Quantcast
Channel: Business Insider
Browsing All 47773 Browse Latest View Live
Mark channel Not-Safe-For-Work? cancel confirm NSFW Votes: (0 votes)
Are you the publisher? Claim or contact us about this channel.
0

Some Americans say 'firefly' while others say 'lightning bug,' and a series of maps highlights an interesting theory why

0
0

firefly lightning bug fireflies

  • In the United States, glowing insects are known as "fireflies" or "lightning bugs" depending on where you live.
  • "Firefly" is the more common term in the West and New England, while people in the South and most of the Midwest tend to say "lightning bug."
  • There's an interesting theory to explain why the two competing terms emerged, and it has to do with the natural surroundings of the two regions.


The natural world has influenced the way we speak for as long as language has been around.

In English, we've taken plenty of idioms from our natural surroundings: "the coast is clear," "go out on a limb," and "wild goose chase," to name a few.

But the environment has a much more subtle effect on our language, too. Take a look at this map from Josh Katz, author of "Speaking American: How Y’all, Youse, and You Guys Talk." It shows where in the United States people tend to say "fireflies" or "lightning bugs" to refer to the little glowing insect we see in the summertime:

dialect map

It's one of many examples of things that have different names in different parts of the US.

But it goes deeper. As meteorological researcher Jason Keeler noted on Twitter, the areas where people say "lightning bug" seem to overlap with the parts of the country where lightning strikes are particularly frequent (the purple area in the map below):

lightning map

Meanwhile, "firefly" is the more common term in most of the West, which just so happens to be the region that experiences the most wildfires:

wildfire map

The correlation could be a mere coincidence, as American Dialect Society member John Baker told Business Insider. "But it also seems reasonable that people are subconsciously reminded of the locally more prominent risk when referring to these insects, though neither fire nor lightning is involved in any way," he said in an email.

While more research would need to be done to see if Keeler's observation has linguistic merit, it's certainly thought-provoking that the type of weather in a region could influence the local term for an insect.

Interestingly, the firefly/lightning bug divide has a surprisingly rich and well-documented history. In 1949, linguist Hans Kurath found that "firefly" was particularly popular in large cities on the East Coast. Later, the Dictionary of American Regional English found that "lightning bug" was the more common term in the South and Midwest, but not the Pacific coast. New York City seems to be caught in the middle: according to Katz, 86% of Manhattan residents say "firefly," while 60% of people on Staten Island say "lightning bug."

Those aren't even the only two names for it, lexicographer and American English expert David Barnhart told Business Insider. Depending on what part of the country you're in, you may have grown up calling it a candlefly, firebob, firebug, glowworm, jack-o-lantern, lamp bug, or will-o'-the-wisp.

No matter what you call it, the divide between "firefly" and "lightning bug" is just one of the linguistic quirks that makes American English such an intriguing dialect.

SEE ALSO: 27 fascinating maps that show how Americans speak English differently across the US

DON'T MISS: 'Sorry to Bother You' is right — minorities are judged by the sound of their voice, and there's science to prove it

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Why 'moist' is one of the most hated words in the English language

TGI Fridays' founder invented the chain as part of his 'business plan to meet a lot of women'

0
0

Alan Stillman TGIFriday's Founder

  • TGI Fridays wasn't founded as the sit-down, family-centric chain it is today, but instead as one of the first bars where singles could mingle in the midst of the sexual revolution. 
  • "My business plan was to meet a lot of women," founder Alan Stillman said in Business Insider's new podcast "Household Name." "It's a hell of a business plan, I’ll tell you that."
  • TO HEAR THE FULL STORY, subscribe to the podcast for free here.

 

When TGI Fridays' founder created the chain, he had just one thing on his mind: women.

The year was 1965. Alan Stillman was a 28-year-old living in New York City, selling essential oils and trying to meet girls at cocktail parties. Then, came an opportunity to buy a schlubby, neighborhood bar on the Upper East Side.

In the midst of the sexual revolution, people were looking for somewhere to mingle unchaperoned, a seismic shift in how Americans were dating. Stillman was convinced that he could turn the bar into just that place. 

Fridays

"My business plan was to meet a lot of women," Stillman told Business Insider in an interview for our new podcast "Household Name." "It's a hell of a business plan, I’ll tell you that."

Stillman borrowed money from his mother to repaint the bar, which he named TGI Fridays. After it opened in March 1965, the customers quickly followed. 

"It became more similar to what a mosh pit is," Stillman said. "It was so crowded that you didn't have to walk up to anybody to get a name or a telephone number. You bumped into them." 

The success produced imitators — so many that New York Magazine dubbed the strip of the neighborhood on the Upper West Side the "Fertile Crescent" as singles flooded the area looking for dates. Stillman franchised his concept, allowing Fridays to spread across the country, bringing alcohol and an excuse to meet people to the masses. 

Today, TGI Fridays is a far cry from the singles bar of the sexual revolution. The chain is more likely to draw in families than a 28-year-old trying to pick up some women. But, according to Stillman, that's the natural progression of things. 

"You don't need a TGI Fridays bar scene to meet somebody," Stillman said.

"We're back to all the electronics around here," he continued. "It's just not a necessity, whereas at the time, although I didn't know it, we invented a necessity and we solved what was a really big problem." 

To hear more from Stillman and others who dated at TGI Fridays back when it was one of the first singles bars in America, subscribe to "Household Name," a new podcast from Business Insider premiering July 25. Subscribe for free on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, or your favorite app. Next week's episode tells the story of how Donald Trump saved Pizza Hut's stuffed-crust pizza, and how it saved The Donald, too. 

SEE ALSO: The manager of the last Blockbusters in Alaska speaks out on the death of the chain, nostalgic tourists, and Russell Crowe's jockstrap

SEE ALSO: How to subscribe to a podcast

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Why this cactus is listed for $250,000

20 lottery winners who lost every penny

0
0

lottery

Mega Millions lottery drawing determined on Tuesday that a winning ticket worth $522 million was sold in California.

The announcement gives hope to lottery players across the country that anyone can get lucky if they simply keep playing.

While buying a ticket may seem tempting, the numbers suggest that it almost certainly isn't worth it.

But even if it does pan out, winning the lottery will not solve all of life's problems.

In fact, many people's lives became notably worse after they hit the jackpot, as you can see from the following cautionary tales.

SEE ALSO: Someone in California bought a winning lottery ticket worth more than half a billion dollars — here's exactly what a lottery winner should do, according to a financial adviser

DON'T MISS: We did the math to see if it's worth it to buy a ticket for the Powerball jackpot

Lara and Roger Griffiths bought their dream home … and then life fell apart.

Before they won a $2.76 million lottery jackpot in 2005, Lara and Roger Griffiths, of England, hardly ever argued.

Then they won and bought a million-dollar barn-converted house and a Porsche, not to mention luxurious trips to Dubai, Monaco, and New York City.

Their fortune ended in 2010 when a freak fire gutted their house, which was underinsured, forcing them to shell out for repairs and seven months of temporary accommodations.

Shortly after, Roger drove away in the Porsche after Lara confronted him over emails suggesting that he was interested in another woman. That ended their 14-year marriage.



Bud Post lost $16.2 million within a nightmarish year — his own brother put out a hit on him.

