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    walking dead twd seth gilliam father gabriel negan

    • Don't go telling Seth Gilliam that Father Gabriel is to blame for Negan's jail cell escape on "The Walking Dead."
    • During an appearance Saturday at New Jersey's Walker Stalker Con in Edison, NJ, Gilliam maintained Gabriel's innocence claiming a guard should have been watching over Negan.
    • "Father Gabriel slammed the f---ing gate shut and it locked. And there was a f---ing guard standing by," said Gilliam during a panel INSIDER attended.

    On the season nine mid-season finale of "The Walking Dead," Jesus was killed, the Whisperers were revealed, and, Negan escaped from his cell after years of being jailed. 

    It seems like Father Gabriel (Seth Gilliam), the last one who spoke with Negan, would be to blame, but Gilliam doesn't agree with that assessment one bit.

    "I think he'd be pissed at the guard that he left on duty when he slammed the gate — shut and locked," Gilliam said at Walker Stalker New Jersey panel in Edison, NJ Saturday afternoon when asked by a fan how Gabriel will feel once he finds out Negan is free from his holding place.

    INSIDER was on hand for the panel in which Gilliam took the stage with Pollyanna McIntosh, who played Anne/Jadis on the show until she flew off with Rick in a helicopter during season nine.

    "There was a guard on duty when Gabriel slammed the cell door, locked, who was in charge of making sure that Negan did not get out," he reiterated.

    negan cell 908 twd

    "No, Father Gabriel did not let Negan out on purpose," he continued, fired up, but in a humerous tone. "Father Gabriel slammed the f---ing gate shut and it locked. And there was a f---ing guard standing by. Next f---ing question."

    Mic drop.

    Gilliam has been vocal about this on social media, too. His Twitter account is locked, but for those who are able to see his tweets, he pointed out the same exact thing after the episode aired. 

    seth gilliam tweets negan escape walking dead

    What kind of impact will Negan's escape have on Alexandria and the rest of the survivors moving forward on "The Walking Dead"? 

    twd 908 negan

    "When we open up in the first episode back in the new season, we will find out what it is that Negan is up to," showrunner Angela Kang told INSIDER of what Negan will be up to on the rest of the season.

    "He's certainly been sick of being stuck inside that cell, both Negan and Jeffrey," Kang added. "So it was fun to kind of have him out and about and I think there's a pretty cool story to be told there that I hope that fans will enjoy who have enjoyed Negan from the start or who are kind of just enjoying seeing his evolution in the character."

    A teaser, which aired on "Talking Dead," showed Negan with a shovel heading into a home in Alexandria. We'll have to wait to see what comes of that when the show returns to AMC in February 2019.

    You can follow along with our "Walking Dead" coverage here.

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: The science of why human breasts are so big

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    ariana grande travis scott kali uchis

    While the Grammy Awards have often been criticized for being out of touch, there's plenty to celebrate about the 2019 nominations.

    The late rapper Mac Miller secured a posthumous nod for best rap album, while the outrageously gifted Kendrick Lamar led the pack with the most nominations. Janelle Monáe's groundbreaking "Dirty Computer" is up for album of the year." Female nominees dominated many of the major categories, including best new artist.

    But as many fans know, for every success from a major award show, there is usually a source of rage or confusion.

    Here are INSIDER's picks for the 14 biggest snubs, in no particular order.

    Mitski's singular nomination for best recording package is just plain rude.

    Best recording package is an award that honors the visual look of an album, not its sonic achievements.

    It is also the only category that recognized "Be the Cowboy," the fifth album from Japanese-American indie rock musician Mitski, and easily her most masterful to date — despite landing within the top five in everymajorroundup of this year's best albums.

    Ariana Grande's "Sweetener" didn't get much love.

    Ariana Grande is optimistic, alluring, and more confident than ever on her fourth studio album, "Sweetener." By many accounts, including Grande's, it's her best album yet.

    "This feels like the most 'me' an album has ever felt. It just feels super close to home,"Grande recently revealed. "A lot of people were like, 'How does it feel stepping out of your comfort zone?' And I'm like, 'Nah, I don't feel like I've stepped out of my comfort zone. I feel like I found it.'"

    But while "Sweetener" did secure a nomination for best pop vocal album, it was shut out of most major categories, including album of the year.

    Grande's hit single "God Is a Woman" was thankfully recognized for best pop solo performance, but the most glittering, nuanced, and impeccably crafted tracks on the album (most notably "No Tears Left to Cry,""Get Well Soon," and "R.E.M.") were completely ignored.

    Travis Scott was one of the most successful artists this year, but his No. 1 album "Astroworld" was nearly ignored.

    Travis Scott has never been a Grammys darling, but "Astroworld" demonstrated a growth in skill and musical maturity that many thought would change his fate; after all, he somehow managed to get Drake, John Mayer, and Stevie Wonder on the same album. 

    "A real driver on this album too was when we got snubbed for the Grammys in 2016," Scott's A&R told Rolling Stone earlier this year. "We were like, man, are they not respecting us? That's when it was like, 'No, y'all got it f---ed up.' We went back and wanted to make an album that was undeniable."

    And yet: Scott secured a nomination for "Best Rap Album," but was still denied entry to the coveted "Album of the Year" category.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Urban Meyer

    • Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer will retire at the end of the season.
    • Meyer won three Big Ten titles and the 2014 National Championship in his seven years at Ohio State, but his final season in Columbus was marred by controversy.
    • Many speculated that the domestic violence scandal from the start of the season, combined with his ongoing health problems, could drive Meyer out of the Buckeye State.
    • Meyer has not indicated what he will do next, and his long and tumultuous career may not provide a clear answer.
    • Let's take a look back at Meyer's roller-coaster past and what he may choose to do in the future.

    Urban Meyer will coach his final game for the Ohio State Buckeyes when they take on the Washington Huskies in the Rose Bowl on New Year's Day.

    Meyer won three Big Ten titles and the 2014 National Championship in his seven years at Ohio State, but his final season in Columbus was marred by controversy. He was widely criticized for mishandling domestic violence allegations against former assistant coach Zach Smith and was subsequently suspended for three games to start the 2018 season. 

    Many speculated that Meyer's ongoing health problems, combined with the scandal, could drive Meyer out of the program.

    According to Pete Thamel of CBS Sports, the decision was driven by "a myriad of factors," but that "foremost among them was his happiness with the state of the Ohio State program."

    Meyer has yet to indicate what he will do next, and his nonlinear path to Ohio State doesn't provide a clear answer. Let's take a look back at his roller-coaster past and what he may choose to do in the next stage of his career.

    Urban Meyer has earned a reputation as a giant of college football, but he hasn't always been a household name.

    Meyer started his head coaching career at Bowling Green in 2001.

    He spent 15 years prior in assistant coaching positions with various programs, including Ohio State, Illinois State, Colorado State, and Notre Dame.


    After coaching the Falcons to 17-6 overall record in his two years at the helm, Meyer left Bowling Green for Utah.

    He coached the Utes to a 10-2 record in his first season at the helm to earn Mountain West Conference Coach of the Year honors.


    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    The Insider Picks team writes about stuff we think you'll like. Business Insider has affiliate partnerships, so we get a share of the revenue from your purchase.


    Subscription boxes are the gifts that keep on giving.

    Whether you subscribe for three months or 12, you're essentially giving several gifts but without the hassle of shopping and wrapping each one.

    And to save you even more time and effort, Amazon has stepped up its subscription box game. Not only does the site literally have all of the things, its subscription box service has kits for every need and budget.

