Welcome to another edition of Aventri's Connect Weekly column, where we share the top five news stories from the week that today's meeting and events planners should know. We aim to cover everything from the worlds of events, technology, business, marketing, social media, travel, hospitality and beyond. Check out the top stories from the week of May 27-31.
AI and VR Will Revolutionize Communication at Events
The latest artificial intelligence innovation from Google could make translating your conference speakers cheaper, more accurate, and more personal. Nicknamed Translatotron, the new AI-powered system is in the testing phase but so far appears to be able to provide simultaneous translation using a close approximation of the speaker’s voice, retaining the intonation and emphasis. In the near future, meeting planners could use the system to provide less costly simultaneous translation for international events requiring multiple languages for several sessions. Human interpreters are typically restricted to two hours of simultaneous translation at a time, but artificial intelligence does not tire, and one program available in multiple languages will ultimately be cheaper than several humans. Read more.
Should Event Planners Adapt to Healthy Eating Trends?
According to the International Food Information Council (IFIC), there’s a growing trend toward healthy food variants. The council’s 2019 Food and Health Survey finds an increased interest in plant-based diets, which half of respondents said they wanted to learn more about. (The term “plant-based” creates a lot of confusion, by the way: Slightly less than a third of respondents say it’s a vegan diet; around 30 percent say that limited amounts of meat, eggs, and dairy are allowed.) IFIC also found that “clean eating” was picking up steam, with 38 percent of respondents saying they had tried eating a specific diet at some point in the past year, with “clean” being the most popular one. Read more.
Why You Can't Copyright a Meme
Epic Games, creator of the smash hit Fortnite, currently faces a tornado of lawsuits over its use and sale of in-game animations based on dance moves popularized by celebrities. The Supreme Court is involved, the public is divided, and entertainers are seemingly getting screwed. But who really owns a meme? For the answer to that question we turned to legal experts and the ghost of a dancing celebrity from the 1930s. Part of the problem with meme-related lawsuits is that there’s no precedent for copyright or intellectual property (IP) suits concerning them. Another part is that memes – specifically those that imitate movements made popular through viral videos or celebrities – don’t appear to qualify for copyright protection. Read more.
TSA Will Now Let You Take Some CBD Oils and Medications on U.S. Flights
Traveling with medical marijuana and marijuana-derived products has been a tricky subject in recent years, but it looks like there’s just been a major move forward. According to Fox News, the TSA just updated its policy on travelers carrying medicinal CBD (cannabidiol) oil in both checked and carry on luggage. Until now, the organization has emphatically told travelers to leave their CBD at home, but now that the FDA has approved the first CBD oil drug (Epidiolex) for seizures, the TSA seems to be following suit in order to allow travelers access to their medications — even though marijuana itself is illegal under federal law. Read more.
Embracing the Future of Personal Data: The GDPR Checklist for Event Marketers
Happy 1-Year Anniversary, GDPR! On May 25, 2018, the European Union began enforcing Regulation (EU) 2016/679 of the European Parliament. According to the European Commission, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR): "regulates the processing by an individual, a company or an organization of personal data relating to individuals in the EU." The GDPR's reach is long. Even if your company isn't based in the EU, but conducts business with EU citizens, you must comply. The implications for event marketing organizations are huge if regulators find that you didn't follow the rules. Check out our short checklist to help make sure your organization is ready for GDPR. Read more.