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Anasticia Sholik

Good evening.

Brexit's super Saturday

New uses for social media

Indians are learning English through TikTok. China's viral video-sharing app just launched an educational initiative in India.

Indians are learning English through TikTok

It seems like ByteDance is trying to use the massive popularity of TikTok for something other than just being really fun.

Indians are using a Chinese app to teach one another English. Although it's an innovative use of social media, I'm a bit skeptical about TikTok's ability to revamp its image. The app's parent company, ByteDance, is based in Beijing. The specter of Chinese influence looms large.

This looks to me like an exercise to clean up its act in India. TikTok has had a rough run in this part of the world with linkages to fatal accidents and pornography. It's also faced legal suits and government warnings. So trying to promote and build an image of being more useful in helping common people

This looks to me like an exercise to clean up its act in India. TikTok has had a rough run in this part of the world with linkages to fatal accidents and pornography. It's also faced legal suits and government warnings. So trying to promote and build an image of being more useful in helping common people works in its favour. For the next court case, TikTok will at least have something positive to show for why it should be allowed to stay in the country.

The future of cars

The world’s downtowns are giving up on personal cars. In recent years, cities have begun to banish cars from specific streets or entire districts.

The world’s downtowns are slowly giving up on personal cars

I live in Los Angeles and were considering things like this as well except our public transit is terrible compared to other places. As long as the infrastructure can support having no cars, great!

Banning cars from the downtown is good for our lungs, our waist lines and our ears. Less air and noise pollution could attract people back to the downtown and result in much needed rejuvenation of beautiful older architecture. Walking in green spaces would allow exercise that is accessible to all and

Banning cars from the downtown is good for our lungs, our waist lines and our ears. Less air and noise pollution could attract people back to the downtown and result in much needed rejuvenation of beautiful older architecture. Walking in green spaces would allow exercise that is accessible to all and may even reconstitute a sense of community as people interact more. The key is access for service and delivery vehicles and easy alternative transport for longer distance travel like trains tramways buses and shared taxis.

India's wealth gap

Chinese censorship goes global

Chinese censorship is no longer just a China problem. The broad strokes of censorship in China are common knowledge. But over the past week or two, the world began to wake up to the fact that China’s censorship machine is now a global phenomenon. ✦

Chinese censorship is no longer just a China problem

It’s fascinating to see: the statement that something doesn’t fall in the scope of free speech because “it hurts the feelings” of people is an appeal to ethical concepts coming from a country that a while back proclaimed there are no such things as natural rights...

In the overt, China complains about

It’s fascinating to see: the statement that something doesn’t fall in the scope of free speech because “it hurts the feelings” of people is an appeal to ethical concepts coming from a country that a while back proclaimed there are no such things as natural rights...

In the overt, China complains about free speech hurting feelings, in the covert it manipulates social media in the west with disinformation.

Western companies need to decide how much to give up in ethics and basic rights in order to gain access to a market.

Outsiders' self-censorship follows a familiar pattern. When a Westerner runs afoul of Chinese nationalist ideology, they tend to follow the crude strategy of "apologize, play dumb, shut up."

The world needs to stop self-censoring about Hong Kong

Personally I disagree with cultural relativism. Not everything begs our understanding, like restricting freedom of thought, opinion, dress or the right to vote or assemble peacefully. There is a such thing as universally wrong. How does one judge the difference? I don’t have all the answers but usually

Personally I disagree with cultural relativism. Not everything begs our understanding, like restricting freedom of thought, opinion, dress or the right to vote or assemble peacefully. There is a such thing as universally wrong. How does one judge the difference? I don’t have all the answers but usually the right thing doesn’t produce more harm than good.

One small step

Two women walked in space. NASA astronauts Christina Koch and Jessica Meir stepped outside the International Space Station for a historic spacewalk that doubles as a metaphor for what it's like to be a woman full of ambition in 2019.

The metaphorical power of NASA’s first all-women spacewalk

Today was the first-ever all-women spacewalk, this moment is historic and will inspire so many girls to come. But getting here to this moment is a reminder of women trying to succeed in a world made for men

A moment to celebrate for all women. Lets make the spacesuit fit for many more women to come. Lets break down the bias so that this story - while spectacular, can become the norm and our children will see no boundaries nor be marginalized in the future simply for being female.

The future of gaming

Call of Duty turns down the loot. Players of the latest edition of the military-themed first-person shooter will no longer be able to pay for a chance of getting better at the game. Ridding loot boxes is a big step for the company, which generated $4.2 billion in revenue last year.

Call of Duty won’t be the last high-profile game to get rid of loot boxes

As an avid gamer I am extremely happy about this! This returns the game to a more skill-based system rather than a “pay to win” model. If you want pay to win, play mobile games or Fortnight and try not to get eliminated by some 8 year old who stole his moms credit card to buy better weapons.

This is great, loot boxes are kind of like gambling with the RNG (random number generator) element. Yes it makes money but nowhere near Season Battle Passes that Fortnite uses (Epic made ~$3B in profit in 2018 from it just one company not the while industry).

So good riddance to loot boxes, Battle Passes

This is great, loot boxes are kind of like gambling with the RNG (random number generator) element. Yes it makes money but nowhere near Season Battle Passes that Fortnite uses (Epic made ~$3B in profit in 2018 from it just one company not the while industry).

