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The world in photos this week


A selection of photos from some of this week's biggest news that you might have missed.

SEE ALSO: 21 stunning photos prove the US Navy and US Marine Corps have the best diving boards and swimming pools

Rebel fighters inspect a piece of a rocket that landed in an area that connects the northern countryside of Deraa and the Quneitra countryside in southern Syria on February 22.

Syria Democratic Forces fighters look through a scope and a pair of binoculars on the outskirts of al-Shadadi town, in Syria's Hasaka countryside.

Macedonian policemen stand in front of a gate over rail tracks as migrants wait behind at the Greek-Macedonian border. Additional passage restriction imposed by Macedonian authorities left hundreds of them stranded near the village of Idomeni, Greece, on February 23.

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A Canadian sailor made history with a single kiss


In the Canadian Navy, "first kiss" is a tradition in which one sailor is picked at random to disembark first and kiss his significant other. This year, they broke new ground with the first ever "first kiss" between a same-sex couple.

Story by Ian Phillips and editing by Stephen Parkhurst

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The 'musk' smell of cologne used to come from a pretty bizarre, unexpected place


Musk Deer

When you see "musk" as a noted smell in your cologne, you probably think of lumberjacks chopping wood in Maine.

But you'll never guess where that "manly" smell actually used to come from: an animal you've probably never heard of, according to the Huffington Post.

Musk is a heavy base note scent that is usually compared with woodsy and earthy smells. It was originally the name of the odor coming from a male musk deer, from which it was harvested.

Though perfumes are made through synthetic chemical engineering processes now, back in the day, a glandular sack about the size of a golf ball would be taken from the musk deer. That sack holds a liquid that is sprayed by the deer and used to attract a mate.

When the deer died, the sack would be taken and dried to produce something called a "musk pod." Once that was broken open, you'd find the fragrant musk grain, which would then be soaked in alcohol, producing the scent we would refer to as "musk."

Musk Pod

The scent has also been found by perfume makers in other animals, including the vomit from a sperm whale and most other "musk" animals, like the muskox, musk shrew, and the musk beetle.

Fortunately, perfumers no longer use animal-derived ingredients, instead moving to more sustainable (and cheaper) synthetic chemicals. The one used to mimic musk is appropriately called muscone.

So don't worry — you're not actually wearing whale vomit (phew).

SEE ALSO: You're probably using your deodorant all wrong

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NOW WATCH: The days of restaurant tipping are dying

People are going nuts over NYC's new hybrid food — the 'Everything Doughnut'


You may have heard of the everything bagel, but the latest hybrid food to go viral is the "Everything Doughnut."

The Doughnut Project, located in New York City's Greenwich Village, is responsible for the new food that's taking over social media.

We visited the bakery to see how the "everything doughnut" is made and if it lives up to the hype.

Story by Aly Weisman and video by A.C. Fowler

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It turns out that dressing well can actually make you more successful


David Beckham

It turns out "dress for success" is much more than just a catchy motto.

Recent studies have pointed to the fact that there may be some truth to dressing for the job you want, as noted by the Wall Street Journal.

Studies have shown that wearing nice clothes in the office can affect the way people perceive you, how confident you're feeling, and even how you're able to think abstractly.

In a study completed at Yale in 2014 that used 128 men between the ages of 18 and 32, researchers had participants partake in mock negotiations of buying and selling.

Those dressed poorly (in sweatpants and plastic sandals) averaged a theoretical profit of $680,000, while the group dressed in suits amassed an average profit of $2.1 million. The group dressed neutrally averaged a $1.58 million profit.

According to a co-author of the study, this shows that the poorly dressed participants would often defer to the suited ones, and these suited participants could sense this heightened respect, backing down less than they might have otherwise.

In another study, participants who dressed up were more likely to engage in abstract, big-picture thinking like a CEO, while those less well-dressed concerned themselves with minor details.

"People who wear that kind of clothing feel more powerful," Michael L. Slepian, co-author of the study and an adjunct assistant professor at Columbia Business School, told the WSJ. "When you feel more powerful, you don’t have to focus on the details."

How does this advice fit into your everyday style? In today's casual office dress code, dressing up can have an even bigger effect.

But make sure to follow the "plus or minus one rule" for company dress. For example, if most people in the office wear button-up shirts, you might want to put on a blazer. If most people wear blazers, you might want to wear a suit. And so on.

Just don't dress up more than your boss. That might create issues.

