12/22/16: Disney-ABC TV Group partners with Snapchat on original shows


Good morning. It’s Thursday December 22, 2016 and this is your first early morning digital briefing.


Technical Debt: Technical debt is a concept in computer programming that reflects the fact that extra development work arises when programmers use code that’s easy to implement in the short run instead of using the best possible solution. 


Disney-ABC Television Group has reached a deal with Snapchat to produce a number original shows for the app. (NBCUniversal reached a similar deal with Snapchat earlier this year.) First up will be Watch Party: The Bachelor, a new aftershow for ABC’s The Bachelor. That’ll premiere January 3, the morning after the show’s season 21 premiere. Nick Viall, who formerly appeared on The Bachelorette and twice finished as runner-up (ouch), will host the series. Episodes will likely run from 3-5 minutes in length, and remain available for 24 hours. Disney-ABC reportedly plans to debut several other shows on Snapchat in the coming months; execs haven’t provided details on those just yet.


Poker Central is folding – at least in part. The network has confirmed that, at the end of December, it’s pulling the plug on its linear programming to focus on digital platforms. The network has already launched apps for multiple streaming devices, including Apple TV, Roku, and Amazon Fire TV. The apps will live on, but will no longer feature a live-stream from the network. Instead, the app will feature free, ad-supported VOD programming.


Do you work at an agency?

For many, buying and planning is a great place to start your career. But if you are one of the few who stick around, this year’s survey suggests you will be richly rewarded for your experience.


You may have noticed that celebrities tend to live more privileged lifestyles than the rest of us. Facebook is happy to keep that tradition going. The social giant will soon release new features that will enable celebs and their social media management teams to edit Facebook Live videos after they’ve streamed. Facebook argues that the ability to trim live-streams will allow users to “create a more polished viewing experience” for post-broadcast audiences. The editing tools will be available to people using the Facebook Mentions app, which is only accessible to verified users. The tool will roll out in the coming weeks, though it’s already available to a small number of users.


With FCC chair Tom Wheeler resigning and a Republican congress in place, it’s a matter of time before the incoming Trump administration goes about gutting Obama-era media regulations such as net-neutrality. Now the President-elect has named a new partner in his deregulatory efforts: Famed investor and early Trump endorser Carl Icahn. Icahn will serve as a special advisor on regulatory reform, though he won’t technically be part of the President’s administration. In the past, Icahn has invested in traditional media companies such as Viacom and Time Warner, and tech-oriented companies like Netflix and Apple.


Sony’s Crackle announced that Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, its long-running talk series starring Jerry Seinfeld, will make its season 9 premiere on January 5. The season’s guests will include Kristen Wiig, Norm Macdonald, Lewis Black, and others.


@LeoRules1: @STAR @deeftherbst @wordtoJude FINALLY it’s here. #Star will ease the #Empire withdrawals lol
Canvs, the language analytics company that measures emotions around content, analyzed tweets about TV and streaming programming from Dec. 14-20 using Twitter data from Nielsen. Insights from the 2,318,023 tweets expressing a specific Emotional Reaction (ER) include:
– 11.9% of people who said they were excited about something on TV were watching NFL Football on CBS, and in particular the Indianapolis Colts vs. Minnesota Vikings game.
– Excluding sports, 4.9% of viewers who mentioned something they were watching being good were checking out the pilot episode of Fox’s new show Star.
– 11.8% of people sending congratulatory messages about TV programming had watched the finale of The Voice on NBC, with many cheering on the winner Jason “Sundance” Head.
– Excluding sports, 74.2% of viewers who said something on TV was cool were watching the Rob & Chyna Baby Special on E!, despite all the drama surrounding the couple’s pre-show “break-up” (and/or publicity stunt).


2016 has not been kind to Twitter’s executive retention rate. Chief Technology Officer Adam Messinger has announced that he’ll be leaving the company to “take some time off.” Messinger joined Twitter in 2011, and has served as CTO since 2013. He oversaw the company’s engineering, design, and product initiatives. According to Recode, those duties will now be handed off to product chief Ed Ho. One other exec announced that he’ll be leaving the company as well: Josh McFarland, a product executive who joined Twitter 18 months ago when the company acquired TellApart, McFarland’s ad tech startup. Other high-profile Twitter execs to exit in 2016 include COO Adam Bain and VP of Product Kevin Weil.
It’s safe to say Amazon is gearing up for a push into virtual reality. Amazon Studios has hired former Tribeca Film Festival director Genna Terranova to head up a new VR initiative, the company confirmed. The Hollywood Reporter was the first to report the news. Not too many details are known about her role just yet, though THR’s sources did say that Amazon intends to both license VR content and develop original VR projects. 
Eric Picard has joined music streaming service Pandora as its new VP of Ad Product Management. A veteran in the ad tech space, Picard will spearhead Pandora’s push into programmatic audio advertising. He most recently served as a VP overseeing MediaMath’s Omni-Channel Media and Buying Platform.


Akio Morita and Masaru Ibuka co-founded which major tech and entertainment company? (Email trivia@cynopsis.com with your answer and be sure to include your name, company, city and state.)
Our Last Trivia Question: Back in 2005, Facebook – then known as TheFacebook – acquired Facebook.com. How much did spend to purchase the domain? Answer: $200,000. (Still, that’s nothing compared to the $8.5 million it spent in 2010 to acquire fb.com from The American Farm Bureau.) Kudos to Andy Pittman-TAMU/TX and David Westberg-Sag-AFTRA Federal Credit Union/CA


CYNOPSIS SPORTS has launched the call for entries for the highly anticipated…
Honoring the best and brightest work from around the spectrum of sports business, with categories that include VR, eSports, live coverage of a sporting event, social media excellence, marketing campaign, apps and more!

For more information & to enter, visit the awards webpage:



It’s that time of year. Jimmy Fallon, The Roots, Paul McCartney, and the cast of the upcoming animated film Sing joined together to sing McCartney’s Wonderful Christmastime in a new music video. (The video’s format makes them look kind of like the Brady Bunch, but as far as we know they’re not actually family members.) From The Tonight Show’s YouTube page, check it out here.

See you tomorrow,
David Teich

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