V&D wants four month rent holiday on all its department stores

Up to 80 men face charges over abuse of 16-year-old ‘prostitute’

Department store group V&D is in such acute financial trouble it has asked all its landlords for a four month rent holiday, the Volkskrant says on Monday. V&D operates 63 stores nationwide and has a presence in most major urban centres. Earlier this month, V&D said it wanted all staff to accept a pay cut of nearly 6% and that it would be renegotiating rental contracts because of its...  More >

Facebook 'unlikes' Dutch watermark app

Facebook ‘unlikes’ Dutch app which watermarks photos An app developed by a Dutch couple which makes photographs uploaded to Facebook unusable by third parties has been removed from the approved list by the internet company, the Volkskrant says on Monday. The app, named Reclaim Yourself, gives photos a watermark which makes them less attractive to use for commercial purposes. Facebook’s new privacy rules come into effect at the end of this week and give the company the right to use all photographs uploaded to the site for other purposes. The app’s designers Sipke Jan Bousema and Willem van Leunen were given the green light by Facebook to introduce it in December, the Volkskrant says. However, 20 days later the app has been scrapped and all photographs which were processed with it have been removed, the Volkskrant says. Van Leunen says he has made a formal protest to Facebook but has heard nothing. The Volkskrant says the media attention has led to Faceback replacing some of the photographs, including pictures which users...  More >

Postcode lottery winners may lose benefits

Up to 80 men face charges over abuse of 16-year-old ‘prostitute’ Dozens of people who won money in this year’s Postcode Lottery New Year draw may lose their welfare benefits or have their winnings taken by Amsterdam city council to repay debts, the Telegraaf says on Monday. Sources told the paper hundreds of the 1,600 winners are on benefits, while others have debts totalling €2m. By law, their winnings should go to the council and their benefits should be halted, the paper says. This year’s big prize went to postcode area 1107 in Amsterdam’s Zuidoost district. A spokesman for the council declined to tell the Telegraaf how many people face losing their prize out of ‘privacy considerations’. It is not yet clear if the council will follow the letter of the law, the paper says. A spokesman for social security alderman Arjen Vliegenhart said the council wants to follow the law but also take into account the ‘personal situation of the prize winners’. The council is in contact with the winners in order to ‘make a new appointment...  More >

Eredivisie round up: PSV on title course

PSV opened up a six point gap on championship rivals Ajax as Frank de Boer’s side struggled to a point against Feyenoord in the ArenA. Meanwhile, victories in the Eredivisie basement for FC Dordrecht and Go Ahead Eagles leaves both NAC Breda and ADO Den Haag supporters nervously looking over their shoulders, writes Neil Adderley. FC Twente 2 - 0 Heracles Almelo: Seventeen-year-old stars in Twentse derby Two second half goals gave Twente the spoils as Alfred Schreuder’s men struggled past local rivals Heracles. A largely drab affair was finally brought to life as teenager Bilal Ould-Chikh came off the bench to stunning effect. Jesus Corona had given the home side a lead on the hour mark, latching onto a woeful Ramon Zomer back pass before finishing past Dennis Telgenkamp. But it was former Feyenoord academy player Ould-Chikh who stole the show with a sublime 25 yard finish. The Dutch youth international, who had seen a previous effort crash back off the crossbar, left the home...  More >

Young couple buy original Jan Steen for €5

A young couple who bought a painting at the King’s Day flea market in Alkmaar for €5 actually picked up an original work by Dutch master Jan Steen, local broadcaster RTV Noord-Holland reports. The painting was valued at open day in Beverwijk at at least €20,000. ‘You feel it immediately, this is right,’ said valuation expert Jeroen Zoetmulder. The painting shows a man celebrating with a tankard in his hand and is thought to be the smallest Jan Steen in existence. The painting has already undergone checks by other experts and will undergo further research to make sure it really is by the Dutch master. ‘It is worth, conservatively €20,000,’ said Zoetmulder. ‘Work by Jan Steen does not come on the market very often.’ Jan Havickszoon Steen (c. 1626 – 1679) is known for his vivid and humorous portrayals of daily life. He is thought to have produced about 800 paintings, of which roughly 350 survive.  More >