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James Mcgaugh 2021-07-23
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From vid.me to f&*% me?!

The domain name of a now-defunct website used by news publishers and others to inline videos in articles has been configured to inject porn into those pages.…

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James Mcgaugh 2021-05-26
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Most of the James Bond movies are available on the ad-supported services Tubi and Pluto TV. Others are on Netflix, Hulu, or Prime Video.
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James Mcgaugh 2021-02-17
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James Jebbia established Supreme in 1994 in New York. Since then, it's gone from a small skateboarding store to a billion-dollar fashion brand.
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James Mcgaugh 2020-09-10
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Games dev pleads with users to set up a password before they get locked out

Epic Games, which is currently in a tit-for-tat litigation spat with Apple regarding the in-app payment system on iOS, has warned its users that they will lose the ability to log into an Epic Games account via "Sign in with Apple" from tomorrow: 11 September.…

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James Mcgaugh 2021-07-22
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Tech consulting giant CGI will use Nokia kit in a new 5G lab that is intended to showcase how great it is.
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James Mcgaugh 2021-05-14
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Now the AirTags are finally out, we need new unreleased Apple products to obsess over. So, please make some noise for the new AirPods and HiFi Apple Music! Here’s the meat: a YouTuber with no real leaking history has said Apple will release the aforementioned products on May 18 via a press release. Should you believe this? Umm, kinda? We know for certain that Apple’s going to release new AirPods at some point. I mean, the true wireless earbuds are so successful they outstrip the earnings of entire companies: Saw this today, and was blown-away.. Apple’s revenue just from selling AirPods…

This story continues at The Next Web

Or just read more coverage about: Apple
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James Mcgaugh 2021-01-19
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Tech companies, including Apple and Google, continue to distance themselves from Parler in the wake of mob violence on Capitol Hill.
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James Mcgaugh 2020-08-18
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Did you know we have an online event about the future of work coming up? Join the Future of Work track at TNW2020 to hear how successful companies are adapting to a new way of working. Coworking spaces have been growing in all the world’s major cities for 15 years. But what makes them so popular? Why and when did they appear? Who are their members? New technologies such as artificial intelligence and robots are leading employers to rethink the way they work. At the same time, workers want more autonomy and flexibility. Many have chosen self-employment to escape organizational…

This story continues at The Next Web
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James Mcgaugh 2021-07-14
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Purple interstellar galaxy of B2B marketing efficiency boosters image.

Purple interstellar galaxy of B2B marketing efficiency boosters image.

How can B2B marketers boost content creation productivity and avoid that dreaded black hole of inefficiency?

As TopRank Marketing chief executive and co-founder Lee Odden said in 2018 in 16 Ways to Be More Efficient with Content Creation, “Without additional budget or writing resources, the most practical way to squeeze out more content creation productivity is by being more efficient,” and the same may be even more true today in 2021.

There’s no denying that better efficiency offers benefits in many areas of a B2B marketer's work, so we wanted to share some of the galaxy’s top tactics, methods, and tips to improve your productivity through efficiency as we make the push through the rest of 2021 and plan ahead for 2022.

Let’s strap on our B2B marketing jet-packs and hyperspace forward with five productivity pulsars to improve your efficiency.

1 — Work Smarter For Out-Of-This-World Marketing Efficiency

Working in a smarter way saves time and increases productivity, and part of that boils down to saving time through efficiencies.

At first saving a few minutes here and there throughout the day may not seem all that important — or worth devoting much effort to achieve. However, keep in mind that saving two minutes each day equates to eight and a half hours over a standard business year. That’s valuable time that can be reinvested for countless other B2B marketing activities.

For marketers, boosting efficiency doesn’t only come from the time saved. It’s additional time that can be used for many things such as experimenting with new technologies, taking on additional projects, or optimizing previous or current campaigns.

Finding and using scheduling, planning, and calendaring applications that work well for you can be one of the bigger time and efficiency boosters.

It’s important, however, to find ones that fit well with how you work best, so that you’re not working against systems designed to make things easier. Just as we all have various styles and tactics for tackling challenges, applications that help us manage time come in a big array of digital flavors with more in 2021 than ever before.

If you’re not happy with what you currently use, it can be worthwhile to experiment with new time management methods and apps that you haven’t yet taken for a spin. Until you do, you may be missing out on a new time management tool that suits you to a tee.

Most marketers today schedule, plan, and calendar completely in the digital realm, using software such as:

  • Calendly
  • Google Calendar
  • Mavenlink
  • monday.com (client)
  • Workfront
  • Microsoft Bookings
  • Setmore

These are only a tiny traction of the available options. A few of the most productive people I know still also include some variation of the old-fashioned pen and paper, too.

Simply using time management software isn’t enough, however, especially if it isn’t a solution that works with you but against you, so take the time to investigate what’s available and what works best for you.

[bctt tweet="“If you’re not happy with what you currently use, it can be worthwhile to experiment with new time management methods and apps that you haven’t yet taken for a spin.” — Lane R. Ellis @lanerellis" username="toprank"]

2 — Harness Productivity Propulsion With Marketing Passion

You’ll also increase your productivity by tapping into your internal passion and energy, which can help propel your B2B marketing to new heights.

When you find yourself in an especially productive period, it’s wise to take advantage of it and ride that wave of productivity to get as much done as possible while the creative B2B marketing iron is hot.

Unfortunately, we can’t control when we’ll be at our peak combined levels of energy, productivity, and efficiency. However, by quickly recognizing when such a period hits us, we can put our nose to the grindstone and get in as much work as possible before that big wave of energy eventually peters out.

How can you best take advantage of these times when they arrive, or even help make them happen? Here are three strategies:

  • Turn off anything you can that normally distracts you, such as alarms, message notifications, or whatever causes you to break stride while working at your best
  • Try to include short micro-breaks — even if only for a minute or two — to keep your overall energy up, and use the time to focus on what you want to accomplish next during the session
  • When your highly-productive period comes to its inevitable end, it can be worth if to take some time and write down what you think made for such a good working session, and what you’d do differently next time to make it even better

A study by the National Association for Professional Organizers found that 82 percent of respondents believed that if they were more organized, their quality of life would be better — a statistic that shows how powerful time management and organization can be in both our professional marketing and private lives.

[bctt tweet="“When you find yourself in an especially productive period, it’s wise to take advantage of it and ride that wave of productivity to get as much done as possible while the creative B2B marketing iron is hot.” — Lane R. Ellis @lanerellis" username="toprank"]

3 — Tiny Elements Make Massive Differences On Interstellar Marketing Journeys

While “don’t sweat the small stuff” is good advice for some areas of life, when you’re looking at the big picture and looking at long-term results, the opposite can often be just as true.

Take for example the simple act of copying and pasting text — something we all do dozens or even hundreds of times every day.

Did you know that you can slice your cut-and-paste keystrokes or mouse clicks in half?

Decades ago I started setting up all my computers with one very simple adjustment that has saved me millions of repetitive keystrokes or mouse and touchpad clicks — a trick so easy that most people don’t even realize it’s possible.

My all-time top cumulatively small time-saver that adds up over time is setting up my computers to automatically copy and remove formatting for any text I highlight.

If you think of how many times you cut-and-paste something every day, imagine cutting the keystrokes fully in half, and that’s just what you can do by using one any many available auto-copy utilities.

Whichever browser or operating system you use, you’ll find an array of extensions or add-ons that will copy whatever you highlight into your computer’s clipboard. Most also come with the option to clear all or just certain text formatting, which is another time saver because you’ll never again have to go in and manually edit out unneeded formatting or markup code.

Examples include:

  • AutocopySelection2keyboard for Firefox
  • Auto Copy for Chrome
  • Ctrl+C for Windows Cortana
  • AutoCopy for Safari

Changing what you’ve always done to find more efficient methods doesn’t have to be difficult, as Danny Nail, account based engagement specialist at Microsoft told us a while ago.

“You have to let go of templatized, old ideas. You have to break free of thinking about things the way we’ve always thought about them, and start really digging into how you can change what you’re doing and make it more efficient, more effective, but be creative about that,” Danny said.

You can watch our full interview with Danny in “Break Free B2B Marketing: Danny Nail on Creating a Global ABM Platform.”

[bctt tweet="“You have to let go of templatized old ideas...and start really digging into how you can change what you're doing and make it more efficient, more effective, and be creative about that.” — Danny Nail @DannyNail" username="toprank"]

4 — Build A Constellation of Content Co-Creation & Crowdsourcing

The co-creation of content can be likened to a constellation of interconnected subject matter experts, influencers, and other B2B marketing professionals.

Working with industry experts and influencers to co-create content is a proven tactic for adding more inherent promotion right from the start of your campaign, as Lee Odden explored in "How to Win at B2B Influence With The Magic of Content Co-Creation."

