Plenty of news items to note this Thursday, from the most tweeted entertainment moments to the continuing flap over the "fake interpreter"
Cell phones on planes hearing today
The Federal Communications Commission will officially start to debate today whether or not to remove a 22-year-old ban on making phone calls on planes. New FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler has called the current rules "outdated and restrictive." It will be the first of several meetings.
House to vote Thursday on budget deal
The U.S. House is on track to vote today on a bipartisan budget deal reached by House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wis., and Senate Budget Chairwoman Patty Murray, D-Wash. Ryan briefed congressional Republicans Wednesday on the two-year framework that sets top-line spending figures through fiscal year 2015 and partially alleviates unpopular across-the-board cuts known as the sequester. The deal also eliminates the threat of another government shutdown during that time period.
Golden Globe nominations on the 'Today' show
Zoe Saldana, Olivia Wilde and Aziz Ansari will announce the 71st annual Golden Globe Awards nominations on NBC's Today show this morning. Also on hand will be Sosie Bacon, the 21-year-old daughter of Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgwick, who is Miss Golden Globe 2014. The Golden Globe Awards will take place Sunday, January 12, with Tina Fey and Amy Poehler returning to the Beverly Hilton Hotel to host the show. The telecast begins at 8 p.m. ET.
Most tweeted entertainment moments of 2013
Star-studded news traveled fast in 2013, a year of shocking celebrity deaths, jaw-dropping live performances, awards show upsets — and the simple existence of five young Brits named Niall, Zayn, Harry, Liam and Louis. We laughed, we cried, we tweeted — and we retweeted. Oh, did we retweet. The 5 most shared celebrity tweets from 2013 included Lea Michele on boyfriend and Glee co-star Cory Monteith's death and a statement confirming Paul Walker's death. To see the rest of the biggest celebrity tweets, head to http://www.usatoday.com/life/
Sign language 'fake' blames mental health
The South African sign language interpreter accused of using "fake" signs at Nelson Mandela's memorial service this week has said he suffered a schizophrenic episode. Thamsanqa Jantjie told Johannesburg's Star newspaper: "There was nothing I could do. I was alone in a very dangerous situation. I tried to control myself and not show the world what was going on. I am very sorry, it's the situation I found myself in."