Here’s How a Newlywed Couple Paid Off $50K in Debt in Less Than Three Years

After college sweethearts Brittney and Ryan Lynn got married in 2012, they began a challenging rite of passage many newlywed couples experience: Combining finances.

Ryan had always been a fan of tracking his finances (though not budgeting — and there’s a difference), but Brittney wasn’t as aware of her financial situation. With the wedding in the rearview mirror, the Lynns knew it was time to gain a true understanding of their finances as a couple.

Brittney and Ryan sat at their dining room table in Milwaukee, laptops handy, combing through their various bank and credit card accounts. The Lynns had amassed a little over $ 50,000 in debt — student loans, some credit card debt and one personal loan made up the damage.

“That night was not fun,” Brittney recalls. “I remember crying and being really upset. We began to ask ourselves, ‘What are we going to do?’”

While the amount they owned shocked them, the Lynns developed a plan and made major life changes, and less than three years later, paid off the entire $ 50K. They now live debt-free.

Aftershock: Formulating a Plan to Get Out of Debt

Brittney admits that even after learning of the $ 50,000 debt, she was still somewhat in denial about the gloomy finances. After all, until that time the couple hadn’t been tracking their money together.

“Seeing it down on paper made me realize we had to come to terms with our debt and do something different,” Brittney says.

With new vigor, the couple sprung into action. Their first move involved a somewhat controversial figure: financial guru Dave Ramsey.

Known for his abrasive personality and bold views on money (like not believing in credit card use), Ramsey has published finance books, runs live events and online trainings, and hosts a podcast.

Ryan knew of Ramsey, and asked Brittney if she’d be open to testing his methods. “In the beginning, I was kind of against it because from the outside, Ramsey doesn’t seem like the type of personality I’d mesh with,” Brittney says.

Ryan encouraged her to listen to Ramsey’s podcast.

She quickly became enamored by his “debt-free scream” segments, where those who had successfully followed his practices shared their financial story and got to physically scream that they were debt-free.

“I was so inspired listening to these stories,” Brittney recalls. “That really motivated us to get started.”

Making Changes

Brittney agreed to try one of Ramsey’s popular tactics — the debt snowball method.

With this technique, you list your debts in order — from the lowest total payoff balance to the highest, regardless of interest rate. The idea is to experience a small win, gaining a psychological boost and motivation to keep going.

“I know people have different thoughts on paying the smallest debt first,” Brittney admits. “But the way we think about finances isn’t always logical. If we had chosen a larger debt to pay off, it would have taken so long to reach a win. We might not have continued.”

The first debt the couple cleared was a credit card with a $ 300 balance.

“After paying that first credit card bill, we were so motivated,” Brittney explains. “I became obsessed with finding as much information as possible about paying off debt.”

The Lynns didn’t follow Ramsey’s method to a T, but they adapted it to work for their lifestyle. For example, the couple still uses a credit card that they pay off every month, treating it much like a debit card.

Brittney and Ryan made several lifestyle changes, too:

  • Instead of going out to eat, Brittney found a new hobby in cooking. They packed their lunches and followed a mostly vegetarian diet, which helped save money.
  • The couple skipped going out for happy hours and coffee.
  • Both Brittney and Ryan drove old cars with no payments.
  • For a period of time, the couple got rid of cable and used Netflix and Hulu.
  • They sold items in their home they no longer needed. Ryan sold cameras he didn’t use, and Brittney sold her bridesmaid dresses on eBay.

One thing the couple didn’t skimp on? Travel.

“We love to travel, and it kept us sane,” Brittney explains. The Lynns made long weekends out of weddings they attended in various cities and took a big trip to Ireland.

“I know we could have paid off our debt sooner if we didn’t travel, but it was important to us to stay excited and not totally dread life with some of the lifestyle changes we made,” Brittney explains.

Life After Debt

a man and woman together in coats and hats outdoors, water and mountains in the background.
Brittney and Ryan stand together while touring the Ring of Kerry route in Ireland during a vacation in 2014. The couple made several lifestyle changes in a quest to pay down their debt, but one thing they didn’t skimp on was travel. “We love to travel, and it kept us sane,” Brittney explains. Photo courtesy of Brittney Lynn

In September 2015, just 2 1/2 years after their financial journey began, the Lynns wrote their final check — for one of Brittney’s student loans — and became debt-free.

At the same time, Ryan was offered a new job, so the couple moved from Milwaukee to Dallas. Brittney, a public relations professional, used the move as an opportunity to start her own business.

“It was awesome!” she says. “I was excited to have the opportunity to start a business and move to a new city knowing we wouldn’t have any debt.”

Now Brittney runs a boutique PR agency working primarily with fellow entrepreneurs. In May, she achieved a financial milestone, earning more than triple what she would’ve made  in a month at her corporate job. On the side, she hosts her “Day in the Life” podcast.

To stay on track, the Lynns have a money meeting every month to look over their budget for the next month. Borrowing an idea from Chris Harder’s “For the Love of Money” podcast, they meet at a favorite coffee shop.

“[It] makes it more fun and special,” Brittney says, “something to look forward to rather than sitting on the couch talking about how much money we spent last month.”

Want to Be Debt-Free? Follow These Tips

If you want to eliminate debt and move toward financial security like the Lynns, Brittney offers four important tips.

1. Know your money story

It’s important to remember that everyone has their own financial story and background. “Everyone views money differently,” Brittney explains. “There are many feelings and emotions around money from growing up.”

