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The latest news from Business Insider

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    MoviePass CEO Mitch Lowe and Helios and Matheson Chief Executive Ted Farnsworth.

    • MoviePass' parent company, Helios and Matheson Analytics, wants to spin off MoviePass into a separate, publicly traded company.
    • Helios and Matheson has been under fire for months from angry investors, and the New York Attorney General's office recently confirmed it was investigating whether the company had misled investors (a claim the company denies).
    • Helios and Matheson has a complicated history as a Nasdaq-listed company, and was once controlled by an Indian company accused of massive fraud.

    On Tuesday, MoviePass parent company, Helios and Matheson Analytics (HMNY), announced a "preliminary plan" to spin off MoviePass and its related entertainment assets into a separate public company.

    The announcement came just days after the New York Attorney General's office said it was investigating Helios and Matheson to determine whether the company misled investors, a claim the company denied. It also came days before a crucial shareholders meeting set to take place on November 1, when Helios and Matheson will seek authorization for a 1-for-500 reverse stock split — a move some investors are against. The reverse split is an attempt to raise Helios and Matheson's stock price to avoid delisting from the Nasdaq, which could happen as soon as mid-December.

    “For many years, HMNY has been focused on data analytics, and in that capacity we own assets like Zone Technologies which provides a safety and navigation app for iOS and Android users and a global security concierge service," Helios and Matheson CEO Ted Farnsworth said in a statement on the spin-off. "Since we acquired control of MoviePass in December 2017, HMNY largely has become synonymous with MoviePass in the public’s eye, leading us to believe that our shareholders and the market perception of HMNY might benefit from separating our movie-related assets from the rest of our company.”

    Helios and Matheson has a complicated history as a Nasdaq-listed company. Before the Farnsworth-MoviePass era, the New York outpost of Helios and Matheson was controlled by an Indian company (Helios and Matheson Information Technology), which stands accused of defrauding at least 5,000 creditors in India, including banks and senior citizens. The company was involved in many facets of information technology consulting.

    HMIT in India began to extricate itself from the US business in 2016 when HMNY merged with Farnsworth's money-losing startup, Zone Technologies. Zone Technologies created a "a GPS-driven, real-time crime and navigation map application." However the RedZone Map app has not been updated since April and does not appear to function as intended.

    At present, MoviePass effectively comprises the entirety of Helios and Matheson's business.

    But the Nasdaq listing of Helios and Matheson has been crucial to MoviePass, as it has allowed the movie-ticket subscription app to fund hundreds of millions in losses by selling new shares of Helios and Matheson stock to the public. This has rankled many shareholders who have seen their stakes diluted and the stock price crater (Helios and Matheson is currently trading at around $0.02). Some retail investors have seen their stakes drop over 99% in value and told Business Insider they had lost more than $100,000 on the stock.

    Now Helios and Matheson seeks to spin off MoviePass into another publicly listed company.

    Here's the plan, according to Helios and Matheson:

    "HMNY is endeavoring to create MoviePass Entertainment Holdings as a separate publicly traded holding company that would contain the following four assets: (i) the shares of common stock of MoviePass Inc. (“MoviePass”), the nation’s leading movie theater subscription service, held by HMNY, which currently comprise approximately 92% of the outstanding shares (excluding options and warrants) of MoviePass, (ii) the membership interests of MoviePass Films LLC (“MoviePass Films”), HMNY’s movie production company partnered with Emmett Furla Oasis Films, held by HMNY, equal to 51% of the outstanding membership interests of MoviePass Films, (iii) the membership interests of MoviePass Ventures LLC (“MoviePass Ventures”), an acquirer and owner of economic interests in completed films, held by HMNY, equal to 100% of the outstanding membership interests of MoviePass Ventures, and (iv) Moviefone™, a multimedia media information and advertising service."

    If permitted to do so under applicable Delaware law, HMNY plans to distribute a minority of the outstanding shares of MoviePass Entertainment common stock as a dividend to stockholders of HMNY as of a record date that is yet to be determined, with HMNY retaining control of MoviePass Entertainment upon any such distribution. Holders of any outstanding convertible notes issued by HMNY in November 2017 and January 2018 and certain warrants of HMNY, as of the applicable record date, would be entitled to participate in any distribution of MoviePass Entertainment shares to the extent required by the terms of such notes and warrants. As previously reported in a Current Report on Form 8-K filed by HMNY on October 4, 2018, all the convertible notes issued by HMNY in June 2018 have been cancelled."

    Regardless of whether HMNY can effect a dividend of a portion of the MoviePass Entertainment shares held by it under Delaware law, HMNY plans to seek to cause MoviePass Entertainment to become a separate public company listed on Nasdaq or an alternate trading market, if MoviePass Entertainment can satisfy the applicable initial listing criteria of the applicable exchange or trading market."

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    Stewart Jackson

    • A senior Brexiteer called the stepfather of a hospitalised child a "pathetic cretin" in a bizarre Twitter outburst.
    • Stewart Jackson, a former Conservative MP who was later a special adviser to former Brexit Secretary David Davis, has refused to apologise for his tweet despite backlash from numerous MPs.
    • Conservative MPs Anna Soubry and Heidi Allen described Jackson as "bitter,""nasty," and "unkind."
    • The stepfather is think tank CEO Anthony Hobley, who tweeted a picture of his stepson holding an EU flag while recovering from surgery in a hospital. 
    • Hobley told Jackson to apologise on Tuesday afternoon. "I am calling on him to apologise today, not for me, but for both my family and the tone of political debate in this country," he said. 
    • MPs have been urged to tone down their language after Conservative MPs used analogies about Theresa May being knifed to death and using a noose.

    LONDON — An influential pro-Leave Conservative who was an advisor to former Brexit Secretary David Davis has been described as "nasty" and "bitter" after calling the stepfather of a hospitalised child a "pathetic cretin."

    Stewart Jackson, an ex-Conservative MP who was later a special advisor to Davis during his time as Theresa May's Brexit minister, has been told to apologise by MPs from parties including his own for his Twitter outburst.

