Reporting on iPad

We can now easily write and file stories from the field by using our iPads and Story Pad.
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Because Story Pad is browser based, we are no longer tied to a networked editorial production system.

Instead, we are free to roam the world looking for stories, writing them and filing them on our digital platforms for our readers to read.

News Now on your iPadOnce they are there, it is just a matter of a few mouse clicks by a news director back in the newsroom and the piece is also on a print page and ready to be printed.

Welcome to the new world of News Now.

Mobile data sharing plans on the way

Family mobile data sharing plans are expected to be popular. Photo: Steven SiewertAustralian consumers will get access to mobile data sharing plans within a year, with at least one telco promising to launch the new pricing option in coming months.
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Data sharing allows customers to share a “bucket” of data among multiple devices, including smartphones, broadband dongles, mobile Wi-Fi and tablets.

Plans currently offered by Australian carriers force customers to buy individual data plans for each device, unless they activate hotspots on one device and tether others to it.

The new wave of billing options will soon allow consumers to customise speeds, downloads and spending on mobile networks, but also require carriers to invest in significant upgrades to existing billing capabilities.

Shared plans have been available in the US and Europe since 2012. Surprisingly, carriers have seen consumers spend more on mobile data as a result, not less.

Consumers tend to spend more because they buy bigger data plans and add more devices to the account. Family plans are popular and encourage everyone to use the same carrier.

Telstra has already released a mobile shared service for business customers charging a basic fee of $60 per month for 1.1 gigabytes (GB) of data, plus a $10 sharing fee and $10 per device. Up to 8 GB can be bought for an extra $60 a month.

“We will be launching data share plans for [post-paid] consumer customers in the coming months, allowing them to share data across a number of mobile devices [such as smartphones, tablets or mobile Wi-Fi]. The plans will suit people who want to streamline and make the most of the data they pay for without any complications,” a Telstra spokesman said, without giving a launch date.

An Optus spokeswoman said it was looking at data sharing, but wanted to address bill shock and international roaming first. A Vodafone spokeswoman said it considers pricing options regularly. But neither committed to a date.

In the US, AT&T and Verizon offer data, voice and message sharing on up to 10 devices. These carriers charge a fee for data and for each device. For example, a basic shared plan on Verizon costs $US40 per smartphone, $US10 per tablet and $US70 for 4 GB of data.

Senior mobile analyst at Ovum, Nicole McCormick, said she expects to see more than one Australian carrier offering this new pricing structure by the end of the year.

“Consumers do benefit from these plans since it is cheaper to have a unified account. However, this results in subscription revenue loss for the telco in the case that a person consolidates their multiple accounts [eg dongle, tablet and smartphone] with that telco. Ultimately, these plans are part of the operator’s anti-churn management strategy, since a subscriber – either a connected person or connected household – is less likely to churn on a shared plan.”

Goldman Sachs telecommunications analyst Raymond Tong recently released a report showing monthly spending in the US increased by about $US10 a month after shared plans were introduced and that the number of devices using networks increased substantially.

“Strong take-up of shared data plans has encouraged incremental take-up of additional connected devices [eg tablets] and greater data usage. This has resulted in strong growth in average revenue per account. Demand has been strong since Verizon and AT&T launched these plans in mid-2012, with 36 per cent of wireless accounts at Verizon already on these plans,” Mr Tong wrote in a note to clients.

Sharing has become possible thanks to new billing technology, according to Alcatel-Lucent’s vice president for payments, policy and charging, Fran Heeran.

Consumers tend to ease back on data usage when they get close to a monthly cap, rather than fork out for additional data, Heeran said.

“When carriers add it all up, they see people use more data and buy more data in a shared plan than in individual plans.”

The real-time billing allows families to control how much data each device gets to use and when, allowing parents to turn internet access off during certain hours or limit their children’s data usage.

Alcatel-Lucent has also found app-specific billing options were quite popular overseas. Consumers could stream unlimited video through a service, such as iView or Foxtel, for a small additional fee every month, or buy speed boosts to make particular apps run faster.

How much you can save

A small business that supplies phones to four employees could save $100 per month using data sharing.

Four phones would cost $100 per month on Telstra’s shared plans for businesses, compared to $200 for four phones on individual plans. The difference is all four phones would share 1 GB of data every month, rather than having 1 GB per phone. Increasing to 3 GB of shared data would cost an extra $30 per month, still $70 cheaper than individual plans.

