On how the modern media landscape supports writers like Grann, behind Ubers $500m ad business and more.
I liked Noahs David Grann appreciation edition. For those of you not in the know, he is an author, that goes super deep into a topic, for years, and like a detective uncovers stories previously untold, and then brings them to life in a remarkable manner.
His latest book, The Wager: A tale of Shipwreck, Mutiny and Murder is out this week, I’m looking forward to diving into this in my upcoming holiday. All of his books are brilliant, so if you haven’t read, don’t be afraid to grab them all.
Here is an excerpt, which is good.
He also, is a regular writer on the New Yorker, so if you read, you’ve probably come across him. But do check out his entire New Yorker archive (thanks Noah for the tip!). You won’t regret it.
But why am I talking about David Grann? And his book launch. Is this a plug? I guess so, but really I wanted to talk about how the modern media landscape helps support a writer doing this type of work.
For example, Killers of the Flower Moon has been turned into an Apple TV movie, out later this year. Leo is the main star! Apparently Grann received $5m for the rights. That book took him five years to research and write – that’s a long and serious bet.
Of course it takes great work to create these opportunities, but at least the opportunity is there, for writers to take the risk. And that is pretty neat, imagine being a young writer today, growing up with all these tools at your dispersal.
Whatever was paid, movies are competitive, folks want the latest stories. And this incentivizes writers like Grann to go and find the untold stories. To spend years unravelling these stories, traveling the world, exploring archives. Interviewing. Killers of the Flower moon, the events were over a 100 years ago.
And then, in-between books, there are the royalties (which has always been around) but also audiobooks. And the columns in New Yorker. He is a one man band media machine. Well I don’t know if he his a one man band, but his pent for curiosity to unfurl these stories, is something that can help him get paid in multiple ways. Each supporting more work.
And that’s neat, whilst I doubt he is getting paid for any use of his work in ChatGPT, maybe he will at some point. Which segues nicely into Washington Posts piece, on what content has gone into the ML models, and what ‘percentage’ of the overall database does any particular domain contribute. It’s worth diving into. My works, have about ‘120,000 tokens’ per their data.
Does that mean, my (and our) collective work will live on for infinity? Maybe. I just ask, if it does, and there are native ads, that they are at least good.
Notable stories this week
- Adding a native ad to ChatGPT.
- Longest Twitter thread ever simulates a Kenyan girls 5.6 mile daily walk to fresh water.
- Inside the secret list of websites that make AI like ChatGPT sound smart.
- ^ You may recall this was one of the first things I posted on about ChatGPT was the content rights associated.
- Search advertising heads into a new era.
- The four pillars of Uber’s $500m ad business.
- Twitter launches new monetization options for creators.
- Brave Software prepares for its next challenge: advertising.
- Reddit expands outreach to independent agencies as its ad revenue rises.
- Consumers say tech companies should be liable for content on their platforms.
- Will Substack notes save our posting soul.
- Barry Diller thinks publishers should sue over generative AI.
- Google Bard adds more variety to drafts.
- Nielsen regains accreditation for national TV ratings.
- In praise of friction.
- Netflix delays password-sharing crackdown rollout, posts mixed results. But ad tier results are promising.
- Google Ads tested its privacy focused tech… and the results are meh.
- AI Drake just set an impossible legal trap for Google.
- Netflix ends DVD biz after 25 years, delays account sharing crackdown.
- Streaming is recreating TV, rather than replacing it.
- Apple’s Safari quietly made it harder for sites to work with third parties like Google Analytics.
- Disney Channel celebrates 40 years of programming.
- AcuityAds rebrands to illumin.
- Twitter partners with eToro to let users trade stocks, crypto.
- Why the new James Bond film is the future of media and entertainment.
- [Long read] You can’t just make the hits.
Campaign of the week
View all 2023 best campaigns.
- “I think it’s something of a lost art. Playful experimentation inside a social network doesn’t have to be a race to the bottom and I think can actually make the network better. That said, I don’t think he’s going to conquer LinkedIn, but I wish him the best.” –Ryan Broderick
Datapoints of note
- Uber has more than 200,000 advertisers on the platform.
That’s it for this week.