Week In Review with videos – June 15, 2011 in News, Pop Culture, Tech News, Entertainment, TV Guide

This Week In History – Week Of June 15, 2011

Compiled By Gary West @ mrpopculture.com

In The News –

The White House  delivers a report to Congress  explaining its involvement in Libya, as a bipartisan group of lawmakers filed suit charging US military action in the war-torn nation is unconstitutional. The report will include legal analysis arguing that President Barack Obama did not overstep his powers in the conflict in the north African nation. “The president has acted in a manner that is consistent with the War Powers Resolution,” White House spokesman Jay Carney said, arguing the 30-page report would show the “success” of the mission to protect Libyan civilians.

A sharply divided Wisconsin Supreme Court on Tuesday (June14)  ruled that a controversial measure that curbs the collective bargaining rights of public workers in the state can go into effect. In what was essentially a 4-3 decision, the high court overturned a lower court, which had ruled Republican lawmakers violated the state’s open meetings law when they passed the measure in March.

Thousands of Syrians fled the historic town of Maarat al-Numaan on Wednesday to escape troops and tanks pushing into the north in a widening military campaign to crush protests against President Bashar al-Assad. In the tribal east, where Syria’s 380,000 barrels per day of oil is produced, tanks and armored vehicles deployed in the city of Deir al-Zor and around Albu Kamal on the border with Iraq, a week after tens of thousands of people took to the streets there demanding an end to Assad’s autocratic rule.

Stocks fell sharply Wednesday as investors became increasingly concerned about the worsening debt crisis in Greece. The dollar rose against the euro and U.S. government bond prices climbed as investors sought out safer assets. In morning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average fell 84 points, or 0.7 percent, to 11,991, giving up much of its 123-point gain the day before.

The International Monetary Fund cut its forecast for U.S. economic growth on Friday and warned Washington and debt-ridden European countries that they are “playing with fire” unless they take immediate steps to reduce their budget deficits. The IMF, in its regular assessment of global economic prospects, said bigger threats to growth had emerged since its previous report in April, citing the euro zone debt crisis and signs of overheating in emerging market economies.

Coast Guard helicopters intercepted a small aircraft that entered restricted air space near the US capital on Saturday, military officials said.The North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) said it ordered the action after the “small general aviation aircraft” approached the capital region without authorization at about 11:50 am (1550 GMT). “Upon being intercepted, the civilian aircraft was diverted to Annapolis (in Maryland) where the pilot was to meet with local law enforcement,” NORAD said in a statement.

President Hamid Karzai acknowledged Saturday that the U.S. and Afghan governments have held talks with Taliban emissaries in a bid to end the nation’s nearly 10-year war, even as suicide attackers launched a bold assault in the heart of the county’s capital, killing nine people. The attack, which occurred just blocks from Karzai’s office, shows the parties have a long way to go to reach a political settlement as the Obama administration weighs a major withdrawal of its forces. The White House neither directly confirmed or denied Karzai’s statement.

Prime Minister George Papandreou besieged by public protests and dissent in his own party, appealed to Greeks on Sunday to support deeply unpopular austerity reforms and avoid a catastrophic bankruptcy.He addressed parliament at the start of a confidence debate on his new crisis cabinet, ahead of a euro zone finance ministers’ meeting in Luxembourg which is expected to release a new aid tranche to keep Greece solvent.

Euro zone finance ministers applied intense pressure on Greece on Monday, saying it had to approve stricter austerity measures before a final decision is made on a further 12 billion euros in loans.

Before launching a second day of meetings on Greece, ministers indicated that the next tranche of EU/IMF aid would be paid by mid-July, allowing Athens to avoid default, but said the country had to show progress first on plans to cut spending, raise taxes and generate other revenue streams.

( New Cigarette Label Warning – Dead bodies, diseased lungs and a man on a ventilator were among the graphic images for revamped U.S. tobacco labels, unveiled on Tuesday by health officials who hope the warnings will help smokers quit. Proposed in November under a law that put the multibillion-dollar tobacco industry under the control of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the new labels must be on cigarette packages and in advertisements no later than September 2012. They represent the first change in cigarette warnings in 25 years. They show images that may disturb some, including one titled “WARNING: Cigarettes are addictive,” illustrated with a photograph of a man smoking a cigarette through a hole in his throat.

An aging Russian airliner went down in heavy fog and burst into flames just short of a runway in northwestern Russia, killing 44 people in a crash that officials blamed on pilot. Eight people survived, dragged from the burning wreckage by locals. The RusAir Tu-134 plane had taken off from Moscow and was moments from landing at the Petrozavodsk airport when it slammed into a nearby highway just before midnight Monday.

British police working with the FBI arrested a 19-year-old man over attacks by a hacker group on businesses and government agencies including the CIA, US Senate and Sony, Scotland Yard said Tuesday. The man, named in reports as Ryan Cleary, was detained on Monday at a house in the suburban town of Wickford in Essex, southeast England, in connection with a month-long global rampage by the Lulz Security group.

Sports –

Boston Bruins Win The Stanley Cup And Not Is Well In Vancouver. Cars were set on fire and shops were looted following the ice hockey team’s 4-0 defeat to the Boston Bruins. Mobs of angry fans roamed central Vancouver after the game, as thick acrid smoke rose over the city centre. Similar riots broke out in the Canadian city after the Canucks lost the Stanley Cup in 1994. Record crowds of supporters gathered in the heart of the city on Wednesday in the hope of seeing their team – the favourites – secure the Stanley Cup and be crowned winners of the National Hockey League (NHL).

But hope quickly turned to gloom after the Boston Bruins scored first and then went on to secure an emphatic victory.

Jamie and Frank McCourt agreed Friday to have a one-day trial to determine if title to the Los Angeles Dodgers is in Frank McCourt’s name or if the team should be considered community property in their divorce and then sold, the former couple and their attorneys announced. The agreement anticipates Major League Baseball’s approval of a 17-year TV contract between the Dodgers and Fox, Frank McCourt said outside court. That deal has been reported to be worth $3 billion and Frank McCourt would receive $385 million upfront.

Technology

Nook rated better than Kindle – says Consumer Reports, marking the first time the esteemed product-review group has given Barnes & Noble’s e-reader higher marks than its competitor from Amazon. Apparently, more is less for Consumer Reports. The Nook Simple Touch Reader, released last month, scored one point higher than the latest Kindle and a few points higher than other models. That’s more than the Nook Color, released about a half-year ago, could muster. (Amazon does not offer a color Kindle — at least not yet). The new Nook, which we’ve called the anti-iPad strips away bells and whistles from the first model, including a second navigation screen, an MP3 player and web browser.

Facebook’s facial-recognition feature for automatically tagging uploaded photos with the names of those pictured sparked a backlash from privacy advocates. Now it’s coming under scrutiny from Connecticut’s attorney general, who sent a letter to company officials this week requesting a meeting. Connecticut Attorney General George Jepsen said he has “deep concerns” about Facebook’s choice to make the tagging feature opt-out, not opt-in.

BlackBerry maker Research In Motion believes its white knight is coming. But while it waits, the company is drastically lowering its financial outlook and handing out pink slips. Very disappointing sales of BlackBerry smartphones and tablets during the last quarter led RIM to cut its full-year profit expectations by 30% Thursday. The Waterloo, Ontario-based company also announced that it will begin a program to “streamline operations,” which will include layoffs.

Google announced a revamp of its mobile search interface, allowing easy access to restaurants, bars and coffee shops in the vicinity of your phone — in effect, cutting further into Yelp’s local search business. At an event called “Inside Search” at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco, the search giant launched a slew of new features for its mobile and desktop search products. The mobile version of Google search gets those icons, instantly accessible at the bottom of the search screen. It also gets a new translate feature for Google Goggles, allowing you to point your phone at text in Russian and getting an instant text translation. Both features are launching today.

The Internet body that oversees domain names voted on Monday to end restricting them to suffixes like .com or .gov and will receive applications for new names from January 12 next year with the first approvals likely by the end of 2012. For instance, while the new steep charges of $185,000 to apply for a domain name could deter cyber-squatters, companies with well known trademarks worry that they may have to contend with series of copycat names like coke.paris or google.zambia. The move is seen as a big opportunity for brands to gain more control over their online presence and send visitors more directly to parts of their sites — and a danger for those who fail to take advantage.

Japanese electronics giant Canon, for instance, has already said it plans to apply for rights to use domain names ending with .canon.

Entertainment news –

Rebecca Black’s official “Friday”music video has been taken off You Tube.The page where the video starring the 13-year-old singer once played now says it “is no longer available due to a copyright claim by Rebecca Black.”Black’s spokesman says her team sent a takedown notice to YouTube because of a dispute over the video with Ark Music Factory, the company Black’s parents paid $4,000 to produce the song and video. The video had amassed more than 160 million views and more than 3 million “dislikes.”

() J.K. Rowling has a new website –  Pottermore.com, a new project for the “Harry Potter” author, spokeswoman Rebecca Salt said Thursday. The site is “not a new book” and “not directly related” to the final Potter movie, “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2,” which comes out next month, she said. “We aren’t saying any more than that!” Salt said.”Pottermore” was trademarked in 2009 by Warner Bros., which distributes the Potter movies. The trademark description of Pottermore suggests an interactive site “providing on-line chat rooms and electronic bulletin boards” and “on-line facilities for real-time interaction with other computer users concerning topics of general interest.”

A 21-year-old “history geek” representing California was named Miss USA at the annual beauty pageant in Las Vegas on Sunday. Alyssa Campanella, who was born and raised in New Jersey which she represented at the Miss Teen USA contest in 2007, was considered among the favorites by pageant experts. She will represent the United States at the Miss Universe pageant to be held in Sao Paulo, Brazil, on September 12. Campanella was crowned by incumbent Miss USA, Rima Fakih, a Lebanese-born Muslim who was the first Arab-American to hold the title.

()  Ryan Dunn, one of the stars of MTV’s “Jackass,” has died in a car crash. He was 34. NBC Philadelphia said that Dunn and another passenger in a 3 a.m crash at Route 322 and New Street in West Goshen Township, Pennsylvania.  Dunn posted to Twitter a photo of himself drinking with friends just hours before the crash. A police report indicated that Dunn was most likely speeding in his 2007 Porsche 911 GT3, which was destroyed in the wreck. “Upon arrival, police located one vehicle in the road and in the woods that was fully engulfed in flames,” the report said.

Tracy Morgan returned to Nashville on Tuesday, where he apologized personally to audience members from his June 3 show, where he unleashed a slew of homophobic remarks. “The first thing I want to say is that I apologize to Kevin [Rodgers], the people who were at the show for bumming them out, I want to apologize to my friends and my family and my fans and everyone in every community, who is offended with this,” Morgan said at a press conference organized by the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) at the Nashville Convention Center.

George Clooney has split from his girlfriend, Elizabetta Canalis, after nearly two years of dating. “We are not together anymore,” the former couple said. “It’s very difficult and very personal, and we hope everyone can respect our privacy.”

Music News –

Passing – The Coasters lead singer and founding member Carl Gardner has died aged 83, the band’s website announced. He passed away at a hospice in Florida on Sunday after suffering from congestive heart failure and vascular dementia “for some time.” The Coasters were a U.S. R&B vocal group with a string of hits in the 1950s that included “Young Blood,” “Searchin,’” “Poison Ivy” and chart topper “Yakety Yak.” Gardner was lead vocalist for Los Angeles-based The Robins before he and bandmate Bobby Nunn teamed up with Billy Guy, Leon Hughes and guitarist Adolph Jacobs to form the Coasters in 1955.

