TIME Silicon Valley

In Silicon Valley, You Can Forget Aging Gracefully

HP CEO Meg Whitman Visits China
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Getting old isn't easy, especially in tech

Nature abhors the old, Emerson said. In 2014, we can add: so do technology investors. Because in the tech sector, where innovation and growth are worshipped and rewarded with obscene valuations, the esteemed companies that helped establish Silicon Valley and shape the Internet are not being allowed to age gracefully.

HP is breaking into two, despite years of its CEO saying this wouldn’t happen. eBay’s spinning off PayPal, after its CEO insisted this made no sense. Both companies knuckled under shareholder pressure. Now Yahoo is facing pressure to cash out of Alibaba and merge with AOL. That follows Dell going private and IBM ditching its low-end servers. There are even investor rumblings that Microsoft would be better broken into pieces.

Spinoffs, breakups, LBOs and shotgun marriages aren’t uncommon among aging, troubled companies. But the wave of events hitting companies once considered blue-chip tech firms is unprecedented. Only a decade ago, most of these companies were at the top of their games. Even today, many are so profitable they annually pay out billions, if not tens of billions, to shareholders through dividends and buybacks. And while many of these companies have been undervalued by investors for years, they are now being treated as if they are entering a period of advanced decay.

In sectors like utilities or retail, slow growth is tolerated as long as a healthy profit margin is maintained. But in tech, profits aren’t enough without growth. And there is plenty of growth among the younger generation of tech giants like Google, Facebook, and LinkedIn. The gap between long-in-the-tooth tech giants and lithe, growing companies is getting wider by the year. While the latter are driven by innovation the former are pushed around by shareholder demands.

Tech investors have always been growth-oriented, but now it’s becoming an obsession. And why not? As the network effects long promised in the early years of the Internet finally kick in, growth at a successful startup can mushroom from seed round into large cap in a few years. Airbnb, Uber and WhatsApp were all founded about five years ago and today are valued at $10 billion, $18 billion and $22 billion, respectively.

Often, the new generation of successful startups push to stay out of public markets as long as possible to avoid the public scrutiny, quarterly earnings parades and exposure to shareholder activists that are plaguing the likes of HP, eBay and Yahoo. The world of secondary markets and venture investing have evolved to accommodate them, allowing institutional investors who can afford substantial stakes to become investors while the startups remain private.

Yet there’s a cautionary lesson here that startup founders should consider: The same forces that are accelerating tech growth curves are also accelerating the time to maturity. Grow big enough and companies will need to draw on public markets for financing. To meet quarterly targets, they need to maintain billion-dollar businesses even when they stop growing. That limits the ability to find new, financially risky areas of innovation. Soon enough, dividend and buyback programs are rolled out to placate antsy investors. That, as we are seeing this year, only placates them for so long.

No one is demanding a dividend from Google, or calling for Facebook to spin off Instagram. Both are delivering growth that often surpasses investor expectations and rewarded with rising stock prices. Others like Netflix and Amazon are getting a pass by investing profits into future growth. But as much as HP talks about, say, developing a mass-market 3D printer, investors only look with disappointment at the slow-growth business of PCs and IT services.

There are a few companies founded before the dot-com boom, notably Apple and Amazon, that have so far been able to buck the trend. But they may not be able to stay ahead of the curve for long. The campaign to pressure Apple for more dividends has halted because Tim Cook keeps promising new product categories like the Apple Watch. Amazon has lost nearly a quarter of its value in the last nine months amid concerns its spending is outpacing its promised growth.

For now, Apple and Amazon are anomalies among companies more than 20 years old that are promising more growth in coming years. That’s leaving their CEOs independent enough to pursue blue-sky innovations. But age catches up to all companies. And these days, companies in the tech sector are growing old faster than ever.

TIME Careers & Workplace

10 Job Skills You’ll Need in 2020

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This post is in partnership with The Muse. The article below was originally published on The Muse.

The world of work—and the world in general—is changing. People are living longer, new technologies are emerging, and we’ve never been more globally connected. That means the skills we use now in the workplace are not necessarily the skills we’ll need in the future.

To get a sense of what skills you might want to start investing your time into developing, check out the infographic below. (Note: It might sound like 2020 is really far into the future, but it’s actually only about five years away.)

Important Work Skills for 2020

Infographic courtesy of Top10OnlineColleges.org.

