“Who wants to win a Dave?” The Raven Marketing, Media & Tech Round-up — 11th July
The Raven delivers 10 talking points across #media, #tech #marketing and the #Environment… What’s sparkled in the roost this Raven?
The challenges of EV growth, Red Dwarf laughs at breakdowns, HBO goes big, MAD Magazine retreats, Nintendo sets out its handheld agenda, Nike & Adidas misstep, culture doubles down on BP, the benefits of a social media shutdown, the end of the GDPR honeymoon, the Guardian picks on the wrong orchestra, it’s time for that BBC list again, and who wants to win a Dave?
They’re not releasing the fantastically triumphant Metronomy Forever until September, but it’s already soundtracking my summer. Metronomy: Salted Caramel Ice Cream. Remember: Find every intro song on the Raven Playlist.
AA & Red Dwarf
This came out of the green. You don’t really associate AA with sci-fi comedy, you don’t really associate Dave Lister with AA.
A fascinating part of Red Dwarf’s mythos isn’t that it’s still alive and well after 30 years, but that the non-existence of aliens is central to its concept. Oh, also that Lister’s the last human — not that any of that disrupts AA’s light ribbing here. Benefitting massively from authentic sets and video (series XII is coming, although no one could possibly comment…), behind it sits a nice union of eco-advocate Robert Llewelyn’s (Kryten) stellar efforts over the past few decades and the EV support evident at the top of AA. (Also: happy birthday to Craig Charles today)
Meanwhile, the new Home and provider of Dave (although owner UKTV is entirely owned by the BBC), has just been announced as a prestigious new sponsor. Calling the awards Daves may be a step too far…
1. Media: Project Shepperton is on for Netflix; HBO Max aims to be huge.
No surprise, but confirmation of intent as the VoD giant snapped up a huge amount of space at Shepperton Studios. Earlier rumours they were eyeing Pinewood weren’t far off the mark — Pinewood owns Shepperton. A significant win all round as a significant part of Netflix’s $10b budget is secured for the UK and the steaming king enhances its regional diversity.
Netflix strikes production deal with Shepperton Studios
Netflix has struck a deal to set up a permanent production base at Shepperton Studios, home to films from Alien to Mary…
Meanwhile: A brand name that caught me by surprise, but this is AT&T leveraging its brands and subsidiaries at full pelt. HBO Max is a fascinating positioning. The mainstream appeal is clear, while it leverages and brings a necessary boost to the HBO brand. It’s a subtle difference, but while Netflix leads the charge and Disney’s aiming for the ubiquity of its recent acquisitions there’s a real chance they can bring back the Home Box Office.
2. Tech. Nintendo confirms its new direction for handheld gaming: Switch Lite
One of the worst-kept secrets heading in and out of E3, Nintendo’s strategy for the handheld market after the success of Gameboy and DS is to diversify the Switch brand. The Switch Lite will be their only new hardware in 2019. Interesting to see how some of the hybrid system’s games can withstand the ‘switch’ away from a TV dock and, out-the-box static Joycons. We’ll have to wait a bit longer for the rumour-as-rock Meanwhile, Dr Mario moved into the mobile space a day early this week. We have an immediate ranking for the latest Nintendo IP to make it to mobile. Sandwiched between South Korean pop and Hogwarts. (Update: two days in and the game needs an update)
3. Media. BBC Power List Round 2.
The vitriol and deliberate misunderstanding around these rather unnecessary lists, as always, surprises me. The concept is too vague, the coverage too narrow, for anything beyond broad and partisan analysis. The increased prominence of female salaries was a clear positive this time. But this was heated by the BBC’s recent decision to suspend free Licence Fees for the majority of over-75s — a decision shipped out to the Corp by former chancellor George Osborne in a highly cynical win-win for the government. Most interest comes from the vast range of responses, many of them from commercial and public workers who refuse to see the flipside. Taken individually, Chris Evans may look ‘overpaid’, but last year’s list directly led to his departure, and inevitably, towards the kind of higher pay that DG Tony Hall is quite right to point out is readily available in the commercial sector.
Gary Lineker is BBC's best-paid star again, but women close gap
Gary Lineker has maintained his status as the BBC's highest earner after the broadcaster's leading male sports…
4. Marketing. Mis-steps of the week.
Don’t like to dwell on the negative, but it’s worth catching up with misfires now and again- especially when there are more distinct warnings to be found than a copywriting error in a local supermarket — especially when it hits two old rivals.