    Jackson tweeted "what a pathetic cretin" to Anthony Hobley, CEO of think tank Carbon Bubble, who tweeted a picture of his stepson in a hospital recovering from surgery and holding an EU flag.

    Hobley said his stepson was "gutted" that he was not able to attend the recent People's Vote march last Saturday, which called for another referendum on Brexit.

    Stewart Jackson cretin

    Hobley told Jackson to apologise on Monday afternoon, for "family and the tone of political debate in this country."

    He explained that his stepson had not been able to participate in the People's Vote march due to a broken collarbone, and that his tweet was "a sweet gesture to make him feel involved" in the protest.

    Hobley said: "After I put his picture up on Twitter, most of the comments were really nice but I got a few from extreme quarters which I had to block

    "Then I saw this from Stewart Jackson. I had not really heard of him before and I was surprised to find out he is former Conservative MP and adviser to David Davis when he was running the UK's Brexit negotiations."

    He added: "Whatever our views on Brexit we need to talk about the problems of Brexit and the case for a People's Vote by debating the facts and issues, not with schoolyard abuse.

    "I don’t believe people honestly worried about the future of our country should be subject to trolling by senior political figures, especially not when it involves children."

    Jackson told HuffPost that he was referring to Hobley, not the hospitalised child, and refused to apologise for the now-deleted tweet.

    He said: "I just think politics is in a low place when Remainers use their kids in this way. Invading the child's privacy whilst in hospital to make a political point on the People's Vote."

    "Not what most decent people would do," he added.

    MPs from across the political spectrum publicly condemned Jackson's outburst and called on him to apologise.

    Conservative MP Anna Soubry tweeted: "When any scrap of humanity is overwhelmed by ideology @BrexitStewart [Stewart Jackson] is a bitter man gone badly wrong," while her fellow Tory, Heidi Allen MP, described her former parliamentary colleague as a "pathetic, unkind and nasty man."

    Anna Soubry

    Labour MP Wes Streeting responded to Jackson's tweet with "this is beneath you."

    His colleague Rupa Huq posted: "Absolutely disgraceful from Tories at every level, chilling talk of knives and nooses re: PM from her own MPs and now this defeated one insulting a little poorly kid."

    Huq was referring to remarks that Tory MPs unhappy with May's handling of Brexit made anonymously in newspaper articles published over the weekend.

    In the Mail on Sunday, a Conservative MP was quoted as saying May should "bring her own noose" to the next meeting of Tory MPs. Another told the Sunday Times that "the moment is coming when the knife gets heated, stuck in her [May's] front and twisted," adding the prime minister will "be dead soon."

    MPs condemned the violent language and urged each other to tone down the language they use.

    Staunch Brexiteer Steve Baker said the Conservative MPs who used these words had "thoroughly disgraced" themselves and called for the whip to be removed from them. Labour MP Yvette Cooper described the remarks as "misogynistic" and unacceptable.

    Addressing the anonymous quotes on Monday, May told MPs: "It is incumbent on all of us in public life to be careful about the language we use. There are passionate beliefs on this subject... but whatever the subject, we should all be careful about our language."

    DON'T MISS: Theresa May prepares for potential leadership challenge as ministers revolt against her Brexit plans

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    Red Dead Redemption 2

    The company that makes "Grand Theft Auto" isn't known for pumping out games. You may recall that the latest "GTA" game came out in 2013 — that's the most recent release from Rockstar Games.

    But a new game from Rockstar is just on the horizon: "Red Dead Redemption 2."

    The relentlessly gorgeous "Red Dead Redemption 2" is just days away, with a scheduled launch on October 26 for Xbox One and PlayStation 4.

    So, what's "Red Dead Redemption 2" all about? Is it basically "Grand Theft Horse"? Yes and no! Let's dive in.

    SEE ALSO: I played 2018's most anticipated game, 'Red Dead Redemption 2' — here are the 12 most interesting things I learned

    Unlike "GTA," the "Red Dead" series is set in the American frontier. That means campfires and starry skies.

    It also means gunslingers and six-shooters and bandit masks. This isn't just a tale of America's Wild West, but a tale of cowboys, robbers, and the evolution of American society.

    Rockstar characterizes the game's story as an "outlaw epic set across the vast and unforgiving American heartland."

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Surviving R Kelly trailer

    • The first trailer for Lifetime's three-part documentary series "Surviving R. Kelly" has arrived.
    • In the documentary, some of the singer’s accusers detail their accusations, which include holding women against their will in what they describe as a "sex cult."
    • R. Kelly has denied these accusations.
    • Prominent figures who appear in "Surviving R. Kelly" include John Legend, Wendy Williams, R. Kelly's ex-wife Andrea Kelly, and #MeToo founder Tarana Burke.
    • "Surviving R. Kelly" premieres on Lifetime in January 2019.
    • Watch the trailer below.


    Join the conversation about this story »

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    ip6 iPhone 6S

    • Last year, Apple instituted a program to replace out-of-warranty batteries for the iPhone 6 or later for just $29 — a $50 price drop from the usual $79 cost.
    • If you own an iPhone 6 or later and have battery issues, you have until December 31 to take advantage of this low price to replace your battery.

    If you own an iPhone 6 or later and have issues with your phone's battery life, now's the time to visit an Apple Store and get your battery replaced.

    Last December, Apple acknowledged something that iPhone owners had suspected for some time: that it had been quietly "throttling," or lowering, the performance of older iPhones.

    It said the goal was to preserve battery life on those older phones and prevent them from shutting down unexpectedly, but customers felt as if Apple communicated this message too late, as many had come to believe that iPhones purposefully got slower to compel people to upgrade to newer models.

    After a good deal of consumer outrage, Apple addressed iPhone battery and performance in an open letter to customers later that month.

    The most important part of Apple's informational letter was an offer toward the very end: Apple said it would reduce the price of an out-of-warranty iPhone battery replacement to $29 from $79 "for anyone with an iPhone 6 or later whose battery needs to be replaced, available worldwide through December 2018."

