Digital media business models are improving for big, traditional media companies as they learn to adapt, but they are still nowhere near the golden days of analog media, and may never be again, Jeff Zucker, CEO of NBC Universal said Monday during an annual briefing to Wall Street analysts and journalists. "I think we're making progress," Zucker said during Monday's session of UBS' Media Week conference in New York, amending what was perhaps his most famous quote of the past couple of years: that new digital media models are converting "analog dollars into digital dimes" for companies like NBC U.

Zucker said it's unlikely that big, legacy media companies such as NBC U would ever approach the kind of revenues they derived from analog media models, but he said they are improving their digital media models, and continuing to "experiment with windows" of distribution to find ones that are more profitable.  Dec 2009

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Facebook has crossed the 100-million-user mark in the U.S. a week after announcing it had surpassed 350 million members worldwide. That's a nice round audience figure to present to advertisers in the market representing the bulk of its revenue.

The social network today hit 100.5 million U.S. users Monday -- up from 98.1 million a week ago, and has averaged a few million new domestic users over most of the last year, according to Inside Facebook. That makes the U.S. the first country to reach the 100 million threshold, although 70% of Facebook's monthly active users live elsewhere.

Last month, comScore estimated Facebook's U.S. audience in October at 97.4 million unique visitors -- well ahead of the 82.9 million for Fox Interactive Media, whose chief property is MySpace.  Facebook eclipsed its social networking rival in U.S. traffic in May, according to comScore.


Ad spending in the U.S. media measured by TNS Media Intelligence declined 14.7% during the first nine months of 2009, and the most recent data -- a 15.3% decline during the third quarter -- suggests that Madison Avenue has yet to pull itself out of recession. According to TNS MI's estimates, the third quarter of 2009 marks the sixth consecutive quarter of year-over-year ad spending declines.

Among the major media, Internet display advertising continues to be among the only ones showing positive momentum. Online display ad spending expanded 7.0% during the first nine months, which along with newspaper FSIs (+3.9%) were the only media to show any increases this year.  December 2009

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Anita Bezjak: There has been a marked increase in demand for factual programming but I think that's mainly because 'factual' has broadened beyond just meaning documentaries. Today genres such as lifestyle, infotainment, docusoap and game shows all sit under the fact-ent banner and there's an increasing appetite for programming where the information or value add is embedded organically. Strong characters and story lines, authentic scenarios and access all continue to dominate broadcaster wish lists.

Has the potential for multi-platform distribution of a title impacted storylines, budgets, etc. in a considerable way? Are you thinking more of titles that can be spread across platforms or is it a case of, 'It's nice if it happens, but...'?

Richard Shaw: 360 isn't a passing phenomenon, it's real and it's going to become more and more important in the future in the UK. For companies like Lion who have a highly developed digital component it's central to our development thinking because of who we work with. We're also regularly handling the digital elements of commissions where the linear telly is being made by our competitors. Plus web-native projects are going to blossom in the next few years. If you don't have multi-channel, multi-platform content at the heart of your development in the UK you're going to be left behind when it comes to standing out from the crowd and grabbing a commissioner's attention. This means web-original content and yes, sometimes it even impacts what's on screen.

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Web 2.0 Attracts Much More Venture Capital Than Any Other Industry

Martes, 20 octubre 2009

Venture capital investing might be bouncing back, but the latest numbers from Dow Jones Venture Source are a bit disappointing. VC invested $5.1 billion in 616 deals during Q3. That's down 38 percent from the $8.2 billion invested during the same period last year, a drop anyone would expect. 

Looking closer at the numbers, a good news for our Internet industry. IT, or information technology, is the top spot when attracting money. Last year it was overshadowed by health care, but now leads the VC attention. 

And within that IT umbrella, Web 2.0 investments not only are continuing but in fact they beat traditional software investments for the first time. VentursSource says Web 2.0 deals improved 11 percent from last year, for a total of $627 million in 86 deals.


No Rest for the Dreary: Newspaper Revs Fall 28%

The economy may have rallied in the third quarter, but the newspaper industry did not, as total advertising revenues -- including print and online -- tumbled 28%, from roughly $10.1 billion in the third quarter of 2008 to about $6.4 billion this year. The third-quarter loss is on par with first and second-quarter declines of 28.3% and 29%, respectively.

As in previous quarters, losses were spread evenly across all the main newspaper advertising categories -- including national, down 29.8%, retail, down 24%, and classifieds, down 37.9%.

National advertising in particular reached a discouraging milestone in the third quarter, with total revenues falling below $1 billion (to $956 million). That's the first time since the third quarter of 1995.


YouTube just offered to share their revenues with the user who generates content that goes viral and receives a high number of views. This decision (which is in addition to the formal agreements they have with high volume providers) is an interesting move for a company under attack for not generating enough revenue to offer to share their revenues with more people–and more independent content creators at that.  As the first distributor of the viral content, does YouTube have a future as a rights owner rather than a non-exclusive platform? Or can the company get their own advertisers to buy into paying a premium to appear alongside whatever happens to be the latest novelty recommendation?

This high-profile story is just the latest in a series related to managing the rights of digital assets in a multi-platform, digital environment. Remember Radiohead? In October 2007, the popular band hit the headlines when it let its fans decide what to pay for its latest album In Rainbows.


After complaints about American dominance of the internet and growing disquiet in some parts of the world, Washington has said it will relinquish some control over the way the network is run and allow foreign governments more of a say in the future of the system.

Icann – the official body that ultimately controls the development of the internet thanks to its oversight of web addresses such as .com, .net and .org – said today that it was ending its agreement with the US government.

The deal, part of a contract negotiated with the US department of commerce, effectively pushes California-based Icann towards a new status as an international body with greater representation from companies and governments around the globe.


Zucker Wants To Reinvent NBC


Its cable portfolio has propelled growth at the company lately. But NBCU remains focused on upgrading the part of the conglomerate formerly known as the National Broadcasting Company. 

Operators, in turn, are experimenting with systems that give people access to the shows on the Web if an authentication process ensures they also pay for TV service.  Zucker said NBCU is participating in a "TV Everywhere" trial in New York involving its Syfy channel.

"If authentication can serve as the model" to keep lucrative affiliate fees coming, "we'll continue to support it," he says. But Zucker notes it's unclear whether "TV Everywhere" could further lead to new business models.

Zucker said NBCU continues to pursue a profitable digital business, notably via its stake in He said NBCU has made "incremental steps," but has not found an economic model that would be a "panacea." He added that he expects Hulu to continue to pursue an ad-supported model and there are no plans to explore charging for content.




YouTube has just held a conference call to announce that it has negotiated a deal with Warner Music Group, the major record label that pulled off the world’s most popular video portal after feeling shortchanged by the revenue its videos were driving. Many details of the deal have ben rumored or the last few days, and were confirmed accurate: WMG will be putting its full catalog back on YouTube and will have the ability to sell its own advertising against both its premium music videos as well as user generated content that features a WMG song. Revenue will be shared with YouTube but most will be going to WMG. The deal also includes rights to Warner’s Chappell Music publishing arm.


Camera phones have been around for years now and the thing that most of them have in common is that the camera tends to be a tacked on feature rather than something really designed to work well. Samsung has changed that with a new device called the SCH-W880.

The device is more like a camera with a phone tossed in as an added feature. The camera sensor has 12-megapixel resolution and a lens with 3x optical zoom . Engadget has posted a leaked marketing image of the camera that gives a few of the specifications away, even if they are hard to make out.

What we can tell is that the camera will be able to record HD video, likely at 720p resolution. The device also has a WVGA AMOLED rear screen that is 3.3-inches wide. The camera phone supports HSDPA data and has GPS, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, DMB TV tuner, and a microSD card slot. DMB support likely means the handset will never leave Korea unfortunately.



OPA Study: Content Is Still King


A bigger proportion of Internet users are spending more time on content sites than they were six years ago, according to a new analysis by the Online Publishers Association. But that growth has come at the expense of communication and commerce sites.

The study showed that people in 2009 on average spent 42% of their time online on content sites compared to 34% in 2003, when the OPA launched its Internet Activity Index, which tracks monthly Internet use across five categories: commerce, communications, community, content and search.  The actual amount of time spent on content sites has nearly doubled since 2003, increasing from an average of three hours, 42 minutes to 6:58. 


by Laurie Sullivan
Adobe Systems reported Tuesday that it has entered into an agreement to acquire analytics giant Omniture for $1.8 billion. The acquisition will combine the world's largest provider of design and content creation tools with the leading measurement and analytics company.


To me, most importantly it's a tool for filmmakers, it's a way to enhance their ability to tell their stories. If you look over the last 30 years or so, filmmakers that have embraced and utilized new technology as it has come along, George Lucas, Steven Spielberg, Bob Zemeckis, Jim Cameron, Peter Jackson, Michael Bay...they are the filmmakers who've seen technology as an asset. They have seen over the horizon.    Jeffery Katzenberg


by Erik Sass
Wal-Mart is poised to begin reducing the amount of aisle space devoted to magazine sales displays. Coming close on the heels of Wal-Mart's decision to move magazine racks to the back of the store, the move to cut the racks themselves is an ominous sign. The nation's largest retailer has knocked magazines several rungs down on its hierarchy of sales priorities.