However, data sharing on two phones and two broadband dongles is not necessarily cheaper. The maximum of 8 GB data sharing would only be about $10 cheaper and have less data than two individual phone and two individual dongle plans. This would cost $150 per month for the four devices with 1 GB per device. Increasing to 4 GB per device would cost a total of $170 per month.

Sharing would cost $100 per month with 1 GB of shared data, and increasing this to 3 GB or 8 GB would cost an extra $30 and $60 respectively.  So the option is $160 for a total of 8 GB or $170 for a total of 10 GB.

Australian reseller Dodo already offers data sharing on up to five devices. It charges $5 per month for each additional SIM card, plus a $20 activation fee per SIM. So sharing 4GB among five devices would cost a new customer $65 per month plus $80 set-up fee.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

FEDERAL ELECTION: Liberal Martin Zaiter

COALITION TO INVEST $500,000 IN HYDROTHERAPY POOL AT MERRYLANDS
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COALITION TO INVEST $500,000 IN HYDROTHERAPY POOL AT MERRYLANDS

COALITION TO INVEST $500,000 IN HYDROTHERAPY POOL AT MERRYLANDS

COALITION TO INVEST $500,000 IN HYDROTHERAPY POOL AT MERRYLANDS

COALITION TO INVEST $500,000 IN HYDROTHERAPY POOL AT MERRYLANDS

Liberal candidate for Parramatta Martin Zaiter announced today the Coalition will invest $500,000 in a hydrotherapy pool at Merrylands if it is elected at the 7 September election.

Mr Zaiter was joined at today’s announcement by Deputy Leader of the Federal Opposition Julie Bishop and the Mayor of Holroyd City Council Ross Grove.

“I am proud to announce this $500,000 funding commitment by the Coalition, which will see a hydrotherapy pool built at Merrylands,” Mr Zaiter said.

“The funding will be provided to Holroyd City Council which will construct the hydrotherapy pool at Merrylands Swimming Centre – which is in the Parramatta electorate.

“Hydrotherapy is a great way for people who are less mobile or who have been injured to get exercise or complete a rehabilitation program.

“Some people are unable to complete land based exercise or treatment due to pain, but in a hydrotherapy pool there is much less stress on their joints.

“The hydrotherapy pool will be incredibly valued by the local community and it is something Holroyd Council has been proposing for some time.”

Ms Bishop said the $500,000 funding will greatly benefit local residents.

“Martin Zaiter has been incredibly persistent in fighting to get funding for the hydrotherapy pool at Merrylands,” Ms Bishop said.

“Martin is a first-rate candidate and if elected he will be a powerful advocate for the people of Parramatta in Canberra.

COALITION RELEASES PRACTICAL PLAN TO REDUCE DROWNINGS

A Coalition government will work with surf lifesaving, the Royal Life Saving Society and AUSTSWIM to reduce the number of drownings across Australia says Martin Zaiter, Liberal Candidate for Parramatta.

“This is a practical plan that works with water safety experts to reduce the number of drownings on our beaches, waterways and rivers and in pools and bathtubs,” Mr Zaiter said.

“Australians love the water, but sadly five people every week lose their life to drowning.

“Most drownings are, in some way, avoidable: that is why we must invest in prevention.

“Our policy funds the experts whose work saves lives every day: Australia’s surf lifesaving clubs, the Royal Life Saving Society and AUSTSWIM.

“Our plan will provide local surf clubs will average grants of $25,000 over five years to assist them purchase needed equipment, first aid and medical supplies.

“A typical surf club spends $3,000 a year on medical supplies like lotions, band-aids and bandages, so these grants will help surf clubs make ends meet.

“We will also provide $2 million to expand the successful Beach Drowning Black Spot Reduction programme.

“As currents can be as dangerous as rips, our policy also works with the Royal Life Saving Society to Australia to identify ways of improving water safety on our inland waterways. This includes targeting alcohol consumption, the safe use of watercraft as well as providing practical training on things like water safety and CPR.

“This is a practical policy that will, over time, save many families from heartache.

“The Coalition’s $15 million commitment is part of our Real Solutions Plan to build a stronger Australia and a better future – for all Australians.”

Coalition promise to Parramatta schools: We will match funding

“Schools need certainty and so the Coalition will match the dollar-for-dollar commitments already made by the government to schools over the next four years,” Martin Zaiter said.

