Here and Now on RIPR

Weekdays, Noon - 2:00 PM
Robin Young, Jeremy Hobson

Here & Now offers a distinctive mix of hard news and rich conversation featuring interesting players from across the spectrum of arts and culture, business, technology, science and politics.

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NPR Story
2:18 pm
Wed May 14, 2014

U.N.'s Syrian Envoy Steps Down As Civil War Continues

Lakhdar Brahimi will step down at the end of this month from his post as United Nations Special Envoy to Syria. (Stan Honda/AFP/Getty Images)

Lakhdar Brahimi will resign at the end of the month from his post as Syrian international envoy, after a failed two-year effort to end the conflict that has claimed more than 150,000 lives in Syria.

Earlier this week, the forces of President Bashar al-Assad took full control of the city of Homs, which had been considered the capital of the revolution against him. Assad is also running for re-election next month, so there are questions about the future of the revolution.

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NPR Story
2:18 pm
Wed May 14, 2014

Real-Time Global Flight Tracking On The Horizon

The International Civil Aviation Organization held two days of meetings in Montreal this week to discuss flight tracking, which has come front and center since the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370.

Airline and aviation regulators say that they agree that tracking all planes around the world is now a priority. But global standards for doing it now need to be developed, and it’s unclear how quickly that will happen.

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NPR Story
2:48 pm
Tue May 13, 2014

The Anatomy Of A College Rape Accusation

Lexie Brackenridge at her new college, Columbia University, on Monday (Courtesy Sara Romano)

Amid increasing scrutiny nationwide of college administrators’ response to sexual assault cases, a former Williams College student and her parents have accused leaders at that college of mishandling her assault case.

Lexie Brackenridge and her parents also oppose the expected return to campus this fall of the alleged assailant.

From the Here & Now Contributors Network, Fred Thys of WBUR reports.

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NPR Story
2:48 pm
Tue May 13, 2014

EU Court Rules Google Must Delete Links When Requested

Originally published on Wed May 14, 2014 7:49 am

Europe’s highest court says Google users in Europe have a right to ask the company to remove links about themselves. The surprise decision by the European Union’s highest court comes as regulators are trying to tighten online privacy protections.

Wall Street Journal reporter Jason Bellini tells Here & Now’s Robin Young about the ruling, and the implications for Google and other search engine operators.

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NPR Story
2:48 pm
Tue May 13, 2014

Man From War-Torn Africa Turns Wine Glasses Into Song

Dan Newbie plays popular songs with wine glasses and a frying pan as his instruments. (Screenshot from YouTube)

Originally published on Tue May 13, 2014 3:54 pm

Arkansas resident Dan Newbie is behind several popular YouTube videos, in which he uses wine glasses and a frying pan to play popular songs such as “Let It Go” from Disney’s “Frozen” and “Happy” by Pharrell Williams. His version of the “Game of Thrones” theme song was posted only six days ago and has already been viewed more than 800,000 times.

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NPR Story
2:58 pm
Mon May 12, 2014

Web Series ‘Thug Notes’ Puts A Hip-Hop Spin On Classic Literature

Comedian Greg Edwards presents brief book reports of classic literature using a hip-hop vernacular in the popular web series "Thug Notes," created by Jared Bauer. (Screenshot)

Originally published on Mon May 12, 2014 4:20 pm

[Youtube]

Note: This video contains language that some viewers may find offensive.

Students of literature have long used SparkNotes and CliffsNotes to help them navigate the tricky plot-lines of the classics. Now, there’s a new web series that students can turn to for literary help: “Thug Notes.”

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NPR Story
2:58 pm
Mon May 12, 2014

Big Weekend In Sports: Sterling Apologizes, NFL Drafts First Openly Gay Player

Newly drafted NFL player Michael Sam, standing alongside his boyfriend Vito Cammisano, becomes emotional as he learns he will be playing for the St. Louis Rams. (Screenshot)

L.A. Clippers owner Donald Sterling apologized over the weekend in an interview with CNN’s Anderson Cooper. It’s the first time Sterling has spoken publicly since a recording of him making racist comments was leaked more than two weeks ago.

And in other big sports news, Michael Sam became the first openly gay player to be drafted by the NFL.

Here & Now sports analyst Mike Pesca joins Jeremy Hobson to talk about the significance of these events in the world of sports.

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NPR Story
2:58 pm
Mon May 12, 2014

FiveFingers Shoe Company Pays $3.5 Million For Misleading Customers

Vibram's FiveFinger running shoes have developed a strong following among runners who believe minimal cushioning in shoes provides a better running experience, but the company recently settled a lawsuit claiming there was no science backing up their claims. (Patrick Yodarus/Flickr)

Originally published on Fri May 16, 2014 5:05 pm

Vibram USA — the maker of those shoes that look more like rubber gloves with separate compartments for each toe — has agreed to pay $3.5 million settlement in a class action suit for allegedly misleading their customers.

The lawsuit was brought by a woman who says the shoe company claimed to decrease foot injuries and strengthen foot muscles, but had no scientific research to prove it.

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NPR Story
2:39 pm
Fri May 9, 2014

Video Chats With Mom Become Popular Web Series

Film director Joshua Seftel turned his FaceTime conversations with his mom Pat Seftel into a popular YouTube series called "My Mom On Movies." (Phillip Toledano)

Originally published on Sat May 10, 2014 10:34 am

In 2009, after filmmaker Joshua Seftel‘s father passed away, he and his sisters worried about staying in touch with their mom, so they bought her an iPad, and even though she was nervous about it at first, they convinced her to start using it.

First they sent emails back and forth, but soon Seftel and his mom started talking on FaceTime. Seftel says that around this time he remembered his mother said she had always wanted her own show. So he thought, why not?

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NPR Story
2:39 pm
Fri May 9, 2014

Speaking Exchange: Brazilian Students Connect With Elderly Americans

A Brazilian student speaks with an American senior in this screenshot from a video about the program. (Screenshot)

A language school in Brazil is connecting its students to the elderly in Chicago, so the students can practice their English online. The promotional video for the “Speaking Exchange” program has gone viral because the kids and seniors are developing relationships.

[Youtube]

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