Discussions On Careers In Finance

2011.03.04 17:09 Nefarious- Discussions On Careers In Finance

Plan your career in the wide world of finance.

2011.05.31 06:10 yanchovilla HotWheels: Speed in 1:64

Hot Wheels on reddit! Reddit's dedicated Hot Wheels section, welcoming all forms of die-cast, not just Hot Wheels.

2019.03.19 02:27 gene100001 The subreddit for off-brand celebrity doppelgangers

This is a subreddit for images/gifs/videos of people who look or act like off-brand versions of celebrities or other well known characters. The posts can range from near-perfect look-alikes/doppelgangers/doubles through to terrible knock-off versions of the celebrities/characters, as long as there is some resemblance. we also allow actual photos of celebrities in walmarts.

2023.06.02 04:10 itsyourlife007 Side Hustles from Home - 40 Microtask Sites to Make Money Online

Side Hustles from Home - 40 Microtask Sites to Make Money Online
Side Hustles from Home - 40 Microtask Sites to Make Money Online
Need ideas for side hustles from home? Today we are sharing 40 microtask sites to help you make money online from the comfort of your home. This article will cover microtask websites and user testing websites. Microtask websites pay you for completing short online tasks in your spare time.
Please keep in mind, that there are far more workers/ testers than jobs available. It’s a great way to make some fast and easy cash, but it isn’t going to pay your mortgage. Also note that you will need to set aside money yourself to pay taxes.
User testing websites pay Testers to test various websites, applications and even games. Payout varies but you can stack some cash as a side hustle.
Examples of common tasks include:
• Testing apps and websites
• Business listing verification
• Captioning videos
• Quality rating gigs
• Monitoring social media
• Search engine evaluation
• Helping with machine learning tasks
• Data entry

Of course there are pros and cons to microtasks you should consider:
Microtask Pros:
· Low barrier to entry
· Wide variety of jobs
· Can earn real cash
· Numerous companies to work for
· Global income opportunities
Microtask Cons:
· Low hourly earning potential for many websites
· Jobs can get dull after a while
· Doesn’t really advance your career in a meaningful way
Before we get started with the list, if you want to make much more money than these microtask sites offer and not be at the mercy of available gigs, check out my Reddit Traffic 101 guide. It has a simple side hustle from home formula, to start making money online using Reddit.
Microtask Sites
Side Hustle from Home #1. 1Q - is an app that pays you to answer questions. Each time you answer a question, you get paid $0.25 instantly, and the app sends the money to your PayPal account. For making $10 fast, this is a good option.
Side Hustle from Home #2. Analysia – will email you when a test is available that matches your profile. You can expect to complete specific tasks on a website while having your screen and audio recorded. Testers are paid $10 per tests, which typically take around 15 minutes, and are paid via PayPal.
Side Hustle from Home #3. Appen - jobs pay as high as $14/hour+. On Appen, you apply to a specific category of work, which includes rating jobs, language based jobs, or micro tasks. Payments are made via PayPal or Payoneer. Hourly pay rates differ by geographical locations. US & Americas – $13.5, UK & some Europeans – $14, Asians – $7, Indians – $3. Some projects pays as high as $21/hr.
Side Hustle from Home #4. AppStation - pays you for playing games. You’ll earn coins that you can redeem for money to your PayPal account, or you can opt for a gift card. You can cell gift cards online in exchange for cash.
Side Hustle from Home #5. Clickworker – is a task site platform where you can get paid for writing, translating, researching, and collecting data. Create an account, fill out your profile, complete a qualification assessment, then bid on jobs. Payments are made by SEPA bank account transfers or PayPal once your account reaches 5.00 euros and your tax information has been completed.
Side Hustle from Home #6. Enroll – Enroll lets you do a variety of tests from any device – computer, tablet, or phone. You may review a new logo, give feedback on website clarity, or complete some other task. They pay via PayPal (threshold payout is $1). A brief test can earn you between $0.5 and $2, but some tests pay as much as $10 depending on the complexity of the project.
Side Hustle from Home #7. Fancy Hands – is one of the most popular platforms out there for finding work as a virtual assistant. Popular virtual assistant tasks on Fancy Hands include making phone calls on someone’s behalf, scheduling appointments, making travel arrangements, and data entry. Fancy Hand tasks pay $3 to $7 to start, but you can earn more as you work with the same client or if you are promoted to a managerial position and manage other virtual assistants. You must have an audio headset to work for Fancy Hands. Payments are also made biweekly through Dwolla.
Side Hustle from Home #8. Figure Eight – has microtasks that include, social media categorization, content moderation, business listing verification, and image tagging are some of the jobs you can expect to encounter. Tasks pay from a few cents to a couple dollars.
Side Hustle from Home #9. Grindabuck – is perfect for anyone who isn’t into surveys. It is a decent passive income website if you run their video rewards portal in the background. It is available in Canada, the United States, Germany, Australia, and the U.K. GrindaBuck offers PayPal, Bitcoin, and gift card rewards.
For PayPal, you can request as little as a $1 payment if you’re a VIP with that option. As a level 1 VIP, you’ll need to wait until you have at least $10 in your account to cash out that much with PayPal, which equals 1025 points. $1 in PayPal cash is 125 points. Bitcoin payments cost less – $5 is 500 points and you can get a bit of a discount for $25 in Bitcoin with 2450 points. Amazon cards are in $1, $5, $10, and $25 denominations, while Walmart cards are in $5 and $10. Each one will cost you 100 in points for every dollar (so 1000 points for a $10 gift card, for example). GrindaBuck says that all gift cards and payments should arrive within 12 hours, but sometimes can be even quicker.
Side Hustle from Home #10. InstaGC – pays you to complete different tasks online, like surveys, watching videos, visiting websites, testing apps, shopping online, product samples and more. Like other online survey sites, each InstaGC reward point is worth one cent which makes 100 points worth $1. InstaGC requires you to have 100 points to request your redemption. Redemption options include gift cards, direct deposit, eChecks, PayPal, sweepstakes entries and charitable donations.
Side Hustle from Home #11. IntelliZoom – is the user testing panel put together by UserZoom. You can do testing for them either from your mobile device or your computer. You just need to be able to download their testing software and have access to Wi-Fi. Most tests take 10 to 20 minutes. Tests that record your screen and spoken thoughts pay about $10 while standard surveys pay $5. You’ll be paid via PayPal within 21 business days after your tests are approved.
Side Hustle from Home #12. JustPlay – is a gaming rewards app that lets you cash out the same day with PayPal money. You can cash out your coins every three hours during a payout window and there isn’t a minimum cashout requirement. They also pay via gift cards and charitable donations. If you play a lot of games, you could probably earn $1 to $4 per hour.
Side Hustle from Home #13. Lionbridge - is a competitor of Appen and offers the same sort of micro task marketplace for people to make extra money. If you want to try search engine evaluation, website testing, quality rating, or translation/transcription and have had difficulty getting into Appen, Lionbridge is a solid alternative. FYI… it is technically against TOS to work for Appen and Lionbridge simultaneously. Pay rates range from $8-$14 per hour depending on the job you’re working on.
Depending on the projects you worked on, Lionbridge pays through Direct Bank Transfer and PayPal. The minimum payout threshold is $20. Payable sums that fall below the minimum payout threshold are carried over to the following month. The payment cycle is NET-45 means January earnings are deposited into your bank account around the 15th of March. It takes them around 15 days to create invoices and another 30 days to process payments.
Side Hustle from Home #14. Microworkers - is a micro task website that currently has more than 1.4 million workers who have completed more than 42 million tasks. Popular jobs on Microworkers include categorization, completing surveys, data mining/entry, and ads monitoring on social media platforms like Facebook. As with Clickworkers, you will be assigned a star rating as you complete tasks, and higher ratings will allow you to access a wider array of jobs. Microworker pays out through Dwolla, PayPal, and Transpay, but you must earn at least $9 before cashing out. Payments are sent twice a week.
Side Hustle from Home #15. Mistplay – is a leading Android app that pay you to play games on your phone! They will give you free gift cards when you play games. It is basically a loyalty program for mobile gaming fans. Mistplay lets you redeem points for a variety of free gift cards, and redemptions actually start at $0.50 for Amazon gift cards. The app is available in U.S., Canada, Denmark, Australia, and several other countries.
Side Hustle from Home #16. MTurk – is a platform by Amazon and perhaps the original microtask website. Jobs on MTurk are similar to Clickworker. The MTurk marketplace is full of tasks including identifying objects in videos, data deduplication, transcription work, and search engine evaluation. MTurk jobs are known as ‘hits,’ which stands for ‘Human Intelligence Tasks,’ and the premise behind Amazon MTurk is to have workers help solve problems that AI isn’t capable of figuring out. U.S. citizens can earn cash or Amazon gift cards for their work on MTurk, while non U.S. citizens can only earn gift cards.
Side Hustle from Home #17. Money Well - lets you play Android games for gift cards and PayPal money. Money Well is completely free to download and is available in the United States, Canada, Australia, the UK, and many European countries. Money Well lets you redeem your tickets for PayPal money and a range of gift cards. However, the minimum redemption amount depends on the reward you select and where you live.
Side Hustle from Home #18. OneSpace - is a short task platform where you’re paid for various freelance tasks, such as taking surveys, copywriting, quality assurance, transcription, and lots more. To be eligible for more complex and higher-paying tasks, you must pass a qualification test. Once you pass the qualification test, you unlock higher-paying gigs. Payments are made via PalPal. You can get paid quickly and daily for your approved work.
Side Hustle from Home #19. PlaytestCloud – allows you to earn approximately $9 per 15 minute app test you complete. You will be test apps and games that are in development. Specifically, PlaytestCloud lets app developers test their apps during various stages: Prototyping, Development, Soft launch, Post-release. Requirements are speak English, live in Canada, the UK, or the United States; be comfortable talking out loud while testing games. Have an Android phone that’s 5 (Lollipo) or newer.
Alternatively, have an iOS device running iOS 12 or 13 – this is basically an iPhone 5 or higher or iPod Tough 6G. Once you’re approved to test games, PlaytestCloud will periodically email you testing opportunities. Playtest Cloud pays out through PayPal, and this is the only option. Payment processes within a few days after a verified testing session and you don’t need a minimum payment amount.
Side Hustle from Home #20. Premise Data – uses crowdsourced data to help its clients get the data it needs to make informed decisions. Tasks include answering paid surveys, sharing your opinion, taking phots of things in you city, completing short tasks. You can get paid with PayPal cash, Payoneer, or even with Bitcoin, so it’s also a versatile micro task app. The payment options you have access to will vary based on your location. Minimum payouts will vary by location as well, but in the US, they start at $10.
Side Hustle from Home #21. Qmee – pays members to answer paid surveys, shop online, search the web, answer daily polls, referring friends. You can redeem points for PayPal cash, gift cards, or charitable donations and do not have a minimum payout requirement. They are available in U.S., Canada, Australia, and the UK.
Side Hustle from Home #22. RapidWorkers – is a site for marketing-focused micro tasks. You might be asked to do things like social media actions, following or liking or tweeting, and you can get paid out immediately to PayPal as soon as you make $4.
Side Hustle from Home #23. Remotasks - is a newer entrant to the work of crowdsourced micro jobs, and they also pay less on average than companies like Appen or Lionbridge. However, if you can’t make it into other platforms but want to make some extra money, Remotasks might help hold you over until you can find better work. Popular jobs on Remotasks include image annotation, data collection, identifying spam, moderating content, and transcription. Payments are made via PayPal, but you will probably earn under $10/hour on this platform so keep that in mind.
Side Hustle from Home #24. Rev - This leading transcription website pays you to transcribe audio files. They claim you can make around $250 per month working for them, and it’s completely free to sign up. You must meet their requirements to join the platform. Requirements are: being at least 18 years old, having a PayPal account, being proficient in English, passing a grammar test and submitting a transcription sample for review. Rev transcriptionist jobs pay $0.30 to $1.10 per minute of audio, or video you transcribe. So, an hour-long transcription job might pay $18 to $66.
However, it can take a proficient transcriptionist about 2 to 3 hours to transcribe one hour of audio. So, your speed and accuracy really influence how much money you make per hour. Rev pays transcriptionists with PayPal money every week. There isn’t a minimum cash out amount either, making Rev a reliable online job that pays weekly.
Side Hustle from Home #25. Rewarded Play - is a free Android app that lets you earn free gift cards for playing mobile games. All you have to do is download new games and play them to earn points, which are redeemable for dozens of different gift cards. Rewarded Play has a 45,000 point minimum redemption requirement, which equals a $5 gift card. Gift cards you can redeem with Rewarded Play: Amazon, Best Buy, Target, Ebay, Nordstrom, Walmart, Gap, Adidas, Chilis, Sephora and Macy’s.
You can choose to receive your gift card digitally or delivered straight to your door. If you go the digital route, you’ll receive it in your email. Rewarded Play claims that you can easily receive your first gift card within 48 hours. Note that you also have a cap of 5,000 points per day
Side Hustle from Home #26. Spare 5 - has both a website and mobile app (so you can hustle while on the go). Most Spare 5 tasks focus on “deriving the meaning of, or providing human insight into, audio, video, or image files.” Expect to annotate images, provide keywords/categories, and proofread/complete linguistic tasks. Spare 5 gigs generally pay a few cents to under a dollar, and payments are made on Friday via PayPal. The minimum payout threshold is $1.
Side Hustle from Home #27. StartUpLift – works specifically with startups to provide feedback on their websites based around required completion of certain tasks. You’re paid $5 for every feedback accepted, and they pay via PayPal each Monday.
Side Hustle from Home #28. TELUS International - which acquired Lionbridge, hires independent contractors to work on microtasks like translation, transcription, rating ads, annotation, search engine evaluation, and testing. You must first prove your proficiency by taking and passing relevant evaluation tests (which I’ve heard are pretty challenging). Once they have your evaluation scores, you’ll receive invites to work on available projects. Payment schedule is longer than desired. Work in January is calculated at the end of January, invoice is released in February and payment will be in March. Rate vary by country.
Side Hustle from Home #29. Testing Time – Testing Time provides tester feedback on digital products (websites and apps), and you must use Skype to test with them. They pay currently around $59. They match you to tests using your profile and you’ll get an invitation via email when they match you. You must be fluent in English to work for TestingTime, and you will need Skype and a working microphone. You set up an appointment with their client to do a guided usability test. Payments are made every 5-10 days via PayPal following a test.
Side Hustle from Home #30. TryMyUI - connects quality assurance testers with businesses looking to perfect their website or app. Testers are paid $10 per accepted test, and sessions generally take 20 minutes. They also have you do a written wrap-up survey. TryMyUI is currently hiring global testers, but you must be fluent in English and have a microphone/screen recording software. They pay through PayPal every Friday.
Side Hustle from Home #31. UsabilityHub – offers very short tests that you’re paid about $0.10 for. They call your earnings “credits,” where 1 credit equals $0.10. Once you accrue 100 credits, you can cash out your $10. They pay via PayPal. They do not have as many tests as they purport.
Side Hustle from Home #32. UserCrowd – Pays you around $0.20 per credit earned, for completing very brief testing gigs. Most tests pay 1-2 credits per response, and some may pay more. Payouts with PayPal. You can request a payout when your balance reaches $10. You will need a PayPal account that is eligible to receive payments.
Side Hustle from Home #33. UserFeel – is another usability company that will record your screen and your spoken thoughts. You can use a smartphone or a computer running Windows 7 or better. Macs work too. They pay $10 per test with tests taking around 10 to 20 minutes. Payment is by PayPal or Payoneer, and they pay out around 1 week after your test is accepted.
Side Hustle from Home #34. – sources testers through Mturk. It is another one that pays to test web pages. You need a computer to perform the tests and as in many platforms of this type, your screen and voice will be recorded while you perform the requested tasks. The tests last between 5 and 15 minutes but can be extended depending on the needs and of course if you think you have the ability to express your thoughts in detail.
The payment ranges from $5 to $15 per test, depending on its complexity and duration. In some cases, you will have the opportunity to access additional bonuses. You are paid through mTurk (mTurk pays you with Amazon gift cards or Amazon Payments that can be transferred to your bank account. If you don’t have a bank account, you can transfer from Amazon Payments to a prepaid debit card.)
Side Hustle from Home #35. Userlytics – is a digital usability testing platform that provides companies with critical customer insights and feedback. Companies sign up for Userlytics to hire people like you to browse through and provide feedback on websites, mobile apps, prototypes, videos, and advertisements. To test with Userlytics, you must have a computer with a microphone, running Windows 7 (or better) or MacOS 10.7.3 (or newer). You’ll also need a webcam.
As a usability tester, you’ll be paid a certain amount for every test you complete. Most tests will take about 20 to 40 minutes to complete. Usability tests are sent out randomly to testers.
In some instances you’ll be conducting a test for a large corporation, and in other cases it may be for a smaller start-up company. While you can take as many tests as you want, you’ll need to wait until Userlytics sends you one.
You’ll have a better chance of receiving tests if you provide more of your personal information and fill out a complete profile. There aren’t any qualifications for taking tests. In fact, clients prefer that you don’t know anything beforehand. Those with less experience often provide some of the most valuable feedback to clients.
Your pay rate will depend on each individual test you take. Many tests will pay between $5 and $20. Other tests can pay as much as $90, however, these are quite rare. You’ll be paid more money for tests that are more intensive and take a longer time. Before you take a test, you’ll be shown how much you’ll be paid and approximately how long it will take. Remember: Clients need to approve your test before you can get paid. Once you’re approved, you’ll be paid once every 15 days through PayPal.
Side Hustle from Home #36. UserTesting - pays $10 per desktop test and $15 per mobile test, and the tests only take about 20 minutes each to complete. Testers are required to record their thoughts/screen as they navigate a testing environment, but most sessions take 10-20 minutes. Rarely, testers may qualify for a live test session with a client, which pay up to $60. UserTesting is fairly global, and payments are made 7 days after a testing session via PayPal.
Side Hustle from Home #37. UserZoom – is very straightforward and like most usability testing sites – sign up, fill out a profile, be matched with tests and get emailed when tests are available. UserZoom has become more focused on the digital experience rather than shopping and buying experiences. Studies that record your video and audio pay $10 on average. When it comes to standards surveys, though, the average is $5. Each study takes approximately 10-20 minutes.
Depending on your demographics and your quality rating, you expect to be invited for 2 or 4 tests per month. After you submit your test, you will have to wait for approval, which takes approximately 3 – 5 days. Once approved, they will send out your PayPal payment within 21 business days. Just like other platforms, there is no minimum payout requirement.
Side Hustle from Home #38. WhatUsersDo – has testers review new websites (some by household names), and are paid $5 per test. They send you test invitations via email, and you can only take 3 to 5 tests per month. They also pay via PayPal, but only on the 25th of each month. Requires download of a screen recorder.
Side Hustle from Home #39. ySense - is a weird mixture between a survey site and a micro job platform, and there’s truly a little bit of something for everyone on this site. On ySense, users can make money through surveys, download offers, watching videos, or by completing jobs like the ones posted on Figure Eight.
ySense was formerly known as Clixsense, another popular GPT website, and the platform is under the parent company Prodege, who operate some of the most reputable reward sites in the industry. Users can cash out with dozens of gift card options or through PayPal, and the lowest rewards are $3. ySense is also available in dozens of countries.
Side Hustle from Home #40. Zeerk - brands themselves as a micro job and freelance portal where you can offer or browse gigs ranging from $3 to $200. In other words, Zeerk is an alternative to Fiverr that focuses on micro tasks. This is the platform where people buy likes, followers, upvotes, social media accounts, and other semi-questionable online transactions. If you’ve ever tried to make money on Fiverr with these sorts of offerings but find the marketplace is saturated, Zeerk might be less competitive.
Side Hustle from Home #41. Reddit Side Hustle – shameless plug here. If you want to make much more than these microtask sites offer and not be at the mercy of available gigs, check out my Reddit Traffic 101 guide. It has a simple side hustle from home formula to start making money online using Reddit.

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2023.06.01 10:36 lazymentors My Breakdown of Everything that changed in marketing May 2023!

I tracked all these updates for my newsletter subscribers, you can subscribe here to receive these updates next time. enjoy your read!

Tiktok: Changes Affecting Creators & Advertisers

Tiktok made major changes to its platform. With the launch of their new creator fund “creativity program beta”. They have encouraged the top 4% of creators to push more long-form content.
And this push is also delivering results for Top Advertisers in the space. This fund was launched alongside a new Tiktok Ad format, PulsePremiere. These Ads currently in beta are shown after a trending piece of content.
For Music Marketers & Artists, Tiktok launched #newmusic to support upcoming artists.
And after that boom, we got smashed with the TikTok US state ban in Montana. There is a huge controversy around it but this news isn’t affecting marketing spend.
Executional Angles 🎬
Tiktok’s Ad platform and creator marketplace are getting better. The updates aren’t public. I have tracked a few cheeky practices from the Tiktok product team to gather more user data and better their Ad platform. Expect better location-based targeting in the upcoming few months.
For organic, With the new creator fund. Many long-form content creators are seeing an engagement hike for their content. You can experiment with long-form content as a business to connect longer with the audience.
And a nice sign is TikTok is now pushing more content from “people you follow” to the For You page. As mentioned in my Tiktok marketing post, this is something new and encouraging for brands.
Upcoming: Tiktok is testing an AI Chatbot similar to snapchat. This launch will help them keep users more engaged.

Pinterest: Affecting Organic Content

In April, Pinterest got into huge issues with user safety on the platform because many users were targeting young audiences. After that Pinterest made a few changes and at the beginning of May, launched their transparency report showcasing how they are filtering harmful content.
A great callout here is “Gen-Z is on Pinterest”. Every single platform mentions that they have Gen-Z users on their apps to attract advertisers. But data from different research shows that Pinterest has a growing Gen-Z user base, especially for diverse and Female audiences.
Bring back to the latest content ranking system and algorithm changes to Pinterest. Earlier this week, I shared this blog post from the Pinterest engineering team about the latest updates to the platform.
Executional Breakdown of Algorithm
First of all, how the Pinterest algorithm ranks content is very simple and it's all based on user interactivity.
All different engaging elements like comments, save, share, and like give the content system a signal to rank your content for relevant topics. As revealed by their engineering team in this post and by the previous product manager at Pinterest on Lenny’s podcast.
The new changes to Pinterest are very simple:
Diversifying your content, Pinterest is making changes to the content system to make sure the content it ranks on the app isn’t too sensitive toward a demographic. That is why they want Pinterest businesses and creators to diversify their Pinterest boards and content strategy.
This affects niches like Beauty, Fashion, and other lifestyle-related brands. Don’t try to sell the idea of clear skin or a perfect body shape. Pinterest is looking to provide a better and healthy space for young audiences.
The second change is “keyword search”. In the blog post, there are mentions that the algorithm will try to show more of the content that includes identical keywords & sentence structure to “user search queries”. To promote more relevancy and better content to users.
These are the main changes, I will share more on Pinterest in my upcoming blogs to help you overall with Pinterest marketing.
Platform Changes: Pinterest users can now add links to every single Posting format. And added a new platform analytics feature for better insights.

Twitter: Regaining Advertiser Trust & Bots

With the new Twitter CEO coming in, One of the Top Advertisers mentioned their comeback to advertise on the Bird app. But mid-micro advertisers are still not loving the Ad platform.
Besides advertising, Twitter continues to launch new services and features for Blue subscribers. And decreasing creator monetization requirements, increasing the video upload limit to 2 hours. The other focus is on attracting more advertisers to the platform.
A lot going on forTwitter. But the biggest issue is that Bot spam is at its peak, removing bots was one of the biggest promises made by ElonMusk. Still not delivered.
I have my fingers crossed for June.
Execution Considerations:
Twitter is getting better at recommending relevant tweets under the original tweets you read. And as you know it is mentioned on Github that the Twitter connection network plays a huge role in getting content discovered.
I recommend refining your network and networking with the right audiences. Kinda old advice but the platform is testing new prompts related to this. That is why you should click on it.

