Tuesday, July 13th, 2010

Cynopsis: DIGITAL



Good morning, it’s Tuesday, July 13, 2010, and this is your first early morning digital briefing.  If you would like to read this or any other Cynopsis edition online, click here

Two Time Warner Divisions – Time Inc. and Turner Broadcasting System, have formed an ambitious new digital partnership to add heft and reach to their sports properties. Under the new agreement, Turner Sports (which operates websites for sporting leagues such as NBA.com and PGA.com) will be responsible for business and technical operations, ad sales, product management and marketing for Time’s SI.com and Golf.com, which will be added to Turner’s portfolio of 19 digital sports and entertainment sites. The two companies will also collaborate on multiplatform sales across their collective properties, as well on the production of new mobile products and apps. Time Warner says the combined properties reach about 40 million monthly uniques, more than Yahoo’s (35.9 million) and ESPN’s (25.4 million) monthly audiences, according to ComScore.


USA Network is paying back fans for their loyalty and engagement with a new “Character Rewards” program modeled on the “badges” programs of location based social networks. Fans who register for groups such as Club Psych will rack up points for watching videos, playing games and re-posting content to other online channels, which they can then exchange for branded merchandise such as T-shirts or bobble heads.
NBC News’ Dateline is sticking with badges in a partnership with Comcast’s Tunerfish social networking portal. Beginning last night viewers who log on during the broadcast receive a “Dateline Detective” profile badge.
GoDigital Media acquired the rights to distribute hit Sundance documentary “American Mullet” across major digital destinations including iTunes, Dish Network, Netflix, CinemaNow, Amazon and YouTube.


YouTube sensation Dan Brown (known for stunts like solving the Rubik’s cube while jumping on a polo stick) is embarking on a new web project with Revision3 dubbed “Dan 3.0” in which he solicits his fans for new ideas on tasks for him to complete.


Advertisers have rushed to Twitter to try and raise their profile, control spin and enhance buzz around their brands and the microblogging platform has worked to monetize this trend, launching Promoted Tweets and selling sponsorships to Trending Topics. Now social video platform TwitVid is teaming with standalone video ad network SocialAds to deliver measurable social media results to advertisers, including Twitter followers and retweets racked up by ads. The idea is to put a value on actions that users are spurred to make around branded products. SocialAds charges advertisers based on a price-per-action model, with advertisers paying a set, agreed upon amount per follow or retweet.


One of the worries of the pending Comcast/NBCU merger has been its affect on independent production. The Independent Film & Television Alliance (IFTA) announced it has reached an agreement with Comcast and NBC Universal to provide “enhanced independent programming opportunities” on NBCU’s broadcast and cable networks, as well as Comcast’s VOD and online platforms. The companies have agreed to schedule an annual development presentation for up to 200 indie producers, take subsequent pitches and meetings and allocate funds for the early development of new productions as part of a blueprint of future relations.
Web and voice services company me2me AG has merged with digital dictation specialist iSpeech, creator of digital dictation product suite, Frisbee. The merger will hasten the delivery of Frisbee to smartphone platforms such as the iPhone and BlackBerry.


Roughly 40% of viewing of the broadcast networks during primetime is time shifted via DVRs, according to Baseline‘s new Primetime Television Insights Report measuring trends and changes to TV viewing. (DVR viewers tend to be about 10 years younger than live TV viewers.) Also, despite the wealth of competition from digital platforms, so far combined time spent with online videos, social networks, blogs, and mobile videos amounted to only 3% of traditional TV viewing. However, trends indicate that this number is poised to jump to 8% next season. Other findings include:

  • Hulu and the broadcast network entertainment websites combined account for some 20%of all time spent video streaming; YouTube accounts for 46%
  • Nielsen will provide data next year combining TV and online viewing into a single ratings, but set-top measurement is far off from being used as a marketplace currency
  • The two major causes of broadcast audience erosion remain the increasing number of channels and mid-season repeats; 70% of homes now receive more than 100 channels
  • One of the most significant trends affecting where a new series landed on the schedule (or whether or not a show was renewed) has been increased ownership of programming by the host network
  • Only 30% of the TV series with the most pre-season buzz became successful over the past decade – slightly lower than the ave. new series success rate over the same stretch

Here’s yet another reason to abandon car camping spots: campgrounds across the U.S. are investing in Wi-Fi equipment to keep their internet-addicted clients happy – even in remote locations – according to a new release from the National Assn of RV Parks & Campgrounds. Satellite-based Wi-Fi service providers such as Napa, Calif.-based Airwave Adventures and Portland, Me.-based CheckBox Systems are scrambling to keep up with demand. “Campers” use Wi-Fi services to keep up with their social networking, to play games, to watch movies or to make Skype calls.


Respected independent product analyst Consumer Reports gave Apple‘s iPhone 4 a big thumbs down, claiming it cannot recommend the handset because of its antenna issues. CR also challenged Apple’s official response to the problem.
Shortages of the HTC EVO phone, the first handset to run on Sprint‘s new 4G network, are hampering the carrier’s potential growth according to a WSJ interview with Sprint CEO Dan Hesse. Sprint has sold about 300,000 of its Evo 4G phones to date, according to Macquarie Group estimates.
Ludia and FremantleMedia Enterprises (FME) have launched an HD graphics-powered Family Feud app for the iPad featuring many of the elements featured on the show. It sells for $6.99.
Hive Media
is working with Discovery Communications to develop a social game based on Discovery Channel’s top rated show, Deadliest Catch. The social media game is scheduled to be released in November 2010 on the Facebook platform and is also being developed as a mobile app.


