05/06/19: Cynopsis Media Tech Update

Good morning. It’s Monday, May 6, 2019 and this is your first Media Tech Update. Join us every Monday morning!

Vice Media, which has undergone layoffs and consolidation of late, raised $250 million in debt from investors including George Soros, Fortress Investment Group, 23 Capital and Monroe Capital, money that will be used to bolster the media company.
According to a study by Microsoft, 41% of consumers are concerned about trust and privacy around digital assistants. Nevertheless, 85% are willing to share email addresses with digital assistants in exchange for personalized pricing/rewards, 82% for free or upgraded shipping, and 80% for expedited purchasing options.
Weeks after acquiring Gizmodo Media Group and The Onion from UnivisionG/O Media laid off about 6% of its 400-person staff. Cuts include Susie Banikarim, former editorial director of Gizmodo Media Group. G/O CEO Jim Spanfeller described the layoffs as “not performance-driven but rather process-motivated.”
Add iPad, Apple TV and Android TV to the devices and platforms now available for launched-last-year streaming service Locast. As a nonprofit, Locast, available in New York, Chicago, Houston, Dallas, Denver, Boston, Philadelphia, Baltimore and D.C., does not need a TV station’s permission to stream.
In a blog post to creators, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki defended the company’s decision this winter to disable the ability for viewers to leave comments on videos featuring kids, noting the top priority was to protect children. The move came in response to the revelation of sexual comments left by child predators on select YT videos. Wojcicki outlined additional company measures against this type of behavior, and also acknowledged creators’ concerns over the removal of comments. “I know this change impacted so many creators who we know are innocent… But in the end, that was a trade-off we made because we feel protecting children on our platform should be the most important guiding principle.”
Altice USA debuted its Altice One operating system 3.0, the evolution of the Altice One entertainment and connectivity platform that includes a new sports hub, a refreshed home screen for faster navigation and an optional Voice Guidance feature embedded throughout the user interface for a more accessible experience. Altice One, available to Optimum and Suddenlink customers, combines 4K video, streaming apps, ultra high-speed broadband, home wifi and digital voice service.
vpnMentor researchers uncovered a hack that affected 65% of U.S. households. Information in the unprotected database, hosted by a Microsoft cloud server, included full names, marital status, income bracket, birth dates and locations. After vpnMentor reported its discovery, Microsoft said“We have notified the owner of the database and are taking appropriate steps to help the customer remove the data until it can be properly secured.” 
Apple reported that profits in the past quarter dropped due to falling iPhone sales, but results were above Wall Street expectations, with better-than-anticipated results from its new products and services.“Our March quarter results show the continued strength of our installed base of over 1.4 billion active devices, as we set an all-time record for Services, and the strong momentum of our Wearables, Home and Accessories category, which set a new March quarter record,” said Tim Cook, Apple CEO. “We delivered our strongest iPad growth in six years, and we are as excited as ever about our pipeline of innovative hardware, software and services.”
With the release of OS X Yosemite later this year, Apple announced it is ceasing development of photo editing app Aperture. Users of the app will be transitioned to Photos, a new app coming next year. “Photos integrates many of the advanced photo editing features that were previously found in Aperture and will replace iPhoto on the new OS X as well,” said the company.
Samsung unveiled its newest slate of lifestyle TVs at a press event in Seoul.  Among them: the Sero TV, a flat screen with a rotating display that’s meant to show off Instagram and Snapchat stories or TikTok videos – vertically. The new TV can be synced with a phone via NFC and then simply mirrors the phone’s display. Samsung also pitched the TV as a solution for big-screen mobile gaming, browsing photos form social networks or visiting shopping sites together with multiple people. If rotated back horizontally, the Sero TV can be used as a regular 43-inch TV screen.
Robotics company Anki is shutting down, reports Recode. CEO Boris Sofman informed his staff Monday that they were out of their jobs. “Despite our past successes, we pursued every financial avenue to fund our future product development and expand on our platforms,” a company spokesperson said. “A significant financial deal at a late stage fell through with a strategic investor and we were not able to reach an agreement.” Anki had raised over $200 million in venture capital.
AT&T launched the NarrowBand Internet of Things, a wireless network created to link to IoT devices for $5/year. “The upgrades at our 4G LTE cell sites across the country are now complete and our NB-IoT network is open for business,” said Chris Penrose, AT&T Business’s President, IoT Solutions, in a blog post. “This new network will help unlock the next wave of IoT connections. And it’s a big step toward massive IoT and 5G.”
Esports Tempest Awards

