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Sony Buys Crunchyroll from AT&T for $1.175 Billion

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Sony will acquire AT&T’s Crunchyroll anime streaming service for $1.175 billion, Sony and AT&T reported Wednesday. Crunchyroll will directly become part of Sony’s Funimation, which already licenses many popular shows such as Attack on Titan, Fullmetal Alchemist, and One Piece.

Now that Sony owns both Crunchyroll and Funimation, at a time when several other media firms are attempting to sort out their anime content, the company has considerable control over anime in the US.

Netflix has also invested heavily in both licensing and developing its own material for anime.

“We are excited to embark on this new journey,” Joanne Waage, Crunchyroll general manager, said in a statement. “With a loyal fan base of over 3 million subscribers, 50 million media followers, and 90 million registered users, Crunchyroll has created a world-class brand.

These phenomenal fans have helped propel anime into a worldwide phenomenon.

It is an exciting prospect and a win for the amazing art form of anime to merge the power of the Crunchyroll brand and the experience of our global team with Funimation.

“In a statement, Colin Decker, CEO of Funimation Global Group, said The union of Funimation and Crunchyroll is a victory for anime fans around the world that will elevate the art and culture of this medium for decades to come.

It will be a win for the fans to combine these two great companies and allow us to compete on a truly global scale. I am proud to welcome the wonderful team of Crunchyroll to a joint mission to assist everyone in the extraordinary anime community.

For some time, AT&T has been shopping around Crunchyroll, and AT&T and Sony have reportedly been in negotiations about the offer for months.

In August, The Information revealed that AT&T wanted Sony to pay Crunchyroll $1.5 billion, and in October, the two sides reportedly were close to a nearly 1 billion contract.

According to the New York Times, AT&T bought Crunchyroll in 2018 from the Chernin Group as part of Otter Media for a reported amount of more than $1 billion. The sale gave ownership of a range of digital assets to AT&T.

John Stankey, AT&T’s current CEO but then WarnerMedia head, said the company would use the purchase of Otter Media to “harness the expertise of Otter” while reinforcing its own digital properties.

AT&T and WarnerMedia are now concentrating on developing HBO Max, the crown jewel of the company’s streaming services, under Stankey’s leadership.

Source: The Verge

Lifestyle

Majority Of Malaysians Still Adhere To SOP, But Some Are Tired

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SHAH ALAM, May 18  –The recent viral on social media of pictures and videos of various quarters violating the prescribed standard operating procedures (SOPs) has sparked public outrage, especially with the high number of COVID-19 cases recorded in the country.

Nevertheless, majority of Malaysians are steadfast in adhering to the SOPs set by the government, which they have been doing since last year and has now become part of the new norms in their daily life.

Universiti Pendidikan Sultan Idris (UPSI) counseling psychologist Dr Fauziah Mohd Saad said this could be seen during the recent Hari Raya celebration which saw majority of the people complying with the government’s directive not to go on house visits.

“However, in terms of enforcement, there must be empowerment by the authorities such as by the management of shopping centres in controlling the number of patrons at their premises which should control the number of visitors,” she told Bernama.

A survey by Bernama at shopping malls in Shah Alam found there were not as many people at the premises as had been viralled on the on social media last weekend in conjunction with the Aidilfitri celebration.

A counselling and motivation expert, Hushim Salleh, opined that the SOP violation by some people was  because they had been under the movement control order for too long, causing them to feel restricted.

“They are suffering from pandemic exhaustion to the point of triggering psychological and emotional effects that bring to a level where they no longer care about the situation of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Not that they do not know about the number of the COVID-19 infections and advice on complying with the SOPs as all the information can be obtained from their smartphones.

“It is the current situation that can sometimes leads to irrational thinking,” he added.

Selangor still recorded the highest number of COVID-19 cases with a total of 1,650 new cases recorded yesterday.

An expert in public health at the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Universiti Putra Malaysia, Associate Professor Dr Malina Osman regarded the SOP non-compliance by some quarters in Selangor, especially in Shah Alam, as the cause of the spread of COVID-19 cases.