    Beauty fans, snackers, kids, pet owners — it's all there. And each month has a different theme so they're never getting the same products twice. It's basically the holidays every month, and they have you to thank for that.

    If you're going to give a subscription box this season, these 18 are all great choices.

    And if you're looking for more gift suggestions, check out all of our gift guides here.

    SEE ALSO: All of Insider Picks' holiday gift guides, in one place

    READ MORE: 22 unique gift ideas for everyone in the family — all from Amazon

    DON'T MISS: 22 useful and fun gifts for coffee lovers they don't already have

    FaceTory: sheet masks they can do every weekend

    FaceTory: FOUR-ever FRESH, $8.90 - $19.90/month, available at Amazon

    Treat them to a four-pack or seven-pack of facial masks every month. The types of masks range from basic cotton sheets to hydrogels so there's a good range of products they can try and explore.

    MexiCrate: Mexican candy for their sweet tooth

    MexiCrate, $11.99 - $21.95/month, available at Amazon

    For a bold taste of Mexico, gift them a box of Mexican candies that hit all the right spots: sweet, spicy, salty, and sour. The Liker box includes one pound of candy, while the Lover box has a whopping three pounds.

    Bean Box: best-in-class coffee from Seattle and Portland

    Bean Box, $26/month, available at Amazon

    Every month, they can try out another amazing coffee brewer from Seattle and Portland. There are six types of boxes to choose from — light roast, medium roast, dark roast, espresso, decaf, and an "All Roasts" option. Each box comes with a 12-ounce pouch of freshly roasted whole beans, tasting notes, and at-home brewing tips.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    mbs jared ivanka kushner

    • Jared Kushner was reportedly the target of Saudi efforts to influence the Trump administration.
    • Kushner, the president’s son-in-law and senior adviser, developed a close relationship with Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and are even on a first-name basis, according to a New York Times report.
    • The relationship has cemented the crown prince in Kushner's priorities, as he defended him to the Trump administration after US intelligence agencies concluded he was responsible for the death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

    Jared Kushner reportedly developed a close relationship and kept in contact with Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, after being targeted by Saudi officials in an effort to woo the Trump administration.

    Kushner, President Donald Trump's son-in-law and senior adviser, also reportedly kept in regular contact with the crown prince, with whom he was on a first-name basis.

    The two men even regularly spoke on the phone — even after US intelligence agencies concluded he was responsible for the death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, according to a Saturday New York Times report

    Khashoggi, a US-based columnist for The Washington Post, disappeared after entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, Turkey, on October 2. Turkish officials leaked gruesome details to US and Turkish pro-government media in the following weeks about Khashoggi's violent death.

    Read more: Here's everything we know about the troubling disappearance and death of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi

    The Times, citing former officials, text messages, and emails, reported that Kushner and the crown prince have been in close contact for nearly two years, despite efforts from the White House chief of staff, John Kelly, to rein in one-on-one communications with foreign leaders. 

    Donald Trump Mohammed bin Salman MbS

    Despite the White House's communications protocol, the crown prince and his aides reportedly continued to pursue contact with Kushner beginning around Trump's inauguration to curry favor for the prince's policies and authority in the region. 

    Three former senior US officials told The Times that Kushner's lack of political experience could leave him vulnerable to being manipulated by the Saudis.

    Kushner's close contact with Saudi officials has been previously reported. The Washington Post reported last month that the crown prince had told Kushner in a phone call that Khashoggi was a "dangerous Islamist" just days after the journalist went missing.

    Their relationship may have been the catalyst for Kushner's previously efforts to persuade Trump to stand by Crown Prince Mohammed through the uproar over Khashoggi's killing.

    Trump's reluctance to back the conclusion by US intelligence that Saudi Arabia orchestrated Khashoggi's killing has prompted outcry from lawmakers. The Senate even voted to advance a measure that would compel the US to withdraw its support for the Saudi-led efforts in Yemen's civil war.

    "We have to be able to work with our allies," Kushner said in an October interview with CNN, before crediting Saudi Arabia as "a very strong ally in terms of pushing back against Iran's aggression."

    Read the full Times report here »

    SEE ALSO: The creative accounting that reportedly allowed Jared Kushner to dodge paying income taxes for years is totally legal

    DON'T MISS: Trump says Chief of Staff John Kelly is leaving the White House at the end of the year

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Anthony Scaramucci claims Trump isn't a nationalist: 'He likes saying that because it irks these intellectual elitists'

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    Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May leaves 10 Downing Street, London

    • Theresa May's Brexit deal is highly risky and represents a failure on the UK's part to make fundamental choices about its future, according to a highly damning report from a cross-party group of MPs.
    • Hillary Benn MP, chair of the committee, said May's plan "would represent a huge step into the unknown."
    • The report said the deeply unpopular backstop mechanism — designed to avoid a hard border on the island of Ireland — would likely need to kick in after the transition period, and would result in "immediate barriers" to UK-EU trade.
    • The stark warning comes just two days before Theresa May puts her much-criticised Brexit deal before parliament, with most MPs ready to vote against it.

    LONDON — Theresa May has failed to spell out what Britain's future will look like after Brexit, with her deal with the EU representing a "huge step into the unknown," according to a damning verdict from a cross-party committee of MPs.

    The Committee on Exiting the European Union's report published on Sunday said the government had "failed to make fundamental choices about the UK's future" and to assess the trade-offs that would result. 

    The stark warning comes just two days before Theresa May puts her much-criticised Brexit deal before parliament.

    Her proposals have been roundly criticised from almost every wing of the House of Commons: Brexiteers believe the deal would bind the UK too closely to the EU, while Remainers have suggested it would leave the UK in a state of vassalage with little upside compared to EU membership.

    The MPs found that:

    • After twenty months of negotiations, the government does not have detailed plans the nature of Britain's future relationship with the EU.
    • The political declaration — the document contained in Theresa May's proposed Brexit deal which sets out the UK and EU's plans for their future relationship — is "neither detailed nor substantive," and only sets out a series of options, meaning businesses would continue to face "significant uncertainty" about the terms of trade with the EU when the transition period ends.
    • There are no realistic, long-term proposals from the Government to keep an open border on the island of Ireland without leaving the EU single market and customs union — something Theresa May has repeatedly pledged to do.
    • The deeply unpopular backstop mechanism— an insurance policy designed to avoid a hard border on the island of Ireland which would see the UK effectively remain within the EU's customs territory — would therefore be the default relationship between the UK and EU when the transition period ended.
    • The backstop would result in "immediate barriers" to UK-EU trade in goods and services. By 2022, the latest point at which the transition period could end — the UK could face the threat of "significant economic disruption" which would reduce its leverage in the negotiations.

    'This could take years to sort out'

    Hilary Benn

    Labour MP Hillary Benn, chair of the Brexit committee, said the political declaration fell "far short" of the "detailed and substantive" document promised by former Brexit ministers and by the EU.

    "It is because the Government has refused to face up to the hard choices confronting us that this deal would represent a huge step into the unknown," he said.

    “The Political Declaration falls far short of the ‘detailed and substantive’ document promised by former Secretaries of State and by the EU Chief Negotiator, Michel Barnier.

    "It does not give the British people or our businesses the clarity and the certainty they need about our future trading relationship with the EU in five or ten years’ time. And with these negotiations having not even having started yet, this could take years to sort out."

