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Welcome to the last Spinning Forward newsletter of 2022. Thanks very much for reading, sharing tips, and offering feedback on future stories and creators to profile.

This was a topsy-turvy year. Last year’s economic boom is how 2022 began. Then Russia invaded Ukraine in February. The worldwide inflation surge led to the highest inflation rates in four decades. Canadians felt the high prices of just about everything in their wallets.

The pandemic subsided but stayed. People resumed their lives but continued reflecting on what they really wanted. The Great Resignation saw Canadians resign from their jobs en masse in the summer and fall. At the same time, the quiet quitting movement exploded on TikTok among young people who rejected the hustle culture.

The UK government investigated the influencer pay standards and the online racial pay gap between content creators of colour and brands. Young people on social media platforms shifted toward “real” creators who weren’t perfect, and who shared information that informed and helped them. TikTok became the official TIFF partner for the first time as the popularity of short-form entertainment continued.

After Roe v Wade was overturned, many creators spoke out and became activists on social media, especially TikTok. Gen Z expects brands to be fun, transparent, and caring and wants them to speak out on social issues quickly. They embrace authenticity. Not surprisingly, the app of the year in the Apple App Store was the social media app, BeReal.

2023 will be a challenging year. Most social media platforms have cut their workforce significantly and introduced hiring freezes. Other sectors may follow soon. A recession in Canada, whether smaller or bigger, is all but certain. Creators are looking at other sources of income as advertisers and sponsors tighten their belts. Yet, Adobe, in a survey, found that almost half of young people in the U.S. want to quit their corporate jobs to become content creators.

The great resignation, quiet quitting and the “lying flat” (popular in China) movements are changing the way people view their relationship to work. Yet, one thing is certain. More and more people are embracing the YOLO economy and the notion that ‘You Only Live Once’. We'll see how they act on these forces in 2023.


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Publisher and Editor, Spinning Forward