Category Archives: News

Amazon Go-ing to the Isle of Wight?

$116.9 billion.

A figure beyond the bounds of most of our imaginations, a sum too staggering to comprehend for all but the select few.

Could Amazon be set for the Isle of Wight?

More tantalisingly still, the gargantuan figure is the net worth of a man who upon starting his own business in lieu of an actual desk placed four wooden slabs beneath a supine wooden door inside his garage to use as a makeshift table, with a hastily erected Amazon logo subsequently hung nearby.

From such humble beginnings, Jeff Bezos prospered to become the wealthiest man on the planet, overhauling fellow Seattleite Bill Gates in late 2017.

Now a global brand, the one-time literature database has targeted the UK as the next market with potential for expeditious expansion. An Amazon spokesperson confirmed: “The UK will play a leading role in the company’s global innovation.”

Manchester and Cambridge were the first UK locations to host Amazon warehouses, creating an abundance of employment, although workers past and present have given mixed reviews, with sections expressing concern for the company’s probation policies.

Speculation has been rife amongst business media moguls that the next progression will be for Amazon to roll out their ‘Amazon Go’ checkout-free grocery stores around the UK in late 2020, with Newport, Isle of Wight, among half a dozen prospective destinations blueprinted for the prototype.

Far from the recruitment generated by the Manchester and Cambridge sites, this is a predominantly machine operated franchise destined to affect a slew of issues for adjacent supermarkets.

The concern with Amazon Go is that it relies almost entirely upon cameras and sensors to run its stores, with only a sprinkling of entrance and shelf replenishing staff necessary for the successful operation of the location.

There are already more than 25 of these active in the US, following the Seattle initiation at the start of 2018.

Customers place their credit or debit card on file before entering and are then tracked by cameras, which register the items that they’ve taken (or put back) and subsequently funds are removed from their accounts within seconds. In the case of returns, the customer can re-enter the store, replace the item and receive a refund within minutes.

This all sounds fine and dandy in principal, other than further evidence of the foreboding lurch towards Orwellian society, but the reality is that it could cause more harm than good.

Stores such as Asda, Marks and Spencer and Sainsbury are likely to be hit by this development, as people opt for the convenient, time savvy alternative that Amazon Go offers. As one domino topples it is likely others will follow.

Jeff Bezos is currently worth $116.9 billion

The pool is already too crowded in the Island’s capital town for another warm body to dive in haphazardly, let alone one that manipulates the Isle’s populace as figurative rodents plodding around a hamster wheel as part of this behemoth’s quest for global domination.

While I am all for the next wave of technological innovation, this advancement reeks of redundancy. Are we not, as Brits, proud of our tolerance for static queues? Are we not the kings and queens of small talk with cashiers? Let us stand as one and chant “ASDA, ASDA, ASDA” until our throats are bone dry.

You can take our minimum salaried, labour intensive jobs Amazon, but you can’t take our seven minutes of waiting for the person in front to dig through their shrapnel to find the right money!

I am grateful to Mr Bezos and his Amazon website for making Clipper tea bags, Anonymous masks and memory foam pillows so readily affordable, the man is a genius – this is a step too far though. It is time that the Wight unite to make sure that we don’t become fungi in a billionaire’s Petri Dish… Unless he wants to throw in a floating bridge that doesn’t sink that is.

Written by Dom Kureen

As a young rapscallion stranded on an Island, my time is split between writing, performing spoken word, wrestling alligators and delivering uplifting pep talks to hairdressers before they prune me. I meditate and wash daily when possible.

Cowes Mylk

In my time as a journalist I’ve uncovered many stories which have stirred my innards, but perhaps none as likely to divide opinion as that which I share on this page today.

Cowes Mylk

There have been myriad ambitious projects in recent years on the Isle of Wight; 24 hour Tesco Express, Dappy from N-Dubs being booked at the Isle of Wight Festival, and a £7m floating bridge that seems determined to sink.

2019 sees the Island set for its latest offering from the entrepreneurial conveyor belt in the form of ‘Cowes Mylk’. Yes, you read that correctly, not cow’s milk as in the lactation from the teat of a bovine, rather a different form of milk produced, manufactured and bottled in the town of West Cowes.

There is a twist; the milk produced will excrete from the anatomy of female human beings, of whom more than 20 have already signed up to take part, with the caveat of a generous hourly rate and flexible hours offered to those deemed suitable for the position.

The initiative has been hailed as a triumph by company founder Jill Patrick, who predicts that Cowes Mylk will be on local store shelves by late 2019, with the target of getting into duty free stores and larger chains by 2021.

“We were never designed to drink the pus filled discharge of another animal, particularly one which has its calves unceremoniously and traumatically ripped from it at the point of giving birth.