    Parliament appears highly likely to reject May's proposed deal when it is put to a vote on Tuesday evening, with all opposition parties resolved to vote against it along with a large number of Tory MPs.

    SEE ALSO: There is a 'real danger' the UK's security will be put at risk by Theresa May's Brexit deal

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Lindsey Graham once warned there would be 'holy hell to pay' if Trump fired Jeff Sessions

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    james Comey

    • Former FBI Director James Comey said during his testimony before lawmakers that he and the special counsel Robert Mueller are "not friends in any social sense."

    • The testimony occurred in a closed-door setting, but lawmakers released a redacted transcript of the proceedings on Saturday.
    • President Donald Trump often accuses the pair of being "best friends," and once even said that there are 100 pictures of Comey and Mueller "hugging and kissing each other."

    • During Friday's testimony, one lawmaker said he wouldn't ask Comey about Trump's "hugging and kissing" remark, to which Comey joked it would be "a relief to my wife."

    Former FBI Director James Comey told House lawmakers on Friday that he and the special counsel Robert Mueller do not socialize, contradicting President Donald Trump's repeated claims that the pair are "best friends."

    Comey's testimony before the House Judiciary Committee and House Oversight and Government Reform Committee occurred behind closed doors. A redacted transcript of the proceedings was released by the committee leaders on Saturday.

    President Donald Trump has tweeted multiple times — the latest instance being on Friday — that Comey and Mueller are "best friends," accusing them of teaming up on the Russia investigation.

    "Robert Mueller and Leakin' Lyin' James Comey are Best Friends, just one of many Mueller Conflicts of Interest," Trump tweeted.

    Read more: Everything Michael Cohen told Mueller about the Trump campaign's contacts with Russia

    James Comey

    During Comey's testimony, Rep. Jerrold Nadler, a New York Democrat, asked about Trump's accusations. He cited a recent interview Trump gave to The Daily Caller, in which he accused Comey and Mueller of being "best friends" and said there were 100 pictures of the pair "hugging and kissing each other." The FBI later said it had no records of such images.

    "Are you best friends with Robert Mueller?" Nadler asked.

    "I am not," Comey responded. "I admire the heck out of the man, but I don't know his phone number, I've never been to his house, I don't know his children's names."

    He continued: "I think I had a meal once alone with him in a restaurant. I like him. I am not a — I'm an associate of his who admires him greatly. We're not friends in any social sense."

    When Nadler followed up by saying he wouldn't ask if Comey had hugged or kissed Mueller, Comey joked that it was "a relief to my wife."

    Read the full transcript here »

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Anthony Scaramucci claims Trump isn't a nationalist: 'He likes saying that because it irks these intellectual elitists'

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    france yellow vest protest

    • Yellow vest protesters took to the streets across France on Saturday, in what quickly devolved into violent clashes with police.
    • The demonstrators began by protesting a planned fuel tax hike weeks ago, but participants have continued even after the French government canceled the increase.
    • The protesters continue to be outraged over French President Emmanuel Macron, economic inequality, and worsening living standards.

    For the fourth weekend in a row, yellow vest protesters took to the streets across France to demonstrate against President Emmanuel Macron, high taxes, and economic inequality.

    The weekly protests have steadily grown more violent, and French officials said by the end of Saturday, dozens were injured and hundreds arrested.

    Thousands of police officers were deployed to control the riots, eventually firing tear gas and rubber bullets, and repelling demonstrators with water cannons.

    Here's how the clashes unfolded:

    The so-called "Yellow Vest" movement was first sparked weeks ago, when protestors began demonstrating against a planned fuel tax increase.

    Many of the demonstrators are working-class or impoverished residents of France.

    In response to the growing outrage and violence, Macron eventually backed down and canceled the fuel tax increase on Wednesday.

    Source: The New York Times

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    twd jesus aaron walking dead

    • Jesus (Tom Payne) was surprisingly killed off "The Walking Dead's" season nine mid-season finale.
    • But we could see him again.
    • Saturday, at Walker Stalker Con New Jersey, Payne hinted we could see him in a flashback during the AMC series' six-year time gap.

    Jesus (Tom Payne) may have recently been killed off "The Walking Dead," but that doesn't mean we may never see him again on the show or in "TWD" universe.

    "There's a six-year time jump, in which a lot of stuff happened and there's the mysterious marks on Michonne and Daryl. All of these things which could be explained, and Jesus may have a hand in some of that," Payne said Saturday morning at New Jersey's Walker Stalker Con in Edison, NJ during a panel with "The Walking Dead" star Ross Marquand, who plays Aaron. 

    INSIDER was on hand as Payne was asked whether or not we could see Jesus resurrected or appear in some sort of flashback during the six-year time gap on the show. 

    "There's a lot of time," Payne said of the jump in time on the show.

    ross marquand tom payne

    But he quickly added that fans shouldn't expect to see Jesus rise from the dead anytime soon.

    "But, as far as this spot from the timeline in the show. Yeah, he dead," Payne said to laughs from the crowd.

    Read more: 'They knew I was a bit unhappy': 'The Walking Dead' star says he was frustrated and bored with his role on the show

    Marquand then chimed in with his own fan-fiction interpretation of what should happen. 

    "I'll tell you what's going to happen. I'll spoil this," joked Marquand. "So, there's a bunch of gravestones. They're basically going to dig a real quick hole, put some gravestones over him, and in three days, he's going to come back."

    If only that's how it worked. 

    twd daryl whisperer mask

    When INSIDER spoke with Payne ahead of the mid-season finale he similarly hinted that we could see Jesus pop up in that six-year time gap. That's what makes the most logical sense. 

    Showrunner Angela Kang has told us we should expect some flashbacks on the show. How else will we learn how Michonne and Daryl — and maybe others — received those mystery "X" marks on their backs? 

    "We'll find out some more about what happened during that six-year passage of time with the mystery of the "X," [and] we may see the return of a familiar character," Kang told INSIDER. Was she speaking of Payne? Maybe. "I'm excited for all of that. And we also, I'll tease, that we do something we've never done on the show before in the back-half of the season that I think fans will be into."

    You can follow along with our "Walking Dead" coverage here

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: The legendary economist who predicted the housing crisis says the US will win the trade war

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    jesus aaron relationship 907

    • Ross Marquand's Aaron had his arm amputated on "The Walking Dead" early on season nine.
    • At a panel during New Jersey's Walker Stalker Con on Saturday, Marquand said it was almost another character which received that fate back on season seven.
    • He didn't name anyone, but it's likely it could have been Carl or Rick Grimes.

    Aaron lost his arm early on season nine of "The Walking Dead" when his arm was crushed by a tree log. But actor Ross Marquand, who plays Aaron on the AMC zombie drama, says we could have seen a very different character meet a similar fate years ago.

    "Originally, they had been proposing that for another character in season seven," said Marquand at a Walker Stalker Con panel in Edison, NJ Saturday morning. "And then it didn't come to fruition for various reasons."

    aaron TWD 902

    He first learned Aaron would lose his arm on the show back in April and it was a detail he was surprised to find out. 

    "I had a meeting with Angela, the new showrunner, and she says, 'So, we're thinking about cutting off your arm.' I was like, 'Oh, OK.' Usually, those meetings are a little vague and you get a general idea of where your character might go, nothing really that specific," said Marquand. "So when she said, 'We're thinking about cutting off your arm,' that's very specific. That's a lot of information to digest."

    Marquand first noted on an episode of "Talking Dead" earlier this season that another character nearly lost their arm instead of him. The actor didn't say who the character was or why the idea from season seven was scrapped Saturday, but we have some ideas. 

