Have you ever seen a trapeze artist perform in a circus? Though his act is full of uncertainty and risk, the artist is able to perform without hesitation. What enables him to do this? The assurance of the safety net at the bottom. He has the surety in his mind that even if he falls while performing, he cannot get hurt because the safety net will catch him.
Similarly, we all seek that ‘safety net’ or protection in our life. This need for protection is fulfilled by different things including people, our status in life, the amount of money we have etc… These things provides us with security and peace of mind that helps us move on in life.
However, it is not enough to look for our own safety always. It is important that we also create an environment that allows other people to feel safe in our presence. When we make someone feel safe, it means that he/she does not fear us in any way. They can be open with us and not fear being judged for something they say or do.
Param Pujya Dada Bhagwan has defined this as the ultimate form of charity called, ‘Abhaya daan’. He says, ‘Abhaya daan is where one’s conduct is such that he will not raise fear in any living being. For abhaya daan, one should have the inner intention of not hurting any living being, even in the slightest degree. Only then will this come into practice.”
So on this auspicious occasion of Rakshabandhan, why don’t we decide to create a safe, open environment around us, which will enable others to feel protected in our presence?
Southampton Seafarers’ Center Celebrates Anniversary
International maritime charity Sailors’ Society has announced that it will celebrate the first anniversary of its Southampton Seafarers’ Center at 108 East Street Saturday (October 13).
Since its opening, the center, which is run by a committed team of staff and volunteers, has seen more than 7,000 seafarers walk through its doors.
The center is designed to feel like a home away from home and gives seafarers visiting Southampton time to relax away from the busy port environment. They can also access free Wi-Fi in order to contact loved ones back home.
The center offers a variety of facilities, including a pool table, TV and a kitchen area for seafarers to use.
The anniversary is being marked by the arrival of a new people carrier to transport seafarers around the city. The people carrier is sponsored by the Merchant Navy Welfare Board, Seafarers Trust, Trinity House and Seafarers UK and provided by Viking Garages of West End.
(Photo: Left center, Ward Puddle, center co-ordinator, shaking hands with Peter Tomlin, CEO of Merchant Navy Welfare Board at the unveiling of new seafarers’ bus for the center on first birthday sponsored.)
This might be one of the most important videos I’ve edited in 2018. After everything that has been going on with the privacy crisis and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg going to Washington to speak with members of Congress, I felt that this video was timely. I think social media can be good but we must be careful with how we use it.
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Speakers in the video
I made this video with the intention to help others in a motivational/inspirational form. The clips and music I have used I do not own in most cases. My understanding is that it is in correlation to Fair Right Use, however, given that it is open to interpretation if any owners of the content clips would like me to remove the video I have no problem and will do as fast as possible. please Email – [email protected] – if you have any concerns at.
These videos are transformative in a positive sense, I take clips from various sources to help create an atmospheric feeling that will help people in different situations in their life. Be it overcoming hard challenges, giving them more fuel in various sporting scenes or act as hope for those who need to hear encouraging words.
I also do not wish to use the heart of any piece of the work that would perhaps decrease the market value of the original content, if anything I hope to promote the content so that people can reach out and subsequently increase the market value. These videos are to educate people in an entertaining fashion. Given these are very short videos the short parts I use them to act as a catalyst to further reading.
In this article, you will learn about the top trends in team building for 2018.
As a team building facilitator and speaker, I realize that the umbrella topic of “team building” brings a number of ideas to people’s heads – not all of them positive!
Many leaders can see the profitable impact of relevant and intentional activities, and recognize the usefulness and of professionally delivered team building events.
But not all of the top trends in teambuilding are positive…
Just as not all that glitters is gold, some of the events and activities that managers and team leaders schedule for their people can be less relevant and have minimal impact.
Team building is NOT the same as team bonding.
And, while there is a place for and a value in simple bonding activities, team building should provide relevant and actionable insights and take-aways that immediately improve group awareness, focus, and interactions. In this article, you will hear about some of the best (and some of the less beneficial) trends in team building – because as a team leader, your focus should be on what is effective, not just what is popular…
From “Recreational” to “Intentional” – Team Building Trends for 2018
The following are activities that many companies and groups have invested time and resources in. They are listed in order from recreational to intentional.