William "Bud" Post won $16.2 million in the Pennsylvania lottery in 1988, but he was $1 million in debt within a year.

"I wish it never happened," Post said. "It was totally a nightmare."

A former girlfriend successfully sued him for a third of his winnings, and his brother was arrested for hiring a hit man to kill him in the hopes he'd inherit a share of the winnings.

After sinking money into family businesses, Post sank into debt and spent time in jail for firing a gun over the head of a bill collector.

"I was much happier when I was broke," he said, according to The Washington Post.

Bud lived quietly on $450 a month and food stamps until his death in 2006.



Martyn and Kay Tott won a $5 million jackpot, but lost the ticket.

Martyn Tott, 33, and his 24-year-old wife, from the UK, missed out on a $5 million lottery fortune after losing their ticket.

A seven-week investigation by Camelot Group, the company that runs the UK's national lottery, convinced officials their claim to the winning ticket was legitimate. But since there is a 30-day time limit on reporting lost tickets, the company was not required to pay up, and the jackpot became the largest unclaimed amount since the lottery began in 1994.

"Thinking you're going to have all that money is really liberating. Having it taken away has the opposite effect," Kay Tott told The Daily Mail. "It drains the life from you and puts a terrible strain on your marriage. It was the cruelest torture imaginable."



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

If you've ever accidentally poured milk in the bin or put your keys in the fridge, new research could explain why

0
0

keys fridge

  • If you've ever accidentally put your keys in the fridge instead of the milk, you're not alone.
  • This mistaken action is normally brushed off as a simple error.
  • But according to a new study, it could be something to do with our mental imagery.
  • Our actions are heavily influenced by the images in our heads.
  • If our minds are focused on the wrong mental image, we can end up doing the wrong thing, such as driving to the wrong destination.


Recently, I was clearing a glass and some rubbish out of my room. I went into the kitchen, and instead of chucking the water down the sink and throwing out the wrappers, I poured the water into the bin and threw the wrappers in the sink.

I realised the mistake immediately, shook my head, then got on with my day. I put it down to daydreaming, but according to new research from the University of Plymouth, there could be a different psychological explanation.

The new study, published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, found that errors like putting your car keys in the fridge and your milk on the side occur because people control their actions through mental imagery. If they accidentally think of the wrong mental image, then they might do something unexpected.

The research was led by PhD student James Colton, who recruited 32 undergraduates to rehearse a finger tapping sequence. Occasionally they were shown images for the same movement, or a different one. They were unable to stop themselves being influenced by the images, even when they were forewarned about them and told to stick to the original sequence.

Forgotten smartphone on a park bench. Woman is leaving from a bench where she lost her cell phone.

The term "ideomotor" was first used to describe this phenomenon by William Benjamin Carter in 1852, Colton told Business Insider. He was a scientist who investigated supernatural phenomena, such as communicating with the afterlife with an Ouija board.

"It spawned an influential branch of psychology which has had something of a resurgence of interest in recent years," Colton said. "This study tested, for the first time, one of ideomotor theory's central ideas — that the intention to act is nothing more than a strong mental image of how it would look, sound a feel to behave in that way."

It's a bit like when we act on "autopilot," because a lot of our behaviour seems to occur automatically. When we perform mundane tasks like making a cup of tea or clearing objects from room to room, we do so with minimal conscious oversight.

"More simply, if everything appears to be fine, we don't need to pay too much attention to what we're doing," Colton said. "However, when we're not paying attention, sometimes strong cues in the environment can lead us to behave in a way that is counter to our intentions. This is essentially what we tried to induce with the experiment."

For example, when you're driving a familiar route, people often say they "glaze over" and don't remember the route they took. We change gears, press down on the brakes, and take the turnings without really needing to decide to do any of it.

"Now that's a pretty good feature of our brains, as it allows us to do and think about many things at once without getting lost in the detail," said Colton.

"Unfortunately, it also means that we're especially prone to making these kinds of mistakes when we're distracted or multitasking. I was once so preoccupied with the stresses of starting a new job that I found myself driving to my old place of work along a well-rehearsed route. I didn't notice until I pulled into the car park!"

Colton and his team have conducted some further experiments to probe the effect in more detail. They are particularly interested in why some participants are more prone to being led astray by their mental images than others. This could be related to how suggestible they are to hypnosis, Colton said. Essentially, being led by my mental imagery rather than being in the present could mean I'm more susceptible to being put in a trance.

But there are also further reaching applications for the research, according to Colton, such as when people are in recovery after illness.

"For example, mental imagery training is used as a means of rehabilitation for patients that have suffered strokes and have lost the ability to move the affected limb," he said. "We think it's possible to build on what we've learnt from this experiment to improve this imagery therapy."

SEE ALSO: Exercising more could reduce those times where you can't think of the right word, according to a new study

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Astronomers just discovered 12 new moons around Jupiter

KitKat makers Nestlé just lost a wild, 16-year legal battle to dominate the chocolate market in Europe after losing an argument about its shape (NESN)

0
0

kitkat

  • Nestlé, the manufacturers of KitKat, lost a 16-year legal fight to dominate the chocolate bar market.
  • Nestlé applied to trademark the distinctive trapezoid shape of KitKats in 2002, and initially succeeded.
  • But KitKat's competitors — who make very similar snacks — objected.
  • This started a string of court cases and appeals for some ten years.
  • In 2016, an EU court annulled the trademark, saying that Nestlé had failed to prove that KitKat has a "distinctive character" across all EU states.
  • Nestlé appealed the decision.
  • Europe's top court threw out Nestlé's appeal on Wednesday, removing any hope of them sewing up the market for themselves.


KitKat's makers have suffered a major setback in its 16-year quest to dominate the market for four-fingered chocolate bars.

Nestlé has been fighting to trademark the distinctive trapezoid shape in Europe, where other snack companies have been manufacturing similar treats.

One of its largest competitors is Kvikk Lunsj — pronounced "quick lunch" — a Norwegian snack first manufactured in 1937, two years after KitKats first appeared.

KitKat's shape is already protected in Australia, Canada, and South Africa, according to Sky News, but the battle in Europe has been particularly difficult.

In 2002, Nestlé applied to the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) to trademark the shape. The office granted the mark four years later.

But Mondelez, the manufacturers of Kvikk Lunsj, appealed the following year, starting a slew of court cases in Europe.

kvikk lunsj chocolate bar

After nine years of court battles, in 2016 a lower EU court annulled the EUIPO's decision, saying that the office "could not validly conclude" that KitKat had acquired the "distinctive character" in all EU member states.

Nestlé had to be able to prove that KitKat had "acquired distinctive character in the part of the EU in which it did not previously have such character," according to a European Court of Justice summary. In other words, the chocolate bar had to be recognizable enough to be trademarked.

Nestlé had been able to prove that in ten EU countries — Denmark, Germany, Spain, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Austria, Finland, Sweden, and the UK — but had insufficient evidence to do so in Belgium, Ireland, Greece, and Portugal.

The global company continued to appeal against the decision. But on Wednesday, the European Court of Justice — Europe's top court — dismissed Nestlé's appeal, saying instead that the lower court had been right to annul the trademark.

