Brands drop David Dobrik

Hello and welcome to Insider Advertising for March 22. I’m senior advertising reporter Lauren Johnson, and here’s what’s going on:

If this email was forwarded to you, sign up here for your daily insider’s guide to advertising and media.

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David Dobrik

YouTube star David Dobrik has been dropped by brands like DoorDash, EA Sports, and Dollar Shave Club after a rape allegation against a former member of his Vlog Squad

Read the story.

Ryan Reynolds

How Ryan Reynolds turned his star power into a viral marketing machine

Read the story.

Abel Clark, Cision

Insiders are buzzing that PR software giant Cision might spin off PR Newswire

Read the story.

More stories we’re reading:

Thanks for reading and see you tomorrow! You can reach me in the meantime at and subscribe to this daily email here.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Project Worldwide’s bet on gaming

Hello and welcome to Insider Advertising for March 19. I’m senior advertising reporter Lauren Johnson, and here’s what’s going on:

If this email was forwarded to you, sign up here for your daily insider’s guide to advertising and media.

Tips, comments, suggestions? Drop me a line at or on Twitter at @LaurenJohnson.

John Higgins

Advertising company Project Worldwide just acquired a specialty agency to help clients like Pepsi capitalize on the red-hot gaming business

Read the story.

YouTube Shorts

YouTube’s TikTok rival, Shorts, is launching in the US. A lead exec breaks down its key features and plans.

Read the story.

Alexi McCammond is jumping from Axios to lead Teen Vogue amid a turbulent early 2021.

Teen Vogue’s incoming editor-in-chief has resigned after old anti-Asian tweets sparked a staff backlash

Read the story.

More stories we’re reading:

Thanks for reading and see you on Monday! You can reach me in the meantime at and subscribe to this daily email here.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Investment firm Apollo wants to spin off PR software firm Notified

Good morning and welcome to Insider Advertising for March 18. I’m senior advertising reporter Lauren Johnson, and here’s what’s going on:

If this email was forwarded to you, sign up here for your daily insider’s guide to advertising and media.

Tips, comments, suggestions? Drop me a line at or on Twitter at @LaurenJohnson.

Joshua Harris

Apollo is planning to sell Notified, one of the biggest PR software companies

Read the story.

Brian Cohen_Headshot

Private-equity firm Innovatus Capital just snapped up 3 ad agencies and said it wants to take on the big ad holding companies

Read the story.

The fuboTV logo is hung from the New York Stock Exchange on the day of its IPO in the Manhattan borough of New York City, New York, U.S., October 8, 2020.

FuboTV’s CEO breaks down the company’s sports-betting strategy, which has spurred both investor enthusiasm and stock volatility

Read the story.

More stories we’re reading:

Thanks for reading and see you tomorrow! You can reach me in the meantime at and subscribe to this daily email here.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Twitter’s surprise counterattack to hold politicians accountable

Hello, and welcome to this week’s edition of the Insider Tech newsletter, where we break down the biggest news in tech.

Wait, this is Saturday, you say. Doesn’t this newsletter come out on Wednesdays? Not anymore. We’re changing things up and moving to weekends, so you can have more time to enjoy all the great articles with your morning coffee – including:

I’m your host Alexei Oreskovic. Hit me up with your thoughts, tips, rants and raves at

Did someone forward this newsletter to you? Get Insider Tech straight in your inbox by subscribing here.

Soundtrack: This week’s newsletter has been specially designed to be consumed while listening to William Onyeabor’s “Ride on baby”

Twitter’s surprise counterattack, or, when Big Tech tried to hold politicians accountable

jack dorsey

For more than a year now, tech companies have been America’s favorite political punching bags; attractive targets for politicians on the left and the right to blame for all manner of misdeeds, both real and imagined.

So what happened on Monday was both unexpected and ironic: Twitter sued Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton. Twitter alleges Paxton abused his power in launching an investigation into the social network’s decision to ban Donald Trump.

