What is Title Insurance?

When buying property, either for commercial or residential purposes, indemnity is necessary to avoid future financial losses or stressful situations arising from the property. To this end, title insurance is always recommended to cover any known and unknown risks.

What does title insurance protect against?

Title insurance is a document that protects against possible losses or inconvenience that may arise from known and unknown risks.

  • Known risks are those that can be foreseen by running a title search and hiring a professional to analyse the property.
  • Unknown risks on the other hand, are those which cannot be foreseen but which may still arise during your period of ownership of the property.

Who needs title insurance?

Many people have heard of title insurance but are not sure whether they need it. To clarify, title insurance is necessary for:

  • Residential and commercial mortgage lenders
  • Home owners
  • Commercial property owners

The importance of Title insurance

Having insurance coverage on your property comes in handy in several scenarios. For starters, it covers problems that may arise from the title itself. These may include an incorrect signature, the incorrect registration process of the title, a breach of covenant by the seller and even the title being owned by another person other than the insured. It also covers against external risks like breach of boundaries, in which case the property is either encroaching into someone else’s property, or other buildings are encroaching onto your property. In this case, it covers both financial losses and stress that may arise from the encroachment. It also covers any survey cover that may be necessary to determine the property’s boundaries and it also covers forgery, fraud, impersonation or incapacity, which may have happened before settlement on the property.

Is every title insurance policy the same?

However, while title insurance covers a wide range of foreseen and unforeseen risks, the exact risks covered against vary from insurer to insurer. Some of the common risks not covered include contamination and basically anything else not related to the title.

How can I get title insurance?

Owing to its grave importance, and considering how huge an investment property is, title insurance is very affordable and easy to find. It only requires a one-time premium payment, which covers you for the entire period of your ownership of the property. For a commercial or residential mortgage lender, the insurance is only valid for the duration of the mortgage, and needs to be renewed with renewal of a mortgage.

Furthermore, title insurance is also convenient for the Conveyance Company or solicitor as it helps streamline the conveyance process. This is because risks tied to the property may also affect the solicitor or conveyance company, but they are exposed to minimal professional incompetence when the property owner has a title insurance policy.

To this end, a company such as Infotrack can easily facilitate the title insurance application process as part of the transaction. In addition to insuring property during the transaction, people who already own homes or commercial properties can also buy title insurance under the different policies available on the market.

As previously mentioned, different policies come with varying terms and conditions depending on the insurer. As such, it is always recommended that you carefully read the terms of the agreement and the risks you are viable for coverage against. This will help you get the best ideal title insurance for comprehensive security for your investment. A professional company such as Infotrack can ensure that a title search, and title insurance can be arranged quickly, easily and without fuss. It’s therefore an essential you cannot do without when purchasing property. To learn more about title insurance, it’s well worth a visit to www.infotrack.com.au.

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5 Tourist Attractions to Visit while on Business in Japan

Senso-JiJapan is a country built on tradition and culture. As a major business hub, Japan has many cities and districts to explore during your downtime. If you are heading off to Japan to conduct business, it can be extremely helpful to get assistance in advance from a travel expert, such as FCm Travel Solutions, when it comes to picking the right hotel and working out which attractions to see. In the meantime, here are a couple of not-to-be missed attractions:

1. Kyoto

Originally Japan’s national capital (until 1886), Kyoto is home to a variety of ancient sites and beautiful architecture. Kyoto’s district contains more than 15 World Heritage sites, including Kinkakuji (also known as the Golden Pavilion), one of the most iconic imperial remnants the city has on display. Kinkakuji is now a Zen Buddhist temple, perfectly positioned amongst tranquil surroundings. Built in the 14th century, the gold leaf top storys and beautiful gardens are a reminder of its past life.

2. Senso-ji Main Hall

After losing the originals to fire in 1945, Asakusa took more than a decade to rebuild Senso-ji. It is one of Tokyo’s most significant temples and a must-see on most tourist itineraries. Stop by the incense burner before making your way through the main hall, which is home to a collection of votive paintings from the 18th and 19th centuries. There are shops and eateries in the area to regroup after exploring the main hall. Once you have explored Senso-ji, wander off the beaten track and explore more of Asakusa.