Recreational Events usually offer a few hours of fun, with little real-world application or impact… while Intentional Team Building activities are more intentional and results-focused.
All events CAN have a positive impact on team dynamics and interactions – but the further down the list you go, the more the event will likely have relevant and actionable outcomes that will improve your team’s accountability, collaboration, etc.
Bowling and Laser-tag and Zip-lining, Oh My!
There are a number of things that managers schedule and call team building, and like these activities, they may be fun, but they are not truly relevant… and they likely offer no real-world application other than a few laughs together. And while laughter and rapport are both valuable in building and strengthening relationships, these activities often offer little depth of meaningful interaction.
Chili and Paint Experiences
Cook-offs and artistic afternoons have become a bit more popular, and while these do offer an occasional discussion of “how we are all important ingredients” or “together we create a beautiful canvas,” the take-aways are seldom more than a lighthearted and enjoyable leisure time together.
Building Bikes and Bears
These “charity builds” give your people a chance to spend time away from the office, and definitely deliver a thoughtful gift to the people they are donated to, but there is seldom any tangible change in office dynamics or behaviors…
Whether across an entire city or at a specific location, a scavenger hunt is a fun and engaging way to allow your people to work together toward a common goal. Some companies, like WildGoose, even use technology to collect and score the events… and you can group people together to ensure they interact during the event. The challenge is finding a facilitator to help the activity translate to a boost in inter-office collaboration or effectiveness.
Crisis & Adventure Simulations
Using out-of-the-box notebooks and PowerPoint programs adds an engaging twist, but a group conversation about being stranded on an island (or saved from a bear attack) doesn’t always provide applicable take-aways for your team. Your people will likely only carry back to their daily activities the memory of a short activity that has limited applications to improve their interactions and productivity.
Nearly everyone has visited – or at least heard of – an escape room experience. In Atlanta, the Ultimate Escape Game is a popular and highly rated opportunity for people to enjoy a fun hour together with a unique challenge. Escape rooms are a controlled atmosphere where all ages can participate and learn the importance of collaboration, and can be helpful to inspire improved communication skills if the lessons are connected to your everyday workplace situation.
One of the more interesting team building trends is to incorporate team building activities into a conference event. These intentional networking and connection-creating opportunities are a key part of why attendees are there in the first place – to grow their network and collaborate with others who they can share information and issues with. Whether as part of an opening interactive keynote, or an engaging set of conversations and designed interactions throughout the event, allowing people to establish and grow useful relationships is as valuable a take-away as any content they may collect in their notebooks.
Enlightening Shared Challenges and Laughs
A tailored collection of experiential challenges can be a powerful and effective way to improve self-awareness. Business team building events are a unique and fun way to tailor team challenges and interactions to address a specific teamwork issue or need, whether it is increased accountability or personality conflicts or just improved clarity in communications. A fun day of laughter, where “ha-ha’s” are transformed to relevant “a-ha’s” that impact your team performance, can be a powerful catalyst for team development.
Experiential activities can be powerful learning tools.
They provide far more effective and memorable insights than a lecture or bullet-list PowerPoint presentation or recreational activity!
As you plan for your next group development event, consider the impact that your investment will ultimately have.
Looking back in 3-6 months, will the time you and your team spend together translate into more effective communication and performance?
There are a number of team building options available, and the trends for 2018 offer a spectrum of experiences for your people to enjoy. And, there are truly no wrong answers. Every activity provides at least some measure of interaction and bonding opportunity.
But for team leaders looking to get the most impact for their teams, the more intentional you are in your team building activity, the more improvement in team dynamics you are likely to witness.