The only recognition program that shines a spotlight on the industry’s most innovative esports companies, with categories that span production, marketing, talent, and technology.
Winners will be announced live at the HyperX Esports Arena during the Esports Business Summit and promoted across social media, and digital assets—reaching over 300k key Esports business industry players.

Facebook execs including Mark Zuckerberg are being sued over alleged data privacy issues related to now-shuttered Cambridge Analytica that resulted in “extreme financial and reputational damage to Facebook,” said a shareholder in a complaint filed in Delaware. “This reputational harm undoubtedly translates into long-term damage to the company.” A company spokesperson said the lawsuit is “without merit.”
In more Facebook news, the social media giant announced it has designated right wing extremists like Alex Jones and Milo Yiannopoulos as “dangerous” and will boot them from Facebook and Instagram. Facebook also said it would ban their official accounts, and remove pages or accounts created to represent them. Tweeted President Trump the day after the news broke, “I am continuing to monitor the censorship of American citizens on social media platforms. This is the United States of America – and we have what’s known as freedom of speech!”
VR subscription service Viveport Infinity won’t offer Facebook’s new Oculus Quest headset games. Viveport president Rikard Steiber told Reddit, “We don’t have plans to support Oculus Quest at this time. Right now, Viveport is focused on supporting PC VR and VIVE Wave devices.”
At Facebook’s F8 developer conference, the company announced Messenger news including Messenger Desktop, set to debut later this year, focused on chat, audio and video calls that won’t require resizing browser tabs; Project Lightspeed, a reengineering of the app rolling out later this year that will accommodate users with low-storage phones; and video co-watching, now in the testing phase, allowing users to pick videos to watch at the same time as friend.
Facebook’s  Zuckerberg also unveiled a major redesign, which he called “the biggest change to the Facebook app in the last five years.” The new look includes the replacement of Facebook’s blue bar with a clean white design.
AdMetva place-based DOOH advertising IoT device solution, has joined global OOH association DPAA. Said DPAA President & CEO Barry Frey, “AdMetv represents a great opportunity for venues to turn passive TV screens into revenue-generating devices that enable advertisers to target specific locations and audiences. They are adding another layer onto out-of-home’s digital presence, and a great opportunity for brands.”
Want to hear more? As the fast growing digitalization of Out of Home advertising continues to accelerate, DPAA’s Barry Frey will lead an expert panel diving into the subject at Cynopsis’ That Big TV Conference. “This session will be a must-attend for anyone interested in the demand side for digital out-of-home,” says Frey. “Our panel of industry leaders will discuss new data sets, video opportunities, addressability and programmatic.”Details on the event are here.
Mercedes-Benz has become the first automotive brand to offer an Instagram augmented reality filter in a campaign that launches its new CLA Coupe. The  filter dovetails with a #PlayByYourRules short film the company created and is part of a larger social media campaign.
Executives at short-form startup Quibi are in the Upfront game, meeting with agency and brand execs in search of ad commitments. Quibi will launch with both a $5 ad-supported subscription tier and an $8 ad-free tier. The company has noted it projects advertising to account for 30 percent of revenue at 20 million subscribers.
Zeta Global closed its approximately $40 million acquisition of Sizmek’s demand-side marketing platform, a move that will impact the programmatic marketplace via the resulting Zeta demand side platform.
Digital technology partner Ntooitive announced an expansion of its existing connected TV platform through an integration with global advertising technology company The Trade Desk. The partnership offers advertisers and publishers a marketplace of cost-effective premium CTV inventory, real-time performance monitoring, and transparent reporting within Ntooitive’s N2TV platform. “Our partnership with Ntooitive allows even more advertisers to extend traditional TV buys into the digital space,” said Brian Stempeck, chief strategy officer for The Trade Desk. “By building its technology on top of The Trade Desk’s APIs, Ntooitive’s N2TV offering provides a powerful solution for their clients.”
Spotify is testing voice ads. An ad for Unilever’s Axe brand encourages users to go to a podcast sponsored by Unilever by saying, “play now,” reports AdAge. Listeners can disable voice ads in their ad settings.
In today’s competitive environment, networks must be innovative beyond what traditional data has historically provided. We need the kinds of insights that enable us to make smarter decisions about brand & editorial strategy, and determine the ideal content calibration in order to maximize revenue and ROI.  –Don Robert, EVP Research – A+E Networks
(Featured speaker on the “Measurement Matters” Panel at That Big TV Conference on 9/10 in NYC)
DON’T MISS OUT: www.thatbigtvconference.com