“While the Rudd-Gillard Government has made a mess of school funding arrangements with seven different Gonski deals in place, we know that schools and parents need certainty.”

The announcement by Tony Abbott means that if elected, a Coalition government will:

– ensure Commonwealth schools funding committed by Labor for school year 2014 will flow to all states and territories irrespective of whether they have signed a deal with the Gillard or Rudd Government;

– amend the Australian Education Act to ensure the states, territories and non-government sectors keep authority for their schools; and

– match the Commonwealth funding for schools committed by Labor over the forward estimates.

“Most importantly, local schools will have the funding certainty but without a national takeover of schools.

“We will work co-operatively with the States and Territories to deliver a better education system.

“I want schools to deliver better quality education through better teaching, better teachers, more community engagement, and more principal autonomy as well as through fair funding,” Martin Zaiter.

PARRAMATTA BUSINESSES TO BENEFIT FROM COALITION COMPANY TAX CUT

A Coalition Government will cut the company tax rate by 1.5 per cent from 1 July 2015.

Thousands of businesses in Parramatta will benefit from the tax cut said Liberal candidate, Martin Zaiter.

“This tax cut will boost jobs and strengthen the economy,’’ Mr Zaiter said.

“I know that businesses are under pressure and people are concerned about their job security. Cutting company tax will increase investment and jobs and build a stronger economy with higher wages.

“Local businesses are doing it tough with thousands of new regulations, the carbon tax, the latest FBT hit and uncertainty in the economy – and they need relief from cost pressures, just like families do.

“With unemployment already at the highest level in 14 years – and set to surge further to nearly 800,000 on the Government’s own forecasts – cutting tax is crucial to strengthening the economy and creating the right environment for jobs.

“I know that not every small business is registered as a company, but many are and that means they will get the benefit of a new 28.5 per cent company tax rate.

“Lowering the company tax rate is part of our Plan to build a strong, prosperous economy with more investment and more jobs.

“The Coalition’s Real Solutions Plan will create one million new jobs within five years – and we will do it by cutting company tax, abolishing the carbon tax, cutting $1billion in red tape and not proceeding with Labor’s $1.8 billion FBT hit on cars.

“For six years Mr Rudd and Labor have talked about a company tax cut but have not delivered – if elected, the Coalition will deliver a company tax cut.’’

PARRAMATTA FAMILIES WILL BE OVER $550 BETTER OFF BY SCRAPPING THE CARBON TAX

Families in Parramatta will be an average of over $550 better off next financial year as a result of the Coalition’s plan to scrap the carbon tax said Liberal candidate, Martin Zaiter.

“Kevin Rudd’s carbon tax adds to the cost of living. It is a tax on electricity, it’s a tax on gas and it hurts family budgets,’’ said Mr Zaiter.

“As the carbon tax goes up, so will families’ cost of living.

“Only the Coalition will reduce your cost of living by abolishing the carbon tax.’’

Mr Zaiter said that on the Government’s own figures, the carbon tax will increase six

-fold between mid-2014 and mid 2019 reaching $38 a tonne by 2019 and increasing to $350 a tonne over time.

“That means if Labor is re-elected, average families will pay $3,000 in carbon tax over the next six years.

“Only the Coalition will scrap the carbon tax lock, stock and barrel.

“And the Coalition will also keep the current income tax thresholds and the current pension and benefit fortnightly rates while scrapping the carbon tax.’’

Mr Zaiter said this means local workers, families and pensioners will keep the tax cuts and fortnightly pension and benefit increases provided in Labor’s carbon tax package, but without the carbon tax.

“As a result, these tax cuts and fortnightly benefit increases will become genuine cost-of-living relief, worth around $4 billion a year, rather than partial compensation for Labor’s damaging carbon tax hit.’’

Mr Zaiter said this means that– based on the Government’s own figures –under the Coalition:

– average families will be better off by more than $550 a year in 2014-15, rising to around $900 a year in 2019-20; and

– over the next six years, average families will be $3,000 better off under the Coalition than under Kevin Rudd’s carbon tax.

MARTIN ZAITER SAYS ELECTION OFFERS CLEAREST CHOICE

Liberal candidate for Parramatta, Martin Zaiter said the election is a clear choice between more of the same from Labor and real change from the Coalition.

“The choice between the major parties could not be clearer,’’ Mr Zaiter said.

