Posts tagged with "Alejandra Villagra"

Uber/Lyft Drivers Shutdown Rush Hour Traffic in NYC

On Tuesday morning thousands of Uber and Lyft drivers with the Independent Drivers Guild led a slow vehicle procession over the Brooklyn Bridge and up to Gracie Mansion to call for the Mayor and City Council’s help in response to new app changes from Uber and Lyft in New York City that will harm drivers’ ability to make a living. Approximately 6,000 drivers participated in the action which slowed rush hour traffic to a near stand still in a procession that stretched across the city at times covering the full length from the Brooklyn Bridge up FDR Drive to Gracie Mansion.

Starting on Tuesday Uber launched new policies to kick drivers off the apps between trips and in areas of lower demand in order to avoid paying drivers as required by New York City’s pay regulations. Lyft enacted a similar policy earlier this summer to protests from the Drivers Guild. The New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission has failed to take action, so the Drivers Guild is calling for the Mayor and City Council to stop the apps from violating the pay rules in an attempt to scam drivers out of fair pay. The Guild, a Machinists Union affiliate representing and advocating for New York’s 80,000 app-based drivers, led a two year campaign to win the nation’s first minimum pay rate for Uber and Lyft drivers. Rules which the apps are now violating.

“Uber and Lyft are flouting New York City’s driver pay rules to avoid paying drivers what they have earned and the city’s Taxi and Limousine Commission has done nothing to stop them. Today drivers are saying: We will not be ignored. We are calling on the Mayor and City Council to step in and help us fight back against the app companies. More than 1,000 Uber and Lyft drivers logged off the apps to take part in a procession over the Brooklyn Bridge and through Manhattan to Gracie Mansion today to protest the app companies and demand action from the city,” said Brendan Sexton, Executive Director of the IDG, a Machinists Union affiliate which represents and advocates for more than 80,000 app based drivers in NYC. “For months we warned that if the city failed to take enforcement action against Lyft for violating the pay rules, that the other apps would follow suit and drivers’ pay would suffer. Already thousands of drivers are struggling to pay their bills because Lyft is blocking them from the app.

Now with Uber following suit more than 80,000 New York City families will pay the price if the city refuses to stand up for drivers and crackdown on the app companies.” Council Member Brad Lander who sponsored the law requiring a minimum pay rate for Uber and Lyft drivers has also spoken out against the app companies’ actions and voiced his support for the drivers today. “Kicking drivers off the app between rides and controlling where and when drivers can work directly undermines Uber and Lyft’s pretense of employing independent contractors who set their own hours. Far from providing flexible work schedules and a solution to transit deserts, Uber and Lyft are forcing drivers to avoid serving low-income outer boroughs and limiting their ability to make a living wage, in violation of the spirit of NYC Council’s ground-breaking legislation to guarantee for-hire drivers a minimum hourly wage.

These are the same companies that have been arguing that they don’t control their drivers’ work and it isn’t central to their business model. Uber and Lyft can’t have it both ways. Either recognize drivers as employees entitled to minimum wage, overtime pay, health insurance and all the rights that entails, or follow the law we passed to ensure that drivers make a fair wage,” said Council member Brad Lander.

Today’s protest shows growing driver anger at the app companies and the city’s failure to protect driver pay. Just last week more than 100 IDG members gathered at CIty Hall to call for the city to abolish the TLC due to its failure to stand up for drivers, including on this issue of enforcing the pay rules. The Guild also called for the city to pass a Drivers’ Bill of Rights, which specifically included blocking apps from trying to get around the pay rules.

Further Background:

For months Lyft has been kicking New York City drivers off the app to avoid paying them and the Independent Drivers Guild has been calling on the city to take aggressive enforcement action, warning that without enforcement other apps may follow suit.  On Friday, just days after more than 100 IDG members rallied at City Hall calling for action, Uber announced in an email to drivers that it would indeed begin the same practice to flout the city’s pay rules on Tuesday.