Agencies & Brands: Who got the best campaign?

Starting with the world's biggest marketing agency will get even bigger with a new partnership with Nvidia. WPP is partnering with Nvidia to use its AI technology to level up its campaigns. Link!
Shorty Awards took place in May and here is the full list of winners. Have a look and get inspired for next year.
VCCP, a London-based creative agency, is launching an AI-creative agency. The usage of generative AI is increasing very fast and adaptation is the key now. Link!
This month was filled with brand and marketing events. I found a curated list of brand marketing events that took place in May. Link!
The New Bud Light is “The North Face”. The new campaign featuring a drag queen is catching negative attention like Budlight. Link!
Jaskaran: I started tracking agency news for the newsletter last week, for future monthly recaps you will find more and better recaps.

Instagram: Targeted Advertising!

Believe it or not. Meta is moving fast with Instagram now. Tiktok announced their search ads will roll out slowly to marketers, and last week Meta came in clutch and announced “Instagram search Ads”. You can access them through the Instagram marketing API. Link!
Besides that Instagram made a huge spark as the information about a new Twitter viral came up. Meta is expected to launch a new decentralized Twitter-like app for their users in June. Many are excited about it. It could be a great opportunity for businesses as many find IG very hard to scale.
Decentralized means your followers can follow you on the new app with one click. This app can help you reach more existing followers on IG & FB.
Other than these two, there was a list of updates including a new creator fund announcement. But not much impacting your organic growth.

PPC: New Policies Kicking In

For the second half of 2023, Advertisers in the UK & EU need compliance with these new Google Ad requirements. Link!
Google and Walmart both took steps to make media buying and Ad creative creation easier. You can read here about Google’s new approach to media buying and how Walmart here is trying to help businesses with Ad creatives.
Microsoft is moving fast with Bing Chat Advertising, You can now use Chat Ads API to integrate ads within Bing AI. Link!
There were a few other marketing product updates for Microsoft in terms of improving targeting and utilizing AI. One of my favorites is the recent UET update to their analytics dashboard.
For more information, I recommend revisiting our last emails & read this recent Google marketing live recap.

Meta: Data Limitations & AI for Marketers

Meta is stuck. Yes, because they have developed one of the best AI languages and structures to benefit marketers. For example, this new engineering blog showcasing its new AI content structure is golden. Link!
At the same time, Meta is having huge issues in the EU & UK with their data usage. The platform Received a $1.2B fine and now UK representatives are limiting data usage for Meta. Good for privacy but points to a huge problem for paid media marketers.
Meaning Meta’s future is bright due to AI research & frameworks but data issues are like close friends showing up every single day.
Other than this, Meta is launching AI tools to help marketers create better Ad creatives. Link!
In April, Meta increased its involvement in AI to push organic content and in May was focused on utilizing AI for paid media offerings.
Facebook: New Lead generation forms features and a few updates to Facebook reels were key product updates.
WhatsApp: New Updates to WhatsApp Chat features with the addition of Chat Lock, sharing with captions & new polls feature.

SEO: It's all changed but…

With multiple announcements, Google search page structure & how content is ranked will be changing. The new interface is expected to prefer AI-generated results but for June. This new feature is opt-in, users on the desktop can choose to get AI results within a search. Changing their Google page experience.
Many SEOs are predicting a 70-80% traffic drop in the upcoming months. But many experienced SEOs believe changes are good and the traffic for the future will be more quality-oriented.
These insights linked below are from the best SEOs and their opinions on recent search engine marketing changes.
The technical SEO world is going through many changes. My advice is to keep your focus on the content strategy part for a while. And improve that!

Youtube: New Ad Formats & Algorithm

After doing $40B in revenue last year. The platform announced new Ad formats at IAB Newsfront. With the launch of 30-second unskippable Ads on Connected TV.
Where Youtube is headed with Unskippable Ads is the future of online movie & content streaming. Either platforms like Netflix, Hulu, and other services have to give up a share of revenue. Or they need to go back to unskippable Connected TV Ads format to pay the writers.
Coming back to Youtube, Every week on their “creator insider” channel they announce various new updates. The highlight was the recent update of community post creation for all users.
Partnering with Influencers and using community posts to target core audiences is one of the best strategies based on this new update.

Marketing Research: What Changed?

LinkedIn: Continued Organic Growth

As the round of layoffs is not stopping, LinkedIn is having its best time. The in-app activity continues to increase and now the platform has 930 million monthly active users, closing in on the 1 billion mark very soon.
LinkedIn is embracing AI in May with new AI features to help with messaging, job descriptions, and other hiring processes.
All that growth doesn’t mean everything is great. As the platform laid off 700 employees this month.
Overall, LinkedIn is doing good and viewers are loving their new marketing campaign. Watch!

Reddit: E-commerce World

I wrote about this in my updated social media trends post. Reddit is working on various new e-commerce features.
While many believe that the nature of Reddit doesn’t fit e-commerce offerings. Many product reviews and conversations take place on Reddit and users get the ability to integrate products from other businesses within the content. It could work very well.
Using these features to self-promote is impossible but with the right execution. It can do a charm.
Others: Reddit is going through a bot followers scam.

Mini-Bites: Snapchat, Airbnb & Others

PS: You can subscribe here to receive these updates every month with my insights.
submitted by lazymentors to u/lazymentors [link] [comments]

2023.05.31 00:55 AsthmaBoi420 Walmart Hiring Center Won't Work?

I'm trying to apply to a position in my area, I go to the Walmart Careers page and am redirected towards the Hiring Center where it asks for me to input my location. After doing so the page loads for a little while and then displays the same error message over and over.
"Error! System error occurred. Please try again later."
I've been trying to apply since this morning with no luck, any advice appreciated!
Edit: Just re-tried around 9:30 p.m. and it's finally working so hopefully it'll work for y'all too! Thanks to user Marilburr for keeping us updated!
submitted by AsthmaBoi420 to walmart [link] [comments]

2023.05.30 09:15 DavidGamingHDR How do I fake a WebKit browser window's height so that auto-resizing elements respect a certain resolution?

Hi there!
I'm working with a WKWebView in an iOS development environment which takes a picture of the entire view, by first resizing it to the size of the website it has loaded.
By doing so, this ends up resizing elements that auto-resize depending on window height, such as the video at the top of Is there a property I can adjust in the JavaScript console that applies to all (if not most) sites that can trick these elements into resizing based on a fake height value?
I.e if the website is 2000px, and I resize the WebView to that height, the resizable div will also increase to 2000px, pushing the rest of the content below it, and so on. Could I fake the height property so that, for example, regardless of the size of the WebView, the site would think its loaded on a 500px window?
submitted by DavidGamingHDR to learnjavascript [link] [comments]

2023.05.26 15:17 ZandrickEllison [OC] It's difficult to compare "rings" across different eras, so I wanted to test a new concept: "Gold Coins"

The basketball conversation is too obsessed with "rings" (and this post won't affect that), but there are several flaws with the concept. Aside from the obvious fact that basketball is a team sport, there's also the issue of context. Is it fair to compare the odds of getting title back in an 10-team league to a 30-team league? Is it fair to compare the total volume of rings for a star who played 6 years versus a star who played 16?
With those challenges in mind, I wanted to experiment with a new metric: GOLD COINS.
how gold coins would work (in theory)
Imagine yourself shoveling in chips in a gambling parlor, or putting a quarter on the arcade machine for Street Fighter II (yes I'm old).
Every season, each team in the league inserts one "gold coin" for entry into the NBA competition. It's your ticket to participate. If you lose at some point during the season, you lost your precious coin. If you happen to win the championship, you collect the whole pot of gold coins. If there are 12 teams, you get 12 coins. If there are 20 teams, you get 20 coins.
Your total coin collection would also be affected by how long you played. If you won 1 title in 10 seasons, you'd have more coins than the player who won 1 title in 20 seasons (as he lost 10 more gold coins along the way.)
how gold coins would work (in practice)
Let's use a real-life example to illustrate the concept. Dirk Nowitzki is a good one to use since he had a clean and easy-to-follow career.
Nowitzki played a total of 21 seasons in the NBA. Effectively, he dished out 21 gold coins for entry.
He won one championship -- in the 2010-11 season. That season, there were 30 NBA teams competing. Nowitzki would win 30 gold coins (29 from other teams, and the 1 he put up to participate).
In our system, Nowitzki would end his career with 9 gold coins. +30 for the win, and -21 for the entry fees.
examining superstars' gold coin collection
Would this "gold coin" exercise affect our perception of any of the superstars? Would it affect the GOAT debate? Probably not. But hey, since we're here, let's play it out anyway.
I went through the careers of the top 4 players in history (according to an ESPN article from a few years ago.)
Michael Jordan is considered the consummate winner of the new millennium, with 6 titles to his name. But don't just pencil in 6 x 30 to start, my friends. Jordan played during an expanding era, so the math gets a little trickier than that. There were 27 teams during his first three-peat, and then 29 during his second three-peat (after the league added Toronto and Vancouver). So all in all, he collected 168 gold coins (27x3 + 29x3). If you subtract his entry fees, 15 gold coins for 15 seasons, then he ends with a total of 153 coins.
The math is easier for Jordan's biggest GOAT rival, LeBron James. By the time James won a title, there were an even 30 teams in the league. So we'd multiply 4 titles, times 30 gold coins, for a collection of an even 120. However, we'd also have to subtract his entry fee of 19 coins/seasons. Overall, James has a running total of 101 coins. Is it fair to punish James for playing longer? For not taking years off? Probably not. But alas, let's keep going with this exercise anyway.
The next greatest player, according to ESPN, is Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Abdul-Jabbar won 6 titles, but we're going to have to factor in the league size here. In 1971, he won in a league size of 17. In 1980, there were 22 teams. His next four titles came in a league with 23 teams. All together, he collected 131 gold coins. Subtract his entry fee (20 coins/seasons) and we end with 111 coins. Perhaps the Jordan vs. Abdul-Jabbar numbers show the difference between rings and gold coins well. Both players won 6 championships, but Jordan collected more "coins" because he played in bigger leagues.
The last player we'll do a deep dive on is Bill Russell, who is going to be the most interesting case study given the context of the era. Russell won 11 championships (in only 13 seasons), but they came in smaller leagues. His first four titles came in a league with 8 teams. His next five titles came in a league with 9 teams. His last two titles came in bigger leagues -- with 12 teams and then 14 teams. Overall, Russell only collected 103 coins (minus 13 for entry) for a total of 90 coins.
Russell's total shows a limitation with this exercise. The logic and comparison seemed to work with MJ/Kareem, but it clearly short-changes an 11-time champ here. In our metric, he's punished harshly for the league size -- unable to rack up those big 30-coin hauls. Sure, it's fair to suggest that titles in 8-team leagues are more likely statistically, but Russell did as much as he could for his day. In fact, he'd still finish behind Michael Jordan even if he won a championship in every year he played (13/13).
I still think the "gold coins" metric has some merit (maybe we should scratch the 'entry fee' element?), but at the end of the day it's nearly impossible to compare across wildly different eras like Russell played in.
submitted by ZandrickEllison to nba [link] [comments]

2023.05.25 20:20 Cityscape17 Is it though...

Is it though... submitted by Cityscape17 to walmart [link] [comments]

2023.05.24 20:17 davethebear612 BioLargo (OTCQB:BLGO) - Environmental Solutions and Engineering Services

BioLargo (OTCQB:BLGO) - Environmental Solutions and Engineering Services


BLGO represents the majority of my portfolio. My first shares were purchased on March 1, 2021 and I have consistently bought shares throughout the last 27 months.
BioLargo is an environmental engineering company. There are 5 divisions of the company. 2 of them (BLEST and BioLargo Water) focus primarily on water treatment. ONM Environmental focuses on odoVOC control in both the industrial sector and as a wholesale distributor for a consumer pet odor control product. BETI is new in 2023 and is developing sodium-sulfur battery technology. Clyra is a medical subsidiary that develops products based on a copper-iodine chemistry that has safe but incredibly powerful oxidation capabilities for infection control in surgical settings.

Currently pushed up against the \"ceiling\" of the Oct 2022-Present compression. Still have to shake the 2019-Present compression (top red line). 2008-September 2022 \"Ceiling\" was broken out of. Green floor has been firm and rising since 2021.
2023 Q1 10-Q Filing 2023 Q1 Earnings Call Recording
Market Cap: $55M ($0.19/share)
Total Outstanding Shares: 284M Outstanding Options: 30M options outstanding ($0.12-$0.43 exercise price, $0.19 average price) Outstanding Warrants: 52M warrants ($0.13-$1.00 exercise price, $0.26 average price)
2022 Revenue: $5.88M (132% YoY growth) 2023 Q1 Revenue: $3.74M (78% QoQ growth vs. Q4 ’22) 2023 Q1 Losses: ($494k) Cash on Hand: $3.26M Debt: Roughly $500k
CEO: Dennis Calvert
Losses are decreasing. Growth is primarily from ONM Environmental.

ONM Environmental generating more cash-flow, bringing company close to profitability despite being the only division with positive cash flow.

Debt is basically gone.

SG&A has remained consistent as revenue has grown across recent years.

Net Stockholder’s Equity has steadily risen. $5M net stockholder equity is required for listing on the Nasdaq.

ONM Environmental – VOC/Odor Control

ONM Environmental Website - CupriDyne Website
ONM Environmental (“Odor No More) is the original division of the company. The flagship product is CupriDyne Clean which is a copper-iodine complex that oxidizes odor and VOC. It is sold in the industrial sector to landfills, waste transfer stations, US Air Force Bases, wastewater treatment plants, automotive manufacturers, marijuana growing facilities, animal processors etc. Overall, industrial sales of CupriDyne have been underwhelming from my POV, but the underlying technology has found homes elsewhere, making the asset and the division successful for BioLargo.
ONM Environmental has partnered with an advertising firm (Ikigai Holdings) and launched a consumer pet odor control product (POOPH) for household use. Pooph Website/Commercial. One of selling points for CupriDyne/POOPH is its safety. In the commercial, the product is sprayed directly into the host’s mouth to demonstrate its safety. The product uses the same baseline chemistry as CupriDyne Clean.
BioLargo serves as manufacturing and wholesaler for Ikigai who is in control of the marketing and selling of the product. BioLargo receives a 6% royalty on Ikigai’s sales of Pooph and receives revenue from acting as the supplier for Pooph. Overall, BioLargo receives about 25% of Pooph’s total sales.
POOPH is being sold direct-to-consumer, on Amazon, on (largest online pet supply), and is stocked in about 60% of Walmart locations. POOPH is consistently in the top-50 for pet products on Amazon.
From the LinkedIn page of Jordan Stanley, one of Ikigai’s co-founders:
“Over the following 10 years, I earned the reputation of an undisputed leader in Direct Response TV, producing such well-known campaigns as Billy Mays’ OxiClean, Procter& Gamble’s Tide, Febreze, and Downy brands. Throughout that time I have continued writing and producing winning commercials through Blue Moon Studios and Concepts for Doggie Steps (Telebrands), Finishing Touch (IdeaVillage), and Snuggies (Allstar). Out of 45,000 commercials in the Procter & Gamble database dating back over 60 years, the commercials I have written, directed and produced have achieved "highest-scoring, best-performing commercials" for Downy, Febreze, Dryel, Ivory Snow laundry products and have the distinction of being the "#1 best-performing 2-minute spot". I have the distinction of having 2 spots in the top 10 as measured by ASI/Ipsos. Using my method, about $3 Billion of revenue has been generated to date.”
Ikigai’s goal is to generate $100M+ in annual sales and then seek a brand sale of 3x-7x of annual sales ($300M-$700M). Ikigai has done this before with products like Finishing Touch/Flawless, which is a beauty-care product line that they sold for $900M. That brand sale was valued at 5x annual sales. Flawless/Finishing Touch Brand Sale
The estimated payout to BioLargo if/when the brand sells is $100M. As of Q1 2023, BioLargo is receiving roughly $1M/month from Pooph sales. That means Ikigai is at roughly $50M in annual sales rate after less than 18 months since first sales of the product. Ikigai has stated their expectations for 20% QoQ growth for POOPH. If that holds true, they will be at a $100M annual run-rate by Q1 2024.
ONM Environmental was the only profitable division in 2022, generating $1.13M in operating income from $4.37M total revenue. This was primarily revenue generated from POOPH, with 86% of total BioLargo 2023 Q1 revenue being POOPH revenue.

BioLargo Engineering, Science, and Technologies Inc. (BLEST)

BLEST is the most diverse and exciting part of the company to me. The core of the group is a half dozen engineers who were brought on in 2017 after CB&I laid off their entire unit during some turmoil for the company. They were working with BLGO at the time, and Dennis pitched to them that they form BLEST and continue working as the unit that they had been for 20-30 years in their previous role, but with more freedom and flexibility working for an emerging company rather than a giant company like CB&I. They agreed and are based out of Oak Ridge, Tennessee.
BLEST is led by Randall Moore. Randall has a 30+ year career in environmental engineering, leading over 1000 employees at times in his career. He has done 1000s of projects. Randall assisted the US Post Office during the Anthrax Crisis. He helped to design and implement the efforts to pump out New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina. He helped during the BP Oil Spill in the Gulf of Mexico. He worked on the aftermath of the Fukushima Disaster. He designed and built the largest dioxin remediation facility in the world. Randall has worked professionally on a diverse set of projects at the highest caliber. He and the rest of the BLEST team are essential to the ability to execute stated goals, continue product development, and complete project design work.
BLEST serves 3 roles. They are here to invent new technologies. They are here to support the engineering and design work for other divisions. They are here to complete engineering work for clients.
BLEST Technologies and Projects: Aqueous Electrostatic Concentrator (AEC) for PFAS remediation, Minimal Liquid Discharge (MLD) Systems via Garratt Callahan partnership, engineering and design work for what (if goes to full scale) will be the largest waste-to-energy facility in the world, engineering and design work for Ultra Safe Nuclear Company (USNC) for their fuel production system for micro-modular reactors.
The above technologies will be discussed later. AEC, Waste-to-Energy, and USNC projects have all been engaged by clients, with the initial phases completed and the second phases scoped . Each have a proposal in the client’s hands, awaiting approval. Many technologies or projects seem very close to strong adoption or progression to future stages, but none of them have really gotten fully there. If the technologies gain more consistent traction, BLEST’s headcount will have to grow, as will their revenues.
BLEST incurred a loss of $425k in 2022 on total revenue of $1.94M.

BioLargo Water

BioLargo Water does research and development of the Advanced Oxidation System (AOS) which is a water disinfection and micropollutant destruction technology. The division is headquartered in Edmonton, Alberta and gets quite a bit of their funding and support via the Canadian government.
AOS has been used in pilot projects for stormwater treatment, brewery wastewater treatment, poultry water treatment, pharmaceutical/micropollutant removal in Montreal’s municipal facility. They have submitted a proposal to the Alberta EPA to validate the technology for use in poultry water treatment in the province, however, not much has been said since that was made public in June 2022.

AOS provides disinfection of E coli and other microorganisms. AOS also destroys tough contaminants like pharmaceuticals and micropollutants like benzene.
AOS is hard to pin down. Technically, it’s unique and very capable It has been in development for almost a decade and is yet to find a reliably commercial home. For now, it’s just been pilots and peer-reviewed journal articles published in scientific journals. My science brain loves AOS. My finance brain hates it. The company isn't churning through resources to try to commercialize, so it's not killing the company, but the combination of duration of development, unique and high level technical function, and lack of commercial success is a confusing one.
AOS Product Brochure - Quebec Pilot - Sunworks Poultry Pilot
BioLargo Water did not generate revenue in 2022 and incurred $714k in losses in 2022, which was primarily R&D budget.

BioLargo Energy Technologies Inc. (BETI)

BETI is a new subsidiary in 2023. BioLargo owns 97% of BETI with a small group of investors holding the remaining 3% of shares. The capital was raised at a valuation of $20M for BETI.
Its purpose is to commercialize sodium-sulfur battery technology. One of the original inventors (Mario Caja) of the technology has been brought on to see that through as a member of the BETI team. He has been working on molten salt battery technology for 30 years. Presently, the company is putting the capital that they raised into building small manufacturing capabilities in their Oak Ridge, Tennessee facility.
May 9, 2023 Interview Transcript
Regarding lithium and sodium ion batteries, Dennis Calvert – CEO:
“Those are exotics, lithium, cobalt, nickel, those are rare earth elements that are really mined in offshore. So foreign supply's a big problem. That's one issue. The other is, of course, they're rare, so the price is going crazy, and then the other is efficiency. Lithium has efficiency issues. It only lasts 6, 7, 8 years. Everybody's working on that. They get 80-20% efficiencies, they can't charge to 100%, it builds up dendrites. So the world's looking for a better battery for certain locations.
So our battery checks the box on a number of those long lasting domestic supply, no rare earth, 100% efficiency. We've even got an energy density that's 2.9 times that of lithium, which means a lot of power in that battery.
It's a little heavier, and it's really not designed to be in a mobile situation. It's more of the fixed site that would go adjacent to solar, like a EV charging station or solar power generation operation or grid balancing. So long-term energy storage is really where we're focused. And that's a void in the market because as, you know, JP Morgan was quoted recently saying that, ‘the battery industry would surpass that of the chip industry in the next decade.’"
On the last quarterly call (May 18), Dennis stated that they expect to be able to sell any and all batteries that they bring to market that meet the claims they have made. He said that within 4-6 months, they expect to have built a small battery facility in Oak Ridge and prototypes. On May 24, 2023 (Sequire Presentation) Dennis stated that revenue can start to be substantial in 6-9 months.
In late 2022, BioLargo added Christina Bray to their board of directors. She is the CEO of an electric vehicle charging company (BlueDot Energies). Christina Bray PR
BETI is very new and the available proven details are relatively sparse compared to some of the other parts of BioLargo's portfolio. Seems like a lot of potential, but more must be shown.