Stevie Wonder gets honored during Apollo Theater’s spring gala with induction into the Legends Hall of Fame, which includes Aretha Franklin, Michael Jackson, Ella Fitzgerald and James Brown. Though Wonder was the main attraction, the audience was also wowed as he collaborated with a cast of friends and admirers including Tony Bennett, Chick Corea, Paul Shaffer and Doug E. Fresh.

Kicks-Off – Britney Spears’ “Femme Fatale” concert tour opens in Sacramento. She Tweeted, “It’s opening night, bitch!” And according to multiple reviews, the pop star didn’t disappoint. Performing a mix of her greatest hits (“Toxic” and “I’m a Slave 4 U”) and new songs (“Big Fat Bass” and “I Wanna Go”), Spears, 29, dazzled in a series of skimpy stage costumes during the sold-out show.Describing it as “her flashiest, fastest moving, and most entertaining production yet,” Rolling Stone said that while tour-opener Nicki Minaj, 26, brought her A-game, “the night belonged to Britney: She managed to prove that she’s still progressing as a showgirl. Not only that, she’s doing it better than even die-hard defenders would’ve predicted.”

British singer Amy Winehouse, whose career has been blighted by alcohol and drug abuse, has canceled all her scheduled concerts after she was jeered by fans in Serbia recently for a shambolic performance. Winehouse, 27, sporting her trademark bouffant hairdo and figure-hugging dress, struggled to perform her songs and keep her balance at the gig in the Serbian capital Belgrade, and on some tunes the audience did most of the singing.

Rock guitarist Leslie West, who rose to fame in the ’70s power trio Mountain, has had his lower right leg amputated in a life-saving operation related to his diabetes, his wife said on Monday. West, 65, underwent the emergency surgery after being admitted to a hospital in Biloxi, Mississippi, on Saturday when his leg started to swell and his foot went septic. “The doctors tried for two days to save it to no avail. The decision to amputate was one that was necessary to save his life as the infection was spreading throughout his body,” his wife, Jenni West, said in an email.

“The nursing staff and doctors have taken excellent care of him and should be called angels for their efforts and tenderness they showed us in this time of crisis.” West is expected to recover but faces extensive rehabilitation, a spokesman said

(Passing – Renowned saxophonist and Bruce Springsteen side man for over 40 years, Clarence Clemons, affectionately known as The Big Man, passed away Saturday night, June 18, at his Florida home. Clemons died of complications from a massive stroke he suffered on June 12, after years of failing health. Even with his health concerns, he remained active until the end, including performing with Lady Gaga last month on the season finale of “American Idol.”

Hot hits this week in 2011

Rolling In The Deep – Adele

Party Rock Anthem – LMFAO fea. Lauren Bennett & GoodRock

Give Me Everything – Pitbull fea. Ne-Yo, AfroJack & Nayer

E.T. – Katy Perry fea. Kanye West

The Lazy Song – Bruno Mars

On The Floor – Jennifer Lopez fea. Pitbull

The Edge Of Glory – Lady Gaga

Just Can’t Get Enough – The Black Eyed Peas

Dirt Road Anthem – Jason Aldean

Super Bass – Nicki Minaj

Till The World Ends – Britney Spears

The Show Goes On- Lupe Fiasco

How to Love – Lil Wayne

Look At Me Now – Chris Brown fea. Lil Wayne & Busta Rhymes

Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall… – Coldplay

Roll Up – Wiz Khalifa

Don’t Wanna Go Home – Jason Derulo

Blow – Ke$ha

Good Life – OneRepublic

I’m On One – DJ Khaled fea. Drake, Rick Ross & Lil Wayne

Honey Bee – Blake Shelton

Tonight Tonight – Hot Chelle Rae

Motivation -  Kelly Rowland fea. Lil Wayne

Just A Kiss – Lady Antebellum

Down On Me – Jeremih fea. 50 Cent

At the movies –

Green Lantern (1st week $53 million)

Super 8

Mr. Popper’s Penguins (1st week $18.4 million)

X-Men: First Class

The Hangover Part II

Kung Fu Panda 2

Bridesmaids

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger tides

Midnight In Paris

Judy Moody and the Not Bummer Summer

The Tree of Life

Thor

Top TV Last Week –

1. NBA Finals: Dallas vs. Miami ABC
2. NBA Trophy Presentation ABC
3. NBA Finals: Miami vs. Dallas ABC
4. NBA Finals: Miami vs. Dallas ABC
5. America’s Got Talent” (Tuesday) NBC
6. America’s Got Talent” (Wednesday) NBC
7. The Voice NBC
8. 60 Minutes CBS
9. NCIS CBS
10. NCIS: Los Angeles CBS
11. The Bachelorette ABC
12. The Mentalist CBS
13. The Big Bang Theory CBS
14. CSI: Crime Scene Investigation CBS
15. So You Think You Can Dance” (Wednesday) FOX
16. So You Think You Can Dance” (Thursday) FOX
17. Tony Awards CBS
18. Blue Bloods CBS
19. Hawaii Five-0 CBS
20. CSI: NY CBS

Invention Invention Of The Year Doubling/Tripling Gas Mileage. Pop Culture Automobile History.

Did you say gas was up? It’s come down a little, but won’t go down much more. And, you can bet, it will go up again. As soon as the Stock market heats-up, traders will go in and bid up oil. Everybody’s crying for better gas mileage – and auto makers say they have a good answer in the hybrid. The real answer is – the technology is out there. This is amazing. Someone’s invented a device that goes into any fuel injected car.

His name is Chris Smart. He has two patents – and a third on the way. He calls it the AMT/Economyzer – a device that saves fuel in any fuel injected car. Doubles/triples gas mileage.

The technology is here. Chris is doing radio interviews to let the world know – this can be done. He’s been at it for 13 years. Here’s a recent radio drive-time interview over KNEWS in Palm Springs.

Chris is only beginning to let the public know – he has what they need in cars.

AMT/Economyzer – Radio interview with Inventor Chris S. – Auto fuel saver expert.

It’s in two parts because – my blog can only handle certain audio bandwidth. So – here goes.

And stay tuned…

AMT Economyzer radio interview wwwmrpopculturecom Part 1

AMT Economyzer radio interview wwwmrpopculturecom Part 2

mrpopculture.com

Week In Review June 1, 2011 In Pop Culture, News, Entertainment, Tech, TV Guide (with videos)

A Complete Look At The Week Of June 1, 2011.

Compiled By Gary West @ mrpopculture.com

In The News -

Wall Street ended a four-day rally with its worst session since August on Wednesday and could suffer more losses in coming days as investors faced more signs the economic recovery is fading. All 10 Standard & Poor’s sectors ended more than 1 percent lower and all 30 stocks in the Dow industrials fell. Banks were the biggest decliners as the economic reports painted a glum picture for jobs and manufacturing.

Syrian forces killed 41 civilians in the central town of Rastan on Tuesday during a military operation to crush pro-democracy protests, Razan Zaitouna, a human rights lawyer, said on Wednesday. The death toll included a 4-year-old girl, Zaitouna told Reuters by telephone from Damascus. Government forces surrounded the town on Sunday and shelled it during the operation, she said, adding that activists on the ground had a list consisting of 41 dead civilians.

NATO and its partners in the military campaign to protect Libyan civilians have decided to extend their mission another 90 days, the alliance’s top official said Wednesday. “This decision sends a clear message to the Gadhafi regime: We are determined to continue our operation to protect the people of Libya,” said NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen. Gadhafi is trying to withstand the NATO air barrage and put down a rebellion among his own people.

Search and rescue efforts continued and thousands in Massachusetts were still without power on Thursday after tornadoes that ripped through the state the previous day, killing at least four people. The twisters injured at least 200. The casualty count “hasn’t changed yet, although we have a lot of folks doing search and rescue, dealing with debris piles and things today, so that number could change,” Peter Judge, spokesman for the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency, said. “We’ll keep our fingers crossed.”

Passing – Jack Kevorkian, the audacious doctor who spurred on the national right-to-die debate with a homemade suicide machine that helped end the lives of dozens of ailing people, died Friday at a Detroit-area hospital after a brief illness. He was 83.

U.S. newspaper advertising revenue fell 7 percent during the first three months of the year. That left the industry’s quarterly ad revenue at its lowest level in 27 years. Combined print and online advertising revenue totaled $5.6 billion in the first quarter. That compared with $6 billion a year earlier. Revenue was $5.2 billion in the first quarter of 1984. It had peaked in the fourth quarter of 2005 at $14.3 billion. Newspapers have struggled with the weak economy and a shift by advertisers to free and cheaper outlets on the Internet.

A federal grand jury charged two-time presidential candidate John Edwards on Friday with soliciting and covering up the secret spending of more than $925,000 to hide his mistress and their baby during the peak of his 2008 campaign for the White House.

A Philadelphia woman is suing Dunkin’ Donuts, saying a worker mistakenly put sugar in her coffee that ultimately caused her to go into diabetic shock.

Danielle Jordan’s lawsuit claims she asked for artificial sweetener to be added to her coffee during a June 2009 visit. Jordan claims she downed the drink and experienced dizziness, light-headedness and ended up making an emergency trip to the hospital.

The Chinese military accused the U.S. on Friday of launching a global “Internet war” to bring down Arab and other governments, redirecting the spotlight away from allegations of major online attacks on Western targets originating in China. The accusations Friday by Chinese military academy scholars, and their urging of tougher policing of the Internet, followed allegations this week that computer hackers in China had compromised the personal Gmail accounts of several hundred people, including government officials, military personnel and political activists.

President Barack Obama says recent economic “headwinds” at home resulted from high gasoline prices, the Japanese earthquake and Europe’s financial crisis. As inspiration for a broader recovery, he’s citing the American auto industry’s resurgence.”We’re a people who don’t give up, who do big things, who shape our own destiny,” the president said in his weekly radio and Internet address Saturday(June4.)The message, taped Friday during Obama’s visit to a Chrysler plant in Toledo, Ohio, was hardly different than the remarks he offered to about 350 Chrysler workers.

British Apache and French attack helicopters struck targets for the first time in NATO’s campaign in Libya, hitting Moammar Gadhafi’s troops early Saturday near a key coastal oil town, the alliance said. Hours later, at least eight airstrikes were heard in Tripoli.The action was a significant step-up in NATO’s operations and a major boost to Libyan rebels, just a day after rebel fighters forced government troops from three western towns and broke the siege of a fourth in yet another erosion of Gadhafi’s power since the eruption in mid-February of the uprising to end his 42-year rule

Israeli troops opened fire Sunday at a crowd of pro-Palestinian protesters who tried to break into the Israeli-controlled Golan Heights from neighboring Syria, killing as many as 20 people and wounding scores in a burst of violence marking the Arab defeat in the 1967 Mideast war. The casualty figures came from Syrian state television and were confirmed by the head of a hospital treating the casualties. The Israeli military said it was not tracking casualties on either side. The latest television report said a woman and child were among the dead.

So far, House Democratic leaders haven’t publicly demanded resign after admitting he sent suggestive photos of himself in his underwear via Twitter and then lied about it to everyone within earshot. But they’ve made it clear they’d appreciate it if he’d go away. And soon. In statements within an hour of Weiner’s stunning admission on Monday, not a single Democrat volunteered support for the man long mentioned as a possible future mayor of New York. And notably, none chose to comment on his defiant vow: “I am not resigning.”