    What other characters could have lost an arm on "The Walking Dead"

    Andrew Lincoln told press in 2017 he had asked the show for years to get rid of his arm, an iconic moment that happens early on in the comics.  

    rick grimes loses hand the walking dead

    "That is the one thing that I have been campaigning for for a long time, for them to chop my arm off,"Lincoln told press at New York Comic Con in 2017

    The main reason why it didn't happen? Lincoln said it was about money.

    "All that happens is the special effects department just starts sucking their teeth [like], 'That's gonna cost a lot of money to do,'" said Lincoln of one reason we haven't seen Rick lose his hand on the show.

    Clearly, the show found a way around that with Marquand. His character wears a giant sheath-like gauntlet over his arm that is made out of multiple materials in addition to the metal on the outside.

    twd jesus aaron walking dead

    "They basically took a cast of my entire arm," said Marquand at Walker Stalker NJ. "It's like a clamshell. It unlocks on one side.. There are four different parts and it's like rubber and plastic throughout. It iitches like crazy and it's impossible to take off."

    Marquand estimated wearing the glove for as many as 10 hours at a time.

    While Lincoln campaigned to lose his arm on the show, it's likely Rick's son Carl could have lost his arm. As a reminder, Negan almost forced Rick to chop off his son's arm during season seven. That fits in with the timeline Marquand mentioned Saturday. 

    carl walking dead arm

    Chandler Riggs has even said he previously thought Carl may lose his arm on the show.

    "I had no idea it wasn't going to happen," Riggs said at a Walker Stalker Con in 2017. "When I was reading the script, I was like 'Are they seriously going to cut my arm off?' I was scared to death."

    Marquand noted during the panel that every time he puts on his gear that he thinks of another TV show.

    "Every time I put it on, I think of 'Ash Vs. Evil Dead. 'Groovy' every time I put it on," Marquand said referencing Bruce Campbell's character, who also has an arm replacement with a chainsaw.

    Bruce Campbell ash vs evil dead

    That would be quite useful in the zombie apocalypse. Marquand says he's not promising a chainsaw addition for Aaron's arm, but he's not ruling it out.

    "Season 10, it's gonna be great," he joked when asked if he would get a similar modification. 

    If he doesn't get the chainsaw, the actor may be more likely to grow out a longer beard as Aaron.

    When Aaron lost his arm on the show many noted that the character started to more resemble comic-book Rick Grimes because of his addition of a long beard but Marquand said the beard was his idea and something he fought for on the show.

    aaron rick grimes walking dead

    "That's why I fought for the beard, too," Marquand said. "He loses so many people in the last few seasons, and I thought, 'Why would you be shaving?' You'd be letting it go. The beard's going to get longer, hopefully. I hope." 

    You can follow along with our "Walking Dead" coverage here.

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: A Harvard psychologist reveals the secret to curbing your appetite

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    Tech v Trump (Jake Kanter's thumb — please do not use)

    • More than 90% of the political donations made by Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix, and Google staff went to the Democrats, figures dating from 2004 show.
    • Staff at Google's parent company Alphabet were the biggest benefactors to Democratic candidates and causes, according to the data from GovPredict.
    • The findings come at a delicate time for Silicon Valley.
    • US President Donald Trump and other prominent Republicans have criticized what they see as bias at powerful tech firms and are threatening anti-trust probes.

    The political donations made by staff at the world's biggest tech firms have been revealed in data seen by Business Insider.

    BI worked with GovPredict, the political data firm backed by prestigious Silicon Valley tech incubator Y Combinator, to uncover donations made by employees at the FAANG firms: Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix, and Google. 

    The data is drawn from campaign filings and covers a 14-year period. It only measures political contributions made by employees and doesn't reflect company-level donations to candidates. Facebook, for example, donates to candidates at a company level through its own Political Action Committee (PAC.)

    GovPredict found that workers at these tech giants have backed the Democrats to the tune of millions of dollars, while donations to the Republicans have been paltry in comparison.

    In fact, more than 90% of the $40 million donated by big tech employees to political causes since 2004 has gone to the Democrats.

    Staff at Google's parent company Alphabet were collectively the biggest funders of Democratic candidates and causes. Employees donated $16.3 million to the party, which was nearly $10 million more than employees from the next biggest funder, Amazon.

    Democrats had a near-monopoly on donations from staff at Netflix, accounting for 98% of worker contributions to political parties.

    Tech political donations 04–08

    The findings come at a delicate time for Silicon Valley. US President Donald Trump and other prominent Republicans have criticized what they see as bias at powerful tech firms. Trump is also looking at anti-trust proceedings against Amazon, Facebook, and Google.

    The president said in August that Google search results were "RIGGED" against him, while last month, he asked his Twitter followers to "check out how biased Facebook, Google and Twitter are in favor of the Democrats."

    Google, in particular, has been a lightning rod for anger. Trump has repeatedly targeted the company, as have Republicans, including House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy.

    Read more: A report on Alphabet employee political donations could light a fire under Trump's war on Google

    Google CEO Sundar Pichai will appear before Congress for the first time next week, when he gives evidence to the House Judiciary Committee on December 11. He is expected to face tough questions about search results, potential antitrust issues, and Google's plans to launch a censored search engine in China.

    The biggest year of donations from Alphabet staffers to the Democrats came in 2016, when staff spent $6 million trying to keep Trump out of office. In fact, all of the tech firm employee donations hit a high in 2016, except Amazon, GovPredict found. Workers at Jeff Bezos' company donated their peak of $3 million to liberal causes in 2012 when Barack Obama secured a second term.

    Tech political donations 16

    Ari Ezra Waldman, director of the Innovation Center for Law and Technology at the New York Law School, said there is "zero" evidence to support the theory that Google is fixing search results against the Republicans — and donation patterns do not change that.

    "What comes up on search results on Google, for example, is the product of Google's highly complex and proprietary algorithm, which is sensitive to what other people click on, share, and so forth," he said. "So, if critical articles about Donald Trump are coming up first, that just means that critical articles about Donald Trump are being shared more, clicked on more, and searched for more."

    Google, Apple, Facebook, and Netflix declined to comment. Amazon did not respond to requests for comment.

    GovPredict analyzed Federal Election Commission filings, state and city campaign finance portals, and the Internal Revenue Service. It examined election contributions made by tech staff by tracking the various subsidiary names of their companies used in the filings. 

    GovPredict then categorized, as Democrat or Republican, the unique committees to which employees made donations. Most were labelled by the Federal Election Commission, while on others GovPredict had to make its own call.

    Former Harvard graduate Emil Pitkin launched GovPredict at the Y Combinator demo day in 2015. The company is also said to have $120,000 in seed funding from Y Combinator, which has backed startups such as Airbnb, Reddit, and Stripe.

    SEE ALSO: Bernie Sanders has received donations from more Amazon workers than Barack Obama over the past 14 years

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    Grace Millane thumb

    • British backpacker Grace Millane, 22, went missing in Auckland, New Zealand, on December 1.
    • Police in Auckland say they believe they have found her body on the outskirts of the city.
    • The update comes hours after police charged a man with Millane's murder.
    • Millane had been travelling after finishing her studies at university.

    Police say they believe they have found the body of murdered British backpacker Grace Millane in the outskirts of Auckland, New Zealand. 

    The update comes hours after New Zealand police said the 22-year-old Millane was dead and charged a 26-year-old man with her murder. His name has been withheld, and he is due in court on Monday.