So good riddance to loot boxes, Battle Passes are more aligned with player engagement b/c you buy the pass and in order to maximize all its benefits you have to play more, play with friends, complete challenges, etc. to unlock things. Brilliant from a user engagement standpoint vs dumb chance loot boxes.

Top dollar TV

South Park streaming rights could cost half a billion bucks. The twisted and topical Comedy Central stalwart has been delighting and disgusting generations of fans for over 20 years. That all adds up to a major payday for Viacom.

Bidding War for ‘South Park’ U.S. Streaming Rights Could Hit $500 Million

Southpark is one of the smartest shows on tv and deserves the price. They have taken on so many taboo subjects, it is nasty hilarious, highly creative and incredibly relevant.

Makes more sense than the price of Friends (yack!). South Park is so accurate I end up seeing it in the real world almost every day - documentaries, the news, on the street, and in print all the time.

Can you hear me now?

Brave towns are putting a stop to the tyranny of leaf blowers. The loudest models may have noise levels of up to 112 decibels—louder than a plane taking off, a freight train, or a live rock concert.

More and more brave towns are putting a stop to the tyranny of leaf blowers

Let’s not stop there. Those pesky beep BEEP BEEPS from the semi-trailer trucks and snow plows on my street have got. to. go. I’ve fantasized about painting a “where (your) kids come to cry” sign at the entrance of the alley way our bedroom sits over. I swear it’s a symphony of bad hip hop or EDM blasting

Let’s not stop there. Those pesky beep BEEP BEEPS from the semi-trailer trucks and snow plows on my street have got. to. go. I’ve fantasized about painting a “where (your) kids come to cry” sign at the entrance of the alley way our bedroom sits over. I swear it’s a symphony of bad hip hop or EDM blasting from sun roofs and open windowed sedans (you know who you are), trucks endlessly backing up (to seemingly nowhere), children mid-meltdown, sloshing drunks, recycling foragers clanking $.05 bottles, children on the verge of a meltdown, couples on the verge of a meltdown and finally, yes, leaf blowers and lawn care equipment.

I want peace but I’m wrapped in red tape. An ode to city life.

Noise pollution is one of the next major challenges to overcome, and the solutions cannot only come from technology advances. Machines, even the quietest, generate their own low-level noise that contributes to both overall pollution and the insistent, steady thrum.

Talkin' Texas

The Lone Star State, but make it fashion. The world’s biggest luxury brand, Louis Vuitton, is investing $50 million into a bag production factory on a Texas ranch south of Fort Worth. They have good reasons why.

Why Louis Vuitton opened a factory on a ranch in Texas

I never thought I'd see the day where Bernard Arnault would be in a photo with Trump. But this is a great set of news for the US manufacturing sector, and hopefully this can create a bigger trend towards fashion brands setting up more US plants.

That said, "Made in the USA" is a tag that brands can

I never thought I'd see the day where Bernard Arnault would be in a photo with Trump. But this is a great set of news for the US manufacturing sector, and hopefully this can create a bigger trend towards fashion brands setting up more US plants.

That said, "Made in the USA" is a tag that brands can only use if 100% of their products are sourced there. The leather isn't entirely from Texas (which is a bit odd) but this issue has also hindered the watch world.

There so much more under this hood, but kudos to LVMH for this news.

Come back soon!

Close

The 17 years since the Microsoft antitrust case taught us that regulation can spur innovation

Read more on Quartz

From Our Members

  • We cannot truly inhabit the counterfactual world - all is speculation. But this is far from the only way to tell this story. We don’t know what a stronger, more integrated Microsoft might have looked like. Would there be a Google? Maybe, or maybe we wouldn’t have needed one.

    When I arrived at Microsoft

    We cannot truly inhabit the counterfactual world - all is speculation. But this is far from the only way to tell this story. We don’t know what a stronger, more integrated Microsoft might have looked like. Would there be a Google? Maybe, or maybe we wouldn’t have needed one.

    When I arrived at Microsoft, I found a company deeply impacted by this ruling, one afraid to integrate its parts in fear of more government regulation. We praise the Microsoft of Nadella, which went from $25 to $100, but fail to recognize that one of the engines of that growth is Balmer finally integrating across the company before he left. He broke the silos because he finally felt he could with reprisal.

    It is a habit of our minds to like the world we have. But that bias doesn’t always serve us. Consumers want a highly integrated system, because it provides a better experience, and we missed out on a more integrated present.

  • History is always a good data point for what could happen. The European data privacy regulations GDPR would not be as welcomed if it wasn’t for the massive data privacy situation or lack thereof at Facebook that was unfolding at the same time.

  • This well-written article makes reference to section 230 of the landmark Communications Decency Act of 1997. This codicle of the act, which is usually known only to policy wonks, is the most important legal battleground for the future of media.

    Companies like Google and Facebook claim section 230 is

    This well-written article makes reference to section 230 of the landmark Communications Decency Act of 1997. This codicle of the act, which is usually known only to policy wonks, is the most important legal battleground for the future of media.

    Companies like Google and Facebook claim section 230 is their safe harbor that allows them to publish user-generated content without fear of being responsible for the consequences of that content. So, if someone posts a message inciting a riot on Facebook, Facebbok can say, "That's not on us. We're just the pipes delivering the water."

    Problem is that they are making lots of editorial decisions as they make judgements about the placement of stories in their algorithms. Every day it gets harder and harder for these companies to say they are not publishers.