“This is a humane and entirely ethical process, in which all of the participants consent fully to supply our demands, whilst also being amply compensated for their contributions.” Continue reading

Written by Dom Kureen

As a young rapscallion stranded on an Island, my time is split between writing, performing spoken word, wrestling alligators and delivering uplifting pep talks to hairdressers before they prune me. I meditate and wash daily when possible.

Gurning twat shoots animals for sport

He had wanted to shoot an elephant, but couldn’t find one large enough to satisfy his blood lust. Walter James Palmer didn’t let that stop him though, making do with the consolation of firing arrows into a lion named Cecil, who had previously been a popular member of a Zimbabwean national park.

Kureen sources have discovered that Palmer, a dentist from Minnesota, paid somewhere between $55,000 and $70,000 to shoot the large cat, who had become notorious for his affable nature and relish of human contact.

In an attempt to sidestep the law, Dr. Palmer hurried through some seriously sketchy hunting permits in exchange for the sizeable outlay upon arrival in Africa, securing the services of a team of trained hunters who agreed to lure the animal half a mile from the park using bait, initially wounding it and returning a day later to finish the job during a pursuit that lasted for around 40 hours.

Palmer pleaded ignorance when questioned on the subject of his unlawful killing during an interview with a Colorado based news agency;

“In early July, I was in Zimbabwe on a bow hunting trip for big game. I hired several professional guides and they secured all proper permits. To my knowledge, everything about this trip was legal and properly conducted.

“I had no idea that the lion I took was a known, local favourite, was collared and part of a study until the end of the hunt.

“I relied on the expertise of my local professional guides to ensure a legal hunt.”

Palmer and co. contravened park regulations on at least two counts; animals cannot be killed within a five mile radius of the park and may not have their collar (usually fitted with a microchip) removed – The hunters had removed his collar to prevent tracking of their cherished game.

Below are some images of Palmer’s previous handy work.

Government approved groups are allowed a limited number of permits each year to hunt individual species, but in certain impoverished nations, where more value is often placed upon monetary gain than the lives of sentient beings, the system is regularly duped.

The reason why bow and arrow killings are so appealing to hunt enthusiasts is two-fold; the stealth of the method allows for less detection, and the arrows themselves are more difficult to trace than a bullet, even then it is difficult to determine that the person in possession of the bow in fact shot the offending arrow.

Ricky Gervais Vs Hunting 

Of course Palmer is not alone here. In one high-profile case earlier this year, a woman named Rebecca Francis uploaded pictures of herself laying next to a dead bull giraffe that she had killed, with her smug conceit and Twitter assertion that she was “grateful to be part of something so good” antagonising a host of social media spectators.

One of those was comedian Ricky Gervais who Tweeted: “What must’ve happened to you in a previous life to make you want to kill a beautiful animal & then lie there next to it smiling?”

Francis, like Palmer, pleads her innocence, claiming that the animal was close to death, with the flesh subsequently used to nourish starving locals, and the bones utilised for art work.

Noble indeed, although a series of latterly published photos involving the same woman beaming in the vicinity of various other trophy kills is incongruent with such philanthropic assertions.

What do you make of Walter Palmer’s actions and hunting as a sport in general? Leave us a note in the comment section below.

Written by Dom Kureen

As a young rapscallion stranded on an Island, my time is split between writing, performing spoken word, wrestling alligators and delivering uplifting pep talks to hairdressers before they prune me. I meditate and wash daily when possible.

Convicted Rapist fit to return?

Oldham Athletic Football Club yesterday announced that they had agreed a contract with convicted rapist Ched Evans. Dom Kureen takes a look at the significance of the move and cites some other cases where convicted criminals returned to the sport.

Ched Evans 2

In April, 2012, Welsh footballer Chedwyn Michael “Ched” Evans was jailed for the rape of a teenage woman in Rhyl, North Wales – having served half of his sentence and only shown remorse for his lost sporting years, in lieu of an apology to his victim.

That latter aspect is viewed as largely contentious for the former Welsh international striker’s legion of detractors, with Evans continuing to plead innocence and apparently viewing any statement of regret as an implied admission of guilt.

The return to the fray of a convicted rapist, a full two and half years before his sentence was complete, has sparked indignation amongst supporters and ambassadors of various organisations that he has found himself linked to, or indeed trained with.

Chief among these clubs are Sheffield United of League One, who allowed their former player to train with their squad for an extensive period upon his release, allegedly going as far as drafting an 18-month deal for his permanent return to the fold.

These actions caused outrage among club officials, supporters and affiliates, with a trio of Blades patrons relinquishing roles at Bramall Lane in protest, most notably Beautiful South singer Paul Heaton. Olympic heptathlon champion Jessica Ennis-Hill meanwhile threatened to follow suit if the player was re-signed, receiving dozens of rape threats on Twitter for her trouble.

