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7th October 2010

EA Sports Teams Up With Susan G. Komen For The Cure

EA SportsElectronic Arts Inc. has begun a special promotional partnership with Susan G. Komen for the Cure® in support of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month through specially marked EA Sports™ games during the month of October. Starting in early October, select Best Buy store locations will have available for sale EA Sports video game titles featuring the Komen Running Ribbon logo to acknowledge the $100,000 dollar donation from EA Sports.Komen for the Cure

“This year marks the third year of commitment on behalf of EA Sports in continuing to create awareness in the fight against breast cancer,” said Christopher Erb, EA Sports Senior Director of Partnership Marketing. “EA is honored to work with Susan G. Komen for the Cure to spread awareness and to give EA Sports consumers an opportunity to participate in finding the NHL 11 Komen For The Cure Covercures.”

Nancy G. Brinker promised her dying sister, Susan G. Komen, she would do everything in her power to end breast cancer forever. In 1982, that promise became Susan G. Komen for the Cure, which is now the world’s largest breast cancer organization and the largest source of nonprofit funds dedicated to the fight against breast cancer with more than $1.5 billion invested to date.

“Over the past 30 years, significant advancements have been made in the fight against breast cancer,” said Katrina McGhee, Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing FIFA 11 Komen For The Cure CoverOfficer for Komen for the Cure. “Without partners like EA Sports, Komen wouldn’t have been able to pay for half a million breast screenings for women last year. Together, we are literally saving lives.”

Best Buy, the exclusive retail partner for the EA Sports and Komen for the Cure promotion, will have the limited edition video game packages in select stores throughout the month of October. EA Sports titles marked with the Komen Running Ribbon logo will include FIFA Soccer 11, , NCAA Football 11, NHL 11 for the PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system and Xbox 360® videogame and entertainment system and will be featured on Madden NFL 11 and Tiger Woods PGA TOUR® 11 across the PlayStation 3 system, Xbox 360 and Wii™ gaming consoles.

A check of both Canadian and American Best Buy web sites did not return any results for the specially marked covers, so it would appear that the “select” locations designation does not apply to online, and will also most likely be only at Best Buy stores located in the USA.

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5th October 2010

PlayBoost Releases GameBar And Indigo Donates Books To Schools

playboostSan Francisco-based social game developer TheBroth announced today that Victoria, BC mobile and social media game monetization company Playboost, a subsidiary of NeverBlue, has developed Gamebar, a custom game-play monetization toolbar for Barn Buddy, a top game on Facebook with 1.8 million monthly users and the #1 game on Hi5. The new Barn Buddy “Gamebar” toolbar was officially launched on September 3, 2010. The toolbar is uniquely designed to add new income streams for TheBroth beyond revenue share off of search feeds, plus increase Barn Buddy’s user engagement.GameBar

“With Barn Buddy, TheBroth is clearly at the top of their game and has captured the imagination and market share of Facebook fans,” said Chris Dykstra, Head of Strategic Partnerships at Playboost. “It’s exciting to work with a group of individuals that challenges us to find new solutions for revenue and user engagement. Their attitude and drive underscores why TheBroth is a leader in Facebook farm games.”

The newly created Gamebar is even further engaging its most avid fans. “I find even I‘m playing the game more! We look forward to increased monetization with Playboost’s Gamebar,” said Markus Weichselbaum, CEO at TheBroth.

In addition to Playboost’s successful Gamebar product, the studio recently launched their Mobile Offer Platform which allows Android and iPhone game developers to monetize their free to play games.

Chapters IndigoThe bookshelves at 155 public school libraries across Canada will now receive a much needed boost in books through the second annual Indigo Love of Reading Foundation Adopt a School program. From September 12th to October 2nd, Indigo, Chapters and Coles stores across Canada “adopted” public schools in their communities. Through the generous donations of customers and employees school libraries were rejuvenated with funds raised by in-store activities and donations.