In June, the Guild wrote a letter to the City’s Taxi and Limousine Commission calling for enforcement on this issue and drivers testified to this issue in July calling attention to the fact that Lyft was using this policy to further enrich the company by giving preferential access to drivers who pay them upwards of $400 per week to rent a vehicle from Lyft’s Express Drive program. However, the city’s Taxi and Limousine Commission failed to act and failed to include any further regulatory guidance during its summer rule making, despite having the clear opportunity to do so.

Paradigm Gallery Presents “Obsolescence”

Paradigm Gallery + Studio (746 S 4th St) is pleased to present Obsolescence, a solo exhibition by Sweden-based artist Ulla-Stina Wikander, open October 25 – November 23, 2019. The artist’s first solo exhibition in the United States, Obsolescence, features new works from Wikander’s well-known series of household objects covered in colorful, vintage embroideries. Obsolescence will have a public opening reception on October 25 from 5:30 – 10:00pm.

Wikander began collecting vintage embroideries 15 years ago in antique stores and flea markets, initially attracted to the intricate designs of needlework textiles. Although Wikander was traditionally trained as a painter and sculptor, the unknown histories of the women who made the embroideries interested her and she began experimenting with her new collection. Wikander’s earliest experimentation with textile began with covering a broken vacuum cleaner she had laying around in her home. Through a meticulous process of deconstruction and reassembly, she transformed the anachronistic tool into something visually absorbing and entirely new, giving the vacuum a new reason to exist. Although not all of the objects Wikander covers are broken, they’re all out-dated. Through Wikander’s process, these retro items are transformed and recycled into fully contemporary sculptures.

On her practice Wikander says, “It is rather new for me to be a part of the textile community because I have always regarded myself as a painter and sculptor. While I do not embroider myself, I am always very meticulous when I choose my patterns.  Embroidery is very hard to find nowadays, so I often travel to small towns in Sweden to find them. I have a big collection with hundreds of embroideries, organized into boxes by motif. I do not know if it is accepted among textile artists, to cut embroideries into pieces, but I think my work is a bit different. I always have a bad feeling that I am destroying a beautiful embroidery that someone else has made, but the recycling of something forgotten also feels current and good”.

The latest artworks included in Wikander’s Obsolescence exhibition are suffused with humor and critical explorations of feminism, domesticity, and upcycling. Her intricate textile constructions are shaped by the forms that lie underneath – including irons, blow dryers, shoes, bags, lamps, books, and phones. Freshly adorned in coverings of flowers, animals, and pastoral scenes, the items transcend their former functionality and are simultaneously revelatory and recognizable. Wikander’s vibrant re-appropriations are evocative formal studies that defy categorization and illicit equal parts dissonance and delight.
About Ulla-Stina Wikander
Ulla-Stina Wikander was born 1957 in Kungälv. She is currently living in Stockholm/Kullavik, Sweden and has been working as an artist since 1986. Wikander has shown extensively around the world in solo and group exhibitions including shows in the United States, Sweden and the UK.
About Paradigm 
Paradigm Gallery + Studio® exhibits contemporary artwork from around the world with a focus on Philadelphia-based artists. Established February 2010, the gallery began as a project between co-founders and curators, Jason Chen and Sara McCorriston, as a space in which to create artwork, to exhibit the work of their peers, and to invite the members of the community to create and collect in a welcoming gallery setting. To this day the gallery still aims to welcome all collectors, from first time to lifelong, and continues to support accessible work that welcomes a wide audience.

Make a passionate pitch—if you want investors

The brains of investors are wired to pay closer attention to entrepreneurs who pitch with passion, according to new research.

One would expect that entrepreneurs who pitch their startup ideas with passion are more apt to entice investors. Now there’s scientific proof the two are connected: enthusiasm and financial backing. According to new research from Case Western Reserve University, the brains of potential investors are wired to pay closer attention to entrepreneurs who pitch with passion.