TIME Careers & Workplace

42 Ways to Make People Like and Respect You

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Own up to your mistakes… and then explain how you're going to fix them

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This post is in partnership with The Muse. The article below was originally published on The Muse.

We all want to be liked, yes. But—perhaps more importantly in the workplace—we all want to be respected.

Respect is so important when it comes to your career development. It comes into play when the higher-ups are considering your ideas, when they’re choosing people to participate in projects, and—yes—when they’re thinking about who’s getting promotions or raises.

But too often people associate earning respect with, well, not being very nice. We’re here to tell you that’s not often the right approach. Instead, try some of the ways below that you can make sure your colleagues like and respect you. You’ll be on your way to being seen as a leader in no time.

1. Do Your Job and Do It Well

The most basic way to get respect? Don’t spend your time worrying about getting respect, and instead spend that time doing your job really, really well. Get a reputation for being really good at what you do, and word will surely get around. As career expert Jennifer Winter explains, “It’s hard to ignore results, and when you’re striving for the respect of your colleagues, one of the best things you can do is show you’ve got the right stuff.”

2. Never Be Late or Miss a Deadline

Along similar lines, get a reputation for being incredibly dependable. That means, any promise you make—be it a date to finish a project, an appointment, or anything else—you keep.

3. Dress Up (the Right Amount)

You know the whole “dress for the job you want” spiel? While, yes, you should dress a little nicer than you’re expected to, don’t dress up so much that you look out of place or like you don’t fit into the culture. So if your company has a casual dress code? Avoid the sweats, but avoid the suit, too.

4. Treat Everyone With Respect

In order to get respect, you have to give it—and not just to the higher-ups. People will pick up if you’re nice to the bosses but mean to the receptionist or delivery guy, and think you’re a brown-noser rather than a genuinely good person. Aim for the latter.

5. Make Friends With the Right People

Seek out relationships with others in your organization who are well-respected and well-liked. And we’re not just talking about higher-ups here—think anyone who has a great reputation around the office.

6. Be a Connector

Know someone at another company who may be able to help with a problem a co-worker is facing, a friend who may be a great sales lead, or anyone else who you think could move the company forward? Introduce them! Doing this shows off that you have an impressive network—but also that you’re willing to share it in order to help others.

7. Invite People Along

If you got an invite to a snazzy event or are planning on networking after work one day, consider inviting along someone from work who you think might enjoy it. She’ll be thrilled you thought of her, and you’ll get a chance to get to know one of your colleagues a little better.

8. Use “I” Less

Studies have shown that people tend to use the word “I” more frequently when communicating with people they feel are more powerful than them. Want to level the playing field? Monitor your use of “I.” The people you’re speaking with will view you as more powerful without ever knowing why.

9. Ask for Help

While many people may think asking for help hints that you don’t know what you’re doing—earning you less respect—it can actually work in your favor in several ways (if done right). First, it shows the person you’re asking that you respect his or her opinion. Second, it will show that you’re productive enough not to waste tons of time trying to figure it out yourself. Finally, it shows that you care about your work (and your professional growth) enough to admit when you don’t know something—and then learn from it. For more on how to do this right, check out Winter’s advice.

10. Take Something Off a Colleague’s Plate

Have a little extra time? Ask your boss or another colleague if there’s anything you can help out with or take over for them. They’ll appreciate the lighter load, and your proactive willingness to help will not go unnoticed.

11. Listen—Really Listen

Nothing will make people lose respect for you quicker than if they feel like your focus is always somewhere else when they’re talking to you. So next time you’re in a conversation, make sure you’re really engaged. Adopt open body language, don’t let other things distract you, and ask validating or clarifying questions to show you’re paying attention. For more on upping your listening skills, check out career coach Lea McLeod’s advice.

12. Ask People “How Are You?”

Being all business all the time won’t make you very well liked. So take the time to ask people about their lives as well! You’d be amazed how good a simple “How are you?” can make someone feel.

13. Remember Things About People

Taking note of small details about people—their spouse and kid’s names, what they’re doing over the weekend, their hobbies, where they’re planning to vacation, and the like—and then asking them questions about those things or referencing them in conversation can be a surefire way to up your brownie points. It shows that you really listed, took the time to remember, and overall care about them as people. Have a terrible memory? Try Muse COO and productivity expert Alex Cavoulacos’ trick for remembering anything about anyone.

