Public School Teachers Standing Up To Privatization Movement

The Private Battle Over Public Schools

The rising tide of teacher activism continues today, as thousands of educators in both Arizona and Colorado walk out of their classrooms and head to their respective state capitol. Unfortunately, they could be playing into the hands of those who want to bust teacher unions and divert billions of dollars to private schools.

public education funding battle

In Arizona, 78 percent of the 57,000 school employees who cast ballots across the state voted to walk out. Around 30,000 to 50,000 teachers and their supporters are expected to march through Phoenix to rally at the Arizona state Capitol to demand a 20 percent raise for teachers, about $1 billion to return school funding to pre-Great Recession levels and increased pay for support staff, among other things. In Colorado, more than 10,000 teachers are expected to demonstrate in Denver as part of a burgeoning teacher uprising. About half of the student population will have shuttered schools as a result.

The teacher walkouts are the climax of an uprising that began weeks ago with the grass-roots #RedforEd movement that spread from West Virginia, Oklahoma and Kentucky. Colorado lawmakers from both parties have agreed to give schools their largest budget increase since the Great Recession. But teachers say that the state has a long way to go to make up for ground lost during the recession and strict tax and spending limits.

privatize public education

Arizona teachers, on average, make $48,304, according to 2016-17 salary data from the National Education Association. In 2016-17, the national average teacher salary was $59,660. Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey has said he’ll urge the state’s legislature to pass a combined 20 percent teacher pay raise by 2020, but educators aren’t buying it.

About 100 school districts and charter schools in the state are scheduled to close on Thursday—meaning a combined enrollment of about 840,000 students will be affected, according to the Arizona Republic. Grassroots organizers with Arizona Educators United, a teacher-led Facebook group, have said that an estimated 30,000 to 50,000 educators will rally at the state capitol Thursday.

Union spokesmen said that tomorrow’s march to the Capitol is necessary after attempts at outreach have been ignored. There’s no end date for the walkout and he said educators might have to consider a ballot initiative for education funding if lawmakers do not come up with a plan on their own. The statewide teacher walkouts in West Virginia and Oklahoma both lasted for nine days. Thomas said he thinks teachers in Arizona would be willing to stay out that long, too, if needed.

“A lot of that depends on the action of the legislature,” he said. “You cannot have 20,000 people at the capitol and have everyone act like they’re not there.”

One Republican state lawmaker has proposed a three-year, 1-cent education sales tax increase, which would provide the state’s public district and charter schools with $880 million a year more in discretionary funding, according to the Arizona Republic. It remains to be seen if that proposal will generate enough support in the legislature to pass.

Republican Gov. Doug Ducey has proposed a 20 percent raise for teachers by 2020, but organizers of the so-called #RedforEd movement say his plan relies on rosy revenue projections and doesn’t address the other issues. He’s running a statewide advertising campaign to position himself as a savior–not part of the statewide education crisis. As such, he’s positioning the teachers as the villains and demons. In Fact, Colorado’s Governor Hickenlooper is considering legislation that will punish, if not fire, teachers who exercise their right to free speech and assembly. Let’s hope that the teachers aren’t shot and killed like the coal miners who went on strike in Colorado more than 100 years ago.

Meanwhile, Arizona’s house majority whip, Kelly Towsend, announced on social media that she’s consulting with lawyers over a potential class-action lawsuit “for those who are impacted by the extended school year or other harm that comes to them by the teacher walkout.” She told the Arizona Republic that she’s worried the walkout will delay her son’s high school graduation, and her family members have already bought plane tickets for the event. Her comments were met with derision and anger from teachers and other citizens.

What’s missing from the debate is the fact that the crisis is really a tale of two teachers and two types of school systems. Those in charter schools have been somewhat insulated from the funding crisis.

Read The Full Story About #RedForEd

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Crossbow is an award-winning and record-setting communications firm that influences public opinion, public policy and business decisions around the world. We have generated millions of dollars in revenue, stockholder equity and media coverage for our clients. We’re helping stakeholders around the world tackle some of the most urgent issues of our time. Our headquarters are in Denver, Colorado. We’re opening a new office in Phoenix, Arizona.

PR Firm Builds Website Traffic, Search Engine Ranking

Website Content Critical To User Experience

According to new market research, website traffic is the most influential factor when search engines determine search results. When many users visit a website, Google sees that site as one of high authority and value.

According to SEMrush, the world’s leading competitive research service for online marketing, user behavior signals such as time on site, pages per session and bounce rate also influence website rankings, since they indicate website quality and relevance for users. Backlinks also are extremely important for rankings.

SEO strategy and tactics

Web Traffic Strategy

One of the main indicators of a website’s popularity is its number of visits. There are a lot of ways for visitors to find your website: organic search, paid ads, social networks, direct visits, referring domains, emails, etc. After excluding organic search and other traffic data, we see a strong connection between the number of direct visits and the page position on the SERP. This could indicate that Google prioritizes domains with more authority and consequently more direct traffic when ranking. Direct visits are fueled by your brand awareness, so building a strong brand image should be an essential part of your promotion strategy. Of course, social media, events, sponsorships and other tactics can help fuel your web traffic.

The researchers analyzed several user behavior signals, including bounce rate, the time that the user spends on the website in general and how many pages per session the user opens. These statistics help identify user behavior patterns and can provide information on whether your content is engaging, whether the navigation on your website is convenient and how users generally react to your website.

It is clear that high-ranking pages have lower bounce rates. This could be the result of the level of trust that users have for top-ranking pages, or it could mean that the lower-ranking pages are less relevant. And though Google reps declare that all user behavior signals are too noisy to be considered during the page qualification, a high bounce rate could indicate that the page content is irrelevant, which is bad for both users and search engine bots. These results indicate that users tend to spend more time on websites that rank higher in SERPs. This could be explained by the same fact: users trust top-ranking pages more than lower-ranking ones. Just like the bounce rate and time on site trends, these results confirm that users tend to visit more pages on websites that are in the top of organic search results.

“Content is still king when it comes to online visibility and shareability,” said Gary Chandler, president and CEO of Crossbow Communications. “Is your information helpful, relevant and unique? That’s what people want when searching for solutions and answers.”

