Where were you when the internet died on 8th June 2021 at approximately 11am?

I, like many of you, was in my home office. Browsing Twitter on a short coffee break from work (honest), a BBC Breaking News tweet stopped my mid-doom scroll:

“Major newspapers and government websites down.”

My first thought: “Uhoh. Somebody is getting sacked.”

My second thought: “Great. The internet is broken…AGAIN!”

The internet always seems to be on the verge of collapse these days. This time it was a problem related to the “edge cloud” provider Fastly, used by many major websites to improve speed and…

The French Open’s response to Naomi Osaka’s refusal to speak to the press, citing mental health concerns, has created huge waves. It’s the familiar tale of what happens when someone — notably a woman of colour — shows vulnerability in their profession, and rather than receiving empathy, finds reprimand.

But there’s a business lesson to take from this. Working from home, furlough, and Black Lives Matter have all signposted what the workplace ought to look like as we move back into the office. Perks like pizza on a Friday and yoga classes on World Mental Health Day shouldn’t necessarily fall…

Digital and data ethics came under the spotlight last week after the UK’s Online Safety Bill was announced in the Queen’s Speech. In this week’s ‘Five 5’ Velvet’s Andy Riley delves into recent headlines to see who’s on the nice list and who’s naughty when it comes to the murky world of digital ethics.

Do the right thing and read on to find out more …

1. The Online Safety Bill fails to keep everyone happy: who saw that one coming? Years in the making, the legislation formerly known as the Online Harms Bill was conceived as a means to…

There are a lot of us humans in the world at the moment with the last headcount coming in at 7.9bn. And with all of these people milling about, they’ll need to be fed.

The big weekly shop isn’t going to cut it, that’s clear — but the real issue is that our traditional arable farming set-up isn’t going to cover it either. The required landmass is just too vast to be sustainable, even more so when space is at a premium as urbanisation continues to increase. Enter Vertical Farming, which could just be the answer to feeding the world.

This week in our Friday 5 series we’re talking about influencers. From gaming to fashion and every niche in between, there is an influencer for everything! While influencers themselves are far from a new concept, their value within the marketing ecosystem has been hotly debated and is ever changing thanks to platforms such as TikTok and Twitch.

According to a recent survey conducted by Influencer Marketing Hub, 72% of marketers believe that the quality of consumers gained from influencer marketing campaigns is better than with other marketing strategies. …

Imagine if you couldn’t drink water for an entire year. Sure, you’re given some government-sanctioned droplets in the summer, and you looked at photos of a Chilly’s Bottle on the internet, but other than that? You’re parched.

That’s the music industry in 2021. Having somehow survived the advent of streaming, its main source of income — that being live shows — was taken away by the pandemic. Despite this, it’s still found ways to engage, entertain and provide new ways to present what is, for all intents and purposes, a product you can get for free.

1. Weezer started selling…

Undeterred by the memes of tents pitched outside Primark, shoppers savvy enough to know where the biggest discounts would be arrived early doors, for non-essential retail’s big reopening.

The most anticipated reopening was undoubtedly London’s Oxford Street. For much of the past year, you could hear a pin drop on a road that once attracted 200 million annual visitors, thus painting one of the starkest images of the pandemic’s painful impact on retail.

But this dead time and upheaval triggered plenty of questions. Experts and consumers alike wondered what Oxford Street would be without the Topshop and Debenhams flagships that…

A quick pop quiz to kick-off our Friday 5. Which “organisation” has a value of $4.76bn and revenues of $792m?

The answer?

Futbol Club Barcelona, more commonly known as Barca. The Catalan, footballing powerhouse and home of the game’s GOAT, Lionel Messi, has topped the Forbes list of ‘The World’s Most Valuable Soccer Team’. Even better for the club, it has taken the top spot off rivals Real Madrid. El Clasico? More like El Cashico!

Forbes also reports that soccer club values are up 30% on average in the past two years. …

Friday 5: Our Podcast Recommendations

At Velvet, we love listening to a good podcast — from football to mental health, our appetite for information and spirited debate is never ending. The only thing we enjoy more than listening to a podcast is getting our clients on them as guests!

Podcasts provide an incredible opportunity to reach a highly engaged audience and spark dialogue thanks to their accessibility. For example, did you know that on average 6.5 million UK adults listen to a podcast per week and 67% of the audience listen to the whole episode?

We’re proud to have secured…

Velvet PR

We are the clever communications people. We provide PR consultancy to clients across the UK.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store