+
upworthy
Pop Culture

Insiders share 'secrets' the average person doesn't know about their industries

From accessing paywalled studies to getting free upgrades, people in various industries are spilling the beans.

woman hiding her mouth with a book
Canva

There's a lot of behind the scenes info most of us don't know.

One strange reality of life is that there's a lot that happens behind the scenes of…well, everything…that people simply never know about. I'm not talking about deep state conspiracies here or anything, just normal run-of-the-mill industry secrets that only people who work in those industries knows.

Some of these "secrets" are actual secrets meant to be kept sacred, like how certain magic tricks work. Some are things we don't really want to know, like how the sausage gets made. And some are simply things that industry folks know but don't bother to inform the rest of us about, like the fact that the average movie theater employee really doesn't give a hoot if you sneak in candy as long as you're not obvious about it.

We're all curious, though, about what goes on in the back room, behind the counter, under the radar, etc. So when someone on Reddit asked "What industry 'secret' do you know that most people don’t?" people flocked to answer—and to see what people said.


To be clear, there's no way to officially verify these insider secrets, but it's still fun to see what people who work in various industries reveal.

Do you know who actually wrote that nonfiction book you loved?

"Most—probably 80 percent or more—of the books on the nonfiction bestseller list (autobiographies, memoirs, political/business books, etc.) are ghostwritten.

Source: am ghostwriter." – RSquared787

The ghostwriter added an encouraging caveat, though:

"Most (good) ghostwritten books are a true collaboration: somebody with an amazing story (or great idea/argument or whatever) who genuinely has the 'goods,' so to speak… but not the major league-level writing chops it takes to execute the best/most effective/most entertaining version of their story. So they bring in a specialist who knows the craft of storytelling and how to structure and execute something on the scale of a book, and—together, over the course of a year or so of deep collaboration—they bring the story to life. It’s the only way these voices would be heard in book form, in a lot of cases, and (IMHO, as someone who collaborates on these books), there’s no downside as long as the author genuinely invests time and effort."

The house always wins, but especially on slot machines

"I saw how slot machines for casinos were designed... don’t play slots." – Eliza_Lisa

"I had a buddy that was in the casino industry and claimed that 80% of their profits came from slot machines. This was the older mechanical types. The newer computerized ones can be programmed to do anything." – Mo_Jack

That security guard? Not all that helpful if the ish hits the fan.

"I'm an unarmed security guard.

Every now & then I'll get a comment from someone about how they're glad I'm around in case there's an active shooter or something.

Yea; if that happens? We're not doing anything aside from getting ourselves to safety and calling the cops.

We're literally told in training that if we try to intervene directly with an active shooter we'll be fired." – disinfo_bot_47·


"'Detect, Deter and Report' was the slogan at Securitas back in the day.

We were frequently told we were there for insurance purposes and were expected to NOT take action beyond calling the cops and getting ourselves to safety.

Great student job." – IBoris

Want to see a study that's behind a paywall? Just ask the researcher.

"I'm an academic researcher and I can speak for a huge number in my field when I say:

If you want access to our studies and they're behind a paywall, you can email us and we will send you the study.

We are genuinely delighted to share and if you want further context for the results or what have you, I'll always try my best to oblige.

The only limiters on that last bit is that:

  1. the original data for the study might have reached the end of our right to keep it, in which case it will have been destroyed.
  2. I might have forgotten details or I might have written that paper during a particularly hectic time and my file system might be total shit.

Also a lot of us are on ResearchGate and various social media things so you can contact us through there. If you can't contact us directly or we're being slow, one of the other authors on the paper might be contactable." – and_so_forth

Bestsellers might be bestsellers because people buy their own books

"The New York Times best seller list has a lot of people on it who buy massive numbers of their own books." – Ibringupeace

"Apparently, there is a symbol that indicates that while it did make best seller status, there was a bulk buy. A footnote, if you will, or similar to an asterisk." – spoda1975

"It’s a dagger! †" – Tarledsa

(It's true.)