    Detective Inspector Scott Beard said the body had been found around 10 metres off Scenic Drive, a road that runs through the western outskirts of Auckland. In a statement, Beard said that the body had not been formally identified but was believed to be Millane's.

    Read more:Police are charging a man with murdering a 22-year-old backpacker who went missing in New Zealand

    "Obviously, this brings the search for Grace to an end,"he said in a statement. "It is an unbearable time for the Millane family and our hearts go out to them."

    He added that Millane's family had been informed. "Any father, any parent in this situation would struggle."

    Grace Millane toyota corolla

    Millane was from the British town of Wickford in south-eastern England. She had been travelling around the world after finishing her studies at the University of Lincoln.

    She had not been seen since December, when she was last seen alive at a hotel with a man. It isn't clear if the same man is being held by police.

    In a statement released by her family earlier this week, Millane was described as "a fun loving, outgoing and family-orientated person."

    According to the BBC, Millane had been in New Zealand for around two weeks after finishing up a six-week group trip to South America.

    In his statement, DI Beard appealed to anyone who might have seen a red Toyota Corolla hatchback car, which had been hired in Auckland.

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    • Commodity companies in cocoa, coffee, soy, and even oil have jumped into sustainability linked loans.
    • Companies can reduce the interest rate on their debt if they meet green criteria, and will be punished financially if they don't.
    • Sustainable finance has become more and more commonplace in the commodities industry.

    Companies across some of the world’s murkiest industries have taken steps to save money, (and bonus: improve their less-than-squeaky clean images) by taking on "sustainability loans." A slew of commodities producers, users, and traders have joined the trend in the past 12 months across areas including the notoriously dirty palm oil industry. 

    Take Switzerland chocolate company Barry Callebaut, one of the world's largest cocoa producers. Last year the company, stung by an accusation of illegally purchasing cocao from protected parks in the Ivory Coast, linked one of its credit facilities (a form of loan) to sustainability rankings.

    That means the interest rate on its loan can go lower if it performs well on sustainability criteria, which is determined by an independent ratings company called Sustainalytics. Callebaut's deal, previously unheard of, was the first of many. (Callebaut did not immediately reply to a request for comment on the cocoa purchases.)

    “Market uptake has been high,” said Leonie Schreve, head of sustainable finance at ING. “Companies are realising that this is part of their transition towards a future economy aligned with the Paris Accords.”

    Read more: The UN says curbing climate change would reap huge health benefits

    Research by firms such as Nielsen has suggested that millennials, in particular, are more willing to spend larger amounts of money to buy products that are sustainable. Companies are taking note, with sustainable financing now regularly mentioned by banks, investors, and major businesses.

    Major palm oil producer and trader Wilmar signed up to a similar loan last year — the first of its kind in the palm oil sector — an industry that has repeatedly drawn criticism from environmental groups.

    Singaporean commodity trader Olam took similar steps this year with a $500 million bank loan linked to a range of environmental, social and governance (ESG) metrics. Importantly, if the company performs well against the metrics the cost of its debt will decrease, saving money while winning brownie points from environmentalists.

    Some players in the oil industry — the climate's biggest boogeyman — are even in on the act. Switzerland-based oil trader Gunvor, announced a sustainability linked bank loan, and will be punished financially if it fails to meet the targets set out in its loan agreement. It also said any savings from meeting those targets will go towards its recently launched Gunvor Foundation which works with aid groups in Africa.

    "We reward companies which choose to use innovative sustainable investments," said Esther Berkelaar, head of trade and commodity finance, agriculture at Rabobank. "On the other hand, banks will increasingly require a higher interest rate from companies which are significantly falling behind on sustainability performance, because the bank runs a higher credit risk." 

    Another commodity trader, ECOM, also took the step of linking its financing to its social sustainability objectives in 2018.

    The companies are motivated to clean up their act, but perhaps the bigger incentive in a world of cut-throat competition and thin trading margins. To be sure, it's an uphill battle. The commodities industry has struggled with reputational hits and an array of scandals ranging from modern slavery, child labor, and bribery.

    "We have clear restrictions on what we don't do," said ING's Schreve, declining to elaborate. "But more importantly, we seek opportunities to support our clients in financing their sustainable transition."

    SEE ALSO: Oil plunges as OPEC tries to balance supply concerns with Trump's demands

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: The legendary economist who predicted the housing crisis says the US will win the trade war

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    hiding emotions

    • Emotions shouldn't be pushed down.
    • It's better to allow yourself to feel what you're feeling.
    • Otherwise, they will boil over and show themselves later, with worse consequences.
    • If you hide your emotions, it makes you afraid of facing them.
    • In reality, they are useful for working out what we need to change.

    If you put a lid on a boiling pot, eventually the contents will rise to the top and spill over. Human emotions are no different. If we push our feelings down and down and try to avoid them, eventually, they will explode out more fiercely than before.

    This is one main reason people sometimes refuse to tap into their feelings, according to psychologist Perpetua Neo. She told INSIDER people can be over-rational, because they think the alternative is someone who cries all the time, is incredibly angry and erratic, and can't control themselves.

    "When you ask somebody 'why can't you trust your feelings?' They'll tell you 'because last time I lost my temper, everything went to pot," Neo said. "Actually, it's this whole vicious cycle that happens when we oppress our feelings."

    If we bottle things up, they don't just go away. Emotions will stay down until we physically can't contain them anymore, then they'll burst out fiercer than before. And it won't just be that one feeling, it will be everything else that's been thrown on top of it since. For some people, it can be years, or even decades, or repressed experiences.

    "When it explodes you do things you regret," said Neo. "You spend too much money on things you don't like, you sleep with the wrong people you hate, things like that. And afterwards, you say it was your emotions that made you do it."

    Read more: Being 'anti-fragile' in times of pain is just as important as being resilient — here's what that means

    By blaming the emotions, we learn they are something to be scared of, and not to be trusted.

    "The perspective shift would be working out how your emotions can play together with your rationality," said Neo. "That actually works much better."

    Emotions shouldn't be terrifying in themselves. We evolved to have them for a reason. They're like our "first intel in a war," said Neo. If you listen to them, they can tell you exactly what you need to hear.

    But you need to learn to respond rather than have a knee-jerk reaction, she added. You can do this by reframing the way you see emotions like anger, jealousy, and guilt, so you can identify areas of your life to change, instead of avoiding the pain. That way, you'll be able to have a hold over how you handle them much easier.

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    trader nyse upset market crash

    • The stock market is currently being hit from all sides by a series of headwinds, and it's been difficult for investors to figure out where their concerns and efforts should be focused.
    • Jim Paulsen, the chief investment officer of Leuthold Group, explains why an equity bear market may be the only way to resolve the six main issues facing stocks.

    Every time the stock market gets thrown for a loop, a great deal of energy is expended trying to identify the single theme that's driving the action. But that focal point has been a moving target for the past several months.

    Some weeks, President Donald Trump's trade war is the lightning rod dictating investor activity. Other times the market is driven by fears about a flattening yield curve, and what it means for the prospects of an economic recession. And if the shiny veneer around tech stocks comes under any pressure whatsoever, you can bet some swift selling will be in order.

    But one market expert thinks it's a foolish errand to try and elevate one market catalyst above all others. That would be Jim Paulsen, the chief investment strategist at Leuthold Group, who says the stock market has been so frustrating largely because there are so many concurrent forces whipsawing it.

