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Ad Age Wake-Up Call: Driverless Pizza Delivery, Anti-Ad Crusaders and Other News to Know Today

Good morning. Welcome to Ad Age’s Wake-Up Call, our daily roundup of advertising, marketing and digital-related news. What people are talking about today: There’s good news and bad news for Uber. The ride-hailing service’s next CEO, Dara Khosrowshahi, has apparently accepted the job, and he wrote his staff at Expedia to let them know, Recode says. Uber board member Arianna Huffington posted a welcome note to Khosrowshahi on Twitter, adding that he would come in to talk to Uber staff Wednesday. So that’s the good news. But there’s also this: The U.S. Department of Justice is investigating whether Uber broke U.S. laws against bribing officials in other countries, as The Washington Post reports. Which is yet another problem Khosrowshahi will inherit post-Travis Kalanick, who made “Always Be Hustlin'” one of the company’s corporate values.

Marching along?
The U.S. Army has extended its contract with McCann Worldgroup for another full year, as Ad Age’s Lindsay Stein reports. But there’s a lot going on behind the scenes in this apparently complicated agency-client relationship. McCann Worldgroup, which includes Weber Shandwick and UM, has had the business for 12 years, but the Army excluded it from a recent agency review. McCann found that decision “arbitrary and capricious,” and it registered an official protest with the Government Accountability Office last month. What’s next? Stay tuned, since the accountability office has to make a decision within 100 days.

Driverless Pizza Delivery
Over the next few weeks, some Domino’s customers in Ann Arbor, Mich., will get their pizzas delivered by a Ford Fusion Hybrid Autonomous Research Vehicle, as Ad Age’s E.J. Schultz reports. The goal is to study the future of delivery, but driverless pizza is not quite here yet, since the futuristic car will be manually driven by Ford safety engineers and staffed by researchers. The goal is apparently for customers to act like there’s nobody inside, so the researchers can see how they interact with the car. At this point, Domino’s drone delivery sounds like more fun.

Anti-ad vigilantes
Protesters disguised as authorized workers are ripping down public transport ads in Melbourne, Australia, as The Age reports. Their website manifesto says they aim to “clean the disruptive, offensive and ugly corporate graffiti from public transport so you and your children no longer have to look at it.” If we’re rating episodes of “brandalism,” though, the anti-ad activists in Paris in 2015 were way more creative.

Just briefly:

Branded raw meat: Whole Foods staff who shaped piles of ground meat into Amazon logos did so because they wanted to, Recode says: “Amazon didn’t tell them to.”

Get-together: In Germany, publishers are coming together to form alliances “that prioritize consumer data privacy and aim to compete with the Facebook-Google duopoly,” as Digiday reports.

Apple vs. Hollywood: Apple is “sparring with movie studios over pricing” ahead of the rollout of Apple TV, The Wall Journal says.

Esports: As E.J. Schultz writes in Ad Age, esports supporters are not happy about the stance of the International Olympic Committee president on competitive video-game playing.

Ta-ta: Sky stopped broadcasting Fox News in the UK “because barely anyone watched it,” as Quartz says.

For your amusement: Dissolve, a stock video firm, has used its footage to put together a funny generic ad that skewers the clichés about marketing to millennials, as spotted by Fast Company. (Seriously, though, if you’re looking for video of 20-somethings photographing their food or playing ukulele in a field of wildflowers, you might actually want to call these folks. Which may be the whole point.)

Campaign of the day: Nobody ever wants to admit on LinkedIn that they were fired. So Burger King is offering a free Whopper to the first 2,500 people who use the platform to own up to it, as Jessica Wohl writes on Creativity Online. Some people will get job-hunting help too.

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