Industry analysts often are quick to point out that traditional networks and broadcasters are having a hard time finding their sweet spot in the new-media market, but commentator Ashkan Karbasfrooshan asserts that there's little motivation for them to do so. Karbasfrooshan writes that that's partly due to hubris among traditional media executives who see Web content as "second-rate," but mostly it's because the value proposition isn't great enough for entrenched media firms that are more concerned with monetizing existing content than creating new content.
Forty-six percent of viewers said they'd be likely to look up a new product or brand if mentioned in an online video, according to a Digitas summary of a Harris survey set to be presented at the upcoming Digital Content New Fronts event. Brand content has become increasingly important because "today's viewer is not just passively sitting and watching -- they're sharing, talking, clicking, testing," says Digitas' Stephanie Sarofian. Almost half of the 55-plus demographic said they might watch online content related to their favorite TV shows.
Mashable says it is accelerating its push into original programming through a partnership with Dick Clark Productions. Under the agreement, the companies will collaborate on the creation and distribution of programming, starting with a behind-the-scenes look at the tech industry called "Dojos," in an effort to bolster the handful of video-news reports that appear at Mashable.com and its YouTube site.
Newspaper retooling for the digital age requires more than simply moving from print to online. The industry also needs to change how it covers news and even rethink the basic relationship between the content they provide and the business that allows them to provide it. "I'm not sure if papers really understand the significance of the digital transformation," said Rick Stevens, an assistant professor of journalism at the University of Colorado. "It's rethinking the entire reporting and data-collection model."
Independent publisher Sourcebooks launched a website to sell a curated selection of its digital romance novels for a monthly membership fee. The site, which operates much like a book club, also allows members to interact with popular authors through comment pages and Web chats.
Small local stores can use the Facebook Ads API to compete with big chain retailers such as Wal-Mart, writes Blinq Media CEO Dave Williams. Smaller stores can identify Wal-Mart's Facebook fans in their areas and then target those consumers with ads and offers. Deeper insights are available as well that allow advertisers to "look at the different qualities of local fans to best match their target customers," Williams says.
Two-thirds of U.S. libraries carry e-books, while more than a quarter lend out the e-readers that patrons need to read e-books, according to a report from the American Library Association. However, the report -- "The 2012 State of America's Libraries" -- also found that while libraries are eager to stock e-books, they continue to face challenges, such as cost increases, a Justice Department price-fixing investigation and the fact that only two of the six largest publishers provide e-books to libraries.
Nokia debuted its Lumia 900 Windows-based smartphone on Sunday, but buying one in person from AT&T -- the phone's official reseller -- turned out to be an exercise in futility given that the device hit the market on Easter. Most AT&T stores in New York reportedly were closed for the holiday, but that didn't stop the Lumia 900 from racking up big sales on Amazon, where black and blue models of the device took the online retailer's top two spots on the cellphone-best-seller list.
Leap Wireless is expanding its broadband capacity in parts of Arizona and Texas through a spectrum swap with T-Mobile USA. Under the agreement -- which brings both providers closer to their 4G infrastructure goals -- T-Mobile picks up additional spectrum in Alabama, Illinois, Missouri, Minnesota and Wisconsin.
The Federal Communications Commission last week adopted an order designed to make it easier for Internet service providers to provide wireless broadband services to rural areas via "white space" frequencies that television stations own but don't use.
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