20 December 2012 South African Airways (SAA) and US Airways have signed a bilateral code share agreement that will provide the airlines with expanded access to destinations in both countries. “Through the codeshare agreement with US Airways, South African Airways’ valued clientele will gain new travel choices to markets across the United States via US Airways’ extensive network and hubs in Philadelphia, Charlotte and Phoenix, providing for seamless travel and status recognition through the respective frequent flyer programs,” SAA’s commercial acting general manager, Manoj Papa, said in a statement. “We are looking forward to introducing US Airways customers to our award-winning service, and to working closely with US Airways as our partnership will improve the connections between our respective networks.” The new partnership will offer the convenience of a single-ticket purchase, as well as the opportunity for SAA customers to earn and redeem Voyager miles. “US Airways’ new code share agreement with its first African code share partner creates a seamless travel experience for our customers travelling to various destinations on the African continent,” said US Airways marketing and planning senior vice president, Andrew Nocella. Pending approval from the Senegalese authorities, the code share agreement will also offer US Airways passengers access to Dakar in Senegal via SAA’s Johannesburg- Washington service. “US Airways values our current relationship with South African Airways as a Star Alliance partner and now as a code share partner, we look forward to strengthening this partnership,” Nocella said. US Airways customers will have access to SAA’s hub in Johannesburg, as well as connections to Cape Town, East London and Port Elizabeth. The agreement took effect on 19 December. SAinfo reporter
A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Startup Weekend always sounds like mission impossible: you have 54 hours – from Friday night until Sunday night – to pitch, then build, then demo a product. But the intensity and creativity of the teams that come together for these events are impressive. Great ideas, great products, great teams, and yes despite the short duration, great startups are hatched there.That’s why it’s pretty exciting to see the next San Francisco Startup Weekend turn its sights on the education technology industry.Startup Weekend EDU will be held June 3 -5 at the Grockit offices in San Francisco, and will bring together “makers, founders, creators, developers, teachers, students, designers, and the business-inclined to launch real startups to address the real problems in the multi-trillion dollar education, training and learning markets.”The weekend will follow the same pattern as other Startup Weekend events: ideas will be pitched on Friday night, and the teams will come together to work on their chosen ones, hacking all weekend in preparation for a demo on Sunday evening.Speakers at Startup Weekend EDU will include Eric Ries, creator of the Lean Startup methodology, and the judges panel will include Prashant Fuloria, Director of Product Management at Facebook. More judges, speakers, and mentors will be announced soon.The judges panel will offer feedback to the presenting teams and will hand out over $5000 in cash for the startups.“SFEDU Startup Weekend is about people passionate about improving education giving up their weekend to create real solutions,” says Grockit CEO Farbood Nivi. Education technology can definitely use more hackers, and you can register here to attend the event. audrey watters Tags:#events#start Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Related Posts Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market
Tags:#music#web 4 Keys to a Kid-Safe App 9 Books That Make Perfect Gifts for Industry Ex… brian proffitt The ongoing tug-of-war between musicians, record labels and digital content providers inched a little more towards artists this week with the introduction of an innovative paid-referral plan from streaming provider Rdio. The new program pays artists a flat $10 fee for every user they refer, a rare form of direct-to-artist revenue in the music streaming business. But it’s only the latest move to renegotiate the flow of money in the world of digital music – and now even Congress is weighing in.Rdio’s artist program is trying to play to both artists’ vanity and their pocket books. Not only will musicians get an immediate benefit for any new subscriber that joins Rdio, if they can help boost Rdio’s current 10-million-user subscriber base to challenge Spotify’s reported 33 million users, that should also increase overall payments to artists from royalties down the road. Of course, other than that up-front fee, Rdio’s royalty payments won’t provide much padding for musicians’ wallets, primarily because Rdio, like competing services Spotify and MOG, pays royalties directly to the record labels, not to the artists.Where The Streaming Music Money GoesAll three of these services essentially negotiate their royalty rates with the record labels in the same way – directly – which can take forever. Royalty arguments actually delayed Spotify’s entrance into the U.S. market by two years, and according to Casey Rae, co-director of the Future of Music Coalition, the three major U.S. labels ended up taking an equity stake in Spotify to make sure they could squeeze every last drop of juice from the service provider.Since these deals are private, it is not known how much each service has to pay to individual labels. It is estimated that Spotify pays anywhere from 70% to 97% of its subscription-based revenue to music distributors, depending on who you ask.Pandora, on the other hand, handles things differently, Rae emphasized in a recent interview. “Pandora can play anything it wants,” he explained. “Their license is a statutory license that pays the artist directly.” The royalty is split down the middle with a music label if the artist is signed with one.That rate, as the law proscribes, amounts to over 50% of Pandora’s revenue. As a non-interactive music streaming service, Pandora has to pay the highest rate bracket within the statute, far higher than satellite or cable TV providers have to pay for their music streaming services. Broadcasters, meanwhile, don’t have to pay anything, unless they stream their content on the Internet, at which point they have to pay the same rates as a service like Pandora or Clear Channel.The Laws of the LandTwo bills now in Congress are set to adjust the rate schedule for these services toward what could be more fair treatment of the streaming services.First is the Internet Radio Fairness Act of 2012, which would adjust the royalty rate that music streaming services have to pay down to match the levels that cable/satellite providers pay. Broadcast stations still pay nothing.Second is the Interim Fairness in Radio Starting Today Act , which takes the opposite approach and would increase the cable/satellite provider rate to match that of the streaming providers’ – and remove the exemption for broadcasters.Needless to say, artists and record labels are much more excited about the latter bill. The music industry already complains about how little it receives from streaming broadcasters, and undoubtedly would express outrage at any reduction in royalty rates.The Last Song A service like Pandora, which has to scale up its royalty payments as more subscribers join, is already dealing with the clash between revenues it generates and the royalties it has to pay. Without a reduction in statutory payments, it is not clear how long Pandora will continue to operate.Rdio, Spotify and MOG, since they have negotiated deals with the content providers separately, would be unaffected by either of these bills passing into law. But they can’t take on much more royalty payments either. Spotify alone lost $57 million in 2011, even as it pulled in $236 million in revenue.It’s a complex, contentious issue, but unless the the royalty issues get worked out, the future of Rdio and its streaming music competitors is in jeopardy. If it costs more for them to license the music they stream than the revenue they can generate from it, they won’t stay in business long. But if they raise prices dramitically to cover royalty payments, they risk losing subscribers who can’t justify the higher fees. And as usual, you can bet that the artists, not the music companies or streaming services, will be last in line to get paid.Image courtesy of Shutterstock. 5 Outdoor Activities for Beating Office Burnout Related Posts 12 Unique Gifts for the Hard-to-Shop-for People…
The flood situation in Odisha has shown signs of improvement as rain has stopped in almost all districts. Except for Malkangiri and Kalahandi, there was hardly any rain in any other district on Thursday. The floodwater flowing towards the delta region in the Mahanadi river was not likely to pose any major threat as its level was decreasing. People in low-lying areas close to the coast are, however, worried about possible overflowing of floodwater before discharge into the sea. At Naraj, the water level was gradually dropping. The water discharge at Kharimal into the Mahanadi was measured at 3.35 lakh cusecs and at Barmul, it was 5.88 lakh cusecs. In most major rivers, the water level has been found either falling or steady.Special Relief Commissioner Bishnupada Sethi said 64,354 people were evacuated and sheltered in 173 relief camps. Of them, 83 camps with 23,383 evacuees were operating on Thursday. An estimated 2.96 lakh people in 11 districts were hit by the floods. Balangir has so far been the worst-hit district where 2 lakh people have been affected.