This week, I feel lucky enough to bring you not one, not two, but three masters of inspiration into the hot seat. Join me in this LIVE conversation from the WeWork Creator Awards where I was joined on stage by serial entrepreneur and investor Kevin Rose, interior designer Kelly Wearstler, and star of Netflix’s ‘Queer Eye’ & fashion designer Tan France. All three of our panelists are built a life doing the things that they love, but like all of us, there were a lot of twists and turns. In this episode, they share stories of inspiration, overcoming challenges, as well as some super solid business advice. In this episode: Next time the fear of failure strikes you, remember this. Only 1 out of every 12 investments in venture capital are successful. Give yourself the grace to fail 92% of the time. You’ve got to surround yourself with the best people you can. Whether you’re mastering your craft, building a team, or looking for your first clients, you’d be a fool to discredit those closest to you. Passion is what made long, hard days worth it. We talk about how to use passion to overcome fear, failure, and getting stuck. […]
All 20 people aboard a small plane died when the aircraft crashed into a mountain in the Swiss alps on Saturday.
Officials said there’s no indication of foul play, and that the old-timey plane likely didn’t have the technology modern aircraft do.
BERLIN (AP) — Swiss police say all 20 people aboard an old-time propeller plane were killed when the aircraft crashed into a mountainside in southeast Switzerland.
The Swiss news website 20min.ch quoted police spokeswoman Anita Senti as saying that police now know all 20 people on the Junkers Ju-52 propeller plane died in the crash Saturday near the Alpine resort of Flims.See the rest of the story at Business Insider
The word “guerrilla,” in its written form, seems very intense. It conjures images of rebellion and conflict. Put it next to the word “marketing,” and it makes a lot of people ask, “Huh?”
But guerrilla marketing isn’t some sort of combative form of communication. After all, that would be highly disruptive, which violates the inbound methodology. In fact, it’s actually a very unconventional form of inbound marketing, in that it raises brand awareness among large audiences, without interrupting them.
Because it’s so unconventional, however, it’s not the easiest concept to explain. Guerrilla marketing is often best understood when it’s observed, so that’s how we’re going to approach its best practices and takeaways here.
We’ll start with some basics around where it came from and how it works, followed by an examination of how it’s been carried out successfully.
What Is Guerrilla Marketing?
Roots of Warfare
When we hear the term “guerrilla marketing,” it’s hard not to think of guerrilla warfare — which makes sense, since that’s where this style of marketing got its name. In the warfare context, guerrilla tactics depend largely on the element of surprise. Think: “Ambushes, sabotage, raids,” according to Creative Guerrilla Marketing.
But how does that translate into the work we do every day? In marketing, guerrilla techniques mostly play on the element of surprise. It sets out to create highly unconventional campaigns that catch people unexpectedly in the course of their day-to-day routines. You’ll see what that looks like in some the examples below.
The term itself was created in the early 1980s by the late business writer Jay Conrad Levinson, who wrote several books about guerrilla tactics in a number of professional areas. Of course, at that time, marketing in general looked very different, and while guerrilla marketing is still used today, the ever-growing digital landscape is changing what it looks like. Again — you’ll see what that looks like in some of the examples below.
What marketers really enjoy about guerrilla marketing is its fairly low-cost nature. The real investment here is a creative, intellectual one — its implementation, however, doesn’t have to be expensive. Michael Brenner summarizes it nicely in his article on “guerrilla content,” where he frames this style of marketing in the same context as repurposing your existing content, like taking certain segments of a report, and expanding each one into a blog post. It’s an investment of time, but not money, per se.
In a way, guerrilla marketing works by repurposing your audience’s current environment. Evaluate it, and figure out which segments of it can be repurposed to include your brand.
Types of Guerrilla Marketing
As niche as it might seem, there are actually a few sub-categories of guerrilla marketing, as outlined by the firm ALT TERRAIN:
Outdoor Guerrilla Marketing. Adds something to preexisting urban environments, like putting something removable onto a statue, or putting temporary artwork on sidewalks and streets.
Indoor Guerilla Marketing. Similar to outdoor guerrilla marketing, only it takes place in indoor locations like train stations, shops, and university campus buildings.
Event Ambush Guerilla Marketing. Leveraging the audience of an in-progress event — like a concert or a sporting game — to promote a product or service in a noticeable way, usually without permission from the event sponsors.
