Rabb.it wants to launch its OS X-only video chat app on publishers’ websites, with a little help from WebRTC. Read more »
Rdio launched its music subscription service in 20 additional countries late Monday, bringing the total number of countries Rdio is available in now to 51. The new markets include 13 Latin American countries, Israel, South Africa, the Dominican Republic and a few smaller countries in Europe. The expansion could give Rdio a chance to leapfrog Spotify in some of these markets: The bigger competitor is thus far only available in 28 countries.
A famous rap group says in a new court filing that GoldieBlox, a maker of girls toys, had no right to use its song as part of a clever marketing campaign about girl empowerment. The group may be right. Read more »
Newspapers and social media are seen as opposite ends of the media spectrum now, and in many cases as adversaries — but not all that long ago, newspapers themselves were a very powerful form of social media Read more »
Publishing analytics startup Parse.ly has released a report highlighting the top screen sizes on which its customers’ readers are consuming news content. Desktops and laptops still dominate overall, but Apple is king of the mobile devices. Read more »
It would be nice if both traditional and new-media outlets would do a little more checking before they report on something — but how much responsibility do the perpetrators of hoaxes bear for the perpetuation of untruths? Read more »
Three independent bookstores lost an effort to sue Amazon and the Big 6 publishers over “digital rights management” systems that prevent users from transferring books off of Kindle devices and apps. Read more »
Chromecast now plays local and cloud content, thanks to support for Plex, Avia and Realplayer Cloud. The streaming stick also added Revision3, Vevo, Viki and others. Read more »
Apple is complaining about a court monitor’s aggressive antitrust tactics. It turns out the company has a point — and a federal judge is over-stepping her authority, according to an antitrust expert. Read more »
Many users of the pornographic streaming-video service Redtube have received letters asking them to pay hundreds of euros per viewed clip. The illegality of viewing streams of copyright-infringing material is questionable, as are the methods used to identify the users. Read more »
Trinity Mirror is experimenting with two sites aimed at social-sharing or “viral” content, and the most recent of these — called Ampp3d — is aimed at trying to make data-driven journalism and news stories more shareable Read more »
Firefox’s nightly version got support for Google’s VP9 video codec a few days ago, Firefox Aurora users will be able to use the codec later this week. Read more »
Time Warner Cable’s incoming CEO is open to adding Netflix’s app to his company’s set-top-box. Rob Marcus, who will begin his gig as CEO of Time Warner Cable In January, said as much at the UBS Global Media & Communications Conference in New York Monday, according to Variety. That’s somewhat different from Comcast, whose CEO recently said that a partnership with Netflix is “not really a high priority” for his company. Netflix has started to work with ISPs overseas to get its app onto their set-top-boxes, but Netflix CEO Reed Hastings has said that he only wants these partnerships if his app gets prominent placement on set-top-boxes.
I’ve been testing Sonos’ new entry-level Play:1 speaker for a little over a month now, and I’ve learned to love the device, but also gotten frustrated by some of its shortcomings. Read more »
Google is reportedly working on a Nexus-branded TV set-top box. But how much of this is really about wooing consumers? Read more »
The New York Times has a new online tool and Twitter feed that analyzes every fourth down in every game and gives its analysis in real time. Fans, commentators and even bosses have yet another means by which to second guess coaches’ decisions. Read more »
Yahoo has snapped up the team behind concert live streaming platform Evntlive. Read more »
Hisense is the latest to drop the Google TV brand for its new generation of Android-based TV devices. The company announced this week that it is building a new TV set dubbed the H6 SMART TV that features “the latest Google services for TV powered by Android 4.2.2″ (hat tip to Engadget). The H6 will come in 40-inch, 50-inch, and 55-inch, and Hisense is also building a new set-top-box dubbed the Pulse PRO, which will replace the Hisense Pulse Google TT box. We reported first in October that Google was phasing out the Google TV brand as it merges the platform with Android.
It’s a return to true independence for YouTube-born The Young Turks, which right from the beginning of its day-long livestream supporting its close-to-ending Indiegogo campaign, focused on hard news laced with big opinions. Read more »
Netflix may call itself a next-generation TV network, but it’s fundamentally changing how we watch television, and in turn define ourselves as a nation, argues Tim Wu in a piece for the New Republic. Wu retells some of Netflix’s earlier original content efforts, and argues that the company’s recent shows aren’t about mass culture but about intense niche fandom. Definitely worth a read.
Some Chromecast users are starting to report that they have received the latest firmware update for Google’s TV dongle, and the most prominent change seems to be an even more subdued home screen. Gone is the big “ready to cast” tag line, as well as the Google-colored status bar. Instead, Google is introducing photo credits, an indication that the company may be opening up Chromecast backgrounds to a wider array of sources, possibly at some point including a user’s personal photos. You can check out some photos of the new Chromecast home screen here and here, and join folks speculating about other features of this update on Reddit.
Bonjour and guten Tag: Netflix executives have visited Germany and France as they are looking for additional markets to launch their service. Read more »
Former Wall Street Journal writer Jessica Lessin has launched a subscription-only news site called The Information, but there are a few things about hard paywalls that she should keep in mind Read more »
Medium has launched a redesign focusing more on the visual power of its posts, and has also changed the way that collections work to give more power to collection curators or “editors” Read more »
This morning, an email from a PR agency titled “Netflix likely to end binge watching in 2014″ hit my inbox, responding to this week’s announcement that the streaming service’s first animated original Turbo Fast will be released in installations, as opposed to making the entire season available on day one. Then, a little later, another email, this time from Netflix: “House of Cards returns for second season Friday February 14.” In one big swoop, ready to binge. No change of heart, after all. So why did Netflix divvy up Turbo Fast? Business Week has the answer, House of Cards star Robin Wright has no comment.
Media center app Plex could be coming to Chromecast soon: A recent version of Plex’s server software already includes a Chromecast configuration file. Read more »
Beats Music will launch its music subscription service in January, likely at CES, and the company is partnering with AT&T to get on people’s mobile phones. Read more »
Should Twitter users be held in contempt of court if they retweet information about a sensitive court case? The UK government is reminding them of the risk. Read more »
Wouldn’t it be cool to use any handset to control your TV or to share media around your home? A deal to put Qualcomm’s AllJoyn protocol on LG Smart TVs brings that reality closer. Read more »
As music subscription services are looking to bring their apps to the big screen, they might want to consider to take a closer look at Instagram and Co. Read more »
Everyone from BuzzFeed to the Washington Post seems to be chasing after viral content because of the traffic it brings — but all this does is reinforce how doomed the pageview-based model really is Read more »
Hotfile, a file-sharing locker, will pay $80 million to settle a copyright infringement case with the movie industry. The move comes after a judge ruled in August that it lost safe harbor protection. Read more »
After an increasing backlash from some high-profile musicians, Spotify is going on the offensive by sharing some information on how it generates money for the music industry. Aside from average pay-outs, which range from $0.006 to $0.0084 per play, the service is also offering musicians detailed statistics, and even an additional revenue stream: Spotify has teamed up with Topspin to allow bands to sell merchandise through its service.
Rdio named Anthony Bay as its new CEO Tuesday. Bay joins the digital music subscription service from Amazon, where he was working as Global head of Digital Video. That’s an interesting background, considering that Rdio also is operating a digital video service called Vdio – but for now, Bay seems to be concentrated on Rdio’s music business, as the company’s press release doesn’t mention Vdio with a single word. Of course, it’s not like Rdio won’t keep Bay busy: The company has been trying to catch up with Spotify by partnering with radio network Cumulus to launch free, ad-supported services. But making the numbers work hasn’t been easy for Rdio, which recently laid off a reported 35 employees.
The tech world is wondering how Apple plans to utilize the assets it acquired by buying Topsy, which focuses on collecting and analyzing Twitter data. I suspect Apple is trying to fill a big data void in its platform battle against Google. Read more »
Online video service Blip is trying to scale down from 900,000 publishers to just a few thousand serialized shows. That process is anything but painless. Read more »
It’s true: The Chernin Group has acquired a majority stake in Crunchyroll, an online video service specialized in Anime. Read more »
Apple has acquired social search engine Topsy, a move that will give Apple access to a wealth of real time data from Twitter. Read more »
Time Warner Cable knows that some of its customers don’t care about 300 channels. The company is now offering a bundle of local channels and HBO — but is it really a good deal? Read more »
Getting local video and images from an Android device to a connected TV, Xbox, Apple TV or other device just got a lot easier. AllCast, now available in beta, streams that content over Wi-Fi from an Android smartphone or tablet. Read more »