Tuesday, January 6th, 2009

Cynopsis: DIGITAL


Good morning, it’s Tuesday, January 6, 2009, and this is your first early morning digital briefing .

Silicon Valley breathed a sigh of relief after Apple CEO Steve Jobs cleared the air with an open letter about his health on the eve before the company’s final Macworld conference. Jobs’ doctors now think a “hormone imbalance” has been the cause of his persistent weight loss but thankfully a “relatively simple and straightforward” treatment is already underway. He goes on to say he will remain as CEO of the company during his recovery, which he expects will continue until at least late Spring.


Showtime will make the pilot of its new original series United States of Tara available from Jan. 8 on Netflix‘s Watch Instantly service, two weeks prior to its premiere on the network. United States of Tara was created by Juno screenwriter Diablo Cody and stars Toni Collette as a suburban wife and mother struggling with Dissociative Identity Disorder (a.k.a. multiple personality disorder, as dramatized in Sybil.) The season premiers of The L Word and Secret Diary of a Call Girl will also be available to Netflix subscribers the Jan. 18, day and date of their network premiers.
Sci Fi Channel’s SciFi.com has spun off its daily entertainment news service into a standalone site SciFiWire.com. The news blog will continue to focus on pop cultural news related to the Sci Fi and fantasy genres, covering movies, books, television shows, comics, etc. The satellite site is third new launch by SciFi.com during the past year, following the debuts of gadget blog Dvice.com and gaming site Fidgit.com.
G4tv.com will increase its coverage of CES this year with a number of web-only exclusives including live coverage of keynotes, interviews, expert analysis and extensive top 10 lists. The G4 network will also broadcast two nights of live coverage hosted by Attack of the Show hosts Kevin Pereira and Olivia Munn.
National Geographic Channel launched a new Spanish language channel on its website featuring over 80 in-language video segments.


Oops! Someone hacked into the Twitter accounts of 33 prominent Twitter-ers on Monday including Fox News, Rick Sanchez, Barack Obama and Britney Spears. Twitter was also the victim of a Phishing scam over the weekend. Twitter is busy shoring up the security breach. The company also says it plans to release a closed beta of the open authentication protocol later this month (but that the new protocol wouldn’t have prevented the attack.)
American Pie and Role Models star Seann William Scott will host a weekly sports roundup show The Burly Sports Show for Heavy.com, per Mediapost. The web show, which will be distributed via CBSSports.com, Verizon’s VCast and Heavy’s Men’s Network of sites, is slated to premiere on Jan. 9.
Call for Content: The Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival announced a competition to find the official trailer for the 2009 Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival. The grand prize winner will receive a trip for two to New York City for two nights to attend the 2009 Tribeca Film Festival, among other prizes. To participate contestants will need to shoot a reenactment of a scene from two Disney films: Remember The Titans and Cool Runnings. Deadline for entries is March 7, 2009.


ABC‘s Owned Television’s Station Group formed an alliance with Cox’s digital sales group Cox Cross Media (CXM) to expand sales opportunities for ABC’s ten local station sites. CXM will handle online sales for the 10 sites and plans to eventually integrate additional mediums. Cox Cross Media reps online, television and mobile media buying for more than 700 local web and mobile sites.


‘s troubled electronics group is preparing a major overhaul as the company’s first foreign-born CEO Sir Howard Stringer prepares to engage is some “sacred cow-slaying,” according to a report in The Times (UK). Expected moves include job cuts, factory closures and the abolition of several major company divisions.
The Chinese government is cracking down on web sites that threaten the moral fiber of the country by spreading vulgar images including search engines Google, Baidu.com and Sina.com, reports Reuters. China’s Ministry of Public Security met with 6 other agencies to announce a clean-up campaign.
St. Louis-based triple play provider Broadstripe filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Jan. 2.  


Join Cynopsis and NATPE for “Coffee With” Q&A Sessions
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Wednesday, January 28, 8:00 – 9:00 am


