Good morning, Quartz readers!
What to watch for today
OPEC convenes in Vienna. The oil cartel will likely cut production in a bid to stabilize oil prices after a recent plunge. Qatar, which said it is withdrawing from the organization next year, will attend.
Yemen holds peace talks in Sweden. The Yemeni government and Houthi rebels will meet for a weeklong UN-sponsored discussion that aims to end nearly four years of civil war, one of the worst humanitarian disasters in recent times. The Houthis didn’t show up for the last round of talks, in September.
The battle against the AT&T-Time Warner merger continues. A US federal appeals court will hear arguments from 27 antitrust scholars, including Nobel laureate Joseph Stiglitz, in the Department of Justice’s petition to overturn a decision allowing the merger.
Golden Globe nominations are announced. Viewers can tune in live starting at 8am ET to see who made the shortlist. The show’s producers revealed yesterday that Sandra Oh and Andy Samberg will host the ceremony on Jan. 6.
A service for George H.W. Bush in Texas. The ceremony follows his state funeral at Washington National Cathedral yesterday.
While you were sleeping
China may have been behind the Marriott hack. Reuters reported that the hackers left behind clues that were consistent in other attacks attributed to Chinese intelligence. The breach, which was revealed last week, began four years ago and compromised the data of up to 500 million customers.
USA Gymnastics filed for bankruptcy. The move could bring all legal proceedings against it in civil court to a halt. Hundreds of women have filed lawsuits against the sport’s governing body related to sexual abuse by former team doctor Larry Nassar.
Residents started to return to a California town devastated by fire. Hundreds headed home for the first time to Paradise, California after last month’s blaze destroyed 14,000 homes and killed more than 75, the deadliest US wildfire in more than a century.
The arrest of Huawei’s finance chief rattled global markets. Meng Wanzhou’s arrest this week in Vancouver—she faces potential extradition to the US for alleged sanctions violations—raised fresh worries over the US-China trade war. Stocks dropped around the world as investors fretted about tensions between the two largest economies.
Orchids are exotic… and also an impulse purchase. In the 19th century, they had to be retrieved at great risk from the wild; in the 20th century, we figured out how to grow them from a test tube, but it was still a long process that produced pricey petals. How’d they get so commonplace? The answer blooms at the Quartz Obsession.
Matters of debate
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The global female shortage is a human-rights issue. India and China are already feeling the crunch, and neighboring countries are suffering from bride trafficking.
Taiwan could win a war against China. Despite Beijing’s massive advantage in military strength, the government in Taipei is well prepared to resist the onslaught.
Startups aren’t cool anymore. Millennials, saddled with debt and scarred by the financial crisis, have become jaded with the romance of entrepreneurship.
Are trucking jobs about to drive off a cliff? US trucking has long been consistently white and overwhelmingly male, but now it’s also getting older, which is creating some problems. Fewer young people are moving into the profession, and there is already a shortage of drivers. If e-commerce continues to grow (and there’s no reason to suspect that it won’t) the demand on trucking will only increase, creating a potentially huge driver shortage. Read more here.
More parents are naming their babies after groceries. The rise of Kale, Sage, and Saffron suggests parents are finding inspiration in the wellness movement.
Trevor Noah’s grandmother doesn’t watch The Daily Show. Though the 91-year-old has a satellite dish, rolling blackouts in South Africa keep her from tuning in.
PETA wants people to avoid “anti-animal language.” The animal-rights group is being ridiculed for suggesting people swap idioms like “beat a dead horse” with “feed a fed horse.”
An American rapper is suing Fortnite for ripping off his dance move. Terrence Ferguson, aka 2 Milly, said the game appropriated his likeness and copied a dance move that went viral in 2011.
A Chinese kung fu fighter regularly wrestles bulls to the ground. Ren Ruzhi enters the ring several times a week, and it worries his mother.
Our best wishes for a productive day. Please send any news, comments, animal-friendly phrases, and derivative dance moves to email@example.com. Join the next chapter of Quartz by downloading our app and becoming a member. Today’s Daily Brief was written by Adam Rasmi and edited by Jason Karaian.