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9th September 2010

Memorial Trust Fund Opened for the Family of Brian Wood

A memorial trust fund has been opened in Brian Wood’s name at the North Shore Credit Union to help his widow Erin and their unborn child through these rough times. As many of you know, Brian, who was lead designer for Company of Heroes Online, did not survive a car accident which happened on Whidbey Island last Friday. If you are able, please donate through any of the three following channels:
Brian and Erin
* In person by making a deposit to “The Brian Wood Memorial Trust” at any North Shore Credit Union branch in the Lower Mainland area of British Columbia. Please visit the Memorial Page for the PayPal information

* Online via PayPal. The donations will be deposited directly into the Trust account set up at North Shore Credit Union. Please note you do not need to have a PayPal account to donate online.

* By Mail: send your donation to:

North Shore Credit Union
3059 Edgemont Blvd.
North Vancouver, BC
V7R 2N5, Canada

Please make cheques payable to The Brian Wood Memorial Trust Fund.

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8th September 2010

Canadian Schools Get Helping Hand From Staples and Best Buy

Best Buy CanadaBest Buy Canada is looking to award $200,000 in technology grants to teachers and students who are passionate about technology in the classroom. Starting Monday, September 13, Canada’s fastest growing retailer of consumer electronics will begin accepting entries for its 2010 Best in Class Fund program.

The need for effectively incorporating the latest technology into Canadian schools was highlighted in a 2009 survey of advanced use of ICTs (Integrated Communications Technologies) conducted by the International Telecommunications Union. The survey showed that Canada dropped to 19th place, down ten places from its ninth place standing in 2002, indicating that Canada is losing its competitive edge regarding technology into the classroom.

The Best in Class Fund program was conceived in 2008 to inspire teachers and students to develop compelling educational projects that will advance learning through the integration of technology in the classroom. This type of learning is recognized as key for scholastic success by numerous experts including Dr. David Vogt, Director of Digital Learning at the University of British Columbia’s Educational Technology Department and member of the Best in Class Technology Advisory Board.

“There are numerous studies that show how the effective use of technology by trained teachers can create a superior learning experience for students,” says Dr. Vogt. “What makes Best in Class such a strong program is that it equips schools with cutting edge technology and then brings in experts to help teachers and students understand how they can best integrate this new technology into the classroom.”

In addition to $20,000 for the latest in digital technology, each of the ten winning schools will also receive in-the-classroom support and ongoing online support from Best Buy’s Geek Squad. Experts in technology installation, trouble shooting and functionality, the Geek Squad will offer their expertise to the teachers and students of the winning schools to help them understand how to get as much as possible out of this new technology to maximize the learning experience.

The submissions will be reviewed by the Best in Class Technology Advisory Board comprised of leaders in the areas of technology and education. This year’s advisory board members include: Dr. David Vogt, Director of Digital Learning Projects for the University of British Columbia’s Faculty of Education; Dr. Michele Jacobsen, Chair of Educational Studies in Language, Culture & Technology at the University of Calgary’s Faculty of Education; as well technology experts and respected journalists Marc Saltzman and Francois Charron.

The Best in Class Fund Program began in 2008 and to-date Best Buy has donated $500,000 in technology grants to schools in Canada. The program is open to teachers and students in grades 7 – 12 in BC, AB, SK, MB, ON and NS, levels 2 – 5 in French-speaking QC schools and grades 8 – 11 in English-speaking QC schools.

Students and teachers are asked to develop their proposals, which must include a video and a written proposal that outline how they would like to integrate various consumer electronic technologies in the classroom and how it will provide an educational benefit, and submit online between Monday, September 13 and Sunday, October 24, 2010. One submission is allowed per school and it can come from a single class, or from a cross section of students and teachers from the same school, such as Student Council or other student clubs.

staples canadaStaples Canada has opened online registration for their Recycle For Education program, which recycles used ink/toner cartridges, then donates funds back to participating schools.