  • Paxton issued investigative demands to Twitter, Google, Facebook and others in January, stating that the seemingly coordinated de-platforming of Trump after the Capitol riots, were a violation of the First Amendment.
  • Twitter’s lawsuit against Paxton points out that the First Amendment does not proscribe private businesses from censoring undesirable speech, it prevents the government from controlling speech – as Paxton, a government official, appears to be doing by interfering in Twitter’s moderation policies.

Twitter’s riposte against the Texas AG follows a fusillade of lawsuits from voting machine companies in response to election rigging claims.

It’s an amusing turn of events in the wake of all the – often very legitimate – criticism of the tech industry’s role spreading falsehoods and misinformation. Who would have thought tech companies would now be the ones fighting to keep others in check about sticking to the facts?

Speaking of the MyPillow guy, it seems the mustachioed CEO is expanding into the tech market and launching his own social network. It will be called Vocl (not to be confused with Völkl, the famous German skis), and according to Lindell, will be a cross between Twitter and YouTube but also “not like anything you’ve ever seen.”

Stay tuned over the next few months as we witness the birth of a new breed of right-wing, personality driven social media networks.

Zuck’s Money Man – and Travis’ new urban warfare

travis kalanick chicago disruption 4x3

We’ve got two great reads for you to sink your teeth into this weekend. The first is a look at former Uber CEO Travis Kalanick’s latest venture into so-called ghost kitchens, the shared kitchen facilities focused exclusively on takeout and delivery orders. As Meghan Morris reports:

For Kalanick, who served as Uber’s CEO until 2017, CloudKitchens is a remarkable second act, cementing his reputation as someone with a unique understanding of how technology can transform business. It’s also already causing clashes with local politicians and other groups, who see a repeat of the controversial playbook that Uber used to succeed.

Read the full story here:

iconiq divesh makan connections 2x1

When Silicon Valley’s elite need someone to manage their money they go to Divesh Makan, the founder of Iconiq Capital. The secretive firm’s clients include everyone from Mark Zuckeberg and Sheryl Sandberg to Eddy Cue and Chamath Palihapitiya. Rob Price and Meghan Morris spent months reporting on Iconiq, looking at its expansion into venture capital and real estate, its vaunted list of clients, and its mysterious founder.

“He wants to be the most influential person in the world,” one former colleague said of Makan. “If you think ‘The Wizard of Oz,’ he wants to be the guy behind the curtain that nobody sees … the person controlling the pieces.”

You can read the full story here, including a list of Iconiq’s celebrity clients and internal documents detailing all of the startups it’s invested in:

Quote of the week:

“Our long-term investors are free to sell if they want. So we immediately launched into this very balanced market space.”

Roblox CEO David Baszucki

– Roblox CEO Dave Baszucki tells Insider why the firm chose to list its shares on the NYSE via a direct listing instead of by doing a traditional IPO.

Snapshot: This is not a banana

When you’re a video game console maker, everything looks like a controller.

That seems to be the case for PlayStation maker Sony, which recently was awarded a bizarre patent to turn bananas into game accessories.

Screenshot of Sony's patent

The patent envisions using a system of cameras to magically turn plantain into peripheral.

Why would you want to use a banana when your PlayStation comes with a perfectly good controller?

According to Sony: “A limited number of peripherals may limit a player’s ability to access all of a video game’s features (e.g. multiplayer, VR, etc.). Even if a player is in possession of multiple peripherals, each of these may need to be charged regularly in order to be usable.”

The solution is to grab a banana, or really, any nearby household object. The patent describes using a pair of oranges (one in each hand), and suggests that mugs and pens could also benefit from the technology.

Recommended Readings:

We identified the 175 most powerful people at Microsoft. Here’s our exclusive org chart.

Amazon has over 800 people working on its secretive ‘Vesta’ home robot – but insiders are worried that it’s a niche, gimmicky product that could fail

I’m a cofounder of a Silicon Valley startup that pays everybody what we’re paying ourselves: a flat $180,250. Here’s why it’s right for us.