Private Eye controversially published this survey.

With Sheffield United distancing themselves from Evans, the 26 year-old was linked to dozens of other teams, many feeling it necessary to formally deny any intention to bring him in, and condemning his previous misdemeanor.

Eventually Oldham Athletic FC decided that the impending spate of negative publicity would be compensated by the presence of a goal scorer to embellish their struggling setup.

The Latics have previous with similar issues; Colombian winger Cristian Montano was charged for his part in the gang-rape of a girl in Romford, Essex in March, 2014, eventually the jury failed to reach a verdict, and although a re-trial was mooted nothing came to fruition.

On that occasion the club did release the player, albeit citing match-fixing allegations, rather than the more pertinent issue in hand; the South American later becoming embroiled in a farcical case surrounding unfair dismissal.

Evans is certainly not the first footballer to return to action following a stint in the clink – here are three other notable cases.

Lee Hughes

Lee Hughes

Crime: Hit and Run.
Sentence: 6 years (served three)

A free scoring lower-league forward, Hughes had at one stage been the subject of a £5,000,001 transfer from West Bromwich Albion to Coventry City (a clause in his contract meant that Albion were obligated to accept any offer of more than £5m.)

Having returned to the Baggies, Hughes garnered a reputation for late nights and unpredictable moods. On a wet November night in 2003 the footballer drove into a father of four, instantly killing him, subsequently going into hiding for 36 hours, with suggestions that he didn’t want to re-emerge until his alcohol levels had plateaued.

Football club after release: Oldham Athletic (again!)

Oldham seem to have taken a shine to convicted criminals in recent years, snapping Hughes up shortly after his release in 2007, aged 31.

The forward enjoyed two productive seasons at Boundary Park, striking 26 goals before a lucrative move to big-spending Notts County, where he managed 30 League Two goals in his inaugural campaign.

And Now?

At almost 39, Hughes continues to ply his trade in non-league for Forest Green Rovers, and is an integral part of their promotion challenge.

In May 2012 he was found guilty of common assault, and is reviled by a large section of those who know him best – a nasty little man who happens to have some talent as a footballer.

 Ilombe Mboyo

RSC Anderlecht v Krc Genk - Jupiler Pro League

Crime: Gang-rape of an 11-year old girl.

Sentence: 7 years (Served three and a half)

Fleet-footed winger-cum-striker, Mboyo, from DR Congo, was regarded as one of his nation’s brightest talents as a teenager, receiving trial offers from the likes of Borussia Dortmund and AC Milan.

At the age of 17 he was found guilty for his role in the gang-rape of an 11 year-old girl in Belgium and spent the next three and a half years in prison, where he is supposed to have reformed his ways.

Football club after release: Charleroi

Belgian club Charleroi decided to give the then 21-year old an opportunity to rebuild his career, but he didn’t shine until K.V Kortijk snapped him up on a free transfer two years later.

And now?

A move to West Ham United fell through when Hammers fans filed a petition against his arrival, he instead secured a £3.5m transfer from Kortijk to fellow Belgian club Gent in 2011, where he was controversially installed as captain.

His off-field behaviour since release has been exemplary, with Mboyo raising money for women’s refuge charities, as well as speaking out against rape from the perspective of his own mistakes – obviously this doesn’t resolve his previous actions, but it at least suggests a change of attitude.

Marlon King

Marlon King

Crime(s): Dangerous driving, sexual assault + 19 other offences.

Sentence(s): Which one? Has done time on three occasions.

Marlon King completed a hat-trick of convictions when sentenced to 18-months for dangerous driving.

A mediocre Championship striker, the former Birmingham City and Watford journeyman’s procession of employers inevitably became weary of his criminal ways – with 21 convictions at last count, notably a 2009 sentence for sexual assault – a great example for his three children.

Football club(s) after release: Gillingham, Coventry City

Gillingham kept faith with their bad boy in 2002 after he served time for car theft, and he repaid them with a job lot of goals and £950,000 transfer kitty received from his move to Nottingham Forest the following year.

In 2010, Coventry City took advantage of his release from Wigan Athletic, their chairman and manager feeling “betrayed” nine months later when King reneged on a verbally agreed extension to join Birmingham City instead.

And Now?

As alluded to, King is again gobbling porridge for his latest abhorrent act. Having variously punched a 20-year old female student in the face, received stolen goods and been put on the sex-offenders list, surely nobody will be stupid enough to take a punt on the 34-year old upon his latest release.

What do you think? Should Evans be allowed back into football? Why is it always Oldham Athletic extending the olive branch to convicted felons? Let us know in the comments below!

Written by Dom Kureen

As a young rapscallion stranded on an Island, my time is split between writing, performing spoken word, wrestling alligators and delivering uplifting pep talks to hairdressers before they prune me. I meditate and wash daily when possible.