Talia Chetrit, a notable artist in the Armory Show 2018

Talia Chetrit is an inspirational contemporary art photographer from the United States. She was born in Washington D.C. in the year of 1982. She pursued her tertiary education in Fine Arts at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and was given the Fred J. Foster Fellowship Award. Following that, she received a Graduate Fellowship from the Rhode Island School of Design, where she completed the graduate program and attained her Master’s in Fine Arts. Since then, Chetrit has shifted location and is now working and living in New York.

Her first exhibition in New York was under the gallery, Plane Space for her piece entitled Items May Have Shifted in 2005. In 2008, her work was featured in “31 Under 31: Young Women in Art Photography”, curated by Lumi Tan and Jon Feinstein in 3rd Ward Brooklyn. Internationally, she has also been featured in many countries, as a group show as well as solo shows. In 2004, she was part of the 4th annual International Photography Exhibition curated by Barbara Degenevieve in the town of Pingyao in China. In addition, she presented solo at the Kaufmann Repetto gallery in Milan, Italy in 2011. A year later, one of her piece called Bodies in Trouble was featured in the Sies + Höke gallery in Düsseldorf, Germany.    

Overall, it is apparent that Chetrit has had more solo shows than collaborations, perhaps due to her unconventional approaches in the construction of her pieces.

A number of Chetrit’s works were exhibited at the Armory Show of 2018 under the Sies + Höke, a Germany-based contemporary art gallery. Two of the most remarkable pieces were both inkjet prints entitled Self-portrait (all fours), 2017 and Red Eyes, 1994/2017. The original photos that these prints were developed from are photographs that were captured by Chetrit herself, along with several of her friends back in the 1990s when she was still a mere teenage girl. These photos mark the commencement of her feminist exploration into image-making, self-representation and so forth. More often than not, there exists a personal narrative with regards to mental and emotional causes that lies beneath the surface of her projects. In another collection, Chetrit once again salvaged her old photos. This time, she uses the very first rolls of film that she had used to capture photos of her own family in the 1990s. Nonetheless, most of her pieces make passing references on the subject of sexuality and the human body.

Talia Chetrit focuses her projects on the search for deeply-veiled elements behind the structure and utilization of a photography. As a rule, she exploits the matter of obscuration, separation and distortion in a way that the person in the print is no longer identifiable. In this way, her work is conceptualized and abstracted. Aside from that, Chetrit often utilizes a monochromatic color scheme, in addition to the reversal of orientations in terms of horizontal and vertical. On top of that, she also transposes the negative and positive space in order to form more unorthodox pieces. With her nonconformist feminist mentality and methods, she has been praised by many and time and time again juxtaposed with prominent contemporary artists like Francesca Woodman and Cindy Sherman.

Talia Chetrit has had solo art exhibitions as well as collaborations with other artists under different galleries all across the world. Several more of her exhibition highlights include the Art Basel in Miami Beach last year, under Sies + Höke, the same gallery as in the Armory Show as well as the Art Düsseldorf 2017. Her pieces have been part of the Armory Show since 2014. An ongoing show that began on 16th February and will end on 25th March is located at the Kölnischer Kunstverein, an art museum in Cologne, Germany. Chetrit’s upcoming solo shows will be taking place in MAXXI, Museo delle Arti del XXI secolo, Rome. It is a national museum that consists of contemporary art and architecture.

Featured Image via flickr/ Todd Carpenter

Which will come first: 2020 or the end of the world?

In recent years, pollution has become an increasingly alarming problem, which can be traced back to the outrageously high levels of toxic nitrogen oxide in the air from our vehicles. For that reason, Germany has started to implement rules and regulations in hopes of reducing these pollutions. Attributable to Germany’s status as a renowned leading automobile manufacturer in the world, it should come as no surprise for them to center their anti-pollution plans on automobiles. Unfortunately, certain implementations such as the bans of diesel cars may require a considerable amount of time, which we cannot afford.

