Media Business News and Trends

As I sit down to write this column, there is so much going on in the news-I barely know where to start. Suffice it to say: The courts are messing up the internet. Let's start with the most high-profile decision that may be affecting you and your content before you know it. It started earlier this year when a U.S. District Court struck down the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) Open Internet rules from 2010.

Posted Jul 22, 2014

Following the success of its pilot Accelerator last year, Dogfish announced the launch of the second cycle of Dogfish Accelerator, a comprehensive development financing program that offers funding, mentorship, and partnership opportunities. The program will provide $10,000 to each candidate or team to establish initial financing and will offer business development and networking support over a nine-week period, from September 22 to November 19, 2014, at the company's headquarters in New York City.

Posted Jul 21, 2014

SponsorPay, a mobile supply-side platform, announced that it has rebranded to Fyber. Fyber enables publishers to integrate, manage and optimize all ad revenues sources through a single, unified platform. Since its inception in 2009, the company has grown globally to over 180 employees and plans to add 70 more by the end of this year. The San Francisco office is slated to triple its headcount this year.

Posted Jul 21, 2014

According to the "Online Personal Experience" study by Janrain, more than half (57%) of people are just fine with providing personal information to a website and as long as they benefit and the information is used responsibly. Janrain also found that 77% would be more trusting of companies collecting private data if the businesses were transparent about how the information would be used. But that's where the trouble lies. Many content providers are still struggling to use the information they collect in a way that truly improves the customer experience.

Posted Jul 21, 2014

After teasing the internet with fleeting test pages earlier this week, Amazon.com today introduced Kindle Unlimited, a new subscription service which allows customers to read as much as they want from over 600,000 Kindle books, and listen as much as they want to thousands of Audible audiobooks, for $9.99 a month. There are never any due dates--just look for the Kindle Unlimited logo on eligible titles and click "Read for Free."

Posted Jul 18, 2014

Amazon tantalized readers and the press-and ticked off some authors-when it briefly posted a test page for something called Kindle Unlimited on Wednesday before pulling it down again-though, according to Gigaom, some test pages can still be found. The service promises unlimited access to over 600,000 ebooks and audiobooks for $9.99 a month.

Posted Jul 17, 2014

Few companies have the potential to dramatically alter the electronic content landscape like Google, which continues to regularly roll out new apps, tools and technologies that make digital publishers sit up and take notice. It's a big reason why Google's annual I/O conference is so closely watched by players in the industry. I/O 2014, held in late June, didn't fail to excite those eager to read the tech tea leaves and develop forward-thinking strategies for success. Here are five of the top takeaways from the conference of importance to content providers.

Posted Jul 16, 2014

A new study by Adaptly, Facebook, and lifestyle website Refinery29 has found that in digital advertising, sequencing ads that take individual consumers down the marketing funnel achieves better outcomes than a sustained call to action (CTA) message delivered over the same period of time. According to the report, sequencing ads on a personalized level increases overall view-throughs by 87% and conversions by 56%. Conducted in May 2014, the research was designed to help inform advertisers about how to improve their creative diagnostics, optimal frequency, and sequencing within Facebook.

Posted Jul 15, 2014

Covario, Inc., a leading independent search and content marketing firm, issued its Global Paid Search Spend Analysis for the second quarter of 2014, reporting that first half spending on pay-per-click advertising (PPC) by its enterprise technology, B2B, consumer electronics, and retail clients had a strong finish, rising 21% above the second quarter of 2013 and 2% ahead of this year's first quarter.

Posted Jul 15, 2014

Adobe released its latest set of World Cup insights and data including stats on online video viewing, social media buzz and World Cup sponsors. The report analyzed more than 2.7 billion online video starts across smartphones, tablets, gaming consoles, and OTT devices as well as 100 million social mentions captured through Adobe Social with the term "World Cup" being tracked in over 36 languages.

Posted Jul 15, 2014

At Lattice, which offers predictive application solutions for marketing and sales professionals to uncover buyer insights, Amanda Maksymiw creates content to educate and engage customers. Maksymiw says, "To help build our thought-leadership role and provide compelling content, I create blog posts, videos, infographics, and longer form ebooks and white papers." To generate ideas for those content assets, Maksymiw collaborates with many departments within Lattice and with outside influencers in the field of sales and marketing.

Posted Jul 11, 2014

An OS for the Internet of Things may be on the way thanks to $4.9 million in funding for Spark Labs. According to Gigaom, the "Series A funding came from Lion Wells Capital, O'Reilly AlphaTech Ventures, SOSventures, and Collaborative Fund as well as a consortium of strategic angel investors." Spark Labs is best known for having created a development board that allows users to create cloud-connected devices.