    Because there are so many factors capable of shaping the investment landscape, Paulsen says there's no easy catch-all solution for the stock market's recent woes. If one area is addressed, another pops up to take its place as the headwind du jour, opening a whole new series of issues.

    To that end, Paulsen says that there's only one development that could finally wipe the slate clean — and it's not pretty. He's speaking about a bear market, which refers to a 20% drop in stocks. In his mind, such a crash may be a necessary evil if market is to regain its footing on a longer-term basis.

    "The issues confronting stocks are numerous and most will likely remain periodically problematic for the balance of this expansion," Paulsen said. "Consequently, resolving 'problems aplenty' will not be easy. And, ultimately, it will be resolved by a bear market and a recession."

    With that in mind, it's still helpful to recognize the myriad headwinds currently afflicting the market. Here's Paulsen's list of the six main impediments. All quotes are attributable to him.

    1) Stretched valuations

    "We examined several valuation measures suggesting significant risk for stocks including: a US post-war record high median trailing price/earnings multiple, a record high S&P 500 price/sales ratio, a record high US stock market capitalization ratio to nominal GDP, and the famed Case-Shiller CAPE P/E multiple trading at the 96th percentile of its entire history since 1881!"

    2) Economy at full employment

    "Historically, the stock market always does best when there is slack on Main Street. Since the economy returned to full employment in the last couple years, traditional 'full employment problems' have been evident for the stock market including Fed tightening, rising bond yields, and stronger inflation reports."

    3) Federal Reserve monetary tightening

    "For only the second time in this recovery and for the first time since 2010, financial liquidity growth has been contracting since the start of this year. Certainly, this has been a rude awakening for investors who, throughout this recovery, have feasted on a Fed-induced liquidity bull run!"

    4) Low intra-market correlations

    "A year ago, the intra-market correlation was still relatively high. However, this correlation has declined dramatically this year and is currently lower than 97% of the time since 1952. This low correlation does not bode well for future stock market returns."

    "Since 1952, the average annualized forward 12-month S&P 500 total return has only been +4.88% when the correlation is in its lowest quintile!"

    5) Volatility is too low right now

    "Even though the stock market has suffered two 10% corrections this year, volatility across the financial markets has been remarkably low in the last year. Calm may be good for your heart, but not for future stock market returns. In stable financial markets, stocks struggle."

    6) Plunging profit expectations

    "Recent fundamental shifts now raise the possibility that 2019 earnings could decline which would likely be a shock for investors still basking in the glow of recent corporate performances."

    SEE ALSO: Investors are staring at the bleakest future since the Great Depression — here's why one market bear thinks a crash could wipe 60% from stocks

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    diamond engagement ring mistakes

    • There are avoidable but commonly made mistakes when it comes to choosing an engagement ring.
    • According to bespoke jeweller Nikolay Piriankov, spending too much money actually isn't a good idea.
    • He explained to INSIDER what people should avoid when picking a ring for their beloved.

    When it comes to choosing an engagement ring for your partner, people often worry most about picking the right style.

    Solitaire, halo, or trilogy design? Round, pear, or oval? Diamond or coloured stone?

    The options are seemingly endless, and when it comes to design, it's entirely down to the person — no outsider can help you choose a ring for someone they don't know. 

    Read more: How engagement rings have changed over the past 100 years

    However, there are certain particularly common yet easily avoidable mistakes people make regardless of what style would be perfect for their beloved.

    Nikolay Piriankov, founder of the bespoke jeweler Taylor & Hart, told INSIDER what mistakes are most commonly made, and how to avoid them.

    1. Choosing the best colour and clarity diamonds.

    If you can afford to, you might want to choose the most expensive diamond possible, but this actually isn't recommended by jewelers. 

    "Going for the best colour and the best clarity diamond and paying the premium for that is a mistake," Piriankov said.

    The reason for this is that the naked eye can't tell the difference between the very top colour and clarity, and the level below.

    Diamond colour is measured on a scale from D to J, with D being the best, but unless you're assessing the diamond under 10x magnification, a G grade diamond will look the same as a D.

    The top clarity grade is FL (flawless), going down to SI2 (slightly included, meaning there are some blemishes and marks). Piriankov recommends going for VS1 (very slight inclusions).

    "You may pay for a D colour and an FL clarity, but your friend buys exactly the same size diamond with a G colour and a VS clarity, and to the naked eye you wouldn't be able to tell the diamond apart, but the other person has paid 40-50% less by not optimising on colour and clarity," Piriankov explains.

    2. Requesting a super narrow band.

    A very popular current style is extremely narrow bands — this is mainly because the thinner the band, the bigger the diamond looks. It also just makes for an elegant ring.

    However, going too narrow is in fact an error. 

    "Clients always want a dainty, thin band with as little metal as possible, it’s a trend at the moment," Piriankov says. "The problem with that is that metal, especially gold, will over the years wear away and eventually you're left with so little that it could even break.

    "So it’s a balancing act between quality and longevity, vs making it look very petite and elegant. No one wants a chunky ring, you want as much contrast between the size of the diamond in the centre, and the metal."

    In order to achieve this look, Taylor & Hart often taper the band and create a little pinch at the top where the band meets the diamond.

    "This creates a beautiful contrast right at the end so you still have the strength of the ring around the bottom and the sides, but you can’t really see it," Piriankov explains. "Towards the top it narrows a bit to create the contrast between the centre diamond and the band."

    3. Spending too much money.

    You might think that your partner will be most impressed if you spend as much as you possibly can on the ring, but from Piriankov's experience, this isn't always the case.

    Nowadays, couples get engaged later than they used to and they're often already living together, sometimes with a shared bank account too.

    "This kind of expense [an engagement ring] is more of a household decision than it was when people weren’t living together already," Piriankov says. "You don’t want to spend too much so that your partner is almost annoyed you spent that amount."

    The average amount to spend on an engagement ring in the UK is in fact £1,500 ($1,900), according to the jewellers.

    "You can achieve something beautiful from as little as a few hundred pounds," adds Piriankov. "Little touches can add a lot of meaning, such as adding a birthstone on the inside of the ring or an engraving. Don’t be afraid to think about customisation or be creative with the design." 



    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Theresa May

    • There's a big risk that a Parliamentary vote on UK prime minister Theresa May's Brexit deal won't happen on Tuesday.
    • The Sunday Times reported that May will return to Brussels to try and renegotiate the most thorny aspect of her deal, the Irish backstop.
    • The official line is that the vote will still happen.
    • But senior Conservatives have said the deal in its current form is unacceptable, and May risks a collapse in government if she loses on Tuesday.
    • Former Conservative minister Esther McVey told Sky News that May couldn't stay as leader if she loses.

    An all-out political war has broken out ahead of the Parliamentary vote on UK prime minister Theresa May's Brexit deal on Tuesday.

    MPs are scheduled to vote on December 11 on May's plan for a post-Brexit UK, agreed after months of talks with Brussels.

    But there are conflicting accounts about whether the vote will go ahead on Tuesday, with The Sunday Times reporting that May intends to return to Brussels next week to negotiate a better deal. It is thought that MPs will overwhelmingly vote against May's deal, raising questions about her future as prime minister.

    The report comes after a senior Conservative politician, Sir Graham Brady, publicly warned that the vote could be delayed, thanks to disagreement over a controversial aspect of the deal: the Irish backstop.