“At this election, the Coalition offers strong, experienced and stable government, a stronger economy, stronger borders, a stronger Australia and a better future for all Australians.

“Labor is offering just more of the same: more talk, more chaos, more division, more

debt, more deficits and more taxes.

“Only the Coalition can form the strong, stable government to deliver a stronger economy with more jobs, real help for families and small business, lower taxes and secure borders.

“We are getting a positive response in Parramatta and throughout Australia – people want a government that can deliver more jobs and a stronger economy.

Mr Zaiter said the Real Solutions Plan lays down 10 clear actions that we will take which will make our country stronger and families more secure:

– We will build a stronger, more diverse economy with lower taxes, less waste.

– We will get the Budget back under control

– Help families get ahead by freeing them from the carbon tax

– Help small businesses grow by reducing business costs

– Build a Five-Pillar economy

– Generate one million new jobs over the next five years and two million new jobs within 10 years

– Build more modern infrastructure to get things moving

– Deliver better health and education services with local communities in charge

– Build a 15,000-strong Green Army to clean-up the environment

– The boats will stop with tough, proven measures not talk from proven boat failures.

Mr Zaiter said he will be campaigning every day between now and the election on the positive choice offered by the Coalition at this election.

“It is only by voting for the Coalition that our community can get a strong voice in a better government.”

CHILD CARE COSTS OUT OF CONTROL

The Shadow spokesperson for Families, Housing and Human Services, Kevin Andrews, and Liberal Candidate for Parramatta, Martin Zaiter, met with child care providers in Western Sydney yesterday.

“Despite promising to address child care affordability, Labor has delivered increased costs and serious shortages of qualified staff,” Mr Andrews said.

“There is incredible pressure on child care centres to increase fees over next few years due to Labor’s red tape drowning the sector.”

“Over the last three years, child care costs have increased by 27 per cent.’’

“This is having a real impact on families in Parramatta and across Australia,” Mr Zaiter said.

At the 2007 election Labor promised to “end the double drop off” and to build 260 child care and early childhood education centres. Kevin Rudd said it was “critical” to give families access to “quality, affordable childcare”.

Labor dumped this promise in April 2010, when only 38 centres had been committed to.

“Labor’s approach has been to increase the costs for child care service providers, increase bureaucracy, and to reduce support to parents. Labor has no plan, only broken promises.

“The Coalition offers real change and will deliver a genuinely united government and a better future – for all Australians,” Mr Andrews concluded.

MALCOLM TURNBULL ENGAGES WITH PARRAMATTA BUSINESS OWNERS

Shadow Minister for Communications and Broadband, the Hon. Malcolm Turnbull MP, visited the electorate of Parramatta on Thursday to hear the concerns of small business owners in Parramatta and Harris Park, with Liberal candidate for Parramatta, Martin Zaiter.

Mr Turnbull and Mr Zaiter had a highly informative discussion with business owners in Parramatta at Coffee Emporium, before moving onto nearby Harris Park.

“The local business community is concerned at the lack of consumer confidence, resulting from Labor’s carbon tax which is driving up the cost of living for local residents,” Mr Zaiter said.

“Business owners themselves are also being hit with double-digit utility price increases, which they have to absorb, given they receive no compensation from this Labor Government.

“Mr Turnbull – as a self-made businessman before entering Parliament – could identify with these problems and has first-hand knowledge of the challenges facing businesses.

“Business owners were also hesitant to invest in new staff or equipment for fear of Labor imposing more sudden taxes, such as the recent fringe benefits tax (FBT) changes to salary-packaged vehicle arrangements.

“I would like to thank Mr Turnbull – who would be an integral part of a Coalition cabinet – for engaging with our local business community.”

Mr Turnbull said the concerns raised by business owners in Parramatta echoed those he had heard as he travelled across the country.

“Wherever I go, I hear the same thing; businesses are worried that Labor continues to announce new taxes and cut spending often without any notice or long-term planning,” Mr Turnbull said.

“In recent weeks, we have seen the introduction of ill-considered changes to FBT arrangements, NBN cost blowouts and now a potential tax on bank savings, to name but a few.

“It’s little wonder that business and consumer confidence is low here in Parramatta and across the country.

“We have a strong team, with a proven track record of stable Government and delivering strong economic growth.”

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Tickets on sale for new variety show

Bookings opened today at Home and Office Furniture for a night of music and humour as Wellington Amateur Theatrical Society (WATS) presents Fancy That.
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Fancy That is a delightful variety show introducing young new talent and experienced old troopers. It showcases solos, duets, piano recitals and dance.