Adidas had their PR cut out when their Arsenal kit launch fell into a huge pit of social media despair. You really do have to be careful.
Meanwhile, Nike’s edgy appropriation of flags lost them State relief.
This may be a good point to catch up on the last Raven, where the pressure on cultural institutions to reject BP was growing. Well, it’s getting worse in the art world. These are big names.
Should oil money fund the arts? Leading British artists say no
British artists including Antony Gormley, Anish Kapoor and Sarah Lucas have called on London's National Portrait…
5. Green. Green jeans; Plastic bags; The challenges of EV.
A nice report on the environmental initiatives changing the $12700m denim industry.
Why blue jeans are going green
As consumers become ever more concerned about environmental and ethical issues, pioneers in the global denim industry…
Waitrose took a further retail lead on plastic bags. Things are changing rapidly for plastics in supermarkets, but it can’t be quick enough.
On the government side, the Department of Transport announced funding to find practical solutions to electric charging — street-side charging stations are unscalable. Naturally, that asks the question unknown to many consumers — leaving the state of infrastructure, how much does it cost to run an electric vehicle?
Talking of Minis, BMW’s plans for mini not only boost the electric industry, but also gain a strong foothold in the fast-expanding market, and more pertinently help it tackle EU carbon emission targets.
BMW unveils electric Mini as it charges into new era
Six decades after the original Mini first rolled off the production line in Oxford, its owner BMW has unveiled a new…
6. Tech. MuskZone.
As reported in the last Raven, the Musk Zone is likely to feature Tesla less and less, but as the car-maker celebrates its 16th birthday, it’s still setting records.
Elon Musk's Tesla breaks all records, delivers 95,200 cars in second quarter
1 min read . Updated: 03 Jul 2019, 03:15 PM IST IANS Tesla has achieved a record production of 87,048 vehicles in the…
7: Media. Journalistic scraps — Carry On Classical
As a warm-up to the (BBC) Proms, The Guardian’s rather snobbish editorial attack on Classical Music as a status symbol was misjudged. Radio 3 has its issues, but the point was entirely missed … Over to Petroc.
Here’s a healthier argument. Carry On films split the British public like, oh, a referendum, and remain (sic) rather unknown outside the British Isles — which simultaneously mystifies me (considering the better crossover of similarly British Hammer Horror) and makes perfect sense. But these uncertain times bring added emphasis to the recurrent evaluation of their place in British life.
Ooh, Matron! Why Carry On films refuse to remain dead
Great news! The Carry On films are coming back! Finally, a win for Britain. We might have become the global punchline…
Carry On films weren't all bad; they celebrated the working class in its heyday | Fiona Sturges
When I was growing up in the 1980s, grey Sunday afternoons were invariably spent in front of a Carry On film, while the…
For the record, Dr Matthew Sweet’s right…
8. Tech / Media. ICO steps up as GDPR hits; UK unveils new Digital Markets Strategy.
Two days and two massive fines as the UK’s data regulator made it clear that the honeymoon following the introduction of stringent new data protection rules last year is well and truly over. A record of £183m levied at BA wasn’t offset by their main defence that none of the data breached resulted in fraud. That rather misses the point. The next day, news that £99.2m was to be held against Marriott proved many US firms were right to be cautious and reduce risks in Europe as soon as GDPR went live.
While ICO roared, the UK Competition and Markets Authority outlined its Digital Markets Strategy.
CMA launches digital markets strategy
The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has already carried out a significant body of work in digital markets. This…
9. Tech. Social Media outages.
Are they getting worse? Does it feel that way?
Facebook, Whatsapp and Instagram have stopped working with images failing to load
Facebook, Whatsapp and Instagram have all partially stopped functioning - at the same time as each other. According to…
Although there are often fascinating side-effects. This time, the image failure exposed Facebook alt tags.
And apparently, delayed the announcement of Frank Lampard as new Chelsea manager. Facebook nil, Football nil.
10. Media. Mad, Mad, Mad world no more.
AT&T bookends this Raven. While DC properties play a large part in the future of HBO (Watchmen) and HBO Max (Watchmen plus), there are radical changes. No, it’s not John Constantine slinking over to the Sandman Universe imprint, but the closure of legendary imprint Vertigo (where Sandman and Constantine originated) and the immediate closure of new Mad Magazine content.
I’ll leave it to Bob and the Watchmen to sum it all up. Dylan of course, along with Neil Young headlining London’s Hyde Park tomorrow having ousted Barclays from sponsorship.
One last thing…
A doff of the hat to KFC.