Experiential Guerilla Marketing. All of the above, but executed in a way that requires the public to interact with the brand.
We know — without context, the whole idea of guerrilla marketing can be a little confusing, so let’s see how it’s been executed by a few other brands.
7 Guerrilla Marketing Examples to Inspire Your Brand
Here’s a fun fact about your neighborhood marketing blogger: I. Spill. Everything. Coffee? Check. Olive oil? You got it. Generally, I am simply a mess, and like to have paper towels nearby at all times.
Naturally, I couldn’t help but be impressed by this guerilla marketing installment from paper towel company Bounty. By installing life-sized “messes” throughout the streets of New York — a giant, knocked over coffee cup and a gigantic melting popsicle — the brand found a unique way to advertise its product and the solution it provides, with minimal words.
You might ask, “Wouldn’t a concise billboard ad accomplish the same thing?” Well, not really. Culturally, we’re starting to opt for every possible way to eradicate ads from our lives. That’s why we love things like DVR and ad-free options on streaming services like Hulu and YouTube. This campaign, unlike an ad, isn’t as easy to ignore. After all, if you stumbled upon a melting popsicle the size of your mattress on your way to work, would you stop and look? We would.
The big takeaway: Identify the biggest problem that your product or service solves. Then, find an unconventional way to broadcast that to the public — preferably without words.
2) The GRAMMYS
Okay, this one might not be entirely fair, since it wasn’t pulled off “in real life.” But how cool would it be if it was? To promote the nominees for its Album Of The Year category, the GRAMMYS music awards show created a video to show what would happen if posters for the nominated artists just began singing.
It might sound impossible to actually carry out something like that. But imagine — what if you could create musical posters for your brand? Again, it’s different than a billboard ad, because when we walk by a wall of paper advertisements in, say, New York City, we don’t expect them to start moving. Now, we’ll admit that this idea isn’t exactly a budget friendly one, as it might require some technical work to bring to fruition. But even if you could include a single moving or digital image among a sea of still ones — in a place where it would come as a surprise, like a brick wall — it would catch people off guard and, therefore, get their attention.
The big takeaway: Think about the things that your audience might just pass by every day — and make those things do something that’s both unexpected and interactive.
When I first saw this photo, I’ll admit that I fell for it. “Someone, get that dog away from those flies!” I frantically thought. Then, I realized that the dog wasn’t real, and neither were the flies. The former was a photo, and the latter were actually humans.
That’s because Frontline, the makers of flea and tick prevention products for dogs, were able to fill the entire floor of this large, public space with this image. The brand knew that many people walk across that space every day, and that a good number of people would also see it from the building’s upper levels, creating the dog-and-insect illusion. It’s hard to miss — and to not look twice.
Again, this campaign is different than traditional marketing, because it’s not just plastering a single message somewhere that’s likely to be ignored. It creates a form of accidental human interaction that reminds the viewer what the product does.
The big takeaway: Figure out how humans might involuntarily interact with your marketing messages. While your product or service may not address the issue of, say, insect removal, there are ways to make people part of the campaign.
Breaking up is hard to do in person, let alone when it’s publicly played out online. That’s what happened — allegedly — when one Instagram user left a comment on this post sharing a tale of his “girl” procuring food from Burger King. There was just one problem. This guy does have a girlfriend, but she was nowhere near a Burger King. So, who was he referring to? The drama ensued, via Instagram comments:
After the comments began to make headlines, many speculated that the entire exchange may have been staged by Burger King. And if it was, we can’t help but salute them — what a way to get your brand into the zeitgeist. Burger King has roughly one million followers on Instagram. Compare that to the 2.1 million followers of its chief competitor, McDonald’s. And while we’re not sure how many followers the former had before this famous breakup, it makes sense to assume that this at least drew more attention to its social media presence, at least on this particular platform. People may have already been observing the brand on Instagram, but before now, were they actively discussing it?
The big takeaway: Guerrilla marketing has gone digital. Think about where your audience already exists digitally — then, give ’em a show. While we can’t condone lying, we can applaud creativity, so don’t be afraid to use the comments to get people talking.