The court said in a statement on Wednesday: "Although such proof may be produced globally for all the Member States or groups of Member States, it is not, however, sufficient that the party with the burden of providing such evidence produces only evidence that fails to cover part of the EU, even a part consisting of only one Member State."

Other European snack companies have been told they weren't allowed to trademark their products in the past. Lindt, the Swiss chocolate company, lost a case to trademark gold-wrapped chocolate bunnies in 2013.

Last year, Toblerone was also forced to prove that its triangular shape was distinctive enough to trademark when British retailer Poundland made an off-brand version. That case ended in an out-of-court settlement.

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: NYU Stern professor on what many people get wrong about sustainability: It's not just about the environment and it actually leads to better financial performance

I took an epic road trip through the bizarre and beautiful desert that has doubled as distant planets in 'Star Wars,' 'The Martian,' and countless other movies

0
0

mars movie film star wars wadi rum jordan (13 of 40)

  • Wadi Rum, a desert valley in Jordan, has played the part of Mars and distant planets in countless movies, including "The Martian," "Star Wars: Rogue One," "Prometheus," and Red Planet."
  • The reddish hue of the sand combined with the massive granite rock faces and sandstone mesas makes for an otherworldly landscape.
  • I recently visited, and it was breathtaking. I'm already planning a return trip so I can spend more time in Wadi Rum.

Don't tell Elon Musk, but you don't have to fire off into space to visit Mars. Just get on a plane — or a bus — to the Middle Eastern country of Jordan.

Jordan is a small, dry, mostly landlocked country that neighbors Israel to the east. Within its rugged terrain is Wadi Rum, a desert valley known for its dramatic sandstone and granite rock faces and the reddish hue of its sand.

The landscape is so otherworldly that countless filmmakers have used the desert as a location for films taking place on distant planets.

Most recently, the desert served as the backdrop for Mars in the Matt Damon-starring space-survival film "The Martian."

But "The Martian" is far from the only film to use the desert. Wadi Rum played the part of Mars in the 2000 film "Red Planet" and the 2013 film "The Last Days on Mars." It played the part of the alien world in the 2012 horror film "Prometheus" and the planet of Jedha in "Rogue One: A Star Wars Story."

On a recent trip to Jordan, I decided to take a road trip through Wadi Rum. After barreling through the desert in jeeps, sprinting down sand dunes, and riding on ATVs, I think I can say I've officially visited another planet.

Here's what it was like:

SEE ALSO: One of the 7 wonders of the world is a 10,000-year-old city hidden in the desert — and in real life, it's more incredible than you can imagine

To start with, on the left is an actual photo of Wadi Rum. On the right is a picture of the same rock formation with some visual effects to make it look a bit more like Mars. But as you can see, it's not a stretch.

Read more about my visit to Petra »



I decided to take a tour through Jordan to visit the desert of Wadi Rum and the ancient archeological site of Petra in two days. After being blown away by Petra, I was skeptical that Wadi Rum could top it.



But when we arrived at the Bedouin camp in Wadi Rum after visiting Petra, I knew I was wrong. While Wadi Rum is mostly uninhabitable, Bedouins have lived in different parts of the desert for centuries. Today, many run luxury campsites for tourists and Jordanians.



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

9 things you can do right now to reduce your risk of high blood pressure

0
0

blood pressure

High blood pressure kills — and it kills quietly.

There aren't any obvious signs (other than a cuff reading) that a person's blood pressure is dangerously high, which is why many call hypertension the "silent killer."

It can be tough to see outward signs of pressure building up in a person's blood vessels until it's too late and the extra stress on arteries leads to a heart attack, a stroke, or heart failure.

In 2013, the problem contributed to more than 1,000 deaths in the US every day, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Recently, the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology lowered the bar for what they consider high blood pressure to a cuff reading above 130/80, down from 140/90.

The new guidelines mean nearly half of adults in the US — 46% — should lower their blood pressure, according to the American Heart Association.

Doing so may help more than just your heart: a recent study of more than 9,000 older adults revealed that lowering a person's top blood pressure reading to 120 (versus the old standard of 140) could significantly lower their risk of developing mild cognitive impairment and dementia.

Here are some tips on how to do it.

SEE ALSO: Doctors say they've figured out how often you need to work out to offset the effects of sitting all day

Blood pressure is measured in two numbers, which tell you how hard you blood is pushing against the walls of your arteries as it circulates. Too much pressure isn't good for the body.

The top number is your systolic pressure, or the amount of pressure in your blood vessels when your heart beats. It ideally should remain below 120.

The bottom number is your diastolic pressure, or the amount of pressure in your blood vessels when your heart rests between beats. It should stay below 80.



If you want to lower your blood pressure, jump around.

A bit of movement can also boost heart health.

When you're more physically active, the heart doesn't have to work as hard to pump blood around the body.

And you don't have to be a pro athlete to reap all-star benefits from exercising. A recent study found that people who start high-intensity aerobic exercise in middle age can reverse some of the dangerous and deadly effects of a life spent sitting in a chair or on a couch.

Researchers already knew that a lifetime of exercising four or five days a week helps keep a heart healthy. But the new findings suggest that even a person who shunned exercise for decades can change their ways later in life and become part of the heart-healthy crew.



Drink less.

If you're going to happy hour, moderation is key.

According to the Mayo Clinic, having more than three servings of alcohol in one sitting can temporarily raise your blood pressure, and repeated binging can lead to more long-term blood pressure problems.

A recent scientific analysis of nearly 600,000 drinkers in 19 high-income countries published in the Lancet in April found that even moderate, daily drinking may hurt your health. People who reported drinking six or more alcoholic beverages a week were more likely to die early from all causes, including cardiovascular diseases.

Some studies suggest that a bit of moderate drinking — especially wine — can help lower blood pressure and may also reduce a person's risk of developing diabetes, but researchers are still debating the science behind that.



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Why Roger Federer is just like pop icon Michael Jackson, according to Andre Agassi

0
0

Roger Federer

  • Roger Federer is the Michael Jackson of tennis.
  • Former world number one men's player Andre Agassi made the comparison to Business Insider at a Lavazza event during the 2018 Wimbledon Championships in London.
  • Agassi told us that Federer "changed the game" just like the "King of Pop" changed music forever.
  • Tennis fans who have yet to see Federer perform live will be hoping he doesn't stop till he gets enough.

 

Roger Federer is the Michael Jackson of men's tennis, according to former world number one Andre Agassi.

Federer is widely regarded as the "GOAT" (greatest of all time) in tennis. He has won more men's Grand Slam singles titles than any other Open Era athlete (20), he has the highest hard court match-winning percentage (currently 87.56%), and has spent the most weeks ranked as the world's number one men's player (310).

Jackson, meanwhile, was famously known as the "King of Pop" as he is the only artist to have an album sell over 100 million copies worldwide ("Thriller," 1982), he created some of the most recognisable pop anthems of all time like "Billie Jean" and "Beat It," and continues to influence record-breaking musicians like Beyoncé and Justin Timberlake.

For Agassi, Federer is to tennis what Michael Jackson was to pop, because sports fans will always regret not seeing Federer perform live once he decides to retire forever.

