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The latest news from Business Insider

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    trump florida rally

    • President Donald Trump built on days of baseless claims of voter fraud to demand that Florida elections be called in favor of Republican candidates.
    • The Florida secretary of state ordered recounts in three races Saturday: the governorship, a US Senate seat, and the state agriculture commissioner.
    • Republicans, including Trump, have shared anecdotes of misplaced votes in Florida, but state Republican officials have denied all their claims.

    President Donald Trump built on days of baseless claims of voter fraud in Florida to demand that the election be called in favor of a Republican candidates for Senate and the governorship as he no longer believes an honest election is possible.

    Three elections in Florida have headed towards a recounts as they were decided with razor-thin margins.

    Following the elections, Floridians reported strange sightings of ballot boxes being left behind, and votes being transported in private cars, which Republicans including Trump used to call into question the legitimacy of the elections.

    Florida authorities later stated that no ballots had been left behind.

    Read more:3 recounts, baseless voter fraud claims, and mixed messages from candidates: Here's what's going on with the Florida elections

    Following the recounts and irregularities of the election, Andrew Gillum, the Democratic candidate for Governor, withdrew his previous concession to Ron DeSantis, who Trump backs.

    Gillum said he was "replacing my words of concession with an uncompromised and unapologetic call that we count every single vote."

    "The Florida Election should be called in favor of Rick Scott and Ron DeSantis in that large numbers of new ballots showed up out of nowhere, and many ballots are missing or forged," Trump tweeted on Monday morning. "An honest vote count is no longer possible-ballots massively infected. Must go with Election Night!"

    Despite the certainty in Trump's statements, no Florida state department has reported any evidence of voter fraud or illegal voting as Trump and others have alleged. This includes offices under Rick Scott, Florida's current governor who ran for the Senate against incumbent Bill Nelson.

    The Florida Department of Law Enforcement said Friday it has not launched any investigation into election fraud.

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: This top economist has a radical plan to change the way Americans vote

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    Theresa May

    • Theresa May will push the button on no deal Brexit planning if there is no breakthrough in talks this week.
    • UK and EU negotiators are still a long way from a withdrawal deal in Brussels.
    • The EU wants the UK to accept some single market rules as part of the backstop for avoiding a hard Irish border.
    • Cabinet will meet on Tuesday to discuss the precarious state of Brexit talks.


    LONDON — Theresa May is on the brink of officially triggering contingency plans for a no deal Brexit with the chances of negotiators in Brussels agreeing on a withdrawal deal this week looking increasingly slim.

    Thursday, November 15 is reportedly the deadline for the UK government to confirm no deal measures like the hiring of boats for importing vital products plus the stockpiling of medicines and pharmaceutical goods.

    This means that unless May is unable to put a provisional Withdrawal Agreement before ministers at the Cabinet's next meeting on Tuesday, there almost certainly won't be an EU summit this month to finalise the UK's exit.

    A no deal Brexit would cause severe disruption across multiple facets of day to day British life. New border checks could lead to shortages of food and medicines, ministers have warned, while planes could be grounded.

    Despite talk of an imminent breakthrough in Brussels, there are still major issues to be resolved in Brexit talks relating to the backstop policy for avoiding a hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic.

    Read more: Theresa May is rapidly pushing Britain towards the Brexit danger zone

    Brussels has said it will let the UK stay in a customs union with the EU as part of the backstop proposal, as May requested. However, the UK wants the right to unilaterally pull out of this arrangement, which Brussels will not allow.

    A senior UK government source told Business Insider on Monday that they were pessimistic about the prospects of a deal this week.

    The source said that a deal would need to be secured by the end of play on Wednesday, if a summit was to be agreed this month. However, they added that: "I wouldn't go getting your hopes up."

    Brexiteers fear that under the backstop model being negotiated, the UK will be trapped in a customs union with the EU for years after Brexit without a guaranteed end date, unable to sign new trade deals with countries around the world.

    House of Commons leader and senior Conservative Andrea Leadsom, warned on Sunday that MPs would not accept this sort of arrangement, telling the BBC: "I don’t think something that trapped the UK in any arrangement against our will would be sellable to members of Parliament."

    This week new issues have emerged over the backstop. The EU is adamant that by staying in a customs union after the Brexit, the UK must also accept some single market rules to ensure there is a "level playing field,"the FT reports.

    Under this model, the UK would adhere to strict environmental rules, like getting 32% of its energy from renewable sources. It would also answer to the European Court of Justice on matters relating to state subsidies to companies.

    A senior EU source told BI last week that Brussels was not going to budge on this issue and that "all of the activity is in London" where May is trying to get government ministers on board with the EU's proposals. The pound was down almost one per cent against the dollar on Monday morning amid concern over the state of Brexit talks.

    If there is a deal, the UK is set to continue following swathes of EU rules for years after it has left the bloc, with little say in shaping those rules. This is angering Conservative MPs on both sides of the Brexit debate.

    Pro-Remain MP Jo Johnson resigned as transport minister on Friday over May's handling of Brexit talks, accusing the prime minister of leading Britain to a "boundless transitionary period."

    He added that May was forcing Brexit two choices on the country — her deal or no deal — and that "to present the nation with a choice between two deeply unattractive outcomes, vassalage and chaos, is a failure of British statecraft on a scale unseen since the Suez crisis."

    SEE ALSO: Former UK civil service chief backs a People's Vote to stop Brexit 'catastrophe'

    DON'T MISS: Theresa May's government told leading medics UK can't rule out medicine shortages in a no-deal Brexit

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: This top economist has a radical plan to change the way Americans vote

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    vice broadlyVice Media is feeling the heat.

    Former A&E Networks exec Nancy Dubuc took over the reins of Vice Media as CEO in May, replacing cofounder Shane Smith amid a string of controversies and a rough market in the digital-media industry.

    According to a report from The Wall Street Journal published on Wednesday, Vice Media's revenue is expected to be flat relative to last year, at $600 to $650 million. The report also outlined the company's dip in Comscore traffic and challenges growing its advertising business, which relies on selling advertisers sponsored content that mimics editorial articles.

    In short, living up to its eye-popping $5.7 billion valuation is proving to be a challenge for Vice. On Thursday, Disney, which is one of Vice's biggest backers, said it had taken a $157 million write-down on its original $400 million investment, equivalent to a 40% decline.

    Click hereto read about what marketers are saying about Vice Media.

    In other news:

    'His comments are illogical': Analysts say Disney CEO Bob Iger's plan to raise Hulu prices is out of step with customer demand.On Disney's fourth-quarter earnings call on Thursday, CEO Bob Iger said he saw "price elasticity" around Hulu with Live TV, the company's digital-TV bundle. Analysts don't agree.

    Amazon's got its eyes set on yet another market — and one high-flying upstart should be worried. In the broader streaming-video market, Amazon is emerging as the chief rival to Roku, according to a note from Morgan Stanley.

    Facebook just launched a standalone video app called Lasso and it's basically the exact same thing as TikTok. Lasso is a social video app that caps posts to 15 seconds and lets creators add their favorite songs to play in the background.

    'We market to who we sell to, and we don't market to the whole world': Victoria's Secret fires back at critics who say it excludes plus-size shoppers. The brand has frequently come under fire for excluding plus-size customers from its ad campaigns and only featuring rail-thin models.

    SAP is buying Utah-based startup Qualtrics for $8 billion — days before it's scheduled to IPO.Qualtrics is a Utah-based startup that helps companies gather feedback and refine their products.

    Thai businessman Chatchaval Jiaravanon has agreed to purchase Fortune magazine for $150 million in cash, reports the Wall Street Journal.After selling Time to Salesforce cofounder Marc Benioff in September, Meredith still has Money and Sports Illustrated up for sale.

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: A sleep expert explains what happens to your body and brain if you don't get enough sleep

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    Dog paw

    If you're a dog owner, you know that canines have a language all their own. Whether they're barking, growling, whining or howling, they're trying to tell you something — and it pays to be informed about what those sounds could mean. Because, while they're often harmless, such vocalizations could be a sign of trouble. Here, we take a look at 10 common sounds that dogs make and exactly what they mean.

    Barking is a dog's main way to communicate, and it can mean a lot of things.

    Barking is a dog's primary means of communication, so it should come as no surprise that barks mean different things, according to Whole Dog Journal. Your dog may bark to alert of danger, to demand attention or treats, to voice frustration, to express anxiety or fear, or to greet you when you get home. Sometimes, dogs bark while playing; other times, they're just plain bored.

    Growling doesn't always mean a dog is angry or aggressive.

    You might think that a growling dog is being aggressive, but that's not always the case. Often, dogs growl because they're afraid, according to Pet MD. Either they don't like what's going to happen (e.g., getting their nails trimmed), they don't know what's going to happen (e.g., a stranger comes into the home), they're protecting their resources (e.g., food and toys), or they're in pain. Keep in mind that growling may mean that your dog is having fun, like when playing with other dogs or chewing a bone.

    Whining, crying, and whimpering could indicate emotional distress or pain.