Read The Full Story About Raising Your Online Profile

PR firm Phoenix

Crossbow is an award-winning and record-setting communications firm that influences public opinion, public policy and business decisions around the world. We have generated millions of dollars in revenue, stockholder equity and media coverage for our clients. We’re helping stakeholders around the world tackle some of the most urgent issues of our time. Our headquarters are in Denver, Colorado. We’re opening a new office in Phoenix, Arizona.

Memes, Video Add Fuel To Digital Campaigns

PR Firms Keep Clients On Strategy

If a picture is worth a thousand words, a viral meme on social media is worth exponentially more. Advocates, marketers and public policy wonks are all embracing the power of social media, pop culture, politics and memes. Some are having greater success than others.

A meme is a funny picture or video clip that can go viral on the web. They come in various forms, though most feature photos with clever captions. Memes have been at the forefront of social media for years, but the art and the strategy are still evolving.

wildlife conservation PR campaign

A meme is to internet subculture what psychedelic art was to Timothy Leary. The concept was born in 1976 when British biologist Richard Dawkins wrote in his book ‘The Selfish Gene’ examined the diffusion of ideas/socio-cultural phenomenon and coined the process meme. With the rise of digital marketing, brands are creating brand memes to encourage viral communication on social media.

The most popular memes are often forms of commentary on current events, political affairs and pop culture. Facebook and Twitter are great mediums for spotting trends. It’s good practice to research memes that have gone viral, especially current ones. Share memes that are relevant to your audience, your cause and your brand. Be as innovative and creative as possible. After posting a meme, don’t forget to listen to your audience. Social media is a two-way channel for your supporters and your detractors.

Of course, don’t forget to post your memes with the most relevant keywords and hashtags so that they are searchable and findable to people outside of your social networks. Tag users, influencers and allies and invite them to share your images.

Prepare a media distribution plan and a press release to reach your target audiences and networks quickly. Facebook, Pinterest, and Google+ are fantastic for sharing, as people can instantaneously see the image or video screenshot on their feeds. Bookmarking sites such as Reddit, Digg, Delicious, and StumbleUpon can help you get the word out. Include share capabilities (share bars) above and below your content for maximum visibility.

Memes require sharp content to engage with your audience. Finding the right image is essential to success on social media. The biggest mistake that communications professionals make with memes is strategy.

Just like in advertising, it’s easy to get lost in the creative process. We often put too much emphasis on being cute, clever and funny. We forget that we are trying to build awareness, understanding and support. We forget that we are asking people to take an action. We quickly seize on a photo or video clip and force it into our arsenal of messages, while diluting our overall campaign.

Keep  in mind that the attention span of the typical internet user is short, so break through the clutter. Come up with a catchphrase that uses simple and memorable language. Make sure that your visuals match the tone and the message without unnecessary distraction. What action do you want audiences to take?

Read The Full Story

PR firm Phoenix and Denver

Crossbow is an award-winning and record-setting communications firm that influences public opinion, public policy and business decisions around the world. We have generated millions of dollars in revenue, stockholder equity and media coverage for our clients. We’re helping stakeholders around the world tackle some of the most urgent issues of our time. Our headquarters are in Denver, Colorado. We’re opening a new office in Phoenix, Arizona.

Propaganda Part Of Public Affairs

The Art Of Information, Influence

Propaganda and censorship are nothing new, but the art, science and motives have evolved tremendously in the past decade. Freedom of speech isn’t what it used to be.

Propaganda is a form of communication aimed towards influencing the attitude of a population toward some cause, position or movement. It’s a common thread between marketing, public relations, and public affairs.

During the 20th century, there was plenty of public discourse about propaganda. Unfortunately, in recent years, the study of propaganda has diminished in many educational settings. Meanwhile, we’re surrounded by more messages than ever with near-constant exposure to advertising, news, and mobile media. With so many messages coming from so many forms and channels, it’s difficult to recognize the various forms of propaganda.

politics and public affairs

“Propaganda is a form of information that panders to our insecurities and anxieties,” Jacques Ellul

“Propaganda is indifferent to truth and truthfulness, knowledge and understanding; it is a form of strategic communication that uses any means to accomplish its ends,” Walter Cunningham.

“Propaganda is the deliberate, systematic attempt to shape perceptions, manipulate cognitions, and direct behavior to achieve a response that furthers the desired intent of the propagandist,” said Garth Jowett and Victoria O’Donnell.

Propaganda is a form of purposeful persuasion that attempts to influence the emotions, attitudes, opinions, and actions of specified target audiences for ideological, political or commercial purposes through the controlled transmission of one-sided messages (which may or may not be factual) via mass and direct media channels,” Richard Alan Nelson

“Propaganda is intentionally-designed communication that invites us to respond emotionally, immediately, and in a either-or manner,” said Neil Postman.

Everyone participates in the process of persuasion. But the term propaganda is generally used when someone is aiming to reach a large group of people, not just a few.

As an activist, you may have created propaganda yourself. People who create propaganda have a specific goal and design a communication message that is intended to circulate among a large group of people and create a reaction. Propaganda involves reinforcing existing beliefs, changing perceptions, activating an emotional response or provoking a behavior.

Today, social media makes it easy for ordinary individuals to create and disseminate propaganda. Of course, communication is always oriented to a specific goal or purpose, as people use symbols to build relationships, convey information, entertain, inspire or teach. But the propagandist does not aim to encourage deliberation or reflection. The propagandist does not encourage independent judgment by presenting a variety of viewpoints and allowing the audience to determine which perspective is correct. Instead, the propagandist uses facts and information selectively, transmitting only those ideas that help accomplish the goal.

Today, propaganda is everywhere – in news, information, advertising and entertainment. Much of it is driven by politics and our governments are part of the equation.

Today people might feel overwhelmed by all the media in our lives, which can lead to a “tuning-out” phenomenon where we are exposed to propaganda but do not actively recognize how it is influencing our emotions, attitudes, knowledge and behavior. Critical thinking about propaganda and understanding propaganda’s intent are crucial responsibilities of citizenship in the twenty-first century. Entering into a discussion about contemporary propaganda invites us to think about the power of communication and our responsibilities as authors and audiences. It raises questions about the use and potential impact of new media and technologies.

Propaganda is not the same as brainwashing or mind control. These terms refer to psychological tactics, sometimes used in warfare, that are designed to subvert an individual’s sense of control over their own thinking. Brainwashing usually requires isolation of the individual from his or her social group. By contrast, propaganda is often so ordinary that it becomes enmeshed with “common sense.”