“We want students to not have to worry about supplies – we realize schools are on tight budgets and can use the help,” says Steve Matyas, president of Staples Canada. The Recycle For Education program is easy; used cartridges can be dropped off into specially marked recycling bins at any of the more than 320 stores in Canada.

Money is donated to elementary and high schools registered with the program and any publicly funded elementary and secondary schools are welcome to sign up.

To be eligible, schools are asked to register with the program between September 1 and December 31, 2010. Funds raised from the previous year will be distributed in May 2011, in the form of a Staples gift card, to participating schools.

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3rd September 2010

Canada Company Awards Eight Scholarships To Children of Fallen Soldiers

Canada CompanyThe Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence; Blake Goldring, Chairman of Canada Company and Chairman and CEO, AGF Management Limited; along with Rear Admiral Andrew Smith, Canadian Forces Chief of Military Personnel; today presented scholarships to eight surviving offspring of fallen Canadian Forces personnel.

The scholarships are provided as a tribute to fallen Canadian Forces personnel by a charitable business group called Canada Company. Each recipient will receive up to $16,000 each – up to $4,000 per year for up to four years – to help defray the costs of their post secondary education.

The third annual awards ceremony was conducted aboard the HMCS Frederiction. The Halifax-based frigate is currently on a five-week Canadian tour, including seven port visits along the St. Lawrence Seaway and the Great Lakes.

“The HMCS Fredericton is a fitting backdrop to honour these fine students,” said Blake Goldring. “Their parents made a commitment to serve our country and today our commitment is to help them pursue their education. Canada Company provides the means for both businesses and individuals to support our military and their families to ensure they are taken care of with ongoing initiatives like these scholarships.” HMCS Fredericton

“The Government of Canada recognizes and deeply appreciates the ultimate sacrifice these families have paid for their country,” said Minister MacKay. “The Canada Company Scholarship helps the deserving children of our fallen to pursue post-secondary education and start on the road to their future careers.”

“The families of our fallen remain an important part of the Canadian Forces family who need our support,” said Rear Admiral Andrew Smith. “The Canadian Forces greatly appreciate the support that Canada Company and Canadians from coast to coast to coast have shown to the families of our fallen soldiers.”

The 2010/11 recipients of Canada Company’s educational scholarship fund awards are:

* Robert Girouard of Orillia is studying Law and Justice at Laurentian University.
* Kirsten Hess-von Kruedener of Burlington is studying at the RCC Institute of Technology Interior Design.
* Sheralynn Kennedy of Winnipeg is attending the University of Winnipeg working towards a doctorate in Psychology.
* Matthew Mellish of French Lake is attending the University of New Brunswick.
* Myriam Mercier of Quebec City is studying Nursing at Cegep de Sainte-Foy.
* Adam Naismith of Moose Jaw is studying Arts and Sciences at the University of Saskatchewan.
* Jocelyn Ranger of Pembroke is studying business at Algonquin College.
* Natasha Roberge of Hamner is studying English and Music at Laurentian University.

The Canada Company Scholarship Fund provides $4,000 per year, for up to four years, to support the post-secondary education for children who qualify. Children of Canadian Forces members who have died on duty while serving in an active role in a military mission of the Canadian Forces or reserves since January 2002 are eligible to apply. The Canada Company Scholarship Fund will provide scholarship grants to children dating back to January 1, 2002.

Canada Company scholarships have received leadership funding in the amount of $1 million from CIBC. Additional financial support was secured from Power Corporation; Peter Munk, Founder and Chairman of Barrick Gold Corporation; Jim Balsillie, Co-Chief Executive Officer of Research In Motion (RIM); RBH Inc.; The W. Garfield Weston Foundation; The TD Bank Financial Group, BMO Financial Group; Scotiabank; Standard Life; Laurentian Bank of Canada / B2B Trust and AGF Management Limited. Canada Company is calling on other members of the corporate community to contribute to this important initiative.

Canada Company oversees the fund through an independent committee, along with members of the Tour de Force 2010Canadian Forces, to ensure that bereaved children have the opportunity to receive this scholarship.

