The Weekly Download – February 3, 2017

Spodek & Co. - The Weekly Download - February 3, 2017, photo of four kids of different racesTo be honest, I don’t even know where to begin this week. From a work perspective, it’s been incredibly productive and positive. From a news perspective, it’s been incredibly grim, not only because of what’s happening in the U.S. but even right here at home with the terrorist attack at a mosque in Quebec where at least six people lost their lives. There are no words to describe what it means when people can’t pray in a peaceful and safe environment, except perhaps “Never Forget”

I’m torn between sharing warm and fuzzy stories versus sharing the stories keeping me up at night. There used to be an idea that businesses should avoid being political for fear of offending. Much of the current sentiment has changed. Business Quebec - image of Fleur de Lys and Mosqueleaders, including those in the communications, marketing and PR worlds saying the it’s up to us to effect change and put pressure on governments to do what’s right. It’s time to step up and speak out about political change that threatens our values, particularly when it comes to our civil and human rights. Either way, it looks like there will be plenty of opportunities for issues management and crisis communications planning this year. Where do you sit on this topic? Should consumer brands join celebrities by taking political action or making strong political statements? What about the impact on their reputation? I’d love to know your thoughts in the comments.

CEOs Take a Stand

Several leaders of the Canadian tech community came together last weekend and collaborated on An Open Letter from the Canadian Tech Community: Diversity is Our Strength. Initially, it was signed by 150 people. As of February 2, about 3,000 signatures (including mine) were received in support of the statement. It’s not too late to add your name.  Leaders south of the border are taking action too, most notably those in the tech community and the list is growing.


And on the flip side of the coin, Uber got into some hot water causing a public outcry for people to #DeleteUber app. Why? Because the company was faced with accusations that its drivers had either implemented “surge pricing” for people needing to get to and from Kennedy Airport or refused to take people to/from the airport during the Muslim travel ban protest. Not surprising, Uber is now in the midst of some damage control and CEO Travis Kalanick has resigned from the President’s business advisory council.

James Corden’s Post-Ban Trip Through LAX

Ellen DeGeneres explains the true meaning of ‘Finding Dory’

Oh, the irony! While the new U.S. government administration imposed a travel ban causing another weekend of protests in the U.S. and abroad, the President screened Finding Dory at his new home. And boy did Ellen have fun with that.

Budweiser’s Super Bowl 2017 Commercial Focuses on Immigration

Super Bowl Sunday is this weekend and you may already be seeing an emphasis on more poignant themes. Known for its classic Super Bowl ads with Clydesdales, this year Budweiser became political and tells a story about the important role immigrants played in shaping the United States with an emphasis on the American Dream.
Budweiser 2017 Super Bowl Commercial | “Born The Hard Way”

Instagram Introduces Albums

Just like its parent company, Facebook, and other photo sharing sites, Instagram has introduced albums giving you the ability to combine up to 10 photos in one post. What made Instagram unique was the single-photo post. Do you think albums will enhance or detract from Instagram’s visual storytelling? Mashable thinks it’s the beginning of the end.

Friday Fun

Beyoncé Twins
Yes, Queen Bey is now eating for three! What do you think of how she shared the news about the Carter family’s upcoming expansion? Gorgeous photo or over the top? Either way, with 8 million likes within the first 24 hours, it now holds the record as the most-liked Instagram photo ever!

Love Wins
The Black Eyed Peas – #WHERESTHELOVE ft. The World (h/t Carolyn Gooderham)

Ada’s Sisters – Episode 55: Icaros, CRA and big data, the Hater app and Gen Z

If you’ve ever wanted to fly you’re going to love the ICAROS flying fitness machine. You’re not going to love hearing that the Canadian Revenue Agency is using big data to find cheaters. Actually, we’re not surprised. But you know what did surprise us? This article about how Gen Z uses their mobiles and this new HATER app. Crazy what we’ll do to find Mr. Right. Speaking of crazy, we need to talk about the hate tweets against Premier Wynne. But don’t worry, we’ve got a fun, tool tip this week from Google Maps. Listen up and if you enjoy what you hear, we’d love if you’d give it a review on iTunes.

Line drawn peony from Spodek & Co Digital marketing site