Streaming video viewing was up 72% in 1Q19 versus a year ago, reports Conviva, with consumption growing fastest on the TV screen (up 74.3%) followed closely by mobile viewership growth (up 72.5%). Virtual MVPDs like HuluYouTube and Sling combined for a 108% increase. Not such good news? Up to 47% of ads are failing, according to Conviva, and delivering quality viewing is a challenge on the internet, which wasn’t built for video. “Compelling content will bring viewers to the service but the quality of the viewing experience across the full stream is a vital component to acquire, retain and monetize viewers,” said the report. “The battle for streaming market share is not a zero-sum game, but services will have to deliver on excellent experience in order to command a premium in the increasingly crowded streaming landscape.”
YouTube struck its first live game deal with Major League Baseball, for 13 games live-streamed for free in the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico. The games will be produced for the YouTube platform. “It’s incredible to team up with Major League Baseball for this first-of-its-kind deal together to provide both diehard baseball fans and our YouTube community with live games exclusively on YouTube and YouTube TV,” said Timothy Katz, Head of Sports and News Partnerships, YouTube.  “With Major League Baseball’s expanding international fanbase, we are confident YouTube’s global audience will bring fans around the world together in one place to watch the games and teams they love.”
BBC Global News is set to produce automated audio versions of all BBC News’ online articles via Project Songbird, its initiative to build a text-to-audio commercial business across digital online platforms. The service promises to let audiences listen to their favorite news and sports editorial content hands-free, without the need to actually click and browse. Songbird will be built with the ability to download audio in the background and will offer a “dynamic” advertiser experience. There is no set launch date at this time.
Spotify reported that it now has over 100 million subscribers for its premium plan, marking a milestone for the 13-year-old streaming music service. The company attributes the growth in premium to several factors, including its new deal to offer a bundle of Spotify premium and Hulu for $9.99 per month, a deal with Samsung to have the app preinstalled on certain phones, and plan promotions. Spotify said it now has 217 million monthly active users, up 26% from the same quarter a year ago. Meanwhile, the company told investors that “ad-supported revenue growth underperformed our expectations in Q1” due to pricing issues, particularly regarding its “Sponsored Sessions” ad product.
iOS podcast app Overcast introduced an update that allows users to share audio or video clips, up to a minute each, from any public podcast, by tapping a share button. An audio clip, portrait, landscape or square video can be generated using the current Overcast theme setting. “One of the most common shortcomings we hear is that podcasts are hard to share,” said Overcast founder Marco Arment. “Hopefully, Overcast’s new clip-sharing feature changes that, and other apps build similar features soon.”
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CYNOPSISJOBS – For More jobs, please visit Cynopsis.com


Part of Sr leadership team candidate to oversee digital media activities of our 20 professionals involved in dvlpmnt/dist of content via digital platforms. 10yrs dig. or multi-platform exp req’d w/extensive exp progressive digital tech & content responsibilities in media ind, pref sports or ent.