One way which you can show your support for Canada Company Scholarships is to take part in the upcoming North American Van Lines Tour de Force, an exhilarating cycling trip through southern Ontario and Quebec. The bike/run will kick off at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto with celebrities in attendance including players from the Toronto Maple Leafs and former NHLer’s and will last for seven days ending in beautiful downtown Montreal. The trip will be broken down into seven 85-kilometre intervals. Cyclists can register for the entire trip or certain legs of the journey. At the end of each leg of the trip there will be a celebration in the evening.

editor’s note: While this article may not be directly related to Canada’s digital media industry, it is directly related to a game we all play every day: life. As a military family and supporters of our Canadian Forces,  from time to time we carry related stories. We hope that you will join us in supporting those who serve our country now and in the future, and in remembering those whose patrol has ended.

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26th August 2010

PayPal and Fundrazr Make It Easier To Give

PayPalPayPal and leading Canadian companies announced two new ways for Canadians to use the power of smartphones and social media to quickly and simply send charity donations or raise money for their favourite causes.

The new version of the PayPal Mobile 2.5 released today on iTunes allows customers to send charity artez interactivedonations to 17 highly-regarded, national Canadian non-profit organizations directly from their iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch. Donations can be funded from a PayPal account balance, bank balance or credit card. PayPal worked with Artez Interactive, a Toronto-based online fundraising solutions provider to make the donate feature possible.

“Canada is a caring society and Canadians are very technologically savvy,” says Darrell MacMullin, General Manager, PayPal Canada. “By bringing these two powerful qualities together and making charitable giving and fundraising simpler on the digital platforms Canadians use every day, PayPal hopes to help charities find new ways of raising money.”Paypal for iPhone

The use of smartphones to buy products and services from online retailers, known as mobile commerce, has exploded in recent years. PayPal customers completed $25 million in mobile purchases in 2008. In 2009, the figure jumped to $141 million. In 2010, PayPal expects to process more than $500 million in mobile transactions.

Part of that growth has been fueled by the rapid adoption of smartphones in Canada. According to an IDC report in January 2010, smartphone penetration among businesses and consumers in Canada is about 25 per cent, but is growing at a rate of 30 per cent year over year. In Canada, the growing number of advanced networks is expected to continue to drive smartphone adoption.

“Customers are comfortable using smartphones for all kinds of professional and personal needs, so making it easier for Canadians to give to charities that way is important,” said Philip King, President and CEO, Artez Interactive. “For charities, mobile giving is a new channel; one that allows people to give quickly and simply and one that may help reach new, younger audiences who don’t respond as readily to traditional fundraising campaigns.” Read the rest of this entry »

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24th August 2010

Get Shank Today on PSN or Tomorrow on XBLA

Klei EntertainmentElectronic Arts Inc. and independent Vancouver development studio Klei Entertainment would like to remind you that the highly anticipated downloadable 2D action game Shank, will be available for download today on PlayStation®Network for $9.99 and tomorrow, August 25th, Shank Boss Battleon Xbox LIVE® Arcade (1200 MS Points). At press time, Shank was still showing a release date of “08.2010” on PSN, but the XBLA page has been updated with tomorrow’s release date. With its blend of classic side-scrolling action gameplay and stylized animation set against a modern-Western canvass, Shank tells a bloody story of revenge, penned by award-winning game writer Marianne Krawczyk.

“Our goal with Shank was to create a game that pays homage to the classic 2D brawler, while seeing how far we could push it by melding it with our own pulp-fiction influences,” said Jamie Cheng, CEO of Klei Entertainment. “At the end of a long road that began as an indie dream in 2009, we’ve finally shipped a visually striking, cinematic brawler.”

Shank Train Chase“With Shank, Jamie Cheng, Jeff Agala, and the team at Klei Entertainment have delivered the game analog of the black comedy symphony of violence dominating today’s indie film circuit,” said Jamil Moledina, Outreach Director at EA Partners. “This exquisitely bloody game conjures memories of the best arcade brawlers of the late 1980s, while delivering the production values and pitch perfect controls of a modern high definition blockbuster masterpiece.”