Although propaganda sometimes involves deception, most forms of propaganda use well-verified, factual information. Propagandists may use partially true or incomplete information that comes from a source that looks authentic, but is controlled by sources that are disguised. These disguises come in many forms. Businesses often provide funding to sources (like researchers and other professional communicators) to create information and transmit messages that align directly with their interests and goals. For example, in 2014, the government of Norway paid $5 million to a non-profit organization to produce information designed to influence top officials in the White House. Online, the term sock puppet refers to the use of online sources that are specifically created to praise, defend or support a person or organization. When such efforts mislead the public, they can be called propaganda.

Read The Full Story

PR firm Phoenix and Denver

Crossbow is an award-winning and record-setting communications firm that influences public opinion, public policy and business decisions around the world. Our headquarters are in Denver, Colorado. We’re opening a new office in Phoenix, Arizona.

Government Shutdown Values Idealism Over Patriotism

Bankruptcy A Threat To U.S. Constitution

Since we now fund our government and our record debt three months at a time, the showdown over funding was predictable. President Trump signaled his approval of a government shutdown last May, when he endorsed the possibility publicly. He made it clear that he was willing to hold a nation and its constitution hostage over extreme and misguided policies that fly in the face of democracy and public opinion. He made it clear that morally bankrupt leaders are willing to overthrow our nation via bankruptcy.

politics and public affairs

Instead of searching for solutions, they all seek to cast blame. The real blame is on the American people for losing sight of history and our future. We have grown selfish and complacent. Our forefathers knew about the threats of power, imperialism and fascism. They created checks and balances in government to protect us all against the forces of human nature. They knew that a citizen-based government couldn’t be held accountable with blind faith. They understood the importance of separating church from state. Traitors were treated with zero tolerance. Today, traitors are are in every corner of government.

The ship of fools on Capitol Hill is seriously off course and it’s gaining speed. Our nation has been hijacked by unchecked greed, unfounded fears and unlimited propaganda. Our forefathers and war heroes alike are rolling over in their graves. Our lawmakers are breaking laws and preying on innocent people (sexually and financially). It’s no longer a government of the people, by the people, for the people.

Our nation hasn’t been this divided since the Civil War. Unfortunately, it’s part of a well-orchestrated plan that has been powerfully documented in a brave book called “Shock Doctrine: The Rise Of Disaster Capitalism.” Through extreme financial policies, the U.S. has overthrown dozens of governments around the world for more than a century, including several healthy, peaceful democracies (Hawaii, Chile, Nicaragua, Brazil, Panama, and others).

Our fragmented country needs bridges, not walls. Yet, President Trump and the ship of fools have made a one-wall policy the top priority in the land. Meanwhile, our ports, airports and the Canadian border have been homeland security jokes. We spend trillions on national security, but foreign governments meddle with our elections undetected and without recourse. The corrupt two-party system still breaks laws to influence the outcomes of primaries and elections that are rigged.

Politicians on both sides of the aisle have been preying on innocent citizens for years. They seem to think that citizens are sheep who can be led to slaughter by selfish losers in suits. These corrupt thugs have underestimated the American spirit. They seem to think that millions of citizens will just stand by and watch as they thrust our great nation into bankruptcy to promote their fascist agendas.

issue management

Millions of brave Americans have lost their lives and limbs defending this great nation. The greatest way to disgrace their honor is to stand by and watch as our nation is demolished by corruption and idealism. People are rising up and speaking out in record numbers. Better late than never. Hate isn’t great. Discrimination and abuse are not family values. Cheating, favoritism and propaganda have no place in capitalism or democracy.

Read The Full Story at http://crossbowcommunications.com/government-shutdown-puts-idealism-over-patriotism/

PR firm Phoenix

Crossbow Communications is an international marketing and public affairs firm. We can help you influence public opinion, public policy and business decisions around the globe. We can help build your brand, your bottom line and a better world. Our headquarters are in Denver, Colorado. We’re opening a new office in Phoenix, Arizona.

Business Credit Report Impacts Brand

DUNS More Than A Number

Businesses of all sizes spend billions of dollars every year to help build their brands and their bottom lines. Meanwhile, millions of these businesses are oblivious to their business credit report at Dun & Bradstreet, which can deprive them of vital opportunities.

Lenders, vendors, insurance companies and prospective clients often check these credit reports as part of their due diligence. They use the reports from Dun & Bradstreet to investigate companies that they are thinking about doing business with. They use these credit reports for both credibility and creditworthiness. These companies and government agencies go to Dun & Bradstreet to make sure that your company is legitimate, viable, stable, reliable and big enough to handle the job. In fact, your business can’t apply for government contracts and grants without a DUNS number (business credit report).

public affairs firm

Unfortunately, many small- and medium-sized businesses fail to create and manage their business credit reports, which can impact their brands and bottom lines in many ways. Such failures speak volumes about a business, while adding to the challenges in the marketplace.

Dun & Bradstreet has been the global leader in commercial credit reporting for more than 170 years. It holds credit reports for millions of companies around the world. If your company doesn’t have a credit report on file, you can apply for a DUNS number for free. D&B will host that file for the life of your business at no charge. The key is to make sure that your credit file is as accurate as possible and as influential as possible. This can help you separate your personal credit from your business credit, which will protect your FICO score and build your D&B scores and ratings.

Once your file has enough data, Dun & Bradstreet will generate scores and ratings for your business on nine different levels that measure the financial strength of your company. An organization’s business credit file is a collection of scores and ratings that allude to an organization’s ability to make good on contractual obligations. For example, the PayDex score indicates the timeliness that your company pays it bills.These scores and ratings can help or hurt a business in numerous ways:

  • a business can use these metrics when deciding to contract with a supplier;
  • a bank can use the information in a credit report when deciding to offer a loan; 
  • an insurance company might use your business credit report to decide whether or not to issue an insurance policy to your company and when calculating your premium; and
  • business owners can use the scores themselves in an attempt to improve their credibility.

Other businesses may be using your DUNS number to make critical decisions that could help or possibly hinder your business. Proactively managing your credit report pays dividends in many ways.