In addition, any noticeable change and improvement towards the environment can only be observed at least two years after the implementation. This is another cause of concern, evident by the statement made by Hendrik Wuest, the transport minister of North-Rhine Westphalia, one of the German state. He believes that an alternative solution to the problem would have been discovered in the next two years, causing the ban to be redundant and futile. An interview published on Saturday by the Rheinische post newspaper revealed Wuest’s stance on the matter.  He brings to light new anti-pollution plans that can be challenged in court, but the verdict itself would take about 2 years, much like the aforementioned implementations. He strongly suggests that bans can be prevented since affected cities have taken the matter into their hands to figure out solutions and measures to be taken to reduce the toxic chemicals in the air.

On Tuesday, the Federal Court in Germany has given cities an authorization to ban diesel cars that contributes heavily to the pollution in their areas. This is an appalling news for automobile manufacturers because they will have to raise their costs of production to build more environmentally friendly exhaust systems and leave combustion engines behind.

Vehicles that run on diesel have always been a large factor of air pollution in the streets, but much like every other factor that contributes negatively to the impact on the environment, vast amount of capital, in addition to time and energy, is needed in order to make a change. This is difficult to achieve because of the capitalist system that nations sought after; A system that is based on profit maximization and self-interest. This is clearly discernible from the increase in the cost of productions for exhaust systems above-mentioned, placing the responsibility on the automobile manufacturers. Furthermore, such drastic measures could bring about problems in the nation’s economy on a larger narrative. While cities are able to ban motorists from polluting the streets, it is important to consider the effects on personal lives from an economical aspect. While the cost of production rises for manufacturers, there is no doubt in the consequent rise in the price of these newly produced environmental-friendly vehicles. This could severely impact consumers who are in the middle to lower income group.

Those who have previously owned diesel cars will now have to sell them at a price that is presumably little to none. A possible approach would be a trade-in to car companies, which will undoubtedly attempt to compensate for the higher costs by unloading the responsibility onto the consumers. As a result, the consumers will be the ones who bear the burden of the movement. This, in turn, decreases their purchasing power, which will then cause the economy to be in a rut. This is especially alarming for Germany since they’re one of Europe’s largest economy and its collapse would lead to a butterfly effect towards the global economy. All things considered, nonetheless, the environmental issues have gradually turned into a harsh reality and if prolonged, will lead to the end of the world. The probable outcome should serve as a warning for large companies and manufacturers to ease up on the profits for the greater good. 

Greece Agrees to Changes in Return for Bailouts

In an effort to finally pull Greece out of its financial slump, a deal made Tuesday requires the country to make domestic economic changes in return for much-needed bailout payments. Greece’s international creditors agree to financially help Greece on the condition that they raise taxes and lower social spending and pensions.

The over €7 billion of payments attempt to decrease Greece’s current debt of approximately €300 billion. Further discussions will be held on the extent to which other countries can continue to help Greece. This deal, which took months to solidify, is only the beginning.

The International Monetary Fund is adamant about increasing efforts to aid Greece. However, several European Union member countries have strong doubts. Economic power Germany is especially averse to further Greek bailout plans.

Three of Europe’s greatest economic powers, Germany, France, and Britain, may see their upcoming elections affected by the decision. Efforts by European officials to direct popularity away from far-right parties could be thwarted by the economic change.

Terms for Bailouts                                                                                         

The agreement requires Greece to cut pension payouts, raise taxes, and change its energy and labor markets. These terms emerged after a 12-hour discussion in Athens according to the Greek finance minister, Euclid Tsakalotos. The results are still subject to approval by the Greek Parliament and the eurozone finance ministers.

Athens stated that they will lower the income threshold for tax payments in order to increase tax receipts. Furthermore, through continued pension and benefit cuts, Greece hopes to raise gross domestic product by 2 percent.

Another major change is in the ability of businesses to fire employees. Companies will face less restrictions on the removal of inefficient workers as an effort to increase the competition of the labor market.

The European commissioner of economic affairs, Pierre Moscovici, expressed positive feelings towards the finished deal. Although debate came to multiple near stand stills over Greece’s potential for efficient improvement, most leaders feel positive towards the finished product.

A History of Debt

One of the oldest human civilizations, Greece’s past is peppered with financial ups and downs. The country’s current debt arose after the global economic crisis in 2007 and 2008. Since that time, the country stayed afloat through multiple bailouts.

With a nearly 25 percent unemployment rate and a shrinking economy change cannot come soon enough. Since the financial crisis, the economy decreased by a fifth and many fear that this will continue.

