TIME Uganda

The Group Behind Kony 2012 Is Shutting Down Most Operations

This picture made available 24 May 2006
This picture, made available 24 May 2006 by the Monitor media group in Kampala, Uganda, shows one of the world's most wanted rebel chiefs, Joseph Kony of the Lord Resistance Movement. STRINGER—AFP/Getty Images

"Despite making incredible progress toward our mission, it’s been difficult to fund the breadth of our work, especially over the last two years"

The non-profit that helped mobilize the international community against a brutal African warlord–or misrepresented and oversimplified a complex issue, depending on your point of view–says it’s packing up.

Invisible Children, founded in 2004 to raise awareness about Joseph Kony’s Lord’s Resistance Army in central Africa, announced on Monday that it is winding down its U.S. operations and will cut most of its 21-person staff.

In a statement posted to its website, Invisible Children cited a drop in Kony’s influence–though he still leads several hundred fighters–but also indicated it was having trouble fundraising.

“Despite making incredible progress toward our mission, it’s been difficult to fund the breadth of our work, especially over the last two years,” the group said.

In 2012, Invisible Children released an emotional film about Kony that catapulted the organization onto the international stage thanks to the film’s viral effectiveness–and the subsequent criticism of its portrayal of the conflict and the resulting “hashtag activism.”

The film, Kony 2012, was viewed more than 100 million times in less than a week and was called at the time the most viral video in history. It was credited with helping to prompt the U.S. to back an African Union military force charged with hunting down Kony.

But it also faced widespread criticism for its simplistic tone and for exaggerating the threat posed by the LRA, at the expense of other health and social issues. While the LRA had forced thousands of children to become child soldiers over the previous two decades, by the the time the film was released, Kony had been expelled from Uganda and led only a few hundred followers.

The film’s backlash appeared to have hurt the NGO’s fundraising efforts: while Invisible Children raised $26.5 million in 2012, nearly as much as it had raised in the previous three years combined, it collected $4.9 million in 2013, according to its financial reports.

TIME

Woman Sues Bill Cosby, Claiming Underage Abuse

Jackie Robinson Foundation 2014 Awards Dinner
Bill Cosby speaks at the Jackie Robinson Foundation 2014 Awards Dinner at Waldorf Astoria Hotel on March 3, 2014 in New York City. Stephen Lovekin—Getty Images

(LOS ANGELES) — A Southern California woman has sued Bill Cosby, claiming the comedian molested her around 1974 when she was 15 years old.

Judith Huth claims in the sexual battery lawsuit filed Tuesday in Los Angeles that the molestation occurred in a bedroom of the Playboy Mansion. Huth’s suit states that she and a friend first met Cosby at a Los Angeles-area film shoot and the comedian gave them drinks a week later at a tennis club.

Huth’s lawsuit states that Cosby took them to the Playboy mansion after several drinks. Her suit states Cosby forced her to perform a sex act on him with his hand.

An email message sent to Cosby’s attorney Martin Singer was not immediately returned.

The woman claims she suffered severe emotional distress and that she discovered its impact on her within the past three years, which allows her to file the lawsuit under California law.

TIME

This Company Drove Baby Name Trends in 2014

"Orange Is The New Black" Season 2 Photocall
Jason Biggs, Taylor Schilling and Laura Prepon attend a photocall to launch season 2 of the Netflix exclusive series "Orange Is The New Black" at Soho Hotel on May 29, 2014 in London, England. Karwai Tang—WireImage

Pornstache has yet to crack the list, thankfully

A close look at BabyCenter’s top baby names of 2014 doesn’t suggest anything out of the ordinary. Anyone who’s walked past a gaggle of nursery schoolers wouldn’t be surprised to see names like Sophia, Olivia, Liam and Aiden topping the lists. But dig a little deeper and you will find that for as much as parents-to-be weigh factors like honoring family names and improving junior’s chances for an Ivy League diploma, Netflix is as big an influence as anything. Yes, Netflix.