"It’s going to be like the person that says 'I never saw Michael Jackson perform,'" Agassi told Business Insider at a Lavazza event as part of the 2018 Wimbledon Championships.

"I can imagine a lot of people saying, 'I can’t believe I never saw him play.' He’s left that kind of mark on the game. He’s changed it.

"It will be a sad day," he went on, speaking on the day Federer retires. "But it will also be a glorious one because I know what he deserves now for the rest of his life, he deserves to feel something he’s never felt before and I know life will offer [that to] him."

Michael Jackson

Federer was knocked out of the Wimbledon quarterfinals by South African athlete Kevin Anderson and recently confirmed he would not compete in next month's Roger Cup as he looks to preserve his career as long as possible by optimising rest and recovery.

Though Federer was unsuccessful in his bid for a ninth Wimbledon crown, he may well continue to be known as the king of tennis as he chases more major titles. Earlier this year, the 36-year-old won the 2018 Australian Open, and it is likely he will have one eye on the upcoming US Open in August and September.

"Roger is still setting a level that is still pretty remarkable," Agassi told Business Insider.

Tennis fans who have yet to see Federer live will be hoping he doesn't stop till he gets enough.

SEE ALSO: Rafa Nadal's uncle says Roger Federer is a better tennis player than his nephew — and is even 'the best of all time'

DON'T MISS: A Paralympic gold medallist says he came face-to-face with a naked Roger Federer in a locker room — and he accidentally saw his manhood

UP NEXT: You can now buy Roger Federer's entire 5-piece Uniqlo tennis outfit for $120

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Brazil's empty $300 million World Cup stadium

Cell phones and computers are slowly taking hold in one of the most mysterious countries in the world — and they’re not making people any happier

0
0

bhutan

  • Bhutan, one of the most mysterious countries in the world, has resisted modern technology for decades.
  • But lately, cell phones, computers, and TV has transformed the way of life in Bhutan.
  • Reuters photojournalist Cathal McNaughton documented everyday life in Bhutan to show how industry and technology are taking hold.


For many years, the South Asian nation of Bhutan has resisted technology — no television, no cell phones, not even a single traffic light.

But lately, outside influences have slowly started to take hold of Bhutan's 800,000 people.

Teens, wearing jeans and English soccer jerseys, spend much of their time on their cell phones and playing computer games at internet cafes. Adults while away their nights at karaoke bars and pool halls. Meanwhile, industrial plants and construction sites are popping up across towns, introducing modern problems to a largely traditional culture.

Reuters photojournalist Cathal McNaughton traveled to Bhutan earlier this year to speak with residents in the changing nation and document their everyday lives. Although Bhutan's government pioneered the concept of "Gross National Happiness" to measure its success, McNaughton found that modern challenges are taking their toll.

Here's how technology is starting to change one of the most mysterious countries in the world.

SEE ALSO: I spent 2 years living in Malaysia — here are 14 of my favorite fruits Americans probably wouldn't recognize

DON'T MISS: Inside the lives of Mongolia's 'millennial monks,' who play basketball, pray for 12 hours a day, and visit the outside world only twice a year

The small nation of Bhutan has resisted technology for decades.

Source: Reuters



There are no traffic lights in in its capital city, Thimphu, and its culture, centered on Buddhism, has barely changed in centuries.

Source: Reuters



But all that is starting to change as technology slowly gets introduced across the country.

Source: Reuters



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

These photos reveal why the 26-year-old organizer of the disastrous Fyre Festival could spend 10 years in prison

0
0

Fyre

  • Fyre Festival organizer Billy McFarland pleaded guilty to wire-fraud charges in March. He will be sentenced on Thursday. 
  • The 26-year-old was arrested in June 2017 after being accused of misleading investors who had poured investment into Fyre Media, the company behind the Fyre Festival.
  • On Tuesday, July 24, the SEC announced that McFarland, two companies he founded, a former senior executive, and a former contractor had agreed to settle the fraud charges made against them. According to the SEC's press release, McFarland admitted to charges that he defrauded more than 100 investors out of $27.4 million. 
  • Here's a look back at what happened at the Fyre Festival. 

Billy McFarland, the 26-year-old founder of the nightmarish Fyre Festival that left hundreds of attendees stranded in the Bahamas, is paying his dues. 

On Tuesday, the SEC announced in a press release that McFarland, two companies he founded, a former senior executive, and a former contractor agreed to settle the charges made against them. According to the SEC's press release, McFarland admitted to charges that he defrauded more than 100 investors out of $27.4 million and agreed to a permanent office-and-director bar. The SEC's charges were related to McFarland's running of Fyre Media, the company behind the Fyre Festival, and Magnises, an events and membership company. 

McFarland will be sentenced on related criminal charges on Thursday. He pleaded guilty to wire-fraud charges in March and could spend eight to 10 years in prison in addition to paying a fine, according to Bloomberg.

On June 12, McFarland was arrested again on charges of selling fake tickets under a different company, called NYC VIP Access, starting in 2017. If convicted on the additional fraud charges, McFarland could face an extended prison sentence, likely of an additional two years, according to Time. 

Fyre Festival promised to offer attendees a VIP experience when they set off to Great Exuma in the Bahamas. But the reality was very different, as attendees encountered delayed flights, half-built huts to sleep in, and cold cheese sandwiches to eat. And that doesn't even include the disastrous trip home.

The luxury festival — tickets for which started at $1,200 — was advertised as two weekends in paradise, but it turned into a nightmare.  Take a look at festivalgoers' expectations compared with the reality they encountered, which is currently being developed into a TV series for Hulu. 

And here's the full Fyre Festival promo video:

SEE ALSO: The founder of the doomed Fyre Festival could spend years in prison after pleading guilty to defrauding investors out of millions of dollars

The three-day party was supposed to be on a private beach on the island of Great Exuma in the Bahamas.



It was supposed to be over two weekends in 2017: April 28-30 and May 5-7.



It was described as an "immersive music festival."



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

The 5 biggest questions after the release of the bombshell Michael Cohen tape

0
0

Michael Cohen and Donald Trump

  • On Tuesday, CNN aired a secret recording of a September 2016 conversation between President Donald Trump and his former longtime lawyer Michael Cohen in which the two men discussed payments to former Playboy model Karen McDougal.
  • The tape created more questions than answers.

On Tuesday night, an attorney for President Donald Trump's former longtime lawyer Michael Cohen gave CNN a September 2016 audio recording of Trump and Cohen discussing payments to former Playboy model Karen McDougal.

The existence of the tape was first revealed on Friday. Cohen made the recording without Trump's knowledge. It was seized by the FBI in April raids of Cohen's home, office, and hotel room as part of a criminal investigation into him. Trump's attorneys waived privilege claims over that tape and 11 others that were seized from Cohen.

McDougal has alleged that she had an affair with Trump in 2006. The National Enquirer purchased McDougal's story for $150,000 in August 2016, but never published anything on it. That practice is known as "catch and kill," and it effectively silenced McDougal's allegations.

The tape contains a conversation between Cohen and Trump in which they discuss a plan to purchase the rights to McDougal's story from the outlet's publisher for about $150,000. David Pecker, the head of American Media Inc., which publishes the National Enquirer, is a longtime friend of both Trump and Cohen.

