The Best Of NewCo Shift — Week of September 26th


Here’s another week’s edition of NewCo Shift Weekly, a roundup of top NewCo Shift stories. Thank you for continuing reading and sharing these stories. Remember to follow us on Medium and social media to receive real time notifications from all our stories as they’re published. And let us know what you’re interested in us covering or pitch your own stories at Thanks for your support!

Lost Context: How Did We End Up Here?

Today marketers pour the majority of their budgets into the Google/Facebook duopoly — 70–85% of all digital advertising dollars go to the one or the other of them, and nearly all growth in digital marketing spend is attributable to them as well. But the real story is the complex, out of control nature of their ad platforms, which are now being hijacked by Russian actors and lord knows who else. How did we let that happen?

“Selective Constitutionalism”

No one argues that our Constitution has, at its core, a principle of equality. And as such, that principle has been repeatedly said to apply to the “presidential selection process.” If so, it ought to hold that the state system of winner-take-all is inconsistent with equality and the electoral college treats votes unequally. A thought provoking OpEd from legal scholar Larry Lessig.

Artificial Intelligence: The Good, The Bad, and The Unfathomable

How will AI affect humanity? Andrew Chakhoyan writes that as the world edges towards singularity, future technology is bound to enhance the human experience in some way, and it is up to us to make sure it is for the better. If not, we will face stark consequences.

Why The Frack Can’t We Fix “CRM”?

John Battelle offers an idea on how to fix Customer Relationship Management (CRM), which is a terrible thing to call the relationship between business and its customers. The idea calls for a different kind of tech platform. One with massive resources and significant AI, data, and tech chops. One with deep ties to the enterprise marketplace and brand permissions not corrupted by years of chasing advertising revenue. One that is hungry for a consumer facing hit that fits hand in glove with their core competencies and their core mission. Which company will that be?

How to Go to a Sex Party for Work

One of our Premium stories in partnership with Medium shows what you can learn from attending a roving erotic masquerade ball of sorts thrown by a private sex society that made those other mansion parties seem downright chaste by comparison. Hugh Garvey, Editor at Playboy, covered the front lines for the men’s magazine, which oddly helped him navigate both work and life.

Rebecca Skloot Has Too Much Information

Our Premiums interview series by Steven Johnson continues with an interview with the author of The Immortal Life Of Henrietta Lacks, Rebecca Skloot. In the interview, she discusses the challenges of multi-threaded narratives, the joys of reporting in a Hazmat suit, and why writing a book is like a Homeland episode. This interview series alone makes a Medium membership worth it.

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