Best Of The Web
“Zola, the e-commerce platform reinventing wedding registries by allowing couples to register for products from hundreds of brands — as well as for “experiences” or cash — is the first successful wedding industry startup since the founding of the wedding-planning website the Knot in 1996. It’s currently worth $650 million, following a new $100 million funding round led by Comcast Ventures, NBCUniversal, and Goldman Sachs. It’s the first successful tech startup in the wedding space ever.
In its first year, 17,000 couples signed up to do their registries through Zola, a number that looks mildly to not impressive on its face but has been spun compellingly in the press by CEO and co-founder Shan-Lyn Ma: Last spring, she told TechCrunch, “One hundred and fifty people on average see [a wedding’s] registry, and if those visitors believe it’s a better product, [they come to us, too]. It’s built-in virality.” By press time for that piece, 500,000 couples had used the service, proving her math.
In the wedding industry, there is supposedly plenty of money to go around: $3 billion a year in the US, and $72 billion globally. According to The Knot’s annual survey, the average wedding in 2017 cost $33,391, a slight dip from $35,329 in 2016, but still more than half of the median annual household income in the United States. If there is one thing that anyone knows about weddings, it’s that people spend a lot of money on them. If there is one other thing that anyone knows about weddings, it’s that all that money is basically lost to the air, disappearing after its handful of hours in the sun. The ephemerality of that cash has plagued the wedding startup space too.”
JJ Editor's Daily Picks
"The likely successor to British Prime Minister Theresa May, Boris Johnson, has plans to subsume the government department overseeing development aid into the foreign office, effectively eliminating it. That will destroy a post-Brexit United..."
"Gerard Baker, editor-at-large at the Wall Street Journal (no reflexively anti-Trump publication) recently wrote a piece decrying Donald Trump and his foreign policy as a fount of erratic unpredictability. This essay will give the counter view...."
"On Wednesday, Congresswoman Ilhan Omar announced that she will be visiting Israel and the Palestinian territories in the coming weeks. Omar will be accompanied by Rep. Rashida Tlaib. The two freshman congresswomen have become a focal point of..."
"Netflix may have lost US subscribers for the first time since it began making its own shows, but that didn't stop the streaming giant from dropping new figures about how many people are sucked into its Adam Sandler vortex. (Spoiler: More than..."
"A few years ago, Amy Balliett, CEO of a Seattle-based design and marketing firm, noticed that as the work week slogged on, her employees’ energy and productivity wilted. “That would slump to such an extent that the same task on Monday would..."
"Over the last few days the #faceappchallenge has taken over social media. This “challenge” involves downloading a selfie-editing tool called FaceApp and using one of its filters to digitally age your face. You then post the photo of your wizened..."
"Although there are plenty of irrational aspects to life in modern America, few rival the odd fixation on lawns. Fertilizing, mowing, watering — these are all-American activities that, on their face, seem reasonable enough. But to spend hundreds..."
"Can a book change the way we think? I don’t mean that in the sense of a reader’s opinion or ideology shifting—of course the right literary work can do that. But can a book rewire the brain itself, literally changing the way one particular mind..."
"It’s our job to let kids know we see and hear them, but we’re not necessarily going to solve siblings’ conflicts for them (or else they never get the practice). When squabbles start, imagine you’re a sportscaster and describe what you see in..."
"Magali Trejo-Martinez, a 22-year-old living in Salem, Oregon, recently went on a date that was rather uninspiring. “I had dinner, had a couple margaritas, and then went home,” is how she recapped the evening. This outcome wasn’t entirely..."
"The first lunar landing was many things — a D-Day-like feat of planning and logistics, a testament to the power of man's will, an ostensible propaganda coup for NATO. It was also, I think, one of the most misunderstood events in the history of..."
"THE FIRST TIME Bernie Sanders ran for president, he didn’t talk much about being Jewish. In fact, he didn’t talk much about himself at all. His 2016 primary campaign, like his whole political career, was relentlessly focused on one topic: income..."