Social Sphere: Amazon's Future and Twitter Subscription

    February 12 2021

    In the News

    Twitter Considers Subscription-Based Service

    Twitter recently experienced a drop in its core advertising business, which reignited its interest in a subscription-based service to bring in revenue. Users are likely to see tests this year.  Twitter’s CEO, Jack Dorsey, shared with analysts that he has a high bar for what he will make his users pay for. Twitter has always prided itself on offering its users a free service while allowing advertisers to run targeted ads for revenue. However, many advertisers pulled back during the pandemic, making Twitter’s ad revenues decrease 23%. Rumors started to circulate about Twitter looking into creating a subscription-based service after the company listed a job offer focused on building a subscription-based platform. Twitter is only in the beginning phases of this possible subscription service, but we are sure to see more in the coming months. 

    Parler CEO Fired

    The far-right friendly social media platform was recently in the news after conservative mobs raided the capital. This quickly led to app stores kicking Parler off to avoid future downloads and further violence before the peaceful transition of power. Parler most recently fired their CEO John Matze after an argument he had with a board member, Rebekah Mercer, about the future of free speech. In an interview with NPR, Matze stated, “if the company wanted to succeed, Parler would have a crackdown on domestic terrorists and any groups that incite violence, including the Trump-supporting conspiracy theory QAnon.” Matze believed Parler needed to step up its content-policing efforts, but everyone on the board stayed quiet as a result. Since Matze’s interview Parler has characterized his summary of events as “inaccurate and misleading.” Parler rose to popularity due to its lax approach to online speech. However, since the apps removal from Apple, Google, and Amazon, other alternative apps like MeWe and Gab are starting to gain some traction for people looking for like-minded individuals who shun Facebook and Twitter. 

    What’s Going to Happen to Amazon

    Jeff Bezos recently announced he would step down as Amazon’s CEO and become an executive chairman. Some investors are left feeling queasy and unsure of Amazon’s new chief executive, Andy Jassy. Andy Jassy isn’t new to Amazon or to making money; he currently leads Amazon’s highly profitable AWS cloud computing business. And like most highly profitable companies, CEOs eventually decide to step down—for example, Microsoft’s Bill Gates and Apple’s Steve Jobs. Knowing the success of Microsoft and Apple, Jeff Bezos’s departure may not matter that much in the long run. 

    Pinterest Launches a New Widget for iOS 

    Pinterest is now offering “Interests,” an iOS widget option where Pinners are served fresh content daily on their iPhones. The content will appear on the user’s home screen, where users can pick the type of content they want to see. The categories include beauty, home decor, food, men’s and women’s fashion, and quotes. Pinterest hopes this new feature will continue to inspire its users beyond the app.

    What's Trending

    The Weeknd Super Bowl Meme

    By now, most of the internet knows that The Weeknd performed at the Super Bowl’s halftime show, and if you didn’t, you’ve seen the meme. The high-energy performance, both amazing and eccentric, made for some funny memes that later populated social media. The meme captures the artist’s rendition of “Can’t Feel My Face,” where the camera moves dizzily around the singer. The meme essentially means, “WTF is going on” and is perfect for summarizing the year we just had and for even characterizing the start of 2021. 

    I May Destroy Deserved a Golden Globes Nomination 

    Earlier this week, the Golden Globes announced their list of nominations, and as always, many decisions were questionable and called attention to a larger issue. As a writer on Emily in Paris, Deborah Copaken was excited to hear her show was nominated but acknowledges the blatant oversight of more deserving shows like I May Destroy You from the film and television industry. Copaken found out about Emily in Paris’s Golden Globe nomination for best comedy series after her mother’s call. She was surprised to hear and also surprised to see a show missing from its list of nominations. Copaken writes, “I May Destroy You, deserves to win all the awards. When it didn’t, I was stunned. I May Destroy You was not only my favorite show of 2020. It’s my favorite show ever. It takes the complicated issue of rape – I’m a sexual assault survivor myself – and infuses it with heart, humor, pathos, and a story constructed so well, I had to watch it twice, just to understand how Coel did it.” 

    Copaken wasn’t the only person infuriated by this misstep from the Golden Globes. Many writers, fans, and people in the media shared on their platforms their criticism of the Golden Globes decision to snub the writer of I May Destroy You, Michaela Coel. And after the year, we’ve had a nomination for a show about a white American girl selling “luxury whiteness” does come off as tone-deaf, especially without acknowledging the other more deserving brilliant show. Racial representation is important, but the Golden Globes not nominating a true masterpiece makes you question how they make their decisions. 

    #FreeBritney is Back

    The #FreeBritney movement was reignited in 2020 when TikTok conspiracy theory videos went viral. But since the release of The New York Times’ new documentary series episode about Britney Spears, the movement is bigger than ever. Framing Britney Spears examines what the public doesn’t know about her conservatorship and battle over her estate. Britney has been under conservatorship since 2008, and fans and colleagues have been wary about the terms ever since. The documentary explores her rise to meteoric fame, mental health struggles, and the #FreeBritney movement now resurfacing on social media. This documentary rocked everyone to their core and caused them to reevaluate how the press treated her and other teenage girl stars during this time. Without social media, these young women were without a space to create and write their narratives. It was all that the media wanted people to believe at the time. 

    Elon Musk Busts Clubhouse Room Limit 

    Elon Musk is famous for his Twitter presence, where he has grown widespread popularity among the younger crowd. He took his social presence to the new social platform Clubhouse for Clubhouse’s first-ever live-session. Musk used his time on Clubhouse to answer space travel and mars, cryptocurrency, and Covid-19 vaccines questions. At the last quarter of his interview, Vlad Tenev, CEO of Robinhood, hopped into the room where Musk started interviewing him. Many people in the room believed the Tenev and Musk mashup to be a PR stunt by the VC firm Andreessen Horowitz who back Robinhood, Clubhouse, and startups that work with Musk’s companies. Whatever this live-session was broke the Clubhouse room capacity limits with more than 5,000 users in the room.

    This week was big for social media giants! Tune back in for an exciting update to our Social Sphere and check out our past editions here.

    Learn more about Carrie Boswell, on PLANOLY

    Carrie Boswell

    Carrie Boswell is the Digital Marketing Content Specialist at PLANOLY. She is always finding ways to include pop culture and the Gen Z perspective into the content we create for marketers and small business owners.

    More by Carrie Boswell

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