Companies That Turned 10 Years Old

Sometimes I think we forget how much has changed in past 10 years and we take the certain things for granted so when I came across an article called 30 Companies Worth At Least $1 Billion That Didn’t Exist 10 Years Ago, I knew it was the perfect article to dive into for more information. The four companies that we are constantly using that didn’t exist 10 years ago that stuck out to me are: DoorDash, WeWork, Instacart, and Lyft.

DoorDash is a food delivery service that is valued $13 billion and as the company is continuing to grow, they plan to launch new products and expand the service of the app. WeWork is the workspace that employers never thought they needed until a few years ago and it was called revolutionary because it was a business model that we had never been introduced to in the past. Instacart is your own personal grocery shopper that deliveries the food directly to your door through using an app. Lastly, Lyft which is one of the new forms of taxis has been valued at $29 billion and its one of the things in our lives that we never knew we needed until we got it.

“The tech landscape looks completely different today than it did at the beginning of the decade.” – Meira Gebel, Business Insider

For me to even think that some individuals that are in lives, have never seen life without these perks is crazy. These companies in particular have become a part of our everyday life and a lot of us couldn’t imagine life without them anymore.


Diversity is on the Rise in the Media

According to Episodic Television Director Inclusion Report that was recently released by the Directors Guild of America, 50% of TV episodes of 2018-19 were directed by women or someone of color which is the first time in a long time. From the previous year, the number has increased by 42.5% percent and increased by 21% since 2013-14. The Directors Guild of America president, Thomas Schlamme stated “Inclusion has been a priority of our Guild for a very long time as we’ve pushed the studios, networks and producers to do better in their hiring”. DGA has also stated that there has been an increase of directors being hired who have never even directed one episode in their career. This is giving newcomers hope that they can jump start their careers but there are still concerns.

“Producers hold in their hands the power to grant an opportunity that can set up an aspiring TV director for a lifelong career doing what they dreamed of. We still have a lot of concern over the underlying hiring practices that reduce the number of jobs available to budding and experienced directors alike. The heart of the issue is that producers aren’t factoring in that every job given to someone who does not pursue a directing career equals an opportunity withheld.” – Thomas Schlamme, DGA president

Reading this article was truly a breath of fresh air because I recently research how we don’t see a lot of diversity in the media industry. It is showing that we are moving forward in society and we are providing more opportunities for some that may have not had them otherwise.


Google Cracks Down

Google, which is known by its employee as a company that provides an open and transparent company morale is now cracking down on policies and procedures which is causing backlash from its employees. Google recently had to fire one employee and put two others on leave because the company feel they went against their privacy policy. The first employee was let go from the company because they leaked employee names and other personal information to media outlet, which the media outlets that the information was leaked to has yet to be released to the public. The second employee was put on leave because they continuously accessed documents that they were asked not to on multiple occasions because the documents were related to their job. Lastly, the third employee was put on leave because they were tracking other employee calendars that were in other departments which ultimately made those employees feel unsafe at work and out of work.

“The firing and employee suspensions have been the subject of intense discussion within the company in recent weeks, as employees worry that Google — which has traditionally been known for its open and transparent culture — is attempting to crack down on dissent by punishing those who openly disagree with management.”

This situation at Google is concerning because this is invading these employee’s security and privacy. Privacy and security are issues that these large companies such as Google and also Facebook are constantly struggling with. These concerns cause the public and employees to rethink about such as: if they are comfortable at their workplace or if they should continue using these platforms.

