Tech

Bts illustration by Kaelen Felix for 360 magazine.

BTS – Be

Written by Thais Jacomassi 

Illustration by Kaelen Felix 

The wait is over. BTS’ fifth studio album, Be, is out now featuring the record-breaking, hit single “Dynamite.” This is the band’s second album release of 2020 – following their release of Map of the Soul: 7 in February — marking the latest comeback for their already historic career. While live concerts and events came to a halt and BTS’ Map of the Soul Tour was canceled due to the pandemic, the band took this opportunity to spur their creativity. The end result was a sentimental and thoughtful eight-track album, including a spoken skit, that reflected on what the past year has been like for them. 

As many sections in the US are entering a new state of crisis with rising Covid-19 cases, Be sends a reassuring message for fans to stay upbeat and hopeful with good-humored, singalongs to keep us afloat from the stress and fear that the pandemic has brought out of everyone. 

Be opens with the band’s newest single, “Life Goes On.” The song’s theme revolved around the pandemic which is made clear in its music video — directed by band member Jeon Jungkook — that features various shots of the members reminiscing on their lives prior to Covid-19 beginning with the line “One day the world stopped.” Despite its melancholic tone, the lyrics are sweet with the promise that one day life will return back to normal, but until then it is important to find positivity among other things. Watch/Listen to “Life Goes On” Here. 

Accompanying the single are more somber and vulnerable songs like “Blue & Grey” and “Fly To My Room” which explore the loneliness that many people have claimed to experience from the confinement of quarantine, especially in the beginning months of the pandemic. In an article by Time Magazine, public health experts stated that coronavirus has amplified the already rising problem of loneliness in the US and across the globe. These two songs not only demonstrate how these negative thoughts have been plaguing so many of us, but it also shows the close and understanding relationship between the band and its millions of fans worldwide. 

“Skit” is a spoken word interlude placed right in the middle of the album which was originally recorded at the same moment that the group was celebrating becoming the first all-Korean group to rise to number one on the Billboard Hot 100 in August with their single “Dynamite.” It serves as the perfect tool to transition the mood of the album from emotional to cheerful with songs like “Telepathy” and “Dis-ease.” 

Tracklist: 

  1. Life Goes On
  2. Fly To My Room 
  3. Blue & Grey 
  4. Skit 
  5. Telepathy 
  6. Dis-ease 
  7. Stay 
  8. Dynamite 

Listen to Be Here

Listen/Watch “Life Goes On” Here

Listen/Watch “Dynamite” Here

About BTS:

Otherwise known as Bangtan Boys, BTS is a South Korean boy band that was originally formed in 2010 but only debuted in 2013 under Big Hit Entertainment. The seven members — RM, Jin, Suga, J-Hope, Jimin, V, and Jungkook– co-write and co-produce their own music whose style ranges over a wide variety of genres including pop, R&B, hip-hop, and rap. 

BTS crossed borders into the global market by becoming the first Korean group to receive an RIAA for their single, “Mic Drop,” as well as the first Korean group to top the US Billboard 200 chart with their album, Love Yourself: Tear. Since then, they have continued to lead K-pop’s global phenomenon and break records by being the first all-South Korean group to reach number one on the US Billboard Hot 100 with their single “Dynamite” and their remix of Jason Derulo’s “Savage Love.”

More on BTS: 

Instagram

Twitter

Spotify 

Youtube 

About Big Hit Entertainment:

Big Hit Entertainment is a South Korean entertainment company that was founded on February 1, 2005, by Bang Si-hyuk. It currently manages idol groups like BTS and TXT and soloists like Lee Hyun. Big Hit Entertainment continues to make new innovations to the music industry business model and according to their website, “Big Hit strives to become the world’s best music-based entertainment lifestyle platform company.” 

More on Big Hit Entertainment: 

Website 

Facebook 

Youtube 

Alesso Illustrated by Kaelen Felix for 360 Magazine

Alesso x Charlotte Lawrence – The End

Today, Grammy Award-nominated artist Alesso & dark-pop artist/songwriter Charlotte Lawrence share their new single THE END via 10:22pm/Astralwerks. The euphoric yet emotionally raw track was co-written by Alesso, Lawrence, Ali Tamposi and Andrew Watt. THE END matches Alesso’s magnetic and masterful production with a poignant vocal performance from Lawrence. Listen HERE, and watch the performance video HERE.