If you’re discussing money with a life partner, Brittney recommends sharing your money story honestly, staying open-minded and talking through your differences. For instance, Britney’s more of a saver while Ryan’s more of a spender. “That knowledge helped me to better communicate with Ryan,” she says.

If you’re flying solo, it still helps to understand your personal money story. Consider writing it out, thinking through how your parents and family discussed and managed money, and the way you view it now.

2. Try not to get too emotional when it comes to money talk

Financial conversations can sometimes be fraught with tension — after all, it’s not necessarily the most fun topic.

For that reason, Brittney recommends having financial conversations with a partner when you’re feeling level-headed and in a good space to talk about money. “If you enter the conversation already feeling emotional or vulnerable, it’s likely not going to go well,” she offers.

3. Start by tracking your finances

It’s almost impossible to create a budget when you have no idea how much you’re earning or spending in a given month.

Start by tracking your finances for a few months, knowing that each month will be different. From there, you’ll be able to determine the recurring expenses that are the same month to month (like your rent or utilities) and the expenses that can range in amount (like groceries or entertainment).

After gathering this data, it becomes much easier to develop a budget you can actually follow.

4. Do your research and find the tools that work for you

It may take some time to figure out which budgeting tool, resource or app will work best for your financial situation.

To stay organized, the Lynns started with a customized spreadsheet to track their finances and budget. They experimented with other apps and tools like Mint and You Need a Budget, but found that the spreadsheet was simple enough and helped keep them accountable.

It’s important to note that the Lynns’ quest for zero debt is not for everyone.

“Know your own financial situation,” Brittney says. “For people who have significantly more student loan debt, your best option probably isn’t paying off all of that debt with the income you’re making. Our best bet was paying it off ourselves.”

Ultimately, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach. For example, Brittney and Ryan were in a good position to pay off their debt because they lived in an apartment and had no children.

“There’s a way out of debt for everyone, and you can still live your life and have fun,” she says. “Find what works for you and your situation, and give it your best.”

Jessica Lawlor is the president and CEO of Jessica Lawlor & Company (JL&Co), a specialty communications agency. She feels inspired to dust off her old budget spreadsheet after chatting with Brittney for this story.

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.

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Lauren Bozicevich Is Seeking A PR Intern In New York, NY (Paid Internship)

The ideal candidate will have a professional, self-starting attitude, possess interpersonal communication skills—for both clients and work colleagues—and be comfortable working in a fast-paced environment. Jewelry knowledge (or interest) is appreciated.

She or he must be a quick learner, highly …

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Tamar Braxton’s Ex-Nanny Finally Paid In Full After Sale Of Calabasas Mansion

Tamar Braxton’s former nanny, who won a $ 213,000 judgment against the reality star last year, has finally received her payment, thanks to the sale of the singer’s 13,716-square-foot Calabasas estate, reports The Blast.

Earlier this year, Sally Lou Perkins filed a lien against the 7-bedroom, 9-bathroom home of Tamar and her husband Vince Herbert, which meant if the property was sold, Perkins would be paid from the sale.

The original asking price for the home was $ 15 million, when the house was put on the market in October following Tamar’s divorce filing. The lien filed by Perkins demanded she be paid $ 213,431.37 from a judgment she won relating to unpaid wages.

On August 8, Tamar and Vince sold their home for $ 9,250,000, far less than the asking price and even less than the $ 10.5 million they paid to buy it in 2012.

Sources tell The Blast that Perkins received a check this week, which paid her entire judgment in full. She now hopes to use her victory to help other domestic workers in similar situations, and has plans to work with the New York-based organization National Domestic Workers Alliance, reports The Blast.

Perkins was hired to care for the estranged couple’s son Logan during Tamar’s Love & War Tour in 2014. She said her duties included preparing meals and snacks, transportation, getting Logan dressed, creating nurturing activities to stimulate development, attending to his social and emotional needs, cleaning bedrooms and doing laundry.

Perkins had originally filed a claim with the State of California Labor Standards Enforcement and they were the ones who ordered Braxton to pay.

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First Look: “Your Passages Have Been Paid” | Queen Sugar | Oprah Winfrey Network


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Stevie J. Reportedly Hasn’t Paid Taxes In Three Years

The self-proclaimed “good guy” is in trouble yet again.
The celebration for newlyweds Stevie J and 90’s r&b icon Faith Evans may be cut short. After the impromptu wedding, Stevie was called out by a woman who claims to be pregnant with his child. As if that wasn’t bad enough, now the state of Georgia is after his coins!
According to Rolling out the Love & Hip-Hop: Atlanta star didn’t pay his taxes 2012, 2013, or 2014. The state of Georgia hit Stevie J with not one, but two tax liens totaling $ 110,507.
It seems like the “good guy” sure is good at getting into bad situations.
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CNN Exclusive: Bayer paid doctors millions for questionable birth control device

When Christina Potts was looking for permanent birth control, she said, her doctor was a “cheerleader” for one option and one option only: Essure. – RSS Channel – Health


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These people get paid to make your vacation pics look glamorous

For Ilyse Dolgenas, planning an exotic vacation is a terrific excuse to splurge on clothes. But the busy real-estate lawyer and mother admits she has neither the spare time to shop, nor the kind of sharp eye for trends that makes digging around department stores fun. “I would have a closet full of black dresses…
Fashion News, Photos, and Video | New York Post


7 paid iPhone apps you can download for free today

Best Free iPhone Apps

We’re kicking off the new week with a solid list of seven paid iPhone and iPad apps that are all on sale for free for a limited time. As always, we have no control over when these free downloads will stop being free, so grab anything that looks appealing as soon as you can.