    And so if you own an iPhone 6, iPhone 6S, iPhone 7, or any other phones made after that and are experiencing battery issues — maybe it's draining faster than it used to — head to an Apple Store before December 31.

    A small anecdote for you: My fiancée owns an iPhone 6S and had been experiencing battery issues for months. She'd constantly need to recharge her phone at work and at home, and she felt as if it hadn't always been this bad. So a couple of months ago, we visited an Apple Store, where an employee measured her phone's battery life and found the degradation to be at about 83%.

    Apple says it will offer to replace batteries when battery degradation reaches 80%, but the employee gave my fiancée the option to replace it right then and there for $29. So we did that and walked around the mall for a few hours while we waited.

    It was worth the wait — since that visit, she's seen a noticeable improvement in her phone's battery life and no longer needs to charge it throughout the day.

    So if you're experiencing anything similar, go visit an Apple Store before December 31 and pay the $30 to get your battery replaced. You'll be paying more if you choose to wait.

    SEE ALSO: If the rumors are true, Apple's next iPhone will be called 'XS' — and people are already making fun of the name, calling it 'extra small' and 'iPhone Excess'

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    nicole kidman tom cruise

    • Nicole Kidman appeared on NBC's "Today" show on Monday and elaborated on recent comments she made about her previous marriage to Tom Cruise.
    • In an essay for New York Magazine, the actress said that being married to Cruise from 1990 to 2001 offered her protection from being sexually harassed.
    • Kidman told Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb that because she was married at 23, she "wasn't going to parties or I wasn't going out a lot."
    • Kidman added that when they adopted their first child two years later, most of her time was spent at home or working.
    • The "Boy Erased" star explained that she prefers not to discuss being married to Cruise because it's "disrespectful" to him and her current husband Keith Urban, who she has two children with. 


    Nicole Kidman is clarifying comments she made in regards to her previous marriage to Tom Cruise

    The "Boy Erased" star appeared on NBC's "Today" show on Monday and elaborated on her recent profile that appeared in New York Magazine. In the essay, Kidman said that being married to Cruise from 1990 to 2001 offered her protection from being sexually harassed.

    Kidman began by emphasizing that she didn't write the essay. Rather, she spoke to a reporter and "that's a very, put into one sentence way in which I was talking."

    The 51-year-old went on to say that being with Cruise and having a family provided a sense of security and safety. During their marriage, the couple adopted two children, Connor and Isabella. 

    "Because I was married at 23 years old, I wasn't going to parties or I wasn't going out a lot," Kidman said. "I was pretty much at home. I had my first child at 25 and I was a married ... I was in a family. So my sense of being in the world was ... I was working, or I was at home."

    When Savannah Guthrie asked Kidman if she believed "people were afraid to mess with you, because he [Cruise] was so powerful," the actress said: "When I say 'protection' there is almost like a barrier. A lot of women don't have that. A lot of people in the world don't have that."

    Kidman added that now she is "happily married" to singer Keith Urban (they tied the knot in 2006), has two children with him (daughters Sunday and Faith), and prefers not to talk about previous relationships because it's disrespectful.

    "I also don't like discussing exes and all of that because I'm married," she said. "I'm very happily married. I have two little girls and I feel it's almost disrespectful one, to Tom, and disrespectful to Keith, so I try to stay in the here and now."

    Watch the video below (Kidman talks about Cruise at 2:57).

    Visit INSIDER's homepage for more.

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    • Walmart will soon allow employees to use their cell phones during work, reversing a previous ban on the devices. 
    • Employees will be able to download a suite of Walmart apps that give them access to sales data, company announcements, and other work-related information.
    • Employees who participate in the new program, which Walmart is calling "bring your own device," will get a discount on their cell phone bills.
    • The program will give Walmart some limited access to information on employees' phone usage.

    Walmart employees are getting new cell phone privileges.

    The company plans to announce Tuesday that starting this month, Walmart will allow store employees to use their cell phones on the sales floor to clock in, check inventory and prices, scan products, review sales data, and perform other work-related tasks.

    Previously, Walmart employees were banned from using their phones on the sales floor. 

    Employees who participate in the new program, which Walmart is calling "bring your own device," or BYOD, will get a discount on their cell phone bills, the company said. The program is optional.

    Walmart said it was introducing the new program after hearing from some employees who said they would prefer to use their smartphones, rather than store devices, to perform work-related tasks.

    To take part in BYOD, employees must download a new suite of Walmart apps to their smart phones. The apps give employees access to information, such as historical sales data and product delivery schedules, that was previously only made available to management.

    "With BYOD, the moment associates clock in at work, they have tools that enable them to do the best job possible, right in their pockets," said Brock McKeel, Walmart's senior director of digital operations.

    The program will give Walmart some limited access to information on employees' phone usage. That information includes battery level, storage usage, corporate email and data, phone make and model, carrier, and phone number. 

    Walmart said it will not have access to employees' personal email and data, photos and videos, voicemail, text, web activity, location, or list of apps.

    SEE ALSO: Some of Amazon's brand-new Mercedes-Benz delivery vans are suffering a mechanical failure

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    reagan volcker

    • President Donald Trump's public attacks on the Federal Reserve have been eye-catching.
    • But a new story from former Fed Chairman Paul Volcker about President Ronald Reagan. is perhaps even more shocking.
    • In a new memoir, Volcker recounts being privately ordered by Reagan's chief of staff to not raise interest rates prior to the 1984 election while Reagan was in the room.
    • Volcker was not planning to raise interest rates at the time, but said he was "stunned" by the direct violation of the Fed's independence.

    President Donald Trump has come under fire recently for breaking with presidential traditions and attacking the Federal Reserve over their recent interest rate hikes.

    But Trump's public tantrums are nothing compared to a new recounting from former Fed Chairman Paul Volcker, who recalled intense pressure from President Ronald Reagan in the run up to the 1984 election.