The current debt is shockingly almost 180 percent of the gross domestic product. Athens has already enacted measures to reduce this percentage however, the new deal will hopefully be the tipping point for change.

The repeated need to assist Greece financially caused contention among the economically stronger European states and the International Monetary Fund. Economic inequality within the EU has encouraged widespread dissatisfaction.

A Potential for Change

Under the current Prime Minister, Alexis Tsipras, the changes will likely pass through parliament. However, his control is shaky as popularity polls reveal a decrease in support. Furthermore, Tsipras’ leftist government retains only a three-seat majority in the chamber of 300 seats.

The legislation is required to be drafted and passed through parliament before May 22 when the eurozone finance ministers will meet. The ministers, called the Eurogroup, are almost certain to approve debt bailouts to Athens in July as long as all of the requirements are met.

Discussions will also be held over how to target Greece’s budget surplus and how to further attack their debt. Plans will hopefully be drafted to further alleviate Greece’s financial burden.

Although the past decade was financially difficult for the country, the future has a potential to be bright. The strengthening of Greece will strengthen the Euro as a whole and hopefully resolve issues of inequality.

Germany Bans Doll Over Suspicions of Espionage

Dolls have been used by children for centuries. They’re good companions and even pose as a good listener. However, this doll might be a little too good at listening. Good enough to ban her from Germany under suspicion of being a device of espionage. German regulators have found suspicion in the seemingly harmless doll called My Friend Cayla.

It’s said that the doll is able to share what it hears. This means the doll could be taken over by a third party. The doll has recently been banned in Germany. The president, Jochen Homann, of the Germany’s Federal Network Agency,  which is also called the Bundessnetzagentur, announced this recently. Homann’s agency has the job of overlooking all electronic privacy. Homann is even more adamant about protecting children, who he says are the most vulnerable members of society.

What makes Cayla so dangerous to consumers is her natural appearance. She seems to be an everyday doll that shows no sign that she is collecting and transmitting everything she hears. She reports these things to two companies, Genesis, which makes Cayla and another company in the U.S. called Nuance.

Nuance responded to this by saying that it in no way shares “Voice data collected from or on behalf of any of our customers with any of our customers.”

And even though her suspicious nature has caused her to banned in Germany, My Friend Cayla is still on sale in the United States. In fact, she can be purchased on Amazon, but not on sites of stores like Toys R Us or Wal-Mart. Toys R Us doesn’t offer the toy in stores either.

In order to fully ban the doll in Germany, German regulators appealed a federal law against espionage devices. Anyone who is caught trying to sell My Friend Cayla or even caught owning one in Germany will be slapped with a fine of 25,000 euros. The regulators say that even though this is effective, they don’t plan on perusing action against parents who’ve already bought the doll for their children. The agency hoped that once this news has gotten out to all its citizens, parents will take it upon themselves to get rid of the doll.

Though the Federal Network Agency is doing what it can to make sure that Cayla does not reach any more children in Germany, their concerns about the doll are not the first ones to arise. In fact, privacy and consumer advocates in the United States filed complaints against My Friend Cayla during the Christmas holiday shopping season. They were unhappy with the Internet-connected doll and the threat she posed to children and other users since the doll can be linked to any smartphone device to share the voice of someone or record what is being told.

A fraction of the complaint made by Claire Gartland of the Consumer Privacy Project was described by NPR’s Brian Naylor who stated,

“Gartland says the conversations that Cayla records are sent to servers at a company called Genesis, which makes the doll, and to another company called Nuance, which makes voice-recognition software for this any many other products. Nuance also has a database used by law enforcement and military and intelligence agencies that matches voice prints.”

Brian also had an interaction with Cayla himself where he asks her if he can tell her a secret. Cayla in turn replies, “Sure go ahead. Be very quiet though. I promise not to tell anyone. It’s just between you and me because we are friends.”

Even the Norway Consumer Council has urged people not to purchase the doll. They even made a video titled “Watch how this doll fails.” In the video, NCC’s technical director demonstrates the threats the doll poses and even has an interaction with it near the end where the doll says “I don’t know” when asked if it can be trusted.

Germany Repatriates Gold In Response To Populist Pressure

The German central bank completed the transfer of $13 billion in gold reserves on Thursday. Germany’s gold had remained in New York for decades, spanning back to the Cold War.