    Dog whining, crying, and whimpering can also mean several different things, according to the American Kennel Club. Your pup could be vocalizing because he needs or wants something, such as food or attention. Dogs that are stressed, scared, or in pain often will whine, too. Here's one possibility you may not have considered: Your dog could be whining to apologize to you after being scolded.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    glossier 2391

    • Glossier, a cult-favorite beauty and skin-care brand founded in 2014, just opened its first flagship store in New York City.
    • The company has raised $86 million in venture funding since 2014. 
    • The flagship store opened where Glossier 's showroom has been for the past year. The space is designed to be a social space where customers can test makeup and hang out while shopping.
    • When we visited a day after it opened, it was already packed.

    Glossier, a previously online-only beauty and skin-care brand founded in 2014, just opened its first flagship store in New York City. 

    Since the company first started in 2014, Glossier has raised a whopping $86 million in venture funding and gained a cult following among millennials. 

    The flagship store opened in the same spot in SoHo where Glossier's shoppable showroom has been since it opened in November 2017. More than half a million customers have come through that space since it opened, the company told The New York Times.

    The flagship is Glossier's second and largest permanent shop, as it already operates a storefront in Los Angeles. The interior is decorated with flowers and over-the-top displays, and employees wear bubblegum pink jumpsuits. The products in store aren't on shelves, but instead on communal tables with mirrors set up for shoppers to test the products. There's even a room with sinks and cleansers so that shoppers can wash off makeup they tested and try out more. 

    We went to the flagship store the day after it opened. Here's what it was like:

    SEE ALSO: 'We're living in the age of the remix': Fashion brands are making major changes to appeal to Gen Z in a new era of luxury

    DON'T MISS: These are the brands that blew up in 2018

    Glossier's flagship store is on Lafayette Street in SoHo, where its showroom had been located since November 2017.

    Walking through the doors, I was greeted by a pink staircase with bright lights and high ceilings.

    At the top of the stairs are employees greeting everyone by a big floral display.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Ramit Sethi 2

    • CEO and author Ramit Sethi works with entrepreneurs, helping them maximize their time and start their own businesses.
    • He's found, both among other entrepreneurs and in his own experience, that small productivity hacks and tricks often aren't enough to save people significant time — and just working harder isn't a good solution, either.
    • In his early 20s, he made a dramatic change to his work and life by hiring an assistant. "I know," he writes. "I thought it was crazy, too. Until I tried it."
    • Over 10 years later, his assistant now saves him more than 20 hours a week.

    I recently spoke to a small group of busy people — entrepreneurs, business owners, freelancers, etc. — about productivity. Before they came in, I asked them to track their time for one day.

    When I asked what they’d found, their heads started shaking.

    “I spend 80% of my time on things that don’t matter,” one guy said.

    Another: “I spend hours in email every day. For what? I just do it again the next day.”

    Then I asked what they wanted to spend time on. One entrepreneur said, “I want to spend time on things that actually make me money.

    Your turn. Let me ask you these two questions:

    1. On an average day, where do you spend your time?
    2. If you could spend your time any way you wanted, where would you spend your time?

    Take a look at what you spent your time on yesterday. What would you say?

    Be honest: If you watched three hours of Netflix (the average American watches five hours of TV every day), that’s OK!

    Yes, that sickening feeling in your stomach means the answers to those two questions don’t add up. You know it. I know it. We all know it.

    Now ask: Where do you WANT your time to go?

    Related:I'm convinced a mistaken belief that keeps people from building wealth can be dismantled with 5 minutes of simple math

    If we could wave a magic wand and spend our time where we wanted to, most of us would not choose to spend three hours per day in email. We’d spend it on our relationships with friends and family, exploring the city we live in or traveling, working on higher-value items or just having fun.

    But... how can you do it?

    Well, first forget about “productivity hacks.” You know the kind I’m talking about: to-do apps (and journals), RescueTime, or “minimalism” (where you ONLY own three pairs of grey pants, two blue shirts, and a 4,000-dollar laptop) are the coupon-clipping of the productivity world. Doing these things might feel good and helpful, but they’re ultimately useless.

    I tried the apps. I tried minimalism. I tried all these tactics. Some of them worked and I incorporated them into my productivity system. But I needed to save more than just a few minutes — I needed to free up 2+ hours a day.

    And we all know that working harder isn’t the solution. Longer hours, another shot of espresso, catching up on the weekend, an unhappy spouse, stress, and a sudden moment of realization in your late 40s that something is wrong. #HustleLife

    I knew that I was starting to get swamped with emails and pulled in all kinds of directions. I knew this would only get worse — and I had to figure out a solution now, because the more successful I became, the harder it would be to figure it out. So I went all in.

    I went a different route ... and realized that I needed help.

    The most successful people have something in common: People who can help them — a personal trainer, a business coach, a supportive spouse.

    I realized I had money but not time — and that, with this money, I could “buy back” my time.

    That’s when I hired an assistant.

    I know, I thought it was crazy, too. Until I tried it.

    It’s funny, because I didn’t look like the kind of person who would have an assistant. I was in my early 20s. I didn’t work at a fancy office or wear a fancy suit.

    But I was busy and I was ambitious. I worked at a startup during the day and wrote my now best-selling book on personal finance at night. I didn’t want to spend my time on mundane tasks. And I didn’t care if it was weird for a guy in his early 20s to have an assistant. I wanted my time back.

    So I hired a part-time assistant on Craigslist. Since then — over 10 years ago — I’ve built an incredible system with my assistant, who helps me remove the following off my plate. My assistant:

    • Schedules appointments (one-off and recurring)
    • Handles thank you cards
    • Selects, buys, and ships items
    • Organizes follow-ups for networking contacts
    • Preps documents
    • Coordinates speaking engagements
    • Screens calls (calls customer service or waits on hold)
    • Sends out media releases
    • Maintains contact details
    • Returns merchandise and checks on refunds
    • Buys event tickets
    • Provides customer support
    • Researches weekend activities
    • Researches questions
    • Organizes to-dos
    • Sends reminders
    • Checks in for flights
    • Tracks birthdays and sends gifts
    • Plans vacations
    • Orders and delivers food
    • Makes dinner reservations
    • Processes emails

    With just this list, she helps me save over 20 hours per week!

    That’s time that I can invest directly into the things that I actually want to be doing for weeks, months, and years —not to shave off a few minutes here and there.

    Ramit Sethi is the author of the New York Times bestseller, "I Will Teach You To Be Rich," and writes for more than 1 million readers on his websites, and His work on personal finance and entrepreneurship have been featured in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and Business Insider.

    SEE ALSO: I've helped thousands of people start their own businesses, and I've found that everyone who makes money has the same thing in common

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Navy SEALs debunk 5 misconceptions about good leaders in the military and the workplace

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    Tom Gebhardt

    • Auto and tech companies are reinventing themselves as the transportation industry nears a historic transformation, but one of their suppliers, Panasonic, is taking a different approach.
    • Tom Gebhardt, Pansonic's North American CEO, told Business Insider that Panasonic is modifying products it has previously made for new uses.
    • Panasonic makes infotainment systems for cars and batteries for electric vehicles.
    • Gebhardt said he anticipates incremental, rather than transformative, changes in battery and infotainment technology during the next decade.

    Auto and tech companies are scrambling to develop new kinds of products and business models as the transportation industry nears a historic transformation away from gas-powered, human-operated vehicles toward electric-powered, autonomous ones. But one of their suppliers is taking a different approach.

    Panasonic, which makes infotainment systems for cars and batteries for electric vehicles, among a wide range of other products, isn't trying to reinvent itself, Tom Gebhardt, the company's North American CEO, told Business Insider. Instead, Panasonic is modifying products it has previously made for new uses.

    "I think it's always easier to leverage off what you know and what you have history with, rather than trying to recreate the world," Gebhardt said.

    Gebhardt characterized Panasonic's transition as a shift from selling products primarily to consumers to selling directly to businesses. That means applying technologies it has developed for consumer products, like televisions and batteries (though Panasonic first made automotive batteries in the 1930s), to new vehicles made by its customers.

    Doing so could lessen the need for the kinds of major research and development investments in unfamiliar technologies that some automakers see as necessary to remain competitive in the long term.

    "We're really comfortable in your TV room today," Gebhardt said. "And we move a lot of those similar technologies into vehicle transportation."

    Tesla has been a 'great customer,' despite hurting profits

    That doesn't mean there won't be bumps in the road. Panasonic said in October that its battery business failed to make a profit for two consecutive quarters due in part to costs required by Tesla, its largest battery customer. Since 2017, Tesla has been ramping up the production of its Model 3 sedan, which features Panasonic battery cells.

    Panasonic said that during the third quarter, it had to increase its rate of battery production at Tesla's Sparks, Nevada, factory faster than expected, which meant it had to hire more employees and increase short-term spending.

    "We are investing in a lot of people so we can catch up with the pace of production," Hirokazu Umeda, Panasonic’s CFO, told The Wall Street Journal.

    Read more: Car companies are pouring billions into self-driving tech they may never use, experts say

    Gebhardt spoke with Business Insider before Panasonic announced its third-quarter earnings and called Tesla a "great customer," highlighting the automaker's innovative and popular vehicles. (The Model 3 outsold competing vehicles made by Audi, BMW, and Mercedes-Benz during the third quarter.)