SEE ALSO: How to get the facial hair women find most attractive

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NOW WATCH: 7 outdated fashion rules that men can now ignore

Q&A: Why Facebook and Asana's cofounder thinks startups should invest in culture in a downturn, and why Slack isn't a threat


Dustin Moskovitz headshot

Dustin Moskovitz worked hard to build Facebook, but looking back, he thinks the social network he cofounded succeeded in spite of all the marathon work hours, not because of it. 

Now at his own startup, Moskovitz is hoping lightening strikes twice, but he is putting an emphasis on building a company that's healthy both financially and for its employees. 

It will be a challenge as the market squeezes startups and many are feeling the pain of investors pulling back. Despite increased competition in the enterprise space, Moskovitz remains confident that prioritizing culture and business — and not pushing yourself too hard — will keep Asana on top coming out of the downturn. 

Business Insider caught up with Moskovitz after he gave a talk at Startup Grind. Here's what he had to say on Asana, why it's important to invest in culture, and why he believes Asana can peacefully coexist with Slack.

The following Q&A has been lightly edited for length and clarity.

BUSINESS INSIDER: Five years in, what’s Asana look like now, and where do you want it to go?

DUSTIN MOSKOVITZ: We've really just been developing this work-tracking market, which is a new and emerging market of collaborations software, and I think we've just made a lot of progress as establishing this as an important part of how teams work. We now have about 12,000 paying customers, like whole companies that use the product. 

BI:So are you profitable yet if you have 12,000 customers? There’s a big shift happening towards valuing profitability over hypergrowth.

DM: Well I think the important thing is that you're headed towards profitability. So we're on an extremely good trend in terms of getting there in the next several years, but we're not profitable yet. It's pretty hard to sort of be profitable all along the way, unless you really pull back on your growth. At the same time, if you optimize entirely for growth, you might set up some things that are really hard to shake down the road and just create a business that's intrinsically not sustainable. So you hear a lot of people talk about unit economics where literally there are some companies that are losing money on every transaction happening on their system.

BI: Well is that you?

DM: [Laughs] No. The reason why we're not profitable is more about economies of scale. We have some set costs, we have the investment in R&D, and we need to get to a certain scale for those to kind of amortize themselves out. But the intrinsic costs of delivering the service to users, it's often called gross margin, that's positive.

BI: A lot of these companies that are feeling the crunch are losing or eliminating some of these aspects of culture. It seems like you’re taking the approach at Asana of investing both in culture and in the business.

DM: Like anything you have to be intentional about how you spend your money on perks and benefits, and I think most companies just carve out a percentage of payroll and then optimize within that. Are you going to spend that on laundry services? Are you going to spend that on healthcare? You have to be smart about that.

Sometimes I think these things get misinterpreted, like a company will drop a benefit, and really it's because they're shifting that money that they decided would be more useful for employees. It gets written about as something more symbolic, but I would just point out that things like that are sometimes penny-wise pound foolish. It's much more important that the cost of delivering the service, the amount you're investing in R&D, the amount you're investing in sales and marketing, that those things are sustainable, and the other stuff is just kind of symbolic.

BI: How would you argue companies should invest culture, in a time where they’re cutting back on perks, instead of putting the money elsewhere?

DM: I mean, I generally see this as a false choice. I think there's very few kinds of culture that you have to spend for. You can really have a budget of $0 for culture and still get a lot done, you know. You just have to talk about it, spend time on it. Really I see those things as optimizing your efficiency because you'll be able to retain people better, they'll be more engaged, they'll be more productive.

So I see it as kind of a false choice of 'things are constrained so we pull back on culture.' I would argue that's the time when you need to invest in culture because only the companies with strong cultures are going to survive that kind of, you know, that kind of friction in the marketplace.

BI: When you say invest, you’re not saying it means monetarily.

DM: No, it’s time. Time and energy. Focus.

BI: Especially in this market conditions where startups are feeling the squeeze, how can employees maintain a positive work-life balance when the rhetoric is to hunker down, work harder?

DM: They can maintain that balance just by being objective about it and really reflecting on what that grinding is costing them. Because I think if you look at any of the actual science and research on this, you get the exact opposite conclusion.

When you push people to work harder you get less out of them. Now it's not true on very small timescales, you can work hard for a week, you can work hard for a couple weeks. But as soon as you've pushed more than like, 60 hours for like 3 or 4 weeks in a row, science shows that you just become less productive and you pay for that. You gotta- you either slow down, or you have to take a vacation and so you think about the longer cycles that these companies are on, for years, they're actually just shooting themselves in the foot, and burning out employees, and losing productivity.