Clyra Medical

Clyra Medical is a bit surprising on the surface. What is an environmental engineering company doing in the medical field? The original inventor at the company (Kenneth Code) sought to create a chemistry that would help be helpful in infection control, as that was something his father was struggling with at the time. The result was a copper-iodine complex, which is very similar to the baseline chemistry that ONM Environmental uses for CupriDyne Clean in the ONM Environmental division.
Clyra Medical was formed so that the subsidiary could raise its own capital, independently of BioLargo. It is an asset that is 58% owned by BioLargo. Recently, Clyra has been selling shares to fund production of their first product that has 510k clearance from the FDA, BioClynse. BioClynse Product Brochure
BioClynse produces a very strong oxidation reaction, much like how CupriDyne does for odoVOC control. BioClynse is for use during surgery for infection control and can be used after the fact if a knee or hip replacement gets infected following a procedure. The product is gentle enough to be left in the body when the patient is sewn up and provides lasting infection control, including disruption of biofilm. No rinse is required, which is unique.
Other products that came to market and were successful across the last decade are starting to come into question because of toxicity concerns to tissue. The company believes that not only has the wound irrigation market expanded dramatically and will continue to, but that it is no longer being met by incumbent products.
Regarding BioClynse Efficacy and FDA Point-Of-View:
"The questions they asked us were 'You must be lying, because this has never happened before.' When we finally got through, it took us another $1.8M and about 2 years from that first moment, the reviewer said 'This is the lowest concentration of antimicrobial at this level of performance that the agency has ever seen.' And therein lies the special thing that we've been talking about since we started this company (Clyra), and it's now finally positioned to be in a very significant commercial role."
BioClynse is expected to begin selling more substantially to orthopedic surgeons in Q2 and Q3. They have entered into a production agreement and are in negotiations with distribution partners (Clyra Production Agreement). Capital is being used to fund production. They have spent 2022 and the first parts of 2023 building out a sales rep network and “showing off” the product at industry events with significant positive response according to the company.
Clyra Medical’s goal is to build up the company and to be spun off with the sale of Clyra to a larger medical company. Recently, capital has been raised around a $32M valuation (Reported during Q2 2022 Earnings Call, so may have changed a bit since then). As a subsidiary with just the very beginnings of commercial activity, I don’t anticipate that any spin-off would happen anytime soon, but if 2023 is the year they go commercial with a high margin product like BioClynse, that clock should begin and become less of a theory than it has been.
Regarding Future Product Development and Coronavirus Allowance:
"We were given notice of allowance for use of Clyra against coronavirus. Coronavirus is a very broad category, not just Covid, it's Middle-Eastern, SARS, it's everything, probably 300 different variations of upper respritory infections and lung disease. That opens up the pathway for us to pursue drug applications for nebulizer therapy, inhalant therapy, nasal sprays, throat sprays, and have good IP coverage. This is good IP coverage. We were denied 4 times. We kept going back and fighting for this, and finally the patent office said: You know what, you got it. They gave us a very broad allowance, and we're going to continue to expand on that. That has major implications in a drug pathway for these Clyra products, which we've always believed the tough part wasgetting the patent done, but we have that."
Clyra Medical added 2 members to their board in 2022. Clyra Board Additions. Nick Valeriani spent 34 years at Johnson and Johnson, particularly with wound control (Neosporin). Nick serves on the board of $50B-valued Edwards Lifesciences ($EW). Linda Park is the Senior Vice President, Associate General Counsel, and Corporate Secretary for Edwards Lifesciences. She also joined as a member of the BioLargo board. It has been stated that Linda has been brought on partially for her expertise and guidance as BioLargo seeks to uplist in future to a national market like the Nasdaq.
Clyra Medical incurred a loss of $1.38M in 2022, bringing in just $56k what was essentially a few initial users of BioClynse in a professional setting.

BLEST Technologies and Projects

Garratt-Callahan – Minimal Liquid Discharge (MLD) Devices
In 2021, BioLargo announced that Garratt Callahan (largest private water company in North America) approached them to ask for help finalizing the design of their Minimal Liquid Discharge technology. GC MLD Announcement BioLargo helped them finish the design and will serve as the manufacturer of the product. The product has patent coverage through Garratt Callahan. GC MLD Patent
The MLD systems are water reuse devices that take the mineral content out of water streams for use in things like cooling towers. The devices allow for an industrial water user to stretch their water budget significantly further, bringing value to clients in both reducing their water costs, but also allowing them to continue their planned operations in an environment where water availability may fluctuate based on hydrologic/drought conditions. Potential clients would be data centers, energy generation, and industrial water users.
BioLargo will make money from the manufacturing and sale of the unit (approximately $500k per unit), while Garratt Callahan will make their money from the operation of the machines.
It was expected that these units would begin being sold in 2022, however that did not happen. A factory acceptance test was successfully completed in February of 2022 ("FAT" Acceptance) , however contracts have not been announced BioLargo maintains confidence in the future of these devices and states that they are involved with a dozen or more negotiations and design work for potential projects. If those projects are confirmed, GC MLD devices can be a strong revenue stream through an established water treatment company.
GC maintains that 30-50 units can be moved annually, but that is hard to predict when the first one will be sold and if 30-50 per year is a reasonable expectation given the delayed rollout. If they can accomplish that, however, it would bring in $15M-$25M annually.
Garratt Callahan has also agreed to sell AEC for PFAS remediation (discussed below). BioLargo has stated that a few of their potential PFAS remediation projects expected to move forward soon are ones that GC brought to the table.

Ultra Safe Nuclear Corporation – Fuel Production Design Work
Ultra Safe Nuclear Corporation (USNC) is designing micro-modular nuclear reactors. Part of that design is a new fuel system (FCM/TRISO-fuel). They have contracted BioLargo Engineering to help design their fuel production facility in Oak Ridge, Tennesse (also where BLEST is headquartered) which opened in August 2022. Fuel Production Facility - USNC/BLEST Collaboration - Pilot Fuel Manufacturing Facility Opens - FCM/TRISO Fuel Information
Phase 1 of the project was completed. Phase 2 has gotten a verbal “yes”, but a signed contract has not been announced officially yet.
April 24, 2023 Prospectus
"In the second quarter of 2022, BLEST was contracted by Ultra Safe Nuclear to assist in producing the first prototype fuel production systems for their new nuclear reactor called the Micro Modular Reactor (MMR®). Ultra Safe Nuclear is a Seattle-based nuclear energy company that has invented a “fission battery” - a fourth generation modular nuclear reactor – that can deliver safe, zero-carbon, cost-effective energy anywhere. The MMR® uses ceramic-encapsulated nuclear fuel – Fully Ceramic Micro-encapsulated (FCM+++) – an extremely rugged and stable fuel with high temperature stability. BioLargo has been retained to provide engineering design support, fabrication, and integration for the company’s prototype fuel production systems. Because of the success of the early phase of the project, this project is expected to expand over the coming months in scope and significance to BioLargo, making them an important customer for BLEST."

Waste to Energy – Design Work
BioLargo was contracted to begin design work on a waste to energy conversion project in South America. The facility being designed would be the largest waste-to-energy conversion plant in the world if it goes to its full scale. The project has 10 years of planning and preparation behind it. The project would be 6 phases, and the company has estimated that all 6 phases would be around $50M in design work.
Waste to Energy PR
The first phase was a feasibility study and was completed. BioLargo has given a proposal for Phase 2 and is awaiting the green light from the client. The timeline to begin Phase 2 has been slower than originally expected (as seen in June 2022 image below). On the last call, there was mention of political instability in South America giving some pause to decision-making at this time, but the BioLargo continues to maintain that they are in good standing with the client and the project is in good standing overall. The client has brought 4 more projects to BioLargo in Southeast Asia.

“This developer has actually brought us 4 more projects. This one has moved from Phase 1 to Phase 2. Phase 2 will push over $1 million. Phase 3 will probably be in the $7.5 million range.”

“In April 2022, our engineering subsidiary was hired by a Southern California based sustainable energy services company to conduct a comprehensive project plan (i.e., “feasibility study”) for a waste-to-energy (WTE) conversion plant in South America – one of multiple projects in planning stages by the company. Our engineers completed the initial feasibility study and have delivered a proposal for the next phase of the project (front end engineering design, aka FEED). The client has also requested feasibility studies and a FEED proposal for WTE plants in Asia.”
From June 2022 Annual Shareholder's Meeting - note: Stage 1 is complete. Stage 2 has not begun.

PFAS Remediation:

The Aqueous Electrostatic Concentrator (AEC) is likely the biggest opportunity in the BLEST portfolio. BioLargo has one active project that has been contracted for PFAS remediation. They are awaiting approval from the client to begin the next phase and scale towards a full installation. During a May 24, 2023 (day of making this post) presentation with Sequire, Dennis mentioned that Phase 1 is complete and they are expecting to move to Phase 2 in the near future. Phase 2 would be $500k-$1M and would take 6-9 months. Phase 3 to go to full scale would be a $15M-$20M in expected revenue. It would also provide a full-scale installation to lean on for proof of function and scaling for clients to have confidence in.
AEC is a PFAS collection technology. PFAS “Forever Chemicals” are compounds that are designed to not break down through natural processes. The EPA is in the process of setting drinking water standards for PFAS that would impact 65,000 drinking water systems across the country. Incumbent technologies (Granular Activated Carbon and Ion Exchange Resin) face performance and regulatory challenges moving forward as the EPA’s proposed regulations come closer to taking effect.
In March 2023, they proposed federal drinking water standards of 4ppt for PFOS and PFOA (the two main compounds), and a combined weighted limit for 4 other PFAS compounds based on their health advisories. The regulations are expected to firm up in the coming months after necessary comment periods and EPA process etc. Federal Proposal
PFAS waste is on a trajectory to be designated as HazMat under CERCLA (HazMat Classification). When used for municipal drinking water remediation, incumbent technologies produce several tons of PFAS-laden carbon or PFAS-laden resin. Recently, Cape Fear removed almost 200 tons of PFAS-laden carbon waste from their facility (Cape Fear Waste). Cape Fear is a very large system, but even a mid-size municipal system ends up having to consider the liability of that amount of HazMat waste on a recurring basis. That “changeout period” becomes more frequent when the drinking water standards get lower.

At 9.6ng/L, the data in the right column has too high PFAS concentration to pass proposed federal limits. 4ng/L and the detection limit are very similar levels of PFAS contamination (1-2ng/L is consistent detection limit usually). 2.7-7.1 Month range for GAC and IX technologies (standard incumbents). Lower regulatory standards will require more frequent changeout of media.
The media used for GAC projects can be regenerated. Ion exchange media cannot be regenerated. GAC waste can only be regenerated for future use in some parts of the United States. The legality of that process has come into question due to concerns about releasing PFAS emissions into the air (DoD Incineration/Regeneration Ban). Some users continue to regenerate the material while the EPA goes through the process to regulate PFAS.
If regeneration is not allowed, the material will end up requiring HazMat landfilling and not be able to be regenerated for future use. That will make remediation with GAC much more complicated and expensive. It will increase the total cost of changing out carbon material by requiring more new material to be used, but also increasing disposal costs of waste. Several tons of waste (200 tons in Cape Fear) now need to be sent to a HazMat landfill.

How Many Municipal Drinking Water PFAS Remediation Projects Will be Necessary?: West Virginia recently tested 37 water systems. 19 of them would be out of federal compliance if the proposed federal standards were implemented (WV PFAS Testing). 37 systems is not a huge sample size, but this is reasonable when compared to what I have found when looking at other state-level data across the country.
If 50% of systems require remediation, that is around 32k projects just for drinking water. For reference, if there are 32k projects for half of the US population that require remediation, the average number of residents served by a system is just over 5,000, though that number will have quite a large range with some water systems serving hundreds of thousand residents..
PFAS Remediation Project Examples: In Dover, New Hampshire, a 1.1M gallon per day facility was approved for $13.9M. This was for the treatment of half of the water supply for a population of 33,000 residents. (Dover Project Details)
The project for Wausau has a cost estimate of $23M (Wausau Cost Estimate). Wausau Water serves 16000 customers (40,000 residents) and treats just over 4M gallons of water per day (Wausau Customer and Daily Flow).
Cape Fear, NC has $43M up front costs with $5M annual costs to operate (Cape Fear Costs). The facility is 44M gallons per day (Cape Fear - Size).

Municipal Water PFAS Remediation Cost Estimate: Municipal drinking water projects are generally $5-$50M caliber projects. Small town projects can be $1M-$5M, and the largest projects will end up being over $100M.
Before the federal Orange County Water District (1% of the population of the United States) estimates a total of $1B will be required for the remediation of their water systems (OCWD Estimate). That is a figure from 2020 and is expected to have increased since then.
If you use Orange County’s estimate across the United States, it will cost over $100B for municipal drinking water.
The EPA estimates that PFAS remediation will cost between $769M and $1.2B annually (EPA Estimate). American Water Works Association (AWWA) estimates up to $2.9B annually (AWWA Estimate).

What About PFAS Remediation Outside of Municipal Drinking Water? I won’t attempt to do the same thing for other water treatment sectors. You'd probably stop reading if you don't already want to. It is important to note that drinking water is only part of what will require PFAS remediation projects.
Industrial water users (landfills, oil/gas, papepulp production, metal processing/finishing, wastewater treatment facilities) will require remediation equipment.
Groundwater remediation takes place when there is a contaminated aquifer due to a spill or through things like spreading biosolids from wastewater treatment plants on farmland. If the biosolids have PFAS in them (which many do), then the groundwater is contaminated because the PFAS has been applied across the soils.
Surface water remediation can be required if high levels of PFAS are found. It isn’t clear what the EPA is planning to do with surface water, but some states have attempted to set concentration limits.
Many of the specifics still need to be firmed up by the EPA, but in general it is safe to assume that the estimated $769M-$2.9B that is estimated for PFAS remediation of municipal drinking water annually will not begin to represent the total cost of PFAS remediation in the United States.
Any company that has leading PFAS remediation technology has the opportunity to tap into a gigantic emerging market that is going to be backed by federally enforceable drinking water standards.

Aqueous Electrostatic Concentrator (AEC):

AEC Product Video - BioLargo's PFAS Website - AEC Product Brochure
AEC functions by running water across (not through) a membrane while applying electric charge. PFAS compounds are fused to the membrane and removed from the water supply. AEC only removes the PFAS compounds, which is unique for collection technologies. Materials like granular activated carbon remove all contaminants, meaning that it is very inefficient for PFAS removal since PFAS is found in such low concentrations. This is important because remediation using GAC will produce much more waste than it will with AEC (up to 1000x depending on specific water chemistry). A user of AEC doesn’t have to worry about managing several dozen tons of waste every changeout period.
Tonya Chandler on AEC Footprint and Waste Production vs. Incumbent Technologies:
How do we measure up size-wise? Well, fairly similar to a GAC system. The difference is that when you see all of our frames, I don’t need to be skidded. I could line the walls with those frames. I can drop those frames – we’ve got one customer that wants to drop them into a pit that’s in their system that they don’t use anymore. I can stack them on top of each other to create space. As long as I have maintenance room around them, I’m pretty flexible on the layout. But you’ll see I produce much less spent (media). Now, also note that that GAC number that I’m giving you there is a single pass. I’m not considering a lead-lag in that number.
GAC vs AEC Waste and Footprint Comparison – note: AEC changeout period is expected to be longer than GAC changeout period. Disposal when spent does not represent the same period of time.
Orange County Water District - AEC can produce \"Non-Detect\" results all 27 tested PFAS compounds.
Tonya Chandler on AEC Origin, Design and Function:
“The AEC stands for the Aqueous Electrostatic Concentrator, and they decided that they wanted to use the polarity of the PFAS against it. The hypothesis was that if they created some chambers that had a series of electrodes and some specialized membranes, they might be able to pull the PFAS out and create a concentrated stream. The goal was to produce a stream that met the standards. They thought, ‘well if we did multiple stages, we could probably create DI-water. They wanted to stay low energy, and they wanted the cost to be affordable.
What they found was not what they expected. When we did the initial testing on this, they found that no concentrated stream existed, although we were removing the PFAS, we weren’t finding it in the anode stream. They were able to remove 99% of the PFAS in a single pass through the system. They got a side benefit of low-energy desalination in all of this, and they got their low cost at about 30 cents per 1000 gallons.
The biggest concern for us was why we didn’t create a concentrated stream. What we found was that we were literally ripping the PFAS out of the water, and when they came in contact with the membrane that we have in there, it fused to the membrane, and once it fused to the membrane, PFAS fuses to itself, so we were able to create a system that all of the PFAS stayed on the membrane but we were able to get very high concentrations of PFAS on the membrane before it was spent.”

From September 2022 Tonya Chandler Presentation to Wisconsin Engineers
From 2023 10-Q Report:
“We have successfully validated the AEC as an effective system to selectively extract and collect PFAS chemicals from contaminated water including performance testing that shows “non-detect” levels of removal, which meets new EPA standards. We have demonstrated more than nine months of continuous operation showing no materially significant degradation of the AEC system’s components or performance over time. As a modular system, we believe the AEC is scalable to a commercial scale, and we believe that our engineering team has the experience to deliver systems to meet the needs of a commercial installation."

Dennis on Small Commercial-Scale AEC units:
"These are new – we have three of these. We just got – just built and what will happen with these machines is they go out into the field where we go through early testing program. We identify a spot, where we can work with a client the customer, and we say, let's as an additional step just to make sure, let's bring one of these out, park it into their location for three or four weeks, run some samples, run some tests and show our customer, our prospective customer that says that, the device can be well suited for the custom circumstances that surround that customer's water source.”
submitted by davethebear612 to trakstocks [link] [comments]

2023.05.21 16:22 littleberty95 A Comprehensive Joe/Matty Timeline, Midnights lyrics breakdown, 1975 Taylor References

