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Megan Thee Stallion Calls Out Jokes About Her Shooting: I’m Real Life Hurt and Traumatized”

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  • On July 12, rapper Tory Lanez was arrested and charged for carrying a concealed weapon inside an SUV after an incident involving Megan Thee Stallion.
  • Megan later explained that she had been shot and underwent surgery to remove the bullets she was hit with. 
  • Later reports and rumors suggested that Lanez was responsible for shooting Megan after a dispute between them, however, there are not many confirmed details about what exactly happened.
  • Following days of memes and jokes, Megan slammed people for making light of her traumatic experience, saying, “Black women are so unprotected.”  

Initial Reports and Videos 

Just a day after telling the public that she had been shot, rapper Megan Thee Stallion slammed internet users for making light of her traumatic experience. 

In the early hours of Sunday, June 12, Los Angeles police officers responded to a call in Hollywood Hills. However, at the time, TMZ first reported that rapper Tory Lanez was arrested for having a weapon in a vehicle. The report claimed people were arguing in an SUV before someone fired shots in the air and the vehicle took off. It also said Meg Thee Stallion was at the scene and had suffered a cut on her foot believed to be from broken glass on the floor. 

After this report, questions appeared online about what actually happened and if Megan had also been arrested. Then on Wednesday, TMZ released footage of police detaining people who were inside the vehicle. Footage from another angle also spread online and was later obtained by TMZ. It showed a woman believed to be Megan walking towards police leaving a trail of blood on the floor with each step. 

Following this, all kinds of rumors began spreading, including some that suggested Megan had also been arrested or was involved in committing a crime. Megan finally set the record straight in a social media post on Thursday, calling the narrative she’s seen reported “inaccurate.”  

“I suffered gunshot wounds, as a result of a crime that was committed against me and done with the intention to physically harm me,” she said. 

She also clarified that she was not arrested and was taken to the hospital by police where she underwent surgery to remove the bullets, adding, “I’m incredibly grateful to be alive and that I’m expected to make a full recovery, but it was important to clarify the details about this traumatic night.”

Rumors About Who Shot Megan Circulate

That post ended up fueling even more rumors as people began to wonder who shot her and what Tory Lanez’s role was in this. In fact, some began to speculate that Lanez was defending her against someone else. 

However, that idea was previously shut down by people close to Megan. For instance, a producer who has worked with Megan said in a now-deleted tweet, “I hope y’all don’t believe he was defending her! This is a bullsh*t story.”

Deleted post from @LilJuMadeDaBeat

At one point, even Megan’s best friend Kelsey Nicole was accused of shooting Megan, which she eventually denied. 

But after Megan’s post, outlets like Page Six and TMZ reported that Lanez was the person who fired the shots. The reports suggested that an argument broke out between the musicians and allegedly escalated when Megan and Kelsey wanted to leave the car. 

A source told Page Six, ”Tory fired the shots from within the vehicle while Megan was outside trying to leave.” 

 “There is video and the police are investigating. This is a case of a man physically harming and abusing a woman.”

Still, concrete details about what really happened remain unclear. Police have said they are investigating and have asked for anyone with more information to come forward. 

Megan Responds to Jokes 

As all this news has unfolded, tons of internet users have made jokes and memes about both Megan and Tory Lanez.

Megan wasn’t having it and on Friday, she tweeted, “Black women are so unprotected & we hold so many things in to protect the feelings of others w/o considering our own. It might be funny to y’all on the internet and just another messy topic for you to talk about but this is my real life and I’m real life hurt and traumatized.”

Many agreed and have also been slamming people for joking about something so serious as the 25-year-old rapper tries to recover. Others argued that if a male had been shot, people might have reacted differently. 

As far as what is known about Lanez, he was booked at Hollywood jail for carrying a concealed weapon in a vehicle and was released that same day on a $35,000 bond. He is scheduled to appear in court on October 13. 

