Why Ludwig Sold His Company 💼

The streamer sells Offbrand to its employees

Good morning. Prank creator Fidias Panayiotou has been elected to represent his home country of Cyprus in the European Parliament. Despite having no political experience, the 24-year-old creator with 2.6 million YouTube subscribers earned 19% of votes in Cyprus. Whether it’s a true pivot to politics or a long-con prank, only time will tell.

AI Roundup: Apple and Adobe Make a Safety Play

Apple announces Apple Intelligence while Adobe shares a clarification / Illustration by Moy Zhong

This week, Apple unveiled Apple Intelligence, its system-wide push into generative AI, while Adobe overhauled its AI terms of service. Here’s what creators need to know →

Apple Intelligence is a new suite of generative AI tools spanning Apple’s products via its latest operating systems. Apple said Intelligence is built with “safety at its core” (but didn’t explain exactly how). Top features:

  • New generative AI writing tools built into Pages, Notes, and Keynote to let you summarize, proofread, and change writing style in-app. 

  • The cleanup tool in Photos lets you cut items in the background of a photo without altering the subject. You can also get summaries of phone calls and videos.

“It feels like we’ve entered a new age with Apple,” MKHBD said in a video recapping Apple’s 2024 Developers Conference. “The AI stuff is so important that it’s very much what we’re most interested in.”

Adobe is changing its user terms to clarify that it won’t train AI on users’ work after users became concerned that Adobe’s new terms implied it would do just that. The revised terms of service are expected to roll out next Tuesday.

Zoom out: These announcements follow a wave of scrutiny (see: last week’s Instagram pushback) from creators and artists concerned that generative AI tools might use their content without their consent…so much so that “anti-AI” social apps like Cara are on the rise.

Ludwig Sells His Stake in Offbrand

Ludwig Ahgren sells stake in his company Offbrand, which also launches Offbrand Games / LudwigOffbrand

Last week, gaming streamer Ludwig Ahgren announced that he sold his ownership stake in Offbrand, the creator events studio he co-founded in 2022.

So who’d he sell it to? Employees who work at Offbrand. The company became a worker cooperative in 2023—but with this sale, Offbrand’s personnel now own the majority of the company.

  • “What that means is the people who work there…now all get a say and a vote at what happens at the company,” Ahgren explained in his announcement video. 

  • “I have as big of a vote as someone who’s worked there as long as I have who operates a camera.”

Big picture: Major layoffs and millions of dollars in losses plagued gaming in 2023, leading analysts to declare an “esports winter.”

Ahgren cited these industry-wide trends as the catalyst for turning Offbrand into a worker cooperative. “I don't want to just survive, I want us to thrive…and I think this is the best path forward for a stronger work culture and a more sustainable company,” he said.

FYI: Ahgren also revealed that Offbrand is spinning off a video game publisher called Offbrand Games. Jason “Thor” Hall, a former game developer at Blizzard Entertainment and the creator behind YouTube channel Pirate Software, will become Offbrand Games’ Director of Strategy.

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Kai Cenat Hosts Record-Breaking Stream with Kevin Hart

(From Left) Kai Cenat, Druski, and Kevin Hart host their nearly 12-hour “Sleepover Stream” / Kai CenatRico Da Vinciii

Twitch streamer Kai Cenat hosted a nearly 12-hour overnight stream on Monday with comedians Kevin Hart and Druski that peaked at over 720,000 concurrent viewers—a record for Cenat.

Why it matters: Cenat, who has over 11 million followers on Twitch, regularly plays a role in driving youth culture. Hart joins a growing list of celebrities who have made viral appearances on Cenat’s channel—LeBron James even FaceTimed in for a cameo in Monday’s stream.

Zoom out: Cenat’s popularity has extended past just the Twitch community. Nike signed him to an endorsement deal back in February, making Cenat the first streamer to sign with the sportswear company.

🔥 Press Worthy

  • Cheeseball Man is hosting a charity cheeseball-eating event in New York City.

  • BeReal is being acquired for $540 million.

  • Learn about the latest innovations in creator-brand partnerships at a Vidcon panel presented by Bio Sites from Squarespace. Join on 6/29 at 11 am PT.*

  • Design creator Nicole McLaughlin is releasing a sneaker with Hoka.

  • TikTok Shop is now the ninth-largest beauty ecommerce retailer in the U.S.

  • AMP signs on to make products with Bang Energy.

*This is sponsored advertising content.

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