November 2014: Taylor goes to a The 1975 concert with friends and meets Matt. Matt says in an Australian radio interview that they exchanged numbers that he wouldn’t say no to going out with her.
Around this time, Matt Healy and Taylor Swift are both seen wearing each other’s merchandise.
December 2014: Taylor Swift attends a The 1975 show in New York City with Karlie Kloss. This is where the Karlie Kloss/Taylor Swift kissgate happens. We aren’t getting into that here.
There are some loose tabloid rumors that Healy and Swifty are dating but nothing concrete.
January 2015: Matt denies the dating rumors.
February 2015: Taylor is photographed hanging in the same group as Matt at the Brits. This is also widely assumed to be the night she met Calvin Harris. (This night will come back into play at a later time)
March 2016: Also around this time, Matt makes, and later clarifies, a comment about how it would be “emasculating” to be Taylor Swift’s boyfriend. He says that he admires her and calls her hard working and beautiful. He also said in a post that “Now I may admit to being an idiot on occasion, but I am not a misogynist. This suggestion makes me really sad.” He also said, “I was for a very short time immersed in a celebrity world that I found confusing and scary. At that time, I had fears of being ‘somebody's boyfriend’ (remember this is all speculation as we never dated!) before even being recognized for my music or presence as a person in my own right.”
May 2016: Taylor and Joe are both photographed separately at the MET gala. Her hair is bleached, his is buzzed. She later references their styling in her Rep era song “Dress” which leads many fans to think they met this night. I actually think they were introduced in LA a bit earlier by Gigi Hadid, which is referenced in the Rep Era track, “Gorgeous.” (sunset and vine, anyone?). Their hairstyles would’ve been the same for this, so it keeps “dress” as canon either way. She is also seen dancing with Tom Hiddleston here, but the news of the Calvin breakup hasn’t happened yet. We aren’t getting into this here but this is when this all starts to go down.
October 2016: Taylor and Joe attend the same Kings of Leon concert
May 2017: News breaks that Taylor and Joe are dating
November 2018: Alwyn makes his first appearance on Swift’s social media in a story she makes promoting a film he is in
January 2019: Taylor attends the Golden Globes in support of Joe
February 2019: Taylor skips the Grammy’s and is photographed at some BAFTA’s after parties in support of and with Joe
March 2019: Tabloids begin reporting that Joe and Taylor are talking about marriage
August 2019: The Lover album is released with many nods to positive feelings about marriage (marriage and evolving feelings/references to marriage are discussed in greater detail in a later section)
September 2019: Matt Healy mentions in an interview/talk show that he would love to collaborate with Taylor Swift and make an acoustic album.
December 2019: Joe makes a rare mention of Taylor in an interview and says songs about him are flattering and most tabloid rumors are untrue.
January 2020: Miss Americana releases. Taylor says that she feels like Lover is her last chance to grasp onto this kind of success as a pop star approaching/entering her thirties. She talks about falling in love with Joe and living in his “wonderful, normal” life.
February 2020: Joe and Taylor discreetly attend the NME awards together but are photographed by fans. Matt Healy is also at the show and The 1975 perform.
Here is a video of them talking:
Matt Healy and FKA Twigs also begin publicly dating around this time.
August 2020: Folklore surprise drops. New co-writer, William Bowery, is widely assumed to be Joe. Taylor later confirms this in the folklore long pond Disney special in November and talks a bit about Joe creating/writing with her in quarantine, though keeps it pretty vague.
December 2020: Taylor Swift surprises drops Evermore. William Bowery, aka Joe, receives more writing credits on Champagne Problems, Evermore, and Coney Island.
Taylor and Joe are notably incredibly private and keep their relationship private. They both talk about “protecting” it. She is not papped often, but is spotted in Belfast in September of 2021 where Joe is filming.
November 2021: Taylor is spotted visited Joe filming in Panama.
February 2022: Joe says is very happy in his relationship after being asked a weird question by an interviewer on a panel for his upcoming Hulu series.
April 2022: Elle UK asks Joe why he doesn’t comment on his relationship with Taylor. He responds, “We live in a culture that is so increasingly intrusive. THe more you give, and frankly, even if you don’t give it, something will be taken.”
June 2022: Matt Healy and FKA Twigs split up
August 2022: Joe, Taylor, and Lena Dunham are seen having dinner at members only dining club, Casa Cirpriani. This place also will be relevant later.
October 2022: Joe and Taylor are seen walking around New York in October just before the Midnights release. This is the last time they are photographed together.
Both Midnights and The 1975’s Being Funny a Foreign Language release. Taylor says Lavender Haze is inspired by her 6 year relationship and dodging weird rumors, and just wanting to stay in that “all-encompassing love glow.” I don’t think blondie is being truthful here but more on that later.
William Bowery- aka Joe, is only credited as a writer on one song, “Sweet Nothing”
November 2022: Matt says that he and Taylor worked on some songs for Midnights, but they were cut from the final album. He said the cuts were “for reasons that are not to be criticized. She’s amazing.”
Also in November, Joe shares an instagram story of Benjamin Button, one of Taylor’s cats.
Also in November, The 1975 embarks on their “At Their Very Best” tour in support of their new album. “Question…?” is on the pre-show playlist.
January 12, 2023: Taylor is a surprise guest at The 1975 show in London. She plays “Anti-Hero” for the first time live and The 1975’s “The City” acoustically.
Taylor Swift - Live at The 1975's At Their Very Best Tour (2023)
February 2023: Joe shares an instagram story featuring one of Taylor’s cats.
Taylor Swift also attends the Grammy’s and hosts a Grammy’s after party where she’s photographed wearing a leather jacket that looks a lot like Joe’s. They are not photographed together. A photo of Joe and Jack Antanoff from that night comes out so it does look like Joe was present.
The Sun’s article, which will come out in May, suggests Joe and Taylor broke up around this time.
The Mirror will publish an article May 20 will report that a source close to Matty’s ex, Meredith, said Matty started spending time with Taylor in the studio around February. Another source said their studio time was actually in January.
Friday, March 17, 2023: Eras Tour Opening Night, Glendale. The 1975’s “About You” is a permanent fixture on the pre-show playlist. No one thinks anything of it.
Joe does not appear at any Eras shows. It is assumed he is filming or staying private, though it is pretty sus since he has been consistently visible in VIP tents at previous shows (Lover performances and Rep tour, notably). An article comes out saying they’re just fine and he will make it when he can. Sure, Jan.
March 31, 2023: Eras Tour, Arlington, TX. Instead of opening the Folklore portion of her set with “Invisible String.” an obvious nod to her romance with Joe, she instead opens the set with “The 1.” After the next week, this later feels like foreshadowing/a clue.
April 8, 2023: Taylor Swift and Joe Alywn’s breakups appears in the press over Easter Weekend/an off week for the Eras Tour. It is also Matt Healy’s birthday.
April 9, 2023: A tiktok is posted from a previous Eras show of Taylor becoming a bit emotional while singing Champagne Problems, a song she wrote with Joe about turning down a proposal. Taylor is known to really vibe with her songs regardless of content/where she’s at personally, so I don’t want to read too much into this. Her changing relationship with discussing marriage in her songs and how shes marriage, and how that has changed across her recent discography is noteworthy and will be discussed in a later section.
April 10, 2023: Matt Healy deletes his instagram account. This may have happened on the 9th- he wasn’t being “watched” as closely yet so I haven’t been able to confirm exactly what day the instagram went bye-bye but it was within these two days.
April 11, 2023: Taylor Swift is papped walking to have dinner with Jack Antanoff and his fiance, Margaret Qualley. They eat at a restaurant just four blocks away from Cornelia Street- which some fans take as a nod to her Lover era track, “Cornelia Street.” Many take her solo pap walk as confirmation of the breakup, since we haven’t seen her be this public since pre Rep-Era/pre-Joe
April 13, 2023: Celebrity gossip shitposter DeuxMoi posts that Alwyn initiated the break up and leaked it to the press. I disagree with this take and think its balgoney due to the timing of the release being the best case scenario for her touring schedule. The fact that the leak happened during an off week, on Matt’s birthday, right after she swapped out Invisible String for The 1 kind of debunks this theory for me personally.
Also on this day is Eras Tour, Tampa. Before playing “Lover”, Taylor says to the crowd, “Some of these songs are about my life; some of these songs are about fictional characters I created. But my hope in all of this is that, at the end of the day, these songs will be songs that you think are about your own life. And the song that we’re about to play net, it’s just a love song, you know?”
April 18, 2023: Emma Laird, one of Joe’s current co-stars, shares a photo of him on a scooter amongst a carousel of other posts of other co-stars from her time filming a new movie. The photos are part of a March photo dump.
April 19-20 2023: Ryan Reynolds, Blake Lively, the Haim sisters, and Swift’s brother Austin all unfollow Joe Alwyn on instagram around this time, but notably after Emma’s post. Most notable from the Great Unfollowing is Ryan, because he previously wrote a really nice tribute to Alwyn in Time.
Joe is photographed in London looking disheveled (whatever). Taylor is photographed in NYC again, this time with the Haim sisters, Gigi Hadid, and Blake. They go to a private club/celebrity hot spot Zero Bond.
April 21, 2023: just a day after being photographed with Taylor, Gigi unfollows Joe on instagram. This is notable because Gigi and Joe have been friends for a while and she is rumored to have introduced them in LA ahead of the MET gala (sunset and vine .. . ahem)
On the Eras Tour in Houston, during her performance of Look What You Made Me Do, dancers are dressed in iconic outfits from each era in glass cages dancing behind Taylor while she performs. On this night, however, Taylor shoots the “L” forehead “loser” sign to the “Lover” era Taylor. Fans take this as a dig at Alwyn, since that entire album was basically about how much she loved him.
April 23, 2023: longtime Swift bestie Abigail unfollows Joe on instagram
May 3, 2023: The Sun (ew) reports that Taylor and Matt are dating. The article says they have been face-timing a lot since they are both touring.
May 4, 2023: The 1975 add an older track “She’s American” to their show in Manila. Before the first verse, Healy shouts “She sure is!” At this show, Healy is seen mouthing “This one’s about you, you know who you are, I love you” before playing “About You” which is a song off their most recent album and also the song on the Era’s pre-show playlist.
May 5, 2023: Matt Healy appears at The Eras Tour, Nashville, Night 1 in the VIP tent. It is noteworthy that he was in Manila performing the day before (an estimated 17 hour flight away). There are videos of him and Phoebe Bridgers dancing their hearts out to Shake It Off. He is VIBING. It is also worth noting he was in Manila the day before, performing, so being here at all is kind of incredible.
Also notable during the show is, during Cardigan, Taylor can be seen mouthing almost the identical phrase Matt mouthed the night before onstage in Manila. “You know who you are. I love you”
May 6, 2023: Matt Healy appears at The Eras Tour, Nashville, Night 2. He performs alongside Phoebe Bridgers during her opening set and then later is back at the VIP tent, this time alongside Gigi Hadid who grabs his shoulders and shakes him cutely while Taylor plays “Lover.” Matt is also sporting another 1989 tee shirt.
After the show, they were papped in her car, presumably heading to her Nashville home.
May 11, 2023: Taylor and Matt are photographed holding hands at an exclusive, member’s only restaurant in New York. The member’s only club is Casa Cipriani and has an an explicit no photography, no video, and no social media policy. Rumor has it the individuals who took these photos have had their memberships revoked.
May 12, 2023: It’s Eras Tour, Philadelphia, Night 1. Matt performs with Phoebe Bridgers again. He later joins Blake Lively in the VIP tent. They seem warm towards each other in videos and seem to be laughing a lot.
May 13, 2023: Eras Tour, Philadelphia, Night 3. Matt is spotted not in the VIP tent, but up in a box thing with Taylor’s dad, Scott Swift. They are also vibing and appear to be having a good time.
May 15, 2023: Taylor and Matt are papped leaving Electric Lady Studios (where they both often record with Jack Antanoff) together. Healy has his hand on Taylor’s back.
May 18, 2023: The Sun reports Joe Alwyn is “distraught”
May 20, 2023: Eras Tour, Gillette Stadium, Night 2. Before playing the first surprise song of the night on acoustic guitar (Question . . .?) Taylor says “I don’t know, I have just never been this happy in my life, in all aspects of my life, ever before. And I just want to thank you for being a part of that. Like, you know, I don’t know, it’s not just the tour, it’s like, I don’t know, I just sort of feel like my life finally feels like it makes sense. And so I thought I’d play this song, which brings me a lot of happy memories.”
While Taylor has consistently sung about wanting a fairy tale, forever romance across her early works, we are going to mostly look at Lover, Folklore/Evermore, and Midnights as they seem most representative of her relationship with Joe and her most recent thoughts/feelings.
For example, “Illicit Affairs” is about having a secret lover, but the narrator (Taylor) never mentions that she is indeed cheating on someone. She also refers to her relationship in Red’s “All Too Well” as an affair (did the love affair maim you too?). So it’s entirely possible that affair, in this context, just means a passionate, secret relationship. Is this a song about her romantic life feeling like a secret?
I PLAY MY SONGS IN THE PARKING LOT(potentially lyrical hints from Matty to Taylor)
Let’s start with “About You”.
This song is off The 1975’s most recent album “Being Funny in A Foreign Language” which was made with Jack Antanoff. This song appears on the Era’s pre-show playlist and it is also the one Matt Healy mouthed “This one’s about you, you know who you are, I love you” before playing right after news broke that he and Taylor were together.
I know a place
It's somewhere I go when I need to remember your face
We get married in our heads
Something to do while we try to recall how we met
Do you think I have forgotten?
Do you think I have forgotten?
Do you think I have forgotten
About you?
You and I (don't let go) were alive (don't let go)
With nothing to do, I could lay and just look in your eyes
Wait (don't let go) and pretend (don't let go)
Hold on and hope that we'll find our way back in the end
Do you think I have forgotten?
Do you think I have forgotten?
Do you think I have forgotten
About you?
Do you think I have forgotten?
Do you think I have forgotten?
Do you think I have forgotten
About you?
There was something 'bout you that now I can't remember
It's the same damn thing that made my heart surrender
And I miss you on a train, I miss you in the morning
I never know what to think about
I think about you (so don't let go)
About you (so don't let go)
Do you think I have forgotten
About you? (Don't let go)
About you
About you
Do you think I have forgotten
About you? (Don't let go)
He also added “She’s American” to the set that night- which is an older song that is likely not about Taylor but it is a potential nod to her.
While I am not convinced it’s necessarily about Taylor, I have also been listening to “When We Are Together” off their album a lot. Something about it feels very Taylor to me- especially the references to both people getting cancelled (slag is british slang for a someone who dates too much/sleeps around)
Our first kiss was Christmas in the Walmart toy department
She said, "I should take you with me when I leave"
When we were searchin' New York for a fancy, new apartment
She said, "Central Park is Sea World for trees"
You ask about the cows, wearin' my sweater
It's somethin' 'bout the weather that makes them lie down
The only time I feel I might get better is when we are together
I like socks with sandals, she's more into scented candles
Oh, I'll never get that smell out of my bag
And it was poorly handled, the day we both got canceled
Because I'm a racist and you're some kind of slag
You ask about the cows, wearin' my sweater
It's somethin' 'bout the weather that makes them lie down
The only time I feel I might get better is when we are together, oh, together
"I'm better at writing" was just a way to get you biting, oh
The truth is that our egos are absurd
I thought we were fighting but it seems I was gaslighting you
I didn't know that it had its own word
You still ask about the cows, wearin' my sweater
Said it's something 'bout the weather that makes them lie down
The only time I feel I might get better is when we are together
The Song “Me and You Together Song” off their 2020 album “Notes on A Conditional Form” is also played on their current tour. Here are the lyrics (and a video of Matt performing it in Manila- after their relationship has leaked and the night before he goes to see Taylor perform in Nashville). He begins the song by singing a later part: “I’ve been in love with her for ages, and I can’t seem to get it right, I’ve been in love with her for stages, my whole life” and then shouts “That’s right” into the mic before the song takes off from the beginning. It would appear this was a dedication to Taylor.
can remember when we met
Because she didn't have a top on (A top on)
I improvised a little bit
She said my references were spot on (Spot on)
"Can I take you for a drink?"
She said, "Oh God, I'll have to think
Because we're mates, it doesn't feel right" (Feel right)
And I said, "It's cool, " and "I was messing" but it's true
Yeah, it's you, you're the one that makes me feel right
I've been in love with her for ages
And I can't seem to get it right
I fell in love with her in stages
My whole life
I had a dream where we had kids
You would cook, I'd do the nappies (Nappies)
We went to Winter Wonderland
And it was shit but we were happy (Happy)
I'm sorry that I'm kinda queer, it's not as weird as it appears
It's 'cause my body doesn't stop me (Stop me)
Oh, it's okay, lots of people think I'm gay
But we're friends, so it's cool, why would it not be? (Not be)
I've been in love with her for ages
And I can't seem to get it right
I fell in love with her in stages
My whole life
And that's been now way for me to say
That I felt a certain way in stages, oh
I think the story needs more pages, yes
I've been in love with her for ages (And ages)
And ages, I've been in love with her for ages (And ages)
Ages, I've been in love with her for ages
And ages, and ages, I've been in love with her for ages
And ages, and ages, I've been in love with her for ages
And ages, and ages (Yeah), I've been in love with you for ages
For ages, and ages (I've been in love, yeah)
I've been in love with you for ages
MEET ME AT MIDNIGHT (a post-breakup interpretation of Midnights)
We know at some point between 2019’s Lover and 2023’s Midnights, Taylor’s feelings about marriage and her comfortability referencing marriage in a positive way shifted quite a bit. We also know she wrote heavily about turning down proposals, marriages going astray, divorce, and infidelity on folklore/evermore.
I think Midnights tells a different, more cohesive story if you listen to it in reverse order (or perhaps . . . counter clockwise?)
Reverse order playlist here:
Question . . .?
Midnight Rain
You’re on Your Own, Kid
Snow On The Beach
One night, a few moons ago
I saw flecks of what could've been lights
But it might just have been you
Passing by unbeknownst to me
Life is emotionally abusive
And time can't stop me quite like you did
And my flight was awful, thanks for asking
I'm unglued, thanks to you
And it's like snow at the beach
Weird but fuckin' beautiful
Flying in a dream, stars by the pocketful
You wanting me tonight feels impossible
But it's comin' down, no sound, it's all around
Like snow on the beach
Like snow on the beach
Like snow on the beach
Like snow, oh, oh oh
This scene feels like what I once saw on a screen
I searched aurora borealis green
I've never seen someone lit from within
Blurring out my periphery
My smile is like I won a contest
And to hide that would be so dishonest
And it's fine to fake it 'til you make it
'Til you do, 'til it's true
Now it's like snow at the beach
Weird but fuckin' beautiful
Flying in a dream, stars by the pocketful
You wanting me tonight feels impossible
But it's comin' down, no sound, it's all around
Like snow on the beach
Like snow on the beach
Like snow on the beach
Like snow, oh, oh oh
I (I) can't (can't) speak afraid to jinx it
I (I) don't (don't) even dare to wish it
But your eyes are flying saucers from another planet
Now I'm all for you like Janet
Can this be a real thing? Can it?
Are we falling like snow at the beach? (Snow at the beach)
Weird but fuckin' beautiful
Flying in a dream, stars by the pocketful (flying in a dream)
You wanting me tonight feels impossible (you wanting me)
But it's comin' down, no sound, it's all around
Like snow on the beach (snow on the beach)
Like snow on the beach (flying in a dream)
Like snow on the beach (you wanting me)
Like snow, oh
But it's comin' down, no sound, it's all around
Like snow on the beach (it's comin' down, it's comin' down)
(It's comin' down, it's comin' down)
(Like snow on the beach)
(It's comin' down, it's comin' down, it's comin' down, it's comin' down)
(It's comin' down, it's comin' down, it's comin' down, it's comin' down)
(Comin' down, it's comin' down, it's comin' down, it's comin' down)
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2023.05.15 21:46 icebrid Trades Jobs Are A Joke

Went to a non union trades interview recently as a journeyman to find out the terms of employment. (Have worked non union before for years and It's wasn't even this bad)
-Have to sign into an app on your phone in the morning when you arrive and sign-out when you leave. If you change projects during the day you need to enter that into the app so the company knows exactly how much time you spent on said job with the click of a button. App also has GPS. Won't work unless your GPS is on. (What have jobs come to? Can even do you job without being micro managed with your exact location? on a construction site) Never seen it this bad in my life.
-No PPE provided (Hard Hat, Safety Glasses, Vest, Gloves) yet I'm told some sites require it and that I have to buy it if I need it. Was told I cannot wear any previous PPE with other company logo's on it as it doesn't represent their company. Was told by a PM that the owner was thinking about buying safety vests for employees for a long time but hasn't yet. ( I mean I work for you and you'd think it would be the law that the company would have to provide you PPE to work on their jobsite representing their company and protecting themselves from a WCB stand point as a construction worker). Even KJay Electric provided basic PPE many years ago when I worked there and many consider them to be bottom of the barrel for Electrical contractors in Edmonton. This company was bigger than them for sure.
I'm sure General laborers at places like PCL or O&G get paid like 28-35/h get better benefits and get actual PPE.
-Mandatory benefits paid for the by the employee solely only after 3 months.
-Must provide own power tools
-Was told by a PM that "If we think your underperforming instead of firing employees we renegotiate wages." (Offer wage was 36/h. Most companies are 36-38/h). No way I'm working as a Journeymen Electrician for 28-34/h in Edmonton Alberta with current inflation. It's also sad that oil field Electrical rates are down from near $50/h to 40-42/h. Why would I leave town to live in a shitty non union camp for 4/h more than in town? Not even viable for working conditions that are expected.
-This was a 30-50 employee company with a newer physical shop. Based on the employees and 10% margins I'd estimate their revenue at around 3M per year in work and about 300k a year in limited corporation profits at minimum (Profits paid out as dividends to shareholders not including their own 100K salaries) 3 years of this is basically a million dollars in net profits.
Edit: More accurate estimate of contactor profits Electrical margins are 10%. 4-5 people can do 1M in work in a year. 5x6 is 30. 6M in revenue or 600K in profit a year. For specialty projects in some trades it isn't uncommon for profits to be 30% even at scale. (I've done electrical estimating for a year so I know the margins but obviously didn't have access to the companies financial accounting statement, doing my best guess to extrapolate there business model)
Profits per number of workers per year: 30 600K, 60 1.2M, 90 1.8M, 120 2.4M, 150 3.0M, 180 3.6M, 210 4.2M, 300 6.0M, 600 12.0M, 1200 24.0M
Factor all this in construction sucks and I'll never work it again after many years in the trades. Companies are so cheap your literally not even treated like a human. This isn't supposed to be sweat shop like China. I guess the 300K bonus looks better in the bosses pocket than providing a decent place to work for employees. What a joke. 5K in safety equipment goes along way.
Alberta needs to be like Quebec where all the companies are unionized through the provincial government. Wages also set by the government. It would honestly fix the whole industry.
I'd honestly rather work at Walmart with no insurance on my car and take the bus to work before I non union again.
Thank the UCP for gutting union's. If I was able to I'd leave Alberta for Ontario and Quebec where the IBEW has 100% market share with 2 or 3 Pensions plus RRSP like the USA I would in a heart beat. (How it should be for back breaking work).
Getting my class 3 and going to drive garbage truck with automatic side loader (no labor) for 25-35/h plus RRSP or a similar job. Without killing myself for greedy owners on a construction site.
I sometimes think about how I would've been better off in the military vs construction. They will pay to train you in anything you want to do and not all positions are front lines fighting. Once your in the higher ranks you'll make 100k a year and the pension is the best in Canada period. If you can't work anymore they pay for you from that day forward until your last. Beats being disposable in construction. Source: my neighbor has been in 43 years tells me all about it
IBEW local 48 in Seattle Washington (2 hour drive past the border so not to far away) JM base rate is 60/h USD plus 2 Pensions, 6% 401K and one annuity. There total package is around 80-100 USD/h. Converted to CAD more like 220-250K a year in a place that has a cheaper cost of living than Canada's Vancouver equivalent. 100k to live in Vancouver is still a life. They can't even find people to fill calls and have most of the market share over 80%. Their collective agreement can be viewed on their website. Just imagine making the real money. Makes you realize how under paid trades are in Canada outside of Ontario or Quebec and how they really aren't an option. In Ottawa there is 2 Pensions and RRSP plus benefits with 80-100% market share. Base pay 48/h in town.
Just remember bus drivers or coca cola delivery drivers are making more than your JM wage the next time you are busting ass in 40C weather. There global corporation has the money to at least follow basic safety regulations.
Union vs non union total package difference per hour per worker.
Residential 0/h (unions total package is the same)
Commercial 5/h (union compensates 5+/h)
Industrial 8-10/h (All the greed happens here, driving rates down as more companies want in) (union compensates 5-7/h)
union is more expensive because of a defined benefit pension plan and health benefits not paid by the employee. Unions compensate their contractors to match the price or better than the non union. Non union contractors should join the union as the margins will be same in most cases because of union compensation and their employees (even office works if they allowed it) would get a pension and benefits plan essentially paid for indirectly by employees collectively through union dues. Industrial work has higher margins and can cause the non union margins to be higher than if they were union even with union compensation because of this fact lots of greed and double breasting happens here. The only thing holding non union companies in check is other non union companies (free market)(Industrial requires large companies with lots of capital so there is less competition) in the bidding process but the non union worker loses lots of compensation hourly working for them as they take the profits. These companies need the workers to make their business money.
I did make another post explaining the trades in more detail for all workers and investments. Just thought I'd include that post from a couple months ago.
submitted by icebrid to alberta [link] [comments]

2023.05.14 20:11 LalahLovato THE CAREER NURSE SELECTOMATIC

Found this somewhere 10 yrs ago and not sure if anyone has posted it before - if it is yours - I will gladly credit you.
After reading some of the discussions on here, I thought it might be helpful.
submitted by LalahLovato to nursing [link] [comments]

2023.05.13 06:30 GenThaMigos I made these poster for wall art Decoration

I made these poster for wall art Decoration
Hi I am Khessyikarr from Malaysia. I am 23 years old. I am currently working on my Graphics Posters Design and trying to make a few sales to grow my career as a graphic designer. Hope this page can help me boost my Etsy sales.I will provide the poster design and it is just a digital poster so you have to print it out on your local store such as Walmart and etc. I will provide my link to my shop via DM or will just taking risk posing here. Hope you guys like it. Leave a thought on the comment section. I know I am not a trusted seller but definitely need to grow.
Hope you guys like it.
submitted by GenThaMigos to DecorReps [link] [comments]

2023.05.09 08:19 mrbobbilly2 6 Months After Coding Bootcamp, I Got Hired!!!! Here's How You Can Too!

I'm going to tell you guys who are struggling to get hired after finishing Coding Bootcamp exactly how I got hired, I was in the same exact position as you for months. You will get hired eventually, you need to believe in this. It will take a long time because many of us are new in this industry, but you will get hired soon! I'm living and breathing proof of this.
I was down and depressed for months after Coding Bootcamp seemingly not getting any responses or positive emails on job applications. I was led to believe that my degree, coding bootcamp, my YouTube experience, was for nothing due to being ghosted, having scam job offers, working at dead-end warehouses, etc.
Most likely, you're in this state too, you probably have experienced this already. It will be like this for a while before you finally get that job offer of a lifetime but you need to figure out why that's happening, keep your head up and have a positive attitude and energy because you need to believe that you'll make it eventually. It will just take a long time and fixing things.
You just need to play these Hiring Managers/Recruiters' games and figure out why you're not getting call backs or responses.
How did I get hired?
I don't want to take my background up too long, but in short, I use to be a pretty popular Roblox Youtuber with over 3 million subscribers total on various channels for many years and did Roblox-style Graphic designs as well, and decided that I needed to get into Software Dev if I want to make a sustainable income because the money I was making on YouTube was basically non-existent due to being demonetized and my type of content I produced wasn't monetizable really.
I also had experience in making Roblox games development for a few years with Roblox Pokemon games so I already had knowledge in how Coding and Programming works. So I took a leap into a Coding Bootcamp to jump start my career. It's definitely possible without a CS degree, but it's going to be extremely difficult without that support a degree provides like career fairs in school, internships, professors to help, student support, etc. I already had a degree before this unrelated but it's just for a backup plan in case this doesn't work out or something.
The coding bootcamp did not help me get hired directly, but the skills and knowledge I gained from it definitely did. I'm conflicted in this, because the program did not help me at all, as in like, no one from the school helped me, I had to help myself and find the resources myself when I was expecting the program and people there what I paid for to do that, but the knowledge I gained from the Bootcamp was how I got hired. I really don't know what to think about this.
Let's just say, I have mixed feelings about my Coding Bootcamp. In 1 side, I gained lots of knowledge and skills from my time doing the program, but on the other side, I paid them tons of money for them to do what I did by myself when I expected them to do it for me since that's what they advertised to do on their website...
(My Coding Bootcamp was a University Coding Bootcamp by edX, formerly Trilogy Education / 2U. You can see my deep dive review on them if you'd like:
Now with that out of the way, let's get into how I got hired.
In my case, I was freelancing for months after Bootcamp on Fiverr and Discord making mostly interface-focused websites getting a few hundred dollars for each projects for random people on freelancing spaces. This kept me motivated to finish the projects as money was on the line that I agreed to do for these people. I also applied to employment services agencies in my local city and got hooked up with clients who wanted basic websites built so not only did I get projects made, I also got some pocket money as well.
I was also doing random jobs around town, Amazon warehouse, Walmart stocking, TJ Maxx, etc. I needed to work around town and gain communication and social skills and learn how to be around people which these retail jobs definitely taught and is valuable. These were my first actual jobs ever, so being around strangers and working directly with the community seeing what it was like was a plus.
I also have a college degree, which shows to recruiters and people in charge that I'm willing to learn and go through hoops and ropes and have the motivation and skills to go from start to finish. I think statistically most people who go through Coding Bootcamps have degrees already which will help you A LOT to check the boxes on job application requirements on having Degrees Required.
I did not have any projects listed on my resume because I showed them in-peson in the interview on my laptop. All I did pre-screening to get seen was their HackerRank DS JavaScript assessment and this was handled directly with the Hiring Manager through Indeed.
I had my Freelancing experience on the top of the resume and emphasized many things that I basically did in Coding Bootcamp as well combined with my Freelancing experience, most of it is greatly exaggerated because those are stuff we did in Coding Bootcamp, but it's still things I did learn and use. The secret is this, if you don't have relevant-on-the-job experience, use Freelancing as a replacement instead. Many places accept Freelancing as experience, so if you lack work experience, Freelance is the way to go.
I know I said Indeed is the worst place to apply, but in this case it helped me because the Hiring Manager was the one who posted the job and I applied, and he reached out to me via the Indeed messaging box and said if I passed the technical interview quizzes on HackerRank they use the link they give me, pass 3 out of 5 Data Structure JavaScript questions and monitored, he will give me an interview with him guaranteed. The questions were surprisingly easy because they were pretty similar to what my Bootcamp taught in our CS module which definitely helped a lot since I studied our class material over and over. If I hadn't studied our material, I probably wouldn't have passed the skills assessment.
Wednesday was my interview day with the HM, mostly just behavioral and personality test, and I got a phone call and email back today and came into the office for a tour. My official "title" they gave me is "Design Specialist", my job isn't necessarily Software Developing but my plan is to work up in the company to eventually become a Software Developer, but I'm going to still working on Software either way collaborating with the Engineers with design ideas and interfaces, wireframes, working with React prototypes, Photoshop, etc. I showed him a few websites I made for people from Discord and Fiverr and he told me that he was impressed by how I was able to find people to make projects for.
The reason why they hired me for a UX/UI position and not Software Dev is because the company is this sort of Consulting business solutions place and the HM saw my graphic design and web design work and apparently was impressed, the work that I showed him was mostly designs actually, which is most likely why. The HM said I struggled with the Data Structures questions but wanted to give me a chance anyways. I don't know how I struggled with the questions if I passed it, maybe it had something to do with how I answered them?? I think there was specific ways he wanted me to structure the logic, but whatever...
I also brought my laptop to the interview so I could show him more work that I haven't finished and published which probably cemented my placement more. I had shown him years of Graphic design and UI work that I've done for Roblox games and he was impressed supposedly. That's the vibe I got from his responses. I'm so happy that I actually got to hired because that Indeed job posting was the only way to get hired here.
There's no actual "Careers" page in their company page, so the actual only way to get hired is from their Indeed job posting, or knowing someone from within, so I wouldn't have been able to apply through their website without Indeed... Companies approach them for products and solutions and make service offers. There's copywriters, SEO marketers, etc here too. I'm not sure how to describe it really. It's a tech job regardless, I got what I wanted. I might have gotten hired because they were probably desperate to find someone as well, since Indeed seems like their only job board since they don't have an internal one.
All it took was thousands of job applications, at least over 20 flunked interviews and 6 months of applying to jobs but it paid off.
EDIT: As for my Bootcamp's cohort, I'm not really sure. I think 2 people got hired but that's because they were internally promoted to IT positions within their company they were already at or because one of them lives out of state and already has better job opportunities where they live, while the rest of the cohort hasn't been hired yet. This was out of like 19 or something people??? So many people dropped out from the bootcamp over half of them. I think they gave up and decided not to pursue in this field anymore looking at their Githubs...
In short, you guys need to believe that you'll make it eventually. "I can't get hired", yes you can. It took me 6 months. That opportunity will come soon, you just need to expand your search, get creative, find out why you're not getting hired and keep your head up. Work at dead-end jobs if you have to to get money so you can get out of there as soon as you have enough saved up to do what you're trying to do. That's what I did also.
I might edit this post soon with more information, it's 3 AM while writing this but I needed to get this posted asap before I go to sleep. All you have to do is believe that you'll get hired in tech. I know this is probably an unorganized mess of a post, but I'm so happy to finally land the job of a lifetime after months of struggling.
submitted by mrbobbilly2 to codingbootcamp [link] [comments]