Nasdaq alerted Sirius XM Radio Inc. that it received notice on Sept. 15, that its common stock had closed below $1.00 per share for 30 consecutive business days and is therefore not in compliance with the Nasdaq Marketplace Rule 5450(a)(1). In accordance with such rules, Sirius XM may regain compliance if by March 15, 2010 its common stock closes at or above $1.00 for 10 consecutive business days. The radio satellite company intends to maintain the listing of its common stock on Nasdaq.   sept 09


by Joe Mandese
U.S. ad spending declined for the fifth consecutive quarter during the second quarter of 2009, and while the rate of erosion moderated slightly from the previous quarter, a top industry economist says it still isn't clear whether demand for advertising is actually improving. "While it's tempting to interpret this as a positive indicator that things aren't getting worse, the fact remains that the market has been steadily tracking at around 14% declines for several consecutive months and this represents billions of lost revenue," Jon Swallen, senior vice president-research at TNS Media Intelligence stated as part of the ad tracking and forecasting firm's second quarter data release this morning. ...


European digital screen base grows by 70% in 2008

Digital cinema is gaining ground in Europe. According to recent figures provided by MEDIA Salles, the number of digital screens equipped with DLP Cinema or Sony 4K technology increased during 2008 by 70% to 1 529 digital screens as of 1 January 2009. The European Audiovisual Observatory estimates that between 4 and 5% of all European screens had been converted to digital by the end of 2008. The number of theatres equipped with at least one digital screen grew to 815 sites, up 48% from 2007.

By the end of 2008 each European digital theatre operated on average 1.9 digital screens, compared to 1.6 in the previous year. This indicates that exhibitors are increasingly opting to convert more than one screen to digital in their theatres in order to enable digital screening along a film’s commercial life cycle and to guarantee the flexibility to react to changes in demand.

MEDIA Salles also reports 3D as a major driver stimulating conversion to digital. This would appear to be particularly true for Italy where, according to the local trade press, Journey to the Centre of the Earth opened on just 42 3D screens in January while Monsters and Aliens was released on a total of 102 3D screens in April 2009.



A new research report from The Diffusion Group estimates that over-the-top (OTT) video revenues will grow nearly sixfold over the next five years, from $1 billion in 2009 to $5.7 billion in 2014.


According to TDG's report entitled "Broadband-Enabled TV: Rise of the OTT Provider," the rapid increase in online video sales will mostly be driven by the proliferation of broadband-connected devices in the home.

By the end of 2009, TDG estimates that there will be nearly 127 million households with a broadband-enabled TV set. But that number is expected to more than double over the next five years, to more than 358 million households with a connected TV in 2014.


North America, which will have 54 million broadband-enabled TVs, will lead the world with a little less than half of all broadband-enabled TVs by the end of 2009, compared to 37 million in Europe and 22.5 million in Asia. But explosive growth in China and India should propel Asia to have the greatest number of broadband-enabled TVs by 2014, with 117 million, compared to 89.6 million in Europe and 87.4 million in North America.


The decline in newspaper ad revenues -- now several years old -- will continue for at least another year, according to Fitch Ratings, which issued the gloomy prediction in an overview of the media business released earlier this week.

According to Fitch's "Credit Encylo-Media," newspapers will not share in the recovery forecast for some other media in 2010, thanks to continuing downward trends in all three traditional mainstays of newspaper advertising: classifieds, local, and national ads.

Fitch also expects continued declines in overall circulation revenues as print readership contracts, despite moves by some big publishers, like the New York Times Co. and Tribune, to bolster circulation revenues by raising newsstand prices. 09


Newspaper revenues fell by almost one-third in the second quarter of 2009 compared to the same

period in 2008, from $10.1 billion to $6.8 billion, according to the Newspaper Association of America.

The losses cut across every major advertising category.  9-09


Report: Consumers Making More Time For Video

Consumers continue to make more room in their busy lives for online video, according to new Nielsen Online VideoCensus data. In May, the time U.S. consumers spent watching the stuff was up a full 48.9% year-over-year, which translates to 188.7 minutes spent.

By comparison, the average American watched approximately 153 hours of TV every month at home, according to recent first-quarter analysis from Nielsen's A2/M2 "Anywhere Anytime Media Measurement" initiative. Year-over-year, according to VideoCensus, total online video streams were up 34.8%, which amounts to a whopping 10,043,049,000 streams in May.

Monthly streams per viewer, meanwhile, increased 19.6% over the past year to about 75, while the number of unique viewers was up 12.8% to 133,797,000. In April, Hulu recorded 373.3 million streams -- up 490% year-over-year -- which solidified its status as the fastest-growing premium video brand online.


Entertainment Tops Mobile Ad Spending Sectors


When it comes to mobile ad spending, the entertainment sector led the way in the second quarter followed by telecommunications, Web portals, dating, and retail. That's according to the latest metrics report from mobile ad network Millennial Media, which says it reaches nearly three quarters of U.S. mobile Internet users, or 44 million people.

Within entertainment, movie studios accounted for nearly two-thirds of spending, followed by games (16%), TV (9%), other (7%) and music (4%). The big summer movie season clearly helped drive the studios' mobile advertising, with Millennial handling 17 campaigns for new movie releases such as "Star Trek" and "Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen" during the quarter.

Over the last year, the company says entertainment advertising has increasingly shifted from placements for endemic products like ringtones to more campaigns for more traditional media like movies and TV shows. The company didn't provide actual ad spending figures or share of spending by industry sector.


After months of controversy surrounding wireless companies, the Federal Communications Commission voted unanimously on Thursday to launch a wide-ranging probe of the wireless industry.

"We are transitioning from a voice-centric world to a world of ubiquitous, mobile Internet access," said FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski. "This transition promises to increase the pace of innovation and investment, but only if we have an open and competitive marketplace that gives every great idea a chance to make its way to consumers so that the best products or services win."

The investigation, which could pave the way for new regulations, will encompass a variety of matters, including spectrum availability, wireless networks, devices, applications, and business practices. In addition, the FCC said it's seeking comments about "how the public has used wireless services and technology to solve real-world problems in areas such as health care, energy, education, and public safety."       yahoo news  August of 09


The percentage of people accessing the Internet for leisure time entertainment is growing

rapidly. ABI Research suggests that the total consumer base for Internet video will be nearly

one billion people by 2012, resulting in a total online video market—both pay and adsupported—

of $15.6 billion.


According to Cisco’s June 2008 Visual Networking Index:

Internet video will account for 50 percent of all consumer Internet traffic in

2012. Internet video-to-PC will make up the majority of Internet video at 40 percent of total

Internet traffic, but Internet video-to-TV will grow rapidly to 10 percent of the total in 2012.

Non-Internet IP video will increase more rapidly than consumer Internet. The

twin trends of on-demand viewing and high-definition video are generating very rapid

growth in cable video and IPTV traffic transported over IP in the metro. Consumer IPTV and

CATV traffic will grow at a 68 percent compound annual growth rate (CAGR) between

2007 and 2012, compared to a CAGR of 43 percent for consumer Internet traffic.ii



14.5M consumers thinking of buying Web-enabled TV in next 12 months
Demand for Internet-enabled televisions is growing rapidly, according to a new study by CEA. The study -- "Net-Enabled Video: Early Adopters Only?" -- found that about half of prospective TV buyers say they are likely to purchase an Internet-connected TV. The study also found that most adults are already online while watching TV. Almost a third of online adults say they always or usually surf the Internet while watching television and another third say they sometimes do.    


TV Everywhere survey should have cable industry clicking their heels - I wasn't at all surprised to read results of a new Solutions Research Group survey fielded to 500 Comcast and Time Warner Cable subscribers giving the concept of TV Everywhere positive reviews. As Multichannel News reported, in the overall survey 28% of respondents said the idea was "excellent" and 45% said it was "good." Digging in further though, among those 18-49 the "excellent" score surged to 80%, while 87% of Hulu and Fancast users approved of the idea. Unprompted, respondents cited benefits like convenience, remote viewing, getting better value from their cable subscriptions, watching on PCs in rooms without TVs and catching up on missed programs. My take: consumers "get" what TV Everywhere is all about and already have positive initial reactions, meaning there's very significant upside for the cable industry.   

Paid video forecast to surpass free - A Strategy Analytics forecast that got attention this week says that the global paid online video market will be worth $3.8B in 2009, exceeding the global free online video segment which will total $3.5B. I haven't seen the details of the forecast, but I'm very curious what's being included in each of these numbers as both seem way too high to me. The firm forecasts the two segments to grow at comparable rates (37% and 39%), suggesting that their size will remain relatively even. I suspect we're going to be seeing a lot of other research suggesting the paid market is going to be far larger than the ad-supported market as sentiment seems to be shifting toward subscriptions and paid downloads.    

By VideoNuze, Will Richmond Friday July 17th

CBS Joining Comcast On Demand Online Trial: Real Competitor To Hulu Underway?

Kudos to Broadcasting & Cable which has been ahead on this story from the start. CBS confirmed this morning it will be the first broadcast network to join the online TV service initiative and provide content. "Comcast’s online TV offering is starting to look like a real competitor to Hulu," B&C reported. CBS has not yet said which content will be available to the trial which is expected to start next month in 5,000 homes in Comcast's footprint, but there'll be a range of current and library content. Yesterday, Time Warner said HBO and Cinemax would also join the line-up, and last week Liberty Media's Starz properties signed up. CBS's Showtime pay TV is not yet on board but likely to be. The move, which B&C predicted last month, underscores why CBS stayed out of Hulu: because of Hulu's desire to control the online content exclusively. "This move demonstrates CBS's willingness to become partners in online ventures when the deal terms are right. CBS owns its own online destination, which is a rival to Hulu and has long stated its desire to make its online distribution strategy about open access," B&C writes.