See what others are saying: (Billboard) (People) (Teen Vogue)

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Netflix Passes 200M Subscribers as Other Streamers Struggle With Retention

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  • In a letter to shareholders, Netflix said it has hit over 200 million subscribers following a successful year of growth.
  • The pandemic gave Netflix a significant subscriber boost in March and April. The company continued to perform well even in its final quarter, gaining 8.5 million subscribers when it was only projected to add 6 million.
  • The data also highlights how relatively unaffected Netflix has been by new streaming services entering the market. While companies like Disney+, HBO Max, and Peacock continue to grow, they also struggle to retain the subscribers that sign up.

Netflix Passes 200 Million Subscribers

Netflix has topped 200 million subscribers following a year of strong growth in 2020.

In its Tuesday letter to shareholders, Netflix announced that it added 8.5 million subscribers in its fourth quarter. This exceeds projections, which estimated the streaming giant would only add around 6 million. In total, Netflix gained 37 million new memberships throughout 2020, bringing the company to 203.6 million subscribers.

Pandemic lockdowns gave Netflix a substantial boost in March in April. In the company’s first two quarters, it added a combined 25.7 million subscribers. According to data from the letter, Netflix had added over 10 million more subscribers by May of 2020 than it had by May of 2019.

When it comes to the success of their fourth quarter, Netflix pointed to shows like “Bridgerton” and “The Crown.” The fourth season of “The Crown” hit the platform in November, prompting many to return to older seasons of the show. Netflix claims the series has been viewed by 100 million households since it first aired in 2016.

Success Amid Growth of Competition

The year 2020 could have been a difficult one for Netflix as new streaming services entered the market. Disney+, Apple TV+, HBO Max, Peacock and more have all made waves with their original programming or by taking some of their brand’s content from Netflix to host on their own site. User-based content on YouTube and TikTok also became increasingly popular throughout the pandemic, further posing as a threat to Netflix. 

Still, it reached a massive milestone. 

“Our strategy is simple: if we can continue to improve Netflix every day to better delight our members, we can be their first choice for streaming entertainment,” Netflix said in the letter. “This past year is a testament to this approach.”

Netflix potentially sees Disney+ as the biggest competitor among new platforms. In its letter, the company noted that the streamer added 87 million subscribers in its first year. In a Q&A, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings seemed enthusiastic about this competition.

“It’s super impressive what Disney’s done,” he said. “It’s going to be great for the world that Disney and Netflix are competing show-by-show, movie-by-movie. We’re very fired up about catching them in family animation, maybe eventually passing them, we’ll see. It’s a long way to go just to catch them, and maintaining our lead in general entertainment that’s so stimulating like ‘Bridgerton,’ which I don’t think you’re going to see on Disney anytime soon.”

Streamers Struggle with Retaining Subscribers

Even as new streamers have had impressive years, there is one hurdle that many are still struggling to jump over: retaining the subscribers who sign up. The Los Angeles Times named Disney+, HBO Max, Peacock, and Apple TV+ in particular, writing that people create accounts with these services, watch the TV shows or movies they are interested in, and cancel once they are done.

An October survey from Deloitte said that 46% of respondents canceled at least one streaming service in the last 6 months, which is up 20% from January of last year. Most who had canceled said they did so because they had finished watching whatever programming it was that brought them to that service. 

Places like Disney+ and HBO Max are really vulnerable to this because they have banked on drawing people in with exclusive marquis titles like “Hamilton” or “Wonder Woman 1984.” However, since they are newer, they are still building their original programming catalog, meaning that people can quickly burn through highlight titles. 

See what others are saying: (Los Angeles Times) (Wall Street Journal) (The Hollywood Reporter)

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Paramount+ To Launch March 4

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  • ViacomCBS is launching Paramount+ in the United States and Latin America on March 4 before rolling out to other markets internationally later this year. 
  • The streaming service will be a relaunch and expansion of CBS All Access. It will include content from Nickelodeon, MTV, and more on top of the CBS-focused selection. 

