Today I have for you a new byline in Out magazine, an exposé on an investing cult, a free camera app recommendation and some hot links.

How's the newsletter lately? Let me know in the comments below, would love your thoughts.

—Nick Wolny

New byline: The pink shadow ban


LGBTQ+ creatives are battling the twin obstacles of algorithmic censorship and fewer corporate engagements. For my latest personal finance column in Out magazine I spoke to three professionals on the impacts.

In some ways, social media has been great for queer people. No-cost platforms have low barriers to entry and allow marginalized folks to find one another and broadcast more fluidly than traditional media structures (when working properly). Our social media feeds, designed to exploit human psychology in ways similar to addiction-inducing behaviors, have extraordinary stickiness, which for some is a critical career asset.

At the core of this censorship is platforms’ community guidelines, what platforms interpret as graphic content, and why queer creators’ non-sexual content is being pulled, while other content remains untouched. A Wall Street Journal piece earlier this month found Meta Platforms failed to avoid showing sexually suggestive content to underage users, and Surgeon General Vivek Murthy recently advocated for a social media warning label akin to cigarettes in an op-ed.

Financials aside, the topic matters because queer people and TGNB people especially have experienced erasure for decades, and anti-LGBTQ+ legislation efforts continue at a breakneck pace. Lambda Legal recently announced its biggest fundraising effort ever, a staggering $180 million, largely to help fight the hundreds of anti-trans bills introduced across the country.

For my latest in Out magazine, I examined the attention economy, the perilous economics of creator funds and why good old-fashioned word-of-mouth and profile sharing are probably some of the more productive pro-LGBTQ+ actions you can take right now—along with voting and staying informed on policy, obvs.

Check it out and let me know what you think.

🔗 Read at

Another day, another insane MLM ruining young people 🫠


Online business is swimming in snake oil, and those of us who are grizzled have the experience (and perhaps a few battle scars) to know it when we see it. But there's one group of people who don't yet have this experience, and that is Gen Z.

That was my takeaway from this wild feature in Bloomberg, which I've dropped a friend link to below (valid for 7 days, they're stingy with the friend links!).

I'd personally never heard of IM Academy, and perhaps it's because I'm not the target market. But the story reminded me of other guru-driven business models I've encountered in my life -- Tony Robbins came to mind, and I did a bunch of courses with Landmark back in my 20s. Self-help companies tend to use personal development investment as a dangling carrot, something to continue to get you to buy again and again.

What surprised me about this story was that IM Academy isn't just a guru business; it's an all-out multilevel marketing (MLM) operation. Yet it had no problem recruiting over 225,000 young people into its ranks, a membership that had nearly quadrupled since the pandemic. They'll teach you how to trade, but if you want the big bucks you should recruit other traders.

Not my vibe. Day trading sounds so tedious to me... like, can I just sell a VIP day instead? But I digress.

For now, pop some popcorn and read this wild piece from Alice Kantor before time runs out.

🔗 Read at Bloomberg (friend link)

Reading is fundamental


Money and Work

Crypto investments will start receiving 1099 forms in 2026, as the IRS tries to cut down on crypto tax evasion. (The Wall Street Journal)

Notion lets you turn your pages into standalone websites now. (Notion updates)

Almost no one trusts Temu over Amazon, and yet people are increasingly shopping on Temu anyway. Maybe value is more important than trust after all. (Omnisend)

Consumers lost a whopping $1.14 billion to romance scams in 2023, according to the Federal Trade Commission in a new report. I think of tech literacy as being a part of personal finance acumen these days. (CNBC)

The Best July 4th Sales this weekend. Go on then, impulse-buy some shit, I won’t tell anyone. (CNET)

Move to Portugal? Don’t Mind If I Do. How a Golden Visa Works. Just in case you're in the mood to leave the country someday after this week’s news cycle. ( blog)


AI and Future Tech

Makers, rejoice: Meta dropped '3D Gen,' which lets you create AI-powered 3D asset renderings at lightning speed. (VentureBeat)

Teen Suicides Force Meta, Snap to Tackle Rising Sextortion Problem. This piece restored my empathy for young men and what they’re going through. (Bloomberg Businessweek, friend link)

YouTube now lets you request removal of AI-generated content that simulates your face or voice. (TechCrunch)

Figma released its AI features. (Figma newsroom)

But then, Figma disabled their AI App Design Tool after it appeared to copy Apple's Weather app. Oops. (404 Media)

Apparently that new AI gadget, the Rabbit R1, left its API open such that anyone who accesses it can see every question every device has ever been asked. Oops again! (404 Media)



A lack of trans-specific resources in OC make stable housing ‘impossible to achieve,’ says a new report. (Orange County Register)

The Toronto Pride parade was canceled after pro-Palestinian protestors blocked streets and a resolution could not be reached. (LGBTQ Nation)

Not Biden's best week: Several LGBTQ+ orgs, including the Human Rights Campaign, blasted him for a recent statement regarding trans surgeries. The WPATH and APA already recommend surgery be for people 18 and up, and exceptions are rare, but the administration’s comments muddled this message; activists assert it’s another example of government trying to override medical professionals in telling people what to do with their bodies. (Still better than authoritarianism imo.) (LGBTQ Nation)

Out Magazine released The Vault, an online library of its Out100 honorees over the last 30 years. (Out magazine)

Bruce Bastian, who left the Mormon church to become an HIV activist and philanthropist, passed away at 76. (Plus)


Hear ye, hear ye: I am OBSESSED with the Blackmagic Camera app, and it's free.

Video creators are buzzing about this app because it lets you shoot in log on your phone. You could already shoot in log, but the files were so big that they were a pain to work with.

This app lets you get really precise with your phone camera, but it's also simple enough for a video village idiot like me to stumble their way around.


Give it a try. You'll be impressed at what your own phone camera is capable of.

Hope you get some sunshine soon! I did. ☀️

Cheering you on,


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