    "It's always just great to be a partner with somebody that's leading and pushing a market," Gebhardt said. "It's always good to be in that position because you're on the cusp of doing things that haven't been done before."

    Solid-state batteries are at least a decade away for the average EV

    While big changes are ahead for the auto industry, Gebhardt said he doesn't anticipate "huge, disruptive" changes coming to infotainment systems in the next five to 10 years. Instead, there will be incremental changes, like more powerful processors, better user interfaces, and larger screens with better resolution, he said.

    The same applies to batteries. The battery industry, like the tech industry, likes to build anticipation for the next major technological breakthrough, even if it won't be ready in the near future, Gebhardt said. Gebhardt and other battery experts have touted solid-state technology as the next significant development in the battery industry. Solid-state batteries replace the liquid electrolyte used in today's lithium-ion batteries with a solid material that could make batteries less flammable while increasing their capacity and charging speed.

    But Gebhardt said he doesn't see solid-state batteries reaching mass adoption in the auto industry during the next decade. Instead, lithium-ion batteries will achieve marginal improvements in capacity, charging speed, and safety.

    "We're still pretty bullish on lithium-ion, but clearly understand that solid-state is something that we all want to get to at some point in the future," Gebhardt said.

    SEE ALSO: I tried Tesla's new Autopilot feature that helps navigate during highway driving to see if it's helpful — here's the verdict

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: The science behind the viral videos of mounting tires with a controlled explosion

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    • A Lyft driver was arrested 12 days after he allegedly exposed himself to a teenage rider in the backseat of his car.
    • The victim's lawyer and family are blaming the company for not doing more to help.
    • A Lyft spokesperson said it proactively reached out to police when it first learned of the incident and has banned the driver.  

    Lyft declined to help police identify a driver accused of exposing himself to teenage girl, adding two weeks to their search for Narinder Singh, the New York Post first reported Thursday.

    An NYPD spokesperson confirmed that the 25-year-old was arrested on October 24 and charged with endangering the welfare of a child and harassment, 12 days after the girl, who has not been identified, caught the incident on video. The three-second clip, shot from the back seat, appears to show Singh masturbating in the drivers’ seat.

    "The reporting of crimes like this should not have so many impediments," the victim’s lawyer said in a letter to the TLC, according to the Post. "It should not have taken 12 days to identify and arrest this perpetrator whose identity was being shielded by Lyft. Most importantly, the victim should not be made to feel that the privacy rights of the perpetrator supersede her rights as a crime victim."

    A Lyft spokesperson said the company reached out to police after it learned of the incident, letting them know its internal processes for these types of situations. "We won't be able to provide any information without a valid subpoena, court order, or search warrant," the company's site says.

    Read more: Lyft removed the option to split ride fares with other passengers, but says an "easier" option is coming soon

    In a statement, the company called the incident "horrific and deeply concerning."

    "Safety is Lyft's top priority and the behavior described has absolutely no place on our platform," it said. "Upon learning of the allegations, we permanently banned the driver from our platform, reached out to law enforcement to offer our assistance with their investigation, and have been in touch with the passenger's family to extend our support. We stand ready to assist in law enforcement."

    The Taxi and Limousine Commission confirmed Singh’s license has been suspended pending the outcome of his case, but declined any further comment.

    Singh is scheduled to appear in the Queens Criminal Court on December 6, according to state records. The phone number listed on the court's website for his attorney, Gary Francis Miret, has been disconnected.

    Do you work at Lyft? Got a tip? Contact this reporter via Signal or WhatsApp at +1 (646) 376-6102 using a non-work phone, email at, or Twitter DM at @g_rapier. You can also contact Business Insider securely via SecureDrop.

    SEE ALSO: Uber's board reportedly held a 'marathon meeting' as it grapples with its ties to Saudi Arabia

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: The science behind the viral videos of mounting tires with a controlled explosion

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    google miniatur wunderland

    The "Miniatur Wunderland" exhibition, located in Hamburg, Germany, is the world's largest model railway.

    If you've never seen it before, it's one of the cutest, most detailed miniature models you'll ever see in your life.

    To bring new perspective to the massive model railway, Google in 2016 built a miniature version of its Street View car to capture footage within the Miniatur Wunderland with an array of tiny mounted cameras. You can actually see all the various worlds within the Miniatur Wunderland on Google Street View.

    The results are stunning. Take a look:

    SEE ALSO: 13 things everyone is going to love about iOS 11

    Google worked with mapping software company Ubilabs to capture the sprawling model world.

    The tiny Street View car couldn't actually film anything, which is why Google and Ubilabs built a fleet of mini camera-mounted devices to cruise the streets ...

    ... and railways of Miniatur Wunderland. Keep in mind, this model railway features over 8 miles of track.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    fortnite battle royale

    For the better part of 2018, I've immersed myself in "Fortnite Battle Royale," the most popular game in the world right now. When I'm not playing, I've been watching and studying the best "Fortnite" streamers on Twitch, like Ninja.

    Still, after dozens of hours of playing and watching "Fortnite," I felt like I wasn't actually improving in the game. I was dying early and often. And while I may have been getting the hang of the various controls, building and shooting — the two most essential functions in "Fortnite" for defense and offense, respectively — were still not intuitive to me. I was getting easily overwhelmed in firefights. And this was frustrating to me, since I play a lot of video games.

    Recently, though, I made a breakthrough. I'm nowhere near the level of pro streamers like Ninja, but I'm consistently finishing in the top 10 to 25 players, and usually with at least one or two kills under my belt.

    Here's what I'd suggest to anyone who's struggling to get better at "Fortnite":

    SEE ALSO: 15 tips and tricks to play and win at Fortnite Battle Royale, the most popular game in the world right now

    1. Try playing on a different device.

    Personally, my biggest breakthrough with "Fortnite" was simply playing the game on a different device.

    I had spent probably a few dozen hours playing "Fortnite" on my PlayStation 4, unsuccessfully, until I finally tried downloading the game to my iPhone X. I noticed an instant and immediate improvement.

    For some reference: Prior to playing "Fortnite" on my iPhone, I was never able to successfully hit anyone with a sniper rifle while playing on my PS4. But I got two sniper kills — not just hits, but kills — in one of my first matches when I switched to my iPhone. In general, I've found it's much easier to move, build, aim, and shoot on the iPhone compared to the PlayStation 4. And I bet it's even easier if you play the game on PC.

    If you're interested, here are the controls for "Fortnite" if you're playing on an iPhone. As you can see, it's very simple.

    The game is coming soon to Android, says Epic Games, the creator of "Fortnite." But it's unclear when, and which devices will be supported.

    2. Lower the sensitivity settings for your controls.

    I overheard Tyler "Ninja" Blevins mention this tip on his Twitch stream, so I tried it for myself. And sure enough, lowering the sensitivity settings of your controls — whether you're using a console controller or a keyboard and mouse — can sometimes help you steady your aim.

    To visit your settings, click the gear icon in the top right corner of the screen while you're playing the game or waiting in the lobby. There, you'll see your controller sensitivities. While you're there, though, be sure to revisit your other controls and settings. You may want to tweak some of those, apply the changes, and see how the game plays. You never know: Sometimes, a simple tweak is all you need.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Voting in the 2018 midterms

    • The headline of Tuesday night's midterm elections was Democrats recapturing the House of Representatives, setting up a two-year long clash with President Donald Trump.
    • But looking at exactly how Democrats were able to win the House tells a deeper story about how America has shifted and might continue to change.
    • The divide between America's cities and its rural areas is growing, and the two parties are becoming more entrenched.

    After Democrats took back the House of Representatives last week, the development-focused news website CityLab created an index to assign each of the 435 congressional districts into categories based on population density:

    • Pure urban
    • Urban-suburban
    • Dense suburban
    • Sparse suburban
    • Suburban-rural
    • Pure rural.
    • (For more on the methodology, check here.)

    Looking at the shift in party from 2010 to 2018, it becomes clear that the divide between America's cities and its rural areas is growing.

    And the two parties are becoming more entrenched in their regional home bases.

    Democratic urban monopoly

    As of Tuesday night, America's city centers are exclusively in the hands of the Democratic Party.

    • In an upset, Democrats flipped the only pure-urban district still held by Republicans — New York's 11th District, which encompasses Staten Island and south Brooklyn — leaving the GOP with no seats in dense cities.

    Democratic dominance in cities is partly due to the GOP-led redistricting effort after the 2010 midterms. But it also shows the growing dominance of Democrats in the major cities. Even in Texas, Democrat Lizzie Pannill Fletcher won the 7th congressional district in Houston, becoming the first Democrat to hold the seat since George H.W. Bush turned the seat in favor of Republicans in 1967..

    • Similarly, in the urban-suburban districts, Democrats are nearing a clean sweep: Five Democrats took over formerly GOP-held urban-suburban districts in Pennsylvania, Texas, California, and Florida (two seats).
    • The only two GOP urban-suburban districts are California's 45th in Orange County, held by a Republican since its inception in 1983, and Florida's 25th in the suburbs of Miami, also held by Republicans since its inception in 2003.

    Urban Districts

    Suburban battleground

    The most heated battleground in the House came in the fight over the suburbs, where it appears Democrats are squeezing the GOP out of these seats.

