Friday, June 22nd, 2012

Cynopsis: DIGITAL

Good morning. It’s Friday, June 22, 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.

A group of lawmakers, spurred on by the recent fracas surrounding the Facebook initial public offering, are asking the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to revamp the IPO process, believing that the current system unfairly punishes small investors, according to a report from The Wall Street Journal. Specifically, the letter (obtained by the WSJ) from Rep. Darrell Issa (R., Calif.) to SEC Chairman Mary Schapiro asks the agency to take a look at the rules for pricing and disclosing information, and suggests that it’s time to overhaul the Securities Act of 1933. One of the big issues surrounding the Facebook IPO, and the steep drop of the social giant’s share price that followed, was how the underwriters allowed analysts to warn select investors about Facebook’s business model but not the larger investment community. The SEC is currently looking into whether the underwriters broke any rules by doing this, according to the WSJ. The Democratic Chairman of a subcommittee within the Senate Banking Committee separately told the WSJ in an interview that regulatory changes are needed in order to boost investor confidence in the IPO process.


Awesomeness TV, a new original YouTube channel focused on teens, has launched with a selection of new episodic series that are organized into four programming categories. AwesomenesstvXOXO, for young women, premieres with IMO, a daily talk show featuring social media stars that offers tips on fashion, dating, and style, as well as celebrity news. AwesomenesstvACTION, for men, kicks off with That Was Awesome, a sports clip show curated by NBA star Blake Griffin and Blow Up Guys, which features five teenagers doing pranks, stunts, and experiments. AwesomenesstvMUSIC will be populated with behind-the-scenes videos of music stars, beginning with Mindless Behavior and Greyson Chance, as they embark on a world tour. And the fourth, AwesomenesstvLOL, will be a destination for comedy programming, including series such as Randomness, which will feature YouTube personalities and stars from Disney and Nickelodeon TV shows doing sketch comedy. Awesomeness TV is a project of Varsity Pictures, which is headed by Brian Robbins (Smallville, FRED) and Joe Davola (In Living Color, Smallville). Varsity Pictures says new series will be introduced frequently and new episodes will be uploaded the same day every week.

Former NFL player Warren Sapp is starring in a new courtroom series from The NOC on YouTube. The new show, called Judge Sapp, is similar to reality courtroom shows on TV as Sapp presides over and exacts decisions on cases featuring real participants. The show also features a DJ, and determines penalties for the participants based on a “Wheel of Justice.” Positioned as a comedy series, Judge Sapp will run for 30 episodes. The NOC (Network of Champions), which launched this past February, is an official YouTube content partner focused on the world of sports and athletes.

Beachfront Media, the company behind the MeFeedia video discovery engine, has launched Beachfront Builder. It’s a mobile-first video platform designed for producers, TV networks, and enterprise companies to build, deliver, and manage custom video apps for iOS and Android devices, as well as the Kindle Fire. Beachfront says the solution is powered by MeFeedia’s video aggregation technology, which allows it to handle thousands of video feeds and formats. The application would not require refreshing or manual uploading of content unless the client wants to provide content that is app exclusive. The company also says the solution offers customization features for branding purposes, and supports multiple pre-existing ad solutions, formats, and revenue streams.


Twitter plans to expand its ad services (Promoted Tweets) to 50 new markets in Latin America and Western Europe this year, according to a report from Bloomberg. Earlier this month, it was reported that the company expects to bring in $1 billion in advertising revenue by 2014. The announcement was made via a press conference at the Cannes Lions Festival in France.

The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) has selected Jonathan Bellack, Product Management Director/Publisher Ad Platforms at Google, and Jay Sears, SVP/Demand at the Rubicon Project as Co-Chairs of its Advertising Technology Council. The new IAB body was created in February tasked with merging the fragmented ad tech sector and building toward the goal of developing technical standards and operating best practices. The Council has picked 24 other industry executives from an array of companies, including Microsoft Advertising, Facebook, AOL, AT&T AdWorks, AppNexus, Adobe, and MediaMath, to serve on its Advisory Board. Check out the full list of Advisory Board members and general members here.