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Thursday, January 29, 8:30am – 9:30 am
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Time spent watching video online jumped an astounding 40% during 2008 according to the November 2008 ComScore Video Metrix numbers. Users viewed an average of 273.1 minutes/month in Nov. ’08 compared to 195 minutes/month in Nov. ’07. Number of videos viewed jumped by 34% to 12.7 billion during the same period. Google Sites once again ranked as the top U.S. video property with nearly 5.1 billion videos viewed with YouTube.com accounting for more than 98% of the total. Google also dominated in terms of unique viewers with nearly 98 million users. Google (and YouTube) visitors accounted for more than half of all video views online during Nov.
Top U.S. Online Video Properties by Videos Viewed – November 2008
Property                    Videos (000)    Share (%) of Videos
Total Internet            12,677,063       100.0
Google Sites               5,107,302         40.3
Fox Interactive Media     439,091           3.5
Viacom Digital               324,903           2.6
Yahoo! Sites                  304,331           2.4
Microsoft Sites               296,285           2.3
Hulu                             226,540           1.8
Turner Network             214,709           1.7
Disney Online                137,165           1.1
AOL LLC                        115,306           0.9
ESPN                              95,622           0.8
Source: comScore Video Metrix. Rankings based on video content sites; excludes video server networks.  Online video includes both streaming and progressive download video.
Top U.S. Online Video Properties by Unique Viewers – November 2008
Property                        Videos (000)    Share (%) of Videos
Total Internet                     146,064                86.8
Google Sites                         97,928                52.2
Fox Interactive Media            58,115                  7.6
Yahoo! Sites                         39,956                  7.6
Microsoft Sites                      34,979                  8.5
Viacom Digital                       27,109                12.0
Hulu                                     22,456                10.1
AOL LLC                                22,442                 5.1
Turner Network                     20,735                10.4
Disney Online                        13,028                10.5
Time Warner – Excl. AOL         12,564                 3.6
Source: comScore Video Metrix. Rankings based on video content sites; excludes video server networks.  Online video includes both streaming and progressive download video.


Two more tidbits emerged targeted to those thinking of “cutting the cord” to their cable subscriptions:
Netflix announced a deal with South Korea’s LG Electronics to make its subscription-based online video rental service available through its new line of HDTVs due out this spring. While a number of set-top options are out there to accomplish this (Xbox 360, Samsung, LG BD3000 Blu-ray players, Roku) this is the first solution that doesn’t require another box.
The tiny, sub-$100 Roku set-top box, which allows you to view Netflix Watch Instantly titles on your TV, is adding support of Amazon.com’s Video on Demand streaming movie rentals. The Amazon movie outlet also connects to home sets via Tivo, Sony Bravia Internet Video Link.
When it comes to electronics slim is always in. Samsung is set to unveil its latest flat panel TV at CES that is between just 6.5 and 7 mm thick. It utilizes LED technology for its backlight. The set will be marketed as the thinnest LCD TV yet to hit the marketplace.
ABC News Digital unveiled its own free ABC News iPhone app offering news, text and video reports sourced from the national ABC News desk as well as the 10 ABC O&O stations.
eBook store BooksOnBoard released over 30,000 DRM free eBook titles formatted for the iPhone including new releases by bestselling authors such as Nora Roberts, Michael Connelly, David Baldacci and Stieg Larsson. Go to the BooksOnBoard site to download the app.


Gaming technology company IGT has upped Richard J. Schneider to EVP/Product Strategy. Rich will integrate IGT systems and games into a single organization to meet the company’s goal of offering a unified product offering. He reports to TJ Matthews, IGT Chairman and CEO.
Digital marketing agency Wiredset has named Grant Johmann as SVP/Marketing. Grant will oversee all aspects of the company’s client marketing including audience building and consumer engagement via social media initiatives, word of mouth marketing and online video.
Empower MediaMarketing announced that Ashley Reker has rejoined the agency as a Digital Strategist. She previously spent six years at Empower as a Media Planner and Client Strategist before leaving the agency in February 2008 to join Mullen in Boston, where she served as Digital Senior Media Planner.


Steve Jobs was forced to disclose the details of his illness yesterday because of a consistent online rumor mill that simply wouldn’t quit until the truth came out. (Judging from the defiant tone of the letter – “So now I’ve said more than I wanted to say, and all that I am going to say, about this” – he wasn’t happy about it.) But you can’t have it both ways. Apart from the whole issue of responsibility to investors, sites such as MacRumors.com, Apple Insider or MacOSRumors.com have helped fuel huge demand for Apple products over the years by obsessing over every scrap of information that comes out of the Cupertino kingdom. These sites will surely go on after Macworld is a distant memory. If anything, they will take on increased significance for Apple as a way to stoke demand now that there is no annual convention to unveil new products at. Time to give credit (and gratitude) where credit is due.

Later — Wayne
 Wayne Karrfalt for Cynopsis: Digital

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Cyn opsis CLASSIFIEDSFor More classifieds, visit the Cynopsis.com classifieds page here    .

JOB OPENING: CORP FIN’L PLNG ANALYST/Comcast Networks/NY: Resp for the day-to-day financial activities. 3-5 yrs related experience and proficiency with Great Plains financial system a must. Apply @ www.comcast.com EEO/AA/Drug Free (1/13)

JOB OPENING: PUBLICIST /Telepictures Prods/LA: Unit pub for synd TV show. News bkgd & exp on assign desk pref’d. Pitch/secure stories/content. Write/distrib releases. Fast paced enviro. 5-8yrs exp Res: [email protected] (1/13)

JOB OPENING: SR. MGR, RESEARCH/Music Choice-Support sales, mrktng& prgrmng initiatives across multiple platforms w/accurate & actionable research. BA/BS, plus 6-8 yrs relevant media research exp. required [email protected] (1/10)