    • Particularly in dense suburban districts, Democrats are gaining a definite edge. In just eight years, the party has gone from controlling a slim majority of these districts — just 53% — to a dominant 80%.
    • Similarly, Republicans and Democrats flipped places when it came to sparse suburban districts. Democrats held 34 such seats after 2010, while the GOP held 52. Now those numbers are perfectly flipped.
    • The suburban districts were also the biggest source of Democratic pick-ups on Tuesday, with 26 seats in suburban districts flipping. Only one seat flipped to Republicans: the newly redrawn Pennsylvania 1st.

    Democrats' success in the suburbs was personified by them turning blue dense suburban districts in deep-red states:

    • For instance, Democrat Kendra Horn became the first non-GOP winner since 1975 in Oklahoma's 5th district in the suburbs around Oklahoma City.
    • And Georgia's 6th district in the suburbs of Atlanta, once home of House Speaker Newt Gingrich, is on the verge of electing a Democrat for the first time since 1979.

    While these wins may be partly attributable to the fact that a president's party typically loses seats in their first midterm, these areas have long been GOP strongholds in solid GOP states. They were held by Republicans through previous Democratic waves.

    There are several demographic explanations for the shift — older millennialsmoving out to the suburbs or the long-term shrinking of America's white majority — but there are also some uniquely political issues as well.

    President Donald Trump does not poll as well with college-educated people or women compared to previous Republican presidents, and those two groups are significant parts of the suburban electorate.

    Suburban Districts

    Red rural districts

    Just as Democrats are nearing a monopoly in the urban districts, so too are Republicans solidifying their stranglehold on rural areas. The number of rural districts held by Democrats tumbled to just nine after Tuesday, a 13% share, down from 16 they held after the 2010 election.

    With the exception of one district, the remaining Democratic rural districts fall into two buckets:

    • Majority-minority districts, where the white population makes up less than 50% of the total (South Carolina's 6th, Mississippi's 2nd, New Mexico's 3rd;
    • Northern areas with a white population at 90% or above (Minnesota's 7th, New Hampshire's 2nd, New York's 19th, Vermont's at-large, and Wisconsin's 3rd).Rural Districts

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    Bed bug

    When it comes to getting rid of a troublesome bedbug infestation, it's easy to become frustrated enough that you're willing to try anything.

    Unfortunately, a lot of things simply won't work against this particular pest — and will only serve to prolong the agony. Getting a trained and qualified pest service is your best bet in this situation. Here are some common solutions that don't actually work. 

    Mothballs won't do much to stop your bedbug problem.

    A research team at Rutgers University led by researcher Changlu Wang found that sticking a bunch of completely infested clothes inside a bag with mothballs was mostly ineffective.


    Bug bombs won't do the trick, either.

    If you're thinking of DIY-ing your bed bug troubles away with one of these — or a spray that contains something like DEET — the levels of concentration at which these products are sold aren't strong enough to be effective, according to research from Consumer Reports.

    Rubbing alcohol only works about half the time.

    Home remedies can give you some hope if you're facing an infestation — but it's not helpful if they don't work. Unfortunately, rubbing alcohol falls solidly into this category.

    In Rutgers University researcher Changlu Wang's bedbug experiments, his team found that spraying bed bugs directly with rubbing alcohol only killed around 50% of the insects. The more bugs that survive to procreate and perpetuate your problem, the longer your bedbug infestation will remain.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    • The popular Alamo Drafthouse chain will not be showing Netflix's "Roma."
    • The Oscar contender will be one of the first original Netflix movies to have an exclusive theatrical run before it streams.
    • After weeks of negotiations between Netflix and Drafthouse to show the movie at its Brooklyn, New York location, the theater chain finally felt the streaming giant put too many "restrictions and guidelines" on them, a source close to the negotiations told Business Insider.
    • The movie will instead be shown at New York City's IFC Center, and is locking other locations to show the movie across the country.


    Netflix wants to keep its powerhouse directors happy going into Oscar season, but one of the first theatrical runs for its original movies with a big name helmer has hit a snag.

    Alamo Drafthouse, one of the most prominent independently owned movie chains in the US, will not be showing Netflix's Oscar contender, "Roma," a source close to negotiations between the chain and streaming giant told Business Insider. A source close to Netflix confirmed that Alamo Drafthouse had passed on the movie.

    At the end of October, Netflix began to dramatically change course on how it released Oscar-contending movies. Reports surfaced that for the first time Netflix would stop its "day-and-date" model — in which the movie premieres in theaters and on Netflix the same day — and give exclusive theatrical runs of around 1-3 weeks for not just Alfonso Cuarón's "Roma," but two other of its anticipated movies, the Coen brothers' "The Ballad of Buster Scruggs," and Susanne Bier's "Bird Box" starring Sandra Bullock. 

    Alamo Drafthouse was one of the reported chains in the mix to show "Roma." But Netflix's terms on how the movie would be released, and how often, led to the popular chain passing on the anticipated title, according to the source.

    While "Buster Scruggs" and "Bird Box" are reportedly getting around one-week runs at select theaters before they are available to stream on Netflix, the company wants to pull out all the stops for "Roma," which out of the three has the best chance to win Oscars in the major categories, including best picture.

    Along with around a 3-4 week run for the movie, Netflix is specifically looking for theaters that can show the movie with Dolby Atmos sound or in 70mm.

    As even four weeks is shorter than the traditional 90-day window that the major chains like AMC, Regal, and Cinemark want movies to be shown in theaters, Netflix knows it cannot go to them. That leaves the streaming giant to depend on the mid-level chains and independently owned arthouses.

    Alamo Drafthouse and Netflix had been in discussions for weeks about showing "Roma," specifically at the chain's Brooklyn, New York location, which could show the movie in 70mm. It's one of the only theaters in the city that can pull that off.

    Alamo Drafthouse NYC 4547Netflix was stringent on its terms, according to the source, which included that "Roma" have a full four-week run with all the screenings show in 70mm. The company also planned to four-wall the theaters, meaning Netflix would be renting the theater from Drafthouse. (It plans to do this at all the locations where the movies will be played.) This is an unconventional move in the industry, where typically the movie theater splits the box office with the distributor.

    Though Drafthouse was willing to show "Roma" at its Brooklyn location, it does not four-wall. Also, the 70mm projector at the location is in its biggest auditorium, meaning that for four weeks the movie would take up its prime space, with Drafthouse unable to schedule in any other titles. That's a tough ask in a time of year when every weekend a new big movie is about to hit theaters.

    "Just way too many restrictions and guidelines," the source told Business Insider.

    "Roma" will now be screened in New York at Manhattan's IFC Center beginning November 21, IFC confirmed to Business Insider. That theater does not have capabilities to show the movie in 70mm.

    Alamo Drafthouse is not the only theater, outside of the majors, to pass on the Netflix offer. Business Insider has reached out to multiple arthouses that said they eventually passed on showing "Roma" due to the terms of Netflix. These include some that would have gotten the movie following its exclusive theatrical run, after the movie began streaming on Netflix December 14.

    "Terms are not too high, but higher than it should be for a movie that's streaming at the same time," one theater owner told Business Insider.

    Other theaters told Business Insider they would love to show the movie but don't have a venue that can accommodate Netflix's terms.

    "It's complicated by Netflix’s insistence that theaters have Dolby Atmos, an extremely expensive sound system that very few theaters can afford," another theater owner said.

    SEE ALSO: Sinemia has emerged as a cheap MoviePass alternative, but it has hidden fees and awful customer service

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    NOW WATCH: How 'The Price Is Right' is made

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    woman working office laptop

    • Feeling passion for and deriving meaning from work is often seen as a good thing. But in "The Job," Ellen Ruppel Shell explains how that can backfire.
    • If you lose your job, you might also feel like you've lost your identity.
    • What's more, employers might be inclined to take advantage of your devotion to work.
    • Some CEOs — like Morgan Stanley's James Gorman — have also said that your job shouldn't define you.

    In her new book, "The Job," journalist Ellen Ruppel Shell includes a chapter on finding meaning in your work.

    A meaningful job is something most of us aspire to (or at least say we aspire to): A recent BetterUp survey found that nine out of 10 American workers would sacrifice some of their lifetime earnings if they could find greater meaning at work.

    Yet Shell makes a persuasive and relevant argument for the potential hazards of finding too much meaning in your work.

    Shell spoke to Amy Wrzesniewski, a Yale professor whose research on "job crafting"— or molding your job to be more meaningful to you — has made its way into more than a few career-advice books and articles.

    Read more:A Yale professor explains how to turn a boring job into a meaningful career

    Wrzesniewski's research also divides workers into three different categories: those who see their work as a job, a career, or a "calling." If you see your job as a calling, you're inclined to see your life and work as linked inextricably, and you're motivated by a sense of purpose and mission (as opposed to financial rewards).

    Sounds fine so far. But feeling called to your job is, as Shell puts it, a double-edged sword.

    Keep in mind that one day, you might not be doing your current job anymore

    Jeffery Thompson, a professor at Brigham Young University who has researched job callings, gave Shell a few reasons why seeing your work as a calling can be dangerous.