Equally parts heavy-hearted and effervescent, THE END centers on Alesso’s immaculate sound design, revealing his undeniable pop sensibilities and gift for crafting addictive beats. The song’s bright textures build a brilliant tension with its narrative a detailed story of a toxic romance, beautifully captured in Lawrenceߣs dreamy vocals and gut-punching lyrics (e.g., “Never held my hand so you donߣt have to let it go”).

THE END follows Alesso’s powerfully uplifting single Midnight (feat. Liam Payne), an April release accompanied by a performance video from the duo. In addition to earning praise from Rolling Stone, E!, and People, the track was lauded by the likes of MTV (who called it “the kind of mid-tempo, easy jam that lends itself nicely to big vistas”) and Billboard (who hailed it as “a soaring anthem built on Alesso’s grand-scale production”).

FOLLOW ALESSO

Website / Instagram / Twitter / Facebook / TikTok

FOLLOW Charlotte Lawrence

Website / Instagram / Twitter / Facebook

Has eSports Become a Part of Pop Culture?

A couple of decades ago, when video games burst into the mainstream audience for good, everyone could have guessed that gaming would soon become an important part of the entertainment industry. But what no one could have predicted is just how popular it would become not to play video games yourself, but to watch other people play. So popular in fact, that competitive video gaming, i.e. eSports, has slowly but steadily grown to become an important part of pop culture. But how and why did eSports gain so much momentum?

eSports expand their reach into the mainstream audience

When the first organized competitive gaming tournaments emerged where professional players vie for a prize, analysts very aptly dubbed the new practice “eSports”. And research reported by the Influencer Marketing Hub reveals that this new industry has quickly expanded its appeal and gained unprecedented growth. In 2017, eSports reached an audience of 335 million viewers, which climbed to 380 million in 2018. It is now estimated that until 2021 that number will reach roughly 557 million, exhibiting an annual growth rate of 14%. Out of those, 250 million will be regular viewers but another 307 million will be casual spectators. This means that casual viewers will constitute the majority of the eSports audience.

Furthermore, according to the same source, even people who do not watch eSports have still heard of them. In 2015, an impressive 800,000 people were aware of the industry. But a year later, over a billion people have reportedly heard of eSports – a jaw-dropping growth. In 2019 alone, eSports awareness was estimated to have reached 1.57 billion people around the world. The combination of these two facts, i.e. the number of casual viewers and the tremendous growth in awareness, lead us to the conclusion that eSports has now become an important part of pop culture.

How eSports became a part of pop culture

But if you want even more proof, just take a closer look at eSports betting. That’s right: betting sites now consider eSports as a sub-category of the traditional realm of sports betting, and punters can place wagers on the biggest eSports tournament just like they would on the NBA finals or the Super Bowl. It is no surprise, when you consider the hype surrounding the biggest eSports competitions. In 2019, the League of Legends World Championship gathered an audience of almost 4 million viewers, and the Fortnite World Cup Finals amassed an impressive 2.3 million. Speaking of Fortnite, it is perhaps the game that best encapsulates how video gaming and eSports are now part of pop culture in their own right.

Who could forget the iconic and hilarious scene in Avengers: Endgame that saw Thor compete against “Noobmaster69” on Fortnite? Just like people are still not over the live concert series that now takes place within the Fortnite game. Travis Scott was the first to take the leap of faith and performed virtually to raving reviews. Now, the digital concerts continue, with J Balvin reportedly set to headline the Fortnite Halloween Concert series, in a perfect blend of these divergent strands of pop culture that has had audiences going wild. Much like the music industry, other sectors have realized the potential of eSports and gaming that allows them to reach to a wider audience and are jumping at the chance. For example, Oakley has already announced that they would launch a new type of lenses specifically designed for gaming.

If we want to understand better how eSports have so quickly become a part of pop culture, we also need to look at the channels that enabled them to connect with their audience. Millennials are now in their 20s and 30s, and they have grown up in an increasingly digital world. Watching their favorite gamers play live on Twitch or YouTube, and interacting with them on chat or social media was an organic way for them to connect. Steven Spielberg’s recent blockbuster Ready Player One took the concept one step further. In a dystopian future, taking place in a VR gaming tournament has become the one shot its protagonist has at fixing everything wrong with the world – competitive gaming has somehow turned into something more real than real life itself.

