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If at that moment the entertainment changes forever, it's not just because the streaming won. It will also be because total control is irresistible.
Warner Bros., the Hollywood powerhouse whose films include the series “Wonder Woman” and “Harry Potter” as well as “Casablanca”, said Thursday that all new films in 2021 would hit theaters and their siblings at the same time -Streaming Service, HBO Max, my colleagues Brooks Barnes and Nicole Sperling wrote.
So far, on the day they debuted in theaters, we had a few new films available to us in the US to watch at home. But never on this scale.
Warner Bros. said its film-plus-streaming approach was a temporary measure while the pandemic made some people suspicious outside cinemas. But don't be fooled. It will be almost impossible to go back to the old ways, as Brooks and Nicole wrote.
You and your colleagues at The Great British Baking Show know why. "This is about turning HBO Max into a Netflix," said Brooks.
Conventional entertainment companies like AT&T, the Warner Bros., Walt Disney, and basically anyone who's ever made a TV show are trying to become Netflix, and fast. (Recode media writer Peter Kafka, who said another contributing factor to Warner Bros. online movie releases is the weaknesses of the cinema chains, wrote about the urge to catch up with Netflix a few weeks ago.)
But it's also important to understand an underrated motivation behind Netflix envy. This isn't just about streaming cable TV companies and movie theaters. The Netflix model represents a complete reorganization of entertainment into discrete empires that control as much as possible from the first frame of a movie recording to the last pixel of a movie you watch on your phone.
The old entertainment model involved constant transfers of control. A movie making company relies on a cineplex to release it and then re-submits its product to video rental stores (remember them?), Movie downloaders, television channels, and other outsiders to make sure it's seen .
This new approach foregoes some of that. Instead, Netflix tries to control almost everything from start to finish. It's not here yet and AT&T isn't going that far with HBO Max, but that's the direction everyone is headed in.
It's like Ford strived to make every part that went in its cars, assemble the vehicles, and sell them instead of buying parts from a number of different suppliers and going through dealerships.
There has been almost nothing like it before, and so this reorganization of the entertainment industry is different from the history of great changes that has often led Hollywood to predict its own demise.
To be honest, I don't know if the self-contained Empire model that inspired Netflix will last. Even Netflix has to borrow money all the time, as it typically spends more money each year than it gets from our subscriptions. But since every major entertainment company is trying to control its own destiny, don't underestimate how big the business is.
Google is not a normal place to work
A well-respected Google researcher, Timnit Gebru, said she was fired from the company after criticizing the approach to minority attitudes and the prejudices built into artificial intelligence, reported my colleagues Cade Metz and Daisuke Wakabayashi.
(You can read the email here that Dr. Gebru wrote to a group of Google employees and one that Jeff Dean, who oversees Google A.I.work, wrote to the company.)
We are seeing increasing conflicts between technology company workers and their employers over issues such as workplace safety, diversity and technology ethics.
This is probably not because Google, Facebook or Amazon have more disagreements between management and employees than a restaurant chain or accounting firm. Big tech companies are no ordinary employers. The outside world pays more attention to what it is doing, and we should do it.
These gigantic corporations are trendsetting everything from office design to employee pay, and they should be kept at a higher level. Companies often say they want and deserve the extra attention, but I'm not sure they mean business.
When Dai wrote an article in 2017 about an analysis that found that Google paid males more than women at most job levels, the company's then HR director told him, “I believe Google because of its size, and maybe our size or our importance in people's everyday life, i think we are in the spotlight. It feels a little unfair. "
I have not forgotten this quote. I think this executive said something out loud that most of her colleagues believe but kept to themselves. She was right that Google was in the spotlight. She was wrong that it was unfair.
Google's parent company has a stock market value that is close to Spain's gross domestic product. It is completely fair, therefore, that it should receive the same amount of attention as a large country.
Before we go …
Speaking of big tech jobs: The federal government sued Facebook, accusing it of being un-American by favoring foreign workers on visas over those from the US, my colleagues Cecilia Kang and Mike Isaac wrote. This lawsuit, they said, shows that big-tech companies are not benefiting American politicians from either major party.
Can little nudges make the internet more beautiful? YouTube said it would start throwing reminders at people before posting potentially offensive comments on videos, Axios reported. Many popular internet services have tried methods like this one to get people thinking before posting something they may regret or sharing inaccurate information. There is mixed evidence that it works.
We love shops – to return things we bought online: Recode wrote about why Amazon and other ecommerce sellers are offering more options for personal returns, often in physical stores that compete with ecommerce sellers.
A couple in Australia returned home after an outing and found this koala stuck to their plastic Christmas tree. The koala was VERY GRUMPY from being pulled from its place by wildlife rescuers, but she was moved to a real tree outside.
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