Beastly Shake Up

This Week: I’m sorry I’m not covering the Met Gala. I really don’t care. But I got you covered on everything else.

Night Falls on MrBeast: MrBeast and his long-time management company, Night Media, have mostly split up. The Reed Duscher-founded agency will still work on Feastables, but everything else is coming in-house or perhaps to a big 3 agency – or one willing to relocate to North Carolina. While surely disruptive to Night Media, it’s not like they haven’t been through this before. They managed Dude Perfect through their early years, but the Dudes brought it all in house a few years ago. As creators evolve into big media companies, many naturally outgrow traditional management and representation. Charli D’Amelio did it – bringing in top digital agent Greg Goodfried to be CEO. MrBeast hired industry vet @Marc Hustvedt as President three years ago, and this feels like a logical next step. Night will continue to grow its roster of budding superstars, including Kai Cenat, Dream and Safiya Nygaard. Night’s premise – that today’s creators are akin to yesterday’s sports celebrities – is alive and well (although I’m still unclear on Rooster Teeth). But sometimes your creators become big media companies and you have to adapt.

Related: This is even better news for full-time creators. Why? Because as more creator-led companies become Unicorns, more growth capital becomes available. The latest from last week:

Open AI’s “Robots of Dawn” Moment: SciFi writer Issac Asimov famously released the “Three Laws of Robotics” in 1942, codifying how to protect humanity from sentient robots. OpenAI just publicly released its own take – called “Model Spec” (aside, marketing anyone?). It starts with the overarching rule that its AI must “follow the Model Spec” and gets even more specific from there. There’s a short section on protecting creators, encouraging fairness and kindness and a focus on being thorough and efficient. It’s a brief but interesting first draft, and I applaud OpenAI for their first attempts at transparency. But it’s a bit hazy on the whole Asimov’s First Law thing: “A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.”

  • Related: This – and some of the other OpenAI stories below, are all a part of the “Sam Altman playbook”. (HT @Brad Berens)

Apple Crushes Creators: Apple’s not typically a tone-deaf org – and it has built great creator tools for most of its life. That’s what makes the latest iPad ad, where the means of creation get squished into a digital AI soup that, presumably, resides in their hardware. An outcry led to apologies and ad pulling, but the question remains: perhaps Apple isn’t your default creativity partner anymore. Not sure what will take its place, but the times they seem to be a-changing.

More Bad Research: Glossy’s latest “research report” ($) analyzed 15 Instagram influencers and came up with supposedly broadly applicable insights around engagement, attention and more. But it’s the research equivalent of Prime Hydration – quick buzz, followed by an epic crash – and factually devoid of any projectable conclusions. 15 out of 10.2 million influencers is NOT a representative sample. Glossy compounds the pop by segmenting those 15 into “micro” and “macro” groups and presenting even more dubious comparisons. As a focus group it works – and delivers good insight on these 15 creators. But don’t bet your company on the results.

  • Aside – what is a “micro” influencer? Glossy’s research claims its anyone with less 500,000 followers/subs but Sprout Social says it’s 10k-100k. I lean more towards Sprout here, but I’d like a real definition.

The Search for a Third Space: Good story on the hunt for “third places” as a way to combat the loneliness epidemic. It contextually validates Whalar’s Lighthouse, Billion Dollar Boy’s membership program and grass-roots creator meetup efforts globally – like @Lucky Lopez’ Taco Tuesday in Las Vegas and @Brett Dashevsky’s Creator Economy NYC.









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