Monday, November 25th, 2013


Extra! Extra!

Note: NextDraft publishing will be sporadic this week.

Five years ago, I wrote a blog post in which I suggested that Yahoo should drop out of the search game and instead focus on what they were great at: News. Here's a clip: "Yahoo is grown up. They know what they're great at. They are great at news. When it comes to news, they absolutely crush Google ... Why not define yourself by your news services and the other stuff where you destroy the competition? Then when folks ask you about Google, you can honestly say they are neither big nor good enough for us to even worry about at this point." In past few months, several big name journalists (including David Pogue, Matt Bai, and now Katie Couric) have joined the Yahoo team. It makes sense. Yahoo has an absolutely huge news-seeking audience. Can they tie it all together and build a news brand with a clear voice, decent design, and quality original content? I'm not sure. But it's likely their last, best shot to remain one of the Internet's biggest sites.

+ With its content deals and large audience, Yahoo could be in a position to be a major player when it comes to video coverage of live news. There's definitely an opportunity as more people are cutting the cord and shifting the gaze of their eyeballs to laptops and mobile devices. From Business Insider: TV Is Dying, And Here Are The Stats That Prove It.


Everyone Loves a Parade

Thanksgiving will provide a reminder that TV isn't dead yet. It is still a national pastime, especially when it comes to live events such as parades and football games.

+ Thanksgiving is one of the biggest days of the year for one of the biggest brands in the world. And that means you'll be watching a lot of commercials. During the average NFL game, viewers get to watch about 11 minutes of actual action (and about 100 commercials).

+ While us old folks will be watching football, the younger crowd could very well be watching another growing spectator sport. Video games.


The Deal

Over the weekend, the United States, Iran and five other countries announced deal that could restrict Iran's ability and efforts to make a nuclear weapon and lead to an easing of economic sanctions. For John Kerry, the deal has been years in the making. His efforts began before he became Secretary of State, and Iran and the U.S. have been holding secret meetings for months.

+ WaPo: The good, the bad, and the ugly of the Iran nuclear deal.

+ The Guardian: Iran nuclear agreement Q&A.

+ Buzzfeed: Everything you need to know about the U.S.-Iran Nuclear deal.


$an Francisco

This town ain't big enough for both us (and 1,600 new Twitter millionaires). The NYT's Erica Goode and Claire Cain Miller pick up on a story that's been stirring up a lot of conversation in San Francisco. Are tech companies and the newly rich squeezing everyone else out of this town? They used to come out west for gold. Now they come for equity.

+ Wired's Alice Marwick: Silicon Valley isn't a meritocracy -- and it's dangerous to hero-worship entrepreneurs. True. Such adulation should be reserved for news curators.


Animals Were Harmed

The American Humane Association makes sure that none of those cute animals in Hollywood flicks are harmed during filming. If you do the right thing, your movie or show gets a No Animals Were Harmed accreditation. But when The Hollywood Reporter took a closer look at the association that was supposed to be ensuring animal safety, they found a whole lot of harmed animals.


And You Too…

"I hope my father dies soon. And while I'm at it, I might want you to die a painful death too. I'm entirely serious on both counts." Dilbert's Scott Adams shares a few angry words about doctor-assisted suicide laws.


Attack of the Spambots

Why did 9,000 porny spambots descend on this San Diego high schooler? The Atlantic's Alexis Madrigal tries to answer that question.

+ WSJ: Inside a Twitter robot factory. "Today, he says he manages 10,000 robots for roughly 50 clients, who pay Mr. Vidmar to make them appear more popular and influential."


The Basics

From CPR to treating a minor burn, Lifehacker's Melanie Pinola shares a list of eight basic life-saving skills everyone should know.

+ Speaking of life-saving tips, there's this: Canadians Rescue Shark Choking on Moose. See, Canadians are about more than Rob Ford.


Married with Longevity

John and Ann Betar of Bridgeport have learned a thing or two since they eloped on November 25th ... of 1932. Here's some relationship advice from America's longest married couple. My parents recently celebrated their 60th anniversary. When I asked my mom their secret, she responded with one word: Mishegas.


The Bottom of the News

OK, stop reading this item if you're concerned about potential spoilers when it comes to half-hour animated shows. But man did Family Guy surprise everyone with a tribute to a character who died.

+ Dry cleaning actually not all that dry. Talk amongst yourselves.

+ The upside to two concussions. A student athlete turned into a musical prodigy who can play more than ten instruments by ear.

+ Franco and Rogen remake the Kanye/Kim music video.

+ How the Internet has changed the meaning of a period.

+ Wow them at Thanksgiving. Cook your turkey in a dishwasher.