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D&B can help you beef up your credit report, while helping you keep a sharp eye on the creditworthiness of others. The key to generating strong scores and ratings is to build in as much positive payment history as possible (operating expenses). Operating expenses are proof that your business pays its bills in full and on time. It requires a paid service from Dun & Bradstreet to build in your positive payment history because D&B will put boots on the ground to verify your trade references and to manually build them into your credit report. It’s an investment that will pay dividends for many years to come. Credit-building is an important part of due diligence, risk management and reputation management.

For more information, contact Gary Chandler, Credit Advisor, Dun & Bradstreet, 866-257-6083 extension 1598. You can send an email to chandlerg@dnb.com

PR firm Phoenix

Crossbow Communications is an international marketing and public affairs firm. We can help you influence public opinion, public policy and business decisions around the globe. We can help build your brand, your bottom line and a better world. Our headquarters are in Denver, Colorado. We’re opening a new office in Phoenix, Arizona.

Public Affairs Evolving, Integrating

Fusion Of Government Relations, Public Relations and Marketing

Public affairs is another term for stakeholder relations among individuals and groups with common and competing agendas. It’s typically found at the crossroads of public opinion and public policy. Stakeholders often include politicians, civil servants, influencers, customers, communities, clients, shareholders, trade associations, think tanks, business groups, charities, unions, the media and more.

Public affairs practitioners engage stakeholders to educate, motivate and deescalate. It’s essentially a specialized form of marketing, where the product is an outcome that usually impacts people, planet and profits. Public affairs professionals help shape the debate with strategy and messaging. Not all lobbyists are registered. Most work behind the scenes with research, strategy, writing and coalition-building.

politics and public affairs

Public affairs work combines government relations, media relations, issue management, stakeholder relations, corporate and social responsibility, and strategic communications advice. Practitioners aim to influence public opinion and public policy by building on common ground with stakeholders. Unfortunately, propaganda and misinformation has long been part of the equation.

Political chaos is the norm and public affairs professionals must anticipate, plan and respond without missing a beat. Strategists are reevaluating the best practices of opportunism and risk management.

While stocks soar, trust in corporate America and elected officials in Washington, D.C., continues to drop. America’s discontent with politics and business is not party-specific. A new survey conducted by the Public Affairs Council, in conjunction with Morning Consult, finds that Clinton and Trump voters have more in common than you might think: neither group trusts Washington politicians nor America’s CEOs.

The online survey polled 2,201 adults on their attitudes and expectations for major companies and elected officials. The surprising findings show bipartisan agreement on sentiment.

● Clinton and Trump voters agree that Washington can’t be trusted. 58 percent of Trump voters, 59 percent of Clinton voters and 63 percent of conservatives say elected officials in Washington have low honesty and ethical standards, despite Republican control of Congress and the White House; and

● Only 47 percent of Americans trust major companies to behave ethically, and only nine percent of Trump voters and eight percent of Clinton voters give CEOs high scores for honesty.

“Businesses are worried about core issues like trade and tax reform, and they’re also jumping into public debates on immigration, racism, LGBT rights and climate change,” said Doug Pinkham, president of the Public Affairs Council. “But with all the political turmoil in Washington, their world feels riskier. Many firms are having a difficult time finding their footing at the intersection of business and modern American politics.”

According to the study, there’s a correlation between the most untrusted industries and perceived underregulation. When compared to other industries, technology companies are considered the most trustworthy and least in need of new regulations. Conversely, pharmaceutical and health insurance firms are considered the least trustworthy and the most under-regulated.

● Not all lobbying is bad. The public largely approves of corporate lobbying as long as companies have a good reason such as protecting jobs (61 percent), leveling the playing field (54 percent) and supporting social causes (53 percent). The survey also measured the impact of traditional and digital media in shaping public perception about corporate behavior;

● Business news = bad news: Americans are twice as likely to assume a media story about a major company is negative rather than positive; and

● Social media not a major driver in shaping views about business. Most Americans form their opinions of major companies through work experience or knowing others employed by major companies. Only 14 percent (mostly young adults) say social media has a lot of influence on their views about Corporate America.

PR firm Phoenix

Crossbow is an award-winning and record-setting strategic communications firm that has influenced public opinion and public policy around the globe. We have offices in Denver and Phoenix.

Mad Cow Disease A Symptom Of Bigger Problems

Prion Disease Never An Isolated Event

Mad cow disease has again raised its ugly head in the United States. Thanks to misinformation and mismanagement by government, the problem will persist.

Government and industry representatives announced yesterday that an 11-year-old beef cow in Alabama tested positive for prion disease. Also known as bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), the disease is always fatal and a major concern for producers and consumers alike.

It was detected after the cow showed clinical signs of sickness at an Alabama livestock market. This animal never entered slaughter channels and at no time presented a risk to the food supply, or to human health in the United States, the U.S.D.A. said. Unfortunately, this producer did attempt to sell a very sick animal to an unsuspecting buyer. He obviously has a farm or ranch that is contaminated. The sick animal added to the contamination on the farm with its urine, feces and saliva. It also infected the livestock auction site. Sun and oxygen do not deplete prions. In fact, they can mutate and multiply in some soil and migrate away via the wind and water runoff.

prion disease

The Problem With Prions

Each prion victim is a symptom of a much bigger threat to food safety, water quality and public health. Prion disease has been detected in livestock around the world. The U.S. has only confirmed five cases through testing since 2003, but the vast majority of beef and dairy cattle are not tested thanks to intense lobbying from cattle producers and food companies.

Unfortunately, livestock producers, farmers and other land owners are being duped into a false sense of security and many are unwittingly participating in high-risk production practices that expose livestock, wildlife and people to deadly prions. To purge the threat of prion disease from the food supply, it’s time to manage prion pathways like we handle all biohazards. It’s time for government agencies to stop spreading misinformation and stop promoting risky production practices, including the dumping of infectious waste on farms, ranches, golf courses, parks and playgrounds. Cities are now dumping their highly infectious sewage sludge, also known as biosolids, on open land across the U.S.—especially in rural areas. It’s bioterrorism. It’s fueling the spike in Alzheimer’s disease, autism, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, chronic wasting disease and mad cow disease. It’s also fueling cancer, endocrine disruption and more.