The Bundesbank announced this transfer on Thursday was part of an effort to build public “trust and confidence”. Officials explained that the transfer of its gold bullion is not a response to concerns about President Trump’s monetary policy. Rather, it is an acknowledgment of the shift in political and economic climate on a broader scale, like the rising populist pressure within Germany and throughout Europe.

Carl-Ludwig Thiele, a Bundesbank board member, said at a news conference, “Trump has not triggered a discussion about the storage facility in New York,” even though the bank frequently discusses the potential effects of President Trump’s proposed policies.

Germany’s central bank began its plan to repatriate half the gold it keeps abroad in 2013. The project is slated to be finished three years ahead of schedule, with the final transfer expected from Paris later this year.

Germany’s gold reserves are the second-largest stockpile of precious metal in the world. Valued at 120 billion-euro ($127 billion), the reserve has been the subject of recent conspiracy theories. Around 2012, theories began to surface that cast doubt on whether or not Germany still had the reserves it claimed. The “Bring Our Gold Back Home” campaign lead by German tabloid Bild-Zeitung also surfaced at the same time, fueling the anxiety that the euro crisis could result in the loss of German gold reserves.

The German government initially cultivated the gold reserves after World War II in order to protect economic prosperity. However, up to 98% of the reserves were stored abroad during the Cold War to keep them safe in the event of an invasion by the Soviet Union. They were kept near foreign exchange points in London, New York, and Paris–in case of an emergency requiring foreign currency.

Now, however, the Soviet Union no longer poses a threat, and the need for French currency is obsolete since France and Germany are both part of the eurozone. In light of candidates like France’s Marine Le Pen and movements like Italy’s 5-Star, which openly advocate withdrawing from the eurozone, some suggest that the gold flowing back to Germany will be needed to back a new German currency if the euro collapses.

For the time being, however, Germany is following through with its plan to keep half of its gold reserves in London and New York with no plans for removal, according to Mr. Thiele.

Greece’s Crisis

The saga started when Greece’s economy could not make it through the financial crisis of 2008 without being bailed out by the IMF. The conditions of the bailout were extensive calling for reform in almost every economic sector. Without an ounce of leverage in the negotiations, nor a choice in the matter, Greece welcomed the cash infusion with open arms.

In the face of pressure to implement drastic and largely undesired reforms, Greeks responded by electing a new socialist Prime Minister by the name of Alexi Tsipras. He won on the platform of fighting the IMF’s terms and keeping welfare programs afloat.

The result has been disastrous.

After months of vitriolic rhetoric between Greece and its creditors, the two simply have not been able to agree on tangible terms. Despite reports of Greece making concessions earlier in the week, the IMF voted to maintain its Tuesday deadline. That said, reports surfaced Monday that the EU still insists a deal is possible as unlikely as it may be.

Neither side can give up since both have an interest in keeping Greece in the EU. Greece needs the EU so that it can retain what little stability it has left. The EU is also the only institution with the motive, means and opportunity to save Greece from further economic turmoil. As if that wasn’t enough, this turmoil would be exponentially multiplied by the trade barriers erected from losing the title of being an EU country. Transitioning from the euro to the drachma will be perilous and stunt any semblance of a recovery Greece has made to date. If Greece leaves, a dangerous precedent will be set.

Believe it or not, there are actually countries in the EU that are in worse shape than Greece. Showing those countries that it’s the IMF’s way or the highway is simply not smart. Allowing Greece to walk away from the EU is a slippery slope, not just because of the precedent, but also because of the broader implications it would have on an already volatile international economy. If Greece defaults and as a result adopts the drachma and falls even farther, its troubled European counterparts would stand little chance of staying afloat. This would lead to a collapse of the euro, and as Angela Murkel, Chancelor of Germany and Europe’s most powerful figure, put it, “If the euro fails, Europe fails.” The dominoes would fall ushering in a recession of a far greater magnitude than 2008.

With a solution all but impossible, Greeks now have a choice: accept the IMF reforms or leave the EU. In true socialist fashion, the decision will be put to a referendum next Sunday. At this point, no one knows what will happen, but both sides are furious and uncertain of the future. In debates concerning the referendum, many have summarized the decision as a question of currency; essentially, Grecians must chose if they want to stay with the euro or revert to the drachma.

