07/01/16: Spotify accuses Apple of anti-competitive behavior; Disney launches mobile app for kids; NBC to air 85 hours of Olympic programming in VR



CYNOPSISDIGITAL
07.01.16

Good morning. It’s Friday July 1, 2016, and this is your first early morning digital briefing.

TODAY’S CODEBREAKER
 

HMD: HMD is short for head-mounted display. A head-mounted display is a display device, worn on the head or as part of a helmet, which situates a display optic in front of one or both eyes. If you want to be geeky about it, you can accurately refer to any virtual reality headset as an HMD.
 
 

TOP NEWS
 

Thins are getting mighty testy between Apple and Spotify. According to a report from Re/code, Spotify is chafing at Apple’s billing restrictions. The music streaming service says that Apple blocked a new version of its app that would have allowed users to pay for subscriptions in-app. Instead, Spotify – like other apps seeking iOS approval – must continue to use Apple’s billing system, and pay Apple a 30% fee. Apple, of course, is considering its own interests. (For one, it’s got its own Spotify competitor, Apple Music.) In a letter obtained by Re/code, Spotify told Apple’s top lawyer that “Apple is causing grave harm to Spotify and its customers.” But it gets harsher: Spotify argues that Apple is butting up against U.S. and EU law competition. “We cannot stand by as Apple uses the App Store approval process as a weapon to harm competitors,” Spotify wrote. Spotify also sent copies of its letters to some Congressional staffers in Washington, D.C.  Senator Elizabeth Warren has even weighed in with some harsh words for Apple. Stay tuned – this will only get more interesting.
 


A CYNOPSIS MESSAGE


TODAY: RISING STAR AWARDS DEADLINE

This is your last chance to nominate for the 2016 Rising Star Awards.

Finish entries by 11:59 PM ET TONIGHT
so we can honor those who will be apart of the next generation’s group of leaders.

[Enter]
*Young  I Talented  Ready to Shine*



 

AD TECH
 

The video ad tech company Unruly announced a new partnership with The Wall Street Journal. Advertisers on the Journal’s website will now be able to buy out-stream video ad formats, which create new video ad inventory within WSJ.com’s article pages. Advertisers will be able to purchase the ad format programmatically through UnrulyX (Unruly’s viewable video supply-side platform), or directly from The Wall Street Journal’s ad sales teams. Unruly and The Wall Street Journal are both owned by News Corp.

 

PubNative, a mobile supply-side platform for native ads, launched a new native mobile mediation solution. The solution lets app developers automatically manage ad placements across multiple native demand sources, including Facebook. It also allows developers and publishers to segment audiences more precisely, using parameters such as OS, device type, app use, and demographics.
 
 

VIRTUAL + AUGMENTED REALITY
 

In these early days of VR, broadcast networks are turning to sports content in a big way. NBC will air about 85 hours of programming covering the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. The 360-degree content, which will be filmed by Olympic Broadcasting Services and supplied to NBC Olympics, will include numerous sporting events, including men’s basketball and gymnastics. It will also include the Opening and Closing Ceremonies, as well as event highlights. The content will be available exclusively on Samsung devices.
 
Wonder why live sports hold so much appeal to programmers when it comes to virtual reality? Jeff Goldberg of the sports-focused VR platform Virtually Live will fill you in – so long as you register for the new Cynopsis webinar, How to Monetize Virtual and Augmented Reality. The Weather Channel’s Jeremy Jones, IBB Consulting’s Jefferson Wang, and National Geographic’s Matt Zymet will also be on-hand. Sign up here: http://www.cynopsis.com/webinar/monetize-virtual-reality/
 
 

PROGRAMMING + CONTENT ACQUISITIONS
 

If you’re an Albert Brooks fan, you’re in luck – if you subscribe to Netflix. Starting today, the streaming giant is making seven of Brooks’s films available for the first time. The movies are: Defending Your Life, Mother, Lost in America, Looking for Comedy in the Muslim World, The Muse, Modern Romance, and Real Life. The films are available only to U.S. subs.
 
The Anglophile-friendly SVOD service Acorn TV announced four new acquisitions. The mystery series Agatha Raisin, an Acorn TV original series, will debut its pilot movie on August 1; the Series 1 premiere follows on August 8. The Disappearance, a French thriller series, debuts on the service August 15. The Syndicate: All or Nothing, a British drama series, debuts August 22. And Series 2 of the legal drama Janet King debuts August 29.
 