Meanwhile, a survey by Bernama at the COVID-19 Assessment Center (CAC) at the Malawati Stadium near here found that the situation was no longer as crowded as was viralled on social media before.

This followed a decision by the state government in setting up tents outside the CAC for the convenience of patients and staff.

Sources: BERNAMA

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‘Only Time Will Tell’ – Muhammad Fadhil

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KUALA LUMPUR, May 17 — “Only time will tell,” replied national track cyclist Muhammad Fadhil Mohd Zonis, when asked if he would be able to one day take up the mantle from national cycling champion, Mohd Azizulhasni Awang.

However, the 24-year-old who recently won the gold in the keirin and silver in the 1km time trial event at the International Cycling Union (UCI) Track Cycling Nations Cup in Hong Kong, said he would not think of the matter too much, and instead focus on improving his performance.

“Everyone has their own advantages, and Mohd Azizulhasni has been my idol as well. I am just focusing on the process to become a more mature rider,” he said when contacted by Bernama today.

He said a message from Mohd Azizulhasni telling him to give 100 per cent commitment and stay focused prior to the race in Hong Kong also inspired him to do well at the competition.

On Saturday (May 15) Muhammad Fadhil rocked the Hong Kong Velodrome with a time of 10.298s to emerge as keirin champion, edging out two Japanese riders, namely 2020 World Championship silver medalist and four-time Asian Champion Yuta Wakimoto as well as 2019 World Championship silver medalist Yudai Nitta, who respectively won silver and bronze.

A day earlier, the Sime Darby Foundation rider, who is also the national and Asian record holder in the 1km time trial, won the silver medal in the event.

He clocked in with a time of 1 minute 1.772s, 0.998s behind German gold medalist Felix Grob, while Spanish rider Juan Peralta took home the bronze.

Mohd Azizulhasni, who is known as the ‘The Pocket Rocketman’ in a post on Instagram said he believed that Muhammad Fadhil and Anis Amira Rosidi – who won bronze in the women’s 500m time trial last Saturday – have the potential to go further, besides having the discipline, dedication and humility to carve out successful careers for themselves.

Meanwhile, Muhammad Fadhil said winning two medals in Hong Kong had never crossed his mind after the long hiatus from competitive action, and his original mission was just to gain enough experience in the tournament.

He also dreams of making his first appearance at the Olympics in Paris, France in 2024, after missing out on the Games in Tokyo, which is scheduled to take place July 23-Aug 8.

Sources: BERNAMA

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Health

Only Pfizer-BioNTech Vaccine Suitable For Pregnant Women

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PUTRAJAYA, May 17 — Only the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine is suitable to be given to women who are in their 14th to 33rd week of pregnancy, said Coordinating Minister for the National COVID-19 Immunisation Programme Khairy Jamaluddin.

He told a press conference on the development of the National COVID-19 National Immunisation Program, which was held virtually with Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr Adham Baba, that the other two vaccines, Sinovac and AstraZeneca, are not recommended for pregnant women.

He said the COVID-19 Immunisation Task Force (CITF) would coordinate with the relevant agencies, such as the Health Ministry, for the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine to be given to pregnant women.

Khairy, who is Science, Technology and Innovation Minister, said the pregnant women could also wait to get the vaccination after the birth of their child.

The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine is also suitable for nursing mothers, he said, adding that for the Sinovac and AstraZeneca vaccines, the safety data is limited and recommendations will be made after consultation.

He said these were the clinical guidelines issued in response to public inquiries on vaccines for pregnant and nursing mothers.

However, they are advised to seek doctors’ advice if they have any doubts, he added.

According to Khairy, 10.18 million individuals have registered to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.

He said a total of 1.202 million people have received the first dose of the vaccine, with 733,237 of them having completed both doses.

So far, a total of 1,935,632 doses of the vaccine had been administered, he added.

On the industrial Vaccination Center (PPV), Khairy said the CITF had approved an application by Pharmaniaga to open it as a pilot project.

“CITF approved Pharmaniaga’s application because it is the factory that is involved in the bottling of the Sinovac vaccine. Pharmaniaga buys its own vaccine to be given to its factory workers, ”he said.

Source: BERNAMA

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