More then 120 Syrian security officers were killed in battles with gunmen, state television said, in the first report of large-scale clashes in a revolt against President Bashar al-Assad.

The report said on Monday armed groups set government buildings ablaze in the northwestern town of Jisr al-Shughour, stole five tonnes of dynamite and were firing at civilians and security forces with machineguns and rocket-propelled grenades.

Fighting flared on Tuesday(June7) in a southern Yemen city seized by Islamist militants, killing at least 25 people, a local official said, after Washington urged President Ali Abdullah Saleh to hand over power peacefully.

With few options at hand and his poll numbers sagging, President Barack Obama expressed concern Tuesday about the sudden slowdown in the economy but said he is not worried about a second recession and the nation should “not panic.”

Tech News –

A waterfront area in the New York borough of Brooklyn has become the first city neighborhood to feature free wireless service on streets and in parks and plazas. DUMBO, short for Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass, already has a reputation for innovative projects. Several formerly abandoned and neglected structures there have been transformed into eco-friendly offices and apartment buildings.”We are encouraging people to step out of their offices and homes and engage with one another and the neighborhood in new and different ways,” said Alexandria Sica, the executive director of the DUMBO Business Improvement District (BIB).

More Hacker Problems for Sony – A group calling itself “Lulz Security” announced a fresh attack on Thursday, posting online snippets of data it says came from a breach earlier this week of more than 1 million user accounts on Sony’s website. Lulz began posting messages to Twitter on Thursday about its “Sownage” campaign, and around 4:30 p.m. ET it posted links to download what it claimed was a giant cache of Sony user data. The World Health Organization re-stoked the debate over mobile phones and cancer this week, when they added the gadgets to a list of items that “possibly” contribute to the disease. The documents posted include names, passwords, e-mail addresses, home addresses and dates of birth for thousands of people. Lulz said it grabbed the material by exploiting vulnerability on a Sony page advertising the company’s Ghostbusters franchise. Lulz posted the website’s address in its data dump, and encouraged fellow hackers to “tear the living shit out of it while you can; take from them everything!”

iCloud Is Here Apple’s Steve Jobs on Monday(June6) announced a new service called “iCloud,” which lets Apple product owners store documents and music on the Internet instead of on their own computer hard drives or mobile phones. iCloud expands on the trend of cloud computing, which refers to the idea that computer users are storing more of their information “in the cloud” of the Internet rather than on their own storage drives. All of a person’s Apple devices — iPhone, iPads and Mac computers — sync wirelessly with Apple’s iCloud, giving users access to their documents, photos, apps, calendars and e-mails from any location, not just on a specific gadget. “We think this is going to be pretty big,” said Jobs, the co-founder of Apple, who has been on medical leave since January.

Verizon follows AT&T in reportedly moving toward tiered plans that charge users based on how much data they use. New Nielsen research indicates that Android users might eventually encounter some bill shock. Nielsen analyzed nearly 65,000 U.S. cell phone bills from the first quarter of 2011 and found that “Android smartphone owners consumed an average of 582 MB of data each month, compared to 492 MB for iPhone owners.” Right now, since 4G networks and handsets are not widely deployed in the United States, these figures mainly represent data usage on 3G networks. As 4G becomes the norm for mobile broadband, average data usage will likely rise sharply.

Live TV on the Xbox and a more mature second generation of games for the Kinect were among the promises at a Microsoft briefing Monday in advance of the E3 video-game expo. At the event, Microsoft said it hopes to make Xbox Live a hub for almost all types of entertainment. As such, they rolled out new partners, such as YouTube and Bing, that they hope will help the gaming system position itself in that way.

Sports –

Shaq O’Neal announces his retirement from pro-basketball after playing 19 seasons.

College football quarterback Nate Montana, son of NFL Hall of Fame star Joe Montana, was arrested early on Friday in Missoula, Montana, on suspicion of driving under the influence. Nate Montana, 21, was stopped at about 4 a.m. local time for speeding and refused to submit to an alcohol breath test, but the arresting officer nevertheless found him to have been driving under the influence, said Jason Johnson a spokesman for the county sheriff’s department. The athlete was subsequently booked into the Missoula County Jail on a DUI first offense — a misdemeanor traffic infraction — and was released after posting a $685 bond, Johnson said.

Rafael Nadal has won his record-equaling sixth French Open title, beating Roger Federer 7-5, 7-6 (3), 5-7, 6-1 in the final.It was the fourth final at Roland Garros between the two players, and Nadal has won all four.

Entertainment –

The season finale of “American Idol” had 29.3 million viewers.

Lady Gaga Hot – In its first week of release, her album Born this Way sold 1.11 million copies nationwide — the highest debut since March 2005, when 50 Cent’s The Massacre sold 1.14 million copies in its first week. Born This Way is only the 17th album to sell one-million plus copies in a week since Nielsen SoundScan began tracking sales in 1991.Digital sales for the record totaled 662,000, the biggest week ever for a digital album in SoundScan history.

TV Season Scorecard As Season Ends – CBS finished the 2010-11 season last week as the nation’s most-watched television network for the eighth time in nine years, the Nielsen Co. said on Wednesday. Fox won its seventh season in a row among the youthful 18-to-49-year-old demographic closely watched by advertisers. The country’s favorite TV show was Fox’s “American Idol” for the eighth straight season. Viewership was down for each of the four biggest broadcast networks, Nielsen said. CBS averaged 11.6 million viewers in prime-time (down 2 percent from last season), Fox had 9.8 million viewers (down 2 percent), ABC had 8.5 million (down 1 percent) and NBC had 7 million (down 15 percent), Nielsen said. Much of NBC’s decline was because the network broadcast the Winter Olympics last season; take away sports and NBC’s prime-time decline was 3 percent. CBS had the five most popular dramas on television, each a crime-solving procedural (“NCIS,” ”NCIS: Los Angeles,” ”The Mentalist,” ”Criminal Minds” and “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation”). The network also had the two most popular comedies in “The Big Bang Theory” and “Two and a Half Men,” the latter despite a Sheen-shortened season. Only the writer’s strike-affected 2007-08 season, won by Fox, stopped CBS from a nine-year winning streak. The fastest-growing prime-time show was  “Modern Family” on ABC, up 24 percent to 11.8 million viewers, Nielsen said. Fox’s since-canceled “Good Guys,” down 42 percent, was the biggest year-to-year loser.

Shania Twain receives the 2,442nd star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame today, honoring her for overcoming poverty as a youth and the deaths of her mother and stepfather in an auto accident to become the top-selling female country artist of all time. Actress Bo Derek and Rob Light, head of Creative Artists Agency’s music division, will joined Twain in speaking in the ceremony in front of the W Hollywood hotel at 6270 Hollywood Blvd. The ceremony comes nearly a month after the release of her best-selling memoir “From This Moment On” and the premiere of a documentary series “Why Not? With Shania Twain” on OWN: The Oprah Winfrey Network.

Passing – James Arness, the 6-foot-6 actor who towered over the television landscape for two decades as righteous Dodge City lawman Matt Dillon in “Gunsmoke,” died Friday. He was 88. The actor died in his sleep at his home in Brentwood, Calif., according to his business manager, Ginny Fazer.

Passing – — Clarice Taylor, the actress and comedian best known for playing grandmothers on “The Cosby Show” and “Sesame Street,” has died at the age of 93.Taylor died of congestive heart failure in her home in Englewood, N.J., on Monday, said her son, William Taylor. During a career that spanned five decades, Taylor performed on radio and TV, in film and on stage, including in the original Broadway cast of the musical “The Wiz.”

The estranged daughter of Billy Bob Thornton has been found guilty of aggravated manslaughter.Amanda Brumsfield had faced murder charges after an incident in 2008 that lead to the death of a friend’s 1-year-old girl. Brumsfield claimed the girl, whom she was taking care of, hit her head after falling from her playpen, but prosecutors from the Orange County State Attorney’s office in Florida argued that the height from which she supposedly fell wouldn’t have caused a fracture of the child’s skull.

Paris Hilton’s’s no longer hot in the reality TV world. The premiere of her Oxygen series, The World According to Paris, drew a meager 409,000 viewers for its Wednesday premiere. By comparison, the March debut of singer Aubrey O’Day‘s Oxygen series drew 724,000, while 1.7 million viewers tuned in for the premiere of the most recent installment of The Bad Girls Club. Despite the initial ratings return, Hilton remains confident her series will strike a chord with viewers.

Winners from the 20th annual MTV Movie Awards:

Best Movie: “The Twilight Saga: Eclipse.”

Best Male Performance: Robert Pattinson, “The Twilight Saga: Eclipse.”

Best Female Performance: Kristen Stewart, “The Twilight Saga: Eclipse.”

Best Comedic Performance: Emma Stone, “Easy A.”

Best Breakout Star: Chloe Grace Moretz, “Kick-Ass.”

Biggest Badass Star: Chloe Grace Moretz, “Kick-Ass.”

Best Villain: Tom Felton, “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1.”

Katy Couric – the 54-year-old journalist (who left CBS’ Evening News on May 19) has inked a multi-year, multi-platform deal with Disney/ABC Television Group on Wednesday to host and produce her own nationally syndicated daytime talk show and to join the ABC news team.

Longtime sportscaster Marv Albert — best known as the lead announcer on NBC’s coverage of the NBA and for his signature calls “Yes!” and “RE-jected!” — is joining CBS Sports to broadcast NFL games, the network announced Monday. “Marv Albert is recognized throughout sports broadcasting as one of its true legends.Very few in the broadcasting industry can claim his combined accomplishments and remarkable longevity,” CBS Sports Chairman Sean McManus said. Albert, who turns 70 on June 12, will continue with the play-by-play for TNT’s National Basketball Association coverage.

NBC has retained the rights to the Olympics through 2020 in a new deal that covers four more games. Comcast, NBC’s new parent company, agreed Tuesday to acquire the rights to the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi, Russia, the 2016 Summer Games in Rio de Janeiro, and the next two Olympics, whose host cities have not yet been chosen. The deal is worth $4.38 billion. NBC Universial CEO Steve Burke said he was “extremely pleased” to continue to carry the games.

Rise Against and Linkin Park – and even the Foo Fighters hit the stage for a surprise appearance at KROQ radio’s annual Weenie Roast in S. California. They’ve been doing it since 1993.

Rap producer and artist Dr Dre Monday settled a federal lawsuit over album sales a day before trial of the royalties case was set to begin. Dre, whose real name is Andre Young, sued the current owners of Death Row Records last year in Los Angeles federal court, alleging the label owed him royalties for three albums. According to the breach of contract suit, WIDEawake Entertainment Group, which oversees Death Row, never paid the artist money for sales of “The Chronic,” “The Chronic Re-Lit” and a greatest hits collection.

Michael Jackson’s Jacket – The coat, which the late star wore in the iconic 1983 music video which saw him transform into a zombie, is expected to fetch between $200,000 and $400,000 when it is sold in Beverley Hills, California, later this month. Auctioneers Julien’s said: “We know of no other jacket that is so easily recognizable or one that so altered fashion history. It is the most recognized and significant piece of pop culture.” The jacket is signed “love Michael Jackson” on its sleeve, and was originally presented to the King of Pop’s designers, Dennis Tompkins and Michael Bush, who worked with him on a number of outfits during his career.

