How Sophia Amoruso's Story Changed Me

How Sophia Amoruso's Story Changed Me

A less than average "Rags to riches" tale.

While this past week saw the loss of Netflix’s "The Get Down," I engaged in my own binge of another of their shows: "Girl Boss." The show documents how the words “Nasty Gal” became a brand, but more importantly, a brand owned by one of Forbes’ 30 Under 30. Sophia Amoruso’s eBay-store-turned-online-empire influenced the industry in a newfound way and just recently, did the same for me.

Though the show is a loose interpretation of Amoruso’s real life, it keeps the guts of the story in place. It awed me; here was a female anti-hero, who with quirky methods, a smart mouth, and very little money, built a multi-million dollar industry. The character the creators established, played by Britt Robertson, has a definite go-getter attitude, and it’s a trait easily admired. True to life, she deals with crushing consistent struggles, whether having destroyed credit because of a forgotten Victoria’s Secret credit card, or going dumpster-diving for a daily meal. While Amoruso made her first auction off a stolen textbook, the show depicts her as purchasing a thrifted, vintage jacket for nine dollars, and reselling it for a few hundred dollars. This, in essence, was the initiation of Nasty Gal— a 23-year-old woman in her bedroom selling vintage clothes for striking profits. The character summarizes the process in saying: “You know how people flip houses? I flip clothes.”

Her “rags to riches” story is naturally sped up — documenting Amoruso’s transitions between office spaces, her selection of warehouse shelving, and her hiring tactics might’ve cost the show its fast-paced spunk. The shortened story, both in book and on screen is influential. The breakdowns, the petty theft, the angst — they all feel far more natural than the recycled, honest business model that dominates the industry. There is nothing wholesome about her journey, and I often found myself labeling her character a jerk throughout the show. Nevertheless, I finished the series wanting more. There’s a definite “Can I do this too?” motivation that succeeds the viewing.

The company filed for bankruptcy just prior to the show’s release; projected sales were falling, complaints against the site were rising, and employees were tired of Amoruso’s tactics. There is a bounty of accusations concerning her firing workers for being pregnant. Why then, has this story— dare I say — changed me?

Amoruso is honest. She knows that she’s not going to be wholly loved by viewers like me, she knows that she’s nontraditional, and she posits that that’s okay. She admits the regularity of failure and of screwing up, but she encourages the ability to move on. There’s a cookie-cutter model for the average, successful businesswoman, and while Amoruso has worked as hard as her, she’s genuine about having gotten her hands dirty doing it. Even if she’s not a laudable feminist, her take on being your own boss is hard to hate.

Cover Image Credit: Girl Boss / Netflix

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How SoundCloud Is Changing The Music Industry

Many of the most popular artists in the music industry all got their start on SoundCloud.

It’s no secret that the term “SoundCloud rapper” has changed in recent years. Due to the number of popular artists that originated from SoundCloud, aspiring artists are posting their music there in hopes of becoming famous now more than ever. This phenomenon has helped crank out some of the hottest artists in the music industry right now, and there are more artists blowing up every month.

Soundcloud has changed the game in the hip-hop scene. It was first founded in June of 2007 in Alexander Ljung and Eric Wahlforss and was launched in October of 2008. It was originally intended to allow musicians to collaborate by facilitating the sharing and discussion of recorded audio but quickly became a music distribution tool. It offers a platform for artists to build a profile of their music and gain a following.

With the amount of music and so-called “SoundCloud rappers” on the site, the industry is flooding with more and more talent. Some of your favorite artists who are topping the Billboard Top 100 charts right now originated from Soundcloud, and you might not even know it.

Recent notable artists that got their start on SoundCloud include XXXTentacion, Post Malone, Lil Pump, Travis Scott, Playboi Carti, Lil Yachty, and even Lil Uzi Vert. They first started posting their music on Soundcloud and quickly built significant followings. Not only have they not been known for more than a couple years, but some of them have made timeless classics that you’ll be hearing for many years to come.

Post Malone’s first studio album, “Stoney [Deluxe Version],” released on December 6th, 2016, peaked at #1 on the Billboard Top 100 and was on the Billboard Top 100 for seventeen straight weeks. His album went platinum less than six months after being released. That album then reached double-platinum about six and a half months later.

