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Netflix Reportedly Increasing Prices As Strikes End

Netflix Reportedly Increasing Prices As Strikes End
Oct 5 2023 Share

Netflix is reportedly planning to increase its subscription prices, starting in the U.S. and Canada, following changes made in response to a loss of subscribers in 2022. 

These changes included measures against password sharing and the introduction of an ad-supported plan at a lower cost. The price hikes will first impact the ad-supported option and will eventually extend to global markets, with specific amounts and implementation dates yet to be disclosed.

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Currently, Netflix offers three main pricing options for subscribers: Standard with ads ($6.99/month), Standard ($15.49/month), and Premium ($19.99/month). Additionally, a “member slot” feature was introduced for Standard and Premium plans at $7.99/month, allowing users to add members outside their home network.

While some subscribers may be displeased by the price increase and potentially cancel their subscriptions, Netflix has been proactive in implementing changes despite initial pushback. 

For instance, their anti-password-sharing system, initially criticized in Latin America, was implemented worldwide and led to subscriber recovery.

Netflix is not alone in raising prices among streaming services, with a 25% increase for major ad-free services over the past year. HBO Max and Disney+ have both recently raised their prices. This trend may prompt subscribers to reevaluate their streaming subscriptions as costs rise across the industry.

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Pope Suggests Catholic Church Could Bless Gay Marriage

Pope Suggests Catholic Church Could Bless Gay Marriage
Oct 5 2023 Share

Pope Francis has suggested the possibility of offering blessings for same-sex unions, responding to five conservative cardinals who sought affirmation of traditional church teachings on homosexuality. 

In a letter dated July 11, Francis proposed that such blessings could be considered if they were distinct from sacramental marriage. 

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This development was hailed by New Ways Ministry, an advocate for LGBTQ+ Catholics, as a significant step towards inclusivity within the church.

The Vatican has historically held marriage to be an indissoluble union between a man and a woman, opposing same-sex marriage. However, Francis has previously expressed support for civil laws granting legal benefits to same-sex spouses, and some Catholic priests in parts of Europe have blessed such unions without official reprimand.

This stance marks a shift from the Vatican’s 2021 position, where it stated that the church couldn’t bless gay unions, citing that “God cannot bless sin”. 

Francis emphasized that while matrimony remains between a man and a woman, pastoral charity requires understanding and patience. He stressed the need to discern benedictions that do not convey a mistaken view of marriage, acknowledging that some situations may not be morally acceptable.

Francis urged that pastoral charity be applied on a case-by-case basis, avoiding the imposition of fixed norms or protocols. This development comes in response to five conservative cardinals who pressed Francis on matters of church doctrine, including issues related to LGBTQ+ individuals, ahead of a significant synod where these topics are on the agenda. 

The cardinals, all retired and known for their doctrinal conservatism, had sought straightforward yes or no responses from Francis, ultimately making their correspondence public.

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Shocking Scene in Floriana as Car Overturns in Narrow Road

Shocking Scene in Floriana as Car Overturns in Narrow Road
Oct 4 2023 Share
Members of the Malta Police Force together with a medical team were at Triq il-Kapuċċini in Floriana earlier today after a car overturned.

 

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Two vehicles were involved in the accident. It is so far unreported whether or not there were any injuries.
 
A photo sent to Malta Daily shows a portion of the road closed off with police tape, as an ambulance, together with police and a medical team were on site to attend to the situation.
 
More on the story as it develops.
 
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Record Breaking Number Of Tourists Visit Malta In August 2023

Record Breaking Number Of Tourists Visit Malta In August 2023
Oct 4 2023 Share

In the reviewed month, Malta welcomed 354,155 holidaymakers and 6,391 business visitors. 

The majority of tourists fell in the 25-44 age range (37.2%), closely followed by the 0-24 bracket (37.0%). Italians, Britons, and French residents constituted 53.2% of the total visitors. 

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Accommodation establishments saw 83.1% of the total guest nights, out of over 2.9 million. On average, tourists stayed for 7.8 nights. 

Expenditure soared to over €393.4 million, a 22.4% rise from the previous year. Each night’s average expenditure was €135.6. From January to August 2023, inbound tourists reached 1,986,260, a 33.5% surge. 

The total nights spent shot up by 25.0%, nearly hitting 13.6 million nights. Tourist expenditure totaled around €1.8 billion, marking a 36.2% increase from 2022. Per capita expenditure rose to €888 from €871 in the previous year.

The milestone was highlighted by Tourism Minister Clayton Bartolo, who took to social media to highlight how, in 2019’s August, 336,547 tourists visited the island. This is an increase of 10.4%.

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