3.20.2019

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All your news in a single email. We scour 100+ sources so you don't have to. Culture, science, sports, politics, business, and more - all packaged in a 5-minute read below.
Need To Know.
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Trout Hooks Record Deal.
The Los Angeles Angels and star Mike Trout are reportedly nearing a $430M, 12-year deal that would keep the 27-year-old center fielder in Southern California for the remainder of his career. The contract would not only be the biggest in baseball, but also the biggest in professional sports history in terms of total value. It comes just weeks after the Philadelphia Phillies signed Bryce Harper for a then-record $330M over 13 years. Analysts consider the two-time All-Star to be one of the best players of his generation, having put together an unparalleled start to his career - Trout has hit 240 home runs with 1,187 hits through 1,065 games (see stats), and has a career .307 batting average and a .416 on-base percentage. Like Harper, Trout is considered one the very few "five-tool players" - those who can hit often and with power, run fast, and throw and field well. 

See the highest-paid players in each sport by average annual value. 
Cohen Investigation Detailed.
Special Counsel Robert Mueller obtained warrants to track Michael Cohen, then President Trump’s personal lawyer, at least half a year earlier than previously thought. Partially unsealed warrant documents (read here) showed that Mueller was eyeing Cohen for acting as an unregistered foreign agent, in part due to consulting work for a Korean aviation company and a bank in Kazakhstan - though Cohen was never convicted on such a charge. More light was shed on the crimes for which Cohen was convicted, including that he lied to banks in an attempt to relieve nearly $22M in debt related to taxi medallions. Cohen heads to prison for three years beginning in May.

New York City’s taxi medallions are an interesting story themselves - after peaking at over $1M in 2014, they plummeted in value (paywall) with the emergence of ride-hailing apps like Uber and Lyft.
Facebook Settles Discrimination Suit.
Facebook agreed to overhaul its lucrative micro-targeting advertisement system for certain companies as part of a settlement with civil rights groups that said the platform facilitated widespread discrimination. The case was a clash between decades-old discrimination laws and the digital era - federal law prohibits discrimination, including in advertising opportunities in housing and employment, based on gender, race, religion, and other factors. Facebook's micro-targeting system allows advertisers to slice and dice finely-grained demographic data that includes the protected statuses, as well as zip codes, listed interests, profile keywords and more. This ability has made Facebook one of the most valuable companies in the world - 99% of its almost $60B in 2018 revenue came from ads. The company said it would establish a separate portal with reduced options for companies advertising jobs, housing, credit, and related opportunities. 

A recent survey said 74% of users didn't even know Facebook categorized detailed data to sell to advertisers.
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In The Know.
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Sports, Entertainment & Culture.
Brought to you by
> Woodstock 50, the 50th-anniversary of the legendary concert, announces its lineup including Jay-Z, the Killers, Miley Cyrus, and several acts from the original concert; see full 3-day lineup (More)
> Google unveils Stadia, a cloud-based video game streaming service which will launch in 2019 (More)
> Prosecutors offer deal to New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft to drop soliciting prostitution charges in exchange for Kraft admitting guilt after reviewing evidence (More)

Who says art has to be subjective? When it consistently outperforms the S&P 500, we’re feeling pretty objective about art as an investment. Want in? Masterworks.io lets you buy shares in high-end art - think Warhol and Monet (More)
Science & Technology.
> US mathematician Karen Keskulla Uhlenbeck becomes first woman to win math’s prestigious Abel Prize; work includes how soap bubbles arrange themselves, or “surface minimization” (More)
> Norsk Hydro, one of world’s biggest aluminum makers, hit by LockerGoga ransomware that halted production (More) | How ransomware became one of the Internet’s biggest threats (More)
> White House 2020 budget request cuts National Science Foundation funding by 12% from current budget of $8.1B (More)
Business & Markets.
> White House announces top US Trade officials will head to China next week to continue trade discussions (More)
> Instagram launches "Checkout with Instagram" allowing customers to purchase products within the app (More) | Online cosmetics brand Glossier latest to become unicorn - raising investment at $1B valuation (More)
> Footwear retailer DSW changes name to Designer Brands, misses earnings expectations - shares down 13% (More)
Politics & World Affairs.
> West Virginia attorney general sues Wheeling-Charleston Catholic Diocese, saying church knowingly hired, protected child-abusing clergy (More)
> Rep. Devin Nunes (R, CA-22) sues Twitter and three users for $250M for defamation; also alleges social media platform engages in “shadow-banning” of conservative opinions (More)
> Defense Department sends Congress list of projects whose funding may be shifted to make up $12.9B in funding for US-Mexico border wall (More)
Etcetera.
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Spring Has Sprung: 7 things to know about the first day of spring.

...and see the colors of Holi, the Hindu Spring festival

Breaking down America’s political independents, and what they think.

A new wave of apps aims to make reporting sexual assault less stigmatizing.

Disney releases the official trailer for Toy Story 4.

The 10 most popular puppy names for 2019.

Tired of trolls? Pay people to shower you with compliments.

Shocking autopsy photos show the effects of plastic on marine wildlife

MySpace just lost 12 years of user-uploaded music.

Clickbait: Budweiser unveils Keurig for home bartending
Historybook: Mister Rogers born (1928); KFC founded by Harland Sanders in Kentucky (1930); HBD legendary basketball coach Pat Riley (1945); HBD Spike Lee (1957); John Lennon & Yoko Ono marry (1969).
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"Excellence is the gradual result of always striving to do better."
- Pat Riley
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