For the young adults that are right now the driving force behind market trends, and are shaping pop culture, eSports are an integral part of life and culture.

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Taylor Swift illustration for 360 magazine

Taylor Swift Achieves 12 New RIAA Certifications

Taylor Swift has garnered a total of 12 new certifications from the RIAA. Among them, her critically-acclaimed, 5 star 2020 album, folklore, has achieved gold and now certified platinum status.

The new album, folklore arrived this summer and quickly gained widespread acclaim and major audience excitement. It rapidly became the top-selling record of 2020 worldwide and is the only album this year to cross 1 million albums in pure sales in the U.S. 

Swift notably completed “the longest consecutive run at number one since 2016” by acquiring six straight weeks at the top of the Billboard 200 chart. Additionally, folklore returns to number one this week on the Billboard 200 chart, reaching eight nonconsecutive weeks at the top of the chart. What’s even more notable, Taylor has achieved 48 cumulative weeks at number one across all of her chart-topping albums which marks a record among women artists. 

Other RIAA certifications include “You Need To Calm Down” which minted triple-platinum, platinum, and gold and “The Man” which is certified gold and platinum. Her song “Me,” featuring Brendon Urie of Panic! At The Disco, is now double-platinum. Additionally, the single “Lover” picked up gold, platinum, and double-platinum certifications.

Taylor stands out as the only artist to have seven albums each sell at least 500,000 copies in a single week. Her albums, Fearless, Speak Now, RED, 1989, reputation, Lover and folklore, have all been a stellar success. Plus, she remains the first and only female artist in the 21st century to score five number one studio albums in the UK. 

Folklore is the ten-time GRAMMY® Award-winning, record-breaking superstar’s eighth album and we can’t wait to see what the future holds for Swift. 

Rita Azar illustrates relationship article for 360 MAGAZINE

The Top 5 Most Important Qualities a Guy Should Have

Are you restarting your dating life but find yourself swiping left a little too often? When you’re outing the dating world, it can be hard to find the right balance. Although we don’t want to “settle” for a person, we also don’t want to discount men.

We’re here to help you along your way. You always can try to meet a right person on Promenad, but first of all read on for the top five qualities on what to look for in a man so that you can date with intention. 

1. He’s Respectful

Your man knows that your time is valuable, and he respects it by making sure that he’s present when you’re together. He’s interested in your opinion about topics and gives you a platform to voice them.

He’s also upfront about what he wants in a relationship and doesn’t lead you on. Lastly, you feel free to live your own life without his micromanagement or what he believes is “better.”

2. He’s Supportive

You’ll know a man is supportive if you feel as if you can talk about your life, career aspirations, and goals without judgment. He trusts the decisions you make and will often back you up on them–not make you feel as if you need to constantly second-guess your decisions.

Best of all, supportive men are often good listeners. They’ll give you the silence you need and won’t frequently interrupt.

3. He’s Honest

They’ll be times when your man disagrees with a decision you’re making, and he’ll let you know in a way that doesn’t diminish your character. You won’t need to second-guess his thoughts or motivations because he’s upfront and doesn’t feel the need to hide. This often leads to better communication, one of the most important aspects of a relationship. If you ask him a question, you don’t feel any doubt in his answer–even if it’s not the one you wanted to hear.

4. He Pays Attention

Men who pay attention are often talented at active listening because they want you to know that you’re being heard. They also have good dating etiquette. When you’re together, he’s good at putting down his phone and giving you his full attention. They’re attentive to your needs because it’s their way of showing that they value you.

5. He’s Happy

A man’s attitude is often a good indicator of their self-confidence. If you find that your man has a constant, pessimistic outlook on the world, they probably have the same view of themselves. You may feel compelled to help him or find that your own mood becomes low when you’re around him. Although it’s not realistic to expect someone to be happy all the time, generally you’ll feel happy and comfortable around someone with a positive attitude. They often have a good sense of humor and smile more.

What Do You Look for in a Guy?

What are you looking for in a man? It’s important to ask yourself this question frequently until you have a definite answer. Once you know what you want in a relationship, it’s far easier to find a man that’s looking for the same theme.

It’s all about trusting your instinct. Pay attention to how you feel when you’re around him. If you feel understood, respected, and cared for, you may have found the one.

Online Casino Bonus Guide for Players in the US and UK

The Ultimate Online Casino Bonus Guide for US and UK players

When you first enter the extraordinary world of online gambling, you will be faced with an inevitable question that will present itself the moment you walk through the virtual casino doors: what is an online casino bonus?

