Media Business News and Trends

The Pottermore ebookstore is now open. All of the Harry Potter ebooks and digital audiobooks are available (DRM-free) for sale for the first time. Pottermore has partnered with Sony, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Google to make the ebooks available to a wide audience.

Posted Mar 27, 2012

The Financial Times (FT) Ltd. launched an interactive marketing campaign focused on new ways to engage its U.S. and global audiences. Housed in New York's Grand Central Terminal, FT Graphic World will feature a series of 3-D interactive film projections.

Posted Mar 27, 2012

Zynga, Inc. acquired game maker OMGPOP, Inc., creators of Draw Something. Zynga paid $180 million plus approximately $30 million in employee-retention payments. Zynga will get a New York-based team of about 40 people as well as a series of OMGPOP's games.

Posted Mar 22, 2012

Organizations operating in the sectors that rely most heavily on enterprise information are among the worst at enabling access to internal content and utilizing it, according to the Industry Information Index, a new study from MindMetre Research.

Posted Mar 22, 2012

LexisNexis acquired Portfolio Media, Inc., the parent company of Law360, an online provider of legal news and analysis that is geared toward business lawyers in the United States. Law360 will continue to run as a stand-alone business. Terms were not disclosed.

Posted Mar 21, 2012

Brand-named writers, marquee editors, and publications named after founders is nothing new to publishing. Think H.L. Menken, Walter Winchell, Anna Wintour, Helen Gurley Brown, Brill's Content, O, Martha Stewart Living... In some cases, the brand elevates the writer or editor to recognizable status; in others, the publication is purely an extension of an individual's personal brand.With the rise of social media, the professional is personal. Social is fundamentally entwined with media. Yet as it has always been for old media, there is risk for new media too reliant upon the one-man-brand. When a brand is bound to a single personality, there are issues of scale, growth and, of course, the potential for implosion upon the eponymous leader's departure.

Posted Mar 21, 2012

Google hired Digg, Inc. founder Kevin Rose and a number of his employees at Milk, Inc., the venture Rose created last year as a lab for experimenting with mobile app ideas. Synacor, Inc. hired Michael Bishara as its vice president and general manager of TV Everywhere platform.

Posted Mar 20, 2012

Really Strategies, Inc. has changed its company name to RSI Content Solutions. In tandem with its rebranding, the company launched a new website at www.rsicms.com. The new name better reflects the company and its services, representatives said.

Posted Mar 19, 2012

Really Strategies, Inc. has changed its company name to RSI Content Solutions. In tandem with its rebranding, the company launched a new website at www.rsicms.com. The new name better reflects the company and its services, representatives said.

Posted Mar 19, 2012

Encyclopaedia Britannica, Inc. announced that it will no longer print its Britannica encyclopedia set, having "complete[d] the transition from print to digital," editor-in-chief Dale Hoiberg said in a blog post. The company will still produce some print products, he said.

Posted Mar 15, 2012

Google is overhauling its web-search formula: Over the next few months, Google will water down the number of web links that a query returns in favor of more direct answers, which would appear at the top of the search results page, in an effort to yield more relevant results.

Posted Mar 15, 2012

An erotic novel (with BD/SM and a whole lot of sex) titled Fifty Shades of Grey, by E.L. James, is sweeping the suburbs, the cities, red and blue states alike just like Peyton Place and The Story of O did 60 years ago. On the Amazon paid Kindle bestseller lists, as of the first week of March, Fifty Shades of Grey is No. 1 in both Erotica and Romance and No. 5 overall. Not bad for a self-published book by a first-time author. The TODAY Show estimated that over 120,000 copies have been sold, most of them ebooks. (Amazon is being characteristically tight-lipped on copies actually sold, so only Amazon and Ms. James really know for sure.) A paperback is available by print-on-demand but the ebook version is what's really flying off the e-shelves.

Posted Mar 15, 2012

Following up on its threat, Yahoo! has filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Facebook. The complaint was filed in San Jose, Calif., federal court. In it, Yahoo! cited 10 patents related to web-based advertising and privacy.

Posted Mar 13, 2012

Reporters Without Borders released its latest "Enemies of the Internet" list, in which it classifies "enemies" as countries that severely curtail freedom of expression on and access to the web. The annual report also includes a list of states "under surveillance."

Posted Mar 12, 2012

FremantleMedia Enterprises, from FremantleMedia Ltd., and Hulu have announced a global first look deal. The agreement enables Fremantle to distribute Hulu original series globally across all platforms, including traditional media.

Posted Mar 12, 2012

CNN is expected to purchase Mashable -- the title digital culture, social media, and technology blog from Mashable, Inc. -- for $200 million, according to Reuters blogger Felix Salmon. CNN is expected to announce the deal on Tuesday, March 13.

Posted Mar 12, 2012

Apple has sold out of initial supplies of the new iPad in every country where the tablet is slated to launch Friday. New orders will not ship for up to 3 weeks, the company told buyers. In the U.S. and Canada, pre-orders placed through Apple will ship March 19.

Posted Mar 12, 2012

Chris Hughes, Facebook co-founder and founder of social action site Jumo, bought online magazine The New Republic. Hughes has purchased a majority stake in TNR but terms of the sale were not disclosed.

Posted Mar 12, 2012

This week marked the fourth annual Exceptional Women in Publishing Women's Leadership Conference in San Francisco, with a theme of "Taking Our Next Step: Content, Community, and Collaboration." The 225 attendees, primarily women, gathered to talk about hot issues in publishing and media, from building sales across digital channels to publishing by and for women.

Posted Mar 09, 2012

Gametek, LLC is seeking legal action against Facebook, Zynga, and other like companies with a lawuist that claims rights to in-game payments -- the process by which players can buy and sell virtual items within a game.

Posted Mar 08, 2012

Though many newspaper executives report struggling to find a digital revenue model, there are some papers that are succeeding, a new study by the Pew Research Center's Project for Excellence in Journalism.

Posted Mar 06, 2012

As it neared a milestone, Apple opened the Countdown to 25 Billion Apps competition, announcing that the person to download the 25-billionth app could win a $10,000 iTunes gift card. The free version of Where's My Water? set the record.

Posted Mar 06, 2012

Ebook and audiobook distributor OverDrive, Inc. acquired ebook company Booki.sh, from Inventive Labs, in a deal of which terms were not disclosed. OverDrive plans to integrate Booki.sh's cloud-based, web-accessible platform.

Posted Mar 06, 2012

EPiServer AB acquired Mediachase Ltd. for an undisclosed amount. The move merges EPiServer's existing digital marketing capabilities and Mediachase's ecommerce framework. New and existing customers have access to EPiServer's Commerce solution.

Posted Mar 02, 2012

At the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media & Telecom Conference in San Francisco, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings said that cable will eventually become an on-demand internet platform, leaving room for Netflix to become another programming provider.

Posted Feb 29, 2012

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