    In a new memoir, according to The New York Times, Volcker said he was called to the White House to meet with Reagan and Chief of Staff James Baker in the presidential library

    Volcker is best known for the "Volcker Shock," a rapid increase in interest rates in 1980 that helped tame the long-running inflation problem from the 1970s while also contributing to the recession that began in 1981.

    It appeared that Reagan did not want a similar tightening cycle, which would have choked off economic growth, prior to his reelection campaign. According to Volcker, Reagan did not say a word, but Baker delivered a strong message.

    "The president is ordering you not to raise interest rates before the election," Baker told Volcker.

    Volcker did not plan on raising rates at the time, but the then-Fed chair was "stunned" since the order was an affront to the Fed's political independence. Volcker also said he later realized that the meeting was conducted in the library since there was likely no recording equipment in the room like in the Oval Office.

    Reagan's apparent intimidation also echoed former President Richard Nixon's disastrous pressure on former Fed Chair Arthur Burns to keep rates low, which is seen as one of the reasons for the inflation of the 1970s.

    The story also jumps out given Reagan's public reluctance to comment on Fed actions during his tenure.

    For instance, when asked about Volcker's shifts during a press conference in 1982, Reagan replied: "'I can't respond to that because the Federal Reserve System is autonomous." In the same press conference, Reagan said there was "no way I can comment" on calls for Volcker's resignation.

    Trump has complained that the Fed's current rates hikes are "loco." But while Trump's public outbursts are a break with presidential norms, the attacks have been easily dismissed by current Fed Chairman Jerome Powell. The administration had publicly maintained the respect of the Fed's independence.

    SEE ALSO: Trump keeps bashing the Fed, calling the central bank 'loco' and 'crazy.' An ugly economic lesson from the Nixon administration shows why his criticism is so worrying.

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    Helios and Matheson, MoviePass

    Shares of Helios & Matheson Analytics, the owner of MoviePass, exploded by as much as 50% to $0.025 apiece Tuesday after the company announced its plans to spin-off MoviePass and make it a separate public company.

    The parent company announced that its board of directors has preliminarily approved a plan to create a new subsidiary, MoviePass Entertainment, that would take ownership of the shares of MoviePass and its other film-related assets. The new unit will be a vertically integrated film production, marketing, and exhibition company. 

    The company also said it is considering distributing a minority of the outstanding shares of MoviePass Entertainment common stock as a dividend to stockholders of Helios & Matheson Analytics. MoviePass will be listed on Nasdaq or an alternate trading market if the branch can satisfy the applicable initial listing criteria of the applicable exchange or trading market, Helios & Matheson Analytics added.

    "Since we acquired control of MoviePass in December 2017, Helios and Matheson Analytics largely has become synonymous with MoviePass in the public’s eye, leading us to believe that our shareholders and the market perception of HMNY might benefit from separating our movie-related assets from the rest of our company," CEO Ted Farnsworth said in a press release.

    The announcement came six days after the New York Attorney General launched an investigation into whether Helios & Matheson Analytics misled investors regarding its financials. The company has denied any wrongdoing.

    Business Insider reported in August that Helios & Matheson had covered hundreds of millions in losses by selling millions of new shares of stock to shareholders, and that Farnsworth had made several promises to investors at a July shareholders meeting that began to unravel soon after.

    Helios & Matheson shares have dropped nearly 100% this year.

    Nathan McAlone and Travis Clark contributed to this story.

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    Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan

    • Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan knocked down the Saudi explanation for Khashoggi's death in a speech on Tuesday.
    • "We have strong evidence in our hands that shows the murder wasn’t accidental but was instead the outcome of a planned operation," he said.
    • Saudi Arabia has denied that its leadership was involved in the killing, and has tried to blame rogue agents who made a "terrible mistake" for the death.
    • While Erdogan did not mention Saudi Arabia's leadership directly, he said he was not satisfied with Riyadh's explanation.

    Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan contradicted Saudi Arabia's claim that the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi was a rogue operation, and said instead that Khashoggi was the victim of a "savage" and "planned" murder.

    Erdogan rejected Saudi Arabia's claim that the journalist was killed accidentally, in an address to lawmakers of his Justice and Development Party (AKP) on Tuesday in Ankara.

    "We have strong evidence in our hands that shows the murder wasn’t accidental but was instead the outcome of a planned operation," he said.

    "The information obtained so far and the evidence found shows that Khashoggi was murdered in a ferocious manner."

    Khashoggi, a Saudi journalist who was often critical of his government, went missing October 2 after entering the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul.

    Erdogan said that a "roadmap" to Khashoggi's murder began when he was called to the consulate to collect marriage paperwork.

    Erdogan said that Turkish investigators have established that Khashoggi's killing was planned several days in advance, and that a team of 15 people had begun arriving in Istanbul the day before Khashoggi’s disappearance.

    Three of the men scouted a forest a city 55 miles away, where police would later look for Khashoggi’s body. The body has not yet been found.

    jamal khashoggi cat

    He said that the "highest-ranked" of those responsible should be brought to justice. "Pinning such a case on some security and intelligence members will not satisfy us or the international community," he said. 

    "From the person who gave the order, to the person who carried it out, they must all be brought to account."

    He did not identify anybody he had in mind, though his reference to high-ranked people suggests he believes the responsibility spreads beyond the limited number of officials who were directly involved.

    Erdogan did not mention King Salman of Saudi Arabia, or Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, despite earlier leaks from Turkish intelligence officials suggesting that the prince was aware of the killing, and could even have ordered it.

    He also called for the 18 people arrested in Saudi Arabia over the death to be put on trial in Turkey.

    Saudi Arabia's account

    While the account given by Saudi Arabia for the journalist's death has regularly changed, the kingdom has consistently denied that the government was involved and most recently claimed that the death was a "terrible mistake" by rogue agents.

    The Saudi government initially claimed Khashoggi safely departed the consulate, and denied involvement in his disappearance for 17 days.

