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The Writing World Turns A New Leaf As Authors Enter The Age Of Authentication

The internet has brought about a Golden Age for authors, making it easier to share their work and connect with others in the writing community. It has also led to the rise of new risks, such as large-scale piracy, theft and plagiarism. For writers, the key to a harmonious future may very well reside in a new generation of secure platforms allowing them to publish through authenticated accounts.

Photo of a typewriter

Typing it loud!


In today's digital age, writers have a multitude of options to showcase their work to a global audience. Websites, blogs and social media provide a platform for writers to publish their work, network with other writers, and build their online presence.

But this online ecosystem can also sometimes feel like a lawless jungle, where a writer’s works can be freely copied, plagiarized and reused in all impunity — and without the author being able to do anything about it. To ensure the integrity of their work and protect their interests, it is becoming increasingly essential for writers to turn to authenticated accounts.

An authenticated account provides the guarantee that an author’s identity has been verified, and that the works attributed to them is, indeed, theirs. This is especially crucial for writers who wish to build a reputation and establish a brand for themselves — reinforcing their credibility, and ensuring their work is taken seriously by an audience that can trust them.

Protecting against plagiarism and piracy

Moreover, an authenticated account protects the work of writers from plagiarism and other forms of intellectual property theft. The rise of digital publishing, for all its benefits, has also brought its lot of piracy pitfalls. In the age of open self-publishing platforms, it's easier for an ill-intentioned user to take someone else's work and claim it as their own. Authenticated accounts make it easier to track down the original author and, if necessary, take legal action. This allows authors to make sure their efforts, and ensuing works, are protected.

High-profile authors, like celebrated French philosopher Jean-Marc Ferry, have already made the switch to such solutions.

Authenticated accounts also provide authors with a secure place to store their writings or multimedia creations, adding a layer of security through the use of a password and identification process, with some platforms leveraging the power of cutting-edge tech like blockchain. The importance of authentication is becoming obvious to many, and some high-profile authors have already made the switch to solutions that allow for such verification methods. Among them is celebrated French philosopher Jean-Marc Ferry, who recently published the first chapter of his latest oeuvre, La Légende de Nil, through his professional account on Panodyssey, a European social media platform dedicated to writing and specifically designed to guarantee the authenticity of the authors’ works.

Building a bonafide community

Having an authenticated account also helps writers to build a network and connect with other writers. Online writing platforms typically feature the possibility to federate a community of writers, able to network and collaborate with each other. Authenticated accounts provide writers with a way to connect with others and build a community of like-minded individuals, which in turn can help writers improve their skills, gain exposure to different styles of writing, and find new opportunities to showcase their work.

Authenticated accounts go a long way in making authors’ lives easier.

Writer’s platforms often provide features such as analytics, which help writers track the performance of their work and get insights into their audience, and eventually enhance the overall quality of their work.

Faced with the double-edged sword of accelerating innovation, authors have a lot to think about, beyond merely reaching their audience — whether it’s navigating the muddy waters of online intellectual property, or sparring with AI-powered writing tools like ChatGPT. Having an authenticated account goes a long way in making their lives easier and allowing them to safely showcase their work to the world.

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Xi Jinping's Mission In Moscow, And The Limits Of The Russia-China Alliance

As Xi's closely watched visit to Moscow begins, China and Russia may seem like strategic partners, but it has ultimately shown to be a marriage of convenience. And both countries are naturally competitors, wary if the other grows stronger.

Chinese President Xi Jinping landing in Moscow on March 20

Petro Shevchenko

This article has been updated March 20, 12:00 p.m. CST


Long before Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese Premier Xi Jinping were growing closer. China’s goal? To revamp the current world order, significantly weaken the West and its leaders, and to become the world-dominating figurehead over and above the United States.

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Russia’s war in Ukraine has become an essential element of this plan to destabilize the global situation.

When the West began imposing stringent sanctions on Russia, China instead chose to economically support Putin and left its markets open to accept raw materials from Russia. But don’t think this means China is Putin’s lapdog. Quite the contrary: Beijing has never helped Moscow to its own detriment, not wishing to fall under the punitive measures of the U.S. and Europe.

The fundamental dynamic has not changed ahead of Xi Jinping's arrival on Monday for his first visit to Moscow since the war began. Beyond the photo ops and pleasant words that Xi and Putin are sure to share, the Russian-Chinese alliance continues to be looked at skeptically amongst the elite in both Beijing and Moscow.

China was not expecting Russia’s plans to occupy Ukraine in a matter of days to fail and as a result, China’s aim to destabilize the West alongside its Russian partner failed.

Add to this the various alliances in the West emerging against Beijing and fears for China’s economy on home turf is beginning to grow.

So, why is Beijing still in league with Moscow? And what are the consequences of Chinese cooperation with Russia after one year of Russia’s war?

Putin the puppet

One of the turning points in the Cold War between the U.S. and the USSR was Beijing’s pivot against Moscow towards Washington (recall ping-pong diplomacy and U.S. President Richard Nixon’s visit to Beijing in 1972).

Now, though, China’s desire to become the main player on the world stage forces it to not just desire America’s weakening and its own control of Asia, but completely rehash the political and economic playing field.