JOB OPENING: ADMIN ASST/Comcast Networks/NY: Asst Sr execs w/ daily admin duties.3-5 yrs exp asst Sr execs.Strong writ/verbal comms skills; det-oriented. MS Off. knwlg a must. Must Apply @ www.comcast.com . EEO/AA/Drug free (1/10)

JOB OPENING: PRODUCER/EDITOR : Univ. of Albany seeks a creative and experienced Producer/Editor to create entertaining and engaging youth-oriented content. Details http://albany.interviewexchange.com/candapply.jsp?JOBID=12291    (1/10)

JOB OPENING: STARTV’s office in NY is seeking a SALES MANAGER to develop and build ad sales operations.Must have 5 years TV/major media experience and knowledge of the South Asian market. Send resume to [email protected] (1/8)

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] .

SPRING INTERNSHIP CREDITS ONLY: Busy Media Production Company. Support Prod Coord, Editor and Prod. Help organize/maintain Prod office. Assist on location shoots. Interest in advancing in prod industry a must. Email: [email protected] (1/13)

WINTER/SPRING INTERNSHIP/CREDITS ONLY: ENTERTAINMENT/MKTG & COMM INTERNS/Cynopsis Media/Shelton CT: Asst various depts as needed in advrtsng sales, mktg, & rsrch. Highly orgnzd & reliable Sophomores/Jrs/Srs; Excellent MS Word/Excel skills. Contact: [email protected] (1/13)

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 Mature ACTRESS seeks survival job in SFV. Experienced exec asst, former asst to celeb, 16-1/2 yrs at major studio.Part-time to supplement retirement. Computer-savvy, efficient, loyal, discrete. [email protected] (1/13)

SITUATION WANTED: WRITER/EDITORIAL DIRECTOR: Deadline activist to the rescue. FREE COPY @ https://freebeaaron.wordpress.com contact: [email protected] (1/13)

SITUATION WANTED: Emmy-winning WRITER/PRODUCER of short-form animation & digital content is available for freelance writing/producing/consulting. Reel & resume: www.elliotblake.com or contact [email protected] (1/13)

SITUATION WANTED: FREELANCE COPYWRITER/MARKETING CONSULTANT: 14 yrs exp. in ad sales marketing and copywriting w/ B2B focus. Upfront scripts/presentations, media kits, brochures, web content, program descrips etc. [email protected] (1/13)

SITUATION WANTED: Recent Harvard grad and FREELANCE WRITER will do pretty much anything involving words and writing them. Currently writing for a Gawker blog. Hard worker, strong writer, great bargain. [email protected] (1/10)


SITUATION WANTED: FILM/TV/ENT PR/NYC: Seeking F/T or Freelance opps. Write press releases/pitch to targeted print/online & brdcst media, track news clips, editorial calendar opps, build press lists w/Cision [email protected] (1/10)

SITUATION WANTED: NON-FICTION DEVELOPMENT PRODUCER. I will write and develop your pitch & produce and direct a winning sales tape.  3 Emmy noms; unscripted or narrative formats; LA based, will travel. [email protected] (1/10)

SITUATION WANTED: VP/DIRECTOR NEW MEDIA SALES-Unprecedented SUCCESS building Revenue/Content/Operations/Infrastructure. Creative, solutions based TEAM builder and motivator, Let’s Talk, [email protected] (1/10)

SITUATION WANTED: Chicago, IL-Experienced MEDIA SUPERVISOR with experience in both buying in planning.Has experience with both big and small clients, and can juggle multiple projects at once.Please contact [email protected]. (1/8)

SITUATION WANTED: MEDIA SUPERVISOR/PLANNER/BUYER available for permanent/temp assignments.15 years experienced with local and national  small & large campaigns utilizing TV/Radio/Print/Online. Contact me at: [email protected] (1/8)

SITUATION WANTED: STILL PHOTOGRAPHER/VIDEOGRAPHER with 20 years experience on location and in studio in film/tv and music business looking for related position in the industry. Contact [email protected] (1/8)

SITUATION WANTED: TONY NOM. B’WAY PROD/THEATRE CONSULT/ACQUIS. & DEV/NYC: 30+ yrs exp. in theatre. Superb theatre/film/TV contacts seeks FT or Consulting Position w/Studio/Prod Co. looking for properties. Contact: [email protected] (1/8)

SITUATION WANTED: UPFRONT FREELANCER/PROJ MGR with 15+ cable TV mktg experience. Can also help with ad sales, consumer and affil mktg related projects inc. promotions, sweeps, events, proposals, trade shows. [email protected] (1/7)

SITUATION WANTED: Chicago, IL-Experienced MEDIA SUPERVISOR with experience in both buying in planning. Has experience with both big and small clients, and can juggle multiple projects at once. Please contact [email protected] (1/7)

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