Shank tells a classic story of gangland betrayal through a violent, pulp-fiction lens. Gamers play as Shank, getting their hands bloody as they uncover the secrets of Shank’s past and the reasons he is hell-bent on Shankrevenge. With a deep and intuitive combat system, players unleash a tremendous number of creative combinations as they take down waves of enemies standing in their path. Shank also features a special co-operative campaign, designed to be played with a friend locally, which tells the backstory of the revenge plot. This prequel mission allows players to play as Shank or his partner-in-crime Falcone, with deadly double-team moves and gameplay that encourages teamwork.

Shank is one of the most highly anticipated downloadable game releases of this summer, having been nominated for Excellence in Visual Arts by the Independent Games Festival, as well as multiple “Best of E3” awards, including “Best Action Game” from IGN.com and “Best Downloadable Game” from GameTrailers.com. Shank is rated M by the ESRB.

vortex competition 2010The McLuhan Festival of the Future’s Vortex Videogame Conference and Competition, an illustrious event designed to showcase Ontario’s undiscovered videogame talent, has announced today that it will be accepting entries for its 2010 edition.

With the mission to create opportunities for emerging videogame companies and individuals to showcase their work locally, nationally, and internationally, Vortex achieves its goal through education, discourse, pitching, networking and, of course, competition. Read the rest of this entry »

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20th August 2010

IN2010 Early Bird Ends At Midnight

Interactive Exchange 10A reminder to all those planning to attend IN2010 – if you haven’t yet purchased your tickets, Early Bird pricing ends tonight at midnight. The event is also looking for a few good volunteers, so if you’re interested in helping out, click here.

Along with the opportunity to hear from 65 industry speakers, IN2010 offers:

3 keynote presentations
Facilitated one-on-one meeting opportunities
4 Networking breaks
2 Evening receptions
Fully catered lunch and breakfast on both days

Plus over 22 conference panels and lectures on a variety of topics, including:

Games Stream
• Concept to Screen: This will focus on the actual creative arc that individuals trace in order to create a piece of work that is exploitable along multiple entertainment verticals. Mark Long, Style Driver, Zombie Studios.

Mobile Stream
• Managing Mobile: Challenges & Opportunities Facing Mobile Projects. Creating projects for the new set of mobile platforms can present it’s own set of challenges. What types of issues can you expect to face and what opportunities can the mobile platform present? Featuring Rick Segal, Co-Founder, FixMO.

The BlackBerry Social Media Stream
• Bend It!: A discussion about pushing boundaries of social media and future trends between an assembly of innovators from several different sectors. Featuring Juliette Powell, Author, Pundit, Integrated Media Specialist.

The Rogers X-Platform Stream
• Branded Entertainment: A breakdown of brand-supported entertainment properties. Featuring creation, brand integration and ROI measurements. Featuring Paul Bennun , Owner, Somethin’ Else.

Visionary Stream
• Weird Science: From thought-controlled devices to biotechnology, this Visionary Presentation session will showcase leading work being done locally and aboard that has the potential to usher in a new era of interaction. Andrew Hessel, Co-Chair, Bioinformatics and Biotechnology, Singularity University.Bioware Corp

If you are a Dragon Age fan but couldn’t go to Gamescom, do not despair. You, too can take part in a Dragon Age 2 live chat tomorrow (August 21st) via the magic of the internet. The live chat will begin at 12:00PM CEDT, which translates to 6:00AM EDT (or 3:00AM here in Vancouver).

xmg studioXMG Studios has released its first Android title.  Little Metal Ball is a top-down full-tilt platform adventure which features 20 levels of twisted labyrinths and challenging puzzles controlled by precise tilt control and physics. You will race against the clock, trying to obtain bronze, silver and gold record times along with power-ups and more.