Continue reading…

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7 paid iPhone apps you can download for free today originally appeared on on Mon, 7 May 2018 at 12:02:36 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.



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DMX producer hasn’t been paid royalties for a decade: suit

A famed hip-hop producer for DMX claims he hasn’t been paid royalties in nearly a decade. Michael Gomez, who worked under the name DJ Shok with the Yonkers-based Ruff Ryders on Grammy-nominated DMX records like 1999’s “. . . And then there was X,” says in a suit he’s been trying to get the funds since at…
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The payments to Harder's firm were largely in compensation for taking on former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon, who was a major source for the book, and Wolff, sources told CNBC.


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The highest paid TV actress just explained how to negotiate pay

‘When you’re asking for a raise, you’ve got to be willing to walk out the door if you don’t get what you want.’

Grey’s Anatomy’s Ellen Pompeo is the highest-paid actress on a primetime drama, with her new two-year-deal with the show earning her £414,000 per episode – that’s over £14 million a year.

But according to the 48-year-old actress, this was a long time coming – reportedly fighting for equal pay for years.

That’s right. Earlier this year, the actress told the Hollywood Reporter that even as the show’s main character – you now, playing Meredith GREY in GREY’s Anatomy, she had to fight behind the scenes to be treated as an equal to her male co-stars.

‘They could always use [Patrick Dempsey] as leverage against me – ‘We don’t need you; we have Patrick’ – which they did for years,’ she explained of her male co-star, referring to his exit from the show as a ‘defining moment’. ‘I don’t know if they also did that to him, because he and I never discussed our deals,’ she explained. ‘But there were many times where I reached out about joining together to negotiate, but he was never interested in that.’

She continued: ‘At one point, I asked for $ 5,000 more than him just on principle, because the show is Grey’s Anatomy and I’m Meredith Grey. They wouldn’t give it to me.’

Eventually getting her pay rise in the end, she is now calling for other women to rise up, giving her own advice on how to negotiate a pay rise.

‘The only time you ever really have power in asking for anything is if you’re willing to walk away,’ she explained. ‘When you’re asking for a raise, you’ve got to be willing to walk out the door if you don’t get what you want.’

She continued: ‘Be 100 percent honest. No, no, no, no, no, wait, wait — 98 percent honest. One hundred percent honest with yourself, 98 percent honest with the rest of the world. In being honest, it’s best to sort of start with the positive. Find something positive and lead with that, and then get into the more truthful parts of it.’

Her final piece of advice? ’Stop trying to be perfect. Nobody’s fucking perfect. I’m not perfect, you’re not perfect, and no one can expect us to be. The closest we can get is to be true and respectful to each other. Be okay with your flaws. We all have them. Stop trying to speak perfect, look perfect, act perfect. Men don’t try to be perfect.’

Here, here, Ellen Pompeo.

The post The highest paid TV actress just explained how to negotiate pay appeared first on Marie Claire.

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Gucci Mane Finally Paid The IRS $800 Grand In Back Taxes

Gucci Mane El Gato Release Party 3

Source: Prince WIlliams / Prince Williams/

You can be the most gangsta dude alive, but if you owe Uncle Sam them taxes that’s ya ass (just ask Al Capone). Gucci Mane is well aware of this fact and according to Page Six, the ATL rapper has finally paid the IRS $ 823,358.50 in back taxes.

If you’re thinking “but he just got out of jail, how he owes that much money?” Turns out that Guwop was owing the IRS for income he got in 2008, 2010, and 2011 (no leniency for having paid his taxes in 2009?). Either way we’re glad that Gucci’s put that drama behind him now that he’s a married man and doesn’t need anything tripping up his progress in life.

That being said, we’re kinda surprised Gucci didn’t just pawn a few of his chains or sell a few cars and get out of that debt a lot sooner, but to each his own.

Photo: Prince Williams

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Transitioning out of Dress Codes AltogetherI’ve always paid…

Transitioning out of Dress Codes Altogether

I’ve always paid attention to what I wear – I specifically remember the floral tie and pegged pants I wore to my first dance, where I awkwardly box-stepped with a girl, shout out to Junior Capers and the Tredyffrin/ Easttown school district–but I didn’t really think about it in relation to others’ clothing deeply until I started going to work. In a cubicle. Wearing a tie I stole from my dad.

Most weekdays since then (for over a decade) I’ve left my house in the morning to work in a traditional office, and worn what I’d like to consider thoughtful business casual. The boundaries of business casual are rarely clear and tend toward the khakis-and-polo side of things. As Derek wrote, “Not as interesting as casualwear could be; not as sharp as the traditional coat-and-tie. It’s just vanilla bland.” It’s one of those areas where we’re technically free to wear nearly anything but unwritten rules often keep us boxed in, or else we’ll raise the eyebrows of our Kirkland polo-d co-workers. I mostly wear OCBDs (lighter cotton weaves in summer), cotton twill or wool flannel trousers, and extra-casual sportcoats (like Engineered Garments or Camoshita might make) or a cardigan.

Last week, though, I started working from home close to full time. My new situation has a lot of benefits – I can access snacks at any time – but it’s made me wonder whether my business wardrobe is obsolete. I have a decent desk setup with natural light, I literally do not have to leave the house; who am I getting dressed for?

