In case you didn’t hear, Elon Musk hosted SNL this past Saturday. His appearance on the show raised some eyebrows—largely because he is controversial, and partly because he’s obviously not in show business.
A few tangents:
How’d it go? Pretty okay. Not great, not awful. Nothing exploded. But that’s just the show itself…
Elon’s critics had a juicy opportunity to critique his more controversial decisions. Obviously, SNL is theatre—their purpose is to put on a show—but SNL is also a public forum of sorts, where prominent guests like Musk will inevitably speak about themselves because their presence is an unavoidable fact of the matter. The unspoken contract from the audience to host: speak you may, but prepare for a swift rebuttal.
This was the opportunity a lot of journalists had been wanting to counter Musk’s version of levity with some biting sarcasm of their own.
Surprisingly, Dogecoin did NOT surge (and instead crashed) because of the show. A bunch of you are like I’m sorry, what coin? Dogecoin is basically a Bitcoin alternative that started as a joke, except now it’s not a joke because (A) cryptocurrency took off and (B) morons develop magic powers in sufficiently large packs. Especially when Elon can use his investment in Dogecoin as a way of maintaining his headline streak.
Speaking of which…
Regardless of what else is said, this show did a little bit more to cement Elon’s social position as the Electric Car Czar. Musk might be the best living example of a “no such thing as bad press” mogul. Consider that there are now more than 50 electric vehicle (EV) models available from a bunch of different automakers, and yet nobody’s talking about them nearly as much as people talk about Musk and Tesla.
Tesla competitors were smart to run ads on SNL during Musk’s appearance, but in a way, it just proves they’re all behind in the brand-awareness game.
The New Map of the Digital Divide. As we’ve mentioned, Congress is focusing some attention on America’s Digital Divide, a.k.a. the “invisible line” between people who can access the full power of broadband internet vs. people who can’t. (This is much more an issue of regional infrastructure and geopolitics, less an issue of the affected households’ spending power.)
Now, thanks to heightened attention—and data collection—on this subject, we finally have a clearer picture of the problem. In this case, it comes as a county-by-county map of the United States:
In BLUE counties, less than 15 percent of people are using the internet at 25Mbps or above. In GRAY counties, 15+ percent of people are using the internet at 25Mbps or above.
You can get more info (and an interactive version of the map!) from this Verge source. For now, just note that…
1️⃣ This issue affects a LOT of America, and it’s even worse than it might look on the map because…
2️⃣ These standards are pretty lax. 25Mbps barely counts as “high-speed internet” and 15% is hardly a plurality, much less a majority of people.