National / International News

Missing Jet Dredges Raw Memories, Sympathy Of Air France Families

NPR News - Fri, 2014-03-21 12:00

Dr. Bernd Gans, the president of the Air France 447 Families Association, discusses an open letter that the group wrote in support of the families of passengers on Malaysia Airlines Flight 370.

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Without Orders, Ukrainian Troops Are Anchorless In Crimea

NPR News - Fri, 2014-03-21 12:00

As Russia has consolidated its control over Crimea, the Ukrainian government in Kiev has sent mixed messages. Many troops on the ground are feeling increasingly abandoned, with no clear orders at all.

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The Zen Master Takes New York City

NPR News - Fri, 2014-03-21 12:00

The New York Knicks were once a marquee NBA franchise; now, they're a dysfunctional mess. How do you save the Knicks? Bring in Phil Jackson, of course. Sportswriter Stefan Fatsis discusses the hire.

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As Carmakers Turn Up The Recalls, Consumers Tune Out

NPR News - Fri, 2014-03-21 12:00

The number of vehicles recalled has more than doubled over the past 20 years — but most notices go unnoticed by the public. "It just starts to become noise," says one auto expert.

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So You Want To Evade Your Country's Twitter Ban? A Workaround

NPR News - Fri, 2014-03-21 11:57

Governments can block sites that they deem dangerous, and for Turkey, that now includes Twitter. How does it work? And how are Turkish residents using it anyway?

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With Clock Ticking Down, Obama Polishes Judicial Legacy

NPR News - Fri, 2014-03-21 11:55

The profile of the judiciary has already changed significantly under the president, especially when it comes to the number of African-Americans, Hispanics and Asian-Americans he's appointed.

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Black Preschoolers Far More Likely To Be Suspended

NPR News - Fri, 2014-03-21 11:39

A new study shows that black students are far more likely to be suspended or expelled from school — and that gap begins before grade school.

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VIDEO: Singer defends skin whitening cream

BBC - Fri, 2014-03-21 11:29
Cameroonian pop singer Dencia has defended her promotion of a skin whitening cream called Whitenicious, which critics have branded an ''abomination'' and ''irresponsible''.

Former White House Official: Putin Wants 'New Russian Empire'

NPR News - Fri, 2014-03-21 11:28

Former Deputy Secretary of State Strobe Talbott and former National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley tell NPR that the U.S. and EU must stick together on sanctions.

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VIDEO: Film Review - the week's new films

BBC - Fri, 2014-03-21 11:25
Film critic Jason Solomons reviews the week's new film releases, including Labor Day, Yves Saint Laurent and Starred Up.

FBI agent cleared in Chechen's death

BBC - Fri, 2014-03-21 10:56
A prosecutor has cleared an FBI agent in the May shooting death of a Chechen man linked to one of the accused Boston Marathon bombers, media report.

Tories and SNP 'in race to bottom'

BBC - Fri, 2014-03-21 10:55
Scottish independence and a Tory win at the next UK election would force the country into a "race to the bottom", Labour leader Ed Miliband says.

Can Europe Wean Itself Off Russian Gas?

NPR News - Fri, 2014-03-21 10:50

Europe has been trying to reduce its energy dependence on Russia for years. The crisis in Crimea has given the effort a greater sense of urgency.

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Europe should control army says MSP

BBC - Fri, 2014-03-21 10:46
Sovereignty over defence should be removed from nation states and handed to a European defence force, a Labour MSP says.

Van Persie out for up to six weeks

BBC - Fri, 2014-03-21 10:34
Manchester United striker Robin van Persie is ruled out for between four and six weeks with a knee injury.

Reports: FBI Agent Who Killed Chechen During Boston Bombing Probe Is Cleared

NPR News - Fri, 2014-03-21 10:32

Twenty-seven-year-old Ibragim Todashev was killed while being questioned by agents in his Orlando home about his friendship with suspected Boston Marathon bomber Tamerlan Tsarnaev.

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Coming up with a billion dollar ad campaign? Priceless.

Marketplace - American Public Media - Fri, 2014-03-21 10:22

Kevin Allen is a ‘pitchman.’ In his three decades in advertising, the bulk of which were spent with McCann Erickson, Allen assembled teams that created countless campaigns. But it was one slogan for one account that changed his life and had a strangely profound impact on American culture.