A Spectrum Disease

Neurodegenerative disease, including prion disease, is the fastest-growing cause of death in the world. Misinformation and mismanagement are fueling the epidemic among people and wildlife. Unfortunately, we have no idea how pervasive the disease is among livestock because 99.9 percent of the animals are not tested, even though many are being exposed to prion contamination on a daily basis. Infected animals are contagious long before they start to stumble, drool and fall down. Therefore, our food and water supplies are at risk.

The technical term for prion disease is transmissible spongiform encephalopathy (TSE). The operative word is “transmissible.” In addition to mad cow disease, TSE includes scrapie in sheep and chronic wasting disease in deer, elk, moose and reindeer. TSE has been found in many mammals, including dolphins, cats, mink and elephants. It’s likely killing whales and other sea mammals, since most mammals appear to be vulnerable to deadly prions.

In humans, TSEs are known as Alzheimer’s disease, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) and kuru. There is little, if any, difference because prion disease is a spectrum disease that’s only distinguished by the severity of symptoms. Diagnoses are usually a shot in the dark based only on visible symptoms.

Dr. Stanley Prusiner, an American neuroscientist from the University of California at San Francisco, earned a Nobel Prize in 1997 for discovering and characterizing deadly prions and prion disease. He claims that all TSEs are caused by prions–a deadly and unstoppable form of protein that migrates, mutates, multiplies and kills with unparalleled efficiency.

President Obama awarded Prusiner the National Medal of Science in 2010 to recognize the importance of his research. According to Prusiner, TSEs all are on the same disease spectrum, which is more accurately described as prion (PREE-on) disease Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease is at the extreme end of the spectrum. Prusiner’s science is being ignored and we are facing a public health disaster because of the negligence.

BSE mad cow disease

The Misinformation

Despite Dr. Prusiner’s crowning achievement, he has remained too silent on policies and practices that are contributing to the spread of prions in our daily lives. Government and industry spokesmen have stepped forward to cast smoke and mirrors over productive conversations about reforms to protect public health. Despite attempts to gag and censor Prusiner and other prion scientists, they have painted the landscape of the problem. It’s up to critical thinkers to connect the dots and demand change.

For example, Jimmy Holliman, a spokesperson for the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association in Denver went on record to say that BSE is not contagious. That’s the equivalent of saying that an infectious disease is not infectious. The comment demonstrates incompetence, negligence or contempt.

“USDA’s ongoing BSE surveillance program has tested more than one million cattle since the program began,” Holliman said. “The incidence of BSE in the United States is extremely low, and will remain so.”

That’s quite an admission. It only takes one infected animal to create a perpetual prion pathway that will infect live animals, carcasses at the slaughterhouse, meat markets and kitchens.

In the spirit of full disclosure, I worked for the National Cattlemen’s Association, the predecessor of Holliman’s organization, between 1988 and 1992. My father worked in the meat industry all of his life. I grew up in rural Colorado with many beef and dairy producers. I’m not an enemy of the beef industry. I’m trying to lead them out of this mess before government lies explode in their face (keep reading).

Prion disease is a complex topic. Even the world’s top scientists don’t fully understand the dynamics, yet. All that we need to know is that prions + pathways = victims:

  1. Prions: Impossible to neutralize completely in laboratory or surgical setting. Even more impossible to halt in the open-air experiments that are taking place all around us.
  2. Pathways: The key to prion management is pathway management. The bodily fluids, feces and cell tissue of prion victims are highly infectious. Prion victims (especially people) contaminate the world around them. Although prions can migrate via many pathways, some of the largest and most obvious threats are being ignored. We examine the major pathways below.
  3. Victims: If we know that we have prions and pathways, there will be victims—an endless supply of victims will spawn new mutations and new pathways.

First of all, prion disease is prion disease. There are now thousands of mutations of prions. No two cases of prion disease are identical because some prions are more aggressive and pervasive than others. It also depends on which region of the brain is impacted first.

The best way to refer to this spectrum of maladies is just “prion disease.” It makes it much easier to keep score and cut through the misinformation. There is no evidence of a species barrier, but some species appear to be more resistant than others. Some people are more resistant to prions than others.

Since prions migrate, mutate and multiply, any official attempt to characterize prion disease as a non-event is reckless, incompetent and fraudulent. There are now thousands of prion mutations–not just two or three. The mutations are becoming more aggressive and more lethal every day as they spread throughout our world (naturally and unnaturally). Victims are getting younger and younger.

People and animals dying of prion disease contaminate the environment around them with the prions in their urine, feces, blood, mucus and saliva. It spreads throughout the entire body. Each victim becomes an incubator and a distributor of the Pandora-like pathogen.

Not only are homes and hospitals exposed to the prion pathogen, so are entire sewage treatment systems and their by-products (wastewater reclamation and sewage sludge). The human prion is resistant to both heat and chemicals. It’s reported that prions released from people are up to a hundred thousand times more difficult to deactivate than prions from most animals. Sewage from hospitals, nursing homes, slaughterhouses, morgues, mortuaries, veterinarians and other high-risk places enters the same sewage system. Wastewater treatment plants can’t detect or neutralize deadly prions.

Prion Mismanagement

Industry spokesmen are again trying to calm the minds and markets around the world. The official story is that the animal had an “atypical” form of the disease, which is one of many red flags regarding the misinformation and mismanagement of prion disease.

As stated earlier, prions can migrate via many pathways. Unfortunately for us all, some of the largest and most obvious prion threats are being ignored. In fact, I argue that humans, wildlife and livestock are exchanging prions back and forth now via food, water and air. The primary pathway is infectious waste from humans that is dumped on open spaces (more detail ahead).

biosolids pathogens toxins

TSE among humans is much more prevalent than government and industry admit. However, just like the example with cattle above, it only takes one prion victim to spread the contamination far and wide. Unfortunately, we have had millions of people in the U.S. alone who have TSE or have died of it over the past century.

As stated earlier, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease and Alzheimer’s disease are both part of the prion spectrum. Without dispute, CJD is highly infectious and extremely aggressive. It’s much more prevalent than reported. In fact, it’s now killing teenagers.

“Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease behaves like Alzheimer’s disease on steroids,” said Dr. Jennifer Majersik, an associate professor of neurology at the University of Utah.

