Panel: Game consoles have competition in serving as media hubs | Universal home-media exec discusses what works when marketing DVDs | Netflix reports Q1 loss even as revenues, streaming base increase
April 25, 2012
C Space SmartBrief
Digital entertainment, advertising and marketing news
Entertainment News
U.S. Senate hearing discusses the future of online television
Representatives of the media and technology industries testified Tuesday before a Senate committee about the future of Internet video and free television services. The hearing brought together executives from Microsoft and Amazon, as well as IAC/InterActive's chairman, Barry Diller, to answer questions on topics such as data caps, Net neutrality and the appropriate regulatory response to online and mobile video.
Broadcasting & Cable (4/24),  The Washington Post (tiered subscription model)/Post Tech blog (4/24) 
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Panel: Game consoles have competition in serving as media hubs
The fight for dominance in the digital living room was once expected to be between Microsoft's Xbox 360 and Sony's PlayStation 3, but those consoles may be losing out as home media hubs to Blu-ray disc players and Internet-connected television sets, according to panelists at a conference in Los Angeles. Consoles now need to be able to handle live TV in addition to video streaming, according to Robert Tercek, president of General Creativity.
Home Media Magazine (4/24) 
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Other News
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Netflix reports Q1 loss even as revenues, streaming base increase
The costs of international expansion and dwindling returns on high-margin DVD rentals helped tip Netflix to a first-quarter loss despite higher revenues. Netflix, which is focusing its attention on its streaming business, lost more than 1 million DVD subscribers during the quarter.
Los Angeles Times (tiered subscription model) (4/24),  PC Magazine (4/23) 
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AOL to produce 7 original series as part of video hub
AOL says it will deliver video programming, including seven original shows, over a single platform that will be available on a variety of connected devices and Web TVs. The AOL On Network will draw on content from partners including The Huffington Post, TechCrunch and Engadget on 14 genre-specific channels in areas such as food, business, style, tech, travel and health.
Bloomberg Businessweek/The Associated Press (4/24),  VentureBeat (4/25) 
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Other News
Monetizing Content
Debating the idea of selling early access to N.Y. Times scoops
Media pundits took to Twitter this week to debate a proposition by Reuters blogger Felix Salmon that The New York Times could draw profits from its scoops -- such as a recent story on allegations of bribery involving Wal-Mart Mexico -- if it offered early access to these stories, for a fee. While some commentators think premium access would be a great way for the paper to further monetize its content, Mathew Ingram writes that such a move would undermine the paper's public-service legacy and could ultimately harm its credibility.
Reuters/Felix Salmon blog (4/24),  GigaOm (4/24) 
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Syfy seeks placement deals for 2013 "Defiance" play
NBC Universal's Syfy is already warming up advertisers to product-integration deals for the 2013 network series called "Defiance," in which multiplayer online gaming will intermingle with the TV show's plot. "Syfy is pushing past linear TV and showing there's a bigger environment for advertisers outside the one screen," Mindshare managing director Ellen Ferrari said.
Advertising Age (tiered subscription model) (4/23) 
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Integrated Marketing
Shazam joins with Britain's ITV for mobile-ad service
TV ads in Britain will be rendered interactive for mobile devices by Shazam under an exclusive distribution agreement with broadcaster ITV. The accord expands the service offered by Shazam for TV in the U.S., where many advertisers on "American Idol," the Super Bowl and other TV fare have had their ads enabled for mobile devices by Shazam.
Mobile Marketing Magazine (4/19) 
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Content marketers are favoring more video
More than half of marketers employed video for content marketing in 2011, catching up to print, website and e-mail tactics, according to the Custom Content Council and ContentWise. That trend should continue, with 54% of North American marketers planning to use more video content this year.
eMarketer (4/23) 
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eBooks, Tablets and More
Google tries again on smartphone sales with Galaxy Nexus
Google re-entered the smartphone direct-sales channel on Tuesday, introducing on its website an unlocked version of Samsung Electronics' Galaxy Nexus phone. The move comes two years after it tried in vain to sell its own device online. Google is charging $399 for the phone; consumers can buy AT&T or T-Mobile SIM cards to use the Galaxy Nexus or pay $200 to purchase the handset from Verizon Wireless or Sprint Nextel under a two-year contract.
Bloomberg (4/24),  The Wall Street Journal (tiered subscription model) (4/24) 
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BT asks rivals if they want a ride on ultrafast network
U.K. broadband provider BT has invited rival ISPs that are members of the so-called next-generation access group to take part in fiber-to-the-premises trials in six communities ahead of a nationwide pilot program scheduled to launch May 21. The rollout of BT's "ultrafast" FTTP service is part of the company's investment in broadband infrastructure in the U.K. that a report from Regeneris Consulting says could bring thousands of jobs to Scotland alone over the next 15 years.
The Register (U.K.) (4/24),  Google/The Press Association (U.K.) (4/24) 
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Business Tips and Advice
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Paul Misener of Amazon, testifying before a Senate panel, as quoted by The Washington Post's Post Tech blog
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