14. Own Up to Your Mistakes

Explains Winter: “I know, it sounds a bit counterintuitive, given you want your clients to think you’re a genius, but trust me: They know nobody is perfect. In fact, your clients will probably get a bit suspicious if you never, ever, make a single mistake. Admitting when you do, however, shows them you’re confident (and humble) enough to face the music. In my experience, that’s a trait most people respect.” (Hint: This applies to your boss and co-workers, too!)

15. …And Then Explain How You’re Going to Fix Them

That being said, simply saying you messed up and then not doing anything about it isn’t going to garner you much respect. Instead, when you ’fess up, make sure to come with a plan for how you’re going to fix things. And if you’re not sure what to do? Try to at least come up with a few options and then ask the person you’re talking to for his or her thoughts on the best course of action (see point #9).

16. Seek Out Feedback

Show that you know you’re not perfect and are constantly looking to improve and grow yourself by regularly seeking out feedback from everyone around you. And this isn’t just something for your annual performance review: Try setting up monthly meetings with your boss, team members, and even direct reports where you can solicit open and honest feedback from them about what you can be doing better.

17. Give Feedback, Too!

It doesn’t hurt to dole out some feedback from time to time, too. Obviously, you don’t want to become the office critic, but giving colleagues the occasional dose of constructive criticism shows that you’re committed to helping everyone around you grow and be the best professionals they can be. Here are a few tips on how to give this advice without seeming like a jerk.

18. Never Say “It’s Not My Job”

Notice the trash is overflowing? Take it out. See your colleague struggling to carry all the stuff for the conference booth? Grab a bag. Showing that you’re willing to pitch in on small things—even if they’re not part of your job description and may be beneath your capabilities—shows that you don’t think too highly of yourself and that you’re willing to do whatever it takes to help the company succeed. And that’s something that people can respect.

19. Anticipate Needs

“‘I’ve actually already started on that’ is music to your manager’s ears,” explains Muse career expert Katie Douthwaite, “It means that instead of waiting for him or her to ask you to do something, you’ve already thought of it and taken action.” You obviously can’t anticipate everything, but thinking of things your boss commonly asks for or that will make his or her life way easier is a good place to start.

20. Do Small Nice Things for People

Whether it’s grabbing an extra coffee on your way to work for your boss (or your intern!) or getting some flowers for your colleague’s desk when you know she’s had a rough day, small gestures like this can speak wonders to your character.

21. Say “No” More Often

Really! While you may think jumping at every opportunity is the way to gain more respect, the opposite is actually more often true—especially when you don’t have time to do what you’re being asked to do right. “When you become known for having the guts to speak your mind, put a stake in the ground for the sake of everyone’s success and find better ways to navigate the rough waters, you’ll land as a person people respect, a leader,” explain leadership trainers Nancy Vonk and Janet Kestin. So when you don’t have time, show that you respect your time and the quality of your work too much to agree. Other people will follow suit. Nervous to say it? Try these strategies for turning people down nicely.

22. Have an Opinion

Agreeing with everything everybody says won’t make people think of you as a leader. Instead, have a well-thought-out opinion on things, and don’t be afraid to bring it to the table. Whether it’s an idea about a new product or service or a thought on how a process can work better, people will appreciate you thinking of ways to help the organization improve.

23. Respect Other Viewpoints

Caveat: Don’t dig your heels in the ground too much when it comes to your ideas. Instead, consider other people’s viewpoints, too, and be willing to compromise and work together to reach a solution that works for as many people as possible.

24. Speak Up

Nothing shows lack of confidence in yourself like mumbling. So speak up! PR professional Ashley Colbert explains, “To be taken seriously in a meeting, speak clearly, firmly, and loudly enough so that people can hear you. And avoid trailing off at the end of a sentence or using fluffy language like ‘I hope to have this done’ or ‘I think it will get results.’”

25. Avoid the Gossip Mill

If you’re known for regularly putting down other people, people will start thinking down on you. So don’t waste your time speculating about the lives of others. Instead, spend your time by the water cooler genuinely getting to know your colleagues—you’ll still be involved in the social side of the office, without tarnishing your reputation.

26. Never Waste Anyone’s Time

Get more respect by showing people you respect their valuable time. What does this mean? Don’t ask questions you can answer yourself, don’t plan meetings that you don’t need, and don’t take forever getting back to people. You get the idea.