That's what I really see as so tragic about it. They think they're optimizing the business by kind of hurting their employees, but really it's just the worst of both worlds. They're not getting anything out of it and they're hurting people.

They're not getting anything out of it and they're hurting people.

BI: In the last couple of years, there have been a lot of enterprise companies that have taken off like wildfire, like Slack. How do you view your relationship with Slack or the other challengers? What’s Asana’s niche in the space?

DM: We really don't see Slack as a challenger, we're actually mutual customers. So we use Slack services, Slack uses Asana, and we really see them as complimentary which is why the integration exists. We look at the broader collaboration space, [and] we think of it in terms of these three major buckets. One is sort of files and file sharing and document collaboration, so that's everybody from Dropbox to Box and like Google Apps. And then messaging and communications that's really where Slack fits in, but also products like Skype and VoIP services. And then this third category of work tracking is really the market that we're trying to develop.

BI: Would you ever consider acquiring Dropbox or selling your company to Slack to kind of merge these spaces into a small number of buckets?

DM: You know, it's really hard to predict like the far future on things, but I would just point out that there's a large surface area to each of these things. They also are each very conducive to being platforms. So I think there's a lot of advantage in having a company that's focused on just one part of the market. Again those parts of the market are very broad and have a lot of depth in themselves. For the foreseeable future I expect all these companies to be separate.

SEE ALSO: Slack grew from 80 to 385 employees in 14 months. Why that worries its CEO

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NOW WATCH: Stewart Butterfield, co-founder of Slack and Flickr, on two beliefs that have brought him the greatest success in life

14 foods you don't need to keep in the fridge


toast avocado tomato sandwich

In case you've ever had a debate with your roommate or significant other whether to keep bread in the fridge or leave coffee grounds in the pantry, here's what you need to know.

If you're talking about perisheable foods like meat, poultry, seafood, eggs, and certain kinds of produce, the FDA recommends they should never be kept at room temperature for more than two hours at room temperature, and not more than an hour above 90 degrees Fahrenheit.

But when it comes to produce and other kinds of food, here are the ones you should leave out of the fridge:

(Note: This is not intended as a substitute for public-health recommendations.)

SEE NEXT: 7 foods you should always refrigerate

DON'T MISS: Here's how long you can keep food and drinks in your fridge


Keeping bread in the fridge will dry it out. If you plan to eat it within four days, keep it on the counter (or in the pantry). Otherwise, wrap it up and stick it in the freezer.


Keep coffee in a cool, dark place, but not in the fridge, because it will lose its flavor and take on the smells of food nearby. You can store large quantities of coffee in the freezer, however.


If tomatoes are kept in the fridge, they lose their flavor. That's because the cold air stops them from ripening and breaks down their cell membranes, giving the fruit that characteristic mealy taste.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

15 things successful people don't do in their 20s


stressed upset frustrated

The best part about your 20s is that you can recover quickly from the inevitable mistakes you'll make as you figure out how to make it in the real world.

That said, there are some poor choices that have lasting effects — like not starting to save money and neglecting your health — that are easily avoidable.

We've sorted through a variety of advice from entrepreneurs and writers on Quora and found recurring themes.

Here are 15 things successful 20-somethings don't do:

SEE ALSO: 18 things successful people do in their 20s

They don't think education and talent are enough to become successful.

High intelligence, natural talent, and degrees from elite universities are all good things to have, but they do not guarantee that you will land a great job — and they mean nothing when not paired with hard work.

"I spent my 20s in corporate environments, and I remember them for working nights and weekends," says Sylvie di Giusto, founder of Executive Image Consulting. "Sweat, hassle, pain, as well as diligence, perseverance, and an enormous amount of effort and energy characterize my career at this point. I've learned that there are very little short cuts when it comes to career success. Success doesn't 'just happen.' Never."

They don't neglect their health.

As you get older, you'll learn pretty quickly that you can't party like you did in college.

"Your hangovers will be so bad at 28 that the idea of staying out drinking all night will be hilarious to you," Meggie Sutherland Cutter writes on Quora.

And the more years out of school you get, the more excessive drinking, smoking, and even an unhealthy diet go from acceptable behavior to dangerous habits.

Communications professor Michael Weston says that 20-somethings also need to pay attention to their mental health, since any potential issues usually arise in your 20s.

They don't spend all of their disposable income.

A 2014 survey of 1,003 people from Bankrate found that 69% of those ages 18 to 29 had no retirement savings.

