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Quartz Weekend Brief—India’s shame, China’s gay activists, ethical fur, a cursed emerald

My Facebook newsfeed was a strange sight yesterday. People both in and outside India were sharing links to India’s Daughter, an unsettling BBC documentary that aired on Wednesday about the brutal gang-rape of a young woman on a Delhi bus in 2012.

Wheat got creamed this week

The waves of grain rippling across America’s heartland lost a little luster this week. Investors are thinking that global production will be a bit higher in the near future per Agrimoney, based on estimates coming out of Russia and the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (Prices were also hurt by concern that some end users may back away from US wheat contaminated with an unpleasantly named infection known as vomitoxin, which can infect wheat grown in wet conditions.).

France has detained more journalists who wanted to report on drones with a drone

Earlier today, four journalists working for Bayerischer Rundfunk, a German public broadcasting station, were detained by police at the Parc de la Villette in Paris for preparing to fly a drone, according to Le Parisien (link in French).

Why do we even have Daylight Saving Time?

You can follow Scott on Twitter at @Disalmanacarian and his book at @Disalmanac. We welcome your comments at

Major corruption charges are coming for a Senator with a shady relationship with a political donor

New Jersey Senator Robert Menendez, a Democrat, will face federal corruption charges in the coming weeks, according to a CNN report.

China’s wind farms can now produce more energy than all of America’s nuclear plants

China is building more than a third of the world’s nuclear reactors currently under construction, and has plans to triple its nuclear power capacity by 2020.

Middle-class jobs are disappearing for people that don’t at least know Excel

For all the focus on the job environment for college grads, millions of US workers have “middle skill jobs,” roughly categorized as jobs for those with more than a high school degree, but less than a bachelor’s. The fastest growing and best paying of those jobs don’t often hire the computer-averse.

There’s actually a way to feel good about wearing fur

Talking about fur—the pelts of animals used for clothing such as coats, hats, and mittens—makes many understandably squeamish.

Praying at the ends of the earth

“In the world there’s no tranquility and silence. But here, it’s quiet enough,” said Sophrony Kirilov, a 38-year-old Russian Orthodox priest profiled by The New York Post.

There is one bit of good news in Italy’s otherwise depressing job market

Italy’s labor market has definitely seen better days, with unemployment rising sharply during the euro zone financial crisis and showing few signs of coming back down any time soon.

The nine most important economics charts of the week

The US created 295,000 jobs last month. Share Tap image to zoom Speaking of jobs, Ireland’s jobless rate is lower than France’s for the first time since 2008.

Germany’s brand new 30% quota for women on corporate boards is already being criticized

Germany’s parliament has just voted in a law compelling large companies to give 30% of non-executive board seats to women. But the legislation (link in German), which comes into force in 2016, is already being criticized as toothless.

Amazon throws in the towel and opens a store on Alibaba

Chinese e-commerce is getting real meta these days. just launched a store on Tmall, the business-to-consumer retail site run by Alibaba Group, as the Wall Street Journal recently noticed.

In the last 25 years, the Fed hasn’t raised rates with wage growth this slow

Another strong jobs report has helped relieve the tension about the US job market, but the conversation has now turned to when the Federal Reserve will start to raise interest rates, a decision that will have repercussions across the global economy.

#TheDress is now part of a powerful campaign against domestic violence

The dress that took over the internet last week has been put to use in a striking campaign against domestic violence.

Apple is making an audacious bet with the Apple Watch

As Apple prepares the Apple Watch for its April launch, it’s worth considering how big of a deal this is for the company, and how different this is from some of its previous launches.

The BBC has pulled “India’s Daughter” from YouTube around the world

Indian government officials banned “India’s Daughter,” a BBC documentary about the Delhi gang rape of 2012, from broadcast in India this week, citing a danger to women’s safety.

The bizarre story of how a stellar explosion produced the fastest star in the galaxy

The story of how US 708 became the fastest-moving star in the galaxy (that we know of) is also a tale of a relationship gone sour.

It’s official: Apple is joining the Dow Jones Industrial Average

The most valuable company in the history of capitalism—in nominal terms, at least—is joining America’s oldest and most prestigious stock index.

Mobile operators want to do away with online passwords

Nobody likes passwords. They’re hard to remember, we’re terrible at coming up with good ones, and they’re not much use anyway.