Nielsen's study on the state of teen media usage find that teens actually spend less time online than mature adults. However, while teens spend 35% less time watching online video than adults


Recession Fuels Use Of Internet, Other Media


Recessions may be bad for the media economy, but they appear to be improving the health of the media ecology. Faced with tough economic times, consumers are consuming more media, not less of it, especially electronic media like the Internet and TV. In fact, the recession is actually fueling Internet usage among people looking for advice and information to deal with troubling economic times, according to results of new research released Wednesday by the Pew Internet & American Life Project.

The study finds that nearly a third (31%) of online users are utilizing the Internet more often to get information about the economy in the past year vs. only 10% who said they are going online less often.

Other recent data from TV ratings researchers Nielsen Co., and from the Nielsen-funded Council for Research Excellence, have shown that the amount of time Americans spend watching TV actually is growing, not declining. One reason for the boon in time spent with electronic media could be that some Americans have more time on their hands. Another is that they may be seeking cheaper or free entertainment options. But the new Pew study reveals that the need for economic information and advice has been a primary factor too.

"More than two-thirds of Americans - 69% - have used the Internet to help them with personal economic issues that have arisen in the recession and to gather information about the origins and solutions to national economic problems," the Pew report noted, adding, "That amounts to 88% of the adult Internet users in the country."



The Real Time Web gives us two new tools that we actually don’t physiologically know how to use; the ability to communicate many-to-one as well as many-to-many.

The only people I know of who have any experience dealing with real time many-to-one communication are kindergarten teachers. They routinely stand in the middle of 20 screaming kids who have not yet learned how to raise their hands and, magically, kindergarten teachers seem to be able to triage the communicative needs of their charges in real time.

Most unfortunately, there is no human experience that allows for the processing of many-to-many communication. To do this, and to practically deal with many-to-one, we need tools.

Twitter (and the other social network news feeds) are one part of the first generation of this tool set. A real time search, sentiment and zeitgeist engine like is the next step. Then we will all need some practice.


Microsoft to step up Google battle

July 12 2009

Microsoft is set to broaden its battle with Google this week as it pushes ahead with online versions of some of its core software, including final plans for a “cloud” operating system designed to extend Windows to the internet. The news comes days after Google took aim at Microsoft with the announcement of a PC operating system of its own, dubbed Chrome OS.

The rival moves point to an intensification of the battle between the technology giants, with Google trying to extend its internet platform to PCs, and Microsoft moving in the opposite direction. While Google’s PC operating system is not due to appear in new computers until the second half of 2010, Microsoft’s cloud operating system will be launched formally this year.

Stephen Elop, head of Microsoft’s Office business, reiterated that the company’s aim was to extend the ways it offers its software to customers. Most analysts believe a free, stripped-down version of Office online to rival the free Google Apps service would do little to hurt Microsoft’s revenues, since it would only appeal to relatively small numbers. Microsoft is also set to spell out pricing and launch plans for its internet-based operating system, called Azure. This will see it leapfrog Google in the business of selling computing resources over the internet, allowing developers to buy capacity to run their applications based on the amount of storage, bandwidth or other resources they use.

Amazon has taken the early lead in this market, selling access to the computer network it built up for its online retail operations. However, the large base of developers who already rely on Microsoft’s technology, and the company’s ability to use its massive scale to undercut on price, are likely to make it a significant force in the market.



Two cable powerhouses announced an ambitious pilot program Wednesday that aims to convince their customers that, actually, TV on the web should not be free.

With a service called TV Everywhere, Comcast and Time Warner will give cable subscribers access “premium” television content via broadband, and later cellphone connections. To begin with, 5,000 Comcast subscribers will begin testing the system next month, giving them access to Time Warner’s TBS and TNT channels on their computers, and the same channels’ video-on-demand catalogs on their cable boxes.

If you made peace long ago with the idea of paying a monthly cable bill, this probably sounds great. It means watching your existing subscription on new screens without paying additional fees or buying more hardware. (Of course, as consumers adopt TV Everywhere, they can probably expect price increases.)

But if you prefer to watch your television for free on ad-supported sites like Hulu while paying only for the internet connection that delivers it, you could be in for a rude awakening. TV Everywhere represents an alternative — and possible threat — to the popular Hulu model.



HP this week announced the impending release of a groundbreaking new printer that the company bills the first-ever home printer that prints from the Web. The HP Photosmart Premium with TouchSmart Web is set to become available in the U.S. this fall, at a suggested retail price of $399.

The printer, which features HP's TouchSmart technology, will also access several applications, including some from Google, Fandango,, USA Today, WeatherNews and more. Users can create their own apps as well.

“By giving people access to the content they want at the touch of a finger, the ability to customize their printing experience and create their own apps, and enabling easy ’one touch’ wireless setup, we are driving a significant shift in how people will be printing in the future," HP's executive vice president, Imaging and Printing, Vyomesh Joshi, said as part of the announcement.


A mobile Internet device buoyed by some pre-sales buzz is slated to go on sale July 6. Will consumers notice? Mobile Internet devices, or MIDs, have been around for a while but never triggered anything near the buying frenzy of Apple's iPhone or the Palm Pre.

On July 6, the Viliv X70, based on the Atom Z520 processor, will go on sale in the U.S. from reseller Dynamism. This could prove to be another litmus test for this tweener category of devices.

MIDs look a lot like the iPhone but aren't phones. They're mini PCs. The screens are bigger (a 1024 x 600, 7-inch display in the case of the X70, about twice the size of the iPhone's) and they are designed to offer everything a buyer would expect in a PC: that is, Windows running on Intel processors. Like PCs, traditionally, MIDs have connected to the Internet via Wi-Fi only.


Helios: iPhone App for Filmmakers

Helios, the first iPhone/iTouch app from the trio, who form Chemical Wedding, graphically predicts the path of the sun from dusk to dawn, on any given day, in any given place. That’s not only useful to cinematographers and still photographers but also to grips, gaffers, production designers, 1st assistant directors–as well as architects, artists, landscape designers, surveyors and anyone else who needs to know exactly where the sun will be at specific times.


Columbia Pictures is in advanced talks with David Fincher to direct "The Social Network," the Aaron Sorkin-scripted film for Columbia Pictures about the formation of Facebook.

The film will focus on the evolution of Facebook from its 2004 creation on the Harvard campus by sophomore Mark Zuckerberg to a juggernaut with more than 200 million members.Scott Rudin and Michael De Luca are producing with Trigger Street's Kevin Spacey and Dana Brunetti.The aim is to begin production later this year. Fincher last directed "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button."


Time Warner and Comcast announced today that they have partnered to offer "The Closer," "My Boys" and other TNT and TBS programs online for free, but only to people who already subscribe to Comcast video.

The program, often referred to as "TV Everywhere," will require users to authenticate that they're paying customers. Initially, the companies will roll out the initiative to 5,000 users.

The move is widely seen as the cable companies' answer to cord-cutting -- or canceling subscriptions in favor of watching video for free. But whether the initiative will clear potential legal and regulatory hurdles isn't clear yet.

On one hand, content owners have every right to decide whether to post their programs online or not. And there's no current law that would prevent companies from charging people to view TV episodes. Indeed, many already do so at iTunes, Amazon and other sites.



Viewers 35+ Drive Long-Form Video Streaming
According to Nielsen Online, YouTube continued to rank as the No. 1 video Web brand with 5.5 billion total streams in April. Meanwhile, Hulu continued its explosive growth, increasing 490 percent in total streams year-over-year, from 63.2 million in April 2008 to 373.3 million in April 2009, making it the fastest growing brand among the top 10

Jon Gibs, vice president, media & analytics, Nielsen Online, said "Historically short form, clip-length video has ruled streaming on the Web... Hulu, along with pure-play providers...  have spent the past two years trying to convince consumers that the Internet can be a good place to watch full length programming...  April's strong showings... suggest that consumers are beginning to listen." 



Prototype Nokia phone recharges without wires

Pardon the cliche, but it's one of the holiest of Holy Grails of technology: Wireless power. And while early lab experiments have been able to "beam" electricity a few feet to power a light bulb, the day when our laptops and cell phones can charge without having to plug them in to a wall socket still seems decades in the future.

Nokia, however, has taken another baby step in that direction with the invention of a cell phone that recharges itself using a unique system: It harvests ambient radio waves from the air, and turns that energy into usable power. Enough, at least, to keep a cell phone from running out of juice.   June 09


Americans are spending a lot of time watching videos on their computers.

ComScore, a Va.-based company that keeps track of the digital world, found that U.S. Internet users viewed 16.8 billion online videos in April, that’s up 16 percent from March.  Google sites ranked as the top site for videos, with 6.8 billion videos viewed. Fox Interactive Media ranked second, with 513 million videos, followed by Hulu, with 397 million, and Yahoo, with 355 million.

Among other findings:

  • 78.6 percent of the total U.S. Internet audience viewed online video.
  • The average online video viewer watched 385 minutes, or 6.4 hours, of video.
  • 107.1 million viewers watched 6.8 billion videos on (63.5 videos per viewer).
  • 49 million viewers watched 387 million videos on (7.9 videos per viewer).
  • Hulu accounted for 2.4 percent of videos viewed, but 4.2 percent of all minutes spent watching online video.
  • The duration of the average online video was 3.5 minutes.


YouTube Loses a Little 'You,' Adds Some 'Tube'

YouTube has redesigned its user interface, removing the "social" tools from the site to make it easier for people to view consumer-generated videos on the "big screen." No, not gigantic theatrical screens, but home televisions that connect to devices with a Web browser, such as a PC, Sony PlayStation 3 or Nintendo Wii.

