Ten Stories We’ve Enjoyed This Week

23rd March 2019

This from Benedict Evans – ‘The access story is now coming to an end…but the use story is just beginning: Most of the people are now online, but most of the money is still not. If we think we’re in a period of disruption right now, how will the next big platform shifts — like machine learning — impact huge swathes of retail, manufacturing, marketing, fintech, healthcare, entertainment, and more? Especially as technology begins to tackle bigger problems, in harder markets, at deeper (and more structural) levels?’  In short, what we did in the first 20 years of the Internet was eCommerce and advertising, what we’ll do in the next 20 years is everything else.’

@faris on Attention. ‘Reframing attention as a commons that we all own reminds us to treat it with respect for the good of all instead of attempting to monetise as much as possible ourselves. A commons unites individual profit motives with social protection of resources. Perhaps that simple adjustment in thinking can help address some of the systemic problems in the current media environment.’ and, from the same author – The Six Templates of Successful Advertising (alongside some insightful video examples).

From WARC Data: Global Ad Trends, The Adspend Outlook for 2019. Top-line projections are here, including combined Google and Facebook share rising to 61.4% of global internet spend.

Winter is coming. But before the final season of Game of Thrones airs on April 14, fans gathered at SXSW to “bleed for the throne.” With the help of marketing agency Giant Spoon, HBO decided to bring the bloodshed to life in a novel partnership with the American Red Cross for this aptly-named branded activation.

Pocket offers a glimpse into a 15-Year-Old’s iPhone. The new film documents what it’s like to come of age in the mobile era.

From the world of travel and tourism. The Economist on the decline of first-class air travel – Executives are flying business class; plutocrats are taking private jets…and has Albania unveiled a contender for the world’s worst tourism slogan? 

A very interesting talk from Lord Rees, Astronomer Royal, at Nesta this week, promoting his new book – On the Future : Prospects for Humanity. Unsurprisingly downbeat in messaging, he observed that – ‘Humanity has reached a critical moment. Our world is unsettled and rapidly changing, and we face existential risks over the next century. Various outcomes—good and bad—are possible. Yet our approach to the future is characterised by short-term thinking, polarising debates, alarmist rhetoric, and pessimism.

In the week preceding Brexit(?), it is important to remember that some of the most English of ‘things’, are quite often not what they seem. This from the wonderful Aeon, about Geoffrey Chaucer – Chaucer was more than English: he was a great European poet. (He) bore very little resemblance to the dull patriarch depicted on the covers of so many books about him. He was a child in the seething streets of London, a young man crossing the mountain passes of the Pyrenees, a maturing diplomat avid for Italian poetry in Pavia and Giotto’s frescoes in Florence, (and) a courtier to a Bohemian queen.’

This exhibit gives visitors the experience of stepping inside Van Gogh’s paintings. ‘Proposing a new, emotional, and dynamic approach to art,” the Atelier des Lumières invites visitors to step inside some of the Post-Impressionist’s most celebrated canvases. This selection of luminous, larger-than-life images includes his signature self-portraits, his series of Irises, and, his pièce de résistance, the sparkling Starry Night. (this of course cemented in more recent culture by Don McLean’s song Vincent this world was never meant for one as beautiful as you)

Darren Aronofsky brings the horror of smoking to the world of video games ; whilst this spoof spot from the People’s Vote, compares Brexit to the infamous Fyre Festival. On a rather more upbeat note, this is rather delightful, as Sipsmith Gin introduces ‘Mr. Swan’ in a Wes Anderson-Esque animation. 

Fabulous and fun. To mark a collaboration between Formula 1 and the Chemical Brothers, W+K London worked with Pulse Films and Universal Music on the music video for recently released single We’ve Got To Try. Especially great if you are a fan of over achieving canines.