27. Make Your Meetings Worthwhile

People are pretty skeptical of meetings, and so will likely think less of you if they think your meetings are a waste of time. Make sure you’re following the 21 unwritten rules of meetings to have meetings that people seriously find valuable.

28. Figure it Out Yourself

Instead of always running to your boss for help when faced with a problem, do everything you can to figure it out yourself. Even if you ultimately need approval before moving forward with a solution, it’s better to come to your manager with a plan for him or her to give an OK to than to come asking “what should we do?”

29. Never Say “I Don’t Know”

At least, not on its own. Simply saying “I don’t know” leaves the person asking you a question at a dead end and doesn’t make you seem very willing to help. Instead, offer to help figure it out, get more information, or direct him or her to the right person to help out. See leadership coach Jo Miller’s suggestions for better responses when you’re really not sure.

30. Become a Stellar Public Speaker

Learning to speak well will gain you respect in many ways. First, you’ll have the ability to present more confidently in meetings. Second, you’ll be comfortable speaking at industry events, giving you credit as a leader in your field. But finally, all this practice and training will give you a more powerful speaking presence even in day-to-day conversations.

31. Work on Communicating Both Warmth and Authority

Body language expert Amy Cuddy explains: “When we judge others—especially our leaders—we look first at two characteristics: how lovable they are (their warmth, communion, or trustworthiness) and how fearsome they are (their strength, agency, or competence).” This is a fine line to balance, but Miller has some ideas for how to do it.

32. Have Clear Work-Life Boundaries

People are likely to connect with you more if you understand the importance of not working all the time. So set clear work-life boundaries—and then stick to them! Whether it’s that you never check email on the weekends or you leave work by 6 to eat dinner with your family, if you’re upfront about your boundaries, people should respect them—and you.

33. Don’t Leave Right at 5 PM

That being said, don’t jet out of the office every day when the clock strikes five, especially if there’s work that really needs to get done. Have boundaries, but show that you’re willing to pull extra weight when it’s really important.

34. Learn Your Colleagues’ Working Preferences—and Follow Them

Have a chat with the people you work most closely with about how they work best, and find ways to help them achieve that. Maybe one prefers conversations to emails and will appreciate you coming over to her desk rather than sending a lengthy message. Maybe another needs quiet working time in the morning and will notice if you stop scheduling meetings during that time.

35. Be a Teacher

When a teammate or direct report is having trouble or does something wrong, instead of getting angry, get helpful. Walk him or her through how to do it. You’ll get better employees, and they’ll respect you for helping them grow.

36. Be a Mentor

Take junior employees under your wing—even if they don’t report to you—and help advise them on everything from company politics to career growth. Not only will the employees you’re advising gain more respect for you, but others will notice the gesture, too.

37. Help Out Newbies

When someone new joins the company, make sure to say hello and let him know you’re there if he has any questions or needs help—even if he’s not in your department. People all over the company will start seeing you as a leader in the company from day one.

38. Champion Your Employees

Have direct reports you’re proud of? Understand their goals—and do what’s in your power to help them achieve them! Whether that’s setting up a meeting with your boss because you know they want to grow at the company or helping them find opportunities to grow important skills, look for ways to help them succeed.

39. Manage Upward

By simply waiting around to be told what to do by your higher-ups, you seem like a follower—not a respectable leader. Instead, learn to tell your boss what you need to get your job done well. You’ll improve your performance and command your boss’ respect. Check out some tips for learning this elusive skill here.

40. Don’t Complain

Are you tired after a long day, and still have more to do? Are you sick of one menial task you seem to be stuck with? Never whine about it, at least not in the workplace. Having a positive attitude about your work is critical to making other people think highly of you. And if you really have a problem with something? See if you can come up with a proactive way to solve it.

41. Get Out in the World

People will hold you in higher regard if you don’t just do your job in a vacuum. So make sure to stay up with the latest and greatest in your industry. Go to events and conferences, and report back on what you learned. Get meetings with experts, and maybe even bring them in to talk to your team. Read relevant articles and share them around to help others.

42. Question Yourself

Great leaders are good at self-reflection. Check on yourself regularly with questions like these and always be looking for ways to be better.

TIME Careers & Workplace

Top 10 Inspiring TED Talks for 2014

Google Developers Event Held In San Francisco
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Bill Gates, Edward Snowden, Larry Page, and the inventor of the World Wide Web converged on the year's hottest topics

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This post is in partnership with Inc., which offers useful advice, resources and insights to entrepreneurs and business owners. The article below was originally published at Inc.com.