Parents looked past the crimes of Litchfield Correctional Facility’s inmates and instead reaffirmed the humanity of Orange Is the New Black’s characters. Galina, better known as Red, rose 67 percent in popularity, while Piper cracked the top 100 names for girls. Nicky, Alex, Dayanara and even the ever-unpopular Larry enjoyed a greater share of this year’s baby name pie.

House of Cards held sway in baby nurseries as well, despite the unsavory motivations that drive so many of its characters. Frank, Remy and Zoe all jumped between 10 and 20 percent from the previous year.

The influence of popular culture on name trends extends, of course, beyond Netflix. In a nod to two of 2014’s other major cultural phenomena — Frozen and Shonda Rhimes — Elsa and Hans saw a healthy boost, Olivia kept her top three spot and a handful of names from Scandal and How to Get Away With Murder made their way onto more birth certificates.

Judging by Netflix’s upcoming offerings, 2015 might just be the year of Marco Polo.

TIME Television

Viola Davis Is Creating a Show About Detroit’s First Female Prosecutor

ABC's 2014 Summer TCA Tour Portraits
ABC's 'How to Get Away with Murder' actress Viola Davis poses for a portrait during ABC's 2014 TCA summer press tour at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on July 15, 2014 in Beverly Hills. Christopher Polk—Getty Images

Kym Worthy has been called 'the toughest woman in Detroit'

Viola Davis, who plays defense attorney Annalise Keating on ABC’s How to Get Away with Murder, is trying her hand at exploring the other side of the courtroom. She’s producing a new ABC drama inspired by Kym Worthy, the badass Detroit prosecutor who has led the charge to investigate the city’s 11,000 backlogged rape kits. (Read more about her quest to revive cold cases here.)

Worthy, who has been called the toughest woman in Detroit, is known for prosecuting former mayor Kwame Kilpatrick for obstruction of justice, conspiracy, and perjury, which led to his resignation from office (along with other high-profile scandals.) A sexual assault survivor herself, she’s also revamped the way her office handles rape cases, pioneering a “victim-centered” approach that puts the emphasis on catching rapists rather than questioning victims.

MORE: Here’s what happens when you get a rape kit exam

Viola and her producing partner Julius Tennon will be joined by Debra Martin Chase (Sparkle) to create the new drama Conviction, which will be written by Jason Wilborn (Damages), Deadline reports. Worthy is on board as a consultant.

[DEADLINE]

TIME People

Woman Who Got Cosby Money Orders Says They Were Just ‘Generosity’

Former NBC employee says he regularly brought women to Cosby's dressing room

A former NBC employee has shown NBC News receipts for money orders that he says he sent to women at Bill Cosby’s direction.

Frank Scotti, now 90, says he also regularly brought women to Cosby’s dressing room. He told Kate Snow in an interview that aired on TODAY Monday that the job made him feel “like a pimp.”

But one of the women whose name appears on several money orders says the gifts were purely the product of Cosby’s “generosity” and were intended to help pay for her son’s boarding school…

Read the rest of the story from our partners at NBC News

TIME Culture

New Sex Assault Allegation Leveled Against Bill Cosby

Another woman alleges Cosby drugged her into sexual activity decades ago

Another woman has come forward with allegations that she was sexually abused decades ago by actor and comedian Bill Cosby.

Speaking to People, Therese Serignese, 57, claims that when she was 19 years old, Cosby pressured her into taking Quaaludes and engaging in sexual activity after his show in Las Vegas. Serignese also said she provided a supporting deposition in a civil suit back in 2006 that was brought by another accuser and settled out of court.

Since 2005, more than a dozen women have accused Cosby of drugging or sexually abusing them. The allegations — which have not led to criminal charges — have recently garnered increased attention and prompted NBC to drop a planned Cosby sitcom and Netflix to postpone his comedy special.

Read more at People

TIME Scandal

‘Pickup Artist’ Accused of Promoting Sexual Assault to Be Barred From U.K.

A petition demanding Britain cancel Julien Blanc's visa garnered more than 150,000 signatures

An American “pickup artist” accused of promoting sexual assault appears set to be banned from entering the United Kingdom, according to a report Wednesday that cited the Home Office.