Trump's team, namely his personal attorney Rudy Giuliani, said the recording was good for the president and that a payment was not ultimately made. Cohen's camp said the tape was not good for Trump.

CNN aired the tape and it led to more questions than answers. Here are some.

Does Trump say 'pay with cash' or 'don't pay with cash?'

On the tape, Cohen says he needs to open up a company for "the transfer of all of that info regarding our friend David," referencing Pecker. He said he spoke with Allen Weisselberg, the Trump Organization's chief financial officer, "about how to set the whole thing up."

Trump asks, "So what're we going to pay? 150?" That was a possible reference to the eventual sum of $150,000.

Cohen says yes, mentioning again that he spoke with Weisselberg "about when it comes time for the financing."

"What financing?" Trump says, followed by the comment in question.

The three words that are audible are "pay with cash." What is less clear because of the muddled audio is whether the all-important word "don't" preceded it. In any case, Cohen replied, "no, no, no."

Then you can hear a voice that sounds like Trump's saying "check" before the tape cuts out.

Giuliani told Fox News after the tape aired on CNN that there was "no way the president is going to be talking about setting up a corporation then using cash, unless you're a complete idiot

"And again, the president is not an idiot," he said.

Alan Futerfas, an attorney representing the Trump Organization, told The Washington Post on Tuesday that "cash" was being used in the conversation as a reference to a one-time payment rather than financing a possible transaction over time.

“The notion that they were discussing using a bag of cash or green currency is ridiculous,” Futerfas said.

Rudy GiulianiLanny Davis, Cohen's attorney who provided the tape to CNN, said it was clear that Giuliani had previously misrepresented the tapes. Last week Giuliani said it was Cohen who referenced "cash" and that Trump then suggested he pay with a check.

"Everybody heard just now Donald Trump say the word 'cash,'" Davis told CNN. "After Michael Cohen mentioned financing."

Why does the tape cut out at the word 'check?'

At a pivotal point in the recording, the tape abruptly ends: When a voice that sounds like Trump's says "check." 

This question remains unanswered, and is clearly on Trump's mind.

"Why was the tape so abruptly terminated (cut) while I was presumably saying positive things?" he tweeted Wednesday morning.

What was Allen Weisselberg's involvement?

Cohen's reference of Weisselberg represents an under-the-radar but critical comment in the tape. Weisselberg's involvement in such discussions and/or other payments involving women could drag the Trump Organization's top financial officer into the Cohen investigation, opening the door to Trump's books.

In May, The New York Times reported that Weisselberg had known of the reimbursement made to Cohen for his $130,000 payment to porn star Stormy Daniels ahead of the 2016 presidential election since 2017, long before Giuliani told Fox News in May that Trump had reimbursed Cohen.

Futerfas disputed Cohen's comments from the tape in his interview with The Post.

"The notion that Mr. Cohen would have spoken to Mr. Weisselberg about a proposition he had yet to even make to the president does not ring true," he said. "Mr. Weisselberg is a bookkeeper who simply carries out directions from others about monetary payments and transfers. There would be no reason for Mr. Cohen to have any conversation with Mr. Weisselberg prior to him recommending and obtaining approval for the purchase he was suggesting."

What is the significance of the conversation about David Pecker?

When Cohen and Trump first began discussing the idea of purchasing the McDougal story from Pecker, Cohen said, "You never know where that company — you never know what he’s gonna be."

"David gets hit by a truck," Trump replies.

Donald Trump"Correct," Cohen responds. "So, I’m all over that."

To some observers, this portion of the conversation made it obvious that Trump wanted to keep quiet McDougal's allegations, and that could be critical for any examination of whether campaign finance laws were broadly violated even if no payment was ultimately made with respect to McDougal.

Cohen and Trump did not ultimately purchase the story, which brings up further questions: Did Pecker assure them it would not be published? Or did they just take their chances?

Does the conversation about Ivana's divorce papers matter?

Right before Trump and Cohen discuss the McDougal payment, they mentioned the New York Times' effort to unseal divorce papers between Trump and his first wife, Ivana.

"They should never be able to get that," Trump said, later adding, "All you’ve got to do is delay for [unclear]."

Cohen responds that "even after that, it's not ever going to be opened."

Election Day at this point was weeks away. To some observers, the conversation seems aimed at making sure, on a broad scale, potentially damaging information is not released during the campaign.

"Trump says about Ivana divorce paper that the release just needs to be delayed until after the election," tweeted NBC News legal analyst Daniel Goodman. "Shows idea of suppressing bad publicity until after election is on top of his mind. Very relevant to campaign finance fraud."

The New York Times lost its effort to unseal those records. But in mid-September 2016, The New York Daily News published details from the divorce papers, which contained allegations that Trump "verbally abused and demeaned" his ex-wife. Ivana alleged his treatment of her was "cruel and inhuman."

Listen to the full recording:

SEE ALSO: Why Trump's lawyers allowed the government to get ahold of the bombshell Michael Cohen tapes

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: North Korean defector: Kim Jong Un 'is a terrorist'

A company that's taking on Victoria's Secret with $35 bras just opened its first store. Here's what it's like to shop there.

0
0

Lively

  • Lively is a lingerie, swimwear, and fragrance startup launched by Victoria's Secret alum Michelle Cordeiro Grant in 2016.
  • The retailer sells more than 50 different types of bras, including bralettes, t-shirt bras, push-up bras, and plunge bras. Each one costs $35.
  • On Wednesday, it opened its first store in New York.

Lively is making its first foray into brick-and-mortar retail. On Wednesday, the online bra company, which also sells swimwear and fragrances, opened a permanent location in New York City.

"This is a first," founder and CEO Michelle Cordeiro Grant told Business Insider during an interview at the new location in Nolita. 

Cordeiro Grant has been testing the waters with brick-and-mortar retail over the past few months. What started as a happy hour in the company's offices where customers could come and try on products evolved into pop-ups in Dallas and Nashville and, now, a permanent location.

"People were so hungry when we did something in real life. Every time it came to close the store, people were in tears. Whether it was our team or the local community, we had all fallen in love and this thing was shutting down," she said. 

The company is taking advantage of the so-called retail apocalypse's store closings and lower rents to open locations in prime areas. Cordeiro Grant said that Lively saved 30% on its rent in the new space because of this. She added that the expansion into stores was a natural progression for the business.

"I always knew it was going to be an omnichannel ecosystem. I knew we had to start with digital first and work out how we needed to tell our story," she said. 

Its new brick-and-mortar presence makes it more of a threat to Victoria's Secret, which has struggled in recent years. Cordeiro Grant, a former exec of the legacy lingerie chain, confirmed that fans can expect to see more stores opening soon — Dallas and Los Angeles are likely to come next, she said.

We visited the New York store in the run-up to its opening on Wednesday, July 25. Take a look:

SEE ALSO: A former Victoria's Secret exec has a new $35 bra company — and it wants to avoid one of retail's deadliest mistakes

The new store is located close to New York's busy Soho shopping area.



From the outside, it looks trendy and uncluttered.

The Lively brand was built on social media. New products are created based on feedback from its Instagram and Facebook followers, which Cordeiro Grant refers to as her "community."

Part of the company's negotiation with the landlords was based on this community and the events it will offer.

