Interesting Reads. Industry news that you may have missed.
When the U.S. started to consider banning TikTok, Instagram was hot on its heels to design its short-term video platform called Reels in the hopes it could take over TikTok's market share. Instagram is trying to make lucrative deals by offering hundreds of thousands of dollars to current TikTok influencers to make the switch over to Reels before its August launch date. With the ban still looming, TikTok continues to deny claims that it shares its users' data with the Chinese government. If the ban does materialize, will the 45.4 million TikTok users adopt a new platform like Reels to take its place, or will the short-form video fad die out with the app?
The continued spread of coronavirus has clouded the outlook for much of the second half of the year. But that uncertainty has been great for publishers’ back to school commerce plans. Just a few weeks into the unofficial start of this short shopping season, Meredith’s back to school gross sales are up 380% year over year for July, driven by strong sales in categories ranging from sanitary products to e-learning subscriptions, Meredith SVP of consumer revenue Andy Wilson said. Ziff Davis, which owns publications including PC Mag and Mashable, saw the strong performance they’ve seen on products such as laptops continue, even amid an economic crunch, vp of partner development Jessica Spira said. And Popsugar, which has for years been building and augmenting a custom shoppable guide for back to school shopping called Backpacked, said it is outpacing the revenue targets set for its affiliate partners.
Before coronavirus changed the world, the North American movie marketplace was the most important and influential film market in the world. On Monday, Warner Bros. announced that its new movie Tenet will be opening internationally in cities that have been able to flatten the curve before being released in the states. With it being clear that U.S. movie theaters won't be opening until at least the end of August, opening-weekend box-office numbers will no longer be an accurate representation of a film's overall commerciality. Moving forward, Hollywood will come to increasingly rely on foreign box-office tallies as it is expected that two-thirds of Tenet's grosses will come from overseas ticket sales.
While the New York City Marathon might have been canceled this year due to the novel coronavirus, the New York Road Runners wanted to give those who had signed up the chance to participate in a new way. Starting October 17th and going through November 1st, there will be a virtual NYC marathon that prior participants and others around the world are encouraged to sign up for. There will even be a free option called "Run For the Love of Running" which has an unlimited capacity. While the race has no time limit, runners must complete the 26.2 miles in a single run or walk during one calendar day during the timeframe of the marathon.