04/06/17: YouTube TV launches in 5 cities


Good morning. It’s Thursday April 6, 2017 and this is your first early morning digital briefing.


Lossless Compression: Lossless compression is a class of data compression that allows the original data to be perfectly reconstructed from the compressed data. It’s used in cases where it’s important that the original data and the compressed data be identical.


lost its highest-profile streaming partnership, and Wall Street yawned. The NFL is handing Thursday Night Football off to Amazon, capping its short-lived deal with Twitter at one season. (Unlike with Twitter, which made the broadcasts available to everyone, Amazon will only allow Prime subscribers to watch live. The games will also be available on linear TV, of course.) Twitter’s stock took a brief dip after the news broke, but recovered in short order. Twitter has never revealed just how much ad revenue its 10 NFL broadcasts generated, but its stated $50 million goal was always a bit ambitious. The company continues to pour resources into its other live-streaming partnerships, and when it comes to drawing attention Twitter’s expanding efforts as a video platform, the NFL deal has arguably served its purpose already.
YouTube TV
is here – if you live in New York, L.A., San Francisco, Chicago or Philadelphia. Equipped with about 50 TV channels, Google’s new TV service costs $35 per month. It comes with an unlimited cloud-based DVR, and an interface that situates digital content alongside its TV recommendations. (In case it wasn’t already clear, YouTube TV is aimed squarely at millennials.) YouTube has also announced a new pact with AMC Networks, which will place the company’s channels on the service. Google is entering an increasingly crowded space. AT&T, Dish Network, Sony, and the sports-centric fuboTV are already out with live TV services, and Hulu is launching one soon.


Less than a week away…
April 13| 8:15-10:30am | NYC  I Sponsored by ViewLift & Monumental Sports Network
Be a part of the celebration and join us for breakfast with your peers on 4//13, as we celebrate the sports industry’s ground-breaking achievements over the past year. Also in the room will be the 2017 luminaries from Turner, Monster Energy, NextVR and LGPA.

For more information visit the event webpage.



Now that’s a problem. According to a new report from Forrester, fraud and waste cost advertisers a whopping $7.4 billion in 2016. Programmatic media and video was the leading culprit. Forrester described the digital advertising supply chain as “riddled with problems, most directly connected to the lack of transparency in ad tech.” The result, wrote Forrester, is “wasted time, effort, money, and lackluster ROI.” The report suggests that it will be a $10.9 billion problem by 2021 unless the issue is addressed. The first step, Forrester suggested, is creating “standards that apply to all digital media.”  


Netflix has found its inner Roger Ebert. The streaming giant has officially axed its five-star user rating system, replacing it with a simple thumbs up/thumbs down option. And instead of the star rating appearing next to titles, Netflix will set a percentage “match score” – i.e., a personalized prediction as to what the service thinks individual viewers will enjoy, based on past viewing habits and behavior. The company argues that the thumbs up/thumbs down rating system results in more accurate matching capabilities. Netflix even says that it saw a 200% increase in ratings activity when it first tested the system.


The high-end VR headsets that hit the market last year haven’t been selling as quickly as their creators had hoped. (The multi-hundred dollar price tags just might have had something to do with that.) Now Sony is trying a new strategy. The Japanese tech and entertainment giant has reportedly set its sights on commercial customers, according to a new report from the Wall Street Journal. Sony will reportedly begin marketing its PlayStation VR headsets to entertainment facilities in Japan. (The Journal’s sources said that Sony isn’t planning to launch its own facilities, at least for the time being.) The new marketing push is reportedly being led by a new “location-based entertainment” unit, which Sony’s videogame arm first announced last month.


YouTube Go is trying to expand its user base. Google released a new beta version of the app in India, an enormous market with notoriously spotty internet access. That’s the point: The app was specifically designed to work on shoddy internet connections. It gives users control over how they watch content, allowing them to save videos for offline viewing and to select specific video resolutions. And users can share videos with each other using Wi-Fi Direct capabilities – an option that’s not available on YouTube’s flagship app. 
Looks like fending off extradition wasn’t occupying enough of KimDotcom’s time. The controversial Megaupload founder has teased a new file-hosting venture designed to let content publishers upload files and then sell them directly to users. All transactions would be handled in Bitcoin. Called BitContent, the service is slated to launch at the same time as Dotcom’s BitCache, a payment system for managing Bitcoin transactions. Dotcom hasn’t announced when the new ventures will launched. First he has to avoid prison; the U.S. has been trying to extradite him for piracy since 2012, and in February a New Zealand court ruled against his appeal. The case now goes to the country’s Court of Appeals.


Tweetl of the week: @MichaelKParrish: I just watched a shirtless man in jorts propose to his girlfriend in front of 70,000 booing people. Wrestling is awesome.#Wrestlemania
Canvs, the language analytics company that measures emotions around content, analyzed tweets about TV and streaming programming from March 29-April 4 using Twitter data from Nielsen. Insights from the 3,108,137 tweets expressing a specific Emotional Reaction (ER) include:
– The epic WWE WrestleMania 33 pay-per-view special had viewers not only feeling more excited than any other programming, but the show racked up more than twice as many ERs vs. any other show during the seven days measured.
– The show that viewers felt was the most badass was the season-seven finale of The Walking Dead on AMC.
– Tops in congrats ERs (outside of sports): The 52nd Academy of Country Music Awards on CBS, with Thomas Rhett being one of the most congratulated artists of the evening, with wins for Male Vocalist of the Year and Song of the Year.
– The show that had viewers feeling the most sentimental was a particularly emotional episode of Grey’s Anatomy on ABC.


Which actress landed a spot on Hulu’s The Handmaid’s Tale after her character died on Netflix’s Orange Is the New Black? (If you’re still behind on OITNB and you’re the spoiler-averse type, try not to read tomorrow’s answer.) (Email trivia@cynopsis.com with your answer and be sure to include your name, company, city and state.)
Our Last Trivia Question: Who’s the CEO of WhatsApp? Answer: Jan Koum. Kudos to Susan Nessanbaum-Goldberg-M and S Entertainment/NY, Andy Pittman-TAMU/TX, Mathew Tombers-Intermat/NY, Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/CA, David Westber-SAG-AFTRA Federal Credit Union/CA, and Lorrie Shilling/CA


We’re shining a light on the kids sector this September at the

The industry’s most trusted brand is bringing together industry experts to honor the best in children’s, tween and family programming across platforms, technology, marketing and prosocial campaigns.

Get your entry in now for the chance to be among your industry peers and join us in honoring the amazing accomplishments that have been made in children’s programming!



Netflix is out with a nifty little video overview of its new thumbs up/thumbs down rating system. Check it out here.

See you tomorrow,
David Teich

Roberta Caploe: Publisher @robertacaploe
Diane K Schwartz: Senior Vice President, Media Communications Group

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