Tag Archives: media

Why the NYT-Flipboard deal is a smart move via @om

For the first time, subscribers will be able to access Times content via something other than the NYT’s own site or apps. It may not be a huge revenue generator (at least not in the short term), but it is still an encouraging sign of a traditional media player trying to adapt to a new model.

Starting this Thursday, the Times will provide all of its content — articles, videos, photo slideshows and blog posts — to subscribers who use Flipboard, while non-subscribers will get a free sample of certain articles. Denise Warren, who runs the NYT’s website, said that the deal made sense for the newspaper because it is promoting digital subscriptions, and an analysis of its readership showed that 20 percent of the paper’s subscribers use third-party apps like Flipboard to consume content. Said Warren:

We realized that we have an opportunity to enable this kind of access for paying subscribers, and we thought it was something we ought to try and see how users react to it.

via gigaom.com

“Draw Something” with Ryan Seacrest, coming soon to CBS via @VentureBeat

Draw Something, the game that saved small studio OMGPOP and prompted a huge buyout from Zynga, is coming to CBS. Draw Something is the game in which you draw something and a friend guesses what it is. According to Variety, celebrities and everyday users will test their skills on live TV while audiences at home can join in to win prizes — including a chance to compete with the celebrities. A group including Sony and Ryan Seacrest is producing the show, but no date has yet been set for the first airing.

via venturebeat.com

Odd news in the conflagration-of-media category. First a Twitter Tv show (Shit Your Dad Says), and now a mobile game-inspired TV game show?

This signals bizarre things ahead.

Amazon Cloud Player: First Impressions

Even from my short test, it became apparent that Amazon wasn’t launching some half-baked product; Cloud Player is a fully functional, very usable streaming music player that could even make iTunes obsolete for many people, and its ability to play on-device and cloud-based music could quickly make it Android’s killer app.

Amazon has thrown down the gauntlet and set a high bar for cloud-based music streaming. Apple and Google, which are expected to launch their own cloud players sometime this year, will have to match Amazon on usability and price if they’re going to compete.

Very exciting news. But where’s my iPhone app?!

Anyone know if it’s possible to use the in-phone browser to access the Amazon music cloud?

Update: Actually, Mashable says no.  But: How to Use Amazon Cloud Player with iOS Devices.

iMovie And Garageband For iOS Announced, Looks Good On iPad 2

Today, Apple announced new versions of iMovie and Garage band for iOS 4.3. Apple says they have set the bar high for devs with the release of the two apps and hope devs build on what they’ve seen in Apple’s programming capabilities.

iMovie on iPad gets a bunch of the same features found in the OS X version. Precision editor, multitrack audio recording, new themes, AirPlay to Apple TV, and sharing of HD videos are just some of the features included. It’s going to cost $4.99 when it releases March 11th.

…and so the iPad becomes a media production device, not just a vehicle for consumption. I’m going to lobby my film school to adopt a herd of these puppies.

Search Optimization and Its Dirty Little Secrets – NYTimes.com

The company bested millions of sites — and not just in searches for dresses, bedding and area rugs. For months, it was consistently at or near the top in searches for “skinny jeans,” “home decor,” “comforter sets,” “furniture” and dozens of other words and phrases, from the blandly generic (“tablecloths”) to the strangely specific (“grommet top curtains”).

This striking performance lasted for months, most crucially through the holiday season, when there is a huge spike in online shopping. J. C. Penney even beat out the sites of manufacturers in searches for the products of those manufacturers. Type in “Samsonite carry on luggage,” for instance, and Penney for months was first on the list, ahead of Samsonite.com.

With more than 1,100 stores and $17.8 billion in total revenue in 2010, Penney is certainly a major player in American retailing. But Google’s stated goal is to sift through every corner of the Internet and find the most important, relevant Web sites.

Does the collective wisdom of the Web really say that Penney has the most essential site when it comes to dresses? And bedding? And area rugs? And dozens of other words and phrases?

The New York Times asked an expert in online search, Doug Pierce of Blue Fountain Media in New York, to study this question, as well as Penney’s astoundingly strong search-term performance in recent months. What he found suggests that the digital age’s most mundane act, the Google search, often represents layer upon layer of intrigue. And the intrigue starts in the sprawling, subterranean world of “black hat” optimization, the dark art of raising the profile of a Web site with methods that Google considers tantamount to cheating.

This is a fantastic story, a modern day tale of intrigue and Machiavellian political influence, questioning the Google SEO sausage factory. Even better, the article reminds us every day, that the NYT proves journalism is alive and kicking in 2011.

In NBC Deal, Comcast Gives Up Management Role at Hulu – NYTimes.com

In its successful bid to acquire NBC Universal, Comcast was not forced to sell off any assets. It did agree, however, to give up NBC’s management role in Hulu, the premier online TV Web site, while retaining a financial stake.

I think everyone can agree, this vested interest had to divest iteself a little bit, at least spiritually.

Facebook Woos Big Media

Facebook and Time Warner are now talking about using the social network’s login system to “authenticate” cable subscribers who want to watch online video from cable channels like TBS and HBO. Sources familiar with the companies’ plans say they are in early stages, but that the two companies are hoping to link up first with Verizon’s FiOS TV  service.

Nifty. I wonder, though, if Facebook will share your private data with TWC? That’s not an option I’d consider too seriously given the infoscape and TWC’s past history…

MediaShift: Who Owns Your E-Book of ‘War and Peace’? Probably Not You

If we are talking about an e-book version of the latest translation that was bought online and downloaded to an e-reader or other mobile device, then the question of ownership of the copy is not so simply answered. Unlike works published in print, electronic works are typically sold subject to agreements, in transactions that look less like an outright sale and more like a limited license.

I can’t wait to hear where sites like this one fall in terms of ownership and copyright law; Is curation an artistic process subject to some of the same privileges? My gut says so; I am adding value and perspective simply in the act of collection and filtration. Not sure about the courts, though.

Lefty Startup Offers Free Apps for Democratic Candidates

free-apps.pngThe founders of Campaign Live want to level the playing field for political candidates running for state, county and local office – if those candidates are Democrats.

The month-old company has been offering Facebook, MySpace, Web and mobile Web apps for between $0 and $999, depending on a client’s ability to pay. But today Campaign Live announced a generous promotion: free apps for any Democratic candidate during election season between now and Nov. 2.

Man Scrawls World’s Biggest Message With GPS ‘Pen’ | Gadget Lab | Wired.com

How appropriate that an author advocating the power of individuals to effect change when committed and empowered, is represented by a lone man driving across the country (semi-aimlessly) with a single-minded purpose. I’m not a huge Ayn fan, but I respect the effort.

I find myself wondering what format other famous authors’ messages would take. The Marxist crowdsourcing photomosaic? The Kafkian rotoscope abstraction? A Borges mashup of Life In a Day-style parallel narratives? The possibilities are endless.