I’m as guilty as anyone of wasting money on bottled water. I have no excuse. I have a reusable one. My workplace offers filtered water from a machine, not a traditional cooler, and yet, it remains a bad habit.
That’s why this guerrilla marketing campaign from relief organization UNICEF resonated with me. It posed the question, “What if those bottles of water you waste money on were filled with dirty water?” It was a way of reminding the privileged masses that in too many parts of the world, entire populations have no access to clean drinking water.
So instead of frivolously spending that money on bottled water, UNICEF suggested putting it toward efforts to bring clean drinking water to these areas. It did so by creating makeshift vending machines that sold bottled dirty water, with each button labeled as a disease caused by a lack of clean drinking water.
The big takeaway: Guerrilla marketing works in the not-for-profit sector, too. And while scary, saddening images are often an impactful way of communicating your mission, there’s a way to convey it by creating something less in-your-face and interactive for the public.
Are you an underwear company looking for an unconventional way to market your product? Why, just try placing an enormous pair of briefs on an iconic charging bull statue.
Really, we can’t make this stuff up.
It’s so simple, in theory, that it sounds like fiction. But when the GoldToe brand needed a way to tease and promote the launch of its new undergarments, that’s exactly what it did — casually placed these new items of clothing on statues throughout New York. And while we can’t be sure that it’s the route GoldToe took, we sincerely hope that those bull-sized briefs were made with leftover manufacturing fabric, helping to make this campaign even budget-friendlier.
The big takeaway: Don’t overthink it. Sometimes what looks like your silliest idea might be the best one.
7) Greene King
When you make plans to catch up with friends and family, what are the two things around which you inevitably gather? We’ll take a stab at guessing:
When pub and brewing company Greene King feared that small, neighborhood establishments — notably, the pub — would start to be overtaken by large corporate retail, it launched a campaign to communicate just how important these local businesses really are. Even better, the content was almost entirely created by those who understand this predicament best: Pub owners, bartenders, and patrons.
These individuals were given cameras to capture video of the most meaningful moments and gatherings they’ve experienced inside these local pubs — from weddings, to funeral receptions, to birthdays. These videos were shared on Greene King’s YouTube profile and posed the question, “Without these neighborhood meeting places, where would we share these moments?”
The big takeaway: It’s okay to get a little sentimental with guerilla marketing. Think about the emotions invoked by what you offer. Then, invite your audience to create content around what your brand means to them.
Guerrillas in the Wild
Starting to make a little more sense?
When we set out to write this post, we were disappointed with just one element of it — we found virtually no B2B examples. That doesn’t mean it’s impossible within that sector. It just requires extra creativity.
Hopefully, you’ll be inspired by these examples, especially if you’re promoting a smaller brand. Don’t be afraid to crowdsource the content for these campaigns, for example — after all, it’s creative approaches to your work that help maintain guerrilla marketing’s budget-friendly, inbound nature. Remember: Catch people where they are, and insert your brand there. Don’t interrupt, but invite them to participate.
Last month, Paris Hilton found herself in a familiar position, standing in front of a crowd of goading paparazzi decked out in bejeweled sunglasses and a shiny silver mini dress. But the conversation they were having was certainly not familiar to those who may think they know the heiress: “President Trump is going to sign the executive order to help the immigrants,” a voice yells out to her amidst the incessant pop of camera flashes. “Do you think that’s going to help?”
Hilton, who’s been the subject of paparazzi lust for almost two decades, is quick with an outspoken opinion: “He better help them, because this is not right what they’re doing to these children and their families … No one should be separated from their family. I’m disgusted,” she replies, turning her head to the side, revealing the weighty gold Gucci logo emblazoned on the arms of her glasses. She doesn’t stop signing autographs, but then looks directly into the camera and tells the world (or perhaps it’s her former family friend, Donald Trump, for whom she voted and to whom she is primarily speaking): “People come to America for the American Dream.”