Of course, many men work mostly on their own terms, don’t have an office, and cope just fine. I asked a few guys who’ve been working this way for awhile how they approach dressing for the home office.

The Tailored Uniform Approach

Mitchell Moss is an editor and writer working for a church in Cincinnati, but he lives and works in an older house outside of Nashville. He likes tailored clothing, mostly Italian, and doesn’t let the lack of a conference room and water cooler stop him. “I usually wear open collar shirt and sportcoat, and jeans or dress pants. I’m almost always in tailoring. That’s how I like getting dressed.”


So no sweatpants. “The slob thing? I cannot do that. Tailored clothing – it’s what I’ve spent money on for years, and didn’t buy it just to hang it there. Plus I get on instagram in the morning, and a lot of accounts I follow are in Europe, and have already posted cool outfits – it gets me excited about wearing a jacket again.”

In the two years he’s had this work style, Mitchell says he’s gotten more casual and wears ties less often. “I do wear jeans a lot more – almost every day now. Wearing a tie with jeans just feels weird. Part of my philosophy is trying to keep it real: ‘OK dude you’re working from home.’ I have a very strong utilitarian streak in me, I live in the real world – and there’s no point in putting wear and tear on nice pants.” Plus he does have to set up and break down for photo shoots sometimes, which is better to do in jeans, and shoes he won’t scratch.

What does he do in the summer swelter of the South? “At the extremes of the seasons, when it’s hot, I will forego a sportcoat. No shorts! Don’t quite go that far.”

The Approach That Changes Day to Day

Eric Cano runs a fashion casting agency – that is, he connects brands with the right-looking people for photo shoots or runway shows. Striking out on his own a couple of years ago after a long time working for a single company, he’s changed his style with his role and the shifting sands of men’s style. “I don’t have to worry about what I look like. I consider myself a fashion person, but on any given day I can kinda wear whatever I want. I don’t really have to put a suit on, which is a shame because I have so many.”


When he was in ad sales, wearing tailoring felt like it fit the role. “My uniform was sports jacket, woven shirt, nice pants, and shoes. I’d show up to meetings with Nike, it was kind of my calling card to be the guy in this market in a suit, meanwhile it was just a sports jacket. Asking a company to do a media buy, it would have felt funny showing up in a tshirt, jeans, and Jordan Is asking someone to spend that much money – a navy blazer justified what I was asking for. I don’t know, maybe people thought I was a narc.”

Now he balances his interest in fashion with the different demands he has every day: sometimes meeting clients or models, sometimes spending the day at his home office or co-working space answering emails.

“I want to be comfortable, and functionality is great, but I still want to look nice. When it’s my first time meeting someone other than email, want them to think ‘Oh, that’s what he looks like, that’s really sharp.’ Then next time we meet I’ll be in sneakers and a trucker jacket.”

When I talked to Eric (over the phone), he was in post-gym-wear – snow boots, sweatpants, and a bubble jacket. “I’m meeting people for dinner later, I’ll probably get out of the sweatpants. I’ll wear good jeans, a knit, nice shoes, and call it a day.” Eric, who’s in his 30s, told me he likes Dior Homme for jeans but also Levis 511s or 501s, recently picked up a shawl cardigan from Martin Margiela, which he’s been paying attention to, he estimates, since 2003.

He’s always liked black boots, and guesses he has 40 pairs. Recently he’s been wearing Balenciaga biker boots or Dries Van Noten chelseas. “Work hard, buy nice things. On sale of course.”

The Sophisticated Traveler Approach

Gus Walbolt works as an artist’s licensing agent and business consultant–selling his publishing business in the early 2000s afforded him the opportunity to set his own work style, which includes a couple of phone calls a day in his home in Walnut Creek, California. “Then off to gym; it’s one of the advantages of selling your company.”


While in publishing, he witnessed the casualization of the workplace in the 1980s and 90s. “When everyone still dressing up a lot, I still got questions– ‘Gus, why do you get so dressed up – it’s your company, you don’t have to dress up.’ But it’s all about showing style. In the 1990s my uniform was a double-breasted blue blazer, jeans while traveling, and gray flannels when I arrived. And I wore a tie. During that time, because we were selling art-based products, I felt it was important to project style. I thought it was necessary to show that I understood style in order to sell style and design.”

Nowadays Gus, who’s in his 60s, mixes his tailored taste with modern dressed-down looks, mixing the vibes perfected in global style capitals. “When I started working for myself, I started wearing what I wear today: American jeans, English shoes, and Italian shirts. Maybe LVC 1954 jeans, an Italian collared shirt, a casual sport coat – like Ring Jacket, Japanese made in an Italian style.”

In the last year, Gus has started to favor cardigans rather than sport coats all the time. “Cable-knit cardigans, maybe with pockets; not so much grandpa cardigans, a stand-up rather than shawl collar, with a scarf.”

“Every now and then, my wife goes ‘Everything’s so casual, don’t wear a jacket; can you wear something else?’”

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SURAMERICANA: 2017 Dividends Should Be Paid In Cash, Not Shares

Colombia’s Grupo de Inversiones Suramericana S.A. (Grupo SURA) reported that its Board of Directors decided to pay 2017’s dividends in cash, not in shares.
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‘We put our soul into this business and it means we won’t be paid this week’: Beckenham cafe suffers break-in

An independent café in Beckenham has had its till and tip jar stolen after a break-in which left the front door smashed.

