Posts tagged with "love"

LongdistanceRelationship by Rita Azar for 360 Magazine

Catfishing During COVID

new study expects there to be an unprecedented rise in online romance scams this Valentine’s Day, with scammers praying on lonely and isolated people during the pandemic.

Americans lost $201 million to romance scams in 2019, more than any other type of scam. Virginia had the eighth most victims in the nation.  

When the FTC releases the final totals for 2020, they are likely to increase in correlation with surging dating app usage due to more Americans turning online for human connection.

Bumble saw an 84% increase in video calls and Match Group, which owns 60% of the market including Tinder, saw subscriptions increase by 15%.

SocialCatfish.com released a study, Catfishing: A Growing Epidemic During COVID-19, using the most recent data from the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center. It also includes an exclusive seven-minute video interview with a Nigerian scammer, and a 20-page leaked playbook.

The study warns of 5 tactics scammers are using:    

1.     Cannot Meet Because of COVID: The hallmark of a catfish scammer is to come up with excuses of why they cannot meet, such as pretending to be in the military overseas. The pandemic gives them a built-in excuse not to meet.  Be careful.

2.     Will Not Video Chat: The oldest excuse in the book… they cannot video chat with you because their video camera is supposedly “broken”, or they do not have the best access to Wi-Fi. These are red flags.

3.     They Ask You for Money: Once they form an emotional connection with lonely victims, they ask for money. During COVID-19, scammers have begun saying they are sick and need help with treatment, or are low on food, water, and other supplies.

4.     Poor Grammar: If the person claims to be American but has terrible grammar, they may be a scammer.

5.     Confesses Love Quickly: If you are stuck in your house with limited contact with your loved ones, then someone else’s sweet words can win you over. Scammers know that the sooner they win your trust, the sooner they can drain your bank account. Beware of someone who is moving too fast.

5 Ways to Avoid Becoming a Victim:  

1.     Never Give Money: Do not give anyone you meet online money, no matter the reason.

2.     Meet or Video Chat: Do not form a relationship with someone who will not video chat with you or meet you in person. 

3.     Do Not Give Personal Information:  Scammers can use basic information to commit identity fraud, get access to your banks and steal your money.

4.     Conduct Thorough Background Checks: Do not take someone’s word for it.  Use reverse look-up sites to verify information, images, email addresses, phone numbers and online profiles.

5.     Take Things Slow: If you like someone online, do not let them rush you. Nigerian romance scammers will be pushy about falling in love right away. If that is the case, know something is not right.  

relationship illustration by Rita Azar for 360 Magazine

Insurance for Valentine’s Day Let-Downs

Survey shows percentage of those suffering Valentine let-downs, finds women caught cheating more often than men, and more.

The leading online resource for health, auto, home and life insurance for more than 20 years, Insurance, recently surveyed 2,000 individuals to determine how frequently Valentine’s Day disasters occur. The good news: most (83%) report escaping relationship drama around the holiday. But, for those who endure heartache, finding highlights include:

  • 27% broke up with someone
  • 20% had a serious argument
  • 65% of men caught partner cheating (vs. 35% of women discovering an unfaithful partner)
  • 52% of men initiate break ups (vs. 48% of women calling it quits)

The complete survey results are available: 5 heartbreaking scenarios—insurance after divorce.

“It’s understandable that insurance may not be top of mind when going through a stressful break up or divorce,” acknowledges Michelle Megna, editorial director for Insurance. “But failing to assess life, homeowners, auto and home insurance can be costly. Our guide makes it easy for people to understand where they may be exposed to financial risks so they can efficiently make any necessary insurance coverage changes.”

Insurance checklist during divorce

Life insurance: Consider changing the beneficiary or setting up a life insurance trust for the benefit of any children.

Home insurance: Ensure the correct name is on the policy and/or secure renters insurance if moving out of a shared home. The guide explains what to do if homeowners are underwater on their mortgage and/or leaving a home unoccupied.

Auto insurance: It is possible to stay on the same auto insurance policy until car ownership is determined. But, assess your estranged spouse’s driving habits, speeding tickets and/or accidents. It may be more cost-effective to separate your auto coverage before finalizing a divorce.

Health insurance: If an individual wants to remain on a former spouse’s health plan after divorce, it may be possible to obtain COBRA coverage for up to 36 months. COBRA is generally a high-cost option and it may be more cost effective to purchase an individual high-deductible health plan.

