What’s hot this week? Barbies in STEM, films on Facebook, card games in the Olympics, TikTok Stories and WhatApp updates.
OBVIOUSLY TikTok is testing Stories. Honestly, this announcement kind of feels late? Were we not all expecting it?
After all, Instagram, the current home of Stories (yeah Snap is the OG but let’s be real – Instagram owns ephemeral content these days) hosts more basic and beautiful content than TikTok, and we care about seeing what Instagram influencers have eaten today, where they go shopping, and what they drink at a Slug and Lettuce on a weekend.
But what about the chaotic creators from TikTok?! Eating ten packs of monster munch, sharing their latest Etsy haul, and never stepping foot in a Slug and Lettuce? That’s much more interesting.
This week, Mattel unveiled a new doll of Professor Sarah Gilbert – a scientist who created the Astra-Zeneca coronavirus vaccine. It’s exciting to thing young children will be exposed to a job they may have never heard of but has certainly saved millions of lives: a vaccinologist. Sarah’s doll is one of a set of six figures celebrating Covid heroes, including American emergency room nurse Amy O’Sullivan and Australian Doctor Kirby White, who created a reusable gown for health workers. Safe to say we love them all.
Films on Facebook
It’s been a weird year for film, from wearing a mask that covers your confused face while watching Tenet, to renting Mulan and watching something created for the big screen at home, to watching my friend begin to choke watching In The Heights because she cried into her mask and made it too wet to wear.
Adding to this VOD drama is Facebook, who launched tickets to their first ever official film premiere on 19th August, the documentary “The Outsider”. You do have to pay for the stream, but Facebook says it isn’t taking a cut of any ticket sales from independent filmmakers until 2023, and is even offering some money to market the event (via Facebook ads). Overall, the launch seems like a bigger marketing campaign for the social media giant than the doc, so you can see why it’s being so unexpectedly generous.
New Olympic Sports
I think it’s safe to say we’ve all loved some of the Japanese additions to the Olympics, with skateboarding being a particular favourite among Brits since it’s provided our youngest ever summer Olympics medallist, Sky Brown. Different cities can add sports to their games each year, which may or may not carry on to the next games. It’s crazy to think the biggest addition from London’s 2012 games was Women’s Boxing – yes, in 2012.
The latest sport people are petitioning to join the Olympics? Uh, Yu-Gi-Oh. Yeah, the card game / TV show. It feels a little late to push for this, since Yu-Gi-Oh is Japanese and you’d think Tokyo would have the best shot at adding the card game to the Olympics, but also, it’s pretty obvious the petition with 7,000 signatures isn’t going anywhere. After all, Chess has tried and failed many a time to join many a time and is arguably more famous. There’s no Netflix Original about Yu-Gi-Oh, is there?
WhatsApp Updates for Adulterers
WhatsApp has added a fantastic new feature if you’re having an extra-martial affair: disappearing images and videos! You know what I’m talking about.
This follows another announcement earlier in the year that WhatsApp was adding disappearing messages, a fantastic feature for cyber-bullies. Apparently, it was very successful.
It’s a strange update, pretty much copying what Snapchat has been doing for ten years (yes Snap turned ten on 8th July), but then what self-respecting adulterer has Snapchat these days?