Sunnier Side Of The Home Office – December 9, 2020


“I would take it seriously if it came from Trump, because Trump cares about American lives."

- Everyone's favorite witness Melissa Carone on why, in light of Rudy Giuliani's COVID-19 diagnosis, she doesn't intend to quarantine after sitting next to him during a hearing for his election fraud lawsuit.

Years in Review Show What Was On Our Minds in 2020
By: Ben Thomas

I think we can all agree that 2020 has been…a year. And as we stumble towards the finish line, social platforms are releasing their years in review, providing a data-driven snapshot of what we talked about and posted, what we liked and who we swiped on. Unsurprisingly, content and interactions coalesced around the three defining events of 2020: the pandemic, the presidential election and the Black Lives Matter movement. 

Tinder’s Year in Swipe showed that - in lieu of real life dating - people flocked to the apps in record numbers to get their socially distanced date on. Tinder bios became an expression of political affiliation, a show of support for social justice, and weirdly a place to talk about Tiger King (doesn’t that feel like forever ago?)

Twitter’s #ThisHappened recap of the most liked tweets and retweets, trended hashtags and most used emoji followed a similar pattern; COVID, Black Lives Matter and politics were the most tweeted topics. It also became a platform of support, with tweets expressing gratitude up 20% globally. Similarly, over on GIPHY, the top 25 most viewed GIFs of the year were dominated by messages of love, encouragement and solidarity.

Netflix Launches ‘Kids Activity Report’
By: Jessica Bedussi

After a day filled with 8 hours of Zoom calls, the last thing many parents want to do is sit in front of a larger screen to watch their kids shows. Insert Netflix solving a problem that could only exist in 2020: helping parents connect beyond their screens.

This week Netflix launched the Kids Activity Report which breaks down kids’ viewing habits in easily digestible infographics. The report details which shows kids watch, their favorite characters, and provides recommendations for other similar content. 

The report not only provides parents with useful information about what their kids are watching, it also helps kids get off screen. Since COVID-19 changed our routines, screen time is up across the board. With virtual learning in place, kids are now spending a staggering average of 7.5 hours per day in front of screens.

Netflix hopes to help provide solutions by giving parents tools like printable coloring pages and discussion prompts to have conversations beyond the TV. As screen time continues to rise, look for more automated reports and tools from other streaming services.

The Color of the New Year? Optimism.
By: Emily Menken

Pantone has picked their 2021 Color of the Year. The company has opted for two colors: “Illuminating” (a classic, sunny yellow) and “Ultimate Gray”. Pantone selects their yearly colors via trend forecasters who scour the net, noticing what’s popping up in consumer products from automotive and makeup packaging to interior design and beyond.

The two somewhat contrasting colors were partly selected for their symbolism. From the Pantone press release, Illuminating satisfies “our quest for vitality” and “is a bright and cheerful yellow sparkling with vivacity”. Ultimate Gray symbolizes “solid and dependable elements” that brings to mind the “colors of pebbles on the beach”. Both colors are natural: Illuminating is sunny and warm, while Ultimate Gray is natural and earthy. 

Given the bleakness of 2020, the selection of a cheerful color and a calming color is an aspirational reading. Illuminating is definitely on the rise: a similar yellow has been featured at Off-White and Louis Vuitton under designer Virgil Abloh. Light Gray has been on the rise in 2020 while Darker Grays are being shunned for being oppressive as ARTNews reported a few months ago.

2016 when was the last year Pantone chose two colors: Rose Quartz and Serenity, AKA Internet-y colors that were in style, particularly among the Instagram influencer population, and popping up everywhere. The two colors also recognized gender fluidity and social progress.

In September, Pantone added a new color to their wheel: Period Red. Laurie Pressman, Vice President of the Pantone Color Institute, said that the color “emboldens people who menstruate to feel proud of who they are” with a goal of helping the world “talk spontaneously and openly about this pure and natural bodily function.” Pantone partnered with feminine products brand Intimina, and included a donation to “help people living in poverty where managing periods is an extra financial and social burden”.

Instagram will mark a major milestone in 2020: The number of monthly users worldwide will reach 1 billion, adding 186.3 million new users between 2019 and 2020. This represents a year-over-year growth of 22.9%