3. Sky Garden Observation Deck, Landmark Tower – Yokohama

The tallest building in Yokohama is home to one of Japan’s highest observation decks. Offering 360 degree views across Yokohama city, the Bay Bridge and even out to Mount Fuji on a clear day, the deck lets you see the city from a different perspective. The lift to Sky Garden ascends 750 metres per minute, taking you to the deck in just 40 seconds. If you can’t make it during the day, the deck is open until 10pm most nights and gives a wonderful view of the city lit up at dark.

4. Hiroshima’s Peace Museum and Atom Bomb Dome

A name synonymous with atomic bombs, Hiroshima is now focused on encouraging peace. The Peace Memorial Museum is split into two parts: the first a look at Hiroshima before and after the bombing, the second a vivid display of the destruction. The A-Bomb Dome is one of the few buildings still standing after the city was bombed and shows the force that shook the city. The surrounding area, including Peace Memorial Park, home to some beautiful cherry blossoms, has been designed as a tribute to that August day in 1945.

5. Kabuki-za Theatre, Ginza

Tokyo’s most famous Kabuki theatre is located opposite Higashi Ginza Station. Kabuki is a traditional type of theatre, with dramatic set changes and new actors appearing before your eyes. The amazing costumes are a staple of Kabuki-style theatre, where matinees can last up to four hours. Rent a headset and listen to the translation to follow the storyline, although the action on stage alone will keep you entertained. Don’t be put off by spectators coming and going; this is fairly common.

Your next Japanese business trip can be filled with as much colour and entertainment as you like. What attractions are on your must-see list for your trip to Japan?

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Top 10 Blog Posts Of 2014

Here are my picks for my top 10 blog posts of 2014.

  1. Top-10-Blog-Posts-2014There is nothing more powerful than 20/20 Foresight to know what’s coming in 2015…
  2. This is my favourite YouTube video of the year – brilliant – Word Crimes are committed by too many people’s.
  3. Antimimeticisomorphism is easier said than done – this example is priceless – poo pourri.
  4. The privacy pirates are still at it in 2014, maybe this guy’s one step ahead of them with his amazing mind reading skills!
  5. We all love our iPads… Who knew they are this versatile and useful?
  6. A metaphor can be the difference life and death, success or failure. This is one of my all-time favourites.
  7. This cute video says a lot about teamwork – Together Everyone Achieves More.
  8. Looks do matter – even if you’re a shark.
  9. I hope your calendar doesn’t look this this! Notice the caribou? Another great metaphor!
  10. Somethings are better left unsaid.

Bonus Blog Posts:

An Oscar Award Winning Speech worthy of its own Oscar!

If Noah was alive today

Enjoy the best of 2014 and may 2015 bring you all the wealth, health and happiness you deserve!

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How Does Australia’s Internet Speed Compare to the Rest of the World?

Internet GlobeHow does Australia compare to the rest of the world in terms of Internet speeds? Well, pretty badly, actually. Visitors to our country from the US or Japan are often heard complaining about our comparatively slow Internet speeds. Is the situation really that bad? Are we really lagging that far behind the rest of the world?

1. Providers

It depends on who you ask. If you were to start with your local broadband provider, they would be pretty upbeat about the Internet situation in Australia – they have to be, they’re the ones who have to sell it to you. And to be fair, it is fast enough to service most online activities – streaming, gaming, etc – without a lot of latency. Businesses with a excessive dependency on high Internet speeds are likely to suffer with the current speeds however. The situation is likely to improve as more and more wholesale telecommunications providers like iVox hit the market, increasing competition for the big Internet players.

2. Average Speeds

Average speeds in Australia vary depending on the kind of connection you’re looking at. If you’re looking at High Speed Broadband (above 10Mbps) then we rank 38th worldwide and have been hovering around that mark for several years. That’s fairly terrible, especially when you look at nations even a few positions higher on that list – South Korea currently sits atop the list with a massive 23.6Mbps average speed. To put that in perspective, most Australians fall somewhere in the average of 6-7Mbps. Pretty dismal. There is, however, one particular kind of internet connection that Australia really excels at.

3. Mobile

We have a world-class 3G/4G/LTE mobile network. The peak connection speed on our 4G network in 2013 clocked in at a whopping 130Mbps, with the average speed coming in somewhere around 4.6Mbps. Our mobile Internet speeds are the envy of a lot of other countries and something we can actually be really proud of. With more and more handsets accessing the 4G network, overall speed will fluctuate but, on the whole, it still leaves a lot of people’s home broadband connections for dead.