Nikola founder Trevor Milton convinced the world he was the next Elon Musk. Insiders say a history of lies brought the billionaire down.

Zego is Europe’s newest unicorn, valued at $1.1 billion after a $150 million round led by DST Global and General Catalyst

Not necessarily in tech:

She voted for Obama and died for Trump. How QAnon turned Ashli Babbitt, an Iraq veteran, into a domestic ‘terrorist.’

Thanks for reading, and if you like this newsletter, tell your friends and colleagues they can sign up here to receive it.

– Alexei

Read the original article on Business Insider

A message from Insider Energy: We’re going on hiatus

Fairfield Iowa Electricity
Power lines in Fairfield, Iowa

Hello! Unfortunately, I have to share some bittersweet news: I’m leaving Insider, and so the newsletter is going on hiatus.

Of course, I’ll miss working with the talented team of writers and editors here including Zach Tracer, our energy editor. Thanks for subscribing to Insider Energy and for sharing feedback. It means a lot!

If you’d like to keep up with Insider’s journalism, you can subscribe to a weekly newsletter featuring our best business reporting, curated by one of our top editors, Matt Turner.

For better or worse, I’m staying in journalism, and I’d love to keep in touch. You can find me on Twitter and LinkedIn. Oh, and feel free to share your pet photos with me through my personal email. Jumi will miss the spotlight.

Ending on a high note, we hosted a lively panel with four top energy execs on Monday. See more on that below.

ing roundtable 3   2x1 (1)

4 top energy execs dish on Big Oil’s reputation, the breakthrough tech we need, and why surging oil prices are actually good for clean energy

We hosted a live panel with executives from Shell, Facebook, Oliver Wyman, and buzzy battery startup Form Energy. The video and transcript are available on-demand here.

The highlights: Soaring oil prices won’t slow the clean-tech boom, according to Shell and Oliver Wyman. In fact, they could accelerate investments in transition technologies.

  • “This near-term price of oil actually accelerates us to be able to speed up the transition,” said Elisabeth Brinton, EVP for renewables and energy solutions at Shell.
  • Money is pouring into ESG funds, which has made the investment case for clean-energy projects comparable to oil and gas, said Francois Austin, partner and head of energy at Oliver Wyman.
  • Facebook is run on 100% renewable energy, as of last year. The key to getting there was partnering with utilities, which are also trying to reduce their emissions, said Urvi Parekh, Facebook’s head of renewable energy.
  • Electrochemical batteries are the cheapest and most feasible solution to the issue of intermittency, according to Form Energy (Form is developing that very technology).

A happy ending: We ended the panel by asking all four executives if they believed the world would realistically reach net-zero by 2050. Optimisim is in their job descriptions, but it was still nice to here the responses.

  • “Yes, if we get started right now. We really can’t afford to waste any more time. Not another five, not another 10 years. It’s got to get going right now,” said Mateo Jaramillo, the CEO and cofounder of Form Energy.
  • “Yes, because we are firmly focused on it and I believe people are good, have passion, and the capital is pouring in the right direction. But we have to put the pedal to the metal,” Brinton said.
  • “This is the decade for the corporates to really step up and really put the shovels in the ground and build the infrastructure,” Austin said.
  • “Yes. I’ve seen social and political will aligning around climate change in a way that’s unprecedented, and so I think that’s going to carry us a long way,” Parekh said.

Click here to read the full transcript or watch the event.

That’s it for now. Have a great week, and please keep in touch!

– Benji

Ps. Jumi is indifferent to my career (assuming his treat supply is uninterrupted).

Read the original article on Business Insider

Amazon is planning a push into podcast advertising

Good morning and welcome to Insider Advertising for March 12. I’m senior advertising reporter Lauren Johnson, and here’s what’s going on:

If this email was forwarded to you, sign up here for your daily insider’s guide to advertising and media.