Researchers examined investors’ neural responses to entrepreneurs’ pitches, conducting a randomized experiment that explored the response of investors’ brains using functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging

(fMRI)—finding a causal relationship between passion of the pitcher and interest from investors.

“No one has ever invested in a startup they ignored,” said Scott Shane, the A. Malachi Mixon III Professor of Entrepreneurial Studies in the Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western Reserve.

“Founder passion is essential to establishing investor attention, and our study demonstrates measurable neural effects that offer a biological explanation for their tendency to react positively to enthusiasm and emotion of entrepreneurs,” said Shane, lead author of the paper, published in the Journal of Business Venturing. By showing such energy in pitching their business ideas, entrepreneurs can considerably increase neural engagement in potential investors—increasing the odds these financiers will support a new, untested venture by having strong, measurable effects on their decision-making.

“Most of time investors just say ‘no,’” said Shane. “In fact, the vast majority of entrepreneurs never receive a dime from external investors.

“Entrepreneurs should know: More engaged brains are more likely to meaningfully evaluate pitches,” he said. “We believe our data makes a strong argument that displays of passion trigger heightened engagement that, in turn, makes investors more likely to write a check.”

The experiment

Videos of pitches—identical in content but different in delivery—were randomly assigned to investors inside an fMRI machine. Depending on the passion-level of the pitch, investors’ brains reacted differently: Heightened displays of passion increased investor fixation on the stimulus (the pitch) to override distractions—and demonstrate a causal effect of displayed passion on investor interest.

· Investors randomly assigned a pitch with high founder passion resulted in informal investor interest increasing by 26%, relative to the same pitch delivered with low passion;

· Data from fMRIs showed investor neural responses to entrepreneurs’ high-passion pitches increased investor neural engagement by 39% over lower founder passion.

“More engaged brains are more likely to meaningfully evaluate pitches—and not play on their phones or think about lunch which should result in more favorable investor assessments,” said Shane.

While it’s possible that other mechanisms may be present in the brains of investors—such as inferring from passion that entrepreneurs may be more capable or competent—the experiment showed that passion is a key mechanism because it causes investors to pay attention, said Shane.

The practice of passion

The findings offer strong implications for the practice of entrepreneurship. “Pitching with enthusiasm and passion—these are skills that can be taught,” said Shane. “Flat, unenthusiastic pitches are the enemy of attracting investor attention and to succeeding in a competitive, cutthroat environment.”

Each year, hundreds of thousands of early-stage entrepreneurs, who often lack established track records, offer pitches—widely recognized as the gateway to investor funding—to financiers across the globe. The study focused on Informal investors—referred to as “family, friends and foolhardy strangers” by the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor who account for most startup investments, investing $1 trillion globally between 2012-2015, according to the organization.

The study was co-authored by David Clingingsmith, an associate professor of economics at the Weatherhead School. Will Drover of the University of Oklahoma, and Moran Cerf of Northwestern University also co-authored the paper.

Bastille, 360 MAGAZINE

Bastille Kicks of American Tour

Headline Run Includes September 24 Show At NYC’s Hulu Theatre At Madison Square Garden And October 12 Greek Theatre Concert In L.A. Bastille Performs On “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” On September 25 Doom Days, Bastille’s Critically Acclaimed New Album, Is Out Now Bastille will kick off its North American headline tour at The Met in Philadelphia.