This is TMZ’s contribution to the national debate over Trump’s family separation policy, and it feels both like a throwback to the tabloid-fueled chintziness of aughts-era Hollywood and a moment that could only occur in 2018. It is a surreal exchange for a litany of reasons, not least because of our collective understanding of who the woman in the sunglasses talking about immigration is: Paris Hilton is an icon not just of the 2000s, but of a certain widely held image of what inherited wealth, undeserved fame, and American excess looks like. There was her reality show The Simple Life, which followed Hilton and then-BFF Nicole Richie as they abandoned their lives of leisure to go live and work alongside “regular” Americans. Then there was also the numerous film and TV appearances, the singing career, the product lines, and the constant coverage by tabloids and early blogs. Through all this she crafted a persona — and, according to our conversation with her, that’s exactly what it was — of a spoiled, air-headed, platinum blonde princess, complete with the fake baby voice and sugary pseudo-sexuality that implies.
“I just got stuck with that character because people don’t know me in real life or haven’t spoken to me,” Hilton tells Refinery29. “They assume it’s just the baby voice and you know, ‘what’s Walmart?’ and silly things. I would say that’s not really how I am, but I was just trying to be entertaining for television.”
At 37, she’s been in and out of the spotlight for nearly two decades, and seems to be emerging now with a concerted effort to shake the image of the prodigal rich girl. How much it’s actually worked is in the eye of the beholder. “I think now I’ve really proven myself,” she argues. “With the success of my fragrances, then all my other 19 product lines, and all the big deals I’m doing, and real estate. I’m finally being taken seriously as a businesswoman and empire.”
While her grandfather donated 97 percent of his fortune to charity when he died in 2007, Paris currently has an estimated net worth of around $300 million. Her perfume empire alone is worth an estimated $1.5 billion. That it’s taken this long for Hilton to feel that she’s earned it says as much about the magnitude of her ambitions as it does about our fascination with money and how those who have it behave. Hilton was arguably the first person to turn her mere privileged existence into a lucrative career, a model copied today by many, but most famously mastered by Kim Kardashian (Paris’ old right hand) and her sisters. This year alone, Hilton released her 24th fragrance, launched a skincare line, and premiered a show on Viceland — of all places — where she examines the lives of young people attempting to “make it” in Hollywood. She also still DJs for nightly fees that, in 2014, were reported to be as high as $1 million per night, and dropped a new single titled “I Need You” earlier this year, though unfortunately it failed to live up to the success of her 2006 cult hit “Stars Are Blind.”
Yes, I came from Hilton hotels, but I’ve parlayed it into such a huge business that even my grandfather said to me, ‘I used to be known as Barron Hilton. Now I’m known as Paris Hilton’s grandfather.’
For all of today’s conversations about the spectrum of privilege and where certain people get placed on it, America either loves, or loves to hate, rich people. (Bonus points if they’re beautiful women with recognizable last names.) In thinking about Hilton, it’s hard not to call to mind another very privileged, very ambitious young woman: Ivanka Trump. In addition to being friends since childhood, both have monetized their moneyed backgrounds and our hunger for a piece of their world to sell a watered-down, mass-produced version of luxury. Paris’s numerous fragrances, like Ivanka’s now-defunct clothing line, are much less valuable because of the products themselves as they are because of the names behind them.
Hilton herself seems to understand this, saying of her new scent: “I really, I really want it to represent me and have my fans have a piece of me.” Nevermind that it smells like one of 2018’s least popular scents (roses), and has aggressively ignored the minimalist, millennial-friendly packaging her celebrity peers have adopted — Hilton’s confidence in her product reflects a confidence that rich-bitch wealth will always be relevant.
Indeed, even as her own star power has waxed and waned, the enormity of her legacy has come into focus: She is there in the fashion influencers filling your feed with their spon con. She is there among the stars of various reality television franchises, as they fling insults and beverages about on national TV. She is there among the socialite-turned-DJs-turned-fashion-designers that populate the most rarefied corners of the world, like Harley Viera-Newton and Alexa Chung.
“Ever since I was a teenager, I wanted to be independent. I didn’t want to have to ask my family for anything,” Hilton explains of her attitude toward money and privilege. “Yes, I came from Hilton hotels, but I’ve parlayed it into such a huge business that even my grandfather said to me, ‘I used to be known as Barron Hilton. Now I’m known as Paris Hilton’s grandfather.’”