4. Geoblocking

Australians run up against geoblocking all the time. How often have you tried to watch a YouTube video only to be told that “this content isn’t available in your country”? Streaming services like Netflix and HBOGO are also hidden behind a geoblock wall. It’s this more than anything else that has seen Australians setting up VPNs (Virtual Private Networks) in order to access these off-limit services. VPNs, however, can cause even further slowdown on the connection and so many users find themselves getting even more lag from their connection.

5. The National Broadband Network

The National Broadband Network (NBN) appears to our current great hope for a faster Internet in Australia. Those who are lucky enough to be connected to it (mostly in city locations like Melbourne and Sydney) report speeds of anything from 56Mbps up to 100Mbps. The NBN continues to roll out across the nation, bringing with it the Internet Australian citizens and businesses have long been craving.

In terms of Internet connectivity, Australia still has a long way to go before it will come anywhere close to the sort of speeds enjoyed by Japan and South Korea. We’re getting there, though, and – in much the same way we did when dial-up was our only option – we’ve managed to find a way to really get the best out of what we have.

Do you think Australia needs to focus on improving it’s internet infrastructure? Do you have the NBN on at home?

Post your comments below!

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Top 5 Mountain Biking Events

image004The mountain biking event calendar is packed full of competitive races and community rides almost every weekend. Most cities will have their own mountain biking clubs holding social and competitive rides; however, for the most serious contingency in the sport, riders travel to some of the top mountain biking events in the hope to claim glory on the world stage. Whether it’s epic multi-stage pedalling journey across the desert or traversing treacherous terrain in the Himalayas, these are five of the world’s top Mountain biking events.

1. Trans Pyrenees

Dubbed as one of the ‘greatest personal challenges’, the Trans Pyrenees spans an 820km route from the Mediterranean Sea to across the Spain’s Pyrenees mountains range, before ending in San Sebastian on the edge of the Atlantic Ocean. There’s around 20,000 metres of climbing and a daily average of 100 kilometres. This 8-day multi stage event is officially non-competitive, however, the sheer numbers mean there are always those who decide to race competitively. Shorter 4 stage events are also available for those wanting a more moderated challenge.

2. Crocodile Trophy

In Australia’s far north, riders race across the outback in a different location each year – the only constants being that it is hot, dry and dusty. This event has attained something of a cult status for mountain bikers around the world due to the ruggedness of the outback the ride takes place in. Crocodiles, death adders, and venomous spiders call this area home, and with eight stages and riders camping in tents each night, this ride is not for the faint of heart.

3. La Ruta

Despite spanning the entire country of Costa Rica, from the Pacific in the west to the Caribbean in the east, this 251 km race may be shorter compared to other mountain biking marathons, however, it is no less intense. The epic yearly race sees riders compete in three stages covering diverse terrain including coastal savannah, tropical jungle, around active volcanoes, and then through fertile coffee plantations. Featuring an array of high profile international sponsors, it’s a short and brutal race that many dub the toughest on the planet.

4. Yak Attack

Riders wanting to push themselves to the limit partake in the 8-stage Yak Attack where things don’t always go to plan. Set among the monumental Himalayas, the Yak Attack is the highest mountain bike race on earth, where air is thin and services and infrastructure are limited. Starting in Kathmandu and passing through Himalayan villages, the biggest challenge is left until near the end of the race during stage 7 where riders ascend Throng La Pass at 17,700 feet. Sand, snow and glacial rivers add to the intrigue and allure of this event with attendance being revered by competitive riders around the world.

5. Yukon Arctic Ultra

If the jaunt across the Himalayas seemed tough, this one take the toughness crown as riders race across tundra sub zero temperatures in Canada’s remote Yukon territory. Riders can choose between 100, 300 or a numbing 430 miles in what can easily be argued is the world’s toughest ultra marathon.

For professional mountain bike riders who live, eat and breathe the sport, participating in one of these events is something they’d love to tick off their bucket list. Are you interested in jumping on the mountain biking bandwagon? Need to upgrade your existing bike? Stores such as 99 Bikes have all the models and facilities that you could need. There’s no time like the present to get started. In no time at all, you may even find yourself signing up for one of these events!

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The Best Off-Road ATV Trails in Australia

With its rainforests, outback and designated motorsports parks, Australia has some of the best ATV off-road destinations in the world. It’s not hard to quickly get off the beaten track and enjoy the great outdoors, so what are the top five off-road ATV trails in Australia?