YouTube XL moves user-generated content into your living room. The latest feature aims to enhance viewing in high definition (HD), when available, on any large screen. Backend technology pulls the clips uploaded by users from a unique content stream, filtering out "commercially produced" videos from partners such as Warner Bros. For now, Google will not integrate AdSense for Video with Content ID, which allows media companies on to generate revenue from copyrighted video content that users create and upload to YouTube.


Texting Talks For Teens and Twenties
Results from the second annual Vlingo Consumer Mobile Messaging Habits Report show that, this year, nearly 60% of mobile phone owners use their phones to text, with 94% of teens the largest user group, and 20-somethings at 87%. Among those in their 40s, usage jumped from 56% in 2008 to 64% this year, and for those in their 50s it jumped from 38% to 46%.

Texting is also gaining on sending/receiving calls as the primary use of mobile phones, with 35% of all respondents using their phones for texting more than for phone calls. Almost half of respondents do both in equal numbers. The volume of text messages has gone up as well across all age groups, although the 13 to 19 age group remains the most active, sending more than 500 texts per month on average. Despite the popularity of mobile data services, of those surveyed:



Revenue from streamed music and full-track downloads on mobile phones will grow from $2.5 billion to $5.5 billion worldwide in the next five years as increased applications, all-you-can-eat data plans and more user-friendly services combine to drive up sales, according to a new forecast by Juniper Research.

Windsor Holden, an analyst at the U.K.-based mobile research firm, points to a widening array of mobile music initiatives from music streaming service Pandora, with 2 million mobile users, to T-Mobile's Mobile Jukebox to Samsung's Beat DJ, as evidence of increased consumer uptake.

"These are just snippets, but they are not isolated cases," he wrote in a blog post. Holden went on to argue that wireless operators are increasingly convinced that not only are customers willing to use their mobile phones for accessing music, but that a significant proportion view music as a key component of their mobile service.


News Corp. Goes Deep Into Red With $6.4 Billion Net Loss
by Wayne Friedman
News Corp. has followed the conga line of media companies recently taking sharp financial quarterly losses. On the heels of an $8.4 billion write down of assets, the company stumbled across the financial reporting line with $6.4 billion lost for its fiscal second quarter.


Best Buy to launch Internet fund

Published: May 28 2009 06:01 | Last updated: May 28 2009 06:01

Best Buy, the largest US consumer electronics retailer, will launch an investment fund managed by former and current News Corp internet veterans that will focus on digital media as it seeks to expand beyond brick and mortar stores.

The retailer, which invested $2.1bn to launch a joint venture with the UK’s Carphone Warehouse last year, purchased the Napster online music subscription service in 2008 for $121m and aims to invest deeper into the music, video, games and “personal media management” businesses. “Best Buy has connectivity to hardware and software manufacturers, (Hollywood) studios, DVDs and cell phones,” said Ross Levinsohn, a partner at Velocity Interactive Group, the venture capital firm that will help manage the new fund.“When you think about the breadth in how they touch consumers, their interest in digital media makes sense,” Mr Levinsohn said.


According to Nielsen we started watching more TV -- 4 hours, 34 minutes a day in 2006-07. Not bad for the producers, network, cable operators, advertisers.  Nielsen found:

100% of US cable operators offer HDTV
165.3 mil LCD TVs to sell in 2011
Americans choose smaller 1080p TV over a larger 720p
80% of TiVo owners and 82% of other DVR owners likely to skip commercials
85% of US households aware of digital TV transition
More than 80% of US households have digital TVs
15% of Americans have 2+ HDTVs
US HDTV sales to top $65 bln by 2009
1080p LCD TV to generate $75.4 bln in 2011
Japanese and Americans watched 4.5 hours of TV a day in 2006
Digital television reached 64% of US households last year
52% of urban males do not get enough international content on TV
94% of Americans have HDTVs

Then a viewing paradigm took place.

Internet Viewing

The Internet became ubiquitous and pipes got bigger.

People started watching stuff online.


Hulu Eyes More Live Content

Dave Matthews concert to stream live on June 1

NEW YORK Hulu, home to a growing library of on-demand TV programming, is seeking to add more live content to its menu.

The site, a joint venture between News Corp, NBC Universal and Disney, will on June 1 stream a live Dave Mathews Band concert from the Beacon Theatre in New York from 9:00 -11:30 p.m. EST. The live-on-the-Web concert is being timed to promote the band’s upcoming new album Big Whiskey and the GrooGrux King, which is scheduled to be released June 2.

The live event represents something of a departure for Hulu, which primarily offers full episodes of current and classic network TV shows, along with full-length movies. (The site did stream President Barack Obama’s inauguration live in January.)

Besides the concert, Hulu will begin offering various Dave Matthews videos on May 28, as well as the documentary Scenes from Big Whiskey, which chronicles the making of the band’s new album. The June 1 concert will also be available to viewers on demand following the live show.




In case it wasn't obvious that newspapers are struggling, a new report by the Newspaper Association of America shows just how dire the situation has become.

In the first quarter of this year, ad revenues plummeted to $6.62 billion, marking a 28% drop from last year, according to the NAA. And it wasn't only print ad revenue that fell. Web ad revenue also dropped 13%, to $696 million.

While all ad categories suffered declines, classifieds fell the furthest. First quarter classified revenue came to just $1.46 billion, marking a 42% drop from last year's $2.5 billion and a 67% decline from the historical first-quarter high of $4.39 billion in 2000.


NEW YORK, May 20 (Reuters) - Yahoo Inc  is looking to buy companies that will allow it to become a bigger player in social networking and revamp its family of products, Chief Technology Officer Ari Balogh said on Wednesday.

Yahoo has had conversations with companies about partnerships and "more interesting" possibilities, said Balogh, who is executive vice president of products at Yahoo.

"I can guarantee you there will be some acquisitions, and we will do some stuff in house," said Balogh, speaking by videolink to the Reuters Global Technology Summit in New York.


Can the iPhone save Sirius XM?

Here’s a first look at Sirius XM’s forthcoming iPhone app, culled from a PowerPoint stack published in SEC documents today. CEO Mel Karmazin presented the slides to investors at Wednesday’s shareholder meeting.  Can this app help Sirius XM repay its half-billion-dollar loan from Liberty Media? The app doesn’t look much different from iTunes at first glance. That’s good. It’s not weird or ugly.

The bad news is the app requires users to sign up for a Sirius XM subscription. No doubt the company thoroughly researched and tested its pricing to come up with the odd monthly fee of $12.95. But in my own experience, streaming music from an AT&T iPhone fails far more often than satellite radio does. news


Digital video and audio cables, similar to the ones that already connect TVs to DVD players, cable boxes and receivers, will soon come with a new capability: connecting those devices to the Internet.

Manufacturers said Thursday that version 1.4 of the HDMI standard, for High-Definition Multimedia Interface, includes a data networking feature. That means that a set-top box that connects to the Internet could share its connection with other devices in the entertainment center, for easier access to Web video, e-mail and news, says Steve Venuti, president and CEO of HDMI Licensing.

Devices with HDMI 1.4 ports could show up in small numbers before the holidays, and in larger volumes early next year, the group said. New cables will be needed to take advantage of the networking feature.


News Corp. chairman Rupert Murdoch said on Thursday that the future of newspapers is digital

Murdoch, in an interview with the N ews Corp.-owned Fox Business Network, also said that newspapers, faced with eroding print advertising revenue and circulation, are going to have to start charging readers on the Web. The News Corp. chief said newspapers in the future will continue to make money "from our readers, from our advertisers (but) the newspapers may look very different.

"Instead of an analog paper printed on paper you may get it on a panel which would be mobile, which will receive the whole newspaper over the air, (and) be updated every hour or two," he said. "You'll be able to get the guts or the main headlines and alerts and everything on your Blackberry, on your Palm or whatever, all day long.



RAB: Ad Revenues Fall 24% In 1Q


Total radio advertising revenue declined 24% in the first quarter of 2009 compared to the same period in 2008, according to the Radio Advertising Bureau, which released the figures Thursday afternoon. Total revenues amounted to just over $3.4 billion -- a drop of over $1 billion from the first quarter of last year, when they amounted to about $4.5 billion.

The precipitous drop suggests that further declines are on the way, as the radio business reels from the same recessionary trends that are affecting most other parts of the media.

On the positive side, radio's digital revenues are still growing, increasing 13% in the first quarter to $101 million. But clearly, digital is still a very small part of radio's bottom line, representing just 3% of total quarterly revenues.


Limelight Networks® Acquires Mobility and Monetization Innovator Kiptronic, Inc.

Tempe, AZ – 21 May 2009 – Limelight Networks, Inc. today announced the acquisition of Kiptronic, Inc., a privately-held provider of dynamic solutions for device-optimized content delivery and monetization.

“A sweeping change in consumer behavior is driving a migration of media consumption from the PC to a wider variety of Internet-connected and mobile devices. Today, the distribution and monetization of content on these devices is complex and difficult to implement in a scalable fashion. The combination of Limelight Networks’ distributed computing and delivery platform with Kiptronic’s device-targeting and dynamic ad insertion technologies will allow us to provide the world’s largest media and entertainment companies a streamlined and scalable solution to this problem,” said Jeff Lunsford, chairman and chief executive officer, Limelight Networks, Inc. “We look forward to working with the talented Kiptronic team to bring to market additional innovative solutions for mobile and connected devices that will benefit our customers and our ecosystem partners.”


Internet-enabled TV may be only now coming into its own as a technology, but customers are already showing a great deal of interest in such products. That's the conclusion of a study released this week by the Consumer Electronics Association.

