When the world gets closer.

We help you see farther.

Sign up to our expressly international daily newsletter.

Already a subscriber? Log in .

You've reached your limit of one free article.

Get unlimited access to Worldcrunch

You can cancel anytime .


Exclusive International news coverage

Ad-free experience NEW

Weekly digital Magazine NEW

9 daily & weekly Newsletters

Access to Worldcrunch archives

Free trial

30-days free access, then $2.90
per month.

Annual Access BEST VALUE

$19.90 per year, save $14.90 compared to monthly billing.save $14.90.

Subscribe to Worldcrunch

China Ends One-Child Policy, GOP Debate, Google Balloons

China Ends One-Child Policy, GOP Debate, Google Balloons


After months of speculation, China today officially ended its notorious 35-year-long one-child policy, allowing couples in the country to have two children, Xinhua state news agency reports. China's so-called "family planning policy" was implemented in September 1980 in an effort to alleviate social, economic and environmental problems. But as The Guardian reports, while "the government credits it with preventing 400 million births, the human cost has been immense, with forced sterilizations and abortions, infanticide and a dramatic gender imbalance that means millions of men will never find female partners."


"The questions that have been asked so far in this debate illustrate why the American people don't trust the media," Texas Sen. Ted Cruz said last night during the third Republican presidential debate on CNBC, The Washington Post reports. "Donald Trump, are you a comic book villain? Ben Carson, can you do math? John Kasich, will you insult two people over here? Marco Rubio, why don't you resign? Jeb Bush, why have your numbers fallen? How about talking about the substantive issues?" Cruz added, as several his fellow Republican candidates also turned against the debate moderators. But his comments came after a substantive question about the debt limit.


Black Tuesday, the beginning of the Great Depression, was 86 years ago today. This and more in your 57-second shot of history.


U.S. naval operations chief Admiral John Richardson and his Chinese counterpart, Admiral Wu Shengli, will hold high-level talks over tensions in the South China Sea after a U.S. warship challenged China in the disputed waters Tuesday, Reuters reports. "We would urge the U.S. side not to continue down the wrong path," Chinese Defense Ministry spokesman Yang Yujun said. "But if they do, we will take all necessary measures in accordance with the need."

  • Meanwhile, The Guardian reports that two Australian warships will hold military exercises with the Chinese navy in the South China Sea next week despite the U.S. patrol in the area.


Google could have 300 Internet-beaming balloons in the stratosphere, forming a ring around the Earth by next year, Mike Cassidy, vice president of the American company's Project Loon, told the BBC. This would allow most of the world to access high-speed internet.


Representatives of NATO countries in Brussels are discussing increasing the number of troops stationed along Russian borders and putting them under formal alliance command, The Wall Street Journal reports. It's part of an effort to deter possible aggression from Moscow.



Alcoholism and related problems are becoming serious in the three Tohoku prefectures severely affected by the Great East Japan Earthquake of March 2011, The Japan News reports. "The deaths of loved ones or the stress of a prolonged life as evacuees have led to increased alcohol consumption, and some are newly diagnosed as alcoholics even 4 1/2 years after the disaster."

Read the full article, Alcoholism, Post-Quake Japan's Silent Aftershock.


Nepal's parliament elected Bidhya Devi Bhandari, a women's rights campaigner, current vice chair of the ruling Communist Party of Nepal and former defense minister, as its first female president, The Kathmandu Postreports. Although the presidential position is mainly ceremonial in Nepal, Bhandari has pledged to champion minority and women's rights in the country.


After Hungary and Bulgaria, Austria is now planning to build a wall to regulate the mass flow of refugees into its territory from the so-called "Balkan route," Euronews reports. The wall will be built along the country's border with Slovenia, the Austrian government said Wednesday, adding that it had no intention of closing the border.


Next year's Chad elections will represent a novelty for the central African country. No, not a new president: Chadian voters are being asked to register to vote biometrically. Read more about it on Le Blog here.


U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is set to join talks on the Syrian civil war today in Vienna, along with foreign secretaries from Russia, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, the UK, France, Germany, Egypt, Lebanon and, for the first time, Iran, The Washington Post reports. Speaking at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace think tank in Washington, D.C., Wednesday, Kerry said the U.S. would intensify its diplomatic efforts to end what he described as the Syrian "hell." "While finding a way forward on Syria will not be easy, it is the most promising opportunity for a political opening we have seen," he said. Defense Secretary Ashton Carter had also announced the U.S. would increase its military campaign against ISIS in Syria and Iraq.


Photo: Brianna Soukup/The Palm Beach Post/ZUMA

A girl picks out pumpkins Wednesday at the annual Pumpkin Patch in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida.


A Google Chrome extension will substitute every instance of the name "Donald Trump" on the Internet into "Your drunk uncle at Thanksgiving."

You've reached your limit of free articles.

To read the full story, start your free trial today.

Get unlimited access. Cancel anytime.

Exclusive coverage from the world's top sources, in English for the first time.

Insights from the widest range of perspectives, languages and countries.


Look At This Crap! The "Enshittification" Theory Of Why The Internet Is Broken

The term was coined by journalist Cory Doctorow to explain the fatal drift of major Internet platforms: if they were ever useful and user-friendly, they will inevitably end up being odious.

A photo of hands holding onto a smartphone

A person holding their smartphone

Gilles Lambert/ZUMA
Manuel Ligero


The universe tends toward chaos. Ultimately, everything degenerates. These immutable laws are even more true of the Internet.

In the case of media platforms, everything you once thought was a good service will, sooner or later, disgust you. This trend has been given a name: enshittification. The term was coined by Canadian blogger and journalist Cory Doctorow to explain the inevitable drift of technological giants toward... well.

The explanation is in line with the most basic tenets of Marxism. All digital companies have investors (essentially the bourgeoisie, people who don't perform any work and take the lion's share of the profits), and these investors want to see the percentage of their gains grow year after year. This pushes companies to make decisions that affect the service they provide to their customers. Although they don't do it unwillingly, quite the opposite.

For the latest news & views from every corner of the world, Worldcrunch Today is the only truly international newsletter. Sign up here.

Annoying customers is just another part of the business plan. Look at Netflix, for example. The streaming giant has long been riddling how to monetize shared Netflix accounts. Option 1: adding a premium option to its regular price. Next, it asked for verification through text messages. After that, it considered raising the total subscription price. It also mulled adding advertising to the mix, and so on. These endless maneuvers irritated its audience, even as the company has been unable to decide which way it wants to go. So, slowly but surely, we see it drifting toward enshittification.

Keep reading...Show less

The latest