"It wasn't about typical metrics at all," she said. "It was about that fact that we are going to make this block what you want it to be."



Although it is 2,700 square feet in size, only a small part of the space is kept for the actual products.

Its minimalist and roomy store layout leaves space for events.

"We purposefully call it our Lively experience store," Cordeiro Grant explained. 

 

 



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Wildfires are tearing through Yosemite National Park and the photos look like a post-apocalyptic nightmare

0
0

yosemite fire

  • The Ferguson Fire has forced California authorities to close parts of Yosemite National Park.
  • More than 3,000 firefighters are struggling to control the blaze, which has spread to 38,000 acres and has ravaged the Yosemite area for nearly two weeks.
  • Photos show thick clouds of smoke billowing across the park and flames engulfing anything in their path.


Authorities in California shut down parts of Yosemite National Park on Wednesday as wildfires spread across the region.

As of Tuesday evening, firefighters contained 25% of the Ferguson Fire, which has ravaged the Yosemite area for nearly two weeks. One firefighter was killed in the blaze July 14, and six others have been injured. More than 3,300 firefighters are working to contain the fire.

It's the first time that the Yosemite Valley section of the park has been closed due to a fire in almost 30 years, according to USA Today.

Photos of the 38,000-acre fire show Yosemite covered in thick clouds of smoke as flames engulf trees, branches, and anything else in their way.

Read on to see what firefighters are facing in California:

SEE ALSO: North Dakota's oil boomtowns are facing an uncertain future — here's what it's like to live there

More than 3,000 firefighters have been working around the clock to control the Ferguson Fire, which has been ravaging the Yosemite National Park area for nearly two weeks.

Source: USA Today



The 38,000-acre fire has forced authorities to close four areas of the park as of Wednesday morning: Yosemite Valley, Wawona, Mariposa Grove, and Merced Grove.

Source: San Francisco Chronicle



Firefighters are braving temperatures of 100 degrees on the ground.

Source: San Francisco Chronicle



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

13 signs you're smarter than you realize

0
0

hidden figures math

  • Signs of high intelligence, according to scientists, include being really funny and (go figure!) procrastinating a lot.
  • Some of those indicators are listed on a Quora thread, "What are the common traits of highly intelligent people?"
  • We rounded up 13 of those signs below — so you can see which ones describe you.

It's only human to want to know how you stack up against your peers.

That's especially true when it comes to intelligence.

Below are 13 common traits and behaviors only the smartest people display, drawn largely from a Quora thread and supported by scientific evidence. Read on and see which describe you.

SEE ALSO: 13 science-backed signs that you're smarter than average

You're not easily distracted

Frank Zhu says "people who can focus for long stretches at a time and tune out distractions" are highly intelligent. As evidence, he points to a 2013 paper published in the journal Current Biology.

The paper describes two small studies that found people with higher scores on an IQ test were slower to recognize large background movements in an image. That's likely because they focus on the most important information and filter out the rest.



You're a night owl

The smarter you are, the more you're inclined to stay up into the wee hours of the morning, according to research.

One study, published in 2009 in the journal Personality and Individual Differences, looked at the link between childhood IQ and sleep habits among thousands of young adults. Sure enough, smarter individuals said they stayed up later and woke up later on both weekdays and weekends.

Another study, published in 1999 in the same journal, looked at about 400 US air force recruits and yielded similar findings.



You're highly adaptable

Several Quora users noted that intelligent people are flexible and able to thrive in different settings. As Donna F Hammett writes, intelligent people adapt by "showing what can be done regardless of the complications or restrictions placed upon them."

Recent psychological research supports this idea. Intelligence depends on being able to change your own behaviors in order to cope more effectively with your environment, or make changes to the environment you're in.



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

A look inside the amazing smart-home systems that rich people use

0
0

smart home

  • Smart home systems that rich people use are wildly different from the Amazon Alexa you may have just bought for your home.
  • Oprah Winfrey has a radiant heat system that automatically melts snow off of her winter home's driveway, while Mark Zuckerberg's custom AI-powered specialty app acts as his own personal butler voiced by actor Morgan Freeman.
  • Here are the major differences in the smart home systems owned by rich people.

Rich people don't skimp when it comes to outfitting their homes with the latest tech.

A "prominent Upper East Side" family was willing to pay a couple $100,000-$150,000 a year to oversee cooking, cleaning, personal shopping, and other household duties, according to a 2017 listing in Hire Society, as Business Insider previously reported.

In addition to housekeeping, the position required the pair to be familiar with three modern smart-home technology systems: Lutron, Crestron, and Kaleidescape.

If those brand names left you scratching your head, Lutron is a smart-home manufacturer that offers energy-saving light dimmers, switches, and shades that can control anywhere 50 to 10,000 devicesCrestron programs offer integrated lighting control, home security, speakers, and other technologies. Kaleidescape's multi-room entertainment server technologies that stream video and audio are the perfect systems for a rich person's at-home movie theater.

Many of us have dreamed about living in a home where mundane tasks — like washing the dishes or turning on the TV — can be outsourced to a device.

With the creation of products like the Amazon Echo and Google Home, that dream is closer to becoming a reality for the mass market. But if a couple of hundred of dollars can buy the average consumer these gadgets, what can those who have unlimited resources get out of their smart home systems? The answer: pretty much everything and anything they want.

"Affluent households are far more likely to become early adopters of new technology than the average consumer, and smart home systems are no different," Winnie Bekmanis, who works in product marketing for the Internet of Things (IoT) at Qualcomm, told Business Insider. "What differentiates the pricier smart home systems is the scale of installation and personalization."

Personalization is the key in smart homes of rich people

Celebrity homes are the perfect examples of what personalized smart home systems can look like. In an interview with CNET, actress Sofia Vergara talked about building a smart house that lets her not only watch movies in her at-home theater, but also allows her to Skype with family and use her social media on a mega screen.

According to the LA Times, media mogul Oprah Winfrey spent $14 million on a high-tech ski home in Telluride where a radiant heat system keeps the driveway completely snow free.

Oprah

Bekmanis said that when it comes to luxurious homes, those systems that can intuitively adapt to the entertainment or security preferences of the homeowner are naturally more desirable.

"Smart home systems are key to connecting every disparate smart device in the house together smoothly," she said. "When these systems are automating trivial chores and tasks for the homeowner, such as turning off the house lights or making coffee in the morning, they can add up to serious time savings."

Guests in the home of Microsoft founder Bill Gates receive devices to connect them to the smart house technology, which includes controlling temperature, lighting, and music, Business Insider previously reported.

Smart home tech

In a Facebook video, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg showed off his very own AI-powered home system, J.A.R.V.I.S, which is controlled through a specialty app that Zuckerberg created and is voiced by actor Morgan Freeman.

Their smart homes are controlled from one interface

According to Bekmanis, smart home systems make it easy to precisely control and customize nearly everything in your house from one interface.

"One of the early markets to benefit from smart home technology was home security — encompassing everything from automated door and window locks to intelligent lighting and cameras. Advancements in artificial intelligence are making a notable impact on the development of these smart home security systems as well," Bekmanis said.