Greece probably won’t find €1.8 billion lying around in the next day; Greece will default on Tuesday. This widely accepted fact has depressed economies everywhere and increased tensions between rich and poor countries within the Eurozone. There will be extensive debate between today and Sunday, then Greeks will vote. But Sunday will not be the end. The real date to fear is July 20th when Greece owes the European Central Bank €3.5 billion for the purchase of government bonds. Stay tuned, it’s going to be a wild ride while the world’s economy hangs in the balance.

Image: Via Flickr/Nikos Koutoulas

QR Code on Heinz Ketchup Bottle Led to Porn Site

The usual concerns that consumers have about Heinz Tomato Ketchup is mostly that is has too much sugar or should contain more natural flavors and fewer artificial ingredients. But amongst regular suggestions and complaints like that, a rather odd one managed to make news.

A consumer apparently scanned the QR code at the back of the Heinz ketchup bottle and found that the code did not lead to any of the ketchup’s promotional website. But rather, the code led him to a porn site.

The man was actually just trying to enter a contest that was arranged by the ketchup company when he discovered the error. The man, Daniel Korell, was later given an apology by the ketchup company.

This error occurred probably because the campaign that Heinz ran went on from the years 2012 to 2014. After that, the QR code simply expired and was recycled to another website.

This website happened to be a German porn site. Korell said that this promotion “probably isn’t for minors” on his Facebook page. Heinz later replied by commenting,

“We really regret the event very much and we’re happy to take your suggestions for how we implement future campaigns on board.”


Anti-Jewish Slogans Return to Germany as Mideast Protests Sweep Europe

As the conflict between Israel and Hamas continues to heighten, protests around the world, both pro-Israel and pro-Palestine, have stirred up a lot of controversy. One such anti-Israel, pro-Palestine protest in Germany has created sky-high tension for invoking a World War II, Holocaust-like atmosphere, and using old anti-Semitic slogans to express disapproval of Israeli tactics.

Protests have erupted throughout the continent. Most recently, in France, despite the outlaw of anti-Israel protests, youths have taken to violent looting of Jewish businesses, and in London, where over 45,000 camped outside the Israel embassy to advocate for Palestine. John Berman, co-host for a CNN talk show, pointed out that “Some of the lines seem to be getting blurred” between anti-Israel rhetoric and anti-Semitism.

This blurred line seems to be the most radical in Berlin, where according to a report by The Washington Post, before a recent pro-Palestinian rally, an organizer bellowed the rules, as ordered by Berlin police: no repeating the slogan, “Jew, Jew, cowardly pig, come out and fight alone,” no setting fire to Israeli flags, and no shouting “Death to Israel.” CNN revealed that protestors were calling for all Jews to be gassed. A 29-year-old protestor, Leila El Abtah told the Post that those things were previously shouted in protest.

The Israeli ambassador to Germany wrote in the Berliner Zeitung newspaper that many Muslims in Germany and those against Israel “pursue the Jews in the streets of Berlin… as if we were in 1938.”

German Chancellor Angela Merkel is bent on speaking against the protests and brutal treatment, stating, “These outbursts and statements are an attack on freedom and tolerance and an attempt to destabilize our free democratic order. We cannot and will not accept this… The security authorities are taking every attack onto a Jewish institution very seriously. Anti-Semitic acts are being prosecuted consequently and by all legal means.”

While many are relieved to hear the firm stance against these anti-Semitic protests, pro-Palestinians claim Merkel is merely aligning with Israel due to Germany’s tumultuous past.

World Cup Champion Germany Welcomed Home Like Heros

World Cup-winning Germany landed home in Berlin Tuesday, July 15, and received a hero-like welcome by hundreds of thousands of soccer fans with the World Cup trophy in hand.

Read also: Germany Is the New World Cup Champion

According to the Guardian, the team arrived at Tegel airport and took an open-top bus, with years they have won the trophy written on it, to the Brandenburg Gate for a huge celebration party. The players were accompanied by almost half a million of fans on the way.

The BBC reported that many German fans took the day off just to join the nation’s celebration, even Tuesday was not an official holiday.