When you work with noted figures in your profession and include their insight along with your own, you’ll both end up reaping the rewards on several levels by joining together.

Co-created content by its very nature provides promotion potential that is greater than the sum of its individual parts. The value and relevance that industry experts add to your content makes it something that not only your target audience will want to learn from and share, but it will also see additional sharing and social amplification opportunities.

Using influencer optimized co-creation of content results in the kind of authoritative content that earns, grows, and keeps audience trust, and it’s also a great way to boost efficiency.

To learn more about influencer optimized content, start with Lee Odden’s insightful “How to Accelerate 2021 B2B Marketing Success with Influencer Optimized Content.”

[bctt tweet="“Using influencer optimized co-creation of content results in the kind of authoritative content that earns, grows, and keeps audience trust, and it’s also a great way to boost efficiency.” — Lane R. Ellis @lanerellis" username="toprank"]

5 — Take Your B2B Marketing To Interstellar Heights With Influence

Speaking of influence, harnessing its power can propel your B2B marketing efforts to new heights, and at the same time turn up the volume when it comes to productivity.

Developing relationships with influencers builds a framework of productivity than can be used not only on immediate projects, but when done carefully will also lead to the type of long-term collaborations that thrive as always-on marketing.

Here are five recent articles we’ve published that can help you understand what always-on influence is, and how influence increases engagement, productivity, and credibility:

[bctt tweet="“Developing relationships with influencers builds a framework of productivity than can be used not only on immediate projects, but also for successful long-term always-on marketing collaborations.” — Lane R. Ellis @lanerellis" username="toprank"]

Sleek Marketing Can Warp You To New Dimensions

via GIPHY

By using these tips and tactics for working smarter, harnessing productivity passion, paying attention to the small details, using content co-creation, and playing off the power of influence, you’ve got the productivity fuel needed to bypass a slow-moving star-field of B2B marketers stuck in the mire of inefficient workflows.

Working smartly and efficiently is key in today’s global B2B marketing universe, which is why many top brands choose the help of an award-winning digital marketing agency such as TopRank Marketing. Contact us and find out how we can help, as we’ve done for businesses ranging from LinkedIn, Dell and 3M to Adobe, Oracle, monday.com and others.

The post Productivity Pulsars: Blast Into Orbit With 5 Efficiency Boosters For B2B Marketers appeared first on B2B Marketing Blog - TopRank®.

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James Mcgaugh 2021-05-12
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Could your kitchen use some upgrades? Read on to see what we expect for this year's Prime Day blender deals.
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James Mcgaugh 2020-09-27
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Plus: CIA launches new research lab for AI experts, and more

In brief  The Los Angeles Police Department has run facial recognition algorithms a whopping 29,817 times over a decade in an attempt to identify suspected criminals captured in CCTV footage, despite promising it wouldn't.…

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James Mcgaugh 2019-11-05

You may have started hearing about gaming smartphones that boast about some form of water-cooling (technically vapor), but the real titleholders in water-cooled systems are monstrous gaming PC rigs.

Not a problem when you have a huge desktop tower, not so much when your gaming computer of choice is a laptop.

That’s where Gigabyte’s latest baby comes in.

The AORUS RTX 2080 Ti Gaming Box claims to be an external graphics enclosure like no other, boasting of the industry’s first water cooling solution inside a graphics dock.

Even gaming laptops these days boast of what manufacturers call water or liquid cooling.

But even the most powerful gaming laptop doesn’t hold a prayer to the mighty desktop-class graphics cards.

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James Mcgaugh 2021-06-23
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“Specifically” and “probably” are two of the most irritating mispronounced words, according to a survey.

In the poll of 2,000 participants, by insights agency Perspectus Global, 35% of those surveyed said they find it most annoying when people mispronounce the word “specifically” as “pacifically”.

Saying “probly” instead of “probably” annoyed 28% of people. And more than a quarter (26%) said the most annoying mispronounced word was “expresso” instead of “espresso”.

Also making the list was “specially” instead of “especially” (25%) and “artick” rather than “arctic” (19%). 

Despite 61% of Brits finding it annoying when others say words wrong, as many as 65% would be too embarrassed to correct them. Yet 35% said they can’t resist correcting their friends and family.  

Here’s a list of the top 10 most irritating pronunciations:

  1. Pacifically instead of specifically – 35%

  2. Probly instead of probably – 28%

  3. Expresso instead of espresso – 26%

  4. Specially instead of especially – 25%

  5. Artick instead of arctic – 19%

  6. Nu-cu-lar instead of nuclear – 19%

  7. Tenderhooks instead of tenterhooks – 18%

  8. Ex-cet-ara instead of etcetera – 18%

  9. Ass-essory instead of accessory – 15%

  10. Triath-a-lon instead of triathlon – 9%

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James Mcgaugh 2021-04-23
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Madonna’s daughter Lourdes Leon has spoken for the first time about her past relationship with Timothée Chalamet.

As a teenager, Lourdes attended the LaGuardia performing arts high school in New York, where the Call Me By Your Name actor was one of her classmates.

Earlier this week, the 24-year-old gave an interview to Vanity Fair about her new Marc Jacobs campaign when the Oscar nominee came up in the conversation.

I respect him a lot, we were a little item,” she told the magazine. “My first boyfriend.”

Lourdes then added a cryptic “or anything”.

Lourdes Leon at a Vogue event in 2018

However, the dancer and model was decidedly less complimentary about another of her classmates, Ansel Elgort, who she remembered simply as a “terrible DJ”.

Since 2018, Timothée has been in an on-off relationship with Lily-Rose Depp, the daughter of Johnny Depp and French singer Vanessa Paradis.

The two met while filming the Netflix film The King.

Lily-Rose Depp and Timothee Chalamet attend a screening of The King at the Venice Film Festival

Elsewhere in the interview, Lourdes – known as Lola to friends and family – discussed her dream of playing Mother Teresa in a film one day, and listed Prince Philip, Prince Charles, Rasputin, Fidel Castro and Real Housewives Of Atlanta star Nene Leakes as her dream dinner guests.

Lourdes previously made headlines earlier this year when she finally joined Instagram, and held absolutely nothing back in the comments section when her mum’s fans found her page.

As well as Lourdes, Madonna is also mum to Rocco Ritchie, 20, David Banda, 15, Chifundo “Mercy” James, 14, and twin sisters Stella and Estere, 8.

Lourdes’ father is fitness trainer Carlos Leon, who dated the Queen of Pop for a short time in the 90s.

In December, the music legend got her very first tattoo in honour of six kids, sharing photos of herself inked with their initials: “L R D M S E.”

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James Mcgaugh 2020-09-19
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OAN is a pro-Trump conspiracy network that has come to function as a media arm of the president's re election campaign.

The first thing I learn from One America News Network is that there is a new Rolling Stones flagship store opening on Carnaby Street, where “you can always get what you want.” The next is that Donald Trump has been nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize and held a massively successful rally in North Carolina where he condemned mail-in voting. OAN will then tell me that The Atlantic magazine is full of lies and owned by “America’s new George Soros.”

What I don’t know at this point on Wednesday morning, only 20 minutes into a 16-hour straight viewing of far-right conspiracy network OAN, is that I will watch its highlight reel of Trump’s rally seven times and the attack on The Atlantic eight times. I will watch a segment on Trump’s Nobel Peace Prize nomination, a meaningless stunt by a far-right Norwegian parliamentarian, at least 10 times. I will watch multiple different hosts recite the same introductions and same scripts, sometimes saying the words along with them in my empty apartment. Because OAN blends its outlandish coverage with everyday banality I will come to know that The Rolling Stones memorabilia store is, at its heart, “about the music.”

This has been a breakout year for OAN. For most people, the network is infamous for its conspiracy theories, its employment of far-right activists and White House correspondent Chanel Rion’s absurdly sycophantic questions to the president. (“We’re watching Joe Biden slip very gently into senility, while you’re at the top of your game. What’s your secret?”)  

Fact-checking OAN, especially 16-straight hours of it, is basically a Sisyphean task

OAN is ostensibly a news network, with 24-hour coverage and a multimillion-dollar budget. It’s available in at least 35 million households through multiple service providers and has its own streaming app for smart televisions. Trump has repeatedly tweeted praise for the channel and encouraged his followers to watch it. He gave the outlet an exclusive interview during the Republican National Convention, and Trump family members and top associates have repeatedly appeared on its programmes. As the election quickly approaches, it is effectively a media arm of the Trump campaign.

Pro-Trump media is often viewed only through brief moments that highlight its most egregious disinformation. This can obscure that part of its function: to produce a kind of information pollution that warps viewers’ perception of reality. It creates an alternate universe where baseless conspiracies mix into legitimate news, major events are ignored and the president can do no wrong. So I’ve decided to binge-watch my way into that reality. 

