The Morning Lowdown 01.03.11


Credit: Corbis / Patricia Curi

»  Publishers are very hopeful about the launch of a Google (NSDQ: GOOG) “digital newsstand.” In recent weeks, Google has told publishers it would accept a smaller cut of Android apps for magazines and newspapers than the 30 percent cut Apple (NSDQ: AAPL) general takes on iTunes sales. But publishers aren’t sure about the timing of Google’s digital newsstand. And one publisher who claims to have been briefed by Google says the search giant isn’t completely committed to it. [WSJ]

»  In addition to acquiring tech companies left and right, AOL (NYSE: AOL) is also interested in doing some hiring in Silicon Valley. TechCrunch’s Michael Arrington mocks a billboard posted by his current employer that seeks to entice Valley workers to leave their current jobs and give AOL a try. [TechCrunch]

»  Facebook, which raised a $200 million “cushion” from Russia’s Digital Sky Technologies a year and a half ago, has now raised an additional $450 million from Goldman Sachs. DST also kicked in another $50 million this time out as well. The $500 million deal values the social net at $50 billion — more than companies like eBay (NSDQ: EBAY), Yahoo (NSDQ: YHOO) and Time Warner (NYSE: TWX). The terms allow Goldman the right to sell up to $75 million to DST. Meanwhile, our Staci D. Kramer takes a look at where the money’s likely to go, since an IPO doesn’t appear to be imminent. [Dealbook]

»  For those publishers hoping that Google and Apple will save its businesses with magazine and newspaper apps is ultimately a losing strategy, argues venture capitalist Fred Wilson. Publishers would do better by adding content filters and curating items their audience is interested in. [AVC via GigaOm]

»  The FTC’s proposal that a “Do Not Track” button be added to browsers hasn’t focused much on what to do about mobile. Well, the Mobile Marketing Association isn’t waiting around. Before the FTC turns its attention to the mobile space, the MMA plans to craft a series of mobile privacy guidelines this year. [Mediaweek]

»  By and large, the sales figures for iPad magazine apps haven’t been great. Why? Frédéric Filloux has some ideas: the competition between the same digital and print product for roughly the same audiences, and the relatively high prices are just some. But it’s only been a half year and it’s hard to judge the first steps. [MondayNote]

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