If you’ve yet to accumulate enough frequent-flier miles to dash off to this innovation conference, you can get inspired at home by watching the following top TED Talks of the year.

Bill and Melinda Gates: Why giving away our wealth has been the most rewarding thing we’ve done

In 1993, Bill and Melinda Gates took a trip to Africa that changed the way they viewed what was truly valuable. The extreme poverty they witnessed then instigated a lifelong commitment to give back 95 percent of their wealth.

In this TED Talk, the mega-philanthropists talk to Chris Anderson about marrying Bill’s affinity for big data with Melinda’s global-minded intuition to help save millions of children from hunger and disease around the world. The always-ambitious Gates are now trying to persuade other business leaders and wealthy entrepreneurs to give back. Warren Buffett recently donated 80 percent of his fortune to the Gates Foundation.

“These are people who have created their own businesses, put their own ingenuity behind incredible ideas. If they put their ideas and their brain behind philanthropy, they can change the world,” Melinda Gates said.

Sarah Lewis: Embrace the Near Win

Using the plight of painters, archers, and Arctic explorers as an extended metaphor, art historian Sarah Lewis makes a case for celebrating the near win: missing the mark but never losing sight of the target.

“Mastery is in the reaching, not the arriving. It’s in constantly wanting to close that gap between where you are and where you want to be,” Lewis said.

Lewis’s “near win” theory has been the driving force behind some of our culture’s greatest minds, from Michelangelo to Franz Kafka. Almost succeeding gives leaders and competitors the focus and tenacity required to try again. According to Lewis, it is by harnessing these near wins that we can master a more fulfilling path.

Edward Snowden: Here’s How We Take Back the Internet

Famed whistleblower Edward Snowden made a rare public appearance via a “telepresence robot” at this year’s TED Conference. Snowden spoke freely about citizens having a right to data privacy and how Internet companies were coerced into collecting this data on behalf of the National Security Agency.

“…Even though some of these companies did resist, even though some of them–I believe Yahoo was one of them–challenged them in court, they all lost, because it was never tried by an open court,” Snowden said. “They were only tried by a secret court. These aren’t the people that we want deciding what the role of corporate America in a free and open Internet should be.”

Snowden gave a detailed walkthrough of some of the NSA’s tactics and programs, including the ones that were hidden from Congress. He also countered the surveillance argument that “if you’ve done nothing wrong, you’ve got nothing to worry about” by advocating for not giving up certain rights.

“We have a right to privacy … because we recognize that trusting anybody, any government authority, with the entirety of human communications in secret and without oversight is simply too great a temptation to be ignored,” he said.

TED organizers gave the NSA a chance to respond to Snowden’s talk by inviting deputy director Richard Ledgett.

David Brooks: Should You Live for Your Résumé?

Touching on the rudimentary conflict between external accomplishments and internal fulfillment, New York Times columnist and author David Brooks makes the case that we should strive toward having the better eulogy over the better résumé.

“The external logic is an economic logic: input leads to output, risk leads to reward. The internal side of our nature is a moral logic and often an inverse logic. You have to give to receive,” Brooks said in his TED Talk.

Society rewards the résumé, and according to Brooks, you can’t calculate one’s life value by looking at the bottom line. There’s a reason why we don’t read out résumés during funerals.

Larry Page: Where Google’s Going Next

For those who ever dreamed of sitting in the front row and trying to see what Google has up its sleeve, this TED Talk is a can’t-miss. Google co-founder and CEO Larry Page sat down with Charlie Rose to discuss what’s next for the search giant, including smartphones powered by artificial intelligence, Wi-Fi-enabled balloons, and automated vehicles, and more grounded topics like security and privacy.

“I don’t think we can have a democracy if we’re having to protect you and our users from the government for stuff that we’ve never had a conversation about,” the Google CEO said, referring to Edward Snowden, a fellow TED Talker.

Page also defended the lack of privacy on the Internet by pointing out the good that could come from sharing information with “the right people in the right ways,” such as making medical records available anonymously to research doctors. “If we did that, we’d save 100,000 lives this year,” he said.

Margaret Gould Stewart: How Giant Websites Design for You (and a Billion Others Too)

Facebook’s Like button is seen around the world 22 billion times a day, making it one of the most viewed visual icons ever designed. Facebook’s director of product design, Margaret Gould Stewart, talked about designing digital elements for a sixth of the world’s population.