    Thompson said, "If you believe you were put on this earth to fill some 'calling,' and for whatever reason you do not do it, you might easily consider that a moral failure." What's more, Thompson said, if you feel called to your work, you might even be more vulnerable to exploitation from managers, because they sense you'll do anything to stay in this role.

    Another practical reason why callings can be harmful is the sheer fact that, one day, you might lose your job.

    This happened to Dan D'Agostino — who was fired from his position as CEO of a multi-million dollar business. But as D'Agostino wrote on Business Insider, "Being fired and taking a year off has provided me with the space to get truly comfortable with not having my identity tied to an occupation." Instead, D'Agostino spent time traveling with his family.

    Meanwhile, Sallie Krawcheck, the founder and CEO of Ellevest, has spoken about getting fired from her position as head of Merrill Lynch's global wealth management division at Bank of America.

    On an episode of the podcast Radiate, Krawcheck said, "It really is about how you define yourself. Do you define yourself by your title? Do you define yourself by the company you work at? Do you define yourself by the amount of money you make? Do you define yourself by whether you have a corporate jet? I define myself by impact ... and so, even when I went on the big jobs, I thought 'How can I have an impact?'"

    Sometimes finding new passions — or new outlets for your longtime passion — can be beneficial

    In "The Job," Shell describes research conducted by Sally Maitlis, a professor at the University of Oxford's Said Business School. Maitlis followed professional dancers and musicians who had to stop that work because of illness or injury. And she learned that the artists who had felt most passionate about their former careers were the least likely to bounce back.

    On the other hand, some of the less passionate artists found ways to channel their dedication to music or dance in other ways that weren't "jobs" per se.

    One former bassoon player who had been hit by a car began reading and teaching writing. She told Maitlis that her "world started opening. A lot. And I started finding out I had ideas and interesting things to say." (This quotation isn't included in "The Job," but it appears in a chapter Maitlis wrote in the book "Exploring Positive Identities and Organizations.")

    Shell summed up her conversation with Maitlis: "Flourishing in a global economy requires us to see ourselves independent of our jobs while maintaining a strong grasp of our work identity"— something that, to be sure, is easier said than done.

    James Gorman, CEO and chairman of Morgan Stanley, alluded to something similar in an interview with Bloomberg's David Rubenstein. "You have to be able to, once you're not CEO, for that not to materially affect how you are as a person," he said. "Your job shouldn't define you. Your job is: You're CEO for a point in time, you're helping drive the vessel, and you'll get off it, and hopefully it does better after you're gone."

    SEE ALSO: All that advice to 'find your passion' isn't just cliché — it could be actively bad

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Navy SEALs debunk 5 misconceptions about good leaders in the military and the workplace

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    iphone x home screen

    Every iPhone comes with a slew of Apple's own first-party apps.

    Thankfully, though, the App Store is overflowing with alternative apps, many of which are better than Apple's.

    Whether you're looking to organize your photos, get work done, or get around town, we've scoured the App Store for the best apps that are better than the default ones on your iPhone.

    SEE ALSO: I've owned an Amazon Echo for over a year now — here are my 19 favorite features

    DON'T MISS: The top 50 video games of all time, ranked

    Instead of Mail, use Edison Email.

    I try new email apps all the time, but I've fallen in love with Edison Email. It's fast, customizable, and it's also proactive and smart. It automatically scans your emails for purchases, receipts, attachments, calendar dates, and more, and it'll automatically put those emails into separate, appropriately labeled folders that appear on your sidebar. It's super nifty — you can read my review of it here.

    (Edison Email, free)

    Instead of Calendar, use Google Calendar.

    I've used Google's calendar app on the desktop for years — but even if you haven't, you'll feel right at home on Google Calendar, which is beautiful to look at and easy to use.

    Like Apple's Calendar, it can pull in data from Google, Facebook, and iCloud, but it presents all the information in a much more useful way than Apple's default app does. The top half of the screen shows you the whole month, and the lower half of the screen shows you what's up next. You can scroll down to see what's coming up, and you can tap the top right corner of the screen to jump back to the present day. It's all incredibly intuitive.

    (Google Calendar, free)

    Instead of Notes, use Evernote.

    Apple's Notes for iOS has gotten better in recent years, but Evernote is still the best way to create different types of notes and keep them organized across all your devices.

    With Evernote, you can create notes out from photos or text, flag notes to revisit later, set reminders for yourself, and tag your notes in various ways to stay organized. Better yet, if you take pictures of documents and upload them to Evernote, its powerful search function can even scan those PDFs and other documents. And, of course, Evernote syncs across all devices — phones, tablets, laptops, and desktops.

    (Evernote, free)

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Made in Network binging with babish

    • Facebook is expanding Watch globally and encouraging creators of all stripes to set up and fund their own shows.
    • Publishers are eager to make ad revenue from mid-roll and pre-roll ads that run in videos, and some say it's almost on par with YouTube.
    • Watch is still a test for Facebook, but was mentioned 12 times in the company’s third-quarter earnings, up from six mentions in the first quarter.

    Facebook is hungry for video and taking lots of pages from YouTube's playbook when it comes to wooing over creators.

    Earlier this fall, Facebook unleashed Watch globally, opening up the company's big bet on premium, long-form video to the world after testing it in the US for a little over a year.

    As part of the rollout, Facebook started allowing anyone — from users to publishers — to set up and fund their own Watch shows through a self-serve tool called Creator Studio that is built into Facebook.

    With Watch's floodgates open and the ability for publishers to bypass Watch's funded team, Facebook is actively encouraging publishers to set up and fund their own Watch programming in exchange for making money from ad breaks, according to sources.

    Before a few months ago, all shows had to be green-lit by Facebook's own team, requiring creators to pitch the social platform their ideas. Facebook's content strategy continues to shift, and the Watch team is experimenting with different formats and production quality, which can make it difficult for creators to know what specific content Facebook is interested in funding.

    But with Creator Studio, they don't have to go through Facebook's funding process.

    Read more: 'It is critically important for Facebook to get this right': Publishers say Facebook's rollout of Watch ads is methodical but picking up speed

    Facebook Watch Apple TV

    Creator Studio helps publishers manage video content and track its performance. The tool also details how many repeat viewers a show has and breaks down the number of one-minute views that are eligible for ad revenue through mid-roll and pre-roll videos. To run ad breaks, Watch Pages must have 10,000 followers and at least 30,000 one-minute views on videos that are three minutes or longer over 60 days.

    The self-serve tool is squarely aimed at YouTube's crop of creators, and has changed the message that Facebook is sending some publishers about Watch, at least when it comes to entertainment-geared shows that are separate from news shows.

    Instead of pitching exclusive, high-quality shows, some publishers have changed their strategy and are cranking out a ton of videos that meet Facebook's qualifications for ad breaks, according to several sources.

    "I think that's only going to continue and grow — it's almost low-hanging fruit," said one executive about Watch's ambitions to attract influencers and creators from YouTube.

    Publishers are chasing Watch ad revenue

    Facebook has started wrangling up publishers at events to talk about Watch, too.

    Last month, Facebook gathered publishers in New York at a partner event to talk about video with execs like Luis Olivalves, who recently changed roles from heading up media partnerships for Latin America to a similar role in North America as part of Sibyl Goldman’s team.

    The event gave attendees a crash course in Creator Studio, according to one source.

    A Facebook spokesperson said that the company routinely hosts events for publishers of all different sizes. The New York event included entertainment, sports, and news publishers.

    Until recently, the opportunity with Watch was slim for publishers that didn't have deep pockets or big concepts that could get directly funded by Facebook. Now, some are trying to rack up as many shows as possible with the goal of making money from advertising.

    "It's totally open — you can just launch a new Watch Page yourself," another publishing source said. "It's like 'launch as many shows as possible' and if you're successful, you're going to get ad break revenue."

    Watch is looking more like YouTube but still has a ways to go

    There's a lot of professionally created shows in Watch from companies like BuzzFeed and MTV. There's also a lot of less polished videos that are posted to the news feed and end up getting pulled into the video tab.

    Indeed, Watch looks more similar to YouTube than to Netflix or Hulu.


    Facebook Watch GIF

    Both Facebook and its partners are quick to point to Watch as a long-term bet for the company that won't happen overnight.

    But Watch is also increasingly becoming viewed as more than an experiment by Facebook's top execs: Watch was mentioned 12 times during Facebook's third-quarter earnings last week, up from 6 mentions in first-quarter earnings, according to transcripts of the calls.

    CEO Mark Zuckerberg also publicly acknowledged Google-owned YouTube as a competitor to Watch during the call.

    "We're seeing video grow dramatically across the ecosystem," Zuckerberg said. "And while Watch is now growing very quickly, we're well behind YouTube and still working to make this a unique people-centric experience."

    Facebook Watch

    YouTube influencers are scrambling to get on Watch

    Made in Network is one of a handful of so-called "multi-channel networks" (MCNs) that works with creators to set up and manage web video talent, primarily on YouTube.

    Over the past few months, the company's roster of creators have started building out Watch shows, some of which make nearly as much money from ad revenue as its YouTube shows. 

    "In the past couple of months, as they've introduced ad breaks and tools, we've seen a lot more meaningful revenue generation for our clients," said Keith Johnson, chief operating officer at Made in Network. 