How Technology Changed Race and Identity

The New York Times article, A Greater Understanding of Race and Identity Through Tech, starts off talking about what the most important tech for work is and writer mentions that due to the constant loud and busy atmosphere, noise-canceling headphones are crucial. The noise-canceling headphones allow individuals to focus while completing tasks. While using the headphones, the writer discusses how he listens to a podcast called Ear Hustle. Ear Hustle is a podcast that is about San Quentin State Prison in California. The podcast talks about what life is like in the prisons and provides different perspectives of mass incarceration. The U.S. has the most individuals incarcerated and a majority of them are black and brown, and the writer talked about how listening to the podcast made he view black and brown people differently and made him rethink the system. The podcast isn’t the only media that changed his perspective on black and brown people, he says that social media also played a huge part. Social media created a sense of community for the black and brown people, especially after the killings of black and brown boys by police. Social media allowed personal content and footage of these events to be seen by the world and support you or not support you. Social media has many positive advantages, but it also has some disadvantages.

We are feeding machines with information everyday, and the information we choose to provide says a lot about who we are — our racism, our values, our strengths, our weaknesses.

This platform has become an outlet for outrage and outrage is the present. Outrage, at times, has brought awareness to communities and have helped move forward Black Lives Matter and outrage has also brought to light that racism through technology is a problem.

Shonda Rhimes Moves to Digital

Shonda Rhimes, the producer known for her ABC dramas series Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal, and How To Get Away With Murder stepped into the streaming world back in 2017 when she signed a deal with Netflix to produce a minimum of eight new shows. Her latest step was into the world of podcast, her production company, Shondaland, and iHeart Radio recently announced their new partnership. Within the new deal, Shonda Rhimes will produce more than a dozen new podcasts through her talented ways of storytelling that has gained her a tremendous follow of viewers and listeners. Shonda Rhimes’s division of the iHeart Podcast Network will be called Shondaland Audio. Shonda Rhimes has had a taste of the podcast life in the past with her podcast called Katie’s Crib which discusses motherhood and that show will now be apart of the iHeart Podcast Division with her future podcasts.

“Just beginning our digital journey” – Shonda Rhimes

This move to podcasts and deal with iHeart seems like the right move for Shonda Rhimes; iHeart Radio has been ranked #2 on the podcast measurement firm Podtrac with 268 shows downloaded 147 million times. With Shonda’s storytelling talent, it seems that she will be able to grab the attention of listeners and viewers on this platform. The president of iHeart Podcast Network, Conan Byrne, believes that Shondaland Audio will attract “an engage, smart female audience” and established major brands will want to advertise on her podcast for the best results.

iHeart can predict this audience because women tend to love to see women win and this is no different.

Roku Is Growing

As of Tuesday, October 15, 2019, Roku has jumped 10% since announcing to the public that the Apple TV is now going to be available on their service. Roku is a streaming service that comes with equipment that is similar to the Apple and Amazon. Some are asking the question, how does the Apple app work on the Roku platform? Roku and Apple have made the arrangements for Roku users to access the Apple TV app by logging in with their Apple ID and passwords and once Apple TV+ launches, Roku users will also be able to subscribe to that as well.

Apple’s stock hasn’t changed much, and they aren’t the only one excited about this new deal. Roku’s general manager, Scott Rosenberg says “With the Apple TV app coming to Roku, our customers will enjoy an even broader range of exciting entertainment, including the highly anticipated Apple TV+ service”. This new deal is something that Roku enjoy and experience by having a vary of entertainment choices on their devices.

This deal is great accomplishment for Roku especially because they are a platform that is constantly competing with Apple and Amazon. It’s honestly a win-win for both Roku and Apple, because Roku gets to satisfy their customers and Apple gets more consumers to experience their products.

Quibi & ESPN Team Up

Quibi is a tech and entertainment startup company that is  all about being brief and quick bites. The company was built with millennials in mind because they know and understand that streaming services is the present and definitely the future. The mobile video platform that plans to launch in April 2020 has just struck a deal to collaborate with ESPN. ESPN, the home for all sports content plans to create a short daily sport show that talk about the big moments in sports from the day before. The content will be shorter content that viewers tend to watch on Sports Center and other Daily 30 minutes to an hour sports talk show. Connor Schell, EVP of Content for ESPN states:

“Wherever fans are having a conversation around sports, ESPN wants to be there. We’re looking forward to taking the best of what we do and delivering it in a way that resonates with Quibi subscribers looking to be informed, entertained and engaged around the sports news of the day.”