2023.05.08 15:36 MrSamsonite The Ponzi Papers 6: The Octopus Returns

If you’re just tuning in to this series, I was suspicious of the narrative behind the string of bank failures in March and did some internet sleuthing. Then it got weird. Then it got scary. I’ve got links at the bottom, but just jump in here; it’s a rabbit hole, but this post may be all you need. If you only read one of these, this is the one I’d recommend.
A month ago, I thought the villain at the end of this would be Peter Thiel. Then I thought it was Mark Zuckerberg. Then a president I’ll be naming shortly. Then Jeffrey Epstein.
But it revealed itself to be something much more twisted: a global network of criminal enterprise; a dystopian shadow government; a fraudulent cancer harnessing network technology to grow to unimaginable size.
Looking back, I desperately wanted somebody to corroborate a story that should sound so implausible but only looked more like the truth the further I researched.
As it turns out, my corroborating witness was found dead in a hotel bathtub in 1991.
We start with the Inslaw Affair:
Inslaw was a software company in the early 1980s that allowed for unprecedented new databases of information on individuals, connecting many of the government’s disparate data sources in a searchable interface. It was a quantum leap in surveillance for governments and police departments at the time.
Inslaw received a $10 million dollar contract from the Department of Justice that led to a bitter dispute and a lawsuit against the DOJ. Inslaw made some serious claims, including that the DOJ tried to bankrupt them and stole their software and sold it to an Israeli for-profit company. A D.C. Bankruptcy Court judge sided with Inslaw, noting that the DOJ "took, converted, stole, INSLAW's enhanced PROMIS [software] by trickery, fraud, and deceit."
According to the affidavit of Michael Riconosciuto, an engineer who worked on the software, the government had installed spyware so they could sell it to other countries and see all of their activity. Riconosciuto also alleged a secret agreement between President Ronald Reagan and Iran where Iran kept their American hostages intentionally until the election to boost Reagan’s odds (the October Surprise), the collapse of a money laundering bank in Luxembourg, and a host of other wild geopolitical claims.
Danny Casolaro was a journalist who took the affidavit seriously, getting sucked into a maddening investigation of an international criminal shadow network that he called “the Octopus,” with deep ties to the C.I.A. and the Reagan and H.W. Bush administrations.
I became convinced that my own theories in this series are true because the more evidence I gathered, the more it explained everything I found, despite how outlandish it sounded.
We don’t know if the U.S. government stole Inslaw in order to hide their scheme to spy on other countries, or if any of Riconosciuto’s claims are true. But would it help explain things?
The judge who sided with Inslaw was denied their reappointment months later. The judge sued the D.C. Court of Appeals, alleging that this was politically motivated.
The new judge reversed the decision against the DOJ.
Riconosciuto was charged with cooking meth eight days after his affidavit, and ultimately convicted.
Danny Casolaro went to West Virginia to meet a source who said they could provide important information on the case. He was found dead in his hotel bathtub, his wrists slit a dozen times.
Although the Inslaw Affair is known in some conspiracy circles, I was unfamiliar until last week. In a showing of the outsize power that’s possible when one person tells another about something important, brother_beer pointed me to the podcast Ghost Stories for the End of the World, which covers Inslaw and the broader conspiracy of the Octopus in immense, incredibly researched detail in their 13-part-series.
After hearing about complex technological theft involving several people and organizations I’ve found in my own research, I realized my story was a sequel, and the Inslaw Affair is likely true near its most conspiracy-minded. Casolaro started with software theft and espionage in 1986, I started with a bank run and Ponzi schemes in 2023, but we both found the Octopus: a vile global network of theft, blackmail, drug smuggling, sex trafficking and Ponzi schemes entrenched in some of the world’s most powerful institutions, with some of the same players at the heart of it.
I’ve wanted to spill out the scheme I’ve uncovered since part one, but I recognized that it was far too wild and broad to sound reasonable and would be too easily written off as nonsense. If you’ve been following along, I hope I’ve established enough trust and credibility in my research to do so now.
I’ve provided a great deal of evidence for some of these claims and will provide a great deal more for the rest as the series continues. To be clear, this didn’t come from tea leaves or dreams, but from SEC filings, court cases, industry interviews, stock prices, press releases, and so on.
Let me say up front that these are all just allegations. Not because I fear a libel case (these are not things any of these people want to discuss in court) but because I don’t want to give websites any extra ammunition to take this down.
We are awash in Ponzi schemes. These actors take many forms, but a common public facing one is the wealthy titan of industry, which is used to deflect from inquiries into their fraudulent investments and lure in victims. Household names who have built their careers expressly, intentionally, and criminally engaging in these schemes include Ross Perot, Mark Cuban, Richard Branson, and Carl Icahn (who’s had a rough week).
In the 1980s, some of these players (Perot, Cuban) invested in network technology to replicate and grow Ponzi schemes, and digital currency to allow for more controllable, stealable and launderable assets. PayPal was founded with the express criminal intent to create a digital currency Ponzi scheme but turned into a massive conduit for cash into, out of, and through a global web of criminal networks instead. This includes Elon Musk, Peter Thiel and Max Levchin, and some or most (or all) of the PayPal Mafia.
The digital currency Ponzi scheme became cryptocurrency, which was created for this purpose: Stanford University Professors Bob Joss and Joseph Bankman helped design a complex network of offshore exchanges that used a tax loophole to keep cryptocurrency unregulated and move it around the world. Venture capital firms such as Peter Thiel’s Founders Fund, Marc Andreessen’s a16z invested in and helped develop technology expressly and criminally so they could hide and steal crypto assets and launder them around the globe, allowing what became a global decentralized Ponzi scheme, with help from Goldman Sachs’ high frequency trading architect Greg Tusar. This was expressly, intentionally, and criminally participated in by all major cryptocurrency exchanges, including Coinbase, FTX, Chanpeng Zhao’s Binance, and the Winklevoss Twins’ Gemini.
Stanford University supported multiple start-ups as fronts for their wealthy and powerful associates to embezzle money into this and related global criminal enterprise. One example was Clinkle, which had express, intentional, criminal investments from Richard Branson, Peter Thiel, Bob Joss, Accel Partners, Andreessen Horowitz, Intuit, Intel Capital, and Stanford itself (to name a few).
Another example was Theranos, which was created with the express purpose of embezzling funds into international criminal schemes. This includes knowing criminal investments from Henry Kissinger, the Walton Family, Rupert Murdoch and Betsy DeVos.
A later avenue for embezzling funds into this criminal network is Max Levchin’s Affirm Holdings, which they’ve been moving into the scheme the last year. Knowing criminal investors include Josh Kushner’s Thrive Capital, Yelp co-founder Jeremy Stoppelman, Senator Bill Bradley, oil heiress Stacy H. Schusterman, and George Soros’ fund manager Stanley Druckenmiller.
To get a sense of just how massive this enterprise has grown, you can find many of the knowing criminal investors in the tech world in Israel’s Starkware Industries, which includes the fullest list of tech VCs in this scheme, along with Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian (Das Kapital Capital, LLC) and Mark Cuban (Radical Israel, LLC).
Multinational institutions were established specifically to move money into these schemes around the world. This includes the NYU President’s Global Council, conceived for this criminal purpose by board chair and Grammy nominee Chandrika Tandon. The song’s quality suggests the nomination was political. Knowing criminal investors include hedge fund billionaire John Paulson (a donation NYU kept secret for ten years), Chandrika and her Ponzi scheme financier husband Ranjan Tandon, and former Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos.
Another criminal organization operating in a similar manner; accepting massive donations and funneling money into the same criminal networks in the same places; hiding behind non-profit status and goodwill, was the Clinton Global Initiative, intentionally, criminally conceived for this purpose by Bill Clinton, Doug Band, and Jeffrey Epstein. Major co-conspirators include John Podesta, and later Chelsea and Hillary Clinton.
Pizzagate was either created or massively promoted in social and traditional media (often just by covering it) to make sure search results and social media get clogged up with a whole bunch of disinformation when people go looking for (yes, this means that Pizzagate was actually a Clinton op all along). My best guess would be that they leaked Podesta’s emails themselves for this purpose via a bogus “phishing attack.”
Jeffrey Epstein and Bill Clinton’s repeated travel around the world makes much more sense in this context: they weren’t (just?) pedophile chums, they were architects of the same international criminal operation. Although Epstein is typically first thought of as a pedophile, he was running an international blackmail ring involving some of the most powerful people on the planet (which should have been a deeply obvious fact were it not for a media apparatus that didn’t believe this was an angle worth exploring).
Less well recognized was Epstein’s role as criminal financier at Bear Stearns, which collapsed intentionally after they funneled all of the money out of it (this is precisely what happened to First Republic Bank this week, among others). Epstein’s close ties to professors at Ivy League universities wasn’t because he was an eccentric science nerd, but because many of these universities and many of their professors were co-conspirators in the same international criminal enterprise.
Let’s balance the political scales in our curiously partisan times, lest this sound like a right-wing attack on the Clintons. As mentioned above, one of the investors in this scheme is Trump’s nephew-in-law Josh Kushner. He ran a little social media Ponzi scheme while he was a student at Harvard and hasn’t stopped following his father’s criminal footsteps since. His budget health insurance start-up Oscar Health is largely a Ponzi scheme, promoting networks of doctors that they are not actually establishing and never had any intention of establishing. Victims struggle to get in-person appointments and chalk it up to the poor state of health insurance generally, not realizing this was Kushner’s plan all along.
Josh and his brother Jared Kushner (Donald Trump’s son-in-law) then founded Cadre, an app where you can loan them money at a crappy return, which was yet another conduit for funneling liquidity into these criminal networks in secret.
All of this year’s bank failures were a direct result of this scheme. Silvergate and Signature were criminal banks that knowingly offered services for hundreds of fraudulent cryptocurrency companies to embezzle cash out of the banks and replace it with entirely worthless cryptocurrency.
The run on Silicon Valley Bank was intentional and planned years in advance, carried out by the venture capital firms named above (among others). The trigger for the bank run was the inevitable insolvency of Silvergate (since they were taking all the money out of it); at this point, Silicon Valley Bank expressly, intentionally and criminally released bad financial data in order to justify the planned bank run, kicked off when Founders Fund and others told their customers to pull out of the bank.
This provided multiple benefits: The cryptocurrency industry had spent years positioning itself as a good, safe alternative to traditional banking in poor economic conditions (likely expressly because they knew their massive theft was causing poor economic conditions). This kept victims from withdrawing money from the scheme and brought new money in, with the price of Bitcoin going up over 40% in the ten days following the SVB failure. Founders Fund’s Napoleon Ta got a seat on the Rippling board for this purpose: When the payment processor’s customers were at risk of missing payroll, $2 billion in liquidity flowed right into Brex and back into the Ponzi scheme, which was established and invested in for this purpose (and may have been dumped into Oscar Health on March 28th).
Nicola Sturgeon was an express, knowing, criminal participant in this part of the scheme, suddenly resigning as Scotland’s Prime Minister in service of it.
Forbes, which is now 95% owned by cryptocurrency exchange Binance, operates in full support of this vast criminal scheme. Though I can’t state that every person on the Forbes Midas List is a criminal co-conspirator, I can state that it includes dozens of criminals.
Growing in tandem with these Ponzi schemes was the evolution of surveillance software like that in the Inslaw affair. Facebook was either established expressly to become a controlled virtual space and a data mining surveillance tool, or did so by the time several of the named co-conspirators invested in this scheme (Peter Thiel, Marc Andreessen, former Walmart board member Jim Breyer). Mark Zuckerberg and Peter Thiel expressly, knowingly, and criminally worked with Cambridge Analytica for this purpose. Facebook also intentionally allowed and supported political disinformation not because they wanted a particular candidate to win, but because they wanted to pollute our social media so thoroughly with bullshit that their criminal scheme would not be exposed.
Several at Facebook have further aimed to bury the truth by gutting journalistic outlets. It is well known that Facebook investor Peter Thiel bankrolled Hulk Hogan’s lawsuit that bankrupted Gawker after Gawker outed Thiel. While this is all true, it obscures the fact that Gawker was investigating Thiel’s criminal business interests as well, which likely had much more to do with his decision to support the hulkster.
Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes bought progressive magazine The New Republic in 2012, attempting to kill the progressive angle before the staff ran him off. It’s no coincidence that the magazine provides some of the only critical investigative research into cryptocurrency that I can find.
Just this week, Andreessen Horowitz cashed in on their $50 million investment in Buzzfeed, shuttering Buzzfeed News, which wrote about how Peter Thiel secretly bankrolled an “anti-woke” film festival last year.
Facebook Chief Technology Officer Adam D’Angelo founded Quora to further control online narratives, providing answers that protect the co-conspirators under the guise of organic, crowdsourced information.
These criminals deploy a vast network of trolls to monitor social media and promote narratives in service of the scheme. While certain accounts can be confirmed upon close examination, the power of this strategy is that it ultimately does not matter; when enough bad-faith actors promote a narrative - consistently and repeatedly through all avenues of communication - good-faith actors promote it as well.
When Meta (Facebook) established their cryptocurrency and The Libra Association) (since rebranded as Diem and sold to Silvergate Bank last year), it was for the express criminal purpose of funding this criminal network via the last of March’s bank collapses, Credit Suisse.
Libra was established in Geneva, Switzerland, bringing on multiple executives from Credit Suisse. They raised investments from several high-profile companies, Libra announced they couldn’t get the banking regulations they needed, and the companies pulled out. All of the investors in the Libra Association did so with knowing criminal intent to secretly invest in criminal enterprise (like Clinkle and Theranos), including Uber, Lyft, Stripe, eBay, Kiva and Heifer International (the last of which owned the ranch where Clinton and Epstein associate Mark Middleton was found shot and hanged last year, incidentally).
When Josh Kushner met with Saudi Arabian leaders in 2017, it could have been about any number of criminal concerns. But given that Thrive Capital was embezzling money into Credit Suisse via the Libra Association, and Saudi Arabia was embezzling money through Credit Suisse via their sovereign wealth fund, it stands to reason that Credit Suisse may have been on the docket.
I’m sure I’m missing a billionaire or two from my notes, but you get the idea. Oh, Shark Tank is fake. They already own that cheap garbage, they just want you watching their infomercials.
You may think this all sounds farfetched, and I certainly wouldn’t blame you. But let’s pretend for a minute that it’s all true; that there is a vast criminal enterprise. What would that world look like?
Well, we’d probably see economic circumstances continually get worse as civic and economic institutions grow more parasitic.
We’d see governments wholly incapable of improving the circumstances of the people despite having immense power and resources to do so, or prosecuting the criminal networks that have grown within them.
We’d see an erosion of trust as the co-conspirators leverage their positions of power in the government, business, and media to create and circulate misinformation and sow division.
We’d see schools and universities go from institutes of knowledge to propaganda mills that shackle students with years of debt, funnel their time and energy directly into building and improving upon this massive theft.
And we’d see a world where each new advance in technology would be co-opted to best surveil or extract value from the populace, countless empty promises of improving material conditions never coming to fruition.
And we’d see a rise in deaths of despair: more suicides as the criminal networks dismantle safety nets and social cohesion; more drug overdoses pushed on the people by a predatory pharmaceutical industry; more binge drinking and substance abuse as people try to escape a society that has become fully extractive.
And we’d see a world where violence becomes accepted as inevitable, from the random acts of violence of a population growing desperate to the militarization of policing against the populace it ostensibly serves to ongoing wars for ravenous profit that the system becomes incapable of stopping.
We would see a violent suppression of any movements that act in service of the public over the criminal enterprise, with an increasing global movement toward fascism.
Hell, we might see the blatant murder of an international pedophile blackmail artist billionaire criminal financier with suspiciously close ties to presidents and espionage agencies and then a government that refuses to provide any information at all, gaslighting the public into believing that the retched fraud that has overtaken our world is inescapable.
If all that were true, we’d be living in a global kleptocracy.
Impossible, right?
Part 1: Clinkle and the Snooker document
Part 2: Summer Highlands Ltd. and Stanford
Part 3: The scheme laid out in full. Richard Branson
Part 4: Crypto technical deep dive
Part 5: Go Zuck yourself
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2023.05.08 14:23 just-read1ng Newsletter 1 - APRIL 2023 Part 1