Passing – Versatile singer/songwriter Andrew Gold, who enjoyed chart success in the 1970s with the songs “Lonely Boy” and “Thank You For Being a Friend,” died in his sleep. He was 59. The Los Angeles Times said he died at his home on Friday. He had been undergoing cancer treatment but was responding well to treatment. Gold, the son of Oscar-winning composer Ernest Gold and singer Marni Nixon, got his break in 1973 when he joined Linda Ronstadt’s band. He played a key role on such tunes as “You’re No Good” and “When Will I Be Loved?” He launched a parallel solo career in 1975 with a self-titled album on which he played most of the instruments. The track “Endless Flight” was later covered by Leo Sayer.

Hot Hits –

Give Me Everything – Pitbull fea. Ne-Yo, Afro-Jack & Nayer

Rolling In The Deep – Adele

E.T. – Katy Perry fea. Kanye West

Just Can’t Get Enough – The Black Eyed Peas

On The Floor  – Jennifer Lopez fea. Pitbullever

The Lazy Song – Bruno Mars

The Edge of Glory – Lady Gaga

Till The World Ends – Britney Spears

I’m The One – DJ Khaled fea. Drake, Rick Ross & Lil Wayne

Party Rock Anthem – LMFAO fea. Lauren Bennet & GoonRock

I Love You This Big – Scotty McCreery

The Show Goes On – Lupe Fiasco

Look At Me Now – Chris Brown fea. Lil Wayne & Busta Rymes

Roll Up – Wiz Khalifa

Super Bass – Nicki Minaj

Down On Me – Jeremih fea. 50 Cent

S&M – Rihanna

Blow – Ke$ha

Don’t Wanna go Home – Jason Derulo

Like My Mother Does – Lauren Alaina

F**k You (Forget You) – Cee Lo Green

Written in the Stars – Tinie Tempah fea. Eric Turner

Honey Bee  Blake Shelton

Good Life –  OneRepublic

Motivation  Kelly Rowland fea. Lil Wayne

Top Video Games

L.A. Noire (X360 PS3)

Wii Sorts Resort

NASCAR 2011: The Game

Wii Sports

Will Mario Kart

Wii Zumba Fitness

X360 Kincect Adventures!

Wii Fit Plus

PS3 Mortal Kombat

At the movies –

X-Men: First Class (1st week $55.1 million)

The Hangover Part II

King Fu Panda 2

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides

Bradesmaids

Thor

Fast Five

Midnight In Paris

Something Borrowed

Jumping In the Broom

Rio

Top TV Last Week –

1. American Idol” (Wednesday) ) FOX
2. Dancing With the Stars ABC
3. Dancing With the Stars Results ABC
4. American Idol” (Tuesday) FOX
5. Glee FOX
6. Dancing With the Stars” (Tuesday ABC
7. Modern Family ABC
8. NCIS CBS
9. So You Think You Can Dance” (Thursday) FOX
10. The Mentalist CBS
11. House FOX
12. The Bachelorette ABC
13. NCIS: Los Angeles CBS
14. The Voice NBC
15. The Big Bang Theory CBS
16. The Biggest Loser 11 NBC
17. Auto Racing: NASCAR Sprint Cup FOX
18. Two and a Half Men CBS
19. NCIS” (Tuesday CBS
20. CSI: Crime Scene Investigation CBS

Week of May 15, 2011 In News, Pop Culture, Tech Trends, Entertainment.

A Complete Look At The Week Of May 15, 2011.

Compiled By Gary West @ www.mrpopculture.com

In The News -

New York police say the maid who accuses the head of the International Monetary Fund of sexually assaulting her in his luxury hotel room picked the Frenchman out of a lineup. Dominique Strauss-Kahn was arrested Saturday and was to be arraigned later Sunday. He has been among the most popular potential candidates to challenge French President Nicolas Sarkozy in elections next year, and his arrest could throw his Socialist party into disarray.Sofitel hotel spokewoman Stacy Royal says the maid has worked there for three years and has been a satisfactory employee. Royal says the company is cooperating with police but will have no further comment on the case.

Evangelist Billy Graham was released on Sunday from a North Carolina hospital where he had been treated for pneumonia, the hospital said. Graham, 92, returned to his home in Montreat, North Carolina, after a five-day stay at Mission Hospital in nearby Asheville, North Carolina. Doctors said his response to treatment was “excellent” but that his recovery would be slow. “We expect continuing recuperation at home with very gradual recovery, returning to normal activities over several weeks. I’m delighted that he has come back this fast,” Dr. Lucian Rice said in a statement released by the hospital.

Deputies warned people Sunday to get out as Mississippi River water gushing from a floodgate for the first time in four decades crept ever closer to communities in Louisiana Cajun country, slowly filling a river basin like a giant bathtub. Most residents heeded the warnings and headed for higher ground, even in places where there hasn’t been so much as a trickle, hopeful that the flooding engineered to protect New Orleans and Baton Rouge would be merciful to their way of life.

Mobilized by calls on Facebook, thousands of Arab protesters marched on Israel’s borders with Syria, Lebanon and Gaza on Sunday in an unprecedented wave of demonstrations, sparking clashes that left at least 15 people dead in an annual Palestinian mourning ritual marking the anniversary of Israel’s birth.

The U.S. and Pakistan agreed Monday(May16) to work together in any future actions against “high value targets” in Pakistan, even as U.S. Sen. John Kerry defended Washington’s decision not to tell Islamabad in advance about the American raid that killed Osama bin Laden. The pledge, which was made in a joint statement, could help mollify Pakistani officials and citizens, who were enraged that one of the country’s most important allies would conduct a unilateral operation on its soil. But details of the promised cooperation were unclear.

Endeavour blasted off on NASA’s next-to-last shuttle flight, thundering through clouds into orbit Monday morning as the mission commander’s wounded wife, Gabrielle Giffords, watched along with an exhilarated crowd estimated in the hundreds of thousands.

“Good stuff, good stuff,” Giffords was quoted as saying by her chief of staff as Endeavour took flight for the final time. Husband Mark Kelly, the shuttle’s skipper, had red tulips presented to her afterward. She wore his wedding ring on a silver chain while he carried hers with him. NASA is winding down its 30-year-old shuttle program before embarking on something new.

Undeterred by real or fake bombs, Queen Elizabeth II on Tuesday began the first visit by a British monarch to the Republic of Ireland, a four-day trip to highlight strong Anglo-Irish relations and the success of Northern Ireland peacemaking. Resplendent in a cloak of emerald green and a dress of St. Patrick’s blue, the 85-year-old queen stepped out from a bombproof, bulletproof Range Rover outside the official residence of Irish President Mary McAleese. Irish Army artillery units fired a 21-gun salute as a military brass band played “God Save the Queen.”

Mississippi River Flooding – The Coast Guard said it closed the Mississippi River at the port in Natchez, Miss., because barge traffic could increase pressure on the levees. Heavy flooding from Mississippi tributaries has displaced more than 4,000 in the state, about half of them upstream from Natchez in the Vicksburg area.The closure is the latest high-stakes decision made to protect homes and businesses that sit behind levees and floodwalls along the river. To take pressure off levees surrounding heavily populated New Orleans and Baton Rouge, the Army Corps of Engineers opened the key Morganza Spillway, choosing to flood more rural areas with fewer homes. Another spillway near New Orleans was opened earlier, but it doesn’t threaten homes. Most residents in the path of the Morganza’s floodwaters have heeded the call to leave their homes. Bernadine Turner, who lives in a mandatory evacuation zone near Krotz Springs, La., spent a third day Monday moving her things out. Water from the Morganza opening was not expected to reach the town about 40 miles west of Baton Rouge for several days, but most residents were taking no chances.

Hundreds of protesters, angered by an overnight NATO raid that they believed killed four civilians, clashed on Wednesday with security forces on the streets of a northern Afghan city. Twelve people died in the fighting, government officials said. There was also deadly violence in the east on Wednesday. A suicide bomber crashed a car into a police bus, killing 14 people and wounding 16, said Zemeri Bashary, a spokesman for the Interior Ministry. Most of the casualties were police officers, he said.

The United States slapped sanctions on Syrian President Bashar Assad and six senior Syrian officials for human rights abuses over their brutal crackdown on anti-government protests, for the first time personally penalizing the Syrian leader for actions of his security forces.

The White House announced the sanctions Wednesday, a day before President Barack Obama delivers a major speech on the uprisings throughout the Arab world. The speech is expected to include prominent mentions of Syria.

May 21 – Some shut themselves inside to pray for mercy as they waited for the world’s end. Others met for tearful last lunches with their children, and prepared to leave behind homes and pets as they were swept up to heaven. And across the globe, followers of a California preacher’s long-publicized message that Judgment Day would arrive Saturday turned to the Bible, the book they believe predicts the beginning of Earth’s destruction on May 21. The doomsday message has been sent far and wide via broadcasts and web sites by Harold Camping, an 89-year-old retired civil engineer who has built a multi-million-dollar nonprofit ministry based on his apocalyptic prediction. After spending months traveling the country to put up Judgment Day billboards and hand out Bible tracts, Camping follower Michael Garcia planned to spend Friday evening with his family at home in Alameda, near the Christian media empire’s Oakland headquarters.

Sports –

Passing – Harmon Killebrew, the affable, big-swinging Hall of Famer whose tape-measure home runs made him the cornerstone of the Minnesota Twins, died Tuesday at his home in Scottsdale, Ariz., after battling esophageal cancer. He was 74.The Twins said Killebrew passed away peacefully with his wife, Nita, and their family at his side. He announced his diagnosis just six months ago and last week Killebrew said doctors had deemed the “awful disease” incurable.

Passing – Macho Man” Randy Savage, a professional wrestler who became a fan favorite thanks to his outlandish outfits and trademark catchphrase, dies in a car wreck. The 58-year-old Savage reportedly suffered a heart attack while driving his 2009 Jeep Wrangler in Tampa, Fla., and careened across lanes of oncoming traffic before colliding head-on with a tree. He died later at a local hospital. Savage’s wife Lynn, who was riding in the passenger seat, escaped with only minor injuries.

Tech news –

Google has shut down its Google News Archives digitization program, which aimed to make the world’s newspaper archives accessible and searchable online. The archives of several hundred newspapers will continue to be available at news.google but is “no longer accepting new microfilm or digital files for processing,” a Google spokesperson confirmed in an email to Mashable. According to the Boton Phoenix, Google emailed its contributing partners Thursday to notify them that the initiative was coming to a close so that the company could redirect resources to “newer projects that help the industry, such as Google One Pass, a platform that enables publishers to sell content and subscriptions directly from their own sites.” Although Google will no longer process any more papers, publishers can continue to add material to their individual archives via sitemaps. They are also welcome to pursue alternative partnerships to get the content Google has scanned for them online elsewhere.

Apple has signed a cloud-music licensing agreement with EMI Music and is close to completing deals with two other music labels, according to a report by tech news site CNET, citing multiple music industry sources. Such a product would throw Apple into direct competition with Amazon and Google, both of which recently launched cloud-based music streaming services of their own. Such services store songs on Web servers, where they are accessible from any device with an Internet connection, instead of on a user’s hard drive. Apple signed a similar licensing deal with Warner Music last month. Its negotiations with Sony Music Group and Universal Music Group, the remaining of the four major labels, could be wrapped up as early as next week, CNET reports.

As further proof of how digital media dominate today’s entertainment, Amazon announced Thursday that its customers now buy more e-books for its Kindle device than all print books — hardcover and paperback — combined.

Nielsen compares usage patterns of nearly 12,000 U.S. owners of tablets, eReaders or smartphones.