“We use a lot of data to inform our decisions, but we also rely very heavily on iteration, research, testing, intuition, human empathy. It’s both art and science,” said the self-proclaimed inventor of “Designing for Humanity 101.” “Data analytics will never be a substitute for design intuition. Data can help you make a good design great, but it will never made a bad design good.”

She also explained how the company has handled “change aversion” when even the tiniest of changes create an avalanche of outrage.

“Even though we tried to do all the right things, we still received our customary flood of video protests and angry emails and even a package that had to be scanned by security,” she said, “but we have to remember people care intensely about this stuff, and it’s because these products, this work, really, really matters to them.”

Simon Sinek: Why Good Leaders Make You Feel Safe

Leadership expert Simon Sinek has written two books, Start With Why and Leaders Eat Last, both about managing a successful team. For his TED Talk, he touched on the innate human necessity to feel safe.

According to Sinek, the business world is filled with danger–be it an unstable economy, the fluctuating stock market, or hungry competitors–and the leader needs to set the tone for survival.

“When a leader makes the choice to put the safety and lives of the people inside the organization first, to sacrifice their comforts and sacrifice the tangible results, so that the people remain and feel safe and feel like they belong, remarkable things happen,” Sinek said.

Elizabeth Gilbert: Success, Failure, and the Drive to Keep Creating

Eat, Pray, Love is the modern-day definition of a literary success: a staple on several bestseller lists when it first came out, the novel became a film adaptation starring Julia Roberts. But soon after, author Elizabeth Gilbert felt stuck, so burdened by her own hype that she considered never writing another book.

“I had to find a way to make sure that my creativity survived its own success,” she said. “And I did, in the end, find that inspiration, but I found it in the most unlikely and unexpected place. I found it in lessons that I had learned earlier in life about how creativity can survive its own failure.”

Gilbert began relating back to her early days struggling to first get published, the six years of rejection letters that didn’t stop her from pursuing her passion.

“I loved writing more than I hated failing at writing, which is to say that I loved writing more than I loved my own ego, which is ultimately to say that I loved writing more than I loved myself. And that’s how I pushed through it,” the author said.

Tim Berners-Lee: A Magna Carta for the Web

Twenty-five years after inventing the World Wide Web, Tim Berners-Lee went to the TED Conference to talk about its future. Like fellow TED Talkers Larry Page and Edward Snowden, Berners-Lee talked about issues concerning censorship, privacy, and security.

He also encouraged Internet users to fight for the version of the Web they want to see prosper in the future and shared his vision:

“I want [a Web] which is not fragmented into lots of pieces … in reaction to recent surveillance. I want a Web which … is a really good basis for democracy. I want a Web where I can use health care with privacy … I want a Web which is such a powerful basis for innovation that when something nasty happens, some disaster strikes, that we can respond by building stuff to respond to it very quickly.”

Keren Elazari: Hackers: The Internet’s Immune System

From cyberpunks to political activists, the role of the hacker in society has gone through a monumental shift in recent years. Cybersecurity expert Keren Elazari has traced this shift, and it has led her to refer to hacking as the immune system of the digital world, exposing weaknesses in the system to make it stronger.

“Sometimes you have to demo a threat to spark a solution,” Elazari said in her TED Talk proclaiming hackers as the crusaders of civil rights, government accountability, and Internet freedom.

 

TIME Tourism

China Sets a Course for the Cruise-Ship Industry With Its First Luxury Liner

Employees stand in front of nearly completed ship at China State Shipbuilding Corporation (CSSC) Longxue shipbuilding ,in the southern Chinese city of Guangzhou
Employees stand in front of nearly completed ship at China State Shipbuilding Corporation (CSSC) Longxue shipbuilding, in the southern Chinese city of Guangzhou November 13, 2011. © Siu Chiu / Reuters—REUTERS

The world's largest shipbuilder does not have a cruise ship — at least, not yet

China is planning to build its first cruise ship, targeting the nation’s huge aspirational middle class as it looks for new ways of spending its money and vacation time.

To venture into new waters, Chinese shipping officials have secured the help of Carnival Corp., the world’s largest cruise-ship operator. The Miami-based juggernaut of cruising said on Wednesday it had signed a memorandum of understanding with the China State Shipbuilding Corporation to help design its maiden cruise vessel.