Tips, comments, suggestions? Drop me a line at or on Twitter at @LaurenJohnson.

GettyImages 813883140
Jeff Bezos.

Amazon details how the company is ramping up its pitch for podcast advertising dollars

Read the story.

Kasey Jamison, director of sales of large customer category, Instacart

Meet the 14 execs leading Instacart’s push to build an advertising business that rivals Amazon and Walmart

Read the story.

Spherex Teresa Phillips
Spherex CEO Teresa Phillips.

How a tech startup is helping streaming TV services comply with local laws and avoid cultural missteps as they expand internationally

Read the story.

More stories we’re reading:

Thanks for reading and see you on Monday! You can reach me in the meantime at and subscribe to this daily email here.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Meet the top ad agency search consultants

Good morning and welcome to Insider Advertising for March 11. I’m senior advertising reporter Lauren Johnson, and here’s what’s going on:

If this email was forwarded to you, sign up here for your daily insider’s guide to advertising and media.

Tips, comments, suggestions? Drop me a line at or on Twitter at @LaurenJohnson.

Joanne Davis

13 top consulting firms that help decide which advertising agencies will win millions in ad spending

Read the story.

Maria Bartiromo.
Maria Bartiromo.

Fox News’ Maria Bartiromo bet big on Trump. Insiders say it’s a gamble that may destroy her career.

Read the story.

alan jope unilever
Unilever CEO Alan Jope

Unilever is shifting a $30 million chunk of its North American advertising account to Publicis in a big blow to ad giant WPP

Read the story.

More stories we’re reading:

Thanks for reading and see you tomorrow! You can reach me in the meantime at and subscribe to this daily email here.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Startups want to help vaccinate


Today in healthcare news: Startups want in on vaccination efforts, the potential of an intranasal vaccine, and what’s in the stimulus bill the Senate passed this weekend

Coronavirus vaccine
A pharmacist prepares the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine.

Digital health startups like Ro and Zocdoc want in on the US vaccination effort. They’re wading into a complex vaccine distribution puzzle.

Read the full story from Megan Hernbroth here>>

flumist intranasal flu vaccine
Actor James Van Der Beek gets vaccinated with a nasal-spray flu vaccine called FluMist on September 15, 2014.

A future COVID-19 vaccine could be squirted up the nose. The nasal spray could stop transmission, especially in kids.

Read the full story from Aylin Woodward and Allison DeAngelis here>>

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, Democrat from New York, united his caucus to pass $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief bill.

11 things you need to know about the revised COVID stimulus bill Senate Democrats just passed

Read the full story from Kimberly Leonard here>>

More stories we’re reading:


Read the original article on Business Insider

Pete Buttigieg brought star power to the Transportation Department. Insiders explain how he’s winning over his new staff, the White House, and Republicans.

Hello everyone!

Welcome to this weekly roundup of stories from Insider’s Business co-Editor in Chief Matt Turner. Subscribe here to get this newsletter in your inbox every Sunday.

What we’re going over today:

pete buttigieg
Pete Buttigieg drinks a root beer float while talking with journalists as he walks through the Iowa State Fair August 13, 2019.


This week was busy as ever, and we’ve got a ton of Insider deep dives to share with you today. But before we get to that, a look at what’s trending this morning:

Now, let’s get to it.

What Pete Buttigieg did next

From Adam Wren and Robin Bravender:

Rank-and-file Transportation Department employees saw their phones start blowing up the day President-elect Joe Biden announced that Pete Buttigieg was his pick to lead their agency.

One DOT staffer remembered being bombarded that December Tuesday with text messages, emails, and Facebook posts from friends who knew little about his actual job but were excited to hear that Buttigieg would be his boss. 

It’s not uncommon for political stars and former White House contenders to land in a presidential Cabinet, but they usually don’t call their new home the Transportation Department, a behemoth federal agency created during the Lyndon B. Johnson administration and whose portfolio includes pipeline safety, air-traffic control, and highway maintenance. 