The key findings, as Nielson sees it:

  • 70% of tablet owners and 68% of smartphone owners said they use their devices while watching television, compared with 35% of eReader owners.
  • 61% percent of eReader owners use their device in bed, compared with 57% of tablet owners and 51% of smartphone owners

Playboy Enterprises on Thursday announced a subscription service that provides online access to every page of every issue, giving readers everywhere the chance to catch up with those, um, fiction excerpts, interviews and investigative articles. The service, called iPlayboy, contains every last photo image, news story, interview, work of fiction, advertisement and nude centerfold published in monthly magazines over the span of 57 years, according to a statement released by the Chicago-based Playboy Enterprises. More than 130,000 pages of content have been rendered viewable, readable and searchable online and optimized for electronic tablets including the Apple iPad, according to the statement.

Entertainment news –

A former Playboy Playmate whose mummified body was found in her dilapidated Beverly Hills home last month, died of heart failure, the Los Angeles Times reported on Saturday. Yvette Vickers, a B-movie actress who was named Playboy’s Miss July in 1959, was found dead at her home on April 27 after evidently being undiscovered for up to a year.

It’s official: Miranda Lambert is a married woman! The 27-year-old “House That Built Me” singer wed longtime love Blake Shelton late Saturday evening at Texas’ Don Strange Ranch.

Las Vegas marks the end of an era this week as one of the US gambling mecca’s last original “Rat Pack” casino-hotels, the Sahara, finally closes its doors. Opened in 1952, the Sahara hosted everyone from Elvis Presley and Jerry Lewis to Frank Sinatra and the Beatles in the 1950s and 60s, and their photos still decorate the walls above the reception. But in recent decades Vegas saw an explosion of mega-sized casino resorts which left the “small” Sahara struggling to fill its 1,700 rooms at the end of the famous Strip. The death knell was sounded in March, when its owners since 2007, SBE Entertainment, announced that the casino-hotel complex with its more than 1,050 staff was no longer a viable business.

Passing – Actress Mary Murphy has died at 80. She was discovered in a coffee shop and landed a role as the small-town wholesome girl opposite Marlon Brando in “The Wild One.”Daughter Stephanie Specht tells the Los Angeles Times that Murphy died May 4 of heart disease at her Beverly Hills home.

Passing – Los Angeles rapper M-Bone, a member of the group Cali Swag District, was killed in what appeared to be a drive-by shooting, police and celebrity news sites said on Monday(May16.) Police said a man was shot while outside a liquor store in the Inglewood area on Los Angeles on Sunday night and pronounced dead at a nearby hospital. Website TMZ.com identified him as rapper M-Bone, whose real name is Montae Talbert.M-Bone was a member of hip-hop group Cali Swag District who found success with the 2010 single dance hit “Teach Me How to Dougie”.

After 45 years of hosting the Muscular Dystrophy Association Labor Day telethon, Jerry Lewis says goodbye. The 85-year-old comedian said in a statement, that it was time for a “new telethon era. Lewis will make his final appearance during the six-hour event on Sept. 4; he’ll perform his song “You’ll Never Walk Alone.”

What A Putz – The marital split of former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and broadcast journalist Maria Shriver took a shocking new twist Tuesday with a Los Angeles Times report that the couple separated after Shriver was informed that her husband and a longtime female member of their household staff had a child together more than a decade ago. According to the Times, the 25-year marriage went south earlier this year, when Shriver moved out of the couple’s Brentwood mansion after Schwarzenegger confirmed the paternity. The employee had retired in January after 20 years with the family, says the paper.  In a statement to the newspaper, Schwarzenegger, 63, said Monday: “After leaving the governor’s office I told my wife about this event, which occurred over a decade ago. I understand and deserve the feelings of anger and disappointment among my friends and family. There are no excuses and I take full responsibility for the hurt I have caused. I have apologized to Maria, my children and my family. I am truly sorry.” (People)

Arnold’s son, Patrick (17)  Patrick is putting his family first. On Tuesday he tweeted: “Some days you feel like sh*t, some days you want to quit and just be normal for a bit, yet I love my family till death do us apart. #family” Later in the week, he changed his Twitter last name to Shriver. Yea, right!

After a dramatic semifinals round, “Dancing with the Stars” has named its final three.Sadly, for early Season 12 frontrunners Ralph Macchio and professional partner Karina Sminoff, they will not be part of that group.

Flamboyant pop singer Lady Gaga ousted U.S. media mogul Oprah Winfrey to top this year’s Forbes celebrity power list released on Wednesday. Gaga, whose real name is Stefani Germanotta, moved up four positions from last year to claim the top spot in Forbes’ annual “The Celebrity 100″ 2011 list that measures power by entertainment-related earnings, media visibility and social media popularity. Forbes rated the American singer-songwriter No. 1, estimating her earnings in the past 12 months as $90 million, but also noting her 32 million Facebook fans and 10 million Twitter followers.

Jeff Conaway, who rose to fame thanks to his roles in Grease and the TV series Taxi, is in critical condition following an apparent overdose. According to family members, Conaway is being treated at Encino Hospital Medical Center with pneumonia; he is currently unconscious. The actor, 60, is no stranger to substance abuse problems. He began using drugs in the mid-1980s, and in 2008, he appeared on VH1′s Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew, where he sought treatment for addictions to cocaine, painkillers and alcohol.

Musician Pete Doherty was jailed for six months on Friday after pleading guilty to possession of cocaine, the Press Association reported. The 32-year-old was arrested in January last year by police investigating the suspected overdose death of heiress Robyn Whitehead. The controversial Babyshambles singer has been jailed twice before and has repeatedly admitted possession of banned substances.

Bieber – He already launched a nail polish line and a unisex fragrance, “My World,” and now teen pop sensation Justin Bieber, 17, is coming out with his first-ever women’s perfume.”Let’s be real, the way a girl smells is very important to a guy,” Bieber said.. “I have such a deep connection with my fans, so creating a fragrance that I personally love is another way I can bring them closer to my world.” The fragrance, which is called “Someday,” is described as a “fruity gourmand” and is scheduled to hit department and specialty stores in June. And to make hordes of teenage girls swoon even more, the Biebs is donating all proceeds of the $35 scent to charity.

Don’t expect a speedy return to the silver screen for Arnold Schwarzenegger. Days after his shocking split with Maria Shriver and the news of his alleged love-child going public. “At the request of Arnold Schwarzenegger we asked Creative Artists Agency to inform all his motion picture projects currently underway or being negotiated to stop planning until further notice,” his lawyer said.

At the movies –

Thor

Bridesmaids (1st week $24.4 million)

Fast Five

Priest (1st week $14.5 million)

Rio

Jumping the Broom

Something Borrowed

Water For Elephants

Tyler Pery’s Madea’s Big Happy Family

Soul Surfer

Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil

Top video games –

Portal 2 (X360)

Mortal Kombat (PS3 X360)

Pokemon Black/White Version (DS)

Just Dance 2 (Wii)

Wii Sports

Zumba Fitness (Wii)

Portal 2 (PS2)

Wii Sports Resort

SOCOM 4: US Navy SEALS (PS3)

CBS Is On Top Again… Sitcoms Coming Back. Pop Culture Television History.

The report says it all – CBS is on top again – the #1 network for the fifth year. A nice surprise is an uptick to sitcom, “Modern Family.” For the past few years, the sitcom has been kind-of-dead, but ABC’s “Modern Family” proves a well-written/acted sitcom is still alive and well. Let’s see some more. So, here it is – from AP:

TV Season Scorecard As Season Ends – CBS finished the 2010-11 season last week as the nation’s most-watched television network for the eighth time in nine years, the Nielsen Co. said on Wednesday. Fox won its seventh season in a row among the youthful 18-to-49-year-old demographic closely watched by advertisers. The country’s favorite TV show was Fox’s “American Idol” for the eighth straight season. Viewership was down for each of the four biggest broadcast networks, Nielsen said. CBS averaged 11.6 million viewers in prime-time (down 2 percent from last season), Fox had 9.8 million viewers (down 2 percent), ABC had 8.5 million (down 1 percent) and NBC had 7 million (down 15 percent), Nielsen said. Much of NBC’s decline was because the network broadcast the Winter Olympics last season; take away sports and NBC’s prime-time decline was 3 percent. CBS had the five most popular dramas on television, each a crime-solving procedural (“NCIS,” ”NCIS: Los Angeles,” ”The Mentalist,” ”Criminal Minds” and “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation”).

The network also had the two most popular comedies in “The Big Bang Theory” and “Two and a Half Men,” the latter despite a Sheen-shortened season. Only the writer’s strike-affected 2007-08 season, won by Fox, stopped CBS from a nine-year winning streak. The fastest-growing prime-time show was  ”Modern Family” on ABC, up 24 percent to 11.8 million viewers, Nielsen said. Fox’s since-canceled “Good Guys,” down 42 percent, was the biggest year-to-year loser.

Tacky Talk Show Hosts… The Name Calling Gets Old. Pop Culture Talkshow Host History.

Sometimes, you just tired of seeing and hearing the name calling. High paid talkshow hosts, entertainers – whomever – whatever’s in the media – a talking head – more name calling. No right, no left. Totally unprofessional. Totally tacky.YIKES!

Over the past year, there’s been a number of these incidents. Glenn Beck was recent, but here’s the latest:

Left-leaning Ed Schultz has been suspended from MSNBC for referring to fellow host Laura Ingraham as a “right-wing slut” and “talk slut” on his syndicated show Tuesday.In a statement released Wednesday, the cable channel said: “MSNBC management met with Ed Schultz this afternoon and accepted his offer to take one week of unpaid leave for the remarks he made yesterday on his radio program. Ed will address these remarks on his show tonight, and immediately following begin his leave. Remarks of this nature are unacceptable and will not be tolerated.”

Mr. Pop History – Yes, I get it. I do PR – and Schultz gets all kinds of curious attention. Next time he’s on MSNBC, his sampling will go up. No doubt.

So many of these talkers are hot air bags anyway. Their job – hold an audience into the next commercial. Doesn’t matter who.  Remember, you the audience are being sold – you’re the commodity the advertisers buy.Think about that any of these talk-types rant, then go into a commercial.

Now – let’s get to more serious business – that of pop culture history. Remember when? Remember this lady? She had a ton of class, didn’t she?

Jackie Kennedy.

mrpopculture.com

This Week In News, Pop, Entertainment, Tech History. Pop Culture History. Week Of May 8-14, 2011.

Compiled By Gary West of mrpopculture.com

A Complete Look At The News, Pop Culture, Entertainment and More – From The Week Of May 8-14, 2011

In The News –

More Memphis residents were being told Sunday to flee their homes for higher ground as the Mississippi’s crest edged toward the city, threatening to bring more flooding to parts of an area already soaked. Officials were going door-to-door, warning about 240 people to get out before the river reaches its expected peak Tuesday. In all, residents in more than 1,300 homes have been told to go, and some 370 people were staying in shelters.

Gunfire and shelling rattled a city in central Syria on Sunday and killed a 12-year-old boy, as President Bashar Assad’s autocratic regime expanded its military crackdown on a seven-week uprising by sending tanks and reinforcements to key areas, activists said. Activists said authorities also arrested a 10-year-old boy, apparently to punish his parents, and filed charges against a leading opposition figure who is suffering from cancer.

Animal Kingdom, who was 20-1 on the morning line, won the Kentucky Derby on Saturday. Shackleford kept a commanding lead throughout the race, but Animal Kingdom, ridden by John Velazquez and trained by H. Motion, overtook his competitors on the homestretch to win the 137th Kentucky Derby. Velazquez, who was initially set to ride Uncle Mo before the horse was scratched, replaced jockey Robby Albarado after an injury. Shackleford only placed fourth.