Paramount+ Gets Launch Date

ViacomCBS will be launching its streaming service Paramount+ in the U.S. and Latin America on March 4 before rolling out in more countries throughout the year. 

It will be an expansion and rebrand of CBS All Access, the service the company currently offers that is used by nearly 8 million subscribers. Paramount+ will go beyond the CBS-centric content promoted there, including works from brands like Nickelodeon, MTV, BET, Comedy Central, and the Smithsonian Channel.

More details about their streaming strategy will be released during an investor event on February 24. Right now, ViacomCBS is boasting that the service will have over 30,000 episodes and movies in their catalog, which will also include live sports and breaking news. 

“The Paramount brand is known and loved all around the world, and is synonymous with great entertainment. It’s always brought people together, which makes it a perfect fit for a streaming service that’s uniquely positioned to do the same,” Josh Line the chief brand officer of ViacomCBS said during a brand announcement in September. “The Paramount+ streaming service will elevate ViacomCBS’ iconic family of brands.”

State of the Streaming Wars

Paramount+ has already announced a slew of original projects including a revival of “iCarly” and a series about the making of “The Godfather” titled “The Offer.”

The service is entering an already crowded battlefield as the streaming wars wages on. It will have plenty of uphill battles to fight since brand recognition for Paramount is not nearly as strong as it is for studios like Disney or NBCUniversal. It will also have to compete with Netflix, which leads the pack in subscribers and unveils new content regularly; HBO Max, which will be home to Warner Media’s new theatrical releases; and Hulu, which hosts original content as well as shows currently airing on cable and network television. 

ViacomCBS has not released information on pricing, but that will likely come during or before the February investor event.

See what others are saying: (Variety) (Deadline) (CNBC)

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Olivia Rodrigo Smashes Records with “drivers license”

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  • Olivia Rodrigo’s debut single “drivers license” has set multiple records on Spotify, becoming both the most streamed song in one day for non-holiday music and the most streamed song in a week.
  • It also has become the most globally requested song on Alexa in one day on Amazon Music. 
  • After its Jan. 8 release, the song became a trending audio on TikTok. Since TikTok’s rise to popularity, the app has helped many songs reach viral success at lightning speed. 

“driver’s license” Breaks Records

At just 17-year-old, Olivia Rodrigo is smashing records with her new single “drivers license” after debuting the tune on Jan. 8.

On Friday, Spotify announced the single set the record for most streams in a week. Prior to this, it set the record for most streams on the platform in one day for a non-holiday song.

As of Monday morning, the song has over 125 million plays on Spotify. According to Pop Crave, it was also the fastest song to reach 100 million streams on the popular music service. 

Over on Amazon Music, “drivers license” became the most globally requested song on Alexa in a single day. It also became the biggest global streaming debut on the site. 

Song Goes Viral on TikTok

Rodrigo is best known for her role as Nini on “High School Musical: The Musical: The Series.” She has also appeared in a variety of other Disney projects where she showcased her singing and songwriting capabilities. In “drivers license,” she croons about using the newly minted independence her license affords her to mourn a recent breakup.  

The pop ballad has become a popular audio on TikTok. Many use it for dances, to discuss the possibility that Rodrigo wrote it about her co-star Joshua Bassett, or to just wallow in its lyrics. It has been used by some of the app’s most popular creators, including Charli D’Amelio. 

Its success on the platform has likely contributed to its success on streaming platforms and charts. The app has had an immeasurable impact on the music industry by helping songs and artists reach the mainstream at lightning speed. Hits like “Old Town Road” by Lil Nas X first found a home on TikTok before breaking records on the billboard charts. 

Rodrigo has been happy and surprised to see her song perform so well and be so positively received. 

“Never in my wildest dreams did I expect this,” she wrote on Instagram after learning that “drivers license” was the number one song on global iTunes charts. “thank u guys so much for listening. I can’t believe this is real life.”

See what others are saying: (Teen Vogue) (CBS News) (Billboard)

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