CBS News has already come to an agreement to work with the upcoming company. They will be producing a news show that will ultimately be the extremely short version of 60 Minutes. Not only Disney, who is the parent company for ESPN, but many other media giants are coming together and getting behind this company. Both consumers, collaborators, and investors are expecting great things once Quibi launches in the upcoming months.

The concept behind Quibi is incredible because we are in a time now where humans have 6 seconds attention span, so things need to catch our eyes right away and we don’t want to waste a a lot of time getting to the point. Quibi is truly sticking to their plan of targeting millennials – the platform will be quick, easy, and on-the-go.

Levi’s Denim Jacket Goes “Smart”

As we all know, technology is constantly around us and it doesn’t seem to be slowing down anytime soon. Levi and Google’s Jacquard platform has decided to work together and create a “smart’” denim jacket. The two companies will be working together to recreate Levi’s classic trucker jacket and the Sherpa trucker jacket. Although this is the second time that the two are working together, the technology is different this time because its small and nearly impossible to tell that the jacket is a smart jacket. The jackets will include a tag that goes into the cuff of the jackets and allows the jacket to pair with the phone. The cuff will be used very similar to how we use touchpad so you can leave your device in the pocket of the jacket. When an individual does different hand gestures, it control the different features of the jacket. Some features include: directions, ETA, traffic reporting, answer phone call, control your music, and receive notifications. Google’s Jacquard platform also worked with YSL on a “smart” backpack recently.

I found this extremely interesting because this isn’t something that we have seen before but its something that if the jacket becomes a hit then we will see more “smart” clothing. I feel that this technology is one of those products that we don’t realize we need until we have it.

Facebook Takes Down Numerous Fake Accounts

On September 19, Facebook took down 244 accounts, 269 pages, 80 groups, and 7 Instagram accounts that were being run by a Ukrainian PR agency called Pragmatico. The primary reason why the accounts were taken down was due to Facebook believing that the accounts were using the social media platform to manipulate people. Facebook’s head of cybersecurity, Nathaniel Gleicher, stated:

“We’re taking down these Pages, Groups, and account based on their behavior, not the content they posted. In each of these cases, the people behind this activity coordinated with one another and used fake accounts to misrepresent themselves, and that was the basis for our action”.

Facebook went on to discuss how these accounts in particular were acting as if they were celebrities and/or news outlets. The accounts that were taken down were housed in Ukraine and Iraq and the Ukrainian PR firm was spending $1.6 million on Facebook and Instagram ads in order to influence the masses.

This is extremely concerning to me because myself and many individuals get their information from social media platforms and its harder and harder to tell what is real and what is fake. I think we can all appreciate how Facebook is taking action and doing what needs to done in order to keep the social media platforms secured for their users.

Sony & Marvel Split Over Spider Man

spidermanSpider Man will always be one of the world’s favorite super heroes but it might be a while before we see him in movies again. According to WION, the Sony-Marvel relationship has split due failing to reach an agreement over co-financing. Marvel, which is a part of the Disney family has produced the previous two Spider Man movies and after last year’s successful release of the movie, Disney wanted to share co-financing on the future films and Sony preferred to keep the agreement the way it was for the other movies.

Kevin Feige, Marvel Studios president states “Unless a deal is reached, Holland will not appear in any future Marvel Cinematic Universe movies and no Marvel characters will appear in Holland’s solo films”. The relationship between Sony and Marvel several years ago when Marvel made the decision to help produce Sony’s Spider Man movies and it also opened the door for the new Sony Spider Man character to appear in Marvel movies.

Even though Marvel produced the Sony Spider Man movie, Sony owns the film rights. Who is right in this situation? It is unfortunate that the relationship between these two media giants has come to an end because the Sony Spider Man character has captured the hearts of the new Marvel generation but Anthony Russo, director of Sony spider Man said it best “it’s complicated.