Jon Stewart Rises Again; Top Podcasts of 2020: Wednesday’s First Things First

Plus, Kazakhstan embraces Borat’s catchphrase to promote tourism 

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Jon Stewart's return to TV will almost certainly help bolster interest in Apple TV+. Getty Images
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Welcome to First Things First, Adweek’s daily resource for marketers. We’ll be publishing the content to First Things First on each morning (like this post), but if you prefer that it come straight to your inbox, you can sign up for the email here.

Jon Stewart Will Host Apple TV+ Current Affairs Show

This is not a drill. Jon Stewart is heading back to TV—Apple TV+, that is—in a brand new current affairs series. The legend of late-night has signed a multi-year deal to host and produce the show, his first full-time TV gig since 2016. Naturally, the move is huge for Apple TV+, which has been aiming to up its content ante while getting more viewers by bundling the service with Apple products.

Back amid other talent: Learn who else will be involved in the project.

Also in streaming news: Assassin’s Creed is coming to Netflix, beginning with a live-action adaptation of the popular video game franchise.  

These Are Adweek’s Podcasts of the Year for 2020

The reduction in commuting amid the pandemic shifted the dynamics of the podcasting scene. Although the industry faced short-term audience drops for professional-focused shows, the podcast universe has continued to grow—and the new landscape has resulted in some incredible innovation and adaptation among the winners of our annual Podcast of the Year Awards. Among the winners you’ll find:

  • 2020 Podcast of the Year: Refinery29’s Go Off, Sis, which amplifies Black women’s voices and experiences.
  • Entrepreneurship Podcast of the Year: ICON Media’s The Great Fail, which looks at the deaths of iconic brands like Blockbuster, Toys R Us and Atari.
  • Marketing Podcast of the Year: Podcamp Media’s Lead Balloon, which features tales from the trenches of PR disasters, crises and impossible odds.

Discover all of the winners and learn how to tune in here.

How FCB Is Building Consistency Into Its Inclusive, Antiracist Culture

IPG has been a loud voice for industry diversity, with CEO Michael Roth pushing for “meaningful change” and saying compensation for execs is tied to diversity goals. Agency FCB, which is owned by IPG, has walked the walk of inclusion for around a decade, becoming one of the first creative networks to require unconscious bias training and create inclusion councils in its offices. Now, it wants to create “universal cultural competence,” which examines structural racism in its workforce, workplace and work.

Breaking down systemic racism: Learn what this initiative entails.

Buyers Say Facebook Pre-Election Ad Period Hit With Unexpected Outages

Facebook made its move to halt new political ads as promised yesterday morning—and chaos ensued, with ad buyers running into bugs and many campaigns ads deactivated at what is a critical moment for campaigns to reach voters ahead of the election. The company said that campaigns and political ad buyers could submit their ads before the deadline at midnight Pacific, but the rollout was fraught with problems. After buyers rushed to get ads in on time amid Amy Coney Barrett’s swearing in, previously approved ads were suddenly paused.

“A horrific scenario”: Read about the issues and what Facebook had to say about it.

Also in election marketing news: With the election one week away, a new Sprite campaign is encouraging Black and multicultural youth to make their voices heard at the polls with help from rising artists.

More of Today’s Top News & Highlights

@JessZafarris Jess Zafarris is an audience engagement editor at Adweek.