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  1. Last week
  2. Fans swarmed police tip lines and white-supremacist hashtags with clips of K-pop groups BTS and Blackpink to make them useless. View the full article
  3. “R.I.P. George Floyd”—Teejayx6 View the full article
  4. On Monday, Los Angeles news station KTLA aired a segment about celebrities' responses to the protests over George Floyd's murder. The channel included a clip from a video Cardi B posted, with reporter Doug Kolk commenting, "rapper Cardi B used her massive platform to promote the violence." … More »View the full article
  5. Proceeds from the single benefit OutFront Minnesota and Black Visions Collective View the full article
  6. With mass protests taking place across the United States and abroad, social media safety is more important than ever. Enormous crowds of people are gathering in cities around the country to protest racism and police brutality in the wake of the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis, Minnesota, last week. Photos and videos of these protests serve the very important purpose of documenting these actions as well as exposing police mistreatment of protestors. Posting them publicly, however, comes with its own risks. For the safety of those involved, if you're going to take photos at protests, you should consider blurring or pixelating the faces of those protesting before sharing them with the world. Read more... More about Photography, Protests, Racism, Police Brutality, and George FloydView the full article
  7. In 2015, Kendrick Lamar dropped off his third solo album, and second on a major label, To Pimp A Butterfly. Immediately hailed as a modern classic, the project was praised for its themes of racial identity and sociopolitical equality; songs like "Alright," "Institutionalized," "Complexion," and the masterful "Blacker The Berry" continue to resonate to this day, perhaps now more than ever. Kevin Mazur/Getty Images Clearly, there are many who feel like revisiting the project amidst the George Floyd protests -- so much so that the five-year-old album has once again entered the Top 100 charts on Apple Music. As of this moment, the album has managed to climb to the 76th spot on the U.S. Top 100, clocking in at 44th in the overall hip-hop charts -- just behind Joyner Lucas' ADHD. Pretty impressive considering the album has been The return to the charts is a testament to Kendrick's impact as a songwriter, one capable of shifting an entire zeitgeist. Though fans have been eagerly awaiting his triumphant return, the recent protests have once again breathed new life into the album -- and should the revolution continue, it's likely that To Pimp A Butterfly is only going to continue thriving. Have you been putting To Pimp A Butterfly back into rotation? View the full article
  8. Mobile banking startup Varo Money has raised an additional $241 million in Series D funding, the company announced today. The investment was co-led by new investor Gallatin Point Capital and existing investor The Rise Fund, co-founded by TPG. Also participating in the round were Bono (yes, that one), along with entrepreneur, impact investor, and movie producer Jeff Skoll; plus HarbourVest Partners, and Progressive Insurance. To date, Varo has raised $419.4 million in funding. Launched in July 2017, Varo is now one of several digital banking apps that are taking on traditional banks. Its rivals include startups like Chime, Current, Space, Cleo, N26, Empower Finance, Level, Step, Moven, and many more. Similar to others in this space, Varo promises an easily accessible bank account with no monthly fees or minimum balance, plus high-interest savings, and a modern mobile app experience. Though it doesn’t have any brick-and-mortar branches, customers can access their money through a network of over 55,000 fee-free Allpoint ATMs worldwide. During the COVID-19 crisis, Varo served its customer base by providing early access to stimulus and unemployment relief funds, as it already does with users’ direct deposit paychecks. It also increased its deposit and ATM limits, and partnered with job platforms Steady and Wonolo to help connect its customers to new work opportunities. Like most of its competitors, Varo itself is not a bank — its accounts to date have been provided by The Bancorp Bank, member FDIC. That may soon change, the company says. In September 2018, Varo received preliminary approval from the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC). In February 2020, Varo announced it was the first banking startup to win approval for FDIC insurance. Last month, the company said it was moving to the final stage of its bank charter journey. “Varo was founded first and foremost to make a powerful impact on systemic financial inequality in communities across this country,” said Colin Walsh, Founder and CEO of Varo, in a statement. “As the first fully digital bank, Varo will bring our mission of financial inclusion to life and create more financially resilient – and thus healthier and stronger – communities. This new investment will enable us to complete the chartering process and leverage our modern banking technology to build on our track record of innovation and inclusion,” he added. Pending completion of the conditions required by the OCC, the FDIC, and the Federal Reserve, Varo will receive approval to become a national bank. The company expects this process to compete by summer 2020, at which point