Southern Forests, Tasmania

image001With tracks available for all rider levels, the designated off-road area of the Southern Forests in Tasmania is a spectacular destination for riding.

Situated primarily in the Little Denison and Russell River Valleys, the sites have long been logging areas and many of the trails take you through regrowth forests of various stages. The designated areas are just beyond the Huon Valley, making it a perfect day-trip destination from Hobart.

Basic safety tips include ensuring you never ride alone and have the proper safety equipment so check out stores like JSW Powersports to ensure you have the right equipment before you hit the trail.

Stockton Beach, NSW

If you’re looking to hit the beach, then Stockton Beach in New South Wales is one of the few areas where trail bikes and ATVs are permitted. Less than half an hour north of Newcastle, Stockton Beach is the largest moving coastal sand mass in the southern hemisphere. The designated ATV area includes sand dunes which feature great views from the top, and the area also provides some great seaside riding. Permits do need to be acquired prior to entering the site.

Lancelin, WA

image002If you’re keen to enjoy a sunset over the beach, then WA’s Lancelin area is also open to ATVs. This 200 hectare area consists of dunes, dunes and more dunes, including razorbacks with sharp drops, so protection is recommended, helmets are required and riders have to keep their wits about them. Lancelin is 1½ hours north of Perth and off-road vehicle registration is required.

Manar Park, Qld

This designated motorsports park features hundreds of kilometres of 4WD, ATV trail bike and enduro trails designed to cater to all skill levels and abilities. With a flat track, skid pan, and River Road, there’s a host of ATV options. It also features hill climbs and has camping facilities, making this a great destination to stay and really enjoy some serious riding without the hassle of permits. Manar Park is set amidst a 15,000 acre working cattle farm and is located in Boondooma, Queensland.

Bike Territory, NSW

Another sheep and cattle farm that has opened its gates to motorsports enthusiasts is the 10,000 acre property ‘Castletop’, home to ‘Bike Territory’. Located on the Nandewar Ranges in North West NSW, the property borders Kapatur National Park and offers unique landscape and varying terrain for ATV and trail bike riders. It features enduro loops, fire trails, hill climbs and endless kilometers to explore. There are also three lookouts where riders can pause to enjoy the property’s amazing views. Accommodation, including self-contained cottages and camping facilities, is available.

Regardless of whether you’re after the freedom of a private park or the thrill of hitting the beach on your ATV, there are some great riding options available in some magical Australian locations.

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Australian Blog Of The Month – November 2014 East Coast Squash Academy

Every month, Australian Blogs selects an Australian Blog Of The Month from its registry of more than 5,000 blogs. This month’s featured blog is http://www.eastcoastsquashacademy.com.au/blog. Click on the image below to check it out.

East Coast Squash Academy

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Bondi Waverley Squash Club Signs Up To Join The East Coast Squash Academy

Bondi Waverley Squash Club Signs Up To Join
The East Coast Squash Academy

Bondi, NSW, Australia (19, November, 2014)Bondi Waverley Squash Club has signed up to become the second facility for the East Coast Squash Academy in Sydney, Australia. A complete schedule of coaching clinics, tournaments and activities will be led by a top 100 profession squash player who will become the resident squash pro.

“We looked at several options and chose The East Coast Squash Academy because it met our social/community, financial and elite sport performance goals with the most attractive value proposition” explains BWSC Club President, Steve Greig. “One of the key factors to go ahead was the fact that this was a working model just across town, at Willoughby Squash Club.”

Amongst the objectives Bondi set forth when signing up was to promote and expand the sport of squash across the seaside community, especially for young players with the development of a junior program for boys and girls that accommodates all levels of play, not just the elite.

With the signing of this landmark agreement, activities will launch early in the new year with several “kick off” events that will attract attention to this exciting new collaboration.

‘We’re thrilled to have Bondi join the Academy” declares Aaron Frankcomb, the Academy’s founder and Managing Director. “Bondi boasts an outstanding reputation within the local squash community. The club has a buzz to it, being in a vibrant part of town in Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs. We’re going to capitalise on that goodwill to create a fun and exciting environment for squash players of all standards with innovative competitions, clinics and activities.”

The East Coast Squash Academy is a value-add to existing squash clubs generating additional revenue by leveraging off-peak time slots whilst promoting the sport of squash in an variety of innovative ways.

