Media stays Covid-escapist, but grief creeps in

“You won’t see many mask-wearers in films this year.”

Climate change coverage will evolve in unintended ways. News outlets may not have dedicated climate desks, but existing teams will have to cover news on their beat that is caused by global warming. Breaking news desks will cover more and more disasters, business desks will report on energy costs and supply chain breakdowns, and local desks will examine how flash flooding has damaged communities. Even the sports desks will need to adjust. Expect more stories about athletes being overcome by heatstroke or how a powerful windstorm blew a ball off the field.

Covid-19 cultural touchstones will continue to be avoided by escapist media — you won’t see many mask-wearers in films this year — but themes of grief and despair will seep into much of the content impacting popular culture in 2022.

Facebook’s rebrand as “Meta” will be disregarded by the public the way Google’s renaming to “Alphabet” was generally dismissed. And while this move will help Instagram keep its audience, they will need to innovate to keep actual users on the platform before transforming into a digital shopping experience. Accounts like Deuxmoi have proven how effective Instagram can be at attracting an audience, but, aside from merchandise opportunities and paid brand promotions, there aren’t many ways these popular accounts can monetize their audiences. If Instagram does not solve this, they may lose creators that have nothing to sell.

Lastly, I still believe readers are exhausted and seek clear guidance to solve their problems and answer their questions. Trusted outlets that prove to be reliable will find a loyal and steady community.

Megan McCarthy is executive director of growth at USA Today’s Reviewed.

Climate change coverage will evolve in unintended ways. News outlets may not have dedicated climate desks, but existing teams will have to cover news on their beat that is caused by global warming. Breaking news desks will cover more and more disasters, business desks will report on energy costs and supply chain breakdowns, and local desks will examine how flash flooding has damaged communities. Even the sports desks will need to adjust. Expect more stories about athletes being overcome by heatstroke or how a powerful windstorm blew a ball off the field.

Covid-19 cultural touchstones will continue to be avoided by escapist media — you won’t see many mask-wearers in films this year — but themes of grief and despair will seep into much of the content impacting popular culture in 2022.

Facebook’s rebrand as “Meta” will be disregarded by the public the way Google’s renaming to “Alphabet” was generally dismissed. And while this move will help Instagram keep its audience, they will need to innovate to keep actual users on the platform before transforming into a digital shopping experience. Accounts like Deuxmoi have proven how effective Instagram can be at attracting an audience, but, aside from merchandise opportunities and paid brand promotions, there aren’t many ways these popular accounts can monetize their audiences. If Instagram does not solve this, they may lose creators that have nothing to sell.

Lastly, I still believe readers are exhausted and seek clear guidance to solve their problems and answer their questions. Trusted outlets that prove to be reliable will find a loyal and steady community.

Megan McCarthy is executive director of growth at USA Today’s Reviewed.

Shannon McGregor & Carolyn Schmitt

Rachel Glickhouse

Janelle Salanga

Gabe Schneider

Candace Amos

j. Siguru Wahutu

Andrew Freedman

Michael W. Wagner

Ariel Zirulnick

Sarah Marshall

Daniel Eilemberg

Cristina Tardáguila

AX Mina

Mandy Jenkins

Anika Anand

Moreno Cruz Osório

Anita Varma

Don Day

Zizi Papacharissi

Simon Galperin

Gonzalo del Peon

Brian Moritz

Jim Friedlich

Shalabh Upadhyay

Tamar Charney

Paul Cheung

Natalia Viana

Jennifer Brandel

Mario García

Tony Baranowski

Nikki Usher

Alice Antheaume

Meena Thiruvengadam

Anthony Nadler

David Cohn

Eric Nuzum

Victor Pickard

Millie Tran

Doris Truong

Julia Munslow

Stefanie Murray

Mike Rispoli

Stephen Fowler

Ståle Grut

Kristen Muller

Kathleen Searles & Rebekah Trumble

Chase Davis

Errin Haines

Jesenia De Moya Correa

Joshua P. Darr

Simon Allison

Cindy Royal

Joe Amditis

Kendra Pierre-Louis

Gordon Crovitz

Matt DeRienzo

Cherian George

Julia Angwin

Christoph Mergerson

Rasmus Kleis Nielsen

Matthew Pressman

Christina Shih

Robert Hernandez

Jonas Kaiser

Richard Tofel

John Davidow

Izabella Kaminska

Mary Walter-Brown

Juleyka Lantigua

Sam Guzik

Larry Ryckman

Chicas Poderosas

Catalina Albeanu

Laxmi Parthasarathy

Raney Aronson-Rath

Kristen Jeffers

Wilson Liévano

James Green

Burt Herman

Joy Mayer

Amara Aguilar

Matt Karolian

Jody Brannon

Jennifer Coogan

Amy Schmitz Weiss

A.J. Bauer

Kerri Hoffman

Sarah Stonbely

Tom Trewinnard

Jesse Holcomb

Joni Deutsch

Megan McCarthy

Joanne McNeil

David Skok

Whitney Phillips

Jessica Clark

S. Mitra Kalita

Francesco Zaffarano

Melody Kramer

Parker Molloy