https://www.rnz.co.nz/assets/news/256046/eight_col_face.jpg?1613862531 Experts believe Facebook’s “aggressive” stance against anti-vax posts is failing to stifle misinformation. Photo: 123RF The digital giant increased the list of banned content that it uses artificial intelligence and content reviewers to remove this month – yet didn’t act on a widely-shared anti-vax post from the Destiny Church leader this week until contacted about it by RNZ. The updated blacklist now includes posts that claim vaccinations are toxic, dangerous, cause autism, don’t work against the disease they’re meant to or are less safe than contracting Covid-19. In a statement Facebook said it enforced the rules via technology and reports from members, with the help of more than 15,000 content reviewer staff based around the world. “We primarily rely on artificial intelligence to identify violating content on Facebook and Instagram, and our technology is often confident enough that a piece of content violates our standards to delete it automatically…often ...

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https://www.beehive.govt.nz/sites/default/files/2017-11/beehive-red-og_0.png Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage and Social Development Hon Carmel Sepuloni today launched a new Creative Careers Service, which is expected to support up to 1,000 creatives, across three regions over the next two years. The new service builds on the most successful aspects of the former Pathways to Arts and Cultural Experience (PACE) programme.  Manatū Taonga Ministry for Culture and Heritage and the Ministry for Social Development have partnered to pilot the service. “COVID-19 has been tough on many creative people in New Zealand, who are often self-employed contractors and freelancers relying on non-creative work for income”, Carmel Sepuloni said. “The Creative Careers Service recognises the importance of supporting people to pursue their creative ambitions, and to retain or regain employment without needing to go onto a benefit. “The service is for MSD job seekers in the pilot regions, recent creative graduates who are outside the benefit system, ...

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[og_img] Geoffrey Marks was a Sri Lankan superstar in swimming Geoffrey Marks Source:Dailynews Geoffrey Charles Marks qualified to represent the country at the 1952 Helsinki Olympic Games following a series of good performances at home and at international level. He won the popular Two-Mile Sea Swim eight times and had also set a record by winning the event with a time of 53 minutes and 10 seconds. During the same period, Marks set a number of Ceylon records in the 100, 200, 440, 880 yards events and One-Mile races to emerge as a superstar in swimming. At a swimming meet held in Bombay, India in 1952, he had exhibited standards of International level. This event was held between teams of Bombay, Calcutta, Allahabad, Osmania, Aligarh and Lucknow Universities. Marks who was an undergraduate of the Colombo University, won the 400m freestyle swimming event in five minutes 28.4 seconds – a ...

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https://www.rnz.co.nz/assets/news_crops/117832/eight_col_Drew-Faiva-Jet-Park-Vaccination-9882.jpg?1613804677 After months of leading “level four lives,” workers at the country’s most dangerous Covid facility say they are thinking of their families and communities after becoming the first border staff to be vaccinated. Jet Park worker Drew Faiva was one of the first border workers to receive a Covid-19 vaccine yesterday. Photo: Supplied / Ministry of Health And some running the campaign shed tears as it was set in motion. About 70 Jet Park workers were yesterday the first in the government’s plan to vaccinate 12,000 managed isolation, quarantine and border workers in the next few weeks. The second border worker to get the jab, Jet Park operations manager Drew Leafa, said from the moment he woke up, the day felt different. There was a different vibe at work, a sense that something special was happening. “It’s a milestone for New Zealand and for our quarantine sites and MIQ. ...

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https://www.rnz.co.nz/assets/news_crops/116150/eight_col_000_8YT9JE.jpg?1610750193 Several thousand people have joined anti-vaccination protests across Australia, ahead of the country rolling out its coronavirus inoculation programme next week. Photo: AFP The protests, organised by Australian vs The Agenda, were largely peaceful but police made several arrests in Melbourne. The coordinated rallies were held only two days out from Australia beginning its Covid-19 vaccination programme. The Pfizer vaccine has arrived in the country and the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) has recently given the Oxford University-AstraZeneca jab the tick of approval. The group claims to represent “everyday Aussies who have been oppressed, arrested and charged by a tyrannical Australian government”. The Melbourne event attracted about 500 people at Fawkner Park in South Yarra. It started peacefully with speakers expressing their opposition to the vaccine and criticising Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews. The crowd marched onto St Kilda Road and towards the Alfred Hospital before police intervened and arrested a ...