    Read more: Here's why the Brexit 'backstop' is now the most important issue facing Britain

    But Brexit secretary Stephen Barclay defended the current deal and said on Sunday the vote would go ahead on Tuesday as planned. Speaking to the BBC's Andrew Marr, Barclay said: "The vote is going ahead, and that's because it's a good deal, the only deal. We've got the vote on Tuesday, and there is still two full days of debate."

    Boris Johnson

    Former foreign secretary Boris Johnson, thought to be eyeing May's job, demurred. Also speaking to the BBC, he said May had to return to Brussels and implied the current deal was unacceptable.

    He said: "If the prime minister is able to go back to Brussels next week and say, 'I'm afraid that the Irish backstop solution that you have come up with is very unpopular not just with the country but also with the house of Commons'.... then I think.... they will listen.

    "What they want is the best possible deal with the UK."

    Johnson added that the current backstop arrangement, which would lead to Northern Ireland being aligned to some EU rules, was "an absurdity."

    "We can have a withdrawal agreement that does not contain the backstop," he said.

    Former Conservative minister Esther McVey likewise piled in on Sunday, telling Sky News that it would be "very difficult" for May to remain leader if she loses Tuesday's vote. McVey refused to rule out a leadership bid.

    Esther McVey

    May's position appears to be precarious. If, as is likely, she loses the vote on Tuesday, she may face a leadership challenge, or potentially even step down.  She may call a second referendum or a general election, though both would be desperate rolls of the dice.

    May appeared to rule out this latter option in an interview with the Mail on Sunday, with a stark warning against Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn.

    She said: "We have a leader of the Opposition who thinks of nothing but attempting to bring about a General Election, no matter what the cost to the country. As someone who cares passionately about my country and my party, I believe Jeremy Corbyn getting his hands on power is a risk we cannot afford to take."

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    nibblegrams instagram

    • Sometimes you want to save a photo from Instagram without taking a screenshot.
    • It's actually pretty easy using Google Chrome on a Mac or Windows PC.
    • Here's how you do it. 

    There are several ways to save Instagram photos you might want to refer to later. But if you want to download a full-resolution JPG version, and it's not your account, it gets a lot trickier.

    Of course, this is by design — you didn't take the photo, so you probably don't have the copyright. Plus, Facebook, Instagram's parent company, would rather you save photos you like to its "Collections" feature.

    There are several websites that allow you to download Instagram photos, but they're all unauthorized, and many have sketchy ads. Plus, they may potentially have malware and other shady tricks.

    You can also take a screenshot of the Instagram post, but that results in a lower-resolution file. 

    So, you can take it into your own hands, and figure out how to download full-resolution Instagram photos — for example, earlier this week I wanted a photo of my cat that I uploaded years ago to a novelty account (I had since lost the original image). 

    Here's how you download Instagram photos in Google Chrome.

    SEE ALSO: Here are the top iPhone apps and games of the year, according to Apple

    Start by finding the photo you want to save. You'll need the web link, which is accessible from the button on the upper right corner of the photo.

    On the desktop version of Instagram, that menu button is on the bottom right. 

    Now, the URL for the photo is on your clipboard. In Chrome on a desktop computer, navigate to that URL.

    You're going to need to look at the HTML source file for the Instagram page — don't worry, it's not that hard.

    On Chrome, you'll find it in View > Developer > View Source. (Firefox, Microsoft Edge, and Safari also allow you to view source.)

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    The Insider Picks team writes about stuff we think you'll like. Business Insider has affiliate partnerships, so we get a share of the revenue from your purchase.

    best mouse pad

    • Mouse pad surfaces affect how your mouse tracks. Soft pads increase drag for more precision and hard surfaces allow for quicker movements.

    • The SteelSeries DeX's unique 3D texture reduces drag so your mouse tracking is fluid and responsive, but it's also soft for hours of comfortable use, virtually eliminating the trade-off between comfort and speed.

    Most people probably don't think too much about mouse pads. Given modern mouse technology, this is actually quite understandable. Old-school ball mouses (remember those?) were barely usable without a good mouse pad, but the optical sensors on today's mouses are much more forgiving when it comes to working surfaces. As long as it's smooth and flat, it'll probably work.

    Nonetheless, if you've ever used an optical mouse without a pad for an extended period of time, you've almost certainly realized what you were missing. A smooth, tactile surface is still a necessity — even with the greatly enhanced sensitivity and accuracy of optical mouse sensors — whether you're doing precise tasks like graphic design and gaming, or just tackling another long day of working on the computer.

    Whereas ball mouses generally required a softer surface for traction, sensitive optical sensors have given rise to a growing number of mouse pad designs that offer different benefits. When it comes to pad surfaces, there's a general trade-off between speed and accuracy: Softer or rougher textures will create more friction than a hard, slick surface, allowing for more precision (as well as creating more drag), whereas a smoother mouse pad will allow for quicker movements (such as while playing a fast-paced video game, for example) at the cost of accuracy.

    In other words: Your mouse will move faster on a hard/smooth surface, thus making it easier to make large cursor swipes quickly, and it'll move more slowly on a soft surface, thus giving you more precise control over your cursor. How much this matters to you really depends on your needs. Gamers are admittedly more fussy about this stuff than most people. Also note that softer mouse pads will naturally be more comfortable to use for long periods of time than hard ones.

    Whatever your needs, we've covered just about all the bases below. These picks include everything from a no-nonsense budget-friendly mouse pad to ones featuring the latest innovations in surface design, so if you're looking to upgrade your setup or just replace an old worn-out mouse pad, then be sure to read through them all to see which one is right for you.

    Here are the best mouse pads you can buy:

    Read on in the slides below to check out our top picks.

    The best mouse pad overall

    Why you'll love it: With a unique 3D-textured surface that reduces friction despite its soft hand-feel, the SteelSeries DeX mouse pad solves the age-old problem of having to sacrifice comfort for responsiveness.

    As mentioned the intro, you generally have to make a compromise between friction and comfort when selecting the right mouse pad for your needs. A soft mouse pad might be more comfortable, but it will create more friction on your mouse, requiring you to do more work to glide it around. A harder surface won't have that "give" to it, allowing the mouse and therefore the optical sensor to glide more freely, but it's less precise and will be harder on your wrist in the long run.

    Our favorite, the SteelSeries DeX, reinvents the common mouse pad with a unique design that all but renders this dilemma solved. It has a unique 3D surface that is comfortable to use while reducing friction and increases your mouse's responsiveness. Instead of cloth or foam padding, the DeX is made of a soft rubberized polymer with a slightly raised texture. This results in a mouse pad that's easy on your hand and wrist, but the 3D surface greatly reduces the actual contact area between the pad and your mouse, thereby mitigating drag.

    The soft pad material is also completely waterproof and fully washable, and the edges are heat-bound so the DeX won't fray like many cloth mouse pads do after while. The great design of the SteelSeries DeX comes at a price, though. At around $40, it's the most expensive of our picks.

    It's nonetheless the closest thing to a perfect mouse pad that you can buy, and well worth the money. The durable polymer should last a long, long while, too. Don't be surprised if you see other companies copying the design of the DeX in the future.

    Pros: The unique 3D texture reduces surface contact between mouse and pad for more fluid and precise tracking, the soft rubbery polymer is comfortable and waterproof, heat-sealed edges prevent cracking and fraying, and no obnoxious branding

    Cons: It's expensive at around $40

    Buy the SteelSeries DeX mouse pad on Amazon for $37.99 (originally $39.99)

    The best mouse pad with wrist support

    Why you'll love it: For wrists that need a little more comfort than a normal soft mouse pad can give, the 3M Precise mouse pad features a gel-filled wrist rest that provides some much-needed relief at a price that's just as easy on the wallet.

