Sunday, 29 January 2023

[Post 533] Visiting North Korea | DW Documentary


Summary

Few tourists manage to peek behind the iron curtain of North Korea's dictatorship. But the journalist Luca Faccio managed to visit Kim Jong Un's regime.

Anyone venturing behind the world’s last Iron Curtain into North Korea will experience a very different country to the one we know only through the usual images of rocket launches and mass rallies. The country is ruled by the dictator Kim Jong Un, whom the people worship - or are made to worship - as a god-like father figure. Little is known about daily life in North Korea, because all images that reach the outside world have been censored by the government. Visitors rarely see evidence of oppression, enforced conformity and starvation in the rural population. Still, journalist Luca Faccio is able to offer some interesting insights into the isolated country - although, of course, government watchdogs are on his heels everywhere he goes.Few tourists manage to peek behind the iron curtain of North Korea's dictatorship. But the journalist Luca Faccio managed to visit Kim Jong Un's regime.

Anyone venturing behind the world’s last Iron Curtain into North Korea will experience a very different country to the one we know only through the usual images of rocket launches and mass rallies. The country is ruled by the dictator Kim Jong Un, whom the people worship - or are made to worship - as a god-like father figure. Little is known about daily life in North Korea, because all images that reach the outside world have been censored by the government. Visitors rarely see evidence of oppression, enforced conformity and starvation in the rural population. Still, journalist Luca Faccio is able to offer some interesting insights into the isolated country - although, of course, government watchdogs are on his heels everywhere he goes.

Saturday, 28 January 2023

[Post 532] How the rich get richer – money in the world economy | DW Documentary


Summary

Exploding real estate prices, zero interest rate and a rising stock market – the rich are getting richer. What danger lies in wait for average citizens? 

For years, the world’s central banks have been pursuing a policy of cheap money. The first and foremost is the ECB (European Central Bank), which buys bad stocks and bonds to save banks, tries to fuel economic growth and props up states that are in debt. But what relieves state budgets to the tune of hundreds of billions annoys savers: interest rates are close to zero.

The fiscal policies of the central banks are causing an uncontrolled global deluge of money. Experts are warning of new bubbles. In real estate, for example: it’s not just in German cities that prices are shooting up. In London, a one-bed apartment can easily cost more than a million Euro. More and more money is moving away from the real economy and into the speculative field. Highly complex financial bets are taking place in the global casino - gambling without checks and balances. The winners are set from the start: in Germany and around the world, the rich just get richer. Professor Max Otte says: "This flood of money has caused a dangerous redistribution. Those who have, get more." But with low interest rates, any money in savings accounts just melts away. Those with debts can be happy. But big companies that want to swallow up others are also happy: they can borrow cheap money for their acquisitions. Coupled with the liberalization of the financial markets, money deals have become detached from the real economy. But it’s not just the banks that need a constant source of new, cheap money today. So do states. They need it to keep a grip on their mountains of debt. It’s a kind of snowball system. What happens to our money? Is a new crisis looming? The film 'The Money Deluge' casts a new and surprising light on our money in these times of zero interest rates.

[Post 531] The first modern financial crisis in the globalized world | DW Documentary


Summary

When the Asian financial crisis hit, it was something the world hadn‘t seen since the 1930s. For the first time since World War II, the global economy faced the very real threat of a complete collapse. Disturbingly, the sudden crisis came as a complete surprise.

In the late 1990s, the world economy seemed to be on a steady path of growth. This trajectory was driven primarily by the emerging economies of Southeast Asia, the global region with the strongest economic growth. Then, within a very short time, millions of people suddenly lost their livelihoods. Hunger, mass unemployment and uprisings returned to these previously prosperous countries. What was particularly disturbing to crisis managers at the time was that they had not anticipated the crisis, and were not prepared for it. Their hasty attempts to correct the problem did not bear fruit for a long time - in fact, in the short-term, these measures worsened the situation. How could this happen? 

Ten years later, in 2008 and 2009, the global economy was once again on the brink of a complete collapse. What became known as the Global Financial Crisis demonstrated how much our world depends on the financial market. In this documentary, world-renowned experts question whether the toxic threat of collapse might perhaps be an inherent part of our economic system. To date, there is no satisfactory answer to this question. One conclusion that can be drawn: we are still living on an economic powder keg, today.

[Post 530] Busting Out A New Career In Bras | Escaping The Cube | CNBC Make It.


Summary

Self-described tech investor and data geek leaves Wall Street to build a new career in intimate apparel.

Friday, 27 January 2023

[Post 529] Who Makes Money From Professional Poker?


Summary

Poker is a game of extreme variance. Professional poker players can go stretches without winning or placing at a level that earns any cash. The wins, however, can make up for the droughts with players earning thousands to millions of dollars depending on the game or tournament entered. Considering poker is an inconsistent sport, players look to offset the risk involved. This is done through staking, where an "investor" will pay a player's way through tournaments for a piece of the action.

[Post 528] How Amazon Changed Twitch Live Streaming


Summary

Websites such as Twitch, YouTube and Microsoft's Mixer are capitalizing on livestreaming by integrating another form of popular media: video games. Twitch is now leading the competition when it comes to livestreaming gaming and esports.

Livestreaming has become one of the most popular forms of online entertainment today.

Websites such as Twitch, YouTube and Microsoft's Mixer are capitalizing on livestreaming by incorporating another form of popular media: video games. According to Newzoo, the video game industry raked in an estimated $138 billion in 2018.

When Twitch launched back in 2011, the company focused on esports and gaming. During the site's launch, Twitch had close to 3.2 million unique visitors per month. In 2012, the site grew to 20 million visitors per month, and by 2014, tech giants Amazon and Google both tried to acquire the site.

Today, it's one of the biggest platforms for streamers such as Tyler "Ninja" Blevins. The site has over 3 million monthly streamers on the platform.

[Post 527] How Snap’s Stock, Once Up 700%, Plummeted in 2022 | What Went Wrong | WSJ


Summary

Snap shifted from overdrive to reverse this year as it prepares for its lowest period of sales growth since going public. WSJ’s Meghan Bobrowsky explains how Snap’s dependence on digital ads led to its restructuring efforts.