Read the full story here:

Also read:

Black women CEOs and executives on their time in corporate America

Black women CEOs

From Jennifer Eum, Keishel Williams, Sawyer Click, and Taylor Tyson:

Across corporate America, the struggle to place women – especially Black women – at the helm of major companies continues. Paving the way forward are women like Thasunda Brown Duckett, who was just named CEO of retirement and investment manager TIAA. She will become only the fourth Black woman chief executive of a Fortune 500 company.

Duckett is one of 67 women featured in this collection of responses from influential Black businesswomen in America.

Insider asked these executives, from leading companies like Google, Salesforce, and Amazon, to reflect on their rise to the top, the struggle of being a Black woman in white corporate America, and the best career advice they’ve received. Their answers are raw and poignant, emotional and inspiring.

Read the full story here:

Also read:

Google’s superhuman hearing project


From Hugh Langley:

Alphabet’s moon-shots division, X, is quietly working on a top-secret augmented-reality device that would give people enhanced hearing abilities, Insider has learned.

The project, which is internally named “Wolverine,” is a nod to the comic-book mutant’s heightened sense of hearing, said four former employees familiar with the details, who asked to remain anonymous because they were not authorized to speak to the press.

The team started seriously working on the project in 2018, the sources said, and in that time it has gone through multiple prototypes and has gained the favor of executives like Google cofounder Sergey Brin.

 Read the full story here:

Also read:

Inside the downfall of Nikola founder Trevor Milton

trevor milton nikola profile 2x1

From Mark Matousek:

Trevor Milton’s star rose as Nikola raised a billion dollars in funding and assembled a blue-chip roster of partners and customers. By 2020, Milton, the serial entrepreneur who’d started four companies before Nikola and sold two of them, was being compared to Tesla CEO Elon Musk.

But last June, Bloomberg was the first to report that the One prototype Milton unveiled in 2016 couldn’t drive under its own power. Three months later, Hindenburg Research, a financial-research firm that calls out companies it thinks have misbehaved, said Milton had a long history of bending the truth.

Milton denied the allegations, but they hung over him until, a little over a week later, he resigned from the company that made him a billionaire, before it delivered a single truck.

Read the full story here:

Also read:

Lastly, don’t forget to check out Morning Brew – the A.M. newsletter that makes reading the news actually enjoyable.

Here are some headlines you might have missed last week.

– Matt

Demoralized junior bankers are contemplating ditching investment-banking altogether as they battle burnout after a grueling year working from home

Inside Apple’s ambitious next decade, where it could redefine consumer tech with a VR headset, foldable iPhone, and even an Apple Car

What hedge funds really think about SPACs: How a money-printing frenzy could end in tears for whoever’s holding the bag

GOLDMAN SACHS: Buy these 30 stocks that are set to keep surging as economic acceleration and inflation continue to lift interest rates

The Wall Street Journal is revamping its digital strategy to get more traffic – and it’s creating tension among some reporters

Meet the 15 executives with the most power under Amazon retail boss Dave Clark – and the 4 who got pushed down as he rose to CEO

Industry insiders say DraftKings is having M&A talks with a variety of potential targets. Here are the companies that could be on its shopping list and why.

Read the original article on Business Insider

What a 3rd authorized vaccine means for the summer


Hope you all had a great first week of March. I’ve been enjoying the longer hours of sunshine and some of the 60-degree days here in Denver. 

To start this week, I wanted to let you know we’re hiring for two new roles on the healthcare team! We’re looking to add another digital health reporter and another healthcare editor. You’d be working with me, editor Zach Tracer, and the rest of the fabulous team we have here at Insider. Interested in learning more? Let’s talk!