    On Friday, October 19, the government officially acknowledged Khashoggi's death and said that he had died in a fistfight in the consulate. 

    And on Sunday, October 21, the Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir told Fox News described the death as a "murder" for the first time, but said that it was a "tremendous mistake" done by people who were not operating under the government's orders.

    He said that Crown Prince Mohammed was "not aware" of Khashoggi's death until later.

    Mohammed bin Salman

    "We are determined to uncover every stone. We are determined to find out all the facts. And we are determined to punish those who are responsible for this murder," Jubeir said.

    The narrative surrounding Khashoggi's disappearance has been shaped largely by leaks from Turkish officials that challenge Saudi Arabia's accounts, and Erdogan has issued increasingly bold statements implicating the Saudi leadership in Khashoggi's death.

    Erdogan did not make mention of many of the grisly claims made in these leaks, or of the recording of Khashoggi's death that Turkey claims to hold.

    SEE ALSO: Jamal Khashoggi's fiancee is under 24-hour police protection following Saudi Arabia's announcement that Khashoggi died at the Saudi Consulate

    SEE ALSO: All the atrocities Saudi Arabia committed before outrage over Jamal Khashoggi's death reached a fever pitch

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    iPhone XS

    • Apple will reportedly fixing the excessive camera smoothing effect that users reported with the iPhone XS.
    • The controversy was dubbed "beautygate" by iPhone XS users.
    • Reviewers are now noticing that the iPhone XR is producing similar selfies, where facial details and imperfections are smoothed out.
    • The fix is coming in the upcoming version of iOS, iOS 12.1.

    Apple is reportedly planning to fix the excessive photo smoothing effect from the iPhone XS and iPhone XR phones in an upcoming version of iOS, according to The Verge's review of the iPhone XR.

    The selfie smoothing controversy, dubbed "beautygate" when users discovered it, can make iPhone XS selfies appear void of detail compared to previous iPhones and other top Android devices. Indeed, the photos looked as though they were taken with some kind of "beauty mode" effect, which some phones come with as an option. Beauty mode photos tend to have facial details and imperfections blurred out.

    The main controversy was that there was no way of turning off the supposed "beauty mode" on the iPhone XS.

    You can check out some selfies we took with the iPhone X and iPhone XS Max to see the effect in action. In the image below, it appears like my face has been painted in the iPhone XS Max selfie:

    beautygate tony low light

    Rather than a "beauty mode," Apple said the smoothing effect comes from the new Smart HDR feature, which is designed to even out shadows and flatten highlights by taking the best of multiple photos taken at various exposures and settings, and combining those photos into a single image.

    To mitigate the excessive smoothing that iPhone XS users — and now iPhone XR reviewers — have reported, Apple says it'll adjust the Smart HDR feature to pick out "a sharper base frame."

    The fix is reportedly coming in iOS version 12.1, which is currently in public beta but has no official release date yet. 

    SEE ALSO: We tested the claims that the iPhone XS selfie camera makes faces look too smooth — check out the results for yourself

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    Museum of the Bible

    • The Museum of the Bible admitted this week that it showcased fake Dead Sea Scrolls in its massive collection. 
    • The $500 million private Museum of the Bible opened last November, filled with artifacts and recreations of Biblical stories.
    • Hobby Lobby's president — who paid $3 million in a case involving smuggling artifacts in 2017 — is one of the driving forces behind the museum.
    • The museum has been plagued by questions about how it will balance religion and facts.

    A new scandal is plaguing the Museum of the Bible. 

    On Monday, the $500 million private museum admitted that third-party testing of what had been displayed as fragments of Dead Sea Scrolls revealed the artifacts were fake and likely modern forgeries. Five fragments have been removed from the museum as a result. 

    The Museum of the Bible opened in November 2017 in Washington, DC. 

    Even prior to its opening, the private museum had been plagued by questions regarding how it would balance religious messages and historical facts.

    Things were further complicated when news broke in July 2017 that the museum chairman and Hobby Lobby president Steve Green had been involved in smuggling ancient Iraqi artifacts into the United States. The museum has also faced backlash on certain exhibits, such as the decision to display the Confederate flag and pro-slavery texts in an attempt to understand the Bible's role in the Civil War. 

    Here's everything you need to know about the controversial museum:

    SEE ALSO: Crocs' popularity is skyrocketing among teens as ugly fashion takes over

    The Museum of the Bible is located in a 430,000-square-foot center in Washington, DC.

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    Construction on the museum began in 2015.

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    The museum is located two blocks from the National Mall.

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    You're four times as likely to be struck by lightning than to win the lottery.

    Those odds apparently don't apply to Stefan Mandel, a Romanian-Australian economist who's won the lottery 14 times, The Hustle reported in a feature story about the mathematician.

    Mandel's first two wins were in his native Romania, where he was trying to earn enough money to get his family out of the then communist country. His salary was just $88 a month.

    He moved to Israel before settling down in Australia, where he won the lottery an additional 12 times.

    Plenty of lottery winners end up blowing it all— spending it on huge houses and Porsches, gambling it away, or getting slammed with lawsuits. Robert Pagliarini, a certified financial planner, previously told Business Insider that to prevent that, lottery winners should assemble a "financial triad" to help plan for their financial future.

    "This includes an attorney, a tax person, and a financial adviser," Pagliarini said. "This financial dream team can help you make smart financial decisions and help you plan for the future. They can also help shield you from the media and from the onslaught of money requests from others."

    The key way to navigate a sudden windfall like winning the lottery, Pagliarini said, is to keep calm and focus on the long term with pragmatic financial planning.

    As for Mandel, he set his sights on hacking Virginia's lottery, but his stunts eventually landed him in an Israeli prison for 20 months. Now he lives a quiet life in Vanuatu, a South Pacific island country known for its volcanoes and waterfalls.

    While his scheme was legal at the time, new laws in the US and Australia render Mandel's scheme impossible nowadays. You can no longer buy lottery tickets in bulk and print your tickets at home — two key parts of Mandel's formula.