The extensive run will include shows at Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden in New York City (September 24) and the Greek Theatre in Los Angeles (October 12). See below for itinerary. Tickets are on sale HERE. Bastille will perform on “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” on Wednesday, September 25. The GRAMMY® nominated, Brit-winning band is touring in support of its new album, Doom Days (Virgin Records), available everywhere. Bastille launched the album a show in New York City’s Central Park as part of ABC’s “Good Morning America” Summer Concert series. Check out their performance of the single “Joy” HERE. Last month, fans around the world were awestruck when front man Dan Smith posted a video of himself singing “Flaws” on a giant roller coaster during a recent show at a Stockholm amusement park. View the clip HERE. Doom Days takes listeners on a big night out in search of distraction from the surrounding apocalypse. It debuted at No. 1 on Billboard’s Alternative Album Sales chart and in

the Top 5 of the Billboard 200. In a four-star review, NME said, ‘Doom Days’ is a vivid snapshot of humanity and an imaginative, adventurous leveling up from one of Britain’s most influential bands. If the end times are coming, you could do a whole lot worse than taking its lead and gathering up all your friends, pressing play and partying like it’s 1999.” “Joy” has amassed more than 70 million combined streams globally while lead single “Quarter Past Midnight” is Bastille’s third single to hit No. 1 on the Mediabase Alternative chart. Smith performed a stripped-down version of the track “Bad Decisions,” accompanying himself on piano, as part of Rolling Stone’s “How I Wrote This” series. View the interview and performance HERE.

Hailed by Rolling Stone as “Britpop’s new crown princes,” Bastille has sold over eight million adjusted albums and amassed more than 11 billion cumulative streams globally. The band was introduced internationally with the single “Pompeii,” which is now 6x Platinum in the U.S. alone. Marshmello and Bastille’s hit single, “Happier,” has topped charts around the world, with cumulative streams exceeding 3.5 billion. It is certified 5x Platinum in the U.S. and has sold more than 15 million units in the rest of the world. “Happier” held the No. 1 position for three consecutive weeks on Billboard’s BDS and Media base/Top 40 Radio Airplay chart. It has spent 50 weeks at No. 1 on Billboard’s Hot Dance/Electronic songs tally. 

Bastille  – North American Tour

E!’S “DAILY POP” LISTINGS: SEPTEMBER 16 – SEPTEMBER 20

Catch E!’s “Daily Pop” weekdays at 12pm ET/PT.

Monday, September 16 – Primetime Emmy Awards Week kicks off with Emmy Awards Governors Ball bartender Charles Joly mixing Emmy cocktails for our hosts

Tuesday, September 17 – Dr. Mehmet Oz’s medical advice to our hosts, plus an Emmy Awards week workout with Brooke Burke.

Wednesday, September 18 – Skin Expert to the Stars Nurse Jamie showing us how to get Emmy Awards Red Carpet Ready.

Thursday, September 19 –Antoni Porowski, from the Emmy Nominated “Queer Eye”, cooks in-studio with our hosts from his new cookbook Antoni in the Kitchen.

Friday, September 20 –GRAMMY Award winners Lady Antebellum on their new song “Pictures” and on announcing their new album today.

Listings are subject to change.

**Denotes changes or additions.

Netflix Kicks Off Breaking Bad Rewatch Campaign

Netflix is kicking off their Breaking Bad re-watch campaign with a video recap featuring anthemic music by the Grammy nominated duo, Chloe X Halle. Using the 1950’s doo-wop tune “Enchanted,” made famous by The Platters, the piece revisits the many painful, soul crushing moments Jesse (Aaron Paul) has gone through over the course of the five seasons of Breaking Bad… all those moments lead up to where we last see him in the final episode. The song choice is particularly special to Jesse since it’s the same music that plays when he tries Heroin for the first time with his now deceased girlfriend Jane (played Krysten Ritter).

Official Logline for El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie: Written and directed by Breaking Bad creator Vince Gilligan, the Netflix Television Event follows fugitive Jesse Pinkman (Paul) as he runs from his captors, the law and his past. The movie is produced by Gilligan, Mark Johnson, Melissa Bernstein, Charles Newirth, Diane Mercer and Paul, in association with Sony Pictures Television.