Full info HERE

VP STRATEGIC INSIGHTS & RESEARCH/Discovery/NYC or LA: Thought leader & strategist to connect research methods w/new data analytics. Utilize primary research, Nielsen data & consumer databases to develop programming, scheduling & marketing strategy for Discovery & Science Channels & stay competitive in industry trends/changes. 10+ yrs media exp req. Apply HERE (5/17)

NETWORK OPERATIONS, VP/Ion Media/Clearwater FL: Provide strategic technical leadership in post-prod operations, network satellite dist, quality control, engineering, content management, TV traffic, & scheduling systems. 15+ yrs exp in media operations & 10 of those in ntwk ops mgnmnt. Full info HERE (5/17)

NETWORK OPERATIONS, DIRECTOR/Ion Media/Clearwater FL: Oversee network broadcast and studio technical support teams and systems (hardware, software, storage, and networking) & 24/7 Master control operations. 10+ yrs exp in media operations & 5 of those in ntwk ops mgnmnt. Full info HERE (5/17)

AD SALES ASSISTANT/Baby First TV/NY: Reports to EVP & AE Ad Sales. Detailed & organized. Ability to multi-task in fast past env. Prof in EXL & PPT. College grad welcome! Full info HERE (5/17)

SALES PLANNER/Fuse Media/NY: Provide sales and support to the Pricing and Planning and Ad Sales teams for Fuse and FM. Maintain media schedules, build sales plans, manage added value. BA/BS & min 1 yr exp. req. Full info HERE (5/17)

/Weather Channel/NYC: Manage digital campaigns for ES Digital advertiser activity, with a focus on theGrio. 2- 4 years digital/data optimization industry exp. Knwldg of digital tech systems. Full info HERE (5/17)

MGR, STRATEGIC DEVELOPMENT/NBCU/NYC: Help identify, develop, and implement business opps across & within the ELG network brands & studios portfolio. Creative strategic thinker w/3+ yrs media business dvlpment and/or investment banking exp.  Full info HERE (5/17)

VP, DIGITAL/NESN/Boston: Part of Sr leadership team candidate to oversee digital media activities of our 20 professionals involved in dvlpmnt/dist of content via digital platforms. 10yrs dig. or multi-platform exp req’d w/extensive exp progressive digital tech & content responsibilities in media ind, pref sports or ent. Full info HERE (5/17)

SR. PUBLICITY MANAGER/Acorn TV/Washington DC area:
Love Television? Love Publicity? This is the job for you! Pitch, follow-up & secure reviews & features for Acorn TV, North America’s largest streaming service for high-quality British & international TV, and its series (Doc Martin, Line of Duty, Agatha Raisin). Full info HERE (5/17)

AD SALES ASSISTANT/KATZ NETWORKS/NYC: Support national Ad Sales team by working with AE’s & planners to service clients. Maintain sales orders, allocations, flighting & move req’s. Office admin duties. Must be detail oriented w/orgnzt’l skills, able to multitask in fast paced team envir. BA/BS req. prefer 1 yr exp in industry. Full info HERE (5/16)

ON AIR FASHION EXPERT: Represent fashion stylist apparel brand on QVC as a backup guest. Start in overnights and early morning shifts w/potential primetime. Must be located w/in 2 hrs of suburban Philadelphia. Res/recent photo and on air links to [email protected] (5/16)

AD SALES- ACCOUNT SERVICE REP/Crown Media Family Networks/NY: Resp for maintaining/growing business on the assigned agency list; training & mentoring Sales Planners & Sales Assts in the co; acting as liaison for the Sales team in key areas of sales dvlpmnt, mktg & rsrch. BA/BS req & Min 2 yrs exp. Apply HERE (5/15)

AD SALES – SALES ASSISTANT/Crown Media Family Networks/NY: Responsible for working with Account Executives and Sales Planners to service and maintain agencies and clients on a daily basis, Marketing, Communication or Advertising. Apply HERE (5/15)