Posted Jul 08, 2014

John Wiley & Sons, Inc. announced the addition of Altmetric data to its journal program, a service that provides a more complete picture of how users engage with scholarly research online. Following a six-month pilot on Wiley Open Access titles in 2013, the service will be available for all journals by the end of July.

Posted Jul 08, 2014

Cambridge Semantics, a provider of smart data solutions driven by semantic web technology, announced the launch of its Anzo Smart Data Integration (ASDI) software to help enterprises rapidly understand and integrate information assets. ASDI is designed to reduce integration timeframes and costs by 10X and enhance time-to-revenue when on-boarding new customers, partners and data.

Posted Jul 03, 2014

Facebook revealed that in 2012 it allowed researchers to manipulate newsfeeds of hundreds of thousands of users to influence their emotions and track their subsequent behavior. All of this was done without users' permission, and the findings eventually appeared in the study "Experimental evidence of massive-scale emotional contagion through social networks."

Posted Jul 01, 2014

The night before I wrote this column, I watched a classic British spy thriller. One of the old-guard spies complained that they had more information coming than ever before, but nobody knew how to make sense of it all. In an age of Big Data, any profession that deals with information faces this problem, including journalists.

Posted Jul 01, 2014

Content Marketing Institute (CMI) announced the acquisition of Intelligent Content Conference (ICC), founded by The Rockley Group and co-produced with The Content Wrangler. The Intelligent Content Conference focuses on helping organizations deliver the right content, to the right audience, anywhere, anytime, on any device.

Posted Jun 26, 2014

Sookasa, Inc., a provider of compliance for popular cloud applications and mobile devices, introduced new capabilities for its Sookasa Cloud Compliance Service, including the ability for users to share documents through any email provider using secure private links. Content that is encrypted on public cloud services can be shared securely using file links with any recipient, with no receiver downloads or setup required. Sookasa has also extended its support for Dropbox encryption, compliance, and access control to Android devices.

Posted Jun 26, 2014

Seal Software, a provider of Contract Discovery and Contract Analytics solutions, announced it has secured $4 million in funding to support the next stage of the company's growth. The round was led by Vinny Smith's Toba Capital and supported by many of Seal's existing investors. Seal also announced that software industry veteran Paul Sallaberry has joined its board of directors.

Posted Jun 26, 2014

Business intelligence focuses on internal data. It's the information that companies have stored in data warehouses including financial, pricing and customer information. Market intelligence (also known as competitive intelligence), is more about looking externally at market conditions, trends, opportunities and threats; as well as at the competition, market shares, penetration strategies and go-to market models. While both are needed in order to run a business, traditionally, organizations have looked at BI and MI separately. However, given the big data movement happening today, it's becoming more important to combine both sets of data in order to get the complete picture of what's happening both internally and externally with an organization.

Posted Jun 25, 2014

Entravision Communications Corporation, a diversified Spanish-language media company, announced that it has acquired Pulpo Media, Inc., a leading provider of digital advertising services and solutions focused on Hispanics in the U.S. and Latin America. The transaction will be funded from Entravision's cash on hand, and includes an initial payment of approximately $15 million and up to $3 million in contingent earn out payments based upon the achievement of certain performance benchmarks.

Posted Jun 24, 2014

Back in January, Nest was acquired by Google for $3.2 billion, which put an end to its plans to open its API, but now Google is looking to extend Nest's platform-perhaps to compete with Apple's HomeKit. According to Nest, it is partnering with everyone from Mercedes Benz to Whirlpool. This follows the news that Nest is buying video monitoring company Dropcam for $555 million.

Posted Jun 24, 2014

The government is sitting up and taking notice of what it calls a growing threat to online safety and security: malware attacks. And if the industry isn't more careful, it may be forced to abide by stricter rules and oversight governing online advertisements that could come down the pike.

Posted Jun 20, 2014

DigiTrust is the first non-profit, industry-wide collaborative organization that will build technology solutions that improve the digital experience for consumers, publishers, advertisers, and technology platform. Just launched, DigiTrust was founded by twenty of the leading digital advertising technology platforms including 33Across, Casale Media, Centro, Dstillery, OpenX, PubMatic, Rubicon Project, RUN, Sizmek, and SpotXchange. As a first order of business, DigiTrust plans to take on the challenge of reducing the number of third-party requests on web pages.

Posted Jun 19, 2014

Amazon unveiled Fire, the first smartphone designed by Amazon. Fire has Dynamic Perspective and Firefly, two new technologies that allow you to see and interact with the world through a whole new lens. Dynamic Perspective uses a sensor system to respond to the way you hold, view, and move Fire. Firefly recognizes things in the real world--web and email addresses, phone numbers, QR and bar codes, movies, music, and millions of products, and lets you take action in seconds--all with the press of the Firefly button.

Posted Jun 18, 2014

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