Good morning, Quartz readers!
What to watch for today
The investigation into the Kobe Bryant crash continues. The NBA legend, 41, and eight others, including his 13-year-old daughter Gianna, were killed on Sunday when their private helicopter went down in apparently foggy conditions in southern California.
Donald Trump’s impeachment trial resumes. The proceedings enter a critical week as the GOP-controlled Senate decides whether to hear witnesses, including former national security advisor John Bolton, whose forthcoming book contains allegations about the president and Ukraine.
Poland hosts a memorial for Auschwitz. Holocaust survivors, presidents, and prime ministers mark 75 years since Soviet troops liberated the Nazi death camp, but more world leaders chose to go to the memorial event Israel hosted last week.
Over the weekend
China continued travel restrictions to contain coronavirus. At least 81 people have died since the outbreak began in Wuhan, with some 3,000 confirmed cases globally—including five in the US. The Chinese government has extended the Lunar New Year holiday to Feb. 2, to dissuade people from travelling.
A rocket hit the US embassy in Baghdad. A Katyusha projectile struck the heavily fortified facility in the Green Zone of Iraq’s capital. Attacks by Iran-linked militias against the embassy have increased, particularly since the US assassination of Qassem Soleimani.
The Indian government announced plans to sell its stake in Air India. It has set a deadline of March 17 for anyone expressing interest in taking over the struggling national carrier, including its huge debts.
Saudi Arabia offered hundreds of millions to invest in the world’s most popular soccer league. In a sign that it is keen to expand its soft power, the state’s sovereign wealth fund is trying to buy struggling English club Newcastle United for a reported $440 million.
Billie Eilish made history at the Grammys. The 18-year-old became the youngest artist to win a top award—and the first to sweep all the best single, album, record, and new artist categories since 1981.
Batteries will soon overtake fossil fuels as our primary method of powering the world. But significant hurdles remain on the road to an all-electric future. Quartz’s latest presentation for members breaks down the history, science, and business of batteries—and takes you inside the race to replace Big Oil.
Quartz daily obsession
The year of the rat began on Jan. 25, 2020. Within the Chinese zodiac, rats are energetic, friendly, clever, and stubborn. In the human world, they’re everywhere. And yet, we barely understand our closest neighbors. Burrow into your favorite abandoned mattress and let the Quartz Daily Obsession reacquaint you with our furry friends.
Matters of debate
Bosses should make men cut down on sports talk in the office. A UK management body says those conversations exclude women.
But complaining about the work environment might be good for you. It can help you cope with stress and frustration.
Personal finance advice misses the point. It places the burden on individuals, rather than policy, to guarantee economic security.
A crooked officer scammed the US Navy for $2.7 million. He conspired with a civilian friend to dole out phony contracts and pocket the proceeds.
Your collection of Scotch could be fraudulent. Scientists determined the true age of 221 bottles—and 40% weren’t as old as advertised.
Classic Corvettes worth $1 million are trapped in a collapsed building. A warehouse explosion flattened a nearby auto shop that specializes in antique cars.
Americans prefer reading over the movie theater. The average US adult makes 10.5 trips to the local library each year, far more than any other cultural activity.
HBO’s Chernobyl is striking a chord in coronavirus-stricken China. People are drawing parallels with the historical TV drama, including the suppression of information.
Our best wishes for a productive day. Please send any news, comments, little red Corvettes, and sport-free office small talk to email@example.com. Get the most out of Quartz by downloading our app on iOS or Android, and becoming a member. Today’s Daily Brief was brought to you by Adam Rasmi and Hasit Shah.