The 11th Hour Dispatch – Tuesday, April 24, 2018

| April 24, 2018

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BINGE WATCH

Cartoon Network has teamed up with the popular site HowStuffWorks to launch a podcast that details how animated cartoon series are made. The 11-episode series Drawn: The Story of Animation will debut on May 1 and will feature discussions about “the history of animation and the cultural influence of cartoons” with show creators, voice actors, and cartoon historians from beloved series like Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Family Guy, and Adventure Time, as well as executives from Cartoon Network and Adult Swim. This is the network’s second podcast behind the Steven Universe Podcast, which has garnered more than half a million downloads and is now in its second season. Both podcasts are part of Turner Podcast Network which includes series from CNN, Bleacher Report, truTV, and the NBA, among others, and reaches an average monthly audience of more than 7.2 million unique users with more than 11.7 million downloads.

YOUNG MONEY

Slow your roll, flavored water. Diet Coke may not be dead yet. The soda’s sales are back on track for the first time since 2010 thanks to its recently released skinny fruit-flavored cans of soda. Before this year’s Q1 report, Diet Coke had reported flat sales for the last eight years. Thanks in part to this small Diet Coke revival, Coca-Cola’s Q1 net income increased to $1.37 billion from $1.18 billion in 2017. The iconic beverage company also reported earnings of 47 cents per share, which beat Wall Street estimates by a single Abraham Lincoln (that’s a penny for any anti-U.S. mint nerds). The company also showed a 5% increase in organic revenue (excluding currency swings, acquisitions, and divestitures), and reported $1.37 billion in profit, which is a bit higher than the $1.2 billion it pulled in last year. Overall though, Coke’s revenue fell 16% to $7.6 billion for the quarter due to the divestiture of its bottling operations, and investors weren’t incredibly impressed either. Coke closed the day down 2.09%

BIG BUSINESS

If you ever step away from the internet for even a second (wow, why would you do that to yourself), you’ve probably never heard of Lil Miquela. She’s an Instagram influencer with more than 1 million followers, magazine spreads, and numerous brand deals — but she’s not a real person. Recently, the AI collective Brud outed itself as the creator of the “virtual influencer” after it was “hacked” by another virtual influencer called Bermudaisbae — eventually revealed to be another creation of Brud. The so-called “hack” was actually “an ongoing virtual reality drama” orchestrated by Brud to cause a media firestorm, which it successfully did. Several outlets including TechCrunch, The Cut, and Highsnobiety covered the feud before Brud took credit for the entire thing. The company has been building up the Lil Miquela persona for the last two years and planning a soap-opera-type storyline into which it can potentially introduce new virtual characters like Lil Miquela, Bermudaisbae, and the lesser known Blawko22. Even crazier, Brud is reportedly backed by some power players in VC including Sequoia Capital (Apple, Google, Oracle, PayPal, YouTube, Instagram, 23andMe), BoxGroup, and SV Angel, so there’s no telling what it has up its sleeve now that the world knows who the man behind the curtain is. And if you’ve learned anything from this ramble, just know nothing is real and nothing matters, so follow all the bots you want!

NOTHIN’ BUT ‘NET

Aidy Bryant’s getting a Hulu series and I am so proud of this person I have never met.

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