    Johnson declined to name specific creators but said that one YouTube channel has doubled its revenue by adding a Watch show. Revenue from the Watch show is 10% smaller than YouTube after running for a few months.

    The company's influencers have experimented with both original Watch shows and repurposing YouTube content for Facebook, with the latter option working the best so far.

    "We actually end up seeing pretty distinct audiences, so it doesn't feel like we're splitting people between the two," Johnson said. "Even though it's the same content, we have a new pipeline to get to them through Facebook."

    Facebook is changing the shows it funds, too

    Facebook continues to green-light programs for Watch but the funding have increasingly shifted to fewer big, celebrity-driven programs that appeal to broad audiences.

    Some of the high-profile shows range from interactive talk show formats like Jada Pinkett Smith's "Red Table Talk" (which has 3.8 million followers) to dramas like"Sorry for Your Loss"(which has 107,000 followers).

    Facebook is also funding shows with various formats, like a scripted program called "Skam: Austin" that has run for two seasons on Watch.

    One source suggested that Facebook is considering outsourcing parts of the development process of its funded Watch shows to firms. 

    A Facebook spokeswoman said that the company is experimenting with different funding models for partners, which include digital publishers, creators, and traditional media companies.

    Granular data is still a challenge with Watch

    While Facebook's video ad revenue is starting to kick in for creators, data and measurement is still a challenge.

    "They make it really hard to dig into the data and attribute it to different things and to figure out what's actually driving it," Johnson said. "There's a lot that's murky and behind a veil."

    Several sources said that it's unclear how views break down between the news feed and Watch tab. One source estimated that most views are still coming from news feeds where videos are exposed to huge audiences.

    "It's really hard to know the split between Watch and feed because they don't tell you — you don't have any data or insights," the source said. "They will never tell you if a Facebook video view comes from the Watch tab or the feed — I'm still pretty sure that a lot of the views come from the feed."

    Do you know something interesting about Watch? Contact this reporter at or securely via Signal at 720-261-0417.

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Why you shouldn't be afraid to fly, according to a pilot with over 20 years of experience

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    Chasing dots illusion

    Researchers at Yale University have developed a seriously confusing optical illusion that is proving our human nature has some bizarre quirks.

    As part of the Neural Correlate Society's annual optical illusions contest, the Yale researchers developed what they call the "Who's Chasing Whom?" illusion. 

    Take a look at the video the team developed. What do you see the red and blue dot doing?

    At first, it seems the red dot is chasing the blue dot over a map of Tokyo. After 30 seconds, everything changes and it seems like the blue dot is now chasing the red dot. 

    But what's really happening?

    Read more: A scientific study claims that your age affects how you see this famous optical illusion — what do you see?

    Turns out, the dots aren't chasing each other at all. The illusion is caused by the movement of the map. The researchers explained that by moving the map, our brain tricks our eyes into seeing the dots chase each other. When it appears that the blue dot suddenly starts chasing the red, it is actually just a shift in direction of the map.  

    Still confused? It's easier to see when the map is taken away.  Without Tokyo, you can see that the red dot is stationary and the blue dot is bouncing around haphazardly. Take a look. 

    The scientists said this is proof that as humans we intentionally give inanimate objects human acts so that we can better relate to them. 

    "Animate entities inhabit the world, and so it is their motion relative to the world (and not with respect to our retina) that determines whether we see chasing," the authors wrote about the study. 

    In other words, we see inanimate objects based on the way the rest of the environment is moving — in this case, the map. 

    “The primary goals of this study were to identify cues that trigger the perception of chasing, to quantify their influence, and to objectively evaluate the accuracy of this form of perception,” the authors wrote in the Journal of Vision

    From this study, researchers said this illusion helps us further understand sensory perception and neurological diseases.

    Visit INSIDER's homepage for more.

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: This mind-melting thought experiment of Einstein's reveals how to manipulate time

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    michelle obama melania trump

    • Michelle Obama sat down for a nearly hourlong conversation with ABC News' Robin Roberts that aired Sunday night on "20/20."
    • Roberts pointed out that Obama, like her predecessor Laura Bush, offered to give first lady Melania Trump advice when she entered the White House.
    • When asked whether Trump had ever called her up, Obama said, "No, no she hasn't."

    Michelle Obama put politics aside when Melania Trump succeeded her in the White House, offering to give her advice if she ever needed it.

    But Trump has never taken the former first lady up on that offer, Obama told ABC News' Robin Roberts in a nearly hourlong conversation that aired Sunday night on "20/20."

    "I know that Laura Bush reached out to you and said, 'If you need any help, I'm a phone call away,'" Roberts said.

    "Yep, yep," Obama responded.

    "You wrote about how and have talked about how you extended that same courtesy to Melania Trump," Roberts said. "Has she reached out to you and asked for any help?"

    "No, no she hasn't," Obama said, raising her eyebrows.

    On Tuesday, Trump's spokeswoman released a statement confirming what Obama said.

    "Mrs. Trump is a strong and independent woman who has been navigating her role as First Lady in her own way," the first lady's spokeswoman Stephanie Grisham said. "When she needs advice on any issue, she seeks it from her professional team within the White House."

    Trump and Obama have an interesting history that extends before the Trumps entered the White House. On the campaign trail in 2016, Trump came under fire for appearing to plagiarize part of the speech Obama gave at the 2008 Democratic National Convention.

    Trump's speechwriter later acknowledged that Trump was inspired by Obama's speech and that lines from it accidentally made their way into the address she drafted for Trump.

    michelle obama

    "A person she has always liked is Michelle Obama," the speechwriter, Meredith McIver, said of Trump in a statement. "Over the phone, she read me some passages from Mrs. Obama's speech as examples. I wrote them down and later included some of the phrasing in the draft that ultimately became the final speech."

    She continued: "This was my mistake, and I feel terrible for the chaos I have caused Melania and the Trumps, as well as to Mrs. Obama. No harm was meant."

    Read more:Melania Trump is brilliantly copying Michelle Obama and becoming the most popular person in the White House

    When NPR asked Obama in an interview that aired Friday whether she could relate to Trump's claim that she's the "most bullied person in the world," Obama said she could not, adding that she had seen the hardships and sacrifices of military families.

    "I admired them, and it made me feel like let me not complain out loud about anything that is happening to me," Obama said.

    She appeared on "20/20" to promote her new book, "Becoming," due out Tuesday.

    SEE ALSO: 'We were afraid to hope': Michelle Obama reveals she didn't expect Barack to win the presidency

    DON'T MISS: Michelle Obama rips Trump in new memoir

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: The Obamas are worth $40 million — here's how they make and spend their money

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    Xi Jinping

    • China has been violently trying to suppress on a new target: A vocal group of student communists campaigning for workers' rights.
    • Student activists fighting for labor rights around the country have been beaten up and detained. Witnesses have also been attacked.
    • The Chinese Communist Party's crackdown on the student group, who describe themselves as Marxists and Maoists, appears counterintuitive.
    • But China has long opposed of all kinds of grassroots protests for the sake of maintaining the country's stability.

    China's Communist Party is cracking down on a new target — student communists campaigning for workers' rights.

    At least a dozen student activists campaigning for workers' rights in China are missing, their friends have told outlets including Reuters, The New York Times, and The Guardian.

    Over the past week agents of the Chinese government violently rounded up the young activists in major cities including Beijing, Guangzhou, Shanghai, Shenzhen, and Wuhan, and detained them. Their whereabouts remain unknown.

    Their friends and associates told Reuters this was likely a coordinated effort to silence their campaign.

    jasic technology china activists

    More than ten people wearing dark clothing beat and dragged one activist, Zhang Shengye, into a black car last Friday night, Agence France-Presse reported, citing Zhang's associates.

    Zhang, a recent graduate of the prestigious Peking University, was taken from the school's campus. His associates alleged that the university "acquiesced to the kidnapping," according to Agence France-Presse.

    Other students passing by were also beaten up and stopped from taking photos or speaking, Agence France-Presse reported.

    22-year-old witness Yu Tianfu, who was studying in a nearby cafe, told The New York Times agents threw him to the ground, covered his mouth, kicked his head, and threatened to attack him more if he shouted again.

    At least four other Peking University students and alumni were rounded up that day, Reuters reported.

    Read more: Here's what China does to people who speak out against them

    peking university china

    Why is the Communist Party cracking down on communists?

    The missing activists formed part of a vocal group of campaigners who have since this summer staged protests around the country to support workers' rights.

    The student activists describe themselves as Marxists and Maoists, and say their support of workers' rights were part of their communist agenda, The Guardian reported.

    They originally formed their campaign to support workers at Jasic Technology, a welding machinery company in Shenzhen, who were fired and arrested for trying to form a labor union.

    But their protests have since expanded to other causes, including alleged worker abuse at an unnamed Chinese supplier for Apple, and for miners suffering from lung disease, The New York Times reported.

    But this new crackdown by the Chinese Communist Party — formed decades ago to reflect Marxist theory and to support land workers' rights, and who still requires universities to give lessons on Marxism— is not as surprising as it sounds.

    The Chinese state today, keen to maintain one-party order, disapproves of all kinds of grassroots protests as they are seen to undermine the party and disrupt the country's stability. Additionally, while China's communist party retains the central government and economic planning of Marxist governments, it's widely embraced capitalism and private enterprise. 