The report includes an interactive map showing divorce and marriage rates by state, along with their differences from national averages.

Megna is available to elaborate on break up survey findings and answer questions about how people can best assess any insurance coverage changes that may be important in the wake of divorce.

About Insurance.com

Insurance is owned and operated by QuinStreet, Inc. (Nasdaq: QNST), a leader in providing performance marketplace technologies and services to the financial services and home services industries. QuinStreet is a pioneer in delivering online marketplace solutions to match searchers with brands in digital media. The company is committed to providing consumers with the information and tools they need to research, find and select the products and brands that meet their needs.  Insurance.com is a member of the company’s expert research and publishing division.

Insurance.com is a trusted online resource dedicated to educating consumers on auto, home, health and life insurance, developing relationships directly with carriers to offer consumers comparison rates from multiple companies. Since 2001, Insurance.com’s industry-first online tools, data-based reporting and experienced experts have helped consumers make informed insurance-related decisions, so they can choose the right insurance for their individual needs.

Rita Azar illustrates relationship article for 360 MAGAZINE

“If Anything Happens, I Love You”

By Hannah DiPilato

Warning: Spoilers Ahead 

Netflix has recently released the heart-wrenching short film, “If Anything Happens, I Love You.” The twelve-minute animation has gained immense popularity on social media and many people on TikTok are urging others to watch the film. 

Written and directed by Michael Govier and Will McCormack, the film looks into the life of two grieving parents. At the beginning of the film, it’s hard to tell what to expect. We see a couple that is visibly fighting and their shadows, which could represent their souls, leave their bodies, and interact with one another. We soon see foreshadowing that the loss of their child is causing the grief. 

The entire film is in black and white except for a few strategic placements of color. We first see this color on the side of the family’s shed, a large, blue spot that the father looks at as if the spot holds meaning. The next time this same blue hue appears is while the mom is doing laundry and finds a blue shirt in the grey pile of clothing. She embraces the shirt into her nose, another hint to the watcher that this family is grieving. 

A soccer ball then falls off the washer and rolls into an ominous room with a closed door. The family’s cat follows the ball into the room and the ball bumps a record player which begins the song, “1950” by King Princess. The mom follows the sound into the bedroom and is met with photos of a young girl with a toothy smile. The dad is close behind and the mother holds up the shirt she found while doing laundry, they share a sympathetic smile. 

The shadow of a young girl pops up out of the record player and shares a heartwarming reconnection with the cat. The parents’ shadows come together and embrace the shadow of the girl and we see the parents finally reconnect since their argument. 

We get a few flashbacks and watch the couple’s daughter grow up. We see the family take a road trip, the girl learns to play soccer and the family celebrates her 10th birthday. We learn the spot on the shed came from the girl kicking a soccer ball too hard into the side. The parents then send their daughter off to school and this is when the tears really start flowing. 

The girl starts to approach the school and the shadows of the then naive parents are trying desperately to stop the girl from going. Of course, the shadows are unsuccessful and the girl waves goodbye as she walks into school, and impending doom. 

An American flag is seen hanging over the doors inside of the school and the red, white and blue pops against the grey background. This is another time the directors used a splash of color in the grey film. At first, the background noise is the basic sounds of a school such as chatter and slamming lockers. Then, we hear a gunshot. Two more gunshots blast in the background followed by the horror of screaming children. The screaming and gunshots continue and police sirens begin to blare while the screen switches to flashing red and blue lights.

While the chaotic background noise continues, a sketch of a phone appears with a bunny phone case. “If anything happens, I love you” sends from the phone and one final gunshot makes the screen go black. The audience finally connects the pieces of the film. The daughter has been killed in the school shooting. 

The text appears again and the letters fall turning to raindrops. The rain falls on the parents’ shadows as they sit facing away from each other on two sides of a piece of land. In the final moments of the film, we see the parents reunite thanks to the shadow of the daughter, and we see the parents finally find comfort in one another. 

It was shocking how much emotion could be fit into a twelve-minute animated film. There were many themes displayed in the film touching on family, loss, grief, trauma and love. This film also speaks out on the very important issue of gun control in America. For so many families, losing a child to gun violence in a school shooting is a harsh reality. A child’s life can be snatched away from them at an incredibly young age. 

With no dialogue and simple illustrations, the writers were able to convey an entire story that plays with the emotions of the viewer and evokes important conversations. The distress shown in the marriage after the loss of the daughter is something parents experience and may not necessarily want to talk about. It’s easy for the loss of a loved one to break people apart. 

