Yesterday was World Emoji Day…


July 18, 2019

Today, textbooks are going away, and Apple’s iArmy is here to stay. But first…
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Ford’s secret fight for a pickup truck emoji

Starting next year, emoji pickup trucks will likely be available on cell phones near you (Google and Android). It makes sense: Pickups are the most popular vehicles in the country.

But the process of how the pickup truck got pixelated is much dicier. Ford spent two years lobbying for the emoji, according to The Atlantic, and the design looks strangely similar to a Ford Ranger. 

The situation leads to a very 21st century question: How much influence should brands have on bringing emoji into the digital world? 

Meet the Unicode Consortium

New emoji don’t just magically appear. They’re selected by the Unicode Consortium, a volunteer organization that oversees the appearance of every computerized text and emoji (either the lamest or the coolest way to spend free time, depending on your personality).

Anybody can propose a new emoji. In the past, plenty of brands have done so unsuccessfully, including Kit Kat and Durex. Ford failed two years ago as well.

But a Unicode Consortium volunteer said she didn’t know this recent pickup proposal was sponsored by Ford. A pickup presentation suggested an outside creative agency and didn’t include any logos or branding — not even a subtle “this slide was built Ford tough.”   

Not that it would have mattered

The volunteer said the proposal likely would have been accepted no matter what. 

“Companies and their agencies usually have terrible proposals, and I remember the (pickup truck’s) being very good,” she told The Atlantic.  

Ford has spent $50k on a campaign to promote this new emoji — a steal. Twitter has charged $1m for branded emoji during the Super Bowl.

The decision to accept the pickup emoji still needs to be finalized, but Ford is already celebrating with, uh, Bryan Cranston?

Never bored at Ford
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He turned interview rejections into a $20M sale

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In the newest episode of The Hustle’s podcast, My First Million, host Shaan Puri explores how Ryan Hoover went from getting rejected at job interviews, to becoming his own boss at Product Hunt, to nailing an 8-figure sale to Angel List. And it all started with emailing people one by one… sound familiar? 

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Apple built an iArmy to clamp down on thievery… and it’s working

Over the years, thieves and copycats have gone to dramatic lengths to steal secrets from Apple.

Six years ago, a rogue warehouse worker falsified documents, recruited a security guard, and infiltrated the gantlet of security cameras to steal thousands of iPhone 5C parts before the highly anticipated phones hit the markets, reports The Information.

But it wasn’t an isolated incident…

Everyone wants a bite of Apple

Since Apple is so secretive about its product releases, information about the company’s upcoming products has obsessed fanboys and criminals alike. 

How obsessed are people with Apple info, you ask?  Exhibit A: 9to5Mac, a website dedicated to round-the-clock Apple rumors that features articles like “A comprehensive guide to the modern furnishings of Apple Store Boardrooms.”

But other Apple-heads are more nefarious: Factory workers have attempted to smuggle out parts in mop water, garbage, and hidden crawl spaces — and even attempted to dig tunnels out of the factory. 

So Apple got super serious about security

To ward off thieves and copycats, Apple created a New Product Security (NPS) team to manage security at 100 factories, recruiting personnel from the NSA and the US military to secure their assets.

Apple’s private security program — the largest of its kind — has succeeded by operating with military efficiency: Female employees at Apple suppliers are required to wear metal-free bras to pass through security checkpoints.

» iSecret Service
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Pearson announces plans to turn the page on physical textbooks

Books? Like of paper origin? What are these physical readings you speak of? 

This is bound to be a topic of historical wonderment in the future. And it starts today as Pearson, the world’s largest education publisher, has taken its first step toward its “digital first” outlook as it starts to phase out print books.

We are now over the digital tipping point

The 175-year-old firm has struggled for years as students gravitate toward used print textbooks to save money. But as digital learning takes focus of Pearson’s model, things are starting to slowly turn around.

According to CEO John Fallon, over half of Pearson’s annual revenues come from digital sales already.

In order to make up for that lost paperback cashola, Pearson will stop revising print books every 3 years, as it has previously done for the last 4 decades.

But what about the authors?

That’s right. There are people who actually write textbooks, AKA college professors, who view the medium through the precision of instructional language. 

It’s fair that this would be worrisome news to those putting into text the craft of underwater basket weaving (or whatever your joyous poison may be), as we’ve seen what subscription models have done financially to artists like musicians and TV writers.

But Fallon claims the firm’s plan would provide authors with “a more sustainable income over time.”

» Royalties anyone?

In the growing microwedding industry, nuptial newcomers say ‘till death do us start-(up)’

Last year, David’s Bridal — which commanded 30% of the $2B bridal dress market — filed for bankruptcy.

It’s the same story across the industry: Younger couples are divorcing themselves from expensive, old-school wedding providers. Wedding planning revenues are slipping, and the number of bridal stores is falling.

But weddings aren’t going away: Instead, they’re just getting smaller — and a new industry has caught the bouquet: microweddings.

Now, startups are offering a more modern matrimony

Startups such as Bloomerent, Anomalie and Our Story Bridal are bringing the wedding planning process into the 21st century by offering digital services and competitive prices.

Local wedding planning companies across the country are offering “pop-up weddings” that only cost around $1,500. 

Wedding startups offer a wide range of services. Zola offers a digital registry, letting guests contribute to a couple’s honeymoon fund instead of buying them a pair of embroidered oven mitts. All Seated helps couples choose a venue by letting them explore it in VR first.

» The World Wide Wed

Still curious about micro-weddings?

The previous story was adapted from a Trends report by The Hustle. Check out the full story here.

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Why? Because the company that makes them — OluKai — is a certified B Corp. 

That’s a distinction reserved for businesses that make great products while also contributing to the well-being of their employees, communities, and the environment.

See, OluKai uses responsibly — and sustainably — sourced materials to make their shoes, but they don’t stop there. They also support causes that have a direct benefit to Hawaiian life and culture, like reforestation, regrowing of native crops, and even celestial navigation. Oooh, science-y. 

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Some of you asked what the workshops on day 2 would cover. Each session will follow 1 of 3 tracks: Founders just starting out, Operators looking to hone their management skills, and Founders looking to go BIG. Here’s a sneak peek of the sessions: 

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The Super Discounted™ ticket sale ends midnight Friday. Don’t be the one reader left out of the networking opportunity of 2k19. 

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