Private messages aren't 100% private, in case you hadn't figured that out yet

"Worked in online community management and social media for years - Admins CAN read all of your PMs. Private only means private from the masses, not from administration, we had to be able to read them to check reports of abuse, grooming, illegal activity etc. I can't tell you how much cringeworthy shit I had to read through, especially from guys trying to hook up." – will_write_for_tacos

You may not have actually witnessed your baby's first steps

"If your baby goes to a nursery/daycare, chances are those weren't their 'first' steps/words etc that you witnessed. Industry standard is to not tell parents when these things happen as it makes them feel bad. I've seen kids up and walking about the room for weeks, even months before their parent proudly announced at drop off that they 'Took their first steps last night.'" – by_the_way_mate

Being extra nice can get you some sweet free upgrades

"If you’re nice to hotel staff they are more likely to give you free sh*t." – Archibald_Thrust

"A good friend of mine (Korean) visited las Vegas for her honeymoon. The husband was just a student at the time and she worked at a call center to pay their bills. When they were checking in at the hotel, the man at the front desk asked where they were from. She told them we are from Korea! And the man responded," oh I love Korean food!". They were a bit early to check in so they left their bags and went out to get some food at a local Korean restaurant. When they came back they bought some food for the front desk guy and when they handed the food over the guy was shocked and upgraded them to the penthouse. Little did my kind friends know, the guy was a manager and the penthouse was available. Friend sent me pics after they got in their room and wow... Las Vegas penthouse is probably a room I will never be able to afford in my lifetime... All for a little Korean food they got a memory they will never forget." – GroovinBaby

"Oh for sure. I worked in hospitality for years, and all my favorite guests got upgrades, free snacks, etc. And the awful guests got the exact opposite lol." – PalerEastMadeIt

via Pixabay

A sad-looking Labrador Retriever

The sweet-faced, loveable Labrador Retriever is no longer America’s favorite dog breed. The breed best known for having a heart of gold has been replaced by the smaller, more urban-friendly French Bulldog.

According to the American Kennel Club, for the past 31 years, the Labrador Retriever was America’s favorite dog, but it was eclipsed in 2022 by the Frenchie. The rankings are based on nearly 716,500 dogs newly registered in 2022, of which about 1 in 7 were Frenchies. Around 108,000 French Bulldogs were recorded in the U.S. in 2022, surpassing Labrador Retrievers by over 21,000.


The French Bulldog’s popularity has grown exponentially over the past decade. They were the #14 most popular breed in 2012, and since then, registrations have gone up 1,000%, bringing them to the top of the breed popularity rankings.

The AKC says that the American Hairless Terrier, Gordon Setter, Italian Greyhound and Anatolian Shepherd Dog also grew in popularity between 2021 and 2022.

The French Bulldog was famous among America’s upper class around the turn of the 20th century but then fell out of favor. Their resurgence is partly based on several celebrities who have gone public with their Frenchie love. Leonardo DiCaprio, Megan Thee Stallion, Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez, Reese Witherspoon and Lady Gaga all own French Bulldogs.

The breed earned a lot of attention as show dogs last year when a Frenchie named Winston took second place at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show and first in the National Dog Show.

The breed made national news in early 2021 when Gaga’s dog walker was shot in the chest while walking two of her Frenchies in a dog heist. He recovered from his injuries, and the dogs were later returned.

They’ve also become popular because of their unique look and personalities.

“They’re comical, friendly, loving little dogs,” French Bull Dog Club of America spokesperson Patty Sosa told the AP. She said they are city-friendly with modest grooming needs and “they offer a lot in a small package.”

They are also popular with people who live in apartments. According to the AKC, Frenchies don’t bark much and do not require a lot of outdoor exercise.

The French Bulldog stands out among other breeds because it looks like a miniature bulldog but has large, expressive bat-like ears that are its trademark feature. However, their popularity isn’t without controversy. “French bulldogs can be a polarizing topic,” veterinarian Dr. Carrie Stefaniak told the AP.

american kennel club, french bulldog, most popular dog

An adorable French Bulldog

via Pixabay

French Bulldogs have been bred to have abnormally large heads, which means that large litters usually need to be delivered by C-section, an expensive procedure that can be dangerous for the mother. They are also prone to multiple health problems, including skin, ear, and eye infections. Their flat face means they often suffer from respiratory problems and heat intolerance.

Frenchies are also more prone to spine deformations and nerve pain as they age.

Here are the AKC’s top ten most popular dog breeds for 2022.