LG Electronics and TP Vision (for Philips TVs) have established the Smart TV Alliance,” which is aimed at creating a “non-proprietary ecosystem” for developers to build apps and services that would work across all connected TV platforms. The companies say other TV manufacturers are in the process of joining, and when they do, the announcement will be made on the consortium’s website. With a focus on defining technical specifications that allow app developers to create universal connected TV apps, the Smart TV Alliance plans to make the first version of its SDK available on the website. Developers can download the SDK, which is based on open web technologies such as HTML5, for free. Current plans are to release the second version of the SDK by the end of 2012. The two founding companies say the SDK 2.0 will allow developers to build apps for 2013 TV sets from participating members. TP Vision develops, manufactures, and markets Philips branded TV sets in Europe, Russia, Middle East, and select countries in South America and Asia-Pacific.

The Google/Oracle trial concerning the former’s use of Java in developing the Android operating system is over, sort of. The judge presiding over the matter had ruled last month that Java APIs aren’t copyrightable under US law. However, Oracle plans to appeal the case. With that in mind, it has elected to forego accepting any damages it could have received from Google for the small amount of Java code the search giant was found guilty of copying. This is so that Oracle can get to the inevitable appeal faster.


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Among “pay-to-view” customers of major home television and video service providers in the US, J.D. Power and Associates finds that 18% of consumers use tablets for viewing paid video content (up from 11% in 2011), making the tablet the most-often-used handheld device for watching paid content. Additionally, the use of wireless phones to watch video content rose from 14% in 2011 to 16% this year, which means that overall 29% of video service customers watch paid content on a handheld device. In comparison, PC/Mac viewing of paid content has dropped to 39% in 2012 from 48% in 2011. Among the other highlights from the report:

  • 23% of video service customers watch paid content via gaming consoles.
  • Customers who watch paid content via gaming consoles average 6.3 hours per week; compare this to 5.3 hours on PCs/Macs, 4.9 hours on wireless phones, 4.5 hours on music players, and 4.4 hours on tablets.
  • Focusing on different generations: 21% of Gen Y customers consider mobility a factor when selecting a video service provider; 9% of Baby Boomer customers do the same.

A new study from the Online Publishers Association (OPA), conducted with Frank N. Magid Associates, finds that accessing content and information is the dominant activity on tablet devices (94% of US users surveyed), followed by accessing the internet (67%), and checking email (66%). The top types of content-related activities were watching video (54%), getting weather information (49%), and accessing national news (37%) and entertainment content (36%). The study also found that US tablet adoption is sitting at 31% in 2012 (74 million tablet users), up from 12% (28 million) in 2011, and is expected to reach 47% (117 million) by the second quarter of 2013. The study surveyed a national representative sample of 2,540 people, ages 8 to 64, in March 2012. Other findings include:

  • 74% of US tablet owners use the device daily and 60% use it several times a day.
  • Tablet users spend an average of 13.9 hours per week with their devices.
  • Paid apps account for 23% of all tablet apps downloaded in the past year.
  • An especially interesting note: 32% of tablet users simultaneously use two screens for 3.1 hours every day, and 29% use three screens for 2.8 hours per day. “The two and three screen audiences are also more likely to purchase a product after seeing tablet advertising,” said Pam Horan, President of the OPA.

Kickstarter has decided to publish daily stats in relation to the funding projects launched on the site. Available via a new page, the first batch of information shows that, as of yesterday, Kickstarter has launched 60,786 projects seeking a total of $261 million. The top five categories in terms of total dollars are film & video ($71.87 million), music ($44.49 million), design ($38.97 million), games ($30.99 million), and technology ($14.36 million). The page will also provide information on successfully funded projects going forward. The initial data shows that, to date, Kickstarter has been used to successfully fund seven projects of more than $1 million. Most of the projects look to raise less than $10,000.


Device maker Belkin has unveiled @TV Plus, a new device that allows users to stream live or recorded content from the home television to tablets, smartphones, and laptops over Wi-Fi or a 3G/4G network. The device is compatible with both standard and HD programming and can connect to multiple sourcecs, including a digital set-top box, satellite receiver, or DVD player. Belkin says @TV Plus has Wi-Fi built-in and can record live TV directly to a mobile device for viewing when not connected to Wi-Fi or a data network. Priced at $149.99, @TV Plus works with the @TV mobile app, which is available for both iOS and Android devices. The app is free for tablets, but costs $12.99 for smartphones. Belkin says the device will be available in mid-July on its website and other online and in-store retailers in the US. The app will be available for download in early July.

The Amazon Appstore is set to expand to several European countries. The Appstore, which provides more than 31,000 apps for Amazon and Android devices, has served as an alternative to Google Play for developers looking to build apps for the Android operating system. It launched last year in the US, and offers features such as 1-Click purchasing and an in-app purchasing API. Developers will now be able to submit mobile apps for users in the UK, France, Germany, Spain, and Italy. Developers will also be able to control price and select the countries in which they would like their apps to be sold. Amazon says it plans to begin European distribution later this summer, with more countries “planned for the near future.”


Online advertising technology company, TruEffect, has opened an engineering lab in Manhattan with the goal of using its first-party technology to develop new levels of attribution accuracy and digital media optimization. As part of the expansion, the company has also hired Thatcher Clay to lead the division as TruEffect’s new VP/Data Research. The company says it plans to hire approximately 10 more engineers, who specialize in big data, by the end of the year. 

Digital advertising start-up SocialVibe has made three executive-level appointments to boost its global growth. John Capano is joining the company as its new Chief Marketing Officer, and will be based in SocialVibe’s LA headquarters. Brett Lofgren has come on board as the new Chief Revenue Officer. In the role, he will be responsible for overseeing the start-up’s global sales team, and will be based in NY. The final addition is that of Bob Lonigro in the role of VP/Advertising Sales. Also based in NY, he will oversee client and agency relationships. SocialVibe develops user-initiated ads on which it says consumers are currently averaging 60 seconds of time spent. It charges advertisers based on performance.


TNT has launched a microsite and free sync app for its new reality competition series, The Great Escape, which premieres this Sunday at 10pm ET. The companion app, The Great Escape Breakout, is available to download on iTunes with Google Play availability coming soon. It features a gaming experience through trivia questions and storyline predictions; behind-the-scenes info and content; and the ability to chat with other fans. Players will have the chance to earn points by answering the trivia questions correctly, all toward a grand prize of a trip to Hawaii. As part of the launch, Volvo has agreed to a multiscreen sponsorship deal tied to the first season of the show. Aside from in-show integrations and on-air promotions, Volvo will have a presence on the microsite and the mobile app.

Later – Sahil
Sahil Patel, Associate Editor for Cynopsis Digital

Cynopsis Ad Sales:
Mike Farina – VP/Sales and Marketing – 203-218-6480 / [email protected]
Classifieds – Trish Pihonak- 888-702-3858 / [email protected]

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Cynopsis CLASSIFIEDSFor More classifieds, visit the classifieds page here .

JOB OPENING: TV RESEARCH ANALYST/The Hub/Burbank, CA: Reqmnts: BA. Min 2 yrs exp in TV. Nielson data. Analysis. Excel. Apply (6/29)

JOB OPENING: SALES ASST/NY: Support SVP + sales execs, for a cable net. Book/main orders, wkly reports, srvc agencies, some admin. Strong math/ excel skills, multi-task, self-start. 1+ media exp: Apply: [email protected] (6/29)

JOB OPENING: PROJECT MANAGER/Plainview, NY: 4+ yrs project management with content delivery network company e-mail resume to [email protected] (6/29)

JOB OPENING: DIR SALES RSRCH CABLE & CROSS PLATFORM/NY: Provide sales research materials i.e. one-sheets, presentations, & oversee custom qual/quant studies. 6+yrs rsch exp (brdcst, cable) Send resume to: [email protected] (6/28)

JOB OPENING: SR. DIR INT’L RESEARCH/A+E Networks/NY: Drive content sales thru research-driven pitches to prog buyers globally. Full Info/Apply: (6/28)

JOB OPENING: VP STANDARDS & PRACT/Discovery/MD NY or CA, no relo: review original/acquired prmg & commercial content to ensure compliance; comm S&P notes to creative; 5+ yrs mgt TV standard & pract; JD pref:; req 5771 (6/28)

JOB OPENING: WEB ANALYTICS & AD OPS COORD/Discovery/MD: drive strategy for websites & generate traffic/usage rprts; responsible for insertion order mgmt, scheduling &rprt’g: (6/28)

JOB OPENING: SPORTS MEDIA TALENT AGENT/NYC: Minimum 2 years experience. Work with company’s current clients and develop new business. Resume and cover to [email protected] (6/28)

JOB OPENING: SR DIGITAL DESIGNER/ESPN Inc/NYC: Design creative from existing print/on-air promos into web & mobile banners,email blasts & landing pages.  Exp.w/HTML5, XML, Flash, AS, CSS, Flash, Photoshop. Job ID-5816 (6/27)

JOB OPENING: MEDIA SUP/GSD&M/Austin,TX: 5+ yrs exp. Oversee and guide research & development of local media plans. Manage planners and assistants. QSR/local broadcast exp preferred. Apply: (6/27)

JOB OPENING: ASSOC MGR, SALES MKTG/NYC: Flixster seeks Assoc. Mgr, Sales Mktg to coordinate marketing programs & online media plans to support “go to market” strategies for the Ad Sales team.BA/BS deg req. Apply: (6/27)

JOB OPENING: WEATHER REPORTER (FILL IN-Freelance) RNN TV: forecast & report weather segments, use comp graphics, gather info from nat’l satellite weather svc & local weather bureaus. Resume: [email protected] (6/27)

JOB OPENING: PROGRAM INVENTORY & ADMIN MGR/AMCN/NYC: manage rights assessment process for all AMCN program content, contract review exp. req. Resumes to: [email protected] (6/27)

JOB OPENING: MARKETING MGR, DIGITAL SPORTS/NBC SPORTS GROUP NY: Incrs sales across dig platforms; gen new ideas, create pckgs, dvlp sales collat & mktg materials; liaise with site & prod teams; Apply: job#5911BR (6/26)

JOB OPENING: DIR, RESEARCH/WarnerBros/LA: Conduct research & analysis for strategic Digital/Home Entertainment partners. 5 yrs+ exp. Focus in primary/qual & quant. Digital/Home Ent/Social Media exp a plus. Apply: (6/26)

JOB OPENING: VP CONTENT/PRGRMNG/Nickelodeon/NYC: Mng overall dig prgrmng strategies and events to increase user freq. 10-15 yrs exp dig content & prgrmng. More info/apply: (6/26)

JOB OPENING: PRODUCTION/KIRKSTALL ROAD/NYC: Daytime talk show looking for experienced Associate Producer for conflict resolution show. Ideal candidate must have at 3 yrs. booking experience. Resume to: [email protected] (6/26)

JOB OPENING: DOCU-SERIES SHOWRUNNER & EIC/NEW YORK: Immediate openings on prime project for top prodco. Need runner and an EIC. Must have proven track records. [email protected] (6/23)

JOB OPENING: MEDIA SPECIALIST/Taco Bell/Irvine, CA: Asst Dir Media in dev of annual Nat’l Media Plans to ensure Mktg Calendar priorities are supported. 4 yr Nat’l media plan’g/buying & dig exp. must. Apply: [email protected] (6/23)