Your retirement may seem far off, but you're doing yourself a major disservice if you don't recognize the importance of saving as soon as possible.

Entrepreneur Aditya Rathnam says that there's no need to start investing too much, since you're just starting out, but it's essential to take advantage of your company's 401(k) matching program, if one is available, and/or open a Roth IRA account.


See the rest of the story at Business Insider

People are hanging off the edge of a 300-foot waterfall in Zambia

The Chinese government just banned 'weird' architecture — here are some of the best examples

Avoid these 5 mistakes when texting someone you want to date


Comedian Aziz Ansari teamed up with sociologist and author Eric Klinenberg to write "Modern Romance," an in-depth investigation into the reality of what it's like to date and look for love in the digital era.

Since so much communication occurs through text messaging, we asked Klinenberg — who interviewed hundreds of people in focus groups for the book — what he found to be some of the biggest mistakes people make when texting someone they're interested in dating.

Produced by Graham Flanagan

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The rise of billionaire Len Blavatnik, one of Wall Street’s greatest dealmakers


len blavatnik with chris martin

Last month, Business Insider published a list of the richest people on earth. Ukraine-born American investor Leonard Blavatnik came in at No. 42 with a net worth of $16.7 billion.

The self-made billionaire's wealth has ballooned in recent years thanks to his privately held industrial group, Access Industries, which has major global investments in chemicals, real estate, and entertainment. 

Blavatnik is perhaps best known for his legendary investment in chemical company LyondellBasell, but since buying Warner Music Group in 2011, he's become a force in Hollywood, too.

Here's a look at how Blavatnik became one of the world's most vaunted dealmakers. 

DON'T MISS: The 50 richest people on earth

AND: The 25 richest self-made billionaires

Blavatnik attended Moscow University of Railway Engineering until his family immigrated to the US in 1978 — he gained citizenship in 1984.


He went on to earn his masters degree in computer science at Columbia University and his MBA at Harvard Business School. He has remained loyal to his alma mater, donating $50 million to Harvard in 2013 to sponsor life sciences entrepreneurship.



In 1986, Blavatnik founded Access Industries, a privately held industrial company. Initially, AI was involved in Russian investments but has since diversified its portfolio. AI now invests natural resources and chemicals, media and telecommunications, technology and e-commerce, and real estate.


See the rest of the story at Business Insider

This map shows you where to find 26 of the best hidden bars in New York City


Hidden bars have been a popular trend in New York City since the Prohibition days.

Today, the city is still home to many incredible bars that are hidden in plain sight.

Thanks to their vintage decor, secret passageways, and complex drinks with top-notch ingredients, these speakeasies remain some of the city's most beloved drinking spots.

To help you scout them out, we've put together a map that shows 26 of the city's top speakeasies.

Behold, your boozy bucket list: 

BI_Graphics_hidden speakeasy bars of manhattan

SEE ALSO: Here's how to make the world's first cocktail

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NOW WATCH: We had drinks at Dead Rabbit to find out why it's considered one of the world's best bars

The most attractive jobs in America, according to Tinder


Top Gun

Tinder has released a list of the most "swiped-right" jobs in the US, indicating which careers people look for in a match. "Pilot" was the most popular men's job, while "physical therapist" snagged the top spot for women. The ones that made both lists were "founder/entrepreneur," "college student," "model," and "teacher."

Tinder introduced the ability to add job information, along with education, to profiles in November.

Tinder CEO Sean Rad told Business Insider:

I think the thing that has shocked me [in developing Tinder] is that when it comes to establishing an initial impression, there's a very finite set of things we look at to decide whether we want to have a conversation with someone. How you look — and what that says about your personality — common connections, career, education. Ninety percent of it comes down to that.

Here is the list of the hottest jobs on Tinder for the last three months:


  1. Pilot
  2. Founder/Entrepreneur
  3. Firefighter
  4. Doctor
  5. TV/Radio Personality
  6. Teacher
  7. Engineer
  8. Model
  9. Paramedic
  10. College Student
  11. Lawyer
  12. Personal Trainer
  13. Financial Adviser
  14. Police Officer
  15. Military


  1. Physical Therapist
  2. Interior Designer
  3. Founder/Entrepreneur
  4. PR/Communications
  5. Teacher
  6. College Student
  7. Speech-Language Pathologist
  8. Pharmacist
  9. Social-Media Manager
  10. Model
  11. Dental Hygienist
  12. Nurse
  13. Flight Attendant
  14. Personal Trainer
  15. Real-Estate Agent

SEE ALSO: Analysts say Tinder is 'a real business,' and it could have nearly 1 million paying users

Join the conversation about this story »

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The kings of New York dining are agonizing over a decision that could change their business forever



Dining is a ritual in New York City.

