What we've been reading: Triangles, chocolate, Russia and maps

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Francois Badenhorst
Deputy editor
BusinessZone and UK Business Forums
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Good morning, readers. Every Friday we publish What we've been reading. It's - as the name suggests - a collection of the articles we've loved this week.

We think you might enjoy them, too. So if you get a gap this fine Friday, please take a moment to enjoy.

“You don’t get it. You aren’t the point.”

Brands can learn a little something from journalism school orthodoxy. Anyone that’s been to J-school is familiar with the upside down triangle.

It’s an article template for news designed to get the most relevant, important news out first. The point is any article begins with what the reader cares about. All your machinations as a journalist, all your narcissistic yearning and literary aspirations come firmly in second place.

As Steve Bryant puts in this article: “The point of an awareness strategy is not to capture dollars by selling a thing. The point of an awareness strategy is to capture attention by selling an idea adjacent to that thing.”

Stop talking about things and start discussing ideas.

How the Mast Brothers fooled the world into paying $10 a bar for crappy hipster chocolate

Speaking of prominent figures in the popular imagination: let’s talk about Hipsters.

Specifically, let’s talk about the Mast Brothers, two trendy urbanite brothers that got the world to pay a premium for bad chocolate.

Mast Bros. chocolate is a prominent part of the artisanal food trend ie. hipsters selling overpriced foods to other hipsters.

For all their claims of transparency and handmade chocolate, though, the two hirsute brothers just took some average chocolate and gave it nice packaging. And they were fabulously successful.

Good or bad? You decide.

Inside the hunt for Russia’s most notorious hacker

Is there a shadier figure in the popular imagination right now than the Russian hacker. He’s everywhere, penetrating all we’ve held dear with his capital-H Hacking abilities.

So it’s quite nice to have Wired actually puts a face to the mysterious enemy. This amazing story traces the FBI’s winding hunt for Evgeniy Mikhailovich Bogachev, otherwise known as Slavik.

Cyber heists, political intrigue – the story has it all.

Boston puts a better map in the classroom

The map of the Earth you grew up with – the Mercator projection – is wrong. Or, at the very least, it distorts the true size of our planet’s continents.

The Mercator projection was developed in the 16th century as a tool for marine navigation. Its intent wasn’t accuracy – but convenience.

But no worries! There are more accurate depictions. Most notably the Gall-Peters map. Now you no longer have to live in darkness.  

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