Sunnier Side of the Office – December 10, 2018

"There is no franchise in sports quite like the Dubs, who were once again wildly successful, socially conscious, fun to love, fun to hate -- and never boring." 

- Sports Illustrated, naming the Golden State Warriors 2018 Sportsperson of the Year

The Hands-On Approach to Challenging Stigma
By: Ben Thomas

Earlier this year, I rode from SF to LA in the AIDs/LifeCycle with 3,000 other riders and volunteers, many of who are affected by, or live with, HIV/AIDs. The purpose of the ride is twofold; to raise money for incredibly important HIV/AIDs research, and challenge misperceptions and stigma that still exist of HIV/AIDs.

For example, according to a North America wide poll, almost half of Americans wouldn’t touch someone with HIV/AIDs. It’s the insight behind “Healing House”, a pop up spa in Toronto by Casey House, a HIV Hospital, where all the spa workers are HIV positive. In an environment that’s designed for skin-to-skin contact, Healing House is a way to challenge the discomfort about something that’s still an unknown for a lot of people, while creating empathy between the spa workers and customers.

Whether we realize it or not, as creatives, advertisers and marketers, we have a lot of influence in society. We can either choose to reinforce perceptions and stigmas or make a conscious effort to challenge them, from beauty to ability to age. It might not always be easy, but the outcome is far more important than sales numbers or brand tracking results. We have a powerful platform, let’s use it.

The Washington Post Launches Daily News Podcast
By: Arthi Veeraragavan 
Last week, The Washington Post released “The Post Reports,” a 20-minute daily news podcast. Each episode will cover the day’s top news stories and include a deeper dive-type segment. The podcast will be hosted by Martine Powers, a reporter at the publication and formerly the Boston Globe and Politico. 
With this launch, The Washington Post aims to draw in new users, while further engaging existing users through a medium that has proved popular with others, like The New York Times.  
Currently, The New York Times’ “The Daily,” leads the daily news podcast category, with 5 million downloads per month. Producers at The Washington Post have estimated “The Post Reports” will launch at 1 million downloads per month, with downloads increasing as the podcast ramps up. 
To promote the podcast, The Washington Post will advertise it on its home page, email newsletters, and owned social channels. This large promotional push should result in a significant amount of reach and draw in advertisers.  
Al Pacino’s face was on the original Facebook homepage, back when it was known as The Facebook. The site’s homepage featured a man's face, which was apparently a manipulation of an Al Pacino photo. 
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