The unforgettable ‘stars’ from Les Miserables will be performed by Les Andrews who has an operatic background.

Our melodrama Unhand Me Squire is bound to amuse. Meet our heroine Sweet Fanny Adams, always in peril as she is relentlessly pursued by the villian, the evil Sir Jasper.

Youth and experience, laughter and song is the order of this performance.

Fancy That takes you down memory lane with some big show stoppers from some of WATS’ previous shows.

Bali Hai, Don’t Cry for me Argentina, Oklahoma, Do-re-mi, The Black Hills of Dakota to mention a few.

Two shows only at the Wellington Soldiers Memorial Club, Dinner Show, Saturday September 7, 7pm. Tickets $35, matinee Sunday September 8, 2pm. Tickets $15. A very enjoyable show, don’t miss it.

Come and let WATS entertain you.

Tickets need to be bought by Thursday August 22.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Mallee voters have more choice

The emergence of a candidate for the Family First party hasbolstered the number of candidates vying for the seat of Mallee to eleven.
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Voters have just three weeks in which to make their informeddecision on who they will vote for, before we head to the polls on Saturday,September 7 for the federal election.

Some in the electorate may believe having 11 candidates isfar to many, that it will only create more confusion. However, on the other endof the scale, it provides choice and healthy debate, all the right ingredientsfor a democracy.

The seat of Mallee has been held by The Nationals fordecades and with a big majority, but there are some who believe this will bereduced at the September election, others who are confident the seat will notonly be retained, but with an increased margin.

Perhaps the only let down for voters in Stawell is thatbeing part of such a vast electorate, stetching all the way up to Swan Hill, wedon’t tend to see or hear from candidates as much as we would if they lived onour doorstep.

That distance hasn’t prevented several of the candidatesfrom campaigning hard in areas like Stawell, where they know every vote isimportant and are aware how committed Stawell people are to ensuring we are animportant piece in the big Mallee jigsaw.

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MPs briefed on Cobbora

Wellington’s mayor and general manager are hoping the Parliamentarians working on the Cobbora transition plan will support the 353 road sealing and other infrastructure.
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The State Member for Orange Andrew Gee told the Times the committee of Parliamentarians working on the Cobbora transition plan held its first meeting on Wednesday.

The committee was formed after the announcement that the NSW government had terminated Cobbora coal supply contracts with electricity generators. The drop in the price of coal had made the contracts increasingly unviable.

Those in attendance at the meeting included Member for Barwon Kevin Humphries, Member for Dubbo Troy Grant, the NSW Treasurer Mike Baird and Mr Gee.

Mr Gee said the MPs were given a briefing on the status of the Cobbora project and discussed ways in which the committee could move forward on issues like land management and mine-related projects.

“There’s still quite a bit of preliminary leg work to do but overall I thought it was a very productive first meeting,” Mr Gee said.

“Obviously community engagement – particularly with respect to local councils – is going to be very important as we go forward. We want to keep our local communities as informed and as engaged as possible,” Mr Gee said.

Mr Gee said he hoped that further details about the direction of the committee’s work would be available in the near future.

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When a screen is their world

Wired: Gabrielle Jamison with her children Marcus, William, and Georgina with their electronic devices. Photo: Steven SiewertToddlers are navigating technology at a rapid pace, but left to their own devices, some of these tech-savvy kids could end up in a dark and possibly addicted head space by adolescence.
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Psychologists say parents must pay attention to their children’s access to apps, online games and smartphones from a young age, to ensure they glean the benefits rather than the problems of our tech-heavy world.

The prolific nature of online gaming is such that psychiatrists in the US have listed Internet Gaming Disorder in their latest diagnostic manual, DSM-5, as a new condition warranting more research. They define it as a phenomenon where people become compulsively engrossed in online games, end up distressed and withdraw from other interests, education or jobs.

An Australian report on the impact of technology on young men’s mental health and wellbeing, by the federally funded Young and Well Co-operative Research Centre, shows males aged 16 to 25 are upping their average time online to three hours each day from two hours four years ago.

So when should parents become concerned? One Sydney pyschologist says children often move through obsessive stages for two or three months without being addicted. But sometimes a love of playing can morph into a serious problem.