According to neuroscientists Dr. Laura Manuelidis, at least 25 percent of those who have been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease actually have CJD, which is further up the prion spectrum. Millions of cases of deadly CJD are being misdiagnosed as Alzheimer’s disease. None of these patients are being quarantined, which means that they are putting family, caregivers and entire communities at risk. It appears that the milder version, Alzheimer’s disease, is equally infectious.

“There is now real evidence of the potential transmissibility of Alzheimer’s disease,” says Thomas Wiesniewski M.D. a prion and Alzheimer’s researcher at New York University School of Medicine.

Millions of victims, past and present, have discharged millions of gallons of infectious waste down toilets and drains. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has confirmed that prions are in sewage and that there has been no way to detect them or stop them. As such, the EPA has never issued guidance on prion management within wastewater treatment plants. Unfortunately, the EPA’s risk assessment on sewage sludge and biosolids were prepared before the world of science knew about prions. The agency continues to cling to its antiquated sludge rule crafted back in the dark ages. It does, however, consider prions an “emerging contaminant of concern.” Meanwhile, its outdated risk assessments are promoting a public health disaster.

The sewage from these victims has permanently contaminated wastewater treatment plants. In fact, these wastewater treatment plants have become prion incubators and distributors. If hospitals can’t stop prions in the sterile confines of an operating room, prions are unstoppable in high-volume, low-tech sewage treatment facilities. Unfortunately, this infectious waste is pumped and dumped into our watersheds, including farms, ranches, golf courses, parks and school grounds in mass quantities. It’s killing people and animals in many ways

land application of sewage sludge

The U.S. EPA used fraudulent risk assessments, which are now outdated and totally worthless in the face of the modern sewage stream. The agency has shown no interest in conducting a real risk assessment since it worked so hard to fake the science with its “sludge rule.” The sludge rule ignores prions, but includes the word “magic” as if it’s a technical term.

A study published in the journal Nature adds to the evidence about the transmissibility of Alzheimer’s disease between people. A second study in early 2016 added to the claim. Meanwhile, there is absolutely no evidence to contrary.

When the U.S. government enacted the Bioterrorism Preparedness and Response Act of 2002, it classified prions as select agents that pose an extreme risk to food, water and much more. Only two labs in the U.S. were allowed to handle them for research purposes. Unfortunately, the CDC quietly took prions off the list because the regulation criminalized entire industries and several reckless practices.

Many factors are contributing to the epidemic. Prions are now the X factor. Industry and government are not accounting for prions or regulating them. They are ignoring the threat completely, which violates the Bioterrorism Preparedness and Response Act of 2002 in the United States. Other nations also are ignoring laws developed to protect food, air and water.

wastewater treatment and biosolids

Wastewater treatment plants, for example, are spreading this infectious waste far and wide because they are incapable of stopping prions. All by-products and discharges from wastewater treatment plants, including biosolids, are infectious waste, which are contributing to the global epidemic of neurodegenerative disease among humans, wildlife and livestock.

Sewage treatment plants can’t detect or stop prions. Just ask the U.S. EPA and the industry trade organization—the Wastewater Effluent Federation. Sewage sludge (biosolids) and wastewater reclamation are causing widespread contamination. The EPA’s risk assessment on sewage sludge and biosolids were prepared before the world of science knew about prions. The agency continues to cling to its antiquated sludge rule crafted back in the dark ages. It does, however, consider prions a “contaminant of emerging concern.” Meanwhile, it’s promoting a public health disaster, including Alzheimer’s disease, autism and the ill effects associated with the Zika virus.

Claudio Soto, PhD, professor of neurology at the University of Texas Medical School in Houston, and his colleagues confirmed the presence of prions in urine. Soto also confirmed that plants uptake prions and are infectious and deadly to those who consume the infected plants. Therefore, humans, wildlife and livestock are vulnerable to prion disease via plants grown on land treated with sewage sludge and reclaimed sewage water. Therefore, humans, wildlife and livestock are vulnerable to prion disease via plants grown on land treated with sewage sludge and reclaimed sewage water. It’s more than theory. Wildlife contract the deadly brain disease from people because of the dumping of infectious waste on farms, ranches and forests. Deer, elk, moose and reindeer are now contracting prion disease from humans. To help cloak the wildlife epidemic, it’s called chronic wasting disease (CWD). Deer with CWD are proverbial canaries in a coalmine. They are being killed by government sharpshooters to help cover up the problem. It’s insane.

Once unleashed on the environment, prions remain infectious. They migrate, mutate and multiply as they infect crops, water supplies, wildlife, livestock, sea mammals and humans. According to prion researcher Joel Pedersen at the University of Wisconsin, prions in soil become up to 680 times more infectious. From there, they migrate, mutate and multiply. Pedersen also found that sewage treatment does not inactivate prions. These unstoppable, deadly proteins represent a real-world version of Pandora’s Lunchbox.

“Our results suggest that if prions enter municipal wastewater treatment systems, most of the agent would bond to sewage sludge, survive anaerobic digestion, and be present in treated biosolids,” Pedersen said.

prions and sewage sludge

 

“Land application of biosolids containing prions represents a route for their unintentional introduction into the environment. Our results emphasize the importance of keeping prions out of municipal wastewater treatment systems. Prions could end up in sewage treatment plants via slaughterhouses, hospitals, dental offices and mortuaries just to name a few of the pathways. The disposal of sludge represents the greatest risk of spreading prion contamination in the environment. Plus, we know that sewage sludge pathogens, pharmaceutical residue and chemical pollutants are taken up by plants and vegetables.”

“Since it’s unlikely that the sewage treatment process can effectively deactivate prions, adopting measures to prevent the entry of prions into the sewer system is advisable,” said the Toronto Department of Health, November 2004.

Read The Full Mad Cow Disease Update

PR firm Phoenix

Crossbow Communications specializes in issue management and public affairs. Alzheimer’s disease, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, chronic wasting disease and the prion disease epidemic is an area of special expertise. Please contact Gary Chandler to join our coalition for reform gary@crossbow1.com.

Chronic Wasting Disease A Symptom Of Bigger Problem In Norway

Reindeer Canaries In A Coal Mine

Norway and the greater Scandinavian region are experiencing some of the highest rates of neurodegenerative disease in the world. The human epidemic is fueling a related epidemic among wildlife. Norway will slaughter hundreds of reindeer to tackle a mere symptom of a bigger problem. Mismanagement is pouring fuel on the fire in Norway and North America.