The main takeaway from the film should be to hold your loved ones close because you never know what will happen next. In our fast-paced lives, we often take our lives and loved ones for granted. This film flawlessly shows how easily we can experience a loss that can make our world come crashing down. Remember, hold your loved ones close and tell them you love them, before it’s too late.

Watch the short animated film on Netflix now.

All Good Just A Week Ago

If you’re feeling a little bit lonely as a single person during quarantine, there might be a perfect book for you.

For both men and women, “All Good Just A Week Ago: Funny Dating Stories to Help You Keep Your Head in the Game” is chock-full of funny, relatable dating stories put together from interviews.

With teachable moments and unimaginable scenarios, “All Good Just A Week Ago” helps single people keep their heads in the game.

Erika McCall and Niesha Forbes, two best friends, wanted to put their quarantine time to good use, so they set up 50 interviews to gather data and stories for the book.

These stories prove that relationships can make you laugh and roll your eyes instead of cry, all while showing us that we’re not alone.

In 1950, only 22% of Americans were without a romantic partner. In 2019, 124 million Americans were without a partner.

Though the percentage of people in relationships has gone down, the desire to find love and companionship has not.

McCall said, “It’s the year of 20/20 vision, and it’s time for a dating and love revolution.”

Both authors agreed that the revolution begins with this book. With a goal to understand romantic communication and expectations, “All Good Just A Week Ago” uses stories to heal relationships and foster close, loving, committed relationships in a generation obsesses with “hook up culture.”

McCall and Forbes even get into a few of their own stories. McCall herself is single and wants to clear the way for her future husband to enter her life while Forbes is on her way to her third wedding anniversary and hopes that sharing her experience can help bring about mutual respect, kindness and traditional courtship in relationships.

McCall said her story is every woman’s story while Forbes said, “It is critical to know that once you get to a certain age, things you did in your early twenties, all those toxic behavior patterns where you’re not putting your worth above your desire to be with someone, if you don’t do the work on yourself, you will find yourself in your thirties, forties and even fifties, having not learned the important lessons or found true love.”

Following the laughs in the beginning of the book, readers will reach a call to action that encourages men and women to think critically about how to move forward with healthier relationship dynamics.

For more information about the book or to order it, you can click right here.

Gorgon City – Burning

Gorgon City, a UK and Chicago-based DJ duo of Kye Gibbon and Matt Robson Scott, released a brand new video for their song “Burning,” which features EVAN GIIA.

The release of this video follows their recent drop of the Terrace Dub remixed version of the song.

You can see the video by clicking right here.

Shot in Wyoming and directed by Eric Maldin, two young women find love in Laramie. They share an attraction to each other, but they only show it in public with slight gestures, like pinky touches.

A heart made of flames finally represents burning love and desire, allowing the two to reconcile and embrace.

The Terrace Dub Remix is a rework of the song with more driving energy, hypnotizing filters, slow beautiful builds and solid sharp drops while still featuring EVAN GIIA’s vocals.

You can hear the Terrace Dub Remix of “Burning” by clicking right here.

Gorgon City has amassed more than 1.4 billion global streams and 9 million singles sold throughout their career. They’ve also topped international radio station charts and landed the No. 1 spot on US Dance Radio.

To learn more about Gorgon City, you can click right here. You can also follow them on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

I ❤️ Beirut

By Justin Lyons

Mika announced Wednesday that his “I ❤️ Beirut” concert, which was live-streamed Sept. 19 on his YouTube channel, raised more than €1 million for the people of Lebanon.

An explosion at a Beirut warehouse on Aug. 4 killed more than 200 and injured more than 5,000.

Ticket sales, sponsors and public donations all contributed to the large sum that will be split between the Lebanese Red Cross and Save the Children.

Tickets were purchased in 120 different countries via Ticketmaster, the most in the ticketing giant’s history. Donations also poured in from 48 different countries via a GoFundMe page.

The show featured megastars like Salma Hayek, Danna Paola, Rufus Wainwright, Kylie, Mashrou Leila, Louane, Etel Adnan, Fanny Ardant and Laura Pausini. It has also picked up interest from major television stations across the world.

Mika joined Georges Kettaneh, the secretary general of the Lebanese Red Cross, and Kevin Watkins, CEO of Save the Children UK, on a video call Wednesday to make the announcement. He thanked everyone who helped the fundraiser cross the €1 million mark.