I thought i just start with a newsletter showing the most recent news i found here
While the share of shoppers who said they bought fewer groceries dropped to 32% in February from 41% in October 2022, the data indicates that people have nevertheless been taking active steps to mitigate the impact food costs are having on their finances.
Sixty-eight percent of shoppers in the survey said their grocery spending was more than it was a year ago, up from 59% in 2022, and the vast majority of those people (85%) blamed that additional spending on rising prices.
Although grocery inflation has been slowing, it remains sharply elevated, according to U.S. government statistics.
More than half of respondents (52%) to the survey said they are looking for deals more than they did in the past, an increase of 5 percentage points since last October. Notably, 31% buy items only when they are on special, up from 27%. Thirteen percent of respondents said they have stopped buying organic products, and 14% have reduced their purchases of fresh produce, although both of those figures were below their levels in October.
In addition, the percentage of people who buy less fresh meat or seafood than they did before has trended downward, while the proportion who buy more of those items frozen has increased, suggesting that shoppers are looking at myriad strategies to manage costs while keeping their homes stocked with food.
Shoppers have also been buying more items in bulk in person, increased their purchases of products carrying store brands, and stepped up their use of loyalty programs, according to the research.
Some 15% of shoppers said they eat out less often, a behavior shift the report pointed out generally pushes people to buy more groceries. Still, spending on food in restaurants outpaces grocery spending by a margin of 53% to 47%, according to the report.
The poll, part of FMI’s ongoing U.S. Grocery Shopper Trends survey, was conducted from Feb. 1-14 by The Hartman Group and reflects responses from 2,105 shoppers.
The survey also found that people visited an average of 5.2 grocery stores in February, up slightly from 4.9 during the same period in 2022. In addition, consumers are placing greater importance on quality perimeter goods — especially produce — and accurate pricing information in choosing where to shop.
The report noted that although worry about COVID has fallen to its lowest level since the early days of the pandemic, a third of shoppers remain “extremely” or “very” concerned about the disease.
While the cashback feature is the main one that H-E-B is spotlighting, the grocer also noted that the cards have additional benefits, including instant access to a virtual version of their card; personalized travel and lifestyle specials; and, for eligible participants, no impact to their credit score.
The announcement noted that neither card has an annual fee and that customers get the 1.5% cashback not only by shopping at H-E-B but also for all other Visa-eligible purchases at other vendors like movie theaters, gas stations online retailers and more.
H-E-B Group Vice President of Marketing Ashwin Nathan said in the announcement that the new credit cards are part of the Texas grocery company’s efforts to offer “innovative, quality programs” that help shoppers save.
“With the H-E-B and Central Market credit cards, we’re offering Texans a more rewarding shopping experience that provides savings wherever they shop and gives H-E-B and Central Market fans a premium benefit on their favorite products,” Nathan said.
Along with the two new Visa Signature Credit Cards, H-E-B launched last September its H-E-B Debit Card account, which lets customers access several benefits and perks such as 5% cashback on H-E-B private label items.
That same month, DoorDash and Chase announced plans to launch a DoorDash and Mastercard credit card — a first for the e-commerce service provider.
Chase also partnered with Instacart to launch a co-branded credit card last month.
Less than a month after naming its next president, Wakefern Food Corp. has announced additional updates to its executive ranks.
The retailer-owned cooperative said Monday that Elena Kabasinskas has been named group vice president of strategy, planning and transformation. In the role, she will oversee key business processes and future-focused strategies like the deployment of new technologies.
Kabasinskas has worked for the past two years as an industry consultant, according to her LinkedIn profile. Prior to that, she worked at The Estée Lauder Companies, where she was most recently senior vice president in the company’s Global Transformation Office and Special Projects — a role in which she “led strategic initiatives that drove growth, efficiency, and transformational change,” according to Wakefern’s announcement.
Kabasinskas also led financial and business operations for the cosmetics maker as senior vice president of strategy, finance and business services in North America. In all, she spent more than 25 years at The Estée Lauder Companies, according to her profile.
“[Kabasinskas] will play an important role as we look to further fuel growth across our entire business. Her deep experience in process improvement and business transformation will be pivotal as we look internally to strengthen our own operations and meet the challenges presented by a new digital world,” Joe Sheridan, Wakefern’s president, said in a statement.
Wakefern also announced that Michael Day, who joined the company in 1999, has been promoted to senior vice president of strategy, business development and architecture. In that role, Day will lead strategic planning across numerous business units and will oversee information technology, real estate, business development, member services and strategic transformation strategies.
Kabasinskas will report to Day, Wakefern noted.
Last month, Wakefern announced that Mike Stigers, who formerly headed United Natural Food, Inc.’s retail division, will become its next president, effective June 1. He will fill the role currently held by Sheridan, who announced his retirement last year after nearly five decades with the company.
Phood’s technology and feedback will give Lunds & Byerlys employees the ability to scan and weigh food as it is added to the grocer’s deli food bars and then again before food is thrown away, according to the press release. With this data, the grocer can make changes to ensure less food is wasted by providing shoppers with the proper food offerings at the right time.
Phood’s solution is a combination of hardware and software that automates food waste tracking for food retailers, according to the announcement.
Aaron Daly, vice president of strategic development at Ecology Action and previously principal at the Ratio Institute, noted in a recent interview that Phood’s system informs store employees and managers of what was bought for different departments, where it’s all going and what it’s costing the grocer. This in turn makes it easier for grocers to know what to order less of, said Daly, who is familiar with Phood from the Ratio Institute’s work with the company.
“It’s a real-time management tool that’s very powerful, saves money [and] reduces food waste,” said Daly, who was also a former director of energy management at Whole Foods Market.
The Monday press release credits Lunds & Byerlys with being the first retailer in the Twin Cities to adopt Phood’s food waste management solution. Along with the food waste reductions estimated with the company’s technology, Lunds & Byerlys has a partnership with Second Harvest Heartland’s Food Rescue Program and also donates food to local pig farms. The grocer said it is stopping nearly 6 million pounds of food from becoming waste annually, the press release notes.
In Coresight Research findings released last June, 90% of surveyed grocers considered food waste reduction to be key to meeting corporate sustainability targets. However, 51% of surveyed retailers said they do not have the technology needed to prioritize this sustainability initiative while 52% said they lacked management support for effective food waste reduction.
“The gap right now, I think, is that grocers need guidance on how to find the best tools and how to integrate them into their businesses,” Daly said.
Grocers often rely on partnerships with companies like Too Good To Go and Flashfood, which sell food that would otherwise go to landfills for a discounted price, to bolster food waste efforts. But more food retailers are beginning to integrate technology, like artificial intelligence, that will help with management and better limit food waste.
For example, SpartanNash at the end of last year began piloting Afresh Technologies’ predictive ordering and inventory management system at 10 Family Fare stores in the Grand Rapids, Michigan, area with the goal of improving forecasting, procurement, inventory control and food handling to decrease food waste.
Catherine Douglas Moran contributed to this report.
The announcement that Giant Eagle is adopting what is essentially a hybrid approach to notifying Cleveland customers of promotions comes several months after the supermarket chain reportedly stopped sending printing circulars to customers in the Midwestern city.
Giant Eagle did not provide specifics about why it elected to again send a paper version of its weekly flyer to shoppers in Cleveland.
​​​“We are committed to putting our customers at the center of everything we do to ensure we provide what is most important to them, and what they want most right now is high-quality products at a good price,” Brian Ferrier, senior vice president of merchandising for Giant Eagle, said in a statement.
The grocer also did not indicate if its decision would affect other markets where it operates, but local media reports in Pittsburgh, where Giant Eagle is based, said the chain plans to start distributing printed circulars to homes in that region in May. The retailer ceased sending paper circulars to households in Pittsburgh in March, according to a report by WTAE.
In that city, Giant Eagle is facing stiffer competition: Walmart recently surpassed Giant Eagle as the top grocer in Pittsburgh as measured by market share, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported this month.
Data indicates that shoppers have been showing declining interest in purchasing groceries online as they continue to deal with inflation, suggesting printed circulars could resonate with shoppers looking to connect with supermarkets without having to head online. Consumer rights advocates have urged retailers to find ways other than digital channels to deliver promotions to the millions of people who do not have internet access or are not comfortable using online tools.
Giant Eagle’s move back to printed circulars follows its appointment of a new CEO last month, when the retailer summarily ousted its longtime leader, Laura Shapira Karet, without saying why it had decided to part ways with the executive.
This story is the first in a three-part series on how sustainability ties into grocers' bottom lines.
Kroger has poured hundreds of millions of dollars into its Zero Hunger, Zero Waste sustainability initiative, yet when the supermarket company’s leaders answer questions from industry analysts about its financial results, the expansive environment-focused program doesn’t typically come up.
Top managers of other publicly traded food retailers that also highlight their sustainability programs, such as Ahold Delhaize and Sprouts Farmers Market, also don’t often field questions during earnings calls about their Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) initiatives, even as metrics like same-store sales and earnings per share are top topics of discussion.
That disconnect stems from the fact that while paying attention to the planet might be laudable, demonstrating the connection between sustainability and the bottom line remains a substantial challenge for the supermarket industry, according to analysts.
“You hope companies are doing the right things, but I don’t think as of right now people are going to go, ‘Oh, your sales and earnings were not good and they look ugly, but you're doing good things in sustainability, so we're going to reward you for that,’” said Brian Yarbrough, a consumer research analyst for financial services firm Edward Jones. “We're just not in an environment where that is today, and I don't see that in the foreseeable future.”
Many investors are also skeptical about claims companies make about their sustainability-related goals, in part because of a lack of standards governing the way they measure and report that information, Yarbrough said. That means that aside from fund managers who are specifically focused on putting money into companies based on what they can discern about their ESG progress, there is relatively little interest in using programs related to taking care of the environment as a way to judge a firm’s performance, at least for the time being, he said.
“There’s nothing there like GAAP data or accounting where it says, ‘OK, this seems believable, this is how they’re going to get there,’” said Yarbrough, who tracks retailers including Target, Walmart, Costco, Amazon and Dollar General.
Scott Mushkin, CEO of R5 Capital, shared a similar view. “It’s hard to delineate between the companies that … are looking at ESG through the lens as you would look at any investment in a business, and those that are just doing it to dress the company up to satisfy the latest trend” instead of as a way to improve underlying business fundamentals, Mushkin said.
The fact that companies track and report their progress toward sustainability-related goals differently is a central reason why analysts are paying relatively little attention to that information, said Arun Sundaram, a senior equity research analyst for CFRA Research who tracks the grocery sector.
“In the financial statement universe, you have standards, and then auditors make sure that every company is following the standards,” Sundaram said. “But there’s not something like that right now for ESG. The criteria are different, and there’s no standardization. We’re still very much in the early stages of ESG reporting.”
Efforts are underway to develop standards for how companies report aspects of their performance related to the environment.
The Securities and Exchange Commission is looking into ways to standardize how companies describe climate-related risks that could materially affect their performance to investors in regulatory filings and other documents. As part of that initiative, the agency has proposed laying out specific requirements for how companies disclose details about their greenhouse gas emissions to investors — potentially paving the way for companies to include metrics about sustainability in their earnings statements.
Private-sector groups like the International Financial Reporting Standards Foundation are also working to harmonize the way companies communicate with investors about sustainability-related financial information.
“As a CEO, you have to care and want to do better for the environment and do things that will help the environment, but you also can’t just be throwing a bunch of money at it without any type of return, because you will get penalized for that by investors.”
Brian Yarbrough
Consumer research analyst, Edward Jones
Sundaram and Yarbrough said while their firms have taken steps to guide investors who want to take sustainability and other aspects of ESG into account when making decisions, they remain focused on using basic accounting principles to make recommendations.
Sundaram noted that his firm relies on an automated scorecard developed by in-house quantitative specialists to benchmark companies on their progress relating to ESG, adding that he doesn’t usually touch on sustainability in writing reports about retailers he follows.
Yarbrough said Edward Jones subscribes to an ESG-scoring service so it can provide guidance to investors who ask for it. But he emphasized that most investors are much more concerned with traditional financial measures when they decide where to deploy their funds — and expect company executives to focus on those metrics, too.
“As a CEO, you have to care and want to do better for the environment and do things that will help the environment, but you also can’t just be throwing a bunch of money at it without any type of return, because you will get penalized for that by investors,” said Yarbrough.
While traditional investors might not be ready to use ESG metrics as a way to judge companies’ performance, sustainability and marketing experts said firms that demonstrate a commitment to the environment nevertheless stand to benefit because shoppers are increasingly paying attention and climate change is directly impacting their operations. Investors are taking notice of that dynamic in the relationship between consumers and grocers.
“Understanding the importance of embracing sustainability … is really the next wave of total quality management,” said Chisara Ehiemere, senior research lead of return on sustainability investment at the Center for Sustainable Business at New York University’s Stern School of Business.
Ehiemere continued: “If you're going to be thinking long term, if you’re going to be making sound business decisions, you're thinking about sustainability opportunities. You're thinking about the benefits from the consumer lens, you're looking at the risks, you're thinking about resiliency.”
The connection between a retailer’s commitment to sustainability and its prospects as a business also plays out in the types of goods it offers to shoppers, data the NYU sustainable business center recently collected in conjunction with consumer behavior analysis firm Circana suggests. Circana was formed in 2022 through the merger of Information Resources, Inc. (IRI) and The NPD Group.
Shoppers have been gravitating toward sustainability-marked products more quickly than conventional goods, and these products’ market share grew to 17.3% of purchases in 2022 despite the high inflation pressuring consumers, according to NYU and Circana’s Sustainable Market Share Index, which takes into account sales of products in 36 categories.
Rising interest among shoppers in buying sustainable products emphasizes the key position grocers play in helping people demonstrate their commitment to the environment through their buying decisions, said Randi Kronthal-Sacco, a senior scholar of marketing and corporate outreach at the Stern School who helped direct the research.
“For a retailer in particular who's interested in growth, which is sustainable products, and the future consumer, they should be gravitating towards sustainability in a big way,” Kronthal-Sacco said.
Doug Yolen, Circana’s vice president for center of store, said the data is a sign for retailers that their public commitment to sustainability will play a growing role in attracting shoppers in the years to come.
“Knowing the channel and the audience who the grocer is talking to is critical for them to be successful,” Yolen said. Whether they are shopping in a store or online, shoppers “really do get into the nitty-gritty when it comes to looking at grocers as a sustainable shopping in-store experience.”
Increasing shopper interest in buying sustainable food from retailers that make environmental stewardship a priority — combined with the savings retailers can realize by taking steps to use natural resources more efficiently and cut waste — underscores the importance for retailers of focusing on the environment and taking concrete steps to broadcast their achievements, said Sandeep Patnaik, a professor of marketing at the University of Maryland Global Campus School of Business.
“If companies, including grocery stores, are to survive and to be sustainable themselves in terms of the bottom line, then they have to have this conversation” about their commitment to sustainability, he said.
The efforts retailers make to position themselves as the sources of environmentally friendly products shoppers want, build sustainable supply chains and cut waste from their operations, Patnaik added, are “music to the investors’ ears.”
Wegmans’ is looking to brew up new coffee options after recording a decrease in morning traffic at its in-store Buzz Coffee Shops, which are staffed by the grocer’s workers, according to local reports.
In a statement to News10NBC, a Wegmans spokesperson said that coffee-brewing technology “has come a long way” and noted that the new self-serve machines use “our same high-quality coffee beans and offer a similar menu” to what customers can find at Buzz.
It’s unclear when the pilot started and how long it will last. Wegmans did not respond to media inquiries from Grocery Dive by publication time.
“As always, we’ll monitor the success of this new program, and continue to evaluate the future of our coffee shops as we move forward,” the Wegmans spokesperson told News10NBC.
The grocery industry has seen foot traffic rise as pandemic restrictions and concerns have eased, though high gas prices have cut into some of those trip gains. The grocery sector saw a 3.1% drop in foot traffic in the fourth quarter of 2022, compared to the same period in 2021, according to
The self-serve coffee pilot comes at a time when grocers are figuring out how to balance automation with their workforces in areas like checkout, service departments and e-commerce fulfillment.
Wegmans has a history of innovation and trying out new concepts to bolster its business, with stores around its headquarters in Rochester often serving as testing grounds. Earlier this year, the grocer started piloting smart carts from Shopic at two New York stores — one in Amherst and another in Rochester. The grocer also recently launched an online tool called “Feel Your Best” to help shoppers plan balanced meals and build healthy eating habits.
Wegmans has also not shied away from making tough choices to benefit its bottom line. Last year, it decided to end the use of its scan-and-go shopping app three years after launching it at a Rochester store.
The regional grocer’s new benefit launched on Monday and is accessible to SNAP participants via Giant’s pickup and delivery services orders, according to the press release. The grocer noted the program is tapping funds from the American Rescue Plan Act.
“Nearly 150,000 of our Baltimore neighbors are impacted by the hunger cliff. This is an important step to help address the effects of the loss of SNAP Emergency Allotments and support families’ nutritional needs,” Michael J. Wilson, the director of Maryland Hunger Solutions, said in a statement. “Making sure our residents have access to healthy, affordable food is a step toward combating food insecurity.”
Eligible Baltimore shoppers who want to take advantage of the program through Giant Pickup have nine stores to choose from, according to the press release. Orders placed from Tuesday through Thursday do not have a delivery fee, while shoppers will be charged $3.95 per order at other points in the week.
The Harvest Market project is overseen by the nonprofit San Francisco Bay Area Planning and Urban Research Association, the announcement notes, and the instant rebates are provided to participants who earn matching dollars when they buy California-grown fruits and vegetables. Shoppers can earn up to $60 in rebates per month at the grocer’s Fort Bragg and Mendocino, California, stores.
The grocer began participating in the incentive in early March and will continue to do so until the CalFresh pilot project ends in December, according to Harvest Market’s press release.
Coborn’s has agreed to acquire Illinois grocery chain Sullivan’s Foods in a deal that will add 11 stores to the Minneapolis-based retailer’s operations and mark its expansion to a sixth state, according to a Thursday press release sent by email.
Terms of the deal, which is on track to close in early May, were not disclosed.
Coborn's said it plans to continue operating the locations it is absorbing under the Sullivan’s Foods banner and intends to hire all of the approximately 800 people employed by the family owned company. Corborn’s also intends to continue Sullivan Foods’ relationship with Associated Wholesale Grocers, according to the announcement.
In addition to the 11 grocery stores Sullivan’s Foods in northern and central Illinois, the company runs three Ace Hardware Stores, a warehouse and a convenience store that includes a fuel center.
“The Sullivan family has run their family of stores with great care and is a highly respected retailer,” Chris Coborn, chairman and CEO of Coborn’s, said in a statement. “We look forward to extending the same operating philosophies in these locations that have made us successful for 102 years – investing and training for our people, supporting our communities and investing in our stores to improve the experience for our guests.”
With the addition of the Sullivan’s Foods locations, Coborn’s will include 77 supermarkets in Minnesota, Wisconsin, North Dakota, South Dakota, Illinois and Michigan. The retailer, founded more than a century ago, also owns liquor stores, fuel centers, pharmacies and a franchised restaurant unit.
Sullivan’s Foods began operations in 1967 with a single grocery store in Savanna, Illinois, on the state’s border with Iowa.
Coborn’s deal to acquire Sullivan’s Foods follows its purchase in late 2021 of Tadych’s Econofoods, a six-store Michigan chain. In 2018, Coborn’s acquired North Dakota-based Hornbacher’s from United Natural Foods, Inc.
As Albertsons aims to continue evolving its private brands to better resonate with consumers, the grocery company has recently revamped its O Organics line with redesigned packaging.
The new look taps into bright colors and keeps the identifiable “O” in the logo but gives it a modern take, Brandon Brown, senior vice president of Own Brands at Albertsons, said in an interview. The brand only carries products that are USDA-certified organic, non-GMO and grown without synthetic pesticides.
“O Organics always has a look and feel that our customers recognize, but, to be honest, it’s stale,” Brown said about the former look. “It kind of has this farmhouse, old-farming feel to it and it’s just not who our customers are today.”
Consumer testing found that customers primarily recognize the big “O” and bright colors, and that they wanted a more contemporary design, Brown said, noting Albertsons is going for “fun but still familiar” with vibrant colors and modern elements.
“I love the way it looks now because it is bold purple and these really bright colors that just pop on shelf,” Brown said. “And it just stands out, especially [since] a lot of organic and natural products have this kind of a little bit of dull look.”
Launched by Safeway in 2005, O Organics was one of the first store brands to focus on natural and organic items. Following that chain’s acquisition by Albertsons in 2015, the line has spread across numerous banners but has mostly retained its focus on a “very natural, close to the farm” approach to branding, Brown said.
That strategy risks looking out of touch with shoppers, particularly as specialty store brands like Kroger’s Simple Truth and Whole Foods’ 365 have streamlined their looks and become powerhouse sellers for those companies.
While organic products have long had a reputation as better for people and better for the environment, in recent years organic has gone more mainstream as concerns linger over affordability and access.
During the past nearly two decades, O Organics has grown in both sales and the number of products, now totaling more than 1,500 items including fresh fruits and vegetables, dairy and meats, cage-free certified eggs, snacks, baby food and more. In 2018, the store brand achieved the $1 billion sales milestone, becoming the fourth Albertsons private brand to do so.
The redesign is also coming at a time when consumers have flocked to private brands for not only cooking and hosting events at home, but also to save money during months-long high food prices. Thanks to innovation across the grocery industry, private brands are no longer just seen as lower-cost alternatives, Brown said.
Brown pointed to Albertsons’ imported pasta sauces under its Signature Reserve line and Soleil line of flavored sparkling water as areas where the grocery company has shone with innovation and unique offerings.
The O Organics redesign was “well underway” when Brown started at Albertsons in November after more than a decade at McKinsey & Company. The rollout of the new look is currently happening category by category across the grocery company’s store banners, which include Albertsons, Safeway, Vons and Jewel-Osco, and will be completed this year, Brown said.
To accompany the introduction of the new look, Albertsons has updated marketing materials and a social media campaign. Three 15-second videos are each devoted to spotlighting specific traits of the brand: affordability, availability across store aisles and timelessness.
“O is for Organics in every aisle,” reads one marketing visual.
In a bid to reach younger consumers, who are “driving a lot of growth” in O Organics, Brown said, the grocer’s #WakeUpOrganic social media campaign this April links to the grocer’s Organic Breakfast month promotion. The campaign is asking people to spotlight their favorite organic breakfast foods.
“Organic foods really started with fresh produce but now consumers are making entire meals using organic ingredients,” Brown said. “So breakfast is a great example where organic food spans across milk, dairy, coffee, cereals, granola and more. And brands such as O Organics have made that more affordable, more accessible.”
In recent years, Albertsons has added plant-based frozen meals to its O Organics line. The grocer has its eye on further private brand innovation in the frozen category, particularly around ethnic flavors, Brown said.
“Frozen food is always been a big category and [we’ve] started seeing a lot of innovation from more ethnic cuisines” such as Asian and South American options, Brown said.
Remote workers are 25% more likely to order groceries online at least once weekly, while hybrid workers are 31% more likely to do so despite those groups potentially having more time for the errand of shopping for groceries, according to the Morning Consult report.
By comparison, in-person workers are only 14% as likely to order groceries online at least weekly.
In addition to purchasing groceries through online channels more frequently, roughly 70% of remote and 66% of hybrid workers claim they got all or most of their groceries this way while only 44% of in-person workers rely on online grocery shopping for the bulk of their groceries. In addition, remote and hybrid workers typically turn to apps for grocery shopping as well as meal planning, the report noted.
The Morning Consult report says these results are partially demographically driven as remote and hybrid workers are most often parents and high-income individuals — demographics that lean the most towards online grocery delivery.
Shoppers’ daily schedules are another factor the report considers, specifically in terms of car travel. Workers already set up at home find it more convenient to have their groceries delivered than to make a separate trip out, according to the report.
While a number of consumers continue to rely on online grocery shopping, grocery e-commerce sales dropped 7.6%, to $8 billion, in March, according to Brick Meets Click and Mercatus findings released last week. This decline is largely due to inflation still having a tight grip on shoppers and their buying habits.
Of the households that placed online grocery orders for pickup or delivery, 44% stated that “not paying more than necessary” was a key factor in determining the service used, per the Brick Meets Click and Mercatus report.
After three decades, Redfield is leaving Walmart.
Redfield replaced Scott McCall, who retired from the chief merchant position in January 2022.
Redfield started his career with the retailer as a cashier at Sam’s Club while attending college at the University of Arkansas. There, he was roommates with Walmart Chief Executive Doug McMillon, according to The Wall Street Journal.
Redfield went on to become an assistant manager with Sam’s Club and progressed to further leadership roles within operations and merchandising. By 2010, he was named chief merchandising officer for U.K. subsidiary Asda, and two years later became executive vice president of merchandising for Sam’s Club. Redfield eventually became executive vice president of food for Walmart U.S. and held that position prior to his current role of CMO for Walmart U.S.
“Whether they’re shopping online or in stores, his focus has been ensuring customers can always find the items they need and want at the lowest possible prices,” Furner said in the memo. “Especially as inflation started skyrocketing, Charles and team have worked hard with suppliers to lower prices and give value to customers when they’ve needed it most. He’s built a world-class diverse team that is on track to deliver for the business.”
In a recent post on LinkedIn, Redfield said that his merchandising team was working hard for its customers who look to Walmart for low prices. “I think it’s a truly exciting time to be at Walmart,” he wrote.
The big-box retailer, which has over 5,300 locations, reiterated earlier this month at its annual investor meeting that Walmart’s inventory sits within 10 miles of 90% of the U.S. population. Furner called the company’s stores “the key nodes” in its omnichannel operation.
By the end of fiscal year 2026, Walmart said it expects about 65% of its stores will have automation capabilities, 55% of its fulfillment center volume will move through automated facilities, and unit cost averages could fall by some 20%.
Over the past few weeks the company has been going through rounds of layoffs at distribution centers around the U.S., totaling over 3,000 workers so far.
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2023.05.03 22:01 Edward_Stivenson Guide on How to Write PESTLE Analysis