    Unless you specifically want the increased movement speed of a hard working surface, then soft mouse pads are generally the best option for most people, especially if you're sitting at a computer for extended periods of time. Even a soft mouse pad can become uncomfortable after hours of use, though. Although the softer material might feel better on your hand, a flat pad still doesn't offer any real support for your wrist.

    Mouse pads with padded wrist rests, like our pick from 3M, are a popular and simple way to solve the problem of wrist pain. A number of padded designs exist today, but the 3M Precise mouse pad has a few features that put it well ahead of the competition.

    Firstly, the gel pillow's leatherette covering is softer and more durable than those of other ergonomic mouse pads. These typically have rubber- or cloth-covered gel pads that are more prone to cracking, pitting, leaking, or otherwise deteriorating over time.

    Secondly, the 3M Precise mouse pad offers more than just increased hand comfort: This pad also features 3M's patented surface design that's purpose-built for optical mouses. This flat, micro-grooved layer sits on top of the soft non-slip base underneath, providing enhanced tracking for optical sensors. This results in smoother, more responsive cursor feedback compared to standard cloth-surfaced mouse pads, which haven't changed much since the days of ball mouses.

    The 3M Precise mouse pad is cheap, too, and the model without the gel-filled hand rest was almost our "best budget" pick. This particular gel-padded design rings in at just $17, making it the second most affordable selection on our roundup and a great choice if you're on the fence about buying an ergonomic mouse pad and don't want to spend too much money to try it out.

    Pros: Durable leatherette-covered gel-filled wrist rest for added comfort, the 3M Precise micro-grooved surface enhances optical mouse feedback, and it's highly affordable

    Cons: The pad is prone to curling slightly at the edges over time

    Buy the 3M Precise mouse pad with gel wrist rest on Amazon for $17

    The best oversized mouse pad

    Why you'll love it: If you're looking for an oversized desk mat to serve as a rest for both your keyboard and mouse, then the Glorious PC Gaming Race extended mouse pad has everything you need at a price point that's hard to beat.

    Mouse pads have come a long way since the '90s, and not just in terms of surface designs and materials: They've grown in size as well. Oversized pads, often referred to as "mouse mats" to distinguish them from their smaller counterparts, serve a number of purposes: They give your hands and wrists a soft place to rest upon whether you're mousing or typing, prevent your keyboard from sliding around, and protect the surface finish of your desk.

    Our favorite, the Glorious PC Gaming Race mouse mat, has everything we like. Its soft and tactile surface feels great and tracks beautifully, and unlike many other cloth mouse pads, this mat has a stitched frame around the edges that prevents warping and fraying.

    The standard pad measures in at three feet long by 11 inches wide, giving you plenty of surface area for your keyboard and mouse, while its size and rubber base secure it in place on your desk. There are even larger options, too: the XXL and XXXL.

    The mat's soft surface is an open fabric, so it will absorb dirt and anything you spill on it more readily than other designs. The Glorious PC Gaming Race mouse pad is washable, though, either by hand or in a machine on a gentle cycle (air drying is recommended), and keeping it clean is not a problem. Just know that it's going to require it at some point like any cloth mouse pad.

    The Glorious PC Gaming Race extended mat is also a solid value starting at $24, which is a great price for something of this size and quality.

    Pros: Soft and comfortable cloth surface, anti-slip rubber base, stitched edges prevent fraying, multiple sizes available for just about any desktop setup, and it's a great value at $24 for the standard mat

    Cons: The non-sealed fabric collects dust and dirt more quickly than some others

    Buy the Glorious PC Gaming Race extended mouse mat on Amazon for $23.99

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    facebook ceo mark zuckerberg

    • The UK Parliament published a trove of top-secret Facebook executive emails on Wednesday.
    • The hundreds of pages of documents provide an unprecedented window into Facebook leadership's approach to competition and growth.
    • Read the key takeaways from the documents below.

    Britain's Parliament has just given the world an unprecedented look at the ruthless tactics of Facebook's executive team.

    On Wednesday, the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee published leaked emails from the Silicon Valley tech giant's leadership team that had been obtained by Six4Three, an app developer that's locked in a legal battle with Facebook after it blocked its bikini photo app. 

    There are hundreds of pages of documents and emails, mostly dating from between 2012 and 2015, that detail the way Facebook allowed third-party apps to access friend data through its platform.

    They provide a unique window into how Facebook's senior leaders privately discussed strategy and competition at a period of intense growth for the company, which has since been bogged down by numerous scandals and flatlining user numbers in key markets.

    Do you work at Facebook? Got a tip? Contact this reporter via Signal or WhatsApp at +1 (650) 636-6268 using a non-work phone, email at, Telegram or WeChat at robaeprice, or Twitter DM at @robaeprice. (PR pitches by email only, please.) You can also contact Business Insider securely via SecureDrop.

    From Facebook's attempts to kneecap "strategic competitors" to CEO Mark Zuckerberg writing that his company's interests don't always match up with what's best for the world, here are some of the key takeaways from the documents.

    1. Facebook had a list of "strategic competitors" that it restricted access to.

    Zuckerberg personally oversaw a list of "strategic" competitors to the social network, and decided whether to restrict them from accessing valuable user data.

    One undated memo stated that companies considered to be "strategic competitors" to Facebook were even more restricted in what they could access. It added that Mark Zuckerberg personally reviewed the list of competitors, and either he or another senior executive had to personally sign off any further access to data these companies might want.

    On the eve of the publication of the documents, Facebook announced it was relaxing restrictions on competitors' apps in an apparent attempt to get ahead of the news.

    In an unattributed statement published on its website, Facebook said:

    "We built our developer platform years ago to pave the way for innovation in social apps and services. At that time we made the decision to restrict apps built on top of our platform that replicated our core functionality. These kind of restrictions are common across the tech industry with different platforms having their own variant including YouTube, Twitter, Snap and Apple."

    2. Zuckerberg personally approved Facebook's decision to cut off social network Vine's data.

    One of the Facebook competitors Mark Zuckerberg played a personal role in stamping on was video social network Vine.

    In an email dated January 24, 2013 (the day Vine launched on iOS) VP Justin Osofsky proposed shutting down the new app's access: "Twitter launched Vine today which lets you shoot multiple short video segments to make one single, 6-second video. As part of their NUX, you can find friends via FB. Unless anyone raises objections, we will shut down their friends API access today. We've prepared reactive PR, and I will let Jana know our decision."

    Zuckerberg responded: "Yup, go for it."

    3. Facebook tried to figure out how to grab users' call data without asking permission.

    Ever-hungry for user data, Facebook in 2015 explored trying to access Android users' call logs and SMS history to use to feed into features like "People You May Know," while acknowledging the risk of user anger. "This is a pretty high-risk thing to do from a PR perspective nut it appears that the growth eam will charge ahead and do it," Michael LeBeau wrote.

    Yul Kwon also said Facebook was looking into ways to grab call log data without even asking users for permission: "Based on [the Growth team's] initial testing, it seems this would allow us to upgrade users without subjecting them to an Android permissions dialog at all," they wrote. 

    Facebook's statement said: "This specific feature allows people to opt in to giving Facebook access to their call and text messaging logs in Facebook Lite and Messenger on Android devices. We use this information to do things like make better suggestions for people to call in Messenger and rank contact lists in Messenger and Facebook Lite."

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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