Al-Qaida’s front group in Iraq reaffirmed its support Monday for the terror network’s second-in-command, Ayman al-Zawahri, a week after U.S. commandos killed Osama bin Laden. Al-Qaida has not yet announced a successor and there is some uncertainty about whether al-Zawahri will indeed take over for bin Laden. In a statement posted on an insurgent website Monday, the Islamic State of Iraq also taunted President Barack Obama as “the rat in the black house” and said he should remain fearful of bin Laden’s promise to threaten the United States.

Newt Gingrich is running for president. The former House speaker disclosed his bid on Twitter and Facebook on Monday and urged followers to tune into Fox News on Wednesday. “I will be on to talk about my run for president of the United States,” Gingrich wrote after spending a year or more publicly laying the groundwork for a GOP presidential candidacy. “I have been humbled by all the encouragement you have given me to run.”

The nation’s first full face transplant recipient said the first thing his young daughter told him when she saw him after the operation was “Daddy, you’re so handsome.” Dallas Wiens, sporting a goatee and dark sunglasses, joined surgeons Monday at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston in his first public appearance since the 15-hour procedure in March. “It feels natural,” said the 25-year-old Fort Worth, Texas, man, who received a new nose, lips, skin, muscle and nerves from an anonymous donor. The operation was paid for by the U.S. military, which hopes to use findings from the procedure to help soldiers with severe facial wounds.

Geological monitoring services say a magnitude 7.1 earthquake has hit in the South Pacific off the French territory of New Caledonia. No injuries or damage were immediately reported. The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center says there was no threat of a widespread tsunami based on historical earthquake and tsunami data.

President Barack Obama’s approval rating has hit its highest point in two years — 60 percent — and more than half of Americans now say he deserves to be re-elected, according to an Associated Press-GfK poll taken after U.S. forces killed al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden. In worrisome signs for Republicans, the president’s standing improved not just on foreign policy but also on the economy, and independent Americans — a key voting bloc in the November 2012 presidential election — caused the overall uptick in support by sliding back to Obama after fleeing for much of the past two years.

The number of people applying for unemployment benefits plummeted last week, reversing nearly all the sharp rise reported the previous week. The number of laid-off workers seeking benefits dropped 44,000 to a seasonally adjusted 434,000, the Labor Department said Thursday. That is the steepest weekly fall since February 2010.

Authorities say former NFL quarterback and ESPN analyst Kordell Stewart has been charged with driving with a suspended license and speeding. Fulton County sheriff’s spokeswoman Tracy Flanagan said Stewart was booked into jail in the Atlanta suburb of Alpharetta Wednesday and freed on $3,000 bond about four hours later. Stewart is scheduled to appear in court July 12. It wasn’t immediately known whether he has an attorney.

A pair of Taliban suicide bombers attacked paramilitary police recruits eagerly heading home for a break after months of training, killing 80 people Friday in the first act of retaliation for the U.S. raid that killed Osama bin Laden. In claiming responsibility, the al-Qaida linked militant group cited anger at Pakistan’s military for failing to stop the American incursion on their soil. The blasts in the northwest were a reminder of the savagery of Islamist insurgents in Pakistan. Tensions also have risen between the U.S. and Islamabad over allegations that some elements of Pakistani security forces had been harboring bin Laden, who died in a May 2 raid in Abbottabad, a garrison town about three hours’ drive from the scene of the bombing.

A computer glitch corrupted the State Department’s annual worldwide lottery for U.S. immigrant visas and the results will be scratched, the Obama administration said Friday, disappointing tens of thousands of would-be immigrants who were notified this year that they had won a chance to come and live legally in the United States.Nearly 15 million people had entered the 2012 lottery hoping to win one of 50,000 U.S. immigrant visas available under a wild-card program that gives entrants who otherwise would have little hope of getting a coveted U.S. visa.

An 18-year-old college student died from a bullet to his chest as he chased three teens who robbed him and his girlfriend when he was buying a computer advertised on Craigslist for $600, a prosecutor said Friday.

Details of the killing emerged at an arraignment for three 17-year-old males who were charged as adults with murder, robbery and shooting at an occupied vehicle.Superior Court Judge Joseph Brannigan entered not guilty pleas on their behalf and set bail at $5 million each — $3 million higher than the amount sought by prosecutors.

A worker at Japan’s tsunami-crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant died on Saturday, plant operator Tokyo Electric Power Co said, bringing the death toll at the complex to three since a massive earthquake and tsunami in March. Despite the prolonged nuclear crisis, Prime Minister Naoto Kan is set to announce at a G8 summit in France that Japan will keep using nuclear power, the Yomiuri newspaper said.

Sports –

Tiger Woods withdrew after nine holes at The Players Championship on Thursday because of leg injuries that sent him limping off the course toward a future that is murkier than ever. Woods shot a 42 on the front nine, walking some 20 yards behind his playing partners, holding his club for support and limping more noticeably with each hole.

Harmon Killebrew announced Friday that he no longer plans to fight his esophageal cancer and has settled in for the final days of his life, saddening friends and fans of the 74-year-old Hall of Fame slugger. In a statement released jointly by the Minnesota Twins and the National Baseball Hall of Fame, Killebrew said “it is with profound sadness” that he will no longer receive treatment for the “awful disease.” He said the cancer has been deemed incurable by his doctors and he will enter hospice care

Terribly tragic news in the hockey world tonight as New York Rangers forward Derek Boogard has passed away at the age of 28. Boogaard was found dead inside his apartment in Minneapolis by family members. No cause of death is known at the moment, but an autopsy will be performed.

Tech News –

Microsoft Corp. said Tuesday that it has agreed to buy the popular Internet telephone service Skype SA for $8.5 billion in the biggest deal in the software maker’s 36-year history. Buying Skype gives Microsoft access to a user base of about 170 million people who log in to Skype every month, using the Internet and Skype usernames as a complement to the traditional phone network and its phone numbers. Microsoft said it will marry Skype’s functions to its Xbox game console, Outlook email program and Windows smartphones. All of these platforms already have other options for Internet calling, but the addition of Skype users would expand their reach, making them more useful.

New York City will launch a new national emergency alert system by the end of the year that will send messages to cellphones during disasters.Mayor Michael Bloomberg made the announcement Tuesday at a news conference overlooking the World Trade Center site. He says the new technology will give the public clear and accurate information about imminent safety threats. The mayor says it will be geographically targeted and send messages to all cellphone users.

A new craze sweeping the Internet known as “planking” claimed a life in Australia Sunday and police fear the tragedy may not be the last. Planking involves someone lying flat on their stomach with their arms against their bodies in unusual and sometimes dangerous situations, with photographs of their exploits shared through social media sites. It has gone viral in recent weeks with Facebook page Planking Australia boasting over 55,000 fans and hundreds of photos of people lying on train tracks, escalators, fire hydrants, motorbikes and other objects. Police last week warned “plankers” of the dangers and their fears have been realised with the death of a man in Brisbane who plummeted from a seventh-storey balcony and died at the scene.

Radio news –

Satellite radio users can expect to pay more. Sirius XM President/CEO Mel Karmazin has confirmed that the company plans to raise subscription rates once a three-year cap imposed by the FCC as a condition of merger approval expires. He told analysts in a conference call explaining first-quarter financial results that the increase would be “more than inflation” and compensate the company for investing in content. Karmazin said Sirius XM hasn’t decided how much the increase would be or when it would begin.  It’s been lobbying the FCC to let the cap on the basic subscription price of $12.95 a month expire when the three years is up this July, saying it faces a much more crowded competitive media landscape now than in 2008 when Sirius and XM combined.

Entertainment news –

Whitney Houston is back in rehab. A representative for the superstar singer confirmed Monday that Houston is undergoing treatment. Kristen Foster says Houston is in an out-patient program for drug and alcohol treatment. She says it is a voluntary measure and part of Houston’s “long-standing” recovery process. The 47-year-old, one of the most successful singers in pop music history, has battled problems with drug addiction for years. But in 2009, as she released a comeback album, she declared herself healthy and clean.

The Oprah Winfrey Network announced Friday that Discovery executive Peter Liguori will replace Christina Norman as CEO. News of Norman’s ousting arrives less than five months after OWN’s debut. The channel since then has averaged a small 283,000 viewers in prime time. Winfrey admitted that the network was “not where I want it to be.” In making Friday’s announcement, the network said the shakeup is the result of “a transition from a launch phase to a more long-term focus on business and creative strategy, development and execution.”

Soccer star David Beckham was at the wheel of a Cadillac that struck another vehicle on a Los Angeles-area freeway, but he was not injured or cited in the collision, police said on Saturday. Beckham was driving on Friday on the 405 Freeway in Torrance, about 20 miles (32 km) from downtown Los Angeles, when he struck a stalled Mitsubishi, the California Highway Patrol said. The owner of the Mitsubishi, a 40 year-old Los Angeles man, complained of pain and was taken to a hospital, police said.

Justin Bieber has agreed to record a public service announcement on cyberbullying in order to resolve criminal charges filed against his manager and a record executive after a frenzy at a New York mall. The case stemmed from an incident in 2009, when thousands of unruly girls turned up at a Long Island clothing store to see the teen pop star sign autographs. Police hadn’t been expecting the crowd, and ordered the event cancelled.

Def Jam Records executive James Roppo was arrested after police said he refused to help disperse the crowd. Months later, police also pressed child endangerment charges against Bieber’s manager, Scott Braun.

After 25 years of marriage, California’s power couple has announced their separation.It was a shock to the outside world Monday night when Arnold Schwarzengegger and Maria Shriver and announced their separation after 34 years together, 25 of them as husband and wife.

Sarah Ferguson tells Oprah Winfrey it was “difficult” not to be invited to last month’s royal wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton.The Duchess of York says in an interview scheduled to air Wednesday on “The Oprah Winfrey Show” that she instead went to Thailand. Ferguson says she wanted to be with her daughters, who attended the wedding with their father and Ferguson’s former husband, Prince Andrew.

Multiplatinum singer Whitney Houston has entered an out-patient treatment program. “Whitney voluntarily entered the program to support her long-standing recovery process” said a press release.

Paula Joins X-Factor – TV’s most favorite dysfunctional duo, Simon Cowell and Paula Abdul will reunite on the U.S. launch of Fox’s ‘The X Factor’ this fall. LA Reid and Cheryl Cole will join them at the judges table. All four attended the first judges taping on Sunday.

Justin Bieber vomited during his Monday night performance in Manila! The 17-year-old pop star tweeted before his show: “Sick as a dog… but the show must go on. got called a trooper!” He had to go backstage mid-set and vomit, but finished the 90-minute performance.

Lady Gaga is turning to an unusual method to cultivate her fan base: The pop icon is releasing songs from her new album on a section of the popular online game “FarmVille” before they can be heard anywhere else. The singer, known for her outrageous styles and hits such as “Poker Face” and “Bad Romance,” will allow singles from “Born This Way” (due out May 23) to be heard within a specially-created farm, called “GagaVille,” in the game. Players will have to complete tasks to hear one exclusive new track per day streamed online from May 17 to 19. Starting on May 20, players will be also able to unlock additional songs that aren’t exclusive.

Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smity will appear on the final episode of Oprah’s talk show – which is scheduled for May 25.