This Is Local London | News


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DJ Countersued by Taylor Swift for Groping Her Says He Paid Her $1 Last Week

The radio DJ ordered to pay a symbolic $ 1 to Taylor Swift after he groped her during a photo op said he mailed her the money last week.

David Mueller told the Associated Press that he sent Swift a Sacagawea coin and provided proof of payment to the outlet, which he said was sent on Nov. 28.

The former radio host previously told the AP he intended the coin to be a final jab at the “Look What You Made Me Do” singer as the Sacagawea dollar features a prominent female Native American.

“I mean if this is all about women’s rights. … It’s a little poke at them, a little bit,” he told the AP. “I mean, I think they made this into a publicity stunt, and this is my life.”

Mueller sued Swift claiming she falsely accused him of groping her. He sought up to $ 3 million in damages. When Swift countersued, a federal jury in Denver, Colorado, ruled in Swift’s favor.

Swift was named one of TIME‘s Person of the Year, and appeared on the cover as one of the “Silence Breakers” for speaking out about her assault. In the magazine story published Wednesday, Swift said she hadn’t received the dollar.

The singer told the magazine in the interview that she was tired of how court proceedings were going by the time she testified.

“I had already been in court all week and had to watch this man’s attorney bully, badger and harass my team including my mother over inane details and ridiculous minutiae, accusing them, and me, of lying,” Swift said.

She continued, “My mom was so upset after her cross-examination, she was physically too ill to come to court the day I was on the stand. I was angry. In that moment, I decided to forego any courtroom formalities and just answer the questions the way it happened. This man hadn’t considered any formalities when he assaulted me, and his lawyer didn’t hold back on my mom—why should I be polite? I’m told it was the most amount of times the word “a—” has ever been said in Colorado Federal Court.”

Swift’s straightforward testimony was lauded by many for its strength. When she was asked why the photos she’d taken with Mueller during the assault hadn’t shown evidence of wrongdoing, the singer simply said, “Because my a— is located at the back of my body.”

Fashion Deals Update:

Reports: Uber paid hackers to keep data breach affecting 57 million customers quiet

Uber reportedly paid hackers $ 100,000 to remove the data of 57 million customers they stole in a massive 2016 data breach, according to Bloomberg.

RELATED: 13 Dos and Don’ts for protecting your identity during the holidays

Uber executives concealed the hack for over a year

Names, phone numbers and email address were among the data stolen. Around 600,000 driver’s license numbers belonging to Uber drivers were also compromised in the October 2016 breach.

Social security numbers appear not to have been stolen in the breach.

Uber executives reportedly concealed the hack for over a year and have been terminated, according to BuzzFeed.

Uber’s current CEO, Dara Khosrowshahi, criticized the company’s handling of the data theft in a blog postthat said there’s no evidence the stolen information has been misused.

The company released a statement Tuesday on the 2016 attack.

The San Francisco company ousted Travis Kalanick as CEO in June after an internal investigation concluded he had built a culture that allowed female workers to be sexually harassed and encouraged employees to push legal limits.

Read more at Bloomberg.


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What we learned (and didn’t) in Week 11: Players about to get paid

Remember that one-year deal Alshon Jeffery took last offseason? Expect him to do much better in free agency in 2018. He’s not alone. This week’s lessons run through guys in position to land big new contracts. – NFL
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“Jane the Virgin” paid the sweetest tribute to Michael, and we’re crying all over again

“Jane the Virgin” paid the sweetest tribute to Michael, and we’re crying all over again

“Jane the Virgin” paid the sweetest tribute to Michael, and we’re crying all over again

Warning! Spoilers from Jane the Virgin Season 4, Episode 4, “Chapter Sixty-Eight,” lie ahead. Read on (and cry) at your own risk…

Jane the Virgin recognized the late Michael once again, and the tribute has us basically crying our faces off — but like, we’re pretty confident that’s always going to be the case. Why? Well, because Michael was perfect. He was an amazing partner to Jane, stepfather to Mateo, and BFF to Rogelio.

For our purposes we’re going to focus on the latter, what could possibly be TV’s greatest bromance. (Yes, I realize and agree that Stranger Things’ Steve and Dustin are total gems. DON’T @ ME.)

In “Chapter Sixty-Eight,” Rogelio and Darci struggle with picking a name for their newborn girl. But Rogelio takes a cue from “Wise Owl” Alba, who tells him: “A name isn’t something that should be chosen at random, Rogelio. It should be something that has special meaning to you and represents a part of who you are.” Key words: SPECIAL MEANING.

Eventually, Rogelio and Darci compromise. Rogelio tells Darci that he’ll agree to Amada — the name suggested by Esteban, Darci’s new love and Rogelio’s arch-nemesis — if he can pick the middle name. Turns out Darci doesn’t even like Amada as a name anymore, but inspiration soon strikes and the pair pick Baby for their, well, baby. Rogelio, then, picks Michaelina as the middle name.


Just, so many tears are flowing right now.

jane the virgin
Scott Everett White / The CW

Later, Rogelio and Darci tell the family the full name they selected.

“Darci and I would like to introduce you all to the newest member of our familia — Baby Michaelina De La Vega Factor,” Rogelio says, and Jane asks if Michaelina is in honor of Michael. “He was my best friend,” Rogelio responds.


And we aren’t alone.

Look, while we *still* might not want to accept that Michael is gone, we do love when Jane the Virgin pays tribute to him —and this is a perfect example.