As it happens, I chose the day that CNN and The Washington Post score a massive scoop: audio from Trump’s interview with Bob Woodward, in which the president admits – in the early days of the pandemic, which will soon claim 200,000 American lives – that he is purposely downplaying the coronavirus. If I was keeping an eye on Twitter or flipping channels I’d know about this bombshell right away, but on OAN, it barely exists.

7am to noon 

Donald Trump is seen behind US flags as he speaks to supporters Mosinee, Wisconsin.

OAN’s daytime shows typically feature a single host sitting at a desk or a couch in front of a city backdrop or stock market-themed green screen. It should look like any other channel, but even with all the trappings of cable news, there is always an uncanny valley between OAN and a regular network. The lighting and graphics are somehow slightly off, and awkward stock footage such as faceless businessmen shaking hands is embedded in reports. There are minor technical issues and hosts flub their lines along the way. The live ticker at the bottom of the screen for hours has no news; it just constantly scrolls “VISIT OANN.COM | FOLLOW @OANN ON TWITTER.”

OAN’s morning programming is incredibly repetitive. Although the hosts change each hour, much of the scripts they read remain the same, and pre-taped news segments air multiple times. What host Stephanie Myers presents just before 7am is sometimes identical to what host Lilia Fifield says an hour later, which is repeated again on Wall to Wall with Greta Wall later in the morning. There is no context or analysis for many news events, such as a fire at a refugee camp in Greece, often just repurposed footage from news agencies or local stations and voiceover that sounds aggregated from news wires like Reuters.

These more generic segments are the closest OAN comes to being a straight news channel, which is how its owner Robert Herring Sr. promoted the network when he launched it along with his son Charles in 2013. Herring Sr., a multimillionaire Republican donor, initially touted the network as just-the-facts news without biased commentary. 

Herring Sr. reportedly played a significant role in making the network’s coverage increasingly right-wing and pro-Trump, and several anchors anonymously told Politico that many on staff are not diehard conservatives but dejected liberals who are simply trying to hold on to a job in broadcasting. 

OAN quickly morphed into an outright pro-Trump outlet that aired his rallies in full during the 2016 presidential election campaign and now lauds his administration. The shift has made OAN a rising star in the right-wing media ecosystem, resulting in the president repeatedly praising the station on Twitter and giving OAN closer access into Trump World. Ratings are allegedly up 55% compared with last year, Charles Herring told Politico. (OAN doesn’t subscribe to industry-standard Nielsen ratings, making it hard to know exact viewership numbers.) 

Even when OAN isn’t promoting outright misinformation, its choice of what to cover helps shape a world that its conspiratorial coverage then distorts. Portland police being paid increased overtime during protests is elevated to national news and manages to fit in mention of “violent rioters.” A story about a federal ban on imports from China’s Xinjiang province and another on the Pacific nation of Palau inviting the US to build a military base frame America as boldly countering China’s influence. It doesn’t matter that the Palau story is almost a week old, or that the Customs and Border Protection has not made any formal announcement on Xinjiang imports.

Where OAN really begins to deviate from reality, however, is in its programming that features guest interviews or pre-taped segments from its better-known personalities. Just after 7am, Fifield introduces a segment from Rion, the White House correspondent, that is an absurd defence of Trump against The Atlantic’s damaging report that the president called Americans who died in war “losers” and “suckers.”

“A once-respected journal now finds itself exposed as a privately funded fiction factory for the DNC,” Rion says, claiming that The Atlantic’s reporting, which has been backed up by multiple other outlets including Fox News, “went down in journalistic flames.” 

The segment baselessly accuses Atlantic journalists of being puppets for owner Laurene Powell-Jobs, whom Rion describes as “America’s new George Soros” who hired a “coterie of pet writers” to do her bidding. Rion, who is also the “curator-at-large” of a word appreciation website that claims to be the “premier destination for lovers of fine words,” lingers on pronouncing “coterie.”

The segment airs multiple times just in the first few hours of the day, and as Rion talks about “truth” and “reality,” the words begin to lose any meaning. I become fixated on why there is a large gray smudge in the second “o” of a sinister “anonymous sources” graphic. I watch Powell-Jobs’ headshot slowly pan across the screen over and over.

“Society’s only hope against such bad actors is the truth, in the hope that it ultimately prevails,” Rion says in a sentence that will slowly sear its way into my mind over the course of the day.

Chanel Rion became a fixture during of the White House coronavirus briefings earlier this year, gaining notoriety for asking bizarre or softball questions.

Another piece repeated throughout the morning is a report from OAN’s Pearson Sharp, who sounds like the voice of Moviefone, promoting Trump’s claims that mail-in voting will result in fraud, giving the impression “illegals” will receive ballots and falsely suggesting Hillary Clinton only won the popular vote in 2016 because “almost 6 million ballots went missing” and “just vanished.” Sharp’s source in this segment is a right-wing advocacy group with a history of misleading and debunked statements that is run by a former Trump administration official. OAN will air it six times on Wednesday. 

Fact-checking OAN, especially 16-straight hours of it, is basically a Sisyphean task. There are simply too many pieces of misinformation per minute to catch up, and the central premise of its coverage is often so misleading that it defies any good faith engagement.

Between 7am and noon, OAN runs interviews with right-wing think tankers under the banner “Economists Warn A Biden America Would Destroy Economy” and Sharp talking with a California pro-gun activist who claims billionaires are coming to take away the second amendment. (“Including George Soros?!” Sharp asks.) OAN also brings on Trump pollster John McLaughlin, who condemns “skewed media polls” showing the president trailing Biden and talks about pro-Trump boat parades.

“If more people owned boats we’d win this in a landslide,” McLaughlin says.

News consumers in the rest of the country, even viewers of Fox News, are seeing a succession of major stories that Wednesday: massive wildfires engulfed large parts of California, where OAN is based, and turned the sky above San Francisco an apocalyptic orange. A Rochester, New York, police chief and his top officials resigned after allegations of covering up police involvement in the death of Daniel Prude, a Black man who suffocated after officers put a bag over his head during an arrest. 

But meanwhile, at around 11:20am, OAN airs an unbroken feed of Department of Homeland Security acting Secretary Chad Wolf delivering a “state of the homeland” address where he defends the agency’s crackdown on nationwide anti-racism protests. 

A few hours after this address, it will become public that a DHS official filed a major whistleblower complaint that claims Wolf twice told him to stop reporting on the Russian threat to the US election because it “made Trump look bad.” I will not find out about this until the next day, because OAN will not cover it during the 16 hours I’m watching.

Noon to 6pm

While the rest of the news media covers the Woodward revelations, which broke just before noon, I am looking at OAN still showing a live feed of Wolf’s speech even though he has now stopped talking and left the podium. 

“There are shuttles waiting outside,” one official helpfully tells the attending audience.

When OAN cuts back to the studio, host Jennifer Franco summarises Wolf’s speech and then goes on to introduce a series of stories that include a poll showing Portland’s disapproval of its mayor, a Republican bill to increase pay for law enforcement officers and a Belgian magazine accused of using blackface on its cover. The Atlantic segment airs again. 

“Society’s only hope against such bad actors is the truth, in the hope that it ultimately prevails,” Rion says.

At around 12:10pm, OAN runs a segment bashing Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden for “flip flopping” on mask policy, and I realise despite multiple stories condemning him, this is the first time in five hours I have heard Biden speak.  

It’s exceedingly rare to actually hear from any Democrats or people with dissenting views. Trump is everywhere – on b-roll, speaking at length at his rally and giving live pressers – but Kamala Harris and Biden are only ever mentioned and function as unspeaking villains. A few-second clip of Harris during a segment on former Fox News host Megyn Kelly condemning her for praising police shooting victim Jacob Blake’s family, and another brief clip of Biden talking about masks, are essentially all we hear from them all day.

About 5 hours into watching OAN my television asks if I am still there and begins a countdown to turn itself off. I watch for a few seconds then press a button on the remote to stop it. I will solely watch OAN all day, only getting up from in front of the TV to grab food or go to the bathroom. During one commercial break later in the day, I run down to the corner store to buy beer.

In the bottom left corner of the screen, OAN has a live feed previewing the upcoming White House press briefing. Before it cuts to the presser, OAN will cover luxury giant LVMH possibly dropping its deal to acquire Tiffany, rerun its segment on Trump being nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize – now with a quote from the Norwegian far-right politician stating that “Barack Obama did nothing” to receive the award – and report that the Oscars is adding a diversity component to its selection process. The channel will tease a segment promising to reveal the reason the Baylor vs. Louisiana Tech college football game has been postponed. (Several players tested positive for coronavirus, which is not given any broader context.)

When the network cuts to the live White House briefing, it only takes a few minutes for reality to Kool-Aid Man its way through the wall of OAN. As soon as White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany opens up the floor to questions, almost every reporter asks about the Woodward tapes. 