Carnival said the joint venture — which will also involve a major Italian shipping yard — would support “the Chinese government’s plans to grow the cruising industry in China and meet escalating demand for cruises from Chinese travelers.”

The Chinese Ministry of Transport has said it expects the Chinese cruise industry to number 4.5 million passengers by 2020 and to be the second largest global cruise market, after the U.S., by 2017. Some 530,000 Chinese tourists boarded cruise ships last year, more than double the previous year, Forbes reports.

Global cruise operators, beleaguered by accidents and on-board illness in other waters, have been keen on cashing in on the Asian market and wooing Chinese consumers to their bunks and buffets, reports Reuters. Carnival already ports three cruise ships in China and is set to add a fourth liner to its China-based fleet in 2015. Other companies, including Royal Caribbean, have claimed a smaller chuck of the market’s burgeoning appetite for cruises.

China built 25,903 tons of ships last year, surpassing South Korea’s output by about 1,000 tons.

TIME Courts

The U.S. Supreme Court Upholds a California Ban on Foie Gras

Forbidden Foie Gras Goes Underground At California 'Duckeasies'
A worker performs "gavage," or force feeding, on ducks in the preparation of foie gras at Hudson Valley Farms in Ferndale, New York, U.S., on Sunday, July 15, 2012. Bloomberg—Bloomberg via Getty Images

Haute diners in California will have to do without

The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday upheld California’s ban on foie gras, refusing to hear an appeal against the state’s kibosh on products made by “force feeding a bird for the purpose of enlarging the bird’s liver beyond a normal size,” Reuters reports.

Foie gras, French for “fatty liver,” is made by force-feeding corn to ducks and geese, a process that animal-rights activists have described as cruel and unethical. The birds’ unnaturally enlarged livers are then harvested for high-end dining.

A Los Angeles-based restaurant group, a foie gras producer in New York, and a group of foie gras farmers in Canada had challenged the ban, calling it a violation of federal protections barring states from interfering in interstate commerce, Reuters says.

The ban was passed in 2004 but went into effect in 2012, according to the Los Angeles Times.

[Reuters]

Read next: The Case Against Eating Ethically-Raised Meat

TIME Companies

Converse Sues Dozens for Selling Knockoffs of Chuck Taylor All Stars

But trademark infringement in fashion has historically been difficult to prove

Converse filed suit against 31 companies, including Wal-Mart and K-Mart, Tuesday for trademark infringement.

The shoemaker alleges that the companies ripped off the iconic striped, toe-guard design of Converse’s Chuck Taylor All Stars, the New York Times reports.

The American company filed a total of 22 separate lawsuits seeking monetary damages in the U.S. District Court of Brooklyn, according to court documents. Other companies named in the complaints include Skechers, FILA, Ed Hardy and Ralph Lauren, among other retailers that Converse claims has unfairly copied the Chuck Taylor sneaker’s design.

Converse, which was bought by Nike in 2003, has also filed a separate lawsuit to the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC), a federal agency with the authority to stop counterfeit shoes from entering the country. Many shoe retailers manufacture their footwear outside the U.S., and a successful lawsuit with the USITC would be effective in preventing the sale of the allegedly copycat shoes.

“The goal really is to stop this action,” Converse CEO Jim Calhoun told the Times. “I think we’re quite fortunate here to be in the possession of what we would consider to be an American icon.”

Trademark infringement accusations in the footwear industry are not new, and are hard to prove in the fashion world, according to several law firms experienced in similar cases. But that Converse has named a whopping 31 companies is somewhat unprecedented in an age when fashion feuds tend to be one-on-one. Recent lawsuits include LVL XIII Brands Inc. alleging that LVMH copied its nameplate design in August, and California shoemaker Gravity Corp accusing Under Armour of intentionally copying the sound of one of their product’s names.

[NYT]

TIME Careers & Workplace

3 Reasons Your Online Job Search Is Failing Miserably

If you’re looking for a job and depending on online tricks and tools to do the job, you might be waiting for longer than you expect before you hear, “You’re hired.” A pair of new surveys highlight the biggest mistakes and misconceptions job-seekers make when it comes to job-hunting online.

You use your smartphone instead of a computer. Jibe, a company that makes technology for job recruiters, finds that a full 20% of job applicants would give up on an online application if they couldn’t do it entirely on their phones. But unfortunately, it also finds that more than a quarter of big companies don’t have a single part of their hiring process set up to work well on a smartphone.