The numerous benefits for the hosting squash facility include: Increased use of the facility, more members, higher revenues, longer tenure of members, greater exposure and visibility within the sports and social communities as well as improved health and wellbeing for participants of all ages.

Even though elite performance is at the core of the Academy’s curriculum, after-school and multi-sport programs are an integral part of the offering and cater to participants of all skill levels from young boys and girls to mature seniors who play competitively at the Masters level (35 to 80+ years of age).

________________________

Bondi Waverley Squash Club:

Bondi Waverley Squash Club Limited is a fully licensed not for profit members squash club which celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2013.

The club has a long and proud squash tradition, producing many male and female players that have excelled and proudly represented New South Wales and Australian national teams.

The club continues to provide first class squash facilities with an excellent bar which are open to members and non-member (guests).

Contact details:
Tel: (02) 9387 1452

Email:  bondisquashclub@optusnet.com.au

Website: www.bwsc.com.au

Facebook: Bondi Waverly Squash Club

________________________

The East Coast Squash Academy:

Founded in 2011 when Aaron Frankcomb retired from the Professional Squash Tour, the East Coast Squash Academy set out to create a business model to expand the presence of squash within local communities surrounding squash centres. The first installation was at Willoughby Squash Club where Frankcomb was hired as the club’s resident squash pro.

Since inception, the Academy has produced some stellar results including: Attracting a handful of junior players with aspirations of going on the professional (PSA) tour. Its junior program has the biggest contingent of players on the NSW Squash Junior ranking list, with players on the NSW junior state teams, Australian junior teams and Australian senior players. The Academy has developed NSW and Australian Junior Champions.

The Academy is home base to two full time senior players that have reached careers highs of top 240 in the world on the Men’s PSA Tour.  Its best female professional reached a top world ranking  of 130.

The junior program now boasts over 500 children participating in weekly squads and training sessions. Memberships and participation in squads have increased by 100% and 300% respectively and tournament registrations are at an all-time high.

Contact details:
Tel: 0424 474 001

Email: Aaron@EastCoastSquashAcademy.com.au

Website: www.EastCoastSquashAcademy.com.au

Facebook: East Coast Squash Academy

 ________________________


Aaron Frankcomb:

Aaron Frankcomb was ranked in the top 100 professional squash players for 8 years, 4 years in the top 50, winning 3 PSA titles. He represented Australia at the 2010 Commonwealth Games, was a Junior Champion in all age groups including 2 times in the Under 19 category and holder of scholarships in the Tasmanian and  Australian Institutes Of Sport. He now coaches professionally and remains Sydney’s top ranked squash player and is still considered within the top 5 players in Australia.

Contact details:

Tel: 0424 474 001

Email: Aaron@EastCoastSquashAcademy.com.au

Website: www.AaronFrankcomb.com

Facebook: Aaron Head Pro WilloughbySquash

 

 

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Protect Your Dog!

I just read a shocking blog post about graffiti vandals tagging properties to alert “robbers” to steal dogs for fighting…  If you have a dog or love dogs and see graffiti like this – alert the homeowner immediately!

Below is an infographic for you if you’re a fellow dog lover!

Woofs of Wisdom Infographic

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So-called “sexting” without consent is now an offence in Victoria, according to MSN.com.au.

From today, anyone who maliciously or deliberately spreads intimate images of another person – or threatens to do so – faces prosecution under two new offences.

According to the MSN.com.au article, the ban applies to intimate images of anyone under the age of 18 as well as images of adults without their consent.

  • Those who illegally spread such images can be jailed for up to two years.
  • Those who threaten to distribute them can be jailed for up to one year.

The new laws also introduce exceptions to child pornography offences so those under 18 will not be prosecuted or placed on the sex offenders’ register for consensual, non-exploitative sexting.

Attorney-General Robert Clark said it was important the law kept up with changing technology. “Previously, the law provided only limited protection against malicious distribution of intimate images and this behaviour can cause considerable harm to victims, especially when images go viral,” he said in a statement.

This is a great first step in protecting our online privacy.

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Australian Blog Of The Month – October 2014 – The Mindset Of A Champion

Every month, Australian Blogs selects an Australian Blog Of The Month from its registry of more than 5,000 blogs. This month’s featured blog is http://www.marcdussault.com/mindset/blog/. Click on the image below to check it out.