The psychologist cited a case where a boy in primary school accrued $1000 on his parents’ credit card by buying simulated products in an online game he played for four hours a day, two of which were in bed at night while his parents thought he was asleep.

Brisbane teenager Caelan Reid has had a glimpse of the dark side of internet use. He realised how dependent he had become on gaming and the internet after spending a couple of months with the net constantly switched on. A week without electricity did the trick.

“When you start getting to days where you get into this cycle of staying up until 2am every night and you wake up feeling tired and that goes on for a month or two months, the time starts to blur and you start feeling trapped in that cycle,” he says.

Reid, 18, who hopes to pursue a career in gaming development, now tries to cut down his time online. He also wants to develop less-violent games.

Spending a lot of time online can be isolating and can lead to bad habits.

“I have definitely been there, but I am trying to go to bed at good times and eat better,” Reid says.

“It doesn’t make you feel good. It was definitely hard to step away from it . . . I would always do something to sort of pull me back in – even something tiny like saying ‘I’ll just check this,’ and that would escalate and cascade into being on the computer for a long time.”

Evidence is emerging that males of Reid’s age are the most likely to be online often, with 99 per cent of young men aged 16 to 25 in a Young and Well CRC survey reporting daily internet use. Internet use after 11pm increased to 63 per cent of young men in 2012 from 44 per cent in 2008.

The survey shows young men with significant psychological distress spend longer on the internet than their lesser-stressed peers, at more than 10 hours a day. They also accessed the net after 11pm six to seven nights a week.

Interestingly, these men also report being more likely to access health information and listen to music and play games with others on the net than their lesser-stressed peers.

While researchers don’t believe gaming causes depression, they say it can add to feelings of isolation for those who are already depressed, as they spend more time alone.

The key, researchers say, is for parents to teach their children to take advantage of the many upsides to internet and technology use, without becoming obsessed.

“Video games have been shown to positively influence young people’s emotional state, self-esteem, optimism, vitality, resilience, engagement, relationships, sense of competence, self-acceptance and social connections and functioning,” another report into video games and well-being by the Young and Well CRC says. “Emerging research suggests that how young people play, as well as whom they play with, may be more important in terms of well-being than what they play.”

Gaming researcher and psychologist Dr Andrew Campbell, of the University of Sydney, sees on average two to three gaming addicts a month, ranging in age from eight-year-olds to people in their 30s. People are classed as addicts once they become socially isolated and have a combination of symptoms such as taking no responsibility for creating a future; giving up education or work, spending maximum time indoors and losing sleep.

But he says there are many beneficial games for education, socialisation, behaviour and mind improvement, even though the games market is primarily pitched at 18- to 25-year-olds.

Simply giving kids phones or tablets without parental involvement is “no different to handing them a packet of cigarettes if you don’t explain the dangers”, he says.

“Think about what your child is looking at,” Campbell says.

“If you give them a tablet computer, make sure the program or the app they’re using is child-appropriate, has some educational benefit and they know it’s a reward. If you can do those three things, the child will not always expect it, they will know it’s a privilege and you as a parent will know they are getting something that’s actually beneficial to their education and social development.”

Campbell says parents should be aware researchers don’t believe games cause depression but that mental illness can lead to isolating behaviour and “gaming is an isolating behaviour”. Compulsive gaming is considered a serious mental illness once gamers are all-consumed and become socially isolated, depressed, anxious and stressed, he says.

“We’ve just got to look at how we use technology effectively so it doesn’t actually interfere with our health,” he says.

Black Dog Institute researcher Dr Bridianne O’Dea says the question should no longer be whether young people are spending time online but rather what they are doing online and is it helpful or detrimental, and what are the consequences for their daily functioning and well-being?

O’Dea, who completed her PhD on social networking sites and adolescent well-being, believes it’s too soon to introduce blanket policies that attempt to limit the amount of time young people spend online.

“Before we jump into saying who or what is responsible for problematic online use, we need to get a greater understanding of usage patterns, ” she says.

“For example, if a young person suffering from anxiety, depression or insomnia finds the internet to be a resourceful coping mechanism for their feelings, trying to limit their internet use could potentially be detrimental. It is important we try to understand the nature of their use and other issues which may be underlying this.”

Gabrielle and Michael Jamison, of Castle Hill in Sydney, and their sons William, 8, and Marcus, 10, and daughter Georgina, 13, possess two iPads, three iPhones, a computer and Nintendo games among them.

