Ben Young
Ben Young
December 22, 2023

Edition #429

The last note of the year, themes of note from the year that’s been.

The final note of the year! I wasn’t even sure if I sent one. As I mentioned in the last note, it’s been one of the busiest q4’s since before covid. Whilst I imagine, more people this year are already on holiday, compared to Dec 22nd of 2019. I thought I should.

It’s not going to be a regular edition, I thought I’d recap on some of the main themes from this year, to ponder on over the break. For this, I went back, opened up all the edits this year and without further adieu here are the ones I think are of note:

Last edition of last year was 388, and we’re at 429. So 41 editions this year. The first part of the year was a bit more sombre, but picked up speed, as AI shook covid PTSD and got people focused on moving forward. Then AI & Threads, and layoffs :/ and a view to moving ahead. It has been a wild year.

Here are some of the themes and topics this year.

  • Streamers and football, Amazon & Google. Leveraging traditional assets to bring incremental eyeballs and audiences online.
  • Substack cracked recommendations, solving the distribution challenge for newsletter creators.
  • Anti-trust, Google, Sherman Act.
  • ChatGPT – AI AI AI AI AI.

  • Spotify was rumored to be bringing a TikTok like experience – but never did?
  • New York is back baby!
  • Celeb branded content, Idris Elba with Gold, Trevor Noah & Roger Federer on the Grand Train Journey. Mythbusters star Adam Savage.
  • We celebrated 400 editions! And more on why I do the newsletter. It keeps me sharp.
  • We learnt about liquidity preferences & how that impacted MediaMath & Vice :/.
  • Vision Pro launched! To my adoration, including this author.
  • Barbenheimer – and a return to all out media blitzes with creative executions. And every brand jumped on board.
  • Artifact launched, soon followed by Threads! Which is now splitting all of our social time. And probably stinting Blueskys growth.
  • We saw the resurgence of Yahoo! Is it 1996?

  • Twitter -> X. And the ongoing chaos.
  • A framework for monetizing AI to reward creators, rights for creators – and the impact on the entertainment industry.
  • We live in a world of excess content, where AI only makes that worse.
  • Attention buckets, on the limited attention we have for any digital tasks and how interrupted we get. And that impact on media.
  • We now have the option to pay to remove ads from Facebook, at least in Europe. Are any readers doing this?
  • A return to the website as a key central authoritative place for every company.
  • Podcast theatre, on how the theatre around podcasts may be getting over the top.
  • And a sense, that some brands will position around Anti AI, as a response to the cultural movement around it.

We covered a lot of ground together, and how all of these impact us day to day in the industry. I hope you enjoyed it, I myself didn’t realize how much we did cover. But here we are.

And for all those that email in – thank you, I appreciate the feedback, notes and links shared.

As you think about the year ahead, and finding ways of navigating change, do consider what you do for analytics and how it helps you orientate & execute on plans. And hit me up!

We did a big clean of the email list, so only those that have been opening recently have stayed on. In the new year, anyone who you think may enjoy it, please do send our way.

Enjoy your break, and let’s touch base in 2024.

That’s it for this year. 2023 out.