Dear Distinguished Subscribers,

Welcome to the 68th Edition of Stuffed.

Despite the continuing uncertainty of 2021, we hope you’ve enjoyed Stuffed this year. It’s been a pleasure bringing you our weekly round up of all the good stuff that the fields of culture, creativity and communications have to offer. This will be the last edition of 2021, but we will return on the 7th January with our first edition of 2022. On that note, it’s Christmas! Treat your’elf to a glass of Champagne and those chocolates under the tree. Merry Christmas and a Happy New year. Stay safe everyone, we’ll see you soon.

If you haven’t already done so, you can subscribe to Stuffed here.

Happy reading and stay safe everyone.

From your friends at Goodstuff.

STUFFED WITH CULTURE

As another bizarre rollercoaster year draws to a close, and with no end to this situation in sight – it’s been fascinating to take a look back at the advertising which has captured the highs and lows of the national experience through 2021. The Drum’s round up of the year in ads captures optimism (Guinness’s anticipation of pubs reopening), IKEA’s fun look at the shifting nature of home, and Burberry’s beautiful and fantastical take on our open spaces.

Spotify’s “year in music” has become a bit of a December institution since its launch in 2017. It’s graphical, built for social and the perfect way to show off just how cool (or not) your tastes are. But it’s also a bit of an anachronism as we become increasingly aware of the social and personal impact of personal data powered algorithms. VOX has written a short but fascinating piece on our complicated relationship with personal data, and why Spotify are getting it right.

Let’s round out 2021 on a high – we could certainly use it! We were immensely cheered to hear that our friends at The Guardian now have over 1 million paid subscribers, having grown their paid support by an astonishing 43% in the last year. With quality, independent and accessible journalism more needed than ever – it’s fantastic to see their future being shored up by the audience they exist to serve. A vindication of their bravery and tenacity in breaking the biggest stories, and speaking truth to power.

 STUFFED WITH CREATIVITY

SPOILER ALERT: Peloton solved their Big problem

When the Sex and the city reboot killed off Mr Big whilst riding his Peloton bike, the fitness brand needed to remind customers that their bikes aren’t dangerous. So the brand leaned into the exposure, with wit and help from another A lister to reassure their riders.

Vodafone and ITV wish you a Happy Re-Boxing Day

Vodafone and ITV have partnered to rebrand Boxing Day as “Re-Boxing Day,” an initiative to ask the nation to re-box their unwanted phones and laptops as part of the brand’s mission to tackle digital poverty and give the gift of connection to those in need of devices.

Guinness are lighting up locals this Christmas

Pubs have fallen on hard times recently, but Guinness are eager to show that there is light at the end of the year. Alongside donating £30 million to keep pubs open, Guinness is Illuminating 22 pubs across the UK with dazzling Christmas lights to celebrate the festive period.

Brexit means rations for The Trussel Trust

There’s no denying that Brexit has been tough, especially for those without a home, so the Or and The Trussell Trust are raising awareness of the increased cost of Christmas Dinner and food price inflation with ‘Brexit Ration Packs,’ designed to nudge donations for The Trussell Trust.

STUFFED WITH COMMS

Nike x Metaverse

In a move that merges fashion, sportswear, and gaming, on Monday, Nike announced that they had bought virtual sneaker company RTFKT Studios: ““This acquisition is another step that accelerates Nike’s digital transformation and allows us to serve athletes and creators at the intersection of sport, creativity, gaming and culture,” (John Donahoe, President and CEO of Nike).

Buying a company that makes virtual shoes might appear to be simply a trend following move to get a foot in the door of the metaverse, but this deal also holds real monetary value. Earlier this year the blockchain based brand sold $3.1 million worth of NFTs in only 7 minutes. And Nike aren’t the only sportswear brand trying to establish themselves in the metaverse; Adidas has also partnered with another NFT specialist company in order to commission their first series of NFTs, meaning that competition for domination of the metaverse is already well underway.

Oxford gets its first Bee Bus

Oxford’s first Living Roof bus shelter has been installed in East Oxford, as part of work to support biodiversity across the city and enhance local communities.

The Living Roof bus shelter – also known as a ‘Bee Bus Stop’- is located on Morrell Avenue, is part of work to support native biodiversity, and to help create healthier local communities. The location was selected by Oxford City Council and it was designed and installed by partner Clear Channel, who will be maintaining it for the entirely of its life-span, at no cost to the tax-payer.

Oxford is the fifth city to install ‘Bee Bus Stops’, alongside Cardiff, Glasgow, Brighton and Leicester. Clear Channel has made a first-of-its-kind commitment to installing 2000 ‘Bee Bus Stops’ to increase biodiversity across UK cities by 2030, with the long-term aspiration to make these the standard across Europe.

Thanks for tuning in to the 68th edition of Stuffed, we’ll see you next week.