery of the Silver Liner 5 equalizer beam defect this past summer creates many questions. I want our customers to understand that safety is our highest priority,” Knueppel said during a press conference last Tuesday.

SEPTA has not said when the all the cars on the Market-Frankford line will be back in service but for now they want to ensure the safety of their riders.

Protesters Vow to Keep Their Voices Heard

No Comments

Hundreds of protesters marched from Market Street to City Hall Thursday evening in what they called a “March Against Discrimination.”

This demonstration came in response to President Trump’s executive order that included a travel ban, preventing people from seven majority Muslim nations from entering the United States.

The Liberty City LGBT Discrimination Club gathered demonstrators representative of the LGBT community as well as other minority groups including Black Lives Matter PA Chapter and the Philadelphia Chapter of the National Organization for Women

“We are taking to the streets to march in opposition to Trump’s dark and twisted view of America exemplified by his latest series of discriminatory policies and statements coming from his administration,” organizers explained in a social media post promoting the event.

During the march chants rang out like “I deserve safety now,” and “No Trump. No KKK. No Factious USA.”

Demonstrator Dorothy Morrison says she attends as many protests she can in hopes to get results in Washington.

“The more we push, the more things are going to get pulled back.” Morrison said. “We have to just keep pushing and fighting and making this happen, because it’s not going to happen unless we’re out here doing it.”

 

 

Temple’s Latino Student Association Holds Empanada Sale for Haiti

No Comments

La Asociacion de Estudiantes Latinos (AdEL) or the Latino Student Association at Temple University held an empanada sale and donated the proceeds to Haiti relief efforts after the devastation caused by Hurricane Matthew. AdEL set up shop in the lobby of The View residence hall between the hours of 9 PM and midnight, and sold close to 80 empanadas to hungry students as they passed by.

President of AdEL, Karla Duran, said it was her idea to sell the empanadas later in the evening as appose to during the day because she knew students would be hungry while studying for midterms.

“We thought that around this time, people tend to get really hungry. And it’s midterms, so, like, anything to take a break. And we just thought people coming in and out of The View will just be like ‘Oh my God, empanadas!’ You don’t see this every day, so we thought it was a great opportunity and we just took it,” she said.

The org sold out of empanadas within the first hour.

AdEL reached out to Unicef, a non-profit humanitarian organization, to connect them to Haiti victims of Hurricane Matthew. Duran said after the hurricane, she didn’t see a lot of organizations around campus doing much to help out. She said as a minority organization, she felt it was important for them to get involved.

“Even if we’re not Haitian, we should help. It doesn’t affect just Haiti, it affects everybody,” Duran said.

AdEL’s Community Service Director, Jesus Alvarado, is a resident at The View and helped to connect their org with the building manager to book the space for the sale. Alvarado believes even though the hurricane hit Haiti in late September, the efforts to help out should never end.

“Anybody who can help should help. This was one of the worst hurricane’s that could have ever happened and it went directly on top of Haiti. Just the amount of support that they need, it’s not going to end anytime soon.”

Duran and Alvarado both say they plan on doing another empanada sale in the future, as well as collaborating with Temple’s Haitian Student Organization to collect clothing and toiletries as well.

Temple’s PRSSA Holds Candy Drive for “Safe Halloween” Children’s Party

No Comments

The Temple University Chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) held a candy drive to collect candy to donate families of the 22nd District of Philadelphia for their “Safe Halloween” party for children.

PRSSA’s Director of Community Service, Erin Quiles, connected with a representative from the Northeast Treatment Center to inquire about new service opportunities. She says when her friend told her about the candy-drive, it was a no-brainer to want to help out.

“He said, ‘Oh my gosh, I have this Halloween event. You’re PR people. Let’s get some candy,” Quiles said.

On Halloween, the Northeast Treatment Center will be collaborating with volunteers and families from the area to host a “Safe Halloween” party for children. The event will be held at the MLK Recreation Center, and kids will have the opportunity to dress up, trick-or treat and participate in a costume contest as well as view the film “Hotel Transylvania 2.”

Quiles, with the help of PRSSA’s Director of Fundraising, Marissa Piffer, promoted the drive through word of mouth and social media, and encouraged members to donate as well.

Quiles says for her, it was important to contribute towards a safe Halloween for kids.

“In recent years, kids don’t have a safe place to go, and that’s just so sad,” she said. “I loved the thought of me growing up and just going to all these random peoples’ houses. And the fact that people can’t do that anymore is like really upsetting.”

So far, PRSSA has collected about 20 bags of candy, but Quiles says she is open to accepting donations up until Halloween day.

For more information on how to donate, contact PRSSA or follow their twitter account @TemplePRSSA.

 

Candidates Battle for PA Voters

No Comments

As election day quickly approaches, now just 12 days away, both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump have made serious efforts to win over the battleground state of Pennsylvania. Trump and Clinton made back-to-back stops in our area recently, and our crews were there to capture their campaigns.

 

Two very different scenes erupted as both presidential candidates made their continuous push for Pennsylvania over the weekend.

Republican nominee Donald Trump made a stop in Newtown at the Newtown athletic center Friday night while Hillary Clinton rallied at University of Pennsylvania the following day, joined by running mate Tim Kaine.

Both candidates told supporters how important it was to get out and vote as they went through their quite diferent policy plans

“We will save the 2nd amendment,” said Trump.

“We have to take on the gun lobby and have commonsense gun safety,” countered Hillary.

And as usual the candidates did not shy away from taking jabs at each other, with Trump claiming Clinton is unfit for the presidency, while

Clinton also endorsed Pennsylvania Democratic Senate candidate Katie McGinty while criticizing her opponent Pat Toomey for not standing up to Trump.

“He heard him engage in saying terrible things about women.”

But female Trump supporters told us his comments about women did not affect their decision to vote for him.

 

“That was 11 years ago and I think that was a differet situation and he’s a different man now,” said Liz Youse.

According to Ballotpedia’s latest poll, Clinton is leading Trump by 6.8 points in Pennsylvania.