They apply usage limits for their children, particularly for Georgina, who, like her peers, wants to be connected on social media such as Instagram, Snapchat and Kik.

“Times have changed,” Gabrielle says. “It’s a real conflict between worrying about how much time they’re on there and knowing that they need it for homework. I know all the guidelines say don’t have computers in bedrooms, but they’re given a computer at high school and they have to do their homework on the laptop.”

Georgina says it’s tempting to go online daily. “Sometimes you just get distracted from homework and just take a break,” she says.

William and Marcus like playing on their devices but they also pine for outdoor time after school.

“I think our kids are fairly balanced with their technology use … they have some times when they’re on it a fair bit and sometimes we confiscate,” Michael says.

Georgina understands her parents need to control technology use. “It’s good because sometimes you get headaches and stuff,” she says.

Your children may have a problem if they:Seem happy online but angry offline.Focus on being online instead of doing homework or dining with family.Spend more time online than with friends.Refuse to admit how much time they are spending online.Lose sleep to go online.

Source: video-game-addiction.org

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Wild winds expose asbestos at Rockdale

Asbestos alarm: Monday’s high winds tore parts of the roof off Rockdale Council’s Bexley depot, exposing asbestos. Picture: John Veage.Yellow tape warning of asbestos surrounds part of Rockdale Council’s Bexley depot after Monday’s wild winds tore parts off the building’s roof.
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The depot is in Rye Avenue, Bexley, and sections of Preddy’s Lane at the depot’s rear have been taped off.

The asbestos was exposed when the roof lifted off.

A council spokesman said the exposed friable asbestos had been contained.

‘‘A tarp has been fastened onto the exposed area of the roof, professional asbestos removal contractors and a hygenist, who is monitoring the works, are remediating the site that will be operational by the end of the week,’’ the spokesman said.

Are you pleased with the council’s response to the asbestos threat?

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Heritage engine makes its way home to Wellington

The famous John Fowler steam engine locomotive is on its way home and will make a grand entry into Wellington on Saturday week at the Rotary Markets.
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Fowler committee chairman Cr Mark Griggs says the Fowler’s return is wonderful news to many people who have admired the old engine.

“Many locals and people within this region and around Australia would remember the engine running at different local events, and at other fixtures it visited back in the 1990s and 2000s.

Children used to get excited when they would hear the steam engine’s whistle in the distance and be out on the footpath to watch as it rolled closer, wave as it passed.

“I remember seeing plenty of adults doing the same,” Mr Griggs said.

“A specially-made trailer is currently being constructed so in the future, children and carers will be able to have rides in the trailer, towed by the Fowler.

“This will become part of the ‘Friends of the Fowler’ committee fundraising for wood supply and servicing,” he said.

“The engine is practically brand new since being virtually rebuilt from boiler to pistons.

“This was only achievable from a NSW Heritage Council grant of $50,000 matched by a dollar-for-dollar input from Wellington Council, which also contributed additional funding when it was discovered the machine was in more desperate need of a rebuild than originally thought.

“Ken Ainsworth from Ainsworth Engineering will be the official guest of the welcome home ceremony, accompanied a guest from the Powerhouse Museum at Ultimo.

“This is going to be a big day for Wellington as the ‘Welcome Home’ mayoral civic reception coincides with the monthly Wellington Rotary Markets being conducted on the other side of the library,” Cr Griggs said

The mayor sends an open invitation to all residents of the Wellington Council area, and their friends, to witness the occasion.

The Wellington Antique Car Club members will be driving their old veteran and vintage cars to the area in support of this wonderful old steam workhorse of Wellington.

In Monday’s Times, a competition will begin with a chance to ride on the John Fowler on its grand entry into Wellington.

Just cut out the voucher and drop the entry form into the Times office in Percy Street.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

$5million promised for Albury hospital

Sussan Ley Sophie Mirabella
Nanjing Night Net

THE Coalition will provide $5 million for a cardiac catheterisation lab at Albury hospital if elected on September 7.

The election promise was made this morning in Wodonga by member for Indi Sophie Mirabella and member for Farrer Sussan Ley.

They were joined by Albury Wodonga Health board chairman Ulf Ericsson and chief executiveDr Stuart Spring for the announcement.

The lab will mean local patients will be able to access treatment closer to home rather than having to go to Melbourne or Sydney.

The election promise follows a recent visit to Albury by shadow health minister Peter Dutton.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.