    Here's the 6-step formula for how Mandel managed to make serious cash from the lottery:

    1. Calculate the total number of possible combinations. (For a lottery that requires you to pick six numbers from 1 to 40, that means 3,838,380 combinations.)
    2. Find lotteries where the jackpot is three times or more the number of possible combinations.
    3. Raise enough cash to pay for each combination. (Mandel rounded up 2,524 investors for his push to win the Virginia lottery.)
    4. Print out millions of tickets with every combination. (This used to be legal. Now you would have to buy the tickets right from the store.)
    5. Deliver the tickets to authorized lottery dealers.
    6. Win the cash. And don't forget to pay your investors. (Mandel pocketed $97,000 after a $1.3 million win in 1987.)

    Read the entire feature about Mandel's feat in The Hustle.

    SEE ALSO: 20 lottery winners who lost every penny

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    Victoria's Secret

    • Victoria's Secret has fallen off the ranking of US teens' favorite clothing brands as part of a recent survey of teen spending habits by Piper Jaffray, Business Insider reported on Monday.
    • One teen, commenting on Business Insider's story on Facebook, provided some insight into why the brand isn't resonating well with teens, and that's because they see it as being too pricey. 
    • Other commenters echoed these sentiments and criticized the brand for the quality of its products. This is an issue that Victoria's Secret is often alerted to on its own Facebook group.  

    Teen shoppers are turning their backs on Victoria's Secret, and pricey bras may be to blame.  

    On Monday, Business Insider reported that the lingerie retailer, which also owns teen-focused brand Pink, fell off of a list of US teens' favorite clothing brands as part of a recent survey of teen spending habits by Piper Jaffray.

    Victoria's Secret previously maintained a leading position in Piper Jaffray's surveys, which are released twice a year. The lingerie seller also appeared on the list of 10 retailers that teens are no longer shopping from for the second time. 

    One teen, commenting on Business Insider's story on Facebook, gave some insight into why the brand isn't resonating well with teens.

    "I'm a teen and the reason it's going down is because we cannot afford a bra that costs $60+. Thank you for coming to my Ted Talk," she wrote. 

    Other commenters pointed out that she would be better off shopping at Pink, the store's sister brand, which is targeted at teen shoppers and sells T-shirt bras for a more affordable $34.95. Still, her comments raised further debate about the price and quality of Victoria's Secret's products. 

    "Most adults can rarely afford a $60+ bra as well," one Facebook user wrote in response.

    "'I'm 32 and even I have a hard time shopping there. Their bras are crazy expensive," another said. 

    Many shoppers criticized the quality of its products as not living up to the price tag.

    "Could it be because their product is garbage and overpriced?! It used to be higher quality and you could maybe justify the price because of that. Now you can legit get a better bra at Target," one commenter said. 

    This is an issue that Victoria's Secret has been alerted to in the past on its own Facebook group. 

    "Their quality has declined while their prices increase. This does not keep customers," one customer wrote on Victoria's Secret's Facebook page in August.

    "I used to love this place ... until the underwear I bought fell apart after two gentle washes," another shopper complained on Victoria's Secret's Facebook page in July.

    If you're a Victoria's Secret employee with a story to share, contact this reporter at

    SEE ALSO: Teens are abandoning Victoria’s Secret

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    NOW WATCH: Why silk is so expensive

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    Cristiano Ronaldo, Juventus FC vs. Manchester United

    • Ronaldo tried hard to make it "The Cristiano Show" on his return to Manchester United.
    • But the Juventus FC forward was upstaged by his own teammate — the young midfielder Rodrigo Bentancur.
    • That is not to say Ronaldo was woeful as he was anything but. He played a part in the only goal of the game, and tested United's goalkeeper with stinging shots.
    • But Bentancur pulled the strings from midfield by showing intuitive positioning, well-timed tackling, and expert passing.
    • At 21 years old, there may be even more to come from the Uruguayan player.
    • Read all of Business Insider's soccer coverage for the 2018-2019 season right here.

    Cristiano Ronaldo tried as hard as he could to make Tuesday's match against Manchester United all about him.

    He wanted it to be "The Cristiano Ronaldo show," to create and score goals, and to be the main man responsible for winning the match on his return to the club that helped make him the global superstar that he is today.

    But none of those things came true, really. Sure, Ronaldo helped Juventus return to Turin in Italy with a crucial UEFA Champions League group stage victory, but he was ultimately upstaged by an unheralded 21-year-old called Rodrigo Bentancur.

    Yes Ronaldo embarked on lung-busting runs, ran the channels, and attempted wild, TV-friendly shots on goal. And yes, Ronaldo's strike-partner Paulo Dybala scored the game's only goal when he struck from inside the penalty box in the first half of the game, but it was Bentancur who ran this show.

    "I'm watching Ronaldo, you're watching Ronaldo, but Rodrigo Bentancur is running this game,"New York Times columnist Rory Smith tweeted in the middle of the match.

    By half-time, Bentancur had 55 touches on the football and tallied 52 passes, of which 96.2% were accurate.

    Bentancur played in the Juventus midfield alongside his more experienced teammates Miralem Pjanić and Blaise Matuidi, but the Uruguayan's performance — intuitive positioning and well-timed tackling combined with expert passing — belied his own young age.

    Rodrigo Bentancur

    That is not to say Ronaldo was woeful, as he was anything but. "Have probably seen Ronaldo live a dozen times in the last 18 months or so, and this is by some distance the most involved he's been in general play in any of them,"Smith said. "He's chasing back, he's dropping deep, he's giving and going."

    Ronaldo was involved in the only goal of the game, when he fired in a cross from the right-hand side, only for the ball to eventually find its way, via a ricochet, to Dybala — who scored a straight-forward, one-touch, left-footed finish.

    Watch the goal right here:

    Ronaldo also had chances of his own. He thumped a powerful free-kick straight at David de Gea, before testing the Spanish shot-stopper with an awesome strike on the edge of the box later in the game.