According to the study, titled "Net-Enabled Video: Early Adopters Only?," 14.5 million consumers are considering purchasing an Internet-capable TV in the next 12 months. This amounts to "about half" of the potential audience. "As we saw at the 2009 International CES, Internet-enabled devices are taking the consumer technology experience to the next level, and nowhere is this more pronounced than with television," CEA's economist and director of research, Shawn DuBravac, said as part of the announcement.

"Consumers want more from their TV experience and marrying traditional television with Internet access is providing the next frontier of the television experience."


Google challenged by new rival with all the answers - Wolfram Alpha

A revolutionary new search engine that computes answers rather than pointing to websites will be launched officially today amid heated talk that it could challenge the might of Google.  Wolfram Alpha, named after Stephen Wolfram, the British-born computer scientist and inventor behind the project, takes a query and uses computational power to crunch through huge databases.

The service can compute the distance between two cities, the population of a country at a specific date and the position of the Space Shuttle at a given moment. The user does not have to search through links provided by the engine; the answer comes immediately and, if appropriate, is accompanied by charts or graphs. What it does that Google, at the moment, cannot do is provide answers to questions that have not been answered already.


The Sorry State Of Broadband
In 2000, the U.S. ranked 5th worldwide in broadband penetration, with 2.5 broadband lines per 100 residents. At the time, the No. 1 country was South Korea, with 8.4% penetration.  By 2007, however, the U.S. had slipped to 22nd place, with 21.5 broadband lines per 100 residents, lagging behind countries such as Bermuda (36.7), South Korea (30.6) and Japan (22.5).

Those stats were compiled by Free Press for its new 123-page report examining the current state of broadband in the U.S.

Not only do penetration rates lag, but service in America is also more expensive and slower than in many other countries. The average U.S. price is $53 per month -- more expensive than in 21 other countries -- while average advertised download speed is 8.9 Mbps, slower than 13 others. By comparison, Finland offers the cheapest service at $31 a month (with advertised download speeds of 13 Mbps), while the fastest country is Japan, with an average advertised downstream of 93.7 Mbps (for $34 a month).

What accounts for this situation? Free Press says "massive policy failures" of the last eight years are to blame.

Among others, the broadband advocacy group points to a decision by regulators (later upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court) to classify broadband as an "information service" rather than a communications service. That move meant that ISPs no longer had to offer wholesale broadband to competitors -- which dealt "an immediate blow to third-party ISPs like Earthlink that relied on reasonable wholesale rates" and "ensured that U.S. consumers would be at the mercy of a duopoly marketplace," the report states.


Social Networking Generates Leads, Closes Sales for Marketers
According to a social media study by Michael Stelzner for the Social Media Success Summit 2009, 88% of marketers in a recent survey say they are now using some form of social media to market their business, though 72% of those using it say they have only been at it a few months or less.
Marketer's Use of Social Media Tools
Social Media % Respondents Using








YouTube or other video


Social bookmark sites






Digg, Reddit or similar




Source: Social Media Marketing Industry Report, March 2009



Amazon Posts Profit Gains as Offline Rivals Struggle has joined Apple among the ranks of technology firms that are still growing robustly despite a shrinking economy.  Amazon, the online retailer based in Seattle, posted stronger-than-expected earnings during the slow winter months, attracting cost-conscious consumers with offers of free shipping and competitive prices for its wide variety of products.

Amazon’s net profit rose 24 percent, to $177 million, or 41 cents a share, in the quarter ending March 31, up from $143 million, or 34 cents a share, in the same quarter a year earlier. The company’s first-quarter revenue climbed 18 percent, to $4.89 billion, slightly surpassing Wall Street’s expectations. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters on average had expected $4.76 billion in revenue.

Some analysts say Amazon has benefited from the downturn, with struggles at the Borders book chain, the bankruptcy of Circuit City and turbulence at a rival, eBay, all driving traffic to The company said its electronics and general merchandise sales were up 38 percent, while media sales rose 7 percent.

“Brick-and-mortar companies are going bankrupt and going out of business altogether and that is helping Amazon gain market share,” said Imran Khan, an analyst at JPMorgan.


Recession forces new focus in e-commerce marketing


Online retailers are shifting their marketing from traditional advertising to less expensive tools like and Twitter and e-mail as they seek market share or just work to retain customers, according to an industry study being released Tuesday.

Conducted by Internet analysis firm Forrester Research for - the online arm of the trade group National Retail Federation - the survey found that merchants believe online business is better suited to withstand an economic downturn than physical stores or catalogs, though they acknowledge challenges for both.  The study involved 117 online retailers polled between Feb. 18 and April 1.

The companies, which didn't name, reported scaling back hiring and their increasingly expensive search marketing programs, which include paying for top billing in the results consumers see for their Web searches. Online merchants whose business is beating expectations will likely fuel much of the e-commerce investments in the coming months, the survey found.

"Online retailers want ... to be more efficient in getting a bigger bang for the buck," said Scott Silverman, executive director of Developing social media marketing requires some investment in personnel, he said, but many merchants see big opportunities to spread a positive message about their brand for relatively low cost.



More People Are Using PCs to Time-Shift TV, Skip Ads

Mike Vorhaus on Digital Communications
Published: May 04, 2009

Despite the level of buzz around ad skipping, not everyone owns a DVR. Our research shows about one-third of online households have a DVR (or think they do). But almost everyone owns a PC, and most of those folks are online. So, actually, they do own a DVR, as a PC with online video serves that purpose for many people.

In our most recent Magid Media Futures online national study, completed in April, we surveyed a national sample of U.S. consumers and identified a sizable population that watches full-length TV shows online.

The No. 1 reason these people watched TV shows online was to catch up on shows and shift viewing to a more convenient time. The only demographic groups that didn't care that much about catching missed shows were the younger males -- all the other demographic groups are mostly using online video to catch up or time shift.

Interestingly, another major reason consumers like watching shows online is that there are fewer and shorter ads. We have confirmed this in focus groups: Consumers think watching shows online is a "good deal" in terms of fewer ads.


Disney Buys Into Hulu
Count Disney in. The Walt Disney Co. is joining NBC Universal, News Corp. and Providence Equity Partners as a joint venture partner and equity owner of the popular online video aggregator Hulu. The agreement is still subject to regulatory review, but once it closes Disney will have three seats on the Hulu board.



MySpace And Fox Launch UReport

News Corp. brethren Fox News and MySpace on Monday co-launched a citizen journalism platform named uReport through which MySpace members can upload photos and videos to Fox News from a computer or mobile device.

With the service, MySpace members can share content with other members and become "uReporters" by uploading video and photos tagged by specific categories, including news, entertainment, and politics.

The initiative is designed to create a larger and more engaged audience for Fox and MySpace, according to Jeff Misenti, Fox News vice president of digital. "The MySpace uReport community presents an extraordinary opportunity to expand our network," he said.

Fox plans to feature select content in programming on Fox News Channel and, while its editors have full control of the MySpace-uReport page.


Online Video To Grow 32% In '09

Despite the economic downturn and its inevitable strains on overall advertising expenditures, online video is clearly holding up as a beacon of change and growth, according to an online video forecast released Monday by Magna.

Magna -- a unit of Interpublic's Mediabrands division -- forecasts that the U.S. market for online video will grow by 32% this year, rising from $531 million in 2008 to $699 million in 2009.

"While these figures represent downward revisions from our forecast for the sector in the middle of last year -- prior to the subsequent escalation of the recession -- these gains will likely outpace growth rates for most other emerging media platforms," said Brian Wieser, global director of forecasting for Magna, and author of the report.

In total, by 2011, Magna expects online video to generate slightly more than $1 billion in net advertising revenues for video content. This represents a compounded annual growth rate of 36% for each year between 2006 and 2011.



Facebook Now Twice The Size Of MySpace


Facebook is now nearly twice as big as its closest rival, News Corp.'s MySpace, Michael Arrington reports. In December, the social networking leader drew 222 million unique users, according to comScore, at a 10.8% month over month gain. More than 1 in 5 people who accessed the Internet in December went to Facebook.

Arrington points out that Facebook now has nearly 100 million more worldwide users than MySpace, which after adding 4 million new users in December had 125 million members total. Facebook also had twice the number of page views in December: 80 billion versus 43 billion for MySpace. Arrington notes that only six months ago, the companies were neck-in-neck.


-----------------------------------Apple iTunes

MySpace co-founder Chris DeWolfe will step down as chief executive officer of the social- networking Web site after falling behind rival Facebook Inc.  A replacement wasn’t named. DeWolfe will remain an adviser, Jonathan Miller, the top digital officer for parent News Corp., said today in a statement. MySpace President Tom Anderson is in talks with Miller about a new role.

DeWolfe co-founded MySpace with Anderson in 2003 and ran the ad-supported company for almost four years under Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. Former Facebook Chief Operating Officer Owen Van Natta is likely to replace DeWolfe, the Wall Street Journal’s All Things D Web site reported today. Facebook passed MySpace as the top social-networking site last year.

“I don’t think advertising growth has reached their initial expectations,” said Michael Morris, a New York-based analyst with UBS AG. He rates News Corp. stock “neutral” and doesn’t own it. “The initial hopes of the business probably haven’t been realized.” April 22 (Bloomberg)


NBC Universal witnessed revenue and profitability declines in the first quarter. 

Net profits sank 45% to $391 million in the first quarter ending March 31, from $712 million in the previous period. Revenues slipped 2% to $3.52 billion, from $3.58 billion.

One bright spot: cable revenues at its networks -- USA, SyFy, CNBC, and MSNBC -- continue to grow at a healthy rate.