Russia’s aggression in recent months is playing into Xi Jinping’s hands.

To do this, Beijing had to concede an alliance with Moscow. The reason is rather pragmatic: to acquire guarantees that Russia would not participate in the strategic encirclement of China alongside the Americans, that its northern borders would be safe. So, eight years ago, Xi Jinping began to develop a strong “friendship” with Vladimir Putin and since then, Russia has become China’s junior, dependent partner.

Russia’s aggression in recent months is playing into Xi Jinping’s hands. With US eyes and resources firmly fixed on Ukraine, China hopes to grow and develop out of sight. Seeking to create an alternative economic system to the Western one, China attempts to weaken the dollar by only transferring payments with certain countries in Chinese Yuan.

A new economic vision

At the same time, the Putin regime fully supports the Chinese vision of a new economic center in Beijing, support which has been bolstered since Feb. 24. Now, sanctioned Russian banks that are no longer able to use the Euro or Dollar for international payments can use the Yuan. The gaps left by Western corporations who exited the Russian market are being filled by niche Chinese companies.

Furthermore, Moscow has become a vast resource annex for China, selling to Beijing at significant discounts. China has been able to obtain valuable military technologies and weapons from Russia including missile attack warning systems, engines for helicopters and airplanes, air defense systems as well as countless other components that aid the Chinese Air Force and Navy.

In 2021, 21% of Russian military exports went to China (in turn, 81% of Beijing’s military imports are Russian).

Moscow has also provided Beijing with access to space technology. For example, the manned Chinese spacecraft “Shenzhou” is in fact a copy of the Soviet-Russian “Soiuz”. Moreover, in June 2021, Russia and China agreed on the construction of a bilateral research station on the moon, as well as on joint exploration of deep space, something which caused Washington grave concern, fearing the militarization of space.

Beijing vs. the West

Xi Jinping diplomatically and economically supports Moscow because he understands that the strategic defeat of Russia in Ukraine and Putin’s displacement would be a threat to his ambitions, both in terms of acquiring Taiwan and more generally as a primary political leader in Asia.

Beijing spreads Russian propaganda in its own media, emphasizing the West as antagonist, and takes a neutral or pro-Russian stance in UN votes. In turn, Russia supports China informationally, especially on issues regarding Taiwan.

At the same time, Beijing has tried to avoid Western sanctions by not sending (at least openly) weapons or sensitive products to Russia. It knows that its largest economic partner (40% of all Chinese trade) is the West itself. Secondary sanctions against China would severely damage any future economic designs, which helps to explain why China has continued to publicly refute reports that it is sending weapons to Moscow.

Today, Beijing is under huge pressure from Washington to back down in the Indo-Pacific region. The U.S. is constantly increasing Taiwan’s defense capabilities (in 2022 alone, the US sold more than $2 billion worth of military equipment to Taiwan, and plans to provide the island with an additional $12 billion in the coming years).

The US is also continually forming anti-Chinese alliances in the region, such as Japan. In turn, China’s military and political partner in the region has become Russia. British political commentator and author Owen Matthews writes that during his pre-invasion visit to China on Feb. 4, Putin won Xi’s consent to an NATO Article 5 level deal, agreeing that their countries would come to each other’s aid militarily, with Xi insisting on the prescient proviso “in the case of foreign invasion”.

If Beijing annexes Taiwan, Moscow will be fully on China’s side. For Xi Jinping, this is an incredibly important fact.

photo of Vladimir Putin Xi Jinping before the start of their bilateral meeting just weeks before Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

Vladimir Putin Xi Jinping before the start of their bilateral meeting just weeks before Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

Mikhail Klimentyev/Kremlin Pool / Planet Pix via ZUMA Press Wire

Asymmetric economics

Cooperation with Russia is situationally advantageous for China, but it sees Russia as nothing more than a weakened and temporary junior partner.

Not only is Beijing unsure if Moscow is really an effective partner in global and regional confrontation with America, Russia’s image as a serious military-political player has entirely disintegrated after almost a year of failed full-scale war against Ukraine. If China can instead find ways of cooling confrontation with the US in the near future, what need does China have for Russia?

China has no desire to modernize Russia out of its own pocket.

Moreover, economic relations between Russia and China remain asymmetric. China, the second largest economy in the world, has no desire to take big financial risks with smaller, rocky economies and limits its investments in the Russian market at less than $10 billion per year, a figure that has only decreased since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, with fear of high-risk, low returns.

In comparison, China’s yearly investment in the US reaches just shy of $40 billion.

China, it would seem, has no desire to modernize Russia out of its own pocket. On the contrary: Beijing wants to buy cheap resources and technologies from Russia.

If anything, once Washington ceases to be the biggest threat and irritant for Russia and China, cooperation between them will go astray. The two “partners” are natural competitors and are wary of each other’s critical strengthening. In the case of Chinese-Russian relations, it appears to be a case of convenience, rather than any deep-set friendship.

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Central to the tragic absurdity of this war is the question of language. Vladimir Putin has repeated that protecting ethnic Russians and the Russian-speaking populations of Ukraine was a driving motivation for his invasion.

Yet one month on, a quick look at the map shows that many of the worst-hit cities are those where Russian is the predominant language: Kharkiv, Odesa, Kherson.

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