    Watch de Gea's reflexive save right here:

    Or here if you are in a different region:

    Because Bentancur plays in an unfashionable position, performing an unfashionable role, he does not attract the highlight-reels that Ronaldo and Dybala can create — the goal-ridden ones that most fans truly love.

    But his 91% accuracy rate from his 86 passes perhaps tells its own story, and his midfield play allows Dybala and Ronaldo to flourish.

    Yes, Ronaldo and Dybala may play the Hollywood-type roles, but A-list actors still need great producers — and on the pitch, that is what Bentancur is proving he can do. Whether it's retaining or retrieving possession, Bentancur produces.

    SEE ALSO: Lionel Messi scored a goal, created another, but then fractured his arm and is now sidelined for the biggest FC Barcelona match of the year

    DON'T MISS: Shares in Juventus FC have doubled since it bought Cristiano Ronaldo, and it's probably only the beginning

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    kate middleton mermaid gown

    • Kate Middleton wore a blue mermaid-style gown by Alexander McQueen to a state banquet at Buckingham Palace on Tuesday.
    • The Cinderella-esque gown made the duchess look like a real-life Disney princess.
    • She paired the dress with Princess Diana's Queen Mary's Lover's Knot.

    Since Kate Middleton returned from maternity leave in early October, she's back to her official royal duties and debuting some new looks in the process. 

    On Tuesday, the Duchess of Cambridge attended a state banquet at Buckingham Palace wearing a blue mermaid-style gown by Alexander McQueen. 

    kate middleton mermaid dress

    Middleton paired her Cinderella-esque dress with one of her most elegant accessories: the Queen Mary's Lover's Knot Tiara that was previously owned by Princess Diana. An eye-catching matching necklace completed the ensemble, which Vogue reports is the same necklace Queen Alexandra wore to her wedding in 1863.

    kate middleton mermaid gown

    Middleton previously drew comparisons to a Disney princess when she wore a sparkling blue gown in November 2017 that looked very similar to the dress Elsa wears in the movie "Frozen."

    Kate Middleton

    Though her title is a duchess — and she is also technically a princess herself — Middleton looks like she has been taking style cues from Disney princesses.

    Visit INSIDER's homepage for more.

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    NOW WATCH: Kate Middleton opened a shop for charity

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    Trey Smith, Jaden Smith, Jada Pinkett Smith, Willow Smith, and Will Smith

    • Jada Pinkett Smith opened up about teaching both of her children, son Jaden Smith and daughter Willow Smith, about consent.
    • At an event to promote the latest season of her Facebook Watch Series "Red Table Talk" on Monday, Pinkett Smith told INSIDER that "from an early age," she advised her children not to put themselves "in spaces where you don't feel safe."
    • "It's certain safeguards, and that can't always be the answer, because as we all know as women, we could get into some sticky situations, even with men we thought we knew," the actress told INSIDER. 


    Jada Pinkett Smith opened up about how she approaches the topic of consent with both her son Jaden Smith and daughter Willow Smith.

    At an event to celebrate the second season of Pinkett Smith's Facebook Watch Series "Red Table Talk" on Monday, the actress spoke candidly about how she navigates parenting with husband Will Smith, specifically amid the #MeToo movement.

    "That started at a very early age of just, 'Nobody should touch you against your will' and me always explaining to Willow specifically and Jaden not to be in spaces that you don't feel safe," the actress told us.

    The 47-year-old actress and talk show host added that even though Willow is now 17 years old, she still advises her to be cautious when meeting up with boys. 

    "With Willow, even to this day I'm like, 'If he wants to meet you, he can come here. But you're not going to his house. I don't know who's there,'" Pinkett Smith said. 

    She added: "It's just instilling a certain rhythm in a young woman's mind of 'Nope, I can meet you in a public place. We can meet there.' It's certain safeguards, and that can't always be the answer, because as we all know as women, we could get into some sticky situations, even with men we thought we knew."

    jaden Willow smith

    Pinkett Smith went on to say that "you just pray that you give your child that inner sense of strength and understanding that she has the right to say no and fight for it, fight for her power and her body."

    When it comes to her 20-year-old son, she reiterates the same message and said that "we don't talk about this, but boys are taken advantage of."

    The actress added that she personally knows several men "who have been molested,""taken advantage of as children," and "don't talk about it."

    Just as she has opened up conversations about taboo subjects with her "Red Table Talk" show, Pinkett Smith hopes to do a show regarding the aforementioned topic at some point. 

    Visit INSIDER's homepage for more.

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    holding hands

    • Two years ago I was diagnosed with a panic disorder.
    • I've experimented with a range of coping mechanisms since then.
    • Writing provides a great release when anxiety overcomes me.
    • Finding a creative outlet to channel your anxiety towards can make a huge difference when dealing with it.

    If there's one thing I've learned about anxiety, it's how different each person's experience is with it. A coping technique that works for one person may not work for another. Someone might react well to a certain medicine while another person had to go off it.

    Although this is true, that doesn't change the fact that sharing coping mechanisms can make a world of difference. I've had things suggested to me I would have never thought of only to realize that, when implemented, they lowered my anxiety. So now I'd like to share the one thing always guaranteed to tame my anxiety.

    You see, while habits like meditation and exercise generally help me cope with keeping my panic disorder at bay, they're not a guarantee. There's only one thing I do that seems to always center me and it's this, right now: writing.


    Whether I'm writing directly about my panic disorder or allowing myself to free flow words onto a page, the release allows me to make sense of the chaos in my brain

    Down on paper, no problem seems as big. In fact, that release may pinpoint exactly what is causing your anxiety in the first place. Writing is also an amazing release for so many people. Diaries are a thing for a reason, right?

    How it works is if I notice my anxiety levels have risen — for example, if I can't think as clearly or I seem tense for unexplained reasons — I'll find whatever I can to write on. Sometimes I prefer actual pen to paper, but in 2018, if I'm not home, it's rare that I have a pen and paper with me. That means if I feel that all too familiar wave of anxiety overcome me or a dark cloud seep into my thoughts, I have to release it via whatever is around. Usually, that means the notes section on my phone. I've also found that having a Google Doc ready to divulge my thoughts into can be really helpful.