“I’d like to ask you about the Woodward interviews. Did President Trump intentionally mislead the American people about the threat of Covid – a pandemic that has now cost the lives of nearly 200,000 Americans?” CBS White House correspondent Paula Reid says.

I don’t know exactly what has happened at this point, but it’s pretty obvious that it’s not good for Trump and has become a big enough story to be simply referred to as the “Woodward interviews.” It also makes me hyperconscious that there are likely a number of important stories that I don’t know about because I’ve instead watched three segments on Eric Trump declaring that the NFL is “officially dead” because Dallas Cowboys players may take a knee. 

McEnany holds the daily briefing at the White House on Sept. 9, 2020.

Toward the end of the briefing, McEnany cuts off a question about Trump drawing down troops in Iraq – something I can’t remember if I’m also hearing about for the first time – and calls on OAN’s Rion at the back of the briefing room. Rion asks if Palestinians have “expressed any interest in distancing themselves from Iran, in the interest of Middle East peace.” The biggest story to OAN is still Trump’s peace prize nomination. 

When OAN cuts back to the studio, Fifield briefly summarises some of what McEnany said in the briefing and then moves right along to other news. Fifield announces that former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich has praised Trump’s Nobel Peace Prize nomination. The news ticker at the bottom of the screen is working now, and it also reports that Trump has been nominated for the prize.  

At a time when any reasonable news outlet could have gotten it together to address the major breaking news story making international headlines, OAN cuts to an unbroken feed of vice president Mike Pence giving a fireside chat to anti-abortion organisation Susan B. Anthony List. Pence laments that the Supreme Court struck down a Louisiana law restricting access to abortion and vows that it means “we need more conservatives on the Supreme Court of the United States.” Pence wraps up after 2pm, and then it’s back to Greta Wall with the top story that air travel is down over Labor Day. The Atlantic segment airs again.

It’s not until around 3pm that OAN addresses the Woodward interviews, which it frames as “the White House shuts down the mainstream media over Bob Woodward’s book.” A short clip of Trump telling Woodward he likes to play down the severity of coronavirus airs, and host Jennifer Franco repeats nearly the same talking points that McEnany used hours earlier during the White House briefing.

After a perfunctory acknowledgement of the Woodward interview, the network quickly moves on. Donald Trump Jr. has defended the 17-year-old militia supporter accused of killing two people in Kenosha, Wisconsin, during anti-racism protests. Trump Jr. tells Extra “we all do stupid things at 17” and OAN states that Trump Jr. is “waiting for due process” before making judgments. I am getting the impression this is not a banner day for the Trump administration, though on OAN there’s no cause for concern.

Trump makes his first live appearance of the day just before 4pm, when he is announcing his list of possible nominees for the Supreme Court. As he goes through his choices, I think I hear senator Josh Hawley called, but wonder if perhaps there is a judge with the same name. I hear senator Tom Cotton and Ted Cruz listed as well, and realise something strange has happened.  

OAN moves past Trump’s nominations so fast that I wonder if I had misheard them, and I start to consider what other networks look like. I imagine Twitter is melting down while OAN airs a segment on Walmart considering drone delivery. I don’t know that Cotton has also tweeted “it’s time for Roe v. Wade to go” just moments after Trump named him, and OAN will never mention it for the entire time I’m watching.

It is obviously an extreme to get information solely from watching OAN, let alone 16 hours of it, but it’s at least partially reflective of how conservative audiences consume news media. Right-wing audiences tend to receive their information from fewer sources than left-wing audiences, according to Pew Research Center reports, and have high degrees of trust toward those sources while distrusting established news outlets. Media analysts argue that this dynamic makes conservative audiences more susceptible to falling into right-wing echo chambers rife with misinformation.

6pm to 11pm 

Trump speaks as social media personalities Lynnette Hardaway (L) and Rochelle Richardson (2-L), otherwise known as Diamond and Silk listen during a meeting.

Watching OAN for this long gives you the feeling like you’re stuck in an airport in some alternate version of America where press freedom and media independence have evaporated. Even more than Fox News, it’s probably the closest the United States has to something that would feel natural in an authoritarian-leaning country.

In Hungary, far-right nationalist prime minister Viktor Orban hollowed out the media to the point where most news outlets are under the control of sympathetic oligarchs who have fired or pushed out anyone critical of the government. It’s not that these outlets have stopped carrying any news, it’s that it is devalued or unreliable and only toes the party line. Meanwhile, the more extreme tabloids traffic in conspiracies and outright government propaganda, and this is what OAN’s prime-time news lineup feels like. 

Apart from pre-taped segments like the ones Rion and Sharp deliver, the really outlandish conspiracies and intense spin happen during OAN’s nighttime broadcasts. It takes a couple hours of coverage that includes Ohio governor Mike DeWine appearing as a guest to defend Trump over the Woodward interviews and a few ad breaks teasing “what familiar faces from the Senate” made Trump’s Supreme Court list, but by 8pm, the channel is in full swing.

“When you have a cold, do we close down the country?” Lynette “Diamond” Hardaway of the duo Diamond and Silk, coronavirus conspiracy theorists and former Fox News pundits, asks OAN host Stephanie Hamill. “I’m getting real tired of science.” 

Diamond and Silk, who were cut from Fox News after promoting coronavirus conspiracies, go on to falsely suggest that Covid-19 death tolls are being inflated. (Medical experts believe that we are actually undercounting them.)

Society’s only hope against such bad actors is the truth, in the hope that it will ultimately prevail.

Hamill’s other guests include far-right conspiracy theorist Dinesh D’Souza and several other conservative activists who attack Black Lives Matter and The Atlantic, and go on to call for “strict criminal penalties” for “false rape claims” while discussing the sexual assault allegations against Trump. At one point, Hamill condemns tech platforms for taking down “second amendment groups.”

“When they don’t like your ideas they call you a racist. They call you a white supremacist,” Hamill tells one guest.

Hamill is followed by Liz Wheeler, whom Trump has singled out for praise on Twitter, and who hosts the show “Tipping Point” with an unblinking intensity. Wheeler’s first segment is a lengthy condemnation of an unknown Rhode Island high school civics teacher, whom she accuses of promoting “anti-Trump indoctrination” for making her students read critical articles from HuffPost, The Daily Beast and The Atlantic. This is a prime-time national news story on OAN.

“This teacher is a perfect example of the rot in public schools,” Wheeler says.  

“Tipping Point’s” other targets include The Atlantic (again), Kamala Harris and Facebook, which Wheeler accuses of “censoring” one of her videos that was flagged for misinformation. Wheeler’s show mercifully ends at 10 p.m., bringing up the final program of the night: “After Hours” with host Alex Salvi. 

Although all of OAN’s late-night talent resemble off-brand Fox News hosts, none are less convincing than Salvi, whose show has the cobbled together feel of a last-minute grade school book report.  

“Tonight, Donald Trump is a Nobel Peace Prize nominee,” Salvi announces at the top of the show. 

Salvi claims that Trump did not win his first nomination in 2018 “despite historical precedent being on his side,” giving the nonsensical comparison of president Theodore Roosevelt winning the prize for brokering peace in the 1904 Russo-Japanese war.

After playing a clip from Tucker Carlson’s Fox News show addressing the Woodward interview, Salvi goes on to dismiss Woodward as simply promoting “another resistance grifter book deal.” Republican National Committee spokesperson Cassie Smedile appears as a guest to back him up.

I have now been watching OAN for over 15 straight hours, but even I take notice at Salvi’s next chyron, which reads “Christian Walker: BLM Is KKK In Blackface” and “BLM Is A Domestic Terrorist Organisation That Hurts Black Americans.” The guest is Christian Walker, son of GOP convention speaker Herschel Walker, who tells Salvi that media and elites are on “a campaign to destroy Western civilisation.”  

After that hint of far-right extremism, Salvi ends his program by playing part of the trailer for Christopher Nolan’s Tenet, which he says he saw over the weekend and was “pretty entertaining to say the least.” 

It all feels like a fever dream, but then the next show begins with the grounding promise to reveal “what familiar faces” Trump has nominated for the Supreme Court. It’s past 11pm and I turn off OAN, knowing that the network’s churn of disinformation will begin again tomorrow and hoping that it hasn’t burrowed into my brain. Society’s only hope against such bad actors is the truth, in the hope that it will ultimately prevail.

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James Mcgaugh 2019-10-27
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Though we'd spotted some exoplanets over the two previous decades, in the 2010s they seemed to be everywhere, including some that look an awful lot like Earth.

In 2014, Kepler 186-f, an Earth-sized planet in the habitable zone with brilliant red and orange sunsets, was discovered.

The decade didn't yield actual aliens anywhere, UFOs, perhaps, but certainly no confirmed close encounters.

