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"It's more about the packaging and the moment and the feel and that's what social media does: it creates excitement for something that is not necessarily exciting."

Influencer marketing has surged during the pandemic as consumers move online and brands are forced to adapt to new challenges. Entertainment reporter Sam Blake explores its implications and how the trend has lead some unexpected partnerships, like KFC's line of Crocs or Forever 21's Cheetos apparel.

Pandemic fuels Cyber Monday sales, which are expected to hit $12.7 billion.

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai will step down Jan 20.

UCLA used Amazon gift cards to pay student workers after payroll error.

Apple hires venture capitalist to improve app store.

Facebook buys customer service platform and chatbot Kustomer.

DoorDash's IPO seeks to raise $2.8B, giving it $32B valuation.

GM drops investment stake in Nikola, nixes planned Badger pickup truck.

R.I.P. Zappos founder Tony Hsieh.

Pandemic Fuels Influencers Sway

The pandemic accelerated influencers appeal as ad budgets tightened and consumers spend more time scrolling and streaming. New data and analytics shows just how effective they are. Read more>>

Virgin Orbit Plans for Second Launch After Failed Attempt

Virgin Orbit announced plans to shoot its LauncherOne rocket into orbit on Dec. 19, carrying with it small NASA research satellites. Read more>>

Column: So You Want to Be an Influencer? 

For creators looking to succeed in this new world, the focus must shift from reflecting sameness to celebrating differences. Read more>>

Making Space Sustainable

Melanie Stricklan, co-founder and chief strategy officer at Slingshot Aerospace, talks with Just Go Grind about her inspiration for the company, finding vision, fostering curiosity among employees and making space sustainable. Read more>>

Strategy Session: 2020 Year in Review

Join us Wednesday, December 16th at 11:00 a.m. PST for dot.LA Strategy Session 2020 Year in Review where we reflect on L.A.'s emerging tech trends, challenges that were overcome and predictions for 2021. Upfront's Managing Partner Mark Suster and dot.LA Senior Reporter Ben Bergman will kick off the event with a one-on-one conversation. More speakers to be announced. Register here - space is limited!

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