14-year-old model who died from exhaustion was paid $8 a day

A top Russian child model who died in China from “exhaustion” made just $ 8.27 a day after paying her air fares, hotels and food, it was claimed today. Vlada Dzyuba, 14, missed school to work on catwalks on a “three month contract” to fulfil her dream to become a supermodel. But her case raises acute…
Fashion | New York Post


For Samsung, copying the iPhone was a massive gamble – and it paid off

Apple vs. Samsung

Samsung just scored a massive win against Apple in a patent war that seems like it will last forever. It obtained a retrial in one of the cases where Apple scored a significant victory back in 2012. Apple was awarded more than $ 1 billion in damages, in a verdict that practically confirmed what many people, yours truly included, said for years: Samsung copied the iPhone.

But then, Samsung was able to lower the damages down to $ 400 million. And now the judge overseeing the case just said the case has to be tried again.

That’s just brilliant, and it shows that copying the iPhone was the best thing Samsung ever did.

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Slate Studios Is Seeking A Marketing Intern In Long Island City, NY (Paid Internship)

Slate Studios is seeking an energetic and self motivated Marketing Intern to helm our digital marketing efforts.The Marketing Intern will be managing our marketing assets including Instagram, Google Adwords, Email Blasts, Website, in coordination with our Art Direction team.ResponsibilitiesMonitor …

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Keep These Things in Mind if You Want to Get Paid Faster

women investors

Getting paid is an important part of business, but not necessarily the most fun part. Invoicing is not a fun job when you have so many other things on your plate. Still, when you’re a small business owner, getting paid can sometimes be a big battle. Efficiency is key when sending and managing your invoices.

Your strategy is important. Here are a few tips on managing your invoices to ensure you get paid in a timely manner.


Know the Billing Cycle


While it would be a treat if your clients followed your billing cycle, that’s not typically the case. When dealing with larger clients, they may pay on 30-, 60-, or even 90-day intervals. When working on-term with a client, the most common type of invoice will be a recurring invoice.

With a recurring invoice, you and your client will agree on the frequency (weekly, bi-monthly, or monthly) and then you can set your invoices to automatically bill at the agreed upon billing cycle. Once your clients get into this routine, you will get paid much more quickly.


Use online software


Go paperless. In 2016, this should not even be a choice, but going paperless will guarantee you get your money faster. You will be hard pressed to find anyone who doesn’t want their invoice sent online.

Here are a few examples of online invoicing tools. Any one of these options is great. It’s all about preference and if you want to pay a monthly usage fee or not:

  • Due: Due allows you to send an invoice, track time, project management and credit card payments platform designed to help companies of all sizes with its scalable solution.
  • QuickBooks: QuickBooks is a full-service accounting platform that also provides tools for invoices, online payment, and financial analysis;
  • PayPal: PayPal offers a simple invoicing tool that has some customization and provides for online payments from customers and clients; and

Communicate clearly


In the age of email, it’s easy for miscommunication to occur. You might think you and your client are on the same page, and then they throw you a curveball about any number of things, even if you laid everything out in an email. People sometimes miss obvious things in an email because they are skimming.

Here are a couple problems that can easily be avoided and get you paid faster:

  • Be clear on the terms: When dealing with a client you MUST be very clear with the terms. Before starting any project lay out all terms, including payment intervals, estimated budget, and any other clauses that protect you. Make sure the client signs this agreement so you have a physical copy of it.
  • Send the invoice to the right person: Sometimes you’ll have to send an invoice to the accounting department, but your client might not tell you that. Then lines get crossed and it takes you forever to get paid. Make sure you know if your project contact is the same as your payment contact. This is so important to avoid any unnecessary delays.



Just like most things in life, timing is everything. For example, Sunday is the worst day to send an invoice. It will get buried in your client’s inbox. Try mid- to late-week. From experience, Thursdays seem to be the best day to send an invoice. If you’re sending recurring invoices, say the 15th and 30th of the month, be sure the payment intervals are clear in your contract.

Many clients will pay an invoice within 30 days. This might help their cash flow, but it doesn’t help yours. It is more than OK to ask that your invoices be paid with 14 or 10 days. Just make sure this is in your agreement and the client understands. Over-communicating on this aspect of your agreement is OK as long as you are respectful and professional.



The follow-up is no one’s favorite part of the invoicing cycle, but some clients just need a nudge to remember to pay you. This might be uncomfortable at first, but sometimes it’s essential to get your money. If a client misses a payment due date here are some follow-up suggestions:

  • Resend the invoice: The first step is to simply resend the invoice with a friendly email reminder. This is easy if you use one of the online invoicing tools mentioned above;
  • Call: If you don’t get a response after your friendly email reminder it’s perfectly OK to call the client. It’s very easy to miss or even ignore an email. If you call, chances are better for you to get paid even while you’re on the phone with them. Typically, they have probably been swamped with other things and aren’t being negligent; or
  • Legal Action: Worst case scenario, your client turns out to be a crook who dodges your email and phone calls and you have to take legal action to get paid. Hopefully, this is rare, but it’s there if you need it.



John Boitnott writes about startups and finance at Inc., Entrepreneur, and BusinessInsider. He is a journalist and digital strategist who has worked at TV, print, radio and Internet companies for 23 years. He’s an advisor at and has also written for Fortune, NBC, Fast Company, USA Today and Venturebeat.

Due is a payments, eCash, online invoicing, time tracking, global payments, and digital wallet solution for freelancers, small business owners, and companies of all sizes.