Seven Master Sommeliers

The Court of Master Sommeliers, Americas ™ is proud to welcome seven members to the organization: Nick Davis, Medium Plus, Seattle, WA; Mariya Kovacheva, Pernod Ricard, West Palm Beach, FL; Justin Moore, Vetri Cucina, Las Vegas, NV; Vincent Morrow, ONE65, San Francisco, CA; Joshua Orr, Broadbent Selections, San Diego, CA; Jeremy Shanker, Michael Mina, San Francisco, CA; and Jill Zimorski, Champagne Specialist Representing Moet Hennessy Champagne Portfolio, Chicago, IL.

Recently 150 individuals from 22 states and Canada attempted the Master Sommelier Diploma Examination proctored by the Court of Master Sommeliers, Americas. The seven noted above, successfully displayed mastery and met the qualification to be awarded the title Master Sommelier. The results were announced at the Krug Reception on September 11th at the Four Seasons Resort in St. Louis, Missouri. “The examinations are an opportunity for our candidates to shine as they demonstrate their mastery of our beverage service industry,” said Devon Broglie, MS, Chairman of the Court of Master Sommeliers, Americas. “It is inspiring to see their dedication to rigorous study and preparation on display during the examination days.”

Following the celebration of our new members, Broglie reflected on the challenges facing the organization and thanked the Examination Committee for its tireless work to provide a rigorous, exacting and fair examination consistent with the Court’s peerless Master Sommelier credential. “We have made great strides to become a stronger organization over the past year,” Broglie said. “We have improved the security of our examinations, strengthened our ethical principles, and we continue our commitment to leading the industry with integrity as we celebrate new Master Sommeliers and mentor all those still striving to attain the goal.”

The Master Sommelier Diploma is the highest distinction a professional can attain in the beverage service industry. The Master Sommelier Diploma Examination consists of three sections: a verbal theory examination, a wine assessment exercise using the Deductive Tasting Method, and a practical component that focuses on hospitality, beverage service, salesmanship, and overall business acumen. Candidates must receive passing scores in each section to earn the highly coveted Master Sommelier title.

“The Master Sommelier Diploma Examination is extremely demanding.  We applaud the efforts of all candidates who sat this fair and rigorous examination,” Broglie said. “Today we celebrate the success of these seven new Master Sommeliers and continue our commitment to mentor all candidates on their path to success as we chart the course for current and future Master Sommeliers worldwide.”

Travelers Are Looking for Adventure

When it comes to adventure travelers, China is an untapped market totaling USD $8.2B per year, according to new research from Bannikin Travel and Tourism, a leading travel consultancy based in Toronto and Hong Kong. The China Adventure Tourism Market Study, which surveyed more than 300 Chinese travelers over the age of 18 who had taken a trip in the past year, determined that 16.3% of respondents ­­— 23.49 million people — chose an adventure trip for their last holiday. For a market with outbound tourism numbers continuing to see double digit growth, this means there are considerable opportunities for adventure travel brands looking to expand their product offerings for Chinese adventurers.

“This report delves deep into who Chinese adventure travelers are—their planning habits, income, spending habits and dream destinations,” said Natasha Martin, managing director of Bannikin Asia. “We’ve never had better insight into how to market towards the Asian travel market and break into one of the largest tourism spends out there.” The 2019 study found that 2.7% of departures could be categorized as ‘hard adventure,’ while 13.6% pursued ‘soft adventure’ experiences. Though Chinese consumers do not necessarily associate adventure travel with risk-taking activities, such as rafting or mountain biking, they do associate it with remote destinations that can be perceived as exotic and potentially dangerous.

The survey was sent with the objective of discovering how many Chinese travelers actively seek-out adventure while on vacation. Here are the report’s main findings: The total adventure market size for China (based on accommodation spending only) is USD $8.2B per year. Adventure travel spend from China represents 0.64% of total international tourism spend. The top destinations for adventure travelers were United States, Thailand, Australia and Japan.Time in nature, camping and backpacking are some of the most popular activities for Chinese adventure tourists. 72% of Chinese adventure travelers spend between 4-10 days abroad, lower than Western adventure travelers. Bannikin Travel & Tourism runs a leading travel trade development satellite office in Hong Kong, with a team of Asia market experts to assist destinations and tour operators on how to tap into the burgeoning Asia adventure marketplace.