German coach Joachim Loew had a big part of the team winning the tournament as well, but he did not forget to thank the German people for the championship.

“For our sakes the fans suffered with us. They were nervous with us. In the end they cheered with us. Without you we would not be here,” Loew said.

Via AP
Via AP

The 22-year-old nation hero Mario Goetze, who scored the only goal in the final game that gave the country the winning title, said making all the way up and bringing home the trophy was “dreamlike.”

Germany defeated Argentina 1 to 0 during extra time in Sunday, July 13,’s World Cup final match played in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. German soccer fans waited 24 years for the trophy to come home since 1990.



World Cup Ignites Facebook and Twitter Interactions

The Germany and Argentina fans weren’t the only ones that tuned in for the World Cup Final. In fact, the last match broke social media records and produced a larger trending reaction than ever before. The world was historically unified through media platforms that exploded with activity.

According to BBC, Facebook’s figures for the final World Cup match show that “88 million people had more than 280 million interactions on the platform during the game,” which calculates to be 35 million more interactions than the 2013 Super Bowl.


Read also: World Cup Final Scores High Ratings and Breaks Records in Social Media


Twitter also had its time savoring the spotlight. Entertainment Weekly reported that there were 618,725 tweets per minute as the end of the match neared. This record beat the previous 580,166 tweets per minute during the Germany-Brazil blowout.

Even United States coach Jürgen Klinsmann joined in on the Twitter bandwagon following Germany’s victory, tweeting, “YES YES YES!!! JOGI YOU DID IT!!! HUGE COMPLIMENT TO ARGENTINA, BUT THE BEST TEAM WON THE 2014 WORLD CUP! #DFBTeam #USMNT #FifaWorldCup.”

Basketball star LeBron James was quick to voice his opinion as well. “The greatest sporting even I’ve ever been to!” James tweeted. This picture from his Instagram was linked to the bottom of the tweet:



The German team snapped a picture with Chancellor Angela Merkel, and within hours, the picture had produced more than 250,000 combined likes from Facebook and Instagram, according to BBC.



The television may have been able to capture all of the plays, but social media connected the world in a way that no one ever thought was possible.




World Cup Final Scores High Ratings and Breaks Records in Social Media

The 2014 FIFA World Cup Final between Germany and Argentina measured the third-highest TV ratings for any World Cup game and was ranked second highest among non-U.S. games for the ESPN networks, according to Zap2it. ABC won the night in ratings as Germany won the championship, 1-0, on Sunday, July 13.

Read also: Germany Is the New World Cup Champion


ABC’s coverage of the match averaged a 9.7 rating overnight, according to Nielsen. ESPN’s coverage peaked at a 14.2 rating between 5:15-5:30 p.m.

This was second-highest rated World Cup Final for either of the Disney-owned networks, ESPN and ABC.


Read also: FIFA’s Corporate Partners to Gain from Argentinean Win


This final showed a 13-percent increase in viewership over 2010’s World Cup Final between Spain and the Netherlands, which was hosted in South Africa. ESPN, ESPN2 and ABC averaged a rating of 3.1 through all 64 matches of this World Cup, which is a 29-percent increase from 2010, according to Zap2it.

In the 1994 World Cup, which was hosted in the United States, the Round-of-16 match between U.S. and Brazil posted a 10.4 average rating, and the final between Brazil and Italy earned a 12.8 in U.S. TV ratings. These two games, which had the benefit of being hosted on U.S. soil, are the only two to have earned a higher rating than Sunday’s final.

The match also broke some records in social media, as Facebook noted that over 88 million users participated in over 280 million interactions—posts, likes and comments—related to the final, according to The Guardian. Those figures include 10.5 million from the United States alone. According to Deadline Hollywood, the final broke the record for the highest level of Facebook activity for any sporting event in the social networking site’s history, beating out 2013’s Super Bowl XLVII, which had 245 million interactions.

Twitter also recorded new highs as it reached a peak of 618,725 tweets per minute during the game’s final buzzer. The previous record of 580,166 was set during the semi-final match in which Germany routed Brazil 7-1.


Read also: Germany Routes Brazil in World Cup Semi-Final


That semi-final match, which became the most-discussed sporting event in Twitter history, still holds the record for most tweets, totaling 35.6 million, which was not broken by Sunday’s total of 32.1 million tweets, according to The Guardian.