Michael Winter has joined Interpublic’s Initiative as VP, Group Account Director, charged with overseeing digital for The Home Depot account. He will be based in New York and report to Ben Winkler, SVP, Director Digital.
New York-based search re-targeting firm Magnetic hired former Platform A/AOL SVP Mike Peralta as COO. He is charged with driving U.S. sales and partnerships.
Peralta brings 18 years of experience of Magnetic, having previously served as a managing director for Advertising.com in Europe and as SVP of North American sales for Platform A/AOL. At Magnetic, Peralta will be charged with driving U.S. sales and partnership.
Boutique creative facility Northern Lights has upped George Carty to the position of Editor


In a further sign that new media producers are becoming players in the global entertainment space, web video outfit Babelgum is teaming with British documentary producer Native Voice Films to co-finance and distribute original programming across platforms. The partnership will begin with the online and mobile release of “The Bengali Detective,” the first chapter of which debuts this week on Babelgum as an exclusive serialized prequel to a feature film currently in production. The show focuses on a real-life detective agency in modern day India featuring characters who seem plucked straight out of an indie comedy, so it makes sense to unleash them on the Babelgum audience to try and create a fan base for the movie. (Rajesh, “the Boss,” is sort of a brainy Dog the Bounty Hunter who is not at all shy in front of the camera.) The project is directed and produced by Phil Cox and Giovanna Stopponi and co-produced with filmmaker Annie Sundberg (“Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work.”) Weekly episodes will be released digitally through the fall festival season, leading up to a theatrical and subsequent broadcast release in 2011.

Later — Wayne
Wayne Karrfalt for Cynopsis: Digital
[email protected]

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JOB OPENING: ASSOCIATE COUNSEL PROGRAMMING/Time Warner Cable/NYC: J.D. degree and a minimum of 4-5 years law firm or other relevant experience. Visit www.twcable.com/careers to view specific requirements and to apply (7/20)

JOB OPENING: SALES PLANNER/Discovery Communications/Chicago: Create and develop proposals and presentations for AE’s, 2+yrs of ad sales experience. http://careers.discovery.com/: Req 9834 (7/20)

JOB OPENING: DIRECTOR INTEGRATED AD SALES MKTG/Discovery Communications/NY: Mng dvlp and fulfillment of solutions, sponsorships & mkt oppts for TLC Ad Sales http://careers.discovery.com/: Req 9772 (7/20)

JOB OPENING: SR. PUBLICIST/FerenComm/NYC: Exp: TV Publicist w/ unit exp., strong media contacts and writing skills. Apply to [email protected] (7/17)

JOB OPENING: SALES PLANNER/The Hotel Networks/NYC: 2+ Yrs Exp; Create sales proposals & compelling presentations; Exc media math skills, excel, pwrpoint req.Exp w/ Nielsen, MRI, AdDatabase +++; Resumes: [email protected] (7/17)

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JOB OPENING: FINANCE ANALYST/TVG Ntwrk & Online/NY: Month-end Close & accruals, creating ad rev Pacing & Summary Reprts reviewed by Ad Sls&Mgmt, budgeting/ forecasting processes & streamlining financial processes [email protected] (7/17)

JOB OPENING: DIRECTOR OF INTEGRATIONS/ Branded Entertainment Division of ZenithOptimedia/NYC: Develop and execute non-traditional, cross-platform solutions. Send resumes to: [email protected] (7/15)

JOB OPENING:  FREELANCE SCHED ASST/NYC: Entry Level: Detail/Organiz. Respn incld assist Sched w. logs, data entry, operate (MAPS/Grip IT),create #s for promos/bugs, Operational/strategic plan’g. Exp. Req. Resume [email protected] (7/15)

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JOB OPENING: RESEARCH ANALYST/ATL:  1+ yrs TV/other Rsrch exp. Nielsen, media math, d-base exp prfrd. Strong analytical, math, MS Excel/Word/Ppt & time mgt skills. Attention to detail. Support Prog Rsrch. Res: [email protected]   (7/14)

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] .

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: NEED A BUDGET DONE?? LINE PROD/EIC – 10+ yrs. exp- Offering freelance budget work in any and all formats including 3D. Accurate budgets, Reasonable rates, fast turn around-30 days unlimited revisions. Email: [email protected] (7/20)

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SITUATION WANTED: 5 PRIME TIME EMMYS/ DOC. PROD, DIR., WRITER in L.A. Credits: National Geo, PBS, Discovery, History CH, TLC and MSNBC. Contact email: [email protected]  (7/14)

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SITUATION WANTED:  ACCOUNTING/FINANCE – 20+ yrs. experience in TV Broadcasting & Cable.  Seeking FT/PT or Temp-to-Perm position:  [email protected] (7/14)

SITUATION WANTED: PROJ MGR, Interactive Platforms; Ideation and Implementation Expert, Brand-to-Consumer Exp: Moving to NYC 6/29. Looking for FT. 2+ yrs exp in digital media, 3+ in brdcst. http://www.linkedin.com/in/thomaskopczynski (7/14)

SITUATION WANTED: Dedicated & Experienced ADV. SALES PLANNER (NY) Sales proposals, resolving client discrepancies, quarterly post analysis, special sales service projects, expert computer skills. Contact- [email protected]  (7/14)

E-mail [email protected] or call Trish Pihonak at 203.926.9878 for rates and specs for Job Openings.

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