“I also wanted to say how amazing this statement of solidarity for the situation in Beirut has been, with tickets for the stream selling to over 120 different countries around the world,” Mika said. “This has been a project that was born out of and made possible by love, and a huge amount of collaboration with friends and many new friends made in the process.”

The certified gold and platinum artist was born in Beirut and is now celebrated around the world.

Kettaneh also thanked donors, saying the Lebanese Red Cross would continue to use the funds to support the people of Beirut.

“The people of Beirut face a long road to recovery, with this generosity and the continued support we have received from around the globe, we can continue to stand alongside them for as long we are needed,” Kettaneh said.

Watkins also chimed in to say Save the Children would work to help children and families affected by the explosion.

“All donations will be going toward our emergency response efforts in Lebanon, which include weather proofing damaged homes, supporting vulnerable and displaced families with food and cash grants, and providing ongoing psychological support for children and families,” Watkins said.

Donations can still be made to the campaign’s GoFundMe by clicking right here. The goal of £150,000 has already been passed, and it is closing in on £200,000.

You can also learn more about the Lebanese Red Cross by clicking right here and about Save the Children UK by clicking right here.

Eric Bellinger – SOLO’N

Today, Grammy-winning songwriter and R&B artist Eric Bellinger releases his catchy second single SOLO’N from his upcoming album Eric B for President: Term 3 releasing via YFS Music/EMPIRE on October 30. Produced by Smash David and Lowky, the magnetic new track shows Bellinger as he falls in love with a strong, independent woman and strives to give her the luxurious life she deserves.

The music video, inspired by his real-life relationship with his wife, gives fans a peek into the start of their romance. SOLO’N follows last week’s release GODLY and he will continue with weekly song and video releases telling a continuous story.

“SOLO’N is definitely one of my personal favorites on the album,” explains Bellinger. “Nursery rhyme melody vibes on the hook make sure you know the words by the time the 2nd chorus comes around, and it’s stuck in your head after the song is done playing! The entire project is in chronological order and is based off the back story of me meeting and solidifying the relationship between me & my 1st lady. The album starts with GODLY, a record where I’m showcasing that I got all my shit together. I’m in position. I’m up at this point and I’ve worked on myself so I can be ready for that special someone. SOLO’N sets the scene. Introducing those first passages of convo from text messages to FaceTimes giving listeners an inside look at the moments that brought us together throughout our timeline of love.”

Eric B For President: Term 3 follows Optimal Music, an album collaboration with longtime business partner Nieman Johnson. The project debuted in April and features Young Thug, Jeremih, Joe Moses, and more. This year, Bellinger also shared another album Scenarios a collaboration with Grammy-winning producer Chase-N-Cash and the thoughtful single Enough written about police brutality and released during the BLM protests.

Eamonn Burke illustrates a rock music video article for 360 MAGAZINE

Nothing But Thieves New Video

The English rock band Nothing But Thieves released a brand new music video for their song “Real Love Song” on Monday.

Real Love Song” is the second song from their new album titled “Moral Panic.” It follows “Is Everybody Going Crazy?” as the second song from the album, and it was produced by Mike Crossey who has worked with bands like Arctic Monkeys, The 1975, Two Door Cinema Club and The Black Keys.

At almost 3 million streams worldwide, the song breaks love and relationships into pieces. Love isn’t the perfect, romantic tale we hear in songs and see in movies. Conor Mason, lead vocals for the band, calls love “dirty,” saying the love in “Real Love Song” makes him hate himself for days, sitting alone while listening to Nick Cave.

Complete with a warning of flashing images and stroboscopic sequences, the video combines neon lights with animation to tell the story of love in the digital world.

“This is a song within a song and the video, with its nods to the modern relationship and its sensationalized band moments, tell two sides of the same story. Where does the cynicism end and the real begin?” the band said.

Nothing But Thieves has sold more than 700,000 albums and 150,000 tickets in the past few years, including a sellout at Alexandra Palace. They have also performed in the United States for Jimmy Fallon and James Corden on late night television. Though they’ve bene unable to perform live, they have kept the content flowing for their fans on their YouTube channel as all five members of the band record separately from different locations.

“Moral Panic” is available for pre-order now and will be released in October. It will be the band’s first album since their EP titled “What Did You Think When You Made Me This Way” in 2018.

Marvel's EMPYRE #4 GETS SECOND PRINTING and is announced inside of 360 MAGAZINE.

