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Two British teachers jailed in Oman for theft of animals after rescuing two dogs

Jennifer Green has been detained in Oman

Two friends claim they have been wrongly detained in a hel..

Jennifer Green

Jennifer Green has been detained in Oman

Two friends claim they have been wrongly detained in a hellhole jail in Oman.

Jennifer Green, 33, is currently locked up in the Middle Eastern country along with a female friend after they were accused of stealing two dogs.

Both of them deny this and say they were actually trying to rescue the animals after they were left out in scorching temperatures by their cruel owner, according to Mrs Greens brother Mike.

The women are employed by the British Council, in Muscat, as English Language teachers.

Mr Green, 35, told the Sun: Im worried sick. Shes being locked up in prison for the last twelve days and because its Ramadan, nothing is happening.

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Two British teachers, Jennifer Green

Jennifer Green was arrested for stealing a dog

Mr Green, from Stockton-on-Tees, revealed the women had initially been released after they agreed to pay the owners of the dogs £4,000.

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He said this deal was later put on hold when a judge asked police to investigate if they had drank alcohol.

Mr Green, who is planning to fly to Oman, added: Im really worried and so is the entire family. Initially she was just brought to the police station but was let go.

She phoned me when she was released and she didnt seem too bothered about it at the time but it has obviously escalated since then.

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Two British teachers, Jennifer Green

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The unstoppable rise of TikTok moms

Ask somebody to think of a social media influencer, and they’d probably picture young, manicured tee..

Ask somebody to think of a social media influencer, and they’d probably picture young, manicured teens and twenty-somethings making content for audiences for the same demographic. We’d expect them to have perfectly styled pictures, high-production videos, popular hashtags, and thousands of followers who are ready to smash a like on any content posted. And we think this because, on average, that’s what influencers look like.

But on TikTok, things are changing. While TikTok’s audiences are still largely the digital native tweens and teens common on most social platforms, the creators aren’t just other fellow Gen-Zers. A new type of TikTok influencer is emerging: the TikTok mom.

TikTok, for the uninitiated, is the latest mainstream social media app that has become known for its Gen-Z heavy audience (you can read an explainer of it here). Similar to the millennial-favourite (and now-defunct) Vine, users on TikTok can share videos up to 60-seconds long, and is commonly used to post pranks, short, Vine-style comedy sketches, and the platform’s bread and butter: lip-syncing videos.

While, “mommy bloggers” who post about being a parent are common on YouTube, Instagram, and blogging platforms, the TikTok mom is something different. TikTok is a platform predominantly used for, and even built for, memes. So rather than making videos for TikTok to discuss parenting, TikTok moms lean into the trend – creating the same meme videos that are being made by their Gen-Z offspring.

One of the biggest mom stars of TikTok is Varli Singh, known to her followers simply as “Varli” – a mother of two living in New York after spending several years in Texas. Despite being a normally dressed, mid-40s mom, Varli has nearly half a million followers (441K) on her TikTok account @Varlicious and posts near daily videos that regularly get tens of thousands of likes.

While her content started as a series of “prank” clips and music videos – typically featuring her kids and sometimes other children – she has found a hungry audience off the back of her video meme series “Don’t Fear, Varli Is Here”. In these videos, which are seemingly responsible for skyrocketing her from mid-tier influencer to one of the app’s most popular accounts, she casts herself as a saviour swooping in at the last minute to “save” children from intimidating situations. Most of her recent videos have over 50K likes, with some getting over 100K.

Despite her meme-filled presence, Varli was, until last year, a food writer. Her personal website doesn’t once mention her TikTok stardom and instead merely hails her achievements in covering the Indian food scene in the United States; and how her “Asia and Middle East” upbringing has given her a deep understanding of “eclectic cuisine”. Her YouTube channel (which she started nearly a decade ago in October 2010) is entirely dedicated to food interviews bar a few videos from the last six months showing “behind the scenes” coverage of how some of her music videos were made, and a call out post calling YouTuber Danny Gonzalez a “hater” for mocking her TikTok content.

If Varli’s videos seem heavily staged and badly acted, that’s because they are. But despite her easily mockable content, the numbers reflect a hungry audience. Even on top of her half a million followers and tens of thousands of likes per video, her recent meme has inspired others to create similar content. At the time of writing, the hashtag she uses for her videos #dontfearvarlishere has over 11 million views (its misspelling, #dontfearvarliishere, has 400K).

While Varli is perhaps TikTok’s biggest mom-fluencer, she is far from the only one. Just Joyce (@author_lady_j) has accrued over 20K followers with fewer than 250 videos. While it’s hard to assess how many times a video has been viewed on TikTok, as the platform only shows the number of “hearts” (ie “likes”) a video receives, Joyce has still managed to get nearly 400K hearts off her relatively limited content. The fittingly named Mommy (@mommy1961), too, has a bafflingly large follower count given her video content – with 112K followers – despite the formula of her videos, which are largely just her cooking and smiling at the camera, along with a couple standard TikTok lip-sync vids.

Like Varli, most popular TikTok moms have had other day jobs until joining TikTok in the last year. But they are increasingly garnering the audiences far larger than the average full-time influencer. (more…)

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The unstoppable rise of TikTok moms

Ask somebody to think of a social media influencer, and they’d probably picture young, manicured tee..

Ask somebody to think of a social media influencer, and they’d probably picture young, manicured teens and twenty-somethings making content for audiences for the same demographic. We’d expect them to have perfectly styled pictures, high-production videos, popular hashtags, and thousands of followers who are ready to smash a like on any content posted. And we think this because, on average, that’s what influencers look like.

But on TikTok, things are changing. While TikTok’s audiences are still largely the digital native tweens and teens common on most social platforms, the creators aren’t just other fellow Gen-Zers. A new type of TikTok influencer is emerging: the TikTok mom.

TikTok, for the uninitiated, is the latest mainstream social media app that has become known for its Gen-Z heavy audience (you can read an explainer of it here). Similar to the millennial-favourite (and now-defunct) Vine, users on TikTok can share videos up to 60-seconds long, and is commonly used to post pranks, short, Vine-style comedy sketches, and the platform’s bread and butter: lip-syncing videos.

While, “mommy bloggers” who post about being a parent are common on YouTube, Instagram, and blogging platforms, the TikTok mom is something different. TikTok is a platform predominantly used for, and even built for, memes. So rather than making videos for TikTok to discuss parenting, TikTok moms lean into the trend – creating the same meme videos that are being made by their Gen-Z offspring.

One of the biggest mom stars of TikTok is Varli Singh, known to her followers simply as “Varli” – a mother of two living in New York after spending several years in Texas. Despite being a normally dressed, mid-40s mom, Varli has nearly half a million followers (441K) on her TikTok account @Varlicious and posts near daily videos that regularly get tens of thousands of likes.

While her content started as a series of “prank” clips and music videos – typically featuring her kids and sometimes other children – she has found a hungry audience off the back of her video meme series “Don’t Fear, Varli Is Here”. In these videos, which are seemingly responsible for skyrocketing her from mid-tier influencer to one of the app’s most popular accounts, she casts herself as a saviour swooping in at the last minute to “save” children from intimidating situations. Most of her recent videos have over 50K likes, with some getting over 100K.

Despite her meme-filled presence, Varli was, until last year, a food writer. Her personal website doesn’t once mention her TikTok stardom and instead merely hails her achievements in covering the Indian food scene in the United States; and how her “Asia and Middle East” upbringing has given her a deep understanding of “eclectic cuisine”. Her YouTube channel (which she started nearly a decade ago in October 2010) is entirely dedicated to food interviews bar a few videos from the last six months showing “behind the scenes” coverage of how some of her music videos were made, and a call out post calling YouTuber Danny Gonzalez a “hater” for mocking her TikTok content.