MindsetChampion-BlogBanner2013

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Graffiti Removal Day is THIS Sunday – October 26th

I recently blogged about that Graffiti is a costly public nuisance that costs taxpayers a lot of money, not to mention kills taggers and graffiti vandals on a regular basis. Even though there are numerous graffiti removal companies, the problem still persists.

The NSW Graffiti Removal Day is this Sunday and its goal is to bring attention to this problem and reduce the graffiti that scars the beauty of our cities. Get out there this weekend and do your bit to help. If you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the problem!

Graffiti-poster-2014-450px

Thanks to Amelia Priest of Just Snacks for sending the original notice through. She has done her bit to help as I have (getting the word out to more people), now it’s your turn!

 

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Australian Graffiti Removal Day October 26th

 Graffiti is a costly public nuisance that costs taxpayers a lot of money, not to mention kills taggers and graffiti vandals on a regular basis. Even though there are numerous graffiti removal companies, the problem still persists.

A NSW organisation has created a Graffiti Removal Day to bring attention to this problem and reduce the graffiti that scars the beauty of our cities. Get out there and do your share to beautify our surroundings!

Thank you to Amelia Priest of Just Snacks for sending this through. She has done her bit to help as I have (getting the word out to more people), now it’s your turn!

Graffiti-poster-2014-450px

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The future is mobile in the gaming industry

Mobile-GamingThe global gaming industry today is huge. It’s estimated to be worth more than $76 billion and forecasts indicate it will be valued at more than $86 billion in 2016.

When you consider there are only 2.5 billion of the planet’s inhabitants online, there’s a huge amount of potential for further growth in gaming. For example, while the European games market is valued at nearly $20 billion, the games industry in India increased by 16% in 2012, to $227 million. As different regions catch-up in access to broadband, so will the gaming population will increase.

The demographics of gamers are changing – gaming is no longer a male-dominated world. More and more women are now playing games. In the US in 2012, 42% of gamers were female; that figure has now increased to 47%. There’s also been an increase in older gamers and 29% of gamers are aged 50 or more.

Gaming is no longer a loner activity. The stereotypical image of a gamer used to be a single guy in a heavy metal T-shirt sitting in a darkened room playing video games by himself. But now gamers have grown-up and had kids of their own, so you get gamer families.

According to the Entertainment Software Association a third of parents play games with their kids once a week or more, and more than half of parents play games with their children at least once a month. Children will play with friends (40%) and their parents (16%) and 17% of gamers play with their partner or another family member (34%).

Gaming can take you places. There’s no longer the need to be stuck at home with your console if you want to game. With the increase of social, casual and casino games that can be played on a mobile device, gamers are free to roam. Now, if you look at any of the major casino sites like Royal Vegas, 32Red or Jackpot City, you’ll see they have a wide selection of mobile-compatible games.

If you click here to visit 32Red online casino you can play blackjack, roulette and baccarat on the move, as well as games like keno and scratch and a wide variety of slots. In the States, there’s 101% mobile penetration, meaning that for each American, there’s at least one mobile phone. And over 48 million people are already playing games on their smartphone or another mobile device.

In the UK, there are more than 20 million mobile gamers, according to a comScore survey from 2013. Japan and China have the highest numbers of people playing on iPhones and iPad. These numbers are set to increase over the time as 91% of people on earth own a mobile, and 56% have a smartphone. And half of all mobile phone users rely on their mobile as a primary source for the internet.

Gaming is big business. Games sales accounted for $24 billion in 2013 and movie box office sales pale in comparison at $10 billion. Today, an ever-increasing amount of gaming takes up the time that people used to spend watching TV and films.

Variety is the spice of life. One major reason for the increase in gaming is the fact that many games are now free to play. When you can play a game for free (or at least trial it for free) why would you limit yourself to playing only one or two games?

There’s also the fact that gaming is changing all the time. Multi-player games can now be enjoyed on mobiles and more technological developments will always be just around the corner. With 46% of teens now playing on their mobiles, the future of gaming is looking distinctly portable, especially given the fact that there are 6.5 billion mobile subscribers around the globe.

While many of those phone subscribers don’t currently have the internet on their phones in areas like Africa, Central America and South Asia, this will soon change, meaning an ever-growing potential market for online and mobile gaming.

 

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Social Media is good for something

I have often blogged a contrarian view of social media. Advocating social media is more about identity theft and piracy than social collaboration. I even argue against the business case for small businesses.

