Good morning, it’s Monday, April 14, 2008, and this is your first early morning digital briefing.
The creators of the hit interactive drama Kate Modern have announced their latest project. MySpace will commission sixty 4-5 minute webisodes of I love Chieftown debuting in the fall, following aspiring filmmaker Jamie around east London as she documents an up-and-coming band. It sounds like a perfect way to promote MySpace’s planned online music store as well as test the company’s new distribution deal with Elizabeth Murdorch’s ShineReveille.
PBS‘ Charlie Rose show is preparing to launch a vastly expanded online archive this summer, whittling 4,000 hours of interviews down to offer some 800 clips for embedding and syndication, reports Beet TV.
RadioOne acquired niche social networking company Community Connect for $38 million, including the sites BlackPlanet.com, MiGente.com and AsianAve.com.
Call for Content: The 60th Primetime Emmy Awards is accepting submissions for original broadband content. This year made-for-digital works in traditional genres such as drama, comedy, animation and reality competition will compete directly against cable and network programming. But new short form entertainment, nonfiction and animation categories have also been created. Go to emmys.tv/awards for all the details.
Online broadcasting platform UStream raised $11.1 million in Series A funding for new product development from DCM and existing investors Labrador Ventures and The Band of Angels. UStream now counts over 260,000 registered users who generate 350,000+ hours of live streamed content per month.
Revision3 is trying out a new clickable web video interface powered by VideoClix, allowing users to click on objects with the video for additional info including product information or background info about the host.
TitanTV debuts two new shows today starring VH1 comedian and Glamour columnist Michael Somerville. “Lunch Break with Somerville” offers a rundown on pop culture and current events. “Love, Somerville” is an advice magazine for the lovelorn, co-starring TitanTV personalities Grace Randolph and Liza de Guia.
The FCC is handing out over $3.9 million in proposed fines to retailers including Wal-Mart, Target and Sears for failing to inform consumers the analog TVs they sold in 2007 won’t be able to receive digital signals without a separate tuner after Feb. 17, 2009. Manufactures such as LG and Vizio are also being fined for labeling violations.
Verizon filed suit against Time Warner Cable in New York last week, claiming its latest cable spots blatantly misrepresent Verizon’s FiOS TV service. According to Verizon the ads falsely suggest that the Verizon service requires a dish; is new to fiber-to-the-home technology; and is inferior to Time Warner Cable’s fiber-optic network. Time Warner Cable, of course, denies any wrongdoing.
YouTube is planning to create an ad-free political portal lawmakers can use to reach constituents without violating House rules. Current regulations, set in the 18th century by the Franking Commission, frown on links between campaigns and commerce-related entities – making embedding YouTube videos on representatives’ sites technically illegal, according to The Washington Post.
The Network Advertising Initiative, a coalition of behavioral advertising companies including Advertising.com, DoubleClick and Yahoo, released an updated version of principles to help the industry regulate itself. The group suggests ad companies should not create segments targeting children under 13 and refrain from tracking certain health histories including HIV, cancer, or psychiatric conditions. Personal life information including relationship orientation is also out of bounds.
Meanwhile Microsoft dealt with the privacy hot potato by proposing its own 5-tiered structure for self-regulation. The plan outlines practices pertaining to collection data about site visitors, delivering ads on unrelated sites, behavioral advertising practices, use of personally identifiable information and use of sensitive personal data.
Despite the apparent elegance of a single, unified search ad system, advertising executives worry that a combined Google and Yahoo search product would drive cost-per-click marketing prices higher by eliminating all competition in the marketplace, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal. Media buyers are also concerned about glitches caused by integrating the two systems.
YouTube released a new discovery tool allowing producers to track how users are finding their videos. The YouTube Insights tool identifies whether or not viewers arrived there by conducting a search on Google or YouTube, browsing “related videos,” clicking from an external link or watching from embedded clip off the site.
Dan Levi is joining Zoom Media and Marketing as SVP/Digital Media and Strategic Partnerships, a newly created position. Previously, Dan was Chief Marketing Officer of Monster.com’s Internet Advertising Division.
GlamMedia expanded its sales team hiring former iVillage National Sales Director Matthew Schulte as VP/Eastern Region Sales. Matthew will be based in Glam’s New York office.
Gaming-themed online publisher Giant Realm has hired former Maxim Digital and NBC Universal marketer Pauline DeRosier as Marketing Director to help create and manage custom marketing campaigns for clients. She is among a new group of Giant Realm hires across multiple regions, joining Jim Thorpe, Account Director, Eastern Region; Rebecca Sanders, Senior Account Executive, Western Region; and Bina Amin, Associate Account Executive, Eastern Region.
~ WEBSITE OF THE DAY ~
Where I Stand.com is a social networking site out to add some substance to the whole social networking craze. The site serves as a resource to discover where public figures stand on key issues, a place to hash out contentious issues and a network to meet like-minded people who share the same views. Founder Nick Oliva came up with the idea for the site during the 2004 election, “when everyone was accusing everyone else of every opinion under the sun.” Next up for the site is a Search by Opinion feature, where users can search issues-based blogs by topic.
Later — Wayne
Wayne Karrfalt for Cynopsis: Digital
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