    This opposition to grassroots organizations extends to labor activists and independent unions.

    huizhou china student activists.JPG

    In August Chinese riot police detained at least 40 of those student activists who were planning a demonstration for Jasic workers in Shenzhen.

    Video footage showed riot police, wearing helmets and carrying shields, bursting into the students' apartment and scuffling with them.

    Some of those students remain missing, the Financial Times reported.

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: This top economist has a radical plan to change the way Americans vote

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    88 rising_4x3

    • 88Rising is an innovative new entertainment company for the social-media age, combining a record label with a creative agency, a house for web-video production, and an artist-management agency.
    • The company, which features hip-hop stars such as Rich Brian, Joji, and the Higher Brothers, was founded by Sean Miyashiro to "celebrate Asian talent and Asian stories and Asian culture."
    • The company built its name early on with viral hits, but Miyashiro wants to turn his company into a "Vice or Disney for Asians."
    • The company's greatest asset might be Miyashiro's ability to work out savvy partnerships with brands including Guess and Sprite.

    If you want to understand where the entertainment industry is going in the age of Instagram, SnapChat, and Soundcloud, look no further than 88Rising, a shape-shifting startup not even 37-year-old founder Sean Miyashiro can find a tidy way to explain.

    From the outside, it looks like a record label mixed with a creative agency, a web-video production house, and an artist-management company. But if you ask Miyashiro to explain what exactly 88Rising is, as I did recently, he tends to chuckle.

    “Damn. It’s funny because I always answer this different,” Miyashiro told me. It's as if he knows his company is a Rorschach test for the media, his investors, and its fans.

    “We're really focused on creating superstars and creating heroes and creating something that people can really believe in and be excited about. A global media company that focuses on celebrating Asian talent and Asian stories and Asian culture.”

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    88Rising — "88" in Chinese means "double happiness"— launched three years ago. It has already fostered several stars. While its biggest names don’t yet rival name-brand artists such as Taylor Swift or Justin Bieber, they have dedicated followings and a certain cachet with connected Gen Zers.

    The biggest of the bunch include Brian Imanuel, a 19-year-old rapper and beatmaker who goes by the name Rich Brian; George Miller, a Japanese-born R&B singer who got his start as a YouTube star making outrageous comedy videos before turning to music full time under the moniker Joji; and the Higher Brothers, a quartet of rappers from Chengdu, China, who make high-energy, bouncy tunes about modern Chinese life, like the group’s 2017 single “WeChat,” about the titular Chinese messaging app.

    When Miyashiro has been asked to explain it, he’s likened his company to a future Vice and Disney. It would be easy to write off Miyashiro as having delusions of grandeur. But 88Rising and its fans are the kind of thing you need to see in action to really understand.

    88Rising and its founder, Sean Miyashiro, have their fingers on the pulse

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    On a warm September night, Miyashiro invited me to attend the New York date of the company’s 88 Degrees & Rising Tour.

    The 21-date tour comes on the heels of 88Rising’s inaugural Head In The Clouds music festival in Los Angeles, which brought together the company’s complete artist lineup, featuring artists from Indonesia, Korea, China, and LA, for the first time.

    Held at Pier 17, a swanky rooftop at the southern tip of Manhattan, the concert started slow as the streetwear-clad attendees filed in while 88Rising’s newest artists ran through abbreviated set lists.

    Those early sets, like much of 88Rising’s oeuvre, have a DIY quality. Like the first generation of YouTube stars, the artists feel talented, but unstudied and rough around the edges. The artists alternate between bleeding their hearts with unvarnished honesty and making the next irony-laden meme-inspired joke. In a way, each artist’s persona seems designed, intentionally or not, to make teenagers feel like they could be one of them.

    In recent dates on the 88 Degrees and Rising Tour, Joji has taken to juggling between songs.

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    During his set, August 08 — an LA-based African-American singer who traffics in melodic and atmospheric R&B — stops the music to egg on the crowd. “Everybody yell ‘F—k!’” he shouted mischievously. “F—k, f—k, f—k, f—k!”

    At one point, he stops mid-song and directs the crowd to look at the sunset. “Everybody look at that skyline,” August 08 directed the audience. “It’s beautiful, man.”

    At first, I can’t tell if he’s trolling the crowd. But then everyone turns toward the Hudson River. The sunset is gorgeous with pink, purple, and orange cotton-candy clouds in the sky.

    Downstairs, in the green room, August introduced himself shyly before complaining that he wasn’t sure the crowd was feeling the set. He, like the rest of the 88Rising crew, is earnest in person. A few minutes later, Rich Brian, Joji and others in 88Rising’s orbit debated the merits of Brockhampton, another of-the-moment hip-hop collective.

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    Meanwhile, Miyashiro was in another room finishing up an interview with Vice. The budding mogul is nothing if not savvy. In the last year, he’s scored glowing features from Bloomberg, The New Yorker, and CNN.

    After the interview wraps up, he starts talking shop with me. Wearing a rolled cuff skullcap pulled back over messy hair, a wispy beard, and a flamboyantly patterned button-down, Miyashiro has a mind that never seems to stray too far from work. Within minutes, he’s asking me if I shoot video, telling me Business Insider’s feature on 88Rising would work really well as a video, and offering pointers to Vice’s videographers on where they might get the best shots for the segment they’re producing. The funny part is, he’s right.

    Miyashiro is prone, like his artists, to switch rapidly between impish trolling and wide-eyed earnestness. In the elevator up to the rooftop concert, I ask him about Thump, the now defunct electronic music site he cocreated at Vice, he looks at me deadpan and says, “What’s Thump?” He holds it for a moment before he starts cracking up. “I’m just f----ing with you, man.”

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    It’s clear that Miyashiro understands the digital-media game better than most — its need for headlines, hooks, and, above all, content — and he knows it.

    To Miyashiro’s mind, 88Rising has four parts to its business: a digital-media and video-production business, a music label, a burgeoning arm looking into film and TV opportunities, and a “cultural agency business” working with like-minded brands.

    When describing his strategy for helping Chinese megastar Kris Wu break into American hip-hop, Miyashiro told The New Yorker he discouraged Wu from appearing on “Good Morning America.” The morning show’s 4 million viewers aren’t who Wu needs. Miyashiro told Wu he needs the audiences who read hip-hop magazines like XXL and Complex and listens to Zane Lowe on Apple Music’s Beats 1.

    Later, when I ask him where the idea for 88Rising started, he again turns to deadpan: “The idea started in my brain. Like, I was just chilling and I was, like, ‘I wanna do that.’” But then he pauses, as if recognizing that he needs to be earnest again.

    “The whole genesis of 88Rising came from me and my friends hanging out," Miyashiro said. "I was fortunate enough to hang out with a lot of different creators and people doing cool things that happened to be Asian. They were all leaders in their respective fields, whether it was graphic design or acting or music.

    “And I just thought that … if we all tried to combine [our skills] and do something with a real, concerted effort, it was gonna be something that's better than nothing because nothing existed.”

    Early on, Miyashiro figured out how to turn viral hits into a career

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    Miyashiro possesses a native’s understanding of media, virality, and, in a word, cool. His initial incarnation of the company was a DIY management firm called CXSHXNLY that he started in 2015 from the roof of a Bronx parking garage.

    He would trawl the internet looking for up-and-coming rappers from Asia. Miyashiro’s first client was Jonathan Park, a Korean-American rapper who goes by the name Dumbfoundead.

    His first big success came when Park showed him the video for the 2015 hit “IT G MA,” by Lee Dongheon, a South Korean rapper who goes by the name Keith Ape. Miyashiro and Park persuaded Ape to come to the US for the South by Southwest talent showcase in Austin, Texas. Miyashiro then persuaded Lee to become a client.

    Shortly after, Miyashiro contacted Taiwanese-American music producer Josh Pan to create a remix of “IT G MA” with Waka Flocka, A$AP Ferg, Father, and Dumfoundead. The remix reportedly cost him less than $10,000 to pull off. It and the SXSW performance launched Ape’s US stardom.

    Miyashiro’s stewardship of Ape’s career speaks to how 88Rising, even in its prototype stage, has positioned itself as different from the rest of the music industry and — if Miyashiro’s ambitions are realized — Hollywood too. Miyashiro didn’t simply release a new song for Ape; he strategically directed Ape’s entire entrance into the culture, from his media appearances and his early shows to his artistic direction. It was a creative, hands-on approach to get his artist the right looks from the right people.

    “Our label exists because no major label or distributor or American music company's gonna know what to do with something like this,” Miyashiro said. “We're the only ones who are gonna know and it's not easy.”

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    Miyashiro pulled a similar feat with Rich Brian.

    In 2016, Rich Brian was 16 and going by the problematic moniker Rich Chigga, a portmanteau of Chinese and the N-word. He independently released the rap song ““Dat $tick.” The accompanying video features the young Indonesian rapping hip-hop tropes like gunplay and fancy cars in his shockingly deep baritone as he struts in a pink polo shirt and fanny pack. The video went viral — it currently has 105 million views — likely because of the transgressive incongruity between Brian’s appearance, his voice, and his lyrics, and the spectacle of seeing hip-hop distorted in his irreverent and foreign lens. But it also courted controversy for Brian’s use of the N-word, his rap name, and, in some eyes, his cultural appropriation.

    Miyashiro’s response was to bring together a number of up-and-coming and established hip-hop artists to film a series of videos at South by Southwest. The most successful of the bunch featured the artists reacting to “Dat $tick” and Rich Brian as they watched the video live. Among others, Cam’ron, 21Savage, the Flatbush Zombies, and Ghostface Killah feature in the video, which has more than 18 million views. For the most part, the artists respond positively, if incredulously, to Brian’s style and flow.

    Later that year, Ghostface Killah recorded a remix of the track. It has more than 13 million views in its own right.

    The video was a savvy move. By putting the question of “Dat $tick” directly to hip-hop’s artists, Miyashiro recontextualized the conversation around Brian’s cultural appropriation and get him rubber-stamped as an artist who could be taken seriously.

    Brian dropped the Rich Chigga moniker in favor of Rich Brian at the beginning of this year, shortly before releasing his debut album “Amen.” The album, for the most part, eschews the gangster-rap and trap cosplay for songs both autobiographical and introspective about what it’s like to live Brian’s strange life. He began as an outcast and an introvert using Twitter and Vine as an outlet for his sometimes offensive humor before producing his own music and hip-hop.

    Miyashiro maintained that Brian came to the decision to pursue more personal music on his own, adding that 88Rising’s artists are self-directed when it comes to their art. But it seems likely that Miyashiro — and by extension Brian — were influenced by the internet conversations around cultural appropriation. Other 88Rising artists have drawn similar criticism.

    “He hasn't done anything remotely similar since. He's grown as a person and as an artist, and now has a much more global point of view,” Miyashiro said of “Dat $tick” and Rich Brian. “None of our artists are talking about anything that they don't do.”

    88Rising’s big sell is that it can bring new brands to its audience and new audiences to its brand

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    What makes 88Rising unique, aside from its focus on Asian stars and entertainment, is its business model.

    While Miyashiro started his career with a number of music-related jobs, he made his first real mark at Vice. In 2013, electronic dance music was blowing up and he, along with several friends who managed EDM acts, persuaded Vice to let them set up a new media platform dedicated to the genre. By covering dance music and nightlife from an insider’s perspective, Thump quickly gained the respect of both established and up-and-coming artists and a dedicated following among the larger underground dance-music culture.

    Miyashiro helped build Thump from the ground up. He said the experience helped shape his blueprint for how to launch a media property. Tom Punch, Vice’s chief commercial and creative director, told Bloomberg that Miyashiro had a talent for pulling in advertisers, like Anheuser-Busch InBev, that wanted to capitalize on the EDM boom.

    It’s easy to see the parallels between 88Rising and Vice. Miyashiro doesn’t shy away from them.

    “There are a lot of differences from our business to theirs, but the one core aspect that might be similar is that Vice has an incredibly strong brand,” Miyashiro said. “They've been able to take that brand and what it stands … and they've been able to expand their brand into all these different opportunities.”

    As of right now, the music label is the most fully fledged and well known, thanks to Rich Brian, Joji, and the rest of 88Rising’s roster. But it’s hard not to think that it’s Miyashiro’s keen eye for working with big brands that persuaded global advertising firm WPP to invest a reported $4.5 million of a total $7 million that the company has raised so far.

    In January, the company worked with the ad agency Ogilvy to come up with the concept for a Sprite commercial in China featuring MaSiWei, one of the members of Higher Brothers. The ad, which began airing just before the Lunar New Year, China’s biggest holiday, features MaSiWei visiting his family for the holidays. The family asks him the usual prying questions about his girlfriend and his salary, which MaSiWei deflects with an ice-cold Sprite and rhymes from his single “Refresh,” the video for which also doubles as a Sprite commercial.

    “We were actually pitching against all of these legacy agencies in the market that have been there forever and we won,” Miyashiro said. “We've never even made a television commercial before.”

    The ad and the song are the kind of intermingling of editorial and advertising that brands crave and Vice has often been criticized for. But whereas Vice must adhere to the standards of a news organization, 88Rising has no such obligations. It's an entertainment company committed to raising the profile of its artists and its own brand. The symbiotic leveraging of brands — using big-name ones to introduce 88Rising and its artists to more people and the use of 88Rising’s brand to confer street cred on those brands — is the point.

    It’s more or less what Miyashiro has already done in music, partnering with the hip-hop press-approved artists that have been featured on 88Rising’s songs. Playboi Carti, Ghostface Killah, Famous Dex, and Wacka Flocka Flame — all of whom have been featured in 88Rising songs or remixes — give 88Rising’s artists credibility while 88Rising introduces those artists to its fan base.

    Though the ad was successful, Miyashiro maintains that, nine months later, 88Rising is onto the next evolution of its business model. Whereas the Sprite commercial came out of a standard ad-industry process — brand produces brief, creative teams pitch ideas, brand selects winner — Miyashiro is after what he calls “true partnerships.” Miyashiro doesn’t want 88Rising to be subject to selling ad impressions against its audience or erecting content paywalls, like most digital-media companies, or responding to briefs like an advertising firm.

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    Instead, he wants 88Rising to create projects that, by virtue of their premium nature, brands simply want to help fund and be associated with.

    “When we get into any type of brand conversation or any type of partnership conversation, we already have the ideas for things that we, as 88Rising, want to make,” Miyashiro said. “We’re not looking to ask [brands] what they want and then make it for them.”

    The first fruit of this approach is 88Rising’s upcoming collaboration with the clothing brand Guess, set to drop on November 8. The 14-piece collection features clothing pieces costing up to $148 and all designed in colorful, psychedelic tie-dye, a nod to the company’s recent compilation album, "Head in the Clouds."

    Guess has a long history in hip-hop. Last year it worked with rapper and fashion icon A$AP Rocky on a clothing line. But, Miyashiro said, this is the first time Guess has collaborated with an Asian company.

    Miyashiro maintains that the collaboration came out of creatives at 88Rising and those at Guess wanting to work together, not Guess asking them how to enter the Asian market.

    “It's more like we're going to come together and our brand is going to be amplified through this and their brand is going to be amplified through this,” Miyashiro said. “When this comes out, this is another thing that elevates us.”

    At the concert in New York, the 88Rising employees I met were already dressed in Guess x 88Rising T-shirts. The S’s are turned into 88s with an the company’s signature arrow. It’s likely only a matter of time before 88Rising’s artists are decked out in the swag too.

    88Rising is already looking to get to the next level

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    This year 88Rising nearly doubled in size, from 24 to 45 employees, and has opened new offices in Los Angeles and Shanghai. But as I visited its headquarters in Chelsea, it feels like 88Rising is notable for what it could be rather than what it is. And right now that’s a scrappy young company and CEO making it up as they go.

    The way Miyashiro talks, I'd be forgiven for imagining the company’s headquarters akin to Vice’s now famous swanky Williamsburg hipster warehouse. In reality, it’s a workmanlike room with exposed brick walls on the fourth floor of a doormanless building that holds maybe a dozen or so people crowded around laptops and iMacs where video editors cut the brand’s latest YouTube videos.

    Miyashiro’s office is in the back. Decorated with a glass table, a velvet sofa, and large neon sign featuring an 88 and the Chinese character for “rising,” it appears to double as a conference room. Framed album covers of 88Rising’s artists hang on the walls.  

    As we wait to start the interview, Miyashiro seems a bit self-conscious about the office’s startup-standard wood tables and chairs and starts quizzing one of his employees about when she could upgrade the furniture to something more “dope.”

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    Miyashiro’s eyes always seem set on the next evolution of his vision.

    “You might look at us right now and say, ‘Hey, 88Rising is the leading Asian label. They have a great collective,’ Miyashiro said. “But in a year or two from now, we'd like to have films that have been made and brought to the world … Three years from now, we might have our own TV channel.”

    Getting to that point will largely rely on 88Rising’s artists continuing to execute and Miyashiro and his team continuing to find ways to get its audience hooked on new artists. In a lot of ways, the team had it easy with 88Rising’s first generation of artists. Before Miyashiro began working with them, Keith Ape had already come out with his career-making single “IT G MA”; Rich Brian had already gone viral with “Dat $tick”; and Joji was already a bona fide star on YouTube, albeit for his comedic antics. He invented the “Harlem Shake” meme when three costumed friends danced along to the Baauer hit.

    With artists like Indonesian singer Nikki and August 08, the company’s first African-American artist, Miyashiro is more or less starting from scratch. And that’s before you get into the difficulty of getting an Asian-led film or TV show made in Hollywood, with or without the box-office success of “Crazy Rich Asians.” But none of that scares Miyashiro.

    “We like doing things that nobody else has done before,” Miyashiro said. “We want to be a part of that conversation.”

    SEE ALSO: A 35-year-old who dropped out of high school had a vision of a utopian future for China, the US, and the world — and it's led her to the forefront of a tech startup worth $3 billion

    DON'T MISS: Inside the Hong Kong billionaire enclave name-dropped in 'Crazy Rich Asians,' where Alibaba founder Jack Ma may have bought a $191 million mansion

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