Tidal, the platform I correctly described in 2015 as “an expensive streaming music service no one wants” when Jay-Z bought and relaunched it with a zany boardroom full of self-congratulating supervillains, will be acquired by Twitter chief executive derelict Jack Dorsey’s electronic payments company Square. Dorsey tweeted a thread purporting to explain the reasoning behind the acquisition, which seems to be: because music is part of the economy? Kurt Wagner and Lucas Shaw at Bloomberg also attempted to penetrate Dorsey’s galaxy-brain reasoning, observing dryly that “it’s not immediately clear how Square will help Tidal build its business.” Square exec Jesse Dorogusker provided a clue though, saying “Square was less interested in Tidal’s streaming market share than its potential to bring together the common ideals of Jay-Z and Dorsey, who have become close in recent years.” It’s nice to support your friends, I guess! If any Tabs pals have $297 million to spare, I’d also take a buyout.
You know what else is tidal? The ocean1, which The New York Times reported yesterday may or may not be about to kill us all. “The warming atmosphere is causing an arm of the powerful Gulf Stream to weaken, some scientists fear,” says the last part of this graphics-heavy package you will probably read before you spend a few minutes looking at some very smooth animated ocean squiggles and then worry vaguely about “ᴛʜᴇ ᴄᴏʟᴅ ʙʟᴏʙ” for the rest of the day.
That weird headachey feeling you have when you wake up? ᴛʜᴇ ᴄᴏʟᴅ ʙʟᴏʙ. The three hundred sixty eighth dinner you have to cook in a row? ᴛʜᴇ ᴄᴏʟᴅ ʙʟᴏʙ. Look in the mirror: is that your face, or is it ᴛʜᴇ ᴄᴏʟᴅ ʙʟᴏʙ? For TikTok user and NY apartment dweller Samantha Hartsoe it literally was ᴛʜᴇ ᴄᴏʟᴅ ʙʟᴏʙ lurking behind her bathroom mirror, in the whole-ass other empty apartment back there. Previously in terror lurking behind bathroom mirrors. And with its customary impeccable timing, the British government decided today was the day to announce that Boris Johnson was previously 5.7% night cheese.2
I tried to avoid it a couple days ago when Buzzfeed’s Ryan Mac and Craig Silverman reported that David Brooks had posted on Facebook’s corporate blog, apparently for free. Last night the other tab dropped in that story, with Mac and Silverman now reporting that David Brooks has a whole second salary from the Aspen Institute, funded at least in part by donations from Facebook and Jeff Bezos’s dad, which has gone undisclosed to Times readers in the numerous columns where Brooks has mentioned Facebook. “A Times spokesperson refused to tell BuzzFeed News whether the paper was aware Brooks was taking a salary for his work on Weave,” reports Buzzfeed. This spokesperson is presumably Times senior comms VP Eileen Murphy, who later suggests to Buzzfeed that Brooks secretly taking a salary funded by Facebook is similar to Paul Krugman publicly teaching at Princeton, in what I can only think is an attempt at PR ad-lib comedy. “I’m just playing in the space here,” she continued, “can I get a yes-and?” The Times has previously fired a freelance travel writer for traveling on JetBlue’s dime, a contract editor for having chills, and a respected health reporter for being a lightly racist pain in the ass. I imagine we’ll find out what comes next in this story Friday evening, around 9pm.
In North Carolina, if you’ve smoked more than 100 cigarettes in your life you can get a covid vaccine shot soon, which is not so much a risk factor as a thank-you gift. Here are two good explanations of why crypto-art (and cryptocurrency) is an environmental disaster and always will be: one short and one long. NFTs are also ᴛʜᴇ ᴄᴏʟᴅ ʙʟᴏʙ. Dinesh D’Souza was finally removed from the National Review masthead in August. Was it because of “thigh-land?” Substack-funded heap of weaponized self-pity Freddie deBoer didn’t manage to get through three newsletters before attacking some women. Adidas drops the bike Samba and… I don’t hate it! Pigeon murder straight out of Goodfeathers. The horrific new suit ads are here. Haruki Murakami x UNIQLO. Former Awl editor and friend of Tabs Silvia Killingsworth promoted to Bloomberg America’s Hub editor. 🎉
Today’s Song: “The Ocean” by Led Zeppelin
~ Na na na-na-na na, na na-na-na-na-na-na-na na, Naaaa naaa na-na-na na, na na-na-na-na-na-na-na na. ~
Immortal lyricist Robert Plant everyone. If you go to the Apple Music page for Led Zeppelin, the first album in “Essential Albums” is Physical Graffiti, which: lol. Just slightly more essential than IV, I think you’ll all agree. I think you’ll also agree it is extremely Thursday. Follow me on Twitter @fka_tabs and check your email tomorrow for the Friday Open Thread! Otherwise, I’ll see you next week.
Segues are my passion.