Actress Lindsay Lohan was sentenced on Wednesday to four months in jail after changing her plea and effectively admitting stealing a $2,500 gold necklace from a Los Angeles store. But Lohan, who was not in court on Wednesday, will likely serve just 16-17 days of her sentence — most likely under house arrest, officials said. “I am glad to be able to put this past me and move on with my life and my career,” Lohan said in a statement. “I support the judge’s decision and hold myself accountable for being in this situation.” Lohan’s lawyer entered a no contest plea on behalf of the actress to a reduced misdemeanor theft charge

Heather Mills, Paul McCartney’sex-wife, has left a hospital after receiving treatment for a shoulder injury she sustained during a skiing accident in Austria, an official said Thursday. Mills crashed on the Moelltaler glacier Wednesday and was flown by helicopter to a hospital in the southern city of Lienz where she was diagnosed with a fractured right shoulder blade, hospital spokesman Alfred Fast said.

The 38-year-old TV sports anchor for NBC’s Chicago outlet was found dead on Thursday of unknown causes, the second time in the past decade the station’s sports anchor has died suddenly. Employees at an Atlanta hotel discovered Daryl Hawks in his room Thursday morning, and he was pronounced dead at a hospital. He was in Atlanta to cover a Chicago Bulls-Atlanta Hawks NBA playoff game.

Mary Tyler Moore has a benign tumor from her brain. The procedure will remove a meningioma, a benign tumor on the lining tissue of the brain.

Rocker James Durbin is voted off “American Idol.” With Durbin, 22, now out of the competition, Idol hopefuls Lauren Alaina, 16, Scotty McCreery, 17, and Haley Reinhart,, 20, will compete for a place in the finale during the May 18 episode.

Ashton Kutcher will replace Charlie Sheen on “Two And A Half Men.” Charlie Sheen says the show will tank with him in the lead.

Katy Couric will leave CBS Evening News on Thursday. She’ll be replaced by Scott Pelley on the CBS Evening News. The anchor, whose contract expires June 4, announced her exit date on Friday’s broadcast, adding that she will look back at “some of the amazing stories we’ve covered over the past five years” on her last day.

Jazz vocalist Etta James has been hospitalized with a blood infection.

The three-time Grammy winning singer of “At Last” was admitted to a hospital in Riverside, Calif., earlier this week with a urinary tract infection and sepsis.James, 73, has struggled with obesity and underwent gastric bypass surgery in 2003.

Saturday Night Live this week – Ed Helms hosted for the first time, welcoming old Daily Show co-stars Steve Carell and Stephen Colbert, among other surprise guests. Carell and Colbert, who voiced the SNL cartoon “The Ambiguously Gay Duo” in the ’90s, helped bring the popular sketch to life for the first time. However this time, Carell and Colbert played two of the villains — along with Helms — while superheroes Ace and Gary were portrayed by Jon Hamm and Jimmy Fallon.

At the movies –

Thor (1st week $65.7 million)

Fast Five

Jumping the Broom (1st week $15.2 million)

Something Borrowed (1st week $13.9 million)

Rio

Water For Elephants

Tyler Perry’s Madea’s Big Happy Family

Soul Surfer

Prom

Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil

Insidious

Source Code

Top albums this week

21 – Adele

NOW 38

Hot Sauce Committee Part Two

Helplessness Blues – Fleet Foxes

Love? – Jennifer Lopez

Musiqinthemagiq – Musiq Soulchild

In Your Dreams – Stevie Nicks

The Ultimate Collection – Sade

This Is Gonna Hurt – Sixx: A.M.

Rumours – Fleetwood Mac

Wasting Light – Foo Fighters

My Kinda Party – Jason Aldean

Paper Airplane – Alison Krauss & Union Staton

Doo-Wops & Hooligans – Bruno Mars

Teenage Dream – Katy Perry

Lemonade Mouth – Soundtrack

So Beautiful Or So What – Paul Simon

F.A.M.E. – Chris Brown

Femme Fatale – Britney Spears

Hello Fear – Kirk Franklin

Greatest Hits… So Far!!!  P!nk

19 – Adele

Rolling Papers – Wiz Khalifa

Glee, The Music Presents: The Warblers

Top TV –

1. Dancing With the Stars ABC
2. American Idol” (Thursday) FOX
3. American Idol” (Wednesday) FOX
4. NCIS CBS
5. Dancing With the Stars Results ABC
6. NCIS: Los Angeles CBS
7. 60 Minutes CBS
8. The Mentalist CBS
9. Criminal Minds CBS
10. The Voice NBC
11. The Good Wife CBS
12. Castle ABC
13. Survivor: Redemption Island CBS
14. Bones FOX
15. CSI: Crime Scene Investigation
16. The Big Bang Theory CBS
17. Blue Bloods CBS
18. Body of Proof ABC
19. Grey’s Anatomy ABC
20. Desperate Housewives ABC

This Week In News, Pop, Entertainment, Tech History – May 1-May 7, 2001. Pop Culture History

Week of May 1-May7, 2011. Compiled By Gary West mrpopculture.com

In The News –

After two airstrikes in a week on targets close to Moammar Gadhafi, NATO was on the defensive Sunday over accusations that it was overstepping its mandate by trying to kill the Libyan leader. Russia said Sunday that the bombing of the home of Gadhafi’s youngest son raised “serious doubts” about NATO’s assertions that it is not targeting the Libyan strongman or his relatives.

Pope Benedict XVI beatified Pope John Paul II before 1.5 million faithful in St. Peter’s Square and surrounding streets Sunday, moving the beloved former pontiff one step closer to possible sainthood in one of the largest turnouts ever for a Vatican Mass. The crowd in Rome and in capitals around the world erupted in cheers, tears and applause as an enormous photo of a young, smiling John Paul was unveiled over the loggia of St. Peter’s Basilica and a choir launched into hymn long associated with the Polish-born pope.

Space shuttle Endeavour’s final launch is off until at least the end of the week because technicians need to replace a switch box in the engine compartment, NASA said Sunday. The six astronauts — led by commander Mark Kelly — wasted no time heading back to Houston. Kelly’s wife, Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, did not join the astronauts in flying back. The timing of her return to Houston, to resume rehab after being wounded in a shooting rampage four months ago, was uncertain.

Authorities say an 8-year-old girl apparently slept through the fatal shootings of four family members at a rural southern Ohio home, and the relative suspected of killing them later died in a shootout with police. Twenty-seven-year-old Randle Lee Roberts II died Saturday in the shootout in Columbus, about an hour after the girl alerted a neighbor that something had happened at her home about 95 miles away near West Union.

(May1) Osama Bin Laden Is Finally Dead – Declaring the killing of Osama bin Laden “a good day for America,” President Barack Obama said Monday the world was safer without the al-Qaida terrorist and mastermind of the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks. His administration used DNA testing to help confirm that American forces in Pakistan had in fact killed bin Laden, as U.S. officials sought to erase all doubt about the stunning news. A U.S. official says Osama bin Laden went down firing at the Navy SEALs who stormed his compound.”Today we are reminded that as a nation there is nothing we can’t do,” Obama said of the news bound to lift his political standing and help define his presidency. He hailed the pride of those who broke out in overnight celebrations as word spread around the globe. Bin Laden was shot in the head during a firefight and then quickly buried at sea. White House officials were mulling the merits and appropriateness of releasing a photo.

Celebrating Bin Laden’s Death In America – Joyous at the release of a decade’s frustration, Americans streamed to the site of the World Trade Center, the gates of the White House and smaller but no less jubilant gatherings across the nation to celebrate the death of Osama bin Laden — cheering, waving flags and belting the national anthem. Ground zero, more familiar these past 10 years for bagpipes playing “Amazing Grace” and solemn speeches and arguments over what to build to honor the Sept. 11 dead, became, for the first time, a place of revelry. “We’ve been waiting a long time for this day,” Lisa Ramaci, a New Yorker whose husband was a freelance journalist killed in the Iraq war, said early Monday. “I think it’s a relief for New York tonight just in the sense that we had this 10 years of frustration just building and building, wanting this guy dead, and now he is, and you can see how happy people are.”

A Dutch woman received a maximum 12-year prison sentence Tuesday for smothering her four newborns in an effort to conceal her pregnancies and keep up the appearance of being a perfect daughter. The woman, identified only as Sietske H. in line with Dutch privacy laws, was arrested last year after the babies’ decomposed bodies were discovered in four suitcases in the attic of her house. They were born between 2003 and 2009. The District Court in the northern city of Leeuwarden convicted her of one count of manslaughter and three counts of murder.

A spokesman for George W. Bush says the former president has declined an invitation from President Barack Obama to attend an observance at New York’s ground zero. Obama plans to visit the site of the destroyed World Trade Center towers Thursday in the aftermath of a Navy SEALs raid that killed Osama bin Laden. The al-Qaida attack, which killed about 3,000 people, occurred in the early months of Bush’s presidency in 2001.The spokesman, David Sherzer, says the former president appreciated the offer to attend but has chosen to remain out of the spotlight during his post-presidency.

Saudi Arabia says an al-Qaida member on the kingdom’s most wanted list called from abroad and turned himself in. Interior Ministry’s spokesman Maj. Gen. Mansour Al-Turki said in a statement Wednesday that Khaled Hathal Abdullah al-Atifi al-Qahtani contacted the security authorities from an undisclosed country and expressed his wish to come home.

Marking Osama bin Laden’s death where the terrorist inflicted his greatest damage, President Barack Obama soberly laid a wreath Thursday at New York’s ground zero and declared to the city and the world, “When we say we will never forget, we mean what we say.” The president closed his eyes and clasped his hands at the outdoor memorial where the twin towers of the World Trade Center once dominated the Manhattan skyline. He shook hands with 9/11 family members and others dressed in black at the site where the skyscrapers were brought down by planes commandeered by bin Laden’s followers. Nearly 3,000 people were killed.

Interest in a new book about Navy SEAL Team Six is sky-rocketing in the wake of the killing of Osama bin Laden by members of the elite U.S. special force.

“SEAL Team Six: Memoirs of an Elite Navy SEAL Sniper” is being rushed into U.S. stores this week ahead of its originally scheduled May 24 publication date. A representative for publisher St. Martin’s Press said it has almost quadrupled the print run to 70,000 copies to meet the demand. On Amazon.com the book has moved from ranking No. 20,000 to the No. 5 bestselling book for the web retailer. Hollywood talent agency CAA was brought in last week to handle movie rights. The Hollywood Reporter has learned that the co-authors Howard Wasdin, a member of SEAL Team Six in the 1990s, and Stephen Templin, a Navy veteran and professor at Meio University in Japan, are now at work on a series of “SEAL Team Six” novels.

Pakistan’s army on Thursday(May5) called for cuts in the number of U.S. military personnel inside the country to protest the American commando raid that killed Osama bin Laden, and threatened to cut cooperation with Washington if it stages more unilateral raids on its territory. The statement, the first since Monday’s raid, signaled the army’s anger at the unilateral operation, but was also aimed at pacifying domestic critics who have accused it of failing to protect the country’s sovereignty — potent charges in a country where anti-Americanism runs deep.

Al-Qaida on Friday confirmed the killing of Osama bin Laden and warned of retaliation, saying Americans’ “happiness will turn to sadness.” The confirmation came in an Internet statement posted on militant websites, signed by “the general leadership” of al-Qaida. The announcement opens the way for the group to name a successor to bin Laden. His deputy Ayman al-Zawahri is now the most prominent figure in the group and is a very likely contender to take his place.

Oil plunged nearly 9 percent to settle below $100 per barrel. Investors who had ridden a months-long rally fled the market Thursday because of concerns about weakening demand for fuel in the U.S. The decline of $9.44 per barrel, or 8.6 percent, brings the week’s loss for oil to $14.13, or 12.4 percent. Other commodities like silver and cotton have plunged as well.