A CYNOPSIS MESSAGE


WHERE’S MY CYNOPSIS?

We will be on vacation and not publishing Cynopsis from July 4 – July 8, 2016
 – with the exception of Thursday, July 7th, when you will receive an issue.

In the interim, past editions, classifieds, special eReports, webinar & event information can always be found on our website. See you on Thursday, July 7th and have a great week!



 

OTT + SVOD
 

Laugh Out Loud, the upcoming SVOD service from Lionsgate and comedian Kevin Hart, is looking for new talent. Hart is teaming up with Just for Laughs at the latter’s comedy festival later this summer. On July 28, Hart and JFL will present a panel inviting creators to pitch pilot ideas for short-form comedy series. The best submissions will have a shot at making it onto the service. One-page outlines must be sent to [email protected] by July 13.
 
 

MOBILE APPS
 

Disney has launched Disney LOL, a new mobile app for kids. The app mines properties such as Pixar and Marvel for various bits of content, including short videos, games, and GIFs. Disney LOL functions as a sort of Instagram for kids’ content – that is, if Instagram’s content were controlled entirely by the company’s curators. There are a couple of ideas at play here: First of all, by launching a fully owned and operated app, Disney promises to weed out any age-inappropriate content. But more crucially, the app allows Disney to make sure that kids see plenty of Disney content – and nothing else. Disney Consumer Products and Interactive Media created the app, and will be tasked with maintaining it. Oh, and there’s also a website.
 
 

VC FUNDING + INVESTORS
 

Kin Community, a multi-channel network focused on female content creators, announced a $13.5 million Series D financing round. Emil Capital Partners, an investment firm backed by Tengelmann Group, led the round. Corus Entertainment, Allure Media, and Tegna also participated. Kin Community says it will use the funding to increase distribution and original content production, continue global expansion, and invest in global sales, marketing and partner management infrastructure.
 
The digital media firm Woven Digital took in $18.5 million in Series B funding. The round was led by WPP Ventures. Woven, which owns online publications such as Hitfix and Uproxx, says it will use the funds to expand its video production and studio operations, and scale its news, entertainment and sports coverage.
 
 

CYNOPSIS DIGITAL MODEL D AWARDS

 
Are you demonstrating a high level of excellence with content, marketing, or tech & tools? If so, you need to enter the Digital Model D Awards. View the extensive list of categories and enter before the deadline: http://www.cynopsisdigitalawards.com/
 
 

RESEARCH

 
In a wide-ranging new whitepaper about the state of programmatic advertising, the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) broke down the automation capabilities of all the major video platforms. In an informative chart, the IAB highlights the degree of automation in each platform, and in each step of the supply chain. Check out the chart below.
 
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DIGITAL SPOTLIGHT

 
In the lead-up to the Summer Games, Fandango is launching a series of videos featuring Olympic athletes discussing films that have inspired them. The videos, made in partnership with NBC Sports, come as part of Fandango’s I Love Movies series. In one of the new videos, U.S. rugby player Alev Kelter explains her love of the film Miracle. Check it out here.
 

TRIVIA

 
Newly-minted Netflix star Albert Brooks was born with a different surname. For understandable reasons, he changed his professional name when he was a young adult. What was his original last name? (Email [email protected] with your answer and be sure to include your name, company, city and time zone.)
 
Answer to Our Last Trivia Question: Fusion, which was initially launched in 2013, is the youngest media company that has a channel on Snapchat’s Discover platform. What’s the oldest? Answer: National Geographic. Nat Geo published its first magazine issue in 1888. Kudos to David Westberg-SAG-AFTRA Federal Credit Union/CA.


A CYNOPSIS MESSAGE


CYNOPSIS DIGITAL: MODEL D AWARDS
Honoring the best in online video content, advertising + talent

Choose from an extensive selection of categories such as:

Best Connected TV Platform | Best Actor/Actress in a Web Series | Best Digital Consumer Brand |Best Live Series | Outstanding Team of the Year | Best SVOD Service

To check out the full list of categories, click here.

 

Deadline to enter: Thursday, August 4, 2016


See you on 7/11,
David Teich
07.01.16

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

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