 

Pee YouTube

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Australian Blog Of The Month – September 2014 – Inner Outer Health

Every month, Australian Blogs selects an Australian Blog Of The Month from its registry of more than 5,000 blogs. This month’s featured blog is http://blog.innerouterhealth.com.au/. Click on the image below to check it out.

Inner Outer Health Blog Logo

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Australian Blog Of The Month – August 2014 – Max Pak

Every month, Australian Blogs selects an Australian Blog Of The Month from its registry of more than 5,000 blogs. This month’s featured blog is http://www.maxpak.com.au/blog. Click on the image below to check it out.

Max Pak Blog Header

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Government Eavesdropping – responses

I recently emailed and posted a link to a petition to stop the government from eavesdropping on all our emails and phone calls and it got a lot of responses – some of them noted below – add your comments below and let’s keep the dialogue open!

____________________

Glad to see you are using your rule of “No Politics” as a guideline not a panacea.  I know this is a rare exception for you and that is good.  I think you have chosen well in having the balls to put your business behind this.  It shows strength, leadership and care on a topic we can all back.  I was not sure that you were willing to take that risk.  I have more TRUST and respect that you have the backbone to make that stand now that I see this about you.

History proves without taking action to use appropriate negative feedback loops and without sufficient accountabilities recognised authorities eventually fail to have a conscience and fail to serve, which is “How Civilisations Fail”, as proven time and again historically (refer to Jarad Diamond’s book “How Civilisations Fail”).

Cheers
Andrew B.

____________________

Done!

Thank you, Marc. Glad you have a social conscience.

Of course, it is our own fault. We have tolerated our governments covert dealings for years and perversely justify our unknowing as integral to our interests.

Terrorism spells fear for a weak politician. It is the Shadow – small as this seems now – that arises and engulfs when we abrogate responsibility.

One day when Sunshine comes – when governments disband their CIA’s – we will know what we are all up to and earning, have friends with, and we will wonder what the fuss was about.

Kind Regards,

Nicholas B-Y

____________________

Marc,

I am impressed with much of your work, but I’m disappointed at what appears to be naivety, or self-interest with respect to this issue.

You are a clever man, how would you track down these extreme Islamist terrorists people before they strike?

Were you aware that Australia is the most potent source of home grown extreme  Islamist terrorists in the Western world?

Our intelligence agencies have averted a number of attacks on significant targets which could have cost hundreds and thousands of lives. The people who get seduced into extremist Islamist terrorism are home grown Australians. They live here amongst us, using our internet to connect and share extreme views, recruit others, and plot terrorist attacks to kill their fellow Australians. If we allow their numbers to grow amongst us we could one day become the next Iraq where the ISIL mass murdering hundreds and thousands of non-believers to take over lands and create a Islamist Caliphate.

What would you suggest is the most effective way to find these people before lives are lost?

You talk about loosing our privacy, but what does that mean? Why should we be concerned if a law enforcement agency maintains records of online activities? How is this going to affect me?  I’m a law abiding citizen. The bigger online threats we should be concerned about are those threats from online fraud, distributed access denial attacks, etc.

I agree that the cost and logistics of government’s proposed approach needs to be thought through, but in the absence of a better way to track down extremists, I think it’s the right thing to do.

Correct me if I’m wrong but surely the only people to fear their data being stored are those who have something to hide from authorities.

So, what is your reason for running this campaign to stop the legislation? Did not know that Australia is such a potent source of extreme views, or do you have a better way to find them, or is there something you have to hide from the Authorities?  If you have a better way, why not share it with us?

Kind Regards,

Malcolm L.

____________________

Hi Marc to fix the problem we have with this internet reading is that there are 15 million people online in australia so all we have to do is for 3 months just talk about guns bomb making killing etc etc and try downloading rubbish like this and that will give the Federal police ASIO etc enough work to last them like 12yrs of flat out understaffed work and it will just go in the too hard basket reverse psychology

John G.

____________________

The statements below are incorrect. Reading emails etc without a warrant is not what is proposed.

John L.

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Get On the Social Scene: How to Utilise New Media

Social MediaBy now, you probably know social media needs to form part of your online communication and promotional strategy. You may even already have set up profiles for your business, have built a following and are regularly using the platforms to communicate with your community.

But are you getting results you desire from your social media activity? Read on to find out how to make your social profiles deliver ROI.

