The Federal Communications Commission has delayed its review of Comcast's proposed $45 billion merger with Time Warner Cable -- which, if approved, would greatly increase Comcast's broadband
footprint. The FCC is also suspending its review of AT&T's proposed merger with DirecTV.
In early October, it was revealed that Snoop Dogg—alongside other investors such as Andreessen Horowitz, Sequoia Capital, Peter Thiel, Ron Conway and Jared Leto—purchased a portion of Reddit through a $50 million funding round. Reddit told the Financial Times it plans to use the money to increase its staff, mobile offerings and ad products. "I've been involved in a few tech ventures over the years. Reddit is particularly interesting to me because it is such an open forum to touch base with people directly," Snoop said, adding that he loves the site because it puts users first. Snoop has been an active Redditor, conducting successful Ask Me Anything (AMA) question-and-answer sessions on the site, including the second most successful AMA in Reddit's history after President Barack Obama's. He also acts as a moderator for the the "r/trees marijuana subreddit" group. But it can be more than that for Snoop. Ted Chung—co-founder of Cashmere Agency and Snoop's manager—said the hip-hop icon's success on Reddit shows the influence celebrities have on the close-knit community, which could be a boon for brands. "I think Reddit is a really stellar example of how Snoop can get involved with the tech community and take it from a niche into the mainstream," Chung said. Previously, Snoop used Reddit to sell a specially designed shirt to raise money for the Marijuana Policy Project. He's also jumped in on others AMAs to drive promotion to their chats. But now the artist will be focusing on his own efforts. Chung said the star will use Reddit to promote his untitled album, set to drop early next year. "The different ways you've seen Snoop and Cashmere Agency utilize different online mediums for visibility and interact with fans in the community, we can manipulate that for future campaigns," Chung explained.
In case you missed it, Wheaties made a commemorative box with former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright on it. For the General Mills cereal, known as the "breakfast of champions," a one-shot box with Albright is part of an effort to redefine what kind of champions the brand will be touting. Just finished my "breakfast of champions." Thank you @GeneralMills! #wheaties pic.twitter.com/f4K3sL6iXO — Madeleine Albright (@madeleine) October 16, 2014 "A champion is no longer solely the megastar athlete; it is also any person who looks inside and challenges their personal best," the brand says on its website. "And that's the ethos of the current incarnation of Wheaties: celebrating the awe-inspiring superstars." While Wheaties has had a long history of success with sports stars—the brand first struck gold with Lou Gehrig in the 1930s—it's exciting to see it shake things up. Albright may be a very different kind of star, but maybe she's the kind that could get Americans excited about cereal again. Facebook Likes: 196,957 Twitter Followers: 8,551 Instagram Followers: 739 The brand has been using its social channels to revamp the Wheaties image to fit in with millennials, using hashtags like #tbt and #grandpaswag to generate more interest. Nothing has been as successful as Albright's tweet, though. While a little bizarre, the spot above certainly grabs your attention. Is the Wheaties flake supposed to be buff? Why are the legs so skinny then? The cereal was created by accident by a health clinician at Washburn Crosby Company (predecessor to General Mills) in 1921. He liked the taste of his cooked wheat gruel and let the company know. Wheaties helped kickstart Ronald Reagan's career. He'd been an Iowa sportscaster, and through a nationwide Wheaties poll, he was voted as the favorite announcer. He'd won a free trip from Wheaties to California and while out there took a Warner Brothers' screen test. Michael Jordan has appeared on the Wheaties box a record 18 times.
Facebook swaps out its usual grandiose advertising with this cute TV spot from Wieden + Kennedy that captures some of the intimate emotions behind social media. In the past, Facebook's ads have been criticized for not focusing on the intimate, human moments that social media can spur. Its Facebook Home ads last year were and 2012's "Chairs" was even more over the top. But the new spot, titled "Say Love You Better," takes Facebook in a different direction. Life-size speech bubbles pop up over two lovebirds as they send short messages back and forth to each other via Facebook Messenger. It's also a clever take on mobile messaging, which often only mentions texting features in ads. The idea is to show that Facebook Messenger can share much more than text—it includes audio, video and stickers. The 30-second spot feels like a mix of Oreo's "Wonderfilled" and some of Google's better TV work—and indeed, the director here, Aaron Duffy of 1stAveMachine, has done lots of Google ads, including its famous 2010 Super Bowl spot "Parisian Love." The ad is running in Los Angeles and Chicago, and the campaign will be expanded to include out-of-home elements in November—a first for Facebook. Billboards in Chicago and L.A.'s airports and freeways will play up creative showing the different features of Facebook Messenger. Ads will also wrap Chicago's "L" trains and bus shelters. Whether the campaign will drive app downloads is unclear, but it's a tactic other digital companies are latching on to. Earlier this week, Foursquare launched its first brand campaign also aimed at driving app downloads using out-of-home and digital ads. The media push comes at a key time for Facebook, as the number of mobile messaging apps continues to grow. A report from Forrester Research earlier this year outlined the top 10 messaging apps, with Facebook Messenger claiming only 200 million users, compared to 500 million for WhatsApp (also owned by Facebook).