    I'm not alone in this either — experts agree that journaling can be a huge help to people with anxiety

    The University of Rochester pointed out that journaling is a tool often suggested to help people manage symptoms of depression, anxiety, and more. 

    "When you have a problem and you're stressed, keeping a journal can help you identify what’s causing that stress or anxiety," according to the university's health encyclopedia. "Then, once you’ve identified your stressors, you can work on a plan to resolve the problems and, in turn, reduce stress."

    Researchers at Harvard also found a link between writing out problems and stress reduction and cited other studies that backed up those claims as well. 

    typing computer laptop

    The point is to find a way to remove yourself from the anxiety and look at it from the outside

    When you're enveloped in panic or worry, it's all too easy to let it overcome you. By putting it on paper, you've found a way to sort through it that also sets your mind free.

    If writing it out doesn't seem to work for you, try to think about which creative release would, like painting, sculpting, making flower arrangements, or anything where you find a release and joy in. It doesn't matter what you produce, that's not why you're doing it. It's to come to terms with how you're feeling.

    flowers bouquet

    Unfortunately, there's no one thing that will act as a cure-all when it comes to anxiety. All you can do is try experimenting with different techniques and determine which one works best for you. The most important thing is to remember that, under no circumstances, do you have to just live with anxiety. There are always other things to try and you are never alone in trying them.

    Visit INSIDER's homepage for more.

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    • Target announced on Tuesday that it is removing the order minimum requirement for most items sold online during the holiday season.
    • That means most items, regardless of price, will be given free two-day shipping with no membership or minimum purchase required.
    • It's one of the most ambitious moves a traditional nationwide retailer has made to compete with Amazon to capture holiday sales.

    Target is taking the gloves off to compete with Amazon this holiday.

    Starting November 1, it's removing the order minimum requirement for most items sold online, the company announced in a blog post on Tuesday.

    That means most items, regardless of price, will be given free two-day shipping with no membership or minimum purchase required. The perk will only extend through the holiday season, until December 22, and was previously only offered to holders of Target's store credit card, known as a REDcard.

    "We want to make the busy holiday season easier for our guests so they can spend more time with their family and friends," Target CEO Brian Cornell said in a prepared statement.

    In March, Target started free two-day shipping on all orders of at least $35 or more.

    Last year, Target offered free standard-speed shipping on most items from November through December 23, meaning this year's offering is a marked upgrade.

    The move is an ambitious one for a traditional nationwide retailer competing with Amazon this holiday season. Amazon only offers traditional-speed shipping for orders over $25 without a membership. There's no limit for customers who pay for Amazon Prime's $119-a-year or $12.99-a-month membership, who get unlimited free two-day shipping.

    Walmart, on the other hand, requires a purchase of at least $35 for free two-day shipping.

    Online shopping is predicted to capture more of holiday shopping again this year, and Amazon is again posed to capture more than half of that.

    Analysts are already forecasting a strong holiday season for retailers, with most overall sales growth estimates in the high single digits or low double digits.

    Most of this year's growth is likely to come from online sales, as Forrester Research is predicting 14% sales growth online but only 1.7% growth in stores. Analysts estimated that Amazon took nearly half of all online retail sales in 2017 and that it would take even more this year.

    Forrester estimates that online holiday sales will account for more than 32% all online sales for the year. Targ

    SEE ALSO: Walmart is offering free 2-day shipping on 'millions more' items — and it reveals a key advantage over Amazon

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    Joseph Saelee (Tetris World Championship)

    • There's a new world champion of "Tetris": 16-year-old Joseph Saelee took the crown over the past weekend.
    • Saelee had tears running down his face as he celebrated; he didn't expect to win the tournament.
    • The new "Tetris" world champion unseats long-running champion Jonas Neubauer, who was swept by Saelee.

    Over 30 years ago, the first version of "Tetris" was created in the Soviet Union. In 2018, the new world champion is just 16 years old — a young man born long after the game was created.

    His name is Joseph Saelee, and he's unbelievably good at the beloved puzzle game.

    That's him above, defeating long-time "Tetris" champion Jonas Neubauer at the World Tetris Championships last weekend. Neubauer was the reigning champ for years, with only one aberration in 2014 when he lost to another major "Tetris" competitor — but no longer.

    Now, Saelee is again the world champ — and Saelee didn't even intend to win the tournament.

    "I came into this tournament just to qualify, just to meet all these great people, and to win, that’s just amazing, I don’t know what to say," Saelee said after winning.

    Joseph Saelee / Jonas Neubauer (Tetris World Championship)

    The version of "Tetris" Saelee was competing in looks ancient, and that's because it's the original Nintendo Entertainment System version of the gaming classic. That version of "Tetris" was first released in the mid-'80s, and features some of the most restrictive gameplay in the series.

    Notoriously, once a puzzle piece touches another (or the ground), it can no longer be spun. More importantly for this competition, however, is the particularity of how "Tetris" on NES handles moving pieces horizontally while dropping.

    If you push left on the d-pad and hold it down, the piece will move to the left. But if you rapidly tap left on the d-pad, the piece will move more quickly to the left — it's a method known as "hypertapping," and it's considered risky in the high-stakes world of competitive "Tetris" as it requires maniacal tapping.

    The reigning "Tetris" champ, Neubauer, was holding down d-pad buttons. Saelee, however, was using the hypertap method. You can see Saelee employing the method in this image:

    Joseph Saelee (Tetris World Championships)

    It's unclear if Saelee's win comes with any monetary prize, but it certainly comes with a heap of recognition. It's easy to understand why: Watching Saelee play "Tetris" is an incredible sight to behold.

    See the final match for yourself right here:

    SEE ALSO: Forget about 'Fortnite' — the new 'Call of Duty' makes 6 brilliant changes to the Battle Royale formula

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