If Varli’s videos seem heavily staged and badly acted, that’s because they are. But despite her easily mockable content, the numbers reflect a hungry audience. Even on top of her half a million followers and tens of thousands of likes per video, her recent meme has inspired others to create similar content. At the time of writing, the hashtag she uses for her videos #dontfearvarlishere has over 11 million views (its misspelling, #dontfearvarliishere, has 400K).

While Varli is perhaps TikTok’s biggest mom-fluencer, she is far from the only one. Just Joyce (@author_lady_j) has accrued over 20K followers with fewer than 250 videos. While it’s hard to assess how many times a video has been viewed on TikTok, as the platform only shows the number of “hearts” (ie “likes”) a video receives, Joyce has still managed to get nearly 400K hearts off her relatively limited content. The fittingly named Mommy (@mommy1961), too, has a bafflingly large follower count given her video content – with 112K followers – despite the formula of her videos, which are largely just her cooking and smiling at the camera, along with a couple standard TikTok lip-sync vids.

Like Varli, most popular TikTok moms have had other day jobs until joining TikTok in the last year. But they are increasingly garnering the audiences far larger than the average full-time influencer. (more…)

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Theresa May tries to buy MPs with counterfeit money

Theresa May has made a big, generous offer on Brexit to Parliament’s various warring tribes: provide..

Theresa May has made a big, generous offer on Brexit to Parliament’s various warring tribes: provided, that is, that you don’t look at the detail too hard, or indeed, at all.

The central thrust of the speech is that she is putting forward a new deal for MPs to vote on when the withdrawal agreement returns to Parliament. There’s a small clue that this isn’t true: there hasn’t been a European summit since the last time Parliament had to vote on the deal. This is the same deal, but the Prime Minister has changed the font on one or two parts and opted to emphasise others.

She will seek changes to the political declaration, but the political declaration is not legally binding. It has no more force than when a divorcing couple shake hands and promise to keep things civil – what matters is the legal accord that formalises the end of the marriage and arranges joint custody and the division of assets.

May also chucked in a if-you-don’t-look-at-it-closely-then-it-looks-like-a-promise that MPs will be given an opportunity to vote for another referendum if they pass the withdrawal agreement bill at second reading. There is nothing to stop any MP attaching an amendment to the withdrawal agreement bill to introduce a stipulation that the deal be subject to a second referendum anyway: this is akin to your boss telling you that if you take a pay cut you will have the opportunity to take the bus to work: it’s conceding a power you already had in order to get you to do something you don’t want to do.

But the promise, such as it is, is at the wrong time – MPs who want to stop Brexit will know that they will have another opportunity to get a second referendum and MPs who want to push ahead with Brexit have a ready-made excuse not to vote for it.

The problem though, is that even if May had given a better speech, ultimately, there is no viable path to pass the withdrawal agreement while she remains as leader. Even if she were offering concrete guarantees, that her political career is in its terminal phase means that any concessions she makes are valueless. She is in the worst of all possible worlds: the MPs she is seeking to buy don't believe she can follow through, and the MPs who oppose her concessions fear that she might.

But even when May steps down, the problem will remain unchanged. There is a rump of Conservative MPs who for reasons of ideology and expediency believe that the withdrawal agreement – the hardest available negotiated Brexit – is not a proper Brexit, and won’t vote for it. It will never be in the Labour party’s interests to vote for a Brexit as hard as the one on offer and the minority of Labour MPs who believe it is in their interests in their own seats have consistently quailed when given the option to rebel and back the deal.

Unless any of that changes, this remains a parliament that will veto a negotiated Brexit, will veto stopping Brexit and will veto a non-negotiated exit. And while May’s maladroit political style is part of why that state of affairs came about, merely replacing her at the top of the Tory party won’t change that fact overniRead More – Source

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