Entertainment

A 26-Year-Old Has Created the Underground Netflix of Cuba

Cubans have found a way around the Cuban government’s strangle hold on digital media via a DIY subscription service called El Paquete Semanal. A new report from Vox shows how with very limited Internet access, Cubans are able to get their hands on the latest movies, music, and television for only a few bucks a week.

El Paquete Semanal is one Cuban’s middle finger to the digital media embargo in Cuba.

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Credit: Vox / YouTube

For more than 50 years, Cubans have essentially been cut off from the Western World, especially when it comes to movies, music, and television. Imagine having The Walking Dead banned from your TV.

A group of people in the US and Cuba are making it possible for Cubans to get their Game of Thrones and Beyonce fix without the Internet.

Network
Credit: Vox / YouTube

And they are taking that content and distributing it to all of their subscribers around the country. Yes, they have subscribers just like Netflix and Hulu.

READ: Cuban Youth So Hungry for American Trends, They are Willing to Risk Everything

All the movies, songs, and shows are put on a hard drive and replicated so the weekly entertainment can be hand-delivered throughout Cuba.

And this shit isn’t like the bootleg DVDs you might buy down the street. Everything is high quality and full HD.

High Quality
Credit: Vox / YouTube

?

Being a member costs you about $2 USD a week, less than a movie ticket.

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Credit: Parks and Recreation / NBC / allfatherthor / Tumblr

It is such a lucrative business that Cuban media is now paying for subscriptions in El Paquete Semanal.

“We exist on the Internet but the Paquete Semanal has such a wide range of distributors and it’s sold all across the country,”Antoinette Duquesne, a writer for the Cuban magazine Vistar told BBC. “So, this is the best way for us to connect with our audience.”

Subscribers can pick and choose what they want to watch/listen to but many just get the full terabyte of entertainment.

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Credit: Vox / YouTube

“I can copy whatever I want,” Ana Lauren of Havana, Cuba told BBC. “If I don’t want to copy music this week I don’t have to. I only copy the things and shows that I want to use this week.”

There are small groups specializing in different entertainment media, gathering the latest and hottest stuff worth watching and listening to.

How THey Gather Content
Credit: Vox / YouTube

READ: Cubans Just Got WiFi This Year and They Already Figured Out How to Use it To Migrate Safely to the U.S.

They even have it down to a science so they can deliver the most current entertainment possible.

Stuff They Have
Credit: Vox / YouTube

El Paquete Semanal has given some Cuban youths a chance for much needed and hard to find income in the communist regime.

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Credit: Vox / YouTube

And it also serves as an underground Craigslist where Cubans can get and exchange goods and services without the constant barrage from the Cuban government regulating the amount of good they are allowed.

But who is the person in charge? He goes by the name Dany Paquete.

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Credit: Vox / YouTube

I see what you did there, Señor Paquete. #clever

The 26-year-old has become something of a digital media kingpin on the Caribbean island.

Chain of Command
Credit: Vox / YouTube

His business model has been so successful that a rival business offering the same service has emerged in Cuba. Paquete welcomes the competition to push them to progress.

It’s impossible to know how many Cubans use El Paquete Semanal, but the service touches the whole country.

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Credit: Vox / YouTube

And if someone doesn’t use the service, they definitely know about it.

READ: These Secret Bedrooms Tell You A Lot More About Cuba

Check out the full video below:

Credit: Vox / YouTube

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Goodbye To The 2010s: 11 Crazy Reality TV Moments You Didn’t Remember Actually Happened This Decade

Entertainment

Goodbye To The 2010s: 11 Crazy Reality TV Moments You Didn’t Remember Actually Happened This Decade

MTV

Reality is messy and unpredictable. So it’s only fitting that reality TV is just the same, messy and unpredictable —x1000. And these past 10 years have really seen a surge in reality programming. So we couldn’t say goodbye to the decade before revisiting some of the wildest reality TV moments of the past years. Some of these were so shocking that we thought they deserved their own shout out. So read along and enjoy. 

