Arts and Entertainment Ellie Goulding has refused to sing at the Sochi Winter Olympics due to Russia's anti-gay laws

The singer turned down a request to sing at the Sochi opening ceremony

Tipple of laughter: Greg Davies as Jennitta Bishard in 'This Is Jinsy'

This Is Jinsy, Sky Atlantic - TV review

Last night, we returned to the weird world created by Justin Chubb and Chris Bran in This Is Jinsy (Sky Atlantic) for a second series.

Rowan Atkinson and Tony Robinson in Blackadder

Baldrick bites back: Sir Tony Robinson calls Michael Gove 'irresponsible' over criticisms of Blackadder as propaganda tool for the left

Actor says comments by Education Secretary amounted to 'slagging off teachers'

Inside television: Why the battle is not just for ratings

This year marks 100 years since the start of a four-year war which claimed 16 million lives around the world. In October, the BBC laid claim to this anniversary announcing an ambitious slate of over 2,500 hours of First World War programming. Clearly, Adrian Van Klaveren needn't worry whether he's commissioned enough programmes, but if anything keeps the BBC's Controller of the World War One Centenary up at night over the next four years, it will be the tone of these documentaries and dramas.

David Tennant and Gregory Doran join forces again for this lucid and gripping account of Richard II

David Tennant: When stars become salesmen they also become cheap

The actor is brilliant as  Richard II, but why does he choose to  appear in a television advert?

David Cameron's absence is not a remark on Russia's stance on gay rights, according to Downing Street

David Cameron to skip Sochi Olympics – but insists it’s not a boycott

David Cameron is not planning to attend the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi, Downing Street said on Friday, but insisted the move was not a statement about Russia’s stance on gay rights.

Police officers detain a gay rights activist during an unauthorized protest - Irina Putilova has said that the new anti-gay legislation in Russia had increased homophobic violence

Russian bisexual activist Irina Putilova is released from detention and taken off fast-track asylum list

Thousands of people signed a petition to support the 28-year-old's release

Police officers detain a gay rights activist during an unauthorized protest - Irina Putilova has said that the new anti-gay legislation in Russia had increased homophobic violence

Bisexual Russian activist fears for her safety after British authorities threaten to deport her

Irina Putilova could be returned home in a matter of days

Fry travels from Moscow to Rio in the BBC's Stephen Fry: Out There

TV Review: Stephen Fry: Out There BBC2

Stephen Fry is an eloquent and erudite host on any topic. That's what makes him the natural choice to present BBC2's QI and as well as countless Radio 4 documentaries and panel shows. But Stephen Fry on a subject as close to his heart as this? That's a different and special proposition. The last film he made that was this personal, 2006's The Secret Life of the Manic Depressive, won an Emmy.

Faber & Faber enjoys story of its success as profits jump

It is a far cry from the spartan poetry of TS Eliot but booming sales of Tom Bower’s juicy biography of X Factor impresario Simon Cowell have helped push Faber & Faber’s profits up fourfold.

Lucy Kirkwood's much-lauded comedy NSFW was performed at the Royal Court last autumn

Polly Stenham and Lucy Kirkwood graduate to television

The much-lauded young female playwrights are turning to TV

Revealed, the ugliest animal on earth: the humble Blobfish

Other contenders for the prize included the axolotl and the pig-nosed turtle

Alastair Campbell photographed at his north London home

Alastair Campbell? I hated his message, but I was always fond of the messenger

For an ex-drinker like me, Campbell makes a particularly interesting role model

BBC Sports presenter Gabby Logan

Russia’s anti-gay laws unsettled me, says Gabby Logan

Gabby Logan has spoken of her personal discomfort at presenting this month’s World Athletics Championships in Russia amid the furore over the country’s homophobic laws.

Jeremy Paxman with his new beard on Newsnight

Do we really need to to talk about Paxman's beard?

Plus, why John Cleese still has some growing up to do

Voices
voicesGood for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, writes Grace Dent
Sport
The Pipes and Drums of The Scottish Regiments perform during the Opening Ceremony for the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games at Celtic Park on July 23, 2014 in Glasgow, Scotland.
Commonwealth GamesThe actor encouraged the one billion viewers of the event to donate to the children's charity
Sport
Karen Dunbar performs
Entertainers showcase local wit, talent and irrepressible spirit
Arts and Entertainment
The Tour de France peloton rides over a bridge on the Grinton Moor, Yorkshire, earlier this month
film
Life and Style
fashion Designs are part of feminist art project by a British student
News
Very tasty: Vladimir Putin dining alone, perhaps sensibly
newsJohn Walsh salutes those brave souls who have, throughout history, put their knives on the line
News
The University of California study monitored the reaction of 36 dogs
sciencePets' range of emotions revealed
Arts and Entertainment
The nomination of 'The Wake' by Paul Kingsnorth has caused a stir
books
News
Joining forces: young British men feature in an Isis video in which they urge Islamists in the West to join them in Iraq and Syria
newsWill the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?
News
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Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

Screwing your way to the top?

Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, says Grace Dent
Will the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?

Will Britons fighting in Syria be able to resume their lives?

Tony Blair's Terrorism Act 2006 has made it an offence to take part in military action abroad with a "political, ideological, religious or racial motive"
Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter, the wartime poster girl who became a feminist pin-up

Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter

The wartime poster girl became the ultimate American symbol of female empowerment
Climate change threatens to make the antarctic fur seal extinct

Take a good look while you can

How climate change could wipe out this seal
Should emergency hospital weddings be made easier for the terminally ill?

Should emergency hospital weddings be made easier?

Some couples are allowed emergency hospital weddings, others are denied the right. Kate Hilpern reports on the growing case for a compassionate cutting of the red tape
Man Booker Prize 2014 longlist: Crowdfunded novel nominated for first time

Crowdfunded novel nominated for Booker Prize

Paul Kingsnorth's 'The Wake' is in contention for the prestigious award
Vladimir Putin employs a full-time food taster to ensure his meals aren't poisoned

Vladimir Putin employs a full-time food taster

John Walsh salutes those brave souls who have, throughout history, put their knives on the line
Tour de France effect brings Hollywood blockbusters to Yorkshire

Tour de France effect brings Hollywood blockbusters to Yorkshire

A $25m thriller starring Sam Worthington to be made in God's Own Country
The 10 best pedicure products

Feet treat: 10 best pedicure products

Bags packed and all prepped for holidays, but feet in a state? Get them flip-flop-ready with our pick of the items for a DIY treatment
Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy': A land of the outright bizarre

Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy'

A land of the outright bizarre
What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?

What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?

‘Weird Al’ Yankovic's latest video is an ode to good grammar. But what do The Independent’s experts think he’s missed out?
Can Secret Cinema sell 80,000 'Back to the Future' tickets?

The worst kept secret in cinema

A cult movie event aims to immerse audiences of 80,000 in ‘Back to the Future’. But has it lost its magic?
Facebook: The new hatched, matched and dispatched

The new hatched, matched and dispatched

Family events used to be marked in the personal columns. But now Facebook has usurped the ‘Births, Deaths and Marriages’ announcements
Why do we have blood types?

Are you my type?

All of us have one but probably never wondered why. Yet even now, a century after blood types were discovered, it’s a matter of debate what they’re for
Honesty box hotels: You decide how much you pay

Honesty box hotels

Five hotels in Paris now allow guests to pay only what they think their stay was worth. It seems fraught with financial risk, but the honesty policy has its benefit