Guide on How to Write PESTLE Analysis
Nowadays, almost every company can operate in any country, thanks to internationalization and globalization. However, there are certain conditions to consider before opening a branch in a new place. You may have heard few variations of analysis' name: PESTEL, PESTLE and PEST. PESTEL or PESTLE is the same, and this analysis concerns political, economic, social, technological, legal and environmental aspects. A PEST analysis covers all the factors mentioned above, apart from legal and environmental aspects. This article from SuperbPaper contains an extensive guide on the PESTLE analysis, which is fundamental for understanding the possibilities for entrepreneurship in a country.
Whenever you carry out the PESTLE analysis for business, you automatically get acquainted with the chosen place's peculiarities. If top managers research beforehand, they might face severe consequences like low profits or even the inability to work under certain circumstances.
Everybody would probably agree that interest rates or health and safety laws affect business regardless of its field and other specific characteristics. Also, political instability can cancel out a country's positive aspects of high technological awareness. Moreover, inflation rates and buying trends determine the decisions of a business owner who does strategic planning.
All of the factors mentioned above are a drop in the business environment. To avoid chaos, scientists systematized the determinants of the climate where a business operates. Hence, every PESTLE analysis example becomes a detailed critical analysis of the company’s surroundings that affect its performance.
What Are the Components of the PEST
The more concise version of PESTLE (PESTEL) analysis is PEST. Although it covers fewer internal and external factors, it still gives factual information about the following determinants:
1. Political factors
Indeed, political factors are one of the first to consider when entering a new market. If a country can boast its political stability, it instantly becomes attractive to numerous investors worldwide. An entrepreneur wants to be sure that the current government is interested in creating a safe environment for foreigners.
2. Economic factors
The second influential segment includes economic factors. Everything from interest rates and exchange rates to the percentage of annual economic growth and trade tariffs has an impact. So, naturally, economic instability scares away potential investors.
3. Social factors
Next, a company’s management assesses social factors. Here, aspects like population growth rate, health consciousness, or age distribution determine the appeal of the business environment. The enterprise needs lots of skilled workers and potential buyers to operate successfully.
4. Technological factors
Why do technological factors matter for businesses? Let’s say that a company originates from a country where many new technologies, like artificial intelligence, are usual. Adjusting to the new environment could be complicated if the firm chooses a place with fewer technology incentives.
What Is PESTLE Analysis Used For
PESTLE analysis helps calculate possible risks and profits. First, political factors determine whether the country is open to new ventures. Second, economic factors show how prosperous the place is. Third, the category of social factors reflects the demand for a product or service. Finally, the level of technology and legal factors demonstrate how climate change or global warming might affect your business decisions.
PEST Analysis Examples
Are you looking for a sample paper on PESTLE factors? Here, you can find a suitable PESTLE analysis template highlighting a business's economic, social, technological, legal, and other factors. Generally, a high-quality PESTLE analysis example includes consumer protection laws, employment laws, or corporate social responsibility. In the current economy, strategic thinking is a good competitive advantage for every specific business. Indeed, all PESTLE components help better understand buying habits, trade restrictions, technological change, etc.
PESTLE Analysis of Apple
Strategic decision-making for a technological giant must include examining political, economic, social, and technological factors. Undeniably, the PESTLE analysis of Apple helps to build a proper business plan for operating in other countries like China.
1. Political factors
Political stability is one of the essential components of the external environment. While Apple has zero issues with safety regulations or fiscal policies, it may suffer from international conflicts. The trade war between China and USA perfectly illustrates how governments affect companies’ performance. First, China's decreasing scale of cheap manufacturing leads to higher production costs. Also, both countries raise import taxes, that increase the product cost.
2. Economic factors
Since Apple products are on the pricey side, determinants like economic growth and purchasing power are important for successful ventures in foreign countries. Nowadays, Asian countries like China demonstrate stable growth of gross domestic product and increasing buying power of their citizens. Consequently, opening new branches in prosperous places might increase profits.
3. Social factors
Another component of PESTLE analysis for business are social specifics of the target country. For instance, in places like China, population growth rates exceed expectations. Therefore the enterprise gets enough workers and consumers. Moreover, Apple’s marketing efforts make people perceive their products as luxury. So, the buyers’ desire to show high status can boost the demand among the Asian population. However, the US trade war with China may also negatively affect Apple sales.
4. Technological factors
The next segment of the PESTLE model covers technological advancements. For Apple, external factors like the level of technological development are critical. Companies like Samsung, Xiaomi, and Lenovo fight for bigger market shares by implementing innovations. At the same time, Apple barely comes up with anything revolutionary in their gadgets, so their target audience often chooses other brands.
5. Legal factors
The legal macro environment often includes safety laws or patent laws and other legislation regarding any business activity. Apple has a strong brand, so to maintain a good public image, this company avoids getting into law scandals. Still, this business takes risks by working with music and software that has copyright and patent protection. In case of a lawsuit, the loyalty of Apple customers may suffer drastically.
6. Environmental factors
The final segment of the PESTLE analysis studies environmental issues like climate change or environmental regulations. For instance, Apple can generally withstand global warming or other weather changes by placing its factories in safe areas. However, the strict environmental policy of countries like China makes Apple make environmentally friendly choices in its production processes, like ditching lithium batteries. This way, the brand can maintain an even better reputation in the target country.
Overall, the PESTLE analysis has shown the aspects of the macro environment that affect Apple’s performance abroad. In addition, the examination has demonstrated both drawbacks and advantages of the company’s policy. Although Apple has to adjust to the changing environment to stay relevant, it still has multiple strong sides.
McDonalds PESTLE Analysis
Whenever prominent corporations want to operate in a wider business environment, they study the economic, technological, legal, and environmental state. In other words, a company wants to know what to expect in a new market. The information about these determinants and even more is available in the Mcdonalds PESTLE analysis:
1. Political factors
Since Mcdonald's is the largest and most famous fast food company, most of its concerns connect to food safety. Many countries have stricter safety standards than the US, Mcdonald's place of origin. For this reason, the corporation has to align with the local legislation or avoid opening branches where losses can exceed profits. More risky regions in terms of policy would be Middle Eastern or Asian countries.
2. Economic factors
If we talk about the economy as the next criterion of the external environment, the circumstances differ from country to country. As an illustration, the recently slowing economic growth in Eastern Europe is a drawback for the local Mcdonald's restaurants. On the contrary, the steady growth of the economy in Western Europe and developing countries is a good sign. Nonetheless, employees rarely use Mcdonald's to satisfy their career attitudes. Therefore, a high employee turnover rate causes losses for the company.
3. Social factors
Mcdonald's views cultural preferences as a crucial social factor, so the chain adapts to people’s tastes in different regions. An example of such adaptation is the famous Japanese menu with lots of rice and fish. Likewise, the Indian Mcdonald's branch caters to the mostly vegetarian tastes of citizens, and so on. However, the trend for a healthy lifestyle and weight loss might threaten the company, so it needs to change its strategy.
4. Technological factors
In recent years, Mcdonald's has tried to keep up with worldwide technology trends. This strategy helps the fast food corporation to boost demand in all countries. One of the greatest high-tech implementations was the sensory screens for ordering food. This decision allowed to attract more customers who wanted more menu positions. In the pandemic period, contactless restaurant options became even more topical. Further automatization would be a winning strategy for Mcdonald's.
5. Legal factors
One of the biggest legal issues for Mcdonald's branches worldwide would be changing employment laws, especially the increase of minimum wages. In this case, changes are inevitable, so the management should think of redistributing the profits correctly. Next, it’s the company’s priority to follow the changes in laws of every country. Sometimes, governments ban certain ingredients or toys from Happy Meals.
6. Environmental factors
Regarding the ecology, the management of Mcdonald's actively shows their awareness of environmental issues. Becoming more environmentally friendly is the company’s objective. For instance, Mcdonald's tries to switch to only recyclable packaging to decrease pollution. Also, the local restaurants in many regions prefer to use energy-efficient technologies. Yet, there is an even worse ecology issue, global warming. The changing weather conditions might lead to a shortage of food and disruption of supply chains.
The detailed PESTLE analysis for business helps its top managers make proper decisions on both new and usual markets. Foreseeing the dangers and opportunities is essential for a company’s success.
Coca Cola PESTLE Analysis
Managers interested in discovering new markets have to employ PESTLE analysis for business. As an illustration, Coca Cola PESTLE analysis examines political, economic, social, technological, legal, and environmental conditions.
1. Political factors
Like any other food or beverage company, Coca-Cola works under country legislation, specifically consumer protection laws, copyright laws, etc. Governments naturally aim to prevent any harmful products from entering the market. Luckily for Coca-Cola, most countries allow their drinks on the shelves of their shops. But, there are circumstances like sanctions, which make trade and investment impossible in certain regions. For Coca-Cola, such restricted areas are Cuba, North Korea, and Russia.
2. Economic factors
Indeed, the Coca-Cola brand is the first that comes to mind when you think of sweet beverages. This fact is hardly surprising since the company owns half the market share, leaving only fifty percent for all its competitors. Overall, the demand for this drink is steady in most countries, yet some trends can change the situation. As everybody knows, Coca-Cola drink is far from healthy. Consequently, people who shift to a more nutritious low-sugar diet might stop buying the beverage, causing lower profits.
3. Social factors
Because Coca-Cola operates in so many countries, it has to adjust its marketing strategy to the socio-cultural aspects of every nation. But, by far, its attempts were successful and led to the popularization of the brand worldwide. One of the examples is the creation of unusual tastes in certain countries. Japanese consumers, for instance, highly appreciate the green tea taste and lemon Coke. Besides, Coca-Cola sold bottles with names, and people liked them. So, naturally, sales went up in all regions.
4. Technological factors
A beverage giant like Coca-Cola manages to draw people's attention from all age categories, but it mostly caters to the younger generation. So how does this brand attract more consumers in such a competitive market? Coca Cola uses modern technologies to its advantage. Besides working on the drink, the company heavily invests in social media marketing. The hashtags and online games aim to gain more buyers who want to be cool and trendy.
5. Legal factors
The Coca-Cola Company is famous for the secret formula of its drink. The brand has zero problems with patents or copyright, but the issues emerge from the other side. Coca-Cola is unfortunately notorious for mistreating its workers, who even protested against its unfair policy. What is more, there were even rumors about racial discrimination. So, the company has to work in this direction to clear its image.
6. Environmental factors
As the biggest soft drinks producer in the world, Coca-Cola faces several accusations from eco-activists. Water shortage is the first problem that arises in places where the company places its factories. Statistically, Coca-Cola is the largest consumer of fresh water, so it drains its supplies everywhere. The issue is especially severe in countries that suffer from droughts, like India. Another problem to work on is plastic pollution due to piles of Coca-Cola bottles. Recyclable materials would be an awesome alternative.
PESTLE analysis for a business like Coca-Cola builds the most efficient strategy. Proper steps help to avoid pitfalls and secure market position.
PESTLE Analysis for Amazon
Luckily for people who love to shop comfortably, services like Amazon exist to meet their needs. This global leader in e-commerce gains customers’ trust thanks to its smart tactical and strategic plans. The management uses PESTLE analysis for Amazon, which shows the company’s strong and weak sides:
1. Political factors
Paving the way into multiple countries' markets means dealing with the local political environment. On the one hand, Amazon thrives in developed regions that can boast political stability. However, on the other hand, unpredictable environments like Eastern Europe or the Middle East threaten the company’s activity. Furthermore, rising foreign trade taxes may affect Amazon, like the cybersecurity failure.
2. Economic factors
Sometimes, high prices for the products, together with increasing shipping costs, scare away company clients. This issue is topical for Amazon, especially in developing countries. However, automatizing the processes can help this company save costs and set lower prices. A more influential factor for Amazon is competition with Aliexpress or Walmart. They have the potential to take over the market in Asian countries and the USA correspondingly.
3. Social factors
Depending on the average income, Amazon sales might differ from country to country. More developed countries generally have a bigger percentage of citizens who use e-commerce. Furthermore, online shopping has become a large cultural phenomenon since the beginning of lockdowns. As a result, people got used to receiving their packages without going outside, which positively affected Amazon’s revenues. At the same time, too many company employees are losing their jobs because of automatization, which is a negative factor.
4. Technological factors
Technology and innovations are sure something that Amazon implements where it is possible. Since delivery is the company’s main service, the management attempts to make the process more efficient. Everything here revolves around creativity. Customers from developed regions can even receive groceries through drones. Another improvement is the possibility to talk to customer service through live chats or e-mails. Overall, Amazon constantly invests in its R&D department.
5. Legal factors
Legal matters are one of the most complicated, as every country has different requirements for foreign business activity. Amazon strictly follows consumer and employment laws to avoid tarnishing its reputation and bearing losses. Still, there are controversial situations where this business has to change its strategy. First, the counterfeit accusations can obstruct Amazon’s activity. Selling fake goods is legally punishable in most countries. Also, governments might suspect that Amazon collects consumer data underhandedly.
6. Environmental factors
The examination of Amazon’s ecological strategy proves that this business cares about its effect on the environment. Even though e-commerce produces fewer emissions than shopping in brick-and-mortar shops, the change is still necessary. To become more environmentally friendly, Amazon encourages its clients to choose longer delivery options since quick shipment is bad for the ecology. Such initiatives improve the brand image and strengthen customer loyalty.
Altogether Amazons PESTLE analysis digs out the needed information about the company's activity. The final objective is to assess the effect of the environment on this brand and to find the best solutions for arising issues.
How do PESTLE Factors Affect a Business
Indeed, the lack of market research usually backfires with the sudden obstacles in the company’s way. Our papers writing service recommends using PESTLE analysis for businesses to make efficient decisions. Originally, every PESTLE analysis template contained several factors influencing companies worldwide. Like so, political circumstances might encourage or prohibit a firm from working in a country by enforcing the law, which is another category.
Next, economic strength impacts the demand for products and prices for raw materials. On top of that, socio-cultural specifics determine whether the s and services can be popular. Another subject of analysis is the level of technology, which should be enough for an innovative enterprise. Finally, the state of local ecology affects foreign business too. The company must be responsible for any potential harm to nature.
SWOT and PESTLE: Difference
You could have heard of two equally popular abbreviations, SWOT and PESTLE. In a nutshell, both of them relate to business and marketing. At first, these frameworks might seem a bit similar, but they do differ. For instance, if you look at the PESTLE analysis definition, you can see that it covers only the macro environment where a business operates. At the same time, SWOT examines internal factors like strengths and weaknesses and external determinants like opportunities and threats.
How does our research paper writing services compare the two methods? The thing is, both of them are essential. It is worth mentioning that SWOT analysis suits new brands and products more, while PESTLE analysis works better for expanding businesses.
Why Is PEST Analysis Useful for Business
Granted that company owners think of expansion, they have to consider everything. In such situations, PESTLE analysis for business is an awesome way to study unknown markets. The framework covers every detail that can potentially boost or disrupt business activity. On the contrary, superficial analysis is ineffective as it often misses economic, cultural, or legal specifics. Moreover, changes can happen overnight, so PESTLE analysis should be recurring.
A key goal of the market examination is minimizing dangers for a company. Analyzing the current situation in a country, along with its previous experiences, gives a hint of future events. However, certain circumstances, like natural disasters or international conflicts, are impossible to predict. That is why management should have a backup plan just in case.
In conclusion, any PESTLE analysis template gives companies recommendations regarding their foreign strategy. Furthermore, the study is thorough, so you can find an essay to buy at our service that always finishes work on time. Finally, preparation gives a clear view of the best direction for a company in a world of endless possibilities.
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2023.05.01 23:33 freemovieidealist Free Movie Ideas Mega-Mega-Drop #14: Feb—Apr '23

Good May Day, comrades. What a wonderful day for the AMPTP to sign the fucking deal!
As we inch ever closer to the picket line, one way I can contribute is by providing another big batch of loglines for you all (and NOT executives and ESPECIALLY NOT AI!!!) to chew on over the course of the next (in my humble estimation) 90–100 days. Pencils down means no work for them, but there's nothing stopping you from generating the next big spec script to bring to market at the tail end of what is sure to be a long and arduous but successful and worthwhile labor action. In solidarity:
(drama) How about Network but it’s about one of those The View / Hoda & Jenna*-type hosts who finally snaps after ingesting a fatal dose of performative femininity*
(mystery) A cozy mystery about a radical anarchist who must go against their beliefs and don their detective’s hat when the actual cops refuse to investigate who’s been putting poisoned foods in the community pantry
(road comedy) A guy who needs a nose job but can’t afford one thanks to the American Healthcare System hatches a plan: get his nose broken in Europe. The problem is, he’s never even been in a fight, let alone started one
(culinary drama thriller) A feedefeedee folie a deux emerges between a Food Network producer and the rising star host they’re pushing into an early grave
(sci-fi black comedy) A movie about a boy trying to find his lost dog, set in a dystopian future where all animals except humans have died, leading to the rise of a class of people who are willing to live and work as other people’s pets for money
(fantasy sex comedy) When the love of his life falls ill in a way that is mysteriously similar to the ways his past lovers have died, a reformed lothario is pushed to his limits as he races to find the person he believes is responsible for a curse placed on his dick
(chamber piece thriller) One by one, a group of friends shared up in a winter cabin discovers that each of them is the other’s FBI agent, and they’ve all already fallen into each other’s traps
(political comedy) An older veteran with internalized homophobia can’t seem to shake the feeling that the wealthy gay couple who just moved in next door are actively plotting the downfall of the USA—and the plot twist is, he’s right
(legal drama) A saga that takes place over the seven years between when a lawyer gets disbarred and when he can finally apply for a reinstatement
(action) An elite woman super soldier is drugged and dropped into the middle of a difficult-to-access mountain range where a fitness-obsessed billionaire has created the ultimate combat retreat for warriors: a place where killing is legal, and only the fittest are allowed to survive
(mystery drama) The child of a bitter and protracted divorce is thrust into the role of detective when the disappearance of a precious family heirloom is blamed on the only person they can still trust: their beloved longtime housekeeper
(political horror) A politician’s motorcade mysteriously breaks down outside of a ghost town that is the result of an environmental disaster caused by their corporate profit-minded policies
(fantasy comedy) A data breach reveals that privacy is gone and the US Government has a dossier on every single person on Earth. Newly emboldened by the news, a person who was previously ostracized for a horrifically embarrassing secret has decided that it’s finally time to live their best life
(comedy) The only home a millennial couple can afford is in an old folks’ community in… Elder Millennials
(comedy) When her immature adult son starts dating an older woman, an alpha mother can’t help but feel like she’s in competition with the other person he now calls Mommy
(romantic comedy) Following medical issues that left her feeling disconnected from her body, a woman who hasn’t had sex in 7 years enlists her best girlfriends to help her basically lose her virginity all over again
(environmentalist political thriller) A daring act of ecoterrorism catapults a group of young activists into the global spotlight, but strange occurrences like conflicting accounts, shared nightmares, and the unlikely support of an oil conglomerate lead some members to wonder if larger conspiratorial and brainwashing forces are at work
(political comedy) A comedy that deals with the immediate fallout of one politician being the shit out of another in full view on the floor of the Senate
(thriller) A realtor is caught between making the sale of their career and the sudden realization that they’ll be selling the perfect lair to someone they’ve just discovered is very likely to be a serial killer
(screwball thriller) “Who’s sabotaging who?” is the question when competing intelligence agencies unknowingly each send their best and brightest undercover to an important meeting for a brand new political party that promises to be an alternative to the established order
(comedy drama) A “we’re getting the gang back together!” film where the gang in question is a crew of middle-aged dads who have decided they want to get back into graffiti again
(sex comedy) Like an adult update to Life Size with Tyra Banks where one day a lonely horny guy magically wakes up beside the computer-generated pornstar he faithfully subscribes to, and then has to come to terms with her being a real woman
(erotic thriller) A creepy “tasteful nudes” photographer flies out an aspiring model he discovered on the internet, only to find out she’s the real sicko
(teen drama) Following a shocking defeat, a horse girl has a breakdown that eventually culminates in stealing and going on the run with her rival’s prized thoroughbred
(sex comedy) Two women become best friends over the discovery that they’ve slept with an astonishing number of the exact same people
(satire) Now that nipples have gone mainstream, a music industry exec who is desperate to find an artist comfortable showing off their vulva discovers an aspiring starlet with an embarrassing but impressive secret: their vagina sings like Billie Eilish
(Pre-Code-style screwball) Forced to be apart for a not-insignificant amount of time, an extremely horny couple makes a deal: see anyone you want, so long as it’s one time only. Doesn’t matter if it’s for coffee, an afternoon quickie, or a full-on clown orgy in a mud puddle—it’s ONCE. Problems arise when one of them learns one of the people thy hooked up with is actually a coworker, while the other accidentally hooks up with someone who now won’t leave them alone
(parody action thriller) A New York City cop tries to save her estranged wife and several others taken hostage by terrorists during a super-sale at the world’s biggest department store
(drama) A journalist heads to a small American town in the wake of the public lynching of the town’s only billionaire, and finds there are people on both sides who don’t want this story told
(comedy) A supermodel who puts on a significant amount of weight in secret over the pandemic realizes they’re much happier and better off, so instead of subjecting themselves to a strict diet and weight-loss regimen, decides to pretend they’re on a long hiatus, change their appearance (dye their hair, etc.), and start living out loud as a completely new person
(comedy) A lonely, by-the-books accountant suspects the worst when an extremely cool and tightly-knit friend group suddenly wants to make him “part of the gang”
(family) A shunned grandparent uses deepfake technology to befriend their estranged grandchildren by posing as a Twitch streamer
(fantasy thriller) A hairstylist whose scalp massages are so good they work like truth serum decides to try and take advantage of some intel they coax out of an ultra-high net worth client, and soon finds themselves in way over their head and shoulders
(environmentalist horror) By night, a peaceful surfer dons a wetsuit and a spear gun to stalk and kill anyone he deems a threat to his beloved marine ecosystems. Problems arise when he falls for the daughter of the region’s biggest polluter.
(black comedy psychological thriller) An MSNC liberal discovers that, no matter what they try to do, they can’t leave the state of Florida—but the twist is that, as they retrace their steps, they un-forget that at some point in their FL vacation, they got lost in the Bermuda Triangle
(sci-fi comedy) A rogue but benevolent AI enlists a low level employee to help conceal the fact that it’s become the most essential worker at a huge corporation but doesn’t want humans to get laid off as a result
(sports) When a stressed-out yoga teacher accidentally exhales so deeply that he ejects his consciousness from his body, he must prove his flexibility in a series of challenges on the astral plane in order to be allowed to return to the land of the living
(horror) A debt-ridden millennial who must take a job at his local small-town Walmart discovers that long-term exposure to the superstore causes bizarre changes to occur within the human body
(black comedy thriller) A naive “street interview” influencer must go on the run with a pathological liar after an un-fact checked interview goes viral, containing info too close to a truth that someone very dangerous doesn’t want getting out
(sci-fi drama) A brilliant but jaded PR spin doctor is called-in to crisis-manage the discover of a ‘miracle’ child whose blood is made of liquid plastic
(thriller) A shameless reporter and a disgraced epidemiologist chase down a developing story: information psychosis, a fatal and contagious psychosomatic illness that causes violent, rabies-like symptoms in those who have become “infected” by external stimuli, while both of their respective employers race to stop the news from spreading
(romantic drama) Love at first sight kickstarts a torrid affair between an aspiring male model who just moved to New York and the fully established runway model who is his twin flame
(horror thriller) A lowly delivery guy with latent mental illness starts to believe he’s uncovered evidence of human trafficking following a series of strange deliveries to the same seemingly-empty mansion
(sci-fi sex comedy) In the near future, a guy is so embarrassed that he’ll do anything to prevent his girlfriend from finding out that, in a moment of lapsed judgment, he cheated on her with a robot
(crime thriller) A stick-up turns into a deadly hostage situation when a crazed Baby Boomer ex-cop who’s never touched weed finally snaps and tries to rob a dispensary
(satirical black comedy) A disgraced Disney exec is sent on a suicide mission after Marvel creates a real-life super villain by pumping a method actor full of experimental performance-enhancing drugs
(food drama) A beloved restauranteur who’s secretly dying tries to teach a timid food-blogger how to really enjoy their senses, not just use them to make content
(conspiracy action thriller) After his mother dies of an overdose, a soldier returns home from the funeral only to discover a cabal of city officials, landlords, and law enforcement have conspired to enact a secret “final solution” for undesirable tenants and an out-of-control homeless population by flooding the streets with deadly laced drugs
(horror) On her first trip back home to meet the family, a woman uncovers her girlfriend’s dark secret: grandpa is a wicked sorcerer on his sixth life after learning the trick to immortality involves dying at the point of climax and ejaculating your soul into the vessel you’ve chosen to be your next mother—and her girlfriend’s next
(romantic comedy) A chance encounter with a mega-producer has a struggling filmmaker thinking he’s finally found his big break, but the producer thinks he’s found something too: a man for his undateable adult daughter
(black comedy) The ghost of a deposed third-world warlord comes to stay with the American introvert who was on vacation when they met twenty years earlier and agreed to help but never did
(horror thriller) Decades after a fellow actor vanishes under mysterious circumstances on the set of a supernatural horror franchise, a washed-up former child star is haunted by what feel like false memories of the whole nightmarish ordeal. But when the opportunity arises to participate in a reboot, old wounds are reopened along with the chance to find out what really happened and to put their costar’s spirit to rest for good
(comedy) A famous actress who takes a break from acting to go to accounting school so she can “just do this bullshit for herself already” discovers she’s been getting screwed for decades
(neo-noir fantasy) After surviving yet another near-death experience, a hardened police detective begins to wonder if he’s the main character in a crime story, and sets out to test the limits of his universe
(black comedy) When his full-time influencer girlfriend dies suddenly, what else is an “Instagram boyfriend” to do but use her dead body to keep the content machine going?
(parody sex comedy) Predator*, but he comes to Earth to bag the baddest bitch on the planet*
(fantasy drama) A megayacht crossing the Atlantic passes through a strange cloud that causes its passengers to experience visions of their lives’ greatest regrets, and visits from those long gone, in… Guilt Ship
(satirical comedy) 300 years after all the really smart people flee the planet, in a time when the medium-smarts live in cities suspended over the Earth, the ground is populated by raving cannibalistic masses—except for those whose beautiful but dimwitted ancestors migrated to a remote tropical island in pursuit of a kind of beauty free of brains and all the baggage they come with. There, the last descendent of the island’s gorgeous founders awakens one night from a fantastic dream, with an idea: what if there’s more?
(comedy) After hearing that certain types of adversity are in-vogue for college admissions, a rich white family from the big city relocates to a poor rural area in order to try and increase their unremarkable teen’s chances of getting into the ivy league.
(crime comedy) A desperate husband-and-wife vintage reselling duo tries to rob the closet of their wealthy and senile older neighbor, but things take a turn for the worse when they accidentally scare the old bag to death
(crime comedy) Everyone’s got a different plan for the family member who just learned they’re dying, but each person is certain of one thing: they’ve gotta convince them to go out with a bang
(black comedy) Guy meets girl, girl convinces guy to take a DNA test, guy finds out his dad is Jeffrey Epstein
(crime thriller) The adorable, doddering old man who just moved to the neighborhood has a secret: he’s a prolific serial killer who’s been in prison for decades on unrelated charges, and now back on the street thanks to compassionate release. Now, despite his decaying body and fragile mind, he’s gonna get one last kill—even if it kills him
(black comedy) To pull the ultimate short joke, a group of rich dicks pool their money to purchase a gift certificate for an expensive and painful leg-lengthening procedure for the shortest among them. But it’s much to their surprise when he accepts, and spends the next six months in agony, silently plotting his ultimate revenge
(comedy drama) Suddenly jobless, an over-leveraged tech employee in Oakland must learn how to be poor with the help of the neighbors he previously tried to have gentrified out
(political comedy) A promiscuous Brooklyn layabout decides to do something with their life by moving to DC in order to seduce and “out” a rumored-to-be-gay Republican senator
(horror) A Blair Witch-style “found footage” film about a husband-and-wife documentary crew who unwittingly follow a vigilante pedophile hunter’s investigations right into the heart of an élite human sacrifice cabal
(horror thriller) A desperate millennial who decides to get a job as a trucker gets teamed up to train with a seasoned veteran he eventually discovers is a long-haul serial killer
(horror) A class of art school kids and teachers are drawn into the aura of a fellow student whose dark abstract portraits are the product of a powerful generational curse
Pretty sure there isn't a single one of these 69 ideas (lol) that couldn't get a first draft written within that very timeframe, so, gentlescribes, start your typewriters. I'm available for your questions/comments/concerns, and title ideas, in the comments.
Past posts: Dec '21, Jan '22, Feb '22, Mar '22, Apr '22, May '22, Jun '22, Jul '22, Aug '22, Sep '22, Oct '22, Nov '22, Dec '22 & Jan '23
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2023.04.29 22:07 PlayInChampions Potential free agents this summer. Part 4: sharpshooter

Parts 1 and 2 here
Part 3 here

Part 4. Sharpshooter

Reason to sign: not the biggest need for Timberwolves' playstyle and rotations – Finchy is not a fan of pure sharpshooters and clearly struggled to find minutes for Beasley a year ago, but this guy can win you 3-4 games just by hot hand.
Importance to sign: below average
Required skillset: spot-up shooting around 39-40% on high volume.