"While cable continued to deliver double-digit growth, NBC Universal had a tougher performance overall, due to a soft advertising market and fewer major DVD releases compared to a year ago," said chairman/ CEO Jeff Immelt of General Electric, NBC Universal's owner, in a release.


Yahoo has decided to shutter its free GeoCities Web site hosting service later this year, the company announced Thursday.

"We have decided to discontinue the process of allowing new customers to sign up for GeoCities accounts as we focus on helping our customers explore and build new relationships online in other ways," Yahoo said in a statement posted on its help page.

The GeoCities help page advises current account users that they can continue to use the service until the summer. "We'll provide more details about closing GeoCities and how to save your site data this summer, and we will update the help center with more details at that time," the help page states.



Today the Open Mobile Video Coalition announced that Washington D.C. will be the showcase market for the ATSC-M/H mobile TV standard. ATSC-M/H is a version of the current ATSC digital television standard used in North America that will allow for mobile-formatted digital TV broadcasts to be made in parallel with existing DTV transmissions, which are set to take over for analog transmissions in the USA as of June 12, 2009.

Unlike some other parts of the world that already have established mobile DTV standards like DMB and DVB-H  , North America's ATSC is still developing a mobile DTV technology that would provide users with a way to access digital television broadcasts without the need to pay a subscription fee, such as those required by Verizon and AT&T's MediaFLO based TV systems. In December of last year, the ATSC promoted its ATSC-M/H proposal to "Candidate Standard" status, which allows for its use in the testing announced today by the OMVC.

In addition to the Washington D.C. launch, four TV stations in Atlanta and Seattle are set to become model ATSC-M/H stations for R&D and testing purposes. In related news, the OMVC announced that Dell will be joining Samsung, LG, and Kenwood in providing prototype devices for testing with the new ATSC-M/H proposed standard in the form of the Inspiron Mini 10 netbook.


Online video continues to expand -- now up 40% versus the same levels a year ago.

Nielsen Online says March's 9.6 billion streams and 130 million Web users are a 38.8% hike over March 2008. Total streams for viewers during March were at an average 74.4 with the total time per viewer, in terms of minutes, at over three hours per month -- 190.7 minutes.

Nielsen says the total time per viewer in March -- which includes progressive downloads but excludes video advertising -- was up a big 12.6% versus February. This seems to suggest -- as other research has found -- that users are watching longer-length videos. YouTube, the big Internet video site, continues to dwarf the competition in two big key areas -- 5.5 billion streams and 89.4 million unique viewers.

Among streams, the next-biggest site after YouTube is at 348.5 million. Yahoo comes after that at 231.8 million; Fox Interaction Media (which includes MySpace)is 207.5 million; Nickelodeon, 196.1 million;, 176.9 million; MSN/Windows Live, 168.9 million; Turner Sports/Entertainment, 137.6 million; MTV, 123.8 million; and CNN, 103.5 million.

Among the unique viewers, Yahoo came in second at 24.8 million, followed by Fox Interactive Media (which includes MySpace) at 14.7 million, and MSN/Windows Live at 12 million. CNN was next at 9.0 million;, 8.9 million;, 6.9 million; Nickelodeon, 6.4 million; MTV Networks, 6.3 million; and Turner Sports/Entertainment at 5.8 million.



Blockbuster Inc.'s auditors believe the Dallas-based movie rental company might not be generating enough cash to fund its operations, again raising the possibility Blockbuster might have to file for bankruptcy reorganization.

In the PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP assessment released as part of a financial filing, the auditors wrote that Blockbuster's financial situation raises "substantial doubt about the Company's ability to continue as a going concern" or viable business. The company had warned investors last month that auditors were likely to raise those concerns.


Everyone On The Planet Tweeting?

Last week we noted that Twitter was going crazy and that we hadn't even seen March's stats yet. Well now we have. Twitter more than doubled its US unique visitors in March.

That's right. Think back to four long weeks ago when you thought that Twitter might have peaked and that everyone you knew had jumped on the bandwagon. Well, now there are twice as many of those people. 9.3 million, in fact.

That means Twitter's growth has accelerated from 33% in January, to 55% in February and now 131% in March. At a growth rate of 131% a month, literally every single person alive on the planet will have a Twitter account by the end of this year.



Keith Urban Soars To No. 1 On Billboard 200
Keith Urban celebrates his first No. 1 on the Billboard 200 as his Capitol Nashville set "Defying Gravity" arrives with 171,000.

German Publishers Back GEMA Over YouTube Row
German music publishers are backing the German collection society GEMA in its dispute with YouTube.

Criticism, Doubts Over iTunes Price Changes
Though the online world tends to give Steve Jobs and Apple the benefit of the doubt, there has been an incredible amount of second-guessing about iTunes' decision to allow a three-tiered pricing system.

Rascal Flatts On Track To Score No. 1 On Billboard 200
Rascal Flatts' new album "Unstoppable" looks like it'll live up to its name, as it's on course to debut at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart next week. Industry prognosticators project the Lyric Street set will sell more than 300,000 copies in its first week, and suggest that the number could grow even higher.



WASHINGTON, D.C., April 6, 2009
— International CTIA WIRELESS 2009® closed on Friday after a riveting keynote address by former Vice President Al Gore, who emphasized that the wireless industry is “one of the great success stories in the American economy.” The continued development of wireless infrastructure is a key indicator fueling the communications revolution.



Yahoo Monday announced an initiative that will draw on music services and content from partners including, Apple and YouTube in a new section on Yahoo Music called Artist Pages.

In addition to offering tour dates, music downloads and streaming music, the new platform eventually will allow users to create their own custom pages as Yahoo opens it up to any musician or record label looking for wider exposure.

"With Yahoo Music's Artist Pages, we're creating a truly open and indispensable music destination that will drive music fans to Yahoo! first on their path to music discovery, experience and purchase," said Jeff Dossett, senior vice president of Yahoo's North American Audience Group, in a statement.

The move is part of Yahoo's broader strategy to open up the Web portal to a wider range of third-party and user-generated content to better compete with social networks such as MySpace and Facebook. Music has long been a strength of MySpace, from its start as hub for indie bands to the launch of MySpace Music in partnership with the four major labels last year.


The era of one-price-fits-all-songs on iTunes came to an end Tuesday as Apple Inc., the Internet's dominant digital music retailer, began selling some of its most-downloaded songs for $1.29 apiece.

Apple said in January that it would end its practice of selling all individual songs for 99 cents each and begin offering three tiers: 69 cents, 99 cents and $1.29.

Recording companies pick the prices, much as they did for CDs sold in stores and online. On day one, songs including "Jai Ho" from the "Slumdog Millionaire" soundtrack, "Single Ladies" by Beyonce and "Chicken Fried" by the Zac Brown Band were bumped up to $1.29. The main iTunes page advertised collections of 69-cent songs that included "London Calling" by The Clash and "Monkey" by George Michael.

Other songs from the same albums and artists remained at 99 cents.  



Twilight' takes lead in '09 video sales

With sales hitting 5.6 million units at the end of this weekend, Summit Home Entertainment's "Twilight" is now the top-selling home entertainment release of the year, according to Home Media Magazine's market research department.

The film narrowly surpassed the previous top seller, Paramount/DreamWorks' "Madgascar: Escape 2 Africa," which has sold an estimated 5.3 million units since its Feb. 6 release, according to Home Media research.  "Twilight," like the "Madagascar" sequel, wasn't released on the traditional Tuesday street date. Rather, the film arrived on DVD and Blu-ray Disc on Saturday, March 21 ("Madagascar" came out on a Friday).
The release sold 3 million units its first day in stores, Summit says, enough to send it to the top of the weekly Nielsen VideoScan First Alert sales chart even though it was only on sale a single day.  As of the end of the day Friday, Summit Home Entertainment president Steve Nickerson reports, the film had sold 5.4 million copies, with the total shooting to 5.6 million over the weekend.        March 30, 2009



With Twitter becoming the way information spreads fastest on the Web, who's benefiting from traffic driven by the micro-blogging service? Mostly social networking, search, email and entertainment sites, according to a new analysis by Hitwise.

The Web measurement firm found that Twitter sent nearly one in five visits to social networks and the same proportion to entertainment sites in February. Google ranked as the top visited after Twitter, followed by Facebook, Twitpic (a photo-sharing service for Twitter), MySpace and Twitter Search.  The top entertainment sites besides Twitpic were YouTube and Flickr. Other sites among the top 20 destinations from Twitter included Yahoo, MSN, Wikipedia and Gmail.

The data also showed that Twitter has more in common with social networks than search engines. "It appears that Twitter is being used as a social network and means of distributing content," wrote Heather Hopkins, a senior online analyst at Hitwise, on the company blog. "This is by no means the only way it is being used -- just one standout trend.'s clickstream profile is much closer to a social network than to search engines or email services."

She pointed out that, unlike search engines, Twitter refers relatively little traffic to retail sites. (As more retailers tap Twitter as a marketing tool that could change over time.) And unlike email services, it drives less traffic to dating and business and finance sites.


It Was A Very Bad Year: Old Media Suffers Long-Term Declines


The fixes are in for 2009, and it's looking pretty bad for traditional media in America. Various forecasts have ad revenues for radio, magazines, and newspapers dropping by double digits across the board, compounding alarming declines for all three media in 2008.

The economic downturn was a popular culprit during fourth-quarter conference calls, and the bogeyman will doubtless make another appearance when first-quarter earnings results are announced. But don't believe the hype: The general downward trend was in evidence well before the recession began, reflecting fundamental secular shifts in media consumption and advertising. If anything, the economic downturn is merely accelerating this process.

