Sunnier Side of the Office – June 17, 2019

"I'm sorry I left. I was just being a brat."

- Geri Helliwell, aka Ginger Spice, on why she quit the Spice Girls in 1998. 

Check-in to cultural experiences
By: Ben Thomas

TSA lines. Missed connections. Bad muzak. Overpriced food.

For most people, the word “airport” doesn’t conjure up images of a place you’d want to spend more time than absolutely necessary. It’s a means to an end, a point on the way to vacation in Hawaii or a ski trip in Whistler.

But given they’re places most people have to pass through, airports are starting to elevate the experience and curate luxury brand destinations en route to the destination itself. From fashion shows to art galleries and cultural events, it’s an attempt to hark back to the Golden Age of flying from the 60s, where the act of travel was something to enjoy and aspire to; an experience, not a chore.

Get ready for takeoff here.

Facebook Watch Nearly Doubled its Daily Active Users
By: Sergio Saucedo

Facebook Watch, the on demand video service which launched in 2017, has seen some considerable growth in 2019 with new licensed and original content featuring the likes of: Stephen Curry and Jada Smith. According to Facebook, Watch currently has 140MM daily active viewers and 720MM monthly active viewers. At the end of last year, Facebook reported that 75MM people viewed Watch shows daily, indicating that their daily active users almost doubled in the last 6 months.

Facebook Watch viewership is still on the lower end in comparison to YouTube who is their largest rival with 2 billion monthly viewers and over 60 billion minutes of video being consumer each day. However, the growth on Facebook Watch is significant and if the momentum continues can become a more viable YouTube alternative for both publishers and advertisers.

With YouTube’s recent scrutiny surrounding their brand safety, Facebook has an opportunity to ease advertisers concerns by positioning themselves as a place to reach their audience with no risk to brand safety.

The Last Black Man in San Francisco
By: Emily Menken

A hometown film has been making nationwide waves. Currently the #1 highest grossing independent film in the country, “The Last Black Man in San Francisco” is starting conversations around identity, gentrification, and the loss of sense of home.

Director/writer Joe Talbot describes his film, released June 7, as a period piece - the house just to the right of the lead Victorian home has been knocked down and replaced with a modern substitute, with individual rooms renting for $2k.

Amongst swirling rumors of another IPO boom, San Francisco’s surviving diverse communities might soon be pushed out. Rental sites across the board track median rent at an all-time high, with the average one-bedroom renting for $3.7k. According to Zillow, the median home value is now $1.4m.

“Last Black Man” isn’t an angry film, even while the loss of home and sense of self through that is palpable. It accepts that gentrification, that change, is inevitable in a dynamic world. Nothing ever remains the same. Even the characters are accepting; in a scene where the protagonist, Jimmy, is baited to fight, he turns his back and walks on, simmering in his feelings rather than throwing the first punch.

Jimmy says in one scene, “You can’t hate San Francisco unless you love it.” San Francisco is a beautiful city - but it has baggage (and filth). The film is part of a larger wave of Bay Area films created by people of color (Blindspotting, Sorry to Bother You) that depict a shared love yet resentment for the Bay Area.

According Pew Research Center, the percentage of phone-only internet users has doubled from 24% in 2013 to 47% today. 
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