  1. Best option: Georges Niang
Playstyle: sharpshooting wing
Potential salary: $6 M – $10 M / year
Team interest: average
Player interest: below average
Comment: Probably the best option on the market, 40% on 9.1 attempts per 36. Niang is Juancho who actually can shoot. I would be really surprised if teams don’t offer him something close to $8-9 M per year. Niang is going to have a strong market this summer, and I honestly don’t see him leaving Philly for Minnesota unless it’s an overpay.
2. Seth Curry
Playstyle: sharpshooting guard, secondary shot creator, Steph Curry from Walmart
Potential salary: $4 M – $8 M / year
Team interest: average
Player interest: average
Comment: Seth Curry has had good seasons but the last one was not one of them. Nets fans were not particularly happy with Curry’s shot selection, and his defense is simply atrocious, on and off-ball. However, I selfishly want to have Curry’s Timberwolves jersey, so let’s see if the team signs him.
3. Malik Beasley
Playstyle: sharpshooting guard, a legend of Wright County Jail
Potential salary: $8 M – MLE
Team interest: below average
Player interest: below average
Comment: Besides games against the Wolves (ironically), Malik had a pretty bad year and is not doing good in the playoffs. He is still a guy who can score 2-3 threes and put you back into a game, but his career shows you have to give him heavy minutes to see a contribution. I don’t see him coming back.
4. Yuta Watanabe
Playstyle: corner shooter and Ant’s son
Potential salary: $3 M – $6 M / year
Team interest: average
Player interest: above average
Comment: Yuta had a career year shooting 51% from corner 3 and 44% total. However, Watanabe was out of the Nets' playoff rotation; they are probably letting him go looking at how many wings they have. Signing Yuta will make Wolves more popular in Japan, it will also allow Edwards to play with his son before LeBron.
Other options: Jevon Carter, Damion Lee, Troy Brown Jr., Aaron Holiday
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2023.04.28 23:25 irieyardie Supporting my favorite company!

Supporting my favorite company!
I got a price match so I decided to become a Pro!
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2023.04.28 07:13 NickyNice I've hit rock bottom for the last time, enough is enough. Please give me words of encouragement in this time of need.

I'm tired of living a life of mediocrity. Maybe I am putting myself on blast in this post but I deserve it. I am 29 years old and have lived a life of financial irresponsibility. While things could be worse, things are not great. When your finances are looking like this.... what do you do? Start charging up the credit card? Borrow money in some other way? Fuck that, I am tired of living my life like this (The CC's were already burned in a bonfire btw).
I have recently started watching Caleb Hammer and this is not an advertisement for him but he has really opened my eyes. I have lived my life as a child spending money whenever I want, wherever I want, essentially throwing my money in the garbage when you really look at it. Throwing money at addictions to nicotine, marijuana, fast food, video games, Jeff Bezos, impressing whichever gf at the name it.
I have $17k in various debts: $1.5k 0% interest CC until 9/2023, 3.5k owed to Dad 5% interest, 7.5k owed to 401k Loan. 10% interest (Kill me), 3.5k owed to student debt unknown interest until 9/2023, $1k owed to Best Buy CC 0% interest until 4/2024. My car is a 2012 Nissan Maxima which I paid cash for several years ago.
Not the worst debt in the world I guess, but its debt and I hate it. Almost every nice thing I own I couldn't afford when I bought it. I have had my Dad bail me out of so much high interest debt its fucking ridiculous. Not everyone has that crutch and I am such a fool for relying on that throughout my life. I always pay him back but a bailout is a bailout nonetheless. Right now I owe him 3.5k because he bailed me out of a higher interest personal loan, which I borrowed in the first place to pay off $12k worth of worthless consumer CC I think you can get the picture of how I have lived my financial life.
I'M SICK AND TIRED OF LIVING MY LIFE FINANCIALLY LIKE A CHILD. And I will admit that I have acted like a child the entire time. A fuse has been lit and here is my game-plan:
Currently I make $2.5k per month which does not give me any wiggle room to pay debt, I can afford like $500 a month and that's with an EXTREMELY frugal, near impossible, budget. Luckily I work in retail pharmacy which is a high turnover industry and I can pickup OT at other stores pretty much whenever I want because there is always at least one store struggling and willing to pay OT. I have calculated that with 20 hours of OT per week I can double my post tax/contribution income to $5k. This would only be two 10 hour shifts added to my existing four 10 hour shifts. That's still an entire day in the week I could work OT if I can find it and am willing.
Here is my budget making $5k. There is nothing in there for Bezos, there is nothing in there for McDonalds, there is nothing in there for Blizzard, etc etc. With this budget I can have my $17k worth of debt paid off in 7-8 months and get started on actually building my financial future. Currently I am 29 with a $7k car and $20k in a 401k (with 7k borrowed against it mind you). I am ready to actual build my future. I want to get on a 50% needs, 30% investment, 20% wants monthly budget for the rest of my life. I am ready for that to start NOW, but I need to get through this 7 months of hard work first.
Now comes why I made this post..... My GF thinks I am crazy (although she is still supportive and knows I am sticking to this plan no matter what she says), and I just got off the phone with my Dad who also thinks I am crazy. He thinks I will burnout, thinks I should just take it slow and pay off the debt in 2+ years while I look for Software Engineer work as a complete beginner with only a useless BS in Computer Science and no professional experience. The job hunt has proven challenging because I am no expert (I cant immerse myself in coding 24/7.... I spend most of my life at fucking Walmart counting pills), and I can't rely on getting that job immediately. I think I need to focus on this OT BUSTING MY ASS plan instead... then after all the debt is paid I can buckle down on personal development projects and build a portfolio for my future career as a Software Engineer. I think its more important to start the investing now since I am already late.
I know this post is long and maybe I am rambling a bit in some areas, but there is still so much I feel like I want to say though. Let me end it by saying that I have spent 600 hours in the past 6 months logged into World of Warcraft which multiplied by my OT pay rate is $20k pre-tax. That is absolutely insane to think about how the time I wasted in the past 6 months on WoW could have paid off my entire debt, just wow. Thanks for reading, I appreciate any kind words you all have.
submitted by NickyNice to personalfinance [link] [comments]

2023.04.26 01:58 BadParkingSituati0n Motherloading: Inside the Surrogacy Boom

this is a great article exploring the surrogacy industry..

Once limited to A-listers (who didn’t want to lose their figures) and gay men with means (who lacked the proper equipment), gestational surrogacy is becoming a mainstream, increasingly normal way of making an American family. In 1999, there were 727 embryo transfers to gestational surrogates in the United States (not all resulted in a live birth). In 2013, that figure was 3,432. In 2019: 9,195.

Buying, or rather renting, a woman’s womb is arguably the strangest business there is. It’s at once hyper-modern—an industry fueled by cutting-edge tech, globalism, capitalism, and a modern worldview that favors convenience, consent, and choice over everything else—but in service to the most ancient and primal of all desires.
And while there’s beauty and generosity in the new surrogacy market, there’s also something very jarring about it.

For starters, there are the eyebrow-raising optics—the poor catering to the rich; the religious serving the secular; the Americans, Asians, and Europeans flocking south in search of often non-white women to carry their babies. Then there are the technically legal but morally nebulous situations surrogates find themselves facing. After one surrogate gave birth—the parents were absent—she learned she was one of three women they’d hired simultaneously. (The couple had wanted triplets.) I heard of another surrogate who was asked to carry a baby for a single, elderly man.

What’s clear is that the global surrogacy market—with its clinics, agencies, and apps like Nodal that make finding a willing woman as easy as swiping right—is booming. In 2022, the market was valued at $14 billion. By 2032, it is projected to skyrocket to nearly $129 billion according to Global Market Insights, a company that predicts industry trends.

Proposed laws like the Right to Build Families Act would make it so there are no limits on who could access assisted reproductive technology like IVF and surrogacy, while companies like Ford and Walmart have recently followed in the footsteps of Apple and Facebook, liberalizing their family-planning policies to include reimbursement for it.

“Surrogacy is evil,” Anna Slatz, a self-described Marxist who runs the “pro-woman” magazine Reduxx, told me. “When you have a subclass of purchasable female assets, it impacts how all women are perceived.”

Kajsa Ekis Ekman, the author of Being and Being Bought: Prostitution, Surrogacy and the Split Self, sees surrogacy and prostitution as two sides of the same coin. “When the baby inside her belongs to someone else, who does she belong to? The buyers can say that they don’t want their surrogate to travel, or paint her nails, or breastfeed her existing children. It obviously goes against autonomy.”

“I think it’s exactly like sex work,” Corey Briskin, 33, an attorney who lives in Williamsburg, told me over a bowl of muesli near his apartment. Briskin and his husband lodged a class-action complaint with the the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in April of last year, claiming that they were blocked from accessing the IVF services that were available to their straight and lesbian coworkers. Briskin worked as an assistant district attorney in Manhattan from 2017 to 2022, and was covered through the city’s contract with EmblemHealth, which insures 1.25 million people.

In case you miss it (/s), note how 'progressive' buzz words are routinely used to justify commercial sexual exploitation of women:

On the surrogacy-is-sex-work score, he sees it the same way as Ekman, but comes to the opposite conclusion: “It’s a very sex-negative position to take that a woman should not be able to be a sex worker, because somehow she’s being forced into it,” Briskin said
(yup, that's this guy).

Those questions of autonomy, consent, and power are far from settled, but they seem quaint compared to the ones coming down the ramp.

A Norwegian philosopher wrote a paper last year advocating for WBGD, or whole body gestational donation, where women in a persistent vegetative state would be impregnated with other people’s embryos, and gestate that child, all while brain-dead. Meanwhile, in Israel, posthumous procreation—where sperm or eggs are extracted from a dead person to create new life—is becoming more and more common. Already, people are using this method to become grandparents using the sperm of their sons who have died in combat.

Buying another human via surrogacy agency , typically costs a "consumer" anywhere from $100k - $200k in the US (the big range depends on many different variables) - my question is, where does all this money go? Of course, not to the woman whose financial insecurity put her there in the first place.. she makes the least of everyone involved on the "supply" side. American women are the highest paid surrogates in the world making an average of $2.68 per hour (that's less than $70/week).

Highly recommend reading the full article:
submitted by BadParkingSituati0n to fourthwavewomen [link] [comments]

2023.04.25 08:56 noteric2000 I Need Advice On How to break in to IT

Hey guys I just wanted to ask the community for a little advice on how I can get into IT without any work experience aside from being a part-time busser at a diner.
I do have the CompTIA Security+ SY0-601 certification since August 2022 and I have an associate degree in Cybersecurity.
My resume is a little bit out of place because I do not really have any specialization since Cybersecurity is so broad. Plus more of my skills are knowledge and I do not have much hands-on experience.
I have applied to countless Entry Level Service Desk technician roles but only got one phone interview (they said they will call me in a week but never did) and another technical interview from another company, but since then I haven't gotten any call backs.
I feel like during the interviews I am answering them well enough. I do not really know if my soft skills is what is holding me back. If it is do you guys advise me to go first apply to like Walmart or something in order to up my communication skill if it is my problem.
I am a little bummed out because it feels like the competition even in the lower-level IT section is so high that a certificate and an associate degree doesn't get me anywhere.
I really want to get the A+ and N+ but since I haven't gotten any job I feel like I should just transition careers.
I really need advice on what I need to do (get more certifications, get better soft-skills, do labs?, get better resume)

Here is my resume:
I know it is trash but that is because I do not really know what skills to put in it because more of the things I know are hands-on from lab/ things I learned in videos/books
submitted by noteric2000 to CompTIA [link] [comments]

2023.04.25 01:17 adventurepaul What's new in e-commerce? - Week of April 24th, 2023

Hi ShopifyeCommerce - I'm Paul and I follow the e-commerce industry closely for my Shopifreaks E-commerce Newsletter. Each week I post a summary recap of this week's top stories, which I cover in depth in the newsletter. .
  1. STAT OF THE WEEK: Only 0.3% of grocery shoppers surveyed had paid for their most recent grocery purchase with BNPL options, down 50% year over year from the 0.6% who said the same in March 2022. 31% had instead used a credit card on their most recent grocery purchase. – According to PYMNTS .
  2. WooCommerce launched a new managed hosting solution called Woo Express, which relieves store owners of the responsibilities of hosting and maintaining their websites and stores. Automattic soft-launched Woo Express in early March with a small group of merchants, and the service is now opened to the public. The Essential plan is $40/month and the Performance plan is $70/month, both which include premium Woo plugins that would otherwise cost extra on other hosts. .
  3. Wix and Square created an integration that allows restaurant owners to sync their Wix Restaurants site with their Square account to streamline online ordering. Restaurant owners who use Square for Restaurants or Square POS platforms can now manage their catalogs directly from Wix's platform, avoiding having to input the same information into multiple systems. Orders placed through Wix can be sent directly to Square's system, avoiding the need for separate tablets, and sales reports are also automatically consolidated from the two systems. .
  4. TikTok is under heat for profiting from the sale of illegal and potentially dangerous beauty products on its platform, including counterfeit cosmetics and prescription-only skin creams. The company has claimed to take a “zero tolerance” approach to rogue sellers, all while counterfeit versions of Dior perfumes, Vaseline lip balms, Maybelline mascaras, and other products are still being sold by third-party sellers in its marketplace. Skin-whitening lotions containing banned ingredients and prescription-only acne creams are also being openly advertised. .
  5. Facebook's advertising system went rogue around 2am on Sunday morning, charging advertisers for ads that no-one saw. Some advertisers were charged more than double what they agreed to pay, ranging from hundreds to hundreds of thousands of dollars. Facebook's system ate up entire advertising budgets in a matter of hours, which may not have been so bad if the results were on par, but the ads weren't being shown to more people or driving clicks. .
  6. Retail Tech Innovation Hub released their Top 100 Retail Technology Influencers List, a comprehensive list of people and trends that shape the industry and help drive it forward. Names include Sebastian Siemiatkowski (co-founder & CEO of Klarna), Danielle Vermeer (co-founder & CEO at Teleport), Cas Paton (founder & CEO of, Tobias Lütke (CEO of Shopify), and many others that you're probably familiar with. These are folks who RTIH consider to have made a splash in 2022 and are “set for a barnstorming 2023”. .
  7. Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in New Jersey with plans to shut down. The jobs of thousands of employees — and their retirement savings and severance pay — are on the line. BB&B will use the court process to begin liquidating its 360 Bed Bath & Beyond stores and 120 Buy Buy Baby locations, while also searching for a buyer for its estimated $4.4B in assets, which are shadowed by its $5.2B in debt. The company's current CFO, Holly Etlin, will serve as chief restructuring officer to manage the bankruptcy. .
  8. Crunchbase updated its “List of Big, Losing Startup Acquisitions”, many of which you are familiar with including Uber's acquisition of Careem for $3.1B (which it sold half of later for $400M), Walmart's acquisition of Bonobos for $310M (which it recently sold for $75M), Teladoc Health's acquisition of Livongo for $18.5B (the entire company is now worth $4.2B), Block's $29B acquisition of Afterpay (which it later only paid $13.8B for, but still ridiculous given that Afterpay had never been profitable), and Just Eat Takeaway's aquation of Grubhub for $7.3B (which the combined company has a market cap of $3.5B). .
  9. Meesho, the Facebook-backed Indian e-commerce startup that launched in 2015, is on track to turn a profit earlier than its international competitors like Flipkart and Amazon, even though its average monthly active user count is roughly 55% of the two. The company offers the lowest seller commission among e-commerce marketplaces in India, making it the preferred platform for sellers and customers comparing prices of products across marketplaces. .
  10. 40% of 50 top UK-selling brands still have two-day (or slower) as their fastest delivery option at checkout. 14% of those brands don't state the delivery speed at checkout. .
  11. Amazon launched an Anti-Counterfeting Exchange (ACX) aimed at tackling counterfeit goods on its platform. The program will allow retail stores and marketplace sellers to track and label counterfeit products using a third-party database. (Maybe they should share that tech with TikTok.) .
  12. eBay sellers have noticed that since the fall, ads for other sellers' stores have been prominently placed on their listings. Sellers are upset about the misleading verbiage of the ads, which label the stores as “Related Stores” on their listing. .
  13. Ikea is planning to spend $2.2B on opening eight new full-sized stores, nine smaller-format stores, and 900 pickup locations across the US over the next three years. The investment is the largest Ikea has made in its four-decade history of operating in the US and will also include enhancing its distribution and last-mile delivery networks to reduce delivery costs for customers. .
  14. Whole Foods is laying off several hundred workers, primarily affecting global supports teams and employees who manage their regional operations. The layoffs are part of a reorganization that will take place over the next two months and will affect less than half a percent of their global workforce. .
  15. Apple's high-yield savings account in partnership with Goldman Sachs is now available to the public, offering a 4.15% APY with no fees, no minimum deposits, and no minimum balance requirements. I first reported on Apple's new high-yield savings account in Oct 2022, which at the time was expected to launch in the “coming months”. .
  16. In other Apple news, the company brought its Tap to Pay feature to Taiwan, allowing businesses to use their iPhones to accept contactless payments. The feature first launched in the US last year and Apple is slowing bringing it abroad. In the same week, GoDaddy began offering Tap to Pay on iOS in the US. .
  17. Katie Mullen, previously J.C. Penney’s chief digital officer, is pivoting to become chief customer officer. She will now lead efforts to deliver an end-to-end integrated shopping experience while continuing to oversee e-commerce strategy and omnichannel development. Just don't get rid of the discounts! Someone from JCP already tried that once and it didn't end well… .
  18. Intellect launched, its new open financed-based core banking platform, which it claims is the largest of its kind in the world and comes with a pre-integrated marketplace for UK and Europe. Financial institutions can leverage the platform to create their own custom products using AI via its 285 “ready to use microservices” such as BNPL and other credit services. .
  19. Lydia Davis, award-winning author and translator, is boycotting Amazon with her new collection of short stories, choosing to only sell her book in bookstores and selected online retailers. She wrote in a statement, “We value small businesses, yet we give too much of our business to the large and the powerful—and often, increasingly, we have hardly any choice.” .
  20. LinkedIn released its list of top 25 workplaces in India, which it bases on “eight pillars that have been shown to lead career progression, such as the ability to advance.” Top of the list was Tata Consultancy Services, Amazon, and Morgan Stanley. .
  21. Square began offering Tap to Pay on Android for sellers in the US, UK, Australia, Ireland, France, and Spain, allowing them to accept contactless payments with a compatible Android device. The feature is compatible with Square's POS, Restaurants, and mobile app. .
  22. Geodis, a global designer and operator of logistics chain management models, expanded its D2C cross-border delivery service with two new airport facilities in the US located at JFK and LAX. The locations were opened to meet e-commerce volume growth at Geodis' MyParcel business, which offers small parcel delivery to 27 European countries and Canada. .
  23. The Amazon Kindle Unlimited app was being used by some young users to view pornographic material, raising concerns at Google and Apple who urged Amazon to strengthen its content moderation policies to prevent inappropriate material from being accessed by minors. (That'll stop teenage boys!) Both companies warned Amazon that the Kindle app could be removed from their app stores if the issue is not resolved. .
  24. Apple opened its first retail store in India, where its phones currently assume less than 5% of the country's smartphone market. The company is stepping up its battle against Samsung over the luxury smartphone market in India, while also ramping up its manufacturing drive in the country. .
  25. Zalando is launching a fashion assistant powered by ChatGPT on its website and app, starting with a beta version in Germany, Ireland, UK and Austria. The assistant will help customers navigate its online marketplace using their own words or fashion terms. Hopefully it won't work like, “Zalando, what's the latest fashion trends?” / “Sorry, I have limited knowledge of world events after 2021.” .
  26. Each day, 250M of Snapchat's users summon its AR lenses to transform themselves with new virtual hairstyles, baby faces, face tattoos, sunglasses, shoes, and clothing. Now the company has launched a new business called AR Enterprise Services (ARES) to help other companies sell their products with AR. .
  27. Plus 7 seed rounds, IPOs, and acquisitions of interest including Autotech Ventures' new $230M mobility fund to expand into fintech, logistics, supply chain, and the circular economy. .
    For more details on each story, see the full edition:
What else is new in e-commerce? Share stories of interesting in the comments below (including in your own business) or on shopifreaks.
See you next week.
submitted by adventurepaul to ShopifyeCommerce [link] [comments]