Money – Black Enterprise


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Netflix paid an incredible amount for Jerry Seinfeld’s new specials and show

seinfeld netflix

Jerry Seinfeld’s very first Netflix special debuted yesterday, following a long line of comedy exclusives which call the streaming service home. The hour-long event, called Jerry Before Seinfeld, is the first of two exclusive specials the legendary comedian is providing for Netflix, and combined with the rights for the next season of Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, the leading streaming company is paying an absolute mint.

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Barack Obama Gave Trump A Letter With Advice, Cheeto Clearly Paid No Attention

Barack Obama gave Donald Trump plenty of advice in the Inauguration Day Letter he gave the newly elected President. It should come as no surprise that Cheeto clearly paid no heed to the sterling advice.

The letter has recently become public, and it reads like a perfect outline on how not to f*ck up your epic new gig as POTUS.

Obama offered this particularly poignant passage:

Third, we are just temporary occupants of this office. That makes us guardians of those democratic institutions and traditions — like rule of law, separation of powers, equal protection and civil liberties — that our forebears fought and bled for. Regardless of the push and pull of daily politics, it’s up to us to leave those instruments of our democracy at least as strong as we found them.

Considering Trump fired James Comey for daring to investigate possible Russian collusion in our election and that he pardoned the racist ex-Sheriff Arpaio, he must have missed that part of the letter.

Read the full letter below. Obama, forever and always Presidential.

Dear Mr. President –

Congratulations on a remarkable run. Millions have placed their hopes in you, and all of us, regardless of party, should hope for expanded prosperity and security during your tenure.

This is a unique office, without a clear blueprint for success, so I don’t know that any advice from me will be particularly helpful. Still, let me offer a few reflections from the past 8 years.

First, we’ve both been blessed, in different ways, with great good fortune. Not everyone is so lucky. It’s up to us to do everything we can (to) build more ladders of success for every child and family that’s willing to work hard.

Second, American leadership in this world really is indispensable. It’s up to us, through action and example, to sustain the international order that’s expanded steadily since the end of the Cold War, and upon which our own wealth and safety depend.

Third, we are just temporary occupants of this office. That makes us guardians of those democratic institutions and traditions — like rule of law, separation of powers, equal protection and civil liberties — that our forebears fought and bled for. Regardless of the push and pull of daily politics, it’s up to us to leave those instruments of our democracy at least as strong as we found them.

And finally, take time, in the rush of events and responsibilities, for friends and family. They’ll get you through the inevitable rough patches.

Michelle and I wish you and Melania the very best as you embark on this great adventure, and know that we stand ready to help in any ways which we can.

Good luck and Godspeed,



Photo: Getty

The post Barack Obama Gave Trump A Letter With Advice, Cheeto Clearly Paid No Attention appeared first on Hip-Hop Wired.

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How a couple with three kids paid off $55K of debt in 2 years

Becoming debt-free isn’t easy, especially when you’ve got a family to raise. The thing is, it’s super easy to accumulate debt. After all, you need that big SUV once you bring home your newest bundle of joy and you need that in-store financing offer to purchase all the furniture to fill up that new home.

Oh, and let’s not forget that you need to take out those student loans in order to get your dream job so you can afford to provide for your family.

Our story is no different from most. Even though we were able to avoid going into debt to afford our wedding ceremony in 2009, that didn’t stop us from accumulating other debt.

Read more: How to create and stick to a budget that works for you

How we tackled $ 55,000 of debt in 2 years

Our grand total of consumer debt was $ 55,365 in March of 2013 — and in comparison to most of the late twenty-year-olds we knew, we were doing really well financially.

The only problem was that we were a one-income family, pregnant with our second child. After running the numbers, I realized that we weren’t going to be able to afford for me to continue staying home with our children with the current amount of debt payments we had every month.

After a lot of late-night discussions, my husband and I finally decided that we were done with relying on debt — and that the only way to keep our dream life a reality was to get aggressive in paying off all the money we owed.

In the months that followed, we managed to pay off two of our four debts — the two credit cards — but we still owed more than $ 30,000 when we welcomed our second child into the world.

And not going to lie, it was a struggle after he was born. Even though we had more money in our budget since we had paid off two debts, we only had a few hundred dollars in our savings account after a medical emergency drained the rest of our funds

Read more: Debt 101: Everything from dangers to avoid to the best ways to pay it off

Making tough choices

This resulted in us living a completely different lifestyle than we pictured.

I had to make our own bread, and we ate more rice, beans, and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches than I care to remember. We had to make some serious changes and sacrifices — like me walking dogs while hugely pregnant in the sweltering heat of Georgia summers. My husband had to work every side job he could find — everything from changing out light bulbs to building cabinets.

For months after our second child was born, I tried in vain to figure out a way to pay off our Tahoe loan (which stood right at $ 18,000) as quickly as possible, but I finally had to admit defeat in March of 2014.

Through our various side hustles, and by cashing out a few of my childhood savings bonds, we finally had enough money set aside to pay for a car in cash.

Read more: 33 ways to make extra cash each month

The last payment

Even though getting rid of our fully-loaded and super nice Tahoe for a well-used Sequoia without all the bells and whistles was hard, it freed up more money in our budget than we could ever imagine.

And through even more hustling and throwing every extra penny we had at my student loans, we finally paid off the last of our $ 55,365 of debt in 2015 — just before our third child was born.