As you are greeted by the plethora of alluring promotional offers, it’s crucial that you understand what you are dealing with before you start on your bonus-infused online gambling adventure.

So, how exactly does a casino bonus work? What types of bonuses are available in the online gambling industry? Are there any terms and conditions I should be aware of and when should I claim a bonus on my account? All of these questions will be answered in our ultimate online casino bonus guide for US and UK players.

However, if you are simply looking for a top recommendation straight off the bat, All Star Slots Casino is mainly for US and UK players and impresses with a wealth of features and bonus offers that is sure to satisfy even the most avid gambler.

What is a Casino Bonus and How Does it Work?

The online gambling landscape would be unimaginable without promotions and bonuses spread across big, colorful banners to excite UK and US players from. It’s a wonderful incentive for the time and money you invest in the site and is a great way to reward you for your loyalty once you become a regular player. The online gambling market continues to expand as more and more gambling sites are flooding into the market.

In fact, the industry is so competitive that casinos need to create new and exciting ways to attract players to their sites and the best way to achieve this is through online casino bonuses. So, what is a bonus, anyway? To put it simply, a casino bonus is essentially an incentive that is offered by the casino to attract players to the site. Casino bonuses can be used to entice new players to register or to keep existing players from leaving by boosting their bankrolls with additional funds. The bonus funds that are added to your account can be done in one of several innovative ways which bring us to the next question: what types of casino bonuses are available to players in the UK and US?

Types of Online Casino Bonuses for UK and US Players

You will discover that there is a casino bonus for each and every player in the online gaming industry. You can look forward to bonuses that don’t require a deposit, welcome packages on your initial deposit, payment specific promotions, and the freedom to claim these offers on either your desktop or mobile device. In fact, claiming promotional offers while away from home is only one of the advantages of gambling on your mobile device. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the types of casino bonuses you’ll come across in the UK and the US along with a brief description of each.

No Deposit Bonus: This is exactly as the name implies, a bonus that you will receive without making a deposit. No deposit bonuses are primarily offered to newcomers for simply registering a new account and come in a variety of flavours, including a free cash offer, free spins, or free play. It’s perfect for online players that want to test the waters before committing with a real money deposit.

Welcome/Sign-Up Bonus: This is undoubtedly the most popular offer in the industry and it usually doubles, triples, or even quadruples your initial deposit made at the casino. It’s the casino’s way to welcome you to the site and to thank you for choosing them over everyone else. You will even come across welcome packages that contain a welcome bonus and a number of free spins on a popular slot to further entice you to make a deposit.

Reload Bonus: Once you’ve claimed a no deposit bonus and welcome package, you will be deemed an existing player, opening up the doors to ongoing promotions. One of the most popular promotions for existing players is the reload bonus. It’s basically a deposit bonus with a smaller match percentage when compared to the welcome bonus. For instance, where a welcome bonus might offer 100% up to $100, a reload bonus will offer a 25% match up to $50.

Cashback Bonus: This offer is designed to give you a percentage back on your losses for either the week or month. For instance, if you lose $100 during the week, the casino would usually credit a 20% or 30% cashback bonus based on your losses, giving you a second opportunity to enjoy your favorite games without making an additional deposit on your account.

High Roller/VIP Bonus: These types of bonuses are specifically designed for high rollers and VIP players that are planning to deposit well-over the usual deposit amount. These offers are usually not displayed within the promotions section. Therefore, you will need to contact support and find out what high roller packages are available, depending on your deposit size.

Loyalty Bonus: Most gambling sites will come equipped with a loyalty program where you can earn loyalty points for every wager you make at the casino. Once you’ve accumulated enough loyalty points, you can redeem them to unlock additional bonuses or free spins on your account.

Refer-A-Friend Bonus: There is nothing better than enjoying your favorite casino games with friends. This is why gambling sites created this innovative promotion that will allow you to earn an additional bonus for simply referring your friends to the site. Most referral bonuses will require that your friend register a new account and make a minimum deposit before you’ll be rewarded with a Refer-A-Friend bonus.

Complimentary Bonus: This type of bonus will usually be based on your financial history with the casino. If you have a bad run, or you feel like making a deposit on the day, you are welcome to contact support and request a complimentary bonus. Should your financial history prove that you’ve been a loyal and consistent player, you will receive a complimentary bonus as a thank you for your patronage.