When Snooki got punched

Okay, okay, we know this isn’t technically part of the last decade but it was right at the very brink of it. In 2009 Jersey Shore cast member Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi was enjoying herself with her squad at the bar and having a good time when she started arguing with a random guy who seemed drunk, and punched her. Ferro was not a cast member and the whole thing became a huge scandal. 

Caitlyn Jenner’s Transition

In a “KUWTK” special called “About Bruce,” Caitlyn Jenner revealed that she was a transgender woman publicly for the first time and was beginning her transition. 

Miss Universe 2015

Steve Harvey only had one job the night that he hosted Miss Universe and that was to announce the rightful winner to the crown. As you know by now, he messed it up and big time. Instead of announcing Miss Philippines, as the winner, he announced Miss Colombia as the winner when she was actually the runner-up. 

American Idol Charlotte Auditions

Be honest: How many of you watched American Idol just for to see the eye rolls and subtle (and not-so-subtle) digs between judges Nicki Minaj and Mariah Carey? You can answer truthfully, this is a safe place. And you are definitely not alone.

Chrissy Lampkin Sucker Punched Kimbella

Chrissy Lampkin has always been super protective of her man and her friends and she proved this during season 2 of VH1’s Love And Hip-Hop. When Kimbella dropped the bomb on Emily B. that she was dating rapper Fabulous while Emily was pregnant with his child, Chrissy went straight into defense mode. 

When Aviva Drescher slammed her prosthetic leg on the table

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Aviva, from The Real Housewives of New York City, announced there was only one thing fake about her, and proceeded to slam her prosthetic leg onto the table.

Mystique Summers Madison reminded Morgan McMichaels where she’s from.

When things got tense on RuPaul’s Drag Race, and Mystique Summers Madison reminded Morgan McMichaels where she’s from; “B*tch I will whoop yo a*s I’m from Chicago!” …things escalated pretty quickly from there. 

Tristan Khloe and Jordyn Woods’ cheating scandal

In season 15 fans got to watch the family learn about Tristan’s cheating scandal just days before Khloe gave birth to True Thompson. Unsurprisingly, Khloe’s sisters were angry, but Khloe tried to keep her cool for her daughter’s arrival.

When Kelly and Abby got into a physical fight on Dance Moms.

Kelly brought up that Abby said Kelly’s daughter looks miserable, Abby denied saying that…cue the fighting.

Kenya using a megaphone to call Porsha a “Dumb ho”

When Kenya used a megaphone to call Porsha a dumb ho, at the reunion episode of “The Real Housewives of Atlanta”, Porsha lost her shit —and was subsequently arrested.

Kylie Jenner’s pregnancy reveal

When rumors about Kylie Jenner’s pregnancy were at their height, she stopped appearing on the show altogether. But then, she showed up pregnant on “KUWTK” in season 15, proving that she had actually been filming for the show in secret.

From Nipsey Hussle To Jose Jose, This Year We Had To Say Goodbye To Many Icons—Here’s A Roundup Of Celebrities Lost In 2019

Entertainment

From Nipsey Hussle To Jose Jose, This Year We Had To Say Goodbye To Many Icons—Here’s A Roundup Of Celebrities Lost In 2019

Jose Jose / emilyhartridge / Nipsey Hussle / Instagram

With 2019 ending in just a couple weeks, we’re taking a look back at the stars we lost in 2019. Learning of the death of a childhood hero, or an icon you look up to is always a sad experience, and unfortunately, 2019 was a year when we had to say goodbye to too many of them. From political big-hitters, to rappers, reggaeton artists and dancers, many icons passed away this year, and all will be greatly missed. Here’s to them:

Jose Jose

The Mexican musical icon died this year after battling pancreatic cancer. “El Príncipe de la canción” (Prince of Song), had tweeted in June that he was undergoing therapy and thanked his fans for their support. He was known for romantic ballads like “La Nave del Olvido,” “40 y 20,” “Gavilán o Paloma” and “El Triste,” and many more songs that became hits throughout his career of more than half a century.