Musk also got lots of attention by strapping three rockets together and using the Falcon Heavy lift system to send his personal Tesla towards Mars in 2018.

Blue Origin, founded by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, has its own vision to establish a presence on the moon and in space stations orbiting Earth.

NASA's Dawn became the first spacecraft to orbit an asteroid in 2011, and four years later it went on to check out the dwarf planet Ceres and its mysterious bright spots, which appear to be reflective salt deposits.

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James Mcgaugh 2021-07-23
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From vid.me to f&*% me?!

The domain name of a now-defunct website used by news publishers and others to inline videos in articles has been configured to inject porn into those pages.…

James Mcgaugh 2021-07-14
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Purple interstellar galaxy of B2B marketing efficiency boosters image.

Purple interstellar galaxy of B2B marketing efficiency boosters image.

How can B2B marketers boost content creation productivity and avoid that dreaded black hole of inefficiency?

As TopRank Marketing chief executive and co-founder Lee Odden said in 2018 in 16 Ways to Be More Efficient with Content Creation, “Without additional budget or writing resources, the most practical way to squeeze out more content creation productivity is by being more efficient,” and the same may be even more true today in 2021.

There’s no denying that better efficiency offers benefits in many areas of a B2B marketer's work, so we wanted to share some of the galaxy’s top tactics, methods, and tips to improve your productivity through efficiency as we make the push through the rest of 2021 and plan ahead for 2022.

Let’s strap on our B2B marketing jet-packs and hyperspace forward with five productivity pulsars to improve your efficiency.

1 — Work Smarter For Out-Of-This-World Marketing Efficiency

Working in a smarter way saves time and increases productivity, and part of that boils down to saving time through efficiencies.

At first saving a few minutes here and there throughout the day may not seem all that important — or worth devoting much effort to achieve. However, keep in mind that saving two minutes each day equates to eight and a half hours over a standard business year. That’s valuable time that can be reinvested for countless other B2B marketing activities.

For marketers, boosting efficiency doesn’t only come from the time saved. It’s additional time that can be used for many things such as experimenting with new technologies, taking on additional projects, or optimizing previous or current campaigns.

Finding and using scheduling, planning, and calendaring applications that work well for you can be one of the bigger time and efficiency boosters.

It’s important, however, to find ones that fit well with how you work best, so that you’re not working against systems designed to make things easier. Just as we all have various styles and tactics for tackling challenges, applications that help us manage time come in a big array of digital flavors with more in 2021 than ever before.

If you’re not happy with what you currently use, it can be worthwhile to experiment with new time management methods and apps that you haven’t yet taken for a spin. Until you do, you may be missing out on a new time management tool that suits you to a tee.

Most marketers today schedule, plan, and calendar completely in the digital realm, using software such as:

  • Calendly
  • Google Calendar
  • Mavenlink
  • monday.com (client)
  • Workfront
  • Microsoft Bookings
  • Setmore

These are only a tiny traction of the available options. A few of the most productive people I know still also include some variation of the old-fashioned pen and paper, too.

Simply using time management software isn’t enough, however, especially if it isn’t a solution that works with you but against you, so take the time to investigate what’s available and what works best for you.

[bctt tweet="“If you’re not happy with what you currently use, it can be worthwhile to experiment with new time management methods and apps that you haven’t yet taken for a spin.” — Lane R. Ellis @lanerellis" username="toprank"]

2 — Harness Productivity Propulsion With Marketing Passion

You’ll also increase your productivity by tapping into your internal passion and energy, which can help propel your B2B marketing to new heights.

When you find yourself in an especially productive period, it’s wise to take advantage of it and ride that wave of productivity to get as much done as possible while the creative B2B marketing iron is hot.

Unfortunately, we can’t control when we’ll be at our peak combined levels of energy, productivity, and efficiency. However, by quickly recognizing when such a period hits us, we can put our nose to the grindstone and get in as much work as possible before that big wave of energy eventually peters out.

How can you best take advantage of these times when they arrive, or even help make them happen? Here are three strategies:

  • Turn off anything you can that normally distracts you, such as alarms, message notifications, or whatever causes you to break stride while working at your best
  • Try to include short micro-breaks — even if only for a minute or two — to keep your overall energy up, and use the time to focus on what you want to accomplish next during the session
  • When your highly-productive period comes to its inevitable end, it can be worth if to take some time and write down what you think made for such a good working session, and what you’d do differently next time to make it even better

A study by the National Association for Professional Organizers found that 82 percent of respondents believed that if they were more organized, their quality of life would be better — a statistic that shows how powerful time management and organization can be in both our professional marketing and private lives.

[bctt tweet="“When you find yourself in an especially productive period, it’s wise to take advantage of it and ride that wave of productivity to get as much done as possible while the creative B2B marketing iron is hot.” — Lane R. Ellis @lanerellis" username="toprank"]

3 — Tiny Elements Make Massive Differences On Interstellar Marketing Journeys

While “don’t sweat the small stuff” is good advice for some areas of life, when you’re looking at the big picture and looking at long-term results, the opposite can often be just as true.

Take for example the simple act of copying and pasting text — something we all do dozens or even hundreds of times every day.

Did you know that you can slice your cut-and-paste keystrokes or mouse clicks in half?

Decades ago I started setting up all my computers with one very simple adjustment that has saved me millions of repetitive keystrokes or mouse and touchpad clicks — a trick so easy that most people don’t even realize it’s possible.

My all-time top cumulatively small time-saver that adds up over time is setting up my computers to automatically copy and remove formatting for any text I highlight.

If you think of how many times you cut-and-paste something every day, imagine cutting the keystrokes fully in half, and that’s just what you can do by using one any many available auto-copy utilities.

Whichever browser or operating system you use, you’ll find an array of extensions or add-ons that will copy whatever you highlight into your computer’s clipboard. Most also come with the option to clear all or just certain text formatting, which is another time saver because you’ll never again have to go in and manually edit out unneeded formatting or markup code.

Examples include:

  • AutocopySelection2keyboard for Firefox
  • Auto Copy for Chrome
  • Ctrl+C for Windows Cortana
  • AutoCopy for Safari

Changing what you’ve always done to find more efficient methods doesn’t have to be difficult, as Danny Nail, account based engagement specialist at Microsoft told us a while ago.

“You have to let go of templatized, old ideas. You have to break free of thinking about things the way we’ve always thought about them, and start really digging into how you can change what you’re doing and make it more efficient, more effective, but be creative about that,” Danny said.

You can watch our full interview with Danny in “Break Free B2B Marketing: Danny Nail on Creating a Global ABM Platform.”

[bctt tweet="“You have to let go of templatized old ideas...and start really digging into how you can change what you're doing and make it more efficient, more effective, and be creative about that.” — Danny Nail @DannyNail" username="toprank"]

4 — Build A Constellation of Content Co-Creation & Crowdsourcing

The co-creation of content can be likened to a constellation of interconnected subject matter experts, influencers, and other B2B marketing professionals.

Working with industry experts and influencers to co-create content is a proven tactic for adding more inherent promotion right from the start of your campaign, as Lee Odden explored in "How to Win at B2B Influence With The Magic of Content Co-Creation."

When you work with noted figures in your profession and include their insight along with your own, you’ll both end up reaping the rewards on several levels by joining together.

Co-created content by its very nature provides promotion potential that is greater than the sum of its individual parts. The value and relevance that industry experts add to your content makes it something that not only your target audience will want to learn from and share, but it will also see additional sharing and social amplification opportunities.

Using influencer optimized co-creation of content results in the kind of authoritative content that earns, grows, and keeps audience trust, and it’s also a great way to boost efficiency.

To learn more about influencer optimized content, start with Lee Odden’s insightful “How to Accelerate 2021 B2B Marketing Success with Influencer Optimized Content.”

[bctt tweet="“Using influencer optimized co-creation of content results in the kind of authoritative content that earns, grows, and keeps audience trust, and it’s also a great way to boost efficiency.” — Lane R. Ellis @lanerellis" username="toprank"]

5 — Take Your B2B Marketing To Interstellar Heights With Influence

Speaking of influence, harnessing its power can propel your B2B marketing efforts to new heights, and at the same time turn up the volume when it comes to productivity.

Developing relationships with influencers builds a framework of productivity than can be used not only on immediate projects, but when done carefully will also lead to the type of long-term collaborations that thrive as always-on marketing.

Here are five recent articles we’ve published that can help you understand what always-on influence is, and how influence increases engagement, productivity, and credibility:

[bctt tweet="“Developing relationships with influencers builds a framework of productivity than can be used not only on immediate projects, but also for successful long-term always-on marketing collaborations.” — Lane R. Ellis @lanerellis" username="toprank"]

Sleek Marketing Can Warp You To New Dimensions

via GIPHY

By using these tips and tactics for working smarter, harnessing productivity passion, paying attention to the small details, using content co-creation, and playing off the power of influence, you’ve got the productivity fuel needed to bypass a slow-moving star-field of B2B marketers stuck in the mire of inefficient workflows.

Working smartly and efficiently is key in today’s global B2B marketing universe, which is why many top brands choose the help of an award-winning digital marketing agency such as TopRank Marketing. Contact us and find out how we can help, as we’ve done for businesses ranging from LinkedIn, Dell and 3M to Adobe, Oracle, monday.com and others.

The post Productivity Pulsars: Blast Into Orbit With 5 Efficiency Boosters For B2B Marketers appeared first on B2B Marketing Blog - TopRank®.

James Mcgaugh 2021-05-26
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Most of the James Bond movies are available on the ad-supported services Tubi and Pluto TV. Others are on Netflix, Hulu, or Prime Video.
James Mcgaugh 2021-05-12
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Could your kitchen use some upgrades? Read on to see what we expect for this year's Prime Day blender deals.
James Mcgaugh 2021-02-17
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James Jebbia established Supreme in 1994 in New York. Since then, it's gone from a small skateboarding store to a billion-dollar fashion brand.
James Mcgaugh 2020-09-27
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Plus: CIA launches new research lab for AI experts, and more

In brief  The Los Angeles Police Department has run facial recognition algorithms a whopping 29,817 times over a decade in an attempt to identify suspected criminals captured in CCTV footage, despite promising it wouldn't.…

James Mcgaugh 2020-09-10
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Games dev pleads with users to set up a password before they get locked out

Epic Games, which is currently in a tit-for-tat litigation spat with Apple regarding the in-app payment system on iOS, has warned its users that they will lose the ability to log into an Epic Games account via "Sign in with Apple" from tomorrow: 11 September.…

James Mcgaugh 2019-11-05

You may have started hearing about gaming smartphones that boast about some form of water-cooling (technically vapor), but the real titleholders in water-cooled systems are monstrous gaming PC rigs.

Not a problem when you have a huge desktop tower, not so much when your gaming computer of choice is a laptop.

That’s where Gigabyte’s latest baby comes in.

The AORUS RTX 2080 Ti Gaming Box claims to be an external graphics enclosure like no other, boasting of the industry’s first water cooling solution inside a graphics dock.

Even gaming laptops these days boast of what manufacturers call water or liquid cooling.

But even the most powerful gaming laptop doesn’t hold a prayer to the mighty desktop-class graphics cards.

James Mcgaugh 2021-07-22
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Tech consulting giant CGI will use Nokia kit in a new 5G lab that is intended to showcase how great it is.
James Mcgaugh 2021-06-23
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“Specifically” and “probably” are two of the most irritating mispronounced words, according to a survey.

In the poll of 2,000 participants, by insights agency Perspectus Global, 35% of those surveyed said they find it most annoying when people mispronounce the word “specifically” as “pacifically”.

Saying “probly” instead of “probably” annoyed 28% of people. And more than a quarter (26%) said the most annoying mispronounced word was “expresso” instead of “espresso”.

Also making the list was “specially” instead of “especially” (25%) and “artick” rather than “arctic” (19%). 

Despite 61% of Brits finding it annoying when others say words wrong, as many as 65% would be too embarrassed to correct them. Yet 35% said they can’t resist correcting their friends and family.  

Here’s a list of the top 10 most irritating pronunciations:

  1. Pacifically instead of specifically – 35%

  2. Probly instead of probably – 28%

  3. Expresso instead of espresso – 26%

  4. Specially instead of especially – 25%

  5. Artick instead of arctic – 19%

  6. Nu-cu-lar instead of nuclear – 19%

  7. Tenderhooks instead of tenterhooks – 18%

  8. Ex-cet-ara instead of etcetera – 18%

  9. Ass-essory instead of accessory – 15%

  10. Triath-a-lon instead of triathlon – 9%

James Mcgaugh 2021-05-14
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Now the AirTags are finally out, we need new unreleased Apple products to obsess over. So, please make some noise for the new AirPods and HiFi Apple Music! Here’s the meat: a YouTuber with no real leaking history has said Apple will release the aforementioned products on May 18 via a press release. Should you believe this? Umm, kinda? We know for certain that Apple’s going to release new AirPods at some point. I mean, the true wireless earbuds are so successful they outstrip the earnings of entire companies: Saw this today, and was blown-away.. Apple’s revenue just from selling AirPods…

This story continues at The Next Web

Or just read more coverage about: Apple
James Mcgaugh 2021-04-23
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Madonna’s daughter Lourdes Leon has spoken for the first time about her past relationship with Timothée Chalamet.

As a teenager, Lourdes attended the LaGuardia performing arts high school in New York, where the Call Me By Your Name actor was one of her classmates.

Earlier this week, the 24-year-old gave an interview to Vanity Fair about her new Marc Jacobs campaign when the Oscar nominee came up in the conversation.

I respect him a lot, we were a little item,” she told the magazine. “My first boyfriend.”

Lourdes then added a cryptic “or anything”.

Lourdes Leon at a Vogue event in 2018

However, the dancer and model was decidedly less complimentary about another of her classmates, Ansel Elgort, who she remembered simply as a “terrible DJ”.

Since 2018, Timothée has been in an on-off relationship with Lily-Rose Depp, the daughter of Johnny Depp and French singer Vanessa Paradis.

The two met while filming the Netflix film The King.

Lily-Rose Depp and Timothee Chalamet attend a screening of The King at the Venice Film Festival

Elsewhere in the interview, Lourdes – known as Lola to friends and family – discussed her dream of playing Mother Teresa in a film one day, and listed Prince Philip, Prince Charles, Rasputin, Fidel Castro and Real Housewives Of Atlanta star Nene Leakes as her dream dinner guests.

Lourdes previously made headlines earlier this year when she finally joined Instagram, and held absolutely nothing back in the comments section when her mum’s fans found her page.

As well as Lourdes, Madonna is also mum to Rocco Ritchie, 20, David Banda, 15, Chifundo “Mercy” James, 14, and twin sisters Stella and Estere, 8.

Lourdes’ father is fitness trainer Carlos Leon, who dated the Queen of Pop for a short time in the 90s.

In December, the music legend got her very first tattoo in honour of six kids, sharing photos of herself inked with their initials: “L R D M S E.”

James Mcgaugh 2021-01-19
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Tech companies, including Apple and Google, continue to distance themselves from Parler in the wake of mob violence on Capitol Hill.
James Mcgaugh 2020-09-19
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OAN is a pro-Trump conspiracy network that has come to function as a media arm of the president's re election campaign.

The first thing I learn from One America News Network is that there is a new Rolling Stones flagship store opening on Carnaby Street, where “you can always get what you want.” The next is that Donald Trump has been nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize and held a massively successful rally in North Carolina where he condemned mail-in voting. OAN will then tell me that The Atlantic magazine is full of lies and owned by “America’s new George Soros.”

What I don’t know at this point on Wednesday morning, only 20 minutes into a 16-hour straight viewing of far-right conspiracy network OAN, is that I will watch its highlight reel of Trump’s rally seven times and the attack on The Atlantic eight times. I will watch a segment on Trump’s Nobel Peace Prize nomination, a meaningless stunt by a far-right Norwegian parliamentarian, at least 10 times. I will watch multiple different hosts recite the same introductions and same scripts, sometimes saying the words along with them in my empty apartment. Because OAN blends its outlandish coverage with everyday banality I will come to know that The Rolling Stones memorabilia store is, at its heart, “about the music.”

This has been a breakout year for OAN. For most people, the network is infamous for its conspiracy theories, its employment of far-right activists and White House correspondent Chanel Rion’s absurdly sycophantic questions to the president. (“We’re watching Joe Biden slip very gently into senility, while you’re at the top of your game. What’s your secret?”)  

Fact-checking OAN, especially 16-straight hours of it, is basically a Sisyphean task

OAN is ostensibly a news network, with 24-hour coverage and a multimillion-dollar budget. It’s available in at least 35 million households through multiple service providers and has its own streaming app for smart televisions. Trump has repeatedly tweeted praise for the channel and encouraged his followers to watch it. He gave the outlet an exclusive interview during the Republican National Convention, and Trump family members and top associates have repeatedly appeared on its programmes. As the election quickly approaches, it is effectively a media arm of the Trump campaign.

Pro-Trump media is often viewed only through brief moments that highlight its most egregious disinformation. This can obscure that part of its function: to produce a kind of information pollution that warps viewers’ perception of reality. It creates an alternate universe where baseless conspiracies mix into legitimate news, major events are ignored and the president can do no wrong. So I’ve decided to binge-watch my way into that reality. 

As it happens, I chose the day that CNN and The Washington Post score a massive scoop: audio from Trump’s interview with Bob Woodward, in which the president admits – in the early days of the pandemic, which will soon claim 200,000 American lives – that he is purposely downplaying the coronavirus. If I was keeping an eye on Twitter or flipping channels I’d know about this bombshell right away, but on OAN, it barely exists.

7am to noon 

Donald Trump is seen behind US flags as he speaks to supporters Mosinee, Wisconsin.

OAN’s daytime shows typically feature a single host sitting at a desk or a couch in front of a city backdrop or stock market-themed green screen. It should look like any other channel, but even with all the trappings of cable news, there is always an uncanny valley between OAN and a regular network. The lighting and graphics are somehow slightly off, and awkward stock footage such as faceless businessmen shaking hands is embedded in reports. There are minor technical issues and hosts flub their lines along the way. The live ticker at the bottom of the screen for hours has no news; it just constantly scrolls “VISIT OANN.COM | FOLLOW @OANN ON TWITTER.”

OAN’s morning programming is incredibly repetitive. Although the hosts change each hour, much of the scripts they read remain the same, and pre-taped news segments air multiple times. What host Stephanie Myers presents just before 7am is sometimes identical to what host Lilia Fifield says an hour later, which is repeated again on Wall to Wall with Greta Wall later in the morning. There is no context or analysis for many news events, such as a fire at a refugee camp in Greece, often just repurposed footage from news agencies or local stations and voiceover that sounds aggregated from news wires like Reuters.

These more generic segments are the closest OAN comes to being a straight news channel, which is how its owner Robert Herring Sr. promoted the network when he launched it along with his son Charles in 2013. Herring Sr., a multimillionaire Republican donor, initially touted the network as just-the-facts news without biased commentary. 

Herring Sr. reportedly played a significant role in making the network’s coverage increasingly right-wing and pro-Trump, and several anchors anonymously told Politico that many on staff are not diehard conservatives but dejected liberals who are simply trying to hold on to a job in broadcasting. 

OAN quickly morphed into an outright pro-Trump outlet that aired his rallies in full during the 2016 presidential election campaign and now lauds his administration. The shift has made OAN a rising star in the right-wing media ecosystem, resulting in the president repeatedly praising the station on Twitter and giving OAN closer access into Trump World. Ratings are allegedly up 55% compared with last year, Charles Herring told Politico. (OAN doesn’t subscribe to industry-standard Nielsen ratings, making it hard to know exact viewership numbers.) 

Even when OAN isn’t promoting outright misinformation, its choice of what to cover helps shape a world that its conspiratorial coverage then distorts. Portland police being paid increased overtime during protests is elevated to national news and manages to fit in mention of “violent rioters.” A story about a federal ban on imports from China’s Xinjiang province and another on the Pacific nation of Palau inviting the US to build a military base frame America as boldly countering China’s influence. It doesn’t matter that the Palau story is almost a week old, or that the Customs and Border Protection has not made any formal announcement on Xinjiang imports.

Where OAN really begins to deviate from reality, however, is in its programming that features guest interviews or pre-taped segments from its better-known personalities. Just after 7am, Fifield introduces a segment from Rion, the White House correspondent, that is an absurd defence of Trump against The Atlantic’s damaging report that the president called Americans who died in war “losers” and “suckers.”

“A once-respected journal now finds itself exposed as a privately funded fiction factory for the DNC,” Rion says, claiming that The Atlantic’s reporting, which has been backed up by multiple other outlets including Fox News, “went down in journalistic flames.” 

The segment baselessly accuses Atlantic journalists of being puppets for owner Laurene Powell-Jobs, whom Rion describes as “America’s new George Soros” who hired a “coterie of pet writers” to do her bidding. Rion, who is also the “curator-at-large” of a word appreciation website that claims to be the “premier destination for lovers of fine words,” lingers on pronouncing “coterie.”

The segment airs multiple times just in the first few hours of the day, and as Rion talks about “truth” and “reality,” the words begin to lose any meaning. I become fixated on why there is a large gray smudge in the second “o” of a sinister “anonymous sources” graphic. I watch Powell-Jobs’ headshot slowly pan across the screen over and over.

“Society’s only hope against such bad actors is the truth, in the hope that it ultimately prevails,” Rion says in a sentence that will slowly sear its way into my mind over the course of the day.

Chanel Rion became a fixture during of the White House coronavirus briefings earlier this year, gaining notoriety for asking bizarre or softball questions.

Another piece repeated throughout the morning is a report from OAN’s Pearson Sharp, who sounds like the voice of Moviefone, promoting Trump’s claims that mail-in voting will result in fraud, giving the impression “illegals” will receive ballots and falsely suggesting Hillary Clinton only won the popular vote in 2016 because “almost 6 million ballots went missing” and “just vanished.” Sharp’s source in this segment is a right-wing advocacy group with a history of misleading and debunked statements that is run by a former Trump administration official. OAN will air it six times on Wednesday. 

Fact-checking OAN, especially 16-straight hours of it, is basically a Sisyphean task. There are simply too many pieces of misinformation per minute to catch up, and the central premise of its coverage is often so misleading that it defies any good faith engagement.

Between 7am and noon, OAN runs interviews with right-wing think tankers under the banner “Economists Warn A Biden America Would Destroy Economy” and Sharp talking with a California pro-gun activist who claims billionaires are coming to take away the second amendment. (“Including George Soros?!” Sharp asks.) OAN also brings on Trump pollster John McLaughlin, who condemns “skewed media polls” showing the president trailing Biden and talks about pro-Trump boat parades.

“If more people owned boats we’d win this in a landslide,” McLaughlin says.

News consumers in the rest of the country, even viewers of Fox News, are seeing a succession of major stories that Wednesday: massive wildfires engulfed large parts of California, where OAN is based, and turned the sky above San Francisco an apocalyptic orange. A Rochester, New York, police chief and his top officials resigned after allegations of covering up police involvement in the death of Daniel Prude, a Black man who suffocated after officers put a bag over his head during an arrest. 

But meanwhile, at around 11:20am, OAN airs an unbroken feed of Department of Homeland Security acting Secretary Chad Wolf delivering a “state of the homeland” address where he defends the agency’s crackdown on nationwide anti-racism protests. 

A few hours after this address, it will become public that a DHS official filed a major whistleblower complaint that claims Wolf twice told him to stop reporting on the Russian threat to the US election because it “made Trump look bad.” I will not find out about this until the next day, because OAN will not cover it during the 16 hours I’m watching.

Noon to 6pm

While the rest of the news media covers the Woodward revelations, which broke just before noon, I am looking at OAN still showing a live feed of Wolf’s speech even though he has now stopped talking and left the podium. 

“There are shuttles waiting outside,” one official helpfully tells the attending audience.

When OAN cuts back to the studio, host Jennifer Franco summarises Wolf’s speech and then goes on to introduce a series of stories that include a poll showing Portland’s disapproval of its mayor, a Republican bill to increase pay for law enforcement officers and a Belgian magazine accused of using blackface on its cover. The Atlantic segment airs again. 

“Society’s only hope against such bad actors is the truth, in the hope that it ultimately prevails,” Rion says.

At around 12:10pm, OAN runs a segment bashing Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden for “flip flopping” on mask policy, and I realise despite multiple stories condemning him, this is the first time in five hours I have heard Biden speak.  

It’s exceedingly rare to actually hear from any Democrats or people with dissenting views. Trump is everywhere – on b-roll, speaking at length at his rally and giving live pressers – but Kamala Harris and Biden are only ever mentioned and function as unspeaking villains. A few-second clip of Harris during a segment on former Fox News host Megyn Kelly condemning her for praising police shooting victim Jacob Blake’s family, and another brief clip of Biden talking about masks, are essentially all we hear from them all day.

About 5 hours into watching OAN my television asks if I am still there and begins a countdown to turn itself off. I watch for a few seconds then press a button on the remote to stop it. I will solely watch OAN all day, only getting up from in front of the TV to grab food or go to the bathroom. During one commercial break later in the day, I run down to the corner store to buy beer.

In the bottom left corner of the screen, OAN has a live feed previewing the upcoming White House press briefing. Before it cuts to the presser, OAN will cover luxury giant LVMH possibly dropping its deal to acquire Tiffany, rerun its segment on Trump being nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize – now with a quote from the Norwegian far-right politician stating that “Barack Obama did nothing” to receive the award – and report that the Oscars is adding a diversity component to its selection process. The channel will tease a segment promising to reveal the reason the Baylor vs. Louisiana Tech college football game has been postponed. (Several players tested positive for coronavirus, which is not given any broader context.)

When the network cuts to the live White House briefing, it only takes a few minutes for reality to Kool-Aid Man its way through the wall of OAN. As soon as White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany opens up the floor to questions, almost every reporter asks about the Woodward tapes. 

“I’d like to ask you about the Woodward interviews. Did President Trump intentionally mislead the American people about the threat of Covid – a pandemic that has now cost the lives of nearly 200,000 Americans?” CBS White House correspondent Paula Reid says.

I don’t know exactly what has happened at this point, but it’s pretty obvious that it’s not good for Trump and has become a big enough story to be simply referred to as the “Woodward interviews.” It also makes me hyperconscious that there are likely a number of important stories that I don’t know about because I’ve instead watched three segments on Eric Trump declaring that the NFL is “officially dead” because Dallas Cowboys players may take a knee. 

McEnany holds the daily briefing at the White House on Sept. 9, 2020.

Toward the end of the briefing, McEnany cuts off a question about Trump drawing down troops in Iraq – something I can’t remember if I’m also hearing about for the first time – and calls on OAN’s Rion at the back of the briefing room. Rion asks if Palestinians have “expressed any interest in distancing themselves from Iran, in the interest of Middle East peace.” The biggest story to OAN is still Trump’s peace prize nomination. 

When OAN cuts back to the studio, Fifield briefly summarises some of what McEnany said in the briefing and then moves right along to other news. Fifield announces that former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich has praised Trump’s Nobel Peace Prize nomination. The news ticker at the bottom of the screen is working now, and it also reports that Trump has been nominated for the prize.  

At a time when any reasonable news outlet could have gotten it together to address the major breaking news story making international headlines, OAN cuts to an unbroken feed of vice president Mike Pence giving a fireside chat to anti-abortion organisation Susan B. Anthony List. Pence laments that the Supreme Court struck down a Louisiana law restricting access to abortion and vows that it means “we need more conservatives on the Supreme Court of the United States.” Pence wraps up after 2pm, and then it’s back to Greta Wall with the top story that air travel is down over Labor Day. The Atlantic segment airs again.

It’s not until around 3pm that OAN addresses the Woodward interviews, which it frames as “the White House shuts down the mainstream media over Bob Woodward’s book.” A short clip of Trump telling Woodward he likes to play down the severity of coronavirus airs, and host Jennifer Franco repeats nearly the same talking points that McEnany used hours earlier during the White House briefing.

After a perfunctory acknowledgement of the Woodward interview, the network quickly moves on. Donald Trump Jr. has defended the 17-year-old militia supporter accused of killing two people in Kenosha, Wisconsin, during anti-racism protests. Trump Jr. tells Extra “we all do stupid things at 17” and OAN states that Trump Jr. is “waiting for due process” before making judgments. I am getting the impression this is not a banner day for the Trump administration, though on OAN there’s no cause for concern.

Trump makes his first live appearance of the day just before 4pm, when he is announcing his list of possible nominees for the Supreme Court. As he goes through his choices, I think I hear senator Josh Hawley called, but wonder if perhaps there is a judge with the same name. I hear senator Tom Cotton and Ted Cruz listed as well, and realise something strange has happened.  

OAN moves past Trump’s nominations so fast that I wonder if I had misheard them, and I start to consider what other networks look like. I imagine Twitter is melting down while OAN airs a segment on Walmart considering drone delivery. I don’t know that Cotton has also tweeted “it’s time for Roe v. Wade to go” just moments after Trump named him, and OAN will never mention it for the entire time I’m watching.

It is obviously an extreme to get information solely from watching OAN, let alone 16 hours of it, but it’s at least partially reflective of how conservative audiences consume news media. Right-wing audiences tend to receive their information from fewer sources than left-wing audiences, according to Pew Research Center reports, and have high degrees of trust toward those sources while distrusting established news outlets. Media analysts argue that this dynamic makes conservative audiences more susceptible to falling into right-wing echo chambers rife with misinformation.

6pm to 11pm 

Trump speaks as social media personalities Lynnette Hardaway (L) and Rochelle Richardson (2-L), otherwise known as Diamond and Silk listen during a meeting.

Watching OAN for this long gives you the feeling like you’re stuck in an airport in some alternate version of America where press freedom and media independence have evaporated. Even more than Fox News, it’s probably the closest the United States has to something that would feel natural in an authoritarian-leaning country.

In Hungary, far-right nationalist prime minister Viktor Orban hollowed out the media to the point where most news outlets are under the control of sympathetic oligarchs who have fired or pushed out anyone critical of the government. It’s not that these outlets have stopped carrying any news, it’s that it is devalued or unreliable and only toes the party line. Meanwhile, the more extreme tabloids traffic in conspiracies and outright government propaganda, and this is what OAN’s prime-time news lineup feels like. 

Apart from pre-taped segments like the ones Rion and Sharp deliver, the really outlandish conspiracies and intense spin happen during OAN’s nighttime broadcasts. It takes a couple hours of coverage that includes Ohio governor Mike DeWine appearing as a guest to defend Trump over the Woodward interviews and a few ad breaks teasing “what familiar faces from the Senate” made Trump’s Supreme Court list, but by 8pm, the channel is in full swing.

“When you have a cold, do we close down the country?” Lynette “Diamond” Hardaway of the duo Diamond and Silk, coronavirus conspiracy theorists and former Fox News pundits, asks OAN host Stephanie Hamill. “I’m getting real tired of science.” 

Diamond and Silk, who were cut from Fox News after promoting coronavirus conspiracies, go on to falsely suggest that Covid-19 death tolls are being inflated. (Medical experts believe that we are actually undercounting them.)

Society’s only hope against such bad actors is the truth, in the hope that it will ultimately prevail.

Hamill’s other guests include far-right conspiracy theorist Dinesh D’Souza and several other conservative activists who attack Black Lives Matter and The Atlantic, and go on to call for “strict criminal penalties” for “false rape claims” while discussing the sexual assault allegations against Trump. At one point, Hamill condemns tech platforms for taking down “second amendment groups.”

“When they don’t like your ideas they call you a racist. They call you a white supremacist,” Hamill tells one guest.

Hamill is followed by Liz Wheeler, whom Trump has singled out for praise on Twitter, and who hosts the show “Tipping Point” with an unblinking intensity. Wheeler’s first segment is a lengthy condemnation of an unknown Rhode Island high school civics teacher, whom she accuses of promoting “anti-Trump indoctrination” for making her students read critical articles from HuffPost, The Daily Beast and The Atlantic. This is a prime-time national news story on OAN.

“This teacher is a perfect example of the rot in public schools,” Wheeler says.  

“Tipping Point’s” other targets include The Atlantic (again), Kamala Harris and Facebook, which Wheeler accuses of “censoring” one of her videos that was flagged for misinformation. Wheeler’s show mercifully ends at 10 p.m., bringing up the final program of the night: “After Hours” with host Alex Salvi. 

Although all of OAN’s late-night talent resemble off-brand Fox News hosts, none are less convincing than Salvi, whose show has the cobbled together feel of a last-minute grade school book report.  

“Tonight, Donald Trump is a Nobel Peace Prize nominee,” Salvi announces at the top of the show. 

Salvi claims that Trump did not win his first nomination in 2018 “despite historical precedent being on his side,” giving the nonsensical comparison of president Theodore Roosevelt winning the prize for brokering peace in the 1904 Russo-Japanese war.

After playing a clip from Tucker Carlson’s Fox News show addressing the Woodward interview, Salvi goes on to dismiss Woodward as simply promoting “another resistance grifter book deal.” Republican National Committee spokesperson Cassie Smedile appears as a guest to back him up.

I have now been watching OAN for over 15 straight hours, but even I take notice at Salvi’s next chyron, which reads “Christian Walker: BLM Is KKK In Blackface” and “BLM Is A Domestic Terrorist Organisation That Hurts Black Americans.” The guest is Christian Walker, son of GOP convention speaker Herschel Walker, who tells Salvi that media and elites are on “a campaign to destroy Western civilisation.”  

After that hint of far-right extremism, Salvi ends his program by playing part of the trailer for Christopher Nolan’s Tenet, which he says he saw over the weekend and was “pretty entertaining to say the least.” 

It all feels like a fever dream, but then the next show begins with the grounding promise to reveal “what familiar faces” Trump has nominated for the Supreme Court. It’s past 11pm and I turn off OAN, knowing that the network’s churn of disinformation will begin again tomorrow and hoping that it hasn’t burrowed into my brain. Society’s only hope against such bad actors is the truth, in the hope that it will ultimately prevail.

James Mcgaugh 2020-08-18
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Did you know we have an online event about the future of work coming up? Join the Future of Work track at TNW2020 to hear how successful companies are adapting to a new way of working. Coworking spaces have been growing in all the world’s major cities for 15 years. But what makes them so popular? Why and when did they appear? Who are their members? New technologies such as artificial intelligence and robots are leading employers to rethink the way they work. At the same time, workers want more autonomy and flexibility. Many have chosen self-employment to escape organizational…

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James Mcgaugh 2019-10-27
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