Consider that many New Yorkers use their kitchens as a dual storage space and takeout dining center.

A bare refrigerator is a normal thing; many contain only a few condiments.

We dine out a lot. It's sacred.

That's why some of the kings of New York dining — the businessmen with restaurants spanning the country and grossing millions in revenue — are agonizing over a decision that could dramatically change that ritual.

We're talking about tipping, and a debate is raging within the industry over whether to do away with it altogether.

Danny Meyer, founder of Union Square Hospitality Group and the habit-forming burger joint Shake Shack, has already eliminated tipping — and he's known for his obsession with service.

Others are not so sure they want to say goodbye just yet.

"America is built on incentives," said Rich Wolf, a founder at the dining and nightlife behemoth TAO Group. "There will always be people who will work hard and break their asses. And there will always be people who do nothing.

"I'm not sure this country is ready for the end of the culture of tipping. For every problem it solves, a new one arises."

The dynamics

Tipping has become an issue because of New York's recent decision to raise minimum wages to $9 from $8.75. The wage hike is pretty straightforward when it applies to workers who don't earn tips. They get paid an hourly wage, and it just went up.

But things got more complicated for workers who earn a huge portion of their pay in the form of tips.

A special process is used to determine wages for the hospitality industry in the state. It's called a hospitality wage order. When the minimum wage is increased in New York, a commission is formed to explore how the hospitality industry's wages should rise in comparison.

american cut steakhouse

A board discusses whether wages should be increased, and a commissioner ultimately makes the call.

Through that process, the minimum wage for tipped workers was recently hiked to $7.50 an hour from $5.

When the commission was convened, however, industry groups tried to present a proposal that Andrew Rigie of the New York City Hospitality Alliance called a "progressive" solution.

The industry group wanted the base minimum wage for tipped workers to stay at $5 an hour for employees whose base wage plus their tips equal at least 1 1/2 time the full minimum wage.  

Their proposal was recommended by a majority of members on the Wage Board but was later denied by the commissioner of labor 

"We were quite unhappy," Rigie told Business Insider. "The issue is you have more and more money going to employees who aren't really minimum-wage employees."

The owners at high-end restaurants say their waitstaffs don't need the wage increase they're getting. Some of their workers were making six-figure salaries in the old regime.

"People who work making $7 to $8 an hour without tips, maybe they should get $15 an hour — God bless them," John Meadow, the CEO and founder of LDV Hospitality, said.

His restaurant group owns the steakhouse American Cut, the nightclub No. 8, and the Italian restaurant Scarpetta, among others.

"But my server making $90K a year? I'm proud I created a business that made that happen. Treating fast food the same as fine dining? That's totally inappropriate."

The house

Another problem with this wage increase, restaurateurs say, is that it makes existing inequities between front-of-house and back-of-house employees even worse. It leaves the back of the house behind.

The people who handle your food in the kitchen can't legally share in the tip pool from the front of the house. Restaurants can use their discretion to pay them more, but a 50% increase in wages to waitstaff will make it harder to hike wages for the back of the house.

So that's when people started talking about doing away with tipping altogether.

"Nobody's talking about the real reason why there's movement in the tipping world," Wolf said in a phone interview. "Laws and regulations around labor are just getting harder to comply with. I would challenge the state of New York and the City of New York to start their own restaurant and follow all the rules."

Restaurateurs have a solution, of course.

"You've got to either increase your prices or get out of the business. We're not doing this for charity," Scott Gerber, CEO of Gerber Group, said. His company operates food and beverage programs in hotels like the Viceroy Central Park on 57th Street and W New York at Union Square.

Viceroy hotel nyc roof

That's what Meyer of Union Square Hospitality Group did in deciding to exit the tipping world. He introduced a "hospitality included" policy, increased prices, wrote customers a note about it, and eliminated the tip portion on customers' bills.

That price hike isn't what's giving these businessmen something of an existential crisis, though. It's more about the culture of the business they know, something they think of as definitively American.

"Because of how I was brought up, I want people to work for their tips," Gerber said.

Proceed with caution

andrew cuomoThe calls for an even larger minimum-wage increase can be heard all over the US.

On Tuesday, Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York hit the road in his "Drive for $15" initiative, a statewide tour in a blue-and-red bus that's kicking off in Manhattan.