Making this happen wasn’t easy, and I wish I could tell you that there was some magical checklist we followed to accomplish what at times seemed impossible.

The truth is, it took a huge commitment to get out of debt — but it was absolutely worth it.

If you want to become debt-free, here are a few things you will absolutely have to do:

  1. Agree to stop using debt: You will literally never become debt-free if you keep racking up new debt. 
  2. Make a plan: It doesn’t matter if you decide to follow the debt snowball method or the debt avalanche method. Just pick one and make a plan to follow it. 
  3. Figure out WHY: Write down why you want to become debt-free, so when the hard sacrifices are required, you’ll remember why you’re doing this. 
  4. Track your progress: This will not only keep you motivated but also help keep you organized. 
  5. Give grace: It’s not easy becoming debt-free — so remember to give yourself grace if things move slower than expected or mistakes are made. Just pick up where you left off and keep going!

How to start building your emergency savings


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Key and Peele Paid Von Miller’s Fine for Imitating ‘Three-Pump’

They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Hingle McCringleberry would agree.

When Denver Broncos Von Miller was fined $ 11,567 by the NFL for celebrating suggestively after he sacked Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford back in 2015, comedians Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele decided to get involved. Because Miller imitated the three-pump celebration from their wildly

This article originally appeared on Key and Peele Paid Von Miller’s Fine for Imitating ‘Three-Pump’

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On This Black Women’s Equal Pay Day, Commit to Get Paid What You’re Worth

This year, Black Women’s Equal Pay Day falls on July 31.  This is the day when black women finally earn what the typical white male earned by December 31, 2016; meaning, black women had to work more than a year and a half to earn what most white men earned in only a year. 

(Image: iStock/rafyfane)

This stark reality reflects the continuing pay gap that black women experience, earning just 63 cents to the dollar of white men compared to the 80 cents to the dollar earned by women overall. 

The implications of this pay inequity are tremendous and expands exponentially over time.  It’s been estimated that the typical black woman will lose over $ 877,000 strictly due to pay inequity throughout her career. 

While there are many reasons why this inequity exists, not the least of which is the continuing reality of institutionalized discrimination, one of the ways that black women can chip away at this gap, is to strengthen their salary negotiation skills. 

Here are five tips to actively advocate for more earning power and ultimately, get paid what you’re worth.


 1. Commit to Negotiate  

Some 70% of women completely skip the negotiation process all. For many, the job search process can itself be so daunting that getting to this stage in the game feels like a welcomed finish line.  But keep in mind, you got the offer because after an exhaustive search, you’ve risen to the top.  Realize that once the offer has been extended, the power dynamic has officially shifted.  The pursued has now become the pursuer.  This will likely be the most powerful negotiating position you will enjoy throughout your relationship with the organization.  So seize the moment.  Take advantage of this window of opportunity and push for what you know you deserve.


2. Do Your Homework

It’s critical to get a realistic assessment of the ballpark you should play in.  Do your homework by using websites like, or in order to get a sense of what others in your industry and in your geographic area, with your level of experience and credentials earn for the same work.  And to get a more nuanced understanding of organizational culture before you say yes, use the intelligence provided by which gives you insights on employee experiences at the organization you’re considering.   Certainly, no level of compensation is worth placing yourself in a toxic organizational environment that could be damaging to your career in the long run.


3.When Talking Numbers, Don’t Be the First to Blink

Try your best to avoid being the first to talk specific numbers.  That means to the extent possible, avoid divulging your current salary.  And if asked what you’re looking for in terms of compensation for your new role, say something general like, “I take into consideration a number of factors beyond salary when making decisions around job opportunities.  But as far as salary is concerned, what range will you be working within?”  Ultimately, you want them to be the first to mention the range that they have in mind.  Generally speaking, the person who gives this critical bit of information first, tends to be at the disadvantage.


4. Avoid the Rush to Yes

Too often when a salary offer is made, the immediate reflex is to just say yes.  Instead, just say thank you.  Then take a moment to remind them of one or two of your stand out specifics regarding your background, experience, or expertise.  With that reiterated, counter their offer with a more aggressive salary range, making sure that your range is in-line with your prior research.  In other words, ask for more and remind them why you’re worth it. And then STOP SPEAKING.  Wait for a response.  This is where the true negotiations begin.  The process could take days of back and forth to get a number you’re both happy with, and that’s perfectly fine.  In fact, if they say yes too quickly, it’s likely you didn’t ask for enough.


5. Remember, More than Money is on the Table

Once you’ve agreed to a number you’re happy with (or even if they can’t fully get to what you’re looking for), know that more than salary is on the table.  Now’s the time to ask for additional vacation time, flexible work schedules, opportunities for bonuses, professional development support and more.  Remind yourself that what you’re negotiating is an entire package, not just a salary.  So think broadly about what you want and need to feel satisfied, fulfilled, and happy in your new position. Then commit yourself to push to make it happen.



Career – Black Enterprise


Ivanka Trump Must Be Pissed That Women in the White House Are Paid Less Than Men

A new analysis find the gap is worse than the workforce at large.

Lifestyle – Esquire


New Trump Budget Includes Paid Family Leave

Trump’s new budget will fund a paid family leave program that stands to cover less people than FMLA, and with no permanent guarantee.
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Apparently It’s Possible to Get Paid Too Much Money

Some former Google employees call it “f-you money.”

Lifestyle – Esquire


Here’s Proof that Paid Parental Leave Is Good for Business

Time to stop the lie that paid leave is a job-killer.

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