The News Matrix: Saturday 3 August 2013


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The Independent Online

Lads’ mags to tone down for Tesco

Lads’ mags have bowed to pressure from Tesco to tone down their raunchy covers. The supermarket has struck a “modesty” deal regarding the front covers of Zoo, Nuts and Front, while Bizarre will be supplied in a bag. Tesco said their sale would be restricted to over-18s.

TV show in shocking babies give-away

One of Pakistan’s most popular talk-show hosts has generated huge controversy after giving away babies live on air. Aamir Liaquat Hussaingave away two abandoned children to childless families last month, and he plans to give away a baby boy this week. MORE

On the menu: lab-grown burger

The world’s first test-tube burger, made from lab-grown meat, will be cooked and eaten by an invited  audience at a secret location on Monday. The five ounce patty was produced from 20,000 tiny strips of meat grown from cow stem cells at a cost of £250,000.

Fury as mine owners escape prosecution

Miners who spent over two months trapped underground in 2010 have reacted with fury after prosecutors announced that no one will be charged with negligence for the collapse. Many of the miners have since suffered from physical and mental health problems. MORE

Watchdog focuses on benefits firm

The National Audit Office has turned its focus to Atos Healthcare, the firm which assesses whether people are eligible for claiming sickness and disability benefit. The Government disclosed that Atos has been paid £754m for the tests since 2005. MORE

Vodka maker says boycott is misplaced

After many gay bars in the US stopped selling Stolichnaya vodka to protest Russia’s anti-gay crackdown, the vodka’s maker has joined forces with Latvia’s leading gay rights group to say that the boycott is misplaced: most of the Stoli sold in the west is made in Latvia.

Charity head-shave pupils told: wear wig

Three school students in Singapore have been told to wear wigs after shaving their heads to raise money for a cancer charity. The headmistress of St Margaret’s Secondary School told the pupils their look was not in keeping with the rules against “punk, unfeminine or sloppy” hair-dos.

Promoters fined for drug ballad song

Mexican city officials seeking to ban drug ballads known as “narco corridos” have levied one of their stiffest punishments yet against the music, fining concert promoters 100,000 pesos (around £5,000). The city of Chihuahua ordered the fine for a performance by Alfredo Rios.

English lessons  now ‘unnecessary’

Traditional lessons in the English language are pointless thanks to mobile-phone and digital technology, an academic has claimed. Professor Sugata Mitra of Newcastle University said teaching spelling, grammar and punctuation to 21st-century teenagers is a “bit unnecessary”. MORE

‘Broadchurch’ is  remade for US TV

American remakes of British shows rarely mimic the success of the original, but a US version of the ITV hit Broadchurch will begin filming in January for Fox. The show’s creator Chris Chibnall will write the first episode and will act as executive producer on the US version.

Oil drilling starts in Sussex village

Energy firm Cuadrilla began exploratory oil drilling in West Sussex yesterday as anti-fracking protests at the site entered a ninth day. A company spokesman said the test drilling would create a 3,000ft vertical well and take approximately two to three months. MORE

Little violence, but fraud still claimed

African Union officials have praised the lack of violence in this week’s elections in Zimbabwe, which appear to have been won by a landslide by Robert Mugabe. However, local election observers have criticised the poll as “a masterclass in electoral fraud”. MORE

DeGeneres will compere next Oscars

Comedian Ellen DeGeneres will host next year’s Academy Awards. Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane was panned for his role as compere at this year’s event, but DeGeneres is seen as a safe pair of hands. “I am so excited to be hosting the Oscars for the second time,” she joked. “You know what they say – the third time’s the charm.”

Navy honours surfer for riding 78ft wave

Portugal’s navy is honouring Hawaii surfer Garrett McNamara for riding the gnarliest wave ever. The navy awarded the big-wave surfer its Medalha Naval de Vasco da Gama this week in Lisbon. The 45-year-old pro from Oahu’s North Shore captured the world’s attention in 2011 after catching a 78-foot wave.

It’s official: Prince George on the books

The Duke and Duchess of  Cambridge have formally registered the birth of their son, Prince George, signing the birth registry entry at Kensington Palace yesterday  morning. The Duke and Duchess gave their occupations as prince  and princess of the United  Kingdom.

Beauty lovers flock to try out bird faeces

Bird faeces for beauty? That’s what goes into facials at a luxury spa where the traditional Japanese treatment using imported Asian nightingale excrement mixed with rice bran goes for $180 a pop. About 100 women and men go into the Shizuka New York skin care salon each month to get the treatment.