"Imagine security cameras that recognize the difference between an intruder and Grandma, or send a notification when a child has lost their key and needs help with remote access," she said.

Smart home

If you want to make your home smarter ...

If you're thinking of investing in your own fancy at-home smart system, Bekmanis said you should plan it out thoroughly. "People often forget to keep the strength of their home WiFi network in mind as they invest in a smart home system," she said. "As connected devices continue to grow in popularity, they become more deeply integrated into every room of the home."

She recommended looking out for any spots in your home where it is difficult for devices to connect to WiFi, and to buy appropriate technology to fix that problem.

"Traditional stand-alone routers do this technology a disservice by creating dead spots in notoriously difficult areas like the bathroom or basement," she said, which can affect smart refrigerators and washing machines.

"Especially for larger homes, mesh WiFi systems are better suited for the job. The technology alleviates dead spots by scattering nodes throughout the home to keep the technology in each and every room reliably connected."

With so many smart products out there today, smart home systems make it easy to sync our physical and digital lifestyles. So if Zuckerberg's AI system inspires you to want to create your very own at-home butler voiced by an actor of your choosing (I'd love Helen Mirren, personally), you better start saving. It's going to cost you.

SEE ALSO: Inside the insanely competitive world of elite New York City preschools

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: This couple reveals their weaknesses when it comes to spending and how they manage to save

An eccentric tech investor and self-help guru has a wild, controversial idea to solve one of America's biggest problems that he thinks could turn you into a billionaire

0
0

high school graduates crying sad

  • Americans owe $1.5 trillion in student loan debt, and the problem isn't going away as tuition rates climb and the demand for college degrees remains high.
  • James Altucher, a tech investor and self-help guru, says young people should consider letting wealthy individuals or organizations invest in their future for a percentage of their future earnings. This way they could pay off their loans.
  • The idea has ignited criticism over the years from people who say "human capital contracts" are a modern form of identured servitude, or slavery.
  • We asked Altucher why he thinks this idea could fix the student debt problem.

 

In Startupland, where college dropouts have a reputation for becoming Silicon Valley royalty, one wealthy tech investor has a bit of unsurprising advice for young people.

Skip college, says James Altucher. It's a rip off.

But if you decide a higher education is a critical part of your future success, Altucher says he has a wild idea that can save young people from crushing tuition debt.

In a blog post that originally appeared on Quora, Altucher, a hedge fund manager, author, and self-help guru, posited that young people would be much better off if they let high net-worth individuals or organizations invest in their future for a stake in their success.

"What if I graduate college and then say, 'I will sell off 10% of all of my future earnings,'" Altucher said in the post.

"This creates an exchange where I can invest in kids that look like they have bright futures (or some organizations can do it for charitable reasons) and then I get a piece of all the earnings of the kids I invest in," he said, adding that investing in young people could be a "great source of income for older people in a low-interest rate environment."

Altucher explained in his post, "It can also help kids monetize their future income (the way a company does every single day) to help pay down their student loan debt."

Americans owe $1.5 trillion in student loan debt, surpassing auto loan debt ($1.1 trillion) and credit card debt ($977 billion) in the US. According to Altucher, the problem isn't going away as tuition rates climb and the demand for college degrees remains high.

James Altucher

His controversial solution has been floated before.

In 2013, a new crop of startups let people forge "human capital contracts," in which an individual raises money from investors in exchange for equity in themselves. Borrowers, who were often referred to as "talent" or "upstarts," could potentially earn $20,000 for every one percent of future income they were willing to pledge. They might use the money to pay off their college loans or cover living expenses while they start a business.

Human capital contracts never took off they way their adherents hoped. Critics said they weren't loans, but "a form of tech-enabled 'indentured servitude,'" Vice wrote in 2013.

Altucher, who is perhaps best known as the face of the "bitcoin genius" ads that are all over the internet, proposed putting a cap on the number of years that the borrower has to give away part of their earnings, so they aren't on the hook for the rest of their lives.

"What's not consensual is student loan debt," Altucher said in respose to the criticism.

"In a weird way, students feel like they have to go to college, because they'll either disappoint their friends or their peers or their future employers or their parents," he said. "So they feel forced to go to college, and they are forced to take student loans, and then the government will take those wages from you — without your consent — for the rest of your life, because it's the only debt you can't get rid of in bankruptcy."

Currently, it is nearly impossible to have your student loan debt forgiven by declaring bankruptcy. To be successful, the borrower must hire a lawyer, which can be expensive, and prove that being forced to repay their student loans poses an "undue hardship."

college student loan debt problem

Other critics are not convinced that investors can tell a person is going to be successful based on what they're like as a college student. They also run the risk that their investment has low returns — or worse, becomes worthless — in the event the person suffers a career-killing move, such as a sexual harrassment scandal, or serious illness.

In 2013, one of those companies specializing in human capital contracts, called Fantex, gave investors the ability to buy and sell interests in professional athletes. It shut down last year after lackluster interest from investors and little trading activity proved fatal.

A college professor of sports management warned of the company's potential pitfalls for investors in a 2013 interview with The New York Times: "You are potentially one hit away from losing your money. On any given Sunday, anything can happen to any player."

Altucher admitted that not all bets would give great returns, though he's optimistic.

"Sure, some of these 'investments' will not work out, but some will, creating a source of income for older generations and removing the debt of younger generations, allowing them to be the entrepreneurs and innovators they were meant to be," Altucher said.

"Will this happen? I don't know. Why don't you make this business? Be a billionaire."

You can read Altucher's post in full on Business Insider.

SEE ALSO: People in San Francisco are leasing their Teslas and supercars to strangers in order to afford owning a car in one of the most expensive cities in America

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Is college a waste of time and money?

'I can monetize those eyeballs': Gwyneth Paltrow said the uproar over her controversial vagina steaming recommendation was a business opportunity

0
0

Gwyneth Paltrow

  • Gwyneth Paltrow's lifestyle website Goop is infamous for recommending treatments that are later debunked by medical professionals.
  • Past treatments have included using stickers that "promote healing" and steaming your vagina to balance hormone levels.
  • Doctors have said the treatments can range from ineffective to downright dangerous.
  • But a new interview with The New York Times, Paltrow shows she knows she can profit from controversy.
  • Paltrow says that controversy drives traffic to her site and "I can monetize those eyeballs."
  • Paltrow also revealed that her Goop magazine venture with Condé Nast collapsed partly because she objected to anybody fact-checking the articles.

Gwyneth Paltrow's lifestyle website Goop has long been criticized by health professionals for offering bad advice that has even been described as "deceptive" and "illegal" by an advertising watchdog.

But in a new interview with The New York Times, Paltrow reveals how she seeks to monetize the controversy and make cash from the outrage over her bizarre recommendations.

One article recommended that people steam their vaginas, a process that has been widely criticized by gynecologists, who say it could upset the vagina's pH balance and lead to dangerous burns.

Other debunked suggestions include jade eggs for your vagina that "recharge " from moonlight, or stickers for your skin that "promote healing ."

In one article, Goop interviewed a "naturopathic physician and homeopath" who suggested drinking nothing but raw goats milk for eight days as a way to get rid of parasites. Experts say there is no evidence the drink has health benefits.