Birthday Bonus: This is credited to your account once a year to celebrate your birthday and the size of the birthday bonus will be based on your financial history, much like a complimentary bonus.

With so many promotional offers at your disposal, it’s easy to understand how the online gambling industry continues to grow in the United Kingdom and the United States with each passing year. The only pitfall when it comes to online casino bonuses is the terms and conditions which is the next topic that deserves your attention.

Promotional Terms and Conditions to Consider:

All promotional offers will be restricted in one way or another to ensure players don’t bankrupt the casino. The restrictions will always be presented in the terms and conditions and it’s here where most players get in trouble as they simply don’t take the time to read through the fine print. Most online casino bonuses will have similar terms and conditions, including:

Wagering Requirements: This will tell you how many times the bonus needs to be wagered before it’s allocated to your cash balance, ready for a cashout. For instance, a typical welcome bonus needs to be wagered 40 times before it’s cleared.

Game Contributions: Every casino game will contribute a different percentage towards your wagering requirements. For instance, slots will usually count 100% towards wagering, while video poker and blackjack might only contribute 5%.

Expiry Date: All bonuses will have an expiry date, indicating how long the bonus will be available on your account before it expires. No deposit offers last between 7 and 14 days, while welcome bonuses usually last up to 30 days.

Cashout Limit: This restriction is usually found in no deposit offers and indicates the maximum amount you’ll be allowed to withdraw from a no deposit bonus. Most gambling sites in the US and the UK will go as high as $200 as a withdrawal cap.

When to Avoid Casino Bonuses

Now that you have a better understanding of what a casino bonus is, how it works, and the types of bonuses you can claim, it’s time to look at when to avoid a bonus. When a bonus sounds too good to be true, it usually is. Casinos might impress you with the biggest bonus offer in the world that you can claim with the smallest deposit. However, when you look at the terms and conditions, you’ll quickly understand why it’s not worth your time or money.

Most gambling sites will trick you into claiming a bonus and will then make it impossible to accumulate any winnings due to unreasonable wagering requirements. Some might only use slots to contribute to your playthrough requirements, while others might increase the wagering requirements to make it impossible to actually clear the bonus.

You will also find gambling sites that shorten the expiry date, making it harder to clear the bonus in the given time frame, while others will limit your withdrawal limit, forcing you to play your winnings instead of cashing out what you earned. Apart from the terms and conditions, you should also avoid claiming bonuses when the casino isn’t licensed and regulated by a reputable regulatory body.

With the ultimate online casino bonus guide, you will have all the tools at your disposal to confidently claim a bonus without having to worry about falling prey to rogue casinos or claiming an offer that comes equipped with arbitrary terms and conditions. You should also have a good understanding of the types of bonuses in the online gaming industry and whether it’s suited for your own unique playing style. Claiming casino bonuses is a fantastic way to keep yourself entertained and is one of the self-care tips during COVID that you can use to escape reality while giving yourself the opportunity to win some cash in the process.

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Kaelen Felix - Steve Aoki

Dim Mak and Meta Threads Enter the Neon Future

Groundbreaking fashion brand DIM MAK announced the October 19th debut of an exclusive cross-over apparel collaboration with Meta Threads, a leading e-sports lifestyle brand, that will feature original artwork from “Neon Future,” the critically acclaimed sci-fi WEBTOON & comic book series created by 2x Grammy nominated DJ/Producer Steve Aoki and Impact Theory Studios. In addition, the collaboration is the first of its kind crossing over with elements from music, fashion, e-sports and futuristic sci-fi comic art.

Steve Aoki, Dim Mak’s founder and creative director, was the driving force in bringing this visionary collaborative collection to life. “My obsession with mixing sci-fi into fashion and music all started when I was a kid reading comic books,” stated Aoki. “I’m thrilled to have Dim Mak collaborate with Meta Threads to showcase the mind-blowing artwork from my ‘Neon Future’ comic series.”  

So, to celebrate the launch, Meta Threads and Steve Aoki will host an invitational “Call of Duty Warzone” Tournament spotlighting some of the most electrifying streamers from e-sports, music and pro sports world. Steve Aoki alongside his Rogue Esports teammates and others will be live streaming their vantage points throughout the 16-squad tournament. Therefore, the event will be live streamed from Meta Thread’s Twitch Channel on October 19, 2020 at 4pm PST.  Winners will receive cash and apparel prizes. Also, spectators will have the opportunity to win apparel and other goodies via “in-chat,” giveaways. Prizing to include peripherals from ASUS Republic of Gamers, A-40 headsets from ASTRO Gaming, premium chairs by AKRacing, digital gift cards from KontrolFreak, and Neon Future Comics.  