SUPERVISING PRODUCER, BRAND CREATIVE/Nickelodeon/NYC: Provide timely feedback on much of the team’s creative work; Assist in the scheduling for assignments on our various platforms. 10+ yrs exp working for a major network brand or agency in a prod capacity. 5+ yrs exp leading creative teams. Full info HERE (5/14)

SR ANALYST, MULTIPLATFORM RESEARCH/NBCU/NYC: Collect, analyze, and interpret audience data (Nielsen) for recurring reports and ad hoc requests. BA deg comm, media statistics. Min 2 yrs exp aud rsrch for media co or ad agency. PP & Excel strong knwldg & ability to analyze/summarize data a must. Full info HERE (5/14)

DIGITAL MEDIA DIRECTOR/ICON/NYC: Oversee dvlpmnt/execution of paid social, SEM, and programmatic campaigns & will work directly w/ICON’s client Discovery Comm. 5+ yrs of digital media exp – incl experience directly mngg paid social and SEM campaigns. Ideally also exp w/programmatic buying platforms (DSPs). Full info HERE (5/14)

PROGRAMMATIC CAMPAIGN MGR/ICON/Greenwich CT: Responsible for the progression, operation/management of programmatic capabilities across the entire ICON Digital team, enabling the delivery of impactful results for ICON’s clients. 2-4 yrs industry exp, incl time at an agency trading desk or DSP. Full info HERE (5/14)

Sr DIGITAL RESEARCH ANALYST/AMC/NYC: Talented, highly motivated individual with strong data analysis with a focus on digital performance, data storytelling and project management skills. 3-4 yrs of related exp. Exp working w/measurement tools Tableau and SPSS/STATA software a plus. Full info HERE (5/13)

/Ad Council/San Francisco: Asst VP of Media, Social & Emerging by overseeing partnerships w/major platform accts. 5+ yrs digital & traditional media/cross-platform sales exp w/track record of developing and executing successful strategic partnerships. Full info HERE (5/10)

ASST MEDIA MGR, SOCIAL & EMERGING MEDIA/Ad Council/San Francisco: Asst team on executing strategic media partnerships. Comfortable managing multiple priorities & personalities, has strong organizational instincts, written/oral comm skills. 2+ yrs professional sales, mktg, or agency (media or acct mnemnt) exp. Full info HERE (5/10)

DP/PHOTOJOURNALIST/Katz Networks/Atlanta: Work closely w/Field Producers in shooting live trials for COURT TV.  Light, shoot, mic intimate interviews; documentary style ENG; extensive travel. 3+ yrs live news network exp and 5+ yrs exp as DP with exp in News. Full info & how to apply HERE (5/10)

/dhx media/NYC: Sell national/local advertising, sponsorships & branded content across WildBrain’s YouTube Channels. A min 4 yrs exp in digital media sales and/or digital media plan’g role. Independent self-starter, proven track record of sales success, & exp building book of business. Full info HERE (5/9)

/GSTV/NYC: Dvlp/implement industry mktg strategies & plans, to generate measurable awareness & strengthen the company’s mkt position among key audiences. Exp dvlp/mng or plan’g events. 6-8 yrs progressively resp mktg communications &/or PR work exp. Full info HERE (5/9)

VP, AD SALES MARKETING/The Weather Channel & Entertainment Studios/NYC: Resp for developing and overseeing mktg partnerships, ad trade positioning and execution plan. Support sales with client selling. 15+ yrs ad mktg/media industry exp; cable TV focus a +. Full info HERE (5/8)

SUPERVISOR, SALES & DISTRIBUTOR MARKETING/Smithsonian Channel/NYC: Support and assist team in admin and coordination of affiliate sales projects and marketing campaign tactics. 3+ years of marketing/sales exp. within media industry preferred. Full info HERE (5/8)

SR MGR, CUSTOM PORTFOLIO RESEARCH/Turner/NYC: Help develop and implement a suite of research tools designed to measure, inform and evangelize Turner’s suite of non-traditional advertising products. 8+ yrs exp custom research design and execution at a brand, research supplier, ad  or media agency Full info HERE (5/8)

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