Employers added more than 200,000 jobs in April for the third straight month, the biggest hiring spree in five years. The Labor Department reported Friday that the economy added 244,000 jobs last month. Private employers shrugged off high gas prices and created 268,000 jobs — the most since February 2006. The job gains were widespread. Retailers, factories, financial companies, education and health care and even construction companies all added jobs. Federal, state and local governments cut jobs. But the unemployment rate ticked up to 9 percent from 8.8 percent in March, the first increase since November.

Federal authorities on Friday(May6) opened seven new inspection booths for commercial traffic heading north to the U.S. from Mexico, nearly doubling capacity at the bridge that’s the busiest commercial port on America’s southwestern border — and a prime smuggling corridor for drug gangs. U.S. Customs and Border Protection says the new posts will ease wait times on Laredo’s World Trade International Bridge, where more than 4,800 18-wheelers rumble into American territory daily, or one about every 18 seconds.

Tech News  –

Google has unveiled Google Business Photos for Maps, a new product that allows users to check out the inside of local businesses. Marissa Mayer, Google’s vice president of location and maps, made the announcement Thursday at the Social-Loco conference in San Francisco. During a demo on stage, Mayer and a co-worker showed off the ability to “enter” local businesses and see the inside of a building. Businesses can provide photos to Google, which can then be compiled into a 360-degree view of a building’s interior

The Coast Guard closed a stretch of the swollen Mississippi to barge traffic Friday in a move that could cause a backup along the mighty river, while police farther south in Memphis went door to door, warning thousands of people to leave before they get swamped. Emergency workers in Memphis handed out bright yellow fliers in English and Spanish that read, “Evacuate!!! Your property is in danger right now.”

Reality television and movies sparked a surge in the popularity of Maci, Bentley and Kellan as baby names last year, a report from the Social Security Administration on Thursday suggests. Maci and Bentley were the names with the greatest increases in popularity. Maci Bookout is a personality from MTV show “16 and Pregnant” and “Teen Mom.” Bentley is the name of her son. Kellan is the second fastest-growing boy’s name, from “Twilight” star Kellan Lutz, while Tiana, the name of Disney’s first African-American princess in “The Princess and the Frog” is increasingly popular for girls. Knox, the moniker for one of Brad Pitt’s’s and Angelina Jolie’s’s twins, was third on the boys. However, the most popular baby names were a bit more classic. For the twelfth year in a row, Jacob was the favorite boys name. Isabella, for the second year, won out for the girls.

The Wall Street Journal quietly launched a WikiLeaks competitor yesterday, SafeHouse, a data dump and tip site for government and corporate wrongdoing. The attention-capturing power of WikiLeaks has often compelled reluctant partnerships with legacy media outlets. Founder Julian Assange’s personal life and insistence on selectively handing out evidence to multiple outlets puts publishers in the awkward position of negotiating with a liable upstart muscling in on their territory.

Entertainment news –

Mariah Carey gives birth to twins. The singer, 42, and her husband Nick Cannon welcomed their twin son and daughter on Saturday (Apr30) – their fourth wedding anniversary! The baby girl was born first, weighing 5 pounds, 3 ounces, measuring 18 inches long; her brother followed, weighing 5 pounds 6 ounces, and was 19 inches.Carey and Cannon, 30, have not yet named their kids. Cannon rushed his wife to the hospital in their Rolls-Royce Phantom; the Grammy-winning singer was calm, assuming it was another false labor incident. When they arrived, Berger told the Associated Press, the first-time Dad was so nervous that he went to the wrong unit in the hospital, and had to be guided to the maternity ward by a nurse.

Almost 23 million American TV viewers tuned in to watch live coverage of Prince William’s marriage to Kate Middleton despite the wedding taking place before dawn in much of the United States.

A former porn star from Fort Wayne who recently has become known as one of actor Charlie Sheen’s “goddesses” has had her driver’s license suspended for 90 days after pleading guilty to a misdemeanor drunken driving charge in her hometown. A judge on Tuesday also sentenced 24-year-old Rachel Oberlin to a year on probation. She was arrested Feb. 3 after police say she crashed into a light pole and didn’t adequately participate in a breath test.

Actor Charlie Sheen toured an Alabama neighborhood leveled by tornadoes and said Monday he wants to organize a relief event for victims in the state. After going through the decimated Alberta neighborhood in Tuscaloosa, Sheen told The Associated Press he was working with local officials to organize a benefit. He said a date has not been set. “I want some money, hope, faith and healing to the area,” said Sheen, the former star of the sitcom “Two and a Half Men.”

Police in Las Vegas say rapper and reality television star Flavor Flav was arrested on four outstanding misdemeanor warrants for driving offenses. Las Vegas police Officer Marcus Martin said Monday the entertainer whose real name is William Jonathan Drayton was arrested Friday night after a traffic stop east of the Las Vegas Strip.

Scott Pelley will be the new anchor for the “CBS Evening News,” CBS said on Tuesday. Pelley, a Texas native who most recently has been part of the CBS “60 Minutes” team, replaces Katie Couric, who confirmed last month that she was stepping down as the anchor. Pelley’s appointment as anchor and managing editor will take effect June 6, CBS said in a statement.

Pop star Rick Springfield was arrested on suspicion of driving drunk through Malibu in his vintage Corvette over the weekend, police said on Monday. Springfield, 61, was taken into custody on Sunday night after failing a field sobriety test, a Los Angeles County Sheriff’s spokesman said in a statement. The singer, best known for his 1981 hit “Jessie’s Girl,” was stopped by sheriff’s deputies after rapidly accelerating his 1963 Corvette along Pacific Coast Highway in the celebrity enclave of Malibu. He “exhibited signs of alcohol intoxication,” the statement said.

President Obama will guest on “60 Minutes” this Sunday. He’ll sit down with Steve Kroft for his first and only interview since the death of Osama bin Laden. The interview, which will be filmed Wednesday at the White House, will air Sunday, May 8 at 7/6c. This will be the president’s first sit-down following the death of bin Laden, although he did an interview alongside First Lady Michelle with Oprah that aired Monday, but it was pre-taped and had no discussion of the Al Qaeda leader.

Gleeks, get your popcorn ready. The Glee concert tour is becoming a 3D movie to hit theaters this August, Fox announced Wednesday. Glee Live! 3D! will be released on Aug. 12 for a limited two-week run. The film will be produced by series co-creator Ryan Murphy and directed by Kevin Tancharoen.

On the final track of their new album — their first together in 30 years — Donny and Marie Osmond give a nod to difficult times. “Sun follows rain, strength follows pain,” the duo sings before echoing the song’s title. “We will find a way.” Also this week, she and her brother Donny released “Donny & Marie,” which has them revisiting their country roots. Marie Osmond rose to her own fame as a country artist in the 1970s, with her hit “Paper Roses” reaching No. 1 on the country charts in 1973.

Marie Osmond remarries first husband – Stephan Craig.

British singer Cheryl Cole will join Simon Cowell as a judge on the U.S. version of his upcoming “The X Factor” talent show, broadcaster Fox television said on Thursday, leaving one more space to be filled on the panel. Cole, 27, a member of the British pop group “Girls Aloud”, and a judge on the U.K. version of the show, is a household name in Britain, but virtually unknown in the United States. But Cowell has long championed Cole for his U.S. project, which is due to start airing in September. Cole will join record executive Antonio “L.A.” Reid as an “X Factor” judge.

Passing – Actor Jackie Cooper. He was 88.

Passing – Aurthur Laurents – the Tony-winning playwright of Broadway’s West Side Story and Gypsy, has died. He was 93.

Lady Gaga will mentor the remaining four American Idol finalists next week, Fox announced Friday. Gaga will join Jimmy Lovine in the studio to help Lauren Alaina, James Durbin, Scotty McCreery and Haley Reinheart and prepare to sing songs by Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller and. Reinhart performed the singer’s unreleased track “You and Me” on Wednesday.

Paul McCartney and his girlfriend Nancy Shevell are engaged, his publicist said Friday, nearly four years after they were first spotted together. McCartney, 68, started dating the 51-year-old New York socialite and businesswoman following his bitter split from second wife Heather Mills. McCartney publicist Stuart Bell confirmed recent media speculation over a proposal as true, but declined to give further details on when and how the former Beatle asked Shevell to marry him, saying only “we’re all thrilled for him.”

Jerry Seinfeld has launches a website as JerrySeinfelddotcom went live Friday morning with three short comedy clips — “The Fattest Man in the World” from The Tonight Show in 1981, “Do the Horses Know They’re Racing?” from a 1988 HBO special and “No Room in the Newspaper” from “The Tonight Show” in 1990. The site is taking an unusual approach to offering the content by running just three new clips per day. The clips, which range from 30 seconds to two minutes, will be available for only 24 hours and then will be replaced with three new ones.

Top TV This Week –

1. Dancing With the Stars” (Monday) ABC
2. American Idol” (Wednesday) FOX
3. American Idol” (Thursday) FOX
4. Dancing With the Stars” (Tuesday) ABC
5. The Mentalist CBS
6. Dancing With the Stars” (Special _ Tuesday) ABC
7. Body of Proof ABC
8. The Voice NBC
9. Survivor: Redemption Island CBS
10. Better With You ABC
11. NCIS CBS
12. CSI: Crime Scene Investigation CBS
13. 60 Minutes” (7-7:46 p.m. Eastern) CBS
14. The Big Bang Theory CBS
15. Grey’s Anatomy ABC
16. NCIS: Los Angeles CBS
17. Blue Bloods CBS
18. Bones FOX
19. 60 Minutes” (7:46-8 p.m. Eastern) CBS
20. Desperate Housewives ABC

Hot hits this week –

E.T. – Katy Perry fea. Kanye West

Till The World Ends – Britney Spears fea. Nick Minaj & Ke$ha

Rolling In The Deep – Adele

The Lazy Song – Bruno Mars

Just Can’t Get Enough – The Black Eyed Peas

S&M – Rihanna

On The Floor – Jennifer Lopez fea. Pitbull

Blow – Ke$ha

Look At Me Now – Chris Brown fea. Lil Wayne & Busta Rhymes

Down On Me – Jeremih fea. 50 Cent

Written In The Stars – Tinie Tempah fea. Eric Turner

F**k You (Forget You) – Cee Lo Green

The Show Goes On – Lupe Fiasco

Roll Up – Wiz Khalifia

Give Me Everything – Pitbull fea. Ne-Yo, AfroJack & Nayer

I Need A Doctor – Dr. Dre fea. Eminem & Skylar Grey

F**kin’ Perfect – P!nk

All Of The Lights – Kanye West

Born This Way – Lady Gaga

Judas – Lady Gaga

Moment 4 Life – Nicki Minaj fea. Drake

For the First Time – The Script

I Feel Pretty/Unpretty – Glee Cast

Firework – Katy Perry

Verizon iPhone Selling Nicely. Pop Culture Tech History.

We knew it, but can’t help but report that the Verizon version of iPhone has topped two million sales. So many were unhappy with AT&T’s spotty reception – and now – the first sales results are in:

Verizon announced Thursday that it activated 2.2 million iPhones during the quarter, helping the company more than triple its profit from a year ago. The wireless division of telecom giant began selling the iPhone on Feb. 10. Verizon only sold the iPhone 4 for 50 days during the quarter, compared to the full 90 days of the quarter that Apple’s smartphone sold on rival AT&T’s network.