About the Collaboration:

The apparel collaboration features 14 unique designs spanning graphic t-shirts, sports jerseys, hoodies, windbreakers, and basketball shorts ($45-$120); which were co-designed by the Dim Mak and Meta Threads studios featuring original artwork from the critically acclaimed sci-fi series “Neon Future” created by Steve Aoki, Tom Bilyeu (Impact Theory CEO) and Eisner winner Jim Krueger. Additionally, the collection features series artwork of the “Neon Future” main characters “Kita Sovee (modeled after Steve Aoki),” “Clay Campbell” and “Dee” as well as covers and panel art from actual episodes from the series.  

“Neon Future” is set roughly 30 years in the future in a dystopian version of America that has outlawed advanced technology. A civil war is brewing between the Augmented, an oppressed class of people who have chosen to integrate technology into their bodies, and the Authentic, who have not.  The resistance movement “Neon Future” is led by the mysterious Kita Sovee (a character modeled after Aoki), who strives to bring peace, by showing the world a brighter future in harmony with technology. 

The series is available to read for free at the WEBTOON site and app.

The apparel collaboration will be exclusively available for purchase at www.dimmakcollection.com and www.metathreads.com starting from October 19, 2020.

About Dim Mak:

Founded by DJ and music executive Steve Aoki, Dim Mak is a fashion streetwear brand for the uninhibited adrenaline junkies and lovers of the same punk skate LA-subcultures Aoki thrived on during his youth. Aoki named his record label and subsequent fashion brand “Dim Mak” as anod to Bruce Lee’s signature fight move: the touch of death. The name itself acts as a constant reminder to stay focused and to forge his own path. “Do it yourself…by any means necessary.”

About Meta Threads:

Born and raised in Los Angeles, California, Meta Threads is a leading, forward-facing, apparel brand within the gaming and esports industries. Founded by Steve Nabi and Nicholas Pineda, the company specializes in fusing streetwear aesthetic with gaming culture. The brand is dedicated to inspiring the community through a well curated mix of men’s & women’s apparel, accessories and gaming specific luggage. Also, Meta works exclusively with select clients and offers services that include custom product development, design, manufacturing, and fulfillment. For more information, visit Meta Threads at www.metathreads.com.

About Neon Future / Impact Theory:

Impact Theory is a first-of-its-kind company designed to facilitate global change by creating, cultivating and monetizing culturally-relevant content focused on human empowerment. The company’s mission is to end poverty or poor mindset by enriching our society with ideas and objectives that positively impact the world. Impact Theory is committed to bringing together some of the most talented creators, writers, and artists in the industry to tell stories of human potential.

The studio produces unscripted and scripted entertainment programming distributed through multiple digital platforms including YouTube, Facebook Watch, iTunes and Stitcher. In 2018, the scripted division released “Neon Future,” its first comic book series created in partnership with two-time Grammy nominated DJ & Producer Steve Aoki. “Neon Future” is set roughly 30 years in the future in an America that has outlawed advanced technology.  The series explores relevant themes of culture, technology and where the human species is headed on a much deeper level.   “Neon Future” is available to read on WEBTOON and available at retailers nationwide.

Headquartered in Bel Air, CA, Impact Theory is led by founders Tom and Lisa Bilyeu who previously co-founded Quest Nutrition, the billion-dollar company that rose to #2 on the Inc. 500 list of fastest-growing private companies. The two have built Impact Theory’s revolutionary in-house media team, producing content that has been viewed more than 100,000,000 times.

About Steve Aoki: 

Steve Aoki, the two-time Grammy-nominated producer/DJ is one of today’s most successful American cross-genre artists, collectively counting 2.8 billion music streams on Spotify. As the founder of the trendsetting record label, events/lifestyle company, and apparel line Dim Mak Records, which he founded in 1996, Aoki has helped launch the careers of global acts like The Chainsmokers, Bloc Party, The Bloody Beetroots, The Gossip, and The Kills, among many others. Dim Mak today counts more than 1,000 official releases from the biggest acts and most buzzing newcomers across EDM, indie rock, hip-hop and beyond over its two-decades-plus discography.