His most popular song on that album, “Congratulations,” went platinum in about three and a half months after its release and has since gone 7x Platinum (selling seven million units) a little over a year and three months after its release according to the RIAA.

Another prime example of a popular SoundCloud originating artist is Lil Pump, who was one of the fastest growing artists in 2017 and 2018. He released his first album ever, "Lil Pump," on October 6th of 2017. On that album was his song, “Gucci Gang,” which went platinum a little after four months from its original release on September 1st of 2017.

For a SoundCloud artist who first started making music in late 2016 and putting up big numbers on SoundCloud with songs like "Boss," which went RIAA certified gold, and "Drose" in 2017, he's a prime example of an artist that originated from SoundCloud and became one of the biggest names in hip-hop in just under a year.

These hip-hop artists, along with many others, that originated from Soundcloud have made big marks on the music industry by making multiple platinum and triple platinum hits on multiple songs and albums, as well as some making songs that each top the Billboard Top 100 Charts consistently for multiple weeks in a row.

These facts not only describe the artists themselves, but it also paints a picture of how Soundcloud and the internet are shaping the music industry and making music more successful and accessible than ever. Soundcloud is one of the primary drivers of bringing up new artists and making networking easier than it ever has by allowing music to flourish and reach more people.

Cover Image Credit: Wikimedia

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5 Netflix Movies You Should Definitely Check Out

When you don't have a clue what to watch, try these.

Everyone goes through the "I don't know what to watch on Netflix" phase, and I'm here to tell you exactly what you should watch at least once.

1. "The Lovely Bones"

"After being brutally murdered, 14-year-old Susie Salmon watches from heaven over her grief-stricken family -- and her killer. As she observes their daily lives, she must balance her thirst for revenge with her desire for her family to heal."

This movie is actually my personal favorite movie. The film adaptation is spot on with the book, only missing minor details. It's an emotional movie though, so ready the tissues and ice cream.

2. "Charlie St. Cloud"

"Adored by his single mother and his little brother Sam, Charlie St. Cloud is an accomplished sailor and college-bound senior with a bright future ahead of him. When Sam dies in a terrible accident, Charlie's dreams die with him. But, so strong is the brothers' bond that, in the hour before each sunset, Charlie and Sam meet to play catch. The return of a former classmate leads Charlie to a difficult choice: remain stuck in the past, or let love lead him to the future."

"Charlie St. Cloud" is a movie that I watch at least three times a year. Zac Efron (swoon) performs flawlessly as his character and makes you feel as though what he's going through is real. This movie is truly moving and touches my heart. I highly recommend this movie, especially if you're looking to have a good cry.

3. "Cruel Intentions"

"Annette unwittingly becomes a pawn in Sebastian's and Kathryn's deliciously diabolical wager of sexual conquest when she writes an article in Seventeen Magazine about how she intends to stay pure until she marries her boyfriend. However, Sebastian gets more than he bargained for as he attempts to woo Annette into his bed."

Reese Witherspoon is my everyday woman crush so of course, I would recommend this movie. Its a dark kind of movie, at least for teen blockbusters. They actually made a musical out of it- which I find pretty cool.

4. "Forgetting Sarah Marshall"

"Struggling musician Peter Bretter is better-known as the boyfriend of TV star Sarah Marshall. After she unceremoniously dumps him, he feels lost and alone but makes a last-ditch bid to get over it by going to Hawaii. However, she and her new boyfriend are there in the same hotel."

Okay so I actually just watched this one last week for the first time, and it is absolutely hilarious. There wasn't a moment I didn't laugh, sometimes I even cried a little. I highly recommend this movie if you and your friends are just hanging out and wanting to have a good laugh.

Warning: There's A LOT of nudity in this.

5. "When We First Met"

"After spending a night with the girl of his dreams only to become just friends, a man gets the opportunity to travel through time and alter that night over and over again until he gets everything perfect."

To be honest, I usually don't like Netflix originals (other than Stranger Things), but this one was actually really good. I watched this one day with my friends while we were all just hanging out and honestly, I was surprised with how much I liked it. It's really funny, and has some touching scenes as well. I highly recommend checking it out

Cover Image Credit: Charles Deluvio

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