Each week, Padilla’s Insights + Strategy team stands at the intersection of people, culture and brands to bring you five stories that you can read in five minutes.

1. Harry Potter  

Spotify is teaming up with ongoing project, Harry Potter At Home COVID-19 Initiative, and announced that a new chapter of the first Harry Potter book will be released weekly on its channels. Each chapter will be read by an actor from the series (and David Beckham), kicking off with Harry (Daniel Radcliffe) himself. Why should you care? As digital streaming continues to reign supreme during the pandemic, franchises/brands are continuing to find ways to make their content more accessible to those in quarantine and Harry Potter At Home is a prime example. The project enables teachers to post recordings on educational platforms and networks while serving as a hub of free resources and activities to keep those at home busy and entertained. [Mashable]

2. Supreme Court

For the first time in its 230-year history, the Supreme Court heard an oral argument by phone. Why should you care? Like all other aspects of life, COVID-19 has put the Supreme Court in unchartered territory and just like everything else, it has had to adjust to a new format. However, that new format comes with a plus side as it is giving the world an inside look at how the court will decide on some monumental cases. [USAToday]

3. Peloton

Don’t call it a comeback – despite backlash of Peloton’s holiday commercial this past year, the exercise-bike maker has seen a surge of 94% in new subscribers as the pandemic has forced gyms to close globally. Why should you care? Despite the COVID-19 landscape changing every day with reports of cities partially reopening, consumers are still weary of spending time with strangers in close quarters in places like the gym. As the pandemic continues, we can be sure to see companies that offer products and services specific to the home to make considerable gains. [WSJ]

4. Potbelly

Potbelly has introduced “Alone Time Parking” to give stressed-out parents sanity, silence and sustenance. The designated sanity spots are clearly marked with a sign prohibiting children or conference calls. Why should you care? Potbelly Chief Marketing Officer Brandon Rhoten said in a statement, “Of course I love my family, but my wildest fantasy right now is eating a sandwich in peace and quiet.” As simple (and comical) as this concept may be, many parents working from home with children would probably very much enjoy living out this “wild fantasy.” [AdAge]

5. LEGO Batman

Will Arnett and Ralph Fiennes have been reunited for a LEGO Batman Coronavirus PSA. Why should you care? Are we sick of celebrities telling us what to do during this pandemic? Maybe, but we can’t deny that this twist on the celebrity cameo is a bit more enjoyable. And with it being geared specifically toward children – will likely be well received, because what kid wouldn’t listen to what their favorite superhero has to say? [CBR]

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