As a solo artist, Aoki boasts a lauded discography that includes: Wonderland (2012), his debut solo album, which garnered him his first-ever Grammy nomination for Best Dance/Electronica Album; hip-hop centric Kolony (2017), and the Neon Future series, which includes Neon Future I (2014, certified gold by the RIAA), Neon Future II (2015), Neon Future III (2018) and the recently released Neon Future IV (April 2020); which has rocketed in streaming to date and received praise from singles such as “Maldad” ft. Maluma and “Let It Be Me” ft. Backstreet Boys. Recognized by Forbes as one of the top 5 world’s highest paid DJ’s and the world’s hardest working DJ, Aoki is “one of the most in-demand entertainers in the world” (Billboard), counting more than 250 tour dates per year.

In 2012, Aoki founded THE AOKI FOUNDATION, which primarily supports organizations in the brain science and research areas with a specific focus on regenerative medicine and brain preservation. Most recently, Steve Aoki released his critically acclaimed memoir entitled BLUE: The Color of Noise published by St. Martin’s Press. 

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iPhone illustration by Kaelen Felix

Apple’s Newest Products

By Hannah DiPilato

On Tuesday, Apple introduced the newest iPhone as well as the HomePod mini. The new generation of products put an emphasis on the new 5G speed and the mini version of the iPhone 12.

The new iPhone 12 comes in models including the original iPhone 12 as well as Pro, Pro Max and Mini models. The iPhone 12 and the iPhone 12 Mini run on the less expensive side, while the iPhone 12 Max and iPhone 12 Max Pro are a bit more costly. 

The new iPhone is 11% thinner, 15% smaller and 16% lighter compared to the iPhone 11. The iPhone 12 features a 6.1 inch super retina display and the iPhone 12 Mini’s super retina display is 5.4 inches. Both phones have 4x better drop resistance, which many iPhone users have complained about in the past, as well as having more splash and spill resistance. The two phones come in five different color finishes: blue, green, red, black, and white. 

The iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max only come in four finishes but have more features for the money. The two phones feature a 12-megapixel telephoto lens which the iPhone 12 and mini do not have. The Pro and Pro Max also feature a stainless steel body while the other phones have an aluminum and glass design. The iPhone 12 Pro Max is also supposed to have the best battery life, with 12 hours of streaming. 

All of the phones feature a 5G speed which is useful for faster streaming and downloading. Apple designed the phone to have the most 5G bands of any phone, so that 5G is available in more places. The new phone design also allows many apps to use 5G without using too much battery life. However, when 5G isn’t needed, the phone automatically switches to LTE to save power. These speeds are meant to help provide better service in heavier populated areas, as well as allowing for better streaming and downloading of videos on cellular. 

The cameras of the phones feature better options for capturing memories at night. The Wide and Ultra Wide cameras have Night mode to bring in a higher level of detail and color. Apple also improved taking video in low light as well as Night mode Timelapse. This allows the camera of the iPhone 12 models to work at any time of day or night. 

Apple also released the HomePod mini, which starts at $99. It’s only 3.3 inches tall but features 360-degree audio that gives a booming sound for its size. If you buy multiple speakers they can connect around the house for an around the home sound system. Two speakers paired in the same room create left and right sound channels for an immersive sound. The speakers also use Siri to play any music or podcast you desire and it can recognize up to six voices. You can also intercom to other speakers around the house. 

The iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro are available for pre-order on October 16 while the iPhone 12 mini, iPhone 12 Pro Max and HomePod mini are available for pre-order on November 6. For more information on the new product check out Apple’s website.

Vijay Mallya illustration by Kaelen Felix for 360 MAGAZINE Netflix article.

King of Good Times

By Hannah DiPilato

Last month Netflix released a new documentary that gives an inside look at the corruption and greed of some of India’s most prominent billionaires. The first episode tells the store of Vijay Mallya’s extravagant life that takes a drastic turn. 

Vijay Mallya was born to Vittal Mallya, an entrepreneur who founded the United Breweries Group. When Vijay Mallya was only 28 years old his father died suddenly and Mallya had to follow in his father’s footsteps and run a business empire. 

When Mallya took over his father’s business he shook everyone up with his lifestyle. In an interview, he was compared to Donald Trump to which he responded he was “nowhere near bankruptcy,” an ironic foreshadowing to his future. He also talked about having many enemies. 