As explained below, many forms of neurodegenerative disease are infectious and contagious. In fact, many are known as transmissible spongiform encephalopathy (TSE). The operative word is “transmissible.” Norway’s sick reindeer are canaries in a coal mine and we all should pay attention.

chronic wasting disease Norway reindeer

Studies confirm that people and animals dying of TSE contaminate the environment around them with deadly prions (PREE-on), which are in the urine, feces, blood, mucus and saliva of each victim. Victims are contagious long before they appear sick. Prions don’t die because they aren’t alive. Prions migrate, mutate, multiply and kill with unparalleled efficiency. That’s why Norway wants to kill hundreds of reindeer—to keep them from generating and spreading infectious fluids. Meanwhile, Norway’s plan ignores a greater prion threat—they dump tons of infectious waste from humans on open spaces, farms and forests.

The infected bodily fluids from millions of humans have turned wastewater treatment plants into incubators and distributors of deadly prions. Since Norway dumps about 90 percent of its sewage sludge on open spaces, this infectious waste is fueling a public health disaster. Norway and most other countries are recycling an aggressive brain disease back into the food chain with every load of sewage sludge dumped on forests, crops, parks and gardens. Millions of people are caught in the crossfire. So are reindeer and other mammals.

prion disease

A prion is a deadly and unstoppable form of protein. Dr. Stanley Prusiner, an American neuroscientist from the University of California at San Francisco, earned a Nobel Prize in 1997 for discovering and characterizing prions and prion disease. President Obama honored Prusiner with the National Medal of Science in 2010. Unfortunately, Prusiner’s science is being ignored and we’re facing a public health disaster because of the negligence and the mismanagement of infectious waste.

Prusiner claims that all TSEs are caused by prions. He says that all TSEs are on the prion disease spectrum. Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) is at the extreme end of the spectrum and is highly infectious. It’s often misdiagnosed as Alzheimer’s disease, which is lower on the prion disease spectrum. Norway estimates that only half of its citizens with neurodegenerative disease are being diagnosed and even fewer are treated. Despite under-reporting, it’s still a top nation for Alzheimer’s disease.

TSEs also include mad cow disease (BSE) in cattle and chronic wasting disease (CWD) in deer. Few, if any, mammals are immune. There is no species barrier. Prions don’t discriminate.

chronic wasting disease

CWD has ravaged deer, elk and moose in many regions across North America since it was first identified at a Colorado State University research facility in the 1960s. Now, CWD is in Norway’s reindeer and moose, which blows holes in the theories and containment plans across North America. Suffice it to say, sick deer didn’t jump the Atlantic Ocean, which means that other prion pathways are at work. These sick mammals are a canary in the proverbial coal mine. Although there are several ways for CWD to take hold and spread, government and stakeholders are ignoring the biggest prion pathway in the world—human sewage.

When the U.S. government enacted the Bioterrorism Preparedness and Response Act of 2002, it included a provision to halt research on prions in all but two laboratories. It classified prions as select agents that pose an extreme risk to food, water and more. It was a step in the right direction. Unfortunately, industry pressure convinced the Center For Disease Control to quietly take prions off the list of special agents a few years ago. Keeping prions listed threatened to outlaw several multi-billion dollar industries, including the biosolids and wastewater reclamation industries. This reversal kept the floodgates open to the prion threat. Especially regarding sewage, agriculture and water reclamation industries.

Because of prion dynamics, Canada declared CWD unstoppable. On the present path, they’re right. Especially when we dump tons of infectious waste on farms, ranches, in forests and beyond every day. Other mammals are contracting the disease from humans and they proceed to infect each other through their own bodily fluids.

biosolids pathogens toxins

Human sewage alone is a deadly cocktail, but wastewater treatment plants also receive tons of infectious waste from slaughterhouses, dental offices, clinics, hospitals, morgues, nursing homes, veterinarians and many other industrial sources. If it flushes, it’s in the waste stream. If it flushes, it’s being recycled on public and private land and throughout our watersheds. Such thinking is recycling brain disease and contributing to the surge in autism.

According to neuroscientist Laura Manuelidis, at least 25 percent of Alzheimer’s diagnoses are wrong. These misdiagnoses are actually CJD, which is further up the prion spectrum. CJD, without dispute, is extremely infectious to caregivers, loved ones and entire communities. It’s drastically misdiagnosed and under-reported, which means that millions of highly infective people don’t even know that they have prion disease. Their caregivers don’t know it. Their families are not cautioned about transmissibility.

Read The Full Story About Prion Disease In Norway’s Reindeer and Watersheds: http://crossbowcommunications.com/norway-killing-reindeer-to-curb-chronic-wasting-disease/

PR firm Phoenix

Crossbow Communications specializes in issue management and public affairs. Alzheimer’s disease, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, chronic wasting disease and the prion disease epidemic is an area of special expertise. Please contact Gary Chandler to join our coalition for reform gary@crossbow1.com.

Phoenix PR Firm Launches Campaign To Prevent Alzheimer’s Disease

Alzheimer’s An Infectious Disease According To Science, Evidence

If you think that you and your family are immune to the surging epidemic of neurodegenerative disease, think again. Neurodegenerative disease, including Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease, is the fastest-growing cause of death in the world. It’s getting worse every day thanks to mismanagement and misinformation.

Infectious proteins known as prions are involved with most forms of neurodegenerative disease. Prion disease is known in neurology as transmissible spongiform encephalopathy (TSE). The operative word is “transmissible.” The global epidemic has more to do with the prion contagion than age.

Dr. Stanley Prusiner, an American neuroscientist from the University of California at San Francisco, earned a Nobel Prize in 1997 for discovering and characterizing deadly prions and prion disease. Prusiner claims that all TSEs, including Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease, are caused by prions.

prion disease

President Obama awarded Prusiner the National Medal of Science in 2010 to recognize the importance of his research. According to Prusiner, TSEs are a spectrum disease. Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, which is extremely aggressive and extremely transmissible, is at the extreme end of the spectrum. Unfortunately, Prusiner’s science is being ignored and we are facing a public health disaster because of the negligence.