"All New Yorkers deserve a fair day's pay for a fair day's work, and we're taking this message statewide," Cuomo said.

"Together, we're going to set a national precedent with a $15 minimum wage and ensure that those who work hard will be able to make a decent living and enjoy a better quality of life."

In the hospitality industry there's a fear that another minimum-wage hike would initiate another hospitality wage order.

"This is a challenging operating environment with a trifecta of hospitality headwinds in rent increases, the wage tip credit increase, and clients' increased focus on value, creating price compression," Altamarea CEO and owner Ahmass Fakahany said.

"For Altamarea we are slowing pace and taking a cautious view, focusing on efficiency, quality consistency, and our clients."

In other words, we're not moving until we see the whites of their eyes. This is too important a decision to take lightly. A chunk of New York culture is at stake.

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: The ultimate guide to tipping in almost any situation

Here's the real reason we punish others, even if their actions don't affect us


Wolf of Wall Street

Why do we punish people who are selfish, even when their behavior doesn't affect us directly?

We protest unfair labor practices, criticize someone for going on Facebook at work, and condemn our friends for cheating on their partners, even though these things have little impact on our own lives.

Punishing someone whose behavior doesn't directly affect you — known as "third party punishment" — is a common cross-cultural phenomenon: It makes sense for society as a whole to punish people people who break rules for their own gain.

But calling someone out can cost you if you do it on your own. You might lose that person's friendship, for example, or they may even decide to take revenge.

So why do we do it? A new study, published Wednesday in the journal Nature, offers some answers.

The money game

For her study, Jillian Jordan, a psychologist at Yale University, and her colleagues studied this phenomenon using a simple economic game.

They found that people were willing to punish others because it made them appear more trustworthy themselves.

The game was made up of two stages:

  1. In the first stage, one person is given a sum of money and can choose whether he or she wants to keep the money or share it with another person. A third person who also has money then has to decide whether to "punish" the first person if they didn't share the money. However, punishing comes at a cost, literally, because the punisher loses some money in the process.
  2. In the second stage, a new person gets a sum of money and has to decide whether to transfer some of it to reward the punisher from the first round. Whatever amount they transfer gets tripled. Then, the recipient gets to decide whether to transfer any of that money back. 

A money changer poses for the camera with a U.S dollar (R) and the amount being given when converting it into Iranian rials (L), at a currency exchange shop in Tehran's business district, Iran, January 20, 2016. REUTERS/Raheb Homavandi/TIMA  What happened was somewhat surprising: People were more willing to reward someone (by transferring money to them) if that person was willing to punish someone who'd acted selfishly. Jordan and her colleagues think this was because it was a sign they could be trusted. Also, the person being rewarded in the transaction was more likely to return some of that money, something Jordan and her colleagues said could suggest that this trust was justified.

In other words, "If someone is willing to sacrifice some money to punish someone for being selfish, they are seen as more trustworthy — and are more trustworthy," said Jordan.

Still, there's a twist: When Jordan and her colleagues offered the punisher from the first stage the chance to be the person giving money (rather than simply giving them the option of punishing someone else for not giving money), those who chose to give were more likely to also receive money from someone else.

This suggests that while punishing bad behavor might make you appear trustworthy, helping others could make you look even better.

Why we punish others

Overall, the findings suggest that punishing people for being selfish isn't just good for society, but can be good for you as an individual, too. 

The findings add to previousresearch on punishment in the laboratory and in the real world. 

In one 2012 study, researchers conducted an experiment in the main subway station in Athens, Greece, where they violated two social norms, and observed how people reacted. In one case, the experimenter stood on the left side of an escalator (which is normally reserved for walking), and in another case, they intentionally littered.

Overall, only about 12% of bystanders enforced these norms. And they were much more likely to enforce the no-standing-on-the-left norm than to enforce the no littering norm. In addition, men were more likely than women to punish norm violaters. 

These findings could suggest that while people are willing to punish others to enforce good behavior, only some of us choose to do so.

So why is it that some people are more likely to punish people than others?

The new study doesn't address this. However, Jordan speculates that it only makes sense to punish people in societies with a good rule of law, where bad behavior has consequences. But in societies where you can get away with acting badly, there's no incentive to risk the personal cost of ratting on other people.

It turns out it's also not worthwhile to punish people who didn't do anything wrong, just to appear more trustworthy. It seems that the cost of punishing someone on false pretenses outweighs the benefits of being seen as a punisher.

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