Germany Is the New World Cup Champion

Four years after losing to Spain in the semi-finals and finishing third overall in the 2010 World Cup, Germany became the 2014 World Cup champions on Sunday, July 13. Germany has won four World Cup titles overall, and this is their first since 1990.

Germany and Argentina were battling for the right to hoist the FIFA World Cup Trophy at 3 p.m., and Germany was pleased to bring the honor home with a 1-0 win that went into extra time.

Despite only one goal being made during the entire 120-minute match, there were many chances to score for both teams.

Twenty minutes into the match, German player Toni Kroos accidentally passed the ball to Argentinian Gonzalo Higuaín, who had no one around him except the keeper. Higuaín, however, missed on the golden chance.

Higuaín actually sent the ball into the back of the net nine minutes later. Everyone, including Higuaín himself, who celebrated after the goal, thought Argentina led the game with its first goal in, but the offsides flag was up right away. The score remained 0-0.

Near the end of the first half, German player Benedikt Höwedes almost took his team a step closer to the trophy with a promising header from Kroos’ kick from the corner, but the ball bounced off the right post. The football just would not let either team score.

German goalkeeper Manuel Neuer took Higuaín to the ground while making a save by leaving his position at 56 minutes. At 97 minutes, Argentinean Rodrigo Palacio was all alone with the ball and the goalkeeper. However, Palacio did not fully use the chance.


Read also: Musician Mick Jagger Blamed for Brazil’s Loss


Finally, at 113 minutes, German substitute Mario Götze, 23, broke the unchanging score with a great goal to put Germany up 1-0 with only seven minutes remaining in extra time. It was the latest goal to have been scored in a World cup final.

Argentinean hero Lionel Messi had a free kick as Argentina’s last chance to tie the game, but luck was not on his side.

A picture that said, “Brazil has Neymar, Argentina has Messi, Portugal has Ronaldo, Germany has a team,” has been spreading around on the internet after the Brazil-Germany semi-final game Tuesday, July 1.

Well, the score proved Germany did play as a team, and Argentinean hero Lionel Messi could not defeat it on his own.

Before the match, “World Cup Jinx” Mick Jagger was seen at the Maracana Stadium in Rio de Janeiro, where the final game took place. He did not say which team he was cheering for, but everyone could guess based on his legendary track record.




FIFA’s Corporate Partners to Gain from Argentinean Win

With the United States and World Cup host Brazil out of the contest, FIFA’s big-spending corporate partners may be relieved by the outcome of the nail-biting semi-finals match between Argentina and the Netherlands on Wednesday, July 9.

After remaining in a scoreless stalemate through 120 minutes of play, the match was settled in a penalty kick shootout. Argentina’s goalkeeper Sergio Romero made two saves in the shootout that put Argentina on top, 4-2, and sent them to the World Cup final where they will face Germany for the cup.

Argentina has had an average of 3.63 million U.S. viewers, which nearly edges out the Netherlands’s 3.61 million. Even though that may seem like a small margin, some analysts speculate that Americans are more likely to tune in for Argentina than the Netherlands.

Forbes provided a chart that illustrates why Argentina has shown more support from American viewers than the Netherlands. The Netherlands’s average viewership was largely inflated by their match against Mexico, a team that has a strong following in the U.S. That game also skewed the comparison because it was played on a Sunday, while Argentina’s comparative Round-of-16 game against Switzerland was held on a Tuesday.

via Forbes
via Forbes

According to a Forbes article on June 2, FIFA gathered $404 million from marketing rights in 2013. FIFA’s major corporate partners, which include Adidas, Coca-Cola, Emirates, Hyundai Motor Group, Sony and Visa, spend $25-50 million per year, while second-tier sponsors pay $10-25 million annually. According to a July 9 article, ESPN pays $50 million for TV rights.


Read also: USA Win Over Ghana Breaks Records in World Cup


Although the growing trend in soccer viewership has shown major growth in this year’s World Cup for ESPN, and many viewers would have tuned in for Sunday’s final match regardless of who was in it, big spenders like ESPN and FIFA’s other corporate partners should be happy to have the extra boost that Argentina can offer.