Alcohol is not viewed in India as it is in America and in some states of India alcohol is banned. Due to this negative stigma, Mallya needed a different way to advertise his brand. He became a pioneer for different kinds of advertising. He used surrogate advertising to promote his company while keeping the sale of alcohol disguised, instead he advertised soda. The brand was still high profile even if the beer wasn’t what was being advertised. In 1996 the World Cup was hosted in India and Kingfisher launched a campaign with a catchy jingle that was a memorable success. 

Vijay Mallya’s genius was making his lifestyle the centerpiece of the brand. He became known as “the king of good times” and this became Kingfisher’s tagline. He knew how to build his image off of this to make everyone desire the lifestyle he was living. According to Sid Mallya, Kingfisher became “more than just a beer, it became a lifestyle” and everyone aspired to live like the king of good times. Vijay Mallya was one of the first people in India that wasn’t afraid to live lavishly and use his money unapologetically. 

In 2003 Mallya survived a devastating helicopter crash. The ride was only supposed to be a short 45 minutes and Mallya’s executive assistant, Tushita Patel, recounted the terrifying crash in the documentary. It was her first helicopter ride and she thought she was going to die. Mallya survived the crash and said, “Miracles do happen, there’s obviously a message from above.” He believed he would use his “second life” to the fullest.  

Mallya became one of the world’s largest liquor producers, but that wasn’t enough for him; he wanted to be recognized all over the world as more. In one recording he explained he wanted to be “a catalyst for change.” He had an urge to be number one, the boldest and brightest and he would do whatever he could to get there. 

The next year in 2004, Mallay got in touch with Alex Wilcox to help begin the next Kingfisher adventure. Here is where Kingfisher airlines began. Mallya created a promotional video that showed how luxurious and unique flying on Kingfisher airlines would be. Mallay appealed to the rising middle class of India, larger than the population of The United States, and knew this would be the perfect consumer for this new flying experience. This was beneficial to Kingfisher as another way to advertise and promote the flamboyant lifestyle. 

On Sid Mallya’s 18 birthday the airline was officially launched. At first, the airline was a rapid success. The brand focused on high-frequency and low-cost eliminating serving meals and first-class like many other airlines. The airline sent the message “everyone is welcome here.” 

Although the company was thriving, in 2005 Mallya went behind the back of Alex Wilcox and spent billions of dollars on new planes. The airline was no longer going to be the same low-cost service it once was, this was not what the market wanted. The desire to expand the airline began to put Mallya in debt as he borrowed money from the bank. Mallya continued to expand and eventually, Wilcox could no longer help Kingfisher airlines; the two men had different expectations for the future of the company. 

Mallya’s debt continued to grow as he continued to buy into more companies. In 2008, the global economic downturn stopped people from traveling, Kingfisher airlines was not making what it needed to, daily, to survive. The company continued to fall into a pit of large debt through 2009 and 2010. The reports of the business numbers were published and scrutiny of the company was heightened. The flights were even running out of food and the crew was giving away their meals to customers. Although things were bad, Mallya thought he could save his airline. 

By 2011 Mallya was doing everything to save the airline. The workers of Kingfisher were severely underpaid. Many went on strike and the wife of an airline worker committed suicide because of the financial stress. Mallya begged his employees not to turn to the press, but eventually, his true character was revealed. He could have paid off some of his debt out of pocket but refused. Eventually, the license of Kingfisher Airline was suspended, the money had run out and the airline closed. 

When Mallya’s 60 birthday came around in 2015, he did not shy away from another profligate party. This party created a negative view towards Mallya and he was seen as a theft that did not care about the lives of his employees. This tipping point led to an investigation into his finances and prosecutors believed he was hiding his finances. Allegations against him included money laundering and fraud. 

Mallya fled to London with no plan to return against the orders of the government. He said, “I disprove the narrative that I stole money.” He was charged by the UK court for money laundering, conspiracy and cheating. Some argued there are worse criminals that need to be caught, while others declare he is a thief and needs to be prosecuted. His son Sid concluded because this was a “lifestyle brand, he was easier to target.”

Mallya has sold most of his business and as of summer 2020, he remains in London where he continues to fight all charges against him. You can watch the documentary on Netflix along with the next two episodes of Bad Boy Billionaires: India.