When asked about the recent controversy surrounding Forbes magazine’s designation of Kylie Jenner, whom Hilton has known since birth, as “self-made,” she was adamant that she agrees with that characterization — and feels it applies to herself as well. “I think of myself and anyone who does business as being self-made. Everything I’ve done, I’ve done on my own, and yes, I do come from a last name, but there also are many children I know that come from families who, you know, take the choice of not doing anything with their lives.”
“I think of myself and anyone who does business as being self-made.
“I work harder and travel more than any CEO I’m friends with,” she continued. “The same with Kylie. I think any woman who is going to get into business and be an entrepreneur and make a big name and brand for themselves, they are self-made.”
Indeed, Hilton and Jenner probably do work harder and travel more than any CEO. Because while a traditional CEO is responsible for a particular product, what Hilton and Jenner are selling is more ephemeral and all-encompassing. The CEO of L’Oreal or MAC doesn’t have to prove that their entire existence is consistent with and can be distilled into a $30 lip kit or a $20 perfume. Perhaps the fact that this is a real career path is a small part of the reason why the American Dream to which Hilton refers in the video increasingly feels like just that — a hallucination from another plane of consciousness. If the American Dream, a flawed premise in and of itself, is about pulling yourself up by your bootstraps, what Hilton and Jenner have done is more like standing for a long period of time in Louboutins. It’s impressive, but you had to have the $1,000 down payment to get there.
Paris Hilton is not self-made, of course. But it’s not hard to imagine how people like Hilton, Jenner, and Kardashian — who recently echoed a sentiment similar in an interview with Refinery29 — are able to conceive of themselves as such. They are indeed a different breed from those born into immense privilege who make no attempt to move forward on the opportunities afforded to them. Hilton’s hustle is impressive, but it doesn’t make her self-made in the way that someone like Cardi B or Rihanna is. You can be hard-working and break barriers without being able to define yourself as self-made.
Hilton’s legacy is a complicated one predicated not just on a cultural obsession with rich girls, but on a sexist desire to tear apart and vilify them in a way that rarely occurs with men of similar means. Why are we so obsessed with the Kardashian sisters and not the Brant brothers?
When we spoke to Hilton over the phone, she sounded cool and self-assured. She has, in case you were weren’t aware, dropped the infamous little girl voice. Surprisingly though, like many who came of age in an era before smartphones and social media and celebrities with teams of people meticulously crafting every inch of their facades, she also holds a degree of nostalgia for that more freewheeling time. “I can’t imagine if I had social media back then,” she confesses, imagining how much more difficult her fame would have been to cultivate.
“I didn’t have all these tools. I didn’t have an agent, no publicist, no manager. I’m going out in public and just being myself and everyone used to say like, ‘Oh my God, famous for being famous’ and like it was almost a bad thing, but now I feel like it’s a whole new formula that has really inspired this whole new generation.”
Despite this, Hilton boasts 9.3 million followers on Instagram, and 17.2 million on Twitter. There are fan accounts out there dedicated not just to her, but to her pets. She’s not Kim Kardashian, who has 114 million Instagram followers, nor is she of the mold of Chrissy Teigen and Busy Phillips, two celebrities beloved for their highly relatable social media content. But people don’t follow Paris Hilton for the great content she’s going to post. They follow her because she’s Paris Hilton.
Critics have said that The Simple Life, the premise of which was dreamed up by Fox execs, functioned to mock the denizens of the small towns it featured, but one could just as easily argue that Hilton and Richie were the butt of the joke. It also flattened Hilton into the one-dimensional character that it appears the “real” her has spent the past decade struggling to emerge from. It is unavailable for streaming on any of the major sites, but exists in perpetuity on YouTube. What is supremely ironic about Hilton and her attempt to return to the spotlight is that the thing that initially beamed her into our living rooms was that she was such an effective agent in showcasing the great American class divide, a massive crater which has only widened in the decade following.
