The Media Minute 07.29.2020

Live events – a trillion-dollar industry – were one of the first casualties of COVID related lockdowns, according to FIPP’s latest report on virtual events. However, businesses and individuals rapidly shifted to working from home, and integrated video conferencing software into their daily lives.

Recently, creative agency Mustache has retooled ads for clients like Grammarly and Instacart to ensure the ads are relevant for the cultural moment due to coronavirus. That means the agency has gone back to its previously created ads and cut out scenes of people together in places like elevators or ride-sharing.

The future hasn’t changed—it’s just been accelerated. That’s a common take on the pandemic’s likely long-term impact, and it rings true. The extent to which white collar workers will return to their offices, students to their classrooms, and all of us to the comfortable privacy of video-less calls remains to be seen.

Many publishers have spent years steadily building a live events business, only to see those efforts quickly dashed during the coronavirus pandemic. In trying to predict when the live events business will recover for publishers, I’ve been monitoring a variety of news developments and other indicators for any reason to be optimistic.

As many legacy news outlets struggle to survive, industry analysts are looking to digital startups as a promising way to revive coverage of local news. After all, digital-only means you don’t need massive presses or barrels of ink or fleets of trucks.

According to recent data on how people are accessing news about the coronavirus pandemic, more than 25 percent of 18- to 24-year-olds in the United States reported getting their news from Instagram within the last month. The age group was unsurprisingly the most likely to use social media as a news source in general.

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