PIRELLI DEBUTS 18-INCH TIRES

Marking a revolution in Formula 1 history, Pirelli‘s newest 18 inch tires were seen in action yesterday during a special 2020 Formula 2 demonstration at Monza with Jean Alesi behind the wheel. These tires will be used in Formula 2 next year, paving the way for a brand-new look in Formula 1 starting in 2021.

Following Alesi’s lap, the iconic tire brand unveiled its 18-inch Formula 1 tire which will be put to the test for the first time at Paul Ricard this Thursday and Friday. Formula One Managing Director Ross Brawn, FIA Single Seater-Commission President Stefano Domenicali, FIA Formula 2 Championship CEO Bruno Michel and Pirelli’s Head of F1 and Car Racing Mario Isola were in attendance.

According to Isola, “The eye-catching demonstration run with the new 18-inch tires at Monza, courtesy of a legendary driver who will always be associated with this track, provided a fascinating glimpse of a future that will be with us before we know it. The link between Formula 2 and Formula 1 have never been closer, symbolized by this latest demonstration and display at our home circuit. Now we look forward to track testing some 18-inch Formula 1 prototypes for the first time next week in France.”

AIWAYS sets a GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS

AIWAYS, the Shanghai-based personal mobility provider, has completed its epic 15,022-kilometer road trip from China to Western Europe – which set a new GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS title in the process. The ‘longest journey by an electric vehicle (prototype)’ record was achieved by the AIWAYS U5 Engineering Drive Team (China), driving an AIWAYS U5, starting in Xi’an, Shanxi, China and ending in Frankfurt, Germany, from 17 July 2019 to 7 September 2019.

During this mammoth 53-day drive, the pair of development cars passed through 12 countries, including China, Kazakhstan, Russia, Finland, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, France and Switzerland. They arrived in Frankfurt on 7 September, in time for the IAA 2019 motor show. Alexander Klose, Executive VP Overseas Operation at AIWAYS, comments: “This world record represents a monumental achievement for our engineers. They have developed a fully-electric SUV that’s capable of traveling hundreds of kilometers between charging in some of the most challenging terrain and remote areas. The fact that we’ve been able to achieve a world record in these conditions demonstrates the U5’s qualities, capabilities and, most importantly, its suitability for European consumers.”

AIWAYS Chief Technical Officer Winter Wang added: “This has been a drive of epic proportions, with the U5 tackling some of the best and worst road conditions that drivers might expect to come across in a lifetime of driving. It shows the high standard of development work that has gone into creating a car that is as suitable for driving in Shanghai as it is in Western Europe.”

The convoy started its journey by tackling the Chinese Gobi Desert and crossing the Kazakh Steppe, locations without an adequate electric vehicle charging infrastructure. The high energy demands of driving on Kazakhstan’s often poor road surfaces, and crossing the Southern Ural Mountains, also posed a challenge to engineers, who frequently relied on low-voltage power sources to recharge the prototype vehicles overnight. Engineers used this to successfully optimise the U5’s charging logic, ensuring compatibility with a variety of different charging standards and varying voltages.

The engineering team on the drive was also in frequent contact with the China-based R&D team, reporting back on multiple hardware and software features. These included the thermal management system underpinning the 65 kWh battery pack, as well as the electric motor, suspension components and dynamic characteristics. With the support of independent test provider TÜV Rheinland, the AIWAYS U5 has recently achieved European homologation in all product aspects ahead of going on sale in Europe next year. The U5 is a statement of intent for the AIWAYS brand as it aims to bring affordable, connected and premium electric transport to the European market in 2020.