1 French Bulldogs

2 Labrador Retrievers

3 Golden Retrievers

4 German Shepherd Dogs

5 Poodles

6 Bulldogs

7 Rottweilers

8 Beagles

9 Dachshunds

10 German Shorthaired Pointers


This article originally appeared on 03.17.23

Representative Image from Canva

There's no way they didn't understand what she was saying.

Okay, so maybe dogs don’t understand everything we tell them exactly as a human would. But is that gonna stop us from having full blown conversations with them? Of course not. And the times they do seem to comprehend what’s being communicated—pure comedy.

Take this dog mom’s hilarious pre-grooming pep talk with Shih-Tzus Branston, Pickle and Gizmo. She minced no words telling them exactly how this trip was gonna go. And the message seemed to be received.

Branston (the troublemaker, apparently) got a firm warning of what not to do, including telling white lies about his upbringing.

“I don’t need you running in telling the first dog you see that this is what this is what your hair used to look like when you lived in the Bronx running up and down the block, cause I know for a fact, Branston, that you live in a rural village,” she tells him.

Viewers, however, seemed on board with Branston’s Bronx-affiliation, even if it was a little white lie. One person joked, “don’t be mad at the treats that I got, I’m still Branny from the block.”

In the video, Branston is also instructed to not tell everyone that he “identifies as a BUll Mastiff,” which gets the most adorable look of disappointment for wee little Branston.

As for Gizmo and Pickle—mom’s best advice is to pretend like they don’t know Branston.

Perhaps the best part is mom’s British accent, which makes the entire clip feel like something pulled straight outta “Ted Lasso.” That, or the complete shock the Shih-tzu trio has at being informed of their weight class.

Watch:

@branstonandpickle01 Your NOT from the Bronx and you never ran up and down the block!! #dogsoftiktok #peptalktoyourdog #branstonwehavearrived #shihtzusoftiktok #peptalkbranston #funnydogvideos #funnyvideos #nyc #bronx #funny #dogs #dogtok ♬ original sound - Branston,Pickle&Gizmo

Perhaps Branston, Pickle, and Gizmo’s mom isn’t totally off-base by giving them a talking to. According to the website allshihtzu.com, this breed had a “unique intelligence,” which gets best demonstrated by their attuned, empathic connection to their human families. Meaning that while they might not have the same kind of smarts as border collies or other herding dogs, their super power is picking up social cues.

And, again, even if they had no earthly idea what their mom was saying, odds are she’d still be talking to them anyway. Why? Because pets are our babies. And baby talk is fun.jk

Island School Class, circa 1970s.

Parents, do you think your child would be able to survive if they were transported back to the '70s or '80s? Could they live at a time before the digital revolution put a huge chunk of our lives online?

These days, everyone has a phone in their pocket, but before then, if you were in public and needed to call someone, you used a pay phone. Can you remember the last time you stuck 50 cents into one and grabbed the grubby handset?

According to the U.S. Federal Communications Commission, roughly 100,000 pay phones remain in the U.S., down from 2 million in 1999.

Do you think a 10-year-old kid would have any idea how to use a payphone in 2022? Would they be able to use a Thomas Guide map to find out how to get somewhere? If they stepped into a time warp and wound up in 1975, could they throw a Led Zeppelin album on the record player at a party?


Another big difference between now and life in the '70s and '80s has been public attitudes toward smoking cigarettes. In 1965, 42.4% of Americans smoked and now, it’s just 12.5%. This sea change in public opinion about smoking means there are fewer places where smoking is deemed acceptable.

But in the early '80s, you could smoke on a bus, on a plane, in a movie theater, in restaurants, in the classroom and even in hospitals. How would a child of today react if their third grade teacher lit up a heater in the middle of math class?

Dan Wuori, senior director of early learning at the Hunt Institute, tweeted that his high school had a smoking area “for the kids.” He then asked his followers to share “something you experienced as a kid that would blow your children’s minds.”


A lot of folks responded with stories of how ubiquitous smoking was when they were in school. While others explained that life was perilous for a kid, whether it was the school playground equipment or questionable car seats.

Here are a few responses that’ll show today’s kids just how crazy life used to be in the '70s and '80s.

First of all, let’s talk about smoking.

Want to call someone? Need to get picked up from baseball practice? You can’t text mom or dad, you’ll have to grab a quarter and use a pay phone.

People had little regard for their kids’ safety or health.