The first commercial aired during the 1997 World Series. It featured a father and a son attending a Major League Baseball game and the sound of Billy Crudup’s voice nostalgically reading:

Two tickets: $46

Two hot dogs, two popcorns, two sodas: $27

One autographed baseball: $50

Real conversation with 11-year-old son: Priceless.

Video of Mastercard baseball commercial

The structure, capped off with that one word - "priceless" – struck a nerve. It was suddenly emblazoned on t-shirts, used in campaign commercials and spoofed on TV. And it's stuck around for 17 years. It not only helped solidify Allen's reputation in the ad world, it helped him finally answer a question that had been nagging him for years:

“When I was coming up in the business, my mom would call me up every so often and say, ‘So, Kevin. What is it you do?’ And I know what it was. She was talking to my neighbor whose son was a doctor, and mom couldn’t have any bragging rights. When I was able to say 'I was part of creating the ‘Priceless’ campaign for MasterCard' – of course she tells everybody I wrote it, I produced it, I acted in it – you know, it’s life-changing.”

Allen says he and his partner knew they had something big when they came up with the idea, but it wasn’t until they were in the pitch review session that they sensed just how big:

“It’s very, very rare that you present something in the pitch room that ends up on air. I think it’s happened to me only a couple of times in my career. It was probably one of the longest reviews in a long time – it was about six months – and everybody knew it would change the lives of everyone who was involved in it. And it came down to two of us. And when we pitched the idea, (my partner) leaned over to me and said, ‘I hope we don’t mess this up.’ We all knew there was something profoundly special about this idea, but no one knew that it would go as far as it went. It’s still in dozens and dozens of countries around the world.”

Allen says the industry has changed a lot since he first started in the biz. Advertisers are losing more and more control:

 “I would call the old days the supply economy. It was a nice, neat, little world where we controlled everything. Back when I was a young account executive I would monitor what were called Out Of Stocks or OOS. And that meant if a product was out of stock in Cleveland I turned the advertising off. As soon as it went back on the shelf again, on went the advertising and everything flies off the shelf. And when I tell those stories now to young marketers they giggle and say, ‘you gotta be kidding me.’

Why do the young advertisers laugh?

"And it’s because of this ultimate democratization that has occurred in general as a result of technology and the internet. You know, the customer is firmly in charge, and they’ll tell us so."


Kevin Allen's new book about starting his career in advertising and what he learned as he moved up is called "The Case of the Missing Cutlery: A Leadership Course for the Rising Star.

England must win T20 opener - Broad

BBC - Fri, 2014-03-21 09:56
England captain Stuart Broad says winning their opening World T20 game with New Zealand on Saturday is "non-negotiable".

How Your Love Of Burgers May Be Helping To Drive Wildlife Extinct

NPR News - Fri, 2014-03-21 09:43

Many meat-eating animal lovers may not realize that their hankering for hamburgers hurts wildlife. A conservation group says some species have already been driven extinct by the livestock industry.

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Houdini, debt, and dandelions

Marketplace - American Public Media - Fri, 2014-03-21 09:42

Here’s a look at what’s coming up next week (March 24 - 28):

Let’s start things off with some magic. Harry Houdini was born on March 24th, 1874. Not an easy guy to lock up. Internet sources say he showed soldiers how to escape from German handcuffs during World War I.

On Tuesday—lots of stuff to talk about. The House Financial Services Committee is scheduled to discuss “Why Debt Matters.”

The Conference Board releases its monthly Consumer Confidence Index.

They had lots of confidence. The TV series “Cagney and Lacey” premiered in 1982. The crime drama shook up the norm, placing two female detectives in lead roles.

And feminist and “Ms Magazine” founder Gloria Steinem turns 80.

Mid-week the Commerce Department reports on durable goods orders for February.

On March 27th, 2006 Graceland, home to Elvis Presley, was declared a national historic landmark. And sixteen years ago on the same date the FDA approved Viagra.

Finally now that we’re a week into spring, gardening may be on your to-do list. Well, March 28th is Weed Appreciation Day. Did you know that some weeds are edible? We here at Datebook headquarters say pull those ugly dandelions. 

You can live the Datebook lifestyle at

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