Disney Interactive StudiosAccording to recently released data from comScore Media Metrix, Disney Online, the No. 1 ranked community-family and parenting destination on the Web, reached a record-breaking 36 million unique visitors in July, beating the previous all-time record of 34 million uniques set in June 2009 by two million unique visitors. This growth was in great part due to increased traffic to areas of the site such as Disney Games, Disney Channel and Disney Movies. Most notably, Disney Games climbed to the No. 3 spot in the Online Gaming category. Read the rest of this entry »

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10th August 2010

Canadian Partnership Against Cancer Launches Online Series

partnership against cancerBefore I get into today’s digital media news, I want to let you know about this very important resource, because pretty well every Canadian has been touched in some way by cancer, and common themes along the way have the potential to provide insights that can help to improve care and understanding. This is the idea behind the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer’s new online video series, The Truth of It. Developed in collaboration with the Health Design Lab, part of the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute at St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto, The Truth of It features interviews with Canadians diagnosed with cancer who were asked to share their story so others could learn from their experience. By providing candid accounts of the personal impact of cancer, the video series will serve as an educational resource for health care professionals as well as patients, survivors and others with a personal connection to cancer.

Reflecting that there is no one common experience in coping with a cancer diagnosis, the people interviewed for The Truth of It range in age from 20 to 73 and have been diagnosed with different types of cancer including breast, colorectal, lung, testicular, and ovarian. Viewers can choose to watch individual stories or compilations of multiple interview clips that deal with challenges common to the cancer journey such as receiving the diagnosis, telling friends and family, talking to kids, body image, and practical advice. The Truth of It series, with 30 videos currently available, was created in collaboration with accomplished filmmaker Wendy Rowland and Dr. Michael Evans, Director of the Health Design Lab of the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute at St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto.

“The Partnership has created this series as part of our work to better understand and improve people’s cancer experience,” said Dr. Margaret Fitch, a psychosocial expert who is Chair of the Partnership’s Cancer Journey Advisory Group and co-lead of the Patient and Family Support Program at Sunnybrook’s Odette Cancer Centre. “By helping health care professionals to tune into the patient’s perspective, The Truth of It will help to enhance patient care – while also serving as a unique resource for people with a personal connection to cancer who can benefit from insight and information from others who have walked the cancer journey.”

Jennifer Smith is one of the people who shares her story in the videos. In 2003 at the age of 38, she was diagnosed with acute myelogenous leukemia and has since undergone chemotherapy and a bone marrow transplant. She is married and has two children.

“If this resource were available when I was diagnosed, it would have helped me navigate the many uncertainties and range of emotions that I experienced,” said Jennifer. “Because hearing from others in similar situations can be such a helpful way of coping, I’m hoping that other people can learn from my story.”

The Truth of It is part of the growing collection of cancer control resources, information and services available at Cancer View Canada, the online portal launched by the Partnership with and for the cancer control Canary Derbycommunity.

“Technology is radically changing the way people seek answers to their health questions, but hearing about someone’s actual experience — their ‘story’ — is still the most powerful tool,” said Dr. Michael Evans, family physician and Director of the Health Design Lab at the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute. “In marrying technology with stories, The Truth of It enables people to engage with other Canadians whose experiences resonate with their own. These firsthand accounts offer a range of perspectives that make this series useful to both patients and professionals.”

The above article can also serve as a reminder of several upcoming fundraiser events that we hope you will help support. The Canary Derby will run in Vancouver/Burnaby on September 25th. This is a soap box derby Canadian Breast Cancer Foundationfor technology companies who want to help fund early cancer detection research, and as an added bonus, the derby is a ton of fun.
Pink Day in Lion's Arch
October 3rd is CIBC’s Run For The Cure, Canada’s largest single day, volunteer-led fundraising event dedicated to raising funds for breast cancer research, and education and awareness programs. Who will you be running for?