You could buy a soda in school.

Things were a lot different before the internet.

Remember pen pals?

A lot of people bemoan the fact that the children of today aren’t as tough as they were a few decades back. But that’s probably because the parents of today are better attuned to their kids’ needs so they don't have to cheat death to make it through the day.

But just imagine how easy parenting would be if all you had to do was throw your kids a bag of Doritos and a Coke for lunch and you never worried about strapping them into a car seat?


This article originally appeared on 06.08.22

What is Depression?

In the United States, close to 10% of the population has depression, but sometimes it can take a long time for someone to even understand that they have it.

One difficulty in diagnosis is trying to distinguish between feeling down and experiencing clinical depression. This TED-Ed video from December 2015 can help make the distinction. With simple animation, the video explains how clinical depression lasts longer than two weeks with a range of symptoms that can include changes in appetite, poor concentration, restlessness, sleep disorders (either too much or too little), and suicidal ideation. The video briefly discusses the neuroscience behind the illness, outlines treatments, and offers advice on how you can help a friend or loved one who may have depression.


Unlike the many pharmaceutical ads out there with their cute mascots and vague symptoms, the video uses animation to provide clarity about the mental disorder. It's similar in its poignant simplicity to the HBO short documentary "My Depression," based on Liz Swados' book of the same name.


This article originally appeared on 08.17.19

New baby and a happy dad.


When San Francisco photographer Lisa Robinson was about to have her second child, she was both excited and nervous.

Sure, those are the feelings most moms-to-be experience before giving birth, but Lisa's nerves were tied to something different.

She and her husband already had a 9-year-old son but desperately wanted another baby. They spent years trying to get pregnant again, but after countless failed attempts and two miscarriages, they decided to stop trying.


Of course, that's when Lisa ended up becoming pregnant with her daughter, Anora. Since it was such a miraculous pregnancy, Lisa wanted to do something special to commemorate her daughter's birth.

So she turned to her craft — photography — as a way to both commemorate the special day, and keep herself calm and focused throughout the birthing process.

Normally, Lisa takes portraits and does wedding photography, so she knew the logistics of being her own birth photographer would be a somewhat precarious new adventure — to say the least.

pregnancy, hospital, giving birth, POV

She initially suggested the idea to her husband Alec as a joke.

Photo by Lisa Robinson/Lisa Robinson Photography.

"After some thought," she says, "I figured I would try it out and that it could capture some amazing memories for us and our daughter."

In the end, she says, Alec was supportive and thought it would be great if she could pull it off. Her doctors and nurses were all for Lisa taking pictures, too, especially because it really seemed to help her manage the pain and stress.

In the hospital, she realized it was a lot harder to hold her camera steady than she initially thought it would be.

tocodynamometer, labor, selfies

She had labor shakes but would periodically take pictures between contractions.

Photo by Lisa Robinson/Lisa Robinson Photography.

"Eventually when it was time to push and I was able to take the photos as I was pushing, I focused on my daughter and my husband and not so much the camera," she says.

"I didn't know if I was in focus or capturing everything but it was amazing to do.”

The shots she ended up getting speak for themselves:

nurse, strangers, medical care,

Warm and encouraging smiles from the nurse.

Photo by Lisa Robinson/Lisa Robinson Photography.

experiment, images, capture, document, record

Newborn Anora's first experience with breastfeeding.

Photo by Lisa Robinson/Lisa Robinson Photography.

"Everybody was supportive and kind of surprised that I was able to capture things throughout. I even remember laughing along with them at one point as I was pushing," Lisa recalled.

In the end, Lisa was so glad she went through with her experiment. She got incredible pictures — and it actually did make her labor easier.

Would she recommend every mom-to-be document their birth in this way? Absolutely not. What works for one person may not work at all for another.

However, if you do have a hobby that relaxes you, figuring out how to incorporate it into one of the most stressful moments in your life is a pretty good way to keep yourself calm and focused.

Expecting and love the idea of documenting your own birthing process?

Take some advice from Lisa: "Don't put pressure on yourself to get 'the shot'" she says, "and enjoy the moment as much as you can.”

Lisa's mom took this last one.

grandma, hobby, birthing process

Mom and daughter earned the rest.

Photo via Lisa Robinson/Lisa Robinson Photography.

This article originally appeared on 06.30.16