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Wholesome Local Election Roundup

Wholesome Local Election Roundup
Jun 14 2024 Share

As the counting of the local council elections continues, more and more wholesome moments are being highlighted all over Malta.

To start off, Rohasia Zammit and Mario Fenech from Birżebbuġa and Iklin respectively were elected together to represent the people of their localities.

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Meanwhile, Birgu mayor John Boxall’s son Karl was elected mayor of Għaxaq on behalf of the Labour Party. This could see a father and son becoming mayor as we await the counting of Biru’s votes, where the father has served as mayor for 30 years.

Meanwhile, PN’s Kyle Mifsud was elected for the Żurrieq local council – but also became a father to twins just hours later as his election was announced.

Jordan Galea Pace’s grandmother Vivienne Galea Pace was also elected into the Sliema council, extending the political activism Jordan is known for.

This just scratches the surface of other wholesome election news, including the election of mother and son Steve and Lillibeth Żammit Lupi.

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Photo Source (Boxall): Newsbook

1 In 7 Maltese Have Streamed Sports Illegally

1 In 7 Maltese Have Streamed Sports Illegally
Jun 13 2024 Share

A recent EU Intellectual Property Office study revealed that over 13% of Maltese citizens streamed sports matches illegally in the past year, slightly above the EU average of 12%.

This placed Malta eleventh among 27 EU countries, with Bulgaria, Greece, and Spain topping the list. Notably, 28% of young Maltese (aged 15-24) admitted to illegal streaming, mirroring a broader EU trend.

In contrast, only 4% of Maltese reported knowingly purchasing fake sports gear, the lowest in the EU and significantly below the 10% EU average. The study estimated that Malta loses around half a million euros annually to counterfeit sports goods, constituting over 12% of sales in this sector.

The EUIPO emphasized that illegal streaming poses a significant threat to sports financing, especially with the UEFA European Championship approaching, which generated nearly €1.9 billion in 2020.

Additionally, digital piracy in the EU increased by 3% in 2022, reversing a previous downward trend. TV shows were the most pirated content, but illegal sports streaming surged by nearly a third between 2021 and 2022.

Europol’s ‘Operation Fake Star’ in 2022 seized over 1,800 fake luxury items at Maltese borders, part of a broader crackdown across the EU resulting in over 250 arrests. The IP Perception Study 2023 surveyed nearly 26,000 people, including over 500 Maltese.

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Source: European Union Intellectual Property Office

Average Monthly Salary At €1,928 In 2024 Q1

Average Monthly Salary At €1,928 In 2024 Q1
Jun 13 2024 Share

In the first quarter of 2024, the Labour Force Survey estimated that 306,571 people were employed in Malta, a 4.6% increase from the previous year, representing 64.3% of the population aged 15 and over.

Unemployment stood at 9,301 (1.9%), while 161,243 (33.8%) were inactive. The activity rate was 81.3%, peaking at 91.6% among those aged 25-54.

Employment rates showed 79 out of every 100 people aged 15-64 were employed, with male employment at 84.7 % and female employment at 72.0 %. The 25-34 age group had the highest employment for both genders. Self-employed individuals made up 13.8% of the workforce.

Most employees (271,309) worked full-time, averaging 40.9 hours per week, while part-timers (35,262) averaged 21.5 hours. Overall, the average weekly hours worked were 34.1, a decrease from the previous year.

The average monthly salary was €1,928, highest in the financial and insurance sector. Salaries ranged from €1,223 in elementary occupations to €3,132 for managers.

The unemployment rate was 3.0%, predominantly among those aged 25-74. Females constituted 58.7% of inactive persons, mostly due to retirement. Forty percent of the population had a low education level, whereas 37.0% of the employed had tertiary education.

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Source: NSO

People Switching To Dumbphones To Fight Phone Addiction

Jun 13 2024 Share

Adults and teenagers concerned about excessive screen time are opting for simpler “dumbphones” instead of smartphones.

Many people realise their smartphone use has become an obsession, driven by social media’s Fear of Missing Out (FOMO).

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In the UK, Ofcom research indicates that around 25% of children aged five to seven have their own smartphones, raising concerns about the impact on mental health.

Some campaigners advocate for age limits on smartphone use. Parents are also opting for dumbphones to stay present with their families. Sales of these low-tech devices are rising in North America.

Stores like Dumbwireless in Los Angeles cater to parents seeking simple phones for their kids to avoid internet distractions. However, challenges persist as some schools require apps, and peer pressure for expensive smartphones remains strong.

Solutions like the “unpluq” device can wirelessly block certain apps, helping manage usage.

Companies like Techless are developing sleek yet basic phones, such as the “Wisephone II,” designed to minimize distractions and promote a tranquil experience.

These phones offer limited third-party tools without social media, encouraging users to prioritize their well-being.

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