There's no question that the falling fortunes of radio, magazines and newspapers are coinciding with recessionary trends. In the fourth quarter of 2008, as the economy went into freefall, radio revenues fell 11%, according to the Radio Advertising Bureaul; magazine revenues declined 14% according to the Publishers Information Bureau; and newspaper revenues dropped 20%, according to the Newspaper Association of America.


Network television took the biggest advertising hit in the fourth quarter of 2008 as compared to other broadcast platforms.

According to the Television Bureau of Advertising (TVB), network television sank almost 10% in the period versus the fourth quarter 2007 to $6.4 billion. TVB's data was released from TNS Media Intelligence.

Local broadcast, which had a traumatic 2008 overall, was down 3.4% in the fourth quarter (to $4.6 billion), and 2.4% for the year (to $16.5 billion). In typical political and Olympic years, local broadcast would see low double-digit percent gains in advertising revenues.

Syndication TV programming continues to be surprisingly resilient versus other broadcast platforms. Ad sales were flat in the fourth quarter to $1.1 billion, and up 6.5% for the year at $4.4 billion.

Overall, fourth-quarter revenues for broadcast were down 6.3% to $12.0 billion and virtually flat for the year -- down 0.4% -- to $46.4 billion.

As with most media businesses, network television had a better first three-quarters of the year. It ended at $25.4 billion, virtually flat versus the year before, and down 0.1%.  April 09


Disney Media Networks has joined the ranks of other major media companies by striking an agreement with YouTube for short-form content.

The ad-supported channels will start up mid-April for ESPN and early May for the Disney/ABC Television Group channels. This includes ABC Entertainment, ABC News, ABC Family and SOAPnet.  In somewhat of a first, Disney/ABC and ESPN will also be able to test pre-roll advertising on short-form content. Disney Media Networks will have the option to sell their own advertising inventory within the Disney/ABC and ESPN channels.

As part of the agreement, ESPN Video Player will be integrated into ESPN's channel on YouTube.  Reports suggested that Disney has been also considering an Internet streaming video deal with Hulu.  Other YouTube partners include CBS, NBA, Sony Entertainment Television, and Universal Music.


Average Online Video Viewer Watches 5 Hours A Month
The February 2009 comScore Video Metrix data shows that U.S. Internet users viewed 13.1 billion online videos during the month of February, representing a decline of 12% versus January due mainly to three fewer days in the month. Google sites comprised the largest share, accounting for 41% of online videos viewed and just under 100 million unique viewers.   

Google Sites continue to rank as the top U.S. video property, with accounting for more than 99 percent of all videos viewed at the property. Fox Interactive Media ranked second, followed by Yahoo! Sites, Hulu and Microsoft Sites. Hulu climbed two positions in the ranking to #4, after experiencing a 33-percent jump in video views on the heels of its Super Bowl commercial at the outset of the month.




Wall Street Journal Crashes, Slashes Edit Staff

by Joe Mandese

In a staff announcement late Thursday, News Corp.'s Dow Jones & Co. unit said it was reducing the number of journalists working for The Wall Street Journal by 14 positions, which follow 11 journalists lost through "attrition" over the past couple of months. news


Disney, YouTube strike video partnership
Disney, looking to extend its presence in the online video space, has announced a deal with YouTube that will put a wide range of its content on the popular Web site best known for user-generated videos. The deal includes ESPN sports highlights, ABC News updates and snippets from ABC- and Disney-produced shows.         Los Angeles Times


Study: HD home-entertainment products set to grow
High-definition products for the home-entertainment market are poised to triple by 2012 compared with 2008 numbers. "The high-tech industry's efforts to provide HD service to every home now are finally coming to fruition. This has resulted in an explosion of shipments of consumer-electronics devices that support HD video, from new Blu-ray DVD players to ultrathin LCD HD Televisions (HDTVs) -- and even some portable media players," said Randy Lawson, senior analyst for iSuppli


RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - MySpace officials say about 90,000 sex offenders have been identified and removed from its huge online social networking Web site.

North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper said Tuesday the new figure is nearly double what MySpace officials originally acknowledged last year when detailing who had used their site.

Cooper and Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal have led the charge seeking efforts to make social networking Web sites safer. MySpace officials sent the numbers to Blumenthal's office Tuesday.   Last year, the attorneys general received agreements from MySpace and rival online networking site Facebook to push toward making their sites safer for young users. Both implemented dozens of safeguards, including limiting how older users can search members under 18.  April 09


NEW YORK (AP) - AOL has named former Yahoo executive Gregory Coleman as head of its online advertising unit, making him the third person in that role in 17 months.

Coleman, Yahoo Inc.'s former executive vice president for global sales, replaces Lynda Clarizio, who took the position last March. Clarizio, in turn, had replaced Curt Viebranz, who was named to that role when AOL started consolidating its advertising operations into Platform-A in September 2007.

In a statement AOL Chief Executive Randy Falco said Coleman was chosen as someone who understand that "online brand building is the next frontier in digital advertising."

AOL, a unit of Time Warner Inc., has been looking to transform itself into an advertising-based company and shed its roots as an Internet access provider, a role it pioneered in the 1990s before steadily losing customers to faster connections. It created Platform-A as a unit to integrate $1 billion worth of advertising-related acquisitions.

Clarizio had been tasked improving the integration, but the effort appears to have run into headwinds as the recession crimps advertising budgets. AOL's third-quarter ad revenue dropped 6 percent, the company reported in November. And AOL said last week it is cutting 700 jobs, or 10 percent of its work force.

In his statement Tuesday, Falco said, "We are enormously grateful for (Clarizio's) work and success."

AOL did not say where Clarizio will be headed and a company spokesman did not immediately return a call for comment.


As studios and exhibitors quake under the advance of increasingly sophisticated home entertainment systems and internet piracy, anything that emphasizes the unique experience of cinema is to be prized. At the moment, that USP is 3-D, and the big boys are circling.

Twentieth Century Fox is pinning its hopes on Avatar, a $200 million (£145 million) 3-D fantasy epic that will be James Cameron’s first directorial gig since Titanic a dozen years ago. Disney, meanwhile, has bet big on the format, lining up Tim Burton to direct Alice in Wonderland with Johnny Depp as the Mad Hatter, hiring Robert Zemeckis to make A Christmas Carol with Jim Carey as Scrooge and, next week, releasing the Oscar-nominated Bolt, a 3-D animated film about a canine movie star, voiced by John Travolta and with Pixar’s John Lasseter as executive producer.


Report: Live Nation, Ticketmaster Close To Merger

Ticketmaster Entertainment and Live Nation -- two of the most powerful companies in the music business -- could be merging as soon as next week, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.

The announcement arrives on the heels of Live Nation, the world's largest concert promoter, launching its own ticketing company last month.

The boards of each company have not yet approved a deal and a merger would require review by antitrust authorities, according to the paper, which cited unnamed people familiar with the situation.

It was not clear which company would be acquiring the other, but the new company would be reportedly be called Live Nation Ticketmaster. The deal would not involve any cash transfer.

iTunes Sales Lift Three Acts To The Billboard 200
February 03, 2009 - Digital and Mobile
The first three sales weeks of January yielded a striking trend on the Billboard 200: Each week, an emerging act's new album charted based solely on digital sales.

Thanks to favorable home-page exposure at the iTunes Music Store, free downloads, attractive pricing and a traditionally slow sales period, up-and-coming acts Erin McCarley, Company of Thieves and the Boxer Rebellion each debuted on the big chart.


Prime-Time TV Commercial Prices Plummet, CBS Faces Biggest Drop
by Joe Mandese
The cost of an average prime-time price plummeted 15% during the fourth quarter of 2008, and CBS led the decline with a whopping 22% decline, according to an analysis released this morning by independent media services agency TargetCast tcm. TargetCast estimates the price of a prime-time network TV commercial fell to $122,133, down 15% from the fourth quarter of 2007. While CBS experienced the steepest decline, all of the major networks saw significant pricing rollbacks, including NBC (down 13%), ABC (down 10%), and Fox (down 6%).


"The level of excitement on the CES show floor was at an all-time high with groundbreaking technologies such as the Palm Pre, Sony's flexible OLED display, 3-D HDTV, Yahoo!'s TV Widget, LG's Watch Phone and a one-third-inch-thin, energy-efficient Plasma HDTV from Panasonic," said Karen Chupka, senior vice president, events and conferences, CEA, in a statement.

Content shined at the 2009 installment of CES. With Sony taping several live episodes of "Jeopardy!" and for the first time CES had an official broadcast partner, NBC Universal. These, among many other announcements at CES, not only showcased a variety of content, but also highlighted the role technology is playing in how audiences view and interact with programming.  

This year's version of the CES also featured a distinctly green hue, with exhibit space for the Greener Gadgets Tech Zone ballooning from 520 square feet last year to 3,000 square feet in 2009. In case you missed this year's CES or just need a refresher, CEA SmartBrief has put together this wrap-up special report. Even though this year's show has just wrapped up, CEA is already gearing up for the 2010 International CES, which will be held Jan. 7 to 10 in Las Vegas.   jan 2009


Music sales worldwide fall by 7 percent
The trend is hastening the industry's push to develop new business models for digital music, some of which emulate the consumers prefer to acquire music - that is, free of charge.



Online and Interactive Video Advertising Hot for 2009
According to a recent survey of more than 400 senior-level decision makers, conducted by PermissionTV,  online video is the top priority for digital marketing budgets, along with a strong preference among marketers for increased sophistication and interactivity in online video capabilities to promote their brands.

