Boarding pass face

February 21st, 2024

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Two ships passing in the night. That’s how Quick Study describes ads and audiences in the final part of their four-part series on Soloculture (which we’ve shout out before). “The likely result isn’t a crash; it’s that they’ll never know the other was there.” According to their research, 30% of Americans struggle to name a brand that’s relevant in their life today. So, hot take: the way advertising works right now is basically broken. If you want to deep dive into Soloculture, you can start your adventure here.

In other news... fashion brands are shaping travel itineraries, facial recognition tech is taking off at the airport, and Tastemade is cooking something up with Pinterest.

Top Trends

YouTube → Civil War

Google → Borderlands

Reddit → Beyoncé

TikTok → “Galway Girl”

Spotify → “Brain Damage”

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Courtesy of Kenny Flowers

Fashion enters its travel era

The Future. The COVID years drove fashion towards ecommerce, but a renewed push for IRL experiences has moved brands to find novel ways to make customers travel in their designs. As designers curate how to travel, where to stay, and what to eat, imagine a luxury brand introducing its own concierge service to design an entire vacation.

Room runway
Fashion brands want to influence your travel itinerary.

  • They’re collabing on pieces. California brand Sporty & Rich partnered with Le Bristol Paris on a capsule, while Kenny Flowers designed a line with Hawaii’s Mauna Kea Beach Hotel.

  • They’re taking over lobbies. Anya Hindmarch did a pop-up of bespoke travel accessories at Rosewood London, and jeweler Garrard designed the hotel’s lobby for Christmas last year.

  • They got a room. The Milestone Hotel in London has a room called the “Hermès Suite,” while Round Hill Hotel and Villas in Jamaica was decked out by Ralph Lauren.

  • They’re influencing the menu. Gucci hired Michelin-starred chef Massimo Bottura for the Gucci Osteria in LA, and Stella McCartney partnered with The Macallan whiskey brand on a pop-up restaurant.

And if you’re a true luxury adventurer, Dior launched two “Spa Cruises” on the Seine this month. Or, as we call it, “ferrying, but make it fancy.”

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Face flight // Illustration by Kait Cunniff & David Vendrell with Midjourney

Airports check your face at the door

The Future. Despite privacy and ethics concerns, biometric technology is taking off at both domestic and international airports — rolling out to speed up security screenings, access to terminal amenities, and even paying for food. One day, airports may no longer have the thing that flyers hate the most: lines.

Biometric boarding
Today’s TSA PreCheck will soon be child’s play.

  • Major airlines like Delta, American, and United have rolled out facial recognition tech to speed up bag drops and security screenings and gain entrance into airport lounges — cutting down wait times by half.

  • The TSA and Customs & Border Protection are each rolling out their own tech as a way to speed up international arrivals and departures — both hope to have their tech in over 400 airports in the coming years.

  • Internationally, Germany’s Frankfurt Airport and almost all the airports in China let passengers use their face for everything once they check in.

A study by air transport IT firm SITA found that 70% of global airlines will likely use biometric identification by 2026, and 90% of airports are investing in the tech. So, even when travel gets stressful, don’t lose your head.

So, now we want to hear from you…


We ask the hard-hitting questions.

Are you into facial recognition tech?

Login or Subscribe to participate in polls.

59.7% of you voted Yes in yesterday’s poll: Do you have stomach issues?

“Thanks pregnancy for a hiatal hernia and out-of-control acid reflux!”

“I have been suffering from IBS since 2000. I have had my gallbladder removed when I had gallstones.”

“No, and I hope it will stay that way!”

“Collagenous colitis.”

“No, I drink a kombucha and two cups of coffee every morning!”

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Courtesy of Tastemade

Tastemade helps Pinterest take a bite of streaming-powered retail

The Future. Tastemade and Pinterest are blending entertainment and commerce with their first streaming series: the shoppable cooking show Deliciously Entertaining. The series may make product placement both organic and actionable — providing a blueprint for struggling digital publishers to open up a new line of revenue.

Edible programming
Tastemade and Pinterest hope their new show makes you hungry.

  • Deliciously Entertaining will consist of ten 22-minute episodes that’ll premiere on Tastemade’s streaming channels and apps on Friday, February 23rd, with new episodes airing weekly.

  • Hosted by cookbook author Danni Rose, each episode invites a guest to bring over a “deeply personal food item” to be used in recipes. Announced guests include *NSYNC’s Lance Bass, chef Kalisa Marie, and Pinterest influencer Joy Cho.

  • Each episode also includes a QR code that links to a Pinterest board with shoppable pins, allowing audiences to purchase ingredients or put Pins on their boards.

Like with Tastemade’s newly announced deal with Amazon MGM Studios, Pinterest is hoping that the show drives engagement on the platform… even though the series itself won’t be on Pinterest. A study by NRG found that 84% of Tastemade viewers have made two or more recipes featured in the brand’s videos.

That all sounds like a recipe for success.

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The best curated daily stories from around the web

Media, Music, & Entertainment

  • Sony has closed a deal for Sam Mendes (1917, Skyfall) to direct a Beatles biopic as four separate theatrical films each told from the perspective of a different band member. Read More → deadline

  • Universal  Music Group bought a minority stake in Chord Music Partners (which owns 60,000 songs from top acts like The Weeknd and Lorde) for $240 million. Read More → bloomberg

  • HBO is delaying the posting of YouTube segments from Last Week Tonight with John Oliver by a few days to encourage audiences to watch the series on Max instead. Read More → thr

Fashion & E-Commerce

  • LVMH is going Hollywood with the launch of 22 Montaigne Entertainment. Read More → deadline

  • Capital One is buying Discover in a massive $35 billion deal, building the largest credit card company in the US. Read More → bloomberg

  • Jordan Brand is launching a World of Flight retail store in Philadelphia — its first standalone store in the US. Read More → complex

Tech, Web3, & AI

  • Softbank is looking to raise $100 billion for a massive AI chip project, pitting it against OpenAI and Nvidia. Read More → theinformation

  • A global police operation took down LockBit, the largest ransomware gang in the world. Read More → wired

  • Apple says that it’s actually not a good idea for people to dry their iPhones by putting them in bowls of rice. Read More → fastcompany

Creator Economy

  • YouTube is still the leader in TV streaming in the US, commanding 8.6% of total TV-watching time. Read More → techcrunch

  • MrBeast claims that his Feastables chocolate bar has become the best-tasting chocolate ever. Read More → tubefilter

  • Fujifilm, after its X100V camera went viral on TikTok, is releasing a new camera, the X100V1, that it promises won’t sell out like its last version. Read More → theverge

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Today’s email was written by David Vendrell.
Edited by Boye Akolade. Copy edited by Kait Cunniff.
Published by Darline Salazar.

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