It’s your post-holiday edition of the Daily, and we’re not even going to ease you back into it. In a new story for The Daily Beast, Taylor Lorenz reveals that Ben Hampton Has 670,000 Followers on Instagram. He’s Only 6 Years Old. As Lorenz tweets, “Merry Christmas! This 6-year-old social media influencer is probably making way more $$ than you.” “THIS STORY IS COMPLETELY INSANE,” tweets Noah Shachtman.
One hell of a story
“This is such a good piece and I kind of feel bad that the Post pushed it on Christmas Day,” tweets Adam Rawnsley. At The Washington Post, Adam Entous, Ellen Nakashima and Greg Jaffe report that Kremlin trolls burned across the Internet as Washington debated options. “CounterPunch and Veterans Today published pro-Assad articles from a Russian agent posing as an American journalist,” notes Michael Weiss. “This one hell of a story,” says Simon Rosenberg. Tweets Philip Bump, “It's hard not to read this as the U.S. losing a new kind of international conflict.”
And still, “The people give me hope,” tweets Paul Krugman, who links to his piece in The New York Times, America Is Not Yet Lost.
Bloomberg’s Henry Meyer reports, Putin Tries to Lure $1 Trillion Home as Sanctions Fear Deepens. Meanwhile, Russian warships skate close to British waters over Christmas holiday, U.K. navy says, That’s the report from Michael Birnbaum of The Washington Post. As William Booth tweets, “Russian naval activity at levels unseen since the Cold War.”
The Editorial Board of The Salt Lake City Tribune explains Why Orrin Hatch is Utahn of the Year, and it’s pretty clear that this designation is not exactly a compliment. Tweets Hugh Naylor, “Scathing critique: ‘His utter lack of integrity that rises from his unquenchable thirst for power.’” “Brutal,” says Blair Miller. “This is marvelous,” tweets Natalie Finn. “Ummmm, congrats,” tweets Dante Chinni. Adds Bret Saunders, “Here's hoping this editorial takedown is a harbinger of editorial-y things to come in 2018. It's a good one.”
Another reason to hate tech bros
A Newsweek exclusive from Nina Burleigh finds that Tech Bros Bought Sex Trafficking Victims by Using Amazon and Microsoft Work Emails. She tweets, “Amazon and Microsoft staff used company emails to buy sex. Add prostituted foreign nationals to the #metoo movement.” Tweets Jason Silverstein, “Another reason to hate tech bros, and actually, an exceptionally dumb reason at that. What a story.”
Also, Playing too many video games can cause a mental health disorder, says World Health Organization. That’s from Melissa Matthews at Newsweek.
Ben Fox Rubin at CNET takes “A closer look at who makes money and what they make in the young Alexa skills economy,” in hie piece, What Amazon Alexa pays the people building its skills.
- Don Hogan Charles, Lauded Photographer of Civil Rights Era, Dies at 79. Niraj Chokshi has the obit for The New York Times.
- As Chris Perez reports for the New York Post, United apologizes to passenger booted for congresswoman.
- “There IS a Santa Claus!!” tweets Jim O'Donnell, referring to the report by Bryan Menegus of Gizmodo, It Seems Like Julian Assange Deleted His Twitter. However, in an update later, Menegus writes, “Assange’s account came back online on Monday morning (albeit with a fraction of his former followers) with no explanation about the account’s disappearance and the following illustration from 2010.”
- For “A behind-the-scenes look at Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s reckless attempt to destabilize Lebanon,” as Colin Kahl tweets, Anne Barnard and Maria Abi-Habib of The New York Times explain Why Saad Hariri Had That Strange Sojourn in Saudi Arabia.
- Defying Trump, California Gov. Jerry Brown issues pardons to spare immigrants from deportation. Christopher Cadelago and Anita Chabria report on the story for the Sacramento Bee.
- “Urban hunting, what could go wrong?” asks Patrick LaForge. He links to Simon Romero’s piece for The New York Times, Coyotes Are Colonizing Cities. Step Forward the Urban Hunter.
- Loren Grush of The Verge has All the best reactions to SpaceX’s Friday night rocket launch in California.
- At The Wall Street Journal, Kitty Greenwald offers up A Walking Tour of London’s Most Literary Quarter—with Pub Stops.
- In his piece for the Las Vegas Sun, 50 years of facts and fiction: A look back at Evel Knievel's jump at Caesars, Ric Anderson separates the truth from the myth.