it will expand its lineup of services to include credit cards, loans, and additional savings products. Those expansions will help to further differentiate its mobile banking app from a number of competitors, as a large group today remain largely focused on offering checking and savings accounts, not a fuller range of financial products. Varo is not the only fintech startup that’s moving towards becoming a real bank. In March, Square said it had also received approval from the FDIC to conduct deposit insurance. It aims to launch Square Financial Services, offering small business loans, in 2021. These moves by fintech startups come at a time when the younger generation is ditching legacy banking in favor of tech. Millennials in particular don’t trust big banks, preferring instead the fee-free challenger banks offering modern mobile features they’ve come to expect from all their other apps. “In the midst of all the economic challenges people are facing right now, the digital economy can still be a force for good. Varo’s focus on financial inclusion and the support they offer people to help manage their finances and reduce financial stress really matters at a time when so many American families are struggling in a volatile economy. And that’s why RISE chose to partner with the team at Varo,” said Maya Chorengel, co-managing partner of The Rise Fund. In addition to its expansion into new products, Varo will hire across operations, marketing, risk, engineering, and communications following the round’s close. It has recently added headcount to its customer care teams. Varo today counts nearly 2 million banking and savings accounts and is growing rapidly. Since the beginning of 2020, account growth is up 60%, spend is up roughly 1.5x over the same period, and deposits are up by roughly 3.5x. View the full article
  9. The letter calls for local officials to decrease police budgets and increase spending on health care, education, and community programs View the full article
  10. As the world watched the video of George Floyd being murdered by Derek Chauvin, many have demanded for justice. Chauvin was ultimately charged with third-degree murder, though it was announced that they increased that to second-degree murder. It's a major step forward for justice. The other three cops that were at the scene and did nothing have yet to face any charges but according to the Star Tribune, they will be later today. Dan Kitwood/Getty Images Per the Star Tribune, Attorney General Keith Ellison will be filing charges against Tou Thao, J. Alexander Kueng and Thomas Lane for their involvement in George Floyd's death. A source close to the publication revealed that the three officers will be charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder. AG Ellison has yet to formally announce that these charges will be laid against the other three officers but he will be expected to make a statement later today. Though it's only the beginning, the charges come after a week of protests that have grown increasingly more tense. There have been protests in all 50 states across America with international demonstrations being held in Europe and Canada in support of holding police officers accountable in the United States and around the world. [Via] View the full article
  11. Monzo, the U.K. challenger bank, continues to be faced with tough decisions linked to the coronavirus crisis and resulting economic downturn. Following the shuttering of its Las Vegas-based customer support office and almost 300 staff being furloughed in U.K., the company has announced internally that up to 120 U.K. staff are being made redundant. Reuters first reported the news just moments ago — which I have now confirmed based on my own sources. According to an internal memo written by new CEO TS Anil, following an all-hands earlier this afternoon led by Anil and Monzo co-founder and president Tom Blomfield, the bank is to make up to 120 roles redundant, despite previously stating that furloughs and pay cuts already carried out would mean further layoffs could be avoided. That no longer appears to be the case, with Anil explaining that the current economic situation isn’t expected to revert back to normal quickly. I understand a full consultation period for those employees potentially affected will now take place, as is stipulated under U.K. employment law. In addition, Anil told staff that in order to recognise their contribution, the bank will be waiving the one year “cliff” from their vesting schedule so that they won’t lose out on any shares due to them. The announced layoffs add to a turbulent time for Monzo in recent months, as it, along with many other fintech companies, has attempted to insulate itself from the coronavirus crisis and resulting economic downturn. Last month, I reported that Monzo was shuttering its customer support office in Las Vegas, seeing 165 customer support staff in the U.S. lose their jobs. And just a few weeks earlier, we reported that the bank was furloughing up to 295 staff under the U.K.’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. In addition, the senior management team and the board has volunteered to take a 25% cut in salary, and co-founder and CEO Tom Blomfield has decided not to take a salary for the next 12 months. Like other banks and fintechs, the coronavirus crisis has resulted in Monzo seeing customer card spend reduce at home and (of course) abroad, meaning it is generating significantly less revenue from interchange fees. The bank has also postponed the launch of premium paid-for consumer accounts, one of only a handful of known planned revenue streams, alongside lending, of course. And just last week, it was reported that Monzo is closing in on £70-80 million in top up funding, to help extend its coronavirus crisis runaway. However, as new and some existing investors play hardball, the company has reportedly had to accept a 40% reduction in its previously £2 billion valuation as part of its last funding round last June, with a new valuation of £1.25 billion. View the full article