Adidas, in particular, can rejoice over Argentina’s victory because they put out an ad that features Argentine superstar, Lionel Messi, who has cultivated a U.S. fan base.


Brazil’s Big Loss Led to Tim Cahill Trend on Twitter

When everyone was surprised at Brazil’s 7-1 loss to Germany in the semifinal World Cup game on Tuesday, July 8, Australian soccer player Tim Cahill was one of them as well. Cahill tweeted a picture of himself covering his mouth with his hand to express how shocked he was about the match.

Minutes after Cahill tweeted, fans got crazy copying him. Below are some tweets from #timcahilling.


Some fans also edited photos to tease Brazil’s loss.

Germany Routes Brazil 7-1 in World Cup Semi-Final

It could have been one of the closest matches of the World Cup. It should have been one of the closest matches of the World Cup. But destiny has a funny way of playing things out. To the horror of an entire country, Brazil’s national team crumbled against their mighty German opponents. In under just thirty minutes the German team scored an astounding five times, while adding an additional two late in the second half. Contrarily Brazil was only able to find the back of the net once at the ninetieth minute.

Thomas Muller and Miroslav Klose both scored in the first twenty three minutes. Then Toni Kroos pounded in another two goals with in two minutes of each other at the twenty-fourth and twenty-sixth minutes. Sami Khedira capped off the first half with another goal at the twenty-ninth minute, and Andre Schurrle put the final two nails in the coffin at minutes sixty-nine and seventy-nine. Brazil’s only goal was scored by Oscar dos Santos Emboaba Júnior.

The end result left Brazilian fans in tears as all but a few protesters dreamed of their host country winning the World Cup. Brazil hasn’t lost a World Cup match so badly since 1998 when they lost to France three to zero in the finals. Many fans feared that Neymar’s absence would impact Brazil’s ability to win against the German powerhouse. His absence though could not excuse Brazil’s terrible performance.

Brazil coach Luiz Felipe Scolari said, as reported by the Chicago Sun-Times, “We did what we thought was best. Please excuse us for this mistake. I’m sorry we could not get to the final.” Could not get to the final was an understatement. Brazil could barely even put up a defense in what can only be described as a total collapse.

Germany has not utterly destroyed an opponent as atrociously since their eight to zero routing of Saudi Arabia in 2002 during World Cup group play. Thomas Muller stated “Now we have to pull it off one more time and lift the thing. We should keep our feet on the ground.” Germany is waiting to see who will join them for the 2014 World Cup final. The second semi-final match between the Netherlands and Argentina is scheduled for July 9.



Germany Up in Arms Over New U.S. Spying Allegations

Though the investigation is still ongoing, German politicians already have begun to announce their outrage in the most recent U.S. spying allegations. Last Wednesday, July 2, a German man was arrested after it was believed that he had been cooperating with foreign-intelligence agencies. An employee of the German foreign-intelligence agency, or BND, came to the attention of the federal German authorities after trying to sell classified documents to the Russians. Once interrogated though, the unnamed worker has reportedly admitted to selling German classified documents to U.S. intelligence.

“If this is true, then I believe we are dealing with a very serious development, I would see this as a clear contradiction to what I understand as trusting cooperation of intelligence services as well as of partners,” German Chancellor Angela Merkel said, as reported by the Wall Street Journal.

The news would be especially troubling since it has become widely known that the NSA wiretapped German officials, as revealed by Edward Snowden.

According to the investigators, the man admitted to working for the U.S. for the last two years. With access to the BND mail room, the man was apparently able to transfer 218 documents via a flash drive, collecting as much as $35,000 along the way. Patrick Sensburg, chairman of a parliamentary inquiry into NSA surveillance in Germany, has confirmed that some of the documents transferred to the U.S. were directly related to the case he is investigating.

The U.S. has yet to make any specific remarks relating to the case. White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said, “We’re going to work with the Germans to resolve this issue appropriately.” He continued to explain that the U.S. values its relationship with Germany. If the allegations really are true, the U.S. government is going to have a harder time than they already are at convincing allies to trust them.

Chancellor Merkel will now face even greater pressure than she already has. Germany’s leader has disappointed many within the country after not strongly confronting the U.S. after the NSA scandal became common knowledge. Now she will be forced to act, but will likely wait until the most recent accusation of spying has been officially confirmed.