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‘Harry Potter’ author JK Rowling’s dark new novel ‘The Casual Vacancy’ divides critics

First reviews of Harry Potter author JK Rowling’s novel for adults on Thursday praised its Dickensian scope and social message, but warned the gritty, even obscene tale was a far cry from Hogwarts. Shortly before the release of the hotly awaited “The Casual Vacancy”, several reviewers said they were taken…

Joan Crawford Oscar sells for over $420,000

The best actress Oscar won by Joan Crawford for her role in classic film noir “Mildred Pierce” has been sold at auction for $426,732. Crawford, who died in 1977, won the award in 1945 for her portrayal of a middle-class housewife struggling during the Great Depression, beating favorite Ingrid Bergman.…

Judge sets Murdoch’s ‘News of the World’ phone-hacking trial for September 2013

The first trial stemming from the phone-hacking scandal at Rupert Murdoch’s now-defunct News of the World tabloid is to begin in September 2013, a judge ruled on Wednesday. Judge Adrian Fulford made the ruling after several defendants including former News of the World editors Rebekah Brooks and Andy Coulson appeared…

Huffington Post launches Italian edition

US news website The Huffington Post launched its Italian edition “L’Huffington Post” on Tuesday as part of an international expansion that has has already taken it to Britain, Canada, France and Spain. The first page of the site featured a lengthy interview with Silvio Berlusconi under the headline “I, Silvio”…

Romney-backer Sheldon Adelson accused of commandeering Israel’s media market

GOP backer Adelson accused of commandeering Israel's media market Casino mogul Sheldon Adelson grabbed the spotlight in the US earlier this year for making multi-million dollar campaign contributions to Republican presidential candidates on the bet that their policies would better jibe with those of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu than with…

Scientists: ’93 percent’ of Fox News climate change coverage is ‘staggeringly misleading’

When it comes to reporting on what scientists say about climate change, the Union of Concerned Scientists told Raw Story that their research shows Fox News can be counted upon to mislead its viewers. In a study (PDF) published Monday, the group takes Fox News and The Wall Street Journal‘s…

Village Voice Media dumps papers to keep sex ads

Village Voice Media agreed Sunday to sell New York’s Village Voice alternative weekly and its 12 affiliated publications, while keeping a classified ads website criticized for hosting ads for prostitution and sex trafficking. According to Forbes, the 13 publications, which include Phoenix’s New Times and California’s L.A. Weekly, among others,…

Canadian ‘Globe and Mail’ columnist accused of plagiarism

One of Canada’s leading newspaper columnists has been accused of plagiarism. After extensive and detailed research by a blogger, Globe & Mail writer Margaret Wente was alleged to have reproduced other people’s work in several columns (see here). The blogger, Carol Waino, has written several postings about the matter. And at…

Vietnam bloggers ‘anti-state propaganda’ trial opens

Hundreds of police surrounded a court in Vietnam on Monday for the opening of the trial of three bloggers, including one whose case has been raised by US President Barack Obama. Heavy security flanked the building in southern Ho Chi Minh City as the case began against Nguyen Van Hai,…

Thriller ‘Homeland’ dethrones ‘Mad Men’ at Emmys

Spy thriller “Homeland” won best TV drama at the Emmy awards Sunday, ending retro cult show “Mad Men” four-year unbroken run, while “Modern Family” was named best comedy for the third straight year. Election campaign film “Game Change,” about John McCain’s Republican running mate Sarah Palin’s implosion in the doomed…

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