Good morning. It's Thursday, July 12, 2012, and this is your first early morning digital briefing. If you would like to read this or any other Cynopsis editions online, click here.
Aereo: 1, Broadcasters: 0; the online television-streaming service will continue to operate for the time being as a federal judge has denied the request for a preliminary injunction that sought to shut the service down while broadcasters sue the company for copyright violations. Aereo, which is backed by Barry Diller, distributes broadcast television content via small antennas to the web, so users can watch live TV on their PCs, tablets, and other internet-connected devices for $12 a month. It also offers cloud-based storage for up to 40 hours. Since it's not paying the networks to retransmit the feeds through the web, it has been hit with lawsuits from the likes of ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, and others. The networks, in response to the ruling, said they would appeal and continue fighting to shut down the service. Diller, obviously, has happy with the ruling. Either way, this one isn't over.
Facebook has struck a deal with NBCUniversal to provide coverage of the 2012 Summer Olympics on the social network as well as support NBC's televised coverage of the Games. Under the partnership, an NBC Olympics page on Facebook will function as the social media home of the two-week competition. It will regularly publish news, results, photos, polls, and trivia questions. Users simply have to "like" the page in order to access exclusive content. The agreement also establishes a social media segment during NBC's television coverage, which will feature a "Talk Meter," a data tool designed to illustrate the buzz on Facebook concerning the Olympics. And finally, an integration with Facebook Timeline on NBCOlympics.com will allow users to share what they are watching and reading on the social network.
Tout allows users to capture and post 15-second videos on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest via its mobile and web apps, or on their own website through the Tout Widget and API. The social video service has now found an investor in the WWE, as in the pro wrestling powerhouse. Starting on July 23, the WWE will feature Tout videos from fans during Monday Night Raw, on WWE.com, through its social media channels, and on in-arena video displays. Additionally, the company says WWE superstars will interact with fans via Tout Q&A sessions leading up to the event. On top of that, it is going to launch a new weekly program called Tout Tuesdays, which will give fans the opportunity to discuss what happened on the previous night's wrestling show.
AdRoll has raised $15 million in a financing round led by Foundation Capital, with additional contributions from existing investors like Merus Capital and Accel Partners. The funds will be used to further develop AdRoll's data-driven advertising technology and scale the business to meet what the company says is overwhelming demand from enterprise, mid-size, and small organizations for its retargeting solutions. AdRoll's retargeting platform currently features over 5,000 active advertisers in the US and abroad. As part of the investment, Charles Moldow, General Partner at Foundation Capital, will join AdRoll's Board of Directors.
Last year, the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) and its Mobile Marketing Center of Excellence released "Mobile Rich-media Ad Interface Definitions" (MRAID 1.0), a project aimed at establishing a common API in order to help agencies run ads on multiple apps without having to rewrite the programming several times for a single campaign. IAB describes it is a standardized set of commands that developers creating rich media ads can use to communicate what those ads do with the apps into which they are being served. To build on that, IAB has released MRAID 2.0 for public comment. IAB says the update addresses the rise of HTML5 in the development of rich media ads over the past year. According to IAB, MRAID 2.0 expands the project's definitions to a wider set of features and capabilities, including:
Legendary Entertainment has bought multiplatform media company Nerdist Industries, which was founded by comedian Chris Hardwick and GeekChicDaily Co-Founder Peter Levin. The Nerdist content network, which reaches an audience of 15 million people per month, includes a website, podcasts, an original YouTube channel, newsletters, and more, all focusing on, as the name suggests, fanboys and fangirls. Thomas Tull, the Founder of Legendary Entertainment, was an early investor in the company. Per the deal, Chris Hardwick and Peter Levin are joining Legendary as Co-President/Digital Content and Co-President/Digital Strategy, respectively. They will report to Legendary Entertainment COO Tim Connors. Nerdist, meanwhile, will continue to operate as an autonomous editorial unit, according to Thomas Tull. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
A CYNOPSIS MESSAGE
4 WEEKS AWAY!
We've announced the Cynopsis Sports Media Award finalists; now join us in saluting them at the Awards breakfast!
Date: August 9, 2012
Time: 8:00-10:00 a.m.
Location: The Harvard Club, NYC
Registration: Jenn Sredzinski; 203.906.4603
Sponsorships: Mike Farina; 203.218.6480
Some highlights from Trendrr's social TV data for June 2012:
Older Americans have a cautious approach to technology, but are still willing to embrace it depending on the practical impact it will have on their lives, according to research form Perion Network. The study shows that 88.5% of Americans over 45 surveyed consider themselves slow to adopt technology. However, 84.8% adopt a new technology when it fits their current lifestyle, 89% will use new technology if it's better than what they use today, and 79.2% enjoy technology and new gadgets. Perion Network, which is a developer of software tailored for second wave adopters of technology, gathered its data from a survey of 2,963 Americans who are users of its IncrediMail email client and over 45 years of age.
The new Google+ iPad app allows users to start a Hangout from the tablet and stream it to their TV using Apple's AirPlay service. Other nifty features include the ability to pinch and expand posts in the stream in order to add comments and to re-share posts by using two fingers to drag the post from the stream. Google has also rolled out an update to its Google+ app for the iPhone, which now allows users to create and manage events. Looking back at the social network's popular Hangouts feature, Google says both the iPhone and iPad apps now allow users to start a video chat with up to nine friends from anywhere, at anytime.
Video technology company FreeWheel has named Blake Krikorian to its Board of Directors. "I'm looking forward to helping FreeWheel expand and deepen its partnerships with leading content and media distribution players around the world," said Krikorian in a statement. Most recently, he served as Co-Founder, Chairman and CEO of Sling Media, the makers of the Slingbox device. He is also on the Board of Directors at Amazon and an active angel investor.
Miami-based PR, marketing, and digital media firm Schwartz Media Strategies has expanded its social media practice with the addition of Maria Arguello to the position of Social Media Director. In her new role, she will implement digital and social media campaigns for Schwartz Media Strategies and clients within the firm's consumer lifestyle, destination marketing, and legal and financial services practices, among others.
The Digital Place-based Advertising Association (DPAA) has named Brian Dusho, President and CEO of BroadSign International, and Pierre Richer, President and CEO of NEC Display Solutions, to its Board of Directors. This marks the first time the DPAA has selected to industry suppliers to such positions.
Brite Promotions, a full-service marketing agency and division of Brite Media Group, has hired Jason Blake to be its new VP/Business Development. Working out of the agency's Manhattan and New Jersey offices, Blake will be responsible for developing new business opportunities across multiple industries with an emphasis on digital media, spirits, and sports, among other sectors. He will report to SVP Pete D'Andrea.
Gilt Live is a new service from the popular shopping site that allows users to watch a "live stream" in order to see what others are buying at that moment or have purchased recently. If you find something of interest, simply click on the image of the product. The service also allows you to post the product on Facebook, Pinterest, and/or Tumblr.
Later - Sahil
Sahil Patel, Associate Editor for Cynopsis Digital
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