Indeed, Paris Hilton is truly not self-made. But more than her family’s wealth or her well-known last name, we made her.
While Twitter didn’t exist back then, tabloids and early blogs did, and as Hilton’s star rose, so too did the level of scrutiny placed on her. In 2004, just as Hilton was about to become a household name, her ex-boyfriend Rick Salomon released a pornographic video of her. Today, the video would be understood as revenge porn, but back then, it was somehow understood as attention-seeking on Hilton’s part. In The American Meme, a 2018 documentary she appeared in, she compared the ordeal to being raped and said she “literally wanted to die.” While illicit celebrity tapes still exist and get leaked, it’s thankfully no longer socially acceptable (in most places, at least) to slut-shame the women victimized by them. If anything, thanks to the ability of the internet to magnify a more diverse range of voices, people are quick to call out such injustices with hackers serving jail time.
“It’s incredible what is happening right now with this movement,” Hilton says of contemporary feminism. “I think women can take over the world. Even though there’s been so many awful things that have happened and scary things, it’s really just changed the whole climate, and what people know women are capable of.”
But there’s a big caveat: We know the capabilities of some women, the ones who have been provided with the advantages necessary to show us what they can do. Which is maybe why Hilton’s rebranding as a serious business woman feels complicated at best. What’s surprising, though, is that even now, her understanding of a concept like being self-made still seems so limited.
Nevertheless, critics would do well to remember that Hilton wouldn’t have become famous if we hadn’t wanted her to be. Indeed, Paris Hilton is truly not self-made. But more than her family’s wealth or her well-known last name, we made her.
And to hear her tell it, she’s grateful: “I feel so proud of my fanbase and how loyal they are. The relationship I have with my fans, they’re like my family. They call themselves the Little Hiltons, it’s such a loyal fanbase. They really can relate with me.”
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People in prison experience a much higher burden of chronic physical and mental health problems than the general population. This is for a variety of reasons but one of these is because of high smoking rates. The final two prisons in England have now implemented their smoke free policies, supported by PHE and NHS England, bringing the total number to 102, making the largest smoke-free prison estate in Western Europe. This is a fabulous public health achievement by the prison service and we published a blog this week on successfully delivering smokefree prisons and wider work on prison health.
Today we published an evaluation of a healthier vending machines trial carried out across Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust. Much of our consumption behaviour is influenced by our environment. This includes hospitals, which have a key role in the food and drink options provided to staff, visitors and of course patients. The study shows that by increasing the availability of healthier products and placing them in more prominent positions, it is possible to encourage people to choose healthier options while remaining commercially viable. This approach has since been rolled out across 105 hospitals, and is an excellent example of behavioural science in action. This is part of our wider work on tackling obesity and helping people make healthier choices, particularly by consuming less sugar. You can read more in our blog.
PHE works in partnership with NHS England, the Department of Health and Social Care and Cancer Research UK on our Be Clear on Cancer programme, raising public awareness of the signs and symptoms of different cancers and encouraging people with symptoms to go to their GP without delay. This is a very effective campaign, based on world-class data, evidence and rigorous consumer research about what works. Yesterday we launched our latest phase focused on bladder and kidney cancers. For both of these cancers a key symptom is blood in pee but only 16% of those most at risk check the colour of their urine every time they go to the toilet. The simple message is to check your pee and even if you see blood just once, visit your doctor. The campaign will run until late September, and you can learn more here.
Since its creation in 2014, the Well North programme has been backing community entrepreneurs, breaking down traditional boundaries, tackling social isolation and boosting education opportunities in communities across the North of England. Their 2018 progress report describes the brilliant network that this programme has created, allowing challenging conversations between the NHS, local authorities and the business, charity and voluntary sectors to produce innovative and flexible ideas to ultimately better the lives of local people. At the heart of all this is a powerful effort to reduce health inequalities and the report is well worth a read.
And finally, until measles is eliminated from all countries, cross-border transmission of cases can occur so we need to work closely with each other and share expertise and data. This week we have published a joint press release with the Italian National Health Institute reminding people that vaccination is the best possible means of protection against this sometimes deadly illness. You can read this here.