  12. Landroid is controlled by an app and is able to create a custom mowing schedule for your lawn by calculating the size of your yard. Read more... More about Tech, Robots, Mashable Video, Gardening, and Future BlinkView the full article
  13. Enlarge / The iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max. (credit: Samuel Axon) Along with other retailers big and small, Apple Stores have been subject to looting by opportunists amid the ongoing protests around the United States. In response, Apple has again closed all of its stores in the US. Stores had only recently reopened after closures related to the COVID-19 pandemic. But looters who brought stolen iPhones home, or people who end up buying those phones in person-to-person transactions, are in for what may be a surprise: it appears that the stolen iPhones don't work and may even be tracked by Apple or authorities. This could pose a challenge for regular consumers who buy second-hand iPhones—as well as repair shops—in the coming weeks and months. Individuals with iPhones allegedly looted from Apple stores found that the phones were automatically disabled and had messages like the following (via Twitter) displayed on-screen: Read 5 remaining paragraphs | Comments View the full article
  14. It’s only been a year since singer-songwriter Bob Mould’s 2018 album Sunshine Rock, but today he announced he’s already on to album 14. The 49-year-old guitarist, also known for his work in bands Hüsker Dü and Sugar, announced his latest LP, Blue Hearts, is slated for release on Sept. 25. The record announcement comes along with Wednesday’s release of his explosive debut single, “American Crisis.” “‘American Crisis’ is a tale of two times,” Mould said in a release. “Past Time and Present Time. The parallels between 1984 and 2020 are a bit scary for me: telegenic, charismatic leaders, praised and propped up by extreme Evangelicals, either ignoring an epidemic (HIV/AIDS) or being outright deceitful about a pandemic (COVID-19).” From now until June 7, all sales from the single will benefit OutFront Minnesota and Black Visions Collective Mould calls his upcoming 14-track album — which he produced at Chicago’s Electrical Audio with engineer Beau Sorenson — “the catchiest batch of protest songs I’ve ever written in one sitting.” You can preorder the record here and check out the tracklist below. 1. Heart on My Sleeve 2. Next Generation 3. American Crisis 4. Fireball 5. Forecast of Rain 6. When You Left 7. Siberian Butterfly 8. Everyth!ng to You 9. Racing to the End 10. Baby Needs a Cookie 11. Little Pieces 12. Leather Dreams 13. Password to My Soul 14. The Ocean View the full article
  15. It's no secret that people are angry. Amidst the ongoing protests, many of which have spawned disturbing footage of police brutality and escalating tactics, patience toward law enforcement organizations stands at an all-time low. As such, many artists have come forward to voice their frustration, including an incensed Metro Boomin. Though he has since cooled down, last night saw him lamenting the fact that only four law enforcement officers had been shot in St. Louis, a sentiment he quickly deleted. Gary Miller/Getty Images When asked about the deletion at the time, Metro elaborated on his message. "I deleted it so I don’t promote violence and get any more of my brothers and sisters killed by trying to make an attempt but not because I’m a police sympathizer," he maintained, keeping more or less the same energy. "And if you feel a way about anything I’m saying then you’re more than welcome to leave because I don’t make music for you anyway." Upon further reflection, as well as a conversation with his mother, Metro returned to Twitter to further clarify his thoughts. "After thinking & talking to my mother I felt and realized that it was wrong to say what I said yesterday," he writes. "I never wanna incite or promote violence of any kind and I was purely speaking from a place of hurt and anger. Most importantly I know there are many kids and people who look at me as a role model and voice of reason, and if anyone was to go out and act on what I said and got hurt (most likely killed) then the blood would be on my hands and I love all y’all too much for that." "Let’s continue to rise and protest and show them that ALL of our voices will be heard and we will not be silenced," he continues, closing out on a powerful note. "The enemy wants us to be violent so they can continue to use lethal force but there is strength in numbers and I know we can drown out all the hate with LOVE." View the full article
  16. As we reported moments ago, Drake alongside the rest of the world has been patiently awaiting what charges will be brought down on the three other police officers who accompanied Derek Chauvin as he killed George Floyd. Chauvin was seen on camera, calm, cool and collected as he pressed his knee into Floyd's neck, while Floyd pleaded with him: "I can't breathe." A phrase that we've seen used tragically in the past involving cops killing innocent Black men. Derek Chauvin, as the man who caused Floyd's death, was arrested and charged immediately-- a move that is among the fastest charges in history. At the time, he was charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter. Even though he was charged immediately, many weren't happy that it was just a third-degree murder charge given all the footage of the incident which screams otherwise. Thankfully, Chauvin's charge has been upgraded to a second degree murder charge, which carries a maximum sentence of 40 years, as opposed to a third degree charge, for 25 years maximum. Mario Tama/Getty Images The news of Chauvin's upgraded charges comes alongside news of charges for the three accompanying officers-- their names are: Thomas Lane, J.A. Kueng and Tou Thao. Senator Amy Klobuchar shared this information in a tweet, writing: "Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison is increasing charges against Derek Chauvin to 2nd degree in George Floyd’s murder and also charging other 3 officers. This is another important step for justice." As far as the charges on Lane, Kueng and Thao, the Attorney General Keith Ellison is expected to announce these formally any minute now. We'll keep you posted. View the full article
  17. As Gucci Mane expands the 1017 roster and plots the release of his next album, he's been steadily promoting some of the new signees to the label including Pooh Shiesty. The Choppa Gang founder has been steadily making noise and released his single, "Main Slime" a few months ago. But as the song gains steam, Pooh Shiesty's enlisted a few heavy hitters for the official remix. Calling on Moneybagg Yo, Pooh Shiesty dropped off the remix of his single, "Main Slime." The single already included production from Tay Keith, who's worked with Moneybagg Yo on several occasions in the past. Pooh Shiesty and Moneybagg Yo have incredible chemistry together on wax. Hopefully, we'll hear more from them in the future. Check out Pooh Shiesty's remix to "Main Slime" below. Quotable Lyrics Police tryna pull me over, Man, you know that shit a wrap Get up off yo ass and by the door You lazy in the trap View the full article
  18. UPDATE: June 3, 2020, 2:37 p.m. EDT President Trump's team has apparently not taken kindly to Snapchat's actions. According to the New York Times, Trump's 2020 campaign manager, Brad Parscale, said "Snapchat is trying to rig the 2020 election." OK, Brad. The social media dominoes are falling for President Donald Trump. As protests over the killing of George Floyd and police brutality continue across the country, Trump is doing things likes having protesters teargassed for a photo op and raging against Twitter. Now tech companies are taking action. Snapchat says that it won't promote the president's account in the Discover section anymoreAxios first reported the decision, and Snap confirmed the news to Mashable via email. Snapchat made the decision over the weekend. Read more... More about Snapchat, Black Lives Matter, Trump, Tech, and Social Media Companies View the full article
  19. Originally set to come out Thursday night, Run the Jewels' "RTJ4" is available now on streaming services and as a free download on the hip-hop duo's website. View the full article
  20. Enlarge / Penguins and sharks, living together in perfect harmony—what a wonderful world it will be! (credit: FreeNAS / Ars Technica) To the surprise—and likely consternation—of BSD fans everywhere, FreeNAS vendor iXsystems is building a new version of its core product, TrueNAS, on top of Debian Linux. This week's TrueNAS Scale announcement builds on the company's March announcement that its commercial project TrueNAS and its community project FreeNAS would be merging into a common base. Effectively, all the NAS projects from iXsystems will be TrueNAS variants moving forward, with the free-to-use version being TrueNAS Core, the new Debian-based project becoming TrueNAS Scale, and the commercial project remaining simply TrueNAS. The company is still being coy about the overall goals of the new project, with the major clue being that "SCALE" is used as an acronym. Morgan Littlewood, iXsystems' senior vice president of project management and business development, expanded on this to Ars a little further in an email exchange today: Read 3 remaining paragraphs | Comments View the full article
  21. If you're at all interested in social justice, you were probably heartbroken when you saw a couple of hashtags trending on Twitter this morning. "#WhiteOutWednesday" and "#WhiteLivesMatter" were both in the list of trending topics. The simple fact that these hashtags earned enough attention to show up on the trending page is ridiculous. However, upon heading into the most popular tweets under those trends, you'll realize that it was actually taken over by K-Pop stans. After finding that the two trends were being distributed among white supremacists, K-Pop stans came up with an idea to drown out their tweets with their own fancams and photos. "HELLO KPOP TWT WHAT IF WE FLOODED ALL THE RACIST HASHTAGS W FANCAMS," suggested one fan before it took off. Now, when you click into either "#WhiteLivesMatter" or "#WhiteOutWednesday," you'll be flooded with content about all of the most popular K-Pop artists. In fact, in order to clear up the confusion, Twitter even listed both trends under the K-Pop category. Shout-out to the K-Pop stans for doing their part in silencing the racists of the world. Check out some of the tweets below. If you're looking for ways to get involved in the current protests, check out our list of resources here. [via] View the full article
  22. Derek Chauvin, the police officer who was caught on camera kneeling on George Floyd's neck for over eight minutes, thus killing him in the process, was charged extremely quickly following the release of footage documenting Floyd's death. There were three other officers on the scene with Chauvin, surrounding him while he killed Floyd, each of whom did nothing in response to it, despite pleas from passer-bys. Following the viral video, all officers involved in the incident were fired. We've been waiting to find out if these three other officers will be charged, what those charges would look like. It's been reported that a decision has been made regarding the officers involved, but the decision has yet to be revealed to the general public. Ahead of this, Drake has shared a few words on his Instagram story, echoing what many people are feeling right now. Drake writes: "The decision on the other officers will be announced this afternoon and it BETTER reflect the cries and outrage of the people...this is an opportunity for those in power who are used to protecting each other to show the nation they are being heard...pivotal moment in history is upon us and I am praying for harsh JUSTICE...can't say I'm not nervous though." State Attorney General Keith Ellison is expected to make a "significant" announcement regarding the other officers, CNN reported just earlier this afternoon. Ellison previously stated that he had "every expectation" charges would be filed against these officers. We'll keep you posted as soon as the charges have been revealed. View the full article
  23. Bob Mould has shared a new song, "American Crisis." It's the lead single from his new album Blue Hearts, the follow-up to last year's Sunshine Rock, that'll be out in the fall. The song's a fired-up ripper with lines like "Here's the latest American crisis / Thanks to evangelical ISIS" and "Silence was … More »View the full article
  24. Many major labels were facing criticism after staying quiet following the protests. Though several have issued statements, many have wondered what they are actually going to do, especially since they've been capitalizing on Black culture for so long. Even The Weeknd put out a challenge to Warner Music, Universal, Apple, Spotify and more to "go big and public" with their donation. "To my fellow respected industry partners and execs- no one profits off of black music more than the labels and streaming services," he said. "I gave yesterday and I urge you to go big and public with yours this week. It would mean the world to me and the community if you can join us." Following Blackout Tuesday, Variety reports Warner Music Group and the Family Foundation main owner Len Blavatnik will be donating a $100M fund towards fighting against injustices across America and within the music industry. The funds will also towards promoting diversity and equality. Warner Music Group's CEO Steve Cooper made a statement detailing what the funds towards, though they haven't clarified exact organizations yet. "This fund will support the extraordinary, dedicated organizations that are on the front lines of the fight against racism and injustice, and that help those in need across the music industry. Our advisory panel, which will draw from a diverse cross-section of people from our team and the wider community, will help us be very thoughtful and accountable in how we make an impact. We’re determined to contribute, on a sustained long-term basis, to the effort to bring about real change.” View the full article
  25. The GrowSquares app walks you through each step of your gardening journey from which plants to order to when to water them. Read more... More about Tech, Food, Mashable Video, Gardening, and Smartphone AccessoriesView the full article
  26. This morning, Fat Joe has been in the news in response to something he shared on Peter Rosenberg's Open Late podcast. The report has quickly circulated across music sites, resulting in a response from Fat Joe himself, who seems to think things have been misrepresented. The original story, which we've also shared, finds Fat Joe explaining that Drake could have been on the remix to "All the Way Up." Joe explained that Jay-Z said to him in response to a remix: "[Jay-Z] said 'Look, Joe. It means so much to the history between us, let's not put no one else on the song,'" said Joe. He added in the clip "It definitely could have been Jay-Z and Drake." But alas, it wasn't, and that's not because of Jay-Z's ill will or directive necessarily, it was simply that Hov didn't know who wanted to get on the remix in the first place. It sounds like perhaps there was just a disconnect between the collaborators-- Drake reached out to Hov to be on the remix and asked for the instrumental, but ultimately Joe decided to follow Hov's heed and keep it between the two. Joe responded quickly on twitter to the news story: "Fake news jay z did not keep drake off atwu he never knew who would be on the remix he wanted just me him and remy." We'll keep you posted if any other details come to light. View the full article
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