JOB OPENING: IN-HOUSE COUNSEL/VP, LEGAL & BUS AFFAIRS/LA: Attorney for TV prod co to manage agreements, releases, employment, negotiations. JD + 5 yrs TV/film legal experience req’d. Apply: [email protected] (6/23)

JOB OPENING: PROD COORD/GSN/Santa Monica: 3+ yrs exp in Production – Studio & Field Prod. Finance a plus. Organized, Excel a Must. PC/Mac proficient. Send Res & CL to [email protected] (6/23)

JOB OPENING: KC MGR STUDIO PROGRAMMING: Oversee Metro Sports’ studio programming and on-air content. Responsible for planning and executing of content for channel and other news programming. Apply @ (6/23)

JOB OPENING: EDITORIAL DIRECTOR/NYC: Lead Oxygen’s Digital site & oversee day-to-day publishing. Will be managing Project Manager, Design Lead, Editorial Team & an Emerging Media Producer. Apply: #5809BR (6/23)

JOB OPENING: PROJECT MANAGER, SYFY DIGITAL/NBCUNIVERSAL/NYC: Manage diverse creative and Adsales projects for sites & products. Min 3-5 yrs exp as a Project Mgr in the digital sphere. Apply: (5997BR) (6/23)

INTERNSHIPS – These positions are for credit only – nobody gets paid here. These ads are always posted for free, and students work for school credit only. For more information on the specs for posting an Internship ad, email Trish at [email protected].

SUMMER INTERNSHIPS CREDITS ONLY: INTERNSHIP: Entertainment firm/NYC: 40 hrs wkly. Interesting opportunity to contribute to media start-up. Apply: [email protected] (6/26)

SUMMER INTERNSHIPS CREDITS ONLY: Media firm/Beijing: 40 hrs wkly. Unique/exciting media internship overseas. Fluent Chinese reqd. Fluent English reqd. Apply: [email protected] (6/26)

SITUATION WANTED ADS, POSTED BY THOSE LOOKING TO BE HIRED… There is no charge for placing your Situation Wanted ad… for more information contact Trish Pihonak at [email protected].

SITUATION WANTED: SPORTS/MEDIA/PROGRAMMING: 4 years of media experience working for ESPN Radio and an Emmy Award-winning sports production company. Expertise in all forms of social media. Contact [email protected] (6/29)

SITUATION WANTED: CONTENT COUNSEL (Los Angeles): Dynamic executive with portfolio of success driving television and new media production and distribution for leading entertainment groups. Contact: [email protected] (6/29)

SITUATION WANTED: Looking for career in MARKETING/BRANDING/DISTRIBUTION TV or FILM. 2yrs experience including working on Emmy winning show. Majored in Broadcasting (BECA) Minored in Marketing. Located: LA, CA. [email protected] (6/29)

SITUATION WANTED: DIGITAL MEDIA/TECHNOLOGY/CABLE ATTORNEY: Broad in-house exp in content distribution, digital media, technology licensing, affiliate & ad sales. Avail for project/consultant/FT. Contact [email protected] (6/28)

SITUATION WANTED: VOICE OVER TALENT, SINGER, MIMIC, AUDIO PRODUCTION: ‘One Stop Shop’! Commercial, Corporate, E-Learning, Characters, more![email protected] (6/28)

SITUATION WANTED: SUPERFINE WRITER. Digital, video, print, integrated. Broadcast, innovation, beauty, foodie, start-ups. I hear brand voices. Portfolio: (6/28)

SITUATION WANTED: Dedicated & Experienced ADV. SALES PLANNER (NYC): Sales proposals, resolving client discrepancies, quarterly post analysis, special sales service projects, expert computer skills. Contact- [email protected] (6/26)

E-mail [email protected] or call Trish Pihonak at 888.702.3858 for rates and specs for Job Openings.

Are you looking for a job? Post your Situation Wanted Ad here — Email [email protected] for specs.

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