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https://www.elanka.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/vaccine.jpg “The vaccine trials with so many people dying with the Coronavirus, have been nothing short of a miracle.”There is some confusion in the interpretation of a vaccine when it is said the efficacy is 95%. That does not imply that 5% of the vaccinated people can get the infection.Vaccine efficacy is the percentage reduction in a disease in a group of people who received a vaccination in a clinical trial.Putting it another way the scientists can calculate how well a vaccine candidate works by looking at the difference in new cases of the disease between the group receiving a placebo and the group receiving the experimental vaccine. This is called vaccine efficacy. What this percentage means is that 95% of the people who entered the trial had a 95% lower risk of getting the COVID-19 compared with the controlled trial that was given the placebo. In other words, the ...

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https://www.rnz.co.nz/assets/news/255674/eight_col_AC210130cb_20428.jpg?1613509995 America’s Cup organisers have announced the challenger final will resume on Saturday, weather permitting. Photo: Studio Borlenghi The challenger of record (COR), Luna Rossa, wanted racing in the best-of-13 series to get back underway on Friday. But it appears the Italian syndicate have settled for a Saturday resumption. Two races are scheduled, with a further two scheduled for Sunday. Luna Rossa have won the first four races and are three more wins away from earning the right to challenge Team New Zealand for the America’s Cup. It has been a year since race conditions for the Challenger Selection Series finals were signed off between all relevant parties – well before the full force of Covid-19 was felt by sports in New Zealand and around the world. Now teams are living and racing in different times. Event organisers wanted fans – Luna Rossa wanted to follow the rules – to ...

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https://www.rnz.co.nz/assets/news_crops/117636/eight_col_school.jpg?1613522390 There are two cases of Covid-19 in the community reported in New Zealand today, and one in managed isolation and quarantine facilities. Papatoetoe High School shortly after the new community cases were announced. Photo: RNZ/Kate Gregan Covid-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins told the Health Select Committee before the 1pm update that there were two new cases in the community. He said both were students at Papatoetoe High School. School principal Vaughan Couillault confirmed they were siblings, and one was a classmate of the existing case. Hipkins said it was still too soon to say what impact the new cases would have on Cabinet’s alert level decision this afternoon. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Dr Ashley Bloomfield will announce at 4.30pm whether alert levels will change. This afternoon’s 1pm statement from the Ministry of Health confirms that number. There is also one new case found in managed isolation and quarantine. ...

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https://www.rnz.co.nz/assets/news_crops/105888/eight_col_000_1V53FI.jpg?1595204156 Victoria’s snap “short, sharp circuit-breaker” coronavirus lockdown will end on schedule tonight, Premier Daniel Andrews has confirmed, but mask rules and gathering limits will remain in place. Masks will remain mandatory in all indoor settings outside the home as Victoria’s latest lockdown comes to an end. Photo: AFP Schools will re-open, workplaces will return to 50 percent capacity and people will be allowed to leave the house for any reason. However, masks will remain mandatory in all indoor settings outside the home and mandatory outdoors when keeping a physical distance of 1.5 metres is not possible. Andrews said the wearing of masks was an “ongoing insurance policy”. From 11:59pm tonight until 11:59pm Friday 26 February, Victorians will only be allowed five visitors to the home, instead of the previous 15-person limit. Up to 20 people from any number of households will be allowed at public gatherings. Hospitality venues will ...

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https://www.rnz.co.nz/assets/news/254812/eight_col_162698042_l.jpg?1612480844 First published on By David Welch, Jemma Geoghegan, Joep de Ligt and Nigel French for The Conversation* New variants of SARS-CoV-2 have now evaded New Zealand’s border protections twice to spread into the community. (File image). Photo: 123rf.com In the most recent outbreak, which placed Auckland into an alert level 3 lockdown, there are five active community cases of the more infectious B.1.1.7 lineage. While we have seen the virus mutate over the entire course of the pandemic, it was not until mid-December 2020 that variants with measurably different behaviour emerged. There are several reasons for this, including the continued exponential rise in cases globally. Every Covid-19 case gives the virus a chance to mutate, and if the number of infections continues to rise, more new variants are likely to emerge. Pressure to mutate The genetic code of SARS-CoV-2 is a string of RNA of about 30,000 bases, or ...

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