Meanwhile, this week, we chronicled the impact of having another vaccine available in the US, a rocky first day of trading for Oscar Health, and the arrival of 2021’s first digital health unicorn

Are you new to this newsletter? Subscribe here for daily updates from the healthcare team at Insider

summer pandemic in the US 4x3

What summer 2021 will be like

Last Saturday, the Food and Drug Administration authorized Johnson & Johnson’s coronavirus vaccine, adding a third shot to the US vaccine rollout. As an added bonus: it requires just one dose. 

That could dramatically impact what our summer looks like. On Tuesday, President Joe Biden said that we’ll have enough vaccines for “every adult in America” by the end of May.

Hilary Brueck and Andrew Dunn teamed up to argue that J&J’s vaccine is probably the best shot. That’s based the fact that it’s cheap, has mild side effects, and performs against the variants.

(What I got out of reading this post is that I shouldn’t write off the J&J shot just yet.) I’m still looking forward to one day getting a shot – any shot. 

More useful news: COVID-19 vaccines are proving crucial in curbing the pandemic by slashing infections, hospitalizations, and deaths, Andrew reports. That’s according to data coming in from the vaccine rollouts outside of clinical trials. 

In all, despite coronavirus cases plateauing at a lower level over the last week, there’s still reason to be optimistic about this summer, Andrew, Hilary, Aria Bendix, and Patricia Kelly Yeo report. 

Read the full story here>>

3 reasons to be optimistic about this summer, according to 18 doctors and scientists

Oscar Health CEO Mario Schlosser
Oscar Health CEO Mario Schlosser

A tough first day of trading for Oscar

After pricing at $39 a share Tuesday night, Oscar Health slipped 11% in its first day of trading. Shelby Livingston reports. The shares continued their slide, and are now trading around $32.

Oscar’s debut was a departure from 2020’s string of digital health initial public offerings, in which companies like Amwell, Oak. Street Health, and GoodRx all popped.

Even so, the IPO made a number of key investors in Oscar – including cofounder Josh Kushner – rich. Michael Goodman has the complete rundown here

I’ll be curious to see what awaits Alignment Healthcare, a Medicare Advantage startup with more members than Clover Health. Clover, a rival in the Medicare Advantage health insurance market, went public via SPAC in January. It’s been in the hot seat after a short-seller report, and is currently trading down off where it debuted. 

Alignment on Wednesday filed to go public, and its S-1 shows how it’s narrowing losses while transforming care for the sickest patients, Shelby reports. 

A big question that likely weighed on Oscar’s debut is one Shelby tackled in a smart analysis piece this week. 

Leading up to its public debut, Oscar was just about as good at losing money as it was at raising it. 

Its financials beg the question – Can Oscar ever turn a profit? 

Read the full story here>>

One giant question is swirling around the IPO of hot health insurer Oscar: Can the startup ever make money?

dispatch health 2
DispatchHealth clinicians treat patients in their own homes.

One of digital health’s first 2021 unicorn

Even with Oscar’s disappointing debut, there’s seemingly no slowing down to startup funding. 

This week, top biotech VC Arch Venture Partners and top tech VC General Catalyst filed paperwork to form a SPAC that’ll make a $500 million bet in 2 of the hottest areas of healthcare, Allison DeAngelis reports. 

And we got one of our first digital health unicorns of 2021 after DispatchHealth raised $200 million at a $1.7 billion valuation.

Megan Hernbroth and Blake Dodge got a copy of the (super short) presentation Dispatch used to raise the latest round for its vision of doing hospital-level care at home.

Read the full story here>>

We got an exclusive look at the presentation that convinced Tiger Global and Humana to invest in a startup’s bold vision to do hospitalizations at home at a $1.7 billion valuation

I’ll leave you with this feature from Allison on BridgeBio’s first drug approval. 

The company ran out of money 3 times on its way to the approval. Now, it’s facing its biggest test yet.

Thoughts on reaching a year of lockdowns, tips on news we missed back in March 2020 when every story idea that wasn’t coronavirus-related got tabled? Questions about the jobs we have open?

Reach me at, and you can reach the whole healthcare team at

– Lydia

Read the original article on Business Insider