But The New York Times interview shows how aware she is of how she can benefit from these kinds of controversies. Its profile recounted a talk she gave to students at Harvard where she celebrated the "cultural firestorms" caused by Goop's bad advice.

Per the NYT:

At Harvard, G.P. called these moments “cultural firestorms.” “I can monetize those eyeballs,” she told the students.

Goop had learned to do a special kind of dark art: to corral the vitriol of the internet and the ever-present shall we call it cultural ambivalence about G.P. herself and turn them into cash.

It’s never clickbait, she told the class. “It’s a cultural firestorm when it’s about a woman’s vagina.” The room was silent. She then cupped her hands around her mouth and yelled, “VAGINA! VAGINA! VAGINA!” as if she were yodeling.

Criticism of Paltrow's website have been constant. A non-profit group called Truth in Advertising has claimed that the website made more than 50 illegal health claims before August 2017, describing some as "deceptive" and "illegal."

Goop Gwyneth Paltrow

Dr Jen Gunter, an obstetrician and gynecologist posts almost monthly critiques of the website's claims on her personal blog.

But numbers Paltrow provided to The New York Times show that, as of June, there were 2.4 million unique visitors to Goop's website.

Paltrow described criticism of Goop as "deeply unfair" in a podcast in August 2017. She claimed that the website was just giving information, and not advice.

She told The New York Times that the website has now employed an in-house fact checker, which she described as a "necessary growing pain."

Read the full story at The New York Times.

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: NYU Stern professor on what many people get wrong about sustainability: It's not just about the environment and it actually leads to better financial performance

20 weird psychological reasons someone might fall in love with you

0
0

jay beyonce

  • Certain psychological factors make it more likely — though not certain — that two people will fall in love.
  • Some factors are based in biology, like the way you smell.
  • Other factors are behavioral, like your body language.

Love is mysterious, but it's probably not destiny.

According to the research, your hormones, interests, and upbringing all help determine who you fall for — and who falls for you.

Since your partner plays a significant role in your long-term health, happiness, and even your career prospects, we've scoured the studies and collected some of the psychological reasons two people click.

SEE ALSO: Science says people decide these 9 things within seconds of meeting you

If you're really, really alike

Decades of studies have shown that the cliché that "opposites attract" is totally off.

"Partners who are similar in broad dispositions, like personality, are more likely to feel the same way in their day-to-day lives," said Gian Gonzaga, lead author of a study of couples who met on eHarmony. "This may make it easier for partners to understand each other."



If you look like their opposite-sex parent

University of St. Andrews psychologist David Perrett and his colleagues found that some people are attracted to folks with the same hair and eye color of their opposite-sex parents, as well as the age range they saw at birth.

"We found that women born to 'old' parents (over 30) were less impressed by youth, and more attracted to age cues in male faces than women with 'young' parents (under 30)," the authors wrote. "For men, preferences for female faces were influenced by their mother's age and not their father's age, but only for long-term relationships."



If you smell right

A University of Southern California study of women who were ovulating suggested that some prefer the smell of T-shirts worn by men with high levels of testosterone.

This matched with other hormone-based instincts: Some women also preferred men with a strong jaw line when they were ovulating. 



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Meet Imran Khan, Pakistan's likely next prime minister who was his country's biggest sports star, a notorious playboy, and married his 3rd wife before ever seeing her face

0
0

imran khan past present

Imran Khan, the man likely to be Pakistan's next prime minister, has had a colorful past.

Before entering politics in the mid-1990s, Khan was an Oxford scholar, world-renowned cricketer, and a playboy with a reputation on London's party scene.

His first two marriages were to a British socialite and a BBC weather presenter, who has since accused him of cheating and taking hard drugs. His third wife is a woman whose face he had never seen until after the wedding.

Khan's party, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, has won more seats than its opponents in the country's general election, according to unofficial results. Khan himself has declared victory, but the result is yet to be made official.

Scroll down to learn more about Imran Khan, the cricketer-turned-politician.

This is Imran Khan, the 65-year-old leader of Pakistan's Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) political party. The party, whose name means "Movement for Justice" in Urdu, is poised to win more seats than other parties in the Pakistani parliament, which would effectively make Khan the next Prime Minister.

PTI is on course to win 120 out of the 342 seats available in the Pakistani National Assembly as of Thursday afternoon local time, the country's Dawn newspaper reported.

It needs 172 seats to gain a majority in the 342-seat parliament.



He grew up in Lahore, Pakistan's capital, before going to Oxford University. There he enrolled in the prestigious Philosophy, Politics, and Economics course, which was studies by other world leaders like Britain's David Cameron, Australia's Tony Abbott, Myanmar's Aung San Suu Kyi, and Pakistan's Benazir Bhutto.



However, Khan was known less for his academics than his sportsmanship. He made his debut for Pakistan's national cricket team in 1971, aged 18.

Source: Daily Pakistan



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

A former F1 champion says Lewis Hamilton confuses the racetrack with Hollywood and acts like Jesus

0
0

Formula One driver Lewis Hamilton and FC Barcelona football player Neymar Jr attend Game 2 of the 2017 NBA Finals at ORACLE Arena on June 4, 2017 in Oakland, California.

  • Lewis Hamilton won the German Grand Prix last weekend after starting in 14th place on the grid.
  • His jubilant celebrations after the shock win hit a sour note for former Formula One champion Jacques Villeneuve, though.
  • Villeneuve accused Hamilton of confusing F1 with Hollywood, and acting like Jesus.


"I guess for those who don't know me, now you do," Lewis Hamilton said after his shock victory at the German Grand Prix last weekend.

The Mercedes-AMG driver came from 14th on the grid to steal victory after arch-rival Sebastian Vettel, of Ferrari, crashed out of the race after 52 laps.

Hamilton's celebrations didn't go down well with everyone, though — not least former Formula One champion Jacques Villeneuve.

Villeneuve told German media outlet Auto Bild: "He confuses Formula One with Hollywood. Everything he does is staged. He portrays himself on social media like he is Jesus.

"The way he knelt next to his car after his problem in qualifying looked like the suffering of Christ. And what he said afterwards was the Sermon on the Mount."

Race winner Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain and Mercedes GP celebrates in parc ferme during the Formula One Grand Prix of Germany at Hockenheimring on July 22, 2018 in Hockenheim, Germany.

Hamilton certainly has a lot of celebrity friends, including PSG soccer superstar Neymar Jr, Justin Bieber, and Usain Bolt.

He also lives a pretty lavish lifestyle.

Hamilton's net worth is estimated to be around £131 million ($172 million), and he spends his earnings on luxury cars, properties and a £16.5 million ($22 million) private jet.

However, Villeneuve's accusation of melodrama is hard to sympathise with given that the four-time world champion had just climbed a seemingly improbable 13 places to claim victory.

Hamilton, who is one of the world's highest-paid sportsmen, suffered from a hydraulics failure in the first round of qualifying, setting him way back on the grid.

His win at Hockenheim, Germany, places him above Vettel in the driver's standings and puts Mercedes ahead of Ferrari in the constructor's standings.

SEE ALSO: How Formula One World Champion Lewis Hamilton makes and spends his £131 million fortune

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Brazil's empty $300 million World Cup stadium

Browsing All 47773 Browse Latest View Live