“Many passive job candidates, and especially the youngest members of the workforce, live a mobile-first or mobile-only existence. If you want to give yourself the best chance to land a job, relying on mobile may add significant risk,” says Joe Essenfeld, founder and CEO of Jibe. “Even though most job seekers expect mobile apply capabilities, enterprise systems are still working to catch up.”

You rely on Twitter and Facebook. If you’re seeking work, go to LinkedIn. A new study from social recruiting company Bullhorn Reach finds that only around 20% of recruiters use Facebook to find job candidates; about the same percentage use Twitter. LinkedIn is the overwhelming favorite, used by 97% of recruiters.

“Relying on just Twitter and Facebook without LinkedIn would be a mistake,” says Aravinda Rao Souza, Bullhorn’s senior marketing manager. “The real surprise is that Facebook isn’t more popular,” with recruiters, she says. “It really should be… Candidates love it because so many of them already essentially live on Facebook.” Rao says companies that use Facebook to find job candidates have a high degree of success, but until a majority of recruiters catch on and start using the social network’s broad reach and targeting abilities, you should probably keep looking on LinkedIn, too.

You give up too easily. Jibe’s research finds that nearly a quarter of candidates will give up on applying for any jobs at a company if they have a single bad experience with completing an online job application. If you’re serious about finding a new gig, this could amount to shooting yourself in the foot. “Job seekers should be cautiously optimistic because the technology is evolving quickly,” Essenfeld says.

Jibe also finds that more than half of job-seekers say they’d be deterred if an online application didn’t let them upload their resume — a problem that’s probably keeping an untold number of people from landing the jobs they want, according to Essenfeld. “Uploading a resume was the second highest challenge cited by job seekers in the survey,” he says. If you can’t upload your resume, call or email the company even if the job listing says not to, he suggests.

TIME Retail

Macy’s Says Black Friday Will Actually Start on Thanksgiving Day at 6PM

Consumers Get Jump On Black Friday Deals By Shopping Thursday Evening
People enter Macy's Herald Square as the store opens its doors at 8 pm Thanksgiving day on November 28, 2013 in New York City Kena Betancur—Getty Images

Take your Thanksgiving dinner to go

Black Friday is starting early this holiday shopping season.

Macy’s fired the first shots of the Thanksgiving shopping wars Tuesday, announcing that its doors will open at 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day, a Thursday. That’s two hours earlier than last year, NBC reports, when Macy’s opened at 8 p.m. Thursday. Back in 2012, it opened at midnight on Black Friday.

Macy’s said in a statement that Black, well, Thursday was appealing to both consumers and employees who volunteer to work the Thanksgiving Day shift. “We also heard last year from many associates who appreciated the opportunity to work on Thanksgiving so they could have time off on Black Friday,” Macy’s said, according to the Star Tribune. “Additionally, associates who work an opening shift on Thanksgiving will be compensated with incentive pay.”

You can take that Thanksgiving dinner to go, right?

TIME Economy

Report: Richest 1% Holds Nearly Half of the World’s Wealth

Luxury Superyachts At The Monaco Yacht Show
A Porsche 918 Spyder automobile, produced by Porsche SE, sits on the deck of the 88m luxury superyacht Quattroelle, in Monaco, France, on Wednesday, Sept. 25, 2013. Balint Porneczi—Bloomberg / Getty Images

A new Credit Suisse report finds the gap between rich and poor widening on a global scale

The world not only surpassed a new milestone of wealth creation in 2014, but the richest 1% now own nearly half of the planet’s wealth, according to a new Credit Suisse report published Tuesday.

The Global Wealth Report estimated that the world’s combined wealth reached $263 trillion in 2014, a $20.1 trillion increase over the previous year. It marked the highest recorded increase since the financial panic of 2007, but the greatest accumulations of wealth occurred at the very upper echelons of earners.

“Taken together, the bottom half of the global population own less than 1% of total wealth,” the report said. “In sharp contrast, the richest decile hold 87% of the world’s wealth, and the top percentile alone account for 48.2% of global assets.”

Credit Suisse also noted widening gaps between the rungs of the wealth ladder: While only $3,650 would place a person in the wealthier half of the global population, $77,000 was needed to reach the top 10% and $798,000 to hit the top 1%.

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