Neurologists are just guessing when they make a diagnosis on the prion spectrum. If the patient exhibits memory problems, they are labeled with Alzheimer’s disease. If they have a movement disorder, they are diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. If the person exhibits more extreme symptoms of both, they are diagnosed with Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD). It’s far from a science. Neurologists don’t know where along the spectrum the disease becomes transmissible. The entire spectrum could represent a transmissible disease. Unfortunately, neurologists are not warning these patients and their caregivers about the risks of exposure. Even those with CJD are not quarantined. They are sent home, where they can infect friends, family, caregivers, clinics, dental offices, restaurants and entire communities.

“There has been a resurgence of this sort of thinking, because there is now real evidence of the potential transmissibility of Alzheimer’s,” says Thomas Wiesniewski M.D. a prion and Alzheimer’s researcher at New York University School of Medicine. “In fact, this ability to transmit an abnormal conformation is probably a universal property of amyloid-forming proteins (prions).”

A study published in the journal Nature renews concern about the transmissibility of Alzheimer’s disease between people. A second study released in early 2016 by the same scientist adds to the stack of evidence.

According to neuroscientist Laura Manuelidis, at least 25 percent of Alzheimer’s diagnoses are not Alzheimer’s disease. These misdiagnoses are actually CJD, which is further up the prion spectrum. CJD, without dispute, is extremely infectious to caregivers and loved ones.

Studies confirm that people and animals dying of prion disease contaminate the environment around them with prions because prions are in the urine, feces, blood, mucus and saliva of each victim. Each victim becomes an incubator and a distributor of the Pandora-like pathogen. Victims are contagious long before they exhibit clinical symptoms.

Alzheimer's disease infectious

At the personal level, this is very bad news for caregivers, especially spouses, who are 600 percent more likely to contract neurodegenerative disease from patients (Duke University and Utah State University). A cough, sneeze, utensils and drinking glasses all become lethal pathways. Once an item is contaminated, it’s impossible to sterilize. The human prion is resistant to both heat and chemicals. It’s reported that prions released from people are up to a hundred thousand times more difficult to deactivate than prions from most animals. Prions are not alive, so they can’t be killed.

Wastewater treatment plants are collecting points for prions from infected humans. The sewage treatment process can’t stop prions from migrating, mutating and multiplying before being discharged into the environment where they can kill again. The bad news is that the prions are being released back into the environment and dumped openly on land. The wastewater is being reclaimed and used for irrigating crops, parks, golf courses. It’s even being recycled as drinking water.

Claudio Soto, PhD, professor of neurology at the University of Texas Medical School in Houston, and his colleagues confirmed the presence of prions in urine. Soto also confirmed that plants uptake prions and are infectious and deadly to those who consume the infected plants. Therefore, humans, wildlife and livestock are vulnerable to prion disease via plants grown on land treated with sewage sludge and reclaimed sewage water.

Prion researcher Dr. Joel Pedersen, from the University of Wisconsin, found that prions become 680 times more infectious in certain soils. Pedersen also found that sewage treatment does not inactivate prions. Therefore, prions are lethal, mutating, migrating and multiplying everywhere sewage is dumped.

“Our results suggest that if prions enter municipal wastewater treatment systems, most of the agent would bond to sewage sludge, survive anaerobic digestion, and be present in treated biosolids,” Pedersen said.

prions and sewage sludge

“Land application of biosolids containing prions represents a route for their unintentional introduction into the environment. Our results emphasize the importance of keeping prions out of municipal wastewater treatment systems. Prions could end up in sewage treatment plants via slaughterhouses, hospitals, dental offices and mortuaries just to name a few of the pathways. The disposal of sludge represents the greatest risk of spreading prion contamination in the environment. Plus, we know that sewage sludge pathogens, pharmaceutical residue and chemical pollutants are taken up by plants and vegetables.”

Thanks to more and more people dying from TSEs, sewage systems are more contaminated with prions than ever. Wastewater treatment systems are now prion incubators and distributors. The problem is getting worse every day.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has confirmed that prions are in sewage and that there has been no way to detect them or stop them. As such, the EPA has never issued guidance on prion management within wastewater treatment plants. Unfortunately, the EPA’s risk assessment on sewage sludge and biosolids were prepared before the world of science knew about prions. The agency continues to cling to its antiquated sludge rule crafted back in the dark ages. It does, however, consider prions a “contaminant of emerging concern.” Meanwhile, its outdated risk assessments are promoting a public health disaster.

“Since it’s unlikely that the sewage treatment process can effectively deactivate prions, adopting measures to prevent the entry of prions into the sewer system is advisable,” said the Toronto Department of Health, November 2004.

Exposing crops and livestock to prions is a very bad idea. Plants absorb prions from the soil along with water and nutrient uptake, which makes the prions even more bioavailable and infectious to humans, wildlife and livestock.

chronic wasting disease

Unfortunately, the damage is real. Deer, elk, moose and reindeer are contracting an unstoppable prion disease now. In deer, the government calls prion disease chronic wasting disease. In cattle, prion disease is called bovine spongiform encephalopathy (they might as well call it what it is—transmissible spongiform encephalopathy). Mad cow disease is the term that most of us know. The government pretends that there is a specific prion responsible for each of these diseases. The fact is that there are thousands of mutations of prions spreading in the environment and food chain now. Some kill quickly, while some are less lethal. The only thing that we need to know is that a deadly prion is a deadly prion. There is no species barrier.

If prion disease is killing these animals, livestock are not immune. Beef and dairy cattle are consuming these infected crops and the infected water supplies, too. Since humans are at the top of the food chain, and since we are often downstream from these infected farms, ranches and forests, our food and water supplies are being compromised.

BSE mad cow disease

Despite all of the warning signs, government and industry are insisting that we waste more time, money and lives studying these issues to death. The infection is real. The body count is real. The denial is disturbing.

So, is Alzheimer’s disease transmissible? There is absolutely no evidence to the contrary.

The truth is your best defense against neurodegenerative disease. It’s time to demand reforms on many levels to safeguard caregivers, family members and our food and water supplies. Source http://crossbowcommunications.com/is-alzheimers-disease-contagious/

PR firm Phoenix

Crossbow Communications specializes in issue management and public affairs. Alzheimer’s disease, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, chronic wasting disease and the prion disease epidemic is an area of special expertise. Please contact Gary Chandler to join our coalition for reform gary@crossbow1.com.