Julien Blanc was apparently informed that his application for a British visa has been rejected, the Guardian reports. The decision by Home Secretary Theresa May comes after a petition demanding that Britain cancel his visa garnered more than 150,000 signatures.

Blanc, 25, gives paid seminars and bootcamps that promise to teach men how to “Make Girls BEG To Sleep With You After SHORT-CIRCUITING Their Emotional And Logical Mind” and develop “panty-dropping masculinity with this rock-solid structure to self-generate the powerful emotions girls crave.” But critics have called the courses predation in disguise as dating advice.

[The Guardian]

TIME celebrities

Rihanna Went on an Instagram Spree at the White House

Scandal jokes ensued

Rihanna knows how to make a comeback. After making her welcome return to Instagram in early November following a six-month break, the unapologetic pop star — who gives new meaning to the phrase “no filter” — proved why she’s also a social-media star during a Monday trip to the White House.

She posed in the briefing room, she posed in what looks like the West Wing, but most importantly, she made a couple jokes about Scandal. There’s nothing for Olivia Pope to fix here, though — unless we’re talking about the current lack of a new Rihanna album. Perhaps she can handle that next.

"CYRUS!!! LET ME IN!!" #DayAtTheWhiteHouse

A photo posted by badgalriri (@badgalriri) on

"Fitz, darling…"

A photo posted by badgalriri (@badgalriri) on

#heyAbby

A photo posted by badgalriri (@badgalriri) on

West Wing Posse!! We wanna be O.P.A. so bad!!! #DayAtTheWhiteHouse

A photo posted by badgalriri (@badgalriri) on

The new America!!! #islandtingz #DayAtTheWhiteHouse

A photo posted by badgalriri (@badgalriri) on

TIME Culture

Amy Schumer Fought to Say This Word on Comedy Central and Won

The fight for gender equality applies to dirty words, too

Comedy Central comedians can now say the word “pussy” uncensored, thanks to Amy Schumer.

The word was a point of contention between her show, Inside Amy Schumer, and the cable network during the second season. Though certain other references to male sex organs were allowed on Comedy Central, this term for female genetalia was not. Dan Powell, the show’s executive producer, had argued for its use and cited gender inequality.

“Dan decided that it wasn’t fair that they bleep the word ‘pussy,'” Schumer, explained at a Paley Center for Media panel this past weekend, according to Vulture. “Because you are allowed to say the word ‘dick’ on Comedy Central,” added Jessi Klein, head writer and executive producer.

If any show could win that battle, it was Inside Amy Schumer, a sketch show that often comments and criticizes the different standards for women and men. “Halfway through the first season, we started to realize that a lot of the show was addressing women’s issues and gender politics,” said Powell. “I’d written a letter, sort of like write I’d write to my congressman, and I guess it struck a chord.” Schumer called the victory Powell’s Mr. Smith Goes to Washington moment.

The writers embraced the new privilege with gusto. Check out the first sketch where the word isn’t bleeped out.

[Vulture]

TIME Parenting

Parents Upset Scandal Sex Scene Aired Right After Charlie Brown Special

KERRY WASHINGTON
Kerry Washington as Olivia Pope on Scandal Adam Taylor—ABC

A glimpse of Olivia Pope and the president was too much

Parents are miffed that ABC aired a sex scene on the show Scandal just moments after the kid-friendly Halloween special It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown, which meant that if kids didn’t change the channel quickly enough, they might have seen some steamy action between Olivia and Fitz.

“Shame on ABC for putting a peep show next to a playground,” Parents Television Council president Tim Winter said in a statement. “In less than 26 seconds, we were taken from the Peanuts pumpkin patch to a steamy Scandal sex scene. Twenty-six seconds, boom. Unless parents had the remote control in their hand, thumb on the button and aimed directly at the TV screen, they didn’t have a chance.”

“The juxtaposition of a reliably classic family-friendly children’s cartoon special like the Great Pumpkin — a huge family draw every year for decades — with such a graphic bedroom scene is unjustifiable,” Winter continued.

So for the kids who got their first glimpse of the Olivia Pope on Halloween: Welcome to Shondaland.

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