Set Tangible Goals and Outcomes

It’s essential to know what you want out of your social media activity.

  • Are you trying to build brand awareness and loyalty?
  • Provide an alternate way for customers to interact with your business?
  • Increase sales and conversions?
  • Form relationships with partners and affiliates?

You need to have a purpose to what you’re doing online if you want to be able to see – and measure – results.

Use The Right Platforms

Knowing which social media applications you need to be investing time and resources into is an important step in ensuring that your social networking endeavours will work for you. Unless you genuinely have the time to spend really utilising each platform to their maximum potential and keeping it regularly updated, you may be better off choosing one or two key social media applications to focus on rather than making a sporadic attempt at keeping five or six profiles up to date across every social networking application available.

Own Your Database

Earlier this year, some page managers started complaining that there had been a sharp decline in their reach and engagement levels after Facebook made some changes to how information was displayed in news feeds. You can’t control things like that, but it can have a detrimental impact on the community you’ve built if you haven’t integrated a way to drive your customers to your email subscription list or website while continuing to interact with them on social media. If you aren’t sure how to do this, contact a digital agency like Simple to help with your social media engagement and promotional strategies.

Get Creative With Your Content

Have some fun with your posts; this is your chance to step out of the corporate box. Social media has changed the way that brands communicate with their customers and provides opportunities to be a little more casual and human in your approach (within reason – there’s still a time and a place for fun. Written communication can easily be misconstrued so keep it professional if the situation calls for a more formal response). From fun phone pics with filters and overlays to videos and sharing relevant content from other pages, social media offers new ways for you to broadcast your key messages to your audience and benefit from the organic word of mouth opportunities that social media presents.

When done well, social media can be a powerful tool for growing your business, building an engaged, loyal following and delivering tangible outcomes and deliverables.

What’s your best tip for businesses to ensure social media success? Place a comment below.

This was a guest post. If you would like to submit an article, please contact us for our publishing terms and conditions.

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7 Things To Ask To Choose The Right Australian Laser Clinic

I’ve blogged about this concept before. The beauty premium, erotic capital, why you can’t afford to be ugly and of course how tall people make more money than their shorter colleagues.

If you’ve decided you want to go for anti-aging treatments, the next step is to decide which clinic is suitable and safe for you. Unfortunately, many clinics and beauty centres have sprung up over the years, making choices rather confusing.

 

Acne Scar Treatment - Laser Skin Resurfacing

 

Choosing a reputable clinic like http://www.advanced-dermatology.com.au/laser-clinics-australia that specialises in Botox and and laser treatments is a good way to go.

The first thing you need to know is to ask what qualifications your chosen laser operators have. You need to ensure  they’re all certified, highly experienced and trained thoroughly to avoid potential accidents (after all, we’re talking about your face here). During your consultation, be proactive to ask if you can see their certificates before confirming a procedure.

Be assertive to know which staff  will be administering the treatment(s).  If possible, ask around to know who will be second in charge if something unexpected arises. Getting acquainted with them will certainly be helpful to ensure you are comfortable and feel secure throughout your treatment(s).

It is helpful to know what kind of lasers they have in their clinic sincedifferent lasers work for different purposes. Deciding with your doctor what kind of laser treatment you need will narrow down clinic choices that provide those particular services. Plus, a good doctor should be helpful and give you an estimate of how many follow up treatments might be required to obtain optimal results, based on past experience from treating a huge number of patients.

Because money does matter, nearly all Australian laser clinics will discuss with you the total costs involved during the initial consultation so you can plan ahead and know what to expect after the treatment(s) are completed. It is also handy to know specifically the cost for each type of laser treatment(s) so you can compare prices across different types of laser clinics.

Most laser clinics will offer consultations free of charge and better yet, see if they offer a patch test to know if your skin reacts well with the  proposed laser.

Last but not least, you should always ask the clinic about potential complications and inquire what kind of solution they offer should (God forbid) that happens. The key is, if the laser clinic being upfront concerning the issue, you can at least be assured that the staff takes quality service and patient wellbeing very seriously. Be wary of those who say there are no risks involved!

Keep these 7 pointers in mind whenever you’re looking for the best Australian laser clinics. For more information about Advanced Dermatology in Sydney you may contact them on 1300 788 800.

This has been a guest post. To submit one of your own, please contact us for our publishing terms and conditions.

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