Matt Kaplan, VP of Solutions and Chief Strategy Officer of PermissionTV, said "... online video will play an increasingly critical role in all interactive campaigns... survey results demonstrate the strategic importance of online video in the overall marketing mix... as well as more sophisticated video experiences."

The study finds that more than two-thirds of respondents identified online video as a primary focus of their 2009 digital marketing campaigns, as respondents consider interactive video experiences to be the next evolution for online video. 62 percent believe that non-linear, interactive storytelling will become the most effective medium for marketers.     news  Jan 09




Although NBC remains in last place among traditional TV viewers, in 2008, the network says its Internet viewing skyrocketed. It also earned the best average monthly unique visitors of all the networks.

Unique visitors--roughly akin to viewers in traditional television--averaged 8.3 million last year, more than any other network. NBC also noted that it was tops in seven of 12 months when it came to unique visitors. All data comes from Internet measurers Omniture, comScore and NetRatings.



Warner Bros. Plans Job Cuts Across All Divisions
Warner Bros. continued the run of large media companies reacting to the economic climate by cutting jobs, saying it would eliminate about 7.5% of its existing workforce; it will not fill 200 more open positions. The cuts--which the company called "a last resort"--will come across all divisions, including the TV production and sizable syndication sales operations


NEW YORK - Microsoft's chief executive, Steve Ballmer, met with Yahoo chairman Roy Bostock in New York this week, according to a report in The New York Times.

The newspaper cited an unnamed source who had been briefed on the meeting, but no details of the conversation have been released.

Yahoo's appointment of Carol Bartz as chief executive has heightened speculation that the companies may be able to agree on a takeover, with Microsoft possibly acquiring Yahoo's search engine business.  1/20/09


Yahoo's New Video Platform

Like the look of the videos on Flickr's new mobile site? If you're a website publisher, you may soon be able to use Yahoo's video platform to convert your users' uploaded clips into great-looking, iPhone-ready video files.

Yahoo launched an updated version of its mobile website for Flickr on Thursday, and along with that update came the ability to playback Flickr's short, 90-second videos on the iPhone and iPod Touch. Other devices, like the T-Mobile G1 and the Nokia N-series phones, will be supported soon.

Videos on the Flickr mobile site are being processed by Yahoo's new video platform, which works on the backend to transcode uploaded videos into the high-quality H.264 format. There's also a web API for feeding videos into the transcoder and for collecting the results.

Flickr is rolling out a new and improved version of its mobile website, the company announced Thursday. In addition to some enhancements to the mobile site's user interface, the update adds video playback capability -- something previously missing from the Flickr mobile experience.

Video playback will only work on the iPhone and iPod Touch right now, but Flickr plans to add support for other smart mobile devices in the coming weeks and months.

A strong mobile experience in a must for the photo-sharing site, especially now as camera-equipped mobile devices become ubiquitous. Almost everyone carries around personal photos and short videos on their phones, and the folks at Flickr are eager to make it easier for more people to share these things online.


Las Vegas, Nevada, January 11, 2009 – More than 2,700 global companies, including 300 new exhibitors, unveiled an estimated 20,000 new technology products across 1.7 million net square feet of exhibit space this week at the world’s largest consumer technology tradeshow, electrifying the technology industry and helping lead the way to economic recovery. New trends unveiled at the 2009 CES will shape the future of consumer electronics, including 3D HDTV, advances in OLED, green technologies, Internet TV and digital entertainment. Produced by the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA)®, the 2009 International CES® ran January 8-11, in Las Vegas, Nevada.

“Despite a subdued economy, excitement exuded from the International CES show floor, with the sheer volume of innovative products, the quantity of senior level executives from the consumer technology and related industries, the international participation from companies and government officials and the partnerships and deals at the show,” said Gary Shapiro, president and CEO, CEA. “More consumer technology business deals start at the International CES than any other event on earth. The success of the 2009 International CES gives us optimism that innovation will restart the world’s economic engine.”

“The level of excitement on the CES show floor was at an all-time high with ground-breaking technologies such as the Palm Pre, Sony’s flexible OLED display, 3D HDTV, Yahoo!’s TV Widget, LG’s Watch Phone and a 1/3 inch thin energy efficient Plasma HDTV from Panasonic,” said Karen Chupka, senior vice president, events and conferences, CEA. “Microsoft’s Steve Ballmer announced Windows 7 Beta at his pre-CES keynote and the download response was so high, it overloaded their systems.”


Cable, led by Cablevision, mulls network DVR

If the nation's largest cable TV operators have their way, the home digital video recorder could soon become a relic.

Leading the way is Cablevision Systems Corp., which plans to roll out a system in early 2009 that will let viewers record any show without a DVR, only a digital set-top box. Shows will be stored on Cablevision's servers instead of a home DVR — a shift the company said could save it upward of $700 million. news  


January 15, 2009

Are Consumer Electronics Makers the New Content Gatekeepers?

The new push by television set makers to introduce Internet-connected models this year could turn consumer electronics manufacturers into gatekeepers for content.

Internet-connected sets from Sony, LG and Samsung were among the most buzzworthy products showcased at the recent Consumer Electronics Show. They’ll come to market later this year with Crackle,, the Minisode Network, YouTube, Flickr and other web services embedded into them, heralding a long-awaited step in the march toward web-to-TV convergence.

Their expanding role also raises the question of whether they might become gatekeepers for web content, much as cable and satellite operators have for decades determined which networks make the cut. Many consumer electronics makers will now also play a role in separating the wheat from the chaff by striking deals with some Internet sites and passing on others. They’ll also determine the placement for such services on the TV sets. This development can benefit content creators and consumers, because Internet-enabled TVs now represent a new distribution source for programs.

Most TV set makers declined to comment on their potential new role as gatekeepers.

Yahoo’s program to develop widgets for TV sets is open to anyone, pointed out Roger Urrabazo, product manager for the Yahoo Widget program. As part of the program, Yahoo’s consumer electronics partners have agreed to allow their consumers access to any widget in the Yahoo widget gallery, said Lucas Mast, a spokesperson for the company. That means widgets from YouTube, MySpace, Showtime, CBS and others are available on sets from Samsung, Sony, LG Electronics, VIZIO and Toshiba, Mast said.

However, Will Richmond, an analyst with VideoNuze, says the best placement on a TV set menu is likely to be awarded to the strongest brands, like Netflix, Amazon or YouTube. “These are known consumer brands, and they all have some degree of pull through the retailer,” he said.

Still, consumer electronics makers are more eager to welcome new services to the set rather than block them, Richmond said. “They are just concentrating on selling sets. The economy is hammering these guys, and they need to focus on that.”

More Internet services could be what help them move more units.



The digital music business internationally saw a sixth year of expansion in 2008, growing by

an estimated 25 per cent to US$3.7 billion in trade value. Digital platforms now account for

around 20 per cent of recorded music sales, up from 15 per cent in 2007. Recorded music is

at the forefront of the online and mobile revolution, generating more revenue in percentage

terms through digital platforms than the newspaper (4%), magazine (1%) and film industries

(4%) combined.

At the same time, a new generation of music subscription services, social networking sites

and new licensing channels is emerging. These were led in 2008 by services like Nokia

Comes With Music, MySpace Music and a raft of partnerships with Internet Service

Providers (ISPs), such as



LOS ANGELES — Although Apple Inc. announced this month that some songs sold on its market-leading iTunes online service would be available for 69 cents (U.S.) instead of the 99-cent tag Apple had insisted on for years, the change won't necessarily put more money into the pockets of music lovers.

In fact, record companies are the ones that plan to come out ahead.

While some songs will be 30 cents cheaper, popular songs likely will be marked up to $1.29. That price breaks a psychological $1 barrier and prepares consumers for a new strategy by labels to bundle songs, videos and other exclusive content together – all in the hopes of reversing years of falling music sales.

According to NPD analyst Russ Crupnick, the music industry has been faced with a vexing question as fans bought more digital singles but fewer albums: “As the album as we know it goes away, how do we replace a $12 or $13 item with something that costs more than 99 cents?”


The Nielsen Co.'s year-end report is in, and the story for music sales in 2008 involves doom, gloom and Taylor Swift.

Swift, the 19-year-old country star who helped ring in the new year with a Dick Clark's Rockin' Eve performance Wednesday, was 2008's overall top-selling artist, with 4 million in total sales and two albums in the all-genre top 10, according to Nielsen SoundScan.

Even with Swift's commercial heft, the Nashville-based country music industry dropped with a thud, though not from a terribly high place. Country sales — which include tallies from albums not played on mainstream country radio, such as the Robert Plant/Alison Krauss Raising Sand collaboration — wound up at around 47,650,000. That's down 24 percent from last year's total. And last year's total was the lowest for country in SoundScan's 19-year history. Only classical music had a bigger dip, at 26 percent.

Sales of Christian and Gospel music, much of which is produced in the Nashville area, were down 12 percent for the year.

Album sales declined 14 percent across every genre, and though growth in overall music purchases is up 10 percent, that increase relies on digital tracks, ring tones and other comparatively small purchases.





2008 Tech News Flashback

2007 Tech News Flashback

2006 Tech News Flashback

2005 Tech News Flashback

2004 Tech News Flashback






CES   2003

CES   2004

CES   2005
CES   2006

CES   2007








First Day CES 08

Home Entertainment

Press Day Two CES 2008

Peter Frampton at CES

The Girls of CES

Music Stage

Movie Stage

Literature Stage

Health Stage


Music Flashbacks

Travel Stage

Native American

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