For Guild Wars players, you can get involved by supporting the Gamers Give Back resurrection of Pink Day in L.A. (Lion’s Arch), which will take place on October 16th. If you don’t play Guild Wars, you can still support the event via its Canadian Cancer Society donation page.

Bioware CorpDragon Age players – today is the day for the latest DLC chapter. Bioware invites you to delve deep underground in Golems of Amgarrak to save a missing dwarven expedition in search of ancient secrets for creating monstrous constructs. Only you can uncover the gruesome fate that befell them.
Put your Warden back in action and adventure through new environments, meet new characters and defeat never before seen creatures. With an engrossing new storyline and challenging puzzles this is one add-on for the PC, Xbox 360, and PS3 versions that you don’t want to miss.

* Import your character from Origins or Awakening or create a new, high-level hero!
* Face an all-new terrifying creature
* Earn powerful rewards that transfer into your Awakening and Origins campaign
* An advanced challenge for even the most experienced adventurers Read the rest of this entry »

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29th July 2010

Gaming World Entertainment Network Helps Gamers Give Back

Gamers Giving BackInternet radio fans, check out Gaming World Entertainment Network, an internet station with roots in Canada. While the station is on the air for anyone to listen to, Guild Wars players can interact directly with radio DJs right in the Guild Wars world, participating in special events and fundraisers such as the upcoming Pink Day in LA (Lion’s Arch) whereby players are encouraged to dress their characters in pink on October 16th to show their Pink Day in Lion's Archsupport for breast cancer research. For those who would like to also donate financially to the cause, GW-EN has a donation page on the Canadian Cancer Society’s fundraising site. Station co-founder Rhonda Head, who lives in Saskatchewan, wanted to not only entertain and interact with Guild Wars players, but also give them a chance to give back to the global community. GW-EN has partnered with Gamers Giving Back, providing a way for gamers to come together as a group and help support a variety of non-profit organizations, including the Red Cross for Haiti relief effort and the Canadian Multiple Sclerosis Society. The Gaming World Entertainment Network plays a wide variety of music, and starting today at 1pm PDT, Michael (a.k.a. The CaveChild) makes his return to internet radio as DJ Behemoth. If you are a Guild Wars player, you’ll be able to find him in Kaineng Harbour rocking it out on one of the boats in American District 1.

Koolhaus GamesKoolhaus Games announces Voting for Round One of its International Contest for Unsigned Bands. The Top 25 Favorites in each Round are being decided by voters to the site. The Top 10 Winner’s Songs will be included in the new soundtrack of their popular iPhone game – iMP:Surf the Music and the groups will earn royalties from game sales.

Just visit the site, click on the Contest link – and go to “Fans: Vote and Enter”. Check out the bands and vote for your favorite by August 23, 2010. Then, Enter to Win an iPod Touch. Enjoy all the great new songs and be part of getting these Unsigned Acts the exposure they deserve! There will be several Rounds and one Voter from each round wins an iPod Touch.

National Film BoardThe National Film Board of Canada returns to 2010 Hiroshima International Animation Festival (August 7–11) with six films in competition. In the running for the Grand Prix are Lipsett Diaries and Drux Flux, two films by Theodore Ushev; Jeu de forme by Malcolm Sutherland; The Spine by Chris Landreth; Runaway by Cordell Barker and Retouches by Georges Schwizgebel. Ushev will be in Hiroshima, and Internet users can stay in touch with him via his blog.

The festival offers several programs in addition to the official competition. No fewer than 11 NFB films are featured at special presentations: Neighbours by Norman McLaren screens at the opening gala; Vive la rose by Bruce Alcock, co-produced with the Canadian company Global Mechanic, screens at the Best of the World program; and When the Day Breaks by Wendy Tilby and Amanda Forbis, Village of Idiots by Rose Newlove and Eugene Fedorenko, The Big Snit by Richard Condie and Ryan by Chris Landreth, co-produced by the Toronto-based company Copperheart Entertainment, are among the films selected for the program celebrating the festival’s 25th anniversary. Read the rest of this entry »

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