EMPYRE #4 GETS SECOND PRINTING

The fourth issue of Marvel’s cosmic epic, EMPYRE, which pits the Kree/Skrull alliance against the Cotati, is getting a second printing after the first printing sold out.

Love prevails in the middle of an intergalactic war in this issue written by Al Ewing and Dan Slott with art by Valerio Schiti.

The first issue of EMPYRE was released in July, and second printings of the first three issues are already available, but the shocking fourth issue will hit comic shops for more fans to experience the story that Marvel said has reshaped the Marvel Universe forever.

The second printing of the fourth issue will also have a variant cover, which will be revealed by Marvel at a later date.

The story continues next week when the fifth issue hits shelves. Readers looking to catch up on EMPYRE can click right here to see every must-read issue in the run, all of which are available digitally and at local comic shops.

KEM and Toni Braxton illustration done by Mina Tocalini of 360 MAGAZINE.

Kem × Toni Braxton

On the heels of KEM’s smash hit Lie to Me which has maintained the No. 1 spot on the Billboard Adult R&B Songs chart for six weeks in a row, the R&B superstar releases his new single, Live Out Your Love featuring the iconic Toni Braxton. KEM’s signature silky vocals give way to Braxton’s rich, sultry sound on the track, which is from his upcoming album, LOVE ALWAYS WINS (Motown), set for release on August 28. The two artists co-wrote the song and KEM produced it with Derek “DOA” Allen. 

The collaboration was sparked last year when Braxton extended an invitation for KEM to perform at her Valentine’s Day concert in Detroit. My wife and I went to Toni’s show at the Fox Theatre, recalls KEM. She called me up onstage to sing with her and it was an incredible moment.

While working on his new album, KEM began to envision Live Out Your Love as a duet and asked Braxton to join him. Due to COVID-19, they couldn’t record in the same room. When Braxton sent her vocal to KEM, he was blown away. I loved the way she recorded, the texture of her voice, he says. The pairing of our voices was just amazing.

The pre-order for LOVE ALWAYS WINS launched today. Fans who pre-order the album in digital format will instantly receive Lie to Me and Live Out Your Love. As a special treat to fans, merch will be available at www.musicbykem.com

Essence said, KEM knows just how to make anyone believe in love, fall in love and sing about love. Praising the smooth and sexy Lie to Me, Billboard observed, The body-swaying mid-tempo number perfectly captures the relatable themes of unconditional love and devotion. Reaching No. 1 on the Billboard Adult R&B Songs chart in nine short weeks, Lie to Me is the fastest-rising of KEM’s six chart-topping singles, which include It’s You, Love Calls, I Can’t Stop Loving You, Why Would You Stay? and Nobody. KEM co-wrote Lie to Me with Anthony Hamilton, Salam Remi, and James Poyser and produced it with Derek “DOA” Allen.

LOVE ALWAYS WINS is the follow-up to KEM’s 2014 album, PROMISE TO LOVE, which debuted at No. 1 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart. It entered the Billboard 200 at No. 3, becoming his third consecutive top five album on the tally. PROMISE TO LOVE contained the hit singles Nobody and It’s You, which each spent multiple weeks atop the Urban Adult Contemporary radio charts. Nobody earned KEM his third GRAMMY nomination.

The internationally renowned R&B singer/songwriter has to his credit: one Platinum album (KEM: ALBUM II), two Gold albums (KEMISTRY and INTIMACY), three GRAMMY nominations and six No. 1 singles. In addition, KEM has been nominated for six NAACP Image Awards, two Soul Train Awards and a BET Centric Award. In 2012, KEM founded Mack & Third, Inc., a Michigan domestic non-profit organization that provides funding to humanitarian aid organizations related to: homelessness; hunger; substance abuse; domestic violence; natural disasters; education, etc.

Toni Braxton is the legendary, multimillion-selling R&B/pop pioneer and seven-time GRAMMY Award-winner behind timeless hits such as Love Shoulda Brought You Home, Another Sad Love Song, Breathe Again, Seven Whole Days, He Was’t Man Enough and Un-Break My Heart. The official video for Un-Break My Heart recently broke 500 million views on YouTube. The multi-talented singer/songwriter has expanded her skill set along the way to include music producer, Broadway musical star, television actress/producer and best-selling author. She also devotes time as spokesperson for Lupus L.A. and Autism Speaks.

Follow KEM: Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

Follow Toni Braxton: Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube