Tuesday, September 30th, 2008


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Cynopsis: DIGITAL


Good morning, it’s Tuesday, September 30, 2008, and this is your first early morning digital briefing.

Tech Stocks were among those battered during yesterday’s historic stock market plunge, occurring after the House of Representatives voted to reject the proposed $700 billion bailout of the financial industry. Apple plunged by nearly 18%. Google and Yahoo closed down 9% each, the margin the tech-heavy Nasdaq fell by overall. The day even started badly for the sector. Before the opening bell several analysts issued pessimistic reports voicing concern for demand of gadgets and services amid a slowing economy.  


The AP
announced that 500 newspaper sites have already signed up for its new online news sharing service AP Member Marketplace, allowing members to exchange and search for relevant stories, photos and graphics. The exchange is one of several new tools the AP is rolling out to try and fight off challenges from new web-based news syndicators such as like Politico.com.
Illustrating yet another reason why users hate DRM restrictions, Wal-Mart announced it will stop supporting tracks sold with DRM beginning Oct. 9. After that users will be unable to transfer tracks they’ve already purchased to another computer. If this affects you, hurry up and burn the tracks to a CD then rip them back to non-DRM MP3 tracks.
Spanish-language ESPNdeportes.com launched a mobile version optimized for most major smartphones and video-capable phones including the iPhone. The site features in-depth soccer coverage – including Primera Division de Mexico, Argentina, Futbol Brasileiro, English Premier League, Spanish La Liga, MLS, as well as extensive coverage of U.S.-based pro sports. The site also plans to increase coverage of rugby, Latin American baseball and global basketball on the site in the coming weeks.
Lifetime.tv debuted its latest web series, Flying Solo from producers TeleNext Media. A UGC-themed show, each episode features interviews and video confessionals, telling the story of a different young recent college graduate trying to figure out what to do next with her life.
Disney-ABC-ESPN Television and Fastweb, an Italian telecom provider, signed a deal to offer ABC Studios-produced TV series to FASTWEBTV’s subscribers on an on-demand basis.
Video on demand service ExerciseTV cut a deal with Hulu making 31 video workout programs available on the portal.
AOL re-introduced entertainment/lifestyle site Digital City as more of a blog.


Web studio Revision3 (Diggnation, Epic FU) launched a new program to incubate its next generation of web shows and perhaps expand upon its tech-focused area of specialization. Revision3beta.com will act as a portal for the new pilots, accepting uploads from non-affiliated producers. Check out the 7 new shows already up including beverage review show Bottles, Blends and Brews and broadly conceived how-to primer That’s Awesome.TV.


Multimedia software company Nero has teamed with Tivo to develop a PC-based DVR that features full Tivo functionality and works with Windows XP or Vista machines not already equipped with a TV tuner. The $199 LiquidTV/Tivo kit, which goes on sale Oct. 15, includes a remote control and TV tuner that plugs directly into your computer. The fee also includes a one-year subscription to Tivo’s programming service. Users who already have a TV tuner built into their PC can save $100 by downloading a software-only version at nero.com.
A new Facebook app from the State Democracy Foundation makes it easy to round up your less politically active friends. The VoterTools app provides voter registration applications, absentee ballot applications and polling place locators, all of which are also available in widget format on statedemocracy.org.


debuted its first WiMax-based XOHM wireless broadband internet service in Baltimore yesterday for the bargain introductory rate of $10 for a day pass, $30/month for mobile users and $25 for home-based users. Sprint says the “4G” network will average download speeds of 2-4 Mbps. Customers can buy modem cards for about $60 and modems for $80. Sprint’s XOHM unit and Craig McCaw’s Clearwire (currently in the process of merging) plan to roll out WiMax service across the nation with Chicago, Washington D.C., Dallas, Providence, RI and Philadelphia next up among the early deployments.
Before passing the historic banking bailout plan (in vain) the Senate found time to pass the Broadband Data Improvement Act over the weekend, directing the FCC to compile better broadband data and report it to the public yearly rather than periodically. A similar measure was passed by the House way back in 2007. The move is being seen as an important first step in calling attention to America’s lagging position in terms of broadband infrastructure. Until now the FCC has published limited data on broadband, collecting data only at the zip code level and defining broadband at 1995 terms – that is 200 kbps.
The issue of who’s going to foot the bill for the transition to digital projection units seems to be getting closer to getting resolved. A consortium of major exhibitors is getting ready to announce a $1 billion financing agreement with Universal, Paramount, Disney and Fox provisioning enough cash to upgrade more than 15,000 screens nationwide with digital projection systems, per THR. The deal means the studios will pay a majority of the upgrade costs estimated at $100,000 per system, including provisions for some 3D-capable projection facilities.
Move Networks announced it is working with Televisa to deliver live and on-demand sports and entertainment video programming for its newly announced web portals.


President Susan Decker defended the proposed search advertising pact between her company and Google, attempting to debunk what she sees as “myths” about a partnership that combines the #1 and #2 players in the industry. Rejecting the claim that the deal will give Google a 90% market share of search, she outlines several practical gains the deal may bring the industry, such as raising the value proposition for advertisers by providing more relevant results. Google is also doing its part to lobby for approval of the agreement, launching a dedicated site addressing similar issues.
CBS found a caffeinated way to promote its Monday night comedy series Worst Week. The network is sponsoring the AT&T log in page at thousands of Starbucks locations throughout the U.S. AT&T recently took over for T-Mobile in powering the coffee chain’s Wi-Fi services.


NBC is duly impressed with the consumption of Olympics themed programming on multiple platforms, claiming it delivered 12 million aggregate hours if video across outlets. Now the hope is that the event has inspired many first time users to frequently return to the digital platforms.

  • NBC’s mobile site attracted 6.5 million unique visitors, 36 million mobile web page views and 826,000 mobile video views, according to Omniture data
  • NBCU’s Olympics VOD offering garnered 6.7 million total views per Rentrak, including 4.7 million views for in-game highlights and encores (over 6X more viewing than Torino)
  • Nearly 7.5 million combined DirecTV and Dish subscribers accessed interactive TV features, generating 50 million + impressions and nearly 3.4 million hours spent
  • 7 million users consumed over 30 million streams of live and VOD broadband video coverage equaling 7.5 million total hours of online video viewing

Wiredset’s online tracking service Trendrr introduced new set of features including a Firefox browser plug in that will allow easy tracking of web consumption of web videos. The add-on, which tracks views across sites such as YouTube, AOL Video, Veoh, MySpace Dailymotion and Metacafe, compares such metrics as aggregate videos or views on a certain topic, breaking usage down by the number of total views, views per day, comments, and times “favorited” on YouTube.


Rainbow Media upped Kim Martin from EVP to President and GM of We.tv following 4 years of consecutive distribution expansion and audience growth. She will continue to be based in New York and report to Ed Carroll, President of National Entertainment Services of Rainbow Media.
Karen Seminara has been named CFO, Bravo Media, reporting to Lauren Zalaznick, President of Women and Lifestyle Entertainment Networks, NBC Universal, and Catherine Dunleavy, EVP and CFO, NBCU Cable Entertainment Networks. She will work closely with Lauren on identifying growth drivers and new revenue streams for the network and is expected to play a vital role in helping to define and build Bravo’s new digital businesses.
Destination Media appointed Nancy Steinfeld to SVP/Sales in the Western region. Nancy, who was formerly National Account Director of National CineMedia, will lead the sales efforts of Destination Media’s Gas Station TV and C-Store TV networks in the region.


Disbeliefnet.com is a screamingly funny parody site of all religions and religious beliefs, created by LA-based web production outfit Jetset Studios to promote Bill Maher’s Religulous documentary opening on Friday. (The Lionsgate film is directed by Larry Charles (Borat.)) Studios are throwing an increasing amount of dollars at web promotion. But rarely is the writing this inspired. Jetset staffers (many of whom are writers) worked for months to come up with outlandish mock banner ads, most of which link to actual religious sites. The Blasphemy Box is a wall of defame. The Heretic Press blog compiles real news stories like this one about an Islamic concept car offering options such as a compass that always points in the direction of Mecca. The producers even compiled a collection of 103 wacko videos from YouTube. The only thing off limits here are images of Mohammed. The whole thing was conceived as a parody of the award-winning faith-themed community site beliefnet.com, according to Jetset CEO and Creative Director Russell Scott, which was acquired by the Fox Entertainment Group last December. (To beliefnet’s credit, they seem to get the joke – they’re even carrying a banner ad for Religulous.)

Later — Wayne
 Wayne Karrfalt for Cynopsis: Digital

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What would a year be without something new from Cyn opsis? Introducing …

Cynopsis Media: Top Tier
Executive Search Division

High level executive search, candidates fully screened and vetted, meeting precisely your criteria.

For more information, call Trish Pihonak 203.926.9878
if you’re looking to make an executive change, or are looking for a change of scenery yourself.
[email protected]
Cynopsis Media: Top Tier

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

JOB OPENING: EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT-HARMONIX/Boston: 2+yrs admin exp. Strng communic & interprsnl sk; Proficient MS Word/Excel/PPT. Detail-oriented; str organ sk; fast-paced env. EOE/M/F/D/AAP. Apply www.mtvncareers.com (10/7)

JOB OPENING: PRODUCTION MANAGER /NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC CHANNEL/Washington, DC: 2+ yrs exp in long form documentary. EOE. Apply to JOB ID 3601 at http://www.nationalgeographic.com/jobs (10/7)

JOB OPENING: MGR/PRGM AND MKTG/Lifetime/LA: TV/Data Anlys in Prgming, Mktg Affil Distr. Prep reprts for ratings/comp perform. Est prgm/sched chges. Star Trak/Nielsen sys, and strng math. Res: [email protected] (10/7)

JOB OPENING: SR RSRCH ANALYST/Lifetime/LA: Analyze & prdce reprts- daily ratings & compet perfmnce to guide Prgm, Mktg, & Aff Mktg strat. Exp TV Rsrch/data anlyst/Star Trak/Nielsen/math/stats. Res: [email protected] (10/7)

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JOB OPENING: RESEARCH ANALYST/ION/NY: Entry level, Nielsen/MRI, 1 yr broadcast or cable/media buying agency exp, College Degree req’d, Business Degree a +, proficient in media math/MSOffice. [email protected]. EOE (10/4)

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SUMMER/FALL 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] .

FALL INTERNSHIP CREDITS ONLY: The Chamber Group is a full service PR firm seeking passionate interns! Internship is for credit only, w/compensation for travel/meals (min of 15 hrs/wk). Contact: Damali Elliott 212.366.5801/ [email protected] (10/7)

FALL INTERNSHIP CREDITS ONLY: MEDIA RESEARCH INTERN: Provides reporting & strategic insights & supports internal functions, incl. prgrmng, mktg, & sales. Provide reporting & analysis. Semester-long, unpaid. [email protected] (10/4)

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SITUATION WANTED ADS, POSTED BY THOSE LOOKING TO BE HIRED … Interested in posting your Video Resume? Contact [email protected] for more information ….

SITUATION WANTED: TRAFFIC MANAGER: With over 12 years exp seeks position in Radio/TV/Entertainment or traffic software in NY Metro Area only. [email protected] (10/4)

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SITUATION WANTED: Award Winning NY based Writer/Producer/Editor seeks work in promos, sales tapes, sizzles, short form etc. Own Avid with 13+ years network exp. Email: [email protected]www.bardsleyproductions.tv (10/1)

E-mail [email protected] for rates and specs for Job Openings.

Interested in posting your Video Resume? Contact [email protected] for more information ….

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

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