Shelley Morrison 

twitter @deanrichards

The actress best known as Rosario Salazar, Karen Walker’s maid and confidante on “Will & Grace” — died on Dec. 1 at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles from heart failure following a brief illness, publicist Lori De Waal told People magazine. She was 83. “Shelley’s greatest pride as an actress was in playing the indomitable Rosario, in a comedy series that furthered the cause of social equity and fairness for LGBTQ people. 

Alicia Alonso 

twitter @luis81710730

Legendary Cuban ballerina Alicia Alonso passed on October 17 at the age of 98 in a hospital of La Habana. She was the first western dancer to perform in the Soviet Union in 1957. She was the Cuban government’s highest artistic figure. 

Edith Gonzales

twitter @olivercampox

The Telenovela star lost her battle with cancer at 54 on the 13th of June, after two years fighting against the disease. There was a public homage in honor of her at the Jorge Negrete Theater in Ciudad de Mexico.

Carolina Bittencourt 

instagram @fofocalisany

Brazilian model Bittencourt died in São Paulo at the end of April after she drowned in an attempt to rescue her dogs who fell out of the sailboat she was on with her husband, Jorge Sestini. She was 37.

Nipsey Hussle

twitter @1johnpapi

The rapper Nipsey Hussle died in April after a shooting in Los Angeles near a clothing store he owned.

Fabio Legarda

twitter @actualidadrt

The Colombian reggaetonero died on February 7 during a shooting in Medellin. The musician was in his car, where he received a shot to the head which caused severe damage. Fellow Colombian artists like Juanes, Maluma and J Balvin expressed their condolences for the loss of this young talent.

Fernando Gaitan

twitter @mrintruso

The writer and producer of the world’s most famous telenovela ‘Betty La Fea’ passed away at 58 years of age. His iconic telenovela is considered to be the most successful in the world. He also worked on the adaptation of Betty, for US audiences ‘Betty en Nueva York’, coming to Telemundo on February 4, 2020.

Silver King

twitter @milenio

Professional lucha libre wrestler and actor King died after collapsing from a heart attack during his performance in London on May 11, The Guardian reported.

Kevin Fret

twitter @reggaetonxgata

The Latin trap singer was murdered this January. He was the first openly gay trap singer and debuted in 2018 with his single “Soy Asi.”

Juice WRLD

twitter @marshmellomusic

The Chicago-born artist, whose real name was Jarad Anthony Higgins, died after reportedly having a seizure at Chicago’s Midway Airport. 

Sulli

twitter @ecpv1

The former member of the popular K-Pop girl group f(x) was found dead in her Sujeong-gu apartment on Oct. 14. She was 25. 

Carl Ruiz

@luis81710730

The beloved Food Network star died on Sept. 21 at 44. His official cause of death has not been announced but Ruiz’s family confirmed the sad news by creating the Twitter account, @wemisscarlruiz.

Emily Hartridge 

twitter @thepophub

The YouTube star died on July 12, at the age of 35, in an electric scooter collision. An announcement was made on her official Instagram account on Saturday.

Cameron Boyce 

twitter @misslu96

The star of the Disney Channel franchise Descendants and the television series Jessie died on July 6. He was 20.

Gabriel Diniz

twitter @jubzinha

Brazilian pop star Diniz died in a plane crash in Brazil in late May, his record label confirmed. He was 28 years old. The singer was reportedly flying from Salvador to his girlfriend Karoline Calheiros’s birthday party in Maceió on May 27 when the small plane he was a passenger on crashed in the town of Porto Do Mato, Estância, on the southern coast of Sergipe, Brazil.

Doris Day

twitter @peterkidder

Day, the beautiful blonde whose sunny screen presence and singing voice guaranteed box-office and record-chart hits in the ’40s, ’50s and ’60s, died on May 13, her rep confirmed. She was 97.

Max Azria 

twitter @thestyledeskco

Azria, founder of the iconic American fashion brand BCBGMAXAZRIA, died on May 6 in a Houston hospital, WWD reported. He was 70. According to the outlet, the legendary Tunisian-born designer died of lung cancer.