Wednesday headlines: Joy

A study says 71 percent of the world’s population now lives in autocracies, up from 48 percent just a decade ago. / The Washington Post [+]

All but one of the 100 cities with the world’s worst air pollution last year were in Asia; 83 were in India. / CNN

Photographs of gig workers in São Paulo, Lagos, Dhaka, and Jakarta while they take a break between orders. / rest of world

Russia’s backdoor methods of accessing the global banking system are closing. / The Wall Street Journal [+]

Israeli air strikes are said to target aid distribution workers in Gaza City, killing at least 23 people. / Al Jazeera

Alon Pinkas: Israel’s “lingering, aimless war” Is a one-way ticket to international isolation. / Haaretz

Meanwhile: Jared Kushner praises the “very valuable” potential of Gaza’s “waterfront property.” / The Guardian

“Sexy water” refers to young people mixing water with “fun and functional” ingredients like electrolyte powders. / Women’s Wear Daily

Thinking about grocery stores’ in-house products: “Brands are everything precisely when they are nothing.” / Internal exile

Teenagers share videos of themselves attempting to hijack and drive out-of-service subway trains. / Curbed

Spam-and-scam campaigns like “Shrimp Jesus” are yet another reason to avoid Facebook. / 404 Media

An oral history of Pitchfork. “I’m in a laundry room, man.” / Slate

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